Category Archives: Features

Shop Small for Big Returns on Florida’s Nature Coast

Thanksgiving is upon us. What a blessing it is to live in the paradise of Florida’s Nature Coast during the fall season. While we do not have extravagant color shows from the changing of the leaves, we do have beautiful wildflowers that change with the seasons, and more subtle things make this an ideal time … Continue reading Shop Small for Big Returns on Florida’s Nature Coast

Mind, Body & Soul Festival enchants Sertoma Dec. 7-10

The Family-friendly, “not under the influence” event showcases the Healing Arts There is much debate about the healing arts in America. With medical care and big pharma becoming increasingly expensive and, in some cases, ineffective, many are turning to the treatments and “cures” of old. If you are curious about what’s available outside of the … Continue reading Mind, Body & Soul Festival enchants Sertoma Dec. 7-10

Helping Veterans and Homeless Dogs

With a national suicide rate for American Veterans of twenty per day, and twenty-two daily for vets with PTSD, there needs to be an intervention. In addition, thousands of homeless dogs are euthanized at shelters each month. Could one help the other? “I’ve had such a passion for dogs from the time I could say … Continue reading Helping Veterans and Homeless Dogs

Manatees swim into spotlight at Wildlife Park

With cooling temperatures, wild manatees are seeking warmer spring waters and will be joining Homosassa Springs Wildlife Park’s resident manatees in the park’s first-magnitude spring. The water temperatures in the spring remain at 74 degrees year-round. On very cold mornings as many as 70 wild manatees can be seen congregating in the spring run. The … Continue reading Manatees swim into spotlight at Wildlife Park

Get to Know Nature at Chinsegut’s Conservation Center

When I moved to Brooksville, the Chinsegut Conservation Center was having a class on pine needle basket weaving. I have a lot of pines on my property. Money was tight. I thought, maybe I could create some baskets with the kids for Christmas gifts, but I could not find the place! I found the beautiful … Continue reading Get to Know Nature at Chinsegut’s Conservation Center

How The Arc Survived Hurricane Irma

Story written by Nancy Stubbs, Development Director of The Arc Nature Coast, and photos contributed by Mark Barry, Executive Director of The Arc Nature Coast (reprinted with permission) We have been fortunate that since we opened our Education Center & Hurricane Evacuation Shelter in 2012, we haven’t had to activate the Hurricane Shelter. That is, until … Continue reading How The Arc Survived Hurricane Irma

Old Homosassa Heritage Park

Almost three years ago, Roger Cullen, a resident of Old Homosassa, formed the “Access to the River” committee with the goal of creating a county park on the Homosassa River.  There is no free public access to the residents of the county to the river.  The original committee was made up of representatives of the … Continue reading Old Homosassa Heritage Park

Fall-O-Ween Fun for You

The end of September brings hope for cooler weather to Nature Coast. The heat of summer is waning and fall harvests are beginning. There are many festivals and activities going on, and it is time to get out and enjoy the bounty and beauty of our area. Then there is Halloween, a uniquely American holiday … Continue reading Fall-O-Ween Fun for You

Experiencing Hurricane Irma

We chose to “ride out” hurricane Irma in our block home in the woods of eastern Hernando County because: we have several pets: 2 dogs, 2 cats and one horse the horrible traffic jams on the freeway scared us our home made it through 2004’s three hurricanes I refuse to buy into the “hype” of … Continue reading Experiencing Hurricane Irma

Riding the Rainbow (River)

Recently I had the privilege of kayaking the Rainbow River, a Registered National Landmark that is fed by a first magnitude spring. The river itself is 5.7 miles long with its origination at the Rainbow Springs State Park. In the 1930s, the park was developed into a tourist attraction and today it is still popular … Continue reading Riding the Rainbow (River)

“Appreciating Vultures” at the Wildlife Park in September

September is Vulture Awareness and Appreciation Month at Ellie Schiller Homosassa Springs Wildlife State Park. Learn about New World and Old World Vultures, the key role they play in the environment, and the plight they face in many countries. September’s displays in the Visitor Center and Discovery Center will focus attention on Florida’s two New … Continue reading “Appreciating Vultures” at the Wildlife Park in September

Boogie on the (Port Richey) Bayou

Port Richey’s waterfront district is located along the Gulf of Mexico both north and south of the Pithlachascotee (Cotee) River. It isn’t well marked and doesn’t look like much from U.S. 19, but it houses some really nice businesses owned by determined entrepreneurs that are improving the area with help from the City of Port … Continue reading Boogie on the (Port Richey) Bayou

Are the Chassahowitzka (Chazz) Bears OK?

