5 Places You’ve Probably Never Been to in Houston, TX

Houston is an exceptional town known for its friendly atmosphere and forward-thinking culture. Many people flock to Houston annually for vacation, entertainment, and an escape from their daily routines. However, if you’re from Houston, or just want an authentic experience when visiting, the typical tourist attractions might not be ideal for you. To truly experience Houston, it is best to know some fun locations that aren’t often advertised. Read on to learn about our suggestions for the top five places you’ve probably never been to in Houston. 

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Off the Beaten Path in Sarasota, Florida

Florida is a beautiful place to live and visit. There is a slew of wonderful tourist attractions and places to entertain yourself, whether you are a native Floridian or just passing through. However, sometimes it is refreshing to go somewhere new, somewhere a little quieter, and somewhere that truly represents Florida. Certain hidden gems in Sarasota represent the peace and beauty that few tourist locations can. Read on to learn about our top five attractions that are off the beaten path in Sarasota, Florida. 

The Marine Discovery Center and New Smyrna Beach

White Egret walking through ocean surf
Image via Flickr by j van cise photos | Licensed by CC BY 2.0

If you want to have an experience to remember, visit the Marine Discovery Center and learn all about New Smyrna Beach. This Florida beach is home to the most biologically diverse estuary in North America. The Marine Discovery Center offers several programs for children and adults to learn. Many programs provide a hands-on learning experience for participants with the bonus opportunity to get up close with marine life. With over 4,000 species across the 146-mile section of Florida’s east coast, you’ll experience something new with each visit. 

Visitors of the Marine Discovery Center can choose to take an ecotour by boat, kayak, or on foot. Ecotour guests get a guided and inside look of the Indian River Lagoon and learn all about the wildlife in the area, including birds like osprey, pelicans, ibis, herons, roseate spoonbills and bald eagles. At New Smyrna Beach you’ll often catch dolphins in the wild, and see them swimming along your boat as you explore the waters. Locals love to visit the sandy beaches, shop the boutiques in the town, and get away from the busy Florida tourist scene. 

The Marine Discovery Center is at 520 Barracuda Blvd., New Smyrna Beach. The center’s hours are Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Saturday and Sunday from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. For information about the center’s camps, ecotour prices, or to reserve your own guided tour, call 386-428-2828.

The Sarasota Classic Car Museum

The Sarasota Classic Car Museum is a car enthusiast’s dream! It is recognized as the nation’s second-oldest continuously operating antique car museum. Escape the typical Florida heat, walk through the museum, and step back in time as you marvel at one of man’s greatest creations: the automobile. A must-see exhibit at the museum is “The Art of Ferdinand Porsche and Enzo Ferrari.” The exhibition features classic automobiles that document the skills of two engineers, the creativity of car designers, and the history of two exceptional brands.

The Sarasota Classic Car Museum is ready to rev your engine at 5500 N. Tamiami Trail, directly across from the Ringling Museum of Art. Museum hours are from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Sunday. Adult general admission is $14.85, children 6 to 12 get in for a reduced rate of $9.25, while those 5 and under get in free. The museum offers discounts for senior citizens and military. For information, or to learn about special group rates, call 941-355-6228 or email [email protected]

Marie Selby Botanical Gardens

Treat your senses at the Marie Selby Botanical Gardens. While tourists crowd the Florida beach, spend the morning in peaceful meditation surrounded by a colorful and lush garden. This living museum provides 45 acres of bay front sanctuaries for plant life, serving to connect people with air plants from around the world and nature native to the area. Originally established by women, the Selby Gardens comprises a 15-acre downtown location and the 30-acre Historic Spanish Point campus in the Osprey area. 

