September 6, 2018

Live Like a Local

The charms of the Golden Isles extends well beyond just the beauty of the beach. With premium shopping, dinner cruises, tours and outdoor adventures, the Georgia Coast offers a variety of unforgettable experiences. Visitors can play a round of golf, kayak the marshes, or rent a bicycle and spend the afternoon under the Oak trees. So, we’ve compiled a bunch of helpful information for those who are new to the Golden Isles… So you can get a taste of the local life!

 

BEACHES

On St. Simons Island, sun-seekers can access the beach through several beach entrances, including locations at Massengale Park, the Old Coast Guard Station and Gould’s Inlet in addition to the Pier/Village area. Lifeguards will be on duty at the Massengale Beach access and the Coast Guard Beach access.

 

And on Jekyll Island, visitors can enjoy the state park’s breathtaking nature while soaking in the sun on the island’s beaches.

 

  • Driftwood Beach: This unique area is famous for its gnarled trees that are scattered across the beach. A popular wedding and photo shoot destination, Driftwood Beach is nonetheless an often quiet, secluded spot away from some of the more crowded beaches in the Golden Isles.

 

  • Great Dunes Park: this beach is located north of the Jekyll Island Convention Center and Beachview Village on Beach View Drive. It is the biggest beach on the island.

 

  • Glory Beach: The beach made its film debut in the Civil War movie, “Glory,” and it can be found at the end of the walk down the Glory Beach Boardwalk. It’s also a great spot for nature enthusiasts looking to see migratory birds. Parking is located at the Jekyll Island Soccer Complex.

 

  • St. Andrews Beach: The beach is located at the southern end of the island. It’s an ideal spot for a family picnic, and it’s the only westward-facing beach.

POOLS

If beach-combing is not your thing, there are also a number of public pools in the area. An “Ultimate Pass” available for individual and families can be purchased for season-long access to all three Glynn County pools. All active-duty U.S. Military personnel, as well as their spouses and children, can receive a 50 percent discount on all entry fees. Military ID will be required.

 

  • Neptune Fun Zone: located at 550 Beachview Drive on St. Simons Island, Neptune Fun Zone offers a pool with water park-like features, as well a putt-putt golf course and a playground. For more information on group and season passes, please call 912-279-2836.

 

  • Golden Isles YMCA: the YMCA on Scranton Connector in Brunswick offers an indoor and outdoor, Olympic-sized pool. For more information, please contact the YMCA at 912-265-4100.

 

  • Summer Waves Water Park: located on Jekyll Island, Summer Waves Water Park offers a number of fun-filled amenities, including a lazy river, water slides a wave pool and a kids’ zone. Season passes are available for individuals and families.

 

BIKING

St. Simons Island offers more than 30 miles of bike trails. Bike rentals can be purchased from several local businesses, including Island Carts, Barry’s Beach Service, Monkeywrench Bikes, Benjy’s Bike Shop and Two Brothers Bike Shop.

 

Jekyll Island has 20 miles of trails that wind through scenic maritime forests and along the edges of the island. Bikes can be rented at a number of locations, including Jekyll Island Mini Golf, located at the corner of Beachview Drive and Shell Road, and at the Jekyll Island Campground, 1197 Riverview Drive.

CAMPING

Those wishing to spend the night with nature can set up camp at several sites around the Golden Isles.

  • Jekyll Island Campground: the campsite takes up 18 acres of woods on Jekyll Island. It offers RV spots, tent camping sites, a camp store,laundry facilities and a bird sanctuary.

 

  • Blythe Island Regional Park: the public park takes up more than 1,000 acres and features campgrounds, a lake, a picnic area, a dock and a marine on the South Brunswick River.

 

  • Altamaha Regional Park:  located in northern Glynn County, this park allows access to the 137-mile-long Altamaha River. The park offers rental cabins, public boat ramps, a camp store, a laundry facility and a wilderness trail.

 

KAYAKING

For a slower nature experience, consider taking a kayak out into one of the area’s many lakes, rivers, marshes and tidal creeks. Kayaks and paddle boards can be rented from Southeast Adventure Outfitters, Barry’s Beach Service and Ocean Motion Surf Co. on St. Simons Island and from Turtle Tides Paddle Boards and Kayaks on Jekyll Island.

 

 

EVENTS

In and around Golden Isles there is never a shortage of things to do. From summer concerts to local theater productions to fundraising galas, there are always activities on the agenda.

 

Every Month

  • First Friday is held from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. on the first Friday of every month along Newcastle and Gloucester streets in downtown Brunswick. Shops and restaurants stay open late and offer specials. There’s also entertainment for the public.

