Monday, August 30, 2010

The Diary of Preston Plummer

Tonight is the last night of filming on Amelia Island for the cast and crew of The Diary of Preston Plummer, an independent film that's been evolving on the island over the last three weeks - and it's ending with a party scene in the house next door.  When the location manager told us that they would be busing in 40 - 60 college age individuals for the "party" scene, we got a little nervous.  I have to say that they've been incredibly quiet and professional.  I'm told that they film the scene in almost complete silence except for the two actors in dialogue at the time, and then the rest of the soundtrack is added later.  I believe them.  They've just arrived with a 300 watt bulb for us to put in our bathroom window to light the final scene that they'll be shooting because it will take place in our driveway... in the wee hours of the morning.  Our bathroom is lit up like an airport but we're closing the door and going to bed.  Rumer Willis and Trevor Morgan, we'll just have to meet you some other time.  Gosh, I sure hope that none of the cats show up as photo bombs in the scene.

Sunday, August 29, 2010

The Lilliputian Huts Are Back

We usually get a pretty good crop of mushrooms this time of year, but with all of the evening showers that we've been getting over the last week, there are some pretty impressive crops popping up.  The conditions are just about perfect right now and I have to say that this is the best one that I've seen.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

The Shaggy Dog?

This is either a Disney character or a friendly bear enjoying a nice ride through Fernandina.  Either way, he seems to be enjoying the nice island breeze through his window.  Maybe he's in town for the big Amelia Island Great Southern Tailgate Coo-Off this weekend.  I've smelled a few bbq practice rounds wafting on the breeze this week.  If you've got some flexibility in your schedule, this is going to be a geat event and you should try to attend.  There are something like 40 - 50 teams signed up and lots of entertainment to accompany the cooking.  Yum.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Oh I Love a Rainy Night

We finally seem to be getting into our evening summer thunderstorm pattern.  I'm trying to ignore the fact that we're two weeks from Labor Day and the "summer" is almost over and just be grateful for the rain that we're getting now.  Everyone's lawns look pretty sad:  so sad that the Florida Times Union did an article about it in the Sunday paper yesterday.  We had a winter about which we will not speak that killed half of everyone's yards followed by a summer of uncharacteristic heat and drought.  That combo has been working on killing the replacement landscape, including our new sod.  Even if things are surviving, nothing is thriving.  And there aren't as many blooms as we're used to either (but there are still plenty).  Oh sure, it's hot and dry everywhere in the summertime but we don't usually get this many consecutive days over 90 around here.  Lots of you have had so many days over 100 degrees this year that you'd be thrilled with 90's so we can put that in perspective too.  We've been here for thirteen years and our thermometer has never registered 100 degrees.  And, yes, it works.  They're calling for 80's all this week so we'll enjoy the rain and the lower temperatures.  I hope that you all get some of the same.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Beautiful Clouds

Clouds come floating into my life, no longer to carry rain or usher storm, but to add color to my sunset sky. ~Rabindranath Tagore

Fairbanks House - Amelia Island

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Fernandina Construction Boom

In addition to several restaurants being added onto or spruced up, there are houses that are actually being built in the Historic District.  This one right here, on Ash Street, seemed to go up overnight.  It's always nice to see any sign of economic recovery, but it's particulary nice to see it close to home.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Our Neighborhood Red-Tailed Hawk

We have a very large and very old oak tree out in front of Fairbanks House that was hit by lightning several years ago and was subsequently left with a naked limb.  It's been like that for several years but doesn't seem to be showing signs of coming down anytime soon.  So, by night, two owls take up residence and, by day, this red-tailed hawk moves in.  Between the three birds of prey and the stray, feral and claimed cats that hang around the block, we're fairly rodent free around here.  It couldn't have worked out better if we'd planned it.  Just another green method of pest control.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Jazz Jam at Indigo Alley

Bill and I dropped in to the Tuesday night jazz jam at Indigo Alley last night.  It's a small place but there were quite a few musicians - including a great singer - that showed up, and they managed to sound as if they'd been playing together forever.  Indigo Alley has music just about every night and it's a great place to have a few drinks and listen to some really, really good music, as well as enjoy some pretty good artwork by the locals.  Mike and Sherry have really done a nice job with creating a laid back venue with some nice entertainment and some gosh darn good beer selections.  And all of this is less than a 10 minute stroll from Fairbanks House.  Just the way we like it.

