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What to do

Washington, D.C.
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What to do

I'll be visiting a friend in Sebastian in mid-Jan. She's elderly, legally blind (can see with aid of a reading machine). I think I'll go nuts if I stay home and chat. Where can we go? What can we do? She's quite willing to go out, but she's only lived in FL (near a relative) for 1 year+, and can't drive (or read much), she doesn't know what to suggest. I'd find a flea market fun, though I'm concerned about her accidentally bumping stuff. She likes the ocean--to feel the breeze and listen to the waves. That will take a couple hours, leaving me several days to fill. HELP!

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Sebastian
Sebastian
Florida
Vero Beach, Florida
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for Vero Beach
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1. Re: What to do

Prognostications indicate we may have a January below-normal cold as December. A lot of palms and other landscape plants were severely damaged or killed. Assuming the weather is reasonable, Sebastian is kind of a smallish place between other smallish places.

For starters, the Environmental Learning Center on Wabasso Causeway has highly accessible walkways, exhibits, and plenty of seating spots so you can sit around should you feel like it. They have a January calendar at the website:

http://www.discoverelc.org/

Continuing across the Causeway, Historic Jungle Trail intersects the road on the barrier island (it's labeled). You can travel north or south on this unpaved, dusty road slowly and enjoy the scenery and marvel at the backsides of super-affluent residential developments. It's easily spotted on Google or Bing Maps. If you drive it northward from the Causeway, you end up at the visitor facilities of Pelican Island National Wildlife Refuge, which are modest but new and accessible. No steps.

fws.gov/pelicanisland/…directions.html

Where Wabasso Causeway reaches the beach, there's a small parking lot (can be stuffed after school or on a weekend). The old Boppy's Market is gone, but there should still be a pizza place, and the Disney Vero Beach Resort is right there. I've only looked the place over from the beach, but at least in the off season, they do advertise their restaurant at places like the movie theater.

North from Wabasso Causeway are two county beach parks. Golden Sands is the preferable--new facilities (the park was relocated in a land swap with the Windsor residential community). Treasure Shores Park doesn't have lifeguards to keep an eye on things and is poorly laid out...

North of Windsor (it's hard to ignore) is the A1A entrance to Pelican Island National Wildlife Refuge, which you need to see 30 years from now when the baby oaks grow up. Continuing north, the Sebastian Inlet State Park has two museums, one for the Spanish treasure fleet disaster of 1715 and the other for fishing. There's room to safely roam around.

www.floridastateparks.org/sebastianinlet/

Vero Beach has a nice art museum, across from the professional Riverside Theater, which specializes in musicals for geriatric tastes. It's a wealthy retirement community, after all. They will be doing "Guys and Dolls" in Jan. The Brevard Symphony will perform at the Community Church on Sunday, Jan. 16, a Polish orchestra on the 29th. Tickets may be available. The Majestic movie theater will have "Fela", a musical, live from London's National Theatre at 2 pm on the 13th with, I think, a repeat at 6 pm. The Majestic also has the Metropolitan Opera live from New York--but tickets might be sold out.

www.cinemaworldonline.com/vero/index_full.asp

riverside theater vero beach

verobeach.com/indianriversymphonicassociatio…

http://www.verobeachmuseum.org/

Also, "On Golden Pond" at a quite adequate facility:

http://www.verobeachtheatreguild.com/

McKee Gardens, on the south side of Vero, has a winter sculpture display (Dr Seuss??). I've been lax about visiting.

Food in Vero runs the gamut. We have some of the chains (Carrabbas, Olive Garden, Outback, Five Guys hamburgers, Publix's Crispers sandwich shop). The longest-established quality restaurant is Ocean Grill on the beach (end of the main causeway) in a small, walkable downtown. Under the bridge on the Indian River is Riverside Cafe, which is largely a bar catering to Vero's younger professionals. Nice setting.

http://www.riversidecafe.com/

http://ocean-grill.com/~og/intro.html

Citrus Grill House has been rated by Florida Trend Magazine (a big deal) but is new and possibly might not last.

http://www.citrusgrillhouse.com/

Tides always seems to be busy when open and they've refurbished recently.

tides vero beach

Near the beachside post office, Casey's has sandwiches and Cravings ice cream and pastry.

To the north, the beachfront grill at Kiwanis Park is popular for breakfast and lunch.

On the mainland side, Royal Palm Point has several eating places, as does Miracle Mile, a congested bit of shopping with Publix, Fresh Market (entertaining food shopping), a quality cheese store, a substantial independent book store, and budding efforts at boutiques. Toojays Deli is a retiree favorite, but please be careful about the wildly overstuffed sandwiches.

To the north of Sebastian, southern Brevard County is a bit short on things to do, but there's a small restaurant and shop district at the old Melbourne downtown.

The nearest big flea market is on I-95, first exit north of Melbourne proper.

I've been short on Sebastian itself, but I have a history of driving through it on the way to Melbourne.

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Washington, D.C.
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2. Re: What to do

THANK YOU! I'll ask my friend about Guys and Dolls--that would be fun. The art museum probably won't work due to her visual impairments, though I can see what music she likes. I really want to get outside and walking, so the nature stuff is particularly appreciated. Yes, Sebastian seems very small. Since my friend doesn't get out much, she only knows the restaurants, etc. where others have taken her. Any good place to look for manatees (for me!)? Best place to buy wine? Warmly, FV

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Sebastian
Sebastian
Florida
Vero Beach, Florida
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for Vero Beach
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3. Re: What to do

There should be a manatee spot in Sebastian, but failing that, the Vero Beach municipal power plant has a manatee viewing spot, complete with parking. It's on Indian River Drive (mainland) at the 16th Street bridge. Its smokestacks are readily visible and it's just south of the Miracle Mile shopping area.

Wine stores are kind of limited. The ABC store on Miracle Mile in Vero (next to Fresh Market) is larger than their new one near the shopping mall (I asked). It's also probably larger than what they have in Sebastian. Publix supermarkets all have selections similar to what you'd expect in a Pacific Coast supermarket.

P.J. O'Rourke will be at the Emerson Center (the Unitarian church) on Jan. 15.

http://theemersoncenter.org/

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Sebastian
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Florida
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9 Reviews
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Emerson Center
1 Review
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Melbourne, Florida
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for Melbourne, Florida
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4. Re: What to do

The Marker One on the north end of Sebastian is pretty good for breakfast. Guiseppes Italian used to be pretty good on Cty Rd 512. I have not been there is a while tho so can't say for sure. For BBQ I like Big Dogs BBQ just north of the Sebastian River Bridge at the Inlet Marina. Better than Woody's in Roseland Plaza. I think Squid Lips has better for seafood than Captain Hirams and will be less crowded. However if you are looking for something to do in the evening they have good bands at Hirams. Both are located on Indian River Drive. Vero Beach Disney Resort has 3 restaurants and is on the ocean and is actually just across the Wabasso Causeway at CR510. About 15 min from Sebastian. Check out the King Center in Melbourne to see what musical venues or plays may be happening. Same with the Riverside Theater in Vero Beach. The Sebastian Inlet State park sometimes has manatees near the jetty but not sure if your friend would be able to make the walk out to the end of the jetty. Check with the park rangers before making the drive as they should be able to tell you if they are there.

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Sebastian
Sebastian
Florida
Melbourne
Melbourne
Victoria, Australia
Washington, D.C.
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421 posts
82 reviews
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5. Re: What to do

Thanks to you both, I have ideas for a good trip!

6. Re: What to do

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