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August 2015 / September 2015 Newsletter

A condensed events and activities list can be found on our Calendar page.
Membership information can be found on our Membership page.

General Participation Guidelines
Always sign up ("pre-register") for an event by using our Meetup.com site or by contacting the leader so you can be reached if there is a change or an event cancellation.  Trip leaders generally make all reservations and arrangements and may set group size limits on some trips and activities.  If you are not pre-registered you may be turned away at some events.  Non-members and their guests must fill out a liability waiver form, available here, before participating in any Sidetrackers event or activity.  Please note that Meetup group membership alone is not the same as Sidetrackers club membership.  For more information please visit our Membership page.

Additional information about our activities and events may be announced at monthly meetings, on our Meetup.com site, and by Meetup.com email messages.  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.


Sat 8/1, 8:30am, Mill Creek Preserve Hike: Enjoy a morning hike at Mill Creek Preserve in Alachua County, which was owned by the Timber Baron of Florida.  This tract of land is a mixture of sinkholes and disappearing springs with its Southernmost American beech forest with towering swamp Chestnut Oaks. We will meet at 8:30 am at McDonald's at 705 Chaffee Road by Interstate I-10 next to Winn Dixie.  There is no parking fee and plenty of parking spaces. Bring bug spray, sunscreen, plenty of water and wear proper clothing and shoes for heat and soft trails.  This preserve is south of Lake City and north of Gainesville, Florida.  We will do the 3 mile loop and, if you're not overwhelmed by heat, we will either do the 1.5 mile trail or hit another trail in the area.  I can’t emphasize enough on knowing your limitations. Please wear the proper clothing and bring plenty of water. Some folks can get dehydrated in a very short time, especially on a short hike. For more information, see: http://floridahikes.com/mill-creek-preserve. Leader: Victor 904-517-2321.

Mon 8/3, 6:45pm, Urban Walk - Riverside Park: Come join us for a lovely 5-6 mile walk from Riverside to The Landing.

Wed 8/5, 6:30pm, Monthly Meeting: Regency Square Library, 9900 Regency Square Blvd., Jacksonville, FL 32256  

Thur 8/06, 6:45pm, Urban Walk – San Marco Area: Come join us for a lovely 5-6 mile walk from San Marco to The Landings.

Sat 8/8, 9:30am: Indoor Rock Climbing in Jacksonville: Ever climb a rock, or a wall? Here is your chance to a try it with the club. We will meet at The Edge Rock Gym located at 3563 Philips Highway, Jacksonville, FL 32207, 904-683-2512. Orientation and getting geared up will be first on the agenda beginning about 9:40am. 9:30-11:30am is the gym's slack time so be on time so we can time to do the climb several times before the crowds show up .The cost will be $16.05 per person. Climbing shoes are $4 and a bag of chalk $3 which is good for 3-4 folks .There are a few snacks and a coke machine available on site. We will have lunch nearby afterwards. Attire: Suggested as ‘yoga’ type, including tennis shoes, no cargo pants/shorts and no open toe shoes. For additional information, please view their web page at: http://www.theedgerockgym.com

Wed 8/11, 6:45pm, Wonderwood Bridge Bike Ride: Up for an evening bike ride? We will meet at BBQ Barn 14025 Mount Pleasant Rd., Jacksonville, FL  32225. This event will start by 7pm. If you are running late, please txt or call me (Victor) at 904-517-2321.  Also non-members must sign a waiver which can be downloaded from (http://sidetrackers.com ). Please make sure you have working lights on your bike (especially the rear red light) and wear a helmet. If you need to get air in your tires, make arraignments ahead of time with someone so we can start on time with the ride. The ride will go East over Wonderwood Bridge and head north to Mayport Village.  For those who don't ride this route, most of this is bike lane, single file. I repeat, not side by side riding like on the Baldwin Trail. This bike ride will be a warm up for the Charleston trip and for an evening ride in the future from Mayport Ferry north on A1A to Big Talbot Island and back in time for the last ferry. The group usually gets a bite to eat at BBQ Barn afterwards. I hope y’all take part and hang out with us Leader: Victor : 904-517-2321.

