Meet Alison from Clerbrook Golf & RV Resort in Clermont, FL

Profile

  • Name: Alison Schulz
  • In position since: February 2016
  • Title: Resort Manager
  • Work Location: Clerbrook Golf and RV Resort in Clermont, FL
  •  Favorite hobbies or sport(s):  Walking my dogs and horse riding

What’s the most rewarding aspect of being a Park Manager?

Meeting new people and making sure they have the best experience while they are in our park.

How do you help make guests vacations at Clerbrook special?

From the time they check in I believe first impressions are very important and ensure that the staff is prepared and ready to give the best customer experience possible to our guests. This includes accommodating them with their needs or to be ready to give suggestions in regards to entertainment and things to see in the area.

What’s special about Clerbrook?

We are a hidden gem in the middle of Florida with an 18-hole golf course and many other amenities, including a fitness center, shuffleboard court, and even great fishing and hiking sites.

 

 

Can you use 3 words to describe your RV park to someone who is considering visiting Clerbrook?

Accommodating, Friendly & Fun!

What area attractions or entertainment do you recommend guests experience while at Clerbrook?

Lakeridge Winery is an amazing, local vineyard where guests go to tour the vineyards and enjoy the tasting room. During the season they even have festivals!  If a guest enjoys live music, I always send them to the Orange Blossom Opry to enjoy their variety of concerts and jam nights. And of course Walt Disney World is only a short drive away.

What accomplishment at Clerbrook are you most proud of? Why?

I’m most proud of bringing the property back to life by helping our park to be more involved in with the local community. We help with hospice fundraisers and regularly contribute to the local food bank.

What does a typical day at Clerbrook look like?

I love arriving at the property very early every day and the first thing on my agenda is to drive around the community and make contact with all my smiling residents and guest. Afterwards, as my staff comes in, I meet with them and disseminate our goals for the day and work matters that need attending to.  

What’s your favorite funny story to tell from Clerbrook?

When guest come in and ask me where I am from (usually due to my English accent), I tell them “North Carolina!” They usually give me a weird look and then I tell them “England”, we always laugh and it is a fun way to break the ice.

Can you share your favorite memory at Clerbrook?

This past season when all my veteran guests returned at the beginning of November, they all had big smiles on their faces! They were like children, excited to be back in the park.

Can you recall a time when the guests at your property surprised you?

Yes, Miss Glenda (a long-term guest) brought in flowers for me and my team. It was very sweet of her.

Can you tell us about some of the friendships that have developed between guests at Clerbrook?

I have seen many friendships form this past season. Canadians inviting new residents to their dinners; Canadian-American bands always put people together and create friendships that last past their time at the resort.

RV communities look out for each other. Can you share an example of how Clerbrook exemplifies the idea of community?

When someone is ill, the guests all come together and help. We also have people who help out for our homebound residents. If a RV is broken, there are always people in the park to help those who need it.

Why do you think your veteran guests keep coming back to Clerbrook?

Some of our residents have been coming here for over 20 years and they do consider this a second home. They feel there is a sense of community and family within the park.

Do you have any last words or thoughts for your guests?

My door is always open so why don’t you just stop by have chat and stay awhile.

 

The Ultimate Roadmap for Your 30 Days in Florida!

So, you have 30 days to explore Florida; lucky you! But it’s a big state, with lots of activities, sights and resorts to choose from, so where do you start? Check out our roadmap below, which takes you through the top must-see areas of Florida. But, before you book your accommodations and activities, we encourage you to take the season into account. Rates are often higher at peak tourist times, not to mention there are more crowds and limited availability.

Days 1 – 5: Crystal River – Homosassa Region

Where to Stay

Crystal Isles RV Resort offers the best of Florida’s scenic West Coast including beaches,
golf courses and fishing in nearby rivers and streams. But book early, because Crystal Isles boasts waterfront sites that are in high demand.

With plenty of restaurants and nearby shopping, plus fishing, golf and beaches there’s lots to do during your time here. Depending on the time of year you visit we suggest making time for…

 

Manatees

Did you know that Crystal River hosts a year-round population of Manatees? Although you can see them any time of the year, the best time is January – March. During the winter season the manatees crowd around the warm water springs that are unique to the Crystal River area. Also, the visibility is better during the winter months because the water is clearer. Plan to visit mid-week (when it’s less busy), and book your viewing in the morning, when the manatees are more active. River Ventures and Plantation are a few of the region’s top manatee tour operators.

