|In this month’s issue of the St. Johns County, FL Parks and Recreation e-newsletter, we found the following current stories regarding St. Johns County parks, recreational programming, beaches, outdoor activities, special events, and the St. Johns Golf Club.|
|Your Opinion Matters
Are you interested in receiving an annual St. Johns County Outdoor Recreation Guide? Let us know by answering our one (1) question survey here.
HAVE YOU VISITED A NATURE PARK IN ST. JOHNS COUNTY?
In addition to providing trails and open space to the community, the County’s passive park system helps preserve wildlife, sensitive ecosystems, and important archaeological and historic resources. This short survey seeks to gauge the community’s current use, interest, and activities regarding these passive parks. If you use these county lands, please take a few minutes and complete the survey. For additional information, please call 904.209.0590.
FOOD TRUCKS IN ST. JOHNS COUNTY?
St. Johns County is conducting a survey now through April 9 to obtain public opinion regarding the operation of food trucks within St. Johns County. Results of the survey will be incorporated into the process of creating regulation for mobile food truck vendors. The results and any proposed regulation will be presented to the Board of County Commissioners for their consideration in future meetings. For more information, please call 904.209.0590.
SOLOMON CALHOUN POOL CLOSURE
The swimming pool at the Solomon Calhoun Community Center, 1300 Duval ST, St. Augustine is closed for routine repairs through April 30. Programs and classes have been canceled during this time. Please call 904.209.0395 or email email@example.com for more information.
LIGHTHOUSE PARK TENNIS COURT CLOSURE
The two St. Johns County tennis courts located at Lighthouse Park, 100 Red Cox RD, will be closed for resurfacing through April 7. For additional information, please call 904.209.0193.
SJC SUMMER CAMP REGISTRATION
Parks & Recreation offers Summer Camp opportunities to children ages 5* to 12 (*only five year olds that have completed kindergarten by the start of camp are eligible), at six locations throughout St. Johns County. Outdoor activities are emphasized at each camp that are all staffed by experienced, motivated leaders from within our community. Campers participate in a variety of activities including field trips, arts & crafts, and swimming.
Enter your family in the summer camp registration drawing for a chance to attend one of our summer camps. Applications for the drawing are accepted online through March 11 at 5 p.m. Names are drawn at random so that all St. Johns County children entered into the drawing will have an equal chance at attending a camp. The drawing will be held on March 18. You do not need to be present. Results of the drawing will be mailed out no later than April 1.
For more details on camp locations, prices and hours please click here or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
ANNUAL EASTER EGG HUNT The Easter Bunny has confirmed his attendance at our Annual Easter Egg Hunt. Children may visit with him prior to the start of the event from 10:30 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. This will give parents and caregivers an opportunity to take pictures. The Easter Egg Hunt will start promptly at 11:00 a.m. and end at 11:30 a.m.
Dates & Locations: Thursday, March 24:
*Veterans Park 1332 Veterans PKWY, St. Johns *Palencia Park 405 Palencia Village DR., St. Augustine
Saturday, March 26:
*Al Wilkie Park 6140 Main ST, Hastings *Treaty Park 1595 Wildwood DR, St. Augustine
COUNSELOR IN TRAINING PROGRAM Attention teens ages 13-16; Do you like the outdoors? Have you ever wanted to be a day camp counselor? If so, the Counselor In Training Program might be for you. This 7 week youth program offers teen’s valuable job training and teaches leadership skills. Counselors in Training work side by side with the Super Summer Spectacular Program Counselors.
This program runs in the summer, Monday through Friday for eight working hours daily. A mandatory training for all CIT applicants will be held in June, date/time to be announced. At completion of this training each CIT will be placed in a Super Summer Spectacular program where he or she will receive one-on-one training and learn what it takes to become a day camp counselor.
The Parks & Recreation Department Counselor-In-Training program offers past campers educational and leadership experiences, preparing them to be the future leaders of our camps and their communities. Registration begins April 4. There is limited space available. Registration is first come first serve. Please click here for additional information.
FUNDRAISER FOR THE FIELD OF DREAMS BASEBALL PROGRAM
The FOD Board invites you to join them for dinner on March 7 from 5:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m. at Taps Bar and Grill, 2220 County Road 210, St. Johns. 10% of the cost of your dinner and beverages will be donated directly to the Field of Dreams.
