Fernandina Pirates Invade MDA Lock-Up

Fernandina Pirates Invade MDA Lock-Up

Fernandina Pirates Invade MDA Lock-Up

Pictured are Fernandina Pirate Club Members: Dee Adam, Larry Davis, Mike Miller and Billie Childers. The jail bird is Pirate Kelley McCrimmon.

Amelia Island, FL – The Fernandina Pirates Club, Inc. stormed the MDA make-shift lock-up in Fernandina Beach to benefit Jerry’s kids. MDA is the nonprofit health agency dedicated to curing muscular dystrophy, ALS and related diseases by funding worldwide research. The Association also provides comprehensive health care and support services, advocacy and education.

Under the disguise of searching for a mutinous wench, Pirate Club members entered with swords drawn looking to break the fair Kelley out of jail to dispense a bit of their own Pirate Justice! It didn’t take long for the swashbucklers to realize they may be better off paying the jailer to keep her locked-up so instead they offered a Silver Star level donation to MDA.

The Fernandina Pirates Club, a charitable and educational organization, helps to support many different community charities including their own Pirate Scholarship Program, the Amelia Island Museum Elderhostel Program, and Katie’s Ride for Life. The Buccaneers also help provide educational activities to the Council on Aging, ARC and several area school programs.

The Fernandina Pirates Club has over 80 volunteers that provide much more than a colorful disposition when they spread smiles and much needed dollars to a variety of charitable organizations.

These award-winning and internationally televised Pirates can easily be found entertaining during the Isle of Eight Flags Shrimp Festival, held the first weekend in May each year on Amelia Island, Florida.

Having received a Resolution from the Board of County Commissioners of Nassau County as well as a Proclamation from the City of Fernandina Beach Commissioners recognizing the club for their ongoing community service and charity work, members of the Fernandina Pirate club truly are our community’s “Goodwill Ambassadors to the World” as designated by both local government entities.

For more information please visit FernandinaPirates.com.

2011 Last Leg Rally Comes to a Close

2011 Last Leg Rally

2011 Last Leg Rally

Amelia Island’s 2011 Last Leg Rally came to a close at Main Beach in Fernandina as the sun set on this lovely oceanfront park.

Bike Show winners were awarded their trophies after raffle winners were called to claim their prizes, then The Karl Davis Band performed the final set bringing a wonderful, charitable fund raiser to a end.

Weekend volunteers were tired! Some were hoarse and some were sun burned, but all of them felt this was a successful festival. Last year was their inaugural event and the improvements for this second year show signs that The Amelia Island Last Leg Rally is here to stay on the line-up of festivals in Nassau County, Florida.

Here is a short video of the festival winding up on Sunday afternoon!

httpvh://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7dBkugoihco

Bently and Aston Martin in Amelia Island Auction

Bently and Aston Martin in Amelia Island Auction

Photos by Simon Clay © 2010 Courtesy of Gooding & Company

Santa Monica, CA – Gooding & Company, the world’s leading auction house for collectors of rare and exceptional cars, announces that it will present more than 85 vintage and modern collector cars at its Amelia Island Auction in a few weeks on March 11. Recent consignments include an extraordinary barnfind 1955 Bentley R-Type Continental Fastback with coachwork by H.J. Mulliner, a highly-original and unrestored 1961 Aston Martin DB4 Series IV, 1928 Bentley 6 1/2 Litre Coupe, 1955 Austin-Healey 100S and a 1962 AC Cobra.

The making of a truly well-rounded, world class presentation of rare European sports cars, original barnfinds, race cars and American classics, these new highlights join the 1971 Lamborghini Miura P400 SV Prototype, 1949 Jaguar XK120 Alloy, 1953 Siata 208 CS Berlinetta, 1963 Lotus 23B and 1964 Ferrari 250 GT Lusso, which are all currently showcased on Gooding & Company’s online catalogue.

“A true connoisseur’s car, the Bentley R-Type Continental Fastback has a place in the world’s finest collections,” said David Gooding, President and founder. “This recently-discovered, two-owner R-Type is the ultimate collector’s Bentley for its role in luxury motoring history and sophisticated performance specification.”

He adds, “With more cars than last year and an increase in registered guests, we decided that an earlier start time of 3:00 pm would allow our Amelia Island guests a more comfortable and leisurely auction experience.”

1955 Bentley R-Type Continental Fastback
One of the most significant post-war Bentleys in “as found” condition, this barnfind R-Type is a superb example of the marque’s most exclusive 1950’s grand touring car, equipped with the most desirable specifications available, including a 4.9-Litre engine, left-hand drive, manual centre-shift and bucket seats. Fitted with H.J. Mulliner Fastback coachwork, this car was originally ordered in an elegant Tudor Grey exterior over grey leather upholstery with sporting red piping. Despite its many years in storage, this Bentley remains in essentially the same condition as it was when purchased more than 40 years ago by its second owner, Lt. Col. Swarz, and will be offered for sale with countless original records, photos and documents that tell its story firsthand. The estimate on this car is available on request.

Aston Martin

Photos by Simon Clay © 2010 Courtesy of Gooding & Company

1961 Aston Martin DB4 Series IV An ideal candidate for Preservation display, this matching-numbers, factory left-hand drive Aston Martin DB4 is being offered for sale for the first time publicly since 1961. Recently-discovered after more than 50 years with the same family who purchased it new, this DB4 will be presented with its original tools, jack, owner’s manual and rare workshop manual, beautifully-preserved and presented in an exquisite Caribbean Pearl paint over blue interior. The Aston Martin’s estimate is $425,000 – $475,000.

1928 Bentley 6 1/2 Litre Coupe
A Bentley Speed Six fitted with original coachwork is viewed by many enthusiasts as one of the finest vintage sports cars in existence. In the words of Gooding & Company Specialist Garth Hammers, “This 1928 Bentley is one of the most authentic, surviving examples of the 6 1/2 Litre,” because of its rare original coupe bodywork and desirable upgrade to Speed Six specifications. This highly-regarded vintage Bentley received the prestigious Supreme Champion Award at the Bentley Drivers Club Kensington Gardens Concours in 1969, where W.O. Bentley himself presented the award to Reg Parker, a renowned collector who cherished this car for more than 20 years. This car’s estimate is $750,000 – $950,000.

1955 Austin-Healey 100S
One of only 41 surviving examples of 50 built, this versatile Austin-Healey vintage race car was initially shipped to Southern California where it participated in numerous regional racing events. Originally restored by the famed Hill & Vaughn restoration shop, this matching-numbers and well-documented 100S maintains an outstanding appearance. It is an ideal candidate for historic racing tours including the Mille Miglia, Le Mans Classic and Colorado Grand. This car’s estimate is $600,000 – $800,000.

