Category Archives: Features

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?

Charming Crystal River

(Feature image courtesy of The Cutting Edge Photography.) Crystal River is situated around Kings Bay, which is spring-fed by a cluster of more than 30 springs, designated as a first-magnitude system. Because the water stays a constant 72 degrees, this area is a popular area for West Indian manatees to winter in. Incorporated in 1903, … Continue reading Charming Crystal River

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

The Taste, a redesigned Food Challenge and Craft Beer Event 4/8

There is Adele, Bono, Cher, and now there is the Taste. This event was known for ten years as the Taste of Inverness, and now in its 11th year organizers simply call it the Taste. The name change reflects the new feel of this signature event. First, The Taste is now a qualifier for the … Continue reading The Taste, a redesigned Food Challenge and Craft Beer Event 4/8

Disovering Anclote Island’s Delights

Anclote Key State Preserve is steeped in history. French and Spanish pirates used Anclote Key to launch raids in 1682, according to researchers. There are rumors of buried treasure. The word Anclote is a Spanish word that means anchor. The island is about 180 acres, around 4 miles long, and less than a mile in … Continue reading Disovering Anclote Island’s Delights

Cattle Dog Coffee Roasters to Compete for Best Cold Brew Title in Nashville

If you are a coffee connoisseur, you need to know about Cattle Dog Coffee Roasters, Citrus county’s first and only coffee roasters. They have state-of-the-art home brewing kits, on-site roasting of over 30 varieties, delicious breakfast, lunch and bakery treats and are soon on their way to Nashville to compete in the Coffee Fest Cold … Continue reading Cattle Dog Coffee Roasters to Compete for Best Cold Brew Title in Nashville

Swimming with Manatees Adventure

It was 59 degrees when we stepped outside on a brisk February Florida morning. Climbing into the truck before sunrise to head north on the Gulf Highway (Hwy 19), we were on our way to Citrus County to fulfill my son’s Christmas gift to his sister… swimming with manatees. When the Gulf water temperature drops, … Continue reading Swimming with Manatees Adventure

Homosassa’s Wildlife Park History featured in March

The history of Homosassa and the Park will be highlighted during the month of March at Ellie Schiller Homosassa Springs Wildlife State Park. Displays on our area’s heritage will exhibited in the Park’s Visitor Center on US 19 and in the Discovery Center from Tuesday, March 7, 2017 through the end of the month. Special … Continue reading Homosassa’s Wildlife Park History featured in March

Experience ‘Art in the Park’ March 11-12

The Hernando County Fine Arts Council is excited to present its very popular “Art in the Park” for the 33rd year on Saturday, March 11, from 10 am to 5 pm and Sunday, March 12, from 10 am to 4 pm at Tom Varn Park in downtown Brooksville – and you’re invited! This celebration of … Continue reading Experience ‘Art in the Park’ March 11-12

Discover Ozello: the Nature Coast Keys

Ozello (or as the locals pronounce it Ozelluh) can be found between Crystal River and Homosassa by turning onto Highway 494 from U.S. 19. This winding two-lane blacktop is called “The Ozello Trail,” and it twists and turns through St. Martin’s Aquatic Preserve, a 23,000 acre wildlife preserve owned by the citizens of Florida and … Continue reading Discover Ozello: the Nature Coast Keys