4/29/2014

Cinco de Mayo - St Francis Inn-style!

In what is fast becoming a tradition we will again celebrate Cinco de Mayo here at the St. Francis Inn with a special Mexican-style breakfast and social hour!

For breakfast that morning we will be serving a Build-Your-Own Breakfast Burrito along with Mexican Roasted Potatoes.  This was very popular last year!

For social we will serve a Fun Fiesta Layered Dip and fresh vegetables with a Mexi-Ranch Dip...topped off with Margaritas, of course!

Janice is still working on dessert, but it will match the theme.

And just for fun here's an old (2010) picture of the staff celebrating Cinco de Mayo when Joe & Margaret were out of town on that special day!

(L-R) Anna, Mike, Patrick (Joe & Margaret's son!), Bozena, Kelly

4/28/2014

Birding and Photo Festival, Gamble Rogers Festival, Chalk Walk Festival and More This Week in St Augustine!

April 28, 2014
Monday - Sunday : April 28 - May 4
Islands of Lemurs: Madagascar at IMAX Theater  - "Island of Lemurs: Madagascar" opens at The IMAX Theatre at World Golf Hall of Fame. This film takes audiences on a journey to the remote island of Madagascar to explore the diverse species of highly endangered lemurs that live there. This IMAX Theater features the largest 3D screen in the Southeast. Adults $13, Seniors/Students/Military $12, and Children 3-12 $10. Visit the website for show times. One World Golf Pl., St. Augustine. 904-940-4123 www.worldgolfimax.com 
  
Journey: 450 Years of the African-American Experience - Journey: 450 Years of the African American Experience covers the long and storied history of African-Americans in St. Augustine. The story of African-Americans begins in St. Augustine with the first Africans both free and slave among founding colonists in 1565. The exhibition is designed for cultural and heritage visitors interested in the full history of America and its beginnings and comprises four themes: Genesis of the African-American Experience; Fortress of Freedom; Breaking the Chains; and Crossroads of Change.  Tickets are $5 for adults; $4 for seniors; $3 for youth 7-12; under 7 free. Free admission for military in uniform. Located at the St. Augustine Visitors Information Center, 10 West Castillo Dr., St. Augustine. www.Journey2014.com 
 
El Galeón and Nao Victoria Tour - Tour full-sized replicas of 16th and 17th century Spanish tall ships. Docked at the St. Augustine City Marina, El Galeón Andalucia and Nao Victoria are both open for daily tours. El Galeón is an exact replica of the famous galleons that played an important role in the creation and maintenance of the Spanish Empire.  Built in Spain, it is similar to the galleon that brought Pedro Menendez to Florida where he founded St. Augustine in 1565. The Nao Victoria is a replica of the first ship to successfully circumnavigate the world commanded by Ferdinand Magellan in the 16th century. The ships are available for tours beginning at 10 a.m. daily. El Galeón admission is $15 for adult and $8 for youth. Nao Victoria admission is $10 for adults and $5 for youth. A combo ticket for both ships is available for $20 for adults and $10 for youth. 111 Avenida Menendez. 904-824-1606 www.elgaleon.org.
 
For a complete list of  eco/kayak, food, and history tours, and other special tours taking place on Florida's Historic Coast this week, visit Florida'sHistoricCoast.com/events 

Wednesday:  April 30
Farmer's Arts and Crafts Market - Farmer's Market located at the ocean-side St. Johns County Pier Park featuring selections of fresh produce, plants, baked goods, fine art, jewelry and more!  Open 8 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. rain or shine. 350 A1A Beach Blvd., St. Augustine Beach. 904-347-8007 www.thecivicassociation.com 
 
Backcountry Guided Tour at Faver-Dykes State Park    - From 8 - 11 a.m., Faver-Dykes State Park hosts a 3 mile informative hike traversing through several unique habitats which are home to many native plants and animals including several species of carnivorous plants.  You will have many photographic opportunities through the back property.  The suggested donation is $10 and includes the regular admission fee. 1000 Faver-Dykes Rd., St. Augustine.  904-794-0997 www.floridastateparks.org/faverdykes
 
Wednesday & Thursday:  April 30 & May 1
"Karst Window" Screening - Flagler College and the Crisp-Ellert Art Museum host a film screening of Kevin Mahoney's "Karst Window" at 7 p.m. on Wednesday at the Gamache-Koger Theater in the Ringhaver Student Center.  The film will also be screened at 6, 7, and 8 p.m. on Thursday.  48 Sevilla St., St. Augustine. 904-826-8530  www.flagler.edu/crispellert
Wednesday - Sunday: April 30 - May 4
12th Annual Florida's Birding & Photo Fest - Experience northeast Florida's abundant bird life and photogenic natural beauty at more than 110 exciting birding and outdoor photography events!  In addition to the ever-popular nature tours and excursions, new discoveries for this year's event include workshops on preparing images and composition, photographing birds in flight, selections and layer masking, flash techniques and many in field photography workshops. The festival is headquartered at the GTM Research Reserve, located 8 miles north of St. Augustine on A1A North. Discover the region's phenomenal bird life and the abundant natural habitats that sustain them with bird walks and boat and kayak trips to undisturbed areas. This Festival is guaranteed to excite nature lovers and outdoor enthusiasts of all ages.  505 Guana River Rd., Ponte Vedra Beach 904-209-4422 www.FloridasBirdingandPhotoFest.com
Thursday - Saturday: May 1- 3
Spring 2014 Senior Portfolio Exhibition - The Crisp-Ellert Art Museum presents the Spring 2014 Senior Portfolio Exhibition with an opening reception on Thursday from 5 - 9 p.m.  The B.F.A. exhibition will include paintings, sculpture, video, and mixed media works by Flagler College's graduating B.F.A. and B.A. candidates.  The works will also be on display Friday from 10 a.m. - 4 p.m. and 5-9 p.m.; and Saturday from 11 a.m. - 2 p.m.  48 Sevilla St., St. Augustine. 904-826-8530 www.flagler.edu/crispellert
Thursday - Sunday: May 1- 4
Limelight Theatre Presents "Other Desert Cities" - A promising young writer returns home to announce the imminent publication of her novel based on a tragic event in the family's history - an event her parents want to forget.  Performance times are 7:30 p.m. Thursday - Saturday and 2 p.m. on Sunday.  Tickets are $25; $22 seniors; $20 student and military. 11 Old Mission Ave., St. Augustine. 904-825-1164 www.limelight-theatre.org
Friday: May 2
First Friday Art Walk - From 5 - 9 p.m. on the first Friday of every month, the Art Galleries of St. Augustine feature new exhibits, refreshments and live music at more than 20 galleries.  The event is held rain or shine inside the member galleries and is a free, self-guided walking tour (tour maps available at participating galleries).  Plus, free Art Walk Trolleys and Trains provided by St. Augustine Sightseeing Trains and Old Town Trolleys, provide free transportation throughout downtown for the art walk.   832-779-2781 www.artgalleriesofstaugustine.org
 