Fri-Sun 8/14-16, Scalloping/Snorkel Trip, Steinhatchee, FL:  Come spend a few days on the beautiful waters of the Gulf side of Florida. Saturday will be a full day in the sun and water.  You will depart early Saturday morning for 6-7 hours. There will be 6 people on one boat for $350. Fee includes, gas, license, snorkel and mask.  You will be snorkeling in 2 to 5 feet of water for scallops. To make things a bit easier, you may want to bring your own mesh bag for collecting scallops and swim fins. There is also a house for staying overnight for $150 a night (2 night's ) plus $50 cleaning cost in all scallop harvesting,  two night stay and cleaning cost would run about $119 a person. As always, bring plenty of water and sunscreen.  Other food arrangements will be made closer to the departure date.  If you wish to go money must be paid up front to San-da-rah, ASAP. Please contact her on where to mail or hand her the money.  Event leader San-da-rah at: 904 881 7439. Meeting location:  Friday 8/14/15 at 6.00pm.    McDonalds at: 705 Chaffee Rd. at Chaffee Road and Interstate I-10 by Winn Dixie Grocery. Please make arraignments ahead of time for carpooling.

The destination is on the Gulf and is approximately a two 1/2 hour drive. Let’s hope for dry weather!   

For more information about scalloping see: http://www.steinhatcheescalloping.com/

Sat 8/22, Hiking adventure at Etoniah Creek State Forest in Florahome, Florida.  We will meet at McDonalds on US 17 , by 295 South across from the Orange Park Kennel Club in Orange Park.  Etoniah Creek State Forest is a state forest in Putnam County near Florahome, Florida. This area in the scenic hike thru bottomlands of hardwoods with steep sloping banks ,ravines, sinkholes  , several creeks plus home to a variety of wildlife. The area is home to the black bear, fox, turkey, bobcats, deer and the endangered fox squirrel. This forest is diverse in several tree ,plant life and disappearing Etonia Rosemary plant. This hike is moderate and thee distance is around 5-7 miles. For those hikers interested in doing some more of the Florida Trail  ,we will try to do some of the Florida Trail as well as some of the blue forest trail. With the warmer weather, this would be a good warm-up for longer hikes later in the ye , such as The Big Oak Trail , also part of the Florida Trail.  Please dress accordingly for the weather.  Bring bug spray,  water,  camera and snacks.  Please be sure you don't over estimate what you can do with these warmer weather and proper clothing and plenty of water is a must. The drive to the trailhead from McDonalds should be about 1 hour and hike should be around 2 hrs. Folks be advised we will leave cars of those carpooling on the way out at Winn Dixie off US 17 / Kingsley. Vic Corrales leader 904-5172321, I will have maps and directions. Additional information available on: http://www.freshfromflorida.com/Divisions-Offices/Florida-Forest-Service/Our-Forests/State-Forests/Etoniah-Creek-State-Forest. 

Sat 8/29, 5:30pm, Dinner at The Yearling & Night Zipping at The Canyons, Ocala: Are you ready to fly into the night? This is zipping at its finest and something that no other thrill ride can match!  You’ll travel through the night with glo sticks to light the way.  This tour will last approximately 1.5 hours and includes five zip lines and one rope bridge (ground school is also included, of course). The night will be complete when you take a glorious flight over water on the famous "Break Out" zip.  There are no more excuses not to zip! So come and experience what everyone is talking about!  Cost is $83.74 ($79 + tax). I have reserved all 8 spots for the 8:30 PM Night Zip.  To make your reservation, call The Canyons at 352-351-ZIPS (9477) and request one of the seven extra spots held by Steve Dorsey.  If all eight spots are filled, ask about availability for the 8 PM Tour (6 spots available as of 7/26/15).  If there is enough interest, they may be willing to add another tour.  The website for The Canyons is www.zipthecanyons.com. Please click website link to review cancellation policy. We will eat dinner at the Yearling Restaurant at 5:30 PM and leave for The Canyons at 7:30 PM.  For those going directly to The Canyons, meet at The Canyons at 8 PM (for the 8:30 PM night zip). The Yearling Restaurant, 14531 East County Road 325, Hawthorne, Florida 32640 352-466-3999http://yearlingrestaurant.net/  (approximately1 hour 45 minute drive from Jacksonville) The Canyons Zipline and Canopy Tours, 8045 NW Gainesville Rd. (CR 25A), Ocala, FL 34475 352-351-ZIPS (9477)www.zipthecanyons.com (approximately 2 hours from Jacksonville)  Leader: Steve D, cell/text 561.602.8613, email ste_dor 'at' bellsouth.net.  Optional Weekend Excursion prices noted in Meetup.com

