Vilano and North Beach lie between the Atlantic Ocean, the Tolomato River (or Intracoastal Waterway) and the St. Augustine Inlet. The fishing pier was originally a drawbridge that provided the only access to Vilano.
In 1995, a beautiful new bridge caused people to gasp when heading east toward Vilano. We gasped because of the panoramic view of the Atlantic Ocean in front of us. We still gasp when we cross to the east.
Vilano Beach has grown and developed, sometimes a bit faster than some would like. But there is a treasure here on Vilano that is worth preserving - no doubt about it.
After the new bridge routed traffic away from Vilano Road, the area fell to disrepair. In the early 2000s, a group of citizens decided not to let that happen.
In 2002, Vilano Beach became a Community Redevelopment Area (CRA) of St Johns County.
An application to the County detailed the need to preserve the history, the beauty and economic development of Vilano.
Today, Vilano remains a CRA within the St. Johns County footprint with a goal of balancing economic development with quality of life and historic preservation.
When we talk about Vilano and North Beach, we generally mean from the St. Augustine Inlet and Porpoise Point north to Sandcastle Lane.
The physical designation for the CRA is smaller - from Ferrol Road just north of Porpoise Point to Gardner Avenue at Surfside.
The Town Center is essentially the property, residences and business on the north and south sides of Vilano Road.
In 2003, Vilano Town Center became a certified Florida Main Street. Over the next several years, Vilano was "discovered" as a beautiful island community with a small beach vibe.
Vilano Beach Main Street Inc, (VBMS) a 501(c)(3) organization, was conceived to enhance, promote and preserve the historic character and economic vitality of the Vilano Beach Town Center by implementing the national Main Street program for the benefit of Vilano Beach businesses, residents and visitors.
Today, VBMS leads the efforts with the CRA and Florida Main Street to preserve the community for future generations to enjoy.
North Shores Improvement Association (NSIA) is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that was founded in 1939 to improve the quality of life in the beachside communities.
NSIA maintains a 4-acre Recreational Complex at 120 Meadow Avenue - in the Surfside neighborhood of Vilano/North Beach.
NSIA supports the arts, fitness and has conference facilities for rent by members of the community.
Each April, NSIA sponsors the Vilano Beach Run with 5k and 10k runs - perfect for the whole family.
Water is ALL around Vilano and North Beach, from the Atlantic Ocean, to the Tolomato River (aka the Intracoastal) and the St. Augustine Inlet.
St. Johns County maintains beach access and multiple boat ramps through the Parks and Recreation Department.
Jet ski and the Pro-Am Skimboard competitions are held each year