Meet The Treasure Hunters- From 6 - 8 p.m., The St. Augustine Pirate and Treasure Museum hosts Captain Carl Fismer - who will share tales of treasure dives and will be on hand to appraise local collector's maritime treasures.  To have an item appraised by Captain Fismer, send in advance a photo of it along with a brief description to tracy@thepiratementmuseum.com in advance.  The event is free.  12 S. Castillo Dr., St. Augustine. 877-467-5863 www.thepiratemuseum.com
Friday - Sunday: May 2 - 4
St. Augustine Chalk Walk Festival - This St. Augustine 450th Anniversary event begins at 7 p.m. on Friday with a Chalk Walk party. Then, from 10 a.m. - 5 p.m. on Saturday, more than 70 artists will use the 500-year old art form of chalking to express St. Augustine's Spanish Colonial heritage on the sidewalks between the Historic Downtown Parking Facility and the Visitor Information Center.  Cash prizes will be presented for the best sidewalk creations. This is a free event for people of all ages to participate and create.  Sunday is a full day of public viewing ending with a sidewalk washing.  10 West Castillo Dr., St. Augustine. www.staugustinechalkwalk.com
 
Gamble Rogers Music Festival  - The 19th annual celebration of the folk music, stories and dance that made Gamble Rogers famous features a Friday night show (5-9:30 p.m.) at the St. Augustine Marina, the all-day (noon-10:30 p.m.) Saturday music-on-numerous-stages show at the St. Augustine Amphitheatre and the Sunday (noon-7 p.m.) free festival party and live music event at the St. Augustine Beach Pier Pavilion.  More than 20 bands and solo performers are featured.  Tickets are $15 for the Friday performances; $35 for Saturday or $45 for weekend a weekend pass. For the musical lineup, ticket information, and other details consult www.gamblerogersfest.org
 
Amiro Art & Found Opens "By the Sea"   - As part of St. Augustine's First Friday Art Walk, Amiro Art & Found features a collection of ocean-inspired artwork from 5 - 9 p.m.  The exhibit include artwork by Miami-based artist, Jeanine Maleno, as well as local artists Jim Macbeth, Nancy Hamlin-Vogler, Deane Kellogg, and Wendy Mandel McDaniel.  The exhibit will remain through the month of May.  The Gallery is open Thursday-Monday from 11 a.m. - 5 p.m. with extended hours on Fridays and Saturdays until 7 p.m.  9C Aviles St., St. Augustine. 904-824-8460 www.amiroartandfound.com
 
Florida Artists Group Juried Exhibition - The St. Augustine Art Association hosts the annual symposium and exhibition of the FLORIDA ARTIST Group (FLAG).  The exhibition contains a diverse collection of work by the many active painters, photographers, sculptors and mixed-media artists that make up that prestigious group.    The gallery is open Tuesday - Saturday noon - 4 p.m. and Sunday 2 - 5 p.m. Admission is free.  22 Marine St. St. Augustine. 904-824-2310 www.staaa.org
 
Honoring the Legacy: A Tribute to African-Americans in Golf - The World Golf Hall of Fame opens a new,permanent exhibit titled "Honoring the Legacy: A Tribute to African-Americans in Golf." The exhibit details the long, rich history of African-Americans in golf, from the difficult beginnings in the late 1800s for pioneers like John Shippen, to the progress and challenges of today.  The exhibit also highlights the struggles and successes of notable golfers like Hall of Fame member Charlie Sifford and major personalities such as Althea Gibson, Joe Louis and Tiger Woods.  The World Golf Hall of Fame is open daily except for Thanksgiving, Christmas and Induction Day.  Hours are Mon.- Sat. 10 a.m.-6 p.m. and Sundays noon - 6 p.m.  Admission is $19.50 adults; $18.50 seniors, military and Florida residents; $10 students ages 13 and over; and $5 for children ages 5-12.  One World Golf Place (i-95 exit 323), St. Augustine. 904-940-4123 www.worldgolfhalloffame.org
 
Miniature Marks - The St. Augustine Art Association hosts a juried open media and subject exhibit of artists making their personal mark in this installation of works no larger than 12 inches.  Small, but mighty, the individual pieces explore a wide range of subjects, ideas and materials.   The gallery is open Tuesday - Saturday noon - 4 p.m. and Sunday 2 - 5 p.m. Admission is free.  22 Marine St. St. Augustine. 904-824-2310 www.staaa.org 
Saturday:  May 3
Old City Farmer's Market - Features locally grown fresh produce, baked goods, plants and more.  Located at the St. Augustine Amphitheater.  Open 8:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.  Admission is free. 1340 A1A, St. Augustine. 904-471-3733
 
GTM Research Reserve Guided Cultural Hike   - The first Saturday of each month at 8:30 a.m. features a Guided Cultural Hike that focuses on the Guana Peninsula's 5,000 years of human history  This 1.5 mile guided walking tour departs from the Trailhead Pavilion located just west of the Guana Dam.  The programs are free.   There is a $3 parking fee.  505 Guana River Rd., Ponte Vedra Beach 904-823-4500 http://gtmnerr.org
 
