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Discover Florida’s Historic Camp Blanding Museum

November 23, 2018 by Corey A Edwards

Camp Blanding Museum  and Memorial ParkCamp Blanding was a major U.S. Army training facility during WWII. Now it is a fascinating military museum right here in Starke – the Camp Blanding Museum and Memorial Park.

Camp Blanding opened in 1939 as a state-owned, Florida National Guard training facility. When World War II broke out, however, Camp Blanding was enlarged and converted to a federal reserve.

Hundreds of thousands of troops trained at Camp Blanding during WWII. Infantry, Cavalry, Tank Destroyer, Field Artillery, Engineer, Medical, and other specialist troops trained here. Nine full Infantry Divisions trained here, as well, including the 1st ID – more famously referred to as The Big Red One.

Camp Blanding served as an Infantry Replacement Center for most of 1944 and 1945. A large percentage of the soldiers who replenished combat infantry ranks during WWII trained here. The Camp was also home to a 2800-bed hospital and a German POW Compound. Near the end of WWII, it also served as a Separation Center.

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Florida Racing School – The FIRM Rally & Motorsport

August 31, 2018 by Corey A Edwards

The FIRM - Florida Racing SchoolIf you’re looking to get into motorsports or are just wanting to get back out onto the track, The FIRM Florida racing school in Starke, Florida has what you’re looking for – and then some!

The Florida International Rally & Motorsport Park (FIRM) is one of the area’s many popular attractions. The North Florida racing school is a motorsports heaven with 6, expert-designed, European-style rally stages with 14 miles of diverse tracks, trails, and road courses.

No wonder The FIRM is known as North Central Florida’s premier action sports facility!

Best of all, it’s less than 15 minutes drive from our North Florida B&B, Hampton Lake Bed & Breakfast.

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Living The Wildlife At Paynes Prairie Preserve State Park

November 17, 2017 by Corey A Edwards

Living The Wildlife At Paynes Prairie Preserve State ParkPaynes Prairie Preserve State Park is an unusual Florida State park chock full of amazing wildlife like alligators, bison, and some 300 species of birds!

People come to Florida for lots of reasons but one of the top reasons given is our amazing wildlife. The state is home to a colorful array of mammals, birds, reptiles, fish, amphibians, and others. Getting out and seeing some of our state’s unique inhabitants up close in their natural habitat is a truly worthwhile experience.

Paynes Prairie Preserve is as interesting as many of our wild neighbors – and a great place to get out and see them! The park is biologically, geologically, and historically unique.

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Discover Florida’s Devil’s Millhopper Geological State Park!

February 27, 2017 by Corey A Edwards

Devil's Millhopper Geological State ParkDevil’s Millhopper Geological State Park is a 120 feet deep, prehistoric, limestone sinkhole containing a miniature rain forest and fossils of extinct animals.

There’s a gigantic, funnel-shaped hole in the ground just two miles northwest of Gainesville, Florida. This natural wonder measures an astonishing 500 feet across, 120 feet deep, and a circumference of almost a half-mile! This is the Devil’s Millhopper, a limestone sinkhole that has yielded fossilized shark teeth, seashells, and extinct land animals.

The Devil’s Millhopper is one of only two geological state parks in Florida. Prior to that lofty designation, it was described in a number of colorful ways. As the name suggests, there are many weird, old stories about this sinkhole. Native Americans, explorers, and settlers have all held their own, unsettling beliefs about the hole.

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Visit Mill Creek Farm – Florida’s Retirement Home For Horses!

December 19, 2016 by Corey A Edwards

Mill Creek Farm - Florida's Retirement Home For HorsesMany people head to Florida when they retire – but horses? Yep! Horses like to retire here, too. Well, they do if they’re lucky enough to wind up at Mill Creek Farm, North Florida’s Retirement Home For Horses!

Mill Creek Farm is a nonprofit equine sanctuary that was founded in 1983 by Peter and Mary Gregory. The couple got the idea from a trip to England where they discovered a “vacation” farm for London’s cart and carriage horses. Once a year, the animals were given a two-week break from their jobs on the city streets. Those two weeks were the only time these animals saw a pasture.

The experience was very affecting.

When the Gregory’s retired, some years later, they decided to open a horse retirement farm of their own – and Mill Creek Farm was born.

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