HUNDREDS OF SHOPS, THOUSANDS OF BRANDS, MILLIONS OF MUST-HAVES
Clearwater, FL 33761 â€˘ westfield.com
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Heather Turk, Nancy Foster, Matt Seli, H. Wadowski, Joel Poiley, Gabriele Walkow, Sandra Chambers, Sandi Mckenna, Misty Wells, Lynn Seldon, Marcia Biggs and Sheri Wilken
Reg Garner, visitstpeteclearwater.com, Bradenton Area Convention & Visitors Bureau, Chiles Restaurant Group, Renee McVety, The Beaches of Fort Myers & Sanibel, Charlotte Harbor Visitor & Convention Bureau, Discover The Palm Beaches, Visit Panama City Beach, Emerald Coast Convention & Visitors Bureau, Amelia Island Visitors & Convention Bureau, Laurie Ross Photography, John Collins, Brian James Gallery Photography, Sunken Gardens, Skip Milos/Tampa Bay Rays, Salvador Dali Museum Inc., Morean Arts Center, Thomas U. Gessler, B. Lively/Barry Lively Images, Green Bench Brewing Co., Pinellas Ale Works, Sundial St. Pete, The Kimpton Hotel Zamora, Rick Falkenstein, Sandi Mckenna, Safety Harbor Resort & Spa, Manstrom Photography/courtesy of Loews Don CeSar, Sandpearl Resort Clearwater Beach, Wayne Cathel/Belleair Images, Ashleigh Crowe, Shannon Leah Batton, Hyatt Regency Clearwater Beach, Hilton Clearwater Beach, Cooters Restaurant & Bar, Sheraton Sand Key Resort, Michael Scheuer, Columbia Restaurant Group, Alligator Attraction, Lightheart Photography, John Athanason/Weeki Wachee Springs State Park, Mike Womack, Sheri Wilken, Mote Marine Laboratory, Boca Grande Chamber of Commerce, Cindy Brown, Captain Lori Deaton, Loving Light Yoga, Joao Pollo, Tid Griffin, @spqrguymontag, Manatees Pizza, Father and Son Pizzeria, The Canyons Zip Line & Canopy Tours, Hennessey Arabians, Silver Springs State Park, Airports Worldwide, The Orlando Eye, Madame Tussauds, SEA LIFE Aquarium Orlando, Greg j. Piecora, Debra Ellen Hartman, Nicole O’Brien Photography, Lynn Seldon Ink, exploreasheville.com, John Warner, Bondfire Restaurant Group, Brentwood Restaurant & Bistro, Palmetto Dunes Oceanfront Resort, Heritage Golf Group, The Sea Pines Resort/Rob Tipton, Ballastone Inn, Gastonian Inn, Printmakers Inn, Clearwater Beach Marriott Suites on Sand Key
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Thank you for choosing Allegiant! We work hard every day to offer you the best deals on travel to make you and your wallet happy. From the theme parks of Orlando to the beaches of Southwest Florida, flights to your favorite destinations have never been more affordable. This summer will be a particularly exciting one for Allegiant as we launch expanded summer service from Myrtle Beach and Savannah/Hilton Head. Allegiant also recently became the first-ever “Official Passenger Airline Partner” for NASCAR. This new partnership will allow race fans to take advantage of Allegiant’s ultra-low fares in more than 20 NASCAR race markets. Sunseeker offers an in-depth look at our most popular destinations and provides information on the best places to eat, drink and play. Amazing Amelia Island awaits on page 11. On page 18, learn about St. Petersburg: A City of Reinvention. Tango with tarpons on Fort Myers Beach and Boca Grande on page 52 and discover 360 degrees of family fun in Orlando on page 63. Then on page 72, find out why South Carolina’s Hilton Head Island has been named the 2016 North American Golf Destination of the Year. We hope you continue taking advantage of our low fares and nonstop flights for your travel needs. Thanks again for choosing Allegiant and have a great trip!
Maurice J. Gallagher CEO/Chairman Allegiant Travel Company
A ONE-OF-A-KIND VACATION DESTINATION
From its beautiful beaches to its culture and charm, St. Petersburg is a destination unlike any other in the state of Florida. This vibrant city is sure to have something for everyone to enjoy during their Allegiant vacation, whether it’s a trip to one of its many museums or a baseball game at Tropicana Field. With several revitalized “districts”—boasting everything from art galleries to craft breweries—for guests to discover, it’s easy to see why St. Petersburg has become one of Florida’s most buzzed about vacation spots in recent years. For more information on all this unique city has to offer, visit stpete.org.
AMAZING AMELIA ISLAND
SAY “I DO” AT SUNKISSED RESORTS
THE TARPON TANGO
CALENDAR OF EVENTS A Sampling of Florida Events
47 WEEKI WACHEE SPRINGS Visit the City of Live Mermaids
THE EMERALD COAST Get a Little Sand in Your Soul
49 TARPON SPRINGS An Eclectic Seaside Community
11 AMAZING AMELIA ISLAND Where Paradise and Perfection Meet!
Cover photo and lead table of contents photo courtesy of visitstpeteclearwater.com
18 ST. PETERSBURG/ST. PETE BEACH A City of Reinvention and So Much More 28 ST. PETE/CLEARWATER/SAFETY HARBOR From Charming Havens to Romantic Resorts 33 CLEARWATER BEACH Great Eats, Activities and Action in Paradise
50 SARASOTA Discover What’s Under the Sea 52 CHARLOTTE HARBOR/FORT MYERS Fishing, Fitness, Food and Fun
A GOLFER’S PARADISE 72 SAVANNAH/HILTON HEAD Golfing Galore and Romantic B&B’s 77 BUY ONBOARD 79 ALLEGIANT VACATIONS Visit Universal Orlando Resort’s Many Attractions 80 MAKE-A-WISH
59 SANFORD/ORLANDO Come and play!
82 ALLEGIANT ROUTE MAP
65 OCALA/MARION COUNTY Home to Abundant Outdoor Activities
84 ALLEGIANT TEAM MEMBER SPOTLIGHT
66 ASHEVILLE Take a Sweet, Artistic Safari
70 MYRTLE BEACH Out-of-the-Box Foodie Destinations
FOR OUR PASSENGERS
82-83 ROUTE MAP
87 BEVERAGES SUNSEEKER
CALENDAR OF EVENTS MAY - JULY
TAMPA | ST. PETE | CLEARWATER St. Pete/Clearwater is America’s only destination with two beaches in the top 5 of TripAdvisor’s 2016 Travelers’ Choice Awards of the Top 25 U.S. Beaches. Beautiful Clearwater Beach scored the #1 spot and laid-back St. Pete Beach landed at #4. This sun-kissed area along the Gulf of Mexico is the perfect vacation destination for Allegiant travelers!
ST. PETE - St. Pete Pride
The St. Pete/Clearwater event scene heats up in the summer. The Sunsets at Pier 60 Daily Festival on Clearwater Beach celebrates the sinking of the sun on another perfect day with artisans, street performers and world-famous Pier 60 sunsets. Catch a free outdoor movie under the stars at Sunset Cinema at Pier 60.
SARASOTA - May Curtain Call
SARASOTA | BRADENTON Sarasota’s Siesta Beach, on Florida's Gulf Coast, has been recognized as #3 in TripAdvisor’s 2016 Travelers' Choice Awards of the Top 25 U.S. Beaches. Also overlooking the sparkling Gulf of Mexico, Bradenton area beaches offer up spectacular sunsets. Be sure to savor the sand, sea and sun here!
BRADENTON - Snooty the manatee
This spring celebrate May Curtain Call and take a seat in one of Sarasota County’s many theater venues. Bradenton, home to Snooty, the world’s oldest living manatee, is gearing up for his 68th birthday with spectacular mid-July celebrations. Visit Snooty at the popular South Florida Museum.
UPCOMING EVENTS Downtown Bradenton’s Pickin’ Picnic, May 7, centers on the sounds of local and national indie, blues, rock and folk bands. Or head to Food and Wine on Pine, a culinary and cultural experience, May 7 in Anna Maria. Taste the spice of Sarasota County during Savor Sarasota Restaurant Week, June 1-14. See performances by established and emerging musicians at the Sarasota Music Festival, June 5-June 26. The Sarasota Improv Festival, July 14-16, promises laughs galore!
BRADENTON - Food and Wine on Pine 4
Photo of St. Pete Pride courtesy of visitstpeteclearwater.com; Sarasota Curtain Calll by Renee McVety; Snooty the manatee courtesy of Bradenton Area Convention and Visitors Bureau; Food and Wine on Pine courtesy of The Chiles Restaurant Group
Whet your appetite on May 6 at the Clearwater Beach Taste Fest and then embark on a food adventure during Clearwater Beach Restaurant Week, May 9-22. Enjoy St. Pete Pride Weekend, home of Florida's largest Gay Pride celebration, June 24-26. The Saturday night block party and parade draw more than 200,000 people! Clearwater Celebrates America on July 4th in Coachman Park with free family festivities. Dunedin Orange Festival, July 9, features music, food and entertainment.
FORT MYERS | PUNTA GORDA If the vibrant Southwest Florida cities of Fort Myers and Punta Gorda are your destination on this Allegiant trip, experience world-class adventures, a rich history, and abundant activities and events. Discover a piece of Florida to make your own!
PUNTA GORDA Blues, Brews & BBQ Fest
From Sanibel Island’s magnificent fireworks, Cape Coral’s Red, White and Boom! and downtown Fort Myer’s July 4th Freedom Fest to Englewood’s Firecracker Festival and the July 4th celebrations at Punta Gorda’s Fishermen’s Village and Laishley Park, patriotic family fun is the order of the day here.
UPCOMING EVENTS A 100 percent purse makes the "Ding" Darling & Doc Ford's Tarpon Tournament on Fort Myers Beach, May 6-7, the hottest competition on the water. Boca Grande’s World’s Richest Tarpon Tournament, May 19-20, offers prize money totaling $80,00. Don’t miss Punta Gorda’s Blues, Brews & BBQ Fest, June 25, and go wild at Pine Island’s MangoMania Tropical Fruit Festival, July 16-17.
ORLANDO | SANFORD From Orlando’s beloved theme parks to thriving downtown Orlando, there is something for everyone at this popular year-round Allegiant destination. Or head to the allure of historic downtown Sanford, listed on the National Register of Historic Sites.
Photo of Blues, Brews & BBQ Fest courtesy of Charlotte Harbor Visitor and Convention Bureau; Boca Grande Tarpon Tournament courtesy of The Beaches of Fort Myers & Sanibel/fortmyers-sanibel.com; Star Spangled Sanford by Reg Garner; Palm Beach Sunfest courtesy of Discover The Palm Beaches
BOCA GRANDE World's Richest Tarpon Tournament
Sanford’s Alive After 5 is Central Florida’s largest recurring monthly street party—it’s free and held on the second Thursday of each month. Take a walking tour of the art venues located in historic downtown Sanford during the Sanford Art Walk, held the third Saturday of every month.
UPCOMING EVENTS Attend the region's premier food and wine pairing event, Heart of Florida United Way’s Chef’s Gala, May 21, at Epcot World Showcase, Walt Disney World Resort. Make plans to attend Sanford’s Memorial Day Parade and Remembrance Ceremony, May 30. At Westgate River Ranch & Rodeo the skies will light up with fireworks on July 2 after the rodeo. The July 4th Star Spangled Sanford extravaganza celebrates America with fireworks launched over Lake Monroe.
FORT LAUDERDALE | PALM BEACH SANFORD - Star Spangled Sanford
These two gems promise to be South Florida’s hot spots this summer—sizzling with endless fun! Vast beaches, exciting community events, a wave of waterfront activities and unique, eclectic shopping and dining beckon. Bring the entire family to West Palm Beach’s 4th on Flagler—for a supersized Independence Day celebration that lasts an entire weekend and includes three stages of entertainment and an 18-minute fireworks extravaganza over the Intracoastal Waterway.
PALM BEACH - SunFest
The Super Bowl of Air Shows returns when the Fort Lauderdale Air Show soars over the oceanfront, May 7-8. Head to Fort Lauderdale’s Xtreme Action Park for an Uptown Block Party, June 11. Celebrate theatre at the Palm Beach Shakespeare Festival, July 7-10 & July 14-17, with a live performance of “The Taming of the Shrew”. See what’s brewing at the Palm Beach Summer Beer Fest, July 23.
Stunning Clearwater Beach
FLORIDA’S AWARDWINNING BEACHES THE SUNSHINE STATE SCORES BIG! By Nancy Foster
he results are in and the winners announced. Due to millions of traveler reviews and ratings over a 12-month period, Florida now boasts 7 of the top 12 U.S. beaches in the highly coveted 2016 Trip Advisor Travelers’ Choice Awards. So the big question is—which one is ideal for you?
Fun in the sun on Panama City Beach
SIESTA KEY Sun-worshippers flock to Sarasota’s eightmile-long barrier island that lures with sparkling quartz sand and a very tropical vibe. Cruise the island on a motorized bike, hunt for the perfect shell, toast a glorious sunset and dine and shop at trendy Siesta Key Village. visitsarasota.org ST. PETE BEACH Beachgoers step directly from their resort’s back entrance onto glorious, powder-soft sand fronting warm Gulf of Mexico waters, superb for swimming and sunbathing. Blazing sunsets, al fresco dining and welcoming tiki bars have made this a vacation favorite for decades. visitstpeteclearwater.com PENSACOLA BEACH Situated on the Gulf Islands National Seashore, this beach beckons with swaying sea oats leading to crystal-clear waters. Deepsea fish or go on a dolphin-watching cruise, explore historic Pensacola Village and the National Naval Aviation Museum, and eat, shop and play at fashionable Pensacola Beach Boardwalk. visitpensacola.com 6
ST. AUGUSTINE BEACH The only Florida East Coast beach in this ranking attracts with colorful history, natural beauty, unique charm and the Atlantic’s sandy beaches. Must-stops include the 165-foot St. Augustine Lighthouse, Castillo de San Marcos National Monument and a romantic carriage ride through historic downtown streets. floridashistoriccoast.com PANAMA CITY BEACH Soft sand and pristine Gulf of Mexico waters entice with miles of idyllic shore perfect for swimming, scuba diving, fishing and snorkeling. For family fun, visit Shipwreck Island Waterpark, Goofy Golf and Pier Park. visitpanamacitybeach.com HENDERSON BEACH STATE PARK Boasting emerald-green waters and sugar-white sands, Destin’s unspoiled northwest Florida State Park features 6,000 feet of natural scenic shoreline. Winding nature trails and boardwalks lead to inviting spots for sunbathing, swimming and spectacular sunset viewing. Camping, picnicking and fishing are also offered. emeraldcoasting.com
Photo of Stunning Clearwater Beach courtesy of visitstpeteclearwater.com; Panama City Beach courtesy of Visit Panama City Beach
CLEARWATER BEACH What's not to love about Clearwater Beach? With seductively warm Gulf of Mexico waters, dolphins frolicking offshore, sugar-soft sand, the free nightly Sunsets at Pier 60 Festival, and accommodations and amenities all within walking distance, beach purists rate Clearwater Beach A+ for year-round fun in the sun. beachchamber.com
- Perdido each Ke B y ty i C
Walton B e a c ort h - F
ach - Na a Be var l o re ac s Be n Pe
Walton - P outh a - S na m
For nearly four decades, ResortQuest by Wyndham Vacation Rentals® has offered the largest selection of professionally managed vacation rentals in Northwest Florida. From Pensacola Beach, to Panama City Beach and all points between, including Fort Walton Beach & Destin, our love affair with beach vacations is thriving and we’re saving a spot just for you! For the best way to stay in Northwest Florida visit FlyToTheBeach.com or call (844) 602-4895.
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Water sports abound in Florida's panhandle
GET A LITTLE SAND IN YOUR SOUL ON FLORIDA’S ENCHANTING EMERALD COAST By Gabriele Walkow
mong many accolades, the Emerald Coast was recently recognized by TripAdvisor’s Travelers’ Choice Awards as one of the U.S’s “Top Destinations on the Rise for 2016”. Perfectly situated in the center of Northwest Florida’s panhandle on the dazzling Gulf of Mexico, the charming towns of Destin, Fort Walton Beach and Okaloosa Island are the heart of the Emerald Coast. Here, Allegiant travelers will discover blissful beaches, abundant activities and ample amenities. Famous for 24 miles of sugar-white sand beaches and shimmering emerald-green waters, the Emerald Coast is paradise perfected. Fabulous fishing, fresh seafood, scenic dolphin watching and pirate cruises, romantic sunset sailings, exciting water sports, stellar snorkeling and scuba diving, and an abundance of marine life complement the award-winning beaches and warm waters.
