The Things that Locals Know! Uncategorized

Body & Sol Spa and Wellness

You’re going to not only feel amazing, but also look amazing when you leave Body & Sol Spa in Anna Maria. Body & Sol has been pampering those who walk through their doors since opening back in 2007.

This establishment offers an array of different services aimed to help you feel your best.

Services Offered Body & Sol Spa and Wellness

  • Message Therapy:
    Message services offered include; Classic Relaxation, Pre-Natal, Island Hot Stone, Couple/Pair, etc. Most of the massages are offered in 25, 50, and 80 minute sessions.  Includes hot towels and essential oils.
  • Healing Arts:
    Includes; Acupuncture (done by a fully trained/licensed DOM), Crainosacral Release Therapy, Fire Cupping, Scar Therapy, and a Microcurrent Face Lift.
  • Natural Nails:
    Manicures, pedicures, shellac, hand dip, this place does it all! They also have a Kids Mani/Pedi and a Gentleman’s Mani/Pedi available, so bring the whole family.
  • Skin Care:
    Treat yourself to an organic facial. Body & Sol Spa and Wellness uses organic skin care products that contain NO propyls, parabens, or chemicals. Some of their specialty facials include; After Sun Re-hydration Facial, Deep Pore Cleansing Facial, and their Anti-Aging Facial.
  • Hair Care:
    The salon here does it all. Highlights, haircuts, styling, you name it. Thinking about dying your hair purple? No problem, they do “Wild Colors”. The hair color used by the salon, L’anza Healing Color,  helps seal, heal, and protect your hair.
  • Yoga with Island Space Yoga:
    Island Yoga Space is located inside the spa. Owner Cindy Phillips offers some awesome classes and workshops. A few of her daily classes include Restorative Yoga, SUP Yoga, and Meditation. Trust me, along with a spa day, yoga is another great way to feel completely rejuvenated.


Body & Sol Spa and Wellness (941-650-5441)
9805 Gulf Dr, Anna Maria, FL 34216
Open Monday – Saturday, 10AM – 5PM
Closed Sunday



Holmes Beach Salons Uncategorized

Acqua Aveda Salon, Spa, and Store.

Welcome to Aqua Aveda Salon, Spa, and Store in Holmes Beach.  This full-service, award winning salon and spa is ready to make you feel relaxed, and renewed.

Aqua Aveda offers everything from lash extensions and hair styling, to facials and deep-tissue massages. The incredibly talented and friendly staff here will have you feeling pampered and confident when you walk out their doors. Who doesn’t like to feel pampered and confident?

They offer services such as; natural nail care, hair coloring & styling, facials, hair & scalp treatments, waxing, and more. Gentlemen, don’t be shy to stop by. They have an awesome Men’s Spa. Treat yourself to a fresh haircut, some grey blending, a manicure & pedicure, hair removal, or a refreshing facial.

Stop by the next time you’re on Anna Maria Island, you wont be disappointed!


Acqua Aveda

5311 Gulf Dr, Holmes Beach
Monday: 9am – 5pm
Tuesday: 9am – 7pm
Wednesday:  9am – 5pm
Thursday: 9am – 7pm
Friday/Saturday: 9am – 5pm


If you’re feeling a big hungry after being pampered, head over to Eat Here located in the same plaza.



The Things that Locals Know! Uncategorized

Bowlero – Bowling in Bradenton

Bowling is a perfect activity for the whole family. While there may not be a bowling alley on Anna Maria Island, there is one close by. Bowlero is in Bradenton, and only a 20 minutes car drive.

Bowelro features 64 lanes, an arcade, a billiards/pool area, an ATM, and a sports bar & lounge area. They even offer free WI-FI! If you’re looking for something to do off the Island, definitely stop by and play a game.