The downtown location is the only botanical garden in the world dedicated to studying and displaying epiphytic orchids, bromeliads, gesneriads, ferns, and other tropical plants. If you can, catch the exhibit “Rainforest Masks of Costa Rica.” It highlights Costa Rica’s Boruca tribe and their artistry and features hundreds of hand-carved and painted balsa masks. At the Historic Spanish Point garden, catch “Seeing the Invisible.” This exhibition is an augmented reality display featuring the works of over a dozen international artists. For the ultimate experience, download the app before you go. 

Both garden campuses are open daily from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. For directions to each campus, or to learn about the garden’s new cruise-and-tour program, including prices, call 941-366-5731. 

Mote Marine Laboratory and Aquarium

The Mote Marine Laboratory and Aquarium is a fantastic destination for kids and the young-at-heart. This quiet aquarium offers several programs ranging from family experiences like kayaking at the Mote or animal encounters with some friendly turtles. Learn about sea turtles, then hang out with the animal ambassadors: Smiley, Booger, and Pearl. Just make sure you visit the website to preregister for one of these special programs. 

Mote Marine Laboratory and Aquarium is at 1600 Ken Thompson Parkway. The aquarium is open daily from 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. General admission ticket prices start at $24 for adults and $18 for youth. Go online to reserve your tickets in advance or call 941-388-4441. 

The Ringling Ca’D’Zan

The Ca’D’Zan, home of the circus royalty the Ringlings, is a 36,000-square-foot house that has been restored and is open to tour. Ornately decorated and designed in the Venetian Gothic style, this palatial building is an American architectural treasure and a tour you can’t miss. The museum is open daily from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. but the Ca’D’Zan capacity is limited so purchase tickets for $10 in advance online. For information, call 941-359-5700.So there you have it. MAXIM Hair Restoration has just shared with you our suggestions for the top five favorite attractions only locals know about. When you want to get away from the busy tourist scene, check out one of these locations. What do you think of our list of ideas? Did we miss your favorite “hidden gem” in Sarasota, Florida? If we did, let us know! Leave a message and we’ll be happy to check out what have you to share. Meanwhile, get a quick assessment online with Maxim Hair Restoration to understand your options. Then, visit our gallery to see for yourself!

How Many Hair Grafts Do I Need?

Hair transplant surgery has come a long way since the technology’s first development. The specialists at MAXIM Hair Restoration are each trained in the most advanced hair transplant technologies and procedures. We offer two of these specialized procedures, follicular unit transplantation and follicular unit extraction. How many grafts you’ll need depends on the area needing to be covered and the donor area available. Our specialists can develop a plan to provide you with the best treatment options for your specific circumstance. Reach out to the providers at MAXIM Hair Restoration today to schedule your complimentary consultation.

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3 Best Hoagies in New Jersey

When you’re craving the best hoagie sandwich in New Jersey,  you’re in luck. These tasty sandwiches filled with meat, cheese, vegetables, and flavorings can satisfy the deepest of hunger. Check out this list we made of the three best places to get hoagies around Jersey.

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6 Best Hidden Beaches in Sarasota, FL

In Sarasota, Florida, you can find plenty of beautiful, relaxing beaches, and some of them are tucked away from the hustle and bustle of the rest of the world. Let’s take a look at what each of these great beaches has to offer.

Longboat Key

At Longboat Key, you won’t find many tourists. It’s about 20 minutes away from Sarasota, and its delicate white sand and crystal clear water make it ideal for relaxing peacefully. Local wildlife roams the area, and bird-watchers, fishing fans, dolphin enthusiasts, and aquatic scientists all love Longboat Key. 

Image via Flickr by chitowngal66_tx | Licensed by CC BY 2.0

Parking in the area is limited, so you should show up early or late to find a good spot. When you visit in the morning or late afternoon, you can also enjoy a magnificent sunrise or sunset. People who enjoy collecting seashells will adore this string of beaches. Thanks to the wide range of nearby wildlife, an incredible variety of shells wash ashore. Some Longboat Key beaches have lifeguards, but you won’t find most other amenities. 