 Chazz Bears are dangerously Isolated The Chassahowitzka National Wildlife Refuge on Florida’s Nature Coast was established in 1943 as a winter preserve for migratory water birds. Today, over 31,000 acres are protected and managed by several federal, state and local government agencies with the goal of offering migrating and wintering water birds a place to … Continue reading Are the Chassahowitzka (Chazz) Bears OK?

Canning to Preserve Tasty, Healthy Traditions

I fondly remember making applesauce from fresh-picked apples with my mom in our little kitchen up north. We made chunky-style sauce from locally-grown Macintoshes in a time when only pureed applesauce was available at the grocery store, adding cinnamon for a flavor that became my definition of delicious! When reading labels on spaghetti sauce, sugar … Continue reading Canning to Preserve Tasty, Healthy Traditions

We’re All Abuzz about Butterflies and Bees at the Wildlife Park in August

Discover the hidden lives of butterflies, moths and bees during the month of August at Ellie Schiller Homosassa Springs Wildlife State Park. Learn about butterflies and bees through exhibits in the Visitor Center and in the Discovery Center. Two special programs will also be offered, one on “The Importance of Honey Bees” by Master Beekeeper … Continue reading We’re All Abuzz about Butterflies and Bees at the Wildlife Park in August

Exploring Nature Coast Springs

There is nothing like hopping into a 72-degree spring on a hot, humid day to cool the body and soothe the soul. Florida is graced with many natural springs, providing crystal clear, cool (some would say cold) water and the Nature Coast has a great concentration of these magical geological phenomena. Although we tend to … Continue reading Exploring Nature Coast Springs

Creative Writing Series at Saint Leo by Leading American Writers and Artists

Admission is free each evening to sessions with actor-writer Benjamin Busch, Florida luminary David Kirby, and many rising talents and experienced writing teacher-mentors Contributed by Jo-Anne Johnston, Saint Leo University Distinguished visiting artists will be performing in early-evening sessions from Saturday, July 15, through Friday, July 21 at Saint Leo University (www.saintleo.edu), including novelists, poets, … Continue reading Creative Writing Series at Saint Leo by Leading American Writers and Artists

Chinsegut’s Historic Treasures adorn Brooksville

Chinsegut (pronounced chin-SEE-gut) is an Alaskan Innuit word meaning, “The spirit of things lost and regained.” This local treasure is an interesting piece of the Nature Coast’s history, having been homesteaded by John and Susan Bishop in the 1800s. Colonel Bird T. Pearson of South Carolina acquired 160 acres through the Armed Occupation Act in … Continue reading Chinsegut’s Historic Treasures adorn Brooksville

Scalloping Florida’s Nature Coast: A Delicious Adventure

At one time, the West Central coast of Florida supported a robust commercial scallop industry, with 400,000 lbs. of bay scallops being harvested in Florida in 1957. By 1992, the commercial harvest was near zero. Fishery groups banded together and worked to restore the scallop populations to healthy levels and by 2005, most years showed … Continue reading Scalloping Florida’s Nature Coast: A Delicious Adventure

Bald Eagles Featured at Homosassa Springs Wildlife State Park for July

Ellie Schiller Homosassa Springs Wildlife State Park will be focusing on the threatened Bald Eagle (Haliaeetus leucocephalus), our national bird, during the month of July. Educational exhibits about the Bald eagle will be on display in the Park’s Visitor Center and Discovery Center throughout July. Three mature Bald eagles; Spirit, Homosassa and Summer; an immature … Continue reading Bald Eagles Featured at Homosassa Springs Wildlife State Park for July