Scalloping

Scalloping is a popular activity in Crystal River during the summer and early fall. The scalloping season generally runs from mid June to the end of September. With some basic snorkeling equipment, you can dive for scallops and enjoy the sights of fish, plants and coral that inhabit the Gulf of Mexico’s coast. Again, check out River Ventures and Plantation, which offer scalloping tours along with a number of other local operators.

Days 6-8: Tampa

Tampa is only 2 hours from Crystal Bay, and offers so many attractions, it’s a definite must-stop on your trip south. Top tourist spots include Busch Gardens, The Florida Aquarium, The Tampa Museum of Art, Adventure Island Water Park, and Big Cat Rescue.     

Where to Stay

There are a number of RV resorts and Parks in the Tampa area to choose from like Topics RV Resort in Spring Hill, although golfers may prefer the Silver Dollar Golf, Trap Club & RV Resort in Odessa.

Days 9-13: Fort Myers

Fort Myers is one of the top stops in Florida, and it’s only a 2.5-hour drive from Tampa. With lots to do here, you’ll want to give yourself time to explore the area.

Where to Stay

The Fort Myers Beach RV Resort provides the friendly, fun atmosphere of a close-knit RV community, while also giving you the opportunity to explore the barrier islands of Sanibel and Captiva. Located just three miles from Fort Myers Beach and pier, you may be tempted to spend your week on the beach, but there’s lots more to do in the Fort Myers area, including:

Golf

There are too many top-notch golf courses in Fort Myers to choose from, so if you like to golf this is the place to be. You could also consider staying at Clerbrook Golf & RV Resort, which boasts its own exceptional, 18-hole golf course.  Check out this article from Golf Advisor, which lists some of the top ranked golf courses of the area.

Edison and Ford Winter Estates

Whether you’re into history, architecture, or are just curious, plan to spend time visiting the winter estates of Thomas Edison and Henry Ford. You’ll be amazed at what you learn and see.

J.N. “Ding” Darling Wildlife Refuge

If you like wildlife, then this is a must do on your trip to Fort Myers. On Sanibel Island you can take a tram tour where you’ll have the opportunity to see birds, dolphins, manatees and alligators in their natural habitat at this wildlife refuge.

Days 14 – 20: The Florida Keys

It’s quite a trip south to the Florida Keys, but it’s worth the 5-hour drive from Fort Myers to stay in this tropical paradise. If you visit during lobster season make sure to try some fresh lobster, or consider experiencing the thrill of hauling in lobster traps on a fishing charter.

Where to Stay

Fiesta Key RV Resort & Marina is a spacious 28-acre resort located on its own island in the Florida Keys. Sunshine Key RV Resort & Marina is located on the 75-acre island of Ohio Key, and has an adjoining marina that offers unprecedented water access to a tropical island environment that’s perfect for fishing, swimming or relaxing on the water. Stay at one, or both resorts and enjoy a tropical paradise adventure that includes days of swimming, beaches, fishing, and snorkeling, all from the comfort of your RV.

Although it’s tempting to stay on the beach during your time in the Florida Keys, there’s lots of sights to visit should you get tired of sitting around relaxing. If you’d prefer to explore, consider visiting:

Day 21: Miami

From the Florida Keys, you can make your way north to the Orlando area, which is a 7.5-hour drive, but we suggest breaking that up with a stop in Miami, which is just 3.5 hours from the Florida Keys area. Miami is known for it’s shopping and world-class restaurants, so it’s the perfect place to enjoy lunch or an early dinner before traveling to your resort in Orlando.

Days 21 – 25: Orlando

There’s lots to do and see in Orlando, but Disney is one of the most famous attractions. From Universal Studios to Epcot, there are lots of amusement parks in this area and you could easily spend a day or week (or more) exploring them, but there are also lots of great golf courses, restaurants and shopping areas nearby, so give yourself time to fully explore the Orlando area.

Where to Stay

Clermont, Kissimmee and Winter Gardens are all close to Orlando, and offer a wide range of RV parks to choose from, including Orlando RV Resort,  Winter Gardens RV Resort, Tropical Palms RV Resort, Lake Magic RV Resort, and Sherwood Forest RV Resort.