 

  • The Brunswick Bazaar and Farmers Market is held from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturdays in Mary Ross Waterfront Park in downtown Brunswick. It is also open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday to Thursday. A variety of fresh vegetables as well as crafts are available.

 

May

  • The Brunswick Blessing of the Fleet takes place the second Saturday of May

in Brunswick. The event features a variety of vendors, live music and kids’ activities.

 

  • The Turtle Crawl Triathlon and Nest Fest is typically held around the second weekend in May on Jekyll Island. This USAT sanctioned event is known as one of the most scenic triathlons on the East Coast. The event, held at Great Dunes Park, includes several races that accommodate every skill level, from elite to novice.

 

  • Movies on the Green, sponsored by the Jekyll Island Authority, will run from May to November. Various films will be shown for free on the Green in the Beach Village on Jekyll Island. For more information, visit www.jekyllisland.com.

 

  • A Little Light Music Concert Series is held monthly throughout the summer months and features a number of musical performances. It is held at 7 p.m. on  Sundays throughout summer on the lawn of the St. Simons Island Lighthouse at 610 Beachview Drive. Performances include a variety of music styles.

Tickets are available at the gate or by season pass: saintsimonslighthouse. org/music.

 

  • Sounds by the Sea, sponsored by Golden Isles Arts & Humanities, is a summertime concert series which features various performances throughout the season. Concerts are held from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. on select Sundays at Neptune Park on St. Simons Island. Guests are encouraged to bring a picnic dinnerand a lawn chair or blanket to siton during the show. Tickets may be purchased at the gate the night of the concert, the Ritz Theatre in Brunswick or by calling Golden Isles Arts & Humanities at 912-262-6934.

 

  • Rhythm on the River is presented by the Brunswick Downtown Development Authority from 6-8 p.m. on the first Sunday of every month between March and November. The concerts are held at Mary Ross Waterfront Park in Brunswick. Picnics, chairs and blankets are welcome. Admission is free.

 

  • Taps at Twilight, the annual Memorial Day observance presented by the St. Simons Island Rotary Club, will be from 6:30- 8 p.m. Memorial Day in Neptune Park. The event honors the men and women who have fallen in service to the U.S., those who served and those who are serving today. The event will feature flags, patriotic music and the posting and retiring of colors. It is free and lawn chairs are welcome.  Admission is free.

 

June

  • The Beach Music Festival on Jekyll Island will kick off a summer of music in the first part of June The tunes will continue throughout the summer with the free concerts running until Sept. 1.  • The Georgia Sea Island Festival on St. Simons Island has celebrated the African American musical traditions, crafts and food of the coastal barrier islands for more than 40 years. This year’s festival will be held from under the live oaks at Gascoigne Bluff Park, 1000 Arthur J. Moore Dr., St.Simons Island. For more information about the Annual Georgia Sea Island Festival, visit www.ssiheritage-coalition.org.
  • Dive In Movies will give movie- goers an alternative to watching a film in a movie theater, or at home. Summer Waves is hosting “Dive In Movies” several times during the summer. Seating isn’t a problem. Just grab an inner tube and plop down in the Frantic Atlantic wave pool. Movies are free with the purchase of a Night Splash ticket.

 

July

  • Jekyll Island Independence Day Celebration includes four days of fun with a variety of activities including a parade, kids activities and food. A fireworks show will take place at sundown. The event is free to the public but a $6 parking fee is charged to enter Jekyll Island.

 

  • Brunswick Old Fashioned Fourth of July is held annually at Mary Ross Waterfront Park in downtown Brunswick. The celebration will include old-time games, entertainment, free watermelon and a fireworks display at dusk.

 

  • The Sunshine Festival is held every year at the St. Simons Island Pier Village and will have related events July 4. The event will include vendors, a 5K run and a fireworks display at nightfall. The Annual Fourth of July Sunshine Festival Arts & Crafts Show from July 4 to 7, 2019 in Postell Park, St. Simons Island.

 

August 

  • Southern Grown Festival

A celebration of all things Southern — food, drink and music— is is set to return this year from August 30-Sept 1, 2019.  Culinary experts and spirits personalities, famous musical acts and instructional sessions will all play a part in this multi-day event that showcases the best of the South. It’s all offered in the world-class setting of Sea Island. To purchase tickets to Southern Grown, please visit southerngrown.com.

 

September

  • Jekyll Island Shrimp and Grits Festival will be held September 13-152019in the Jekyll Island Historic District. Presented by Southern Living, the event combines food, family entertainment, more than 100 arts and crafts vendors, kids’ zone, a craft brew fest, wildlife demonstrations, live music and more. Admission to the event is free. Jekyll Island charges a $6 daily parking fee to access the island.

