With more than 20 restaurants participating in Amelia Island’s Restaurant Week, there is a taste for every taste bud and a flavor for every food lover. Beginning January 17 and running thru January 26, restaurants are preparing to wow guests with a prixfixe menu of $19 and $29 that includes a three course experience of specially selected items. Descriptions of food varieties being offered include: “eclectic, steak, land and seafood, Spanish, American, French, seafood/burgers, and Fine Dining”. For a complete menu list you can visit www.ameliaisland.com/yummy or call 904-277-0717. Restaurants included are 29 South, Bar Zin Bistro & Wine Bar, Baxter’s, Brett’s Waterway Café, Cafe’ Karibo Crab Trap, Espana, Gourmet, Gourmet, Horizon’s, Jack & Dianes, Joe’s 2nd Street Bistro, La Mancha, Le Clos, Lulu’s at the Thompson House, Marina, Merge, PLAE, Salty Pelican, Sandy Bottoms, Sliders, and the Verandah. Located across the Island, theses restaurants can serve a large variety of tastes and the week offers an opportunity to experience a favorite or try something new. Amelia Island Restaurant Week entices visitors to explore Amelia Island’s many choices for fine food, unusual flavors and traditions of different cultures at the many varieties offered by our local restaurants and their chef’s. We try to take the opportunity each year to explore one new restaurant and re-visit one of our favorites. So….come on and visit Amelia Island, stay with us at the Williams House and explore a wonderful dining opportunity during Restaurant Week on Amelia Island.
Posts Tagged ‘local attractions’
Yes, that title is a mouthful, but so was the barbecue at the last weekend’s Great Southern Tailgate Cook-Off. Held on Amelia Island for the second year, it featured expert barbecue teams from all around the south. Having tasted several, I have to say they were great at their chosen profession or hobby! Crowds were good and every where you looked people were enjoying their favorite version of barbecue. Pulled pork, ribs, chicken were all available and the smell of wood fired cookers filled the air. Visitors could also get smoothies, funnel cakes, fries, onion rings and beverages. Held at main beach with ocean backdrops, it was a fun event with great views.
- July 4 parade – Fernandina Beach
The July 4th holiday yielded lots of activity on Fernandina Beach including an event with specialty vehicles, games and live band at Central Park during the early hours. In the evening, a traditional parade with police, fireman, military and citizens was held. Later the same day, a free concert was held down by the waterfront and fireworks followed at 9:30 pm. It was fairly crowded on the Island with lot’s of folks enjoying the shops, restaurants, Fort Clinch (with reenac tments) and lot’s of local activities. We were full at the Williams House and in fact July in total was one of our busier months this year. We also had a small wedding on the Holiday weekend which we will cover later in another blog.
Byron’s brother Gary visited recently from Raleigh, NC and we had the opportunity to introduce him to one of our favorite local attractions, Fort Clinch, an historical Florida State Park. Started as part of the United States coastal defense system before the civil war, it never really saw action although Union soldiers occupied the fort during the war. It was worked on again as part of the 1930′s WPA projects as were many of these early forts. Since then it has been worked on with volunteers and donations and is largely intact and complete. It is usually manned by at least one soldier in period uniform who will gladly enlighten you on what life was like in the fort during the 1860′s. On the first weekend of each month in the summer, reenactments are staged with larger numbers of soldiers joining the historic setting. There are numerous tunnel like alley ways to and from various parts of the fort, cannons atop the walls, gun turrets, a dry moat, powder rooms, officer and enlisted quarters, jail, kitchen and blacksmith shop. The fort is about four miles from the current Fernandina Beach historic district and sits at the northern most point of Amelia Island. There is beach access and a fishing pier within the park as well. Views north to the south end of Cumberland Island are available from atop the river side walls. We always encourage guests at the Williams House to find time to visit this little piece of history and try to imagine what life was like on Amelia Island in the 1800′s.
One of our favorite times on Amelia Island and the largest festival is the Shrimp Festival, held the first weekend of May each year. Festivities begin with a parade on Thursday evening and it is the longest of the year at over and hour. Many residents, businesses and associations participate and awards are given for the best float linking in the parade theme. It is truly a family affair with many children participating and many more lining the streets to get glimpses of all the fun floats and characters from pirates to Disney type costumes. Of course pirates abound and the parade closes with the pirate ship firing loud and smokey guns and cannon. Candy and beads are given out to spectators and everyone vies for the most collected and greatest variety. This is our sixth year of attending and viewing from the Williams House and this was the first year threatened by rain. But, rain came just before the parade, stopped for the hour plus of the parade and resumed again soon thereafter. Once again the parade was dry and fun! Enjoy the attached pictures.
