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COSTCO Shoppers — Get Ready! Costco Opening Soon in Bradenton, Florida 

Manatee County’s first Costco, one of the most-anticipated new businesses coming to the Bradenton area, is scheduled to open at 8:00 am on Aug. 21st.
The Costco’s new wholesale warehouse, part of a more than 300,000 square foot retail development at 805 Lighthouse Drive in Bradenton, FL is very close to completion. The project, called the Market Place is located at Heritage Harbour on the northeast corner of State Road 64 and Interstate 75.
 
Did you know that Costco is one of the largest retailers in the world? As of March 2019 Costco has 770 warehouses worldwide. Costco has long been known for selling bulk quantities of high quality foods and other consumables at discount prices. And, Costco will not stock a product if they feel the wholesale price is too high. If you have been in a Costco store recently did you notice that the aisles are not labelled? And, do you know the reason for that? Costco strategy is that we, their customers will wander the aisles searching for what we came for while putting more items in our carts along the way. The same reason Costco places popular items at the back of their store, again more items placed in our carts, not necessarily what we came for, while we go in search for what we really came to buy. In comparison it is actually easier to find a product in Costco than their Walmart competitor. For example, Costco stores display 4000 products open layout compared to Walmart’s approximately 100,000 products displayed in somewhat cluttered aisles. Certainly something to think about on your next shopping trip. And then there is Costco’s legendary free samples. Yes, you can stand in line to fill up on bites of glazed salmon, sausage bites, spoonfuls of yogurt, crackers and cream cheese and so much more.
 
No matter what Costco’s strategy is, I don’t know about you, but I love Costco. And not just because of the free samples – you see there is a 99% chance you will not find me in a Costco free samples line-up. I have nothing against the free samples, I actually think it is a great way to ‘try before you buy’ a new product, but I just don’t enjoy standing in those line-ups.
 
You might be wondering, on your one week vacation with Anna Maria Island Condo Rentals, why would you want to shop at a huge warehouse and buy bulk items? The answer is simple, you might not, but there is a lot more to visiting a Costco warehouse than free samples and buying bulk-sized everything. From the health and beauty items, good deals on men’s, ladies and kids clothing, yummy fresh treats from their bakery, I usually manage to find something different in one of the many Costco departments. Oh, and how about the $5.00 Costco Rotisserie Chicken? Pair with a salad and you have an easy meal because really, who wants to cook when they’re on vacation – not me!
As well, many of our guests are staying with us longer than one week and prefer a one stop shopping experience which Costco provides. And, I would never forget to mention our ‘Snowbirds’ — they love to stock up on items for their lengthy visit allowing themselves more time to enjoy the beach, pool and other activities.
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Here are a few things I definitely think are worth going to Costco for —
Eggs – you can get everything from conventional to free-range eggs, all at a lower cost than at many other grocery stores.
Costco’s Food Court – Filling and inexpensive it’s hard to pass by without stopping at the food court. Choose from cheese, pepperoni or veggie pizza, frozen yogurt, chicken Caesar salads, chicken bake, turkey provolone sandwiches, organic beef-based cheeseburgers, hot dogs or for those who don’t eat meat, try a plant-based açai bowl. For some shoppers it’s all about the hotdog and sofa, and it really is a deal!— since 1985, the price of the soda and hot dog combo has remained at $1.50.
Cheese – Fancy Cheeses, delicious! The Costco’s cheese aisle offers a variety of high quality cheese and you can get a large piece for a good price.
Costco’s ‘Kirkland’ – Great quality house brand products under their own name. Costco’s Kirkland Signature label offers everything from cereal and olive oil to dress shirts and vitamins. And when they are packaged with the Costco store brand – Kirkland Signature the discounts are sweet.
Rotisserie Chicken – The $5 rotisserie chicken is a loss-leader for Costco, but a bargain for us hungry consumers.
Meat – Their meat department is always well stocked with fresh, very good quality products.
Gasoline – The Costco gasoline station is easy to use, straight in and straight out and gas is typically 6 cents or more per gallon cheaper than other stations.
Beer, Wine and Liquor – Costco sells many alcohol, wine, beer, & spirits under the Kirkland Signature label for great prices.
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Other than a brand new, brightly lit, impeccably clean warehouse what else can Bradenton consumers expect with the upcoming arrival of Costco?
A large variety of services will be available — According to latest reports, the site plan for Market Place include — the Hair Cuttery, Amazing Lash Studio, dental office, several restaurants such as Chipotle Mexican Grill, Miller’s Ale House, Longhorn Steakhouse, Panera Bread, Blaze Pizza, Cheddar’s Scratch Kitchen, Jersey Mike’s Subs and more!
 
Remember, Costco is a membership warehouse club. Memberships are available online and in Costco stores.
If you already have a Costcomembership card it is valid at any Costco warehouse in the world. Just make sure you tell the cashier that it is an international card and they will input a special code for you to use your card.
So, when you visit Bradenton’s brand new Costco what will you be buying?
Maybe I’ll see you there, just don’t look for me in one of the food samples line-up. 😊
For the latest up to date news, things to do, special offers, travel tips and more continue to follow our blog @ Anna Maria Island Condo Rentals/Blog
Note: Anna Maria Island Condo Rentals offers the above company names and affiliated links as suggestions only. We are not receiving commissions from any of the above and are listing them only to assist our guests. We recommend services that we or close friends and family have experienced.
The content of this blog is not to be copied, adapted or shared without the written consent of Anna Maria Island Condo Rentals.
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Fourth of July Events — Anna Maria Island Condo Rentals

Fourth of July Events — Anna Maria Island 
 
How are you planning to celebrate Independence Day?
Anna Maria Island is the perfect place to celebrate the Fourth of July and experience the delights as you observe the uniqueness and freedoms of this country.
All of us at Anna Maria Island Condo Rentals look forward to having you spend this special holiday with us!
This year, Anna Maria Island has four planned events — a parade, a picnic, parties and fireworks display.
 