Address: 4208 Cortez Rd W, Bradenton, FL 34210

Bradenton Bowlero Hours

Monday – 11AM – 12AM
Tuesday – 9AM – 12AM
Wednesday – 11Am – 1AM
Thursday – 9:30AM – 12AM
Friday – 11AM – 1AM
Saturday – 9AM – 1AM
Sunday – 11AM – 12AM

Need some more family friendly places to visit while you’re on Anna Maria Island? Head to the Bishop Museum in Bradenton, The Fish Hole Miniature Golf in Bradenton Beach, or Sarasota Jungle Gardens in Sarasota.

Activities Family Fun Kids Corner Out of Town Uncategorized

The Bishop Museum of Science and Nature

Formerly known as the South Florida Museum, The Bishop Museum of Science and Nature is located in Downtown Bradenton. It is the biggest cultural and natural history museum on the Gulf coast of Florida. Most people know the museum as the home for Snooty the Manatee. The oldest recorded Manatee ever. Sadly, Snooty passed away in 2017 at the incredible age of 69 years old. But don’t worry, you can still see other Manatees here in the Manatee Rehabilitation Habitat.

The Bishop Museum of Science and Nature has tons of awesome exhibitions, an impressive planetarium, and of course, the Parker Manatee Rehabilitation Habitat.



Let’s begin with the first floor of the museum. Here is where you will find some incredible fossil evidence of the earliest animals to live in the state. The exhibits on the first floor include; Great Hall, Land of Change, Fabulous Florida Seas, Archaic Peoples and the Tallant Gallery. There is even a underwater viewing window that lets you see the manatees being cared for in the rehabilitation facility. The second floor features the River Heritage Hall, the Environmental Hall ,and the Visible Storage Gallery.


The digital full-dome planetarium theater is truly out of this world. Featuring a digital 25,000 watt Dolby 5.1 surround sound system and stadium like seating. It’s even the west coast of Florida’s premier astronomy education facility! Check out the planetarium show schedule on the museums website.

Manatee Habitat

The most popular part of the Bishop Museum of Science and Nature would definitely be the Parker Manatee Rehabilitation Habitat. It consists of a giant medical pool, about 60,000 gallons of water, and some manatees of course. This manatee habitat serves as a second stage rehabilitation facility. This is where the manatees temporarily stay before being released back into the wild. The manatees end up at the habitat after they have received treatment. There is an exhibit area where the medical pool is which allows visitors to learn about Manatees, and view the ones in the pool from above and below the water. Believe me, it’s pretty awesome!


While you’re in Bradenton, check out some other great places, like the Red Barn Flea Market, and Myakka State Park!



The Things that Locals Know! Uncategorized

Dips Ice Cream

Dips Ice Cream, located at  503 Pine Ave in Anna Maria, has been serving Anna Maria Island delicious ice cream since 1993. Though this ice cream shop is more than just a place to go for a sugar rush. Dips is also a candy & sports shop. 

Adults will enjoy the many throwback candies, including bottle caps, wax lips and jaw breakers.  Kids will like the dotted ice cream pellets and general abundance of delicious refined sugar. And with over 30 flavors of ice cream (including non-dairy), you’re sure to find a treat you’ll enjoy! Did I mention they also have Mango and Tangerine Italian ice? Because they do, and it is the perfect way to cool down on one of Florida’s hot summer days.


Anna Maria Island July 4th Activities

Get out your lawn chairs! With so much to do, you’re sure to never be bored while visiting the island. If you want the perfect day of play, here are some of the best Anna Maria Island July 4th Activities.

AMI Privateers 4th of July Parade

privateers parade
Come out and watch the Privateers parade! Photo courtesy of

Known as one of Anna Maria’s biggest events, the AMI Privateers 4th of July Parade is a must-see. Start your morning off from 10 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. with this FREE parade, starting at Coquina Beach and ending at the City Pier in Anna Maria. Everyone is welcome, and try to catch some beads! Just as a warning, many of the floats have a knack for bringing out their water guns, so get ready to be wet!

Festive Foods!

One of my favorite parts about the fourth of July is the delicious food you get to eat! Whether you want to eat at home or eat out, there’s something for everyone.