Living History Day at Fort Matanzas  - From 10:30 p.m. until 3:30 p.m., authentically clad reenactors demonstrate Spanish cannons at this fortress that guarded the southern approach to St. Augustine.  Admission is free including the ferry ride to and from Rattlesnake Island.  Fort Matanzas National Monument is located at 8635 A1A, approximately 15 miles south of St. Augustine. 904-471-0116 www.nps.gov/foma
 
Changing of the Flags Ceremony - Eighteenth-century military re-enactors commemorate the 1763 transfer of St. Augustine and the Castillo de San Marcos from Spanish to British control in accordance with the Treaty of Paris.  Ceremonies take place at 11 a.m. and 2 p.m.  Admission is free.  Castillo de San Marcos, 1 S. Castillo Dr., St. Augustine. 904-820-6506, ext. 233; www.staugustinegarrison.com
 
Vilano Beach Sunset Celebration - A celebration of a spectacular sunset across the bay featuring dozens of market vendors, live music, local arts and crafts and more at the Vilano Pier on the Intracoastal Waterway.   Activities are from 2 p.m. - dusk.  Admission is free. 260 Vilano Rd., St. Augustine. 904-540-0402 www.vilanobeachfl.com
 
PGA Tour Grand Demo Day - From 11 a.m.-4 p.m., The PGA Tour Golf Academy at World Golf Village hosts a Grand Demo Day at the Slammer & Squire driving range.  The event showcases the latest products from PING, NIKE, TaylorMade, Sky Caddie, Cleveland Golf and more.   One World Golf Place, off I-95 exit 323, St. Augustine. 904-940-4123 www.worldgolfhalloffame.org
Sunday: May 4 
Lincolnville Farmers Market - Eddie Vickers Park hosts this farmer's market with farm-fresh vegetables, meats/fish, cheese, bread, treats, arts & crafts, prepared food, jewelry, picnic areas, playground and more! Live music by The House Cats. Every Sunday from noon - 4 p.m.  399 Riberia St., St. Augustine.  www.facebook.com/lincolnvillefarmersmarket
 
St. Augustine Vintage Car Tour of Mission Nombre de Dios - Travel in style aboard an electric, vintage-style automobile to the peaceful, historic grounds where the first parish Mass in what is now the United States was celebrated in 1565.  The tour includes a visit to the museum, shrine, and gift shop.  Tour departs at 1 p.m. on the first Sunday of the month. The cost is $25 per person.  Reservation required.  21 Orange St., St. Augustine. 904-430-3542  www.staugustinevintagecartours.com
 
EMMA Concert:  Matthew Young, Pianist - Matthew Young, a winner of multiple competitions, including the highest division solo piano competition at the Florida Federation of Music Clubs Festival, will perform at 2 p.m. at the Lewis Auditorium at Flagler College.  This is a free concert.  14 Granada St., St. Augustine.  904-797-2800 www.emmaconcerts.com

4/16/2014

The Pit Surf Shop expands without really changing | StAugustine.com

As you probably know, guests of the St. Francis Inn can easily access St. Augustine Beach on B Street.  We provide free off-street parking, complete bathroom with shower, outside shower, along with beach chairs, towels, and cold bottled water.





The Pit Surf Shop is located on A Street - just a block away - and has all kinds of surf equipment you can purchase or rent:  surf boards, boogie boards, skim boards, etc.  Their web site features the Daily Surf Report and a Live Surf Cam.



Also on A Street:  Stir it Up! (smoothies and wraps), Mango Mangos (Caribbean Grill and Bar), and The Beachcomber Restaurant (Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner - a favorite with the locals - and located right up on the sand).



If you would like to stay at the beach, the St. Francis Inn owns and/or manages four properties out there:







Guests who stay at any of Our Beach Lodgings also can take advantage of the St. Francis Inn's free guest amenities!





The Pit Surf Shop expands without really changing | StAugustine.com

4/15/2014

Spring festivals and outdoor events | StAugustine.com

The Easter Parade is this Saturday!  Other outdoor events include:

A Taste of St Augustine

Race to the Taste

Bacon Nation Food Festival

First Coast Farm Stroll

Farm to Table Week

Florida's Birding and Photo Fest

Gamble Rogers Folk Festival

Paseo Pastel - St Augustine Chalk Walk

Romanza Festivale

Music By the Sea Concert Series

Vilano 5K Walk/Run

Taste of the Beach

The Great American Craft Beer Tour

Concerts in the Plaza

St Augustine Music Festival





Click on the link for dates and details:  Spring festivals and outdoor events | StAugustine.com



So get outside and enjoy!  (If you stay with us - www.stfrancisinn.com - you can sit outside in our walled courtyard and enjoy a specialty coffee while planning your day!)

4/14/2014

WHAT A WEEK!! Easter Parade, Sunrise Services, Darius Rucker, National Parks Weekend and SO MUCH MORE!

 April 14, 2014
Monday - Sunday : April 14 - 20 
Jerusalem at the IMAX Theater - The documentary film "Jerusalem" plays each day through  May 30 at The IMAX Theater at World Golf Hall of Fame. This film explores how this small city became such a pivotal part of human history.  Jerusalem is home to some of the most sacred sites in the world for Jews, Christians, and Muslims. This IMAX theater features the largest 3D screen in the Southeast.  Adults $13, Seniors/Students/Military $12, and Children 3-12 $10. Visit the website for show times. One World Golf Place, St. Augustine. 904-940-4123 www.worldgolfimax.com 
  
