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Additional information about these activities and events may be announced at monthly meetings, on our Meetup.com site, and by Meetup.com messaging. If you did not sign up for an event or activity at the last club meeting and would like to do so, you may add your name to the list at our Meetup.com site. If you have additional questions, please contact the trip or activity leader directly.
Wed 7/2, 6:30pm, Monthly Members Meeting: (Cancelled due to Independence Day holiday)
Fri 7/4, 10:00am, Annual Sidetrackers Picnic at Kathryn Abbey Hanna Park - for MEMBERS ONLY: We encourage all Sidetrackers Club members to come to our annual Fourth of July picnic. This is a member’s only event due to limits on the shelter capacity and the club providing food and drinks. We have reserved shelter # 2 near parking lot #8 again this year. There is a $3.00 fee per car to get into Hanna Park. The park ranger will provide you with a map of the park and can explain how to get to shelter # 2 and the nearby parking. http://www.coj.net/departments/recreation-and-community-services/recreation-and-community-programming/hanna-park.aspx. We will enjoy eating, socializing, taking dips in the ocean, going for walks on the beach, and playing beach games if you desire. You can also bring your bike and ride the trails. The club will provide b-b-q chicken and pork as well as drinks. Please bring a side dish or dessert to share. Bring your bathing suit and appropriate cover and/or hat, towel and sunscreen. Camp or beach chairs are welcome as well as any beach games you desire. You can arrive at any time and we will start eating around noon. You can stay and enjoy the beach as long as you desire. Please sign up as attending on meet up or contact Paula S. @ 904-400-6699 or Vicki A. @ 904-504-9432. PLEASE CHECK THE MEETUP.COM/SIDETRACKERS SITE FOR ANY LAST MINUTE CHANGES.
Sat 7/12, 9:00am, Hike/Geocaching at Ft. Clinch State Park: Come join us for a full day of hiking and geocaching in Fernandina Beach. We will meet at Hardees, 9111 Merrill Rd. and leave at 9:00 am sharp. Please arrive earlier if you plan on having breakfast, etc. We ask that you have your car pooling arranged ahead of time and make sure your schedule is the same as the driver. Maps and directions will be given out at Hardees. If you decide to meet us at Ft. Clinch, please communicate this to the leader. It’s best to call or text. We don’t want to delay our departure waiting for you at Hardees. To get to Ft. Clinch State Park, take I-95 to the Fernandina Beach/Callahan exit (Milepost Exit 373 - Old Exit 129), and stay to the right. You will then be traveling east on A1A. (This road becomes 8th Street within the town limits of Fernandina.) Stay on this road, (A1A), for 16 miles until you come to the intersection of 8th Street and Atlantic Avenue. Turn right on Atlantic Avenue and go about two miles, Fort Clinch State Park will be on the left. We will be hiking 6 miles on various loops with parts of the trail heavily forested and traverse ancient dunes that are steep. Two of the loops encircle a series of fresh water ponds and wildlife observation is good. Alligators, deer, birds and other wildlife can be seen in this area. We will hike Cumberland Sound, where we will be able to see Cumberland Island in Georgia. We will also look for several geocaching sites at the park. Dogs are welcome on the trail. Please dress accordingly for a hike. In addition, please bring water, sun screen, bug spray, etc. If you would like additional information about Ft. Clinch or geocaching, see the following websites: http://www.floridastateparks.org/fortclinch/ and http://www.geocaching.com/guide/. After our hike we will stop for lunch at the Sandollar Restaurant (http://www.sandollarrestaurantjax.) overlooking the water. Leader: Julie’s cell, 904 424-1548. As a courtesy, please call Julie if your plans change, will be late or meeting us in Fernandina Beach.