1962 AC Cobra
Originally finished in steel grey over blue, this early Cobra was the 1962 Paris and London Show car and today remains a historically-authentic, well-documented and well-kept example. This AC Cobra bears an interesting SCCA racing pedigree and has been cared for by one owner for the past 35 years. Gooding & Company specialists recommend this car for various touring events, including the Copperstate 1000. Its estimate is $450,000 – $550,000.

The Amelia Island Auction will be held on Friday, March 11, 2011, commencing at 3:00 p.m. Guests may preview the cars on Thursday, March 10, from 9 a.m. – 6 p.m. and Friday, March 11, from 9 a.m. – 3 p.m., at the Racquet Park located at the Omni Amelia Island Plantation at 6800 First Coast Highway in Amelia Island, Florida, one mile south of the Amelia Island Parkway. Complimentary shuttles running from the Racquet Park auction site to other areas of interest will be available for guests’ convenience. Auction catalogues cost $75 and admit two to the viewing and auction. General admission tickets to the viewing and auction may be purchased for $30 per person.

Bidder registration forms, 2011 press credentials and additional auction information are available on www.goodingco.com. For additional vehicle information and up-to-the-minute results, follow Gooding & Company on Facebook and Twitter @GoodingCompany.

Paying Yourself First is a Good Savings Habit

Are Loan Sharks opening in former Blockbuster locations?

Last night on our way to a mouth watering Vegetarian Pizza at Arte Pizza, we drove by the sign that announced another BlockBuster store closing, this time the one at Sadler and 8th St.. The ensuing conversation was around the fact that we have been announcing the inevitable movie rental demise for half a decade now and then I started thinking about all the other stories and articles we have written and why. Does anyone ever take action? Does anyone care? And then I remember the emails and the comments and I remember the French Expression “Frappé Toujours” which defines the advertising industry in the loose translation: Always Keep on Hitting the Message HOME. I started thinking about the enjoyable smart kid who ran the Blockbuster store and if he had put some money away in savings while he still had his job. Another story you have heard in one way or another.

And the next stop was this essay.

You have heard the expression, they are one paycheck away from losing their house or declaring bankruptcy. As a matter of fact, these days many people are estimated by how many missing paychecks it takes before they go down. It’s a strange culture that has grown of the past 30 years or so. Not that the situation did not exist prior to 1980, but many more people and families operated on the premise of saving before buying. But once we were seduced by the concept of ‘buy now, pay later’ we not only forgot the concept of saving, but in the process created an entire growth industry of Bill Collectors in this country and that is sad.

Why do people have such a hard time with the concept of saving before buying. Sure, the last couple of generations have been bombarded with the prospect of easy money, and some have never experienced the peace of mind that comes with saving and counting out cash and outright owning.

Most people I talk to these days are not saving regularly.
Many people never save because they consider it too complicated, yet the concept of saving is really quite simple.  Developing the discipline (habit) of saving is what takes a little work.
The three reasons given for not being able to save are: I don’t make enough, I’ll save what’s left, and I have too much debt.
They call them reasons; I call them excuses . Whatever your attitude towards life, you have to get in the mindset of paying yourself first. Here are some thoughts on how you can actually do that, because the habit of saving has nothing to do with the size of your paycheck.

Excuse #1: I hardly make enough money:
Never mind those who don’t even know how much they have in the bank(s), for the rest of us there are two kinds of people – those who save now and those who wait. Someone who makes $2,000 a month and gets in the habit of putting $100 of it away will have $1,200 saved by the end of the year. The person who waits until they can “save more than a lousy $100” will have $0. And after 10 years, they still won’t have anything saved, and will still be waiting to have enough to save.

The “When I/Then I” Game is a tremendous distraction in step-by-step building a life.
It starts with a mindset like this: “When I can afford to save $200 a month, then I will start to put away money for the future”.  The problem with this game is that it rarely, if ever works and our nature is to always create the next “When I/Then I” scenario instead of developing the habit needed to be successful with money. How many people do you know who are just waiting for the Golden Opportunity to get their feet wet in life. Sure it is great to dream about becoming wildly successful with something and you should give yourself a 3-5 year window to pursue that possibility. But if it doesn’t happen in that time, stop beating a dead horse and start developing a discipline that leads to a successful life based on the long term.

Get into the habit of paying yourself a portion of what you make NOW.

The amount doesn’t really matter; it can be $5 or $500. The important thing is to get in the habit. As you are developing the habit, you will find that often you can bump up that amount annually by substantial amounts. I did so last year when I “abandoned” the car for a bicycle and found myself saving $25 a week on average. But if you don’t start building the habit it will never add up like that unless you get started.

Excuse #2 I’ll save what’s left

… and typically what’s left is nothing. It happens to everyone. Saving won’t happen if you approach it this way. It is human nature to spend what is there, so don’t even give yourself the option.
To be successful at paying yourself first, requires that you make savings automatic.  Your company’s 401k, 403b, SEP, or other retirement plan can deduct a percentage of your income pre-tax from your paycheck.  You can set up an automatic draft to fund after tax savings like ROTH IRAs, brokerage accounts, and savings accounts.  You have to plan for real life  and can set up automatic drafts to fill up separate buckets for emergency savings, car fund, house maintenance. But don’t forget to Reward Yourself to Stay on Track
All of this automatic saving is great, but if you want to stay on track you have to build in some rewards for all of your discipline and hard work.  As you go through life build in buckets or automatic accounts to fill up for things like a road trip to see the grandkids, an annual trip to the Caribbean or a Down Under trip with the guys.
Success is about living well and planning well.  These memorable experiences are priceless and need to be planned and saved for or else we are right back to playing the “When I/Then I” game.

Excuse #3 I have too much debt

The truth is those that have the discipline to pay themselves first get out of debt faster.
Debt won’t go away unless you pay it off and nothing will get saved unless you start now. So split the difference. Come up with a formula that you can live with using these 4 components:

1.     An amount you can live off – 70%
2.     An amount to save – 10%
3.     An amount to go towards debt – 10%
4.     Giving back – 10%

If you absolutely need every penny, the breakdown can be 97%, 1%, 1%, 1%. And one point, the debt will be gone and you’ll be able to increase your savings without having to change your lifestyle or spend a penny more. No Rocket Science here, the only “hard” part is developing the discipline.

Paying yourself first puts the focus where it should be – on the person whom the money was meant to serve. You are the most important asset that you have. Take care of yourself. Oh yeah…and giving 10% of your net income back to those who need it more than you do will give you more joy in life than anything else you’ll ever do.
And my last personal advice is to occasionally turn your paper money into gold or silver. Just to protect yourself from inflation.