Privateers’ parade

 
The annual Anna Maria Island Privateers July 4 parade will begin at about 10 am.
Beginning at Coquina Beach in Bradenton Beach and travelling north on Gulf Drive through Bradenton Beach, Holmes Beach and Anna Maria. The parade ends at the City Pier Park at Pine Avenue and North Bay Boulevard in Anna Maria. Be prepared to catch some beads as the participants throw them to the onlookers. Lots of fun for all! Don’t forget your sunscreen!
 
JULY 4THAnna Maria City Picnic Celebration
Immediately following the AMI Privateers parade the City of Anna Maria will hold a picnic party in the City Pier Park.
Enjoy lunch — Hot Dogs, Beverages and Entertainment.
12:00 pm until 1:30 pm
For more information, call city hall at 941-708-6130.
 

Privateers party

 
After the parade, at about noon, the Privateers will hold a party and reception at the Manatee Public Beach (Anna Maria Island Beach Cafe) 4000 Gulf Drive, Holmes Beach. Celebrate Independence Day and the winners of Privateers college scholarships. The Privateers will present $19,850 in scholarships to 14 students for their college education. Bring your cooler and spend a little time at Manatee Public Beach, one of Anna Maria Island’s famous beaches and enjoy the sunshine.
 
Celebrate July 4th at The Sandbar! 
Of course the day wouldn’t be complete without some fun and noisy celebrations topped off with fireworks and the Sandbar Restaurant has just the ticket for you.
One of Anna Maria Island’s favourite restaurants is once again hosting their annual dinner party and fireworks display.
Tickets for the dinner party include special seating for the fireworks.
Starting at 6:00 pm 100 Spring Avenue, Anna Maria, FL
For reservations call 941-757-3737
Adults: $155 Kids 12 and under: $50 — Tax and gratuity is included.
Here is a sample of their July 4th Dinner menu:
Starting at 6:00 pm — Champagne Toast
6:30 pm — PASSED APPETIZERS — Shrimp Ceviche | Tomato & Mozzarella Bruschetta | Cheesy Tator Tots Pickled Papaya Spring Rolls | Shogun Farms Sausage and Pimento Cheese
7:00 pm — RAW BAR — Gulf Oysters on the Half Shell | Pine Island Clams on the Half Shell Snow Crab Legs | Peel & Eat Gulf Shrimp | Smoked Fish Dip & Hemp Crackers
7:30 pm — DINNER — Shogun Farms Roasted Wild Boar | Smoked BBQ Chicken | Shrimp & Grits Smoked CAB Brisket Cornbread & Rolls | Macaroni & Cheese | Collard Greens Sandbar Rice | Grilled Vegetables | Farm Fresh Salad
DESSERT — Key Lime Pie | American Flag Cake | Blueberry Cheesecake
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The firework display is a public event which will start around 9:00 pm. For those of you that want to see only the Fireworks show you can make your way to the beach north or south of the Sandbar Restaurant. Parking at or near the Sandbar will be limited, therefore we strongly suggest leaving your car at the condo and taking the Free Island Trolley or Monkey Bus.

For more information about the fireworks, call the Sandbar at 941-778-0444.
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Off-island activities —

July 4th celebrations off the island include a parade, a picnic, a hot dog-eating contest, Minor League Baseball play and of course, Fireworks!

 
On Longboat Key July 4, the Chamber of Commerce will present its Freedom Fest beginning with a parade starting at 10:00 am.
In Cortez, the Swordfish Grill and Tiki Bar, 4628 119th St. W., will host its sixth annual Fourth of July Hot Dog Eating Contest at 1 pm.
In Bradenton, the Bradenton Marauders will celebrate the holiday Wednesday, July 3, with fireworks after the baseball game against the Jupiter Hammerheads.
The ballgame will begin at 6:30 pm at LECOM Park, at the corner of Ninth Street West and 17th Avenue West, with the Marauders giving the first 1,500 fans a shirt.
For more information, call the box office at 941-747-3031.
Bradenton and Sarasota will present fireworks displays.
 
If you would like more information regarding any July 4th events please reach out and ask us.
Note: Anna Maria Island Condo Rentals offers the above company names and affiliated links as suggestions only. We are not receiving commissions from any of the above and are listing them only to assist our guests. We recommend services that we or close friends and family have experienced.
The content of this blog is not to be copied, adapted or shared without the written consent of Anna Maria Island Condo Rentals.
 

For the latest up to date news, things to do, special offers, travel tips and more continue to follow our blog @ Anna Maria Island Condo Rentals/Blog
Anna Maria Island Condo Rentals

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Awesome ways to Celebrate Father’s Day on Anna Maria Island 