For you chefs out there, grilling is ALWAYS the way to go on the fourth of July. With Publix right around the corner, you’re sure to find all the ingredients you need, such as ribs, corn, potatoes, and what ever else your stomach desires! Plus, there’s no better time than to get a little crafty with your food. Sweeten up the day with Patriotic White Chocolate Covered Oreos! You can make them right at home, and they’re really easy to make!

Patriotic White Chocolate Covered Oreos- Red, white, and blue chocolate give these Oreos a patriotic touch. Serve them for Memorial Day or the 4th of July!

Activities for Kids

If you’re looking for something to keep the kiddos busy, try out these Glow in the Dark Sensory Bottles. They make for really fun toys, and can actually be educational if you look at the science behind them!

If you want to get up and close with nature, try out this DIY ring toss! All you need is a couple of attachable glow sticks, some sticks (that can easily be found on the island), and some friends to play with!

For more super fun ideas, visit our Pinterest page!

Sandbar Annual Fireworks Spectacular


sandbar fireworks
Enjoy fireworks at the Sandbar Restaurant! Photo from

If you’re looking for a show of lights, look no further than the Sandbar Restaurant located on the North end of the island! Celebrating 31 years, the fireworks show will begin right after dusk under their wedding pavilion. They can be seen on almost any part of the island, so be sure to look for them!

For those who want front row seats, the restaurant is offering an exclusive VIP package! Included are a private area to watch the fireworks, an array of food prepared by their culinary team, open bar, party favors, and valet parking. Tickets are $140 for adults and $50 for children.

AMI Rules!

While we’re all about having fun, we ask that you please not set off your own fireworks! They can be very unsafe, and the last thing we want is for your vacation to end early. Illegal fireworks include-but are not limited to-roman candles, bottle rockets, and mortars. Legal fireworks such as sparklers, snappers, and snakes will be permitted. Any person found with an illegal firework is subject to a ticket by the Holmes Beach Police Department, so just stay safe and have a good time!

Fishing Fishing Report The Things that Locals Know! Uncategorized

April Fishing Captain Ryan Taylor

April Fishing Captain Ryan Taylor Fishing report April 1st -16th

April has been great, the weather has been beautiful a little windy most days but the snook, redfish, and trout have seemed to love it. The water temperature around Anna Maria island is in the mid 70’s. The bait has invaded Tampa bay gathering around every piece of structure and every grass flat surrounding Anna Maria Island. Spring fishing is one of my favorite times of the year.

April Fishing Captain Ryan Taylor

My clients always ask what are we fishing for here?  My response, is we’re probably going to catch it all snook, redfish, trout, because they all hangout together this time of year. It’s always exciting never knowing what your going to have on the line.

With the comfortable water temperatures these fish are eating all day. On most half day trips this week clients were catching 20 to 30 snook with the biggest being 36″. We catch about 5 to 10 redfish and 10 to 20 trout. If you are looking for an excellent table fare the trout are 15″ to 20″.

Tarpon fishing is right around the corner I generally start fishing for them every morning in May June, and July.  If you are  looking for a place to stay on Anna Maria Island check out Island Real Estate.

Reporting is Captain Ryan with Captain Ryan Taylor fishing charters.

To book call or text (941)812-7435




Uncategorized Weddings

Anna Maria Island Photographers, Family Beach Photos and More

Anna Maria Island has Great Photographers for every occasion!

If you are looking for photography services on Anna Maria Island there is no shortage of options to choose from. Family beach portraits, weddings, engagements, maternity photos and events; there is a professional that can help you capture any of your Anna Maria Island special moments for long lasting memories.

Anna Maria Island Chamber of Commerce Photographers

The Anna Maria Island Chamber of Commerce offers over a dozen suggested photographers and videographers to choose from. All of these professionals specialize in weddings and special events. Browse this list to see additional services offered such as framing, children’s portraits, beach photos and more. If you are looking for suggestions on where to plan your Anna Maria Island photo shoot check out the list here.

