Archive for the Island Enthusiasts Category

It was a Merry Christmas in Destin

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Sunshine Cindy and I hope all of our friends had a safe and joyous Christmas. In Destin the town filled up while the weather was nice and warm. It was a perfect holiday.

There was actually a Christmas miracle happen on Saturday. The Cleveland Browns won! Yes, they actually beat another team in the game of football! Sunshine Cindy and I watched the first half of the game at Hogs Breath then we went to Landshark Pizza to watch the second half.

Landshark was packed with Packer fans but a table opened up at the TV that had the Browns game on as we walked in. That should have told me a miracle was coming. As the game wound down the bar was getting into the game. As the last second ticked off the clock and the Chargers missed a field goal that would have tied it the bar erupted like they won the Super Bowl. Finally I had a chance to cheer! It felt great!

The rest of the weekend was spent with Sunshine Cindy’s family. We went to their house after the game for Christmas Eve and then again on Christmas day. Tiffany flew in from Atlanta so the whole gang was here. Even Chaos enjoyed running around the yard and going to the dock. It was a nice holiday celebration.

There was not much else going on during the week as Sunshine Cindy spent most of the week cooking. As I mentioned the town started to fill up but early in the week it was dead. I did have a scare driving home on Monday. I was on 98 and almost in front of Landshark Pizza when a homeless guy walked right out in front of me. It was dark and he was wearing dark clothes. It was lucky I could make him out with all the headlights coming towards me. I had to almost come to a dead stop to keep from running him over. I am glad the guy behind me also was alert and didn’t hit me!

Happy New Year to all of our friends from Destin! Be safe and have fun. We will see you again in 2017!

Destin Steve

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Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays from Destin

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The holiday season is in full swing in Destin. You can’t turn around without seeing a Santa or two! Sunshine Cindy and I went up to Niceville on Saturday to celebrate her Dad’s birthday. It was a nice day as we sat outside and gave her Dad a proper birthday celebration.

When we headed back to Destin we decided to stop at Hogs Breath for a while. We were sitting at the outside bar. Rikki was working and a good crowd was there. We were sitting by Bill who is a parrot head. We didn’t know Bill was 85 years old. He is always out and enjoying himself. Good for Bill.

We also got to talking to Robert and his wife. In the “it’s a small world” category we found out Robert was the person who originally was going to by the house we now live in. Sunshine Cindy got it when Robert backed out because of a fence that was going to be built. It was a new build and we have a lake right behind us. For safety purposes a fenced was going to be built. Robert was told it would be a solid 8 foot fence which would have blocked the view of the lake. So when he backed out Sunshine Cindy jumped in and they ended up putting in a small fence. That was wild talking to them about it.

Sunday Funday saw us at Charlie’s inside Crab Island Cantina to watch football. The Browns lost again. Nothing new there. Ken, Donny and Chad joined us. At least their team won. Brian, Julie, Alan and Jackie all showed up too. We had a fun time. Christmas carols were sang, jokes were told and everyone had a blast.

Saturday morning I took a bike ride. I rode over 9 miles. Come along for the ride.

I pulled out of our sub-division and rode up Commons Drive and then up to Hwy 98 at the roundabout by Home Depot. I crossed over 98 and headed east to Matthews Blvd. The new Henderson Resort is open. They are doing more building both north and south of the resort. It looks like some townhomes or something similar is going in. Now I turned east down Scenic 98 and headed towards the Crab Trap. The wind was hollowing and blowing right in my face so I cut into the Crystal Beach area and started to loop back.

Now I was heading west on 98. As I got to Restaurant Row I passed the new Home Suites hotel. They have also just opened. They actually built this place pretty fast. I stopped for a few minutes to enjoy the Gulf of Mexico watching the waves pound the shore. Some brave paddle boarders were out riding the waves. I crossed back over 98 at The Track and headed to Airport Road. I rode by Beach Liquor and went to Commons Drive.