To celebrate Father’s Day on June 16th – yep, THIS Sunday – The one thing most dads want is to spend time with their kids. This Father’s Day, forgo traditional gifts and give him a keepsake he will always remember. Make June 16th all about fun experiences and quality time together.
Here are a few things to do with Dad while vacationing on Anna Maria Island …
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Take a Segway Tour: Fun for the whole family, you can enjoy a guided tour.
Rent Bikes, Scooters or Golf Carts: What a fun way to explore the Island. Pick your riding style and enjoy your tour. Any of these rentals are such a fun way to explore the island. Rent them for the half day, day, or even the week. Don’t forget to stop along the way and treat Dad to some ice cream 🍦
Parasailing: A great way to experience the breathtaking beauty of Anna Maria Island. Parasailing is truly a once in a lifetime experience and a wonderful way to celebrate with Dad. 
Kayak or Paddle Board: Choose from single and tandem kayaks and stand up paddle boards. Consider an Eco Paddle Tours, they are also available.
Jet-ski: Jet skis offer the thrill of flying across the water and allow you to see unique views of Anna Maria Island. You will get the chance to see all kinds of aquatic wildlife exploring the Gulf of Mexico or Intra-coastal waterway. 
Guided Boat Tour: Eco Tours, Boat Tours, Nature & Wildlife Tours, Private Tours, Dolphin and Whale Watching…so many choices, might be best to let Dad pick 😉
Rent a Boat: Considering a boat rental? Be your own captain and rent a pontoon boat for a half day or full day rental. It’s such a fun way to explore the waters of Anna Maria on your own with family and friends. Captains and private charters are also available.
Sunset Cruise: Any evening is a good evening for a beautiful sunset cruise aboard one of Anna Maria’s lovely tour boats like the Anna Maria Explorer or Island Pearl.
Aircraft Flying: See the beauty of the Island from the sky. Take a ride on the amazing Light Sport Aircraft flying along the beaches of Anna Maria. Book Dad’s flight today. 
Fishing Charter: Book your fishing trip for renowned Anna Maria Island charter fishing and cruise along the local waters with an experienced captain.
To book any of the above services, call Julie at —> Book a Little Sunshine.
Not only will you receive excellent service and be well taken care off, Book a Little Sunshine will make it an experience you will never forget. Make sure you tell them you’re staying with Anna Maria Island Condo Rentals to receive a discounted rate.
Call 941-524-4275 for more information or book online.
Treat Dad to Ice Cream: Before or after your adventure or an after dinner treat. Do you know the best Ice Cream place on the island? Island Scoops at 103 Gulf Drive North, Bradenton Beach. You really must try it, we guarantee Dad will thank you.
Take Dad out to dinner: As the old saying goes, the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach. Is that really true? I think so … good food creates memories, makes the heart grow fonder, and makes for good dinner table conversations. Treat Dad on Father’s Day at any of the fine restaurants Anna Maria Island offers.
Here are a few of our favourites that we’re sure Dad will like too —
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Beach House – 200 Gulf Drive, Bradenton Beach
The Beach House is a world-class restaurant is just a few minute walk from Anna Maria Island Condo Rentals located directly on the beach. You will find waterfront dining with a laid-back casual atmosphere featuring air-conditioned indoor seating as well as climate friendly outdoor seating. Serving superb, fresh seafood as well as other fabulous entrees the Beach House is a top choice when dining on Bradenton Beach. If you are planning dinner at this gulf-front restaurant you will have the perfect spot to watch a beautiful Anna Maria Island sunset.
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Sandbar Restaurant – 100 Spring Avenue, Anna Maria
Inside and outside dining, literally yards from the water. Enjoy being seated around a table with your feet in the sand while your food is being prepared creatively and with a wait staff that’s friendly and prompt. Sound inviting? If you are looking for a truly locally sourced dining experience we recommend the Sandbar restaurant. Goods grown in their own farm, serving fish fresh from the docks at Cortez and they make their own breads. Their menu features picked and plated produce, locally grown clams and locally grown fruits and vegetables.
If you are looking to start Dad’s day with brunch? Sunday brunch will be served starting at 10:00 am at the Sandbar.
Dinner will be served at both the Beach House and the Sandbar.
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The Moose is calling all Fathers! The Anna Maria Island Moose invites you to visit on Sunday June 16th where you can relax inside or kick back and enjoy some sunshine on their outdoor patio or rooftop terrace. And, Dad will receive a drink on them!
The Moose Lodge has special craft beer taps…maybe 10 on tap…I think that’s more than any other Island establishment?!
The Moose Lodge
110 Gulf Dr. South
Bradenton Beach, Fl. 34217
941-778-4110
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Waterfront Restaurant – 111 South Bay Blvd., Anna Maria 
Anna Maria’s waterfront casual dining restaurant with a touch of class. It’s slightly higher end than most places in the area, but we think it’s worth it. You can sit outside and enjoy the waterfront gulf view, be seated inside, or on the back patio. Reservations are accepted for inside dining. Patio seating is first come first serve. We recommend their fish tacos, fresh Snapper and the Grouper is fabulous. As well, the Kale and Brussels Sprouts salad is excellent! Great food with fabulous craft cocktails and for dessert their delicious key lime pie … a perfect place to treat Dad! 
 
For the latest up to date news, things to do, special offers, travel tips and more continue to follow our blog @ Anna Maria Island Condo Rentals/Blog
Anna Maria Island Condo Rentals
Note: Anna Maria Island Condo Rentals offers the above company names and affiliated links as suggestions only. We are not receiving commissions from any of the above and are listing them only to assist our guests. We recommend services that we or close friends and family have experienced.
The content of this blog is not to be copied, adapted or shared without the written consent of Anna Maria Island Condo Rentals.
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WORLD’S STRONGEST MAN COMPETITION Anna Maria Island & Bradenton, Florida

Tachi Palace World’s Strongest Man competition June 13th – June 16th 2019 brings with it the Game of Thrones star Hafthor Julius Bjornsson, also known for his role as Sir Gregor “The Mountain” Clegane on the HBO show.

After an eventful competition in the Philippines last year, which followed two consecutive years of the contest taking place in Botswana, the 2019 World’s Strongest Man competition is back in United States. The contest took place in the United States in 2014 when the World’s Strongest Man was held in Los Angeles. This will be the very first time for the event to be held in Florida!

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The World’s Strongest Man competition has been held annually since 1977 and this
year’s event is not only taking place in Florida, but right here on the beautiful beaches of Anna Maria Island as well as on Old Main Street in Bradenton, Florida.
The four day competition from Thursday, June 13th until Sunday, June 16th will include three days of qualifiers and a one-day finale. This year will bring a change from years past with five events in each qualification round and all of the groups will be doing the same five events. The five events include: truck pull, super yoke and farmer’s walk medley, overhead press, deadlift and last man standing. From pulling trucks to lifting and pressing logs, the challenges are designed to push the competitors to their limits, testing their physical strength, their agility and mental toughness.

The public is invited to watch all competitions, free of charge.

So what does this mean for guests of Anna Maria Island Condo Rentals? —
— No tickets and all events will be free to attend.
— Our guests will watch the planet’s greatest strongmen compete for what may be the most coveted title in strength sports.
— You will see 25 of the sport’s most-dominant strength athletes compete for the title. — The event set-ups will be fan friendly.
— All events on the beach are within walking distance from your condo. Alternatively, you can take the Free Island Trolley to both Coquina Beach and Manatee Public Beach. Those events being held in Bradenton are approximately a 10-20 minute drive from Anna Maria Condo Rentals.

