Snowbirds invited to head north, tour DeFuniak

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The first 140 snowbirds who RSVP will be provided a complimentary light lunch at the Tropicana Club.

Staff report

DEFUNIAK SPRINGS — Officials have finalized plans for the 6th annual “Snowbird Day” that will introduce seasonal visitors to a dose of history in the heart of the city’s historic district.

Visitors staying the winter season in Walton and surrounding counties who RSVP early will receive a complimentary light lunch and tours on Thursday, Jan. 18.

“We have a lot of special activities in place to welcome our guests,” Mayor Bob Campbell said. “It is our honor to introduce our visitors to a piece of America’s hidden history involving presidents, first ladies, American poets, songwriters and even astronauts.”

The first 140 snowbirds who RSVP will be provided a complimentary light lunch at the Tropicana Club, a fine-dining restaurant in DeFuniak Springs, followed by a program including remarks by city officials and a brief historical overview of the Florida Chautauqua grounds. 

Live music and door prizes from area businesses will complement the luncheon.

Guided tours of the historic downtown business district and original grounds of the Florida Chautauqua campus begin at noon and last until 3 p.m., and include presentations inside the historic train depot which houses the Walton Heritage Museum, DeFuniak Springs Library displaying medieval armor, and St. Agatha’s Episcopal Church. Tour guides will explain the history of these buildings and surrounding homes as they relate to the Florida Chautauqua grounds once marketed as the “Education Resort of the South.”

Winter visitors to the region who wish to attend the luncheon should RSVP by calling Lisa Gierlinski at DeFuniak City Hall at 850-892-8500, ext. 224 or the DeFuniak Springs Visitors Bureau at 850-333-2241. RSVPs are not required for tours beginning at noon.

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