Families can also create memories in the sand with sandcastle lessons! The sandcastle coaches bring all of the tools and equipment for this fun two-hour family experience. Then splash around at an oversized water park, go mini golfing and go-kart racing at one of several entertainment centers or interact with a live dolphin at the Gulfarium Marine Adventure Park. Discover the area’s rich history and culture at no less than five museums. This stretch of paradise also has a 8
The Emerald Coast is also home to delectable and creative Gulf-to-table cuisine sure to delight every appetite. From rustic oyster bars to open-air, casual cafes to candlelit restaurants, many local eateries offer an abundance of freshly caught seafood, with several catches of the day. The heart of Florida’s Emerald Coast features a range of accommodation options from luxurious beachfront homes and condos, to beautiful hotels and charming coastal inns, to RV parks on the edge of the Bay. For more information on this enchanting destination, visit emeraldcoasting.com.
A pier fishing outing at Destin's HarborWalk Village
Tantalizing Gulf-to-table cuisine
Photos courtesy of the Emerald Coast Convention and Visitors Bureau
Nature lovers flock to the many parks of the Emerald Coast to go bird watching and hiking. Visitors can also go geocaching in various Okaloosa County Parks. This outdoor treasure hunt using GPS-enabled devices leads to containers called “caches” hidden at various locations. Golfers of all skill levels are challenged at the eight championship golf courses and country clubs. Sunny skies, coastal breezes and lush landscapes lend themselves to a wealth of ways to go Emerald Coasting—year-round.
vibrant arts and entertainment scene. Visitors can gallery hop, attend an arts festival and take in some theater—artistic inspiration is aplenty here.
Allegiant Goes Destin Ft. Walton Beach Okaloosa Island
Twenty-four miles of sugar-white sand beaches, Gulf to Table seafood and world-class family attractions await. The Emerald Coast is proud to be the newest destination to join the Allegiant family.
Memorable family time…
AMAZING AMELIA ISLAND WHERE PARADISE AND PERFECTION MEET AT THE OCEAN’S EDGE Story by Gabriele Walkow; Photos courtesy of Amelia Island Convention & Visitors Bureau
onveniently located just 30 minutes from Jacksonville International Airport, off the coast of northeast Florida, Allegiant travelers will discover delightful island charm complemented by an abundance of activities and amenities in this tropical paradise. An unhurried pace of life greets visitors, inviting them to kick back and reconnect with all things island. It’s time to make lifelong memories.
walked before you and learn about 4,000 years of history. For example, the Victorian courthouse, built in 1891 and located in the heart of town on Centre Street, is the oldest county courthouse in Florida that is still in use today. Hop on the Amelia Island Trolley for a one hour and 15 minute tour of downtown Fernandina, Old Town and the silk stocking district. Located at the end of Centre Street at the marina, tickets for this journey back in time
A visit to Amelia Island promises an experience that’s uniquely Floridian and countless travelers agree. Amelia Island consistently ranks among the "Top 10 U.S. Islands" and “Top 25 Islands in the World” as recognized by the Condé Nast Traveler Readers' Choice Awards. A timeless destination, 13 miles long and approximately two miles wide at its widest point, Amelia Island is home to breathtaking beauty, pristine parks, vast stretches of tranquil beaches and a rich history. World-class golf, soothing spas, luxury resorts, a roster of restaurants and a world of water activities await travelers of all ages.
Amelia Island is a timeless destination
Start your exploration at the newly reopened Amelia Island Welcome Center, located in the lovingly restored historic train depot at 102 Centre Street in Fernandina Beach. The expert ambassadors here ensure that visitors get the most from their vacation. Armed with brochures and information, head to Fernandina’s historic downtown district, a treasure trove of history and heritage with the 50-plus blocks listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Stroll the brick streets of this graceful port town where generations have
Explore unique shops and galleries FLORIDA
Scenic Fernandina Beach Marina are purchased from the driver. After the tour, be sure to stop by the Palace Saloon, Florida's longest-operating saloon and reportedly designed by Adolphus Busch of Anhesuer-Busch fame, for a cool one! Eight different flags have flown over Amelia Island since May of 1562 and this unique history is honored by the Amelia Island Museum of History, housed inside the old Nassau county jail. Catering to many interests and age levels, walking tours and docent-led museum tours are scheduled regularly. Donâ€™t miss the popular Ghost Tours, where guests tiptoe through dark streets and walk in the footsteps of a haunted past through the skillful storytelling of a guide. Time for fun in the sun? Prepare for natural Appalachian quartz beaches framed by sand dunes, some as high as 40 feet! Amelia Island is home to five main stunning beaches each with its own amazing appeal. Main Beach Park is Amelia Islandâ€™s most well known beachfront park and a family favorite with a playground,
A delectable shrimp basket!
picnic areas, two sand volleyball courts, a skate park, beach accesses, and restroom and outdoor shower facilities. Fort Clinch State Park boasts a fishing pier and a wide variety of family-friendly recreational activities including swimming, fishing, sunbathing, hiking, biking and wildlife viewing.
The Amelia Island Welcome Center is located in the historic train depot 12
FUN IN THE SUN Amelia Island is a perfect playground for travelers of all ages. Come play! PIRATE PLAYGROUND
Set in a breezy, shaded area behind the Atlantic Rec Center Auditorium and next to Egan’s Creek, at 2500 Atlantic Avenue in Fernandina Beach, this is a unique community-accessible playground. Integrating exercise, art, nature, music, imagination and local history for children of all physical and mental abilities, this park promises fun for all!
Shelling and shark tooth hunting are also popular here. Visit historic Fort Clinch and step back to the year 1864, as soldiers reenact life during the Civil War. Peters Point Beachfront Park is popular for its fishing, covered picnic areas and limited beach driving. This is also the departure point for memorable beachside horseback riding tours. American Beach, now listed on the Black Heritage Trail, is a historic beach community popular with African-American vacationers. Amelia Island State Park, at the southernmost end of Amelia Island, offers visitors a secluded setting for fishing, strolling and bird watching.
Savor the area’s natural beauty on a sunset sail from Fernandina’s historic waterfront. With an abundance of native wildlife, it’s not uncommon to spot dolphins, sea turtles, herons and even wild horses roaming free on Cumberland Island. Learn about local history and the fragile eco-system from the expert history and nature narrators.
Learn to “trike" fly and enjoy the beauty of the island flying just a few feet or up to a thousand feet off the ground. Experience pure joy with your hands on the control bar and fly like a bird! Or take to the skies with an experienced United States Parachute Association instructor for an exhilarating tandem skydive over Amelia Island. What a rush!
After a busy day of soaking up the sun, connecting with nature and discovering the area’s rich history, thoughts always turn to food and the anticipation of a delectable dining experience. Visitors can savor over 70 distinctive restaurants, sure to satisfy every appetite, on Amelia Island. Breakfast options include cozy cafes and sweet-smelling bakeries while a range of delis and diners, pubs and grills beckon invitingly for lunch. Dinner can be enjoyed oceanside, patioside or inside! The flavors of fine dining, international cuisine and fresh Florida seafood will tempt everyone’s palate. Amelia Island also offers unique boutique shopping, colorful art galleries, cool collectables and much more. Visitors can wander through a dizzying selection of fresh fruits, vegetables, organic products and specialty foods at the Amelia Farmers Market at The Shops of Amelia Island Plantation. - Continued on page 16
Enjoy the scenery of Amelia Island's fantastic white sand beaches and the beauty of the ocean by horseback. What greater freedom than riding miles of beach along pristine Atlantic shores? Choose from several beach horsebackriding outfitters.
TAKE TO THE SKIES
TAKE TO THE WATER
Enjoy the calm, clear waters surrounding Amelia Island from a canoe, kayak or wave runner and then head under the surface with scuba diving classes. For more information on these and many other activities, visit ameliaisland.com. FLORIDA
EXPERI E NCE S AR E T H E M O S T
Escape to a beach destination that can only be found in North Florida. Omni Amelia Island Plantation Resort is set on 1,350 acres of enchanting natural surroundings offering a scenic contrast between moss-covered oak trees and pristine beaches. With endless recreational options, cuisine to please every palate, championship golf, 23 tennis courts and a full service spa, youâ€™ll never want to leave the resort. Book the Extra Sun, Extra Fun package and receive up to $250 resort credit.
STAY HERE. PLAY HERE. Book a villa through The Villas of Amelia Island Plantation and experience miles of pristine beaches, one-of-a-kind marshlands and authentic Southern hospitality. You’ll also gain access to the amenities at Omni Amelia Island Plantation Resort, including the largest poolscape in North Florida, three world-class golf courses, a nature-inspired spa, kids activities and more. Book the Extra Sun, Extra Fun package and receive up to $250 resort credit (based on length of stay).
Book your next getaway | villasofameliaspecials.com | 888-261-6161
Extra Sun, Extra Fun Enjoy up to $250 in Resort Credit earn more each night you stay*
1 0 Re st a u ra nt s • G o l f • Te n n i s • S p a • K i d s Ad ve nt u re s 39 Beach Lagoon Rd | Amelia Island, FL | 32034 * R e s tr i c ti o n s m ay a p p l y. S e e we b s i te f o r d e t a i l s . © 2 0 1 6 A m e l i a I s l a n d P l a n t a ti o n
The chic Omni Amelia Island Plantation Resort The upscale, oceanfront Omni Amelia Island Plantation Resort is a vacation destination in itself. Nestled on 1,350 spacious acres with a 3.5-mile private beach and offering over 400 oceanfront guest rooms and suites with patios and balconies, guests can relax in oceanfront luxury. Featuring an infinity edge adult swimming pool, a 10,000-square-foot family friendly pool, a children’s splash park and two hot tubs, guests can lounge poolside on the largest multi-tiered pool deck in northeast Florida. Spend an afternoon kayaking and
LIFE IS BETTER AT OUR BEACH
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paddleboarding through preserved marshlands and then visit the nature center. Tee off on three championship golf courses or head to the award-winning courts at the Amelia Island Racquet Park. Still have energy to burn? Hit the fully equipped fitness center and then take some time out at the full-service spa before sampling the nine on-site dining venues, serving up casual to gourmet fare. The shopping village, complete with 14 boutiques and a French-style deli and market, is perfect for a shopping spree! Other island accommodation options range from quaint B & B’s to welcoming motels to luxury hotels. The Residence Inn Amelia Island is a modern all-suite hotel, just three miles from Fernandina Beach. The bright rooms range from studio to two-bedroom suites and come with full kitchens and living areas. A free cooked breakfast, an outdoor pool with hot tub, a fitness center and BBQ facilities round out the amenities. The Amelia Hotel at the Beach is located across from a white sand beach and is a fiveminute walk to restaurants. All rooms feature wet bars, mini fridges and microwaves and offer pool views and partial ocean views, some with balconies. The terrace suite has a jacuzzi tub and an oceanfront balcony. Stays include a free hot breakfast, afternoon cookies, an outdoor pool and 24/7 fitness center. Looking for a vacation rental to call your homeaway-from-home? With four offices and over 35 years of experience, ERA Fernandina Beach, Amelia Island’s full-service real estate and rental company, will help you find the perfect place to vacation or live.
1997 S FLETCHER AVE AMELIA ISLAND FL 32034 ~ (904) 206-5600 ~ www.ameliahotel.com 16
Amelia Island is home to a number of captivating festivals throughout the year, including the Amelia Concours d’Elegance, Isle of Eight Flags Shrimp Festival, Amelia Island Jazz Festival, Petanque America Open, the Holiday Home Tour and Dickens On Centre. For more information on this blissful barrier island, including a complete Calendar of Events, visit ameliaisland.com.
THE NEWLY REFRESHED RESIDENCE INN BY MARRIOTT AMELIA ISLAND Our suites offer guests flexible spaces and amenities to help maintain a healthy balance and routine while traveling. We invite you to come and experience the new features and styles of our island treasure.
LET’S BEACH IT! Come “Beach It” with the newly renovated Residence Inn by Marriott and enjoy the leisure life of Amelia Island! Newly Renovated Suites Two Beach Chairs with Umbrella Beach Bag with all the essentials Complimentary Island Shuttle Access to our outdoor pool, hot tub, fire pit, and outdoor kitchen
BOOK ONLINE WITH PROMO CODE CUE or CALL 866.245.6099
Amelia Island’s Tresure - DISCOVER US! -
Residence Inn® by Marriott Amelia Island 2301 Sadler Road, Fernandina Beach, FL 32034 904.277.2440 residenceinn.com/JAXAR
St. Petersburg is a vibrant and creative destination
A CITY OF REINVENTION REDISCOVER ST. PETERSBURG, FLORIDA By Heather Turk
nce a retirement haven thanks to its beautiful beaches and warm weather, the city of St. Petersburg has evolved in recent years into a vibrant and creative destination offering all of the amenities of a much larger city, but with a charming, smalltown feel. Sure there are still waterfront views in almost every direction, but there’s also a thriving arts community, a growing craft brew scene and exciting events attracting guests of all ages. It’s a city unlike any other in Florida. Offering something for everyone, the revitalized city now boasts several “districts” that are destinations unto themselves. Artists in the Warehouse Arts District, for example, are transforming the economically deprived area from 1st Avenue North to 10th Avenue South and from 16th Street to 31st Street into a community where visitors can see artists crafting their latest wares inside nearly 25 different studios—including the largest working pottery studio in the Southeast, the Morean Center for Clay. Operating out of the former Seaboard Railroad Station, visitors will discover functional and sculptural clay pieces by more than 100 artists on display. Workshops and classes are available, too, for those who want to get their creative juices flowing. At the Grand Central District, visitors will find more than a dozen antique/vintage shops in addition to a wide variety of restaurants and bars. The urban village, which extends from 16th Street to 31st Street and includes 1st Avenue North and South in addition to Central Avenue, also boasts Florida’s largest new and used bookstore, Haslam’s Book Store, and Pinellas County’s largest stained glass studio, Grand Central Stained Glass & Graphics. Attracting artists of all types, the district is home to Hideaway Cafe, a popular live music venue known for featuring both local and national touring musicians.
The EDGE District, meanwhile, features an eclectic mix of locally-owned and independent 18
boutiques, pubs, galleries and eateries all within an easy stroll of one another. Spanning seven blocks between Martin Luther King Street and 16th Street and 1st Avenue North and South, visitors will find everything from vintage furnishings to chic coastal décor, classic tattoo parlors to fine art galleries. Must-stop shops include the Bohemian apparel store Ashe Couture Boutique and the art gallery and custom framing shop ARTicles. While St. Petersburg has long been known for its many art galleries and museums, it’s also a great place to purchase art. Florida CraftArt, located in the Central Arts District of downtown St. Petersburg, features works by more than 250 of the state’s most talented artists. Shoppers will find everything from fine jewelry to home furnishings for sale inside its newly renovated retail gallery.
ARTicles, found in the EDGE District
Kyu Yamamoto giving a sculpting demonstration at the Clay Center of St. Petersburg during a Second Saturday ArtWalk
The Clay Center of St. Petersburg, which recently relocated to a more spacious facility in the Grand Central District, has its own retail gallery, too, where clay artists sell their creations. The largest art glass store in the Tampa Bay area can also be found in St. Petersburg at the Morean Glass Studio & Hot Shop on Central Avenue.
May 5, Radio on May 12, Searching for Sugar Man on May 19 and Labyrinth on May 26. All films begin at dusk with live music from local bands starting at 7 p.m. Naturally, this is just a taste of what awaits guests in St. Petersburg. For more on this reenergized city, visit stpete.org.
Photo of St. Petersburg at night courtesy of visitstpeteclearwater.com; ARTicles courtesy of Laurie Ross Photography; Kyu Yamamoto by John Collins; CraftArt courtesy of Brian James Gallery Photography; waterfall courtesy of Sunken Gardens; Tropicana Field by Skip Milos/Tampa Bay Rays
In addition to visiting individual businesses, art lovers can browse affordable new works from more than 40 galleries and studios during St. Petersburg’s Second Saturday ArtWalk, held every month from 5 to 9 p.m. in the Waterfront Arts, Central Arts, EDGE, Grand Central and Warehouse Arts districts. Of course, Mother Nature played a part in St. Petersburg’s beauty, too. In fact, one of the city’s most popular attractions showcases the area’s natural beauty. Sunken Gardens, a 100-year-old botanical paradise in the midst of the bustling city, features some of the oldest tropical plants in the region. Attracting thousands of visitors each year, guests can stroll along the garden’s lush pathways or book a guided tour with a docent to learn more about the “living museum.” St. Petersburg also scores a homerun with baseball fans, as the city’s own Tropicana Field has been home to the Tampa Bay Rays since 1998. Upcoming home games include the Tampa Bay Rays playing the Los Angeles Dodgers May 3-4, the New York Yankees May 27-29 and July 29-31, and the Boston Red Sox June 27-29. North American Soccer League’s Tampa Bay Rowdies play in St. Petersburg, too, with all home games scheduled at Al Lang Stadium in downtown St. Petersburg.