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Here’s what you can expect to see —— Athletes pulling monster trucks weighing more than 30,000 pounds, deadlifting more than 650 pounds and tossing 150-pound kettle bells.
— The field of athletes will include the reigning champion and star of “Game of Thrones” Hafthor Julius Bjornsson. Bjornsson — who is 6 feet, 9 inches tall and weighs around 400 pounds — portrayed Gregor “The Mountain” Clegane, an imposing enforcer for House Lannister, for five seasons, including the eighth and final season that concluded earlier this month. Last year, the Icelandic strongman won World’s Strongest Man, Europe’s Strongest Man and the Arnold Strongman Classic. Other competitors are, four-time World’s Strongest Man champion Brian Shaw of the United States and the 2018 runner-up, Mateusz Kieliszkowski from Poland.
— Twenty-five athletes in total will compete over the three days of qualifiers and one-day final.

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Seventeen-year-old Michael Cruz competes in the Tire Flip. Competitors had to flip a 600 lb. tire for 30 yards. Cruz finished with a time of 52.24 seconds.

Qualifying is set for:
▪ 9 a.m. on Thursday, June 13 on Old Main Street, south of Manatee Avenue near the historic courthouse in downtown Bradenton.
▪ 9 a.m. on Friday, June 14 on Coquina Beach, Anna Maria Island.
▪ 9 a.m. on Saturday, June 15 at Manatee Public Beach, Anna Maria Island.
The finale is planned for 8 a.m. on Sunday, June 16 at Manatee Public Beach, Anna Maria Island.

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In the finale at Manatee Public Beach, the events include loading race (medley), deadlift hold, overhead press (medley), squat lift and Atlas stones.

This world event has an estimated international viewership of more than 220 million.
Coverage of the 2019 event will be broadcast worldwide to more than 70 countries and territories.
All free, no tickets, just come out and enjoy! Don’t forget your sunscreen.

For the latest up to date news, things to do, special offer, travel tips and more continue to follow our blog @ Anna Maria Island Condo Rentals/Blog

Anna Maria Island Condo Rentals

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Our Favourite Beach Shops — Anna Maria Island, Florida 

Our Favourite Beach Shops — Anna Maria Island, Florida 
 
Anna Maria Island has it all — beautiful beaches, amazing food, plenty of old Florida charm as well as many unique beach shops. As you enjoy the paradise of Anna Maria Island, your days at the beach and shopping if you choose to fit it in, here is a list of our favourite beach shops —
 
Alvin’s Island — 3658 E Bay Drive, Holmes Beach, FL
A great place, Alvin’s is so much more than a tourist beach gift shop. Surf shop, beach accessories, souvenirs and anything you need for your vacation at the beach.
They are always friendly even if they get busy and we shop here often!
They have a huge selection of souvenirs and clothes with a great selection of reasonably priced swimsuits. Their merchandise is good quality and prices are good whether you’re shopping the sale racks or not. Anna Maria Island logo’s hats, tees, shot glasses… you name it they have it.
 
Bridge Street Interiors — 100 Bridge Street, Bradenton Beach, FL
Don’t let the name fool you, once inside you will be pleasantly surprised with their merchandise. This is a really fun and relaxing place to shop. The owners are amazing and the products they sell are truly wonderful.
They have lots of cute costume jewelry, home decorations, scents, candles & tropical apparel. In the back they do have interior design services and can help you with your decorating needs. There are so many unique things in this store that it might just be my favourite on Anna Maria Island.
 
Green Turtle Shell & Gift Shop — 701 Gulf Drive North, Bradenton Beach, FL
The fun gifts and souvenirs you’ll want to bring home from the island are waiting here! From a large variety of shells to funky beach accessories they have it all. There is also a selection of  jewelry, home decor, T-shirts and all the beach goodies you will want.
The Green Turtle Shop is only a few minute walk from Anna Maria Island Condo Rentals and trust me your kids will love it. Our adult children still talk about their fond memories of many visits to the “Turtle Shop” and are now experiencing the same with their children.
 
Island Bazaar, East Bay Drive, Holmes Beach, Florida
Bridge Street Bazaar – Bridge Street, Bradenton Beach, Florida
Island Bazaar offers two shops on Anna Maria Island. These two stores are popular beach tourist shops, one located in Holmes Beach and one in Bradenton Beach. My personal preference is the Holmes Beach location, which is the larger of the two. It has a large selection of beach wear including swimsuits, sun hats, and shoes. Both offer an array of clothing, hats, towels and all the beach souvenirs you could ask for. Lots of toys and trinkets that kids love looking through.
 
Sand Dollar Gift Shop — 5302 Marina Drive, Holmes Beach, FL
The Sand Dollar Gift Shop is a unique boutique in Holmes Beach with a different feel than other shops on Anna Maria Island. They have a limited selection of stylish beachy clothes and jewelry. You will find lots of candles, soaps and home decor. This is a great shop to find unique gifts and keepsakes. Browsing in this little boutique is always enjoyable.
 
Sun & Surf Beach — 5418 Marina Drive, Holmes Beach, Florida
Before you enter the store you will be greeted by about a dozen resident parrots. Everyday the friendly staff of this surf shop pull the parrot cages outside of the shaded store front to greet their guests. These entertaining parrots, each individually named, are a hit with adults and children alike. Once inside you can expect a fun tropical shopping experience with a nice selection of beach attire. The shop has lots of beach themed T-shirts, cover-ups and swim wear too. And, sometimes you’ll find furniture and other knick-knacks. There is a small play area for kids while you shop—such a great idea to help keep kids occupied. But, if they get bored you can take them back outside for another visit with the talking parrots.
 
West Coast Surf Shop — 3902 Gulf Drive North, Holmes Beach, Florida
This is the oldest surf shop on Florida’s west coast and sells items relevant to having fun on the beach and in the water. They have a large selection of swimwear, sportswear, surfboards, skimboards, skateboards, accessories, sunglasses, sandals and more.
 
As always, if you would like more information, please feel free to email or call us anytime!  We are happy to help! Contact us here.
 
