Outdoors: Oct. 3-9

October 3, 2013 

OUTDOORS: Fun things to do

DATED EVENTS

American Littoral Society: Society offers the following nature tours and kayak trips:

• Little Sarasota Bay to Palmer Point Beach, Sarasota, kayak trip, 8:30-11:30 a.m. Oct. 12.

• Little Manatee River State Park, East Manatee, kayak trip, 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Oct. 13. Cost: $30 members, $35 nonmembers. Bring lunch.

• Waterways of Nokomis, Nokomis, kayak trip, 9 a.m.-noon Oct. 15.

• Little Sarasota Bay, Sarasota, sunset-moonlight kayak trips, 5:30-8 p.m. Oct. 16 and Oct. 17.

• Myakka River State Park, Sarasota, kayak trip, 8:30-11:30 a.m. Oct. 19.

• Bird Key and South Lido, Sarasota, kayak trip, 8:30-11:30 a.m. Oct. 20.

All kayak equipment is provided and is included in the cost of the trip. A short training session will be given. Participants are encouraged to wear sunscreen and bring drinking water. Unless otherwise noted, all trips are $20 for members and $25 for nonmembers. Information and reservations: 941-966-7308.

Bay Life Safari: Explore sea life near our beaches with American Littoral Society biologists 9:30-11:30 a.m. Oct. 12. Aprticipants will search shallow shorelines and sea grass beds, observing, collecting and learning about some of the many interesting fish and other animals that inhabit Sarasota Bay. Wear wading shoes, and bring sunscreen and drinking water. The event is free. Information: 941-488-8998.

Camping

Camping at Crowley: 16405 Myakka Road, Sarasota

Tent and hammock camping is now available at Crowley's new Indian Field Primitive Camping Area and Camping. Campsites are available per night and amenities include a solar shower, bathrooms, fire pit, and a large screen room with electricity and a kitchen area. Reservations are required. Cost per night: $8 adults, $4 children ages 5 and older. Camping classes are available through Not a Clue Adventures. Information: 941-322-1000 or visit www.crowleyfl.org.

Frog Creek RV Resort: 8515 Bayshore Road, Palmetto

Frog Creek RV Resort, on historic Frog Creek just north of Palmetto, offers a special summer rate of $25 a day, plus electricity, for a family of four at their resort. The resort features a swimming pool and kayaking and canoeing. Call for package pricing: 800-771-3764 or visit www.frogcreek.us.com.

NATURE TOURS

Emerson Point Preserve Nature Tours: Emerson Point Preserve, Snead Island

Master Gardeners conduct free tours at 9 a.m. on at least one Saturday and one Sunday each month. Tours are limited to 12 people, and reservations must be made through the Master Gardener office. A portion of the tour is handicap accessible. The office is open 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Monday-Friday. Information: 941-722-4524.

Sarasota Bay Explorers: Mote Aquarium on City Island, Sarasota

Now offering a new eco-tour, Nature Safari, with in-depth looks into the ecosystems of southwest Florida. View bird nests and watch for creatures of the bay. Observe bottlenose dolphins, manatees and sea turtles up close. Cruises run daily at 11 a.m., and 1:30 and 4 p.m. Regular tour rate is $26 adults, $22 children ages 4-12. Aquarium admission not included. Information: 941-388-4200.

Walk on the Wild Side Eco-Tours: 629 41st St., Sarasota

Guided canoeing, kayaking, hiking and wildlife viewing tours throughout west central Florida. Half-day, full-day, moonlight and overnight trips. All equipment and transportation is provided and instruction is available. Tours start at $30 a person and are available 6 a.m.-8 p.m. Monday-Sunday. Information: 941-351-6500.

Boat rides and charters: Captain Kim's, Anna Maria Island Historic Bridge Street Pier, Anna Maria Island.

Captain Kim's Boat Rides and Charters offers dolphin tours, historical tours, bird watching tours, sea shelling tours, hands-on eco tours, sightseeing rides, sand bar hopping, boat rides and charters. Hourly rates: $15 per person. Reservations and information: 941-920-3307 or www.kimscharters.com.

