Want to see what it feels like to be walking on the moon without leaving Earth? You can do it when you take part in the new Sea Trek Reef Encounter at the Miami Seaquarium. The helmet-diving experience gives guests a chance to become one with the park’s 300,000-gallon reef aquarium, while moving in ethereal slow motion in a near zero-gravity diving system. Guests are submerged in a surreal underwater paradise with colorful tropical fish, large groupers, cobia, stingrays, lobsters and moray eels. The program is called Sea Trekking and can be experienced by non-divers ages 10 and above with no certification or swimming skills necessary. Seaquarium officials insist if you can walk and breathe, you can Sea Trek. Unlike deep-sea diving, a participant’s entire head stays dry throughout the experience. Sea Trekkers can dip as deep as 15 feet under the surface. The Sea Trek Reef Encounter costs $99 plus tax, which includes same-day admission to the park. Call (305) 361-5705, ext. 225.
AMELIA ISLAND: Half-price tickets to chamber music festival for hotel/inn guests
Planning to stay at an Amelia Island hotel, condo, inn or resort during the 11th Annual Amelia Island Chamber Music Festival? Here’s music to your ears. The Amelia Island Chamber Music Festival is offering a 50 percent discount on concert tickets for visitors staying at any of the above between May 13 and June 8. A showcase of world-class artists performing classical music in intimate and historic settings around Amelia Island, the festival lineup includes cellist Lynn Harrell, violinist Anne Akiko Meyers and pianist Natasha Paremski. To buy discounted tickets, call the AICMF box office at (904) 261-1779 and have a valid confirmation number from a local accommodator for your stay during the festival. Performances include Chopin in Paris (May 18), Songs on a Summer Night (May 25), Pictures at an Exhibition (May 31), and many more. The festival offers four free concerts, including the Concert in the Park: String Cheese Fling on May 13; McDuffie Center Showcase on May 19; Family Concert on May 26; and Beth Newdome Fellowship Artists Showcase on June 1. Other AICMF highlights include three informal Beer and G Strings performances, and French Cabaret.
VENICE: Theater package at Best Western; Dinner and a play, anyone?
The Best Western Plus Ambassador Suites on the edge of this west coast Florida city has just the ticket. The theater package, available through April 30, includes two nights’ accommodations, two tickets to the Venice Theatre, and a $50 dinner voucher for one of the area’s restaurants. Cost: $333.98. Free breakfast each day is provided at the hotel. Call (941) 480-9898 or visit bestwesternflorida.com.
ST. PETERSBURG/CLEARWATER: Surfing dolphin video an online hit
Dolphins are a familiar sight in the Gulf of Mexico, but when a video of two dolphins surfing and frolicking alongside a teenage wake-skater surfaced earlier this year, the world took notice. The clip, which was taken off the coast of St. Pete Beach and sent to Visit St. Pete/Clearwater (VSPC), has received more than a million online views. Media outlets picked up the story, too, including ESPN, ABCNews.com and World News Tonight with Diane Sawyer. Not a wake-skater yourself? Not to worry. You can always find dolphins at the Clearwater Marine Aquarium, 249 Windward Passage, Clearwater. Call (727) 441-1790 or visit www.seewinter.com.
FORT LAUDERDALE: Riverside Hotel celebrates 75th birthday
The historic Riverside Hotel is celebrating its 75th anniversary and offers guests a special deal for the occasion. The hotel was opened in 1936 by the Wells family, who also developed Las Olas Boulevard, Fort Lauderdale’s tony main street. It’s the only hotel on Las Olas and mixes Caribbean style with Old Florida charm. The anniversary package, offered for stays on Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday, includes a complimentary 1936 Anniversary Cocktail upon arrival for two people; a $75 food-and-beverage credit to hotel bill to be used for Indigo restaurant, Preston’s Wine & Martini Lounge in the main lobby and the Golden Lyon Vintage Pub; and a limited-edition Riverside Hotel Anniversary Globe.
Source: Palm Beach Post