Photographers love the St. Augustine Alligator Farm. (Photo Snowmanradio via Wikipedia.)

St. Augustine Alligator Farm: Superb bird rookery at historic attraction

By Bonnie Gross,, Special to,June 24, 2015 – For years, I’ve seen stunning photographs of birds taken at the St. Augustine Alligator Farm rookery. Meanwhile, my love of things Old Florida means I am always intrigued by surviving vintage roadside attractions. So when I visited St. Augustine this June, I needed to check out the St. Augustine Alligator Farm Zoological Park. I wasn’t sure what to expect. The historic marker out front confirmed the St. Augustine Alligator Farm is […]

Steep banks on Suwanee at Stephen Foster Folk Culture Center State Park.

Suwanee River: Skip the song; but go for kayaking & camping

By Bonnie Gross,, Special to, May 26, 2015 – If you think all there is to the Suwanee River is an old song with problematic lyrics, you’re missing out on one of Florida’s greatest kayaking, canoeing and camping rivers. While it’s a long drive from some parts of Florida, if you can spare a couple of days, the Suwanee will reward you with tranquility, beauty and a paddling trip that is different from rivers and streams elsewhere in Florida. […]

Key West Wacky Regatta (Video)

Key West Wacky Regatta (Video)

By FloridaKeysNewsBureau For, May 24, 2015 – KEY WEST, Fla. — A wacky regatta in Key West, featuring cobbled-together watercraft made of thin plywood and duct tape, attracted 37 entries including a vessel dubbed “First Ferry to Cuba,” skippered by a man costumed as Cuban president Raul Castro. “First Ferry,” an offbeat salute to the recent easing of restrictions for Americans traveling to Cuba, was a standout in Memorial Day weekend’s Schooner Wharf Minimal Regatta. “Castro” was abruptly drenched when […]

Sebastian Inlet (Photo by John Massung,

Sebastian Inlet: Spring getaway for camping, paddle sports, wildlife

By Bob Rountree,, Special to, Apr. 4, 2015 – The Sebastian Inlet area has long been a favorite destination for family and friends, featuring two outstanding public campgrounds with unrestricted access to the Indian River Lagoon, pristine beaches, abundant wildlife and a dose of Florida coastal history. There are no condos anywhere near the three miles of beachfront within Sebastian Inlet State Park, a haven for surfers seeking the best breaks on the Florida coast. The fishing is outstanding, […]

Internet Gaming Disorder: The Damaging Effects of Screen Addictions

Internet Gaming Disorder: The Damaging Effects of Screen Addictions

By Dr. Michelle Hintz, Psychologist, for, Mar. 27, 2015 – Internet gaming disorder, as discussed , is a new diagnosis for a problem that an increasing – and disturbing – number of adolescents and adults are experiencing. IGD, an acronym for internet gaming disorder, is defined as “a pattern of excessive and prolonged internet gaming that results in a cluster of cognitive and behavioral symptoms.” We can’t deny that technology is huge part of our modern lives, yet we need […]

Internet Gaming Disorder: What is it?

Internet Gaming Disorder: What is it?

By Dr. Michelle Hintz, Psychologist, for, Mar. 26, 2015 – Recent studies have shown that 8-18 year olds devote about 53 hours a week to screen time. Many psychologists, particularly child development experts, believe so much time in front of a computer screen is harmful. So, let’s review the facts. It used to be exciting just to chat using Skype or Facetime, and now almost any question can be answered with a few pulses on a screen that doesn’t even […]

Karen “Ooo La La” Grant Margil, left, and Bounce Margil, right, demonstrate the art of juggling pins to youngsters at a Spring Break Circus Camp (Rob O'Neal/Florida Keys News Bureau/HO)

Key West Kids ‘Juggle’ Fun and Learning at Spring Break Camp (Video)

By FloridaKeysNewsBureau For, Mar 26, 2015 – KEY WEST, Fla. — While many kids might spend their spring break on vacation or going to the beach, 11 young Key Westers are acquiring skills that many performers use to entertain visitors at Key West’s daily Mallory Square sunset celebration. At the five-day Spring Break Circus Camp presented by The Studios of Key West, kids ages 6 through 13 learn to juggle, spin plates, twirl hula hoops, perform balancing acts and more. […]

The endangered sandhill crane is a common sight at Moss Park near Orlando.

Moss Park offers best camping near Disney

By Bob Rountree,, Special to, Mar 22, 2015 – The Moss Park Campground may be Orlando’s best-kept secret. Tucked into the woods between two lakes and a wildlife preserve, this 54-site public campground is $18-$23 per night and only 20 minutes to Disney World. Enjoy boating, camping, kayaks, canoes, paddle boards, hiking, biking, fishing, picnic areas, a swimming beach, bird-watching, orienteering. Lots of trees. Lots of wildlife. I visited this park a couple of years ago in my hunt […]

At the very start of the Chassahowitzka, you find one of the prettiest spots, the Seven Sisters Spring.

The Chaz: Springs & wildlife make this river a special kayak trail

By Bonnie Gross,, Special to, Mar 12, 2015 – We would have loved kayaking the Chassahowitzka River, better known as the Chaz, if only one of these things were true: Within the first 10 minutes, we paddled over magical springs that sparkled like swimming pools (and, indeed, you can swim there.) On one of the Chaz’s tributaries, we spent 15 minutes watching a family of five or six otters scampering, swimming, fishing, diving and delighting us. We paddled up […]

Athina Onassis has a $2 million-contract to buy this new spec house in Wellington (MLS photo)

Heiress Athina Onassis Spends $3 Million on Wellington Real Estate

By Jose Lambiet,, Special to, Mar 11, 2015 – WELLINGTON — Athina Onassis, heiress of one of the world’s famously rich families, has bought two vacant plots of land at Palm Beach Polo in equestrian Wellington, and she has a $2 million-contract to buy a spec house in the fancy development. It’s yet another Gossip Extra exclusive: Show jumping champ Onassis, 30, is expected to sign on the doted line later this month for ownership of 3173 Blue Cypress […]

Daytona Beach

Things to Do near Florida’s top Spring Break destinations

By Bonnie Gross,, Special to, Mar 11, 2015 – When I first arrived in Fort Lauderdale back in the ’70s, Spring Break was an event to behold. Hundreds of thousands of kids would converge on the beach, spilling over and blocking State Road A1A for a month of steady drinking and assorted debauchery inspired by the iconic ’60s movie “Where the Boys Are.” Alas, Fort Lauderdale would tire of the intemperance and improprieties, seeking a better class of tourist, the once-wild Spring Breaker […]

Corkscrew Bird Rookery Swamp Trail passes through wetlands full of cypress and red maple trees.

Naples Bird Rookery Swamp: It’s a beaut for hiking, biking, wildlife

By Bonnie Gross,, Special to, Mar 1, 2015 – Few South Floria hiking or biking trails rival Bird Rookery Swamp Trail near Naples for scenery and wildlife. It’s a beaut; the relatively new trail deserves to be known outside the Naples area. I had been to Audubon’s Corkscrew Swamp Sanctuary many times and have always loved it. But I did not know about this 12 mile trail on adjacent land, a few miles south, which opened in 2011. What […]