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Mount Dora - Orlando / Florida Guide

Florida Guide > Days Out

Mount Dora is a charming little town about 35 miles north of Orlando and is a true Mecca for antique collectors. There are probably more interesting and varied antique dealers per square foot than any other place in Florida. To top that off, nearby Renninger's Antique Market attracts thousands to its many weekend fairs and extravaganzas.

Shopping in Mount Dora is just irresistible! The number and variety of gift shops, fashion boutiques, decorative art galleries, and interesting cafes astounds - - all within easy walking distance of each other and beautiful Lake Dora. Most stores are open every day.

But there is plenty of other entertainment in this cute European-style town. The City recreation complex and six parks offer children's playgrounds, tennis and racquetball courts, a picnic area, shuffleboard courts and a nature walk. Set sail on a sunset cruise, rent a bike, fish off a pier next to the inland light-house, enjoy the nature walk on Palm Island or stroll around the neighbourhoods enjoying the sunsets and the lake views. For those who like their fun less strenuous - - an evening sunset cocktail at one of the outside cafes or on the porch of the Lakeside Inn is the thing.

Its proximity to the Ocala National Forest makes Mount Dora the ideal stop for dinner after a day in the parks. For lunch or dinner visit one of the sidewalk cafes or restaurants or enjoy an English High Tea at one of the tea rooms.

When you want to linger longer. There are some cosy bed and breakfasts where you can nest for the night -- or longer -- plus the historic Lakeside Inn in the heart of Mt. Dora a day in the parks.

There is plenty of cultural entertainment year round: Mount Dora enjoys plays at the IceHouse Theatre, concerts and recitals by international artists at the Mount Dora Festival of Music & Literature, gallery openings, and on-going exhibitions at the Mount Dora Center for the Arts. There is always something to do in Mount Dora. Below the festival calendar for 2004/2005:

Benniger's Antique Extravaganza
Dates: (Third weekend of January, February and November)
An antique lover's dream! This event held at Rennigers Twin Markets, is one of the largest gatherings of antique dealers in the south with over 1500 dealers attending. Antique Fairs held third weekend of each month.
Phone: (352) 383-8393

Arts Festival
Dates: February 5-6, 2005
This nationally ranked fine arts festival attracts 300 artists from all over the world. The fine arts are displayed throughout the downtown village attracting thousands of visitors.
Phone: (352) 383-0880

Antique Boat Festival
Dates: March 17-20, 2005
Over 150 antique, classic and historic boats are on display at the southeast's largest event of this type.

Annual Downtown Antique Fair
Dates: March 2005
Over 150 vendors display treasures on the downtown streets of Mount Dora.
Phone: (352) 735-1191

Festival of Music & Literature
Dates: April 3-10, 2005
Presenting outstanding artistic programs in music, literature and other genres including jazz and concerts, literary events, brownbag literary lunches, cafe concerts, solo musical performances by Young Artists Competition, poetry readings, writers contest, and more.
Phone: (352) 385-1010

Festival of Exotic Cars
Dates: April 23 &24, 2005
Held on the downtown streets of Mount Dora, this event features over 150 rare and exotic cars, including Aston Martin, Ferrari, Lamborghini, Maserati, Lotus, Jaguar, Porsche, Bentley and Rolls Royce.
Phone: (352) 383-1181

Taste of Mount Dora
Dates: August 29
A spectacular evening of culinary delights prepared by Mount Dora’s finest restaurants. Tickets are limited and are $25 in advance and $30 at the door.
Phone: (352) 383-2165

Jewels & Junque Sale
Dates: March 27
A fundraiser for the Ice House Theatre.
Phone: (352) 383-8808

Bicycle Festival
Dates: October 8, 9, & 10, 2004
Attracting 1500 cyclists, this is Florida's oldest and largest bicycling event! With rides of varying lengths skill levels, cyclists of all ages come and see why Lake County is recognized as one of the best places in the world to ride (Bicycling Magazine, March 1998)
Phone: (352) 383-2165

Craft Fair
Dates: October 23 & 24, 2004
Sponsored by the Downtown Village Merchants Association, this nationally ranked juried event continues to attract over 250,000 visitors and over 350 of the best crafters in the country.
Phone: (352) 735-1191

Plant & Garden Fair
Dates: November 6 & 7, 2004 (First weekend in November)
Over 10,000 rare and exotic plants plus garden accessories. Displayed lakefront at Simpson's Cove downtown.
Phone: (352)357-4116

Light Up Mount Dora
Dates: November 28, 2004 (Sunday after Thanksgiving)
Join us in lighting Donnelly Park and Downtown Mount Dora with close to 2 million sparkling lights! Wonderful Holiday Season Entertainment and festivities.

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Page added on: 30 August 2004
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