I rode into the shopping center with Beals and then onto the Wal Mart center. There is still the big hole in the Beals center where Dick’s Sporting Goods was going to open. Last I heard the shopping center was sold and no one knew if Dick’s was still coming in. It sad because businesses were closed to make room for Dick’s and now they sit empty with For Lease signs on them. What a waste.

From there I headed back home. The entire trip took a little over an hour and I got a lot of fresh air and exercise!

Sunshine Cindy and I want to wish all of our Blog Friends a Merry Christmas. We hope Santa is good to you! See ya next Monday!

Destin Steve

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Christmas in Destin

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It was a festive holiday week in Destin and along the Emerald Coast. It was supposed to start on Monday with the Fort Walton Beach Christmas parade but rain and wind postponed the parade till Tuesday evening. A big crowd enjoyed the parade that night.

The city of Destin held it’s Christmas parade on Saturday. The parade started about 10:00 am and went till almost noon. Then on Sunday there was the lighted boat parade in the Destin harbor. A couple dozen boats got decorated and cruised up the harbor where a fireworks display ended the evening. Well, the fireworks almost ended the evening.

The fireworks are shot off from a barge in the East Pass. Somehow the fireworks started a fire in the parking lot at White Trash Beach. This is the parking lot at the southwest corner of the Destin bridge. Pictures show a big brush fire but the local fire departments were able to get it out. That’s the first time that has happened.

Sunshine Cindy and I took Chaos to the parade on Saturday. We went to Landshark Pizza to watch it. One of the first places we ever took Chaos last year was to the parade. She was barely 10 pounds. Today she is a big strong 60 pound plus bundle of energy. Chaos had a good time. Wayne, Loujean and several others were there to watch the parade and drink Bloody Mary’s. After the parade many Parrot Heads showed up to keep the party going. We ended up heading back home about 3 in the afternoon. Chaos was a tired puppy!

On Friday night the Parrot Heads had our monthly meeting at Landshark. BT provided the music and had everyone up and dancing. Elections for the 2017 board of directors was held. I am actually going to be on the board next year as the club secretary. An ugly sweater contest was held and a check to a church charity for $1000 was presented. For the year our club has donated about $12,000 to various charities.

We didn’t go to the boat parade on Sunday night but I did go to Charlie’s BBB Bar in the harbor to watch the Browns lose again in the afternoon. Josh was working the inside bar, Mike was outside and Carlos was wondering around too. Brian came and joined me as we watched the Browns try hard again but still fall short. Jose came by and told me to hang in there. He’s a 49er’s fan so he knows my pain! LOL 

When I left I saw Alan and Jackie sitting at the bar. I stopped and talked with them for a few minutes when the old GM of the Cantina, Judy came in. She moved to Louisiana early this year. I have not seen her since and it was nice talking with her for a few minutes.

I have been talking about how dry it had been in Destin until we got some rain last week. I looked and it was dryer than I had thought. We had NO rain in September and only .7” in October. That’s less than one inch in two months. But in the first seven days of November we had received 8.8” so we are back to normal around here.

The Destin Log reported last week the widening of Hwy. 98 will begin. They will be adding a lane in each direction from Airport Road east into Walton County. It will take several years to complete. Get ready for even worse traffic while they do this work but it should help in the end. 

The route of the Destin Christmas parade was right down 98. It started in the parking lot of Old Time Pottery at Main street. Then it was about 2 miles down to Stalhman Ave. at Whataburger. The west bound lanes were shut down and all traffic was directed onto the east bound side. The city and the sheriffs were very efficient in getting the route set up and then back to normal. There were thousands of folks lined up along the highway with the kids scooping up candy and beads.

In addition to Landshark Pizza having a viewing party there was also big crowds at Hogs Breath and Mama Sherry’s. The weather was good…cool but sunny and dry. And of course Santa came up at the end riding in the bucket of the high rise fire truck. It is a lot of fun living in a small town and see how everyone comes together for an event like this parade.