Gala and Golf Tournament to Benefit Micah’s Place

Gala and Golf Tournament to Benefit Micah's PlaceMicah’s Place is honored to be the benefactor of Sheffield’s at the Palace 2nd Annual Black and White Gala and Golf Classic April 2nd and 3rd. The Gala kicks off the event on Saturday evening on April 2, at the exclusive Sheffield’s at the Palace. Mingle with celebrity host Chris Kirkpatrick, founding member of the band NSYNC. Guests will take part in live and silent auctions to bid on trips, a Golf Amelia Package, a Dine Amelia Package, Honorary Teammates (including Chris Kirkpatrick), Vintage Wine, Rare Scotch, Fine Champagne and much more. Enjoy complimentary cocktails from Ketel One Ice Bar, Captain Morgan, Belvedere and assorted fine wines and beer. Savory appetizers and delicious desserts will be served. And of course, there will be lively music for dancing.

The Golf Tournament will be a day of fun, food, gifts and awards on Sunday, April 3, at the Oak Marsh Golf Course at the Amelia Island Plantation, which was recently purchased by the Omni Hotel and Resorts. Have your chance at winning prizes for Hole-in-One, Longest Drive, Closest to the Pin, Best Dressed and Biggest Cheater! And back by popular demand, our coupon book will be available for purchase the day of the tournament. The Awards Dinner and Ceremony will be held a Sheffield’s at the Palace. Complimentary cocktails and buffet dinner will be served.

If you are interested in attending the Black and White Gala and/or Golf Tournament, please contact Bill Childers, Palace Saloon, at 904-651-6925 or email Bill at the Palace Saloon. Individual Gala tickets are $50.00 and Golf Packages start at $175.00 (including two tickets to the Gala).

Micah’s Place is a Certified Domestic Violence Center and the only one serving Nassau County, Florida. The mission is to provide prevention and intervention services to victims of domestic violence and to provide education within the community to affect change in behavior and attitudes relating to domestic violence. Micah’s Place offers safe, confidential shelter, advocacy, a 24-hour toll-free hotline, counseling, legal advocacy, and support groups to victims of domestic violence. All services are free and confidential. For more information, please visit www.micahsplace.org or call 904-491-6364.

Chasi Lynn and CountryWild Video

Chasi Lynn and CountryWildChasi Lynn and her band, CountryWild, played oceanfront at Main Beach for the 2011 Amelia Island Last Leg Rally. Based out of Chattanooga, Tennessee, this band has been winning fans since 2009. (Photo credit: Ally Mackie)

Playing a mix of country, some classic rock and originals, they certainly gained more fans during their brief stay here in Northeast Florida.

Chasi and the band recently released their newest video, Sweet Tea and have been busy in the studio working on their lastest CD, My Name Is….

Playing a calendar that has them traveling all over the Southeast United States, this is one band you don’t want to miss if they show up in your town!

For more information on their upcoming shows, visit ChasiLynn.com.

I had the opportunity to chat with this dynamic group while they were in Fernandina Beach; here is the video:

httpvh://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZNeuJFb7Oyc

Saturday Video of Last Leg Rally

Saturday Video of Last Leg RallySaturday’s events at the Amelia Island Last Leg Rally turned out to be a day packed full of exciting events including a charity motorcycle run, a car show, beer garden, vendor booths selling amazing food, apparel, leather, jewelry and more. Entertainment included live music by Rev. Roy & No Spring Chickens, Smoking Jacket, Chasi Lynn & Country Wild and a Jacksonville favorite, Big Engine.

Here is a short video of just some of the festivities:

httpvh://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jpf_6U2JcfQ

Sunday’s events held at Main Beach in Fernandina include:

February 27, 2011

ALL DAY – Vendor and Food Booths (Bar-B-Q, burgers, dogs, ice cream, leather, apparel, patches, sewing, jewelry, LED pin striping and more)
11:00 AM to 5:00 PM – Bike show! Vote for your favorite bike. Tickets are $1.00 each and all proceeds will go to charity.
11:00 AM to 1:00 PM – Live music by: Beech St. Blues Band
1:00 PM to 6:00 PM Beer Garden Open
1:00 PM to 3:00 PM – Live music by: JudgeRock and Bluesbender
4:00 PM to 6:00 PM – Live music by: Karl W. Davis and Friends
5:00 PM Bike Show Trophies will be awarded on the Main Stage
After the festival from 6:00 PM – 9:00 PM, you can finish up your weekend on Sunday night with a Pub Crawl on board our very own Amelia Island Trolley. (Must be 21 years old to participate)

All proceeds from the Benefit will go to the Anchors Aweigh Charters, Inc. a non-profit, charity corporation that provides free fishing charters to those with disabilities aboard Ye Ole’ Pirate, a specially equipped fishing boat from Amelia Island, Florida.

March 1st City Commission Meeting

March 1st City Commission MeetingThere is a March 1st Fernandina Beach City Commissioner Meeting at 6:00 PM. Meetings are held on Ash Street on Amelia Island.

Here is the agenda:

1. CALL TO ORDER
2. ROLL CALL
3. PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE / INVOCATION, Invocation by Reverend Goyette of Living Waters World Outreach.

4. PROCLAMATIONS/PRESENTATION
4.1 PROCLAMATION – 150TH FLORIDA RAILROAD ANNIVERSARY – Proclaims 2011 as the year of “The 150th Florida Railroad Anniversary”. Phyllis Davis, Executive Director of the Amelia Island Museum of History.

