35th Annual Cortez Fishing Festival

The 35th Annual Cortez Fishing Festival will be Saturday and Sunday February 18th and 19th 10am-6pm. In the fishing village of Cortez this event is a fund raiser for the Cortez village and wetlands.

35th Annual Cortez Fishing Festival

About 20,000+ people will visit the festival across Saturday and Sunday. Admission of $4 for adults and children under 12 are free. Parking will be available east of Cortez Fishing Village about a five minute walk from the event. Additionally, park at G.T Bray recreational facility and pay for the $3 round trip shuttle service. G.T Bray is at 5502 33rd Avenue in West Bradenton. Coquina Beach on Anna Maria Island, will also offer parking and shuttle service.

Seafood is the star!

The seafood comes from the local boats and hard working people fishing the gulf and bay. While offering a large selection of seafood, vendors will be cooking it to order! Additionally, enjoy live music, dancing, arts and crafts fair, marine life touch tank, and exhibits about local commercial fishing and marine life.

Funds raised are for local non-profit organization FISH also called, Florida Institute of Saltwater Heritage. Proceeds will go toward maintenance of 95 acres of Mangrove wetlands just east of Cortez Village. This area is called the FISH Preserve. It is some of the only undeveloped land on Sarasota Bay.

Mangrove wetland is also vital to the success of a healthy marine environment. They function as a nursery to countless numbers of species, in addition to filtering pollutants and protecting against erosion.

For additional Information call 941-254-4972, or cortez-fish.com online.

34th Annual Cortez Fishing Festival
Cortez Fishing Festival. Picture Credit: Cortez Commercial Fishing Festival Facebook page.


If you’re looking for Anna Maria Island rentals visit IslandReal.com. See our inventory of almost 300 homes, cottages and condos.



2015 Cortez Commercial Fishing Festival

Cortez – The 33rd annual Cortez Commercial Fishing Festival is this Saturday and Sunday, February 14th-15th from 10:00am – 6:00pm. Art, music and seafood will bring scores of people to the historic Cortez fishing village and you won’t want to miss it!

cortez commercial village festival

Admission – $3.00 for Adults – Children 12 under free

To find Cortez Village on a map, locate Bradenton which is about 50 miles south of Tampa. Find State Road 684, known locally as Cortez Road or 44th Avenue, and go west to the beaches.

Remote Parking for the Annual Cortez Commercial Fishing Festival

Every year there is a something new at the Festival. Festival goers will want to note that there is a remote parking area in west Bradenton. You can avoid the traffic and enjoy the bus ride with your friends to the Festival ($2.50 round trip). The new parking site is located at G. T. Bray Park (5502 33rd Ave. Dr. W., Bradenton, 34209). Just turn east off of 59th St. onto 33rd Ave. W. You can’t miss it.

As in past years, this same shuttle service is being provided from the remote parking area located at Coquina Beach on Anna Maria Island. Island folks can take the free trolley to the parking site.

Also, the parking area just east of the village off of Cortez Road has been expanded again this year. But get there early or later in the day as this parking area tends to fill up quickly. Parking spots open up later in the day.

Another option is to park in the western part of town. Many folks manage small parking areas throughout the village with some charging a fee depending on how close they are to the village.

The Annual Cortez Commercial Fishing Festival is organized entirely by a volunteer committee of the Florida Institute for Saltwater Heritage (F.I.S.H.), a Florida not-for-profit corporation.

2013 Anna Maria Elementary School Fall Festival for Halloween

Kids in costume for Fall Fest

Come out and enjoy a good old fashioned festival of fun at the Anna Maria Elementary school.  Open to everyone, this event features live music, fun and games, raffles, carnival prizes, a bake sale, and an island cookout. And don’t miss the Haunted House- set up for dark display, as well as some lighter tours for the littler folk!  Festivities begin with a childrens’ parade at 10am from the Anna Maria Island Chamber of Commerce, and move to the school for fun until 3pm.

Get into the Halloween Spirit, Island style, with the Fall Festival!