Journey: 450 Years of the African-American Experience - Journey: 450 Years of the African American Experience covers the long and storied history of African-Americans in St. Augustine. The story of African-Americans begins in St. Augustine with the first Africans both free and slave among founding colonists in 1565. The exhibition is designed for cultural and heritage visitors interested in the full history of America and its beginnings and comprises four themes: Genesis of the African-American Experience; Fortress of Freedom; Breaking the Chains; and Crossroads of Change.  Tickets are $5 for adults; $4 for seniors; $3 for youth 7-12; under 7 free. Free admission for military in uniform. Located at the St. Augustine Visitors Information Center, 10 West Castillo Dr., St. Augustine.  www.Journey2014.com 
 
El Galeón Tour - Tour a full-sized replica of a 17th century Spanish galleon. Docked at the St. Augustine City Marina, El Galeón Andalucia is an exact replica of the famous galleons that played an important role in the creation and maintenance of the Spanish Empire.  Built in Spain, it is similar to the galleon that brought Pedro Menendez to Florida where he founded St. Augustine in 1565.  The ship is available for tours beginning at 10 a.m. daily. Admission is $15 for adult; $8 for youth. 111 Avenida Menendez. 904-824-1606
 
"The Colors of Spring" Exhibit - Lost Art Gallery features the colorful works of Darwin Chaves.  Rainbows are the pallet of this Peruvian-born artist.  Rich in color and texture, Chavez paints his favorite beach scenes, streetscapes and gardens in acrylic on canvas. Through April 30. 210 St. George St., St. Augustine. 904-827-9800 www.lostartgallery.com
 
Spring Members Show - The St. Augustine Art Association's Annual Spring Members Show features a broad array of artistic styles, media and subjects.   The gallery is open Tuesday - Saturday noon - 4 p.m. and Sunday 2-5 p.m. Admission is free.  22 Marine St., St. Augustine. 904-824-2310 www.staaa.org 
 
For a complete list of  eco/kayak, food, and history tours, and other special tours taking place on Florida's Historic Coast this week, visit Florida'sHistoricCoast.com/events 
Monday:  April 14
"The Role of Art in the Egyptian Revolution" - Internationally-renowned Egyptian artist and activist Mohamed Abla visits Flagler College.  Abla, is considered Egypt's leading contemporary artist and will talk about "The role of Art in the Egyptian Revolution."  This free lecture begins at 7 p.m. in the Flagler Room. 74 King Street, St. Augustine. 904-819-6282 www.flagler.edu/our-community
 
Sunset/Moonrise at St. Augustine Lighthouse - Enjoy the sunset and moonrise from the top of the Lighthouse!  The $25 admission includes a champagne toast, provided by San Sebastian Winery, hors d'oeuvres from The Reef and an informative overview of the history of the St. Augustine Light Station. 81 Lighthouse Ave., St. Augustine. 904-829-0745 www.staugustinelighthouse.org 
Monday & Tuesday:  April 14 & 15
Schooner Freedom Full Moon Sail - St. Augustine's premier tall ship, the Schooner Freedom, sails through the calm waters of Matanzas Bay lit by the glow of the full moon.  This memorable sailing excursion departs at 8:45 p.m. from the City Marina.  Complimentary beer, soda and wine are included in the $35 per person rate.  Bring along a picnic basket or dessert and make it a night to remember.  111 Avenida Menendez.  904-810-1010 www.schoonerfreedom.com 


Wednesday:  April 16
Farmer's Arts and Crafts Market - Farmers' Market located at the ocean-side St. Johns County Pier Park featuring selections of fresh produce, plants, baked goods, fine art, jewelry and more!  Open 8 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. rain or shine. 350 A1A Beach Blvd., St. Augustine Beach. 904-347-8007 www.thecivicassociation.com 
 
"Gathering" with the St. Augustine Maritime Heritage Foundation - At 6 p.m. the St. Augustine Maritime Heritage Foundation will host a "Gathering" at the St. Augustine Yacht Club.  The doors open at 5:30 p.m. with SAYC menu items available for purchase.  A guest speaker focusing on the rich past, present and future maritime heritage of St. Augustine will be the highlight of the evening.  The event is open to the public and free of charge.  442 Ocean Vista Ave., St. Augustine. 904-599-3800 http://staugmaritimeheritage.org
Thursday:  April 17
Relay for Life at San Sebastian Winery - Enjoy a tour, wine tastings, light hors d'oeuvres and live music at St. Augustine's San Sebastian Winery.  Sponsored by The Bailey Group, this is a pre-event fundraiser for the American Cancer Society's Relay for Life.  Tickets for all the fun are only $15 when purchased at The Bailey Group, 1200 Plantation Island Dr, Suite 210 in St. Augustine or $20 at the door.  The event is 5 - 7 p.m. (tours and tasting begin at 4:15 p.m.)  157 King Street. 904-461-1800 
 
"Brotherhood and 'Brotherhoodism' in the Civil Rights Era; and "Bottling Hell: Cultural Identity and the Datil Pepper of St. Augustine"  - Beginning at 7 p.m., Dr. Ted Ownby, Professor of History and Southern Studies, Director of the Center of the Study of Southern Culture, University of Mississippi, presents "Brotherhood and  'Brotherhoodism' in the Civil Rights Era American South."  Next, Ms. Anna Hamilton, Graduate Assistant, Southern Foodways Alliance, Center for the Study of Southern Culture, University of Mississippi, presents "Bottling Hell: Myth-Making, Cultural Identity and the Datil Pepper of St. Augustine."  These lectures take place in the Flagler Room at Ponce Hall and are presented by the Flagler College Ideas and Images Program marking the 50th anniversary of the passage of the Civil Rights Act. The lectures are free and open to the public. 74 King Street, St. Augustine. 904-819-6282 www.flagler.edu/our-community
Friday: April 18
Music from Vegas To Branson - The Pioneer Barn at the Old Florida Museum hosts the very talented Mr. Trey Dees featuring the music of some of the greats of the 50's, 60's, and 70's at 7 p.m.   Enjoy music from the likes of Elvis, Chuck Berry, Dean Martin, Roy Orbison, and Tom Jones.  Tickets are $10 general admission, $8 seniors.   259 San Marco Ave. St. Augustine.  904-824-8874 www.fortmenendez.com
Friday - Sunday: April 18 - 20 
Limelight Theatre Presents "Other Desert Cities" - A promising young writer returns home to announce the imminent publication of her novel based on a tragic event in the family's history - an event her parents want to forget.  Performance times are 7:30 p.m. Thursday - Saturday and 2 p.m. on Sunday.  Tickets are $25; $22 seniors; $20 student and military. 11 Old Mission Ave., St. Augustine. 904-825-1164 www.limelight-theatre.org
Saturday:  April 19
Old City Farmer's Market - Features locally grown fresh produce, baked goods, plants and more.  Located at the St. Augustine Amphitheater.  Open 8:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.  Admission is free. 1340 A1A, St. Augustine. 904-471-3733
  