The 2011 Concours D’Elegance or parade of elegance kicked off yesterday with a group of cars coming downtown to show a portion of what will be presented at the Amelia Island golf course on Sunday. There were plenty of options from Allard to Dusenberg, Ferrari to vintage race cars with something for every taste. Many proud drivers and owners were nearby to explain details of the restorations and their own car’s history. There was a good crowd on a beautiful but slightly cool day in downtown Fernandina Beach. The show continues today with the auction segment and tomorrow these cars and many more are displayed on the golf course for enthusiastic auto buffs and anyone who appreciates the finest in automotive design and restoration. We and most of the island’s lodging have been booked out for months and restaurants are mostly fully booked in advance. A great time to visit if you enjoy cars and the early start of Spring on Amelia Island.
While listening to a speaker at the recent innkeeping convention I was inspired to make a “top ten” list (Letterman style) for things to enjoy while visiting Amelia Island and Fernandina Beach. However, as I began to list these enjoyable potential items, the list grew longer and is now well above 30! So…needless to say there are many local opportunities to enjoy and I will start with ten in this blog and bring the rest forward a little later. These ten are those most often enjoyed by the average guest and thus are repeated more than some of the others. If you are planning to come for a visit….plan on these and stay tuned for more!
Williams House “Top Ten” List
1. Walk to and eat in one of more than 20 local fine restaurants.
2.Take a historic carriage ride thru downtown.
3. Enjoy a boat cruise around Cumberland Island.
4.Tour Fort Clinch Park, a civil war era fort.
5. Walk to and explore more than 20 boutique shops.
6. Visit the beach and ocean.
7. Visit the history museum.
8. Have dessert at the Icecream and Fudge shop on centre street.
9. Bike around the area (free as Williams House guests).
10. Explore the Saturday Farmer’s market.
Byron’s son, daughter in-law and daughter visited recently and we were delighted to have one of those good winter weeks with temps in the sixties. Byron and Tim played golf one day, and then we all acted liked tourists and enjoyed a carriage ride, strolling the city, eating at local restaurants and shopping. We tryed to take a river cruise, but not enough people signed up so we got to walk some more after looking around the marina. It’s aways good to see family and friends and share some of this beautiful island and setting.
Our former state house representative who now is the owner of a local putt-putt right on the ocean on Amelia Island recently staged the “Hospitality Open”. Teams from all varieties of local businesses including hotels, B&B’s, and restaurants gathered for friendly competition, with wine, beer and snacks to aid the competition. The competition was challenging among the 10 or so teams, but everyone won something at the end. Along with our tourism and development guru we all enjoyed friendly competition in the name of connecting the key service providers on Amelia Island. We are all pleased with the great variety of guest experiences available on the Island including a variety of price points, many quisine options and great hospitality of the “Southern Style”. Most of the attendees are usually busy with guests, so it was fun to take a break and enjoy telling stories and sharing experiences of providing hospitality on layed back and beautiful Amelia Island. In the B&B category it was Williams House and Fairbanks House teamed against Elizabeth Pointe Lodge. As the three Select Registry properties on the Island it was a battle of the “best” and Elizabeth Pointe came out ahead by one single stroke. So they got local movie tickets and we recived premium ice cream gift cards. Did I mention we also had a wonderful strawberry/vanilla soft ice cream blend as a reward for all the hard work and concentration of putting and competing. There aren’t many Islands that have a putt-putt course with ocean views, but it is one of the fun and unique features of this beautiful Island. Come and join us for a trip to paradise!
Arrg matey! Welcome to the 2010 Amelia Island Shrimp Festival! Held the first weekend in May each year, the festival began as usual on Thursday with the parade. This year definitely topped the record by our count with an hour and 20 minutes to get all the floats and parade members through the process. It seems like every year more businesses and people participate and that increases the fun and excitement. People began lining the street outside our Inn an hour before the parade and by the start time it was standing room only. For our guests, it was mostly on the porches with a comfortable relaxing beverage in hand for the really big show. Shrimp appeared in every imaginable form, pirates joined in the fun, cars old and new drove thru, all types of police and fire vehicles, dance groups, bands, and ordinary folks gave the parade its unique small town feel. Candy and beads were distributed to kids and grownups alike and by the time the parade was over everyone was ready for the festival to get underway. I’ve attached photos for your viewing pleasure. (more…)