Hook Spit and Greer Island 

This pair of islands is at the northern end of Longboat Key, and they’re perfect for shaded relaxation, boat watching, and fishing. Hook Spit and Greer Island are right next to a busy boating lane, but they’re always headed for nearby ports or marinas, so none will bother you where you rest. The pine trees here sway in relaxing breezes, and the whole area feels like a remote tropical paradise. The trees are spaced just right for hammocks, and campfires are allowed as long as you use driftwood or fallen wood. 

Shark watchers enjoy this place because food and fishing waste from the boat traffic nearby attracts them. Residents have reported seeing some sharks as large as 10 feet long. If you take a boat out from one of the piers here, avoid swimming or interacting directly with the sharks. People often call Greer Island Beer Can Island. Both of these places have beautiful scenery that’s perfect for photographs. If you don’t have a boat, you can walk across a bridge from Longboat Key to get there. 

Turtle Beach 

Swimmers and amateur surfers love Turtle Beach for its mild waves, and you can collect fistfuls of sand dollars scattered all over the beach. It’s also an excellent place for fishing and canoeing or kayaking. This beach is near Siesta Key, a popular spot, but nonresidents rarely visit. Bathrooms, showers, a playground, picnic areas, a volleyball court, grills, and rinsing stations are available. 

Pop-up vendors often offer drinks and food, so you won’t have to go far to sate your hunger or satisfy your thirst. It’s about 20 minutes away from Sarasota, and people call it Turtle Beach because it’s a sea turtle nesting place. Visitors can watch the turtles, but you shouldn’t disturb them. You can often see manta rays as well. 

There are several comfortable cottages nearby, making this place perfect for a secluded romantic getaway. The nearby sandbar protects this area from riptides, and the water is shallow for a good distance. However, you shouldn’t swim beyond the sandbar because you could encounter lots of boat traffic and waves. 

Anna Maria Beach 

This beach has beautiful white quartz sand that doesn’t absorb lots of heat. That means it’s a great spot to visit in the afternoon, when other options may be too hot. However, you’ll still be more comfortable with a beach umbrella, some sunscreen, and some water. Anna Maria Beach has a good-sized parking lot, regularly cleaned bathrooms, and lifeguards. The area just next to the access road can sometimes be pretty crowded, but a large stretch of the beach a bit farther away is ideal for isolated relaxation. 

The sunrises and sunsets here are usually very beautiful, and not many boats or ships in the area will obstruct your view. Animal lovers should check out Manatee Beach, a segment of Anna Maria Beach. It’s a great place for spotting those docile, friendly sea creatures. There are many restaurants and shops nearby, so if you want to head to a more remote beach for part of a date or an entertaining family gathering, Anna Maria Beach is the option for you. 

Manasota Scrub Preserve 

This is the largest beach area on our list, and it covers 145 acres. It has plenty of isolated spots where you can relax or get some exercise. A breathtaking range of birds, turtles, fish, and other animals call the Manasota Scrub Preserve home, so it’s a great destination for people who love the natural world. While the coast isn’t part of the preserve, it’s nearby. There are also a few ponds. 

Oak, palm, and pine trees are everywhere, and during spring, the preserve is covered with beautiful, fragrant wildflowers. Some of the wetland areas aren’t open to visitors, so keep an eye out for warning signs. Full picnic facilities, a few hiking and biking trails, and a pet-friendly park are all available. Some of the trails are paved, but unpaved trails may be flooded after storms. 

South Venice Lemon Bay Preserve 

South Venice Lemon Bay Preserve is near a suburban area, and it doesn’t get a lot of visitors. It’s about 45 minutes away from Sarasota, and you can spot plenty of wildlife in the area, including bald eagles, gopher tortoises, river otters, Florida scrub jays, and more. You can explore more than 8 miles of hiking trails and 1.7 miles of shoreline, and the preserve covers 222 acres. 