5. CONSENT AGENDA
5.1 APPROVAL OF MINUTES – Regular Meeting – January 4, 2011; Work Session – January 11, 2011; Regular Meeting – January 18, 2011; Work Session – February 1, 2011; Regular Meeting – February 1, 2011; Town Meeting – February 3, 2011; Regular Meeting – February 15, 2011.
5.2 ACCEPTING CONDITIONS OF THE RURAL BUSINESS ENTERPRISE GRANT APPLICATION – RESOLUTION 2011-23 AGREEING TO THE CONDITION OF THE RURAL BUSINESS ENTERPRISE GRANT APPLICATION, AS SUBMITTED THROUGH THE UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE, FOR THE RENOVATION AND EXPANSION OF THE DOWNTOWN COMFORT STATION, RELATING TO THE USE OF THE PREMISES BY PRIVATE BUSINESS ENTERPRISES; AND PROVIDING FOR AN EFFECTIVE DATE.
Synopsis: Accepts conditions in consideration of possibly receiving funding from the United States Department of Agriculture to expand and renovate the downtown comfort station.
5.3 APPROVING A SUBLEASE AGREEMENT – RENAL TREATMENT CENTERS – RESOLUTION 2011-24 APPROVING A PART-TIME SUBLEASE AGREEMENT BETWEEN RENAL TREATMENT CENTERS – SOUTHEAST, LP, AND KADIR MANSUR, M.D.; AUTHORIZING EXECUTION; AND PROVIDING FOR AN EFFECTIVE DATE.
Synopsis: Approves the part-time Sublease Agreement between Renal Treatment Centers – Southeast, LP and Kadir Mansur, M.D. for space located at 1525 Lime Street.
5.4 RE-AWARDING BID #10-19 FOR THE RE-ROOFING OF THE SUNSHELTERS AT SEASIDE PARK – ALIGN ROOFING LLC – RESOLUTION 2011-25 AMENDING RESOLUTION 2010-107 BY AWARDING BID #10-19 TO ALIGN ROOFING LLC FOR RE-ROOFING OF THE SEASIDE SHELTERS AT SADLER BEACH ACCESS; AUTHORIZING EXECUTION; AND PROVIDING FOR AN EFFECTIVE DATE.
Synopsis: Amends Resolution 2010-107 and awards Bid #10-19 to Align Roofing, LLC in the amount of $35,700.00.
5.5 EQUIPMENT PURCHASE – POLICE DEPARTMENT – RESOLUTION 2011-26 APPROVING THE PIGGYBACK PURCHASE OF FOUR (4) POLICE VEHICLE EQUIPMENT PACKAGES UNDER THE CITY OF TALLAHASSEE, FLORIDA CONTRACT; AUTHORIZING EXECUTION OF ALL DOCUMENTATION PERTAINING TO THE PURCHASE; AND PROVIDING FOR AN EFFECTIVE DATE.
Synopsis: Approves the purchase of four (4) Police Vehicle Equipment Packages from Dana Safety Supply, Inc. for a total amount of $28,992.92.

6. REQUESTS FROM THE PUBLIC TO BE HEARD ON ITEMS NOT ON THE AGENDA
6.1 CITY RESIDENTS
6.2 NON-CITY RESIDENTS

7. RESOLUTIONS
7.1 AWARD OF RFP #10-104 – SCUBA STATION – RESOLUTION 2011-27 AWARDING RFP #10-104 TO SCUBA STATION, INC. FOR THE OPERATION OF THE SUNDRY SHOP AND CONCESSION STAND AT THE ATLANTIC CENTER; AUTHORIZING EXECUTION OF AN AGREEMENT; AND PROVIDING FOR AN EFFECTIVE DATE.
Synopsis: Awards RFP #10-104 to Scuba Station, Inc. for the operation of the Sundry Shop and Concession Stand at the Atlantic Center and authorizes a three (3) year Agreement.
7.2 AGREEMENT APPROVAL – HUBBARD CONSTRUCTION COMPANY – RESOLUTION 2011-28 AUTHORIZING A “PIGGYBACK” PURCHASE FROM THE FLORIDA DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION CONTRACT # T2326 WITH HUBBARD CONSTRUCTION COMPANY FOR THE RESURFACING OF CITY STREETS; AUTHORIZING EXECUTION; AND PROVIDING FOR AN EFFECTIVE DATE.
Synopsis: Authorizes the purchase of services from Hubbard Construction Company asphalt and paving services.
7.3 INTERLOCAL AGREEMENT – NASSAU COUNTY EMERGENCY SERVICES – RESOLUTION 2011-29 APPROVING AN INTERLOCAL AGREEMENT WITH THE NASSAU COUNTY BOARD OF COUNTY COMMISSIONERS FOR FIRE/EMERGENCY MEDICAL SERVICES; AUTHORIZING EXECUTION; AND PROVIDING FOR AN EFFECTIVE DATE.
Synopsis: Approves an Interlocal Agreement with the Nassau County Board of County Commissioners for Fire/Emergency Medical Services.
7.4 INTERLOCAL AGREEMENT – OCEAN RESCUE SERVICES – RESOLUTION 2011-30 APPROVING AN INTERLOCAL AGREEMENT WITH THE NASSAU COUNTY BOARD OF COUNTY COMMISSIONERS FOR OCEAN RESCUE SERVICES ON PUBLIC BEACHES; AUTHORIZING EXECUTION; AND PROVIDING FOR AN EFFECTIVE DATE.
Synopsis: Approves an Interlocal Agreement with the Nassau County Board of County Commissioners to provide Ocean Rescue Services for Nassau County Public Beaches.

8. ORDINANCES – FIRST READING
8.1 CHANGE IN ZONING – NORTH PARK VILLAGE PUD – ORDINANCE 2011-04 CHANGING THE ZONING MAP FROM MEDIUM DENSITY RESIDENTIAL (R-2) AND OFFICE AND RESIDENTIAL MIXED USE (MU-1)ZONING TO PLANNED UNIT DEVELOPMENT (PUD), 17.97 ACRES OF LAND LOCATED AT NECTARINE STREET, SOUTH 15TH STREET AND NORTHPARK DRIVE, PARCEL ID NUMBERS 00-00-31-1600-0162-0020, 00-00-31-1600-0163-0020, 00-00-31-1600-0164-0000, 25-3N-28-0000-0001-0010, 25-3n-28-0000-0001-0020; PROVIDING FOR SEVERABILITY; PROVIDING FOR AN EFFECTIVE DATE.
Synopsis: Approves the Change in Zoning from Medium Density Residential (R-2) and Office and Residential Mixed Use (MU-1) to Planned Unit Development (PUD) for 17.97 acres located adjacent to the northern boundary of the Amelia Park neighborhood on Northpark Drive and South 15th Street.
8.2 LAND DEVELOPMENT CODE TEXT AMENDMENTS – ORDINANCE 2011-05 AMENDING THE LAND DEVELOPMENT CODE, CHAPTER 2, SECTION 2.02.03 HISTORIC DISTRICT OVERLAYS, SECTION 2.02.04 COMMUNITY REDEVELOPMENT AREA OVERLAY, CHAPTER 4, SECTION 4.03.02 STANDARDS FOR DEVELOPMENT IN THE HISTORIC DISTRICT OVERLAYS, AND CHAPTER 9, SECTION 9.04.00 ELIMINATING AIRPORT ADVISORY COMMISSION AND SECTION 9.06.04 TECHNICAL REVIEW COMMITTEE, RULES OF PROCEDURE; PROVIDING FOR SEVERABILITY; AND PROVIDING FOR AN EFFECTIVE DATE.
Synopsis: Amends the Land Development Code involving expansion of the Historic District to include the Peck Center, updating references for the Community Redevelopment Area, eliminating the Airport Advisory Commission from the Code and amending appointment of Technical Review Committee chairperson.
8.3 CODE AMENDMENT – ADOPTION OF OFFICIAL CITY SEAL – ORDINANCE 2011-06 AMENDING CHAPTER 2, ARTICLE 1 OF THE CODE OF ORDINANCES BY CREATING SECTION 2-1 TITLED CITY SEAL, GENERAL RESTRICTIONS; BY OFFICIALLY ADOPTING THE CORPORATE CITY SEAL AND ESTABLISHING GENERAL RESTRICTIONS; PROVIDING FOR SEVERABILITY; AND PROVIDING FOR AN EFFECTIVE DATE.
Synopsis: Amends the Code officially adopting the Corporate City Seal.