SEGWAY TOURS

Anna Maria Island Segway Tours: Anna Maria Island

AMI Segway Tours takes visitors along the Gulf of Mexico and Intracoastal Waterway, exploring Leffis Key Boardwalk, Coquina Beach, Historic Bridge Street, Anna Maria City Pier and more. Tours, which are offered seven days a week, are limited to six guests and start at $30 a person. Ticket includes training, helmet, water and photo opportunities. Reservations required. Call 941-565-2082, visit zegwaybythebay.com or stop in at the Paradise Bagel Cafe, 3220 East Bay Drive, Holmes Beach.

Manatee Segway Tours: Downtown Bradenton

Manatee Segway Tours takes visitors on tours on the riverfront and beyond in Bradenton. Snack and drink provided along with plenty of photo opportunities. Tour tickets start at $45 and includes training and helmets. For more information or to get on the waiting list, 941-224-8079 or www.manateesegwaytours.com.

Segs by the Sea: 119 C Bridge St., Bradenton Beach

Segs by the Sea offers scenic Segway tours of Anna Maria Island and the surrounding beaches including Longboat Key and their newest addition, the Heritage History Tour. Tour options include one hour, 90 minutes, and two hours and cost between $40-$60. Segway rentals are also available, including rentals of bikes, electric bikes, and stand-up paddle boards. Training and helmets are included in all tours and rentals. Reservations are 8 a.m.-sunset. Information: 941-209-5970 or www.segsbythesea.com.

Florida Ever-Glides: The Ritz Carlton, Sarasota

Segway Tours of downtown Sarasota and through St. Armands Circle are offered by Florida Ever-Glides Inc. The three-hour guided tours are $85 a person and are limited to six riders. Tours are offered daily 9 a.m.-noon and 1-4 p.m. Ages 12-70-plus are welcome. Reservations are required. Information: 941-363-9556 or www.floridaever-glides.com.

BOATING

Almost Heaven Kayak Adventures: Bradenton/Sarasota area

AMI Parasail: Anna Maria Island

Parasail over the Gulf of Mexico with the area's oldest parasail operator. Dry takes-offs and landings for 2-3 people at a time. Information and reservations: 941-778-5000.

Beach Bum Billy's: 427 Pine Ave., Anna Maria

Charter or rent a boat at Beach Bum Billy's, 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday-Sunday. Information: 941-778-3316.

Capt. Mark's Watertaxi at the Cortez Kitchen: 4528 119th St. W., Cortez

Boat rides and dolphin cruises daily. Take the whole family, up to 16 passengers, on a cruise visiting sandbars or see the dolphins at sunset. Take the water taxi and stop at Bridge Street or the Mar Vista Restaurant or stay aboard and watch the sunset, or join us on the beach for some great shelling. Half-day charters for picnics are available on select days for office parties or family outings; the boat is equipped with a bathroom and gas grill. Cost: $20 a person; no charge for kids younger than 3. Call for times and reservations: 941-228-3504 or www.scatteratsea.com.

Freedom Boat Club: 1000 First St. W., Suite B

Club offers use of 30 boats of various sizes, and members have unlimited use of boats. Hours: 9 a.m.-4 p.m., daily. Information: 941-714-0673 or 941-922-1292.

Hughy's Kayak Rentals and Tours: 12507 Cortez Road

Explore the bay area of historic Cortez and Anna Maria Island on a kayak. Rent a kayak and explore on your own or take our guided eco-tour that allows you to get up close to dolphins, manatees and many types of sea birds and sea life. Tours daily during the summer and weekends during fall and winter. Information and reservations: 941-321-0233.