Thu 7/17, 6:30pm, Jax Beach Bike Ride: Join us on the beach for a casual evening bike ride and enjoy the ocean breeze while we ride about five miles on the sand. This is an easy ride for all levels. We will meet at Oceanfront Park on 1st Street South between 5th & 6th Avenues South at 6:30pm. There is plenty of parking at the east end of 5th Ave. Bring water and any bike appropriate for the sand. We will leave for the beach at 6:40pm so if you are running late, just head south on the beach. Those people interested can go out for a bite to eat somewhere at the beach afterwards. If you have any questions call the Leader: Kathy D. 908-433-5974
Sat 7/19, 9:00am, Hike Big Oak Trail in Live Oak, FL: Come join us for a full day of hiking near Suwannee River State Park. We will meet at McDonalds on I-10 & Chaffee Road (705 Chaffee Rd, Jax 32221) and leave at 9:00 am sharp. Arrive earlier if you plan on having breakfast, etc. Please arrange your car pooling ahead of time and make sure your schedule is the same as the driver. Maps and directions will be given out at McDonalds. We are only doing 4.5 miles and will do the shaded portion of the trail. We will see the remains of the Drew Mansion, who was the Governor of Florida in the 1800’s. We will also hike by the ghost town of Ellanville, and of course, the Big Oak in the Suwannee River State Park. This great Oak is one of the largest in the State. This is a very scenic trail with bluffs, a great forest with the remains of confederate guns, as well as parts of the Florida Trail. For additional information: http://www.floridastateparks.org/suwanneeriver/ The hike will calls for proper footwear, water, sun screen, bug spray and comfortable attire. When the hike is over, we will stop for lunch in the area. Leader: Vic, 904.517.2321. As a courtesy, please call or text Vic if your plans change or if you are running late. http://www.exploresouthernhistory.com/suwannee1.html.
Fri-Sun, 7/25-7/27, 5:00pm Kayaking and Scalloping on the Steinhatchee River, FL: Come join us for a fun filled weekend in Steinhatchee, FL. This is a member’s only trip. If there are spots open 2 weeks before the trip, they will become available for nonmembers to RSVP. Snorkeling for scallops is fun and easy. You hardly need to dip your head below water to pick the scallops out of the grass in 4’ to 5’ of water. If all goes well, we would like to bring back five gallons (max limit). This amount is usually enough for a good meal. We also have a local restaurant prepare them for us. How’s that for fresh! The total cost is appx. $120.00 = $50 for lodging, $60 for the boat and $10 for tip to your captains and host. Our housing accommodations are with Mike and Susan Williams who were such gracious hosts in 2013. They have offered lodging in their home on the river and in a new house they have located just down the street. One house has a king, bunk beds full and twin, and a twin. The big house has a king and two full beds. Six people per house so the beds are shared or you can choose to throw a sleeping bag on the floor. Susan Williams reserved two six person boats with guides who will operate the boats. The boat cost is $60.00 per person. Bring your own kayak or rent one for the trip down the Steinhatchee River on Sunday. For those not bringing their own the cost is $30.00 or so. Tandems are available. Please respond if you haven't already to Laura know if you want to rent a kayak or you will be bringing your own. Payment for the kayak is not included in the reserve trip fee and paid at the time of rental. Check out www.steinhatchee.com for general information about the area, scalloping, pictures, videos and a river cam. Payment is due within one week after your RSVP is made. If you need to cancel, please do so as soon as possible in order to allow others the opportunity to go. Total cost for the trip is appx. $150.00 if you rent a kayak plus your food, drink and gas. Try to coordinate carpooling with others on the trip and leave earlier in the day. For those who have to work meet at McDonalds at 454 Cassat Ave. 32205 at 5:00pm for the 2:30 drive to Steinhatchee and stop in Live Oak for dinner at a great little out of the way Bar-B-Q joint. If you leave from McDonalds you will arrive it Steinhatchee at about 9:00 PM. Please bring your own mask, snorkel and fins. Leader: Laura 904.349.3785, Email: email@example.com
Sat 8/2, 8:00am, Mini Pedal & Paddle the Ortega (Westside Jacksonville):
your bike 15 miles and paddle your kayak/canoe 5 miles around the Ortega and
Cedar Rivers (Westside). You can do both or choose to do one or the other.