The retail gallery at Florida CraftArt in the Central Arts District
Sunken Gardens is a 100-year-old lush botanical paradise
The city hosts several other can’t-miss events throughout the summer including the annual St. Pete Pride Festival. Florida’s largest LGBT event, this year’s festival will take place June 24-26 at locations throughout the city and features a free concert, the state’s only nighttime Pride parade and the largest street festival in St. Petersburg. Movies in the Park is another popular event, attracting nearly 1,000 cineastes to North Straub Park in downtown St. Petersburg each Thursday in May to enjoy complimentary film screenings. This year’s lineup includes ¡Three Amigos! on
The Tampa Bay Rays at Tropicana Field FLORIDA
3 Daughters Brewing is St Petersburg's largest brewery
SOMETHING EXCITING IS BREWING ENJOY A TASTE OF ST. PETERSBURG’S BURGEONING CRAFT BREW SCENE
By Heather Turk
hile just a few years ago there wasn’t a single craft brewery in St. Petersburg, today the reenergized Florida city is home to more than a half a dozen craft breweries—all conveniently located near Central Avenue. Those staying downtown or in St. Pete Beach can easily take the Central Avenue Trolley to visit each location, so guests can savor as many selections as they desire. Here are a few breweries you won’t want to miss during your craft beer tour of St. Petersburg.
St. Petersburg’s largest craft brewery, at 222 22nd St. S., was named after its founders’ three little girls whose handprints can be found on the concrete bar in the tasting room. While younger guests can enjoy juice boxes during their visit, adults can relish 14 draught beers from more than 60 rotating recipes, including 3 Daughters Brewing’s flagship Beach Blonde Ale. For those who want a closer look at the brewing process, tours of the recently expanded facility are available for just $10 and include a pint of beer and a souvenir glass to take home. Live entertainment is offered on the weekends, too. 3dbrewing.com
GREEN BENCH BREWING CO.
Ranked as the 10th Best New Brewery to open nationwide in the past three years by USA Today 10Best, this innovative microbrewery at 1133 Baum Ave. N. is known for its envelope-pushing beers. Offering 15 to 20 selections on tap, guests can enjoy a diverse portfolio that includes Green Bench’s Saison de Banc Vert, which won a gold medal at the 2014 U.S. Open Beer Championship, and its Middle Eastern Brown Ale made with Yemeni spices, dates, raisins and Aleppo peppers. Visitors can drink their beer in the tasting room overlooking the 15-barrel 20
Innovative microbrewery Green Bench Brewing Co.
Pinellas Ale Works, one of the newest craft breweries
brewhouse or outside in the beer garden with covered patio. greenbenchbrewing.com
PINELLAS ALE WORKS
One of St. Petersburg’s newest craft breweries, beer drinkers can enjoy 16 beers on tap at this 15-barrel facility located at 1962 1st Ave. S. Boasting a spacious tasting room and a nice airy beer garden, guests can choose from a selection of American IPAs, pale ales and brown ales as well as traditional German-style beers. Be sure to try the Milk Bone, a café con leche-like sweet stout that’s brewed with lactose to give it extra body and some residual sweetness to balance out the finish. pawbeer.com
Photo of 3 Daughters Brewing by B. Lively/Barry Lively Images; Green Bench Brewing Co. courtesy of Green Bench Brewing Co.; Pinellas Ale Works courtesy of Pinellas Ale Works
3 DAUGHTERS BREWING
APRIL 20–JULY 9, 2016 Decorative Arts Galleries
Diaz is a multidisciplinary artist adept at reworking interior domestic spaces so that the most habitual of settings become distorted. Working in the Museum’s decorative arts galleries and period rooms, Diaz will create site-specific installations that disrupt notions of customs and home décor.
Visit mfastpete.org and download our app MFA Viewpoint
255 BEACH DRIVE NE, ST. PETERSBURG 727.896.2667 | mfastpete.org Image credit: Vanessa Diaz, Possibility of an Exit (installation detail), 2016. Photography by Lauren Lightbody.
The magnificent Dalí Museum
TRUE WORKS OF ART THREE ST. PETERSBURG MUSEUMS SURE TO LEAVE A LASTING IMPRESSION
By Heather Turk
iven the amount of artistic creativity found in St. Petersburg, it should come as no surprise that the city is home to several museums honoring some of the world’s most talented artists. From glass art to paintings and photography, the works on display at these three museums are sure to inspire and impress.
Photo of The Dalí Museum courtsey of ©2016–Salvador Dalí Museum, Inc., St. Petersburg, FL; Chihuly Collection courtesy of Morean Arts Center; The Museum of Fine Arts by Thomas U. Gessler
Presented by Morean Arts Center, guests can see a stunning collection of artwork by worldrenowned glass artist Dale Chihuly—including large-scale installations like Ruby Red Icicle Chandelier—in a unique waterfront building located at 400 Beach Dr. NE. Featuring a 20-foot sculpture created specifically for the site, the
building was designed by award-winning architect Albert Alfonso, with the art and the architecture working together to create a visitor experience unlike any other. With plans to move the Chihuly Collection to Central Avenue this fall, be sure to check out the pieces in this magnificent 10,000-square-foot setting while there’s still time. moreanartscenter.org/chihuly
THE DALÍ MUSEUM Showcasing the work of Salvador Dalí, this museum at One Dalí Blvd. features more than 2,100 pieces from the Spanish surrealist painter’s career. In addition to the permanent collection on display, which includes 96 oil paintings, guests will find temporary exhibits like “Disney and Dalí: Architects of the Imagination.” Running through June 12, this multimedia exhibition tells the story of the unlikely alliance between two of the most renowned artists of the 20th century. Special events are held throughout the year as well, including the popular summer Cult Classics series, where guests can enjoy free films, craft beer and local food truck fare in the museum’s Avant-Garden on the first Thursday of the month. thedali.org
MUSEUM OF FINE ARTS Visitors to the Chihuly Collection admiring Dale Chihuly’s Sunset Persian Wall, 2010
The beautiful Museum of Fine Arts
St. Petersburg’s first art museum, the Museum of Fine Arts at 255 Beach Dr. NE boasts an extensive collection of more than 20,000 objects, including major works by Claude Monet, PierreAuguste Renoir and Georgia O’Keeffe. It also features one of the largest and most respected photography collections in the Southeast. Complementing its permanent collection are several special exhibitions that change throughout the year, such as “Shana Moulton: Journeys Out of the Body.” Running June 18 through October 9, this exhibition marks the media artist’s first solo museum project in the United States. Featuring all 10 installments of her Whispering Pines video series, Moulton explores our obsession with self-help fads, wellness therapies and consumer culture as a whole. mfastpete.org FLORIDA
A striking sundial is the centerpiece of Sundial St. Pete
A HIDDEN GEM SUNDIAL ST. PETE HAS SOMETHING FOR EVERYONE By Joel Poiley
mong the many interesting facts about St. Petersburg is that it’s known as the Sunshine City, holding the Guinness World Record for the most consecutive days of sunshine—a stretch of 768 days that began in 1967. As an ode to this distinction, when developer Bill Edwards rebuilt and renamed the BayWalk shopping complex in downtown St. Petersburg in 2014 he wanted to honor the city’s reputation for sunshine. Edwards contracted Emmy Awardwinning production designer Rene Lagler to design a nearly three-story high sundial and the new name was born, Sundial St. Pete. The striking sundial is the centerpiece of the shopping complex courtyard. Surrounding the sundial is a fountain that cascades into a mosaic lagoon made from blue glass tiles, with six life-
size bronze sculptures of dolphins frolicking in and around the water. The open-air shopping center features a mix of Florida contemporary and traditional Mediterranean architectural styles with stuccofaced buildings and wrought iron touches. In addition to the eclectic artwork, Sundial is a perfect destination for visitors with upscale shopping, dining and nightlife. “Our goal was to create a world-class shopping and dining destination with something for everyone and all ages,” Edwards explained. Sundial St. Pete is a collection of local, regional and national shopping and dining. National shops include Chico’s, White House I Black Market, Swim’n Sport, Tommy Bahama and L.O.L Kids. Local shops range from Juxtapose Apparel and Studio to St. Petersburg-based fashion designer Tracy Negoshian’s clothing store to Jackie Z Style Co. and the Florida Jean Company. If you’re looking for something unique, try Marilyn Monroe’s Glamour Room, which is a different take on the spa experience. Or check out The Shave Cave, where men can enjoy a haircut or hot towel shave along with a local craft beer or soft drink.
Photos courtesy of Sundial St. Pete
An eclectic mix of local and national shops await
Restaurants include Ruth’s Chris Steakhouse, the Sea Salt seafood restaurant and the Locale Market, which features a gourmet grocery, wine bar and restaurant. Farmtable Kitchen highlights regionally sourced ingredients in dishes inspired by the farm-to-fork philosophy. Farmtable was named the number two restaurant in the area and Sea Salt the number two seafood restaurant by Tampa Bay Times food critic Laura Reiley. To complete the entertainment package there is also a Muvico complex with 19 theatres and an IMAX.
Sundial St. Pete pays tribute to the Sunshine City
For more information, go to sundialstpete.com FLORIDA
More margaritas. JustLetGo.com/allegiant
Sip tropical drinks at sand-in-your-toes beach bars. Plunge down a three story water slide. Master the art of paddleboarding. Dine. Shop. Watch the sunset in a beachside cabana. At TradeWinds, itâ€™s more than just a beach vacation!
ISLAND RESORTS ON ST. PETE BEACH
877.737.5125 | St. Pete Beach, FL
ST. PETE BEACH
The sumptuous 360° Rooftop at The Kimpton Hotel Zamora
SKY-HIGH COCKTAILS ROOFTOP BARS ON ST. PETE BEACH
Photo of 360° Rooftop at The Kimpton Hotel Zamora courtesy of The Kimpton Hotel Zamora; Hurricane Watch Rooftop twin bars by Rick Falkenstein; Level 11 by Sandi Mckenna
By Sandi Mckenna
he west coast of Florida is renowned for its sugar-sand beaches and stunning sunsets. There is no better place to take in the view and watch the crimson glow of the sun fade into the Gulf of Mexico than perched on a stool at one of these epic rooftop bars on St. Pete Beach.
360° ROOFTOP AT THE KIMPTON HOTEL ZAMORA Described as Spanish ancestry meets cool Mediterranean, the Kimpton Hotel Zamora’s 360° Rooftop has a subtle hipster feel and
Hurricane Watch Rooftop twin bars
is the perfect place to sip on an Elderflower Gimlet, Frozen Torched Cherry or a Spiced Pina Colada while taking in the breathtaking views of the Gulf of Mexico and the Intracoastal Waterway. Nosh on a cheese and charcuterie plate, ceviche or Grilled Oysters ala Rosemary from the vibrantly colored, plush cushioned lounges and settees. For a real splurge, reserve one of the VIP cabanas. 360° Rooftop is open Monday through Friday at 4 p.m. and weekends at noon. After 7 p.m., it’s 21+. thehotelzamora.com
HURRICANE WATCH ROOFTOP
The Hurricane Seafood Restaurant, located in St. Pete Beach’s historic Pass-A-Grille district, has been a happy hour staple for locals and visitors alike since it opened its doors in 1977. A rooftop deck with twin bars pours a potpourri of thirst quenching libations—from the Hurricane Rum Runner and Colossal Margarita to the Voodoo Bucket (made with five different Cruzan rums) or an ice-cold beer. Featuring a diverse menu that caters to all tastes and a laid-back atmosphere, visit the Hurricane for a rooftop experience you won’t soon forget. The Hurricane’s Rooftop Happy Hour runs from 12 p.m. until 6 p.m. thehurricane.com
LEVEL 11 ROOFTOP LOUNGE
Level 11 is perched atop the Grand Plaza Hotel and Beachfront Resort
Perched atop the iconic, circular Grand Plaza Hotel and Beachfront Resort, Level 11 is a rooftop artisan bistro and bar. The atmosphere is comfortable with a thoughtful and creative menu that includes Duck Bacon Potstickers, Kobe Beef and Ahi Sliders and Glazed Pork Shanks. Savor local brews and exquisite craft cocktails such as the Rosemary Lavender Lemonade—a blend of Tito’s vodka, St. Germain elderflower liqueur, lavender water, fresh lemon juice and a sprig of rosemary. Level 11 is open daily from 3 p.m. until 2 a.m. with food being served until 11 p.m. grandplazaflorida.com FLORIDA
Sunrise over Safety Harbor
WELCOME TO SAFETY HARBOR A CHARMING HAVEN ON TAMPA BAY By Nancy Foster
cenic, secluded and homey, tiny Safety Harbor, with a population of 17,000, is all this and more wrapped up into a package that hugs the western shoulder of Tampa Bay. Best of all, it is easily reached from popular St. Pete/Clearwater area beaches. This mostly residential community offers gorgeous sunrise views and a public marina famous for manatee viewing. The historic Safety Harbor Resort and Spa, opened in 1925, sits on natural mineral springs, deemed by Spanish explorer Hernando de Soto as â€œhealing waters." To this day the resort still uses that very same spring in their water treatments. Downtown Safety Harbor is a very walkable city complete with an old-fashioned gazebo, historic 300-year-old live oak tree, internationally
Historic Safety Harbor Resort and Spa
known Syd Entel Galleries, retail shops and a myriad of eateries. A recently launched historic marker program easily identifies century-old landmarks, so let your first stop be the Chamber of Commerce building at 200 Main Street (once site of the first town hall) where maps and friendly help are provided. Hungry visitors might choose to chow down at The Sandwich on Main for handcrafted sandwiches on homemade bread (think hearty muffalettas, reubens and Cubans), Whistle Stop Grill & Bar for fried green tomatoes and happy hour libations or Southern Fresh where the golden brown pan-fried chicken is pretty much legendary. Discover a quiet retreat at lush Philippe Park, which affords recreational opportunities for hiking, biking and picnicking. Explore historic landmarks including an authentic Tocobaga Native American midden and a marker lauding the former plantationâ€™s colorful owner, Frenchman Odette Philippe, whose main claim to fame was introducing the propagation of grapefruit to the state of Florida in the 1820s.
Should you wish to stay, Safety Harbor Resort and Spa offers tasteful rooms; creative, healthy dining; a 50,000-square-foot spa and fitness center; and fabulous views of Tampa Bay.
Lush Philippe Park 28
Vacation packages to Safety Harbor Resort and Spa and other area properties can be found at Allegiant.com. For more information on this charming haven, visit safetyharbor.com.
Photos courtesy of visitstpeteclearwater.com
Plan your visit to include the Third Friday Music Series, when multiple downtown blocks morph into a merry street festival complete with food and beverage vendors, live music and booths laden with handcrafts and wares. Other annual events include the waterfront 4th of July celebration and Harbor Sounds Oktoberfest.
Brandon 10023 E. Adamo Dr / 813-689-1188 Channelside 615 Channelside Dr Ste 113 / 813-221-2600 Clearwater 2800 Gulf To Bay Blvd / 727-797-4008 Clearwater Beach 381 Mandalay Ave / 727-443-7263 John’s Pass 192 Johns Pass Boardwalk W / 727-797-4668 North Tampa 13606 Bruce B Downs Blvd / 813-972-1682
Port Richey 5336 Treadway Dr / 727-841-0801 South Tampa 4420 W Gandy Blvd / 813-835-5164 Spring Hill 3437 Commercial Way / 352-666-9225 St Pete (4th Street) 4125 4th Street N / 727-822-6178 St Pete (Tyrone) 2250 Tyrone Square / 727-343-4947 Tampa 4215 W Hillsborough Ave / 813-885-3916
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249 WINDWARD PASSAGE | CLEARWATER, FL 33767 | 727.441.1790
A sunset kiss to tie the knot at Safety Harbor Resort and Spa
SAY “I DO” AT SUN-KISSED RESORTS ROMANTIC ST. PETE/CLEARWATER AREA WEDDING DESTINATIONS By Marcia Biggs
Photo of sunset kiss courtesy of Safety Harbor Resort and Spa; Don CeSar by Manstrom Photography/courtesy of Loews Don CeSar; Sandpearl beach wedding courtesy of Sandpearl Resort Clearwater Beach
hen it comes to the perfect destination to tie the knot, the Florida Gulf Coast and Tampa Bay can’t be beat. The beauty of a waterfront wedding is that it can serve double duty as a honeymoon spot, too. Most resorts have various options for flexible indoor/ outdoor ceremonies and receptions as well as on-site wedding planners to help with all the details. Here is just a sampling of popular St. Pete/ Clearwater area resorts where you can say, “I do.”
