Tag Archives: Bruce Hunt

The Beach on Anna Maria Island, Florida

I’ve been to a lot of local beaches, but Anna Maria Island‘s is one I hadn’t visited much until I met my husband. He says that his family went there a lot when he was young. It’s nice because it has a playground and bathrooms nearby. The water is really close to the parking, which is great when you are toting a lot of stuff. We went there this weekend and last, at two different spots along the beach.

The weekend before last we went to a spot that is to the right of the City Pier. Our timing was perfect, because the tide was really low and we could go out pretty far in the water—which is perfect for the kids. The water was really calm and warm and there was hardly anyone on the beach. We found lots of neat shells in the water too. This past weekend we went to the spot that is to the left of the Pier, between Rod & Reel and City Pier. This is the more populated side of the beach and it was pretty crowded. The water is a little deeper, but that’s great for the adults in the group. You can see the Sunshine State Skyway from both places, but this second spot gives a view of it and Egmont Key and Fort DeSoto. It’s pretty neat to see all these places in one spot. You can even see the glint of the light on the Egmont Key lighthouse as it slowly turns.  I wanted to take some pictures of this lovely spot but was afraid of losing the camera in the water.

The Rod & Reel has some great food, according to author Bruce Hunt (@BruceHuntImages). He’s taken some photos of the area and has some nice history and related places to visit in the area in his book, Visiting Small-Town Florida Third Edition. Next time I visit I need to go into some of the neat shops that you find along the way to the beach. I think it would be a great place to vacation as I saw many people on rented bikes and scooters.

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Filed under Beach, Bradenton, Family travel, Our Town, Sarasota, Travel

Twitter chats

One of the new things we have tried out recently are twitter chats. The hashtags we have used so far are #familytrav and #chupacabra. We’ll be doing our next Twitter chat with author Bruce Hunt, @BruceHuntImages, on March 16th at 12 noon EST.

Bruce kindly pointed out that a lot of people might not have participated in a Twitter chat and might not know how to. I certainly should have considered this more before I started one. I sort of winged it after taking a look at some chats done by others–so I learned on the fly by trying it out. I will now reveal myself as a dork–but it was exhilarating to get responses and questions and helpful tips from others. Sometimes you feel like you are talking to yourself on Twitter! I think this 3rd chat will be even better…mainly because I am getting better at it. Then I can have my first two guinea pigs (@FLGhostDoc and @AlissonClark) back for another chat!

I took a look on the Internet and found several great resources on chats. I’ll list them at the end. So far I’ve used TweetDeck for the chats. It’s been great because you can load up search columns with the hashtag name and the name of the person you are interviewing and keep track of everything really easily. I’ve found that it has been a little confusing with all the @’s and #’s in the past though. I think that maybe it works best when only I do the @name and everyone else does the #hashtag only. It gives you more characters to talk with and simplifies things a lot. Then if you are responding to someone specifically in the chat you can save the @name just for them. At least that is what I think I will do this next time.

So basically I’ve rambled around to this procedure for a Twitter chat that I think works well:

1) Start following us at @PineapplePress and the person we are interviewing’s @name. That way you can see all future #hashtag mentions too in case the chat continues in the future.

2) Sign up for Tweetdeck or something similar so you can set up a search for the #hashtag. (Recommendations on software more than welcome!) Then read up on how to get the most out of the searches your software can do for hashtags and people’s names, etc…

3) When the time comes for the chat start asking questions and saying things with the #hashtag in them so we can see them. If you want to say something specifically to me then use @PineapplePress (and the same goes for the participant).

4) Then you have to wait a while. There’s a time delay sometimes as we think of something to say or the software updates tweets. Be ready for time lags and repeated questions sometimes–it’s all good though. You’ll get your answer eventually. Don’t feel bad if we miss a question–sometimes it happens. Just retweet! We aren’t ignoring you.

5) Feel free to add in relevant tips or comments. I learned something from each of our chats from participants. It doesn’t have to be all questions.

6) Once the chat is over–feel free to keep on talking with us! We want to hear from you. Then give me some suggestions for other chats you want to see happen. I’ll see what I can do. If it’s about Florida then I’m sure I can find someone to discuss it.

Here are those links I mentioned:

http://mashable.com/2009/12/08/twitter-chat/

http://smallbiztrends.com/2010/08/how-to-participate-in-twitter-chat.html

http://samanthaogborn.com/?p=90

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Filed under Author chats, Twitter

Here’s a peek at downtown Sarasota, Florida

Our guest post by Bruce Hunt got me to thinking about towns. Our offices are in downtown Sarasota. I thought you might be interested to see what downtown Sarasota looks like. We’re probably a medium-sized city..smaller than Tampa and larger than Arcadia. I’d love to see what your city’s downtown looks like. Tweet them to us @pineapplepress using #mytown as a hashtag. I look forward to seeing them!

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Filed under Our Town