The end of summer is upon us. Parents are out buying school supplies and back-to-school clothes for their kids and the children are either looking forward to a new year in school or dreading it. When I was a kid the school year started the day after Labor Day. Now it starts some time in August so the Labor Day weekend has lost some of its significance but not in Fernandina Beach. With all that is happening over the weekend you’d think it was the last weekend that was ever going to happen.
But let us step back just a bit. The weekend before Labor Day, August 27th
, is going to be a great weekend here too. The first ever Great Southern Tailgate Cook-Off
has really taken off with over 60 teams entering. We even have a celebrity BBQer
staying here at the Addison. No names mentioned (as my friend Bob used to say: discretion is my middle word) but he is one of the BBQ Pitmasters
from the TLC channel show. One of our local competitors, Richard from the Happy Tomato, will be providing the BBQ for the Addison’s Happy Hour on Sunday.
The Labor Day weekend starts off on Friday night with a free street concert downtown starring the blues/funk music of Instant Groove. Saturday starts off with our local award-winning Farmer’s Market, just a block from the Addison. The day continues with the next in a free series of reggae concerts called Sunsplash.
The concerts go all day at the beach down by Sadler
Road. There will be surfing competitions, sandcastle building and, of course, some great reggae music.
On Sunday morning you can catch the second day of the weekend’s Fort Clinch Union Garrison. This is a good chance to check out the fort and talk to some of the old-timey living historians that will be manning the fort for the weekend. On Sunday afternoon I’ll be getting the grill ready for a traditional Labor Day weekend cookout for the Addison’s Happy Hour. I’ll be cooking hand-made hamburgers and a big pot of my favorite chili recipe to go with them. We’ll have side salads and all the fixins for a great cookout, just like the cookout your neighbors will be having but without you having to do any labor. (Get it? Labor Day?)
After the Labor Day Cookout on Sunday the fun continues with the ‘Dina Shore Pub Crawl. The organizers have lined up drink specials at 8 local taverns and bars and for the low price of $15 you not only get the drinks specials, you get a T-Shirt! The big after party is at O’Kane’s and Indigo Alley. If $15 seems steep just let me know by August 30th and I can pick up your advance tickets for $10. I’ll have them here for you when you check in.
The best thing about this line-up of events? It is practically free! OK, you have to pony up a couple of bucks to get into the Fort and the pub crawl is $15 (free T-Shirt!) but what a deal! As Pete Millasakas always said, “Free stuff is good”. Speaking of free stuff… don’t forget our Dog Days of Summer Free Night offer. Stay at least 4 nights through the end of September and one of the four is free! Check the website for details. Pete would love it!