Wildlife in Central Florida

If you enjoyed our post about Celebration’s Trails, you’ll be sure to love this!

Some of the best places to see wildlife are right here in Central Florida! Whether you’re looking for feathery birds, exotic fish or alligators, Central Florida has plenty of opportunity.

Let’s start right here in our community with Celebration’s walking trails. The trails wind all through the town’s downtown and conservation areas, giving peeks at what furry friends might be around. In Celebration we often see deer, hogs, roosters and chickens, turkeys, alligators and handfuls of beautiful birds.

Get up close and personal with birds at Lakeland’s Circle B Bar Reserve— a 1,267-acre reserve of cypress swamp and oak hammock. It’s home to thousands of wading birds, ibises, ducks, shorebirds and even bald eagles! Circle B Bar Reserve has been recognized by USA Today Travel as one of the 51 Greatest Places to See Wildlife.

But if you’re feeling a little more adventurous, take an airboat tour and experience the real Florida that isn’t often seen. Airboats are fast, flat-bottomed boats that often tour through the swampiest areas of Florida. You can spot alligators, birds and plant life as you travel right through the heart of their home.

Information source: VisitCentralFlorida.org

Wildlife in Central Florida

If you enjoyed our post about Celebration’s Trails, you’ll be sure to love this!

Some of the best places to see wildlife are right here in Central Florida! Whether you’re looking for feathery birds, exotic fish or alligators, Central Florida has plenty of opportunity.

Let’s start right here in our community with Celebration’s walking trails. The trails wind all through the town’s downtown and conservation areas, giving peeks at what furry friends might be around. In Celebration we often see deer, hogs, roosters and chickens, turkeys, alligators and handfuls of beautiful birds.

Get up close and personal with birds at Lakeland’s Circle B Bar Reserve— a 1,267-acre reserve of cypress swamp and oak hammock. It’s home to thousands of wading birds, ibises, ducks, shorebirds and even bald eagles! Circle B Bar Reserve has been recognized by USA Today Travel as one of the 51 Greatest Places to See Wildlife.

But if you’re feeling a little more adventurous, take an airboat tour and experience the real Florida that isn’t often seen. Airboats are fast, flat-bottomed boats that often tour through the swampiest areas of Florida. You can spot alligators, birds and plant life as you travel right through the heart of their home.

Information source: VisitCentralFlorida.org

New Construction Without the Long Wait

Who doesn’t want something shiny and brand new? Everyone, of course! Real estate is no different. People love the idea of being the first homeowner in a property, of having a home warranty to fall back on from the builder, and the ease of a move-in ready property. Often times the only drawback to new construction can be the long build times.

One of the best options for people wanting new construction but needing to be in something by a certain time is Inventory Homes. These are homes that the builder already has under construction when you visit the development. Sometimes they are homes that the original buyer has decided not to purchase but more often they are just started by the builder to keep up with demand. What is nice about these is that they are already underway, have been permitted, and will not take the typical 5-6 months to complete. You can almost always still pick the finishes and colors, and sometimes you can negotiate the price a little bit. The builder wants them sold as soon as they are finished, so they have incentive to move them.

Just a few miles from Celebration is an area called Champions Gate. It has some very nice hotels including the Omni Orlando Resort at Champions Gate and the Reunion Grande, and multiple championship golf courses. It is a great place to live, own a vacation home, or purchase property for investment income. Lennar Homes is currently constructing a neighborhood there called Stoneybrook at Champions Gate, and they have homes ranging in price from $255,000 to $373,000 and 1880 sq feet to 4259 sq feet. They have recently reduced some of their inventory homes, and there are multiple floor plans to chose from with completion dates between August and October 2013.

Here are all of the amazing amenities at Stoneybrook at Champions Gate:

Aerobics Studio

Clubhouse
Community Center
Equestrian
Fitness Center
Fully Maintained Lawns
Gated
Golf Course
HOA
Playground
Security
Splash Park
Sport Court
Swimming Pool
Tennis Court
Tot Lot
Volleyball Court

Plaza, Spa, Restaurant, Bar, Fitness Center, Tiki Bar, Cabanas, Tennis Club, Tennis Clubhouse, Stadium Court, (6) Tennis Courts, Golf Club, Golf Clubhouse Grill, Locker Rooms, Golf Shop, The Oasis, Resort-Style Pools, Family Pool, Lazy River, Water Slides, Swim-Up Bar, Water Falls, Beach Entry, Spa, Splash Pad, Grill, Bar, Fitness Area, Theater, Game Room, Tiki Bar, Cabanas, Performance Area, Trolley.  So much to do and you’re only a fewmiles Walt Disney World!

We have assisted so many clients with new construction contracts and been their liaison throughout the process. If this is something you are interested in, please don’t hesitate to contact us today!  Also if you are looking for new construction in another area of Central Florida, email me to get a list of what is available in your area.Champions GateStoneybrook at Champions GateStoneybrook at Champions Gate

The Celebration Exotic Car Show Celebrates its 10th Anniversary

This year marks the 10th Anniversary of the Celebration Exotic Car Festival. This four-day event showcases North America’s largest collection of exotic cars, race cars and iconic Hollywood movie cars, coming together to help children with life threatening medical conditions. There are a variety of events that take place over the 4 day event, April 11-14th, including 2 track days at Daytona, Food & Wine at the Portofino Hotel, and the Exotic Car Rally. Indulge in some great food, experience some exotics cars, and help children’s charity at the same time.