10am Start at:
Anna Maria Island Chamber of Commerce
5313 Gulf Drive
Holmes Beach, FL  34217

11am Festival located at:
Anna Maria Elementary School
4700 Gulf Drive
Holmes Beach, FL  34217

Great Time At Food and Wine On Pine in Anna Maria City

Pine Avenue was packed from 11am- 6pm for the 3rd annual Food and Wine on Pine. The atmosphere could not have been better perfect weather, booths with delicious food, and some great wine tastings.  At the Island Real Estate office we had a show stopper with our new TAMI Turtle photo op. Young and old had a good laugh and a chance to send a digital postcard of their day on beautiful Anna Maria Island.  Not sure how next year’s event could top this years but the Chiles Group/Sandbar Restaurant will once again pull out all the stops to make it a special event in 2014.

Update: this event continues and 2015 provided for a fabulous Food and Wine event.

Island Real Estate has some fabulous vacation rentals right in the heart of the Food and Wine on Pine festival.  Casa Calienta at 217 Pine is one fabulous choice.  Another good choice is 414 Magnolia.

Bradenton – Cortez Commercial Fishing Festival

The Cortez Commercial Fishing Festival is an event to celebrate “old Florida” and the fishing heritage of Cortez Village. The festival was founded in 1981 and drew in over 500 people to this small fishing village. The event has grown having an average attendance of 25,000 people. Considering the Cortez Village is less than 10 blocks large that is a significant amount of people for the community.

The Cortez Commercial Fishing Festival offers many things such as great live music, nautical arts and crafts, children’s activities, environmental exhibits, more seafood than imaginable, and of course, beer. This is one party you don’t want to miss.

Parking can be trouble if you don’t get there early enough. There are two satellite parking lots this year, G. T. Bray Park (5502 33rd Ave. Dr. W., Bradenton, 34209) and Coquina Beach (the southern most end of Anna Maria Island) with a shuttle to the festival for $2.00 round trip.

Admission is $3.00.

2013 Entertainment Schedule
Saturday February 16th
10:00 – 11:30 am Passerine
11:30 – 12:00 pm Shanty Singers
12:00 – 12:15 pm Awards and Introductions
12:30 – 2:00 pm Eric von Hahmann
2:30 – 4:00 pm Soul R Coaster
4:30 – 6:00 pm Razing Cane

Sunday February 17th
10:30 – 11:30 am Soupy Davis and his Band
12:00 – 1:30 pm Eric von Hahmann
2:00 – 3:30 pm Shotgun Justice
4:00 – 5:30 pm Scott’s Garage

Cortez Village
119th Street
Bradenton, FL 34209

Annual Bradenton Craft Festival – Downtown

Bradenton craft festivalThe 4th Annual Downtown Bradenton Craft Festival is presented by American Craft Endeavors. American Craft Endeavers also produces Siesta Fiesta and the Downtown Sarasota Craft Fair. The Craft Festival takes place on Barcarrota Blvd right along the water. Some of America’s best crafters will be displaying and selling they’re works. Jewelry, pottery, handmade body products, paintings, and other unique crafts are what you can expect to see. The Craft Festival has something for everyone!

The Downtown Bradenton Craft Festival takes place in early February each year.  Take a look at our Bradenton things to do information page for great ideas of things to do on your vacation to Anna Maria Island.


4th Annual Downtown Bradenton Craft Show
Downtown Bradenton
1301 1st Ave
Bradenton, FL 34205

Anna Maria Island Winterfest

Anna Maria Island Winterfest
Winterfest 2011

Get ready for the Anna Maria Island WINTERFEST – the annual Fine Arts and Craft show held in the Holmes Beach City Hall Field this Saturday and Sunday December 8th and 9th from 10-4:30 each day.  Parking and admission are free, leashed pets welcome.  Perfect place to pick up local art for holiday gifts!

Please note, this is an old post and the Anna Maria Island Winterfest changes from year to year.  Your best bet for more festival information is to check the Island Real Estate Facebook page as well as visit one of our local Anna Maria Island Newspapers for more event information.

