In every issue, the St. Augustine Social team consults a local family to find out their favorite places to eat, beloved rainy day activities, their can’t-miss spots, and plenty more. This Family Favorites column is populated by St. Augustine entrepreneurs, creatives, restauranteurs who are raising their families to love life in the Ancient City and enjoy life with each other. This column is our go-to when we’re looking for local recommendations, so we’ve compiled the favorites of the families in our last nine issues. From favorite dessert spots to frequent local haunts, here’s where just a few St. Augustine families spend their time.
FAVORITE PLACE TO LET THE KIDS LOOSE?
Davenport Park, the one with the carousel. The park is big and we let the kids run free and play with all the other boys and girls. Of course, no trip to “Carousel Park” (as our boys call it) is complete without at least a half dozen rides. – The Lanhams
The kids love to run free at the Splash Park at the Anastasia Island pier! I love that we can meet up with families with kids of all ages here. – The Fowlers
The Fort! We bring the football and head down to the Fort. It is perfect. The kids can roam, run free, and enjoy the fresh air. – The Sims
FAVORITE THING TO DO ON A RAINY DAY?
Combing through thrift stores! The Betty Griffin House, St. Vincent de Paul’s, Out There Antiques, and 312 Pawn are some of our favorites to find vintage furniture and old video games. – The Brodersons
We’re having a lazy day at home! We’re always on the go, so rainy days are our excuse to sit back and relax. If we’re trying to get out of the house and it’s a weekday, Marquesa loves the St. Johns County Library, and we’re there almost every week. – The Louden-Taliaferros
If we’re not all cozy at home watching Netflix, you could probably find us at the Lightner Museum, an art gallery downtown, or Ripley’s Believe It or Not! – The Hudsons
WHEN WE HAVE OUT OF TOWN GUESTS, WE ALWAYS BRING THEM TO…
Always to the Kookaburra, multiple times a day! And for dinner either at The Floridian or The Ice Plant. You can always count on a really great drink and the setting at both restaurants is so beautiful. – The Applebys
Casa Maya! Jill is a pescatarian and Rob is not, so The Maya (as we call it) has just about everything, and their Avacado Soup pretty much cures everything. – The Futrells
When we have out of town guests, our first stop is always brunch at The Blue Hen…because Chicken Biscuits with Peach Butter! It’s also a great example of one of the many local businesses that display the vintage charm that St. Augustine has in spades. – The Higginbothams
FAVORITE PLACE FOR DESSERT?
Cousteau’s Waffle & Milkshake Bar! YUM!!! Plus its downtown, a perfect treat to walk around and visit the cute shops. – The Sims
Creme de la Cocoa is our FAVORITE place for dessert. We use them for all of our special occasions, birthdays, holidays, etc. On Fridays, we try to stop in for an after-school treat. We have never had anything that didn’t taste amazing. – The Hudsons
Dessert First Bistro, just west of the Vilano Bridge. Not only is it close to home but they have some of the best desserts. The boys love it, and we love it. – The Lanhams
FAVORITE SUNDAY EVENING TRADITION?
Sitting outside for dinner (so Marquesa can run around and explore) while watching the sunset at one of the restaurants down the road (Casa Bennedetto’s, Kingfish Grill, Vilano 180 Grill). It’s an easy and relaxing way to end the weekend! – The Louden-Taliaferros
I have a tricycle with two baskets and Jeremy has a beach cruiser. We load up the baby and the furbaby in the tricycle and take a bike ride down the beach. Then we’ll usually stop at The Taco Shop for their California Burritos and take a breather on their patio under the palms and string lights. – The Fowlers
PLACE IN THE CITY WE’VE ALWAYS WANTED TO GO…
Cafe Alcazar – we recently had to cut through the pool during an event and we looked at each other and said, “Hey, let’s come back here this month with the kids so they can check it out too.” A really awesome spot tucked away from the hustle and bustle of downtown. – The Futrells
We keep hearing great things about Llama. That’s next on our list for sure! – The Applebys
FAVORITE FREE THING TO DO IN ST. AUGUSTINE?
A look at the sailboats, throwing a frisbee at the Fort, and taking a peaceful stroll through the Mission Nombre de Dios to admire the cross makes for the perfect day. – The Higginbothams
We love reading books and magazines at Barnes & Noble for design inspiration. We also take the St. Augustine Distillery and San Sebastian Winery tours. – The Brodersons