Sun 8/30, 9:00am, Mountain Biking at Santos Mountain, Ocala:: Meet at 9 am at the Santos Trailhead (3080 SE 80th St, Ocala, FL 34480).  This is approximately two hours from Jacksonville.  We are meeting at the Trailhead since the leader and others are staying at The Yearling on Saturday. Intermediate mountain bike ride at 9:30 am from the parking lot next to the Skills Course.  Bring sunscreen, bug spray and plenty of water for the ride.  Helmets are required. Ride at own risk. Link:  SANTOS & VORTEX AREA BIKE TRAILS  Leader: Steve D, cell/text 561.602.8613, email ste_dor 'at' bellsouth.net.

Location Change:
Wed 9/2, 6:30pm, Monthly Meeting:
REI store at St. Johns Town Center, meeting room at rear of store.

Fri 9/11, 8:30am, Paddle the Santa Fe River: Let’s meet at 8:30am at the McDonalds on Chafee Road (off I-10) for the 1 hour trip; Carpooling is highly recommended. We are heading down the Santa Fe River. It is a beautiful 7 mile easy paddle and you will pass multiple springs along the way. We will carpool from Mc Donald’s at 8:30am. McDonald’s is located on Chaffee road off I-10. We plan on meeting at Santa Fe Canoe Outpost by 10:00am. Jim Wood runs the Outpost and is very accommodating. We can rent kayaks from him or your may want to bring your own.  It will take 3 hours to paddle 7 miles but the current helps to carry you. There will be a brief opportunity to get out and swim at Poe Springs and Ginny Springs.  At the end of the paddle, we will be picked up and carried back to our cars by the Santa Fe Canoe Outpost. It will be a great trip!   Bring a lunch and plenty of water for the trip. Don’t forget your sunscreen, water shoes, towel, and a hat. There is a refrigerator on the premises if you need to keep something chilled until you get back to the car. Kayak/canoe rentals are available: Rental Cost: $35 Single Kayak, includes paddle, whistle, life preserver and boat pick-up; $40 Double/Tandem Kayak, includes same as above; $40 Canoe, includes same as above.  If you bring your own kayak there will be a group rate discount of $25 for pick-up. It is normally $35 for the 3 hour paddle. For additional information, see the website: http://santaferiver.com/about/ McDonald’s Meet up location: Chaffee Road, Jacksonville, FL (map)     Directions: http://santaferiver.com/directions/  Santa Fe Canoe Outpost 21410 US-441, High Springs, FL 32643, Leader: Vicki A. 904-923-9335

Sun 9/13, 11:00am, Skeet Shoot at Amelia Island Shot Gun Sports Club, Yulee:  Here's your opportunity to shoot things and destroy them, old-time Florida style. We'll be assembling at the Amelia Island Shot Gun Sports Club, 86300 Hot Shot Trl, Yulee, FL 32097, for a late morning skeet shoot starting at 11:00am. A "round" of skeet consists of 50 shots (rounds) at clay pigeons.  The course consists of 5 stations positioned along a mile semi-circle.  Think of it as “skeet golf” or "target shooting". 

The fine folks at Amelia Island Shot Gun Sports will supply everything we need for a safe and fun event.  All you need bring is sunscreen, bug spray and a comfortable pair of sunglasses or safety glasses (eye protection is required). For those of you without eye protection, safety glasses are inexpensive at Home Depot.

