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Christmas Expo 2019 in DAYTONA BEACH, FL!!!!

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YESSSSSSSSS I just saw this and I got so excited my kids want to go this year and we are literally an hour and a half away from it.

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Can count me in.  Thursday to Saturday?

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My parents live in Daytona so I am in.

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Can't wait to see everyone. It's nice to be able to put a face with a name. Working in Ocala puts me only an hour away from there now straight across 40. as it gets closer I'm sure I will have more questions I've never been to one but my kids are highly excited this year and so is the wife.

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I can't wait to see all you non-Floridians wilt in the FL summer heat :P

Being the food-meister of Expo (that's right.  I claimed the title) there are 2 things you need to eat while in FL.  One is Stone Crab, but that is going to be OUT OF SEASON when you get here.  

The other is Cuban food.  You should be able to find a Cuban Sandwich just about anywhere, but take the time to track one down from a REAL Cuban place.  The same holds true for a Medianoche.  You could head about 4-5 hours south to Miami, or you can have the TRUE experience 2 hours west in Tampa/Ybor City (for those that don't know Tampa and Miami have a friendly rivalry going on about the Cuban Sandwich.  BOTH are delicious!)

Want a sandwich that's not Cuban?  You want a Pub Sub.  Pub here does not mean bar, but Publix - the grocery store chain here in FL.  The Pub Sub was rated NUMBER 1 sandwich in the country! https://www.thrillist.com/eat/nation/florida-publix-deli-subs#

If you come over to the west side, you can do the 'Sunrise Sunset' FL tour - Get up early enough to watch the sunrise on the Atlantic, drive over to the west coast (where we have the BEST beaches.  FEH Daytona!), and watch the sunset over the Gulf of Mexico.  Tampa is also home to one of the best steakhouses in all of the USA- Bern's.

Orlando is only going to be about 1 hour west of there.  Since it's an international destination, you can find many different cuisines there.  But be warned:  it's tourist country which means a LOT of it is mediocre at best.  I've had more disappointing meals in Orlando than I have had anywhere else.  I occasionally find a gem, but they are few and far between.

Speaking of Orlando - if you are flying in to the Expo, check prices flying into there as well as the smaller airports on the coast.  Orlando is VERY  competitive (and HUUUUGE), so you may save a few dollars for an hour drive.  You can check other airports as well if you don't mind a little longer (2+ hour) drive. Tampa, Ft Lauderdale/Miami (Ft Lauderdale is usually cheaper than Miami), and Jacksonville.  

Speaking of Driving - FL doesn't have an out-of-the-ordinary number of toll roads for a state, BUT we DO like to place them around tourist areas (Like Orlando, Daytona, etc).  The tourist ones are usually pretty expensive too (we don't have an income tax, so we have to make money some how!)  Also, most of our toll roads are now cashless.  Be aware of the OUTRAGEOUS fees that are going to be charged by your car rental company for toll roads.  Unless stated, EZ-Pass does NOT work in FL (we are the south, we are backwards).   You'll need SunPass.  Consider purchasing one before getting here (the sticker is only $5 + tolls)

With the exception of the Panhandle and the outer keys (like Key West), you are within about a 4 hour drive to any of the major destinations in FL.  Key West is 7 hours, so you may want to spend the night there.  Miami is only 4, Everglades 4.5, West Palm/Ft Lauderdale 3, Clearwater 3, Tampa 2.5,  St. Augustine 1.

If you are an Amusement Park kind of person, obviously Orlando.  But don't forget Tampa has Busch Gardens.  And good food.  And me.  :P

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My parents live in Daytona and my brother lives in Tampa so I can pretty much lay my head anywhere. Keep in mind that it is Summer season so hotels and stuff fill up quickly.

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I was just telling my husband over the weekend that I need to attend a lighting convention so I can pick the brain of how some of you guys have your stuff set up and stored each year.  If only to figure out a way to make our set up more clean and our storage more organized.  When does registration open for the 2019 shindig in Daytona?

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31 minutes ago, Jaynee said:

I was just telling my husband over the weekend that I need to attend a lighting convention so I can pick the brain of how some of you guys have your stuff set up and stored each year.  If only to figure out a way to make our set up more clean and our storage more organized.  When does registration open for the 2019 shindig in Daytona?

My house has seven bedrooms with two being in the finished basement. I took those two bedrooms and lined the walls with the large metal racks from Home depot, 16 racks total. Each rack can hold 20 totes, four totes per shelf and five shelves per rack. I then fill and label each tote with all my Halloween and Christmas items. I also use the center of the rooms for larger items so it creates an island in the middle which we can walk around.

