Our November magazine is hitting the streets this week. The second edition of our new size and format. The response to our October issue was overwhelming with almost 100% of our customers and readers liking the new look. We appreciate everybody’s input and feedback and will continue to tweak it as we get closer to 2024.

Two things we noticed last month were request for getting a hard copy of our magazine mailed out and everyone’s hope that The Fishing Lowdown will continue. We have good news on both. A link has been placed on our home page to get readers added to our mailing list via a subscription. We enjoy mailing our magazine out across the country and all we ask is that you pay the mail cost – that’s it! Regarding The Fishing Lowdown, we are definitely going to continue this publication. We are working on how we can keep its own identity in our current format, along with some other ideas, so bear with us. It’s not going anywhere.

With the holidays officially upon us, there is a lot going on throughout the region. We have several festivals and events highlighted in our November edition. These along with our local contributors and advertisers, many who are new, give us another 64 pages of local content! Also, please remember to shop locally, now more than ever. You can find some unique gifts throughout the region, and these folks could use a shot in the arm after the last few months.

2023 has definitely been one for the books. My mother passed in February, our son became engaged in April, We finally did our “Bucket List” cross country trip in May, faced a devastating hurricane in September, dealt with some health issues in October, and now come to the finish line of 2023 stronger and better than before! We are truly blessed with both our families and business. Hurricane Idalea dealt a crushing blow to the region and the repercussions are still being felt. Although many towns, communities and businesses have reopened, we continue to see many businesses deciding not to reopen or rebuild. This is very sad to see, for after seven years they were more than just customers, they were friends. We wish them all the best in their future plans and goals and thank them for their patronage and trust with us since 2016. We are also very grateful to the local Tourist Development Councils and individuals who have stepped up and paid for several ads over the past two editions. Helping those in need and letting the rest of the world know The Hidden Coast is “open for business.” It continues to show what a special part of the state this is and why we are so lucky to be a part of it.

We wish everyone a very Happy Thanksgiving this year and thank you for the blessing you have bestowed upon us.

Unwelcome Visitor

October, 2023. This was our goal to print our next magazine and I am very proud to say and show that “we did it.” The week Hurricane Idalia hit The Hidden Coast was probably one of the longest of my life. It was agonizing to see the pictures and videos coming from the area we know so well. We decided immediately to shut down production and help out in other ways. My wife and I hit the road on Labor Day weekend and started dropping off needed supplies throughout the region. The first sites we saw were unbelievable. As we traveled towards Perry, we passed miles and miles of downed trees and power lines. Some splintered, twisted and even blown apart. Structures damaged one right after the other. As we headed south into Keaton Beach, more of the same.

But when we got into Steinhatchee, it was quite the site. Cleanup was well underway. Machinery, trucks and individuals making their way through the debris. When we reached the drop off point, there were stacks and stacks of supplies. It was like this for the rest of the day and it was an amazing sight to see. I was told that 1K+ volunteers showed up the first week in Cedar Key. The state of Florida had a make-shift office park setup in Horseshoe Beach, offering aid and support for those who desperately needed it. At the end of the day, my faith in humanity had been restored and I felt like this on each additional trip we made down to the area.

Now, just over a month later, many businesses have already opened, with several more in the process of doing so. Clean up still goes on but the roads are cleared, the restaurants and stores are open and these communities only need one thing… you.

That is why we though it was important to print a magazine as quickly as we could and let everyone know, THE HIDDEN COAST IS OPEN FOR BUSINESS! These small towns and communities took a big hit over the last month. And they could sure use some visitors. Festivals and events are back on schedule and the weather will be cooling down a bit here in North Florida. What better way to enjoy a weekend than by getting outdoors and supporting those in need. Please pick up a copy of our latest edition and see all the events planned or simply click on the link to read  the entire October issue online.

It’s Hot Out There

Our July/August edition has been out for a month already and I am just now writing this blog. A show of how busy we have been this summer. Between short weekend getaways, office moves and the normal daily grind, it has been a unbelievable crazy summer. We were actually two weeks behind getting our other two publications out in July, so hopefully things will start to settle down a bit for us as we move closer to fall and some cool weather. 

Our July/August edition was again a big hit this year. SeaHag Marina did an outstanding job on the cover and we had several new advertisers and contributors join us for this round. Advertisers include Tie The Knot with In the Slot, SeaHorse Landing, BBQ From the Hart, Ta-Ja-Pa, Southern Canvas, IFAS and 2 Sweet Donut Shop and Bakery. Most of our contributors focused on the scallop season and they supplied us with great tips and tricks for the ongoing season.

