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Ghosts Wednesday: Florida’s Ghostly Legends and Haunted Folklore Vol. 3

Regardless of details, however, one thing is for certain – Mary’s spirit still remains. Ringling’s Keating Hall is considered by many paranormal researches to be one of the most haunted buildings on any campus in the United States. Even though some believe she was successfully exorcised by a local priest a few years ago, many  >> READ MORE

Travel Tuesday: Mount Dora

Quaint, picturesque, and although not mountainous, at least hilly, Mount Dora is only 45 minutes north of Orlando, but a century away in time. It could easily be Florida’s version of Bedford Falls (in the movie It’s a Wonderful Life). Victorian homes, a postcard-perfect turn-of-the-century main street, antique shops, superb restaurants, and inviting bed &  >> READ MORE

Poetry Monday: Dog Island

The House of Stone and Branch Once he thought That coral and pine Were the gnarled stuff From which he might build His tropical house, an architecture of light Sprung from the ground. Seasoil and salt grape And the skysweet mango Would blossom there Under his hands, Among the quick lizards And slow scorpions. —  >> READ MORE

Cracker Thursday: Classic Cracker

This is important to note. From the configuration of the simplest pioneering cabin, the single-pen house, down through its double-pen or dog-trot offspring, the homes of the Crackers had maintained a formal dignity. The ubiquitous I-house, the Cracker plantation house and, finally, the “late Cracker” four-square Georgian – in all these the classic principles of  >> READ MORE

Ghosts Wednesday: Florida Ghost Stories

He had been seen a number of times down by the pool, and others had seen him as he disappeared into the doorway or into one of the secret passages. They even found opening to passages that had not been used for years that no one even remembered existed. Many had heard the choir boy  >> READ MORE

Travel Tuesday: Key West in History

Bahamian fishermen and wreckers built temporary camps in the Keys before the U.S. took over Florida, and Bahamians or “Conchs” were among the earliest settlers in Key West. The Bahamian heritage is commemorated in the Bahama Market in a neighborhood originally settled by Bahamians southwest of Whitehead Street. A sign over the entrance to Petronia  >> READ MORE

Poetry Monday: Thoughts on Saving the Manatee

Weighed down by its dense bones the manatee swims so slowly that algae have time to colonize on its spine. I know a woman who rode one down the river gently scraping with a clamshell letting drift free a bushel basket of diatoms and kelp. — Maxine Kumin (1989) Learn More about Florida in Poetry  >> READ MORE

History Sunday: Myakka

Though renowned for its beauty and diversity, the Myakka is not the pristine stream G.O. Shields described in the 1800s. When the land was first acquired for a state park in the 1930s, the priorities were to prevent lightning fires from burning, to minimize flooding of the river, and to prevent the lakes from drying  >> READ MORE

Gardening Saturday: The Trees of Florida

Mastering the language of botany can seem an overwhelming task for the beginning student of our flora. There often appears to be no end to the complex technical vocabulary that is commonly used in describing the various characteristics of a plant’s morphology. However, acquiring a command of such language is a necessary prerequisite for learning  >> READ MORE

Nature Friday: Florida’s Waters

In their original, pristine condition, all of Florida’s lakes were outstanding water bodies. The Indian names of Florida’s lakes and ponds – Tsala Apopka, Tohopekaliga, Weohyakapka, and the others – testify that they have always attracted people to their shores. Today, many have changed greatly due to human impact. Learn More about Florida’s Waters at  >> READ MORE