Days 26 – 30: Daytona Beach

Daytona Beach is only a 1.5-hour drive from the Orlando area, and it’s a great place to end your Florida adventure. This beach, which has been called the “world’s best beach” since the 1920’s hosts an abundance of shopping, dining and golf options.

If you love speed and cars, then make sure you schedule a visit to the Daytona International Speedway, which hosts the Daytona 500 and attracts hundreds of thousands of visitors each year.

Where to Stay

There are a number of excellent RV resorts in the Daytona Beach area, including Sunshine Holiday Daytona RV Resort (which is just minutes away from the Daytona Speedway), and Rose Bay RV Resort which is located next to Daytona’s famous white, sandy beaches, and is well-known for it’s amazing fishing.

Whether you choose to follow this itinerary, or create one of your own, if you’re looking for tips about where and when to visit Florida, give our customer service team a call at 1-877-570-2267. They know all the ins-and-outs of the Florida area and can give you the insider information that will make your trip extra-special.

Did you find this road trip plan helpful? Do you have any suggestions? Let us know in the comments below!

The Key to Your Winter Getaway is no other than the Florida Keys

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This 120 mile stretch of island chains is home to North America’s only living coral barrier reef. It’s a great place to spend your winters, stay active, have fun and meet wonderful people!

Finding the Fabulous Florida Keys
The Florida Keys are located off the southern coast of Florida. While we may think of them as a series of islands, they are actually exposed portions of an ancient coral reef. The southern part of Key West is only 140 km (90 mi) from Cuba. Many of the islands are connected by an astounding 42 bridges! Getting here is easy. Take US 1 Florida City (south of Miami) to Key Largo and you’re on your way. You can also fly into Miami International Airport and rent a vehicle there.

Pack Your Swim Fins
Novice or expert, you are going to love snorkeling or diving in the reefs. The Florida Keys are located between the Atlantic ocean and the Gulf of Mexico and are packed with amazing underwater explorations. There’s Indian Key Historic State Park, 10 minutes from Encore’s Fiesta Key RV Resort, where you can view the remains of a shipwreck. You can also take an eco-tour and snorkel out on the reef. Underwater adventures are as limited as your time here, so pace yourself and enjoy life under the sea.

thinkstockphotos-185251753Fishing Paradise

The Florida Bay is in the upper Florida Keys and contains more species of fish than anywhere else in the Atlantic Ocean. There is a warm gulf stream that runs off the coast and creates a migration path for the fish. The variety of game fish and fishing grounds here is like nowhere else in the world.

Big Pine Key is 10 minutes from Sunshine Key RV Resort, and has dozens of fishing charters to choose from. Depending on the time of year your catch could be sailfish, wahoo, kingfish, cero mackerel, blue or white marlin, snapper, grouper, barracuda, amberjack, sharks, tuna or bonito. And it’s all within a 45-minute boat ride.

Boats, Canoes and Kayaks
Bring your own or rent one from one of the many suppliers in the Keys. Boating is the number one attraction in this area. The Fiesta Key RV Resort & Marina and the Sunshine Key RV Resort & Marina have their own marina where you can dock your boat when you’re not out exploring. For something a little more laid back, rent a canoe or kayak and explore the area. The Summerland and Big Pine Key have fewer people and great bays

and lagoons.

Explore and Learn
Come explore the area and learn what makes the Florida Keys so special. The National Key Deer Refuge is 84,824-acres created to protect the falling population of Key deer. It is just one of over 20 animals and plants classified as endangered or threatened, including five that are found nowhere else on Earth. There’s also the Blue Hole, the largest body of freshwater in the Keys. Take a stroll on the walking trail or gaze out from the observation platform. You’ll probably catch sight the resident alligator, turtles, and other wildlife.

The Dolphin Research Centre lies between Sunshine Key and Fiesta Key on the Gulf of Mexico. It’s wheelchair accessible and pet friendly too! While you’re here you can watch actual research, and observe animal behavior. Trainers are available to talk to you about the facility and the mammals in their care. You can also meet with the dolphins as they love to people watch as much as we love to watch them. There’s live presentations in the education theatre and signage

Arts, Culture and Shopping

The Florida Keys are a hub of arts and culture and there’s great shopping here too. From Key Largo to Key West you’ll find a vast assortment of talented theatre companies. Visual treats abound with galleries, art and art walks. Step into the past and visit one of the many museums in the Keys. Of particular note, is the Ernest Hemingway Home and Museum in Key West. There are festivals up and down the Keys year round including art, music, Celtic and fantasy fests.

