6/30/2010

A Zeke Story

Early this morning Chef Gary was walking from the parking lot to the Inn when he noticed Zeke in the neighbors' driveway. Zeke was in his "stalking" mode...slowly making his way up the driveway to his poor unsuspecting prey. Chef Gary couldn't see whatever it was that Zeke was hunting, and turned to continue his walk to the Inn. Suddenly there was an eruption of squirrel chatter! Five squirrels charged down the surrounding trees and jumped our Zeke! Did he fight? No, that cat tore out of there like the demons of hell were chasing him!

Later...Zeke glared at Chef Gary as if daring him to tell this story.


6/29/2010

4th of July Weekend!!


FRIDAY JULY 2

FIRST FRIDAY ART WALK
Enjoy the latest exhibits, music, entertainment and refreshments at over 20 participating galleries - plus, great food courtesy of the St. Augustine Independent Restaurant Association. Tours begin at Rembrandtz American Craft Gallery, 131 King Street. Galleries are open from 5 to 9 p.m. St. Augustine Sightseeing Trains and Old Town Trolleys offer attendees a complimentary shuttle service to most of the galleries. Shuttles run on a continuous loop every 30 minutes. For more information, call 904.829.0065 or visit www.artgalleriesofstaugustine.com

REO SPEEDWAGON, PAT BENATAR & NEIL GERALDO IN CONCERT
REO Speedwagon has sold 60 million records and Pat Benatar has received four Grammys!. See these legends live at the beautiful St. Augustine Amphitheatre. The show starts at 7 p.m. and tickets are $69.50, $64.50, $57.50, $47.50 & $37.50. The St. Augustine Amphitheatre is located at 1340 A1A, St. Augustine. For more information call 904.471.1965, or visit www.staugamphitheatre.com .

SATURDAY JULY 3

2ND ANNUAL INDEPENDENCE DAY FESTIVAL
Celebrate our Nation's founding at this day that is full of activity on the grounds of Ripley's Believe It or Not! Museum. Enjoy arts and crafts exhibits, music and foods, lots of kid's activities and games with prizes. You can even take an art class with artist John Koehler. The fun all takes place from 1 to 7 p.m. at Ripley's Believe It or Not Museum grounds, 19 San Marco Avenue. Admission to the grounds is free, art sessions are $40 per person. For more information, call 904.824.1606.

SUNDAY JULY 4

WILLIE GREEN IN CONCERT
Blues legend and Eclipse recording artist Willie Green will perform two special July 4th concerts in St. Augustine. Admission is free to his 2-6 p.m. show at the Lincolnville Summer Sunday Music Series at St. Benedict Shady Field, 100 M.L. King in Lincolnville (bring a chair) - food, drinks and family fun! From 9:30 p.m. 'til closing, Willie and his Blues Project Band will perform at Café 11, 501 A1A Beach Boulevard in St. Augustine Beach. $10 cover charge. For more information, email otterrick7@aol.com

ST. AUGUSTINE'S FOURTH OF JULY CELEBRATION
Have a blast at one of the East Coast's largest fireworks shows! The spectacular fireworks burst above the ancient Castillo de San Marcos and reflect in the waters of Matanzas Bay. The festivities begin at 6 p.m. in the Plaza de la Constitucion with a two-hour concert by the All Star Orchestra featuring big band and swing hits along with patriotic favorites. Fireworks Over the Matanzas begins at 9:30 p.m. and the 20-minute show includes a stirring soundtrack of great patriotic music. Admission is free with the best vantage points located along the bayfront between the Castillo and the Bridge of Lions. For more details, go to www.fireworksoverthematanzas.com

4TH OF JULY TOP OF THE LIGHTHOUSE
Celebrate the 4th of July at the Top of the St. Augustine Lighthouse with a magnificent view of the skyline and St. Augustine fireworks! The spectacular event begins with the viewing of the sunset over the Atlantic. Then fireworks when darkness sets...... St. Augustine Lighthouse and Museum is located at 81 Lighthouse Avenue in St. Augustine. Tickets are $40 per person and space is limited. For reservations call 904.829.0745 ext. 207. For more information, visit www.staugustinelighthouse.com

FIREWORKS FROM THE WATER
Get a close up look at St. Augustine's fireworks extravaganza from the waters of Matanzas Bay. St. Augustine Scenic Cruise offers a Fireworks special aboard the Victory III for only $25 per person. To purchase tickets, call Barbara at 904.824.1806 x210 or go to www.scenic-cruise.com . The pirates of the Black Raven are offering an adults-only fireworks cruise for $60 per person (food included; cash bar onboard). For details and tickets go to www.BlackRavenAdventures.com or call 877.578.5050.

