Fernandina Harbor Marina Visitor…..007 Style

Superyacht at the Marina Today…waiting for 007?

….several looked like “superyachts” to me. Amazing to see where I played as a boy under wooden piers.

“AB 116 was created from the concept of a yacht able to navigate at high speeds in any type of sea without upsetting the canons of comfort that are part of the DNA of all AB Yachts jewels. And like all AB Yachts masterpieces, AB 116 is fully customizable in both interior and exterior furnishing.”  http://www.abyachts.com/abyachts/en/yacht/296/AB-116/

The impressive thing to me is a 1400 mile range when using only one engine.

City’s Chief Hurley and Nassau County Sherrif Leeper…Cooperation and Respect

Taking a short walk after lunch, I ran into the heads of our local law enforcement and it struck me how lucky we are to have these two individuals.  Both come with exceptional resume’s, but they also work together and love the community.  Sometimes the stars align and sometimes the taxpayers really get lucky.  In 2015, the consolidation of dispatch services, saved as much as $1,000,000 on paper, in the first year alone.  Savings after the first year run well over $200,000 annually and quality should  actually improve.  With staff reductions and an avoided purchase of new hardware for a city system, this under-reported change happened because our local law enforcement works well together.

Events, taxpayer savings and public safety all improve, when you see this kind of cordial, professional relationship.

Locals Know….Nice to be Noticed

The press release is a nice touch and locals are always pleased to see this kind of recognition.



Community Development Dept.

204 Ash Street, Fernandina Beach, FL 32034



Fernandina Beach Wins the Great Places in Florida People’s Choice Award

clip_image004Representatives of the Florida Chapter of the American Planning Association traveled to Fernandina Beach today to announce the Great Places in Florida People’s Choice Award, granted to Historic Downtown Fernandina Beach. The Great Places Award celebrates communities that have a true sense of place, cultural and historic interest, and strong community involvement. Historic Downtown Fernandina Beach received the most votes out of the finalists.

From the Florida APA website, “Great Places in Florida is an awards program created to highlight Florida’s Great Places and the communities and people that have created them. Florida is full of amazing places that keep our communities thriving and make this state a wonderful place to live. Great Places stand out with their exceptional character and lasting value. They are memorable, perhaps even famous, but each deeply cared for and valued. Citizens, planners, business leaders and elected officials work hard to create, sustain and improve the places that we love and enjoy in our cities.”

The Florida Chapter of the American Planning Association (APA) named four finalists in the People’s Choice Awards category of the Great Places in Florida contest. Fernandina Beach was among the final four, which also included Lakeland, Lake Worth, and the Gaines Street District in Tallahassee. The City thanks the Amelia Island Tourist Development Council for submitting the nomination, and all who voted to help Historic Downtown Fernandina Beach win the award. For more information, visit http://www.floridaplanning.org/great-places/.

Responsible Influence

Sometimes sayings stick in your head and one seems to be staying in place more than others.   Apparently, I need to find better sources, but a variation of something I’ve been thinking today, “Don’t mistake my kindness for weakness…” came from Al Capone.  Compassion is sometimes not taking advantage of your position, when it there is no purpose.  Writing this blog creates a kind of influence and I make a point of avoiding personal criticism, because I understand, even though this is all opinion, the exposure could be used in an irresponsible way.

I still see the code of ethics used by the Society of Professional Journalists as one of the best guides to communication.  https://www.spj.org/ethicscode.asp  Recognizing when we take a wrong turn in communication is a great way to keep people working together.  Listen, even if you don’t agree and I’ll listen if you write.  

19th Annual 8 Flags Car Show in Historic Fernandina

What a great way to spend Saturday morning!   This show is in it’s 19th year and I’m surprised by how many locals I don’t see.  Casual, laid back….just a great time with shops open, the farmer’s market operating and even artists painting local scenery.  If you live here or if you’re a local, this is worth the trip and parking is ridiculously easy to find.



Great event and history of giving back to the community and local non-profits….. www.ameliacruizers.org

Justin Hess Foundation 2015 Show Logo

In the previous 15 years, the Amelia Cruizers have given over $89,000 to charity, which includes the Justin Hess Scholarship Fund at Fernandina Beach High School.  To find out more click on the link above for the Fernandina Beach High School web site.

Nassau County Council on Aging

We cheerfully deliver critical services to Nassau County seniors in five major categories: Meals on Wheels, In-Home Services, COA Transportation and Adult Day Health Care. We also operate two Senior Centers: the East Nassau Center in Fernandina Beach and the West Nassau Center in Hilliard.

Wildlife in the Front Yard

My wife, youngest son Landon and I were out for a bike ride earlier today and saw something that’s becoming more common here on Amelia Island. With no natural predators other than the occasional coyote, deer show up in front yards across the island, especially on Northern Amelia Island.IMG_7007 IMG_7008


Happy 453rd Birthday…… Isle de Mai….Amelia Island

CarolinaToFloridaCoast1733.jpgNot only do we have 8 flags, we were also flying Some of those flags 453 years ago….three years longer than St. Augustine?   I think I’ll settle for more flags.  