Shopping in the Keys is an adventure like no other. There’s the Lobster Trap Art Gallery, Little Switzerland, and places like the Latitude 25 Clothing company. There’s even outlet malls in Key Largo and Key West. Don’t be surprised by the number of places that sell key lime products!

Just Relax

Some days all you want to do is kick off your flip flops, put on your sunglasses and relax. There’s plenty of places to do that here. At Sunshine Key RV Resort, you can walk on warm sand directly into the ocean. Watch the sunrise and take a stroll down the beach as
_mg_0093-1-1you watch the sea birds frolic above the waves.

At the Bahia Honda State Park you can picnic at the beach and watch the wading and shore birds. The park has 500 acres where you can have a quiet day beachcombing, or simply enjoying the award-winning beach. There’s a concession on site too.

Where to Stay

Choosing where to stay could be a difficult task; as this area is filled with all types of accommodations. Sunshine Key RV Resort & Marina is a great place to relax and the perfect jumping off point for all things adventurous. You can bring your RV (there’s even beach sites) or rent a place to rest your head. Rentals include camping trailers, cabanas, and cottages.

Over at Fiesta Key RV Resort there are even more choices. Bring your own RV or rent one of their varied accommodations. How about a one bedroom waterfront cottage? There are villas that sleep up to four people, and they also have one and two-bedroom travel 3-2trailers. Some units are pet friendly.

Both locations are near tons of fun adventures and have swimming pools and activities for those days when you don’t feel like going too far.

Whatever your taste, a Florida Keys winter getaway has something for you.

Let us know what your favorite part of the Florida Keys is in the comments below, or let us know if you’d like to visit!

Meet Rosa from Sunshine Key RV Resort & Marina in the Florida Keys

rosacimino

• Name: Rosa Cimino
In position since: July 2015
Title: Resort Manager
Work Location: Sunshine Key RV Resort & Marina
Favorite Activity: Enjoying time with my family

1. How does a typical day at Sunshine Key RV Resort & Marina look like? What is your favorite moment of the day?

My favorite moment starts with my drive to work. The view of the island from the 7 mile bridge is spectacular. Seeing the park full of RV’s starts my day with a smile. I also enjoy the variety each day brings – interacting with guests, working with colleagues and relating dsc_9685-1with staff. These moments are all opportunities to expand the guest’s experience.

2. You are working, while people at the park are enjoying their vacation. How do you handle that?
It’s a joy to know that my work directly results in our guests enjoying their time on the island! To me, that joy hardly makes it feel like work.

3. When people ask you what the best experiences are in the surrounding areas, what would you recommend?
Surrounded by the ocean our guests enjoy fishing, swimming, and kayaking right from our shores. We are also just 2 miles from the award-winning beaches at Bahia Honda State

Park, where you can also roam the trails and see a real piece of the historic Flagler railroad bridge. Ten minutes in either direction you will find excellent dining, shopping and areas to explore.

4. What’s your favorite story to tell about your time at Sunshine Key RV Resort & Marina?
We were lucky enough to have our property picked as a staging and filming site for a major movie production. Hosting Donald Sutherland and Helen Mirren was an experience all our guests and staff will not soon forget!

5. What’s your best accomplishment so far at Sunshine Key RV Resort & Marina?
We have a wonderful team that works hard to ensure our guests’ needs are met at every turn. The revamped play area and tennis/pickleball courts look amazing. I’m also proud of playarea-1the new branding and signage we’ve created. With a list of projects on the horizon, each trip will bring new discoveries.

6. If had to describe your RV park to someone who thinks about coming to Sunshine Key, what would you say?
I always say that Sunshine Key is a private island in the middle of paradise. Our resort is located on the 75-acre island of Ohio Key, near Big Pine Key in the lower Florida Keys. It provides the perfect gateway for ocean activities, or just relaxing at the water’s edge.. Our marina also offers the RV adventurer unprecedented access to a tropical island environment.