Guided Beach Exploration Guana South Beach - Join GTM Research Reserve Docents from 8:30 - 10:30 a.m. for a beach walk at the Guana South beach location on A1A, South Ponte Vedra Beach.  Learn about the animals that call the beach home as well as seashells and other interesting facts.  This is a "Beaches 101" experience that the entire family will enjoy.  There is a $3/per vehicle parking fee.  1768 Ponte Vedra Blvd., Ponte Vedra Beach 904-823-4500 www.gtmnerrbeachexploration.eventbrite.com
 
Photography Challenge Event - Photographers, from beginners to professionals, compete to take the best photo at three designated locations within Washington Oaks Gardens State Park.  Maps to the featured locations can be obtained from the Ranger Station or from volunteers in the main parking lot. Each month, park volunteers select the winning photo which will then be displayed at the VIC kiosk and the park's gift shop.  There is no cost to compete.  Park admission is $5 per vehicle; $2 per pedestrian/bicyclist.  6400 North Oceanshore Blvd., Palm Coast 609-247-8146;  www.floridastateparks.org/washingtonoaks 
 
Tolomato Cemetery Guided Tour - Tour the oldest extant planned cemetery in the State of Florida with burials starting during the First Spanish Period (1565-1763).   Admission is free, but donations are encouraged.  Tours are from 11 a.m. - 3 p.m. 16 Cordova St., St. Augustine.www.tolomatocemetery.com 
 
Record Store Day - St. Augustine Tonevendor Records celebrates international Record Store Day and its transition from 18 years as an online shop to an actual brick and mortar record store! From noon - 6 p.m. enjoy live music by local and regional bands interspersed with DJ sets -- plus there will be special sales as well as poster, CD and record giveaways.  From 2 - 3 p.m., Hot Shot Bakery and Cafe will host an on-stage pepper-eating contest with a $75 cash prize for the winner.  81d King St., St. Augustine.  904-342-7981 http://recordstoreday.com/CustomPage/614
 
Pirate Plunder Tour - St. Augustine City Walks presents a one-hour tour featuring the town's most famous pirate lore.  Kidnapped by a well-known pirate captain, tour participants will find out what it was like to live in 17th century St. Augustine - complete with the threat of pirate raids.  This fun, free tour departs at 4:30 p.m. from the Tour St. Augustine office, 4 Granada St., St. Augustine.   Reservations required. 904-825-0087 www.StAugustineCityWalks.com
 
Union History Day and Candlelight Tours at the Castillo de San Marcos - Castillo de San Marcos hosts a special Civil War daytime event followed by Civil War themed candlelight tours of the fort.  All day at the Castillo, Civil War era demonstrations will be showcased from Cannon firings by the Wabash crew, to Union Infantry demonstrations both in and out of the fort. Admission to the Castillo during the day is free. The Candlelight tours take place at 6:15, 7 and 7:45 p.m. Admission is $8 adults,  $4 children 5-15 and under 4 are free.  1 South Castillo Dr. St. Augustine904-829-6506 x 233 www.nps.gov/casa
 
Darius Rucker Concert - Darius Rucker returns to the St. Augustine Amphitheatre with the Eli Young Band and Corey Smith.  Rucker, who first attained multi-platinum status as the lead singer and rhythm guitarist of Hottie & the Blowflish, was inducted into the Grand Old Opry in October 2012.  His singles continue to top the charts with songs like "It Won't Be Like This For Long" and "Alright" which earned him the New Artist award from the Country Music Association. Tickets range from $45.50 - $65.50. The concert starts at 6:30 p.m. (gates open 5:30 p.m.)  1340 A1A South St. Augustine. 904-209-0367 www.staugamphitheatre.com
Saturday & Sunday: April 19 & 20
National Parks Weekend at Castillo de San Marcos - Enjoy free admission as the Castillo de San Marcos kicks off their annual celebration of National Parks Week. The Castillo is open from 8:45 a.m. to 5 p.m.  Cannon firings and historic weapons demonstrations take place throughout the day. 1 South Castillo Dr. St. Augustine 904-829-6506 x 233 www.nps.gov/casa
Sunday: April 20   Easter Sunday
Lincolnville Farmers Market - Eddie Vickers Park hosts this farmer's market with farm-fresh vegetables, meats/fish, cheese, bread, treats, arts & crafts, prepared food, jewelry, picnic areas, playground and more! Live music by The House Cats. Every Sunday from noon - 4 p.m.  399 Riberia St., St. Augustine.  www.facebook.com/lincolnvillefarmersmarket
 
Vilano Beach Easter Sunrise Service - The Church at Vilano and Christian Communion of St. Augustine/Vilano host the 14th Annual Vilano Beach Easter Sunrise Service.  The 45-minute beach service will contain songs, dance, Scripture, and a brief message about the joy and hope of the Christian experience.  The worship service is at 6:45 a.m. with meditational music at 6:15 a.m. Ocean baptism will follow.  Park on the beach, street, or at Publix.  Bring chairs and blankets.  Rev. Sam Schlegel, 904-808-8304 www.facebook.com/churchatvilano 
 
Crescent Beach Easter Sunrise Service - Greet the Easter sunrise with thousands of worshippers at Crescent Beach.  The program, presented by Crescent Beach Baptist Church, begins at 7 a.m. on the beach with special music and an inspiring message. 45 Cubbedge Rd., St. Augustine.  904-794-7777
 
St. Augustine Easter Promenade - This 56th annual promenade features St. Augustine locals and visitors alike promenading in their Easter finery.  Prizes are awarded for prettiest hats, most creative hat, best dressed couple, best dressed girl, boy and pet, largest family, family from farthest away, and guess the weight of a giant, live bunny. Contest registration starts at noon.  The promenade takes place in St. Augustine's Plaza de la Constitucion at 12:30 p.m.  904-315-7414.
 