There’s a butterfly garden, a black mangrove forest, and a canoe or kayak launch. At nearby Lemon Bay Park, you and your kids can take classes about nature and go on guided tours. Dogs are allowed, and you can visit from 6 a.m. to sunset. 

These are only some of the most secluded beaches in the Sarasota area. If we missed one of your favorite places to relax, contact us at Maxim Hair Restoration and let us know where you like to relax. We can also help you with a FUE hair transplant or non-surgical hair restoration services  for men and women to shield you from the sun while you enjoy the beach.

Entertainment and Events in Fort Worth, TX

When you live in a community like Fort Worth, Texas, you’ll find plenty of places to go and things to do. Throughout the year, Fort Worth offers dynamic forms of entertainment that will delight and inspire you. Whether you love listening to music, watching live rodeo action, or witnessing the thrills of the racetrack, you’ll find these offerings and more in the Fort Worth community. Explore the following top picks for entertainment in Fort Worth below.

Attend a Live Musical Performance

Person playing cello
Image via Unsplash by jessonmat

When you have the opportunity to attend a live music performance in Fort Worth, you’ll appreciate the city’s diverse venues that lend the perfect ambiance to any musical event you choose.

Nancy Lee and Perry R. Bass Performance Hall

The Nancy Lee and Perry R. Bass Performance Hall is a state-of-the-art facility for entertainment of all types. Built in 1998 in Fort Worth’s Sundance Square, the hall plays host to performances by the Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra, Fort Worth Opera, Texas Ballet Theater, and the Cliburn.

The 2021-2022 Broadway at the Bass season brings some of Broadway’s hits to Fort Worth. The 2021-2022 season of Broadway at the Bass features “Dear Evan Hansen,” “Mean Girls,” “Jesus Christ Superstar,” and “Oklahoma!”

Location: 525 Commerce St.

Telephone: 817-212-4300 (administrative office), 817-212-4325 (concierge), 817-212-4280 (patron services), 817-212-4450 (season tickets)

Magnolia Motor Lounge

What was once a garage is now one of Fort Worth’s most recognizable live music venues. From alternative rock hits to Americana classics, the Magnolia Motor Lounge brings local, regional, and national performing artists to the stage for performances that pack the house.

When you come for the music, be sure to bring your appetite with you. Magnolia Motor Lounge offers various tacos, burgers, fries, and sides. Menu specialties include the El Camino burger with grilled jalapeno peppers and onions and a slathering of spicy Magnolia sauce.

Location: 3005 Morton St.

Telephone: 817-332-3344

Panther Island Pavilion

Panther Island Pavilion offers the only waterfront stage venue in Texas. Covering an area of about 40 acres, Panther Island Pavilion is the place to be for music and parties in Fort Worth.

Panther Island Pavilion’s Rockin’ the River presents free public concerts featuring established and up-and-coming artists from the Fort Worth area and beyond during the summer months. Reserve a paddleboard, kayak, or canoe and go out onto the water to listen to the music. 

Location: 395 Purcey St.

Rev Your Engines at the Texas Motor Speedway

Car in shop
Image via Unsplash by mcgroom

Even if you’re not from Fort Worth, you likely are familiar with the name Texas Motor Speedway. With 1.5 miles of track and 24-degree turns, Texas Motor Speedway offers spectators plenty of chills and thrills as they witness pure adrenaline on wheels.

Texas Motor Speedway hosts the AA Texas 500 and the Duck Commander 500, two NASCAR Sprint Cup race experiences. The 2022 racing season will feature three prominent race weekends:

  • March 19-20: NTTIndyCar Series Weekend.
  • May 20-22: NASCAR All-Star Race Tripleheader Weekend.
  • Sept. 24-25: NASCAR Playoffs Doubleheader Weekend.

Fans may purchase season tickets or create a custom ticket package based on the events they’d like to attend. VIP club benefits, infield access, and premium camping and parking are among the upgrades guests can request upon purchasing their tickets.