SENIOR APPRECIATION LUNCHEON There will be a Senior Appreciation Luncheon on Saturday, March 26 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Solomon Calhoun Center, 1300 Duval ST, St. Augustine. Thanks to local sponsors, there will be great food, lots of activities and entertainment. Please call 904.829.3918 Monday through Thursday from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. to reserve your spot. See you there! HASTINGS DINNERS
Monday, March 28 at 6 p.m. dinner will be provided by the Fruit Cove Baptist Women’s Group at W.E. Harris Community Center, 400 E. Harris ST, Hastings. Dinners are offered each month to those who benefit the most from enjoying a free meal in a welcoming community setting.
“CELEBRATE HASTINGS” SPRING HARVEST FESTIVAL
Team Up and Hastings Friends of the Library are sponsoring the Spring Harvest Festival at Al Wilke Park, 6150 S. Main ST, Hastings on Saturday, April 2 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. There will be a Kids Zone, Car Show, Gospel Sing-Off, vendors and food trucks. All proceeds will go to the purchase of school supply kids for Hastings area youth. Please contact the Hastings Library 904.827.6970 for more information.
The Gospel Sing Off is open to all interested groups and individuals. There is a $25 donation per group or individual with all proceeds going directly towards the purchase of school supply kits for Hastings area youth. For more information, please call Pastor Chris Coleman 904.501.4577.
BASKETBALL COACHES NEEDED Parks & Recreation is seeking coaches for the spring Basketball League for the Boys 11-12 and 13-14 division and the Girls 9-11 and 12-14 division. If you or anyone you know is interested, please contact email@example.com.
LIBERTY PINES GOLF TRYOUTS
Golf tryouts will be held at the St. Johns Golf & Country Club, 205 Saint Johns Golf DR, St. Augustine on Wednesday March 2 from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. Please email Will Kurtz at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information. Click here for information about golf tryouts at other schools.
CREEKS TRACK & FIELD
Open Registration continues through March 12. Creeks Track & Field offers a flexible practice program of either 1-Day or 2-Days per week: 1-Day Practice Program – $80 per child 2-Day Practice Program – $130 per child.
All ages are welcome. The season begins Monday, March 14 and runs through Sunday, May 22. Click here for more information.
WEST AUGUSTINE CHEER & FOOTBALL
West Augustine Yellow Jackets Fall Cheer and Football registration is Saturday, March 19 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Solomon Calhoun Center, 1300 Duval ST, St. Augustine. The season starts in August and runs through November. Click here to view last year’s registration video.
CREEKS FOOTBALL LEAGUE/CREEKS DEVELOPMENTAL LEAGUE MUSTANGS FOOTBALL
The Creeks Development League (CDL) is a Junior Development League (JDL) that is an innovative youth tackle football program for K thru 8th grade created specifically to assure a safe and enjoyable sports experience for every participant regardless of age, weight or ability. Players compete against each other in equitable and competitively balanced situations. As a result, all participants in JDL Football derive significant benefit from the experience by developing new skills, gaining increased confidence, self-respect and self-worth, all while learning valuable life lessons including sportsmanship , teamwork, commitment, acceptance of discipline and the respect of others.
Fall registration is open now through July 1. Registration fees are $275 January 31 to May 31 and $300 May 31 to July 1. Click here to register. Please contact Jim Mattey, email@example.com or 904.322.0623 for more information.
The Ponte Vedra Soccer Club is hosting their Inaugural Battle at the Beach Tournament at Davis Park, 210 Davis Park RD, Ponte Vedra Beach on May 21 – 22. This tournament is a great way to close out the Spring Soccer Season. All teams are welcome and encouraged to attend. Click here to register. This is an FYSA Sanctioned Event.
2016 KIDS TRIATHALON
Children ages 5-14 can join in the fun and JUST TRI IT! This is a non-competitive event giving everyone the chance to participate in a Triathlon. The first 250 children to pick up their race packets will get a Just Tri It! t-shirt and every child that completes the race will get a medal for their accomplishment. Early Registration Ends March 31. Race day is Sunday, May 15 at the Solomon Calhoun Center, 1300 Duval ST, St. Augustine. Last day to register is Saturday, May 14, from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Just Tri It! Everything you need to know about this awesome event can be found here.
SPRING TENNIS CLINIC
Parks & Recreation is offering a tennis clinic for adults 18 and over. The clinic runs March 22 to May 10 at Francis Field, located behind the Historic Downtown Parking Facility, Castillo DR, St. Augustine. Classes meet on Monday from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. The clinic cost is $20 for St. Johns County residents and $30 for all others and is due at registration. Space is limited. Register now through March 15 at the Parks & Recreation Main Office, 2175 Mizell Road, St. Augustine, weekdays from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Bring a tennis racquet, a can of tennis balls and you’re guaranteed to have some fun! Please call 904.209.0320 for more information.
|Park of the Month
BELUTHAHATCHEE Beluthahatchee Park,1523 S.R. 13, St. Johns on the William Bartram Scenic Highway. It is a Florida Community Trust park and home of the late Stetson Kennedy, famous author, human rights activist, and folklorist. Kennedy was inducted into the Florida Artists Hall of Fame, and nominated for the National Heritage Award presented at the Library of Congress.