Get some exercise while you see the stately river front mansions from the
street view then the water view! Pedal is expected to be done at 8:00-9:30
am and paddle at 10:00 -11:30 am, with lunch to follow 12:00- 1:00 pm.
Parking, bike/kayak staging areas, and lunch will be located at a Canoe and
Kayak Club’s fenced lot on the Ortega River. The bike route is on scenic
paved roads in scenic residential neighborhoods next to the rivers. The
paddle starts from a private dock on Ortega River and will traverse the
rivers in the same neighborhoods that were bicycled. Picnic tables, a few
plastic chairs, bathrooms, and plenty of shade are available at the site.
Sat 8/2, 8:00pm, Fort Clinch Candlelight (EVENING) Tour: Come join us for a rare evening stroll in the park. Roam Ft. Clinch after dark by lantern and candlelight. Corporal Bledsoe will lead small groups for this unusual after hours tour. First built in 1847 and occupied by both Confederate and Union forces during the Civil War, the fort also served as a communications outpost during World War II. Visitors will see it all, from laundry area to the medical quarters. Fees: $4.00 single occupant per vehicle, $6.00 per vehicle with 2-8 people and $3.00 Ft. Clinch admission. Please dress accordingly for a night hike and bring additional items such as bug spray, water, flashlight, etc. Those wanting to carpool can meet at 7:00PM at the McDonald’s on Airport Road. I-95 and Airport Center Drive, Exit 363. McDonald’s will be ¼ mile on the left (north) side. Leader: Vicki A. 904.923.2335.
Wed 8/6, 6:30pm, Monthly Members Meeting: Regency Square Library, 9900 Regency Square Blvd., Jacksonville, FL 32256
Sat 8/9, 8:00am, Paddle along Cracker Creek, Port Orange: Come join us for a day paddle along the quiet waters of Cracker Creek in Port Orange. Located in Volusia County, this is an easy 90 minute drive down I-95, a few miles south of Daytona. We will meet at 8:00am at the McDonald's on I-95 and Old St. Augustine Road. If you plan to eat breakfast, please arrive 15 minutes earlier. We will leave for Port Orange at 8:15am and lead a convoy down I-95. If you bring your kayak or canoe, there will be a $5.00 launch fee. Kayak rental fees will be $30.00/half day or $45.00 for a tandem (2 person) kayak. Please see website for additional information, address and highlights of activity in the area. http://www.crackercreek.com. Camping is also an option at Cracker Creek; however, this event is not arranging any overnight accommodations. We will probably paddle for app. 4 hours, and then go for a burger and beverage. Please be sure to bring typical paddle gear i.e. PFD, bug spray, water, aqua shoes, sunscreen, whistle, cap, and a snack. If you are not going to join us for lunch, you may want to bring a sandwich as well. Lunch will be near Port Orange at a place called Hidden Treasures: http://www.hiddentreasureonrosebay.com/ for menu and location.
Leaders: Paula S. 904.588.2707 and Chris H. 904.48.6276. Paula will need to call a few days ahead to make kayak reservations. Please specify if you need to rent a kayak, (indicate single or tandem) or if you are bringing your own kayak
Sun 8/10, 1:30pm, Virtual Shooting Party at Aiming Point Firearms Academy, Jacksonville: Come join us for a fun filled afternoon of simulated shooting using a laser-equipped firearm in a safe, fun environment. Moving targets will provide a range of difficulty, for not only the beginner but also for the seasoned shooter. We will have a 2-hour party (2-4 pm) with 4 participants shooting at a time while the others watch on a TV from another room. Based on 20 participants, the cost will be $6.25/person and each participant should get two 10-minute sessions. First session will be practice and the second will be scored.
