By Tammy DeLosh Festivals No Comments
The Cortez Annual Commercial Fishing Festival ~February 16 & 17, has been celebrated by the locals, for 37 years. Just over the Cortez Bridge from your Anna Maria Island vacation cottage. Featuring the freshest Seafood, caught on the Florida Coast and prepared by local Restaurateurs. The streets are lined with vendors, selling everything from nautical arts and crafts, jewelry and clothing as well as Ice cold BEER.
All proceeds benefit the Florida Institute for Saltwater Heritage, a local all-volunteer non-profit dedicated to the preservation of Cortez, maritime culture and the environment on which they depend.
Free parking is available off-site at Coquina Beach with a small fee for round trip shuttle service.
Located on 119th Street Just South of Cortez Road, by the Florida Maritime Museum and follows the Fishing village to the Bay, for waterfront family fun. Admission – $4.00 for Adults – Children 12 under free
If you are on Anna Maria Island and want to add some old fashioned family fun to your winter vacation, come stroll this delightful fishing community and enjoy festivities. You enter into a world more relaxed and laid back, as you mingle along the quiet streets, reminiscing of days gone by. When you were carefree and full of adventure. This is where you become family, with the small town, heart of gold, hardworking people, that make America special. Take your time and soak in charm, that is Cortez.
The Maritime museum, opens up their grounds to Live Music, children’s activities and the Pirates. The Privateers, are all about caring for Kids and Community, strolling among the crowd, posing for pictures, creating a authentic feel of Old World Florida.
1. Bungees & Trampoline fun. 2. Face Painting. 3.Turtle Watch monitoring 4. Blown glass Blowfish
Make your way through the booths, where Artists with handmade and crafted Nautical themed creations, line the streets selling unique and intriguing wares. Be amazed at the talent offering one of a kind Jewelry, furniture, clothing, and Art as well as statues and ornamental embellishments.
As you near the bay, the sound gets a little louder as local bands encourage you to move with their foot stomping, knee-slapping, get up and dance, Music. Whether you listen, while you eat, take a seat in the audience or dare to shake your groove front stage, it is unending entertainment.
Seafood, isn’t that why you really came? Well, where do you begin? Come early and come hungry because the variety will make your mouth water with anticipation for the next taste. Graze the fresh seafood, stop by the Rum Nuts for a Rum Punch Cocktail, served in a coconut, and finish with a delightful dessert. Tyler’s Ice Cream is always a hit, as well as many fresh baked items that will tempt you along the way. End the night with Sunset on the Bay at the Swordfish Grill Bayside Deck, Bar.
5. Live Music. 6. Sarasota Bay. 7. Dinner for 2. 8. Fresh Seafood. 9.Rumnuts. 10&11 Privateers
You may plan to have your vacation in February every year, just to take part in this annual event. Just remember, the second weekend of the month, when looking for Houses to rent in Anna Maria Florida.
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Just across the street near Palma Sola Bay, walking distance from the Festival is “Kapok”. An elevated, 2 bedroom vacation rental home, perfectly located to explore the Island, or head into Bradenton for area activities, shopping etc. This lovely home is a block from the bay park, where you can kayak, fish or picnic. Learn More at www.BeachRentals.Mobi