So far it has been a very successful season for many of our advertisers and contributors and we are very happy for that. it’s been a long couple of years for everyone on The Hidden Coast. Between the pandemic and two rainy summers, the scallop season was mostly a flop for many of them. Glad to see restaurants, condos and retail shops filled this year! On top of that there is a lot of growth going on all over The Hidden Coast. Many of the old-timers are not happy about, and would have like to remained “Hidden”, but it’s sign of the times for all of us in North Florida. It’s coming whether we like or not and we put our trust in our elected officials to manage and regulate it correctly.

On a side note, my wife and I finally did our ultimate bucket list trip with a 7-day, 9 state trip in May. We flew into St. Louis and ended up on Jackson Hole, 2K+ miles later. We saw everything on our list plus some, The Arch, Lincoln’s Tomb, Mark Twains home town, Mt. Rushmore, Crazy Horse, Devil’s Tower, Little Big Horn, Yellowstone, Old Faithful and Grand Teton. Amazing trip and America the beautiful for sure. We have a incredible country with amazing people. Everywhere we went we were welcomed with open arms and great hospitality. Flights, hotels, restaurants – spot on! Don’t let the nightly news fool you with “Gloom and Doom”. Much more good out there than bad for sure! They only downside of the trip? When we came home we were both hit with a major case of CoVid. Knocked us for a loop for sure, but we are slowly getting back to normal.

Until the next time, enjoy what is left of summer and stay cool! This heat has been oppressive for even the hardcore Florida residents. We look forward to several events planned for the fall, so make sure to pick up a copy of our next edition for all the details.

Happy Spring

Spring is here. The Renaissance, or rebirth, of our annual year. The weather is beautiful and the outdoor recreation is in full swing, with more to come in June with the kick off Scalloping season. 

We thank Jason Lowe, J Lowe Guide Services, for passing out our publications at the Cast and Blast Expo in Ocala and the Kay Mcallister, Dixie County TDC, for passing them out at Rural County Days at the Capital in Tallahassee. We are so grateful for our all our customers and thankful for all that they do for us. 

Things are starting to slow down a bit around the area, as we promoted 12 events in the region since January 1st. So glad to see this and we’re happy to say we participated in one of them. We are promoting the annual Chiefland Watermelon Festival on our current cover plus two inside pages with local businesses. We thank the Chiefland Chamber and Woman’s Club for their assistance in this project. This is a fun event and my wife and I actually went to it last year. They offer slices of cold, sweet watermelon for free! What else can you ask for on a hot day in June?

Compass Homes and Land Vacation Rentals joins us as a new customers in our May/June issue. Nancy has been a long time customer in our Real Estate Magazine and wanted to let our readers know that she offers vacations rentals as well. The Williston Chamber is in promoting the Peanut Festival that will be taking place in September and James Chewing, Nikki Douglas, Tony Johns and Rhonda Rogers leads the pack of our local contributors with some great reading for these spring days! 

Look for our next issue in July, and if you are a local business think about advertising with us. This is our biggest edition every year and we have thousands of visitors coming into the area. Been see in print and online with us! 

Until the next time, happy spring. 

Hello’s and goodbye’s in spring

Our March/April edition is upon us. There has been so much going on, in our little piece of paradise, since January 1st and it continues for the next few months. 

We kick off this weekend with the Lower Suwannee Art & Nature Fest (March 11). Next weekend will then be the Brew Fest (March 18). The following weekend has the Trenton Quilt Festival (March 25) and we wrap up the month with the Florida State Bluegrass Festival (March 31-Apr 1), Old Florida Celebration of the Arts (April 1-2) and the Horseshoe Beach Spring Festival (April 1). In April we have the Cross City Fly-In & Cruise-In (April 15) and we wrap it up with the Cedar Lakes Woods and Garden Spring Festival (May 6-7). Lots to do so please take advantage of the beautiful weather and attend a couple of these events. Most, if not all, are put on by volunteers and the local towns and cities would appreciate it! 

We have some unique stories in this issue again thanks to all of our contributors.  We are happy to welcome two new contributors as well, Brian Bowen and Carla Antico. They both bring informative and entertaining articles to kick things off. We also welcome some new (and old) advertisers, Cedar Key Pottery, Putnam Hotel RV Resort, Steinhatchee Marina and Deadman Bay and Dek Kat Boats. Also joining us this round are two new businesses from the east coast in St. Augustine. FishBites Trading Post and Bob’s Bait and Tackle. We are very excited to have these two in with us and thank Captain Tony Johns for his help on this.

Although this has been a very busy year for us already, we had to take some time to reflect on the loss of my mom in February. She was 87 years young and lived a wonderful life. She and my dad (who we lost in 2006) uprooted their five kids and moved cross country to Florida where we have spent 50 years of making memories and having our family continue to grow. She ran a tight ship back in the day and she took care of the discipline since my dad was on the road quite a bit. She taught us respect, manners, and accountability for our actions. I feel lucky to have had her for my mom and thank her for all that she did for us. With that, I will leave you with a few quotes I found online this weekend.  Until the next time, enjoy.