Location: 3545 Lone Star Circle

Telephone: 817-215-8500

Take a Ride on the Cowtown Cycle Party

You can’t visit Fort Worth and leave without going for a ride on the Cowtown Cycle Party. You and a group of friends can pedal your way to the attractions in downtown Fort Worth on this foot-powered tour wagon that you’ve likely not seen anywhere else but in Fort Worth.

The tour on the Cowtown Cycle Party lasts about two hours, but riders determine the tour routes. The tour wagon can accommodate up to 16 guests, and a driver helps direct every excursion. Full bike tours are available Monday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. and Sunday from noon to 9:30 p.m. Reserve your tour date and time on the Cowtown Cycle Party website.

All passengers must be ages 18 or older. Individuals 21 and older may bring alcohol with them (no glass bottles or hard liquor).

Location: 129 W. Leuda (near Southside of Fort Worth, one block west of South Main Street, and across the street from the Rahr & Sons Brewery)

Telephone: 682-422-9253

Witness a Live Rodeo

Rodeo Rider
Image via Unsplash by gillesrollandmonnet

You haven’t experienced Fort Worth at its finest until you’ve experienced a rodeo. The Cowtown Coliseum is your place to go to witness rodeo action each Friday and Saturday evening with the Stockyards Championship Rodeo. Bronco riding, calf roping, barrel racing, bull riding, and more provide heart-pounding entertainment for rodeo fans young and old. Watch as amateur and professional cowboys and cowgirls compete in some of the fiercest competition on four legs that you’ll experience, with competitors from Texas, Oklahoma, Colorado, New Mexico, Wyoming, and beyond.

In addition to the weekly Stockyards Championship Rodeo, Cowtown Coliseum also hosts Bullfest, the six-day, two-weekend 2021 Ultimate Bullfighting (UBF) World Finals. Witness some of the world’s top freestyle bullfighters compete for cash prizes and the title UBF World Champion.

Purchase tickets online or by telephone. Ticket options include VIP and three tiers of reserved seating options with various amenities provided with purchase. 

Fun fact: Did you know that Cowtown Coliseum was the first North American indoor rodeo arena to be built in the early part of the 20th century? The coliseum cost approximately $250,000 to construct in 1908. Today’s equivalent costs would be approximately $6.2 million, plus labor.

5 Great Biking Trails near Sarasota, FL

Sometimes all you need is a bike ride out in the sun to reenergize, disconnect from busy day-to-day living, and reset your mind. Being out in nature is a healing experience, and the exercise bike riding provides can help you reduce stress levels, maintain weight, and stay healthy. When you know quality bike trails to pedal across, planning for your ride is fast, fun, and easy. Whether you live in Sarasota or you’re just passing through, be prepared by having a list of quality bike trails. Read on to learn about five great biking trails near Sarasota, Florida. 

Robinson Preserve

6519377005_63594caefc.jpg
Image via Flickr by psyberarti | Licensed by CC BY 2.0

For a picturesque experience sure to take your breath away, head down to Robinson Preserve. Located in Bradenton, the preserve comprises 682 acres of protected mangrove, tidal marsh, and agricultural lands that have transformed into a coastal wetland habitat. The Robinson Preserve ride keeps you close to the beautiful and serene waters. You can take in the smell of fresh air, listen to the soothing sounds of water flowing, and clear your thoughts. 

The paved trail is ideal for all levels of riders, from novice to experienced. Because you’ll be sharing the trail with pedestrians, children, dogs, and other riders, don’t plan to go too fast. The ride on this trail is all about the view, so take it slowly. Pedal your way through the mangroves, and enjoy the Tampa Bay horizon. If you want to let your legs rest, stretch your muscles, and take a breather, pause at one of the many benches and shaded areas along the path. 