 

October

  • CoastFest is an ecologically-themed day full of family fun, set for Oct. 6, 2018. There will be more than 70 vendors and exhibitors throughout the Southeast. The event is held at the GA DNR Coastal Regional Headquarters, 1 Conservation Way, near the Sidney Lanier Bridge in Brunswick. For more information, call 912-264-7218. {need to check this information. I think they moved it to Mary Ross Park}

 

  • Under the Oaks Half Marathon Challenge October 6, 2018sponsored by St. Simons Christian School and the Jekyll Island Authority, will be held in October on Jekyll Island. It will include a 5K, 10K and 13.1-mile half marathon. For more information, call 912-634- 8177.

 

  • Georgia-Florida Weekend  includes a number of game-related events throughout the Golden Isles, primarily on St. Simons Island, during the weekend of the annual meeting of University of Georgia and University of Florida on the gridiron in Jacksonville. One of the most popular is Georgia-Florida Golf Classic on Jekyll Island.

 

November 

  • The RSM Classic Golf Tournament is an annual event hosted by The Davis Love Foundation, at the Sea Island Golf Club on St. Simons Island. Numerous events take place during the week of November 12-18, 2018, including a wiffle ball tournament, concert and other activities.

 

  • The Jekyll Island Christmas Tree Lighting Festival rings in the holiday season on  November 24th2108following Thanksgiving, in the Jekyll Island Historic District on Jekyll Island. A number of children’s activities, refreshments and live entertainment will be included.

 

December

  • Christmas at Hofwyl Plantation, the annual celebration, highlights how Christmas was celebrated on a Southern rice plantation. Take a candlelit stroll down the old carriage road and enjoy candlelit tours of an antebellum plantation house, hot wassail and cookies, Civil War re-enactors, Christmas carols and a special appearance by Santa Claus.

 

 

  • Jekyll Island Comic Con & Hyde Horror Alley will be held December  8-9, 2018at the Jekyll Island Convention Center. There will be numerous activities, celebrity guests and artists from Marvel and DC comics.

 

 

January 

 

  • The Brunswick Rockin’ Stewbilee is held January 26, 2019– an annual event that celebrates the classic recipe with the coastal city’s namesake. It includes a Brunswick stew tasting, classic car show, pooch parade and other events. The event is held at Mary Ross Waterfront Park in Brunswick.

 

February 

  • Whiskey, Wine and Wildlife, “W3,” an event that combines renowned beverage tastings, and inspired cuisine from the region’s most impressive culinary talent, will be held February 7-10, 2019at The Westin Jekyll Island. For details, visit www.whiskeywineandwildlife.com.

 

  • The Annual Southeast Georgia Health System Bridge Run, a run across the scenic Sidney Lanier Bridge, is held February 16, 2019. Runners tackle the 7,780 foot bridge to complete the 5K distance, classified by the U.S. Track and Field Association  as the “toughest 5K in Georgia.”

 

March

  • Red Hot Chili Cookoff, sponsored by the Rotary of the Golden Isles, holds the fundraising event March  2, 2019at Neptune Park on St. Simons Island.

Tickets are available at the gate.

 

  • The 66th Christ Church Tour of Homes, featuring a wide variety of local homes and gardens, is scheduled for March 16, 2019. Details: www.christchurchtourofhomes.org.

 

  • The Georgia Elvis Festival, organized by the Sherry Management Group, will be held March 7-10, 2019at the Ritz Theatre in Brunswick. Elvis tribute artists from all over the world descend on the area to perform at the contest with the winner going to represent the festival at the national competition in Memphis. Many artists also perform in parks and venues in the downtown area. For more information, visit www.georgiaelvisfestival.com.

 

  • The Jekyll Island Easter Egg Stroll is a family-friendly Easter gathering in the Jekyll Island Historic District. Search and find Easter eggs hidden along Pier Road, get pictures with Easter Bunny, and enjoy pony rides and other activities. Eggs will be hidden and re-hidden throughout the festival. Special section for kids 3 and under. Held April 14, 2019-the Saturday before Easter

 

April

  • Darien’s Blessing of the Fleet is a three-day festival April 5-7, 2019, that includes vendors, fresh seafood, entertainment and the blessing on the Sunday, the last day of the event. Details: www.blessingofthefleet.com.

 

GOLF

Variety of ways to explore golf in the Isles If you are looking to spend a day or a week on the links, you couldn’t pick a better place than the Golden Isles. With more than 220 holes of golf available, there are a wide variety of courses to cater to every golf need from the casual player to the most hardcore players. Golf’s impact in the Golden Isles, though, goes beyond the number of courses.