LOEWS DON CESAR HOTEL ST. PETE BEACH
Step inside this stately beachfront hotel and it’s easy to see why The Knot brides named the Don CeSar Best of the Best in 2009, 2010 and 2013. Offering impeccable service, awardwinning cuisine and a classic ambience, the legendary Pink Palace is as rich in luxury as it is
in history. A sweeping outdoor staircase and lush tropical landscape overlooking the Gulf provide a beautiful setting for a wedding. The hotel’s 11,000-square-foot Spa Oceana, romantic restaurants and private cabanas on the beach make this the perfect honeymoon destination. loewshotels.com/don-cesar/meetings/weddings
SANDPEARL RESORT CLEARWATER BEACH For those who love the sand and sea, the pearl of Clearwater Beach combines casual elegance and spectacular Gulf vistas on a breathtaking stretch of white sandy beach. An oasis of tranquility and tropical beauty with world-class service and cuisine, Sandpearl earns kudos nationally as a Silver LEED Certified resort embracing sustainability practices including food and wine that is all-natural and organic, upon request. Couples can choose to say their vows in a ballroom or banquet room, at the poolside waterfall or in a barefoot sand-in-your-toes beach ceremony. Walk up the beach for a lively scene offering restaurants, nightlife, shopping and watersports. sandpearl.com/weddings
SAFETY HARBOR RESORT AND SPA
The Don CeSar makes a colorful wedding backdrop
A sand-in-your-toes beach wedding at Sandpearl Resort
For a unique Florida waterfront wedding away from the hustle and bustle of the beaches, check into the charming Safety Harbor Resort and Spa overlooking peaceful Tampa Bay. This 172-room resort provides an intimate setting for picture-perfect indoor and outdoor weddings. The patio terrace, with its view of the Bay and adjoining reception tent, is perfect for smaller affairs both formal and informal. Inside, elegant ballrooms and waterfront banquet room space is available. Wedding parties can enjoy the perks of a 50,000-square-foot spa and fitness center complete with three pools, saunas and a full-service salon. safetyharborspa.com/weddingsspecial-occasions/wedding-information.htm FLORIDA
Guests will be all smiles after sampling some of Clearwater Beach’s finest fare
A FOODIE FAVORITE CLEARWATER BEACH RESTAURANT WEEK TANTALIZES TASTE BUDS By Heather Turk
ne of Florida’s most mouthwatering events returns for its seventh savory year this May—Clearwater Beach Restaurant Week!
Photos by Wayne Cathel/Belleair Images
Taking place May 9-22, this two-week culinary celebration offers guests a taste of some of the area’s most delectable restaurants as they compete for “Best in Class” in a variety of categories. Visitors can indulge in special prix fixe menus at participating restaurants for just $15 to $35 (some establishments offer special prix fixe lunch menus, too, priced from $10 to $15). They can sample each venue’s fare, then vote on their experience by filling out a ballot on what dishes/restaurants they thought were the best. The ballots will be tallied to determine which restaurants are truly tops with taste buds, and all entries received will also be put into a drawing for great prizes—including a stay at one of Clearwater Beach’s fine hotels! As an appetizer before the main course, Clearwater Beach Restaurant Week will kick things off with its annual tasting event, Clearwater Beach Taste Fest. Taking place May 6 from 6 to 9 p.m. on Beach Walk promenade, this scrumptious soiree allows participating restaurants the opportunity to showcase their signature cuisine and specialties to thousands of beach guests and local foodies in attendance. This year’s event will feature live entertainment by smooth jazz saxophonist Eric Darius as well as raffles, vendors and a dazzling fireworks display at 9 p.m. Admission, which includes entertainment and tastings, is just $30 for adults and $15 for children ages 6 to 13; children 5 and younger are free. Proceeds from Clearwater Beach Taste Fest will benefit the Morton Plant Mease Health Care Foundation, which provides philanthropic support to the not-for-profit hospitals of Morton Plant Mease Health Care. In honor of Morton
Plant Hospital’s 100th anniversary this year, chefs are being challenged to provide a hearthealthy appetizer on their prix fixe menus during Clearwater Beach Restaurant Week. That means diners can expect even more dishes that taste good and are also good for them! For more information on this year’s event, visit clearwaterbeachrestaurantweek.com.
Enjoy live entertainment at Clearwater Beach Taste Fest
Delightful dishes at Clearwater Beach Restaurant Week's kick-off party, Clearwater Beach Taste Fest FLORIDA
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Second Street Indian401 Rocks Beach, FL 33785 Indian Rocks Beach, FL 33785 HOTEL GUESTS RECEIVE A SPECIAL RATE AT SPLASH HARBOUR WATER PARK HOTEL GUESTS RECEIVE A SPECIAL RATE AT SPLASH HARBOUR WATER PARK
Waterslides ~ Lazy River Waterslides ~ Lazy River Splash Pad ~ Zero Entry Pool Splash PadShack ~ Zero Pool Snack ~ Entry Tiki Bar Snack Shack More ~ Tiki Bar & So Much Fun! & So Much More Fun!
INDIAN ROCKS BEACH
Welcome to Splash Harbour Water Park!
SPLISH-SPLASH AT SPLASH HARBOUR WATER PARK YOUR AQUATIC FUN ZONE! By Gabriele Walkow
his is a fabulous time of year to visit Florida and thereâ€™s no better place to beat the heat than splish-splashing at the brand new Splash Harbour Water Park. Conveniently located between Clearwater Beach and St. Pete Beach, Splash Harbour Water Park is your headquarters for aquatic fun! From thrilling waterslides to a relaxing lazy river, the whole family will be happy to spend the day here.
Photo of waterslide by Ashleigh Crowe; water mushrooms and lazy river by Shannon Leah Batton
"We are very thrilled to announce the opening of Splash Harbour Water Park perfect for all ages! Our staff cannot wait to see smiling faces enjoying our fun filled park," said Water Park Manager Nicole Guzman.
Locker rentals are available on a first come, first served basis for all of those extra items. Splash Harbour Water Park also provides tubes and U.S. Coast Guard approved life jackets free of charge. Relax and savor the sun on lounges and chairs scattered throughout the park. Visit splashharbourwaterpark.com for rates and hours of operation. Then, get ready for splishsplashing fun at Splash Harbour Water Park, your aquatic fun zone! Registered guests at the Holiday Inn Harbourside, Indian Rocks Beach, Fla., receive a special water park rate.
The fun begins with two large waterslides. One is a tube slide for single and double riders and the other one is a single rider body slide. Both slides end in the lazy river, which meanders for 600 feet along the adjacent Holiday Inn Harbourside, Indian Rocks Beach, Fla. What better way to spend part of the day than floating leisurely along the lazy river while the kids slide and splash? The little ones will be thrilled when they see the three smaller waterslides waiting for them at the Splash Pad. Delightful water activities such as a dumping bucket and an interactive water wheel will also keep the tikes busy all day long. The whole family will love the water mushrooms and ground sprays in the zero depth entry pool, which gradually goes to a depth of five feet. Being in the sun and water all day is sure to make everyone hungry. Visit the Snack Shak and Pool Bar, complete with beer and other alcoholic beverages, inside the water park to satisfy those appetites. Food and drinks are also available at Jimmy Guanaâ€™s Bar and Grill, a full-service, Key West-style restaurant located in the Holiday Inn Harbourside, Indian Rocks Beach, Fla.
The water mushrooms in the zero depth entry pool
The lazy river meanders for 600 feet FLORIDA
Making memories on Clearwater Beach
A KID’S PERFECT CLEARWATER BEACH DAY WHERE THE FUN NEVER ENDS By Nancy Foster
ith acres of sugar-soft sand and warm Gulf waters acting as nature’s perfect playground, Clearwater Beach makes for the ideal family getaway. Smiles and enthusiasm from kids of all ages are guaranteed from sunup to sundown. If staying at a water or beachfront resort, it can be tempting to linger by the crystalline pools and enjoy the in-house amenities, but a day spent offsite exploring sun, sand and water activities can lead to creating even more magical memories. Start with breakfast al fresco at your resort (watch offshore for playful dolphins), then pack up your beach gear and head to the public beach at Pier
60 Park. Pick up snacks, floats and beach towels at Pier 60 Concessions before claiming your stake at a colorful beach cabana ($30 for the day includes cabana/umbrella and two chairs). Turn the kids loose and let natural fun take center stage with shelling, wading, swimming and sandcastle building. At lunchtime, take a quick rinse under the outdoor showers before heading across the street to Crabby Bill’s Clearwater Beach. Young ones can double down on delicious chicken fingers, mahi tacos or coconut shrimp from Crabby Bill’s special Little Crab Menu (for crabs 12 and under). For mid-afternoon adventure, the two-hour Captain Memo’s Pirate Cruise lets kids morph into pirate mode with face painting, water gun games and a treasure hunt while parents settle in with a frosty beverage to enjoy the merriment. In late afternoon, head back to your resort for rest and cleanup before nighttime amusement begins. An hour before sundown, trek to the free, nightly Sunsets at Pier 60 Festival where buskers and crafters roam, musicians entertain and artisans sell their wares. Hand over the camera and let the young ones capture their own special moments before the sun disappears in blazing glory.
It’s family time on Clearwater Beach! 36
What a memorable way to spend a kid’s perfect day on Clearwater Beach! For more information on Clearwater Beach, visit beachchamber.com and for vacation packages to Clearwater go to Allegiant.com
Photos courtesy of visitstpeteclearwater.com
As the evening winds down, a smart choice for dinner might be your beachfront resort, where young guests can refuel with menu temptations created just for them. To combat that perennial reluctance for bedtime (who could blame them?), a fun finale could be a few more minutes of playtime in your resort pool.
From sand to suite, experience the best at Clearwater Beach. Steps away from the powder white sands of the beach named America’s best by TripAdvisor, the all-suite Hyatt Regency Clearwater Beach Resort & Spa brings world-class style and amenities to the west coast of Florida. Book your next reservation and take advantage of our Special Promotional Rate to receive 20% off daily rates. For reservations, call 727 373 1234 or visit clearwaterbeach.hyatt.com and reference offer code SEEKER.
HYATT REGENCY CLEARWATER BEACH RESORT & SPA
301 South Gulfview Blvd. Clearwater, Florida, USA, 33767 Offer valid through 2/13/2017 at Hyatt Regency Clearwater Beach. All hotel reservations are subject to availability and must be made in advance using offer code SEEKER. Offer is not valid with groups/conventions and may not be combined with other promotional offers. Rate is based on double occupancy and standard room accommodations. Room tax and resort fee not included. Additional guests may be subject to additional hotel charges. Additional charges apply to room type upgrades. Promotional blackout periods may apply due to seasonal periods or special events, and normal arrival/ departure restrictions apply. Hyatt reserves the right to alter or withdraw this program at any time without notice. The trademarks Hyatt®, Hyatt Regency® and related marks are trademarks of Hyatt Corporation. ©2016 Hyatt Corporation. All rights reserved.
PIERC5303_HR Clearwater Allegiant Sunseeker Ad.indd 1
3/16/2016 12:25:05 PM
SEASON OPENS OCT. 15TH
HIGH QUALITY • BEST PRICES
Since 1955, Ward’s Seafood Market has been providing locals and visitors with the freshest fish in town. We specialize in fresh seafood. Our Florida seafood is caught and delivered daily by local fishermen we’ve known for years! h wee Ward’s hometown Market offers one stop shopping seven days a week. WARD’S SEAFOOD EXPERIENCE At Ward’s Seafood market you’ll get more than fresh seafood. Our experienced fish handlers can explain how to cut, cook and care for fresh seafood. They are always happy to share favorite seafood recipes, offer advice on cooking & grilling and educate you on storage and nutritional facts. Shrimp, lobster and crabs can be cleaned and steaming is always complimentary. Any type of whole fish can be cleaned and dressed to your specifications. We have fine wines, grocery items and freshh e produce to complete your seafood experience!
COOKED SEAFOOD • Take-out Eatery • You Pick It, We Cook It • Heat & Serve • Specialty Salads • Gourmet Hot Soups • Custom Catering
FAMIL Y OW SERV ING C NED AND OP L
EARW ERATE ATER D , FL FOR O V
Retail Store Hours: Mon. - Sat. 10-7pm Sunday 10-5pm
TTakeout Eatery Hours: Tues. - Sat. 10-7pm Nationwide Shipping N
1001 BELLEAIR ROAD | CLEARWATER, FLORIDA 33756 (800) 556-3761 | (727) 581-2640 | FAX (727) 518-8731 Visit www.WardsSeafood.com
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Shrimp and Grits at SHOR American Seafood Grill
SHRIMPLY DEVINE IRRESISTIBLE CREATIONS FROM CLEARWATER BEACH'S TOP CHEFS By Nancy Foster
Photo of Shrimp and Grits at SHOR American Seafood Grill courtesy of Hyatt Regency Clearwater Beach Resort; Coconut Shrimp Stack courtesy of Hilton Clearwater Beach; Beer Battered Shrimp Dinner courtesy of Cooters Restaurant & Bar
hrimp is a seafood favorite for many people and vacationers to Clearwater Beach will find no shortage of places for a memorable feast made from this tasty crustacean. From casual beach spots, pubs and bistros to high-end dining outlets, the area’s food scene is ripe with delicious Gulf-caught shrimp, prepared in many tantalizing ways. Go for Shrimp Tempura at Island Way Grill, Hidalgo Rock Shrimp at Frenchy’s South Beach Cafe, Blackened Shrimp & Smoked Gouda Grits at Clear Sky Beachside Cafe or Shrimp Tacos at Palm Pavilion Beachside Grill & Bar. By now, you get the picture—when you visit Clearwater Beach, pack your shrimp appetite!
SHOR AMERICAN SEAFOOD GRILL
At this award-winning restaurant inside the Hyatt Regency Clearwater Beach Resort and Spa, dine in upscale panache while enjoying the finest of wines and Chef Richard Preston’s delicious culinary masterworks. Start with a perfectly chilled shrimp appetizer and move on to the flavorful Shrimp and Grits, a blend of local shrimp sauté, stone ground grits, aged white cheddar and scallions. Pair it with The Seeker, Pinot Grigio, Veneto, Italy for complete dining bliss. The zesty Cioppino, a savory blend of clams, mussels, local shrimp, scallops and calamari in a tomato stew, makes for another memorable meal. shorgrill.com
Carambola Restaurant’s Coconut Shrimp Stack
Request a table overlooking the Gulf of Mexico at this trendy restaurant located inside the Hilton Clearwater Beach. Bright and cheerful, Carambola’s affords prime viewing to catch a glorious sunset as you nosh on Shrimp “Cargot” and Boom Boom Shrimp appetizers. Relax with a tropical cocktail before tucking into the utterly decadent Coconut Shrimp Stack over Crab with Avocado Mango Salad. hiltonclearwaterbeach.com
COOTERS RESTAURANT & BAR
With a kickback atmosphere, this off-beach restaurant appeals to locals and visitors alike with inside and outside dining and a rustic casual vibe. Friendly servers, affordable prices and freshly prepared food keep patrons returning time and again. Sip on a Goose Island IPA craft beer as you get your shrimp fix on with chilled Peel & Eat Shrimp or a tangy Buffalo Shrimp appetizer. A made-from-scratch Sloppy Shrimp Sandwich also ranks high on the favorite list, reported Cooters’ owner Carol Mears, as does the Beer Battered Shrimp Dinner. cooters.com For area information, visit beachchamber.com and for vacation packages go to Allegiant.com.
Cooters’ Beer Battered Shrimp Dinner FLORIDA
Clearwater Beach esort #1 Entertainment R • Luxury Gulfside Rooms & Suites • Water-side dining at Tiki Beach Grill • Ocean Flame Interactive Seafood • 2-Level Wave Nightclub with Hip Buffet & Sunday Brunch DJs and Ultimate VIP Bottle Service • SALT Tequila Bar & Tap Room • Exclusive SOAK Poolside Bar • White Sandy Beach and 800.237.8477 www.shephards.com • Famous Tiki Beach Bar with Live Watersports 619 So. Gulfview Blvd. • Clearwater Beach, FL 33767 Local and National Bands and DJs
Bliss at Sandpearl Spa!
