Well, it’s been a year since I became an official rent-paying Jacksonville resident, and though it surprises me to say it, I’ve quite enjoyed the return to my roots. When I departed home a few several many years ago to find adventures in Atlanta, NYC and beyond, I left behind what I thought was a dead-end city with no jobs and nothing much to do.
When I returned, somewhat out of exhaustion and the general need to chill out briefly before moving on to my next adventure, I was surprised to find a thriving city, chock full of entrepreneurs and musicians and artists and outdoorsy athletes. Yummy food, too.
Once I accepted that Jacksonville will never be New York City, its special & unique characteristics began to reveal themselves, and one day it hit me — Jacksonville is a really lovely place to live in its own right.
As such it warrants my attention as a destination just as much as any other place I’ve ever been.
In the midst of my return home, I’ve been incredibly lazy. Since most of my blogging and consulting business takes place outside Jacksonville, I’ve been content to shelter in the harbor of my family and friends from childhood rather than striking out boldly in search of new friends and experiences. And since I grew up here, it’s been very easy to shrug off all the activities I’ve already done… despite the fact that I haven’t done them since I was a field-tripping elementary-schooler!
This week, I’m signing a lease for yet another year on the First Coast – something I never thought I’d do willingly. In the next calendar year, when I’m not jaunting to The Bahamas, Las Vegas, St. Kitts, Uganda or wherever, I’m hoping you’ll join me as I tackle what I’m calling my Jacksonville Bucket List. Any activity, restaurant, park, coffee shop, speakeasy, rodeo – anything! – in the triangle between St. Augustine, Amelia Island and Middleburg is fair game. I invite you to come along for the ride and implore you to share your suggestions!
The Ever-Changing Angie Away Jacksonville Bucket List
Attend OneSpark 2014 Speak at Generation W – 4/4
- Check out The Riverside Arts Market 3/8
Eat at Angie’s Subs Visit the Jacksonville Zoo Zip-lining at the Alligator Farm Eat at Orsay
- See an exhibit at the Cummer Art Museum
Explore animal encounters in Florida
- Tailgate & attend a Jacksonville Jaguar Game
- “ “ Sharks
- “ “ Armada
Wander Little Talbot Island State Park
- Kayak on the St. Johns River
Dine at Moxie in the St. Johns Town Center Check out Catty Shack Ranch Ride the Skyway
- Sleep at Riverdale Inn
Art Walk See a show from the Artist Series at the Times-Union Center – 3/18 Memphis
- See a movie at the historic San Marco Theater
- Check out the MOSH Planetarium
- Take a photo with my family at Friendship Fountain
- See a show at the Florida Theatre
Attend the TPC at Sawgrass
- Eat at Maple Street Biscuit Co.
Talk travel on The Chat Write for the Florida Times-Union again
These are just a few items off the top of my head, but I know there are many more things to do in Jacksonville. So let me know what I’m missing and what needs to move to the top of the list. I’ve got a lot of planning to do!
5 thoughts on “Tourist in My Town: The Ultimate Jacksonville Bucket List”
You’ve got to do a local brewery tour and then at least visit the tasting rooms of a few more. Jacksonville is gaining a good reputation for craft beer. You’ll also get to talk to the local owners and probably hear some decent music.
I would add Black Sheep to your places to eat.
And the river run. It’s part of Jacksonville, and people travel from across the world to compete in it. You run through a ton of neighborhoods, each with their own personality cheering you on. Think mimosas in San Marco and little cups of pulled pork and beer in St. Nicholas. I’m not a runner, but I did run it a few years back. Once was enough for me, but it was awesome.
And when you are ready for the Jags game, let me know! We are serious about our tailgate!
I volunteer to help you in this critical venture! We just need to schedule a visit 🙂
Good idea. I haven’t really been to Jacksonville. I’ve been through on my way to Neptune Beach where we stayed for a week with a friend who lived there. Maybe I’ll tackle a similar project for my own city, Memphis.
Visit St George Street in St Augustine, see all the quaint little shops.
Eat Lunch at the Columbis and have some imported Sangria
I think so many people end up hating on their hometown (especially those of us that live in NYC!). I’m definitely guilty of complaining about where I’m from (Boston) even though I’m sure from a tourist perspective it’s a great place! Every city has its charm – glad you found Jacksonville’s 🙂