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One of my upstairs bedrooms is the Tarantula room, for the life of me I can't understand why nobody ever wants to sleep in there.  😁

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1 hour ago, Mr. P said:

My house has seven bedrooms with two being in the finished basement. I took those two bedrooms and lined the walls with the large metal racks from Home depot, 16 racks total. Each rack can hold 20 totes, four totes per shelf and five shelves per rack. I then fill and label each tote with all my Halloween and Christmas items. I also use the center of the rooms for larger items so it creates an island in the middle which we can walk around.

Sadly, I do not have a 7 bedroom house with a finished basement.  I don't even have a basement - we're on a slab.  We keep all our stuff in our storage shed, which is huge so we've got plenty of space.  But every year we battle with which cords to use where, although I do have my light show cords LABELED at least, which helps.  It's all the other cords that are a mess. *lol*

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On 11/11/2018 at 9:07 AM, dibblejr said:

Lots of good people, see y'all there.

JR

JR, my daughter, that came to the Alabama mini with me, and I will be coming to Expo. I procrastinated a good bit this year, which i knew I was likely to do, but we did get a small show up and running. Yay! I have plans to mookie than double it for next year. 

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That should say MORE than double. Mookie is the dog's name...

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I saw the other Expo post, so that reminded me I want to give a few more tips for FL.

1 - The greatest threat you are going to run into here are not gators or thunderstorms (they are #2) - It's the sun.  I AM SERIOUS.  Don't be a tourist, wear your sunscreen!  If you plan on being outside for longer than 5-10 minutes during daylight, PUT IT ON.  In 10 mins you WILL burn.  The UV index will be 11 in July (and no, that's not a Spinal Tap reference).  You are MUCH closer to the equator here than in most of the rest of the USA.  The rays are MUCH stronger.   We joke around here that we have to put sunscreen on to check the mailbox - but it's not that far from the truth! :)

Also remember that it takes about 20-30 minutes after applying sunscreen for it to come up to max protection so put it on BEFORE you go out.  Your sunscreen should be SPF30-SPF50 and be WIDE SPECTRUM (UV-A and UV-B).  Less SPF is NOT effective here, and more is a waste of money.  Re-apply every hour or two - more often if you sweat a lot and every 30 mins if you are in the water.

Not all clothes provide good sun protection.  Personally I apply over my entire body unless there are TWO layers (so everywhere except where the tighty-whities are :P).  It is possible to be burnt THROUGH you clothes.    Don't forget areas like your face (especially your nose) and your EARS.  If you are of advancing years and have less up top than you used to, make sure you get the bald spots too!

I reserve the right to point and laugh at anyone attending expo who looks like a crab.

2 - The second greatest threat is LIGHTNING.  It's going to rain pretty much EVERY DAY you are here, but not for a long period of time.  Here on the peninsula you should be able to set your watch by the times the storms run through.  In West Central FL (that's over here in Tampa/St Pete), it's between 4PM and 6PM (depending on how close to the coast you are).    If I remember correctly, the Orlando area is in the 2-3PM range.  I'm not sure what Daytona/etc will be, and south FL (Miami) is weird because it's 3 sides water.  In any event, the storms typically start in the center of the peninsula, and then move outwards towards the coasts.  

And when I say storms, I mean STORMS!  The rain can (and usually does) come down hard enough that you can not see across the street.  But unless you are driving (good luck) it's not the rain you need to watch out for:  it's the lighting that will kill you.

FL is the lightning capital of the USA (not the world, that's places in Africa).  And the worst part of FL for lighting is Lightning Alley which extends (you guessed it) from TAMPA through Titusville (which is near Daytona).  So not only are you in the lighting capital, you are in the worst part of it.   About 10 people a year die here from lightning strikes.

FL has on average 1,200,000 lightning strikes during the year.  That sounds high until you realize it is MUCH worse:  Most of those strikes occur June-September with the rest of the months much more calm.  Storms here can have up to 1000 strikes/hr - that's about 17 PER MINUTE - once every 3 to 4 seconds.  Did you know that most lightning comes out the BACK of the storm?  So many beach goers see the storm coming and (correctly) move to shelter.  the storm passes and they are back out on the sand.  The sky is blue, and the clouds are moving away.  ZOT!  The proverbial 'Bolt from the blue'.

Remember the simple rule:  if you can hear thunder you are close enough to be hit by lightning.

https://www.tripsavvy.com/lightning-is-serious-risk-in-florida-1513642

3 - Yes we have gators.  Yes they can kill you.  No you don't have to worry about them since you probably won't run into them (unless you go looking).  Just be aware that any body of water here CAN have a gator.  That means small retention ponds, springs, etc.  But you are more likely to be killed by what you don't see in those waters (Naegleria fowleri).