SUMPTUOUS SPAS THESE LUXURIOUS CLEARWATER BEACH SPAS PROMISE TO PAMPER By Gabriele Walkow
hether you are seeking a day of pampering or a weeklong Florida wellness vacation, a visit to one of these Clearwater Beach spas will leave you feeling renewed, rejuvenated and certainly relaxed! Here is a small sampling of their superb services.
Photo of Sandpearl Spa courtesy of the Sandpearl Resort Clearwater Beach; massage courtesy of Clearwater Beach Marriott Suites on Sand Key; relaxation lounge courtesy of the Hyatt Regency Clearwater Beach Resort and Spa
OPAL SPA AT OPAL SANDS RESORT This award-winning spa at the recently opened opulent Opal Sands Resort offers a full menu of rejuvenating and reinvigorating services. The Signature program has been exclusively created for Opal Spas and is the most decadent of their spa therapies. The Signature Perfect Massage is an individually crafted massage created just for you! The Signature Ritual is the perfect six-hour spa escape. Luxuriate in a combination of the Signatures including the Body Renewal, the Facial Radiance and the Signature manicure and pedicure. opalsands.com/the-spa
and therapeutic wrap designed to heal sundamaged skin. sandpearl.com/spa
ANTONIO’S SALON & DAY SPA AT CLEARWATER BEACH MARRIOTT SUITES ON SAND KEY
Sink into serenity at this superb spa on Sand Key. Indulge in therapeutic massages and revitalizing facials, aromatherapy, post-sun treatments and invigorating body scrubs or treat yourself to Antonio’s Signature Pedicure which includes skin pampering paraffin. The two-and-a-half hour Antonio’s Sampler includes a 30-minute Relaxation Massage, Refresher Facial, and Signature Manicure and Pedicure. Now that’s pampering plus! marriott.com/tpams
SANDAVA SPA AT THE HYATT REGENCY CLEARWATER BEACH RESORT AND SPA
This luxurious and tranquil oasis has been named “One of the Top Spas in North America” by Conde Nast Traveler. Also offering the Opal Spa experience, guests are pampered with a delightful menu of ocean-inspired treatments. The Detox is an award-winning body program combination, which includes exfoliation, wrapping and nourishing to improve the appearance of skin texture and cellulite. Calm your sunburned skin with The Soothe, a nourishing full body cooling
This blissful retreat promises a spa experience that exceeds expectations with an extensive selection of treatments created to relax, rejuvenate, energize, hydrate and detoxify. After enjoying the Florida sunshine, treat yourself to the rich and luxurious Blueberry Bliss Facial— perfect for anti-aging. For the Clearwater Beach Wrap you begin with your toes in Clearwater Beach sand before surrendering to relaxation in the tight wrapping of a marine-infused cocoon. Sandava Spa Journey packages last from threeto five-hours and promise to activate, nurture and inspire. sandavaspaclearwater.com
Hot stone massage at Antonio's Salon & Day Spa
The stunning Sandava Spa Relaxation Lounge
THE SPA AT SANDPEARL RESORT CLEARWATER BEACH
Sheraton Sand Key Resort at sunset
A SLICE OF PARADISE SAND KEY IS A PERFECT OASIS By Nancy Foster
For accommodations, choose between two popular full-service resorts. The Sheraton Sand Key Resort, long touted for its wide, sandy beach and family-friendly atmosphere, features a tiki pool bar, tennis, hammocks and fire pit. On the Intracoastal side, the Clearwater Beach Marriott Suites on Sand Key attracts guests
Poolside at the Shoppes on Sand Key
with spacious accommodations, a crystal-clear waterfall pool and on-site kids club. Activities abound here. Water enthusiasts can rent kayaks, stand up paddleboards and sailboats at the Clearwater Community Sailing Center. Beach-worshippers can bask in the tranquility of Sand Key Park with its pristine beach, walking trails, picnic pavilions and beach concessions. Beach cabanas and umbrellas are available for rental. Shoppers flock to the Shoppes on Sand Key where retail and service outlets stretch along a meandering boardwalk overlooking scenic Clearwater Bay. Stop at Poolside for tropical women’s wear, Merry Mouse for Floridathemed gifts and the pizza joint or yogurt shop for tasty snacks. Affordable eats and great food are yours at Maggie Mae’s Sunrise Café. Go for breakfast and fuel up on menu favorite Eggs Benedict Arnold. For nighttime dining, the choices are many. The Sheraton’s award-winning Rusty’s Bistro is known for its cuisine of the sun, nightly specials and weekend prime rib buffet while the Marriott’s Watercolour Grill House claims fame for aged Certified Angus Beef and fork tender steaks. Beach-themed Backwater’s on Sand Key tempts with cool drinks, hearty ribs, steaks and seafood. The Columbia Restaurant, legendary for exceptional Spanish cuisine including tapas, paellas, crusty Cuban bread and fine sangria, is a definite must. Exploring beyond Sand Key is easy. Hop the Clearwater Jolley Trolley to access Clearwater Beach shops, dining and public beach. Quite possibly, however, you’ll join the ranks of many who never leave beautiful Sand Key!
Deck side dining at Columbia Restaurant 42
For more information on Sand Key go to visitstpeteclearwater.com and for resort packages visit Allegiant.com.
Photo of Sheraton Sand Key Resort courtesy of Sheraton Sand Key Resort; Shoppes on Sand Key by Michael Scheuer; deck side dining courtesy of Columbia Restaurant Group
f your ideal beach vacation is one where the action is close yet seclusion bathes your surroundings, then Sand Key on Florida’s West Coast may be your perfect slice of paradise. Just under three miles long and separated from the main part of Clearwater Beach by Clearwater Pass, this tiny land mass known as a key (small, low-elevation sandy island on the surface of a coral reef) is self-contained fun.
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The ocellaris clownfish at Florida Under the Sea
IN JOHN'S PASS, MADEIRA BEACH By Gabriele Walkow
istoric John’s Pass Village and Boardwalk, nestled between Clearwater Beach and St. Pete Beach, is a colorful turn-of-the-century fishing village with an adjoining, elevated boardwalk along the Intracoastal Waterway. Home to over 100 merchants with unique offerings and attractions, all four of these family fun spots are conveniently located next to each other on the upper level of Village Boulevard.
Visitors to this interactive sandbox can make their own Florida vacation memory to take home the same day. Choose from a range of molds including personalized plaques, picture frames, sea animals, gators, your hand or foot and more. Dive into their huge treasure chest, which includes sea glass, shells, glass gems and other treasures, to design your masterpiece. Then, pour in the magic milk to create a personal memory in beach sand! Open Friday to Sunday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.; call 727.631.2655 to make a sandbox reservation outside of these hours. mysandboxflorida.com
FLORIDA UNDER THE SEA This live fish exhibit is adjacent to the Alligator Attraction. See live stingrays, seahorses, bamboo sharks, a lionfish, a live Finding Nemo tank and more. Admission is included with a visit to the Alligator Attraction. For Florida Under the Sea only, the admission price is $2 per child and $3 per adult. thealligatorattraction.com
Alligator photo op!
BEACH FUN & GAMES
Next door, parents can relax in air-conditioned comfort with a cold beer or glass of wine while the kids have arcade fun at Beach Fun & Games. Open daily at noon, adults will also be tempted to play games and win prizes at the best arcade on the beach. Guests describe it as happily stepping back into their youth playing Skee Ball, air hockey and other familiar favorites. As well as the classics, players can test their skills on some of the latest and greatest video and ticket games. It’s fun out of the sun with prizes! johnspassarcade.com 44
Good times are not just for the little kids at Beach Fun & Games!
Photo of clownfish and alligator courtesy of the Alligator Attraction; Beach Fun & Games courtesy of Lightheart Photography
The world’s largest indoor alligator attraction is home to over 50 live alligators, from hatchlings to future-star-in-training, Chewie. This Tripadvisor Certificate of Excellence recipient offers visitors the opportunity to feed and hold live alligators. Be sure to snap a pic! Rescue animals include Rudolph, a 100-pound spur-thighed tortoise. This attraction is priced just right for a family or group of five people for $20, which includes a visit next door to Florida Under the Sea. thealligatorattraction.com
PIRATE CRUISE GREAT FUN FOR THE WHOLE FAMILY!
• Music • Games • • Dolphin Watching • • Friendly Pirates • 10:00 a.m. + 2:00 p.m. 4:30 p.m. + 7:00 p.m. (call for seasonal schedule)
Save $2.00 when you reserve your cruise online!
celebrating 20 years of sunsets crafters. buskers. live entertainment. best place to watch the sunset.
clearwater beach, florida
Cooter_QrtPg_AllegiantAd_Layout 1 12/24/13 4:31 PM Page 1
& Tues All-You-Can-Eat Snow Crab!! Mon
Th e l a Or igin ★ All-You-Can-Eat Fish & Chips – Wednesdays
★ Super Grouper Thursdays ★ Sizzling Steaks & Fresh Catch Specials – Fri, Sat & Sun
Adjoining Sports Bar with all the games!
The Simple Things in Life...Are Often the Best Stay at the newly renovated Palm Pavilion Inn just 25 steps from the white sands of award-winning Clearwater Beach. • 100% non-smoking property • Free Wi-Fi • Great rates • Swimming pool • Beach umbrella/chair rentals • Superior Small Lodging® approved for quality and service • Palm Pavilion Beachside Grill & Bar with live music on the deck
Palm Pavilion Inn
18 Bay Esplanade • Clearwater Beach, FL 800-433-7256 • www.PalmPavilionInn.com TripAdvisor - Certificate of Excellence
WEEKI WACHEE SPRINGS
The mermaids perform in a magical underwater world
THE CITY OF LIVE MERMAIDS WELCOME TO WEEKI WACHEE SPRINGS By Gabriele Walkow
he world-famous mermaids of Weeki Wachee Springs have been delighting visitors since 1947. One of Florida’s oldest and most unique roadside attractions is home to enchanting mermaids swimming in the cool, clear spring waters of Weeki Wachee Springs State Park. Known as the City of Live Mermaids, Weeki Wachee Springs is located about 80 minutes north of Clearwater and makes for a memorable day trip for the entire family. Enter a magical and mysterious underwater world of mermaids, manatees, turtles and bubbles. Seating 500 and embedded in the side of the spring, submerged16 feet below the surface, the Mermaid Theater is an aquariumlike setting where visitors feel like they are inside the flowing spring. Twenty-three striking
mermaids perform two different 30-minute shows up to four times daily. Good conquers evil and love conquers all in their graceful underwater ballet version of Hans Christian Andersen’s The Little Mermaid, complete with a charming prince. In “Fish Tails” the mermaids perform feats from the past six decades including eating and drinking underwater. This show also includes several musical numbers and a behind-the-scenes tour (via video). Be sure to pose with one of the beautiful mermaids after the show!
“Half a million people from around the world come and see our mermaids each year,” said John Athanason, public relations manager for Weeki Wachee Springs State Park. “And we have people applying from around the world to become mermaids of Weeki Wachee Springs. We also offer summer camps so kids can experience what it takes to be a real live mermaid.”
Photos by John Athanason/Weeki Wachee Springs State Park
The attraction is also home to Buccaneer Bay, Florida’s only spring fed waterpark; an animal/ reptile encounter providing guests with a firsthand glimpse of some of Florida’s native wildlife including alligators and snakes; and a riverboat cruise down the pristine waterway of the Weeki Wachee River. Several food and beverage options, picnic areas and a gift shop stocked with fanciful and functional mermaid souvenirs round out the offerings. Weeki Wachee Springs State Park is open yearround from 9 a.m. to 5.30 p.m. Admission is only $13 for adults and $8 for children ages 6 to 12; children 5 and under are free. The daily admission price includes access to the mermaid show, Buccaneer Bay, animal/reptile encounter and riverboat ride.
Mermaid Kristy performing in The Little Mermaid
Truly an original piece of Florida’s rich heritage, visit weekiwachee.com for more information and current show times. FLORIDA
WWOORRLLDD FA FAMMOOUUSS
Experience Experience the the flavor flavor ofof Greece Greece and and the the excitement excitement ofof anan authentic authentic working working waterfront waterfront onon the the Sponge Sponge Docks Docks ofof Tarpon Tarpon Springs, Springs, Florida. Florida. Visit Visit the the Sponge Sponge Docks Docks forfor authentic authentic Greek Greek restaurants, restaurants, bakeries, bakeries, sponge sponge diving, diving, sightseeing sightseeing tour tour boats boats and and unique unique shops. shops. In In the the Historic Historic Downtown Downtown District District you you willwill find find restaurants, restaurants, art, art, antiques, antiques, eclectic eclectic boutiques boutiques and and St.St. Nicholas Nicholas Greek Greek Orthodox Orthodox Cathedral, Cathedral, home home ofof the the largest largest Epiphany Epiphany celebration celebration in in the the
National National Register Register of of Historic Historic Places Places
Tarpon Tarpon Springs Springs
Only Only 20 Minutes 20 Minutes fromfrom Clearwater Clearwater Only Only 45 Minutes 45 Minutes fromfrom Tampa Tampa Only Only 2 Hours 2 Hours fromfrom Orlando Orlando
Clearwater Clearwater Tampa Tampa BayBay St. St. PetersburgPetersburgClearwater Clearwater International International Airport Airport
St. St. Petersburg Petersburg
Visit VisitGreece Greece without without leaving leaving Florida Florida
www.TarponSpringsFloridaUSA.com www.TarponSpringsFloridaUSA.com ÂŠDave ÂŠDave Spataro Spataro Photography Photography
The spectacular setting sun sinks to the horizon at Sunset Beach
DISCOVER TARPON SPRINGS AN ECLECTIC SEASIDE COMMUNITY AS DIVERSE AS IT IS BEAUTIFUL By Sheri Wilken
arpon Springs, Florida offers travelers the next best thing to visiting Greece…no passport required!
Photo of sunset by Mike Womack; Sponge Docks and Downtown District by Sheri Wilken
This historic Gulf Coast city, located just 20 minutes north of Clearwater, is on the National Register Of Historic Places—and for good reason. Tarpon Springs is the oldest community in Pinellas County with a wealth of historic landmark buildings and Victorian homes in the Historic Downtown District. Visitors can learn about the history of Tarpon Springs at the restored Train Depot Museum, home to the Tarpon Springs Historical Society. Downtown is also home to art, antiques, eclectic boutiques and shops, restaurants, bakeries, taverns, a winery and a brewery. Two of the businesses have been in operation for over 100 years! A short distance from the Downtown District, experience the flavor of Greece and the excitement of an authentic working waterfront at the world famous Sponge Docks. This charming Grecian fishing village offers authentic Greek restaurants with fresh seafood, bakeries, sponge diving tours, sightseeing tour boats, unique shops, boutiques and nightlife. No visit would be complete without sampling Greece 's famous flaming cheese dish, Saganaki, and giving a loud, "Opa!"
and festivals throughout the year. A Fine Art Festival, Seafood Festival, Snow Place Like Tarpon Avenue and Epiphany are just a few of the exciting annual celebrations that attract thousands of visitors to this eclectic seaside community. For more information and an event calendar, visit TarponSpringsFloridaUSA.com.
The Sponge Docks at Tarpon Springs
Within walking distance of the Historic Downtown District and Sponge Docks are Spring Bayou and Craig Park, home of Alma, a six-foot-fourinch striking bronze mermaid sculpture. During the winter months, manatees—a large aquatic relative of the elephant—swim into Spring Bayou looking for warmer waters. Watching manatees, Florida’s state marine mammal, is a favorite pastime for many winter visitors. In addition to its beautiful beaches, Historic Downtown District and world famous Sponge Docks, Tarpon Springs hosts many events
Spend a day exploring the Historic Downtown District FLORIDA
The Shark Zone at Mote Aquarium
DISCOVER WHAT’S UNDER THE SEA VISIT THE MOTE MARINE LABORATORY & AQUARIUM By Matt Seli
ocated in Sarasota, Fla., just an hour from the St. Pete-Clearwater International Airport and only two hours from the Orlando area, Mote Marine Laboratory & Aquarium is home to more than 100 species of marine life including sharks, manatees and sea turtles. Here, the worldclass marine scientists are “driven by research, education and excitement” and “work to create a better environment for ourselves and our children.”
Combining fun and education, everyone in your group will both enjoy and benefit from visiting the Mote Marine Laboratory & Aquarium. Open every day year-round from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., it’s easy to make a visit to Mote a part of your Florida vacation. For visitor information, including specifics on what’s going on during your stay and behind-the-scenes tours, go to mote.org.
Because the Mote Marine Laboratory & Aquarium is a groundbreaking research institution, guests aren’t just “shown” ocean life, they have the opportunity to learn all about it. For example, how to take care of it and how it is helping us in our daily lives. This also makes Mote a great place to spend an entire day exploring all of the exhibits and presentations geared towards educating.
