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March 2014 / April 2014 Newsletter


A condensed events and activities list can be found on our Calendar page.
Membership information can be found on our Membership page.
 

General Participation Guidelines
Always sign up ("pre-register") for an event by using our Meetup.com site or by contacting the leader so you can be reached if there is a change or an event cancellation.  Trip leaders generally make all reservations and arrangements and may set group size limits on some trips and activities.  If you are not pre-registered you may be turned away at some events.

Additional information about these activities and events may be announced at monthly meetings, on our Meetup.com site, and by Meetup.com messaging.  If you did not sign up for an event or activity at the last club meeting and would like to do so, you may add your name to the list at our Meetup.com site.  If you have additional questions, please contact the trip or activity leader directly.




ACTIVITIES and EVENTS
 

Sat 3/1/, 10:00am, Photo Scavenger Hunt at Jacksonville Arboretum: We will meet 10:00 am at the Jacksonville Arboretum parking lot, 1445 Millcoe Road, Jacksonville, (just off Monument Rd.) There is a limit of 31 (one leader, 30 team members) participants at this event. This event is a competition among teams. The group will be divided into 5 teams of 6. The event leader has taken photos of objects (natural and man-made) along the lovely, winding trails of the arboretum. Each team should assign a leader who has walked the arboretum before (a route map will be issued) and one photographer (cell phones are fine) to match each of the photos the event leader has taken. Each team will be provided sheets of these photos. All the members of the team will be the spotters. The team which collects/matches the most photos correctly and arrives back at the parking lot first will win the team prize which is being donated by the event leader. (In the case of a tie at the finish, the team with the most correct matches wins.) We can decide where we might like to go to lunch after the hunt. Because of the use of cameras, this event will not be held in the rain – Rain date will be Sun., 3/2/14 at 10:00am. NOTE: This is likely to be a popular event which is limited to 31 people, and we want to have the same number of people on each team. As a result, if you sign up and it looks like you can’t attend, please give several days’ notice on Meetup.com so that people who are on the wait list can join. Leader: Tim Scott, cell # 904-705-3335.

Sun 3/2, 1:00pm, Paddle at Cedar River, Jacksonville:  Come join other paddlers on kayaks or canoes this Sunday afternoon for a leisurely trip on the quiet Cedar River located on the west side of Jacksonville. Starting point is the Wayne B. Stevens Boat Ramp at Ortega Farms Blvd. and Seaboard Ave (off Timuquana Rd) which leads to Ortega River. From there we will turn left (northerly) into Cedar River, which goes under Blanding Blvd to another boat ramp at San Juan Blvd. This out-and-back 2 hour paddle (approximately 4 miles) is suitable for beginners or intermediate paddlers. Faster paddlers can go farther upstream for a longer paddle. Those who want to go slow and/or fish can do that also.  High tide at Ortega River is at 11:26 am and low tide is at 5:50 pm (Cedar River will be a little later), which will make it shortly after high tide and provide a slight outgoing current (to make it easier on the return). Bring your own kayak/canoe or make arrangements to rent or borrow one because there are not any rentals at this location.   The boat ramp has adequate parking for cars next to the hand-launch ramp (first one you see straight ahead as you drive into it). If you desire, bring a beverage and a snack or sandwich because there is a place nearby to picnic when we are done. The weather is predicted to be sunny 70’s with 10% or less chance of rain. A map of the rivers is located at: http://myfwc.com/media/415208/Manatee_duvalMPZ.pdf. (See page 4; boat ramp is on Fishing Creek which leads to Ortega. Leader: Suezy Q-see meetup for contact info.

Wed 3/5, 6:30pm, Monthly Members and Planning Meeting: Regency Square Library, 9900 Regency Square Blvd., Jacksonville, FL 32256

Sat 3/22, 9:00am, Mountain Biking at Hanna Park:  Come join us for a fun day at Kathryn Abbey Hanna Park, 500 Wonder wood Drive, Jacksonville. Meet between 9:00 - 9:15 am at the parking lot just inside the entrance. Intermediate ride on the off road trails begins at 9:30 am. Bring sunscreen, bug spray and plenty of water for the ride.  Helmets are required. Ride at own risk. Link to Hanna Park Trails Map.  Leader: Steve D. 561.602.8613 ste_dor 'at' bellsouth.net

Sat 03/29, 8:00am, Princess Place Preserve Picnic and Matanzas River Paddling in Palm Coast, FL:  We plan on meeting at the McDonalds on Old St Augustine and I-95. This is located by Kohl’s near Bartram Springs. Bring typical paddle equipment and lunch. The main pavilion is reserve for our event.  A word of caution! The oyster beds are very sharp. Everyone entering the water is urged to wear heavy duty shoes, aqua shoes or old sneakers.  Kayaks will be available to rent. Just let me know if you are interested and I will call for rental prices. For more information on this area, check out: http://www.flaglercounty.org/facilities.aspx?page=detail&RID=18 .

