Archive for March, 2014

10 High-Flying Facts about this Weekend’s Florida International Air Show

Wednesday, March 26th, 2014

This weekend the 34th annual air show comes to the Punta Gorda airport. If you’ve never seen an air show in Florida, you must go. I can remember going 30 years ago, when it was a one day event. Since then, it has grown to a bigger, more exciting three-day event.

Let's hope the pilots get the opportunity to enjoy the beautiful views of Punta Gorda.

Let’s hope the pilots get the opportunity to enjoy the beautiful views of Charlotte County.

Before you go, here are some facts you might not know about the air show:

  • USA today named the show one of the “Ten Best Air Shows Around the World.” It appeared in the Southeast Tourism Society’s list of the “Top 20 Events in the southeastern United States” for Spring 2010.
  • This year’s air show features the United States Air Force Air Demonstration Squad, the Thunderbirds. The squad is often called “America’s Ambassadors in Blue.”
  • The 2014 air show theme is “A Salute to Veterans.” One of only four surviving Doolittle Raiders, Richard Cole, will be attending as an honored guest.
  • The Thunderbirds are one of the oldest squadrons in the Air Force. In September 1985, the Air Force Historical Research Agency combined its history with the 30th Aero Squadron, which began at Kelly Field, Texas on June 13, 1917.
  • Worldwide the Thunderbirds have performed over 4,000 shows in the past 54 years.
  • Other performances at the air show will include the Lima Lima Flight Team, the Quick Silver P-51D Mustang, a B-25, OV-1 Mohawk, and the US Special Operations command parachute demo team.
  • The air show has a free app you can download to keep up on air show news and event.
  • Adult tickets are $5 off if you buy them online and print your ticket.
  • The show relies on volunteers. All the proceeds go to Southwest Florida working charities.
  • You will witness air speeds of between 500 and 720 miles per hour!

You can find the weekend schedule here. Don’t forget to bring a chair and sunscreen. Outside food and drink are forbidden. Although, I never wore them, young children may need earplugs—it is going to be loud.

For more information, visit the show’s website http://www.floridaairshow.com/index.html.

See you there!

One Simple Way to Find Friends with Shared Interests in Punta Gorda

Wednesday, March 19th, 2014

Whenever you move, it’s normal to wonder how you will find people with similar interests. You might put off coming south, because you can’t give up your social life up north. It can be particularly difficult if you have less commonplace interests. Maybe you play the ukelele, dance Polynesian style, or love the Detroit Lions. You should remember many Punta Gorda residents are northern transplants, and unless you are looking for mountaineering or cross-country skiing groups, you can easily find friends.

One simple way to find new friends is Meetup.com. It’s a simple website where people post activities they want to share with others.

Get Started

If you’ve never tried Meetup, you can go to the website or download the app. You create an account with your email address or Facebook information.

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Find a Group for You

Once you are logged in, click on Groups. Choose your city and how far you are willing to travel. If you want to take a road trip to a Sarasota or Naples, you can either expand the mileage or change cities. You never have to travel anywhere without a plan to meet up with new people again.

When you find a group for you, you will be asked a serious of introductory questions. Your answers can only be seen by other group members.  After you’re a group member, you simply RSVP to activities and show up. It doesn’t matter that you don’t know anyone. In fact, many groups are started with the intention of meeting new people.

Most groups are free to join. Although many ask active members to pay small annual fees–usually under $10. The money goes to keeping up the group and administrative fees.

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Start a Group

Can’t find a group for you? For $12 a month, you can start one.

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Search by Date

Finally, if you’re not sure what you want to do but are eager to get out of the house, you can search the Calendar. There you will find ideas on what to do around town and new friends to accompany you.

 

 

 

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Do you have an interesting hobby you’d like to share with others? Check out Meetup and find others just like you!

Take a Video Tour of Punta Gorda!

Tuesday, March 11th, 2014

All you know is you are done. You’re done with the scraping, the shoveling, and the trudging through snow. You can’t spend another springtime hoping the cold will end.

Next year, you will spend your winters on your boat.  You will laugh with glee as you watch the weather. The only ice you’ll see will chill your margarita.

Now that you’ve decided to finally start your search, you find the internet can give you all the facts you need about Punta Gorda. You can read about our minuscule crime rate, our near perfect weather, and the endless things to do here.

However, it might be difficult to get a feel for what Punta Gorda is really like. When every subdivision that grabs your interest has boating, golf, and tennis right outside your door, how do you know where to start?

Well, we feel for you. Punta Gorda has some amazing places to live. Although nothing compares to actually visiting and letting our buyer’s agents give you the tour, we made this video to get you started. The video takes you through the major subdivisions, explains the waterways, and shows off some of the many activities around town. We hope it answers your questions about our favorite city.

One more thing to consider: As you drool over the water views and gorgeous landscapes, remind yourself that we shot this video in February 2014.

Want your winter 2015 to look like the video? Now is the time to put away those long  johns, heavy coats, and mittens forever. Come down and let us show you around.

Spring Training is Here! Go See a Rays Game at Charlotte Sports Park

Wednesday, March 5th, 2014

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March in Southwest Florida means spring training. All over Florida, major league teams move into local stadiums to warm-up  for the regular season. Historically, spring training was a chance for players to get back into shape after the long winter break. Yet these days most players spend their winter break staying in shape.

While players and managers may moan about no longer needing such a long spring training, the spectator wins. You are no longer going to a game to watch players work off their holiday pie. Instead, you see professional athletes ready to show off their skills for much less cost than in the regular season.What does that mean for you? 

The Tampa Bay Rays

This March, the Tampa Bay Rays have taken over Charlotte County’s own Charlotte Sports Park. The Rays originally came to Charlotte County in 2009, and have been filling up the park ever since. A baseball game is not much fun without a cheering crowd. Last year, the Rays played 17 games during spring training and sold 106,102 tickets with an average 5,895 tickets per game. The park seats about 6000, so you can expect to feel the cheers of the crowds.

Most games are afternoon games and start at 1:05 pm. Evening games start at 7:05. You can find the schedule here. Tickets range from $15-$35. Parking at Charlotte Sports Park costs $10.

Florida’s Grapefruit league’s 15 teams started playing in February. If you are looking to see your home team play and don’t mind traveling around Florida, check out the Grapefruit League’s program here.

Charlotte Sports Park

USA Today Travel recently nominated Port Charlotte as one of the Ten Best Spring Training cities. You can vote for Charlotte Sports Park here. (We are currently number one—no surprise.)

The Sports Park underwent a $27 million renovation in 2009. It now features two outfied areas, a tiki bar, and a children’s playground.
During spring training the Rays take over the park. April through August, the park is home to the Class-A Florida State League team The Charlotte Stone Crabs and the rookie team the Gulf Coast Rays.

The park is located at 2300 El Jobean Road, Port Charlotte, Florida.