How to be a Mermaid on Anna Maria Island

Anna Maria- Remember watching The Little Mermaid as a kid and wanting to be just like Ariel? Well, now is your chance to make that childhood dream a REALITY. With so many great shops on Anna Maria Island, transforming yourself into the mermaid you’ve always wanted to be is as easy as ever. As a fun activity for both kids and adults, make sure to grab these mermaid essentials and spend your vacation feeling like the queen of the sea!

Mermaid Essentials

Jewelry

If you’re a mermaid, it’s always important to sport some jewelry that shows your love for the sea. Shops on Anna Maria such as Bridge Street Jewelers and Tide & Moon Jewelry sell beautiful handmade and designer jewelry. Also, many shells on the beach already have holes in them. Just string them together and you’ve got your own DIY bracelet!

mermaid jewelry
Grab some beachy jewelry from The Tide and the Moon jewelry store!

Swimsuit

Every mermaid knows to have a cute swimsuit, and we’ve got you covered here on the island. The Island Bazaar and West Coast Surf Shop is one of my favorite stores to get bathing suits, cover-ups, and everything in-between. They have good prices and good quality products!

mermaid bathing suit
Every good mermaid needs a cute bathing suit! Photo courtesy of West Coast Surf Shop.

Blankets/Towels

While relaxing on the beach, having a comfy blanket or towel to sit on is always a must-have. The West Coast Surf Shop has some really cute towels to lounge on, and is the perfect way to spice up your look!

mermaid towel
Get this cute towel at West Coast Surf Shop!

Drinks

One of the best ways to enjoy your mermaid experience is by adding a yummy drink to it! For adults, treat your taste-buds at The Waterfront Restaurant & Craft Bar where they serve drinks such as Pimm’s Cup, a mix of sour, sliced lemon, cucumber, strawberries and topped with sprite. However, at Anna Maria Island Beach Cafe kids can enjoy a Coconut Créme which is essentially a non-alcoholic Piña Colada. Overall, fruity drinks make for the perfect mermaid experience!

mermaid drinks
Enjoy a fruity drink for the ultimate mermaid experience!

Books!

Every good mermaid has a good beachy book. One of my favorites is The Blue Bistro, which is about a girl who moves to the island of Nantucket in order to find herself a new job. She has had trouble with commitment to people and places in the past, but when she starts to like her new boss she doesn’t know what to do. This book is a mixture of drama and romance, and is great to read on the beach!

mermaid books
Relax by the beach with a good book!

Anna Maria Island vacation rentals and accommodations fit for a Mermaid!

Island Real Estate has the largest selection of vacation rentals on Anna Maria Island. Visit IslandReal.com first when looking for the perfect Florida vacation.

Anna Maria Island vacation rental
You’ll feel like a Mermaid when you visit Anna Maria Island vacation rental 3 Mermaids! This 4 bedroom home offers accommodations for up to 8 guests just a short walk to gulf beaches! Click on the image to reserve your stay today!

Scavenger hunt on Anna Maria Island

Anna Maria- If you’re looking for a fun activity with the family, why not have a photo scavenger hunt on Anna Maria Island? Great for all ages, grab your camera and go explore some of the best features of Anna Maria! Don’t forget to post your pictures on our Facebook page at the end of your trip!

Photo scavenger hunt on Anna Maria Island

1. Selfie in your vacation rental

What better way to start your vacation? Take a selfie in your new vacation rental and make all your Facebook friends jealous! Plus we always love seeing our guests satisfied with our properties.

vacation rental scavenger hunt
Take a picture at your vacation rental!

 2. Buried treasure on the beach

Make like a pirate and find some buried treasure while staying on Anna Maria Island! Many times loose change can be found, and every once in a while jewelry! Take a lap around the beach and see what you might find.

Scavenger hunt on Anna Maria
Find buried treasure on the beach!

3. Sunset Scavenger Hunt on Anna Maria Island

Anna Maria is home to some of the most beautiful sunsets. Good places to view these lovely colors are White Avenue and Bean Point.