If time permits, the individual with the highest score from each group will compete for bragging rights as best shooter (four highest scores from the five groups will compete). The $125 fee has been paid in advance. If you RSVP, you are agreeing to pay $6.25. Unless special arrangements are made, payment is due within 10 days. Send checks to Steve Dorsey, 10135 Gate Parkway N, Unit 1612, Jacksonville, FL 32246-8268. If you must cancel after making payment, your funds will be returned if another individual pays to take your place. Leader: Steve 561.602.8613
Sun 8/17, 10:00am, Kayak the River from Aunt Kate’s Restaurant, St. Augustine (Vilano Beach) Beach: Come join us for a full day of kayaking and swimming in the Tolomato River. We will meet at McDonalds (586 March Landing Pkwy) Jax Beach, on AIA South near JTB behind Target. We are planning on a 10:00am departure. Arrive earlier if you plan on having breakfast, etc. Please make your car pooling arrangements ahead of time and make sure you have the same schedule as your driver. If you are coming from the St. Augustine area, please meet us at Aunt Kate’s. Please communicate with the leader where you will be meeting the group. We will launch our kayaks from “Aunt Kate’s” Restaurant (612 Euclid Ave.) off A1A, 2 miles south of the Castle Otttis. They have a boat ramp and dock, plus there should be plenty of parking. We will kayak for several hours and park on the sandbar for swimming. Afterwards, we will stop for lunch at Aunt Kate’s. Depending when we finish, we might be able to listen to live music on the deck. Kayak rental is available at Kayak St. Augustine at 904-315-8442. They will deliver and pick up kayak and charge $40 for 4 hours. Leader, Julie, 904 424-1548. As a courtesy, please call Julie if your plans change, if you are unable to attend or will be meeting us at Aunt Kate’s. Website: http://www.aunt-kates.com
Sat 8/23, 10:00 am, Hike, Pancake Lunch and Swim at De Leon Springs, State Park: Come join us for full day at De Leon State Park. We will begin with a 4 mile (loop) hike on the Wild Persimmon Hiking Trail. After the hike, lunch will be at Old Spanish Sugar Mill Grill and Griddle House at 12:00 noon for lunch where everyone gets to make their own pancakes on a grille in the middle of the table. You can order blueberries, sausage, eggs or other items to accompany your pancakes. Please let Kathy know if you are planning on going. She will make a reservation ahead of time so we all will be sure to get in. Afterwards we will cool off at the spring boil. De Leon Springs State Park provides access to Lake Woodruff National Wildlife Refuge, where canoeists can explore 18,000 acres of lakes, creeks and marshes. Canoe, kayak and paddleboat rentals are available in the park throughout the year. Snorkeling and swimming is permitted at the spring boil, the water temperature is a constant 72 degrees to beat the heat, and depths range from 18" to 30' at the spring. Parts of the trail can flood during wet seasons and biting insects are common, so appropriate clothing and footwear will be recommended, along with insect repellent and drinking water. Be sure to bring your towel and bathing suit. As a courtesy, please call Kathy if your plans change and you are unable to attend. Cost(s) of Activity: Park entrance $6 per vehicle and lunch. The leader will be coming from St. Augustine. If you wish to carpool, please contact the leader and they’ll coordinate a meeting spot in the St. Augustine area at 8:15 a.m. Leader Kathy D. cell 908-433-5974 http://www.floridastateparks.org/deleonsprings/aboutthepark.cfm
Sun 8/24, 1:00pm, Castle Otttis Tour in Vilano Beach: MEMBERS ONLY. Come join us for a day of fun exploring the Castle Otttis. Castle Otttis is an impression of an Irish castle of 1,000 years ago. The interior was created under guidance of historians from the Catholic Diocese of Northeast Florida. Enjoy the view of the Atlantic Ocean, Vilano Beach and St Augustine from the roof top of its towers. There is a free tour, however, donations are encouraged. The Castle is located 103 3rd St, St Augustine, FL 32084 on highway A1A three miles north of St. Augustine, Florida. For those who want to car pool, meet at 12:00 Noon at the Jacksonville Southeast Regional Library at 10599 Deerwood Park Boulevard near JTB and Gate Parkway. Map & Driving Directions. For additional information: http://www.castleotttis.com/
After the tour some of the members will be going out to eat. Sidetrackers Members Only – Limit 20 guests. Hosted by Jim Nackley 904-382-7734
Fri-Mon, 8 /29 - 9/1, (Members only) Labor Day Weekend at Callaway Gardens, Pine Mountain, GA: Callaway Gardens is having a Sky High Hot Air Balloon Festival on Labor Day Weekend. There is so much to do here starting with the balloon glow at dusk Friday night. There are balloon launches at 7:15am and 6:00pm on Saturday. There are several gardens with a discovery center and butterfly center, nature and biking trails, beach and water sports, and much more. You can bring your bicycle if you choose. We will explore more each day.