6/28/2010

New Attraction: Fort Menendez at Old Florida Museum


Fort Menendez at Old Florida Museum is kicking off its Summer 2010 Grand Opening with an Open House on Thursday July 1. The Open House will start at 5:00 pm and run until 8:00 pm. Admission is free for all who attend that evening, and refreshments will be available. Fort Menendez is a 1 ½ acre family entertainment attraction. You've seen the walls going up - now's your chance for a sneak peek of St. Augustine's newest attraction!

"This is an experience that cannot be summed up in words," said Chuck Ponce, museum curator. "All I can say is that it's a whole lot of fun. You just need to come see it for yourself!"

Fort Menendez at Old Florida Museum is conveniently located at 259 San Marco Avenue at State Road 16. There is plenty of free parking available.

For more information about Fort Menendez visit their website at www.fortmenendez.com <http://www.fortmenendez.com/>


Fort Menendez at Old Florida Museum
(904) 824-8874
www.fortmenendez.com <http://www.fortmenendez.com/>

6/25/2010

Special Treats for your Drinks this Weekend

Guests of the St. Francis Inn this weekend will enjoy some special treats: Homemade Orange Sugar, Homemade Lime Salt (for our Frozen Daiquiris and Margaritas), and a special Homemade Tomato Salt for our weekend morning Bloody Marys. Joe and Margaret's son Patrick - a recent graduate of the renowned Johnson & Wales University in Providence, Rhode Island - decided to brush off his culinary skills and make something fun and unique for this weekend. Thanks, Patrick!

6/24/2010

This Weekend: Shopping! Greeks! Historic Battles! Moonrise!


UPTOWN SATURDAY NIGHTA favorite end-of-the-month event, Uptown Saturday Night takes place from 5 to 9 p.m. in St. Augustine's San Marco Shopping District. Galleries, antique stores and unique shops between Ripley's Museum and the Mission of Nombre de Dios remain open during this special time. Meet the artists, book signings, live music, refreshments and other events contribute to the party-like atmosphere. The Mission of Nombre de Dios provides FREE PARKING for Uptown Saturday Night. The event is sponsored by the San Marco Avenue Merchants Association. Please call 904.824.3152 for more information.

242nd Annual GREEK LANDING DAY CELEBRATION
Celebrate the 242nd anniversary of the arrival of the first colony of Greeks in North America. Hundreds of Greeks, Menorcans and Corsicans arrived in St. Augustine on June 26, 1768 and went on to establish the New Smyrna Colony. St. Photios Shrine serves as a memorial to those Greek colonists by witnessing the Orthodox Faith and promoting the Hellenic culture. On Friday there will be Supplications to the Virgin Mary at 11:30 a.m., and Great Vespers followed by the Blessing of the Five Loaves will take place at 5:30 p.m. Then from 6 to 9 p.m. on Friday and 11:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, visit the "Glendi" for a celebration of music, food and dancing. Admission is free. The St. Photios National Greek Orthodox Shrine is located at 41 St. George Street in St. Augustine. For more information, call 904.829.8205 or visit www.StPhotios.com


BATTLE OF BLOODY MOSE 270TH ANNIVERSARY
This realistic re-enactment commemorates the 270th anniversary of the battle of Fort Mose - the first legally-sanctioned community for free blacks in what is now the United States. See the Spanish militia composed of runaway slaves, Spanish regulars and their Indian allies battle against the invading English forces from Georgia and Scottish troops from South Carolina. Living history demonstrations, guided tours, food vendors and music are included. The event takes place from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Fort Mose State Park located at 15 Fort Mose Trail in St. Augustine. Admission is $4 per vehicle or $2 for pedestrians or bicyclists. For more information, call 904.823.2232 or visitwww.floridastateparks.org/fortmose .

SUNSET/MOONRISE TOUR
Be a guest of the St. Augustine Lighthouse and enjoy viewing the sunset and moonrise from the most unique perspective in all of St. Augustine! This special event at the top of the tower includes a champagne toast, provided by San Sebastian Winery, and light refreshments, provided by The Reef. The tour takes place from 8 to 9:30 p.m. at the St. Augustine Lighthouse located at 81 Lighthouse Avenue. The fee for the event is $25 for non-museum members and $20 for members. www.staugustinelighthouse.com For reservations, call 904.829.0745.

6/18/2010

St. Augustine Music Festival June 20-25







All concerts are held at the beautiful Cathedral Basilica of

St. Augustine (just 3 blocks from the Inn). Musicians from the Jacksonville Symphony Orchestra and the Ritz Chamber Players will be joined by guest artists to offer a variety of classical compositions.

All performances are FREE to the public.

