I finally caught up with Joanne Stevens from Venice, FL who was our very first Mount Dora Play, Shop, Dine & Stay Sweepstakes winner. She gave me some details of her July visit to Mount Dora when she came with a best friend and her daughter for a girlfriend's get-a-way weekend.
Joanne has been to Mount Dora before and was delighted when she was randomly selected from thousands of entries as the very first winner of the Sweepstakes. She immediately booked her accommodations at her favorite "home away from home," the Mount Dora Cottages owned and operated by Jim & Ana Tuttle. Though her lodging portion of the winnings was just enough to cover a one night stay she decided to book another night in addition.
Joanne told me that she started her visit to Mount Dora with cocktails on the deck at Pisces Rising overlooking beautiful Lake Dora. She had dinner there and then went into town for some shopping before retiring for the evening.
Joanne dined at Chew Chew Express Sandwich Depot three times during her stay. She says it is always very good and she really appreciates the family style atmosphere provided by Mark & Tracey who own and operate this local favorite.
Day two of her trip was highlighted by a visit to Pure Aveda Salonspa where her group went for the "full treatment." Joanne indicated they would be returning for many more visits to Pure Aveda Salonspa!
They rounded out the day with some serious shopping at our many fabulous shops, cupcakes at Mount Dora Cupcakes on 5th Ave. and finally cocktails in the Viking Lounge located above the Frosty Mug Icelandic Restaurant.
Joanne wanted to do even more shopping but because she was the very first to visit Mount Dora with the contest winning "Dora Dollars," many of the merchants unfamiliar with the program turned her away. We have hopefully solved any of those problems for the future as the Sweepstakes expands into 2010.
Joanne ended by saying, "We had a wonderful time in Mount Dora. My best friend Charlene and I spent a girls weekend together. We met up with my daughter who just moved to Mount Dora from Texas. We shopped all the stores,and ate and ate and ate! I love staying at the Mt Dora Cottages, it's just like home. Jim and Ana are the best.
We had a blast, a lot of fun and laughs."
Register now for your chance to win the Mount Dora Play, Shop, Dine & Stay Sweepstakes.