Less than two weeks till Christmas. I hope you are ready! See ya next week!!!

Destin Steve

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Tornado’s in Destin

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We have not had any rain in Destin in many weeks. For the last couple months we have only had a sprinkle here and there. All that changed last Wednesday. The same system that brought much needed rain to the Smokey Mountains also hit Destin with strong storms. The storms were coming in right off the Gulf of Mexico. There were waterspouts spotted in several locations along the coast.

Waterspouts are tornado’s on the water. One of those waterspouts came ashore in Mary Ester just a few blocks from my office. It caused some minor damage to some homes but no one was hurt. About the same time a bigger waterspout was in the gulf in Destin. It too came ashore but was in an area that was not inhabited. It made its way to the bay where it finally dissipated. All in all we got some much needed rain and no one got hurt.

Sunshine Cindy and I mostly stayed home and did some things around the house this past week with the exception of Friday when we headed to the harbor to meet up with Mike. We walked into Harry T’s about 3:30. Susan and Carlos were behind the bar. I recognized a co-worker who was sitting at the bar. We were chatting with Hotch when Alan and Jackie came in to join us. Not too much later Mike came in too. It was a good time as talked about some Parrot Head stuff.

As our friends left, Sunshine Cindy and I struck up a conversation with a guy who was sitting just down from me. He was a Marine who was in town on some training. He heard me say something about the Browns and he is a Steeler fan so we had to talk. He was a very interesting guy (even though he liked the Steelers…lol). Sunshine Cindy and I thanked him for his service to our country.

On the way home we decided to stop in at the American Legion. There were a lot of cars in the parking lot but the place was not too busy. Karoke was going on. Robin, John, Tony all were there. It was good catching up with them.

The rest of the weekend was spent at home. I walked Chaos each morning. She loves her walks. We watched some football but otherwise we were just doing some things that we had put off.

The Destin Log reported this week the reason the Funky Blues Shack and Graffiti’s closed was their lease was not renewed. They are reporting an AutoZone is supposed to go into that location. The owners of Funky Blues Shack are looking for another location to open back up.

Another building has been torn down in Destin. The building that was between Club Destin and Alvin’s Island is gone. The land is graded and it looks like something is going to be built there. I have not heard what it is but I am betting another strip center. The 692 strip centers we currently have in town are not enough. We shall see.

This coming weekend is the Destin Christmas Parade on Saturday and the Lighted Boat Parade in the harbor on Sunday. These are both fun events. Destin does know how to throw a party! We hope to see you at one or both events!!!

Destin Steve

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The Holiday Season is upon us…

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Another Thanksgiving has come and gone. Destin saw a big influx of tourist for the holiday. Heading home from work on Wednesday the traffic on 98 was heavy but moving.

Thanksgiving day saw Sunshine Cindy and I take Chaos to Cindy’s parent’s house for dinner. We had a nice dinner then spent time down at the dock. Chaos loved running in their big back yard and looking over the side of the dock into the water. We have not had any rain in many weeks so the water was crystal clear. Chaos kept us entertained. By the time we got home about 7 or so Chaos was a tired puppy and slept all night.

Black Friday was a special day for us. It was one year ago on Black Friday 2015 that we brought home Chaos from Alaqua. She was an 8 pound pup who didn’t know what was happening. Now one year later she is over 60 pounds and is the princess of the house!

We took Chaos down to the harbor as she loves to sniff all the smells down there. The harbor was packed with folks. Charter boats were coming in from a day on the water, sunset cruises were getting ready to go out and the restaurants and bars were busy. We parked by The Boathouse and walked towards Harborwalk Village. We stopped at Fishheads for a beer. Melisa was working and staying very busy as a steady stream of people were stopping and buying drinks.

