Exploring Cumberland Island

Cumberland Island TreesGeorgia is home to many unique historic locations. One of my favorites is Cumberland Island. Located just off the coast of St. Marys, it’s one of the most secluded and remote spots that you can visit. A while ago, while camping at Crooked River State Park, we decided to take a day trip over to the island. Our adventure started with a ferry ride over to Cumberland. It’s a quick trip across the water, and before we knew it, we were there. We planned ahead for our trip, bringing sunscreen, water, a picnic lunch and cameras. (There is no place on the island to purchase things like snacks and sunscreen, so you have to bring your own!)

Cumberland Island HorsesOnce we arrived, we found different trails to explore throughout the island with lots of sights to see, including the ruins of one of the homes that used to belong to the Carnegie family. We also spotted a few of the wild horses that call the island home. There were also troops of armadillos that darted through the woods and onto the trails.

Cumberland Island Beach ShellsBeing able to “unplug” for the day was fantastic. I didn’t have cell phone service; there was no background noise or traffic, just nature. If you want to best-horoscope.com are air signs, which means that they have light, airy personalities, with an effervescence that seems to draw people to them. escape all the commotion of your everyday life, even for just a little bit, this is the place! We eventually made our way to the other side of the island where we enjoyed the beach, which was full of seashells and a few seagulls. I’ve only visited a few times but have never been lucky enough to catch a group of horses trotting through the surf. Guess I’ll have to go back again!

After a day spent trekking through several of the trails and relaxing on the sand, we made our way back to the dock. Most everyone who had ridden the ferry with us earlier in the day returned as well. You can camp on the island, but I haven’t had a chance to do that yet either, so I will have to start planning my next visit soon!

Warm Springs Batmobile

Anna Lee Mikell is a Southern girl raised in Georgia and South Carolina. She loves Southern food, photography and SEC football. You can often find her searching for old records at the flea market or sipping sweet iced tea.

 

 

Guide to Georgia’s Spring Festivals

Dogwood Festival in Atlanta

Dogwood Festival in Atlanta

Celebrate springtime at one (or all) of these family-friendly Georgia festivals in 2013!

APRIL

4/18-4/21: Vidalia Onion Festival in Vidalia

4/19-4/21: 77th Annual Dogwood Festival in Atlanta

4/19-4/20: Downtown Moultrie Spring Fling & Backyard BBQ Festival in Moultrie

4/19-4/20: National Mayhaw Festival in Colquitt

4/19-4/20: The Cornelia Apple Blossom BBQ Festival in Cornelia

4/20-4/21: Jasper ArtFest in Jasper

4/20-4/21: 17th Annual Bear on the Square Mountain Festival in Dahlonega

4/21: Spring Arts Festival in McDonough

4/25-4/27: 92nd Annual Thomasville Rose Show and Festival in Thomasville

4/26-4/28: Sacred Heart Garden Festival in Augusta

4/26-4/27: Woodbine Crawfish Festival in Woodbine

4/26-4/27: Georgia Strawberry Festival in Reynolds

4/27: Dogwood Music Festival in Moultrie

4/27: Madison Fest in Madison

4/27: Midway Arts Festival in Midway

4/27: Color the Grove 5K & Music Fest in Albany

MAY

5/3-5/5: Southern Blooms Festival at Rock City in Lookout Mountain

5/4-5/5: Shady Days in Gay Arts & Crafts Festival in Gay

5/4-5/5: Art in the Garden Festival & Spring Fling Car Show in Dawsonville

5/4: Tifton Turfgrass Festival in Tifton

5/17-5/18: Adel Daylily Festival in Adel

5/18: 36th Annual Geranium Festival in McDonough

5/18: 51st Mountain Laurel Festival in Clarkesville

5/30-6/2: Atlanta Food & Wine Festival in Atlanta

5/31-6/2: Wing & Rock Fest in Woodstock

JUNE

6/1: Dairy Festival in Eatonton

6/1-6/2: Georgia Sea Island Festival on St. Simon’s Island

6/1-6/2: Penny McHenry Hydrangea Festival in Douglasville

6/1: Brew Moon SummerFest in Alpharetta

6/8: Tunes from the Tombs in Atlanta

6/8-6/9: Blairsville Scottish Festival and Highland Games in Blairsville

6/8-6/9: Peachtree Corners Festival in Peachtree Corners

6/8: Roswell Lavender Festival in Roswell

6/19-6/23: AthFest Music & Arts Festival in Athens

Get Outdoors in Augusta

When you think of Augusta, The Masters golf tournament or James Brown might be the first things that come to your mind. However, what you may not know is that Augusta is a fantastic place to get out and enjoy the beautiful outdoors.  Here are my suggestions for great outdoor attractions & activities in Augusta, Georgia:

Augusta Riverwalk: Augusta is situated along the Savannah River, which forms the state line between Georgia and South Carolina. Take a stroll down the multilevel Riverwalk and enjoy the scenery of the river, gardens, abundant opportunities for picnicking and a playground for kids (and kids at heart). Riverwalk is a great place to experience 4th of July fireworks, the St. Patrick’s Day Celebration and the Augusta Market on the River, where you can find fresh produce, food and crafts during the warmer months of the year. It is also home to the Jessye Norman Amphitheatre, a unique spot for outdoor concerts.

Kayaking the Canal

Kayaking the Canal

The Augusta Canal: The Augusta Canal was built to provide water to textile mills and factories that used hydro-power to operate large machinery. Today, you can tour the canal by boat, bike or foot. If you have your own canoe or kayak, you can put in at the canal head gates and paddle the 7 miles past Lake Olmstead to the 13th Street Bridge. There are several outfitters in town that offer boat rentals and shuttles. Because there are no gas-powered boats allowed in the canal, the only traffic you will see is tour boats and other paddlers. It’s pretty cool to be on the water, viewing birds, turtles and possibly alligators and heading right through the heart of downtown at the same time. If you’d rather stick to land, you can experience the Canal Trail, a dirt path that runs the length of the canal and is great for biking or hiking. The trail is shaded by large trees, so it is enjoyable year-round, and there are different entrance points, so you don’t have to trek the entire length of the trail if you’re not up for it.

Disc Golf: Augusta is home to the PDGA International Disc Golf Center, making it a mecca for disc golfers. You can toss some discs there or at several different courses throughout the area. Just bring your own discs, and you’re all set.  Pendleton King Park is great for beginners. If you’re looking for a challenge, I suggest the Lake Olmstead course is perfect, which is built around the water.

Auggie

Auggie

The Augusta Greenjackets: The Augusta Greenjackets are a minor league team affiliated with the San Francisco Giants that plays at Lake Olmstead Stadium, just minutes from downtown. The tickets are affordable and the beer is cold, making it a great option for a night out with family or friends. Insider tip: Don’t miss out on the chance to have your picture taken with the mascot Auggie!

Lake Thurmond

Lake Thurmond

Camping: After all of your outdoor adventures, it’s time to relax with nature. What better way to do that than by camping at Lake Thurmond? Mistletoe State Park is only about 30 minutes from downtown and a great place to set up camp. You’ll be right on the banks of Lake Thurmond, where you can swim, boat or simply laze about and enjoy your surroundings. The last time I camped there, the weather was perfect and peaceful. It’s also nice to know you aren’t too far from civilization in case you forget to pack any essentials.

Camping in the Giant TentAnna Lee Mikell is a Southern girl raised in Georgia and South Carolina. She loves Southern food, photography and SEC football. You can often find her searching for old records at the flea market or sipping sweet iced tea.

Fan Photo Friday

Submit your Georgia photos for the chance to be featured:

View from Southern Union County looking toward Brasstown Bald. Photo by Scott Michael Anna. Submitted via Facebook.

View from Southern Union County looking toward Brasstown Bald. Photo by Scott Michael Anna. Submitted via Facebook.

Marietta, Georgia. Photo by Bret Landry. Submitted via Flickr.

Marietta, Georgia. Photo by Brett Landry. Submitted via Flickr.

Lake Acworth in Acworth, Georgia. Photo by @kayakjeff7. Submitted via Instagram.

Lake Acworth in Acworth, Georgia. Photo by @kayakjeff7. Submitted via Instagram.