9. ORDINANCES – SECOND READING
9.1 CODE AMENDMENT – SPECIAL MAGISTRATE – ORDINANCE 2011-01 AMENDING SECTION 1-12 OF THE CODE OF ORDINANCES BY PROVIDING FOR CODE ENFORCEMENT THROUGH CITATIONS AND APPEALS TO A SPECIAL MAGISTRATE; AMENDING SECTION 42-147 BY PROVIDING FOR APPEALS OF NOISE CITATIONS TO A SPECIAL MAGISTRATE; PROVIDING FOR SEVERABILITY; AND PROVIDING FOR AN EFFECTIVE DATE.
Synopsis: Amends Section 1-12 and 42-147 of the City Code to provide for Appeals of Citations to a Special Magistrate.
9.2 CODE AMENDMENT – PARKING REGULATIONS AND FINES – ORDINANCE 2011-02 AMENDING THE CITY CODE OF ORDINANCES CHAPTER 78, ARTICLE III, STOPPING, STANDING AND PARKING, DIVISION I GENERALLY, BY AMENDING SECTION 78-77 TO PROHIBIT OVERNIGHT PARKING WITHOUT A PERMIT; AMENDING SECTION 78-91 REGARDING ADMINISTRATIVE FEES (FINES) FOR PARKING VIOLATIONS; AMENDING SECTION 78-92 ISSUANCE AND DISPOSITION OF CITATION; PROVIDING FOR SEVERABILITY; AND PROVIDING FOR AN EFFECTIVE DATE.
Synopsis: Amends Chapter 78 to prohibit overnight parking in certain City parking lots, to increase Parking Administrative Fees (Fines) and Appeals to a Special Magistrate.

10. CITY MANAGER REPORTS
11. CITY ATTORNEY REPORTS
12. CITY CLERK REPORTS
13. MAYOR/COMMISSIONER COMMENTS
14. ADJOURNMENT

Why Men are Never Depressed

Why Men are Never DepressedThis came to me from my mother-in-law and it was just too cute not to share.
Original Author Unknown
Why Men are Never Depressed

Your last name stays put.
The garage is all yours.
Wedding plans take care of themselves.
Chocolate is just another snack.
You can be President.
You can never be pregnant.
You can wear a white T-shirt to a water park.
You can wear NO shirt to a water park.
Car mechanics tell you the truth.
The world is your urinal.
You never have to drive to another gas station restroom because this one is just too icky.
You don’t have to stop and think of which way to turn a nut on a bolt.
Same work, more pay.
Wrinkles add character.
Wedding dress $5000, tux rental $100.
People never stare at your chest when you’re talking to them. New shoes don’t cut, blister, or mangle your feet.
One mood all the time.
Phone conversations are over in 30 seconds flat.
You know stuff about tanks.
A five-day vacation requires only one suitcase.
You can open all your own jars.
You get extra credit for the slightest act of thoughtfulness.
If someone forgets to invite you, he or she can still be your friend.
Your underwear is $8.95 for a three-pack.
Three pairs of shoes are more than enough.
You almost never have strap problems in public.
You are unable to see wrinkles in your clothes.
Everything on your face stays its original color.
The same hairstyle lasts for years, maybe decades.
You only have to shave your face and neck.
You can play with toys all your life.
One wallet and one pair of shoes, one color for all seasons.
You can wear shorts no matter how your legs look.
You can ‘do’ your nails with a pocket knife.
You have freedom of choice concerning growing a moustache.
You can do Christmas shopping for 25 relatives on December 24 in 25 minutes.

One Pot Meals Gain in Popularity

One Pot Meal Morrocan Chicken

A while back we published a little ebook about how to save on energy cost (Over 150 Tips to help you save on your Utility Bills)and I think I need to get it back into circulation, as everyone by now knows that energy costs will sky-rocket in the near future with consequential price increases of food and about everything else we use, need and want to live our lives.
There was one chapter in the book about how to save in the kitchen with a number of One Pot Meal suggestions that would substantially lower the physical cost of cooking on a stove.
As it turns out, famous chefs are now starting to share (and publish books with) these recipes, while claiming they have been serving One Pot Meal to their families for a long time.

Following story may catch your interest.

If you think of cream of mushroom soup and gooey cheese when you think of one-pot meals, think again. Think seared curried fish with warm olive chutney. Moroccan chicken. Airy egg bakes. Above all else, think of all the different pots you can cook in to get a quick meal on the table and have minimal cleanup when it’s done.
Wok. Slow cooker. Pressure cooker. Dutch oven. Skillet. And yes, even the covered casserole.

“One-pot meals have been around for thousands of years,” Ming Tsai said in a recent phone interview from his office in Wellesley, Mass. “The Chinese have been cooking in woks for thousands of years, and the French have been making cassoulet for hundreds of years.”
In his latest book, “Simply Ming: One-Pot Meals” (Kyle Books, $29.95), Tsai offers recipes that employ one-pot methods from braising to sautéing to roasting and more. And the meals, though they include quality items such as lamb, fish and duck, are economical.
“The majority of meals in the book cost about $20 or less for four,” said Tsai, who is best known for his “East Meets West” and “Simply Ming” television series, but also is the owner of Blue Ginger restaurant in Wellesley.

Like many chefs and home cooks, Tsai believes in the importance of nutritious meals for his children and the sanctity of the family dinner. “This is the way to cook at home, especially if you have kids — a normal household — like me,” he said. “Hopefully, this book can be an aid to get back to family dinners.”
But like many family cooks, he’s got a demanding job, too. He makes it work.
“What I do is I come to the restaurant in the afternoon and get things going, then I leave for an hour or so to go home, cook dinner, and come back in time for service,” Tsai said. “And quite honestly, I cook one-pot meals.”