The Isles has become a haven for PGA Tour players with about a dozen players on the PGA Tour making their homes here. The number of courses and the quality of the instruction available locally help, but the community itself also attracts some of the world’s best to base out of the Isles.

Perhaps the biggest impact golf has on the community is the annual PGA Tour event that has quickly become an Isles tradition.  The RSM Classic held its first tournament in 2010 and has attracted some of the best golfers in the world to challenge Sea Island Golf Club’s Seaside and Plantation courses. The tournament has not only helped shine a light to all the Isles has to offer, it has also raised millions of dollars for charity.

To see what golfing in the Isles can do for your game, check out the myriad of courses that are just waiting for you to  book a tee time.

 

  • Heritage Oaks Golf Club

126 Clipper Bay Road, Brunswick

Hours: 7 a.m. to 6:30 p.m.

Semi-private

912-280-9525

 

  • Jekyll Island Golf Club -Public

Hours: 7 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Oleander Course

Pine Lakes Course

Great Dunes Course

322 Captain Wylly Road, Jekyll Island

912-635-2368

 

  • King and Prince Golf Course

100 Tabbystone, St. Simons Island

Hours:7:30 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Semi-private

912-634-0255

 

  • Sea Palms Golf Course

515 N Windward Dr, St. Simons

Hours: 7 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Semi-private

912-638-3351

 

  • Sea Island Golf Club

Retreat, Plantation & Seaside Courses

100 Kings Way, St. Simons Island

Hours: 9:30 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Private

(888) 732-4752

 

  • Frederica Golf Club

100 Pikes Blu Dr, St. Simons Isl

Private

912-634-6900

 

  • Brunswick Country Club

4041 Darien Highway, Brunswick

Hours: 7:30 a.m. to 7 p.m.

Private

912-264-4377

 

  • Sanctuary Golf Club

2050 Sanctuary Wynd, Waverly

Hours: 7 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Semi-private 912-466-0080

 

Dining

“The Golden Isles boasts some of the best restaurants in the area! From authentic Italian to classic American, the selection of restaurants is second to none. Many of the restaurants offer menus featuring local produce and the freshest seafood available. No matter what you’re craving, the Golden Isles has a quality restaurant for you!”

 

Shopping

While the Golden Isles is home to beautiful beaches, old oak trees adorned with Spanish moss, and miles of winding bike paths, it is also home to several excellent shopping options. You can find the convenience of big box stores in Brunswick, plus a unique selection of apparel, outdoor, furniture, and gift options on the islands themselves!

 

Home Services

Owning a home in Jekyll Island, Brunswick, St. Simons Island, or anywhere along the Georgia Coast can be wonderful. With how much the area has to offer, not to mention it’s natural beauty, it’s no wonder why this region is  called the Golden Isles. While owning a coastal home has its perks, it can also be a lot of work. Luckily the area is also home to some of the top Home Services companies in the area! Whether you need an exterminator, tree removal service, new windows, or your A/C unit serviced, a top rated company is here to serve you.

 

Tourism

Coastal Georgia has quickly become a tourist destination due to its beautiful scenery and abundance of activities. Whether you are looking for an easy going hotel for a quick weekend getaway or a full service hotel and resort for a luxurious getaway, the Golden Isles provides several different high quality options to suit your needs. With premium shopping, dinner cruises, tours and outdoor adventures, the Georgia Coast offers a variety of unforgettable experiences.

 

Wedding Services

As a popular wedding destination due to the beautiful beaches and majestic Oak trees, the Georgia Coast has several options for prospective brides to choose from. From full service resorts and ballrooms, to casual beach services, each of the wedding vendors offer custom, personal service to ensure a unforgettable event. Event rentals, cake designers, venues and more, the Golden Isles have it all!

 

Real Estate Services

The Golden Isles is one of Georgia’s most sought after places to live and vacation. Whether you are looking to purchase, rent or just lease for a short-term vacation, the Real Estate companies in the area are here to help you! With extensive knowledge of the area, full access to all of the listings, and personal service, these Real Estate professionals will help you find exactly what you are looking for.

 

Personal Services

The Golden Isles are known for their breathtaking beauty and southern hospitality, and the businesses on the islands are no different. The area offers top rated personal services from florists, to hair dressers, and photographers to pet sitters. All of these businesses exude exceptional service and the southern hospitality the area is known for.

 

Business Services

Owning a business in the Golden Isles, or anywhere along the Georgia coast is an undeniable blessing. The area boasts a fantastic economy full of locally owned businesses… And let’s face it… The view is unbeatable! Owning a business in the Golden Isles has its perks, but it can also be a lot of work. Luckily the area is also home to some of the top Business Services companies in the state! Numerous IT companies, business finance businesses, and other local business support-related companies are here to help out their fellow workers.

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