Annual St. Augustine Easter Parade -  Features marching bands, floats, drill teams, clowns, the Easter Bunny, the Royal Family and the city's carriage horses wearing hats donated by nationally- recognized women. The parade begins at 3 p.m. at the Mission of Nombre de Dios and winds through downtown St. Augustine.  Trophies will be presented in four categories.  904-829-2333.
 
Family Easter Egg Scavenger Hunt and Plaza Stroll - Celebrate Easter with this free, one-hour, guided walking tour of the beautiful monuments in the city's historic Plaza de la Constitucion - plus,go on a traditional Easter egg hunt with prizes and candy for the kids! It's the perfect way to have fun while learning about all of the cultural influences that have left their mark here, including explorers, entrepreneurs and famous personalities.  The free tour departs at 4 p.m. from the Tour St. Augustine office. Reservations required. 4 Granada St., St. Augustine.  904-825-0087 www.StAugustineCityWalks.com

www.stfrancisinn.com

Sail Away to Romance Special Sunset Sail - Schooner Freedom


This year our Sail Away to Romance Special has been updated and upgraded!  Stay two weeknights (Sunday through Thursday) at our regular season rates (not including holiday periods or special events) from April 28 through December 19, mention the Sail Away to Romance Special and you will receive:


  • A full 750 ml bottle (not a split) of Champagne,
  • A six-piece chocolate sampler from St. Augustine's own Claude's Chocolates,
  • A two-hour sunset sail aboard the Schooner Freedom along the historic St. Augustine bayfront!
The RATE for this Midweek Special is $60 in addition to your room charges.  (a $120 value!)

Advance reservations are required, and no other offers or discounts may be used with this special package.

4/11/2014

Salt Life Food Shack aquarium built by 'Tanked' team | StAugustine.com



Salt Life Food Shack aquarium built by 'Tanked' team | StAugustine.com



The new Salt Life Food Shack, being built on A1A Beachside across from the St. Johns County Pier, has no firm opening date, but will be featured on TV tonight!  Click on the link above for details about the aquarium built by the "Tanked" team from Animal Planet.



Remember, when you stay at the St. Francis Inn, we provide access to St. Augustine Beach:  a place to park, supplies (cold water, towels and chairs), an outside shower, and a complete bathroom for cleaning up.

http://www.stfrancisinn.com/amenity.html


4/10/2014

Food trucks, restaurants and farms partner for annual Tour de Farm | StAugustine.com

This Sunday will be the Annual Tour de Farm.  This event features locally grown produce locally produced food and the sources!  You do need a ticket - they are $5 per adult.



Local plug:  If you find yourself driving along CR 13 Sunday afternoon (along the St. Johns River - a beautiful drive and only about 20 minutes from the St. Francis Inn) watch for BBQ signs!  Our own Mike Brooks has set up shop in front of his house cooking up brisket and pulled pork with all the fixins!



For more information on the Annual Tour de Farm, click on the link below.



Food trucks, restaurants and farms partner for annual Tour de Farm | StAugustine.com

4/09/2014

Reverend Peyton's Big Damn Band and The Duhks to headline 2014 Gamblefest | StAugustine.com

The Gamble Rogers Folk Festival will take place in downtown St. Augustine and at the St. Augustine Amphitheatre May 2-4...for more details click the link below:



Reverend Peyton's Big Damn Band and The Duhks to headline 2014 Gamblefest | StAugustine.com

4/08/2014

St Augustine Events: Tour de Farm, Blessing of the Fleet, Dierks Bentley Concert!! And More!! Do you really need more???!!!!

 April 8, 2014
Monday - Sunday : April 8 - 13
Jerusalem at the IMAX Theater - The documentary film "Jerusalem" plays each day through  May 30 at The IMAX Theater at World Golf Hall of Fame. This film explores how this small city became such a pivotal part of human history.  Jerusalem is home to some of the most sacred sites in the world for Jews, Christians, and Muslims. This IMAX theater features the largest 3D screen in the Southeast.  Adults $13, Seniors/Students/Military $12, and Children 3-12 $10. Visit the website for show times. One World Golf Place, St. Augustine. 904-940-4123 www.worldgolfimax.com 
  
Journey: 450 Years of the African-American Experience - Journey: 450 Years of the African American Experience covers the long and storied history of African-Americans in St. Augustine. The story of African-Americans begins in St. Augustine with the first Africans both free and slave among founding colonists in 1565. The exhibition is designed for cultural and heritage visitors interested in the full history of America and its beginnings and comprises four themes: Genesis of the African-American Experience; Fortress of Freedom; Breaking the Chains; and Crossroads of Change.  Tickets are $5 for adults; $4 for seniors; $3 for youth 7-12; under 7 free. Free admission for military in uniform. Located at the St. Augustine Visitors Information Center, 10 West Castillo Dr., St. Augustine. www.Journey2014.com 
 
El Galeón Tour - Tour a full-sized replica of a 17th century Spanish galleon. Docked at the St. Augustine City Marina, El Galeón Andalucia is an exact replica of the famous galleons that played an important role in the creation and maintenance of the Spanish Empire.  Built in Spain, it is similar to the galleon that brought Pedro Menendez to Florida where he founded St. Augustine in 1565.  The ship is available for tours beginning at 10 a.m. daily. Admission is $15 for adult; $8 for youth. 111 Avenida Menendez. 904-824-1606
 