Many chefs are one-pot meal fans.
“We are the kings of one-pot cooking in this house,” said Ryan Trimm, chef and co-owner of Sweet Grass (who is up for the Food & Wine People’s Choice Best New Chef award; go to foodandwine.com/peoples-best-new-chef to vote. Click on “Southeast.”). His is a two-person household for now, though he and his wife, Sarah, are expecting their first child in May. He’s just practical:
“You cannot believe how much we hate doing dishes. We’ll go so far as to cook one thing in a pan, wipe it out, then cook something else in it.”
The Trimms make a quick stove-top paella, pork chops and rice, and their favorite one-pot dish, kielbasa and sauerkraut.
“It’s my wife’s favorite, and you wouldn’t believe how good it is. My mom used to make it with sauerkraut and the sausage and I always liked it, but when Sarah and I started cooking it together, we starting putting in potatoes, peppers, caraway seeds, beer — it is so good,” he said.

Rick Farmer, who was the chef/owner of Jarrett’s for 14 years and now teaches at L’École Culinaire and does in-home catering and cooking classes, also likes the one-pot method.
“It’s not about the cleanup for me,” he said. “If I’ve got to make a mess, then I’m going to make a mess. I don’t let that stop me when I want to cook something.” He likes the convenience, and like Trimm, he loves his Le Creuset Dutch oven.
“My dad and my mom have both recently had surgery, so I’ve been cooking one-pot meals to take to them all the time,” he said. “All they have to do is heat it when they want it.” He also likes a bamboo steamer, the kind with several layers than you insert in a pan.
“You can stack your meal. Cook some fish in one layer, vegetables in the others,” he said.
He doesn’t often use a wok at home, though. “The average home stove just doesn’t have enough BTUs for a wok. You need a monstrous amount of heat,” he said. “Sometimes I’ll break out my Cajun cooker and use the wok outside.”

And one-pot meals aren’t just for dinner.

“We mostly make this when we’re in Arkansas fishing,” Farmer said. “You brown off your sausage or whatever, maybe some onions, peppers, anything you want, then drain off the grease. Pour in eggs that you’ve whisked, then put the whole thing in the oven at 325 and cook just until the eggs are set, about 25 minutes.”
Tsai loves braises and will often do two at the same time on the weekends.
“I think braised dishes are always better the next day, anyway. So I’ll make two, serve one and save the other,” he said.
A braised dish will take longer to cook, but hands-on time is brief — usually just a bit of cutting and browning — and the smell from the kitchen stimulates appetite and desire.
“You just put it together, then you cook it for about two hours, and you fill your house with a fabulous aroma,” he said. “That’s a secret right there to feeding your kids.”

Looking for some delicious One Pot Meal recipes?

Seared Curried Butterfish with Warm Olive Chutney
4 tbsp. Madras curry powder
1/2 cup rice flour, brown rice flour, or cornstarch
4 (6- to 8-oz.) fillets butterfish, cod, or farm-raised Chilean sea bass
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
4 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling
3 shallots, minced
1/2 cup mixed olives, pitted and minced
1 large tomato, cut into 1/4 -inch dice
Juice of 1 orange
2 tbsp. chopped cilantro
On a large platter, combine the curry powder and rice flour and mix well. Season the fish with salt and pepper and dredge it on both sides in the flour mixture.
Heat a large, heavy skillet that can be brought to the table over medium-high heat. When the pan is very hot, add 2 tablespoons of the oil and swirl to coat the bottom. When the oil is hot, add the fish. Sauté the fish, turning once, until a paring knife pierces it easily, about 8 minutes. Remove the fish and set aside.
Add the remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil, swirl, and when hot, add the shallots, olives, tomato and orange juice. Heat through, about 2 minutes. Add the cilantro and stir to combine.
Return the fish to the pan, drizzle with oil, and serve. Serves 4.
Source: “Simply Ming One-Pot Meals,” Ming Tsai

New-Style Halibut Sashimi Soup
1 tbsp. unsalted butter
2 tbsp. very fine strips peeled ginger
1 medium onion, halved lengthwise and thinly sliced
1 bunch scallions, thinly sliced, white and green parts separated
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 qt. fresh chicken stock or low-sodium canned chicken broth
1 (4-oz.) piece halibut, cut into 1/4 -inch slices
Pinches of togarashi or chile pepper flakes, for garnish
2 sheets nori (dried seaweed), folded lengthwise 6 times, then cut widthwise with scissors into 1/8 -inch strips
Heat a large saucepan over low heat. Add the butter and when hot, add the ginger, onions and scallion whites. Sauté, stirring, until soft, 1 to 2 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Add the stock and bring to a simmer. Reduce the heat and simmer until the stock is reduced by one quarter, 3 to 4 minutes.
Using a skimmer, remove the onions and ginger from the stock and transfer to four individual serving bowls. Top each with the halibut slices. Sprinkle with the togarashi, scallion greens and nori. Ladle in the broth until it just covers the fish (or for cooked-through fish, cover it with broth completely) and serve immediately. Serves 4.
Source: “Simply Ming: One-Pot Meals,” Ming Tsai

Moroccan Chicken

1 chicken, cut in pieces
Salt and pepper, to taste
1 cup Wondra flour, for dredging
2 tbsp. oil, for browning
1 large yellow onion, thinly slices
3 to 4 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
1 (28-oz.) can whole tomatoes, crushed in your hands
1 large zucchini, cut in half moons
1 yellow squash, cut in half moons
2 cups chicken stock
Pinch of saffron (if on hand)
1 tbsp. ground coriander
2 tsp. cumin
1/2 tsp. black pepper
1 cinnamon stick, broken in half
Juice of one lemon
1 tbsp. honey
Season the chicken pieces with salt and pepper, dredge in Wondra and brown on all sides in a Dutch oven. Remove from pan and set aside. Drain most of the grease.
Add the onions to pan and caramelize over medium heat, cooking for about 15 minutes.
Add all remaining ingredients except chicken and stir. Add chicken pieces, stir to coat, and put pan in 350-degree oven, uncovered, for about 30-40 minutes, until chicken is cooked through. Serves 4 to 6.
Note: Serve with Israeli couscous. Before cooking according to label instructions, pour a little olive oil in a pan and toast the couscous with a bit of curry powder and if desired, smoked paprika. Proceed with label instructions to cook.
Source: Rick Farmer

Kielbasa and Sauerkraut
2 (16-oz.) packages of kielbasa or Polish sausage
Half large onion, thinly sliced
1 green bell pepper, thinly sliced
2 russet potatoes, cut in 1/2 -inch dice
1 clove garlic, sliced
1 (32-oz.) jar sauerkraut, drained
1 tsp. caraway seeds
12 oz. beer, preferably lager
Brown sausage on all sides in Dutch oven (leave sausage in links). Set aside and sauté the onion, pepper, potatoes and garlic. When slightly cooked down, add sauerkraut and caraway seeds. Stir, then add sausage and pour beer over top. Bring to a boil, then cover and bake at 350 for about 45 minutes. Serves 4 to 6.

