The Walton County Snowbirds held their annual business meeting on February 23 at St. Andrews Episcopal Church in Destin. The highlight of the meeting was the presentation of two $1,000 scholarships as part of our Vivik Likite Scholarship Fund to South Walton High School Seniors Cayll Craig and Mary Margaret Cline. Mrs. Barbara Stratton from the high school accompanied Cayll and Mary to our meeting. Both students were very appreciative of the scholarships.
Cayll is involved with both basketball and track at the high school. He plans to attend the University of West Florida majoring in cybersecurity. Mary Margaret does weigh-lifting at South Walton. She is going to attend NW Florida State College and pursue her degree in education so she can be a teacher. The scholarship money comes from a 50/50 raffle from each of our meetings. In addition, our Singles group donated $265 to the scholarship fund by taking up a collection from our very generous singles.
The club also presented a check for $2,100 to Ken Hair, CEO of Children in Crisis from the proceeds of selling 210 FundRays coupon books. Pat Whitledge, our club secretary, diligently sells the coupon books at many of our events. Our annual blood drive through OneBlood generate 32 pints of blood from the snowbirds.
Board members who serve on our Board for at least 4 years were presented with recognition pins by past President, Donna Reed. This year, Mike Quinn and his wife Catherine Campbell and Pat and Jim Whitledge were presented with pins for their dedicated years of service on the Board. The slate of candidates for the Board for our 2023-2024 season was also approved. The club is always looking for volunteers to lead or even create a new activity or event for the season.
The meeting wrapped up with Kate Blundell distributing the numerous door prizes. Many of the local restaurants, golf courses, salons, and stores donate gift cards and other prizes for the door prizes at each meeting. Linda Neighbors, Kate Blundell and their team do great work soliciting the area establishments for donations. The Walton County Snowbirds appreciate all the support from the local South Walton and Destin communities.
Our final membership was at 695 members, with 162 being new to the club. We represent 36 states and Canada with Minnesota and Michigan having the most members. We increased our membership by 110 members over last year. Permanent residents of Walton County can join our group as long as they like to have fun, meet new friends and give back to our community. If you are interested in volunteering or learning more about the club, contact Peg Breetz, 330-807-2379.
For more information on all the club has to offer, go to the website at www.waltoncountysnowbirds.com or join the group Facebook page “Walton County Snowbirds.” We hope to see many of the same snowbirds and some new ones for the 2023-2024 season!