Saturday, October 30, 2010

Florida-Georgia Weekend

Now that the game is over and Florida won (in overtime), it's officially called the Florida-Georgia weekend.  And it will be for the next year.  If the outcome had been different, next year we'd be hosting the Georgia-Florida weekend.  See how that works?  Despite the two inflatable Bulldogs to one Gator across the street, the Dawgs just couldn't get it done today.  Great comeback late in the game but, tomorrow morning, only the Gator will be standing in our neighbor's yard.  Despite the fact that somebody has to lose, it's fun to watch this mixed marriage play out every year.

Fairbanks House - Amelia Island

Friday, October 29, 2010

Sidewalk Art

I've always loved the vibe created by sidewalk art.  And it can be any kind of art, but there's something special about paintings.  Art is good for the soul and a community that values feeding the soul through creativity always feels a little more special to me.  And it evokes a nice, slow, dreamy pace to stop and smell the roses, have an ice cream cone and absorb what the artist puts into their work.  In this case, the sidewalk is on Centre Street and the art is from La Torre's Gallery.  Hmmmm.... surf and sand, languishing ladies or a Venetian canal.... what's my mood today?

Fairbanks House - Amelia Island

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Pumpkins A'Plenty

Tis the season, afterall.  I'm really surprised to see such a plentiful display of pumpkins all over the island.  There have been shortages for the last couple of years - and the prices have reflected that - so I'd gotten used to the idea that we'd all have to make due with scarecrows again.  And I'm happy to see them back if for no other reason than our continued ability to make our special pumkin pancakes.  Mmmmm.

Fairbanks House - Amelia Island

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

A Perfect Pint at the Dog Star Tavern

We've been really busy at the inn lately with our fall projects but all of the stars lined up tonight and we were able to get out and enjoy a pint at the Dog Star Tavern on 2nd Street.  Other than taking photos for the blog as I wandered by on my evening walk, I'd never actually been a patron before this evening and... I like it very much.  Any bar that has exposed brick wins 90 points for character, alone, but it's a very comfortable pub throughout.  No smoke, spacious but intimate, just the right lighting and a good selection of beer on tap.  I settled for the Killer Whale Cream Ale.  Yum.  Top that off with an extraordinary dinner at 29 South (shrimp and grits with coffe and doughnuts sundae) and you've got your self an innkeepers' night out to remember.  In fact, it would work really well for guests too.  Cheers!

Fairbanks House - Amelia Island

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Palace Saloon Pirate Preps for Halloween

Even pirates need a costume for Halloween.  And why not be a Gremlin?  Nobody will know who you are...

Fairbanks House - Amelia Island

Monday, October 18, 2010

Vintage Find

I picked up this sweet vintage cherub lamp along with his twin brother this evening at Eight Flags Antiques just a few blocks up the street.  Perfect fit for an 1885 vintage house, don't you think?  As a rule, I'm not particularly fond of Victorian decor throughout the inn because we like our guests to be very comfortable and lots of Victorian pieces seem to be more beautiful to gaze upon than sit upon.  But we do like to keep a few things around that let you know that you're not in a hotel room, but a room where each piece has been carefully selected for the unique layout of the space.  I've always found that to be part of the charm of staying at a bed and breakfast.  It's rare for people to request that a hotel show them all of the other rooms... because they'll all look like the one that they stayed in.  But it's a common request here.  And we're happy to oblige... as long as the other guests have checked out.  It's one thing to see the rooms online, but it's another experience entirely to walk through the rooms in person.  We are frequently told that our photos don't come close to doing our place justice, and we're working on that, but it's still a treat to enjoy the details "up close and personal".  Now, where to put these guys....

Fairbanks House - Amelia Island

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Change of Seasons

I feel just like this Christmas tree in the window at Christmas On the River: enjoying the current season but planning for the next.  How else do you explain the fall harvest hanging off of a Christmas tree?  I like it.  I'm really, really enjoying our fabulous fall weather but, as the chair of the Holiday Cookie Tour of Inns, I'm fully immersed in plans for Christmas cookie baking, decorating, recipe collection, volunteer coordination, etc.  The Tour is just a little over a month away so we're in high gear here.  I'm about to start posting updates to our Association's Facebook page about the Tour so you may want to become a fan if you're not one already.  Otherwise, I'll be in the kitchen.  Hope to see you there, Satuday, November 20th.  We'll be raising money for some of Amelia Island's animal shelters.

Fairbanks House - Amelia Island

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Putt Putt of Fernandina Beach

We had a fine night out of old fashioned putt putt golf this week when B&B, hotel and restaurant people were invited to Putt Putt of Fernandina Beach for a fun putt and mingle.  Bill and I were paired with Deborah and Byron from the Williams House against a foursome from Elizabeth Pointe Lodge.  I'm proud to say that our team was smokin' and won the pairing... but went considerably downhill during the lightning round when pitted against the whole field.  Seems that the restaurant folks are just coming to life when innkeepers are looking around for a nice soft place to stretch out.  We did well enough to score some gift certificates for half-gallons of Publix Premium ice cream so we ended the evening as happy campers.  Thanks for hosting us Aaron and Abby Bean and crew.  Your fun oceanfront facility is probably one of the last of its kind anywhere.  And our guests love it.

Fairbanks House - Amelia Island

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Amelia Island Fine Arts Festival

The Amelia Island Fine Arts Festival wrapped up this afternoon under blue, blue skies and 82 degree temps - perfect weather by any definition.  Lots of folks who'd been to the Jazz Festival got a double-dip of the arts scene when they had a chance to wander the booths displaying everything from ceramics and watercolors to fabulous sculptures like my favorite iridescent frog here.  Even though folks are still a bit hesitant to open their wallets for things that don't fall into the "necessities" column, I saw a few who still recognize that sometimes the soul needs some artistic therapy too.  Mark this weekend down on next year's calendar - you'll love it.

Fairbanks House - Amelia Island

Friday, October 8, 2010

Fernandina General Store

This is Joy, the manager of the Fernandina General Store that will be opening very soon in the old Bank of America building on Centre Street, two blocks from Fairbanks House.  Just think of it as a downtown grocery with a deli in the back from which you can eat in or take out.  When I stopped by I saw a nice wine display going in too.  There are a couple of places in town for people to just pick up a bottle of wine but Joy tells me that the hours of the store will be 7am to 10pm seven days a week.  Let me just say, YAY.  That will work well for locals and visitors, alike.  I'll let you know when it opens.

Fairbanks House - Amelia Island

P.S.  Sorry to be off the airwaves for a bit now - we got unexpectedly very busy over the last week and a half.  Again, let me just say, YAY.

Update 10/11/10 - The General Store is now open.

Friday, October 1, 2010

Amelia Island Jazz Festival

The Amelia Island Jazz Festival started tonight, as it did last year, with a free performance at the First Friday Sounds on Centre concert.  It was a "full house" in the street tonight and it was hard for me to even get through.  The combination of great jazz, a beautiful 73 degree evening and the last concert of the season in the Sounds on Centre seemed to hit the spot.  The party doesn't end tonight though.  The Jazzfest will go on through next weekend and share double billing with the downtown Fine Arts Festival on Saturday and Sunday next week.  Way too many reasons to stay home in October.  See you on Centre.

Fairbanks House - Amelia Island