Your Year of Events on Amelia Island
Amelia Island loves to celebrate everything from shrimp to classical music, from the flora and fauna of the island to the wonder of the holiday season (brought to life with a special Victorian twist.) Why not mark your calendar now?
All year, every season, and for all ages, there are events aplenty on Amelia Island. Make 2016 more interesting by making plans now to enjoy them. (Find the perfect place to stay here
AMELIA ISLAND CHAMBER MUSIC FESTIVAL
[Now through May]
The incomparable cellist Yo-Yo Ma opened the 2016 Festival, which will also see performances by the Dover Quartet, superstar mandolinist Chris Thile (host of ‘A Prairie Home Companion,’) the American String Quartet, and the Christiania Trio featuring cellist Christopher Rex, the Festival’s artistic director. Held in beautiful venues around the island, the Festival also features a number of free concerts such as the Concert in the Park when the Jacksonville Symphony Brass Quartet plays at Amelia Park. 904-261-1779, Aicmf.com
Amelia Concours Week
One automotive week rises above the rest. From March 10-20, Amelia Island welcomes vintage car aficionados for auctions and events that surround the rarefied Amelia Island Concours d'Elegance
. This year will see the debut of SVRA's Amelia Island Vintage Gran Prix. AmeliaConcoursWeek.com
SLIDE INTO SPRING
[March 18-20] The third annual music and beer festival takes place at Main Beach, with the Atlantic Ocean as the backdrop for top live acts and the best of craft brewing. Donovan Frankenreiter, Chilakaya I and G-Love are part of the lineup. Hotel and ticket packages
are now available.
THE KATIE RIDE FOR LIFE
This is a great year to join in this annual spring event, which benefits the Katie Caples Foundation’s organ donor education and awareness raising programs. With five routes (of 103, 63, 34, and 18 miles, plus a challenging 6 mile off-road route), the Ride courses through majestic state parks, ecological preserves and 40 miles of stunning coastal views. The Ride also offers an 8K walk and fun run, a four-hour marathon spin event, and a fun triathlon. KatieRideforLife.donordrive.com
FISH TO FORK
In partnership with the James Beard Foundation, Omni Amelia Island Plantation Resort is pleased to host its 3rd Annual Fish to Fork, May 6-8, 2016. With sweeping views of the Atlantic Ocean and beautiful tree canopies as a backdrop, this weekend offers an unmatched foodie experience, including true dock-to-dish specialties in a fun, interactive atmosphere. The resort welcomes six renowned chefs from around the country to showcase their fishing and culinary skills, ultimately tested with a live vote from event guests. Fish-to-Fork.com
WILD AMELIA NATURE FESTIVAL [May 20-22]
The annual Wild Amelia Nature Festival is a three–day celebration of natural attractions. It includes tours (kayaking, biking, boating, hiking), photography workshops, an Eco-expo, nature-based activities for children, critters from the Jacksonville Zoo, and more. 904-277-0717, WildAmelia.com
ISLE OF EIGHT FLAGS SHRIMP FESTIVAL [
April 29, 30, And May 1 2016, Pirate Parade April 28]
One of the Southeast’s premier events, the Isle of Eight Flags Shrimp Festival has been combining the love of shrimp and the enjoyment of arts and entertainment for over half a century. Fernandina Beach, the birthplace of the modern shrimping industry, hosts the celebration featuring juried arts and crafts, antiques, live music, a parade, a family Fun Zone, fireworks, and of course dozens of dishes made from wild-caught shrimp.
ARTRAGEOUS ART WALK [Ongoing]
Every second Saturday evening of the month, Amelia Island hosts the Artrageous Art Walk. More than a dozen galleries concentrated in walkable downtown Fernandina Beach but also sprinkled throughout the island, open their doors to art enthusiasts. (And it's especially welcoming on a summer evening.)
SOUNDS ON CENTRE [
First Fridays from April through October, excluding May to enjoy the Shrimp Festival]
Free, family-friendly, and festive, these outdoor concerts at the foot of Centre Street invite you to bring a beach chair and come down to enjoy a range of music, street dancing, giveaways, and the many restaurants and shops within strolling distance. Shows are from 6:00 – 8:00 PM.
RENDEZVOUS FILM FESTIVAL
Rendezvous Film Festival, the only one of its kind in the region, is an international film, music, and interactive gaming festival held on Amelia Island June 2-4, 2016, bringing artists and the community together for a 3-day celebration. rendezvousfestival.org
AMELIA ISLAND JAZZ FESTIVAL [October 2-9]
This celebration brings together the chance to enjoy the best weather of the year with some of the world’s top jazz artists. Legendary artists perform in a variety of venues around the island, and the beautiful Jazz in the Park free concerts are favorite settings for a romantic afternoon or family picnic.904-504-4772, Ameliaislandjazzfestival.com
PETANQUE AMERICA OPEN [mid-November]
The world visits Amelia Island for the largest Petanque (pronounced “Pay-tonk”) Tournament in the U.S. Close to 200 teams compete in this spirited game for all ages. The Open is held on and around the historic harborfront, surrounded by plenty of cafés, restaurants, and shops within walking distance. 904-491-1190, Petanque-America-Open.net.
AMELIA ISLAND CHRISTMAS [Thanksgiving Weekend - New Year's Eve]
From the beauty of Bed and Breakfast Inns decorated in their holiday finest for the Cookie Tour of Inns to the annual Holiday Home Tour, with tree lightings, giant gingerbread pirate ships, holiday villages, caroling, and many holiday happenings, Amelia Island sparkles with holiday spirit. The newest addition, Dickens on Centre,
transforms the Victorian seaport village of Fernandina Beach into a spectacular guaranteed to banish the ‘bah humbugs.’
AMELIA ISLAND RESTAURANT WEEK [January 2017]
The ninth annual Amelia Island Restaurant Week will offer a culinary showcase of top Amelia Island restaurants, featuring a selection of the island’s popular dining establishments. In 2017, guests will enjoy Restaurant Week dining for lunch and dinner, with different restaurants participating in each and special prix fixe menus. ameliaislandrestaurantweek.com