Category Archives: Daytona Beach

Nights of Lights has injected holiday spirit to St. Augustine for 25 years

For the last 24 years, the moment the switch is flipped in November, the Nights of Lights officially has kicked off the holiday season in St. Augustine.

Millions of tiny white lights drape canopies of trees and illuminate St. Augustine’s skyline of Spanish-inspired architecture. The spectacle draws tens of thousands of people to the Ancient City between November and — this year, at least — February of each year, also bringing them into the shops, restaurants and hotels in what historically had been a time of darkness, not light, for business activity in St. Augustine.

And that was the original catalyst when local merchants and city officials began planning for the very first Nights of Lights in 1993.

“The downtown area basically closed up after dark in November and December with business shut or keeping fewer hours,” said Kathy Catron, communications director for the visitors and convention bureau in St. Augustine.

Former St. Augustine city commissioner William Lennon and real estate developer and former mayor Len Weeks first came up with the event as a way to combat the slow off-season for tourism, according to Catron, who researched the history of the event before its 25th anniversary. The city leaders came up with the lighting scheme and raised money through private donations to pay the bills.

“We figured eventually, once the people see it — meaning the owners of the businesses — they will realize we can bring some people down here in the winter,” Lennon told Catron. “All of a sudden, little by little, they started opening their (previously closed) businesses on St. George Street.”

The event’s reputation and traction grew every year, with the footprint of the lighted areas expanding as well as the number of weeks the lights are kept on.

Irving Kass, owner of the St. George Inn, recalled how when he took over the business in 2004 the lights were popular and he could count on the display to fill rooms, especially on weekends.

In the past six or seven years, though, following National Geographic naming it to the magazine’s list of Top 10 Holiday Lighting Displays in the World, Kass said the crowds have been overwhelming and he has bookings all the way through January.

“I think that now people all over the country know this is a pretty cool thing to do,” Kass said.

The economic impact Nights of Lights has had on the city is well into the millions. Its crowds even manage to support two trolley companies that run tours for the lights as well as water tours on schooners, boats and pirate ships and private tours in golf carts or horse-drawn carriages.

“Prior to Nights of Lights, winter was a very slow time of the year for tourism in St. Augustine and St. Johns County,” said Dave Chatterton, owner of Old Town Trolley Tours. “Most people working in tourism had to find second jobs to support themselves and their families during this time. Nights of Lights has provided year-round economic stability for many St. Johns County residents and businesses.”

The boost in business has also helped restaurants and retail shops, putting them solidly in the black to end the year and in good shape to start out the next year.

“It’s like our only time of the year, starting Saturday and going through New Year’s is our crunch time,” said Josh Watts, manager of Al’s Pizza.

Watts is busy now, scheduling extra servers to keep up with the crowds — “usually we’re on a wait, especially on Saturdays,” he said.

This year, for the first time, the restaurant has installed a take-out window to deal with the overflow of orders.

“We’re hoping that will bring in even more business,” Watts said.

Said Catron, “It’s certainly one of our biggest times of the year and it’s helped to put St. Augustine on the map and put us on the world stage.”

The Nights of Lights goes through Feb. 3. For more information, click CityStAug.com/LightUpNight.

https://www.news-journalonline.com/news/20181118/nights-of-lights-has-injected-holiday-spirit-to-st-augustine-for-25-years?rssfeed=true


Princess Place ‘eco-cottages’ unveiled in Flagler

The cottages are the result of a four-year effort borne from a partnership between the county and Guana Tolomato Matanzas National Estuarine Research Reserve, a team of scientists and researchers that has been studying the region’s unique ecology for years.

Hikers, campers and outdoor lovers who visit Princess Place Preserve in Flagler County will soon be able to incorporate the comfort of indoor living into their nature experience.

Beginning next month, Flagler will offer stays at three “ecological cottages” on the grounds of the historic preserve, once reserved for royalty.

County officials will be showing off the new lodging options beginning at 10 a.m. Monday during a ribbon-cutting ceremony at the county-operated park, 2500 Princess Place Road. Guests are asked to follow the event signs when they arrive to the grounds.

The cottages are the result of a four-year effort borne from a partnership between the county and Guana Tolomato Matanzas National Estuarine Research Reserve, a team of scientists and researchers that has been studying the region’s unique ecology for years.

“These cottages will attract scientists, students, and educators to explore and study the Princess Place Preserve and the surrounding natural systems,” GTM Reserve director Michael Shirley said in a written statement. “This important work will guide management decisions to maintain or restore water quality, oyster reefs, fish habitat and salt marshes to benefit present and future generations.”