Welcome to Mote!
Get up close and personal to many marine animals
Photos courtesy of Mote Marine Laboratory
Everyone in the group will enjoy discovering manatees, sea turtles and, yes, sharks, too, in Mote’s 135,000-gallon shark habitat, a part of their Shark Zone exhibit. Should you plan a Monday, Wednesday or Friday visit here, don’t miss out on the 11 a.m. narrated training session, where the sharks swim to special targets for their food. See wondrous seahorses, cuttlefish and other invertebrates raised by Mote to bring public awareness about what’s in our oceans. Peek into actual working labs where Mote Marine Laboratory scientists carry out their research. Say “hello” to Huck, Jane and Pippi, Mote’s most recent residents in the new special exhibit, “Otters & Their Waters.” Touch rays and reef animals at one of Mote’s two touch pools. Explore the history of Mote’s shark research—including their work on shark repellants. Incredibly, Mote scientists have tagged more than 12,000 sharks in the Gulf of Mexico and beyond. There’s just too much to list, as you’ll really see and do it all at Mote!
Here you’ll find hundreds of ways to get away, get together and make the memories of a lifetime. Whether you rent a boat and explore an offshore island, head to the mainland and take a tour of a working farm, or simply stroll the shops and cafés of a quaint downtown, this is the vacation all of you will always remember. And return to again and again.
Only 45 minutes from St. Pete-Clearwater International and Punta Gorda International.
Euphemia Haye Restaurant Exquisite Dining in a Romantic Atmosphere. Chef Owned and Operated since 1980. 941-383-3633 EuphemiaHaye.com
On Anna Maria Island, featuring authentic, sustainable Gulf to table, farm to fork menu items, breathtaking sunsets and toes in the sand dining! Award winning for best seafood, best sunset and favorite wedding and event venue. 941-778-0444 • IslandDining.com
FORT MYERS BEACH/BOCA GRANDE
Boca Grande’s World’s Richest Tarpon Tournament
THE TARPON TANGO BEGINS IN FLORIDA GET READY TO DANCE WITH THE SILVER KING By Misty Wells
arpon, also known as “Silver King,” are one of the most exciting and addictive fish to catch. The life span of a tarpon can be in excess of 50 years and they can reach sizes of up to eight feet and weigh in over 280 pounds! The hunt is on down the coast of Florida, a tarpon hotspot, where the season starts to heat up in March and the bite stays hot all the way through July.
Team Fishing Divas in the "Ding" Darling & Doc Ford's Tarpon Tournament
Captain Lori Deaton landing a big one 52
After some practice, head to Fort Myers Beach and Boca Grande for some tarpon tango time! Both of these tournaments are catch-and-release events and are symbols for conservation, education and sportsmanship in the fishing community. A 100 percent purse makes the "Ding" Darling & Doc Ford's Tarpon Tournament on Fort Myers Beach, May 6 to 7, one of the hottest competitions on the water. Head to Doc Ford’s Rum Bar to watch professional and amateur anglers compete to land the most tarpon in a day. Last year was a record-breaking purse of $25,375 paid to five of the 48 participating teams. The Fort Myers area is the Tarpon Capital of Florida, so pack your rod and get there quick! Boca Grande’s World’s Richest Tarpon Tournament, May 19 to 20, offers prize money totaling $80,000 with first place hooking $30,000. Anglers and spectators alike will get a big adrenalin rush from the excitement of big fish and big money! The largest tarpon caught during last year’s tournament was 217 pounds. It is estimated that over 5,000 tarpon are landed in Boca Grande Pass each season. Keep up with all of the tarpon action in Florida by downloading the free fishing app, FishBrain, and follow your favorite anglers and species. For more information, visit bocagrandechamber.com, dingdarlingsociety. org/tarpon-tourney, fishbrain.com and ladyfishcharters.com.
Photo of Boca Grande’s tarpon tournament courtesy of Boca Grande Chamber of Commerce; Team Fishing Divas by Cindy Brown; Captain Lori Deaton by Captain Lori Deaton
Connect with a premiere tarpon guide such as Captain Lori Deaton of Lady Fish Charters and dramatically increase your chances of catching the big one. Captain Lori has been guiding anglers since 1999. “As a professional tarpon
guide and tournament angler I feel blessed to call the beautiful waters of Tampa Bay and Boca Grande home,” said Deaton. “I take anglers from all over the world to fish prime tarpon estuaries in hopes of catching one of these amazing primitive creatures.”
From Gulf to Bay - the place to Stay! Weston’s wannaB inn on Manasota Key in Englewood, Florida. • Docks on Lemon Bay featuring 38 slips • 900 feet of beach along the Gulf of Mexico • 80 Units, each with a kitchen
Old Florida charm at its finest! Call or Email us today... 941.474.3431 firstname.lastname@example.org | WannaBinn.com
985 Gulf Blvd. Englewood, FL 34223
A Yoga for Every Body class with Loving Light Yoga
FITNESS, FOOD AND FUN AFFORDABLE ATTRACTIONS IN CHARLOTTE HARBOR & THE GULF ISLANDS By H. Wadowski
acations are supposed to be fun—not expensive. Luckily, Allegiant passengers traveling to Charlotte Harbor & the Gulf Islands for their Florida getaway don’t have to break the bank to have a memorable time. Visitors will find deals around every corner, so they can use all the money they save for their next trip!
perfect place to cool off after a day of fun in the sun. Serving more than 40 flavors of ice cream made fresh on site, prices range from $2.95 for a single scoop to $5.95 for a banana split. Be sure to try the Turtlelicious: little caramel-filled chocolate turtles swimming in vanilla ice cream. scoopsandbites.com
HARBORWALK SCOOPS & BITES
A great way to start the day, guests are invited to bring a large sheet or blanket to the north end of Englewood Beach every morning from 8:30 to 9:30 a.m. for Yoga for Every Body. Open to participants of all ages and skill levels, guests will feel the warmth of the sun as they breathe in the fresh sea air and listen to the waves while flowing through a gentle yoga class. Classes are by donation so participants only give what they can afford. It’s fitness that’s both fun and affordable! lovinglightyoga.com
Photo of yoga courtesy of Loving Light Yoga; Harborwalk Scoops & Bites by Joao Pollo; 15th hole by Tid Griffin
Rated the #1 ice cream shop in America by TripAdvisor, this sweet shop located on the picturesque Punta Gorda Harborwalk is the
LOVING LIGHT YOGA
PEACE RIVER SEAFOOD
Treat yourself to a cool creation from Harborwalk Scoops & Bites
For those who want to sample some of the area’s savory seafood, this Punta Gorda favorite offers an all-you-can-eat blue crab special daily until 7 p.m. (supply permitting) for just $30. Guests can fill up without emptying their wallets! Brought in fresh each day off the boats, the crabs are served steamed and dusted with some of Baltimore’s tasty J.O. seasoning and come with half an ear of corn and a new potato on the side. facebook.com/peace.seafood
RIVERWOOD GOLF CLUB
The 15th hole at Riverwood Golf Club
Charlotte County’s only 4.5 star-rated golf course (Golf Digest), this par-72, Gene Bates-designed championship course in Port Charlotte offers special seasonal rates where golfers can save up to 60 percent when compared to peak tee times. During the month of May, rates are only $50 and drop to $40 from June through September. Surrounded by lush landscaping and native vegetation, each hole is sure to challenge even the most skilled golfer. riverwoodgc.com FLORIDA
ContactUs@potteryexpress.com m 25370 Zemel Road, Punta Gorda, FL 33955
Peace River Wildlife Center
in beautiful Punta Gorda, Florida
Open Every Day for Tours 11 A.M. to 4 P.M. No Admission Fee
Donations Appreciated Ponce de Leon Park 3400 W. Marion Ave. Punta Gorda, FL 33950 941-637-3830
Pioneers Pizza’s Large half Chicken alla Vodka half Jersey Meatball Pizza
PERFECT PIZZA PIE IN PUNTA GORDA & PORT CHARLOTTE By Gabriele Walkow
Photo of Pioneer Pizza by @spqrguymontag; Manatees Pizza courtesy of Manatees Pizza; Father and Son Pizzeria courtesy of Father and Son Pizzeria
eople are passionate about pizza and Punta Gorda and Port Charlotte have their share of enticing pizza places! Choose from an abundance of classic and innovative savory pies at these pizzerias.
and Tomato Basil are offered alongside delicious comfort dishes including stromboli and panini sandwiches. The whole family will enjoy exploring the fresh and flavorful menu! pioneerspizzapc.com
UNCLE NICK’S PIZZA
With a serious passion for Italian-American cuisine and hospitality, Pioneers Pizza is a newcomer to the area’s pizza pie scene, having opened earlier this year at Tavern Square, 4560 Tamiami Trail, Port Charlotte. Sourcing local meats and produce, they also hand stretch their mozzarella and make fresh bread in-house. Unique pizza creations such as the Formaggio
If you're looking for a new favorite pizza shop, give Uncle Nick's Pizza, located at 3880 Tamiami Trail in Port Charlotte, a try and experience the Uncle Nick's difference. Locally owned and operated this pizza shop offers an array of pizza pies from the fully loaded Meat Grinder to the cheesy Smokehouse Cheddar. Other delectable options include cheese calzones, subs and chicken sides. Uncle Nick's Pizza prides itself on a high level of customer service and quality of its eats at a competitive price. facebook.com/unclenickspizza
A Manatees Pizza “Build A Pie” creation
Serving breakfast, lunch and dinner at 408 Tamiami Trail in Punta Gorda for over two decades, Manatees Pizza has an extensive menu of Italian fare including pizzas, strombolis, melts, wraps, pitas, subs and pastas. Pizza selections range from Meatza and Alfredo to Mexican and Pizza of My Heart. The Build A Pie selections are also ample. Choose from a Breakfast Pizza or a Breakfast Stromboli along with paninis, frittatas and specialty sandwiches during brunch, which is served daily. Pizza also comes by the slice every day except for Thursday, which is dine-in for half off pizza day. manateespizza.com
FATHER AND SON PIZZERIA
A pizza pie selection at Father and Son Pizzeria
Open since September 2012, this small family run pizzeria is located at 5240 Duncan Road in Punta Gorda. Specialty and gourmet pizzas such as the Father & Son Special, classic Italian dinners such as Eggplant Parmesan, lasagna, spaghetti and Chefs Best Dinners, which include Fettuccini Alfredo and Mussels Mariana, are served in a warm and inviting atmosphere. facebook.com/FatherSonPizzeria FLORIDA
Inside Wop’s Hops Brewing Company
WET YOUR WHISTLE AT ONE OF DOWNTOWN SANFORD’S DIVERSE DRINKING ESTABLISHMENTS By Heather Turk
anford may be known for its rich history, but the Central Florida city is actually quite hip, too. In fact, downtown Sanford boasts an array of eclectic bars, microbreweries and restaurants for visitors to enjoy. Whether you’re in the mood for a craft cocktail, a beer or a glass of wine, there’s a place for everyone to kickback with a drink and socialize.
Photo of Wop’s Hops Brewing Company by Greg J. Piecora; Ellen’s Wine Room by Debra Ellen Hartman; Wolfy’s Lakefront Bar & Grill courtesy of Nicole O’Brien Photography
ELLEN’S WINE ROOM
Boasting more than 225 wines and 30 international beers, this quaint establishment sells a variety of vinos by the bottle or glass. Guests can take their purchases to go or enjoy their selections at the store, either on the patio or inside by the fireplace, at the granite bar or around the barrel table. Special events are held regularly, including wine dinners on Thursday nights, where guests can enjoy six wines with a shared theme for just $20 per person. Live music is also featured on Saturdays from 8 p.m. until midnight courtesy of local guitar player and ballad singer Chuck Culbertson. ellenswineroom.com
Florida breweries. With a variety of Wop’s Hops beers to choose from, ranging from light blonde ales and wheat ales to its Honey Oatmeal Stout, there’s sure to be something on tap for everyone to enjoy. Must-tries include The Bokey, a lightly smoked Rausch ale, and the seasonal Sicilian Summer IPA. Guests can savor their selection inside the tasting room or outside in the spacious, dogfriendly beer garden. Live music is featured on the weekends. wopshopsbrewing.com
WOLFY’S LAKEFRONT BAR & GRILL
The largest bar and grill on Lake Monroe, this scenic hangout is the perfect place to unwind with a cocktail and watch the sunset. Guests can enjoy live entertainment from some of the area’s most talented musicians every weekend starting at 4 p.m. on Friday and 1 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday or stop in for Wolfy’s locally renowned open mic/jam night Thursdays at 7 p.m. In addition to having a full bar serving a wide selection of bottled beers and specialty drinks, Wolfy’s offers a menu of upscale casual favorites like locally caught Gator Bites, which can be prepared blackened, grilled or fried. 407.322.2150
Ellen's Wine Room is a popular spot
WOP’S HOPS BREWING COMPANY
Sanford’s first microbrewery, this newly expanded watering hole serves 13 of its own beers on tap as well as a selection from other
Wolfy’s Lakefront Bar & Grill is a scenic hangout FLORIDA
Arrival at SFB
FLIER-FRIENDLY ORLANDO SANFORD INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT By Nancy Foster
impler. Faster. Better. This straightforward tagline sprang from the code letters for the Orlando Sanford International Airport (SFB) touting the reasons it is deemed a prime choice for fliers destined for Florida’s central corridor. This passenger-friendly airport puts you in the heart of action quickly, whether you’re beach bound east to Daytona or Cocoa Beach, west to the mid-Florida theme parks (all within an hour’s drive) or staying close by to explore the area’s natural beauty. The two-terminal airport, situated on a 3000-acre complex with an 11,00-foot runway, is very simple to navigate, providing deplaning passengers with quick access to baggage claim, parking and ground transportation. Readily available are rental cars, taxis, pre-arranged shuttle services and Orlando Carriers, the airport’s official concessionaire that provides shuttle, rental and private limo services to the I-Drive corridor and major central Florida resorts. Various food and shopping outlets make airport downtime pleasurable. Grab a burger and beer at the Bud Tap Room, chow down with light fare at the Food Court or grab a coffee from Starbucks. Need to connect? Find free Wi-Fi throughout and convenient charging stations airside.
growth, much attributable to Allegiant’s surge to 65 departure cities. The airport is managed through a public/private partnership between Sanford Airport Authority and Airports Worldwide. Airport officials are quick to point out the surrounding area (Orlando North Seminole County) as one that offers much to entice travelers. With multiple lakes for canoeing, kayaking, fishing, airboat tours and horseback riding, the northwest area of the county lures with tranquil appeal. The Central Florida Zoo and Botanical Gardens, also home to treetop adventures with ZOOm Air Adventure Park Orlando, is perfect for families. Historic downtown Sanford provides a mecca for antique shoppers and cozy bed and breakfasts entice with a touch of romance and charm. Diane Crews, President & CEO of Orlando Sanford International Airport, stated that, “Allegiant has filled a much needed void in Central Florida’s transportation network, especially for the leisure traveler. Our central location, convenient access and customer-focused environment make us an attractive option for new and seasoned passengers.” Find airline packages for central Florida at Allegiant.com, area information at visitseminole.com and airport information at orlandosanfordairport.com.
Relax at the Bud Tap Room
Photos courtesy of Airports Worldwide
SFB, honored in 2014 as the fastest growing airport in its category of two to five million passengers, continues on track for significant
ADVENTURE IS EASY TO SPOT IN SANFORD.
Sanford is your ticket to exploring the wild side of Florida, just minutes from the Orlando Sanford International Airport and the best Atlantic Coast beaches. Experience ferocious Florida fun by visiting the Central Florida Zoo and beautiful nature parks, or enjoy charming civilization in Sanfordâ€™s historic downtown restaurants and shops. Visit Sanford today. DoOrlandoNorth.com
25% OFF madametussauds.com/Orlando
Daily admission ticket. PROMO CODE: Allegiant16. OFFER EXPIRES: 9/1/16
TERMS AND CONDITIONS: This offer is valid for 25% off Madame Tussauds daily admission ticket. Please check-in at the Madame Tussauds admissions desk and present this coupon when receiving discount. Discount valid for up to six (6) people per transaction. Offer not valid online. Offer cannot be applied to pre-purchased discounted tickets or combined with any other discounts or offers. Restrictions may apply. Not for resale. No photocopies or facsimiles will be accepted. Prices and hours are subject to change without notice. Attraction admission is not guaranteed and is subject to availability.