Sunset scavenger hunt
Snap a shot of Anna Maria’s beautiful sunset while on your scavenger hunt!

4. Triple-Decker ice cream cone

When in the hot Florida sun it’s always nice to cool off with some cold ice cream! Stack on multiple scoops for the ultimate ice cream cone. Delicious places to go to are Two Scoops and Holy Cow Ice Cream.

triple-decker ice cream
Get some yummy ice cream! Photo courtesy of http://www.njfamily.com/NJ-Family/July-2011/Youll-Scream-for-Jerseys-Best-Homemade-Ice-Cream/

5. Wild Parrots

One of the best characteristics about Anna Maria is the occasional sighting of wild parrots. These beautiful creatures can be found all over the island, and are definitely picture worthy. Just please don’t try to feed or disturb them!

parrots scavenger hunt
Spot beautiful Blue Crowned parrots on the island!

6. Seagulls (Do not feed!)

Some of the most common birds in Florida are seagulls. Found all over the beach, seagulls are the perfect addition to your vacation photos. However, do not feed them as they can be very aggressive and won’t leave you alone once you do!

scavenger hunt seagulls
Find seagulls on your scavenger hunt!

7. Selfie on the free trolley

A great feature on Anna Maria Island is the free trolley that goes through Bradenton Beach, Holmes Beach and Anna Maria. As you’re traveling around the island make sure to snap a picture to record your travels! You can find the schedule for the trolley here. All we ask is to not take a photo in front of the trolley as it will hold the driver up and put it off schedule!

free trolley anna maria
Photo courtesy of www.annamariaislandchamber.org

8. Donuts from The Donut Experiment

If you like sweets The Donut Experiment is an absolute must to go to. With delicious donuts that make for great pictures you can’t go wrong here. Plus, you get to choose EXACTLY what goes on your donuts as they are made-to-order. There will be a little wait however as they are extremely popular!

scavenger hunt donuts
Grab some yummy donuts!

9. Spell your name in shells

Leave a little of yourself behind and spell your name out in the sand! Anna Maria has pretty shells littering the island, and is a great way to get creative on your vacation. Plus it makes your pictures a little more personalized!

shell name
Photo courtesy of http://trenchesofmommyhood.blogspot.com/2011/04/jacob.html

10. Build a sand castle

What better way to show off the island’s beautiful sand than creating sand castles? Show off your creative skills and build your own or be on the look out for professionals creating theirs! This is also a great activity to do with the family, and adding kids into the picture only makes it cuter! Get inventive and have fun.

sandcastle scavenger hunt
Find or build your own sand castle!

11. Duffy’s famous burger from Duffy’s Tavern

Known for their delicious burgers and cold beer, Duffy’s Tavern is the perfect place to go for food. Make sure to document you’re meal for the scavenger hunt on Anna Maria Island!

scavenger hunt at Duffy's Tavern
Get the best burgers and beer at Duffy’s Tavern!

12. Selfie at the beach

The best part of vacationing at Anna Maria is the beach! With pretty water and cool wildlife you’re sure to get some awesome pictures. Take a selfie (or selfies!) with the family, you’re sure to get some Instagram-worthy pictures!

beach selfie
Take fun selfie’s at the beach!

 

13. Visit the Historic Green Village

Located on Pine Avenue, the Historic Green Village is one out of 100 places worldwide to have achieved the highest possible green building standard. With cool shops such as ami Outfitters and Beach Bums there’s a lot to see and do! Learn more about this historical place here.

historic green village scavenger hunt on Anna Maria Island
Snap a picture at Anna Maria’s Green Village! Photo courtesy of http://www.historicgreenvillage.com/

Have fun with this scavenger hunt on Anna Maria Island, and remember to be safe!

 

 

Kids art workshop at the Anna Maria Island Art League

Holmes Beach – The Anna Maria Island Art League is hosting a three day kids art workshop called “Exploring Creativity’, taught by Marie Garafano. The class will be taking place from Monday, March 30th through Wednesday, April 1st from 1:30-3:30pm.

