Friday, December 23, 2011

Crowded Beaches at Gulf Shores & Orange Beach

Would you believe me if I told you our beautiful Alabama and Florida Gulf Coast beaches are crowded this time of year? You would be smart not to believe there are human crowds and the crowds of birds remove themselves quite naturally as you stroll by them seeking treasures from the deep. Yes, our treasured shells are quite lovely and arrive daily with the tide.

If you seek serenity and the joy of walking along the water's edge for miles this is your time of year. You will encounter a few other visitors who appreciate this value season and the warmth of the sunshine and the warmer Southern hospitality, but you won't encounter crowds.

I call this the value season because not only are the Meyer Vacation Rental rates the lowest of the year, we are also running a BOGO (Buy One Get One FREE) special allowing you to stay for two weeks in January or February for the price of one week. I'll take a free week any time of year, won't you? It's also a value season because lots of restaurants run winter specials to get patrons in the door. They know you will love the food, the relaxed atmosphere and the live music (where available). They are banking on the fact that you will tell your friends and family what a great experience you had and that is more powerful than any ad their business could run.

Of course there are lots of other fun activities while here on our shores such as golf, tennis, mini-golf, go-carts, dolphin cruises, etc. but for me the simple pleasure of walking along the shore brings a joy that's indescribable. Add a sunset to the scene and I'm in heaven.

Thursday, December 22, 2011

National Women's Soccer Championship Coming to Orange Beach

Women's Soccer is coming to our coast in a big way in the next two years when the National Championship games are played at the Orange Beach Sportsplex. The National Association of Intercollegiate Athletic (NAIA) recently announced the awarding of this event to Orange Beach, AL for the dates of Nov. 26-Dec. 1, 2012 and Dec. 2-7, 2013. These championship games are co-hosted by the Gulf Shores & Orange Beach Sports Commission and the University of Mobile.

For the past two seasons the NAIA Men's Soccer National Championships have happened at the same sports arena in Orange Beach. This has brought tons of people to visit who now know what beautiful beaches exist here. Now even more visitors will learn about our fantastic coast.

Mark your calendars to attend the Women's Soccer National Championship games where you will see action like what is depicted in this photo furnished by AYSPN at the 2011 NAIA Women's Soccer National Championship final between Lee, Tennessee (in red) and Concordia, Oregon (in blue).

Hopefully you will get a chance to head to your favorite coast before next December. Check out our HOT DEALS for extra savings on a quick trip to the coast.

Friday, December 16, 2011

Come Join the Winter Party in Gulf Shores

Isn't it fabulous that you can play golf year-round in Gulf Shores? To celebrate our warm sunshine and warmer Southern hospitality Meyer Vacation Rentals will once again host a Winter Guest Golf Tournament.

We have chosen the Peninsula, 5 miles west of Hwy. 59, on Fort Morgan Road as our venue for this signature golf event on February 9, 2012 and we will begin the golf tournament with an 11 a.m. shotgun start. Our guests enjoy this picturesque golf course located beside Mobile Bay and among the live oaks, cypress and other native plants. It really is an enjoyable layout for golfers of all skill levels and I speak from the wonderful experience of playing it myself and believe me when I say that skill is not what I posses when it comes to golf. I do love the scenery and the challenge of all the sand and water hazards. We will also host an awards dinner following play. The subsidized cost exclusively for Meyer Vacation Rental guests is only $40 and that include the meal afterwards.

Later in February we will let the good time roll with our Winter Guest Mardi Gras day. On February 21 our registered guests will have a front row seat when the Gulf Shores parade rolls past our office. Donuts and coffee plus a few beads and moon pies add to the festivities at this fun event from 8-11 a.m. on Fat Tuesday.