Paddle Location:  2500 Princess Place Road, Palm Coast, FL  32137; the drive is 48 miles and will take approximately one hour from McDonald’s. Any questions, call Sue M. at: 215-939-8523 

Wed 4/2, 6:30 PM, Monthly Members Meeting: Regency Square Library, 9900 Regency Square Blvd., Jacksonville, FL 32256

Sat 4/5, 10:00am, Otttis Castle Tour in Vilano Beach: MEMBERS ONLY. Come join us for a day of fun exploring the Otttis Castle. Castle Otttis is an impression of an Irish castle of 1,000 years ago. The interior was created under guidance of historians from the Catholic Diocese of Northeast Florida.  Enjoy the view of the Atlantic Ocean, Vilano Beach and St Augustine from the roof top of its towers. There is a free tour, however, donations are appreciated. The Castle is located 103 3rd St, St Augustine, FL 32084 on highway A1A three miles north of St. Augustine, Florida. For those who want to car pool, meet at 9:00 am at the Jacksonville Southeast Regional Library at 10599 Deerwood Park Boulevard near JTB and Gate Parkway. Map & Driving Directions.  For additional information:  http://www.castleotttis.com/ 

After the tour some of the members will be going to Caps Restaurant on the intercostals waterway. You are welcome to join us. Sidetrackers Members Only – Limit 20 guests. Hosted by Vicki A. 904.923.2335.

Sat 4/12 - Seaton Creek Hike: For more details, and to make a reservation, visit our Meetup.com pages.

Sat 4/19 - OPEN

Fri-Sun, 4/25-27th, Cayo Costa State Park (Naples, Fl): SIDETRACKERS MEMBERS ONLY.  We will meet at 5:30 am, Friday, 4/25th at McDonalds on Old St. Augustine Road, 13939 Old St. Augustine Rd., off I-95, exit 335.  This is approximately a 6.5 hour drive.  Cayo Costa Island has 8 miles of beautiful beaches off the Gulf Coast.  Swimming, snorkeling, fishing, hiking, kayaking, bird watching and sea shell collecting are all part of this tropical paradise. Access to the Island is by boat shuttle only.  You will be responsible for your reservations to transport you round trip on and off the Island.  Call Tropic Star, Pine Island at (239)283-0015. 

Let them know you are with the Jacksonville Sidetrackers Group.  We will take the 1:00pm boat shuttle on Friday.  You must be there by 12:30pm.  We will leave the Island at 10:00am on Sunday.  Personal gear is limited to 50 pounds (tent, food, etc.).  In addition you are allowed 1 back pack. The boat fee is $42.00 and includes park access fee.  There is a $15.00 transport fee if you bring your own kayak.  There is a $10 transport fee to bring your bike.  Parking at the Marina is $18 for 2 days.  On the Island there is a complimentary tram that will shuttle your camping equipment to camp site.  Rentals for kayaks and bikes are available on the Island. Everyone is responsible for reserving and paying for their own campsite.    Call (941)964-0375 to reserve your campsite.  Each campsite can accommodate (2) tents and (8) people.   There is water and firewood available on the Island for purchase.  You must have an animal proof food container. We will be kayaking and hiking.  Organized trips will be announced once we arrive on the Island.  Bring sunscreen, plenty of water, food for grilling/cooking, snacks, camera /binoculars.  Leader Victor, (cell) 904-517-2321. Food arrangements will be coordinated closer to trip departure. For additional information, please check the website: http://www.floridastateparks.org/cayocosta/  

Wed 5/7, 6:30 PM, Monthly Members Meeting: Regency Square Library, 9900 Regency Square Blvd., Jacksonville, FL 32256