During the class children will elarn how to paint with watercolors as well as experiment with colalge to create expressive pictures. Marie Garafano is a watercolor painter and former illustrator/designer who also illustrated the children’s book “Ginger Goes on a Diet”.

The cost for the class is $50 per child and supplies will be provided. Classes are limited to 10 people and children should dress comfortably in clothes they are okay getting paint on.

For more information or to register for the class, call 941-778-2099 or visit the gallery itself  in Holmes Beach at 5312 Holmes Boulevard, Monday, Wednesday and Friday from 10am-2pm.

Spring Events at the Anna Maria Island Community Center

Anna Maria – The Anna Maria Island Community Center Spring Events are a phenomenal community resource that house classes, courses, workshops, an exercise center and cafe. Check out what’s going on at the community center this spring!

Spring Events:

Tour of Homes
Saturday, March 21st
10am to 4pm. Tickets are $20 per person. Do not forget to purchase your tickets for the handmade quilt “Seas the Day on AMI.” Raffle tickets are $1 for one or $5 for six. Get your tickets today!
Community Pancake Breakfast
Saturday, March 21st
8am to 11am. All you can eat. Price is $6 in advance and $8 at the door. Children five and under eat free.
Program EXPO
Saturday, March 21st
9am to 11am. Receive information about upcoming Spring Sports Programs, Spring Break Camps, Teen Program, our revamped Volunteer Program, Fitness Class demos, Specialty Class information, and
Tennis and Pickleball information.
Harley Raffle
Get your raffle tickets for a 2003 Anniversary Edition Harley Davidson 1200 Sportster. Only 125 tickets will be sold. The winner will be announced at the Silver Affaire on April 18th
Raffle tickets are $125.

Sports League:

Tryouts for Baseball
4-7 year olds: April 10th at 6pm
8-12 year olds: April 10th at 7pm

Tryouts for Basketball
5-7 year olds: April 6th at 6pm
8-10 year olds: April 8th at 6pm
11–13 year olds: April 6th at 7:30pm
14-17 year olds: April 8th at 6pm
Adults: April 7th at 7pm

Tryout for Kickball
Adults: April 13th at 7pm

Tryout for Soccer
Adults: April 9th at 7pm

AMICC Hours & Contact Information
Monday – Friday: 6:30am to 9pm
Saturday: 9am to 5pm
Sunday: 12pm to 4pm

Phone: 941-78-1908

407 Magnolia Ave, Anna Maria, FL 34216

Online at www.IslandReal.com

 

New programs at the Anna Maria Island Community Center

Anna Maria – The Anna Maria Island Community Center is a phenomenal community resource that house classes, courses, workshops, an exercise center and cafe. Check out what’s going on at the community center this spring!

Community Programs

MONDAYS
Zumba 9am-10am
Yoga for Relaxation 8:45am-10am
Staying Strong 10:30am-11:30am
Karate 5pm-6pm
Self Defense 6pm-7pm
TUESDAYS
Chair Yoga 8:45am -9:45am
Pilates/Yoga Mix for Beginners 9:30am-10:30am
Conversational Spanish 4:30pm-6pm
WEDNESDAYS
Zumba 10:15am-11:15am
Watercolor 10am-1pm
Mahjongg Lessons 1:30pm-4:00pm
Zumba 6:15pm-7:15pm
THURSDAYS
Chair Yoga 8:45am-9:45am
Pilates/Yoga Mix for Beginners 9:30am-10:30am
Mahjongg Club 10am-12pm
Karate 5pm-6pm
FRIDAYS
Yoga for Relaxation 8:45am-10am
Bridge Lessons 1:30pm-4pm
SATURDAYS
Iron Yoga 9am-10am
**Classes are subjected to change. Pre-registration
is required for some classes and classes may be
limited.**

Spring Break Camp

March 27, 30, and 31, April 1 and 2
Need a fun and safe environment for your kids during  spring break? AMICC will offer Spring Break Camp for elementary school aged children as well as children in middle school.
K-5th: Friday: Jumpin’ Fun Sports
Monday: Pirates Baseball Game
Tuesday : Chuck E. Cheese T
Wednesday: Center Fun Day with Surf Set
Thursday : Tom Bennett Park
6th-8th: Friday: Jumpin’ Fun Sports
Monday: Pirates Baseball Game
Tuesday: Hungry Howies and Riverwalk
Wednesday: Putt Putt Golf, Ice Cream, & Surf Set
Thursday: UTC Mall

Pre-registration is required and space is limited. Trips are subject to change.