"The Colors of Spring" Exhibit - Lost Art Gallery features the colorful works of Darwin Chaves.  Rainbows are the pallet of this Peruvian-born artist.  Rich in color and texture, Chavez paints his favorite beach scenes, streetscapes and gardens in acrylic on canvas. Through April 30. 210 St. George St., St. Augustine. 904-827-9800 www.lostartgallery.com
 
Spring Members Show - The St. Augustine Art Association's Annual Spring Members Show features a broad array of artistic styles, media and subjects.   The gallery is open Tuesday - Saturday noon - 4 p.m. and Sunday 2-5 p.m. Admission is free.  22 Marine St., St. Augustine. 904-824-2310 www.staaa.org 
 
For a complete list of  eco/kayak, food, and history tours, and other special tours taking place on Florida's Historic Coast this week, visit Florida'sHistoricCoast.com/events 
Tuesday:  April 8
Navigating by Sail - Join St. Augustine Lighthouse historians aboard the Schooner Freedom for a two-hour cruise and discussion of how waterways influenced the history and settlement of St. Augustine.  Sit back and relax, enjoy the sun or help the crew set sail.  The cruise departs the St. Augustine City Marina at 12:15 p.m.  Tickets are $50 each and include admission to the St. Augustine Lighthouse and Museum plus complimentary soda, water, beer and wine.  Tickets must be purchased through www.staugustinelighthouse.com  111 Avenida Menendez, St. Augustine. 904-810-1010 www.schoonerfreedom.com
 
ROMANZA Gathering - Dennis Fermin of Fermin Spanish Guitar will be the entertainment and speaker at the ROMANZA Gathering from 5 - 7 p.m. at the Columbia Restaurant.  Complimentary hors d'oeuvres provided by the Columbia and a cash bar.  98 St. George St., St. Augustine. www.romanzafestivale.com www.ferminspanishguitar.com
 
Tale Tellers of St. Augustine: Hawaii Calls - Legends, folklore and songs of the Hawaiian Islands presented by the Tale Tellers of St. Augustine at the Limelight Studio Theatre.  General admission is $10 (group rates available).  The program begins at 7:30 p.m.  11 Old Mission Avenue, St. Augustine. 904-471-0179. taletellers.org
Wednesday:  April 9
Farmer's Arts and Crafts Market - Farmers' Market located at the ocean-side St. Johns County Pier Park featuring selections of fresh produce, plants, baked goods, fine art, jewelry and more!  Open 8 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. rain or shine. 350 A1A Beach Blvd., St. Augustine Beach. 904-347-8007 www.thecivicassociation.com 
 
A Coquina Rock Beach Walk - From 11 a.m. - 12:30 p.m., explore the second largest outcropping of coquina rock on the Atlantic Coast with a park volunteer at Washington Oaks Gardens State Park.  Learn about coquina and discover the inhabitants of the rock, its geological makeup and gain a better understanding of the beach ecosystem.  Regular park entrance fee of $5 per vehicle, up to eight people; $4 per vehicle for single occupancy or $2 per person on bicycle applies.   6400 North Oceanshore Blvd., Palm Coast.  386-446-6780 www.floridastateparks.org/washingtonoaks
Thursday:  April 10
Celeste Roberge Artist Talk at Flagler College - Sculptor Celeste Roberge will discuss her exhibition "Ocean Floors" at 7 p.m. in the Gamache-Koger Theater in the Ringhaver Student Center.  Her "Ocean Floors" exhibit is on display in the Crisp-Ellert Art Museum through April 19.   Admission is free. 50 Sevilla St., St. Augustine. 904-826-8530 http://readme.readmedia.com/Crisp-Ellert-Art-Museum-presents-Celeste-Roberge-Ocean-Floors/8220732
 
"Evenings at Whitney" 2nd Thursday Monthly Lecture - At 7 p.m. at The Whitney Lab Lohman Auditorium at Marineland, Christine D. Schmidt, Ph.D., Dept. of Biomedical Engineering, University of Florida, presents her lecture entitled "Regrowing Your Body Parts."  The program is free.  9505 Ocean Shore Blvd., St. Augustine. 904-461-4000 www.whitney.ufl.edu 
Thursday through Sunday:  April 10 - 13
Masters Weekend at the World Golf Hall of Fame - Celebrate the Masters Tournament with a visit to the World Golf Hall of Fame. Enjoy photo opportunities with the Hall's Masters Trophy, go on a special scavenger hunt and watch the broadcast during regular museum hours. The World Golf Hall of Fame is open Monday through Saturday from 10 a.m. - 6 p.m. and noon to 6 p.m. on Sunday.    Admission to the Hall of Fame is $19.50 adults; $18.50 seniors; $10 for students age 13 and over; and $5 for children ages 5-12.   One World Golf Place, off I-95 exit 323, St. Augustine. 904-940-4123 www.worldgolfhalloffame.org
Friday: April 11
Fins & Freedom Sail - The tall ship Schooner Freedom and dolphin experts from Marineland are partnering up for a one-of-a-kind sailing experience.  Come on board, help raise sails, and then kick back and relax while educators and trainers from the world's first oceanarium talk about dolphins.  Tickets for the sail, including admission to Marineland, are $50 per person (complimentary soda, water, beer and wine are included).  Reservations suggested for this 2:15 p.m. departure time. 111 Avenida Menendez.  904-810-1010 www.schoonerfreedom.com
 
Saturday:  April 12
Old City Farmer's Market - Features locally grown fresh produce, baked goods, plants and more.  Located at the St. Augustine Amphitheatre.  Open 8:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.  Admission is free. 1340 A1A, St. Augustine. 904-471-3733
 
GTM Reserve Guided Trail Hike - Join GTM Research Reserve volunteers from 8:30 to 10:30 a.m. for a 1.5 mile guided walk along the Guana Trail. After the walk, visit the GTM Research Reserve Environmental Education Center. There is a $3 parking fee.  505 Guana River Rd., Ponte Vedra Beach. 904-823-4500 http://gtmnerr2ndtrailhike.eventbrite.com/
 