The map to the right (1733) is interesting, in itself.  As a native, I tend to forget the sheer number of coastal settlements.  There is a huge history to the island and the region.   In 1817, pirate Luis Aury declared himself ruler of the island under the Mexican flag.  Fernandina, for some time, became a pirate haven and a rumored location of buried treasure.  Springs like the one you see here, flowed with clean, fresh water, when the water table was higher.  This is a spot, I believe, flowed from the center of a blackberry patch near by home.  40 years and a world of change, only a few vines remain, but the location still has a certain feeling of history.  I can imagine ship’s captains in the 1500’s looking for fresh water on a sparsely populated island. 

We may not be the oldest, but I think we’re, by far, the most interesting city in Florida.  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Original_Town_of_Fernandina_Historic_Site

Fernandina Beach is a city in Nassau County in the state of Florida in the United States of America, on Amelia Island. …….  Known as the “Isle of 8 Flags”, it has had the flags of the following nations flown over it since 1562: France, Spain, Great Britain, Spain (again), the Patriots of Amelia Island, the Green Cross of Florida, Mexico, the Confederate States of America, and the United States. It is the only municipality in the United States that has flown eight different national flags.[3]

Fernandina Beach, Florida – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Hurricane Floyd….1999 and Amelia-Island.net’s History.

The post below was a "pre-Wordpress" post on Amelia Island Net, back in 1999.  Time passes, but looking back at a post from nearly 16 years ago….Wow!  Keep Preparedness in mind and pay attention to emergency updates in hurricane season.  Locals may seem lax, but they know to move when a major storm is on the way.  While the old surfer in me still hopes for waves, I’d love to see storms pass a few hundred miles offshore, instead of making landfall. 

On September 15th, 1999, Hurricane Floyd passed a short distance off the coast of Amelia Island.  Although this was not a direct "hit", it is interesting to see what happens here when a category 3 storm passes nearby.   The pictures you see were all taken before, during and after the storm.  If you have any shots you would like to add, you can e-mail them to source@amelia-island.net .

Click any of the pictures to enlarge…

floyd1.jpg (36892 bytes)floyd2.jpg (39525 bytes)floyd3.jpg (35917 bytes)floyd4.jpg (40741 bytes)floyd5.jpg (36568 bytes)floyd6.jpg (40713 bytes)floyd7.jpg (29847 bytes)floyd8.jpg (34650 bytes)floyd9.jpg (52941 bytes)floyd10.jpg (58649 bytes)floyd13.jpg (55040 bytes)floyd14.jpg (43256 bytes)floyd15.jpg (33983 bytes)floyd20.jpg (54516 bytes)floyd21.jpg (37252 bytes)dora.jpg (90562 bytes)

Well, that is about everything.  We saw very little damage here on the island.  The pictures run from the left to right starting at the top.  The first shot is the day before the storm.  Then all the rest are the day of the storm and the final picture is the morning after.

If you want to see how lucky we were this time, another storm in 1964 caused far more damage.  I think the last shot is a picture of the North Beach area of Amelia Island during Hurricane Dora.

Anyone is welcome to use these pictures with the following stipulation.  If they are published, you must contact me for a release and I will ask for a small credit.  No permission is given to sell the above pictures without express written consent from Edward E. Boner, Jr. The last shot of Dora is not mine.  If you would like a copy, call Quality Fast Photo at 904-261-9600.

Hurricanes and Complacency

[Image of 5-day forecast and coastal areas under a warning or a watch]

NHC Image of projected path for Erika on 8/26/2015 at 5PM. Go to the National Hurricane Center for Current Information.

Watching the news, www.weather.com , www.nhc.noaa.gov and various forecasting tools online, we all should pay attention to storms like Erika.   The projected path can change and evacuation in Florida is far from simple.  If you remember the last near miss here in Fernandina, Hurricane Floyd in September of 1999 or Dora in 1964, there is a world of difference or can be in storms.  The link below is one of the best common sense plans I’ve seen.  Consider your plan to meet family members, in the event of a major storm event, but plan for water, food and shelter, if power is interrupted.  Filling bathtubs or using water from a hot water heater is good, if you aren’t evacuated, but evacuation and mandatory evacuation will happen with a major storm.

As a native, I’m not complacent.  I do watch storms and am used to thinking about the possibility of wind shear and projected increases in wind speed.  I would highly recommend basic preparation for the possibility of a storm.   We tend to forget the Andrews and Katrinas, after time passes.  Preparation for pets, family and property  can go a long way.


Map of Springs and Sinks in Florida

This is an exceptional map of spring and sink locations here in Florida, put together by Jhwum Ki-ak.  See the reference to the source below.  I’ve been to some of the areas, but the smaller springs or less known areas are entirely new to me.  I’m inclined to make a point of taking the kids to the Suwanee River, when I’m sure the water is down and clear.   Ichetucknee State Park for tubing, is a great day trip from the island, but most visitors never know about the inland clear-water springs.  

There are a variety of state parks and springs, all within 2 to 4 hours of Amelia Island and interesting for the day.  Crystal River, on the west side or Blue Springs, will often have manatees in the winter, as the animals look for warmer water and food. 

Florida Spring and Sink Location Map: By Jhwum Ki-ak A map of the known springs in Florida.
Contact: jhwumkiak@gmail.com