1. Sarasota Farmers Market
Main Street and Lemon Avenue, Sarasota
Start your day bright and early at the Sarasota Farmers Market, located on the corner of Main Street and Lemon Avenue, to get the best pick of fruit and veggies for snacks on your day trip. Starting at 7 a.m. Saturday mornings, vendors sell colorful, crisp greens, savory breakfast bites and artisan-made items, among other things. Our pick for breakfast is a homemade Argentine empanada. The Fochi family, Italian immigrants from Argentina, own Peperonata Pasta & Empanadas.Their daughter, Stefi Fochi, makes the pocket-sized meals by hand and fills them with spinach, chicken, sweet corn, beef, sausage or cheese for a tasty bite-on-the-go. Customers can purchase one empanada for $3 or two empanadas for $5.
2. Historic Spanish Point
337 N. Tamiami Trail, Osprey
Explore 30 acres of outdoor museum and the only archeological exhibit in the nation built inside of a shell mound. Connect with Florida’s pioneers by visiting the first produce packinghouse, charming chapel and pioneer cemetery. Open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday to Saturday and noon to 5 p.m. Sunday. Admission for adults and children ages 13 and up is $12; seniors 65 years and older are $10; children ages 5 to 12 are $5; and children 5 and under are free.
3. Oscar Scherer State Park
1843 S. Tamiami Trail, Osprey
Bike or hike 15 miles of scenic trails through the scrubby, flat woods of Oscar Scherer State Park. Be on the lookout for Florida scrub jays, but don’t be disappointed if you don’t catch a glimpse — they are harder to spot than a bald eagle. Cast your line along the shore of Lake Osprey for freshwater fishing. The three-acre lake is the only freshwater lake in the county in which people can swim. Stay at one of the 112 campsites, and roast marshmallows over an open fire while creating lasting family memories. There is an admission fee of $5 for vehicles with two to eight people; $4 for a single occupant vehicle; $2 for pedestrians, bicyclists and extra passengers. The sunset entrance is $4, and the park is open from 8 a.m. to sundown all year. (Photo courtesy of floridastateparks.org)
4. Casey Key Fish House
801 Blackburn Point Road, Osprey
Savor a sweet rum runner right on the water at the Casey Key Fish House tiki bar, located next to the restaurant. Enjoy the festive atmosphere, or just sit back in one of the lounge chairs and watch the sky change colors overhead during sunset.
If you are hungry, head over to the Casey Key Fish House where an attentive and friendly waitress will greet you. Watch beautiful birds on the outside deck and take in the fresh sea breeze as you look through the menu. Try the lobster dinner that comes with two 6-ounce tails of fresh Florida lobster, mashed potatoes, ginger carrots and sautéed zucchini. The lobster dinner is $29.99. Casey Key Fish House is open from 11:30 a.m. to 9 p.m. daily.
• Bay Preserve
400 Palmetto Ave., Osprey
Walk through the 1931 Burrows-Matson House at the Bay Preserve on Little Sarasota Bay and transport yourself to simpler times. Enjoy the natural beauty and look for wildlife from an observation platform or on the quarter-mile nature trail. The Burrows-Matson House, which is host to an environmental art photography exhibit by artist Pamela Callendar through Aug. 29, is open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday to Friday. The grounds are open every day from dawn to dusk. Admission is free.
113 N. Tamiami Trail, Osprey
This small antique shop has everything from 18th-century furniture to vintage children’s toys and even World War II Army jackets. Walk out of this quaint shop with a historical souvenir to remember your staycation adventure. The shop is open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday to Saturday and from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday.
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