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Celebrating Mom On Mother’s Day — Anna Maria Island – Anna Maria Island Condo Rentals

Mother’s Day is the perfect excuse to take your Mom to Anna Maria Island and a great way to celebrate Mother’s Day — and spoiling Mom on her special day makes for an even more memorable vacation. Would Mom like to take a cooking class, play a round of golf, or simply relax surrounded by her family? On Anna Maria Island you can celebrate all the things that your mom loves most.
Staying with Anna Maria Island Condo Rentals is a nice way to reward and say thank-you to Mom and the following Mom-friendly ideas will really put a smile on her face for Mother’s Day.
 
Special Mother’s Day Boat Cruise aboard the Anna Maria Princess with live music and flowers and a free mimosa for Mom!
Sunday, May 12, 11:30 am departure
  • Adult: $32.10
  • Senior: $26.75
  • Child (10 and under): $21.40
Location and Contact Information : The Anna Maria Princess is docked at the Bradenton Beach Marina
402 Church Avenue North, Bradenton Beach, FL 34217
Call: 941-778-2288
Bradenton Beach Marina is a resort marina located just off the Intracoastal Waterway on beautiful Anna Maria Island. The Bradenton Beach Marina is easy to find, only a few minute walk from Anna Maria Island Condo Rentals.
 
Segway and Beach Market Tour
Join Segs by the Sea for a Mother’s Day Coquina Beach Market tour. This 90 minute excursion will take participants along Anna Maria Island’s Coquina Trail. With a stop at the Coquina Beach Market tour participants will have an opportunity to explore and shop. Mothers ride 1/2 price.
For Information visit — bookalittlesunshine.com
Or call: Julie @ 941-524-4275
 
Beach Market at Coquina Beach from 10-4:00 this Mother’s Day, May 12, 2019.
You will find unique items from local artists, arts and crafts, jewelry, fresh produce, baked goods, gourmet foods, herbs and teas, local honey, plants, apparel, pottery, purses, collectibles, photography, woodworking, health and beauty items, and more! Watch local artisans creating and find that perfect souvenir of your trip to Anna Maria Island, Florida. Enjoy the live music compliments of the talented AMI String band as they stroll the market from 10:30 -2:30. View the beautiful white sand beach and relax with eats and drinks on the deck overlooking the Gulf of Mexico at Coquina Café. The Beach Market is located at 2650 Gulf Drive South in Bradenton Beach. Getting there is easy. You can walk or ride the FREE trolley to the market or drive and park in the FREE parking lot. The market is stroller, walker and wheelchair accessible.
 
1/2 OFF Sundaes from Island Scoops — Treat Mom to some ice cream at Island Scoops – Gulf Drive, Bradenton Beach
Help mom celebrate in the most delicious way possible — with Island Scoops special 1/2 OFF Sundaes for mother’s. Over half dozen Sundaes to choose from to celebrate mom on Mother’s Day.
 
Sarasota Jungle Gardens — 3701 Bay Shore Road, Sarasota, FL
Approximately 20 minutes from Anna Maria Island, Sarasota Jungle Gardens is a perfect place to celebrate Mom together as a family.
Moms and Grandmoms get a special deal on Mother’s Day weekend, May 11 and 12. With the purchase of any full-priced same-day admission, Mom or Grandmom receive free admission for both Saturday and Sunday. Enjoy the lush, tropical botanical gardens on 10 acres in the heart of Sarasota. You can follow the winding trails and Interact with the animals and enjoy various animal shows and performances.
Admission is free for children three and under; $12.99 for children 4-16; $17.99 for adults and $16.99 for seniors 65 and older. The Gardens are open 10 am – 5 pm
Visit the Sarasota Jungle Gardens web site at www.sarasotajunglegardens.com or call (941)355-5305 for more information.
 
Looking for somewhere special to take Mom for lunch or dinner? Here are a few of our favourites —
 
The Beach House – 200 Gulf Drive North, Bradenton Beach, FL
The Beach House will be serving chef inspired dishes from their dinner menu starting at 11:30 am both inside and outside on the newly renovated waterfront deck. Mom will love her favourite cocktail in the sunken lounge area or outside bar. With a spectacular view of the Gulf of Mexico and only a few minute walk from Anna Maria Island Condo Rentals this is a fabulous choice of venue to celebrate Mom.
Reservations: 941-778-2222; groupersandwich.com
 
Blue Marlin – 121 Bridge Street, Bradenton Beach, FL
A cottage from the 1920s transformed into a top spot for skillfully prepared sea creatures brought over from the docks of nearby Cortez Village. Blue Marlin serves fabulous craft cocktails and other fun drinks and after dinner enjoy live music outside in the Trap Yard.
941-896-9737; bluemarlinami.com
 
Eat Here – 5315 Gulf Drive, Holmes Beach, FL 
Enjoy Mother’s Day Brunch Saturday and Sunday from 11:00 am to 3:00 pm with some special treats from Eat Here’s award winning chef. We’re sure Mom will enjoy her delicious meal along with her complimentary drink.
941-778-0411; eathereflorida.com
 
Old Hamburg Schnitzelhaus – 3246 East Bay Drive, Holmes Beach, FL
This beloved restaurant has an enchanting, Old World setting to go with its authentic wiener schnitzel and other traditional German dishes. Pair your food selection with steins brimming with genuine German beer. We’re certain Mom won’t be the only one that will love this place!
941-778-1320; schnitzel.house
 
The Sandbar – 100 Spring Avenue, Anna Maria, FL
The Sandbar Restaurant is having their Jazz Brunch at 10:00 am with music provided by the Al Hixon Jazz Band. Dinner will start at 1:00 pm featuring a special menu to treat Mom. Toes in the sand dining is a perfect way to celebrate Mom’s special day.
Phone: 941-778-0444; sandbar.groupersandwich.com
 
Waterfront Restaurant — 111 South Bay Blvd., Anna Maria Island, FL
This fabulous restaurant with authentic Old Florida vibes is located on the north end of the island just across the street from the bay. Indoor or Courtyard dining is available. On a clear day, you can see the Skyway Bridge.  We have only had the best meals here and this is a place our family frequents often. The Waterfront offers daily specials and pride themselves on serving fresh local ingredients when available, as well as an array of well appointed Craft Cocktails.
Reservations recommended 941-778-1515; thewaterfrontrestaurant.net
 
Aside from the above suggestions, Mom can make the most of Mother’s Day on Anna Maria Island by relaxing on the beach or by the pool, followed by a comfortable evening in her luxury accommodations with private lanai. It’s all part of a great Mother’s Day with Anna Maria Island Condo Rentals.
Happy Mother’s Day to all Mothers!
 