Our next stop was at Crab Island Cantina. We got our usual spot at the outside bar. Bob was working the bar. Chaos was the star as folks were coming up and petting her and saying how beautiful she is. You really can meet a lot of folks when you have a dog.

We planned to walk back towards the car but at Hooks on the Harbor we saw Kerby and David. We stopped to chat with them and next thing you know we are there for an hour. Scotty was there and Tony stopped by too. We got some sad news there. Hooks was having their last day on Sunday. Their lease was not renewed as that prime land will be sold. We heard Alan from AJ’s might be getting it but we are not sure. Hooks was a good locals hangout. We don’t have many of those left anymore.

Sunshine Cindy, Chaos and I then headed to Duck Duck. Passing the Boathouse I saw Jack at his usual spot at the bar. I stopped in to say hello. Jack is a good guy and a fixture on the harbor and at the Boathouse. We got to Duck Duck and saw the sunset. It was another wonderful day. This was another night where Chaos got home and slept all night.

On Saturday I wanted to watch the Ohio State / Michigan football game at Charlie’s inside the Cantina. Carlos is a Michigan guy so one of us would be crying in our beer. Sunshine Cindy and I got there in the middle of the first quarter and stayed for the entire game. It was a great game as Ohio State won in double overtime. It was a lot of fun watching the game there as Carlos has changed things up a little. They have a 2 for 1 happy hour all day long as long as you order some food. That’s one of the best deals going. They are also now doing pizza on the weekends and it really looked great. I would be having one real soon!

After the OSU game we stopped at Landshark Pizza to hang out for a while. A big crowd was there watching the Bama / Auburn game as well as Wisconsin / Minnesota. We had fun talking to a couple of airmen who were sitting next to us. It was a nice end to the day.

So on Sunday I wanted to torture myself and watch the Browns play. Sunshine Cindy and I went back to Charlie’s. Wayne joined us. Josh was working the inside bar and took good care of us. Sunshine Cindy and Wayne both ordered one of their signature burgers. And yes, I got a pizza. It was really good. It was big and tasty. I highly recommend it. Having it helped with the pain of watching the Browns! LOL  And with that the holiday weekend came to a close.

Around Destin the construction of the “Baby Grande” is getting ready to get started. It is supposed to include a hotel, condo, retail and restaurant space. They have to do something before the end of the year or their permits will run out. So I expect to see some dirt moved and some type of small structures built.

The Donut Hole is having their usual December closure. They will reopen right before Christmas. And on the harbor across from Sexton some old buildings have been torn down. I understand there will be some type of condo going up there too. The building boom in Destin is not slowing down.

Have a great week. I will have a full Destin report next Monday!

Destin Steve

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Beach Bonfire

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Reason number 638 why we love living on the beach is over in Walton County you can have a bonfire on the beach. All you need to do is get a permit, pay a fee and make sure you clean up before 7 am or so the next morning. Each fall the Parrot Head club sponsors a bonfire. This year we had it on Friday evening. Almost 60 folks showed up. Capt Ron brought the wood, Mango Mike tended to the fire, folks brought food to share and a boom box provided the Trop Rock tunes.

It was a perfect night too. There was not a cloud in the sky. After the sun went down there was an orange glow that lasted almost an hour. It was magnificent. Mother Nature in all her glory. The party went deep into the evening as we all enjoyed the night. Too bad Okaloosa does not allow bonfires but I’m glad Walton does.

On Saturday morning Sunshine Cindy and I headed across the Mid-Bay bridge to drop off some tee shirts at a friend’s house and then go spend time with her parents. It was a nice visit.

Saturday evening was a surprise birthday party for Darla. Bobby rented the American Legion hall for the party. Amazingly Darla was surprised as about 60 folks were there. Trying to get that many people to keep a secret is hard but we pulled it off. Happy Birthday Darla!