Sat 5/10, 10:00am, Photo Scavenger Hunt at Jacksonville Arboretum: We will meet at the Jacksonville Arboretum parking lot at 10:00am. (1445 Millcoe Road, Jacksonville, just off Monument Rd.) This is the second and LAST roll-out of this very well-received event which should accommodate all those from the wait list from the one in March. There will be a limit of 31 people. This event is a competition among teams. The group will be divided into 5 teams of 6. The event leader has taken photos of objects (natural and man-made) along the lovely, winding trails of the arboretum. Each team will have a leader/navigator who has walked the arboretum before (a route map will be issued) and one photographer (cell phones are fine) to match each of the photos the event leader has taken. Each team will be provided sheets of these photos. All the members of the team will be the spotters. The team which collects/matches the most photos correctly and arrives back at the parking lot first will win the team prize which is being donated by the event leader. (In the case of a tie at the finish, the team with the most correct matches wins.) We can decide where we might like to go to lunch after the hunt. Because of the use of cameras, this event will not be held in the rain – Rain date will be Sun., 5/11/14 at 10:00am. NOTE: This is a popular event which is limited to 31 people, and we want to have the same number of people on each team. Last time 11 out of 30 people were no-shows which was not well-received. The leader will take names of no-shows for future board discussions. Please give several days’ notice on Meetup.com so that people who are on the wait list can join. Leader: Tim S., cell # 904-705-3335.

Fri-Sun  5/16–18, Skidaway Island Camping (Savannah, GA): SIDETRACKERS MEMBERS ONLY.  We will meet at 5:00 pm, Friday, May 16th at McDonalds at Airport Center Road, exit 363A.  This is approximately a 2 hour drive.  This is a State Park South of Savannah, GA. Kayaking, biking, hiking and site seeing of Historic Savannah is on the agenda.  Two cabins and 1 campsite have been reserved.  Cabins sleep 5 people.  Cabins are approximately $55 per person for 2 nights.  Campsites are $35 per campsite for 2 nights, with up to 8 people per site.  Cabins and Campsites are close in proximity.  Leader, Vic will coordinate cabin and campsite arrangements.  Please state your preference when signing-up for trip.  Activities planned are: Friday night Ghost tour, biking and hiking at Tybee Island and kayaking at the State Park on Sunday.  You can bring your own kayak and bike or rent on site from the State Park.  You cannot reserve kayaks ahead of time.  Reservations are first come, however, there are plenty available.

Bring sunscreen, plenty of water, food for grilling/cooking, snacks, camera /binoculars.  Leader Victor, (cell) 904-517-2321.  Food arrangements will be coordinated closer to trip departure.

For additional information, please check the website:  http://gastateparks.org/SkidawayIsland


Additional information about these activities and events may be announced at monthly meetings and on our Meetup.com/Sidetrackers trip reservation pages.

2014 Monthly Meeting Schedule.  Locations Will Be Announced.
MONTHLY MEETINGS are always on the first non-holiday Wednesday of the month at 6:30 p.m.
and the location may vary.  Subscribers to our Meetup.com group receive an automatic reminder message in their email two days before the meeting.

WEDNESDAY, April 2, 2014 – 6:30 PM
WEDNESDAY, May 7, 2014 – 6:30 PM
WEDNESDAY, June 4, 2014 – 6:30 PM
WEDNESDAY, July 2, 2014 – 6:30 PM
WEDNESDAY, August 6, 2014 – 6:30 PM
WEDNESDAY, September 3, 2014 – 6:30 PM
WEDNESDAY, October 1, 2014 – 6:30 PM
WEDNESDAY, November 5, 2014 – 6:30 PM
WEDNESDAY, December 3, 2014 – 6:30 PM

The Sidetrackers Newsletter
Our newsletter is maintained by Chris who can be reached by email at newsletter 'at' sidetrackers.com.
If you have any comments about the newsletter, or if you have material to submit for inclusion in the
next monthly newsletter, please send email to newsletter 'at' sidetrackers.com.

To Become a Sidetrackers Member
Members pay a small annual fee to help share the annual cost of maintaining this web site and the small costs of running the club.  Members are also covered by our supplemental accident insurance policy and are not required to submit a Guest Waiver Form at each Sidetrackers trip, activity or event.  Membership applications are accepted throughout the year.  Please visit our Membership page, or send questions and comments to membership 'at' sidetrackers.com.

The Sidetrackers Web Site

Our web site is maintained by Frank who can be reached by email at webmaster 'at' sidetrackers.com.  Please contact Frank if you have any corrections, photos, or other items of interest from any current activities. We will be pleased to consider your suggestions concerning the web site content.

In Case You Were Wondering...
Email addresses are slightly obscured with 'at' instead of '@' in an attempt to foil automated spam robots.



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