AMICC Hours & Contact Information
Monday – Friday: 6:30am to 9pm
Saturday: 9am to 5pm
Sunday: 12pm to 4pm

Phone: 941-778-1908

407 Magnolia Ave, Anna Maria, FL 34216

Online at www.IslandReal.com

Anna Maria Elementary School 2014 Fall Festival

Anna Maria Elementary Fall Festival is the best way to make Halloween last and to ring in Fall here on Anna Maria Island. The Anna Maria Elementary School Fall Festival is on Saturday November 1st from 3:30 to 8PM!!!  This event is open to the public, so you do not need to be or have a student at this school to enjoy the event.

This year’s festivities will start out with a children’s costumed parade beginning at 3:30PM at the Anna Maria Island Chamber of Commerce located at 5313 Gulf Drive, Holmes Beach, FL 34217.  They will then take a path south down Gulf Drive ending at the elementary school located at 4700 Gulf Dr Holmes Beach, FL 34217.

After the parade there will be carnival type games with prizes, a costume contest with prizes and a HUGE bake sale not with prizes… sorry.   There will be live music by Blue Echo Bluegrass to enjoy with lots of eats and treats too with the island cookout!

If you didn’t get enough scares on Halloween make sure to take a tour of the Haunted House (which is open on October 31st as well)!  There are also not so scary tours for the little monsters/princesses as well that will not give them nightmares.

All proceeds for this event will go directly back to the school to support their programs and facilities.  If you would like more information please contact the school directly at 941-708-5525.  The event is put on by the school’s PTO, and is one not to be missed.  Hope to see you all there!

Anna Maria Chalk Festival – Manatee County’s First and Only Chalk Festival

Anna Maria –  Taking place January 18th and 19th on Pine Avenue in the city of Anna Maria, the Anna Maria Chalk Festival is Manatee County’s first and only chalk festival. A partnership between the Pine Ave Restoration group, the Tourist and Development Council, the Historic Green Village, members of the Anna Maria Island’s artistic and cultural community and Sarasota Chalk Festival founder Denise Kowal, it is a truly community oriented event. A VIP dinner will be held the night before to help raise funds for the event and to give people a chance to meet the artists that will be pouring their souls onto the streets of Anna Maria.

Meet the artists at the Anna Maria Chalk Festival VIP Dinner
Contact Micheal Coleman at 941-592-6642 for more information.

With the theme “Historic Anna Maria: From Pirates to Present”, around 25 artists will inhabit three block of Pine Avenue over the course of two days.  Street painters, also known as I Madonnari, will use chalk as their medium and the road surface of Pine Avenue as their canvas to create over-sized masterworks of art while the public becomes an integral part of the creative process as the viewer. Students in grades 7-12 can have their own spot to chalk and the younger children are invited to chalk in the Children’s Area. Participation is free to all and chalk is provided.

Being an event truly created for the community, the goal isn’t for humongous crowds to the flood the streets and advertisements to cover the media, it’s about creating a personal event.

When asked about the event, Micheal Coleman, one of the event chairs, was quoted as saying “I believe a successful event is not measured in numbers, but in the quality of the experience enjoyed by all. From the artists, to the volunteers, to the visitors and including, of course, impacted residents, the idea is to enjoy a couple of days expressing and appreciating art as its created.”

