Happy Memorial Day! Photos of Sarasota

Photos of Sarasota, Florida by NYC photojournalist, Kelly Williams

Hi everyone!  Memorial Day weekend starts today, and that usually means a bit of holiday travel for most folks.  In anticipation of the fun weekend ahead, I thought I would tempt you with photos from my trip to Sarasota, taken during my Florida sojourn this past winter.  To those of you going somewhere relaxing, I hope you have a safe trip.  And for those of you — like me — who will be enjoying a staycation, use these photos to dream of your next trip.  Enjoy!

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The 2015 Pasco County Fair: Babies and Bull Riding

The Pasco County Fair Championship Rodeo, by NYC photojournalist, Kelly Williams

Of all the wacky fairs I have attended during my visit to Florida, the Pasco County Fair was by far the best.  A cute baby contest, full rodeo, and wild amusement rides — need I say more?

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Saturday Night Special: Ybor City Knight Parade

Photo from the 2015 Ybor City Knight Parade in Tampa, by NYC photojournalist, Kelly Williams

Saturday night was party night in Tampa where the annual Knight Parade made a triumphant return down 7th Avenue in Ybor City.  The parade is one of the final events for Tampa’s Gasparilla pirate festival.  As a reminder, Gasparilla is a bit like Mardi Gras, and as with the ‘crews’ in New Orleans, this parade is sponsored by the Krewe of the Knights of Sant’ Yago.  The Ybor City Knight Parade is known as one of the more raucous events of the festival, and this year lived up to the hype.  Lots of drunk people countered by cute kids from the surrounding area who just wanted those beads.  Enjoy the pics!

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Tampa’s Thai Temple: The Wat Mongkolratanaram

A woman walks outside the Wat Mongkolratanaram, as photographed by NYC photojournalist, Kelly Williams

With the coldest air of the season beating down on New York City, I thought sharing photos from one of Tampa’s most serene spaces was in order.  Welcome to the Wat Mongkolratanaram of Florida, a Buddhist temple located alongside the Palm River near Brandon.  The ‘wat,’ or monastery temple, was established in its present location in 1981 and the newly designed temple was dedicated in 2007.  English-language religious services are held every Sunday beginning at 1:00 p.m., and classes on Buddhism are offered during the week.

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The Florida State Fair

A carnival history display at the Florida State Fair, photographed by NYC photojournalist, Kelly Williams

Yesterday, my mother and I visited the Florida State Fair.  For a city girl like myself, this was an introduction to the country life, complete with livestock competitions, homemade concoctions, and everything you would ever need to decorate your house à la Little House on the Prairie.

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Gasparilla 2015: Pirates Invade Tampa

Tampa celebrates Gasparilla 2015, by NYC photojouralist, Kelly Williams.

Hi everyone!  The Gasparilla 2015 Pirate Parade was held today in Tampa, and I am pleased to say I was there to catch all the action.  The festival has been going strong since it was first held in 1904.  With a look and feel a bit like Mardi Gras in New Orleans, the premise of the festival is a celebration of legendary local pirate, Jose Gaspar.

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Circle B Bar Reserve: Pristine Wilderness in Polk County

A lake at the Circle B Bar Reserve in Polk County

Hi everyone! I’m still in Florida, and yesterday I visited the Circle B Bar Reserve in Polk County with my cousin, Robin.

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A Tour of the Oxford Exchange in Tampa

Sailboat in the entrance of the Oxford Exchange in Tampa, Florida

Hi everyone!  I’ve decided to extend my stay in Tampa for a bit longer in order to avoid the cold of New York City.  As such, I wanted to introduce y’all to my hometown of Tampa.  Let’s start at the Oxford Exchange — a bookstore, cafe, glorious oddities shop, and remote workspace all rolled into one.

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The Road to Micanopy, Florida

Photos of Micanopy, Florida by NYC wedding, event, and portrait photographer Kelly Williams

Happy new year, everyone!  I hope you all are enjoying a little ‘down time’ — I certainly am.  I’m spending time with my family in Florida, and we recently took a trip to Jacksonville to visit with my aunt and cousins.  The trip was great, especially the side trip to a little town called Micanopy (pronounced “mick-ah-No-pee“).  The town is an ideal relic of ‘old Florida’ and has one main street with lots of cute shops and restaurants.  I encourage everyone to take a visit there if you can.  While you’re there, enjoy some alligator tail at the Yearling Restaurant in nearby Cross Creek.  Enjoy the pics, and there will be plenty more photos of Florida coming soon!

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