Category: Sights to See

Getting Ready for Local Author Expo

ONF05052016 (18)We have been at our current assignment for 3 months now and have been really busy during our stay here. With no other volunteer we have been working 7 days a week since we got here. We have been updating our online stores with new items and I am working on a new book. In the mean time we have decided to offer our eBook version of our current book for 1/2 price for retail customers and $0.99 for Libraries. Below is a cute little widget from Smashwords to help promote our new pricing. We will be changing the Amazon Kindle price as well but not the paperback version. We only get a couple of dollars on these anyway.
Continue reading “Getting Ready for Local Author Expo”

Left Troy Springs Now at St Sebastian Preserve

SSRPSP09022015We have left Troy Springs State Park and have made it to St. Sebastian River Preserve State Park in Fellsmere, Florida which is 20 miles west of Sebastian Inlet State Park in Vero Beach, Florida. This is a fairly new state park and being a “Preserve” it doesn’t have a lot of things to do here. They do have a new Visitor’s Center at the North Entrance with very nice and informative displays. We start working the center tomorrow so we will be able to take some pictures for our readers. There is primitive camping here is specific areas of the park, fishing at the spillway along the canal and lots of trails all over the 23,000 acres. They have a Volunteer Village on the north side with electric, water and sewers onsite. They also provide the live on-site volunteers with a washer and dryer to use once or twice a week. They are currently working on getting a shower area but at this time it is just a shower head with cold water attached to the back of the storage shed. We are assigned days to wash and dump our black water as the sewer system in this area is not very big. Someone donated a very nice double door refrigerator that the volunteers can use. Of course, the first thing I did when we got here was clean that puppy up. It is so nice to have ice cold drinks and space in the fridge so we can now buy more food at one time.
Continue reading “Left Troy Springs Now at St Sebastian Preserve”

Summer on the Suwannee

Summer on the Suwannee River is going to be exciting and it will be hot and muggy too. It’s a very good thing that we will be in a Florida State Park that has a cool spring for swimming. As we speak our little RV air conditioning unit is thinking about quitting on us and we just don’t have the money to get it fixed. 🙁 Major bummer for us. We may have to move to the front of the park behind the ranger’s station to get under the shade of some trees pretty soon. The barn area campsite for the residential hosts is extremely nice with a huge yard, electric, water and sewer set up, a fire ring and picnic table. We also have an extra bathhouse inside the barn that we use. It was made for the boy scouts who primitive camp in the park in exchange for some service project they do for the ranger. They were trying to get equestrian primitive camping approved to utilize this great horse barn that came with the property as well. But due to some “right of way on private property” snafu that has been put on hold indefinitely. The bathhouse is A.D.A. accessible. However, there are no shade trees where we have to park in order to reach the utilities. It gets pretty warm in here fairly quickly in the morning then all the way until dark.

TSSP05032015 (24) (Copy)
Continue reading “Summer on the Suwannee”

Welcome to Troy Springs

The springs when the river is down
The springs when the river was down
We made it to Troy Springs State Park just fine. We have worked a couple of hours opening and closing the front gate and cleaning the bathrooms once. Then we are off the the next several days. It’s pretty quiet around here as the river is still pretty high and our park ranger, Tina, cannot open the springs up to swimming and diving until the water recedes enough. 🙁 That is both good and bad. Good because we don’t have many visitors so we don’t have to do much in the way of cleaning and bad because we are not getting many visitors to the park so the park is not making much money. We are catching up on some cleaning, posting to our social media pages and writing articles. Hopefully, I will have enough time to add some of our craft items that we have made over the last several weeks on to our online store pages.

This park has two residential park host sites. One is located directly behind the ranger’s office next to the springs area and the other is located on the back of the property in front of the barn. When the park ranger told us we could use the camp site next to the barn I was picturing one of those big red buildings with hay, farm equipment and stuff. Well, it turns out this property had a large horse barn on it when it was purchased by the state. It is in great shape and the park personnel and volunteers have kept it really nice. Sadly, the park cannot allow horses in the park. Which is a great shame as it would bring in more money for this park. They have to get some kind of property easement agreement from one of the local private land owners that are between this park and the Ruth Springs Suwannee River Water Management land area.
Continue reading “Welcome to Troy Springs”

Winding Down Here at Stephen Foster

AntiquesVillageWhiteSpringsFL (5) (Copy)We are winding down here at Stephen Foster Folk Culture Center State Park. The campground is looking better as we, and our fellow volunteers, slowly rake, sweep, clip and blow the leaves and trim the bushes in and around the campground area. We finally found a hand blower that I can start myself and I try to use it every day on the campsites. In the mean time another volunteer couple, Linda and J.T., are trimming the trees, bushes and along the roadways. They pay to stay on their campsite and work all day most of the week to whip the campground back into shape after a long fall and winter season. Our co-campground host couple, Dennis and Liz, are doing a great job as well as we learn to use the “automated” cleaning solutions station that was put into the storage areas of the bathhouses. This is suppose to help deliver the “right amounts” of cleaning solution with water ratios for proper cleaning and to help the park save money in the long run. We are still having to use a watered down bleach solution on the shower areas though as it stays so damp in the bathhouses between the rain and humidity. But, we do our best with what we are given and we are still receiving compliments from our fellow campers about how clean the bathhouses are and how nice the campsites are being kept.
Continue reading “Winding Down Here at Stephen Foster”

Only Two Weeks Left At Big Shoals

BigShoals11282014 (11)Only two weeks left at Big Shoals State Park and then we move down the road about 6 miles to Stephen Foster Culture Center State Park for the first 4 months of the new year. It has been so peaceful here. Yes, we get a couple of visitors each day and more of the weekend. We have even gotten a couple of visitors who asked questions or just wanted to talk for a few minutes. The work is not difficult and basically only needs doing a couple days a week. All the other times we just are available for the visitors and to close the gates at night. So if you are thinking about volunteering here we hope you will consider it in the future.

The good is definitely the peace and quiet here. The only bad we could say would be the sewer situation. You will have to buy about 80 feet of sewer hose to dump your black water and you can use a regular garden hose to dump your gray water. It would be nice to have a little storage building to use while we are here. But you can use the volunteer washer/dryer at Stephen Foster State Park for FREE. You will have the use of a Gator to run back and forth along the paved trail between Little Shoals and Big Shoals area as well as to explore the various trails while you are here. It has been nice here.

We are looking forward to transferring to Stephen Foster on January 1st. We know that it will be more work, more people and they don’t have sewers on site for the campground hosts either. We may not come back to Big Shoals as we have so many more places to explore. Nor, will we come back to Stephen Foster after we leave there at the end of April for the same reason.

We hope you and yours have a safe and happy holiday season. See you next year!


Continue reading “Only Two Weeks Left At Big Shoals”