Musicians will be lining the streets and storefronts to provide a backdrop of music for the works of art being created. Musicians include locals such as Kristopher Byerly, Scott Blum, Trevor Bystrem, William Hellem-Brusso, Howie Banfield, Debbie Hood, Elephant in the Room, Savannah Brady, Can’t Turn Left, Bill Vinhage and more. 

The Anna Maria Chalk Festival is taking place on Pine Ave, Anna Maria, The Greenest Little Main Street in America. Pine Avenue is a live and work paradise sprinkled with residential cottages, professional offices and retail shops to serve the surrounding community. Its restoration project  advanced the quality and sustainability of the overall area. Native plantings are a natural extension to the responsible development along the street. Rather than hardscapes and lawns which encourage runoff into the precious  Gulf and Bay, the street uses soft-scapes such as “native pathways” consisting of engineered sand wherever possible as part of systems for  capture and re-use of rainwater.  This has the practical effect of meeting and exceeding the objectives of the Southwest Florida Water Management District (SWFWMD).

For more information head over to Facebook and find us at Facebook.com/AnnaMariaChalkFestival.

Lester Family Fun Day at the Anna Maria Island Community Center on Sat, Dec 7th!

Lester

The 12th annual Lester Family Fun Day is drawing near. Free admission for the whole family….old-fashioned fun at old-fashioned prices!

Bring your camera to capture those big smiles as Santa Claus arrives on a Fire Truck at noon! Awesome raffle prizes and drawings for turkeys will keep you on the edge of your seats. From Manatee Player’s Dickens Christmas Carolers to Tony the Balloon Guy, this is a good, old-fashioned family day at our community center. Pony rides, a bounce house, face painting, card making, cookie decorating, crafts and more will keep kids of all ages entertained. Bring your appetite as well, as you may want to snack on hot dogs, snacks, sodas and even the famous Duffy Burgers!

So mark your calendar for Saturday, December 7th, to have a great time from 10:30am through 2pm at the Anna Maria Island Community Center, located at 407 Magnolia Ave, Anna Maria!

2013 Halloween Trail of Treats on Anna Maria Island

Halloween TreatThe Anna Maria Island Chamber of Commerce will, once again, host the Trail of Treats for children of all ages.

It begins at the Anna Maria Island Chamber of Commerce at 3:30pm on Thursday, October 31st, with the Kiddie Costume contest for ages 0-12, and continue until 7+pm.  There will be a free photobooth and a map of the 50+ participating businesses island-wide, that will have goodies available for trick or treating.

There is even a Crazy, Creepy Crawly Critter Costume Contest hosted by the Islander newspaper at the Feast restaurant at 5pm.  Don’t miss the Halloween fun!

Halloween's Top 5 Beach Costumes

Halloween is a fun time of year where we get to play pretend and live out our imaginations.  If you’re imagination is full of thoughts of the beach, here are our five favorite beach-inspired Halloween costumes:

 

5.  THE HULA GIRLhula girl

 

Luaus and hulas might be a Hawaiian tradition, but we have to respect the beautiful tradition and overall appeal of the hula girl.

 

 

 

child-mermaid-costume

4. MERMAID/MERMAN

No humanistic character has a closer relationship to the sea than the mermaid.  We can’t help but be jealous of life spent in the ocean and love to see the little mermaids who stop by the Island Real Estate office to trick or treat.

 

 

 

 

 

lifeguard costuem3. LIFEGUARD

These are some of our heroes.  Lifeguards and other first responders who protect our beaches and keep our loved ones safe are near and dear to our hearts, so grab shorts and tank tops and  represent for the lifeguards this Halloween.

 

 

 

 

 

Shark-costume-baby-on-the-beach  2. SHARK BABY

Not everyone can pull this one off.  But if you have the chubby cheeks for it, you can’t go wrong with a shark baby disguise.  It’s both ferocious and irresistible at the same time.

 

 

 

 

 

 

TAMI baby costume No. 1 TAMI SEA TURTLE

Tami the sea turtle is our Island Real Estate mascot and our favorite Halloween costume concept.  Just imagine all of the extra candy you can store in that shell!!