The county will begin accepting reservations for the three cottages on Dec. 1. Each of the climate-controlled two-bedroom lodges will offer queen-sized beds, full kitchens, two bathrooms, a furnished screened-in porch and an outdoor fire pit, according to the county.

Rents are $125 per night Monday through Thursday, $150 per night Friday through Sunday, with a two-day minimum that extends to three days during holiday weeks or special events. Picnic pavilions and campsites also are available for rent.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association, or NOAA, in September 2014 authorized $330,000 for the three 1,000 square-foot cottages through an agreement with the Florida Department of Environmental Protection. The NOAA later kicked in another $16,000 for research in outdoor experimental areas, according to the county.

Friends of the Guana Tolomato research team added $60,000 to furnish the cabins and equip each of them with energy-efficient appliances. Flagler County has contributed $120,000 to build the cottages through labor, cash, equipment and construction oversight, and land value. Flagler owns and operates about 1,500 acres of the Princess Place preservation area.

Princess Place is situated on more than 2,200 acres of land that straddles Pellicer Creek as well as the Matanzas River.

The cottages will offer comfortable lodging for those ecologists who visit the area on extensive researching expeditions. They also tap into the eco-tourism market and county officials hope they can help attract out-of-state nature enthusiasts traveling in groups.

“It’s the perfect fit for a family that wants to visit Florida but might be a little bit overwhelmed by the Orlando experience,” said Tim Telfer, the county’s public lands and natural resources manager. “This is a chance to come experience what Florida has been like for centuries. It’s a more natural environment.”

NOAA defines estuaries as bodies of water usually found where rivers meet the sea, where fresh and saltwater mix. They usually produce unique plant and animal communities that have adapted to brackish water conditions.

Telfer explained that the park is part of a nature preserve that extends all the way north to Ponte Vedra and includes some of the most pristine water estuary systems anywhere. He said the mixture of freshwater systems colliding with the saltwater systems of the Intracoastal Waterway creates “one of the most biologically productive ecosystems in the world” and lures scientists from across the globe hoping to study the multitude of ecosystems.

He said the county’s job now is to promote the findings of those scientific studies and spread the word.

“People might be coming down from Maine or Minnesota and they like the natural environment, they want to get out on the trails,” Telfer said. “It’s up to us to now interpret what they’re seeing for them, so they understand this doesn’t exist everywhere in Florida anymore. And there’s a lot of effort that goes into keeping this in a high-quality condition.”

https://www.news-journalonline.com/news/20181118/princess-place-eco-cottages-unveiled-in-flagler?rssfeed=true


Black Friday store hours in Volusia

The holiday shopping rush kicks off with Thanksgiving and Black Friday events at area malls:

One Daytona, One Daytona Boulevard, Daytona Beach: The dining, entertainment and retail complex across from Daytona International Speedway will be open from noon to 9 p.m. on Thanksgiving (optional for tenants); and from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. on Black Friday. Throughout the holidays, the complex will host weekly Family Nights (5-8 p.m., Dec. 4, 11 and 18) with live reindeer, elves, carolers and a holiday art station; Live Holiday Jazz Music (6-9 p.m. Dec. 1, 8, 15, 22); and Sunday Snowdays (3-7 p.m., Dec. 2,9, 16, 23) with Polar Express Train, stilt walkers, snow slide and special guests. onedaytona.com

[Thanksgiving shopping savings: Gobble up deals in The News-Journal on Wednesday or Thursday]

Tanger Outlets, 1100 Cornerstone Blvd. (at Intersatte 95 and LPGA Boulevard), Daytona Beach: Tanger Outlets will open at 6 p.m. on Thanksgiving and remain open for a Moonlight Madness sale through 10 p.m. on Black Friday. Rounding out the weekend, hours are 9 a.m. to 10 p.m. Nov. 24; and 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Nov. 25. Before the shopping rush, Tanger will host its Second Annual Tree Lighting presented by Halifax Health from 6 to 9 p.m. Nov. 17 near H&M, an event that includes Santa’s arrival at 6:30 p.m. as well as live music, holiday crafts, face-painting, cookie decorating and holiday games. tangeroutlet.com

Volusia Mall, 1700 W. International Speedway Blvd., Daytona Beach: The mall will be closed on Thanksgiving, but doors will open at 6 a.m. Friday for a Black Friday Bash, when shoppers will be greeted with Doorbuster deals for the first 100 people in line, free coffee and hot chocolate, a live DJ from 6 a.m. to 3 p.m., selfie station, hourly prizes, a Michael Kors handbag giveaway and a performance by teen singer Shane Patrick from 5 p.m. to 6 p.m. Before the rush, the mall will welcome Santa Claus with a kids’ PJ Party at Center Court from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. Nov. 17, an event featuring treats, activities and a visit with St. Nick.

https://www.news-journalonline.com/news/20181117/black-friday-store-hours-in-volusia?rssfeed=true


Art is the star at annual DeLand festival

About 175 artists exhibiting everything from sculptures and paintings to jewelry and photography filled downtown DeLand Saturday for the first day of the 26th annual DeLand Fall Festival of the Arts.