7. What brought you to Sunshine Key RV Resort & Marina?
img_3009-1I had worked at Disney for 20 years and was ready for new challenges and a new environment. When the opportunity arose, the timing was perfect for a change of life and the chance to move my family to the paradise of the Florida Keys.

8. Any last words for your current and future guests?
We have an amazing resort, wonderful guests and a remarkable staff. Sunshine Key has everything from boating to kayaking to fishing to swimming all on our own private island.
Come make some new friends, meet old friends or just soak in the rhythm of island living.

Come Discover the Florida Everglades!

everglades

People have been coming to the southern tip of Florida, specifically to the Florida Everglades, for centuries. Snowbirds have tried to keep this area a secret; however, something this great has a way of becoming known.

Subtropical Wild
When some people hear the word Everglades, they think swamps and dangerous creatures. While the Florida everglades are one of North America’s unsung wild places, there’s plenty of amenities here too.

birdsYou’ll marvel at the subtropical landscape that is both beautiful and rugged. This mostly untouched wilderness has plenty of wildlife that will delight and surprise. You can take wildlife tours via plane, boat or airboat, by vehicle or on a bicycle or walking tour.

There are several parks in the Everglades to enjoy. Spend a day exploring the 11,000-acre Corkscrew Swamp Sanctuary where you’ll find the largest remaining stand of ancient virgin bald cypresses. There’s no trekking through the jungle here, it’s an easy two-mile walk along a boardwalk that passes through marshes, wet prairie, pinelands, hardwood hammocks and cypress swamps.

Fishing and Boating
Fishing is one of the main attractions of the Everglades. A fishing trip into the Ten Thousand Islands is an experience like no other. Imagine a land where there are no roads, no stores, and no signs of civilization. Now imagine yourself venturing into the tidal creeks and rivers and the mangrove islands and landing the catch of a lifetime.

fanAnglers of all ages and experience love the guided fishing tours here. Remember to bring your camera too. This land is flush with osprey, pelicans, herons, egrets, white ibis and roseate spoonbills. Don’t be surprised if a bottlenose dolphin or manatee tries to capture your attention.

There are several guided tours in the area that offer up both fishing and boat tours. Choose from guided kayak and canoe adventures, an airboat tour, or rent a boat for the day to explore the beaches and islands of the area.

Fresh Feasts
As you can imagine, being this close to the water means great seafood. There are as many types of restaurants in this area as there are variations on seafood dishes! Cafes, delis, family dining and five-star cuisine are all within minutes of wherever you’re staying. Some eateries even offer views of alligators while you eat!

There are several ethnic restaurants as well that serve Chinese, Italian, Cuban, Colombian, Peruvian and Caribbean food.
Learn More About the Everglades

One must see place is the Museum of the Everglades in Everglades City. Step through the doors and learn the story of the past 2,000 years in the Everglades. There are pierartifacts, period photographs, programs, lectures and events. While the museum is small, it contains a thorough history of the area from the native tribes, to the Tamiami Trail, and the Big Cypress Swamp.

There is loads of information here as well as a rotating gallery near the entrance where you’ll see great local art.
Where to Stay
Although there are motels, hotels, cottages and B & Bs in this area; this subtropical paradise was made for RVers.

Pull in and park your home on wheels amongst the avocado, mango and palm trees. The Miami Everglades RV Resort near Miami, Florida was voted “Best Campground in Miami.”
famSet yourself up in a spot that feels just right for you in the 34-acres of tropical camping surrounded by tropical floral nurseries and farms. From here you are only 10 miles away from Everglades National Park. Key Largo is located 30 miles to the south.

Travel a bit further south and you’ll come to the Florida Keys RV Resort. This 28-acre resort is located on its own island! Picture yourself waking up in a place where you are surrounded by the Gulf of Mexico. Ocean views in every direction, an onsite marina and plenty of amenities are right here for you to enjoy. Venture out and enjoy Long Key State Park, the Dolphin Research Center and the Bud ‘N’ Mary’s world famous fishing marina.

Both Miami Everglades RV Resort and the Florida Keys RV Resort also have lodge and cabin rentals for your convenience.

No matter where you go, or where you stay, you are sure to find plenty of great adventures, and ways to relax in the Florida Everglades.