We had committed to the party months ago so we had to miss a celebration of life for our friend Steve who recently passed away. It was held at Landshark Pizza as that was one of Steve’s favorite places. Steve will be missed…

Sunday I went to Landshark Pizza to watch the Browns. Donny, Ken and Cheryl joined me and we had their Ravens game on next to the Browns. Both of our teams lost…again! But it was a good time no matter. Courtney was behind the bar and took good care of us.

Most of the week was spent preparing for our trip to the Keys that is coming up next week. Sunshine Cindy is in full packing/prepping mode. We are looking forward to our yearly trip to the end of the road. It will be another fun time!

This past week was the Mullet Festival in Niceville. I know a lot of folks went there for that festival. There was also Thunder Beach in Panama City Beach. This is a biker rally that draws thousands of bikers from around the country to the beach. The Harley dealer in Fort Walton Beach piggy back’s on to the festival by having events here too. There were bikes everywhere and I’m glad to day I didn’t hear of any major accidents.

With us heading south, there will not be a blog update for a couple weeks. See everyone on the other side!

Destin Steve

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No hurricane in the panhandle

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Obviously the big news last week was Hurricane Matthew. This was a big and powerful storm that at one time was a Cat 5. It weakened only slightly to a Cat 4 as it headed up the east coast of Florida. The good news is it mostly stayed just off the coast but the storm surge was huge and there were spin off tornado’s. All in all it could have been a lot worse.

I saw some film of some weathermen who were out of control. One guy (I don’t know what city he was from) was telling people on the air that if they didn’t evacuate they would die. No if’s, and’s or but’s, you will die. Yes, this was a storm that demanded respect but saying things like that just gets people to tune out. You can only cry wolf so long.

Over here in Destin we had no effects from the storm at all. Our weather was picture perfect. In fact the only thing that happened in Destin was some of the evacuees who didn’t want to die came to town till the storm passed. Destin was slammed with folks. Friday it was like a summer day with so many people here. It was a problem because businesses were not staffed to handle the crowds.

Sunshine Cindy and I were busy this week. On Monday we headed to Pensacola as our friends the Southern Drawl Band were featured on WSRE TV’s show “StudioAmped.” This is a Austin City Limits type of show. They taped it with playback to be in the Spring. It was a lot of fun. They had about 8 camera operators so they got a lot of great footage. The guys did an hour of their original music. It was really cool.

A touching and emotional moment came at the end of the show. They had time for one more song and Mike Nash decided to sing “Numbered” for the first time since their lead guitar player David Crow was killed in a motorcycle accident. The song is about how all of our days are numbered but we don’t know what number we are on. There was not a dry eye in the house. Mike held it together for the song and it turned out to be a great tribute.

Friday was my off day. I did some things around the house then made a run to Publix. The store was super busy. You could tell they were not prepared for the crowds as they only had a couple checkout isles open. Publix is great about having enough staff on hand but they were surprised by this.

After my running around was done I stopped at Landshark Pizza for a few Props craft beers and some Boudin Balls. Sue was working the bar. Bill came in for lunch and we solved some of the world’s problems.

Saturday we had Wayne come over to the house to help us with things that needed to be fixed. We checked everything off the list with only one trip to Home Depot needed. Chaos was supervising the entire time too. Sunshine Cindy made her famous mac and cheese as that’s Wayne’s favorite. Then we all headed to the harbor to enjoy the beautiful day.

We first stopped at AJ’s upstairs. Again, the place was packed in the middle of the afternoon. The fishing rodeo is going on the entire month of October with the weigh in’s taking place at AJ’s. We saw them weigh a huge Mako shark. It was about 8 feet long and had to weigh over 500 pounds. It was a big one! On the way out of AJ’s we saw Tommy. He was watching football and getting ready to head home.

