Ann-Ventures 

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Bear Aware

  • 4:17 pm Tuesday, January 2nd, 2018 by Ann Kelly

There are certain things that get my attention on Ann-Ventures. Great views, beautiful sunrises….and signs warning of bears. You don’t have to go that far outside of the Bay area for that. But it is the first time I’ve seen that sign in Colt Creek State Park off SR 471 in Lakeland. Oh it’s a beautiful park with great trails but since I was a) on my own, and b) without bear spray the wiser choice was to stay close to path around Mac Lake and not venture out too far.

But it’s a beautiful park with equestrian trails, campsites, [More]

Will A New Year Bring A New Me?

  • 8:23 am Monday, January 1st, 2018 by Ann Kelly

So how are those resolutions going? I wasn’t going to make any but after a couple of less than stellar flights home I did. I saw a man wallop a woman right in the head with his carry on in the mad rush to leave one flight and barely apologize, then refused to give her his name and address and told her “the airline would take care of it.” No, the airline is about to take care of you, sir. Then as I was enjoying a nice approach to Tampa International Airport at sunset a women sitting next to me [More]

Celebrate First Night St Pete With Ann Kelly

  • 4:29 am Wednesday, December 20th, 2017 by Ann Kelly

Whether this will be your first or your twenty-fifth you have a personal invitation from Executive Director Allen Loyd to bring the family down to help celebrate the silver anniversary of the Annual First Night Celebration in downtown St Petersburg. It kicks off at 4 pm and includes 25 different venues than range from churches to office buildings as well as historic buildings. It’s a great way to celebrate the diversity of the local arts scene and give the kids a chance to experience Florida’s largest First Night Celebration. The best way to do that is to [More]

Peace, Quiet And Only 20 Minutes Away

  • 3:34 pm Tuesday, December 12th, 2017 by Ann Kelly

There are days when I need my trainer Jim Healy at the BayCare Fitness Center at Carillon. That was yesterday. Today was the need for a quiet place and that was in a park new to me. Boca Ciega Millenium Park in Seminole is a sweet little gem of a park with plenty of boardwalk, an observation tower and a glimmering view of the Bay. And most importantly for today a bench in shady spot at the end of the boardwalk that had my name all over it.  A few nice little shots of residents of the lake [More]

Add Three More To The Hiking Spree

  • 8:17 am Saturday, December 2nd, 2017 by Ann Kelly

I have to say being a part of the Hiking Spree has been a real pleasure. Not only does it make me slow down to enjoy the beauty of Hillsborough County Parks, it has introduced me to parks I have not had the pleasure of visiting. It’s very easy to join and since our weather has finally cooled down you have plenty of time to complete the Spree. I’ve heard it has already surpassed the last few years with over 1,000 happy hikers. My first stop was in Upper Tampa Bay Park and I can now add three more to the [More]

The Lights Are On In Largo!

  • 4:14 pm Saturday, November 25th, 2017 by Ann Kelly

This past weekend it was time to light the lights – a lot of them. More than one million lights have transformed the Florida Botanical Gardens for Holiday Lights In The Garden. Every night there’s entertainment for the whole family along with Santa’s nightly visits. What a magical place to make sure the big guy knows what’s on the kids list, and for you to create new family holiday memories! Holiday Lights is open through through Sunday, Dec. 31, every evening from 5:30 to 9:30 p.m. A small donation of $4 per person ages 13 and over is suggested. And why [More]

The Manatees Are Back!

  • 3:35 pm Friday, November 24th, 2017 by Ann Kelly

The manatees are returning to TECO’s Big Bend Power Plant in Apollo Beach and I’m glad I took a little side trip on Black Friday before heading home for a little online shopping. There are not as many at the Viewing Center as you will see when the water in their usual habitats gets cooler but there were more than enough to charm the many visitors. Along with the manatees I actually had a quick glimpse at a few sharks! The tarpon were also around but the stars of the show will also be the manatees.

I found one mother [More]

Take The Hiking Spree Challenge With Me!

  • 8:50 am Thursday, November 9th, 2017 by Ann Kelly

 

I love a challenge. And, I love long walks in beautiful parks. So put those two together and we have the Hillsborough County Hiking Spree. I’ve accepted that challenge! What a great opportunity to show you some of the wonderful parks in Hillsborough County and take you down the many hiking trails. The Hiking Spree Challenge is easy; once you register simply choose at least eight parks to take your hike in now through March 31st of 2018, keep track of your travels and if you complete the challenge choose from a patch, medallion or walking stick.

My [More]

The Lion Next Door – And More – At Big Cat Rescue

  • 8:31 am Sunday, November 5th, 2017 by Ann Kelly

It’s hard to describe exactly how I felt hearing a lion’s roar early on a Saturday morning while walking through Big Cat Rescue. After all, I had just gone through the drive-through right next to the sanctuary for a latte not five minutes before and now I was in the middle of one of the most precious places in Tampa Bay. Big Cat Rescue is in the Citrus Park area and was there long before there was a mall, subdivisions and what you probably think of the whole area as being now. But twenty-five years ago Big Cat Rescue [More]

Win “Pretty Sick: The Beauty Guide for Women with Cancer”

  • 8:36 am Tuesday, October 31st, 2017 by Ann Kelly

As we wrap up October and Breast Cancer Awareness Month, I first of all want to thank you for your support of our Making Strides against Breast Cancer walk. It’s so exciting to see more and more of you each year at the Shoppes of Wiregrass at Wesley Chapel. Your energy is amazing! I know how much it means to our survivors to return and share their stories, and to honor the memory of those who have lost their fight. But with each walk, each event we come closer and closer to that day when we can say we live in [More]

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