Sunday June 20 2:00 pm. Festival Opening: Father’s day “Family Concert”

Monday June 21 7:30 pm. “Summer Music”

Tuesday June 22 7:30 pm. “Grace and Beauty”


Wednesday June 23 7:30 pm. “Mozart and More”


Thursday
June 24 7:30 pm. “Piano Spectacular”


Friday June 25 7:30 pm.“Back to Bach”

History, Food, and Music this Weekend




ST. AUGUSTINE BLACK HISTORY TOURJoin this two-hour tour that highlights over 400 years of African American history in the nation's oldest city. Tour guide Howard (Xhabbo) Lewis, will provide a narrative about Pedro Menendez, Ft. Mose, the Plaza Market, Dr. Alexander Darnes, the Emancipation Proclamation, Lincolnville (formerly called "Africa"), the Civil Rights Era and more of the African-American history which is an integral part of the rich legacy of St. Augustine. The tour departs from Ripley's Believe It or Not! Museum, 19 San Marco Avenue at 10 a.m. Tickets are $20 for adults, $15 for Romanza members and $10 for children 12 and younger. To reserve your ticket, call 904.501.6878, or visit www.RomanzaFl.org


First Food: St. Augustine and the Birth of American Cuisine.
EL FESTIN DE SAN JUANLos Companeros de la Cocina (The Companions of the Kitchen), a group of re-enactors and historians will present exhibits and programs about authentic and historically-accurate 16th century Florida cuisine and culinary customs. Presentations will include Native American, Spanish colonial, French and Hispano-African foods. The event takes place from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Colonial Spanish Quarter's De Mesa Yard, located at 29 St. George Street in St. Augustine's historic district. For more information, call 407.345.3127 visit www.FloridaLivingHistory.org , or emailinfo@loscompanerosdelacocina.org

ST. AUGUSTINE MUSIC FESTIVALDon't miss the opening performance of the 2010 edition of the St. Augustine Music Festival! Featuring a different concert daily Sunday through Friday, the festival includes musicians from the Jacksonville Symphony Orchestra and the Ritz Chamber Players joined by guest artists to offer a variety of classical compositions. All of the festival's concerts will take place at the beautiful Cathedral Basilica of St. Augustine, 38 Cathedral Place. Admission is free, but donations are welcomed. The festival opens on Sunday with a special Father's Day concert at 2 p.m., followed by different performances each evening at 7:30 p.m. The schedule is: Monday, Summer's Music; Tuesday, Grace and Beauty; Wednesday, Mozart and More; Thursday, Piano Spectacular; and Friday, Back to Bach. For more information, visit www.staugustinemusicfestival.org

6/11/2010

This Saturday in St. Augustine


CHANGING OF THE GUARD
(photo credit St. Augustine Garrison)
As a typical day in 1740 St. Augustine draws to a close, soldiers guarding the Governors House are dismissed for the night by their replacements. As they retire for the evening, the soldiers fall into formation and fire a volley of musketry that assures residents that the city of San Agustin is secure for the night. This authentic re-enactment begins at 6:30 p.m. when the St. Augustine Garrison begins their march from the Taberna del Gallo, 35 St. George Street, to the Government House located at the Plaza de la Constitucion. For more information call 904.819.0332or visit http://staugustinegarrison.com.
NATIONAL MARINA DAY
Celebrate National Marina Day from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Camachee Cove Yacht Harbor at the base of the Vilano Bridge in St. Augustine. Live music. DJ., food and drinks, nautical flea market, and lots of pirates doing piratical things. Plus, there will be a blindfolded dingy race and a homemade sailboat race. For more information, call 904.829.5676.

6/10/2010

ZEKE.....

Zeke just wanted ya'll to know he's doing fine...he seems to love this summer weather we're having. He visits with his "chosen guests" in the morning, suns himself on his favorite courtyard table (but not too long!!! He's carefull about too much exposure to the sun!!!), then finds a shady spot for some serious napping.

PS It's Joe's birthday today. Happy Birthday, Joe!

6/09/2010

More New Attractions...Two New Tours...


City Walks Guided Tours: Known for their popular pub crawl and their history, murder and mayhem tours, City Walks now offers two new tours with far less sinister themes - food and shopping!

The Savory Faire Tour is a two-and-a-half hour walking tour exploring the historical and cultural influences on the tastes of St. Augustine. From tapas to desserts, participants journey from the First Thanksgiving (Sept. 8, 1565) to the present-day culinary offerings of the Oldest City. Lots of tasting adventures along the way - plus, each participant receives a special heritage recipe gift.

Shop St. Augustine is a three-hour tour that leads to the most unique and off-the-beaten-path shops in the city. The tour is accompanied by a cart that will hold and deliver your shopping treasures to your inn or vehicle. For details on these and other special City Walks Guided Tours, go to http://www.staugustinecitywalks.com or call 904.540.3476.

