Venic has a lot to offer for vacationers looking for natural beauty, historic sites, and relaxation! We have Venice Beach, which is world known and attracts people from all over the world. Not only has it kept its natural beauty over the years, but it’s a great place to meet new people and play beach volleyball! Not too long ago, for the first time, I was introduced to the pier life. Many teens and young adults stay out on Sharky’s Pier all night for shark fishing. It’s definitely a huge part of our culture down here, and a great example of the laid-back, island-style living. One of my favorite parts of Venice Beach has to do with how Sharky’s Pier got it’s name- Sharky’s, the seafood restaurant that is connected directly to the pier. The fresh seafood is the best around- my family comes down from all over America so we can get together and have dinner there (The best part? Vegetarian bean burgers).
If you want a look at more cultural landmarks, about a half hour away we come to Sarasota, where one of our favorite malls is, and where the famous Unconditional Surrender Statue rests. Many of my friends took pictures there for prom, and the area is gorgeous! Staying closer to home, my high school, Venice Senior High, is actually on an island, Venice Island. Venice Island is worth the entire trip down by itself! Thrift shops, boutiques, and cafes line the streets, while beautiful art and sculptures sit on the sidewalks and in the parks; a small Gazebo marks where parents sit and kids play in the small water park. I would definitely advise stopping in the Soda Fountain- a great café where they make soda and milk shakes the right way.
How can I not mention the circus? Since 20 years after Venice was founded, the circus has been integrated into Venice culture- I don’t know any schools that don’t plan at least a few trip a year to visit the Ringling Museum in Sarasota. However, when heading onto the Island using the Circus bridge (A daily trip for me) you will see the Ringling’s Winter Quarters, and the Venice Depot, holding the train that rolled into Venice in 1960- a popular place for Senior pictures at Venice High.
Another cultural hub is the Venice Little Theatre- the third largest community theatre in the United States. This is a great place to see rising stars in Venice, and be entertained as well! Venice is also known as the “Shark’s Tooth Capital of the World,” and if you are in town for it, the Shark’s Tooth Festival is a great time to see all kinds of culture come out in sculptures, paintings, and other art forms. The Shark’s Tooth Festival is something my friends and I look forward to every year- from the local bands and foods, to the beautiful jewelry and art, there’s no finding this anywhere else.
One of the last places of historical importance in Venice is the Venice Municipal Airport. It was here that 3 terrorists of 9/11 were secretly planning their attacks on American cities. While this airport holds that dark memory, new memories are already in the making. Agape Flights is a Christian-based program that flies out supplies to missionaries and poor villages in other countries. This nonprofit organization shows the heart of Venice, and has helped heal the damage done by 9/11.
The best part? At the end of every adventure filled day, we can always depend on a beautiful, unique sunset. What’s not to love?
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