For the latest up to date news, things to do, special offers, travel tips and more continue to follow our blog @ Anna Maria Island Condo Rentals/Blog
 
Note: Anna Maria Island Condo Rentals offers company names and affiliated links as suggestions only. We are not receiving commissions and are listing them only to assist our guests. We only recommend services that we or close friends and family have experienced.
The content of this blog is not to be copied or adapted without the written consent of Anna Maria Island Condo Rentals.
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Speggtacular Easter Celebrations — Anna Maria Island—Anna Maria Island Condo Rentals

Happy Easter from Anna Maria Island Condo Rentals! With the holiday weekend right around the corner, we’re taking a look at a few of our favorite ways to celebrate—including some unique to Anna Maria Island.

When you think of celebrating Easter what comes to mind? Celebrating can include decorating Easter baskets, painting Easter eggs, early morning egg hunts and special church services. You can celebrate Easter in a variety of ways — Anna Maria Island offers some fun events and a great number of services including an Easter sunrise service on the beach!

Easter Worship Services:
Anna Maria Island Churches
Episcopal Church of Annunciation – 4408 Gulf Drive, Holmes Beach, Florida
Call the church for information on Easter services 941-778-1638
CrossPointe Fellowship (Non-Denominational) – 8605 Gulf Drive, Anna Maria
Road to Resurrection Services April 14 – 21 Palm Sunday 9 am
Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Good Friday all at 7 pm, Easter Sunday 9 am
941-778-0719
Gloria Dei Lutheran Church – 6608 Marina Drive, Holmes Beach, Florida
Call the church at 941-778-1813 for Easter service information
Harvey Memorial Church – 300 Church Street, Bradenton Beach
Call church for service information 941-779-1912
Roser Memorial Community Church – 512 Pine Avenue, Anna Maria, Florida
Good Friday Service – Friday, Apr 19, 2019 @ 7:00 p.m.
Easter Sunday – Sunday April 21, 2019 @ 8:30am Early Worship Service – Sanctuary
8:45am Adult Sunday School
9:00am Adult Book Study
10:00am Worship Service – Sanctuary
Please call the church 941-778-0414 for any additional information.
St. Bernard Catholic Church – 248 S. Harbor Drive, Holmes Beach, Florida
Easter Week Schedule – April 18th 7:00 p.m. Mass of Our Lord’s Supper; April 19th 3:00 p.m.; The Passion of Our Lord April 20th 8:00 p.m. Only Easter Vigil Mass
April 21st Easter Mass at 8:30 & 10:30 a.m.
St. Bernard’s 941-778-4769

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Sunrise Celebration on the Beach — April 21/2019 — 6:30 – 8:30 am
Manatee Beach, 4000 Gulf Drive, Holmes Beach
The Kiwanis Club of Anna Maria Island is once again sponsoring the 55th Annual Sunrise Service at Manatee County Public Beach. Participating are all six Island churches including, St. Bernard Catholic Church, Roser Church, Gloria Dei Lutheran Church,
Episcopal Church of the Annunciation, CrossPointe Fellowship, and Harvey Memorial.
Reflect and worship during this all denominational sunrise service. I am always grateful to spend Easter on Anna Maria Island and find this service is always exhilarating and inviting as everyone joins in singing inspirational Easter music. There is lots of free parking at the beach and to accommodate the anticipated crowd of up to 2,000 people the Island Trolley will begin running at 6:00 a.m. As well, the Anna Maria Beach Café located at the Manatee Public Beach will open at 6 a.m. to serve coffee.
Remember, you will be on the sand so don’t forget to bring your beach chairs to sit on.
There will be an offertory collection for those wishing to participate.

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Secular Activities:
Saturday, April 20/2019 Sandbar Restaurant, 100 Spring Avenue, Anna Maria 941-778-0444
At the Sandbar Gazebo beginning at 8:30 a.m. families can enjoy breakfast snacks, coffee and juice for kids aged 10 and under.
An Easter Egg Hunt begins at 9:00 a.m. for kids 10 and under. The Hunt will be held on the beach in front of the Sandbar Restaurant. Don’t forget to have your children’s Easter baskets ready to fill with eggs collected from the beach (don’t worry if you didn’t bring baskets, you can pick them up at the Island Dollar store).
Next up, from 9:30-11:30 a.m. is the Annual Easter Egg Roll with the Easter Bunny leading the way down Pine Avenue. Lots of family fun with face painting, games and coloring as kids participate in egg-rolling races. Everyone will enjoy the live music and complimentary framed pictures taken with the Easter Bunny.
Make sure to wear your finest Easter bonnets with a chance to win some great prizes. Again, the local Dollar store is a great place to pick up a bonnet and all the embellishments needed to make it a winner. Bonnet Contest judging will be held at 10:30. First place adult prize is a two-night stay at an Anna Maria Island guest house and kids win a Sandbar lunch with three friends. There will also be second and third place prizes.

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As you can see, while visiting Anna Maria Island there is no shortage of ways to get into the Easter spirit.
We hope that you and your family enjoy a very happy Easter filled with family, fun, beach and sunshine 🌞

For the latest up to date news, things to do, special offer, travel tips and more continue to follow our blog @ Anna Maria Island Condo Rentals/Blog

Note: Anna Maria Island Condo Rentals offers company names and affiliated links as suggestions only. We are not receiving commissions and are listing them only to assist our guests. We only recommend services that we or close friends and family have experienced.
The content of this blog is not to be copied or adapted without the written consent of Anna Maria Island Condo Rentals.