We will stay in deluxe 2 bedroom cottages with fully equipped kitchens and living room areas. Each bedroom has 2 queen size beds and a bath. Cottages can sleep 8 if we double up or 4 if you want your own bed.
The price for all three nights per person is $148 if sharing a bed or $296 if sleeping alone. We will coordinate dinners or just desserts on Saturday and Sunday, depending on the number of people. More information will follow closer to the date.
We will leave early Friday morning for the six hour drive up and return Monday around noon. If you wish to carpool, contact the leader for details. RSVP directly to leader and pay to reserve spot. Check out the website to see all of Callaway Gardens. Leader: Paula S. 904-588-2707 or email sawyerhouse-at-bellsouth.net.
Wed 9/3, 6:30 PM, Monthly Members Meeting: Regency Square Library, 9900 Regency Square Blvd., Jacksonville, FL 32256
Fri-Sun 9/5 - 9/7, (Members Only) Relaxing “Chill Out” weekend in Madison, Fl. Come join a small group of 10 "Sidetrackers Members" on beautiful Cherry Lake in Madison County, FL. It is a 2 hour drive from Jacksonville and 20 minutes from Wild Adventures Theme Park (http://wildadventures.net). The crystal clear lake is ideal for swimming, any water sport, boating or fishing. There is a lot of land to explore plus a campfire area for the evening time. The house sleeps 10 people comfortably with 2 king-size bedrooms and a bunk room that has 2 Queen size bunk beds and a 1 Queen size regular bed. The bedrooms sleep 2 and are $25.00 per night per person. The bunks are $20.00 per night per person. There is a sleeper couch in the den that can sleep 1 for $15.00 per night. This beautiful house has a full kitchen, living area, game room and a large front porch with a dock. We will arrange group dinners and other activities as the group desires. Note: there will also be an additional fee of $10.00 (cash) per person for "clean up" service at the end of the weekend. For photos and additional information, check out the website at: http://www.radloffretreat.com If you are Sidetrackers member and able to provide full payment no later than Sunday, 7/27/14, please contact Kathy B. ASAP at: firstname.lastname@example.org. Cell 904 463 3499.