Woody Guthrie, legendary American folk balladeer and good friend of Stetson Kennedy, wrote the final draft of his autobiography, Seeds of Man, and composed over 80 songs, many of which were inspired by Stetson Kennedy’s writings, while visiting Beluthahatchee. Guthrie is most famous for writing “This Land is Your Land”. Beluthahatchee was dedicated as the only National Literary Landmark honoring two writers (Stetson Kennedy and Woody Guthrie), as recognized by the Friends of the United States Library.
Stetson Kennedy’s home is now a museum and the site features unique cultural and music programming for the public. Please contact the Stetson Kennedy Foundation to set up an appointment to view the site at 904.287.0452 as you may not enter the residences at Beluthahatchee without a representative from the county or the Stetson Kennedy Foundation accompanying you.
|Artist in Residency Program
ARTIST IN RESIDENCY PROGRAM
Parks & Recreation in conjunction with the Stetson Kennedy Foundation and the Jacksonville Songwriters Residency, is excited to announce the Stetson Kennedy Songwriter Residency at Beluthahatchee Park. Songwriters will experience Beluthahatchee for 1 to 2 weeks and will perform a showcase somewhere in the proximity of Beluthahatchee upon conclusion of their stay.
Professional songwriters interested in participating in this unique opportunity are encouraged to apply online at www.jacksonvillesongwriter.org or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
Please consider showing your support for this project by sending a donation to the Stetson Kennedy Foundation at 1523 S.R. 13, St. Johns, FL 32259. Donations are appreciated.
There will be a concert on Sunday, March 20 from 2:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. The park will open at 1:00 p.m. with tours of Stetson’s house and museum before and after the concert. Space is limited. Reservations are required. Please call 904.206.8304 to make reservations. A $10 donation is gratefully accepted.
Future concerts are scheduled the second Sunday each month.
|St. Johns Golf Club
RYPE & READI GOLF BISTRO The RYPE & READI GOLF BISTRO, located at the St. Johns Golf Club, 4900 Cypress Links BLVD, Elkton is now open from6:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily. Menu items include fresh fruits, breakfast sandwiches on farmhouse biscuits, salads, grab & go wraps, the Cuban, and the half pound certified Angus Steak burger on an Ottenberg Pennsylvania Dutch potato roll. Soft drinks, draft beer, wine, and a full bar are also available. The RYPE & READI GOLF BISTRO would love to host your next meeting, or golf event. Visit us on Facebook or call 904.209.0350 or 954.684.0855 .
CLINICS & TOURNAMENTS St.Johns Golf Club offers opportunities to learn the game and improve your skills. Dr. Bernadette Twardy is teaching a ladies golf clinic each Friday from 11 a.m. to 12 p.m. We offer a mixed golf clinic each Saturday from 9 a.m. to 10 a.m. This clinic is being taught by Head Golf Professional Tommy Aycock, Dr. Bernadette Twardy, and Assistant Golf Professional Copeland West. We also offer individual half hour and hour lessons, mornings or afternoons.
The Twilight Golf League begins on Tuesday, March 15 at 5 p.m. The format will be an individual point quota. To register for a clinic, instruction, or to join the Twilight Golf League, please stop by our Pro Shop, email@example.com or call 904.209.0350. 2016 TOURNAMENT SERIES – 18 HOLE EVENTS
Saturday, April 2 – The Little Masters, a four person team event.
To register for any of these events, or to obtain more information, please call the Pro Shop at 904.209.0350, or email firstname.lastname@example.org. All email signups need to be made by 12 p.m. on the day before the event, and if you wish to be a late addition please call for availability.
|SJC Equestrian Center
The 4-H club is hosting the 2016 Spring Break Horse Games on Saturday, March 19 at the St. Johns County Equestrian Center, 8200 Smith RD, Hastings.
Registration begins at 9 a.m. Class starts 10 a.m.