Experience the best views of Orlando on The Orlando Eye
360-DEGREES OF FUN & MORE VISIT THESE ORLANDO ATTRACTIONS By Gabriele Walkow
Photo of Orlando Eye courtesy of The Orlando Eye; Madame Tussauds courtesy of Madame Tussauds Orlando; Sea life courtesy of SEA LIFE Aquarium Orlando
rlando is known around the world for endless family fun! Now, it’s also home to a new $250-million entertainment destination located in the heart of popular International Drive. Visit I-Drive 360 and prepare for 360 degrees of non-stop action. The Orlando Eye’s 400-foot iconic observation wheel is the centerpiece of this chic complex. Madame Tussauds Orlando, the world’s number one wax attraction, and SEA LIFE Aquarium Orlando, a magical underwater world, join The Orlando Eye as part of I-Drive’s 360’s unique landscape of attractions, restaurants, live entertainment and shopping. Combination tickets to all three attractions are available.
THE ORLANDO EYE
Enjoy breathtaking 360-degree vistas of Orlando and Central Florida from 400 feet in the air on the tallest observation wheel on the East Coast. See downtown Orlando’s skyline, theme parks and lush landscapes and lakes (on a clear day, you can even catch views of Cape Canaveral on the East Coast) from your fully enclosed, air-conditioned capsule. Great for all ages, the ticket price includes the ultimate pre-flight 4D Cinema Experience. Enhance the 30-minute adventure with Champagne or Eye Glow Experiences or make arrangements for a private capsule for up to 15 guests. officialorlandoeye.com
MADAME TUSSAUDS ORLANDO
Snap a selfie with no boundaries at Madame Tussauds Orlando
Mix and mingle with your favorite celebrities, famous Americans and historic figures at Madame Tussauds Orlando, located inside the Terminal Building of The Orlando Eye. With a unique blend of glitz and glamor, themed galleries include A List Party, History and Leaders, Sports, Music, TV and Film. Pose with your favorite stars, challenge sports legends, hop on stage with international pop icons and be on the set of blockbuster movies at this interactive attraction where they truly roll out the red carpet. Photography is encouraged. madametussauds.com/orlando
SEA LIFE AQUARIUM ORLANDO
Spectacular views in SEA LIFE Aquarium Orlando’s 360-degree tunnel
Travel from the heights of The Orlando Eye to SEA LIFE Aquarium Orlando’s immersive 360-degree ocean tunnel! Home to over 5,000 creatures including colorful fish, seahorses and jelly fish, have a face-to-face encounter with sharks and turtles in the ocean tunnel; get up close and personal to green sea anemone, live sea stars and more at the interactive touch pool; and learn about the valuable “Breed, Rescue and Protect” Conservation Program. Dive into an amazing underwater world to celebrate the sea and its inhabitants at Orlando’s newest aquarium. visitsealife.com/orlando/ FLORIDA
The Canyons Zip Line & Canopy Tours boasts more than a mile of the longest, highest and fastest zip lines in the state
NATURAL BEAUTY FOUR OUTDOOR ACTIVITIES OCALA VISITORS WON’T WANT TO MISS
here’s no better time to discover the beauty of Ocala than late spring/early summer. From zip line tours to glass bottom boat excursions, this Northern Florida city boasts a wealth of outdoor activities, all of which showcase the area’s natural charm, for visitors to enjoy.
Photo of Canyons Zip Line courtesy of The Canyons Zip Line & Canopy Tours; Farm Tours of Ocala courtesy of Hennessey Arabians; Silver Springs State Park courtesy of Silver Springs State Park
THE CANYONS ZIP LINE & CANOPY TOURS
Experience Ocala’s ultimate rush as you fly over enormous cliffs, spring-fed lakes and massive canyons while zip lining on some of the state’s highest, longest and fastest zip lines. Two different zip line tours are available, including one that takes participants through nine zip lines, two rope bridges and a rappel. For a bird’s-eye view
By Heather Turk
of the area, try the Super Zip where guests lay face down and headfirst into a hang-glider style harness as they travel 1,600 feet over treetops, reaching speeds of up to 50 miles per hour. zipthecanyons.com
FARM TOURS OF OCALA
No trip to the “Horse Capital of the World” would be complete without seeing some of Marion County’s working horse farms. Horse lovers can go behind the gates on this three-hour morning tour, meeting past and present thoroughbred champions, Olympic sport horses and even newborn foals as they visit three different locations. Tours are capped at 10 people so guests can interact with their guides as well as the professionals who train and care for the horses. farmtoursofocala.com
RAINBOW RIVER CANOE AND KAYAK
See newborn foals during Farm Tours of Ocala
Reconnect with nature while enjoying an unforgettable canoe or kayak ride out on one of Florida’s finest rivers. Offering two boat trips to choose from, guests can float down the crystal clear, pristine waters of the aquarium-like Rainbow River or take a nine-mile scenic tour of Florida’s wild side on the Withlacoochee River— running through the third largest state forest in Florida, Withlacoochee State Forest. Keep your eyes peeled during your excursion. Turtle and river otter sightings aren’t uncommon! Paddleboard rentals are available for Rainbow River trips, too. rainbowrivercanoeandkayak.com
SILVER SPRINGS STATE PARK
Silver Springs State Park’s glass bottom boat ride
This jungle-esque 4,666.5-acre park might seem familiar to some guests. Several movies and TV shows were filmed here, including Creature from the Black Lagoon and the TV series “Sea Hunt.” Home to one of Marion County’s most popular attractions, visitors can step aboard a glass bottom boat for a narrated 30- or 90-minute tour that showcases the underwater beauty and history of the springs. Kayak and canoe excursions are available as well. silversprings.com FLORIDA
Honey tasting bar at Asheville Bee Charmer
HONEY DO ASHEVILLE’S SWEET BEE & HONEY SCENE By Lynn & Cele Seldon
nown for its moniker of Foodtopia and a thriving beer scene, Asheville, N.C. is now sweet on bees and honey in a big way. So, visitors to Asheville should put the sweet stuff on their menu as a ‘honey do’. Best of all, Bee City USA’s thriving bee and honey scene is easily explored. For all things honey and bees head to Asheville Bee Charmer, with hotspots in the heart of bustling downtown and in eclectic West Asheville. Co-founders and owners Kim Allen and Jillian Kelly have curated shops that highlight honey through informative tasting bars featuring free tastes of dozens of honeys from around the corner and the world. It’s only natural that they also carry lots of honey (including sought-after local sourwood honey), beeswax candles, apparel, cookbooks, beekeeping gear and more. Next, head downtown to the original location of Tupelo Honey Café where an order of freshly made biscuits is served with honey. Known for their oh-so-southern fare, there are 10-plus Tupelo Honey locations.
The Market Place; honeyed beets at popular Early Girl Eatery; Burial Beer’s Pollination Honey Saison; locally poured honey mead from Bee & Bramble and Fox Hill Meadery; and the refreshing Penicillin #3 cocktail that pairs apple pie moonshine and honey ginger syrup at Nightbell. For dessert—or anytime—City Bakery brews up a sweet tasting (and smelling) lavender honey latte, while beloved French Broad Chocolate Lounge features cashew honey caramels and lavender honey truffles, both made with local wildflower honey. It’s not on the printed list of services but those in-the-know ask about the soothing honey oatmeal soak for sensitive skin at Grove Arcade’s Wake Foot Sanctuary & Shop. At the renowned Omni Grove Park Inn, the subterranean spa features a Sourwood Honey Body Wrap. With a variety of accommodations options, historic Reynolds Mansion Bed & Breakfast Inn is the sleeping sweet spot at the end of the day. Co-owner Billy Sanders is a busy beekeeping evangelist with many hives on the grounds and his honey on the table for the flaky biscuits (and so much more) come morning. For more honey do ideas, buzz on over to exploreasheville.com.
Biscuits and honey at Tupelo Honey Café
Bee City USA sign
Photos by Lynn Seldon Ink
More tastes of Asheville’s honey scene can be found on other restaurant and bar menus including a local cheese plate with honey at
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Nestled amongst the pines this prominent mountain home in Brevard, NC is less than 30 minutes from Asheville Regional Airport!
EAST FORK RANCH
WATERFALL ESTATE ON 21 AC.
A river runs through this beautiful 22 acres of land hosting a pond, pasture, and a beautifully restored farm house. $995,000
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The RADâ€™s one-mile area is easily navigated on foot
EXPLORE ASHEVILLE'S ARTSY SIDE TAKE AN ARTISTIC SAFARI ALONG THE FRENCH BROAD RIVER By Sandra Chambers
pend a day exploring an iconic community of 200 artists set in an urban scene of old factories and historical buildings along the French Broad River. The River Arts District (known simply as RAD) is open year-round and provides a unique opportunity to experience art as it's being created. Visitors can watch artists weave a scarf, fire pottery, turn a wood bowl or produce avant-garde blown glass pieces. This area along the river has historical significance for the city of Asheville N.C. In the 1880s, the Norfolk and Southern Railroad,
which still runs though the heart of the River Arts District today, was responsible for the townâ€™s huge population boom. Then, in 1916, an historic flood devastated the railroad and left many buildings abandoned due to water damage. But in 1985, a few industrial buildings were transformed and opened as working artist studios. Today the mile-long River Arts District has grown to include 22 repurposed buildings with multiple art galleries, artist studios and retail stores. Shelley Schenker, President of the River Arts District Artists (RADA), described a visit to the RAD as an artistic safari. "You're looking at native artists in their natural environment," said Schenker. In addition to the working artist studios, there's shopping venues, live entertainment, music and several unique restaurants such as 12 Bones Smokehouse where even President Obama waited in line for their famous barbecue. One of the newest and most unusual restaurants is Smoky Park Supper Club, which was built using 19 shipping containers. This is the largest shipping container restaurant in the U.S.!
Robert Gardner working glass
For more info or to download a free walking guide of the RAD, see riverartsdistrict.com.
Photos courtesy of exploreasheville.com
Metal artist Zack Noble
While most studios and shops are open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on weekdays, weekends at the RAD kick it up a notch with more artist demonstrations, hands-on activities and entertainment. Twice a year, in May and November, RAD holds its Studio Stroll, one of the largest walking tours of artist studios in the region. This year's May Studio Stroll (May 21-22) will feature a Street Art Project. Forty national and local artists will transform a rundown building in just three days into a graffiti mural that will become a permanent landmark in the area.
5500 Greenville Hwy~Brevard, NC 28712~828-885-2015
Connestee Falls a 4,000 acre gated
Residential Community situated in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains about seven miles south of Brevard on the Greenville Hwy 276S Over 1350 Homes, Clubhouse & Wellness Center, Four Lakes, Four Tennis & Pickleball Courts, Heated Pool, Bocce, 14+ Miles of Hiking Trails, 18-Hole Championship George Cobb Golf Course Homes from $100â€™s up to $1 Million Attractive Building Sites Still Available
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The unique Chemist Restaurant
OUT-OF-THE-BOX FOODIE DESTINATIONS DISCOVER MYRTLE BEACH'S UNIQUE DINING SCENE By Sandra Chambers
yrtle Beach S.C. offers much more than Southern comfort food. Dine in a haunted house, sip nitrogen-infused cocktails in a restaurant/art gallery or be a lab rat in a new chemistry-themed restaurant!
ART BURGER SUSHI BAR
Offering a merger of art and food, this new oceanfront restaurant features an art gallery, gourmet burgers, sushi and liquid nitrogeninfused cocktails. Menus are shaped like an artist's palette and works of art by local artists line the walls. Several digital monitors also display more than 250 pieces of art. Appetizers are tasty
Beautiful Brentwood Restaurant & Bistro 70
Designed like a scientists' laboratory, this restaurant emphasizes molecular gastronomy in both food and beverages sure to entertain both science buffs and food fans. Servers dressed in lab coats are well versed in menu items that are featured in three sections: Hypothesis (Appetizers), Research (Entrees) and Conclusion (Desserts). For an appetizer try the Liquid Nitrogen Tuna or Diver Scallops. Entrees include familiar foods with a twist such as Shepherd's Pie or unique offerings like Smoked Trout under Glass. For dessert, the dark chocolate Liquid Nitrogen Truffles are a favorite. Drinks are served in beakers and coasters with chemistry symbols light up when drinks are placed on them. The bar features several house-made craft cocktails. Try the Flux Capacitor (the most popular), the Mad Scientist or the Radioactive Coke. chemistbar.com
THE BRENTWOOD RESTAURANT & BISTRO This classic restaurant is part of Myrtle Beach's history. Located in a beautiful Victorian home (circa 1910) in Little River, it offers upscale dining, wine tastings and a friendly staff eager to share the strange happenings at the restaurantâ€”including its hauntings, verified by a paranormal investigative team. Featuring low country French cuisine with over 100 wines from around the world, guests will find the five dining rooms complete with fireplaces very cozy for that special night out. The Brentwood also offers a happy hour Monday to Saturday from 4 to 6 p.m. thebrentwoodrestaurant.com
Photo of The Chemist Restaurant and Beach Portrait cocktail courtesy of Bondfire Restaurant Group; Brentwood Restaurant & Bistro courtesy of Brentwood Restaurant & Bistro
Nitrogen-infused Beach Portrait cocktail from Art Burger
and funâ€”try the Ahi Tuna Lollipops! Burgers made from locally sourced hormone-free and grass-fed beef are named after famous artists such as the Rembrandt Burger or Picasso Burger. The creativity continues whether you opt for a nitrogen-infused cocktail like the favorite Beach Portrait, a mug of Beer Dip & Dots or a dish of nitrogen-infused ice cream. artsushibar.com
HigH Hampton inn ~ An Inn To Remember
Captivating mountain ResoRt on 1400 sCeniC aCRes in tHe Blue Ridge
Discover High Hampton, an historic inn and moun-
tain resort on a beautiful 1,400 acre private estate at 3,600 ft. Enjoy the scenic golf course, six clay tennis courts, fly-fishing, eight hiking trails, 35 acre private lake for swimming and boating, and a world-class spa. Throughout each season there are special activities and events for all ages, including Golf Schools, a Summer Childrenâ€™s Program, Bridge Tournaments, Wildflower Workshops, Wellness Retreats, Visiting Artist Workshop, annual Teddy Bear Picnic and fun Holiday Weekends. High Hampton is an ideal venue for friends and families. Stay at the Inn, a Cottage or Mountain Rental Home.
Call, or go online, for details about High Hamptonâ€™s Special Events and seasonal weekday packages. Gracious hospitality and excellent cuisine await you. For reservations and information
Since 1922 Cashiers, NC National Register of Historic Places 100 Best Family Resorts in North America
The 10th hole at Palmetto Dunes’ Robert Trent Jones Course
A GOLFER’S PARADISE TEE OFF ON THESE PICTURESQUE HILTON HEAD ISLAND GREENS By H. Wadowski
ith 24 world-class championship golf courses tucked into an area the size of Manhattan, it’s no wonder the International Association of Golf Tour Operators named South Carolina’s Hilton Head Island the 2016 North American Golf Destination of the Year. Sure to score a hole in one with golfers of all types, the Hilton Head Island golf experience offers an array of challenging courses, many of which showcase the area’s natural beauty.
HARBOUR TOWN GOLF LINKS AT THE SEA PINES RESORT
ROBBER’S ROW AT PORT ROYAL GOLF & RACQUET CLUB This 18-hole, par-72 course was designed by noted architects George Cobb and Willard Byrd in the early 1970s before being redesigned by Pete Dye in 1994. Set atop former Civil War grounds, the course is rich in history and features historical markers throughout describing events that took place on the island. Sure to pose a challenge to any golfer, it is located on the scenic marsh side of the Port Royal Plantation and cuts through beautiful strands of magnolia and live oaks. hiltonheadgolf.net/port-royal/golf/robbersrow-course
ROBERT TRENT JONES COURSE AT PALMETTO DUNES OCEANFRONT RESORT
Scenic Robber’s Row
The 18th hole at Harbour Town Golf Links 72
Boasting one of only two oceanfront holes on Hilton Head Island, this 18-hole, par-72 course is sure to challenge golfers of all skill levels, especially when breezes roll in from the Atlantic Ocean. In addition to its dramatic par-5 10th hole, widely considered one of the most spectacular holes in the United States, the course features wide fairways, expansive greens, challenging bunkers and subtle elevation changes. Designed by Robert Trent Jones and Roger Rulewich, it is considered one of the best golf courses in the Southeast and has been designated a Certified Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary. Not only will golfers see a wide variety of birds during a game, but they might also spot some alligators! palmettodunes.com/golf/hiltonhead-golf-courses
Photo of Palmetto Dunes courtesy of Palmetto Dunes Oceanfront Resort; Robber's Row courtesy of Heritage Golf Group; Harbour Town Golf courtesy of The Sea Pines Resort/Rob Tipton
Home to South Carolina’s only PGA TOUR event, the RBC Heritage, this acclaimed Pete Dyedesigned golf course reopened in September after undergoing a series of course enhancements. The tee boxes, fairways and rough were replaced with Celebration bermudagrass, the most technologically advanced surface used on
warm season courses, and the greens were regrassed with TifEagle ultradwarf bermudagrass. Consistently ranked among Golf Digest’s top courses, the 18-hole, par-71 course features a collection of par threes ranked among the world’s finest, as well as a par-4 18th hole overlooking Calibogue Sound that’s considered one of the most feared in golf. seapines.com/golf/harbourtown-golf-links.aspx
Look closely into the mountains of North Carolina and you’ll discover a place unlike any other. Hendersonville calls out to all to seek out and explore new experiences year-round. Stroll through our downtown Main Street filled with boutiques and eateries or find a trail that will take you to new heights in DuPont State Recreational Forest. Belly up to a cold brew at Sierra Nevada Brewery or indulge in regional wine tastings — it’s all up to you!