Monday, August 16, 2010

The Shops at Amelia Island Plantation

We're really fortunate to have lots of good shopping on the island: in the Historic District, at the consignment shops and at the resorts.  We frequently send our guests down to Amelia Island Plantation because they've got a nice collections of interesting shops, a spa and a good deli (and ice cream shop!).  And it's a lovely, serene setting for shopping or getting a nice massage at the Spa.  I can't tell you how many Chico's bags have been found in guest rooms after checkout but I can tell you that very few of them have been small.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Darts in Fernandina

I know that I told you about the Dog Star Tavern last night but I neglected to show you the dart area, which I think is really cool.  I just love the look of exposed brick in a bar.  And there are lots of opportunities for that in Fernandina.  The Dog Star has used it to its fullest advantage.  Meet you down there for a beer and a game of baseball.  (And you should bet me a lot because I don't remember how to play.)

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Dog Star Tavern

The Dog Star Tavern is the newest addition to Fernandina's pub scene.  Some of you may recognize the bar from its days as the Intercoastal Wine Shop.  The wine shop is now just a wine shop (no bar, but still hosting tastings) and has moved next door to a smaller space.  The Dog Star is open every night and frequently hosts bands or DJ's.  And if you've been looking for a dartboard in town, you'll find two here.  We wish them the best and appreciate the investment in the community.  Located right next to Pablo's, it's sure to keep Second Street hopping.

Friday, August 13, 2010

Cafe Karibo Addition

Cafe Karibo, one of our favorite Fernandina casual restaurants (and featured in  our Romance Packages) has a little bit o' construction going on right now.  I didn't get a chance to ask but by the looks of things, I'd say that they'll soon be taking advantage of all of that nice space that they have upstairs.  To date, they've been seating on the patio, two dining rooms inside and a separate little patio behind their brewpub, Cafe Karibrew.  They always serve great food at reasonable prices and there's always a demand for that here so I can understand why they'd want to expand.  Talk about being nestled in the treetops...  Best wishes Tim and Teresa.  Save a red ale for me.

Fairbanks House - Amelia Island

P.S. The video saga of my Locks of Love haircut will be presented in several parts on our Facebook page, if you're interested.  Part 1 is up now.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Locks of Love

Today was the day... and Suzanne at Magna's did the deed for me.  Good Neighbor Peg was my camera person and cheerleader and - if all goes well - there may be a video of the event coming.  We shall see.  But in the meantime, we'll be shipping the braid off to Locks of Love post haste.  Thanks for the votes.

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Fairbanks House Photo Shoot

The last couple of weeks have been pretty interesting at the inn because we've had both a photo shoot and a video shoot so that we can share some updated images of the property with our guests.  Some of the images on our website were shot in 1994.  Since the house has looked pretty much the same since 1885, many of the views haven't changed.  But the landscape, the decor and the amenities have all been continuously upgraded so we'd like our website to reflect our current offerings.  That's all well and good but photographing and videoing 12 rooms, the public areas, pool and grounds is exhausting - and I wasn't even holding a camera.  Lighting has to be just right, furniture has to be moved so as not to block the shot, the pesky August weeds have to come out of the garden, new gardens have to be coaxed along in the heat, all while running an inn.  But then the professionals take over such as the most excellent Dave Hensley (pictured)  who made things very easy for us and got just what we wanted.  Thanks, Dave.  We're anticipating our photos just like newlyweds awaiting their wedding photos.  I'm sure that they'll be great.  In the meantime, I'm ready to get back to walking and blogging.

Monday, August 2, 2010

Faces In Time Has Candy!

Several of our "girls groups" have gone down to Faces In Time photography studio to have some old-time saloon-girl style photos taken for a fun souvenir from their time here Amelia Island.  But I bet that we'll have a whole lot more going now that I've discovered that they sell candy there too.  How can you possibly have more fun that playing dress-up and eating candy?  In fact, if they add ice cream we may never see our ladies again.  That's not true; we lure them back every evening at 5:00 for wine slush.  Secret weapon.

P.S.  If I haven't blogged for a bit it's because I'm keeping up with our Facebook fans and posting some more photos over there.  If you'd like to check in there to see what's going on you can click on the Facebook "badge" at the top left of the blog or click here.  You don't have to become a fan or sign up for Facebook to look, only if you want to participate on the page or in some of the contests that we'll be running.  But I won't be gone long... have no fear.