We’re Celebrating the 4th throughout the Nature Coast

“The second day of July 1776, will be the most memorable epoch in the history of America. I am apt to believe that it will be celebrated by succeeding generations as the great anniversary festival. It ought to be commemorated as the day of deliverance, by solemn acts of devotion to God Almighty. It ought … Continue reading We’re Celebrating the 4th throughout the Nature Coast

Another Old Homosassa Update

Hey, I write things.  And now it’s time to update them! First, the winners of the Scavenger Hunt sponsored by the Old Homosassa Heritage Council! Everyone that I talked to about the race thought it was FUN, FUN, FUN! Now, on a more serious note.  Things that will make Old Homosassa better….. The post I … Continue reading Another Old Homosassa Update

Bramble Creek Farm: Growing Blackberries with Love

Pulling up to the wide farm gate on Hayman Road, anticipation of the sweet, yet slightly tart flavor of fresh, juicy blackberries has a grip on me. This is my second year visiting Bramble Creek Farm and I have a vision to fulfill – and a bucket! It is an idyllic scene; slowly touring the … Continue reading Bramble Creek Farm: Growing Blackberries with Love

First Friday Brings Music to the Streets of Dade City

June 2 kicks off summer’s First Friday, a date night of sorts featuring live music, store specials and a community atmosphere from 5-9 pm in Dade City. Downtown shopkeepers and restaurateurs are staying open late to bring some of the finest shopping and dining to NatureCoasters. Live music, in the form of street musicians throughout … Continue reading First Friday Brings Music to the Streets of Dade City

Paddling Adventure for NatureCoasters: Blazing a new Trail

Kayaking and canoeing are peaceful ways of interacting with nature on the water and getting healthy exercise, without getting too wet. Florida’s Adventure Coast (Hernando County) recently opened a new paddling trail from Bayport Park to Linda Pedersen Park to  give residents and visitors the opportunity to enjoy what makes Florida’s Nature Coast such a … Continue reading Paddling Adventure for NatureCoasters: Blazing a new Trail

A Corny Obsession for Golden Fans at Frazier Farms

At 10 am the gate opens and customers begin their semi-annual trek for what has been called, “the sweetest gold on earth”: Frazier’s sweet corn. David Frazier owns a 25-acre farm several blocks north of Jefferson and East Avenue in Brooksville. Twice each year he harvests the crops and people flock to the quaint locale … Continue reading A Corny Obsession for Golden Fans at Frazier Farms

Florida-fresh Blueberries in the Nature Coast: Picking and Grinning

Picking blueberries throughout Florida’s Nature Coast is one of my favorite things to do in April-May. I easily pick 10 pounds at a time and they keep a long time in the refrigerator. I give some to the neighbors, some to my friends, and I eat a lot of blueberries while picking because they taste … Continue reading Florida-fresh Blueberries in the Nature Coast: Picking and Grinning

Fresh Farm Food for NatureCoasters’ Good Health

Florida’s Nature Coast has a cornucopia of fresh farm produce available throughout most of the year. While the local grocery store may carry Florida fresh fruits and veggies throughout the year, a local produce market can provide foods that have been grown closer to home, and a trip to the farm provides the freshest food … Continue reading Fresh Farm Food for NatureCoasters’ Good Health

Bountiful Blueberries make Tasty Fun in Brooksville

You can almost taste it, right? That cool blue sensation that awakens the pallet this time of year. Spring is nearly upon us and with it, the bountiful harvest of Florida blueberries. On April 22 and 23, Brooksville will celebrate Florida’s fastest growing specialty crop of edibles by hosting the Sixth Annual Florida Blueberry Festival. … Continue reading Bountiful Blueberries make Tasty Fun in Brooksville

Try The Taste: Food Competition & Craft Beer Festival April 8

The Taste of Inverness began as a way to showcase local restaurant and catering offerings and raise funds for local nonprofit and educational needs. Over the years, it has grown to a signature event for the City of Inverness and has contributed to the betterment of thousands of NatureCoasters through its philanthropic efforts. “2017 is … Continue reading Try The Taste: Food Competition & Craft Beer Festival April 8