Next stop was at the outside bar at Tailfins. That was a great people watching spot. Turtle stopped to get a drink with Ashley and their little girl. I can’t remember her name but she is growing up fast. We then headed to Duck Duck. There were only a couple folks there so we were enjoying the peace and quiet. But that didn’t last long. A group of about 25 folks came in on some kind of pub crawl. They all ordered frozen drinks. The bartender was running ragged. Then as quick as they came they all left. Most were riding bicycles too. That could be interesting after a few more frozen drinks.

Our last stop was at Landshark Pizza for yep, a pizza! They also had a big crowd there. When Sunshine Cindy and I got home we went to visit with our neighbors who moved a few doors down. That was nice.

Sunday Funday we went to Tailfins to watch the Browns lose another game. It is a necessary but painful season as they get new talent up to speed. Mike, Suzanne and Brian all joined us. We had a great time. Brian let me listen to his new song that I kind of helped co-write. He took one of my poems and made it into a song. Come to the Boathouse on Tuesday night and he is going to debut it. It’s really good.

There was a Pat’s fan there giving me a hard time about the Browns. At least I was able to throw the Indians beating the Red Sox in the first two playoff games back at him. So there! lol

It is going to be another great week in Destin. Don’t forget to read my Crab Island Mambo Weekly Update for all the information about what’s going on around the panhandle.

See ya next Monday!

Destin Steve

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It’s still hot in Destin

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Even though the calendar says it is now Fall, the temps are not reflecting that. We had another week of near record highs as we were in the mid 90’s all week. We should start to cool down to more normal temps this week if you can believe the weatherman.

Sunshine Cindy and I actually took it kind of easy this week. Friday was my regular Friday off. I got some errands run and even made stop at Barbary Coast for a haircut. Tim the barber started Barbary Coast over 20 years ago. I have been going there for several years. It’s a place for guys. I have never seen a lady in there except for the ladies who work there. About a year and half ago Tim had a stroke. He was bouncing back from that when he got another one. Tim is not doing well from that stroke. I found out one of the ladies, Kelly is buying the business and will keep running it as it is now. I hope Tim will get well enough to stop back in from time to time. And good luck to Kelly.

When I got back home Chaos and I washed and cleaned BadAss3. Actually I did most of the work while Chaos sniffed around the yard. But she was right there if I needed her! lol

The Parrot Heads had a meeting Friday night at KC’s Sandbar in Fort Walton Beach. Sunshine Cindy didn’t get home from work till almost 6 so we ended up missing the party. Oh well, next time.

Saturday morning Sunshine Cindy and I loaded Chaos into BadAss3 and we went to make a few stops. We hit Home Depot, Pet Smart and Destin Ice Seafood. Chaos loves riding in the car especially with the top down. But it was hot out and she was glad to get back home and into the air conditioning.

Later in the afternoon I headed to Crab Island Cantina and Charley’s BBB bar to watch some football. Johanna was working the bar. She got called in as they were shorthanded and had to bring her daughter with her. All I can say is kids can sleep anywhere! Charley’s has Edamame and it is so good. I had it with a few brews while watching some games. Carlos came by and we chatted for a few minutes. I have not seen Carlos in a few months so it was good catching up. I headed home and watched some hockey in the evening as Canada beat Russia in the World Cup semifinal game.

Sunday Funday had me going to Landshark Pizza to watch the Browns. Brian had sent me a message saying a couple guys from Cleveland down on vacation were coming in to watch the game. Jerry and Jack were great guys. Typical Cleveland guys. They love the Browns and love to party. It was fun hanging out with them. They stayed till the middle of the third quarter before they had to go back to their condo. The wives were wanting them back!

The Browns almost won. If our kicker had made a field goal we would have but it was not meant to be. As the game was ending B came and joined me. He told me Steve is in the hospital and not doing well. He had some surgery and did not wake up properly. They don’t know if he had a stroke or what but B said he can’t recognize people and does not remember even talking to folks right after having a conversation. That is so sad. He is a great guy who is well known in Destin. I pray for his wife to have strength at this time.