The trail is host to about a dozen bridges. You’ll enjoy the rhythmic sound as you ride across each one. Go during sunset to see the Florida sky aglow, but be sure to take bug spray to protect yourself against flying insects. 

The trail has a south entrance at 9th Avenue NW that features a 1.5-mile rubberized pedestrian-only track. If you’re bringing your bike, use the north entrance at 1704 99th St. NW. Robinson Preserve is open 365 days a year, from sunrise to sunset. Refer to the trail map to see complete routes. For information, call 941-748-4501.

Myakka River State Park

Myakka River State Park offers a trail that’s ideal for beginner and intermediate cyclists. Park at the south entrance, where you can hop right on your bike and begin your journey through the lovely landscape. A paved road runs through the park where palms and live oaks create a relaxing atmosphere for visitors. Bicyclists often see area wildlife such as deer, turtles, and raccoons. This park lets you enjoy Florida at its best. The 14-mile loop is great to ride with family. Bring the kids, and pack a picnic for a full day out in the Florida sun. 

Mayakka River State Park sits at 13208 State Road 72, right here in Sarasota. Parking is $6 per vehicle, and the park is open from 8 a.m. until sunset 365 days a year. For information, call 941-361-6511. 

Lido Key Beach

Avoid the busy automobile traffic when you ride your bike straight from Lido Beach to north Sarasota. If you start your route at New College of Florida, you can take Bay Shore Road for 2 scenic miles through one of Sarasota’s older neighborhoods. Trees line the streets along this peaceful stretch. Continue past Ringling College, turn right at Cocoanut Avenue, and you’ll find yourself at the bay front. At John Ringling Causeway, you’ll find a wide lane for bikers. 

Before you head down the causeway, stop at its summit for a view of the city you can’t find elsewhere. Walk your bike along the shoreline, and hunt for seashells. Lido Beach, at 400 Benjamin Franklin Dr., is open from 5 a.m. to 11 p.m. year-round. For information, call 941-861-5000.

Venetian Waterway Trail

The Venetian Waterway Trail features 5 miles of paved bicycle or walking trails on either side of the Intracoastal Waterway. It connects downtown Venice to the Venetian Waterway and the Legacy Trail to the Historic Venice Train Depot. The trail ends at the Venice Avenue Bridge. While riding, you might glimpse some of the area’s wildlife, including scrub jays, alligators, and bobcats. 

The trail has a few breaks in it, so be cautious when riding. When you need to rest, you’ll find several picnic areas, restrooms, and observation areas along the way. If you take your furry friend along for the ride, take advantage of the dog cleanup and water stations. 

The Venetian Waterway Park is at 303 E. Venice Ave. It’s open from 6 a.m. to 8 p.m. year-round. For more information, call 941-486-2626.

Legacy Trail

The Legacy Trail is the one trail you can’t miss in Sarasota. It’s a historic bike trail that runs between Sarasota and Venice. Originally built along an old railway line, this 15-mile ride is perfect for dedicated cyclists or those looking for a scenic experience. Take your time on this route, and enjoy the safe asphalt-paved trail. You can start your ride from one of the nine trailheads along its length, all of which are dog-friendly. 

Legacy Trail, at Central Sarasota Parkway, is open year-round from 6 a.m. to sunset. Parking is free. For information regarding the Surrey Ride Program, which supports visitors who might otherwise be unable to experience the Legacy Trail, call 941-486-2757.

So there you have it. MAXIM Hair Restoration has just shared with you our suggestions for the top five great biking trails near Sarasota, Florida. If you’re ready to head out for some cycling, consider one of these prime locations. What do you think of our list? Did we miss your favorite trail to ride? If we did, let us know! Leave us a message, and we’ll be happy to check out your ideas.

Meanwhile, consider us for your hair transplant needs. Learn the difference between a Follicular Unit Transplantation (FUT) and a Follicular Unit Extraction (FUE). Then get a quick assessment or visit our appointment calendar online to schedule your free consultation.