Sat 9/13, 9:00am Mountain Biking at Tillie Fowler: Come spend a fun morning mountain biking at beautiful Tillie K. Fowler Regional Park, 7000 Roosevelt Boulevard, Jacksonville. Meet between 9:00 - 9:15 am at the first parking area inside the entrance. Intermediate ride on the off road trails begins at 9:30 am. The south end of the park contains a small network of off road bike trails varying from beginner to advanced skill levels. The main loop is Whistling Kitty Chaser aka WKC, this is the beginner trail that is just over a 1.5 miles. Branching off of WKC are the more advanced trails, these contain features from rollers and berms to steep ladder bridges. All of the bike trails are signed to indicate the required skill levels, please do not ride over your limits. Bring sunscreen, bug spray and plenty of water for the ride. Helmets are required. Ride at own risk. Link to WKC Trail Map Leader: Steve D. 561.602.8613 ste_dor 'at' bellsouth.net
Sat 9/20, 9:00am, Nature Hike on Little Talbot Island: Sleep in a bit and then lets enjoy a very pleasant four mile nature hike experiencing a cross-section of ecosystems on Little Talbot Island State Park. This includes maritime hammock, beach dunes, depression marsh, and a stroll on the beautiful white sandy beaches of the island. It will be nearing low tide when we get to the beach portion, so there will be a good opportunity to view wildlife and locate shells or sharks teeth. Bring water, snacks, sunscreen, insect repellent, a hat, and a bright smile. Cost: Entry fee of approx. $ 4 or $ 5 per vehicle onto the island, plus lunch if you desire. Please note, this Sidetrackers event is strictly a nature hike on the trail/beach of Little Talbot Island. It does not include swimming in the ocean. In the event one or more wish to divert from the hike and elect to go swimming, then the Sidetrackers activity for those people will end at that time and you will be on your own. The tides and undertow of the ocean can be dangerous and you should exert all caution if you elect to go swimming on the island. We will meet at the Hardee’s at 9111 Merrill Rd. at 9:10 AM. If you plan to eat breakfast, then please come earlier so you will be finished by 9:10 AM. Take 295/9A North or Southside Blvd Connector North and exit to the right at Merrill Rd. Proceed east and Hardee’s is immediately on your left. We will depart Hardee’s sharply by 9:20 AM and car-pool and caravan approximately 20 miles to Little Talbot Island State Park off of Heckscher Blvd. If you live in north Jax or Ga. then suggest you meet us at the Little Talbot Island parking lot at approx. 9:50 AM near the bathrooms and shelters. For those interested after the event, some people may desire to get lunch at the nearby Sand Dollar Restaurant that has good food and a wonderful water view. Leader (Mr.) Kim L. (cell 904-610-5029)
Wed 10/1, 6:30 PM, Monthly Members Meeting: Regency Square Library, 9900 Regency Square Blvd., Jacksonville, FL 32256
Sat 10/11, Zip Lining in Ocala - Details to follow
OCTOBER TBD 9:00am, Jekyll Island Bike Ride: We will meet at McDonalds on Duval Rd by the airport in the Riverplace Market and leave promptly at 9:15am. Arrive early if you plan on having breakfast. Carpooling is recommended, but you may want to arrange it ahead of time as there is planning involved when transporting bikes. We will be parking in the Historic District on the island nearest the Sea Turtle Center if you want to meet us there. It takes about 65 minutes to get there from our meeting spot.
We will ride the bike path through the center of the island to the ocean and around the north end, stopping at driftwood beach/pier for a stroll and quick snack then finishing the ride and touring the historic district on foot and having lunch at a nearby restaurant. Any type of bike is welcome but beach cruisers are most appropriate. The ride is about 9 miles long with stops to enjoy the sites.
This is a very scenic ride with intracoastal and ocean water views on paved trails and a lot of island history. There is a limit of 25 people, so please sign-up ONLY if you are planning on attending. And update your RSVP if your plans change. Please bring plenty of water, sunscreen, bug spray and a light snack if you desire. We will get a bite to eat on the island. Location to be announced. There is a toll bridge before crossing over to the island with $6.00 fee per car so bring cash. Leader: Paula S. 904-588-2707. As a courtesy, please call Paula if your plans change and you are unable to attend or you will be marked as a no show. http://www.jekyllisland.com/resources/visitors-guide/
Wed 11/5, 6:30 PM, Monthly Members Meeting: Regency Square Library, 9900 Regency Square Blvd., Jacksonville, FL 32256
Wed 12/3, 6:30 PM, Monthly Members Meeting: Regency Square Library, 9900 Regency Square Blvd., Jacksonville, FL 32256
2014 Monthly Meeting Schedule.
Locations Will Be Announced.
WEDNESDAY, August 6, 2014 – 6:30 PM
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