The festival also featured music and children’s activities.

The festival concludes Sunday and will be open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Admission is free. For more information, go to delandfestival.com.

https://www.news-journalonline.com/news/20181117/art-is-star-at-annual-deland-festival?rssfeed=true


Thanksgiving shopping savings: Gobble up The News-Journal on Wednesday or Thursday

The Daytona Beach News-Journal’s Thanksgiving week newspapers will be huge.

They’re packed with advertising that can save you thousands of dollars on your holiday shopping.

Pick up a copy will all that valuable advertising, as well as our usual big helping of news, at your favorite store on Wednesday, Nov. 21, or Thanksgiving Thursday, Nov. 22.

https://www.news-journalonline.com/news/20181116/thanksgiving-shopping-savings-gobble-up-news-journal-on-wednesday-or-thursday?rssfeed=true


Volusia stores gear up for holiday shopping madness

DAYTONA BEACH — In a world of online shoppers, Calvin Leiter, 62, still prefers buying holiday gifts the old-fashioned way — at the mall.

“I miss it, the social interaction with people,” said Leiter, a picture-framer from New Smyrna Beach. “People who shop online don’t care about actually seeing what they are buying, touching it, trying it on. That’s just something that I miss.”

[Thanksgiving shopping savings: Gobble up deals in The News-Journal on Wednesday or Thursday]

On a recent afternoon, Leiter was seated comfortably on a bench outside Dillard’s in the Volusia Mall, studying a Spanish textbook while his wife was off considering a few early holiday purchases. The mall was uncluttered by shoppers on a mid-week afternoon, but retailers and industry experts expect that to change when the annual holiday shopping season kicks into high gear on Thanksgiving weekend.

Nationally, consumers report that they plan to spend an average of $1,007.24 during the holiday season this year, up 4.1 percent from the $967.13 reported in 2017, according to a newly released annual survey by the National Retail Federation and Prosper Insights & Analytics.

The consumer survey arrives in the wake of the federation’s annual holiday spending forecast, which takes into account a variety of economic factors to project overall spending rather than per-consumer spending. It estimated that holiday retail sales in November and December will be up between 4.3 percent and 4.8 percent over 2017 for a total ranging from $717.45 billion to $720.89 billion.

Tariffs on a wide range of consumer goods from China took effect in September, but the federation noted that retailers imported record volumes of merchandise ahead of the tariffs this past summer, so effects on pricing during the holiday season is expected to be minimal.

For the 12th year in a row, gift cards remain the most popular items on wish lists, requested by 60 percent of those surveyed, followed by clothing and accessories at 53 percent, books/movie/music (37 percent), electronics (29 percent), home decor (23 percent), jewelry (22 percent), personal care or beauty items (19 percent), sporting goods (18 percent) and home improvement items (17 percent).

The consumer survey also reports that an equal percentage of shoppers (55 percent) plan to make purchases online and in department stores. Likewise, 50 percent of online shoppers report that they intend to pick-up items in the stores, potentially drawing more customers to brick-and-mortar businesses.

‘A pretty strong picture’

The Florida Retail Federation, a sister organization that tracks statewide retail and consumer trends, hasn’t yet released its holiday forecast, but the predictions are expected to mirror many of the national findings, said James Miller, spokesman for the Florida federation.

“We’re definitely predicting an increase over last year,” Miller said. “We’re still figuring out what that increase will be. Everything is just positive in Florida right now. We have the lowest unemployment in a decade and, with that come more people with jobs, more people with an income, more money to spend on the holidays.

“Also, we have 120 million tourists, a record-breaking number, coming into Florida,” Miller said. “Most leave with more than what they came with. There’s very high consumer confidence. Home sales remain robust. Add up all those things and it makes for a pretty strong picture of Florida’s economy right now.”

In Florida, the only cloud of uncertainty is the potential impact of the destruction caused by Hurricane Michael in the Florida Panhandle, Miller said.