Based on a turnout of 20 Sidetrackers, the cost is $70 per person, which includes gun rental and shells.  

The event should take about two hours and we will find a local place for lunch afterward.

If more than 20 respond, you will be notified of being waitlisted. Carpooling from the Regal Cinema Parking lot at Regency Square Mall at 10:15am. Leader: Jim Nackley 904-382-7734 cell: Please RSVP by 8/31/2015.  http://www.ameliashotgunsports.com/

Fri-Sun 9/18-9/20, 8:00am, James Island County Park Trip and Charleston, SC:  Come join us for a fun long weekend to beautiful Charleston, SC. We will depart early Friday morning, September 18 at 8:00 a.m. and return on Sunday September 20, leaving at 1pm. Meeting location to be decided at a later date. The cost of the trip is $52 per person for housing for 2 nights.  We will need money to hold reservations A.S.A.P. Mail your check to: Vic Corrales, 1321 Gately Road, Jacksonville, FL 32225. The trip will be to James Island County Park, a 500 acre park with cottages and camping, a lake, kayaks, canoes and bike rentals. The park also has a challenge course, climbing wall and a waterpark.  This area provides for $10 shuttle service to Historic Charleston, Foley Beach, as well as Patriots Point where you can tour the U.S.S. Yorktown. The Cottages have 1 bunk bed for 2 and 3 queen beds.  If you don’t wish to double up on the queen bed, plan on bringing an air mattress. We’re looking at 8 folks per cottage. If you wish to camp, then you will be responsible for your own reservations.  Due to timing, the first to pay gets to stay in a cottage. This trip will be offered first to fully paid Sidetrackers members only. On this trip, plan on kayaking, biking and hiking Charleston and Ft Sumter. As a bonus, we plan on eating at wonderful restaurants and eateries.  I have looked into a kayak tour to the Fort as well as kayaking around Foley Beach. There is the Magnolia Plantation and Garden, which have been around since 1678, plus nearby trails to hike as well as ghost tours in the Historic area. We plan on doing a group meeting for arraigning events and to collect money for group discounts for future events.  Expect to leave no later than 8:00am Friday morning. It’s a 3.5 hours to drive to Charleston. Perhaps we can check into an activity along the way.  Leader: Victor, 904 517-2321.   As a courtesy, please call Vic if your plans change and you are unable to attend. For additional information, check out the website: https://www.ccprc.com/68/James-Island-County-Park and http://www.adventuresightseeing.com/tour-e.cfm.

Sun 9/27, 9:45am, Otttis Castle Tour in Vilano Beach:  Come join us for a non denominational service followed by fun exploring the Otttis Castle. 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. This is a free tour, however, donations are encouraged. Donations should go to the group leader on site for transfer to the tour guide.

The Castle is located 103 3rd St, St Augustine, FL 32084 on highway A1A three miles north of St. Augustine, Florida. There are NO bathrooms on site and parking is limited. 

For those who want to car pool, depart at 9:00am from the Jacksonville Southeast Regional Library at 10599 Deerwood Park Boulevard near JTB and Gate Parkway. The tour will begin promptly at 12:00 Noon, or earlier, following the service.  For additional information:  http://www.castleotttis.com/ After the tour some members will go out to eat.

Hosted by Jim Nackley 904-382-7734

Wed 10/7, 6:30pm, Monthly Meeting: Regency Square Library, 9900 Regency Square Blvd., Jacksonville, FL 32256

