Saturday, December 22, 2012

Saturday Fun: Day Trip to The Showcase of Citrus and a Monster Truck Eco-Tour Ride

Hello everyone! I hope you're having a wonderful weekend so far!:) Earlier today my husband and I took our boys on a day trip to the Showcase of Citrus in Lake County, Florida. We had such a wonderful time looking through the country store, sampling the fresh picked oranges, and even took a Monster Truck ride touring the property. The ride was especially fun, and the boys absolutely LOVED it, to say the least. :)

Descriptions from the Showcase of Citrus Website:

"Showcase of Citrus is owned by fourth-generation citrus grower John Arnold and his wife, Julie. It is family operated in every sense of the word. When you visit, you’ll see their four boys everywhere, from digging (their specialty) to working in the store to collecting eggs from our organically raised chickens. You may even hear them belting out Johnny Cash songs around a Saturday night bonfire at the Pickin' Shack, our bluegrass & classic rock friendly music stage located right here on the property. You’re welcome to join; it’s BYOB (Bring Your Own Banjo)."

 "Showcase of Citrus is located on Arnold Groves and Ranch, a 2,500 acre working citrus and cattle ranch.

Passionately committed to the wonders of locally grown citrus, we are also transitioning the land back to its natural steward, good ol’ Mother Nature herself.

Not yet certified, we do practice the organic way of life around. No pesticides, no herbicides, no exceptions. Not only does it make it a worry-free spot for you and your family, it also keeps things safe for the wildlife that inhabit our little corner of the earth.

That’s why you’ll see otters playing in the canal as you walk through the grove. Visitors have sworn the little guys will actually stop playing and pose for a photo or two. You’ll also spot Allie the Alligator sunbathing with a few friends. While our gators appear benign, remember these are not pets, admire their beauty from afar (and with a telephoto lens).

Also seen around these parts––Sandhill Cranes, Wild Scarlet Macaws, wild turkey, coyotes, raccoons and the beautiful––and rare––fox squirrel."

This is a Water Buffalo we saw on our Eco-tour.

(Here is the Monster Truck we road in for the Off-Road Eco-Tour)

"Monster Truck Eco-Tour? We know, it sounds like an oxymoron, but it’s the only thing like it this side of … anywhere!

Climb aboard our monster truck, equipped with air ride suspension; and travel through beautiful citrus groves, upland Palmetto, Oak and Pine Scrub habitat, cattle pastures and wooded swamps––the head waters to the Everglades Watershed. Bring a camera or two; you might glimpse some wildlife, like a real Florida gator, along the way."

 Our driver on the eco-tour was super friendly and very knowledgeable. We made several stops where he would tell us about the local wildlife, citrus trees, and the boys were even given a couple buckets of oranges to feed the cows and water buffaloes that decided to walk up to the Monster Truck during a couple of our stops. 

The Country Store is filled with locally grown sauces, pickles, jams and jellies; fresh eggs from the organically grown chickens, and fresh squeezed orange juice.

They also sell ice cream, hot dogs, bread, vintage sodas, apple cider, peach cider, boiled peanuts, and old-fashioned candies, to name just a handful.

This is just one wall of their homeade jams. They also have an entire area filled with samples of the jams, hot sauces, and delicious honey that is produced right on the property.

We came home with a gallon of Fresh Squeezed Orange Juice, a jar of homeade Apple Butter, a jar of Blueberry Jam, and a jar of Strawberry Jam...needless to say, every single one is absolutely delicious! :)

If you happen to live in the area, or are planning a trip to Central Florida, consider taking a little time to make a trip to  The Showcase of Citrus. It really is a relaxing, enjoyable, and fun time.  :)



  1. How fun is that! I have some friends who are in your area for the holidays, we are dog-sitting for them while they go to Disney and then stay on at a condo. I'll let them know by email about this place, they would love it!
    Thanks for sharing and have a great weekend.

    1. Hi Dani! I'm so sorry I am just responding to your comment now...not sure how I missed this! I hope your friends were able to visit the Showcase of Citrus. It really is a lot of fun! :)

  2. What a great day trip with the kids. I bet they loved riding in the monster truck. I wish I was near enough to take advantage of that honey on tap!

    1. Hi Desert Flower! My apologies to you as well, for my long delay in responding to your comment! The boys did enjoy the monster truck immensely! It was their favorite part of the trip, as a matter of fact. The honey is incredible. I can send you some if you like...just let me know! :)