4-H Member $35/Non-Member $45. Entry Fee includes 10 classes. All classes are either Walk/Trot or Walk/Trot/Canter. There will be a “Tacky Tourist” Theme Costume Class. No holding stalls are available for this event. The registration form can be found here. Please email registrations to email@example.com
DRUM RUNNER 2016 GAME SERIES
Sign up at 1 p.m. on March 5 at the St. Johns County Fairgrounds, 5840 S.R. 207, Elkton. Games start at 2 p.m. and will consist of barrels, poles and two fun games. Contact Ali Smith 904.588.8017 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Please click here for fees and schedules.
COWBOY MOUNTED SHOOTING CLINIC
Clinic runs from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the St. Johns County Fairgrounds, 5840 S.R. 207, Elkton on Saturday, March 12. The ammo fee is $50. This clinic offers anyone over the age of 12 the opportunity to learn the sport of cowboy mounted shooting, the fastest growing equestrian sport. Participants may borrow the guns and holsters; a head count is needed to ensure that everyone will be supplied. Please email Ali Smith at email@example.com,call 904.588.8017 or click here for more information.
|Field of Dreams
SPRING SEASON OPENING DAY
Click here to read David Aaro’s Florida Newsline Creekline article about opening day Saturday, February 6.
Field of Dreams is located at Aberdeen Park, 1401 Shetland DR. St. Johns. It is a specifically designed turf baseball field that allows children living in or near St. Johns County, the opportunity to wear a uniform and play baseball with the help of a buddy while being part of a team. Registration is FREE, includes a baseball uniform and is open now through the end of the season. Please click here to visit the Field of Dreams website to register, volunteer or donate.
ON-BEACH PARKING PASSES
Beginning March 1 vehicles entering the beach will be required to purchase an on-beach parking pass from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Vehicles can purchase an Annual, Daily, or Twilight pass. On March 2 the Annual Passes will increase to $40 for St. Johns County residents, $60 for non-residents and $30 for Handicap. 100% Disabled Veterans may still receive one free annual pass by presenting valid identification. Residents must present a valid driver’s license with a County address or present proof of property tax payments in St. Johns County. Daily pass prices are $6 for St. Johns County Residents, $8 for non-residents, and $5 for Handicap. Vehicles entering the beach after 3 p.m. can purchase a daily pass for $5. Passes can be purchased at the nine on-beach ramps located at A Street, Crescent, Dondanville RD, Fort Matanzas, Mary ST, Matanzas AVE, Ocean Trace, Porpoise Point, Vilano.
Do you enjoy spending time outdoors? Do you enjoy the challenges involved in treasure hunting? If you answered yes to both of these questions Geocaching will definitely interest you. Geocaching is a real-world, outdoor treasure hunting game utilizing GPS-enabled devices. Participants navigate to a specific set of GPS coordinates and then attempt to find the geocache (container) hidden at that location. Once you find the geocache you remove the treasure and replace it with one of your own. The Parks and Recreation Department has hidden caches all around our County parks. This family activity allows for friendly competition while enjoying the great outdoors. For more information visit our web page.
|Sing Out Loud Series Spotlights Parks & Beaches
SING OUT LOUD SERIES
SOL Series was fortunate enough to grab Ted Leo before his show with THE BOTH at the Ponte Vedra Concert Hall in Ponte Vedra, FL. Mr. Leo loves empty baseball diamonds and we were happy to accommodate him with Field 3 at Cornerstone Park. It also happens to be next door to the Ponte Vedra Concert Hall, so that made for a super relaxed and easy shoot. Sit back and enjoy Ted sing “The Little Smug Supper Club”. You can almost smell the fresh cut grass through your computer monitor. Click here to hear more of the artists featured in the SOL Series.
|Good To Know
PROOF THAT HIKING MAKES YOU HAPPIER AND HEALTHIER
Abigail Wise, Social Media Fellow and Healthy Living writer for the Huffington Post explores how outdoor sports make us healthier, happier and full of adventure. Click here to read the article.
TAKE A SWING AT THIS: GOLF IS EXERCISE, CART OR NO CART
Allison Aubrey, Correspondent, Sports and Health in America Desk at NPR looks at how much exercise is involved in the playing the game of golf. Read the article here.
GEOCACHING FOR FAMILIES
Looking for something to do with the kids at home or on vacation? Try geocaching, a scavenger hunt with a high-tech twist. You will find more information about this family friendly activity by reading this article written by Diane Bair and Pamela Wright.
5 PSYCHOLOGICAL BENEFITS OF PLAYING YOUTH SPORTS
Read the True Sport article here.
PLAYING YOUTH SPORTS TAKES A LOT MORE GREEN THAN IT USED TO
Patti Neighmond Correspondent, Health Policy, Science Desk at NPR discovers the cost of youth sports in America. Read the article here.