Bon Appetit

2011 Video of Last Leg Rally Kick-Off

Last Leg Rally T-ShirtThe 2011 Last Leg Rally got off to a great start beginning with a Meet & Greet party at Sandy Bottoms in Fernandina Beach.

SearchAmelia was there with cameras rolling to catch some of the excitement in preparation of this weekend’s motorcycle festival for charity.

httpvh://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hy_np0qyMAM

Saturday morning there was a motorcycle benefit ride where many bikers polished up their chrome and took to the streets on this spectacular Amelia Island morning.

httpvh://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8OkPZ6z2V_Y

This Week’s Shockers

Riot Head Gear in Egypt

The week was filled with shockers once again. Some sad, some hilarious and some downright idiotic. One real pleasant shocker was the opening movie at the Amelia Island Film Festival that plays this weekend. “Ten Years Later” from writer/director/actor Aaron Metchik was a pure delight in creativity and story.

A Pygmy Whale washing up on the beach.

It was a dreary day last Wednesday, yet when we went out for a hearty beachwalk, we noticed in the distance near Beach Access 30 at the end of Simmons Rd. a group of people staring at something in the water. As we got closer we witnessed the death struggle of what we later learned to be a Pygmy whale. The sight was hugely disturbing and sad as the lone mammal seemed to be trying to get back in deeper water, slowly losing the fight to the outgoing tide. Entirely helpless we watched with tears in our eyes as the gentle giant turned on its back several times, trying with its powerful tail to push towards the surf. Even though there were several men ready to get into the water, there was nothing really we could do. I estimated the whale to be at least 600-700 pounds and even in its death struggle, the tail smashed powerful.  Someone had called Animal Rescue/911 but when we left 40 minutes later, no one had shown up yet (it was lunch hour). Disgusted by such a slow reaction time I was going to write a searing story, but decided to let it sit for a day or two, even though I was shocked to the core.

Admittedly I have no clue how this type of rescue service operates and who budgets for it in a feeble economy, but I can imagine that a rope and a fish net is not of much help trying to rescue this animal.
Then yetserday I learned that help finally arrived after we had left, but that there had been no hope for the whale, as it had apparently suffered a heart attack, most probably caused by old age. Rescuers tried until past 4pm to save it, but to no avail.

The US Government Priorities

Another thing that shocked me (but then again not really) was learning about how the US Government set priorities and spent our money.
It takes a bit of experience to read the signs but usually you can make a reasonably accurate prediction of the future of an individual or organization by how it sets its priorities. And you can tell someone’s true priorities by seeing how they spend their time, money, and energy.
Based on this simple formula, I would say that the US and its government is in serious need of a major adjustment of its priorities.

Note: FCIC = Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission. The one and so far only attempt to “explain” why a handful of banks received trillions of “no strings” attached handouts after engaging in fraud and reckless gambling on an epic scale.
The US spent $8 million investigating this staggering financial catastrophe which has cost the US about $8 trillion dollars (and climbing) but FIVE TIMES AS MUCH on the details of Bubba’s Oval Office sexcapades.

You may want to make a note to yourself that if you are ever given a choice between getting a BJ in the Oval Office and stealing trillions of dollars,… choose the latter.
Here is why: Apparently, there’s no penalty to pay and eight trillion dollars will buy a lot of…well you get the idea.
Speaking of which, for those who want to go further down the rabbit hole (so to speak) as well as for the generally prurient…here’s where a good chunk of the Wall Street bonus money went:

The Demise of Charlie Sheen and Two and a Half Men

I have been pondering whether this really came as a shock, or that it had been in the pipeline for quite a while. In my opinion there is something intrinsically wrong when someone who makes reportedly $1.8 million per weekly episode of a sitcom, decides to badmouth his boss. After 8 years on the job, Charlie Sheen did just that and now we are most likely without our Monday night 9 o’clock staple. As a loyal follower of the cleverly written show however, I have seen my loyalties over the years move from Charlie to the rest of the cast and without too much trouble I can see someone replacing Mr. Sheen, while still having a great and witty show. And let’s face it, after 8 years, the half man in the show’s title is now fully grown and funny as Charlie is more and more sinking into the morass of a midlife crisis.

What really shocked me however was learning about the math behind a show like this. Charlie gets $1.2 per episode and the advertiser pays a little over $200,000 per ad spot. With about 6 full minutes of ads (FCC) in a 30 minute segment, you wonder how the rest of the cast and crew makes a living. A re-run stipend and food stamps come to mind.

In his departing rant Charlie said: “It’s been a toxic environment for eight years. I was a good ol’ guy for eight years. I put five bil in the studio’s pocket, I put a half a bil in Chuck’s pocket, so this is the freaking thank you I get? This is the level of gratitude that I get?”
Well my calculator says that 8 years of 26 episodes per year at an average of $1 million per episode put about $200 million in Charlie Sheen’s pocket and that my dear friends proves that money beyond a certain comfort level does not add anything to happiness.

Headwear in the Egyptian revolution

A friend who lives in Dubai (United Arab Emirates) from where he is watching the turmoil unfold in the Middle East, sent an email this week with the following message:

My friend, my advice is that Canadians and Americans sit down for a cup of coffee and start planning to dig some oil wells on their own soils & waters and leave the Middle East to their fate, because as it is so far Uncle Sam’s help has done no good!

The main points to note from the Egyptian revolution are :
1) No violence from the demostrators   
2) Very educated crowds   3) It took eighteen days to change the Govt.

  If Uncle Sam wants to have power in this region they should control it with
 a real Democratic system and not support the same Tyrants and Kingdoms for 30 – 40 years; basically they need to update policy.

  Hope all is well at your end.

And then my friend attached some pictures I thought were hilarious. Yes especially the one with baguettes and a loaf of bread as head protection against the riot police.

Taking the Easy Way Out

Not so sure about this one

A new marketing technique for bakers

Tim Geithner never had a Real Job

On the domestic economic front this may come as a shock to many, although insiders were already very much aware of the fact that Timothy Geithner, our Secretary of the Treasury never had a real job. What came as a shock however is that he openly admitted that when pointed out in an interview. That is either debilitatingly Stupid or a sign of Arrogance that goes with considering yourself Untouchable. You’ll be the Judge.