“There were hundreds of thousands of people affected by that, hundreds of businesses damaged or even closed altogether,” Miller said. “It’s tough to figure out what the total impact from that storm will be on the shopping season. For many of those affected, money that would have been spent on gifts will go instead toward recovery and rebuilding efforts, and understandably so.”

‘Zip, and it’s done’

In Volusia County, meanwhile, the Leiters expect to spend about the same amount this year as in recent years on holiday gifts.

“She enjoys more the visiting and looking around,” Leiter said of his wife. “It’s more about that than purchasing a lot of things. We’re disappointed in the decline we see in mall traffic. It’s disappointing that we’re not seeing people shopping brick-and-mortar.”

In the Volusia Mall food court, Valerie and John Valentine, of Daytona Beach, do everything possible to avoid the mall during holiday season.

“Since the kids are older, they all get checks, so we try to avoid the stores at all cost,” Valerie said. “The big stores are too crowded and some of the sales are better before Black Friday, which is just crazy. Some of the people are mean.”

Even when it comes to shopping for grandchildren, the Valentines do it online.

“The kids post wish lists on Amazon and we buy whatever it is there,” Valerie said. “The kids know what they want, the price is better. There’s shipping. It’s just zip, and it’s done.”

Nevertheless, area malls are rolling out the fanfare, giveaways and entertainment and extended hours to entice shoppers away from the ordering on computers, smart phones and portable devices.

The Volusia Mall will be closed on Thanksgiving, but doors will open at 6 a.m. Friday for Black Friday Bash, when shoppers will be greeted with Doorbuster deals for the first 100 people in line, free coffee and hot chocolate, a live DJ from 6 a.m. to 3 p.m., selfie station, hourly prizes, a Michael Kors handbag giveaway and a performance by teen singer Shane Patrick from 5 p.m. to 6 p.m.

“We’re looking at a great holiday shopping season for 2018,” said Kristina Circelli, mall marketing director. “There’s been an increase in hiring going into the holiday season, which means retailers are positive about sales as they are looking for more help.

“We’ve seen retailers showing their vote of confidence by making considerable investments in their stores with full renovations and new product additions,” Circelli said. “We’ve invested considerably in the new restaurant district at the former Sears Auto Center. Exact dates haven’t been released for opening the restaurants, but Metro Diner is set to open January 2019 and Bonefish Grill spring 2019.”

At One Daytona, the retail, dining and entertainment complex across the street from Daytona International Speedway, a growing list of tenants will offer holiday shoppers more options, including the newly opened Oklahoma Joe’s Bar-B-Cue restaurant on the west side of Victory Circle.

Other tenants that recently opened at One Daytona include GameTime, the family fun center across the street from Cobb Daytona Luxury Theatres and the Kilwins chocolates store along the north side of Victory Circle on the ground floor of a six-story building where a 145-room Marriott Autograph Collection hotel called The Daytona is set to open early next year.

One Daytona will be open from noon to 9 p.m. on Thanksgiving (optional for tenants); and from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. on Black Friday. Throughout the holidays, the complex will host weekly Family Nights (5-8 p.m., Dec. 4, 11 and 18) with live reindeer, elves, carolers and a holiday art station; Live Holiday Jazz Music (6-9 p.m. Dec. 1, 8, 15, 22); and Sunday Snowdays (3-7 p.m., Dec. 2,9, 16, 23) with Polar Express Train, stilt walkers, snow slide and special guests.

At Tanger Outlets, near Interstate 95 and LPGA Boulevard, the mall will open at 6 p.m. on Thanksgiving and remain open for a Moonlight Madness sale through 10 p.m. on Black Friday. Rounding out the weekend, hours are 9 a.m. to 10 p.m. Nov. 24; and 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Nov. 25.

Tanger will host its Second Annual Tree Lighting presented by Halifax Health from 6 to 9 p.m. Nov. 17 near H&M, an event that includes Santa’s arrival at 6:30 p.m. as well as live music, holiday crafts, face-painting, cookie decorating and holiday games.

All merely a warm-up for the holiday shopping rush.

https://www.news-journalonline.com/news/20181116/volusia-stores-gear-up-for-holiday-shopping-madness?rssfeed=true


Road closures scheduled during DeLand Fall Festival of the Arts

Motorists should expect road closures this weekend in Downtown DeLand as art makes its way to the streets for the annual Fall Festival of the Arts.

Woodland Boulevard, from Wisconsin Avenue to Howry Avenue, will be closed to traffic starting at 5:30 a.m. Saturday and will remain closed until Sunday evening, city spokesman Chris Graham said. Also closed is the 100 block of East and West Indiana Avenue.

Starting at 6 a.m. Saturday, New York Avenue from Florida Avenue to Alabama Avenue will be closed until 7 p.m.