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Bring on the Sunshine, the Sand, and the ICE CREAM

“You can’t buy happiness, but you can buy ice cream, and that’s kind of the same thing”. 🍦🍚
For our family these two are the same thing and our vacation would not be complete without ice cream from our favourite ice cream parlour, Island Scoops. Ice cream is synonymous with leisure and comfort and just thinking about it makes me smile.
 
Imagine sharing your Anna Maria Island vacation photos with your friends on Instagram or Facebook — photos of relaxing beach days, smouldering sunsets, and
melting ice cream cones.
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People with a sweet tooth (that’s me) may have at one point stood in an ice cream shop looking at the delicious flavours and watching the smiling faces of everyone that enters, because really — who doesn’t love ice cream? Ice cream is a category that makes people smile. Research from neuroscientists at the Institute of Psychiatry in London found that eating ice cream makes you happy, that just one spoonful lights up the happy zones of the brain.
 
At our local ice cream shop in Bradenton Beach, February 1st brought lots of smiles, all those smiles can be contributed to ice cream. This popular ice cream shop welcomed new owners Julie Kirkwood and Walter Loos. The name has now changed from Cream of AMI to Island Scoops, but the one thing that didn’t change is their ice cream. They are continuing to serve Big Olaf, Florida’s best Homemade Ice Cream. Big Olaf Ice Cream is made with the finest ingredients, hand mixed by local Amish craftsmen and churned in batch freezers then sold for us to enjoy! The shop itself has the usual traditional look, but what they serve is what we love.
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Island Scoops has so many ice cream flavours to choose from, plus rotating flavours, as well as sugar free and dairy free options. Looking for other sweet treats? Try their floats, malts, milkshakes, banana splits, sundaes and new vintage sodas like, Frostie Root Beer and Dog n Suds Root Beer. And, if you cannot live on ice cream alone, Island Scoops offers baked goods, including fresh baked cookies, brownies, cupcakes, pies and cakes.
 
The new owners, Kirkwood and Loo, also own Segs by the Sea and Book a Little Sunshine at 102 Bridge Street, Bradenton Beach. Segs by the Sea offers Segway tours of the island, and Book a Little Sunshine offers tours, activities and rentals. Additionally Book a Little Sunshine offers all guests of Anna Maria Island Condo Rentals discounts on tours, activities, beach rentals, baby rentals and more. With all three businesses linked to tourism and within walking distance of each other, this recent acquisition seems like a good fit. The line-ups we witnessed last week seemed proof that the ice-cream business will be just as successful as their others.
 
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Stop by Island Scoops and enjoy your favorite flavor.
Island Scoops is open from 1:00 – 10:00 pm seven days a week.
 
For more information, call 941-840-0095 or visit islandscoops.shop.
 
For the latest news, things to do, special offers, travel tips and more continue to follow our blog @ Anna Maria Island Condo Rentals/Blog.
 
Note: Anna Maria Island Condo Rentals offers company names and affiliated links as suggestions only. We are not receiving commissions and are listing them only to assist our guests. We only recommend services that we or close friends and family have experienced.
The content of this blog is not to be copied or adapted without the written consent of Anna Maria Island Condo Rentals.
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Beach Workout – Anna Maria Island, Florida

You’ve arrived at your destination, beautiful Anna Maria Island and are looking forward to a wonderful holiday. You are anticipating white sandy beaches, sunny weather, and delicious cocktails. Your only concern is — maintaining your fitness while enjoying your holiday. Being on vacation doesn’t mean you have to skip your workout. A beach workout is a perfect way to start your day. Some simple beach workouts will have you looking and feeling amazing from the day you arrive until the day you leave.