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7 hours ago, DevMike said:

 

1 - The greatest threat you are going to run into here are not gators or thunderstorms (they are #2) - It's the sun.  I AM SERIOUS.  Don't be a tourist, wear your sunscreen!  

2 - The second greatest threat is LIGHTNING. 

100% correct!!!!!! We go to the theme parks and I see it all the time. By 12pm people have beat red sunburn. Wear sunscreen! And keep it with you.  Thunderstorms are serious. Rule of thumb is if you can hear thunder even in the far distance SEEK SHELTER!  I'm over by Crystal River on the west coast of Florida and lightning gets crazy here just as much as anywhere in Florida. Even the theme parks will shut down certain rides or water parks if lightning is within 10 or 11 miles.

I totally forgot about this thread. My apologies for double posting. @DevMike is speaking the absolute truth and everyone should read all of what he added.  Can't wait to meet you all to finally put faces with the names of those I've interacted with. Of course I will have to get me and my 2 boys GriswoldStyle shirts so everybody knows who we are LOL

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Posted (edited)

Good Morning All,

I have several questions about the Classes that will be given this year.

1. From what I saw in the Expo web site, the classes are geared more to the beginner and could be more on S4 than S5, I'm NOT saying that I'm an expert but I made the switch to S5 and DONT want to sit thru the other versions, sorry.

2. Didn't get the cost per class or for the PRE 3 days any help

3. Does anyone have a finial list of classes yet, need to make up my mind if I should go, have a room already just don't know if it will be worth it?

4. What about the Texas Expo / Show will that happen this year is it any good, any info?

5. Who from LOR will be there?

6. Will most of my time be taken up with the expo or,  more of a party,  family vacation type of show or something in between?

Just a long flight from Denver and its going to be much hotter than at home, need to get my head on square so I can enjoy.

Thanks for any responses,

Jack

Edited by Jack
update my post

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                 OK,  just went to the Expo web site and it has been updated since I last took a  look.

I'm starting to understand a lot more,  it looks like the classes that I would be interested in would be during the 3 day show (S5 classes) and would be covered by the 3 Day Pass of $215.00

some of the other classes look interesting but first things first.

Someplace I read a post of a Texas show last October but now I'm not sure what I was looking at.

Sorry for asking silly questions above, any advice would still be helpful.

Thanks again,

Jack

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2 hours ago, Jack said:

                 OK,  just went to the Expo web site and it has been updated since I last took a  look.

I'm starting to understand a lot more,  it looks like the classes that I would be interested in would be during the 3 day show (S5 classes) and would be covered by the 3 Day Pass of $215.00

some of the other classes look interesting but first things first.

Someplace I read a post of a Texas show last October but now I'm not sure what I was looking at.

Sorry for asking silly questions above, any advice would still be helpful.

Thanks again,

Jack

The Expo travels around. The Expo was held in Mesquite TX last July.

JR

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Ok, so maybe move Gators up a notch...

 

Clearwater Police Department (@myclearwaterPD) Tweeted:
See you later, alligator 🐊 A scaly 11-foot-long gator broke into a Clearwater home overnight through some low windows in their kitchen. Clearwater Police officers and a trapper responded to the scene to capture and remove the gator. There were no injuries. https://t.co/jsOxRNfkEV https://twitter.com/myclearwaterPD/status/1134429910972346374?s=17

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18 minutes ago, DevMike said:

Ok, so maybe move Gators up a notch...

 

Clearwater Police Department (@myclearwaterPD) Tweeted:
See you later, alligator 🐊 A scaly 11-foot-long gator broke into a Clearwater home overnight through some low windows in their kitchen. Clearwater Police officers and a trapper responded to the scene to capture and remove the gator. There were no injuries. https://t.co/jsOxRNfkEV https://twitter.com/myclearwaterPD/status/1134429910972346374?s=17

Just right for a BBQ. Love gator bites, tastes like chicken

Unfortunately I had to cancel my class and cant be there. Next year.

JR

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Hey Dev are trying to scare people from coming to Florida see you at the Expo i can only come on Saturday have to work the other Days

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Truthfully, that's a new one on me - I don't ever remember a gator getting inside of a house.  They will break through a screen Lanai to get to a pool, but have never heard of through a window.

It is the height of gator mating season, so they do get a little more bold and territorial at this time of year (through the end of June).  Maybe a reflection?  

All I know is that one has been turned into a couple of purses, a pair of boots and several pounds of gator nuggets :P

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