Kathleen D Sailing Catamaran: 1000 First Ave. W., Bradenton

Kathleen D Sailing Catamaran offers cruises to Egmont Key 10 a.m. Saturdays, Sundays and Tuesdays departing from the Seafood Shack in Cortez. The 6-hour sail costs $79 per adult, $59 per child ages 11 and younger. Snorkel equipment, lunch, water and soft drinks will be provided. Information and reservations: 941-870-4349.

Manatee River Boat Tours: Manatee River, Manatee County

Manatee River Boat Tours is offering boat trips daily. Boat tour times vary and each tour lasts approximately one hour and capacity is a maximum of six people. Tours are $20 a person, and reservations are required 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday through Friday. Information: 941-721-4230 or www.manateeriverboattours.com.

Manatee Sailing Association: Various locations in Bradenton

The Manatee Sailing Association is a club with programs to give members information, experience and events for fun and safe boating. The MSA meets the second Tuesday of each month. Membership information: Sandee at 941-729-3573.

Native Rentals: 5416 Marina Drive, Holmes Beach

Free kayak eco-tours and dealer tryouts, 9 a.m.-2 p.m., every Saturday through Perico Estuary at the northeast base of the Manatee Bridge. No experience necessary; kids welcome. Kayaks and all gear provided. Free for the first half hour and only $10/hour extensions and is deductible from kayak purchase. Information: 941-778-7757.

Oak Haven River Retreat: 12143 Riverhills Drive, Tampa

Oak Haven River Retreat offers guided sunrise canoe/kayak tours 7:30-9:30 a.m. Saturdays. Experience the excitement of an early-morning paddle along the river, surrounded by majestic cypress trees and shaded oak hammocks as you enter into 16,000 acres of parks and wilderness areas. Canoe and kayak rentals are available 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Friday-Sunday. Rentals are available by the hour, half-day or full day. Rates per canoe/kayak: $12 an hour; $28 for a half-day and $38 for a full day. Information: 813-988-4580 or www.oakhavenriverretreat.com.

Ray's Canoe Hideaway: 1247 Hagle Park Road, Bradenton

Canoe or kayak the Upper Manatee River. Enjoy paddling, picnicking, swimming and the scenery. Rentals are $23-$35 per boat. Half- or full-day rentals are available. Hours: Open dawn to dusk six days a week. Closed Wednesdays. Information: 941-747-3909.

Regatta Pointe Marina Freedom Boat Club: 1005 Riverside Drive, Palmetto

The world's largest members-only boating club is a simple alternative to boat ownership. Boats of all shapes and sizes are fueled up and ready to go. Information: Charlene Graeber at 888-781-7363.

Regatta Pointe Marina Tours, Cruises and Charters: 1005 Riverside Drive, Palmetto

Regatta Pointe Marina offers tours, fishing trips for all ages, river excursions and sightseeing tours, sunset cruises, lunch and dinner cruises and charters, and sailing adventures on the Windancer seven days a week. Information and schedules: 941-729-6021 or www.RegattaPointeMarina.com.

Riverside Tours: Regatta Pointe Marina, 1005 Riverside Drive, Palmetto

Riverside Tours offers daily cruises on the Manatee River, Terra Ceia Bay and Gamble Creek, and narrated morning trips or romantic sunset cruises on Tampa Bay. Catered lunch is provided for day cruises, optional dinner inside the restaurant before the cruise. For schedule, pricing and reservations: 941-779-3606.

Schooner/kayak: Seafood Shack Marina, Cortez

Sail the Gulf aboard a sleek and stable catamaran or Tallship Schooner. Dolphin sails, sunset sails, Egmont Key, overnight adventures and more. Information and prices: 761-4779. Nature tours are given by sailboat or kayak to remote mangrove islands or take a day on Egmont Key. Reservations and prices: 941-713-8000.

Waves Boat and Social Club: 4110 127th St. W., Cortez

Waves is a customer-focused boat club offering the unlimited use of a brand new fleet of boats as well as a full social calendar packed with fun things to do. With two convenient locations in Bradenton and Sarasota. Information and tour reservations: 941-795-1600 or www.wavesboatclub.com.

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