If you are vacationing with us in February register here for these exclusive events and come join the winter party. And if you still need a beach retreat for a month or more we have lots of condo and house choices to warm you up.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Help Sea Turtles - Buy a Special (Alabama) Tag

Lots of my friends are volunteers in the Share the Beach sea turtle conservation program. They get up early in the morning and patrol the beach looking for and marking sea turtle nests during the nesting season of May through October. I haven't yet found a way to fit this into my schedule but I admire the hundreds of volunteers from Orange Beach to Dauphin Island who do so.

Now there is a way for all Alabama residents to contribute monetarily to the Share the Beach program by buying a new specialized vehicle license plate. There is actually a sense of urgency to pre-register for the tag because there must be 1,000 commitments before the tag will be given final approval. Simply go to your license office and complete a commitment form and pay the $50 specialty license plate fee, in other words don't wait for your tag renewal time to help the sea turtles.

Out of the $50 approximately $43 will go directly to Share the Beach for equipment, supplies and educational materials. Speaking of turtle education, I learned that two of the world's seven sea turtle species come ashore in Alabama to nest. Loggerhead visits are frequent and rarely we get Kemp's Ridley turtles nesting here. The educational efforts include informing coastal visitors to turn out lights at the beach so that the newly hatched turtle babies don't get confused on their trek to the Gulf waters. Learn more here about these turtles and how you can increase their chances for survival.

These photos were taken at the 6-bedroom Meyer Vacation Rental house Windswept a couple of summers ago and you never know where these precious mama turtles will choose to build their nests.

Monday, December 05, 2011

Lighted Boat Parade, Billy Claus and Christmas Show in Gulf Shores & Orange Beach

Are you ready for the holiday season? It's ready for you in Gulf Shores and Orange Beach. This weekend (Dec. 10 & 11) several holiday festivities are planned island-wide.

The Orange Beach Christmas Show will be held from 10 a.m. - 5 p.m. on Saturday (Dec. 10) and Sunday (Dec. 11) at The Wharf Expo Center. Adult admission is $4, kids and parking is free. Santa Claus will be visiting along with live reindeer and the little ones will surely want their photo with the jolly one. There will be a best Christmas tree competition, arts and crafts and Christmas carolers to get you in the holiday mood.

LuLu’s at Homeport Marina in Gulf Shores is a special destination for holiday fun for all ages, especially when Billy Claus, Santa’s younger brother, makes an appearance on December 10.

Perhaps you are not aware but Santa’s younger brother Billy is allergic to snow, so he spends his time in the Caribbean and gathers toy lists from the children in the southern hemisphere. Join Lucy Buffett on December 10 as she reads the story of Billy Claus while awaiting his arrival with his elves, the LulaBelles. The little ones can have their photo made with Billy Claus and personally hand him their wish list.

The fun lasts for 3 hours, from noon to 3 p.m., with the band Roman Street providing the musical entertainment. This local group of talented musicians are internationally trained and create a unique sound by blending old styles and techniques with a modern twist and incorporating their travels and experiences into their musical expressions. No doubt they will be showcasing selections from their new Christmas Rhumba CD.

Grab a lawn chair and position yourself along the water route Saturday evening for a spectacular "Nautical Night of Lights" lighted boat parade. These colorful Christmas-themed vessels set sail from LuLu's at Homeport Marina at 5:30 p.m. and travel east on the Intracoastal Waterway past the public viewing area at The Wharf, around Bear Point, along the south end of Ono Island, west to Perdido Pass, north into Terry Cove Harbor, south to the Pass bridge and end their journey at approximately 8:00 p.m. at Zeke's Landing Marina. Bring the entire family to enjoy this free event showcasing our area's fishing heritage and boating lifestyle and setting a festive tone for a family-oriented coastal holiday.

There's still time to reserve your holiday accommodations. You might consider a 4-bedroom beach house in Gulf Shores close to all the action or a 5-bedroom jewel on the scenic, secluded Fort Morgan peninsula. If desire a different size or style for your beach retreat there are houses in various sizes and a wide variety of condos ranging from 1-4 bedroooms along your favorite coast.