Springtime is on its way, the temperature is slowly rising, and that means one thing – Florida weather is about to be at its best. Whether you’re visiting the South Florida area or are a year-round resident, this is the time of year to get outside and make the most of everything the Sunshine State has to offer. And we’re about to make that as easy as possible. Southwest Florida has tons of family-friendly, outdoor events to choose from. Here are some highlights.
Bark on the Ark | February 25, March 25, & April 15
Who says that the family dog can’t be a part of your outdoor adventures? If you’re a dog lover, this is a can’t-miss event. Guests and their pups will pile aboard the M/V Edison Explorer for a sightseeing cruise down the Caloosahatchee River to Picnic Island, located between Sanibel and Pine Island. Dogs and humans alike are encouraged to run, swim, and play catch while enjoying fresh air and sunshine. Registration costs $44 per person and space is limited, so head to the Pure Florida website to book now!
Burrowing Owl Festival | February 25
Did you know that Cape Coral is home to the largest known population of Florida Burrowing Owls? They’re even the official city bird! Come kick off the start of the burrowing owl nesting season at the Rotary Park Environmental Center and educate yourself on these natural wildlife treasures. The festival will include educational exhibits and live animals, bus tours to local burrowing owl burrows, tours through the live interactive butterfly house, and more! Admission is a $5 donation for ages 16 and older with all proceeds going toward local wildlife protection, preservation, and education.
Fort Myers Beach Shrimp Festival | March 4, 11, & 12
The Fort Myers Beach Lions Club presents their annual Shrimp Festival! With events like a 5k run, a 1.5 mile long parade, the crowing of the Shrimp Festival Queen, and a shrimp eating contest, you’ll definitely get your fill of sunshine and fresh seafood. The festival takes over Fort Myers Beach with a ton of fun, family-friendly attractions. And all proceeds benefit the Beach Lion’s charities! Go to www.fortmyersbeachshrimpfestival.com to find out more.
Swamp Buggy Races | March 25
Head on down to the Florida Sports Park and get ready to watch mud fly as swamp buggies speed around the track known as the Mile O’ Mud. Dating back to 1948, the Swamp Buggy Races have become a staple in the Naples and Collier County community for nearly seven decades. They’re also the perfect location to grab a beer (and some kettle corn for the kids!) and enjoy the beautiful weather. Ticket prices are $20 for adults and $10 for kids the day of the event, or you can pre-order your tickets for $3 off. Head to the World Famous Swamp Buggy Races website to learn more.
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