Be moved. Because that’s what happens in Hendersonville.
vis ithender s onv illenc .o rg
Escape to romantic Savannah at beautiful Ballastone Inn
DISCOVER SAVANNAH’S SOUTHERN CHARM VISIT ONE OF ITS ROMANTIC BED-AND-BREAKFASTS By Misty Wells
there are 17 plush antique-filled rooms featuring fireplaces, chandeliers, claw-foot tubs and four-poster beds. True to Southern hospitality, guests are treated to a gourmet breakfast, wine and hors d'oeuvres, and dessert and cordials. The AAA Four Diamond rated Gastonian was recently recognized by Condé Nast Traveler Magazine as one of the finest places to stay in the world and voted Savannah’s 2014 Best B & B by Savannah Magazine. gastonian.com
This luxe B & B is set in two adjoining RegencyItalianate-style mansions built in 1868. Combined
The pretty parlor at the Gastonian Inn
The elegant Henry Suite in Printmakers Inn 74
This luxurious B & B was built in 1838 and is located in the center of Savannah’s historic district. A favorite of Robert Redford and Matt Damon, it has been featured on “Good Morning America” as one of the finest inns in America. This Four Diamond B & B is dedicated to gracious Southern service, having been bestowed Andrew Harper’s Hideaway Grand Award Winner accolade and Dallas Magazine's Top 10 places in the world to visit. Adorned with Victorian furnishings and serving elegant Southern breakfasts and high tea with delectable homemade delights, this historic gem will transport you back in time for a romantic adventure. ballastone.com
This Victorian mansion is a prime example of Italianate architecture from the Victorian era and was built in 1884 for William Nichols, the head printer in Savanna during the Civil War. The mansion boasts intricate corbels and dental molding outside and original ceiling medallions, crown molding and beautiful heart pine wood floors inside. For a time the inn was owned by legendary singer Nat King Cole and enjoyed by the likes of Etta James. Your four-legged family members are welcome; this historic inn is pet friendly with private pet apartments and spacious yards and gardens. There is walking galore with beautiful Forsyth Park and River Street nearby. printmakersinn.com
Photo of Ballastone Inn courtesy of Ballastone Inn; Gastonian Inn parlor courtesy of Gastonian Inn; Printmakers Inn Henry Suite courtesy of Printmakers Inn
avannah, the oldest city in Georgia, is the picture of Southern hospitality and charm. You may want to pack your searsucker suit and flowing white cotton dress as you picnic in the park, stroll along the historic brick roads and sleep at some of the most romantic bed-and-breakfasts (B & B) in the United States. Savannah is brimming with so many historic B & B’s that choosing which one will be your most difficult decision!
Walk Up and See the Savings. Mention code Free Gas when making a rental car reservation at the following locations and receive a Free $10 gas card. For Reservations, call 803-569-2955 or walk up to our counter to create a new reservation. Knoxville, TN Airport Chattanooga, TN Airport Tri City, TN Airport Asheville, NC Aiport
Greenville, SC Airport Mytrle Beach, SC Airport Savannah, GA Airport
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The iconic Universal Orlando globe
Photos courtesy of © Universal Orlando Resort/All Rights Reserved
ow that it’s summer, the kids are out of school, the weather is perfect and it’s time to have some fun! So, what is fun for you? Is it thrilling rides and captivating shows? Laying by the pool and hanging with friends and family while soaking up some sun? How about wizardry? No matter how you define fun, Universal Orlando® Resort has everything you’re looking for. Upon landing at Orlando Sanford International Airport (a 45-minute drive) or St. PeteClearwater International Airport (less than 90 minutes by car), the kids, grandma and grandpa or whoever you are traveling with will be rushing to grab the bags as all the joy of Universal Orlando® greets them. The first stop will be to check-in to your on-site hotel. Whether you decided on Universal’s Cabana Bay Beach Resort’s retro-themed property, the popular Hard Rock Hotel®, the brand new Loews Sapphire Falls Resort or one of the other five on-site locations, you’ll be treated to a memorable stay. You’ll probably spend most of your time at the two theme parks that have made Universal Orlando® as famous as it is today—both of which have that wizardry you’re looking for. The most well known of the two is Universal Studios Florida®, where visitors get behindthe-scenes and even interact with their favorite movies while enjoying the variety of rides, shows and movie sets. This is also the home of The
The Wizarding World of Harry Potter
Wizarding World of Harry Potter™—Diagon Alley™. Next door, discover Universal’s Islands of Adventure® where comic books, myths, legends, cartoons and children’s stories come to life. Throughout your explorations, you’ll pass through towering Hogwarts™ castle and the classrooms and corridors of The Wizarding World of Harry Potter™—Hogsmeade™. In addition to the amazing hotel properties and two world-famous theme parks, Universal Orlando® Resort is home to even more entertainment, dining and shopping at Universal CityWalk®. Savor a delicious meal at restaurants such as Jimmy Buffett’s® Margaritaville or Emeril’s® Orlando, pick up some new swag at Universal Studios Store® or some new ink at Hart & Huntington Tattoo Company® and catch Blue Man Group, one of the most popular Las Vegas/ Orlando shows. Fun and sun, family and friends, excitement and enthrallment—everything that’s a great vacation can be found at Universal Orlando® Resort.
Universal’s Cabana Bay Beach Resort SUNSEEKER
Allegiant manager Leah’s son Michael (second from the left) is also a Make-A-Wish kid
THE POWER OF A WISH MAKE-A-WISH IS FUELED BY THE “KINDNESS OF STRANGERS”
eah Scherr is a project manager at Allegiant headquarters in Las Vegas and for her, Allegiant’s partnership with MakeA-Wish carries special significance since her own son is a Make-A-Wish child. “The Power of a Wish…it is an energy; a real and tangible force of good. Each wish is fueled by the kindness of strangers. My son Michael is a Wish child and a four-year survivor of diffuse large B cell lymphoma. While he was sick, the hope and positive energy of the thought of his upcoming Wish provided him a muchneeded distraction from the sickness and pain of chemotherapy. The Wish was a bright focal point for the whole family to anticipate as part of a healthy and cancer-free future. The Wish… My son’s wish was simple; to go spend time with his best friend in Pocatello, Idaho. From the moment we were picked up at our home by a limo to go to the airport and at every carefully planned adventure during the Wish, we were surrounded by the overwhelming kindness of complete strangers. Imagine how you would feel after four straight days of receiving genuine kindness and generosity from everyone you met. I can testify that for my family, it felt amazing! What a journey it was to travel from the lowest of lows, potentially losing my son, to the highest of highs on our Wish trip. Three years later fate brought me to work at Allegiant, a major supporter of Make-A-Wish. I am so proud to be a part of a company that pours out so much love and kindness to
Leah and her family stop for a break during their Make-AWish trip
hundreds of wish kids and their families. To see all that Allegiant does and to now be a part of the “kindness of strangers” means the world to me. Every act of kindness from our stations’ teams as they create special send offs at the airports, from our flight crews that give cockpit tours, from our flight attendants that provide a world class in-flight experience, from our maintenance crews that make sure the aircraft is ready to fly, to every team member that bakes, cooks and donates to raffles to raise money, to every team member that joins a Make-A-Wish 5k run; this is the “stuff” that Wishes are made of, the fuel that powers the Wish! I was fortunate to participate in a small way at Serena’s (Allegiant’s 300th Wish kid) airport send off in Las Vegas. Along with dozens of other team members we held up special balloon signs at the ticket counter. The troupe of Allegiant supporters continued to the gate to give a final cheer of love and support to Serena and her family as they boarded the plane. I had a chance to talk to Serena’s mom prior to boarding. As chance or fate would have it, Serena and my son were treated at the same hospital and had the same nurses. I felt very fortunate to connect with one of our Wish families and give them encouragement on their journey. I am so honored to work for Allegiant and be a part of an amazing team that provides the ‘fuel’ to power so many Wishes.” Leah Scherr
Allegiant employees greeted Wish kid Serena and her family at the airport for a fun send-off SUNSEEKER
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Captain Charlotte Burckhard
ALLEGIANT TEAM MEMBER SPOTLIGHT CHARLOTTE BURCKHARD, CAPTAIN, ASHEVILLE, N.C.
llegiant and our employees work hard to be active and involved members of our communities in a number of ways, primarily through our partnership with Make-AWish®. Charlotte Burckhard, one of our Ashevillebased pilots, was lucky enough to give back to her city in a unique way. It wasn’t a typical day in the flight deck for Captain Burckhard but it sure was memorable! Wings for Autism® is an airport “rehearsal” created for individuals with autism spectrum disorders, their families and aviation professionals. The program is designed to alleviate some of the stress that families who have a child with autism experience when traveling by air. Sunseeker: How long have you been working for Allegiant? Charlotte: I started working for Allegiant more than five years ago in Hawaii. After two and a half years, I moved to Asheville as a captain. Sunseeker: What about your job gets you excited to go to work? Charlotte: I love meeting our travelers and hearing their stories. Just yesterday, I met a 97-year-old lady who didn’t need any assistance and exited the plane on her own. That’s pretty
Sunseeker: What was it like to be a part of the Wings for Autism® event? Charlotte: Wings for Autism® was the perfect opportunity for me because I love volunteering and working with children. It feels so great to be a part of a community that gives back. I had never worked with special needs children before, and I can hardly wait for the event next year! Sunseeker: Is there a special memory you would like to share with our readers? Charlotte: It was especially magical for the children, but it was a special day for me as well because I got to see the transformation that took place within the children. The majority of them were initially extremely scared, but by the time they walked off the plane they were excited and comfortable. At the end of the flight, each child came up to the flight deck and I talked to them about flying and allowed them to pretend to fly. One father came up with his two boys and was so impressed with the flight deck that he wanted to sit in the seat and fly too. His wife had to pull all three of them out of the flight deck! Sunseeker: If you could travel anywhere in the United States on vacation at this moment, where would you go? Charlotte: Hawaii! I was based there for two and a half years before I upgraded to captain and moved to Asheville. It truly is paradise! Sunseeker: Do you have a “locals” tip for Allegiant travelers going to the Asheville area? Charlotte: Come visit! It’s impossible to eat at a bad place and the city views are beautiful. One of my favorite places is the Bee Charmer in downtown Asheville where they offer honey tastings! I have also been volunteering at the Wolf Laurel Stables and highly recommend a horseback riding tour through the mountains.
Photos by Mari Miller Photography
Wings for Autism® children in the flight deck
rare for someone her age! She credited her good health to the exercise she received while living on a ranch in her 60s and 70s.
FOR MORE DELICIOUS SNACKS AND BEVERAGES, TAKE A LOOK AT OUR FULL MENU ON PAGES 86-87 62-63
AIRCRAFT BOEING 757 Number of Aircraft: 5 Cruising Speed: 565 mph Range: 4,000 miles Maximum Take-Off Weight: 255,000 pounds Maximum Passengers: 215 Total Length: 155 feet Wingspan: 124 feet Pilots: 2 Flight Attendants: 5
MCDONNELL DOUGLAS MD-80
Number of Aircraft: 25 Cruising Speed: 511 mph Range: 3,682 miles Maximum Take-Off Weight: 162,000 pounds Maximum Passengers: 177 Total Length: 123 feet Wingspan: 111 feet Pilots: 2 Flight Attendants: 4
Number of Aircraft: 51 Cruising Speed: 540 mph Range: 3,200 miles Maximum Take-Off Weight: 160,000 pounds Maximum Passengers: 166 Total Length: 147 feet Wingspan: 107 feet Pilots: 2 Flight Attendants: 4
TRAVELER INFORMATION SAFETY FIRST Customer safety is Allegiant ®’s first concern. Please be advised that interference with the duties of crew members, including flight attendants, is a violation of federal laws. Our crews are thoroughly trained in all safety procedures. To ensure your own safety, we hope you take a moment to review the safety information card located in the seat pocket in front of you. Be aware of the following: • Location of the nearest emergency exit • Location of your emergency oxygen mask, if needed • Correct procedure for exiting the cabin in an emergency SEAT BELTS Seat belts must be fastened ANY TIME the seat belt sign is on, during taxi, takeoff and landing. Once the seat belt sign is turned off, you may walk around the cabin. Due to unexpected turbulence, it is strongly recommended that you keep your seat belt fastened any time while in your seat. Allegiant’s exit seating policy does not allow the use of seat belt extensions in the exit seats due to tripping hazards. CHILD RESTRAINT SEATS Federal Aviation Administration requires that all child restraint seats used on planes meet federal safety standards. Acceptable seats bear proper labeling “THIS RESTRAINT IS CERTIFIED FOR USE IN MOTOR
VEHICLES AND AIRCRAFT” from the manufacturer. Unlabeled seats or seats manufactured before Jan. 1, 1981, are not acceptable. Child restraint seats are to be placed into a window seat and secured with an aircraft seat belt. PHOTOS & VIDEOS ONBOARD The use of small cameras or mobile devices for photography and video is permitted onboard provided you keep the purpose of your photography and video to capturing personal events. Photographing or recording other customers or airline personnel without their express consent is prohibited. Airline personnel reserve the right to prohibit photos and videos onboard the aircraft if it becomes a disturbance to them or other passengers. ALCOHOLIC BEVERAGES Allegiant is forbidden to serve alcoholic beverages to anyone who appears to be intoxicated or who has not yet reached the age of 21. It is a violation of federal regulations to drink alcoholic beverages during a flight unless they have been served by Allegiant personnel. SMOKING Smoking, the use of other tobacco products, e-cigarettes and other similar smoking devices are not permitted on any Allegiant flight. Federal law imposes fines of $1,000 for smoking and up to $2,000 for any attempt to disable an aircraft smoke detector.
PORTABLE ELECTRONIC DEVICES ALWAYS PERMITTED*
Wireless Mouse, Keyboard or Other Accessory
(in Airplane Mode)
*Restrictions may apply when operating outside of U.S. Airspace. NOTE: Portable electronic device use on the ground, during takeoff and during landing should be limited to small, lightweight devices less than 2 lbs. These devices should be able to be easily secured in a seat back and not impede emergency access to the aisle.
PERMITTED AT GATE & IN FLIGHT
Personal Air Purifiers
Remote Control Toys
Two-Way Radios or Transmitters
Using cellular network services (voice or data) to make or receive calls during the flight is not permitted by U.S. and International regulatory authorities. If you have other questions about the use of other portable electronic devices not shown here, ask your flight attendant.
The luggage that lends a hand with family travel. USB Port allows you to charge devices on the go.
We created Unite™ 2 for every family that could use an extra hand when traveling. The unique Link2Go™ system attaches two Spinners together so you can push two pieces with one hand. Simply connect back-to-back with Velcro straps and you’re ready to go. Plus, an external USB Port and integrated battery pouch in the Carry-on provide access to power for all your families devices. Lightweight and affordable, Unite 2 is perfect for busy families on the go.
Luggage connects back to back so you can push two pieces with one hand.
ALWAYS EXPLORING SEE WHERE THE JOURNEY BEGAN. SEE WHERE IT LEADS.
Stand nose to nose with Space Shuttle Atlantis℠. Touch a moon rock. Meet an astronaut. And feel the thrill of liftoff at a live rocket launch or on board the Shuttle Launch Experience®. At Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex, the adventure never ends.
ON THE PRICE OF ADMISSION.
Limit 6 admission passes. Maximum $42 savings.
877.634.0705 | KennedySpaceCenter.com
Coupon not valid with any other discount or on special ticketed events. No cash value. Valid for up to 6 admissions purchased on one transaction. Offer expires 12/31/2016.
Rediscover St. Petersburg - A City of Reinvention and other Great Allegiant Destinations