• “My mother is a walking miracle.” — …

• “A mother understands what a child does not say.” — …

• “The world needs our mothers.” — …

• “A mother’s hug lasts long after she lets go.” — …

• “There is nothing as sincere as a mother’s kiss.” — …

• “Life began with waking up and loving my mother’s face.” —

Happy New Year 2023!

Happy New Year! What a year 2022 was indeed and we limped across the finish line December 31. My wife came down with CoVid two days before Christmas and our house was turned upside down for a week. No holiday get togethers, no baking, no festive mood… basically no fun. Our kids bailed on us and we didn’t do our family gift exchange until the 28th. A different Christmas indeed but we survived and made the best of it. And yes, thank the Good Lord, my wife is doing fine. She shed a lot of tears but I did the best to entertain her (lots of Christmas movies, carols and fires in the fireplace).

We start year number six of The Hidden Coast Magazine and we are blessed indeed for such great support from all of our wonderful customers. All of our current customers resigned with us and we picked up some new ones, and old friends at the end. We are looking forward to a great year and it kicks off with several festival planned throughout the area for the first quarter.

We start with Fiddler Crab Festival, then Miles of Smiles, The Lower Suwannee Art & Nature Fest, the Brew Fest, the Old Florida Celebration of the Arts and finally the Horseshoe Beach Spring Fest. Knock on wood we have had a mild winter so far, so get outdoors and enjoy these great events.

We have some great articles in this edition from our regular contributors and Dawn Taylor, Unexpected Adventures with Dawn, gives us an overview of some of the events mentioned already, plus a few more. We have all of our regular charter captains giving tips and tricks to fish the winter waters and Nikki Douglas gives us an Old Time Cracker Christmas. A little late, we know, but it’s well worth the read.

Finally we are excited to announce the launch of a third publication. We’ve had several charter captains contact us about writing in The Hidden Coast Magazine. Unfortunately so many that we don’t have the room for them anymore. Hence, we decided to start The Fishing Lowdown. A monthly tabloid publication that zeros in on the fishing right here along The Hidden Coast. We have several captains already in with us and the reception has been far greater that we ever expected. They are a tough bunch, all with big hearts, who are excited to promote the waters of the Gulf of Mexico. Be on the lookout for our first issue this month and be sure to check out our website for additional information and updates.

Until the next time, enjoy The Hidden Coast.

Another year coming to a close

Another year coming to a close for us. We spent 2022 celebrating our 5 year anniversary and topped it off with a 3 day/2 night stay Giveaway in Steinhatchee. Congratulation to our winner, Mike Ferris, who was selected November 1st. We thank all of our participants and we appreciate you taking the time to be part of our celebration. We wish we could have given everyone a prize!

Christmas is coming and we are promoting several holiday events in our current edition! From boat parades, festivals, event venues to Santa showing up everywhere – we have got the area covered. We hope the weather will cool down a “little bit” so everyone can catch some Christmas Spirt and get out and enjoy some of the fun events throughout the area.

Don’t forget that November and December are excellent times to finish in the area as well. Our charter captains have some good tips and tricks to take advantage of the cool weather and have a successful day on the water.

Although it is November, we have a couple spooky articles from Toni Collins and Nikki Douglas. Both of these ladies send us insightful articles for each magazine and we hope you can take the time to read them.

Our usual advertisers are all back in with us again along with some old friends. As with each holiday season, we urge you to visit them and do your Christmas shopping locally this year. These are some hard working folks that offer unique and one-of-a-kind items you can only find on The Hidden Coast. Perfect for the hard to buy for person on your list!

We hope everyone will take time this November to give thanks for all that we have. Mike Farmer has given us his annual “Blessed” article again for this issue, and we hope everyone takes a few minutes to read it. I have certainly been blessed through my life with strong families, good health, wonderful friends and a career that I have enjoyed doing for over 30 years. I’m not sure what else I could have done in life other than art. Starting our magazines 5 years ago has been the “cherry on the top” and we appreciate all of our advertisers and readers for the support they have given us since day one.

We wish everyone a happy and safe holiday season spent with friends and family, and a happy and healthy new year 2023. God Bless.

Fading Away

Summer is slowly fading on The Hidden Coast, but that doesn’t mean things will be slowing down. Just the opposite. We are promoting half a dozen festivals planned for the upcoming months and into the first of the year. Fall in North Florida is always a beautiful time and we urge everyone to take advantage of the cool weather and visit one, two or all of the events we have in this month’s issue.