In addition to The Anna Maria Island Chamber members we have a few other photographers suggested by locals including:

Sugar Beach Digital

Karly Carlson

Emily & Co. Photography

Kelly Janssen

Shooting Star Photography

BH Digital Design

Stephanie Dubsky Photography

Megan Mahoney

Dylan Jon Wade Cox Photography

Wedding Resources

Anna Maria Island is a scenic vacation destination perfect for gathering family and friends. If you are looking for wedding services check out the Weddings and Special Events tab on the Anna Maria Island Chamber website.

There are several great places to host a wedding on Anna Maria Island including the Sandbar Restaurant offering a large beach side pavilion perfect for housing any event on powder sand beaches. Find a serene more secluded beach spot for your ceremony at places like Bean Point on the north end of Anna Maria Island.

Need Accommodations? 

If you need accommodations for the Bride and Groom or even the wedding party and guests head over to for a large inventory of vacation rentals!

Hotels Recreation Restaurants Uncategorized Vacation Rentals

Things to do on Anna Maria Island July 4th

If you are looking for something to do on Anna Maria Island July 4th, then look no further!

Holmes Beach Fireworks

Like most places in the USA that enjoy the Independence of America with picnics, family, and fireworks Anna Maria Island is no exception.  Islanders and visitors take this holiday pretty seriously, not sure if it is mostly due to the visitors who want to enhance their vacation or if it is how the beach itself is a great environment for fireworks.

Either way the light show on Friday was amazing. Bombs were bursting in air! The day started off with the annual Anna Maria Island 4th of July Parade hosted by the Privateers. Cars, motorcycles, golf carts and pirate ships were decorated in patriotic red, white and blue throwing beads and treats.

Many of the local businesses participated, some memorable displays were Island Real EstateIsland Scooter Rental and Beach Bum’s. Onlookers lined the parade route, cheering for candy, beads and refreshing sprays from water guns.

From the looks of it, the disposable income lacking in the past few years is back for Florida vacationing families.  There was a lot of money being blown into the beautiful night sky over the Gulf of Mexico for as far as the eye could see, this was no average back yard light show.

From St. Pete Beach to Lido Key the magnificent lights were abound and beautiful; it looked like a battle reenactment just as our national anthem reflects in its lyrics.

Anna Maria Island July 4th Firework Regulations

Anna Maria Island 4th of July ParadeAlthough illegal to discharge in Florida and easily purchased in the same state, firework novices and self taught experts were setting light to some amazingly high and elaborate candles, mortars, and reports.

It was truly amazing to see the quality and quantity of fireworks going off up and down Anna Maria Island.  Sitting in the North end of Holmes Beach expecting to see the SandBar shooting off their annual display, which in its own right is usually quite awesome, it was amazing to see just how many spots along the beach were blowing rockets.

At one point it was hard to discern which lights were coming from the SandBar and which were being blown off from either Bradenton Beach or the City of Anna Maria.  The night before the BeachHouse restaurant (same owner as SandBar) put their display on. However, thunderstorms seemed to deter others from doing the same.  On Friday, it looked as if the ban on fireworks was lifted temporarily on Anna Maria Island.  They were everywhere.

Needless to say it was truly a site to behold from the Chinese lanterns high in the sky to the kids with glows sticks zooming up and down the beach, to the finale at the SandBar. Anna Maria Island did not disappoint this 4th.  Thanks to all of those willing to spend the money and time for the show. Please, everyone clean up after yourself; other creatures use the beach as well.


No Oil Yet – The Water is Amazing on Anna Maria Island

“So far so good, No Oil Yet!” is what most of the visitors and locals are saying on Anna Maria Island.  There are no visual or physical effects to the beaches or waters surrounding the island.  It is surreal to think about what is happening in the water miles away. The beach gazing has absolutely crystal clear water.

There is no good situation that will come of this horrible disaster.  But, we are thankful that everyone can still enjoy Anna Maria Island’s nature, wildlife, and of course the beaches.

Updates on BP Oil Spill Anna Maria Island