Things continue to happen on the Island. Wild Willy’s Adventure Zone is planning an expansion. The addition proposes a wide range of family amusements, including electric Go-Karts and bumper boats.

The other big news from the Island is the owner of the Ramada is planning to tear down the Ramada and replace it with a Hard Rock Resort. Immediately people were crying about this proposed development. I doubt many of them read or heard the plans instead jumping to conclusions that this was going to be built on vacate land adding to the traffic problem and removing more beach from public use. I would like to see a slowing of the development around here too but this is just a wash as we replace one resort for a newer one.

It is going to be a busy crazy week in Destin. The Seafood Festival is this weekend with our friends The Southern Drawl Band performing on Friday night on the main city stage. The fishing rodeo kicks off this weekend too. Fall is in full swing in Destin.

Have a great week. I will have a full report next Monday.

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The best time of the year in Destin

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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!!!

Destin Steve

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Perfect weather in Destin

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This time of the year is about as close to perfect as you can get in Destin. After Labor Day the tourist are gone but the weather is still great with the humidity down a bit and the temps a little lower too. The past week we had no clouds and postcard sunsets. This makes it paradise!

Sunshine Cindy and I got out and about a few times this past week. Tuesday evening we stopped in at The Boathouse to listen to BT. There was a good crowd of fun loving people there. BT always keeps the crowd engaged. He was retiring his beloved 12 string guitar as it is not able to be repaired. It was a party!

Thursday the Trop Rock world got more bad news. Our friend, David Crow who is the lead guitarist for Southern Drawl Band was killed in a motorcycle accident Wednesday night. Some lady fell asleep and crossed the medium. David never had a chance. Thursday afternoon Sunshine Cindy and I went to Landshark Pizza to toast David and share some memories. This was a hard time for us and all fans of SDB. It was a gut punch to lose someone so young and talented. Sail on David…

Friday I was off and ran some errands in the morning. Those errands took me to the shopping center where Island Wings is at. It was hot so I stopped in for a couple beers. Thursday when we were at Landshark Pizza I was paying $2 for a pint of Yuengling. The same pint at Island Wings was $4.25. Needless to say I won’t be back at Island Wings.

Friday night was our monthly Parrot Head meeting at Landshark Pizza. It was another fun time. Mike and Suzanne come up with some more fun games, the music was good and the beer was cheap. Lol  The Parrot Heads continue to raise a lot of money for local charities too.

Saturday we were back on the beach for our last Crab Island Mambo / ECPHC beach cleanup of the year. We had about 40 people show up to clean the beach and then have a party on the sand. Mike did  a shrimp boil and they came up with some more fun games. The weather was perfect. The Gulf of Mexico was calm. It was a perfect day on the beach. As Mike and Clyde were working on the shrimp boil our lifeguard came by and asked what we were having to eat. He has stopped by in the past and we always feed him. He said he would be back when it done and asked if his girlfriend could also come and have some food. Of course she could! Not only do we clean the beach but we keep the first responders fed too!

Football is back. Sunday I went to Tailfins to watch the Browns. Ken, Cheryl and Donnie came to watch the Ravens. We have our own spot we take over to watch the games. Sunshine Cindy had a baby shower to attend. She didn’t get to Tailfins till after the game was over. But she didn’t miss anything as the Browns were the Browns. They have a real young team and it will take time for them to grow up. Bobby also came and hung out with us and even BT came to hang with us. Even if the game was terrible we have the water, harbor and sand to look at which makes it okay! And BTW, the Ravens won so those fans were happy.

Around town it was announced what is going in where we thought Dolly Parton might build some type of entertainment complex. This land is just down from our sub division and they will now be building another apartment complex. This is another example of the “Atlantafacation” of Destin. That is you build an access road and then put so many businesses and apartments on it no one can move on that road either. Pretty soon Commons Drive will be nothing but one big traffic jam.

Have a great week. See ya next Monday!

Destin Steve

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