That portion of New York will be closed again Sunday at 8 a.m.

[READ MORE: Creativity arrives with DeLand Fall Festival of the Arts]

The festival is on Woodland Boulevard from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday.

Roads are expected to reopen by 8 p.m. Sunday.

https://www.news-journalonline.com/news/20181116/road-closures-scheduled-during-deland-fall-festival-of-arts?rssfeed=true


Blaze Pizza to open at Daytona’s Tomoka Town Center

DAYTONA BEACH — A build-your-own pizza chain whose backers include NBA star LeBron James is opening its first location in the Volusia-Flagler area on Monday at Tomoka Town Center.

Blaze Pizza is part of a growing trend of “fast-casual” restaurant chains such as Chipotle where customers can custom-design their own orders.

In the case of Blaze, the chain touts itself as offering “artisanal” thin-crust personal pizzas that are “fast and affordable.” Customers can choose from a variety of made-from-scratch pizza dough, sauces, all-natural meats, cheeses and toppings. The custom pies are then cooked in an open-flame oven and ready to eat in three minutes.

For those with special dietary needs, Blaze also offers gluten-free dough, vegan cheese and tree-nut-free pesto. 

Prices for personal pizzas range from $5.25 to $8.25.

The new restaurant is located at 1405 Cornerstone Blvd., across from Academy Sports + Outdoors.

Its regular operating hours, beginning Monday, will be 10:30 a.m. to 10:30 p.m., seven days a week, with the exception of Thanksgiving and Christmas Day.

On Tuesday, to celebrate its opening, Blaze will offer free pizzas from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. to anyone who follows the restaurant on social media: either Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or Snapchat.

The Daytona Beach location is the chain’s 12th location in North Central Florida. It employs 45 workers and has indoor seating for 75 people as well as an outdoor patio that can seat more than 40 at a time.

Blaze is part of a growing collection of retail stores and restaurants at the new 400,000-square-foot “power lifestyle” center at Tomoka Town Center that is being developed by North American Development Group.

The new shopping center is across the street from Tanger Outlets, along the east side of Interstate 95, on the south side of LPGA Boulevard.

“It’s such a great development,” said Houston Albritton, director of training for North Central Florida franchisee for Blaze, referring to Tomoka Town Center. “This (the I-95/LPGA area) is really the new draw besides the Speedway.”

Dustin Bell, general manager for Blaze Pizza in Daytona Beach, said in a news release that the area’s “thriving restaurant scene makes it a perfect fit for Blaze Pizza.”

The restaurant also offers a charitable fundraising program that returns 20 percent of a special events’ proceeds back to local organizations such as schools, clubs and nonprofit groups.

Blaze was founded in 2011 by Rick Wetzel, co-founder and namesake of the Wetzel’s Pretzels chain, and his wife Elise.

James, the National Basketball Association star who now plays for the Los Angeles Lakers, was one of Blaze’s original investors and is also a partner in a Blaze franchise group.

[READ MORE: Tomoka Town Center draws national chains]

https://www.news-journalonline.com/news/20181116/blaze-pizza-to-open-at-daytonas-tomoka-town-center?rssfeed=true


Annual A1A garage sale expands to 150 miles

Bargain hunters can visit more than 100 vendor sites along 150 miles of State Road A1A during the Super Scenic A1A Garage Sale on Saturday.

Bargain hunters will be flocking to the coast Saturday for a garage sale of epic proportions.

This year marks the 10th anniversary for the Super Scenic Garage Sale, which is organized annually by the Friends of A1A Scenic & Historic Coastal Byway.

And organizers say this will be the biggest sale they’ve ever had. Thanks to new partnerships in other counties, the route will be expanded from 72 to 150 miles. It will stretch from Fernandina Beach in Nassau County to Ponce Inlet in Volusia, spanning five counties along Florida’s Atlantic coast.

“This is one of our most popular events, so why not share the opportunity with our neighbors?” said Bill McClure, Friends of A1A president. “People in Flagler and St. Johns counties look forward to this event every year, and it draws shoppers from across the Southeast region of the United States to the local area, providing exposure for communities as well as our coastal corridor’s natural and historic resources.”

Partner byways include A1A Ocean Islands Trail in Nassau and Duval counties, the Ormond Scenic Loop and Trail and the Halifax Heritage Byway — a candidate byway — in Volusia County. Home and business owners located between the community sites all along the route are expected to participate.

The sale’s southernmost point will be at the Ponce Inlet Community Center where 14 vendors have already signed up to participate. The center itself will offer food and beverages for sale.

