One Week of In-Town Jacksonville Fun

Our spring break started with no plans other than to not work and not spend too much money! But thanks to the other writers here on the blog, we had plenty of local ideas to choose from to keep us very busy! We ended up spending all week in and around Jacksonville experiencing things that were new to us and making lots of great memories!

Friday – Fun Friday

Fun Friday Bowling!
Fun Friday Bowling!

After school and work were both done on Friday, our spring break fun was officially underway! In keeping with our new family tradition of fun and “screen-free” Fridays… we kicked off our week of togetherness when the kids randomly chose “bowling at home” as our Fun Friday activity!

Saturday – Strawberry Picking

On Saturday, we drove to St. Augustine to pick strawberries. Before starting, we received a quick lesson on how to properly harvest strawberries. The kids got their own scissors and away we went! After picking absolutely perfect strawberries, we brought them home and enjoyed them for the next couple of days (they were too good to last long). The kids had fun picking them and even more fun eating them!

Sunday – Natural Life Music Fest

Jax Mom's Blog at Natural Life Music Festival
Jax Mom’s Blog at Natural Life Music Festival

I met up with a few other Jax Mom’s Blog bloggers to volunteer at the JMB craft station at the Annual Natural Life Music Fest. Later, my kids and hubby met up with me there to explore all the sights, sounds, and activities that the festival has to offer! I can’t believe that this was our first time at NLMF because it was one of the most family friendly events we’ve been to in Jacksonville. We’re looking forward to doing it again! {This event is happening on March 13, 2016}

Monday – Lego Movie

The start of the week was awfully gloomy but there was no way we were going to use that as a reason not to have fun together. My son loves Legos and we have been trying to convince him that we should go to Lego Land for his birthday in May instead of having a party. So, in an effort to make the case for the theme park, we brought the whole family to see The Lego Movie. It worked! We’re going to Lego Land in May.  (But, if those plans fall through, I’ve got his lego party all planned out for me just in case.  Thanks Pam!)

Tuesday – Tree Hill Nature Center & Free Tuesday @ The Cummer Museum

Turtle Petting at Tree Hill Nature Center
Turtle Petting at Tree Hill Nature Center

Still gloomy but not rainy… we headed out to explore Tree Hill Nature Center in the morning. The highlight of this trip was the hands-on experience with tiny little baby turtles. We also checked out the other animals and hiked the trails (of course). Along the way we found the amphitheater which was another fun spot for the kids to climb and roam!

Cummer Museum Gardens
Cummer Museum Gardens

In the evening we made our first ever visit to the Cummer Museum for Free Tuesday (4-9 pm). Our visit began with a trek through the truly amazing gardens.  My favorite part of the garden is the incredible oak tree at the center… it’s breathtaking! Then we dined at the The Cafe at the Cummer while listening to some beautiful live music! Finally, we made it to the kid’s area of the museum where children are free to touch, experience, and even create their own art. Unfortunately, as bedtime was calling, we didn’t get a chance to visit any other exhibits. But we will… someday!

Wednesday – Big Talbot Island & Marche Burette Deli

Exploring Big Talbot Island Boneyard Beach
Exploring Big Talbot Island Boneyard Beach

The still gloomy and chilly weather didn’t keep us from doing some more exploring! This time we packed up the car with lunches and beach buckets (and jackets) in tow to visit a spot on Big Talbot Island nicknamed “Boneyard Beach.” It’s labeled as “The Bluffs” on the state park map.  This is an area of the island where old cedar and oak trees grew but are now “skeletons” on the beach. Things I wished I’d known… access to the beach is easier at low tide. (I have a tide app… why didn’t I just use it?) Also, while the beach has lots fun places for the kids to climb and have fun… this is not really a sand castle building beach.

After a picnic lunch we headed a little north and found by chance the Marche Burette Deli  at the Amelia Island Omni Resort where we warmed up with some yummy treats and coffee.  (Well, actually Evan did not warm up… he ate ice cream!)

Thursday – Beach Day

Yay For Beach Weather!

Finally some warm weather and we made it to the beach! (Thanks for the beach tips Jessica.) The kids even braved the frigid temps of the water and splashed around a bit. They had a great time… I loved the free and simple fun!

Friday – Hannah Park

Exploring Hanna Park
Exploring Hanna Park

We thought we were going to Hannah Park to rent boats… ’cause they do that… just not at this time of year! Oh well! There was other fun to be had there. We played on the playgrounds, picked flowers (weeds), explored, and had an impromptu picnic on our beach towels in the sun! On the way out, we thought we might rent a cabin for the weekend. It turns out that the cabins book up WAY in advance for weekends. It sounds like it’s not too hard to get a cabin during the week though.

Saturday – The Jacksonville Zoo

Jacksonville Zoo Carousel - First Time!
Jacksonville Zoo Carousel – First Time!

This was my FOURTH time to visit the zoo in a 2 week time frame. Geez… I guess everyone in my family HAS to see the really amazing tiger exhibit. This time we decided to go all out at the zoo. I usually let my kids pick only 1 activity that you pay extra for but this time we did it all! Of course the tigers are incredible, the stingrays are really neat, and the carousel was super fun, but this was my first time visiting the butterfly gardens and I was really impressed… it’s yet another beautiful feature of our incredible zoo!

Sunday – Outlet Shopping

Since we didn’t actually plan our spring break in advance (thanks to an abundance of local ideas to easily choose from), we made a second trip to St. Augustine.  This time for shopping at the outlets! It’s a good thing (for my budget) that the outlets are not right around the corner from my house!

What did you do for spring break? Something local? A fun destination?

Megan Johns
Megan grew up in rural central Florida building forts and feeding cows with her 3 younger sisters. Her youth led Megan to believe in the amazing power of female ingenuity and to put a high value on positive and supportive interaction among ladies and girls. As a graduate of the University of Florida Mechanical Engineering program, Megan moved to Jacksonville to pursue a career with a bio-medical device company and to begin a wonderful life with her amazing husband Patrick. During her years working as an engineer, Megan developed an interest in photography. When she put her career on hold to take on the hardest job a person could love (Mommy to Evan 5 and Lilla 3), she discovered her love of "life" style photography as seen at Megan Johns Photography. Megan carries her camera everywhere and sometimes refers to it as her "third child!"


  1. This sounds a lot like our Spring Break! Love it! We did Big Talbot, Fernandina, Beach Day on Thursday, Zoo, and the Outlets. 🙂 We also did a day trip to Orlando and an overnight to Savannah.


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