Move over Steven Spielberg- there is a new kid in town

Aaron Metchik and co-star Rachel Boston

Move over Spielberg and give space to  Aaron Metchik – writer/producer/actor extra-ordinaire.

Last night was the Opening Night of the Amelia Island Film Festival and Aaron Metchik’s “Ten Years Later” was on the Menu. To say that I was shocked would be the understatement of the year. At times hilariously witty with clever twists and turns, “Ten Years Later” catches your attention from the first car scene to visiting the reunion as an afterthought.
Unlike so often when it comes to “low budget” productions and the dialog needs to make up for lack of action and variety of sceneries, this assumption was completely lost on this movie. The only reference to small budget was probably the fact that the entire movie was shot in a small central California town, but at no point was that obvious. Also the fact that it took “only” 26 days filming from start to finish does not show anywhere. It truly felt like a high budget movie, with actors that had a familiarity and professionalism that was instantly inviting and energizing.

When Film Festival director Tony Macadoo introduced 30 year old Metchik to the audience of mostly invited guests, he spoke in superlatives of screenplay writing, directing, editing and starring, which Metchik immediately put into perspective by pointing out that the superlatives were less the result of supposed brilliance, but more the lack of funding.

Not having seen his name in writing yet, I mistook Metchik for Magic, and that’s exactly what he produced MAGIC.

When I asked him before the movie screening, to describe what the screenplay was all about, he quickly worded the description that is mentioned in the Film Festival’s Promotional pieces, so my expectations were still circling around a coming of age movie, as we have seen in many different formats and castings, most notably “The Big Chill”.
Sure Metchik’s piece de resistance has a couple of the predictable post highschool reunion scenes, that we have come to know so well since the genre became big in the early 1980s, yet this movie doesn’t dwell on it, but rather keeps you on your toes with quick and very believable twists and turns.

Even as the script got darker and more twisted, Metchik kept clever comedic humor as a central focus point, which had the audience burst out in laughter, sometimes at the most serious moments. In one scene where the “femme fatale” Kyra Lee (Rachel Boston) shows her friends in a pole dance imitation what she has been doing in Las Vegas since she last saw them 10 years ago, another friend who brought his young son to the reunion, covers the kid’s eyes and in a totally un-rehearsed move, the son puts a teddy bear over his dad’s hands to make sure he would not see any of the risky scene.

The selection of the cast is so well balanced and familiar that it feels you know the characters and the actors behind the story, but you cannot exactly put your finger on where you know them from. A little research however unveils that all of them have substantial careers in both TV and movies and for Metchik to get his hands on this display of talent, also tells me that he is on his way to superstardom; quite likely finding Spielberg’s trail in the next years to come. Last but not least, what else gave “Ten Years Later” a big production feel were the subtle use of pyrotechnics and special effects. Masterful but not overdone.

At no point during the screening did I feel the need for a bathroom break, popcorn or even something to drink. My wife and I agreed afterwards that it was probably the best movie we’ve watched in several years, which brings me to my closing argument: what is wrong with a country that can not recognize true talent anymore for what it is? I am not going to give away the storyline and the plot…but I do hope that Island Cinema burned a copy of this great film, that is both entertaining, feel good and clean, because with a little promotional budget it would draw large audiences.

As to the Film Festival, kudos and regrets. Kudos for bringing such unexpected quality to a film festival and regrets that once again the Weekend Spotlight has to be shared with so many other events. I would have loved to come out and see more productions or even buy an all screening pass, if “duty” didn’t require our presenece at other spots such as this weekend’s Last Leg Rally.

As to Aaron Metchik, I sent out a friend request to him on Facebook and a note on Google Alert, which will help me follow his career from here on.

Showing at the Island Cinema

Cedar Key Pirates Peddle for a Purpose

Cedar Key Pirates Peddle for a Purpose

Pirates Peddle for a Purpose

In 1861, the 155 mile David Yulee Levy’s Florida Railroad connecting Fernandina Beach to Cedar Key, Florida was completed. The first train arrived on the dock at Cedar Key on March 16, 1861. This spring marks the 150th anniversary connecting the East Coast of Florida to Florida’s West Coast.

To mark this historic occasion, a group of cycling pirates from the Cedar Key Pirates in Paradise will leave Fernandina Beach on March 16th and average 50 miles a day retracing the tracks to Cedar Key.

Following the original route as closely as they can, they will travel through the towns of Callahan, Baldin, Starke, Waldo, Gainesville, Archer and Rosewood with the group completing their three day journey by arriving in Cedar Key at noon on Saturday.

This Pirates group is still in their infancy at only four months old, but they are doing what Pirates do best by finding a couple of charities and implementing a fun way to raise money. “Cedar Key Pirates in Paradise Peddling for a Purpose” is collecting pledges, or wagers on whether they will finish the ride or not.

Spearheading the ride are John Hadden and Bobby McCabe. Cyclist and Pirate McCabe told me, “We will arrive on Dock Street where the Pirates are having our Treasure Hunters Rummage Sale fundraiser. Our charities are the Cedar Key Food Pantry and the Wounded Warriors Project.”

Here in Fernandina Beach, the city is officially recognizing the anniversary at the March 1st Commissioner Meeting by presenting a Proclamation, “PROCLAMATION – 150TH FLORIDA RAILROAD ANNIVERSARY – Proclaims 2011 as the year of ‘The 150th Florida Railroad Anniversary’,” to Phyllis Davis, Executive Director of the Amelia Island Museum of History.

If you would like more information about the ride, would like to make a donation or simply grab your bike and join them, visit their FaceBook page to learn more.

Don’t worry if you miss the Cedar Key Pirates in March, they will be returning the end of April to participate in the Isle of Eight Flags Shrimp Festival’s Pirate Parade. This annual parade gets the Shrimp Festival festivities started and our noisy band of Fernandina Pirates hand out beads and pirate hats while they bring up the rear of the parade firing cannons and black-powdered weapons from their street-worthy parade ship, Amelia’s Revenge!

Art of Better Photography

Art of Better PhotographyThere is a five-week photography class beginning March 16, 2011, at the Island Art Association in Fernandina Beach. The Mouth of Amelia sent us the following information:

From 9:30 to noon, two professional local photographers, Roger Moore and Michael Spicer, will share their experiences with you in a course titled “The Art of Better Photography.”

Each class will cover the technical and aesthetic qualities of how to make a better photograph and a guided tour shoot in downtown Fernandina.

The curriculum includes four weeks of classroom instruction and outdoor exercises, a planned field trip, and a private one hour shooting session with either Roger or Michael.

The cost is $200 for the series of classes and you must have working knowledge of your film or digital camera to attend.

For more information, please contact the Island Art Association at 904-261-7020.

1 2 3 7