For more information on the schedule of events or how to purchase tickets, click herecar, and we’ll see you there!

Epcot Food & Wine Festival 2012

I know. I can’t believe its that time of year again already either. The Epcot Food & Wine Festival 2012 kicks off this weekend, and I am sure it has been met with much enthusiasm. As one of the most sought-after events at Disney, people come from all over the world to sample the unique mix of cuisine.

As a local (living only 6 miles away in Celebration, FL), I have attended every Epcot Food & Wine Festival since 2003, and I am always excited about it. The food is wonderful and the drink offerings are never a disappointment either. On a normal day, Epcot has some of the best food in the area. During the Food & Wine Festival, the sky is the limit. They have food and beverage parings from over 25 different countries.

I mean where else can walk around in one of the most beautiful parks and enjoy everything from a Spicy Hand Roll in Japan to a Beef Empanada in Argentine paired with a Stella Artois in Belgium or a lovely glass of Sparking Pomegranate Kir in France. Make sure to save room for dessert too. The Baklava in Morocco and the Apple Strudel with Karamel- Vanilla Sauce in Germany are to die for.  All of the portions are small so you walk around and do a lot of sampling.  Food items are priced at $3 and up with beverages starting at $2.

There is truly something for everyone – maybe several somethings. Cheers!

Oktoberfest & the Porch and Yard Sale

Next weekend, October 5th & 6th will be jam packed with events happening here in Celebration. The Fall is when our schedule of events and celebrations really picks up, and next weekend is just the beginning.

We have the semi-annual Celebration Porch and Yard Sale on Saturday starting at 8 am and going until 2 pm. So many residents participate in this sale, and they will be selling a little bit of everything. From furniture to Disney paraphernalia to clothing, you will see it all.

Also going on this same weekend is Celebration’s Oktoberfest. Leaves will fall on Market Street both night at 7:00, 8:00, and 9:00 PM. Friday night will have traditional German music played by Dan Witucki & Heimatland Musikanten. They offer an interactive experience with the crowd that features yodeling and sing-alongs. Saturday night’s ‘Rock’toberfest will play host to national recording artist Ryan Cabrera.

There will be activities and entertainment for all ages, so come by and take a stroll around the lake, enjoy some great food, hop on a hay ride, or paint a pumpkin. Parking and admission is free.

We’ll see you there!

California Grill Gets a Makeover

Disney announced last week that they will be shutting down one of my all-time favorite restaurants in order to revamp it. The California Grill located on the top floor of the Contemporary Hotel at Walt Disney World Resort is going to be closed starting Januray 6, 2013 and will reopen late Summer 2013.

Everything is undergoing an overhaul including the “on stage kitchen” and a few tweaks will be made to the menu as well.   The restaurant will be keeping its 2 private dining rooms which is important as the Contemporary Hotel is also one of Disney’s largest convention hotels.  Although I am sad to take a hiatus from this great dining spot, I will be excited to see all the new dishes and decor.

So if you’re local, like we are, you should make a reservation to get in before the renovations start. I know that we will be popping over there form Celebration really soon!

Celebration Summer Breakout 2012

Celebration’s Summer Breakout Camp is in full swing. This camp runs for 10 weeks from June 11- August 17 8:30am-6pm. The camp features a different theme every week and is run by Celebration Parks and Recreation Department and is located in the South Village at Heritage Hall. They have everything from “Prince & Princess” week to “Breakout Olympics”. There is something that surely every child would like. Every week includes different crafts, playground/pool time, and loads of games. Many weeks are still open for registration, so if you’re interested, sign up today.

The camp is for children aged 6-12. You can find get more information by contacting Celebration Parks and Recreation Department at 407-566-1200.

Sweet Escape Bakery Newest Additon to Celebration

This past Thursday, Sweet Escape Bakery had its soft opening. This much-anticpated new eatery was very busy on its first day, even at 8pm when I stopped by to sample the menu.

Located at the top of Market Street next to the post office, Sweet Escape is sure to get noticed. They are filling the much needed void in the restaurant scene here in Celebration, which is a quick-stop casual dining option. They have tables inside and out, great for all seasons here in FL.

Everything off the menu is easy to eat-in or take with you depending on your preference. They have lots of baked goods, flavored coffees, and deli sandwiches featuring Boar’s Head meat. The reasonable prices, convenient location, and tasty food are sure to make this place a hit.

Stop by for a chocolate chip scone. They are yummy!

Celebration Amenities for Celebration Residents

The Celebration amenities; such as parks, playgrounds, pools & tennis courts; are for the explicit usage of Celebration residents and their guests. You may think this is an obvious statement, but it has come to my attention over the course of the last 18 months that some outside sales people have been making different claims.

Given where we are located, very close to theme parks, there are lots of different timeshares properties nearby. There are no time share properties located inside Celebration though. Many of those timeshare salespeople bring their clients to our downtown area restaurants during their tours with potential buyers. I have heard them tell their prospects that they can use the amenities here, and that is simply not true. The common areas here are not maintained by any state or county entity; therefore, they are not public. They are maintained by a private company that the residents here pay for every year with their homeowners association dues. Not only are the potential buyers being misled, but the salespeople are making fraudulent statements.

I know a number of people who have been up in arms after hearing some of the salespeople makes these same claims. If every timeshare owner could use our facilities, it would be pretty crowded here. The parks and recreation department had been adding signs stating that the parks areas are for residents only, and they do require gate passes at the pool.

Of course, the downtown area and our frequent festivals and events are open to everyone. So check back often to see what is going in town!