June 2016


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Thankgiving Day 30A 10K and Free Community Events!

Need an incentive to get the family to lace up those running shoes this fall? Join us for the 5th annual 30A 10K Thanksgiving Day race in Rosemary Beach for three days of family fun, fast racing and the chance to help fundraise a record-breaking donation for local charities. The race featured three days of activities — and you don’t have to be a registered racer to participate! Sign up for the 30A 10K, ranked one of the top 5 Thanksgiving Day races in America! The 2016 30A 10K features three days of events including a race expo at 30Avenue, a Thanksgiving Day 10K race & 1 mile fun run down scenic highway 30A, and the inaugural 30A 10K Black Friday Shopping Spree Contest with special deals and prizes for our runners. The fun before the run starts on Wednesday, November 23, at 30Avenue, with a fall festival and packet pick-up. The event is free and open to the public. The festival runs from noon to 7 p.m. Forrest Williams Band plays from noon to 3 and Chris Alvarado takes the stage from 3:15 to 6:15 p.m. The party includes lawn games, a silent auction, photo opportunities with Lucky the Turkey. We’ll also have the 30A Gear truck out with great race gear and other fun items. After the race, join local shops and businesses for the inaugural 30A 10K Black Friday Shopping Contest, which is also free and open to the public. All you have to do is snap a photo where you are eating, shopping or working out on Black Friday. Post it on Facebook and tag the 30A 10K. Winners will be randomly selected for a bunch of cool prize packs (including one from 30A Gear!). All proceeds from the race are donated to the annually selected charity partners. “We are so excited to celebrate our 5th anniversary and expand our event with a new expo venue and the Black Friday Shopping Spree Contest,” said Race Director Karen Meadows. “We love that so many families make our event their Thanksgiving Day tradition and celebrate the spirit of the holiday by helping us give back to those in need.” This year the 30A 10K is raising money to help four charity partners including: the South Walton Fire District, the Walton County Sheriff’s Department’s Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, Anchorage Children’s Home and the Northwest Florida Guardian ad Litem Foundation, Inc. The race expects more than 6,000 runners, volunteers, vendors and spectators in three days of events. “We have something for everyone,” said race organizer Craig Baranowski. “Runners of all ages and paces are welcome. And now, with our expanded race expo and the Black Friday Shopping Contest, we have exciting events for our non-runners as well.” In the past four years, the race has raised more than $150,000 for local 501c3s. This year, the event’s goal is to top that grand total and exceed the $200,000 mark. “It’s been an honor to help so many needy organizations in our area,” said race organizer Amy Stoyles. “The success of this race is a reflection of the support of our local business sponsors and race participants.” Find us online at 30A10K.com or on Facebook and Instagram for more information about the race!

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We Asked the Experts: What Are the Best Local Fish to Eat?

By Caroline Giddis Salty, meaty, flaky, mild. These are some of the characteristics of the favorite fish of executive chefs, seafood market managers and fishing captains in South Walton. Whether they come from the bay or the gulf, our local fish are some of the best in the world, and highly sought after by fish […]

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Take it ‘Easy on 30A’ at Beloved Benefit Concert — July 3

The fifth annual Easy on 30A benefit concert will take place on Sunday,  July 3, from 5 to 10 p.m. at WaterColor’s Marina Park. This year’s performers are Geoff McBride, The Courtyard Saints, Chris Alvarado and Scott Rockwood. Admission is free and open to public. South Walton locals Beth and Randy Carroll founded Easy on 30A in 2012. The non-profit organization works together with the local community, businesses and musicians to host a benefit concert for Northwest Florida charities. Check out this 30A Radio interview with Randy and Beth Carol: The event also features a craft market and a silent auction. Silent auction and raffle items will include donated vacation stays, restaurant gift certificates and much more to benefit The Sonder Project, Muscogee Nation of Florida, Lighthouse Family Retreat and Alaqua Animal Refuge. Picnic blankets and chairs are welcomed. Food and beverages will also be available for purchase. Easy on 30A works together with the WaterColor Community and WaterColor Resort to bring this fun charity event to fruition during one of the busiest weeks of the summer. For more info, follow Easy on 30A on Facebook.

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WCSO RECOVERS BODY OF MISSING KAYAKER

Santa Rosa Beach, Fla— The body of 31-year-old Chris Hinton was located by Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission Sunday afternoon.The body was located in the middle of the bay due south of Lagrange Bayou. Authorities confirmed the clothing on

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Grayton Beach State Park Named Among Top 10 Beaches in U.S.

Grayton Beach State Park has once again been named among the Top Ten Best Beaches in the 26th Annual Top 10 Beach List produced by coastal expert Dr. Stephen P. Leatherman, professor at Florida International University, better known to many as Dr. Beach. Grayton Beach State Park features sugar-white sand and emerald-green water where development has been restrained so big sand dunes still dominate the landscape. At the same time, all the amenities of great restaurants and accommodations are close by in the old town of Grayton Beach or bustling Seaside.  Many people choose to camp in this wonderful state park that also features tidal lakes and freshwater ponds. “More attention is being paid to safety and management this year and extra credit is being awarded to beaches that prohibit smoking,” said Visit South Walton Director of Marketing Jon Ervin. “These changes allowed the list of best beaches to begin anew. This is why Grayton Beach, which has been recognized before by Dr. Leatherman, has once again made the list.” Check out this live tour of Grayton Beach State Park: It’s the first day of summer and we went LIVE from Grayton Beach State Park. Tune in again tonight around 5 p.m. C.S.T. for a very special announcement about some amazing news from The 30A Company! Posted by 30A on Monday, June 20, 2016 As “Dr. Beach,” Leatherman has selected the annual Top 10 Beaches since 1991. Fifty criteria are used for evaluation including water and sand quality, safety and management. Dr. Leatherman is an internationally known coastal scientist who has published 20 books and hundreds of scientific articles and reports about storm impacts, coastal erosion and ways to improve beach health and safety. For more info, visit Grayton Beach State Park.

