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Silver Springs

Sivler Springs Florida Silver Springs, Florida is just a few miles from Ocala, situated in Marion County, as a city and natural spring, that is considered to be one of the biggest artesian spring formations in the world, that continuously produces 550 million gallons of clear clean water every day, and begins the headwaters of the Silver River, that flows into the Ocklawaha River, as its biggest tributary, with both being in the St. John's River system. During the mid 19th century, the area would become quite popular because of its spectacular spring, bringing crowds of visitors from around the nation, who would tour the river's clear waters using glass bottomed boats in the late 1870s. Carl Ray and W. M. Davidson would be the first to construct the attraction that exists there today, which has grown to become the Silver Springs Nature Theme Park, showcasing many natural animal exhibits and the famous glass bottomed boats that continue to take visitors on an exciting and interesting tour of the river area around the feature. Just downstream from this park is the famous attraction Silver River State Park, which is almost as exciting and interesting making the journey to this area worthwhile to visit for a day. The city also has a water park called Wild Waters that opened in 1978 and the T. W. Randall House that was added to the National Register of Historic Places in the northwest area. Numerous other attractions have come and gone now, as the park still welcomes visitors coming here to cruise on the glass bottom boats and enjoy all the natural scenery and wildlife available. One of the best ways to get around town is to rent a car from a great company called Enterprise Rent-A-Car that has many special deals to save you money to be used on other vacation needs or wants, and it is also the most economical way to travel the state, since public transportation still hasn't found a home in Florida yet. The Silver Springs State Park occupies almost 5,000 acres of beautiful land, situated next to the city of Silver Springs and the Ocklawaha River. Some of the fabulous wildlife found there include; the Florida black bear, nine-banded armadillos, bobcat, white-tailed deer, coyote, wild boar, Sherman fox, wild turkey, gopher tortoises, foxes and the American alligator. One very unique site that you might see along the trails are the rhesus macaques monkeys that were brought here in the 1930s by a tour boat operator called Colonel Tooey, that had them brought here to enhance his Jungle Cruise ride; although a local legend has it that the monkeys would be the left-over descendants of monkeys that had been used for the movies about Tarzan, which would be filmed here in the 1930s; but is not true. Other exciting activities include bike riding, camping, wildlife viewing, canoeing and kayaking; as well as a cracker village, museum and environmental center that are open on the weekends. The trail there is fifteen miles long, and accesses the Silver River, a 59 campsite campground and ten luxury cabins for those that want to stay in a more luxurious setting in the park's outstanding environment.

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Appleton Museum of Art

Ocala Appleton Museum of ArtThe Appleton was founded in 1982, as a gift from Arthur I. Appleton to the Ocala community, and the city would donate 44 acres of land to showcase the museum after it was constructed. That would start in 1984, and open to the public in 1987; constructed to showcase the fabulous collection of Appleton that is now one of the premier collections of the south, as well as one of the top attractions in the city of Ocala. Ever since it opened, the museum has strived to showcase excellent works of art and relics for the public, as well as offer outstanding educational programs for the community members; and in 2004, would become part of the College of Central Florida and the CF Foundation. It has become a part of the Appleton Cultural Center that is located in downtown Ocala that also includes the Pioneer Garden Club of Ocala and the Ocala Civic Theater. This magnificent museum sits in a two story travertine marble building sitting on a small knoll that is now fronted by a beautiful reflecting pool and fountain that is encompassed by 11 acres of woods and landscaping. It houses five permanent galleries, the cafe which sits in a quadrangle surrounded by a landscaped open air courtyard and a 250 seat auditorium. In 1996, the museum would open the Edith-Marie Appleton wing that contains 4,000 square feet of display space, offices and storage areas, three classrooms, interactive video classroom, art workshop and an art library that houses over 2000 reference books and videos. The permanent collections houses about 16,000 works from Europe, Africa, Asia, America, pre-Columbian and contemporary relics and art; and a fabulous collection of works from Floridian artists that pertain to the history and cultural heritage of the region. The best way to travel the area is to rent a car and take your time, saving money from any transportation needs, making it the most economical way to travel. Check out Enterprise Rent-A-Car where you will find friendly folks and a southern atmosphere of hospitality as well as the best prices in the business.