The Spirit of the Suwannee Music Park, located on the banks of the historic Suwannee River in North Florida, has become a favorite destination for horse lovers seeking just such an idyllic retreat. The 700-plus-acre resort, nestled in the North Florida woods, features trails that wind through live oak thickets and hardwood hammocks, along the mysterious dark waters of the Suwannee River and through thousands of adjacent acres of protected state lands www.musicliveshere.com.
The park's exclusive horse-camping area is located in a lush area with bathroom and shower facilities. Its 30-stall barn is situated to provide easy access, and an additional 20-stall barn is close to the camping area. Portable stalls and picket lines are also available for those who wish to board their horses next to their campsites. Horses may also be boarded at the stable, located approximately two-tenths of a mile from the camping area.
The park's water and electric campsites are ideal for those with big rigs and travel trailers. There are more than 60 campsites available in the horse-camping area, with hundreds of others, including primitive as well as full hookups, throughout the park. (A limited number of full hookup sites are near the horse camping area.) Cabins nestled amongst live oak and pine trees are also available.
On the Go
Beautiful shaded trails and the Suwannee River highlight the equestrian experience at the Spirit of the Suwannee, but its many amenities rate high with campers as well. The park's full-service restaurant, the SOS Café, offers breakfast, lunch, and dinner. There's also a general store, craft village, and tack store.
For a true Suwannee experience, the Canoe Outpost rents canoes and kayaks, and offers guided river trips. Cool off at the pool. Having achieved its fame through the years as a home for music of all genres, the odds are pretty high that you'll find music being played somewhere throughout the park at any given time.
The Way Down Upon the Suwannee Trail Ride is set for November 3 to 8, 2006, when North Florida boasts ideal weather. There will be organized, guided rides with meals Saturday and Sunday. The state-owned lands feature hundreds of miles of trails managed by the Suwannee River Water Management District; both the park and the district offer an extensive selection of maps.
Another favorite event is the New Year's Eve Trail Ride. In addition to the trail riding opportunities, the weekend features a barbecue, live music and, of course, a New Year's Eve party.
The park is conveniently located just 4 ½ miles off either Interstate 10 (Exit 283, travel north on Highway 129) or Interstate 75 (Exit 451, travel south on Highway 129), and just a few minutes from the county seat in Live Oak. Shopping, restaurants, gas stations and other businesses are just five miles from the park. Veterinarians and a feed store are also located in Live Oak and a farrier is available to park guests.
The park's location affords easy access to Jacksonville, Gainesville, and Tallahassee. The region offers day-trip options to the region's historic sites, antique stores, and museums. The clear, cold waters of Ichetucknee Springs are less than an hour away. Branford, located in the south part of the county, is known as the "Cave Diving Capital of the World."
Whether you're interested in the upcoming organized events or simply a relaxing weekend with your family and horses, the Spirit of Suwannee Music Park is a good choice. Its staff will do their best to make your equestrian experience a uniquely memorable one.