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Alaqua Pet of the week – VIDEO

Bellamy, a 4 year old Schnauzer mix, has been waiting for her forever home for 160 days. She can usually be found carrying around her favorite toy or begging for a belly rub! She loves every human she meets, but she can be a little picky about […]

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New Vending Machine Concept Carries 30A Gear

Vending machines are not just for chips and candy bars any more. At least not the kind Scott Turner runs. Turner’s business, TBOX, operates a series of high-tech vending machines across Northwest Florida where customers can purchase t-shirts, hats and now even 30A Gear. Turner’s concept is part of a growing movement for businesses to provide higher-end products in vending machines. Red Box, the movie rental kiosks, may be the most popular in the United States, but people across the globe have started using vending machines to sell everything from iPods and phone chargers to shoes. “Once we got into researching it ourselves, we found these kind of machines are popular in Asia and Europe, but not a whole lot of people are doing it in the states,” said Turner, who started out with ice vending machines, but quickly saw a need for something more. A vending machine can serve as a pop-up store — without the expense of overhead — and the concept is catching on. “It helps businesses expand to an area they might not be able to otherwise, to have a presence without having to have a storefront, staffing and all that goes with it,” said Turner. The technology has come a long way since the days of coin-operated soda and snack machines. Turner’s machines use LED lights and a system of infrared sensors so the machine conserves energy when not in use. All merchandise is tracked electronically, as well, which helps decrease the business’s ecological footprint. In years past, vending machine stockers had to travel with a big semi-truck full of products and assess what needed to be restocked on site. Turner can use a compact car to visit and restock machines. He knows exactly which products and how many he needs before he ever leaves the warehouse. Customers make purchases with credit cards and if any problem arises, the machine sends a text to Turner and he can operate it remotely to provide whatever customer service is needed. 30A Gear vending machines are in place at HarborWalk Village, Destin Commons, Silver Sands Premium Outlets and Pier Park. You can buy t-shirts, hats, drink huggies, license plate decals, Tervis tumblers and even coffee. “With the technology available, these things are pretty amazing,” Turner said. “They’re eco-friendly, business and customer friendly. We’re really excited to have them out there for people to use.”

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The Big Tamale TV Show with Lauren Catanese

Contact Lauren to be on the show, network your business or be a guest and be sure to hashtag #thebigtamale  @thebigtamale and follow 30A TV http://facebook.com/30atv http://twitter.com/30abuzz http://instagram.com/30atv Follow us on social media and on MEDIACOM CH 17 NW Florida TV channel  – ROKU and AMAZON and in […]

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THIS WEEKEND: Hunt is On For Big-Game Fish at Sandestin’s Blue Marlin Classic

In a few short weeks, a fleet of powerful sport-fishing yachts will blast through the Destin Pass in a mad dash to fame and fortune as the 2016 Emerald Coast Blue Marlin Classic gets underway at Sandestin Golf and Beach Resort. At stake will be nearly $2 million in prize money and bragging rights for one of the premier events in the sport. Tournament Director Adam Alfonso said they have already surpassed all previous records for the number of sponsors and donations for the tournament, which will be held June 22-26. “We’ll have a ton of great gifts for all the anglers and especially the winners,” he said. Boat owners will receive an exclusive package from presenting sponsor Wind Creek Casino & Hotel-Atmore along with a custom fishing shirt from Hook &Tackle, while the captains will take home a special Wind Creek gift bag. Get a look inside the festivities from last year: Category winners will be awarded goodies from Costa, Orion Coolers, Jackson Fishing Kayaks, Glas Designs custom jewelry, Larry Rackley paintings and custom sculptures from beneath the blue. “Best of all, based on the pace of pre-tournament registrations, we’re on track to top our record number of boats and record $1.68 million in overall prize money,” Alfonso said. “I’ve ordered plenty of beautiful Florida weather and some really big fish, so it’s shaping up to be another fantastic tournament week here at Sandestin Golf and Beach Resort.” Now celebrating its 14th year, the Emerald Coast Blue Marlin Classic draws teams from across the Gulf Coast and Southeastern United States. Eligible species include blue marlin, tuna, wahoo and dolphin, plus a billfish release division. In 2015, Johnny Dorland’s Cotton Patch crew from Orange Beach, Alabama, set the new tournament benchmark by weighing in an 899.6-pound blue marlin. The record billfish was measured at 134 inches with a girth of 74 inches to earn Team Cotton Patch first place and a payout of $195,277. The tournament held at Baytowne Marina at Sandestin Golf and Beach Resort doled out more than $1.5 million in winnings during the 2015 event. Check out this video with the Cotton Patch crew: “This year adding new boats that have never fished with us before, so that bodes well for spirited competition and more available prize money,” Alfonso added. “We’ve also re-arranged the weigh station to increase the viewing area to accommodate more spectators for the Friday and Saturday weigh-ins. The public is welcome to come watch all the festivities as the boats unload their catch.” The 2016 Emerald Coast Blue Marlin Classic, presented by Wind Creek Casino & Hotel—Atmore, runs June 22-26 at Sandestin Golf and Beach Resort. For registration forms, dockage or more information, visit www.fishecbc.com. To make your reservation, visit Sandestin.com/ECBC or call 800-320-8115. Use GROUP Code FISH16 for a special discount.