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Biography

Charlie Carlson is the author of a dozen Florida books, big and small, and over 200 magazine and newspaper articles related to Florida’s past and as he puts it, downright weird folklore. He is a past president of the Seminole County Historical Society and currently serves on the Advisory Board for the City of Sanford Museum.

Known as Florida’s Master of the Weird by his readers and with good reason, Charlie has appeared in numerous television documentaries, including the Curse of the Blair Witch on the SciFi Channel and in Blockbuster’s rental video, Stix and Stones. He has been featured in several cable television and rental DVD documentaries related to unexplained phenomena plus a half dozen independent movies.

Miss Scarlet was originally known as Dakota, born in Sumter County, Florida, she is a seven year old female boxer. She spent the first year of life as a neglected pup chained to a tree in someone's backyard until rescued by two animal lovers. She soon joined the Carlson family and found her mentor, a large, brindle boxer named, Bubba James, from whom she learned her boxer etiquite. Because of her unique reddish coat she was renamed, "Scarlet."
Miss Scarlet is co-star in the Florida PBS special, "Weird Florida: Roads Less Traveled."

During the filming, Miss Scarlet rode nearly 1500 miles in the weirdmobile, most of it with her head stuck out the window and her chops flapping in the breeze. Miss Scarlet now resides in luxury with her own four cats and a squirrel in New Smyrna Beach, Florida.

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Florida is a state known for its sun, surf, and sand, where South Beach is famous and theme parks reign supreme. But hold you horses! Florida also has a darker, offbeat and downright weird side, steeped in ancient mysteries and roadside craziness.

“WEIRD FLORIDA: ROADS LESS TRAVELED” celebrates Florida’s eccentricities as we travel the highways, byways and even down a few back roads in search of the Sunshine State’s weirdest and wackiest places. From Key West to the Gulf of Mexico, we chronicle this sightseeing adventure with Charlie Carlson, Florida’s Master of the Weird and his traveling companion Miss Scarlet. Delve into the unknown world of weird where you’ll discover a different kind of tourist destination.

"Weird Florida: Roads Less Traveled" is co-produced by WLRN's Mia Laurenzo, a 26-year veteran of public television in Miami. Currently she is a writer, producer and on-air host. Her experiences include producing for a series, special events and historical documentaries.