By Kara Stover
Moving is known to be one of the more stressful life events. Beyond packing and unpacking all those boxes, one must also acclimate to a new place, perhaps start a new job, and definitely meet new people.
Fortunately, Ponte Vedra Beach offers tons of opportunities to connect with like-minded folks at every age and stage of life. Here are some great places to get started.
Almost every community offers a neighborhood association, giving neighbors a perfect chance to get to know one another. Marsh Landing, The Plantation, Sawgrass, Plantation Oaks, and Nocatee all host an array of events for residents, including Family Movie Nights, recreational activities such as Bridge and Food Truck Fridays, as well as a variety of seasonal celebrations. For more info, contact your specific neighborhood association or visit their website for monthly listings of activities. You can also check on Facebook to see if your community has a private group that you can join.
If volunteering is your thing, there are several clubs in the area looking for you!
The Rotary Club offers a chance to engage with business professionals while making a positive impact in the community. Weekly meetings typically feature a guest speaker from the community and cover a broad spectrum of topics, from local traffic issues to global epidemics. There are plenty of ways to get involved, plus many fun events sprinkled throughout the year, such as Jaguars Day and Croquet Night. To contact the Rotary Club of Ponte Vedra, visit www.pvbrotary.org and use their “Contact Us” tab.
For community-minded females, there’s the Junior League of Jacksonville, an all-women service group committed to volunteerism. Members attend meetings and participate in several charity events, including Jockeys & Juleps, a Derby day party, and the holiday Tour of Homes. For more information, email firstname.lastname@example.org, or call 904-387-9927.
Ponte Vedra has gorgeous weather practically year-round, perfect for the fitness fanatic. There are a variety of special interest groups in the area and a great way to find the right group for you is by checking out the local YMCA. There are several branches in our area, including the Ponte Vedra YMCA, Brooks YMCA, and the Williams Family YMCA. Each offers group fitness classes, childcare, camps for kids, as well as a great workout. The Y is also a good place to join up with a running or biking club. For more information, check out the YMCA web site at fcymca.org.
Another popular activity in the area is tennis. There are some great local tennis clubs for all skill levels. The Oakbridge Club at Sawgrass is recently renovated and features ten lighted courts, locker rooms, and player lounges. They offer clinics, lessons, ladder and league play for adults and youth. Contact them at 904-285-5552. Marsh Landing Country Club, Sawgrass Country Club, and Ponte Vedra Inn & Club are private clubs all offering excellent and competitive tennis programs for their members. You can find more info on each individual club at their websites.
Ponte Vedra Beach is also home to the PGA TOUR Headquarters, so of course, golf is popular with the residents. Some of Florida’s best golf courses are located on the First Coast, including TPC Sawgrass, The Ocean and Lagoon courses at Ponte Vedra Inn and Club, three nine-hole courses at Sawgrass Country Club, Marsh Landing Country Club, and the exclusive Pablo Creek Golf Club. Adult and Junior clinics are offered, along with a variety of tournaments. Contact the individual club for membership options, pricing, and availability.
For book lovers, the St. Johns County Public Library is a great resource. There are six local branches, so there’s sure to be a library near you. Each branch offers slightly different programming, but you can count on Story Time for children, a Teen Club or two, Adult Book Clubs, and local Writer’s groups. There are also nature programs, guest speakers, and other cultural events throughout the year. Visit their website at sjcpls.org to learn more.
Your fur baby needs friends, too! And outings with dogs are a great way to meet new people. Luckily, there are a variety of local dog parks to discover. Paws Dog Park in Davis Park (210 Davis Park Road, Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida 32081) has two large fenced areas with a doggy playground and a pond for cooling off. There’s also a Dog Wash where you can hose Fido off prior to the car ride home.
Nocatee offers multiple dog parks for their four-legged friends, including Trails for Tails inside the Community Park, Happy Tails Dog Park in Greenleaf Village, Waggin Tails in Twenty Mile Village, and Central Bark in Twenty Mile Post, which boasts separate entrances for small and large dogs, as well as agility courses sure to challenge your pup mentally and physically! For more info on these parks, call 1-800-NOC-ATEE or visit their website.
For those who want it all, look no further than the private club. There are multiple options, each with their own distinctions.
The Cabana Club is connected to the Sawgrass Marriott and offers beach access, an oceanfront pool, dining options, members-only social events, and complimentary parking. For more info, contact the Membership office at 904-280-34403.
Adjacent to the Cabana Club is the Lodge & Club, a Mediterranean-style hotel offering private membership. Notable features here include an Adults-only pool, a Family pool with waterslide and spray pad area, a fitness center, four restaurants, and a wide variety of social events, including a weekday complimentary afternoon tea service.
One and a half miles down Ponte Vedra Boulevard is the Lodge’s sister property, the Ponte Vedra Inn & Club. Steeped in history, PVIC opened the historic Inn just prior to the Great Depression in 1928 and has hosted quite a few celebrities over the decades. Members of PVIC enjoy wide swaths of beach, three pools, including a lap pool, an Adults-only pool, and a family pool with two waterslides, a playground, lighted tennis courts, two private golf courses, on-site childcare, nine restaurants and lounges, shopping, and many fun social events throughout the year. For membership info on the Lodge or PVIC, call 888-839-9145.
Another great club option is Sawgrass Country Club. Sawgrass offers some fabulous amenities, including outstanding dining, golf, tennis, a private beach club, a fitness center with a lap pool, childcare at the KidZone, and fun family events throughout the year. Some of the most popular events for members include a Fourth of July Celebration with fireworks at the golf club, complimentary surf lessons, and Breakfast with Santa, complete with snow sledding! (Yes, in Florida!). For membership info, call 904-273-3700.
There are many fun, interesting, and impactful activities available to the residents of Ponte Vedra Beach. Get out there and try a few and you will undoubtedly create some connections within this vibrant beach community. Welcome!
About the Author:
Kara Stover left the tundra of the Midwest for the Sunshine State at the age of five and has never looked back. After graduate school, she firmly dug her toes into the sand of Ponte Vedra Beach and has been avidly hunting for shark’s teeth here for over a decade. She currently chauffeurs her eight-year-old twins to an alarming number of activities and writes informative and funny things as often as she can.