“Come out and enjoy our beautiful town,” said Jim Hinson, center president.

Hinson encourages shoppers in Ponce Inlet to take some time to visit the lighthouse and the beach, as well.

The Hammock First Baptist Church, located south of Washington Oaks State Park, is always a busy community site.

“We see a lot of people,” said church member LaJuana McKay.

Shoppers will be helping three local charities when they shop there: Samaritan Ministries, the Community Chorus of Palm Coast and the Guardian Ad Litem Foundation. Church members will also set up booths.

Photographer Vickie Payne has donated some of her work to be raffled off at the site, with proceeds being divided between the three charities.

Shoppers will find several such sites and more than 100 other stops along the route. A list of community sites will be posted Friday at http://www.scenica1a.org/ so that shoppers can plan their trips.

In addition to shopping, the event offers people an opportunity to explore four Florida Scenic Highways.

A free mobile tour app hosted by TravelStorys is being offered to enrich travelers’ experiences. It is available for download from the App Store.

Sale hours are 8 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Vendors who make a registration donation of $20 receive official garage sale signs and will be included in the list. Sellers keep the proceeds earned at each site.

Those interested in being a vendor can contact event coordinator Danielle Anderson at danielle_anderson@scenica1a.org for information.

——

https://www.news-journalonline.com/news/20181114/annual-a1a-garage-sale-expands-to-150-miles?rssfeed=true


Oceanfront hideaway

The highlight of 2707 S. Atlantic Ave., Daytona Beach Shores — aside from the spectacular ocean front views — is the raised octagonal master suite.

With a high ceiling, custom chandelier and it’s own private view of the beach, this oversized room — which holds a king size bed and full sized futon — is the perfect hideaway for couples.

“You can close the French doors and be separate from the rest of the house,” said listing agent Craig McGray. “It’s so grand and unexpected, just a big and different open space.”

The three bedroom, two bathroom home was built in 1956 but was completely renovated in 2016 when the current owners bought the house.

“The owners took a lot of care in renovating the inside,” McGray said.

The upgrades include stainless steel appliances, quartz countertops, a brick wall, shiplap walls, custom chandeliers and hurricane proof glass windows.

“The family uses it as a vacation home,” McGray said. “When they have friends in town they come down to the beach house.”

McGray said the home is perfect for a family.

“It’s right next to the park and there’s a lifeguard right there,” McGray said. “It’s still very private though with all of the landscaping.”

The house has it’s own pool with a paved deck and also features an outdoor shower on the property to rinse off sand before going in the house.

“It’s a family beach and a lot quieter than Daytona Beach,” McGray said. “It’s also right down the street from Daytona Beach Shores Resort and Spa and just a short drive to the Port Orange Pavilion.”

Interstate 95 and I-4 are just a short drive away and all of Daytona Beach’s attractions are just within reach.

“It’s a fairly decent sized lot too,” MGray said. “It’s a pie shaped lot so there’s a lot of grassy area in the front.”

Set back from the main road, the house has a two car garage and plenty of space to park at least four cars without blocking anyone in.

“With this house you get the view and family atmosphere,” McGray said. “It’s not a huge home but it has a big feel.”

https://www.news-journalonline.com/homes/20181114/oceanfront-hideaway?rssfeed=true


Fishing report: Warmer than normal temps keep catches high

Gene Lytwyn at The Fishin’ Hole said this area’s fabulous fall fishing season has been extended because of the warmer weather. Anglers are bracing for a mild cold front, but that will help spark the freshwater bite.

SURF, PIERS: The Fishin’ Hole in downtown Daytona Beach has plenty of news to share. For instance, the Daytona Beach Pier has been active with black drum, redfish, trout and pompano. “The guys fishing off the beach are getting pompano, whiting and some Spanish mackerel,” Lytwyn said. Evan Stein at Fishing Shack Bait & Tackle said Sunglow Pier has been hopping with redfish, pompano and a whole bunch of whiting. “I saw some bull whiting in a photo one of our customers brought in,” Stein said, who added the best times to fish Sunglow are early morning or in the evening. “They are catching pompano on sand fleas and clams,” he said. “Everything else they are using live shrimp.” The Flagler Beach Pier reports black drum, redfish and whiting as the primary catch this week.

OFFSHORE: Lytwyn said anglers have been doing some trolling and catching wahoo and sailfish. Bottom fishermen are bringing up cobia and various types of snapper, including keeper mangrove and lane snapper. Capt. David Caruthers (strippinlipscharters.com) said the kingfish bite is very strong. “We are also catching a lot of sharks, triggerfish, vermilion snapper and red snapper,” he said.

