Get ready to Strut Your Mutt and “Save Them All” this Saturday, September 30th at Riverside Park in Jacksonville. Best Friend’s Animal Society’s Annual Strut Your Mutt dog walk and festival isn’t your average dog walk. Community members and their furry friends are invited to come together to support No More Homeless Pets and save the lives of shelter pets in our community by donating to non-kill shelters. Cities across the country are participating, too!

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St. Augustine is a special little town known for its Spanish architecture, history, shopping and outstanding restaurants. Davidson Realty’s Graphic Designer Matt Burkhart and I recently took a trip to the oldest city in search of the best happy hour spots in town. Luckily for us, the locals were happy to point us to the three best places to stop and wet your whistle during the day!

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Northeast Florida is known for its spectacular holiday lights, but none shine brighter than historic St. Augustine’s Nights of Lights celebration. In fact, Rachael Ray magazine named St. Augustine one of the Nation’s “Twinkliest Towns” in 2014. National Geographic also dubbed St. Augustine one of the Top 10 Places in the World to view holiday lights in 2012 and 2013.

This year’s event looks to be just as “twinklie” as previous years with more than 3 million lights going up through the town. The celebration will run from November 19 through January 31, 2017.

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The Holiday of Love is right around the corner and you probably aren’t any closer to figuring out the perfect way to “woo” your significant other. It’s tough coming up with new ideas every year. Mashable says the seven most popular Valentine’s Day gifts in the US are greeting cards, candy, flowers, an evening out, jewelry, clothing and gift cards. I guarantee you she doesn’t want a box of chocolates or a teddy bear that says “I love you” and he doesn’t want a tie. Let’s think outside of the box!

Groupon: Honestly Groupon has some GREAT deals/packages going on for Valentine’s Day. Search Valentine’s Day Jacksonville or St. Augustine and you will come across spa packages, Cigar Samplers, more than 50% off diamond stud earrings, discounted getaways, nights out and more! You can even have delicious Omaha steaks delivered to cook her/him a romantic meal.

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St. Augustine has been gearing up for its 450th birthday celebration for quite some time. Though the banning of food trucks and remnants from Hurricane Erika might have dampened some excitement, most Augustinians are ready to get the party started. Here are the major events queued up for the week:

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As St. Johns County students gear up to return to the classroom, parents are now looking for after-school activities for the fall. From football to drama classes, our area offers diverse options for all skill levels, talents and interests. Here are just some of the local activity options for your children:

Soccer by Amenity Athletics (Ages 4-13): Games are on Saturday mornings between 8:30 a.m. and 12:30 p.m. at the Heritage Landing amenity center.

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Mother’s Day can be hard to plan for…what to do? Where to go? What to buy her? Luckily, this year there is a LOT going on right in our own backyard for the whole family to enjoy. Make this Mother’s Day a “staycation”!

Black and Blue Grill: Did you know Black and Blue Grill just won Best Family Restaurant by the Taste of St. Augustine? They are offering a delicious Mother’s Day menu from noon to 9 pm on Sunday, May 10th. Reservations recommended! Find more information on their Facebook Page.

The King & Bear Clubhouse: Enjoy a Mother’s Day brunch buffet at the King & Bear Clubhouse from 11 am to 3 pm. The buffet includes everything from an omelet station to raspberry glazed salmon and a prime rib carving station! Non-members welcome. Reservations required – (904) 940-6207.

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If you have ever planned a romantic Valentine’s Day date, you’ve probably heard, “Sorry, we’re all booked” more than a few times. Waiting too late to make reservations can make your dining and entertainment options dwindle – fast.

With this year’s Love Day falling on a Saturday, it is especially important to put your name in early at the First Coast’s most popular Valentine’s Day destinations. Here are some popular reservation-only options that are running fantastic V-day specials. Reserve your spot today!

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The Cascades is an active-adult community located in the heart of World Golf Village known for its 22,000 square foot grand clubhouse and plethora of activities happening year round. I took a tour of the amenity facility with Davidson Realty agent and Cascades resident Jock Ochiltree to spotlight some of his favorite community activities. Join us for our tour!

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If you’re not a Serenata Beach Club member, now is a great time to consider a membership! Why? Because New Year’s Day at the club will be filled with delicious food and shivering swimmers!

From 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. the club will be serving a Breakfast Buffet complete with omelet station, smoked salmon display, waffles, bacon, sausage, biscuits and gravy, fruit, assorted pastries and beverage specials. Adults are $16.95, ages 6-12 are $7.95, and ages 3-5 are $4.95. Advanced reservations are recommended so call Serenata at (904) 823-3368 ext. 221 or email reservations@serenataclub.com to reserve your spot.

At 10:30 a.m. on New Year’s Day, Serenata will host a Polar Bear Plunge in the Atlantic Ocean! All member ages are welcome to participate, so plan to join in the fun with an invigorating dip with the other polar bears!

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