First Island Treasures Float of 2009 Discovered

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"Island Treasures on Jekyll Island" is a unique treasure hunting experience on Georgia's most popular public beach. The treasures are hand-crafted glass floats, called Island Treasures. Over 200 of these beautiful, unique floats are placed on the beach during January and February for visitors to find. The first float was found by two lucky beachcombing guests from Ponte Vedra Beach, FL.

The first float finder of Jekyll Island's 2009 Island Treasure promotion is Eric and Deborah Stevens from Ponte Vedra Beach, FL. Staying at the Jekyll Island Club Hotel, the couple read about Island Treasures in Jekyll Island's Beachscape Newsletter.

"Island Treasures on Jekyll Island" is a unique treasure hunting experience on Georgia's most popular public beach. The treasures are hand-crafted glass floats, called Island Treasures. The glass floats have been sought after by Jekyll Island guests since 2002. Each is unique and stamped with the year to be a collector's item for the lucky beachcomber who finds one.

Island Treasures mimic glass floats once used on the fishing nets of fishermen in the early 1900s. The floats would sometimes break loose and wash ashore for lucky beachcombers to find and keep. Collecting these glass floats became a hobby in the 1950's, declined as commercial fishing moved to plastic and Styrofoam floats. Glass fishing floats became rarer and are highly sought after and very valuable today.

During January and February, the Jekyll Island Authority recreates this hunt-and-find experience is recreated. The glass float treasures are the works of commissioned artists from across the country. "Beach Buddies" hide them along the shore line every day for lucky visitors to find and keep. Treasure finders can register their Island Treasure at the Jekyll Island Visitor Information Center to receive a bio on the artist and a certificate of authenticity. The Jekyll Island Visitor Information Center has Island Treasure floats and an array of the other colorful glass creations for purchase in-store or online at http://www.jekyllisland.com/islandtreasures.

Since the promotion began six years ago, over 1,000 glass floats have been found by guests from across the U.S., Canada and England. Jekyll Island floats are collector's items and can be occasionally found on auction sites like eBay.

Those who are unable to visit Jekyll Island can participate in a virtual treasure hunt on http://www.jekyllisland.com. Search the website for small, hidden Island Treasure pictures. The first person to click on one will win an actual Island Treasure that will be shipped to them.

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Beth Burnsed
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