This year some downtown businesses went all out for the annual Holiday Window Competition. Store entries included everything from traditional and elegant holiday themes to more creative endeavors including a tree made of flip flops, and upside down tree, illuminated canning jars, and a Christmas tree dress made of garland.
This year restaurants were given their own category and an opportunity to win bragging rights.
The public had four days to cast their ballot for their favorites. This year's winner for 'Most Creative Store Window' is Julianne's Coastal Cottage (135 E. 4th Ave.) for their Florida Christmas tree made of festive flip flops. The winner for "Best Use of Lights in a Store Window" is Home and Garden Treasures for its Frosty The Snowman window (430 N. Donnelly St). The restaurant with the winning decorations is Goblin Market (330 Dora Drawdy).
The decorations will be up throughout the season, so residents and visitors are encouraged to stroll by and enjoy.
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Most Creative Store Window: Julianne's Coastal Cottage (Above)
Best Use of Lights in a Store Window: Home & Garden Treasures (Above)
2015 MOUNT DORA
No place does Christmas like Mount Dora. For the next four weeks, the city becomes the 'North Pole of the South'.
Hardworking, creative elves have been working over-time in stores to create festive holiday windows for the enjoyment of shoppers, gawkers and visitors.
This weekend is the time to stroll through downtown, check out the decorations, then vote for your favorite holiday store window, as well as which restaurant has the best Holiday decorations.
Voting will be now through noon on Nov. 30.
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Visitors, residents and downtown employees are finally getting what they've asked for.
A new convenience store, Green Apple Market, opened in the rear of the Renaissance Building to provide customers with everything from sodas, snacks and toiletries to household goods and coffee. The small space will also provide copy, fax and lamination services.
The enthusiasatic owner, Susan Heuer, has experience working in convenience stores in the past and is excited about her new venture. The Caracas, Venezuela native was raised in Jacksonville and has lived in Lake County for the last several years.
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First, onlookers see something very big and cheerful coming their way. Then they catch a glimpse of the whimsical, random objects on the roof. Finally, they are happily engulfed by a trail of bubbles and lively tunes
As the The Fun Bus rambles through downtown streets, it has been turning heads and generating wide, curious smiles. Later this month the renovated, purple school bus will start operating and taking passengers on family-friendly tours of Mount Dora, Tavares and Eustis. The 90-minute excursion will share the area's sights, interesting history and fun local secrets. The lively bus will have a crew of three on each ride, including the driver and two comedic characters.
The 28-passenger, 1986 bus has been completely remodeled inside and out. The exterior is uniquely outfitted with an Everready Bunny hood ornament, a bubble machine and long pink eyelashes. The eclectic rooftop is loaded with a tandem bike, chicken coop, and even a kitchen sink. The cheerful interior features paisley upholstery, black and white checkered floors, festive lighting, and a larger flat-screen monitor.
The tour's impassioned crew of eight has worked hard to ensure passengers will leave with smiles. Their efforts are lead by Dave Hurley, a long-time Lake County businessman and enthusiastic resident. The goal of the endeavor is to connect the communities while providing passengers with a positive, fun activity without alcohol, said Lynn Wisniewsky, one of the instrumental crew members and owner of Under the Cherry Blossoms, a downtown Mount Dora boutique. Eventually, the bus will also be available for parties and as a shuttle.
The bus is also accessorized with a side-kick to add to the experience. It's a fully restored, 1963 Ford Galaxy police car adorned with a Mayberry police badge on the door.
Tickets for The Fun Bus be available online for $34.99. The tour will depart from the heart of Mount Dora's historic district and make a fifteen minute stop in downtown Eustis for passengers to explore. For more information call 352-735-5FUN.
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