PONCE INLET, HALIFAX RIVER: Stein said inlet and river anglers are reporting pompano, Permits, plus reds, black drum and bluefish. “Permits look like pompano, but are much bigger,” he added. Caruthers said bull redfish “are still on fire in the inlet.” He said the river bite has been good, too. “We are also starting to catch a lot of pompano inshore,” he said. Lytwyn said those fishing the inlet at night are finding the “occasional snook.” The sheepshead bite is getting better every week as the water temperature cools. “They’re catching some black drum and redfish around the bridges but at night there has been a big upswing in big trout,” Lytwyn said. Capt. Jeff Patterson (smallboatbigfish.com) said he has been targeting the large redfish at the inlet. “We are seeing a lot of fish over 40 inches,” he said. “We are also catching slot reds and I’ve been getting a bunch of snook in the mid-20-inch range, plus mangrove snapper, on live mullet.” It should be noted that Capt. Tim Russell, Caruthers and Patterson took a group of veterans out on free guides Sunday in recognition of their service on Veteran’s Day Sunday.

TOMOKA BASIN, RIVER: Lytwyn said some of his regulars have seen “banner days” fishing this area. “They have caught a lot of snook up there,” he said. “They aren’t of size, but they have been catching snook in double digits.” Around the state park and basin areas, anglers have been hooking into black drum and redfish. “I’ve had some people go into the mosquito canals and finding some nice reds in the grass,” he said. Capt. Barry Englehardt (fishwithcaptainbarry.com) said he has been catching snook and redfish. “There’s action in both the basin and river,” he said. “The majority of snook are in the 20-inch range and the reds are 16 to 20 inches.”

MOSQ. LAGOON, INDIAN RIVER: Capt. Michael Savedow (edgewaterriverguide.com) said he had a couple of guides in the last week and caught a 38-inch redfish. “On that same trip, we scored a ‘slam’ by landing snook and trout.” In another outing, Savedow said they reeled up a couple of shovelnose sharks, trout, bluefish, pompano, whiting, mangrove snapper and jacks.

MATANZAS INLET, RIVER: Capt. Chris Herrera (palmcoastfishing.com) said fishing is good in this area. “Fish the last of outgoing tide to first of incoming proves to be the best bite,” he said. “I am targeting redfish and trout until water temps drop and flounder start to move. For trout the last two hours of outgoing tide in the ICW fishing, I’ve been free-lining live shrimp and it has proved effective.” Herrera said fishing dead low tide in creek holes next to shallow flats has put many redfish in his skiff. Live bait such as mullet, shrimp and mud minnows have been the best live baits.

ST. JOHNS RIVER: Capt. Bryn Rawlins at Highlands Park Fish Camp in DeLand said bass fishing is improving rapidly. “Capt. Rick Rawlins has caught 10 bass up to 4 pounds on a recent trip with clients,” she said. The speckled perch bite remains the same — steady but underwhelming, like 10 to 12 per boat. Most of the specks are being caught in Lake Woodruff. “We are looking for more consistent cooler temperatures to turn things around,” Rawlins said.

SEND PHOTOS: We want to see your most recent catch. Email your fish photos to godwin.kelly@news-jrnl.com. Be sure to include type of fish, size of fish (weight and/or length), where the fish was caught, first and last names and hometown of angler who caught the fish, and first and last name of person who took the photo. If a child is in the photo, please include their age. The News-Journal will use one or two photos in print each week and the other photos submitted will go into the online gallery called “Readers Fish Photos.”

https://www.news-journalonline.com/sports/20181114/fishing-report-warmer-than-normal-temps-keep-catches-high?rssfeed=true


Riverfront home is a masterpiece of design

The home at 1298 John Anderson Drive is a waterfront masterpiece of design. The home features a backyard oasis with travertine pool deck and artificial turf inlay, summer kitchen, covered lanai with wood-stained timbers and an outdoor fireplace. The home has access to the Halifax River, and has a dock with a new deck and boathouse. Designed by Ben Butera, the floor plan has been restructured to allow for open, natural light. Custom features abound in the home, such as alligator-skin tiles in the den and a secret pet-friendly room off the cigar bar.