Holmes Beach City Hall Field
5801 Marina Drive
Holmes Beach Fl 34217


Bridge Street Market in Bradenton Beach

Bridge Street Market in Bradenton Beach is held from 10:00 am – 3:00 pm every Sunday November through April. The market is located at 107 Bridge Street in Bradenton Beach. Visit your favorite vendors every Sunday at the Bridge Street Market and enjoy great food, art, crafts, jewelry, local musicians, fresh produce, and much more!

Bridge Street Market
107 Bridge Street
Bradenton Beach
For more information call: 215-906-0668

There are lots of events that occur on Bridge street all year long.  Here are a few events that occur on Bridge Street Market in Bradenton Beach.  Christmas on Bridge Street, Santa Clause comes to Bridge Street, Blues and Brews on Bridge Street and lots more can be found on Island Real Estate’s local scene.

Sarasota Chalk Festival – International Pavement Art

If you’re in the area October 28th – November 6th, come out and see what may be the biggest Chalk Festival yet!  This year’s theme for the Sarasota Chalk Festival is “Circus City, USA” and promises over 500 artist, 200,000 visitors and 5,000 children to be involved along with various street performers; there is even talk of live elephants to be used as muses!  For its 5th season, the festival will take place in Burns Court, Sarasota (downtown). This year will highlight the use of 2D & 3D chalk art, featuring artist David Brancato, who has won numerous 1st place awards from Disney!

Check out the pictures below from prior years, which have recently gained international recognition, and come see the masterpieces in person or make one yourself, this festival is free to the public!

Want more ideas for things to do in Sarasota?  Visit our top ten things to do in Sarasota information page.

South Pineapple Ave & Laurel Street
Sarasota Florida 34236


Crowd at Sarasota Chalk Festival
Image by Sarasotaday.com
Sarasota Chalk Festival
Image by Sarasotaday.com

Annual Cortez Fishing Festival

This weekend there is something fishy going on in the Village of Cortez… With live music, fresh Florida seafood, arts and crafts displays, the Cortez Fishing Festival is sure to be fun for the whole family. The annual Cortez commercial fishing festival is expecting more than 20,000 people in the Historic Village of Cortez this weekend.

The festival starts this Saturday February 18th and will continue through Sunday February 19th from 10am to 6pm on both days. Admission is only $3, and kids under 12 get in FREE! The proceeds benefit the F.I.S.H. Preserve.

There are a couple of different Parking options available for you this year: There will be free parking east of Festival area at the F.I.S.H. Preserve, space is limited and will defiantly fill up early.

Remote Parking will be available at G. T. Bray Park in Bradenton located at – 5502 33rd Avenue Drive West Bradenton, 34209. Additional parking will be available at Coquina Beach on Anna Maria Island – Anna Maria Island residents can take the free trolley to the parking site. Round-trip shuttle service from remote parking lots is only $2.50.

Live Music Schedule

Saturday February 18th Stage #1 – Waterfront
10:30 am: Soul R Coaster
12:00 pm: Awards and Introductions
12:30 pm: Eric von Hahmann
2:00 pm: Shaman
4:00 pm: Razing Cane

Saturday February 18th Stage #2 – Bratton Store
10:30 am: Eric von Hahmann
11:45 am: Passerine
1:00 pm: Brian Smalley
2:15 pm: St Pete & Main Hatch Motley Sea Shanty Singers
2:45 pm: Eric von Hahmann
4:00 pm: Jimmy Johnson

Sunday February 19th Stage #1 – Waterfront
10:30 am: Soupy Davis and his Band
12:00 pm: Eric von Hahmann
1:30 pm: Dr. Dave Band
3:30 pm: Gumbo Boogie Band

Sunday February 19th Stage #2 – Bratton Store
10:30 am: Main Hatch Motley Sea Shanty Singers
11:15 am: Jimmy Johnson
12:30 pm: Terry Blauvelt
1:45 pm: Sister Act – Lane & Val
3:00 pm: Eric von Hahmann
4:00 pm: Eric & Jimmy