City Walks Pet Friendly Tours - Bring Fido to join City Walks for a free Pet Friendly Tour of St. Augustine's Historic District.  The tour departs at 10 a.m. from Tour Saint Augustine's office.  Pets must be leashed, and reservations are required.  4 Granada St., St. Augustine. 904-825-0087 www.staugustinecitywalks.com
 
Changing of the Guard Ceremony -  At 6:30 p.m., St. Augustine's Spanish Garrison conducts a 1740 Changing of the Guard Ceremony in the city's Plaza de la Constitucion.   The event begins at 5:30 p.m., with two groups of soldiers marching from the Spanish Bakery -- one heads north on St. George Street to the City Gate and the other group comes south on the street to the Government House where they will demonstrate Spanish military arts and explain the purpose of the Changing of the Guard.  At 6:15 p.m., after greeting the public at the City Gate, the second group of soldiers march down St. George Street to join their comrades at the Government House where the Changing of the Guard, complete with a volley of musketry, will be performed. The Garrison will then march back to the Spanish Bakery.  St. George St. and Government House on the Plaza, St. Augustine.
 
Dierks Bentley Concert - The St. Augustine Amphitheatre hosts country music star Dierks Bentley.  With 10 No. 1 songs and 11 Grammy nominations, Dierks Bentley has become one of country music's most popular performers.  Frankie Ballard (Helluva Life) and the Brothers Osborne are the opening acts.  Tickets range from $46.50 - $62.50. The concert starts at 7 p.m. (gates open 5:30 p.m.)  1340 A1A South St. Augustine. 904-209-0367 www.staugamphitheatre.com 
Saturday & Sunday: April 12 & 13
19th Annual Flower & Garden Expo -  Growers, educational seminars, nurseries and artisans from around the state offer gardeners everything they need to make spring bloom.  Admission is $5 (which is good for both days) and children under 11 are admitted free.  The Expo takes place Saturday 9 a.m. - 5 p.m. and Sunday 10 a.m. - 4 p.m. at the St. Johns County Agricultural Center. Expo patrons can use their Expo pass for discounts to local attractions and for free admission to A Taste of St. Augustine on April 26.  3125 Agricultural Center Dr., St. Augustine (off State Road 16) 904-829-3295 www.epiccommunityservices.org
 
Old Town Art Show - Celebrate spring at this juried art and fine craft show featuring outstanding artists and craftsmen from St. Augustine and around the country.  Features the very best from exquisite jewelry to funky and functional pottery, abstract sculpture to glistening glass, hand-woven fashions to stunning photography, extraordinary paintings to wonderful wood carvings - and much more!  Show hours are 10 a.m. - 5 p.m. both days at Francis Field.   Free admission.  25 W. Castillo Dr., St. Augustine. 904-794-0084 email lynn@holidayartshows.com www.OldTownArtShow.com
Sunday: April 13
Lincolnville Farmers Market - Eddie Vickers Park hosts this farmer's market with farm-fresh vegetables, meats/fish, cheese, bread, treats, arts & crafts, prepared food, jewelry, picnic areas, playground and more! Live music by The House Cats. Every Sunday from noon - 4 p.m.  399 Riberia St., St. Augustine.  www.facebook.com/lincolnvillefarmersmarket
 
Blessing of the Fleet - In an annual event dating back to St. Augustine's earliest history, watercraft from trawlers and yachts to sailboats and motor craft - all decorated with flags and bunting --receive this special blessing from the Bishop of the Diocese of St. Augustine.  The ceremony begins at noon with a procession from the Cathedral Basilica along the Plaza de La Constitucion to the St. Augustine Municipal Marina.  904-824-9725 www.sayc2000.com
 
Third Annual Tour de Farm - From noon to 5 p.m., tour local farms and meet the chefs and artisans who are committed to using locally-grown ingredients.  Hosted by the non-profit Slow Food First Coast, participants can select from a planned tour or design their own route -- more than 20 farms are available for tours. A $5 donation gets access to all of the farms. Admission is free to children age 17 and under. For complete details, go to www.slowfoodfirstcoast.org
 
Plaza Stroll Historic Walking Tour - Experience St. Augustine City Walks' one-hour, guided walking tour of the beautiful monuments in the city's historic Plaza de la Constitucion.  It's the perfect way to learn about all of the cultural influences that have left their mark here, including explorers, entrepreneurs and famous personalities.  The free tour departs at 4 p.m. from the Tour St. Augustine office, 4 Granada St., St. Augustine.  Reservations required 904-825-0087 www.StAugustineCityWalks.com
 

4/04/2014




Honey, who is not as famous as Zeke the cat, belongs too Joe and Margaret Finnegan.  Guests will see Honey being walked by Joe (during the day) and Margaret (evenings and weekends).  She often helps me work in the office.  Today I brought her some shredded cheese on a paper towel.  She liked it so much I think she is saving the paper towel for a souvenir!

Luck of the Irish Winner Announced

Congratulations to Stacey Vega!  She and her family stayed in The Cottage during the month of March, and her name was pulled from the pot of gold this week.  All guests who stayed with us in March were encouraged to fill out an entry into our Luck of the Irish contest.  The prize?

$100 Gift Certificate to the St. Francis Inn
AND
$50 Gift Certificate to Meehan's Irish Pub and Seafood House.

4/02/2014

April's Specialty Coffee



Janice delayed announcing April's Specialty Coffee so no one would think it was an April Fool's Joke.  And here it is:  Chocolate Covered Almond Latte!  Perfect for thoughts of spring and Easter.  


4/01/2014

Spring festivals and outdoor events | StAugustine.com

April and May are great months to visit St. Augustine!!  Lots of outdoor spring festivals and great weather!



Spring festivals and outdoor events | StAugustine.com



Regular Season Rates will begin again May 1st at the St. Francis Inn.