When you’re staying with Anna Maria Island Condo Rentals you can take advantage of the beautiful coastal scenery and do your workouts at the beach. The fresh salt air, the feel of the sun on your skin as well as the added resistance of the sand are the makings for a better and more efficient workout.
An added bonus — once your beach workout is complete, instead of hitting the shower you can jump into the ocean for a refreshing cool off.
Well there is no equipment needed for excellent beach workouts, please don’t forget to apply your sunscreen and stay well hydrated!
Here are some suggestions that are sure to help you meet your fitness goals while not imposing on your relaxing vacation.
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Swimming
You can definitely get a sweat on in the water. You probably already have your swimsuit on so hit the beach and make a splash! Take advantage of your beach vacation with the added benefit of working out on a liquid treadmill in the refreshing Gulf of Mexico. And, I can’t think of a better way to enjoy the beautiful Florida weather than a workout in the water. A swimming workout is easy on your joints, bones and muscles, burns calories and firms every muscle in your body. It is also known to relieve stress and tension while refreshing and renewing us. And, don’t forget to bring your beach chair along so after your workout you can pick the perfect spot to sit back and relax.
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Running
Running is a popular type of exercise on the Florida beach and running on the sand is much different and harder than it is on cement or the treadmill. Running on beach sand will be a workout your body isn’t used to, making it more effective.
Barefoot or shoes? You will see a mix of runners, some choose to wear shoes, although many prefer to run barefoot. Running barefoot allows you to use your whole foot enabling your feet to move through their natural range of motion. This can help strengthen different muscles, but pay attention to any unusual aches or pains you may experience especially if you have plantar fasciitis, ankle injuries, or any lower leg problems. For those that like to run barefoot, be careful of fish hooks, sharp shells and broken glass.
Wet sand or dry sand? Wet, hard sand creates a dense, stable surface. Soft sand creates a higher level of instability, which makes you work harder.
If you choose to wear your shoes on the beach, you can run in the soft sand you work harder and have lots of sand in each shoe when you’re done or you go for the hard sand while trying not to get your shoes wet.
You can also consider running in the water. What a feeling you get with the water splashing up on your legs as you run. Plus, the bonus of slightly firmer footing than the loose sand further up on the beach.
An added perk to beach running — the cool beach breeze blowing on your face giving you a continuous cool down effect.
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Walking
Walking on the sand isn’t easy. Scientists say it takes 2.1-2.7 times more energy to walk or run on the sand than it does to move at the same pace on hard surfaces. You know the feeling … you take a step forward, your foot sinks into the sand and shifts as you push a little harder trying to get a little traction. Yep, that energy you are using strengthens the muscles between your feet and back, especially your calves, quadriceps and glutes. So, as you are enjoying your next beach walk, remember, you are really working those muscles. And, the dryer the sand, the harder the work.
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Beach Bear Crawl
Simple, but effective — begin in a plank position with your arms fully extended. Then, slowly crawl forward in the sand like a bear using your arms and feet.
Pushups
You can do these pushups inside your vacation rental, but doing them on the beach with the uneven terrain will challenge your body in new ways. The softness of sand makes push-ups harder. Begin in a plank position with arms fully extended and lower your body until your face is almost touching the sand. Repeat until you feel fatigued. Facing the water puts your body at a decline which is more challenging. Beginners may find it easier to face away from the water so your body will be at an incline.
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Sand Sprints
Want to boost your cardiovascular fitness? Running sprints on the beach will do it.
The resistance from the sand makes these more strenuous than regular sprints, so don’t overdo it – you’ll feel them quickly.
Warm up by easy running on the beach. When you’re ready go hard and sprint for 20 seconds pumping your arms trying to cover as much ground as you can in the short amount of time. Then give yourself a minute or two of recovery, to allow almost full recovery so you can put maximum effort into each sprint. Repeat. Aim for 10 sprints. Sounds easy enough 🙂 Then cool down walking slowly on the beach to bring your heart rate back down.
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Walking Sand Lunges
Walking lunges are an ideal leg workout for the beach. Lunging in the sand is an excellent glute and thigh workout, and doing it on the beach means you can enjoy the peaceful view while on vacation. The sand makes for adequate resistance and requires you to really use your stabilizing muscles. Begin by slowly lunging forward with one leg; then lunge forward with the other leg in a continuous motion while moving in a forward direction. Complete several sets of this exercise until your legs feel fatigued.
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Beach Yoga 
Ohhh, the power of a yoga workout. Get stretched and relax with some beachside yoga. Imagine—enjoying the beach with light activity, connecting with nature and your own spirituality. Beach yoga is the perfect way to surround yourself with serene scenery as you deeply inhale the fresh salt air and get the sensational, warm feeling as the sun touches your skin. The softness of the sand will enable you to create poses that would normally require you to stop and put down a blanket for padding. Anna Maria Island is relaxing and laid back, an absolutely perfect place for beach yoga.
If you are interested in group yoga classes on the beach please contact us Anna Maria Island Condo Rentals and we will provide information.
Whatever form your workout takes, we wish you a wonderful beach vacation on Anna Maria Island, Florida. We hope your visit with us is filled with many great moments making beautiful take-home memories.
For the latest up to date news, things to do, special offers and more continue to follow our blog @ Anna Maria Island Condo Rentals/Blog
Anna Maria Island Condo Rentals
Note: Anna Maria Island Condo Rentals offers company names and affiliated links as suggestions only. We are not receiving commissions from any that we list and are listing them only to assist our guests. We recommend services that we or close friends and family have experienced.
The content of this blog is not to be copied or adapted without the written consent of Anna Maria Island Condo Rentals.
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Shop, Play & Dine on Bridge Street, Bradenton Beach – Anna Maria Island

Bridge Street is where the original wooden bridge stood and at one time was the only means of access to the island. The wooden bridge was replaced in 1967 with the concrete bridge that you see today running from the mainland to Anna Maria Island.
Bridge Street offers the same laid-back Florida charm that is consistent with all of Anna Maria Island. Instead of high-rise condos and shopping malls, you will find boutique style shops and restaurants. Historic Bridge Street on Bradenton Beach which is the southernmost city of Anna Maria Island. With spectacular Bay to Gulf water views, Bridge Street is a must see!
So, let’s get started — Parking is limited on the Bridge Street. We recommend that you leave your car and walk or use the free Island trolley. The area is very walkable with rest benches along the way.
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Shop — Anna Maria Island shopping on Bridge Street, with a wide variety of local art, jewelry, clothing and beach souvenirs. Bridge Street stores are walkable, right between the beach and bay. Find one of a kind items from many of the merchants, including, Bridge Street Bazaar, Bridges Street Interiors, Back Alley Treasures, Bridge Street Jewellery. There are a few not to be missed shops that have just recently opened, right beside Bridge Street Bazaar. Shopping on Bridge Street is a relaxing experience. Have fun while you look for that treasure souvenir to take back home with you.
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Activities — Play a round at Florida’s most unique miniature golf course. Fish Hole Adventure golf is an old Florida fishing village themed course. With misters to keep you cool on a hot Florida day, a 3000 gallon pond filled with koi of all sizes and colors, and native Florida plants this is a fun activity. Perfect for the whole family!
If you are looking to book any tours or activities, be sure to stop at Book a Little Sunshine. Choose from water adventures, fishing charters, snorkeling, sunsets cruises, paddle experiences and more. You name it, they will arrange it.
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Dine — There are plenty of places to dine, many offering nightly live music (some day music too). Here are a few of the restaurants we recommend on Bridge Street: Anna Maria Oyster Bar on the Pier, Bridge Tender Inn, Island Creperie, Blue Marlin, Island Time Bar & Grill, Bridge Street Bistro. We are sure one of these will become your new favourite spot. Bridge Street = the best place for Anna Maria Island dining and entertainment.
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After you’ve wandered along Bridge Street and enjoyed a little shopping and a delicious meal, make your way onto the Bridge Street Pier. There is always a breeze and some great views of the waterway and its many boats. Its almost magical!
As you end your day on Bridge Street, take a seat on one of the benches or swings and relax on the Pier. You’ll be happy you did.
Bridge Street is a very inviting and happening street — the place to be and enjoy….
Take a look at the video below to learn more:

For the latest up to date news, things to do, special offers, travel tips and more continue to follow our blog @ Anna Maria Island Condo Rentals/Blog

Anna Maria Island Condo Rentals

Note: Anna Maria Island Condo Rentals offers the above company names and affiliated links as suggestions only. We are not receiving commissions from any of the above and are listing them only to assist our guests. We recommend services that we or close friends and family have experienced.
The content of this blog is not to be copied, adapted or shared without the written consent of Anna Maria Island Condo Rentals.