Without a doubt this is the best time of the year in Destin. Temps are down slightly, traffic is not a problem, the Gulf of Mexico is warm and the locals are out and enjoying all that Destin has to offer.
Friday evening Sunshine Cindy and I went to Landshark Pizza for a bite to eat and to hang out for a while. Julie joined us for a nice relaxing evening. We were surprised at some heavy traffic. We think there might be some “fall breaks” taking place as there were a few more tourist than usual for this time of the year plus a bunch of limo’s going up and down Hwy 98. Jason and Paige were taking care of us. Pops was there and Landshark filled up pretty good. I have been getting a small pizza with fresh jalapeno’s on it that is to die for. The jalapeno’s gives it just the right amount of heat for me!
Saturday the Parrot Heads had plans to go out to Crab Island on the Sun Venture. We had about 45 people sign up. We woke up Saturday morning to thunder and lightning and heavy rain. It did not look good as we were supposed to head out at 11 am. It looked like it might clear up a little about noon so the start time was pushed back to 1 pm. Surprisingly the weather did clear and we ended up having a fun time at Crab Island. There were only handful of boats out there so we almost had the entire area to ourselves.
We had several folks bring their own boats out there. Kenny and Becki kayaked over too so we had a big group. The tide was coming in so the water was crystal clear. There were a few Moon Jelly Fish but nothing too bad. It was a typical Crab Island kind of afternoon. On the ride back to the dock we went to East Pass. There were dolphins playing and jumping. They were swimming in our wake and have a blast showing off for us.
As we got back into the harbor we passed a guy on a catamaran who was struggling to get back to shore. The captain and mate maneuvered our boat to push him to shore, then the mate got off to help secure the catamaran on the shore. That was a perfect example of boaters taking care of boaters! When we got back to the dock a group of us headed to Duck Duck for some cold drinks. No one was in the place so the bartender was happy to see us! It was the perfect end to a fun day that didn’t look like it would happen.
Sunday Funday had us at Tailfins to watch some football. A big crowd of folks were there to watch the various games. We met Donny and some of his friends to watch the Browns/Ravens game. A big group sat at the table right next to us watch the Bengals/Steelers game. Tony and Amy stopped in with some friends to watch the Browns game too. Amy is from outside Cleveland and their friends are from Cleveland so we had a mini cheering section. The Browns lost but at least they played a good game. They are trending in the right direction.
After the game we stopped in at Landshark for a while. It was not too busy but folks were starting to come in for the Packers game that was coming on later. We ran into Tony and Amy and their friends there too. Then Sami and Barry and some friends came in. Finally Judi and Richard came in with some friends too. It was a nice ending for Sunday Funday. When we got home we took Chaos out for a walk and we got ready for the upcoming work week.
A lot has been happening around town recently. The new breakfast, brunch and lunch place called The First Watch is open next to Publix in Destin. It looks like a nice place. We will be trying it soon. Also in Destin at Fudpuckers their new late night bar called “The Down Under” is open. This place opens about 10 pm and goes till 4 am. Definitely a place for the younger folks. In Ft. Walton Beach “The Spot” is open in the old Staff’s building. This is a jazz club. It looks like they have done a lot of work to the building. Staff’s was in business for close to 100 years so it is a historic location. We will have to go check it out.
Down on Okaloosa Island “The Gulf Okaloosa” is scheduled to open at the end of this month. This is a big place built on the bay back by the strip clubs. Their claim to fame is they use shipping containers for their building. It looks like a great place from the pictures I have seen. Yep, another new place for us to check out. Back in Destin Funky’s Blues Shack is moving from Baytowne and will be opening in the old Chili’s location near the Commons in January or February. And last but not least the 5 star resort, “The Henderson” is scheduled to open November 18th.
Over the past several months there has been a public spat going on between the owners of Tops burgers and their landlord. Tops is a greasy spoon type of burger that folks just love. They have been in Destin for several years just down from the Commons. They got an eviction notice from their landlord in the Summer and they had to close. Well, the landlord then opened a greasy burger joint called “Pops” that looked and felt just like “Tops.” That didn’t go over well. A war of words ensued. People boycotted Pops. Then last week it was announced they kissed and made up and Tops will be back in business at their old location. Go figure!
I want to give a shout out to Eastern Shipbuilders of Panama City. Last week they won a $10.5 billion contract to build Coast Guard Cutters. That was a great win for Eastern and Panama City as they beat out some big names. This will be a big boost to the economy of Panama City. Congratulations!
It looks like it is going to be another great week in Destin. See ya next Monday with a full report on the fun and games!!!