Our big news for this edition is our 5 Year Anniversary Giveaway! SeaHag Marina and Fiddlers on the River, both located in Steinhatchee, have graciously partnered with us to offer a 3 Day/2 Night stay at SeaHag Marina, with a full day’s boat rental and a $100 gift certificate from Fiddlers. We thank both of these businesses for being part of our celebration, as well as Country Legends Radio for their help in promoting us on the airwaves throughout the area. What do I have to do to win, you ask? Simply go to the Hidden Coast Magazine Facebook page and follow us – it’s that simple! The contest will run for the next two months (Sept/Oct) and we will randomly pick one winner on November 1st. Our way of saying “Thank You” for five great years!

We have several new, and returning, businesses in for this round. The Marina at Deadman Bay in Steinhatchee, Dek Kat Boats in Cross City, The Arts Center in Cedar Key, The Deer Stand in Chiefland and BBQ Fest in Hart Springs. We welcome all of our new customers in and look forward to working with them for a long time to come. Please remember all of our regular articles contributors and advertisers as well. Without them, issue after issue, we would not have a magazine. Period.

Finally, after five years, our little business is growing internally. As many of you know my wife and kids have always lent a hand when needed. Unfortunately, work schedules and school schedules have overtaken everyone in our house and it was time to hire some help. I am happy to say we now have a part-time bookkeeper and a part-time delivery person. Knock on wood, it’s been a smooth ride so far, and we appreciate Amanda and Dany coming on board with us!

Until the next time, enjoy the beautiful season ahead and pat yourself on the back for surviving another Florida summer!

What’s in a number?

5 & 48. Significant numbers for us this year. 5 being the number of years we have been in print and 48 being the record number of pages for our upcoming July/August edition. These are both goals we have strived for when we started our magazine back in 2016. Close one door, open another. End one chapter, begin another. I have learned quite a bit on this journey and we have added additional features and tools to help promote this area even more. 50+ Racks, Social media pages, Web Advertising, Google AdWord Campaigns and finally a complete apparel line that includes shirts, hats, visors, tote bags, koozies, magnets and decals. It has been hard work but I have been lucky to have strong support from my family and great customers and contributors who have supported us from day one. We thank everyone for their patronage over the past 5 years and look forward to promoting and serving this area for a long time to come.

Sea Hag Marina is on the cover of our July/August edition again this year with their annual scalloping theme. Sea Hag has done quite a bit of work over the past year at their location and if you haven’t been lately you might want to check them out. They revamped their docks and upgraded their facilities. They have a great crew working for them and we wish them well with the upcoming season!

In addition to Sea Hag, we welcome James Chewning to this edition. James grew up in the area and currently lives in California. He has written “The Coast is Clear” a riveting tale of a smuggler’s life and you can purchase your copy through his ad with us. We also welcome Good Time Charters and Big Bend Charters both back in for us this round and our brand new customer on the Local Flavors Page, The Putnam Lodge. 

IFAS has also contributed some timely information on the scalloping season again this year and our regular charter captains all give their insight on the fishing and scalloping season. They talk about what is being caught in the waters this month and the do’s and don’ts of scalloping. Heed their advice!  Steinhatchee Chamber has given us an article on a very unique visitor that now calls their coastline home. 

Again we thank all of our regular writers and advertisers for their continued support. Without them we are not where we are today. Please take the time to read their articles and visit their storefronts when in the area. They are a tough bunch, but they will welcome you with open arms and a big heart.

Finally we are happy to announce we were the recipient of the Above and Beyond Award 2022-2023 from the Steinhatchee Chamber of Commerce in June. We are very proud to have been recognized by our peers and thank them for this wonderful recognition. Also, be on the lookout for a big announcement in our September edition. We look to top off our year long anniversary in a fun way! Until the next time, Happy and safe scalloping. 

Hold on tight – Here we go!

Can you believe it’s already May? My goodness, where does time continue to go. And beyond May, we see the dog days of summer. Of course as I get older, the summers get hotter (so I’m told by my smart aleck  kids). But with our wonderful location here on The Hidden Coast, it is easy to find a place to cool off! Have fun, and enjoy the upcoming summer months and remember to pick up a copy of The Hidden Coast Magazine wherever your travels may take you.

We are happy to announce some new customers with us for this round and some old ones back in with us again. KOA of Perry and Florida Saltwater Flats Fishing Charters are our newest advertisers, and we welcome them to our publication. Tide Water Tours and the Cedar Key Historical Society and museum are back in with us, as well. We thank all of them for their support of our magazine and look forward to a long relationship with all.

We are also happy to have the Cedar Key Dolphin Project on our cover for this round. This organization, led by Dr. Stefanie Gazda, does some amazing things, with a staff that comes from around the globe. They have an article on page 26 of this edition and you can learn much more about them at

Speaking of around the area, our charter captains bring some awesome tips and tricks for fishing the waters of this area. And Jeff Cary gives us an “eagles eye view” of the entire region. In addition, Nikki Douglas, Dawn Perez and Toni Collins give us some great insight on the history and interesting sights of this area we call, The Hidden Coast.

We thank you for reading and hope you enjoy your visit!