Fri-Mon 10/30-11/2, Table Rock State Park, South Carolina:  This year our annual fall trip will be to Table Rock State Park in South Carolina. We will be departing on Friday, Oct 30th and returning late afternoon/early evening, Monday, Nov 2, 2015. It’s a six hour drive so it’s best to be departing by 6:00 a.m. On Monday, we plan on leaving around noon. This trip is open to 2015 confirmed SIDETRACKERS MEMBERS ONLY!  If you respond to a RSVP in Meetup.com, but are not a SIDETRACKERS member, you will be removed from the list. If you are on the RSVP list it will be your responsibility to provide payment to Victor Corrales or Kathy Donato. The cost is $80.00 if you are staying in the cabins. You can find Victor and/or Kathy at an event or at the April 1st members meeting. The other option is by mail. Send a check, payable to: Victor Corrales, 1321 Gatell Road, Jacksonville, FL 32225. Payment is to be received by April 15. We have a long list of Members trying to go on this event. If you are unable to participate, please change your status on Meetup.com. This will allow the next person on the waiting to join in on the trip. If you pay and need to cancel, we'll refund your money as long as someone takes your spot and it's not 2 weeks before we leave on trip. Some of the activities will be:  hiking, kayaking and other fun things.  The kayaking is available in Table Rock,  but we're considering a kayak trip with an outfitter, 30 minutes north in North Carolina on the French Broad river; Class I, and I I Rapids near Roscoe, Nc. There will be a group discount for 8 or more folks; $30 / person for 3hours.  There is also hiking trails in and near state park, most are 1 to 4 miles, easy  to moderate, as well as 2 very severe strenuous long hikes on Pinnacle Mt trail 6 miles, 26 ft. elevation gain and Table Rock trail 4 miles, 2433 elevation gain.   The accommodations are 2 cabins: 1 for 6 folks and 1 cabin for 8 folks.  The cabins have Wi-Fi, linens, cooking equipment, sleeping accommodations for 1 cabin are 2 bedrooms with 2 full beds and sleeper sofa.  1 cabin has 2 sets of bunk beds, sleeper sofa and 1 full bed.  We will plan meals and transportation as we get closer to trip date and plan on a great Italian pasta night by Chef Tom and 1st line cook Vic . As soon as well have everyone paid up, some folks might consider renting a minivan. I have one reserved with a full load. If you're interested in getting a minivan and driving let me know so we can compile a list of how can drive or participate in renting a van. For any other questions call or txt me 904-5172321 Vic.   Additional park information: http://www.southcarolinaparks.com/tablerock

Wed 11/2, 6:30pm, Monthly Meeting: Regency Square Library, 9900 Regency Square Blvd., Jacksonville, FL 32256 

Wed 12/2, 6:30pm, Monthly Meeting: Regency Square Library, 9900 Regency Square Blvd., Jacksonville, FL 32256 

Non-members and their guests must fill out a liability waiver form, available here, before participating in any Sidetrackers event or activity.  Please note that Meetup group membership alone is not the same as Sidetrackers club membership.  For more information please visit our Membership page.

Additional information about these activities and events may be announced at monthly meetings and on our Meetup.com/Sidetrackers trip reservation pages.

2015 Monthly Meeting Schedule.  Locations Will Be Announced.
MONTHLY MEETINGS are always on the first non-holiday Wednesday of the month at 6:30 p.m.
and the location may vary.  Subscribers to our Meetup.com group receive an automatic reminder message in their email two days before the meeting.

WEDNESDAY, September 2, 2015 – 6:30 PM
WEDNESDAY, October 7, 2015 – 6:30 PM
WEDNESDAY, November 4, 2015 – 6:30 PM
WEDNESDAY, December 2, 2015 – 6:30 PM

The Sidetrackers Newsletter
Our newsletter is maintained by Chris who can be reached by email at newsletter 'at' sidetrackers.com.
If you have any comments about the newsletter, or if you have material to submit for inclusion in the
next monthly newsletter, please send email to newsletter 'at' sidetrackers.com.

To Become a Sidetrackers Member
Members pay a small annual fee to help share the annual cost of maintaining this web site and the small costs of running the club.  Members are not required to submit a Guest Waiver form at each Sidetrackers trip, activity or event.  Membership applications are accepted throughout the year.  Please visit our Membership page, or send questions and comments to membership 'at' sidetrackers.com.

The Sidetrackers Web Site

Our web site is maintained by Frank who can be reached by email at webmaster 'at' sidetrackers.com.  Please contact Frank if you have any corrections, photos, or other items of interest from any current activities. We will be pleased to consider your suggestions concerning the web site content.

In Case You Were Wondering...
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