Sierra Club Offers FREE Screening of The Whale on July 4th

TheWhaleMountainsideFilmsNo baseball game, barbeque, or music on July 4th? Not to worry. Join the Nassau County Sierra Club for a free family-friendly movie, The Whale, which will screen at the Fernandina Beach Public library on July 4th at 6:45 pm before the fireworks start downtown.

The Whale is a documentary film. While not written or edited specifically as a children’s film, it is accessible and entertaining for children ages 6 and up. Children particularly respond to the film because it has the emotional force of a real story rather than being lists of facts. While the film does not provide answers to all the questions, a child’s curiosity is fed rather than ignored and what they most want to do when the film is over is talk about Luna the whale.

The film follows a lost young orca that uses humans for his need to socialize. People called him Luna. Because orcas are highly social animals and Luna had found himself alone, cut off from his pod, he seemed to think he could make a life among humans. So he tried to make contact with people at docks and boats along a fjord called Nootka Sound, on the west coast of Canada’s Vancouver Island.

Luna, whom the press called “The Lonely Orca,” became the subject of controversy in both public and scientific arenas over what should be done with him—whether to catch him, befriend him or force people to stay away from him.

Although Luna was healthy, and his presence in the area delighted tourists and drew a large number of paparazzi, there were concerns that his behavior was endangering people. The relationship between the First Nations tribe and the local authorities – and how the two groups have contrasting views of what’s best for Luna – makes for interesting conversations after viewing the documentary.

This is not an advocacy film. But it is an amazing story. This film is more mysterious than most and has been described as “a complete emotional experience” because it tries to come to terms with the feelings of a whale.

City Said No to Fireworks, Will Citizens Say Yes?

City Said No to Fireworks, Will Citizens Say Yes?After the City of Fernandina Beach Commissioners decided not to spend the $13,000 on an Independence Day fireworks display in the historic district of Fernandina Beach, Florida, the Amelia Island Fernandina Beach Yulee Chamber of Commerce and the Historic Downtown Business Association joined forces tempting citizens, businesses and tourists to say, “Yes!”

There is an effort underway to raise the money by June 22nd, through cash donations and checks made payable to the: Chamber of Commerce Fireworks Fund.

Here is the information found on the fundraiser’s Facebook event page:

The commission failed to fund a fireworks display for downtown Fernandina, held traditionally since the 60’s. With an economic impact in some areas many times the cost of the fireworks, this makes little sense.

The Chamber of Commerce is helping to organize fundraising for this event. If you would like to help keep the fireworks at the river, businesses and individuals who understand the importance of drawing visitors downtown hour early to spend money as well as the importance of celebrating the birth of our country are asked to consider donating.

Cash or check is accepted. I would highly suggest checks. Make checks out to the Chamber of Commerce Fireworks Fund. You are welcome to drop off either at Magna’s Full Body Salon, c/o Tom Hughes on Centre Street or at the Chamber of Commerce in Gateway to Amelia.

A number of notable locals are helping organize the effort… including Sarah Pelican, Joel Embry, Charlie Corbett and Tom Hughes of Magna’s.

The drop dead cutoff date to raise $13000.00 is June 22nd. Please include Name, address and phone number with any donations. If, for any reason, the Chamber is unable to raise enough to save the 4th of July Celebration, all money is to be returned.

If you have any questions, please feel free to call Regina Duncan at the Chamber (904) 261-3248

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2011 Fernandina Freedom Festival Contest Winners

Apple Pie Contest WinnersHere are the results from the Stars and Stripes Freedom Festival on July 4th in Fernandina Beach. The festivities included contest, raffles, a touch-a-truck display and so much more family fun!

The All American Apple Pie Contest feature eight entries for the best home baked pie made from scratch!

The winners were:

1st Place: Marci Colwell ($100, Fernandina Beach, FL)
2nd Place: Samantha Ofeldt ($50, Fernandina Beach, FL)
3rd Place: Michele Readdick ($25, Fernandina Beach, FL)

Pictured in the photo from left to right are: Samantha, Michele, and Marci

The Parent/Child Look A Like Contest was a huge hit with 21 family entries! All participants received a coupon for a free ice cream cone from Fernandina’s Fantastic Fudge in historic Fernandina Beach, Florida.

Look-A-Like Contest Winners

The winners were:

1st Place: Debbie & Darian Fitzwater (Yulee, FL)
2nd Place: Tom & Ashley Moen (Fernandina Beach, FL)
3rd Place: Amanda & Emily Sweetz (Jacksonville, FL)

Look-A-Like Contest Winners in the photo are, from left to right: Darian & Debbie Fitzwater, Ashley & Tom Moen, and Emily & Amanda Sweetz

What to do July 4th on Amelia Island, Florida

july-4th-activities-amelia-islandMany activities are planned for the 4th of July activities in Fernandina Beach and Amelia Island, Florida. SearchAmelia’s Judie Mackie, shares with you the highlights of the week for locals, guests and vacationers starting with Trivia with Maggie upstairs at the Crab Trap on Wednesdays. The Independence Day weekend gets started with Sounds on Centre, this FREE family event lasts from 6 to 8 PM and includes Pirates, a street dance and live music by the band, “Out of Hand“.

Saturday’s July 4th Celebrations include more activities beginning at the Amelia Island Plantation at 9:00 AM with a parade, music, air show, bar-b-que and fireworks. 10:00 AM brings the Stars and Stripes Freedom Festival, brought to you by the City of Fernandina Beach and the Shiny Badges Ball. The festivities start at Central Park on Atlantic Avenue and then move into Historic Fernandina Beach during the evening. There is a wide variety of activities all day long including games, food, music, contests, a parade and fireworks over the waterfront at approx. 9:30 PM. At 3:00 PM, Blister returns to the Sandollar Restaurant on Hecksher Drive and the Ritz Carlton is hosting an event on their ocean view lawn from 6 to 9 PM for $75.00/adults and $35/kids thru age 12.

As you can see, there are plenty of things to do, and if you really get bored, you can always go to the beach and watch the tourists get their cars stuck in the sand!