ADDRESS: 1298 John Anderson Drive, Ormond Beach

TOTAL SQUARE FEET: 3,645 square feet

LOT SIZE: .41 acres

BEDROOMS: 3

BATHROOMS: 3

STORIES: 1

YEAR BUILT: 1961

PRICE: $1,485,000

CONTACT: Bill Navarra, Realty Pros Assured, 386-334-9991

https://www.news-journalonline.com/news/20181110/riverfront-home-is-masterpiece-of-design?rssfeed=true


Upcoming Events

  1. Miami/Brickell Festival of the Arts

    October 20, 2018 @ 7:00 pm - January 15, 2019 @ 6:00 pm UTC+0
  2. Comedian Gerry Dee World Comedy Tour in Naples, Florida

    November 21 @ 7:00 pm - 9:30 pm UTC+0
  3. Ocala Balloon Glow

    November 23 @ 5:00 pm - November 25 @ 10:00 pm UTC+0
  4. 9th Annual Shopapalooza Festival, Part 2

    November 24 @ 10:00 am - 5:00 pm UTC+0
  5. Lake Helen Christmas Parade & Santa’s Village

    November 24 @ 4:00 pm - 9:00 pm UTC+0
  6. Christmas in the Country – Lights Display, Hay Ride & Festival

    November 24 @ 6:00 pm - 8:30 pm UTC+0
  7. Soul Beach: The Outdoor R&b / Jazz Concert & Comedy Show on the Water

    November 24 @ 7:30 pm - November 25 @ 1:00 am UTC+0
  8. 15th Annual X-Country Marathon, 30K, Half-Marathon & 5K

    November 25 @ 7:30 am - 2:30 pm UTC+0
  9. FREE TICKETS! Tampa Improv 11/27 Stand Up Comedy Show

    November 27 @ 8:00 pm - 10:00 pm UTC+0
  10. FL Orchestra Happy Hour Concert – Nov 28

    November 28 @ 6:30 pm - 7:30 pm UTC+0

Upcoming Events

  1. Miami/Brickell Festival of the Arts

    October 20, 2018 @ 7:00 pm - January 15, 2019 @ 6:00 pm UTC+0
  2. Comedian Gerry Dee World Comedy Tour in Naples, Florida

    November 21 @ 7:00 pm - 9:30 pm UTC+0
  3. Ocala Balloon Glow

    November 23 @ 5:00 pm - November 25 @ 10:00 pm UTC+0
  4. 9th Annual Shopapalooza Festival, Part 2

    November 24 @ 10:00 am - 5:00 pm UTC+0
  5. Lake Helen Christmas Parade & Santa’s Village

    November 24 @ 4:00 pm - 9:00 pm UTC+0
  6. Christmas in the Country – Lights Display, Hay Ride & Festival

    November 24 @ 6:00 pm - 8:30 pm UTC+0
  7. Soul Beach: The Outdoor R&b / Jazz Concert & Comedy Show on the Water

    November 24 @ 7:30 pm - November 25 @ 1:00 am UTC+0
  8. 15th Annual X-Country Marathon, 30K, Half-Marathon & 5K

    November 25 @ 7:30 am - 2:30 pm UTC+0
  9. FREE TICKETS! Tampa Improv 11/27 Stand Up Comedy Show

    November 27 @ 8:00 pm - 10:00 pm UTC+0
  10. FL Orchestra Happy Hour Concert – Nov 28

    November 28 @ 6:30 pm - 7:30 pm UTC+0

Join our Fun Network

  1. Miami/Brickell Festival of the Arts

    October 20, 2018 @ 7:00 pm - January 15, 2019 @ 6:00 pm UTC+0
  2. Comedian Gerry Dee World Comedy Tour in Naples, Florida

    November 21 @ 7:00 pm - 9:30 pm UTC+0
  3. Ocala Balloon Glow

    November 23 @ 5:00 pm - November 25 @ 10:00 pm UTC+0
  4. 9th Annual Shopapalooza Festival, Part 2

    November 24 @ 10:00 am - 5:00 pm UTC+0
  5. Lake Helen Christmas Parade & Santa’s Village

    November 24 @ 4:00 pm - 9:00 pm UTC+0
  6. Christmas in the Country – Lights Display, Hay Ride & Festival

    November 24 @ 6:00 pm - 8:30 pm UTC+0
  7. Soul Beach: The Outdoor R&b / Jazz Concert & Comedy Show on the Water

    November 24 @ 7:30 pm - November 25 @ 1:00 am UTC+0
  8. 15th Annual X-Country Marathon, 30K, Half-Marathon & 5K

    November 25 @ 7:30 am - 2:30 pm UTC+0
  9. FREE TICKETS! Tampa Improv 11/27 Stand Up Comedy Show

    November 27 @ 8:00 pm - 10:00 pm UTC+0
  10. FL Orchestra Happy Hour Concert – Nov 28

    November 28 @ 6:30 pm - 7:30 pm UTC+0