6/07/2010

NEW Attractions in the Oldest City

Over the next few days we will feature the Oldest City's newest attractions - from wild & weird to dining and shopping.

Adrenaline Alligator Adventures: For the ultimate adrenaline rush, go hands-on with nuisance alligators - in the wild! Spend the day with a licensed alligator trapper and go along on a mission to subdue and remove nuisance 'gators - each of which must be more than four feet in length. The 'gator hunt may take you to a deep swamp or the fairway of a famous golf course - each day offers new challenges. The adventures are priced at $45 per person for the "ride-along" featuring a scout for alligators and observing the live capture of these prehistoric predators. Or choose the Full Gator Hunt priced at $145 per person and get right in the middle of the action and assist in the snaring, subduing and taping the big gator's deadly jaws firmly shut! For more information, go to:http://adrenalinealligators.com or call 904.607.6399.

City Walks Guided Tours: Known for their popular pub crawl and their history, murder and mayhem tours, City Walks now offers two new tours with far less sinister themes - food and shopping! The Savory Faire tour is a two-and-a-half hour walking tour exploring the historical and cultural influences on the tastes of St. Augustine. From tapas to desserts, participants journey from the First Thanksgiving (Sept. 8, 1565) to the present-day culinary offerings of the Oldest City. Lots of tasting adventures along the way - plus, each participant receives a special heritage recipe gift. Shop St. Augustine is a three-hour tour that leads to the most unique and off-the-beaten-path shops in the city. The tour is accompanied by a cart that will hold and deliver your shopping treasures to your inn or vehicle. For details on these and other special City Walks Guided Tours, go to http://www.staugustinecitywalks.com or call 904.540.3476.

6/04/2010

Wild dolphin eco tour

We offer two add-on packages with St. Augustine Eco Tours. Click here for details. For more information on St. Augustine Eco Tours, click here.

6/03/2010

Drakes Raid 2009

ART WALK, BEACH FUN, DRAKE'S RAID, & MARINELAND THIS WEEKEND!



Photo "New Day" by AM Shehadeh


FIRST FRIDAY ART WALK * FRIDAY JUNE 4
Join one of St. Augustine's most popular cultural events on the first Friday of every month. Enjoy the latest exhibits, music, entertainment and refreshments at over 20 participating galleries - plus, great food courtesy of the St. Augustine Independent Restaurant Association. Tours begin at Rembrandtz American Craft Gallery, 131 King Street. Galleries are open from 5 to 9 p.m. St. Augustine Sightseeing Trains and Old Town Trolleys offer attendees a complimentary shuttle service to most of the galleries. Shuttles run on a continuous loop every 30 minutes. For more information, call 904.829.0065 or visit www.artgalleriesofstaugustine.com.

ANASTASIA STATE PARK'S 17th ANNUAL BEACH BASH * SATURDAY JUNE 5
Enjoy a day of sand castle building, scavenger hunts, nature walks, and other fun family activities. This day of fun has activities for everyone, starting with a scavenger hunt and ending with a spectacular sandcastle/sculpture contest. There will be interpretive programs given by one of our park rangers, a Bird Walk, our famous "Low Tide Bike Ride". Prizes will be awarded! Activities take place 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Admission to the park is $8 per vehicle for up to 8 people and $2 for pedestrians and bicyclists. For more information, please call 904.461.2035 or visit www.floridastateparks.org/anastasia.
DRAKE'S RAID * SATURDAY JUNE 5
Relive history as the English corsair, Sir Francis Drake, and his raiders return to St. Augustine in an authentic re-creation of the 1586 sack of the city. Open to the public, the raiders' camp at the Fountain of Youth Park features displays of the arms and armor, craft skills, and lifestyles of the period explained by costumed interpreters. In the late afternoon, Drake and his followers will descend on the city's historic district. At 7 p.m., the battle will begin on Orange Street at the Santo Domingo Redoubt. For more information, please call 904.829.9792 or visit www.FloridaLivingHistory.org and for a cool video of last year's raid, go to: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gPa9QElZkF0 .

FAMILY FUN DAY AT MARINELAND * SUNDAY JUNE 6
Bring the entire family to Marineland's Dolphin Conservation Center for an afternoon of fun and games. From 1 to 4 p.m., enjoy kid-friendly food, beverages, games, crafts, educational activities and DOLPHINS. From noon to 1 p.m., Captain Don Dingman, host of the Hook the Future TV show, will present interactive sessions designed to show young people how to become responsible anglers. Admission is FREE for children age 12 and under and $2 for adults Half of the admission costs will be donated to the Dolphin Conservation Field Station, For more information, go to www.marineland.net or call 904.471.1111.