This past week I was fortunate enough to have my great friend Thomas Thomas III (yes, that's his real name) come and visit for the weekend and one of the things we did while he was down here was explore St. Augustine for the day. If you have ever been there you know that seeing the Bridge of Lions is a must on your list because it is one of St. Augustine's most important and famous landmarks (just take a look at those photos!). The existing bridge was first constructed between 1925 and 1927 while the original wooden bridge was built in 1895. At the time it was the only bridge from St. Augustine to Anastasia Island and remains to this day to be the primary form of transport there. It is also a draw bridge that allows tall ships to travel in and out of the bay. In 1999, after 72 years of service, the bridge was deemed structurally unstable and plans for it's then uncertain future were discussed. Fortunately the right people spoke up and the decision was made to restore the bridge to its original glory! On May 26, 2006 the original bridge was closed, a temporary bridge put up, and restoration work begun. Four years and $80 million dollars later the "New" Bridge of Lions was once again open and the Lions restored to their rightful place guarding the bridge on the St. Augustine side. Which reminds me, the Bridge of Lions gets its name for two Carrara marble Lions that are copies of those found in the Loggia dei Lanzi in Florence, Italy. Lions are a symbol of the Spanish royal family, harkening back to St. Augustine's past as a Spanish colony. I love visiting this bridge and I do hope you can see it someday yourself. It is worth the trip, especially since Roads & Bridges magazine named the Bridge of Lions as fourth in the nation’s top 10 bridges for 2010! Anyway, thanks for reading folks and Keep it REAL!