30A South Walton Jessie Taylor 175 WaterColor Merchants Offer Everything Under the 30A SunBy Jessie Taylor

30A South Walton Blue Giraffe WaterColor Merchants Offer Everything Under the 30A SunWaterColor Merchants offer everything that your little heart could ever desire. I know this firsthand after meeting with Debbie Taylor and Christi Sheffield, the owners of The Blue Giraffe in WaterColor. For three hours, Debbie graciously gave me a personal tour of the many fabulous shops that WaterColor has to offer. Not only do these shops have everything that you could possibly need for a fun beach vacation, but these shop owners clearly share a special kinship that radiates all around WaterColor’s main square.

The WaterColor Merchants are not just a family-friendly series of stores: They’re like a family themselves.

Trekking around WaterColor, I got to know each store’s unique personality, and all of the many different things that they offer our community and 30A visitors. Just as I had the chance to get to know all of these wonderful people and their businesses, I’m now excited to offer you the same opportunity. Let’s start with The Blue Giraffe, because without the time they spent personally touring me around, there certainly wouldn’t be any article to read:

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30A South Walton PicMonkey Collage Mattie Kelly Arts Foundations Festival of the Arts Coming Oct 25 26

Mattie Kelly Arts Foundation presents the 19th Annual Festival of the Arts on October 25 – 26 from 11 a.m to 5 p.m. at the Mattie Kelly Cultural Arts Village in Destin. One of the Southeast’s premier festivals, the event showcases the original artwork of more than 100 juried artists from across the U.S., who will compete for $10,000 in cash award prizes.

The festival will feature include live music, art activities for kids, souvenir posters and t-shirts, art raffle and more. A food bistro, wine and beer garden as well as convenient parking and free shuttle will also be available.

Explore a diverse palette of artistic styles, including: acrylic, clay, collage, glass, jewelry, metal, mixed media, mosaic, oil, pen and ink, photography, digital art, pastel, pottery, sculpture, fiber, textile, wood and water color and spend time meeting the artists, discovering their inspiration, and adding to your own collection.

Admission is $3 for adults; children 12-and-under are free.

For more info, visit Mattie Kelly Arts Foundation or call 850-650-2226.

30A South Walton tee shirt 2 NEW: Blue Mountain Base Camp ShirtEvery mountain needs a base camp, right? You know, a place to rest and prepare before you make the long, strenuous ascent up the mountain side. So why should 30A’s Blue Mountain Beach be any different? After all, lugging beach chairs, a cooler, umbrellas, and beach totes up and down that Blue Mountain is no easy feat! 

Our new Blue Mountain Base Camp shirt (Elevation: 0′) will help commemorate your epic ascent to Blue Mountain’s mysterious summit. This is a District Faded Crew Tee. Priced at $26.95, it comes in all possible sizes, from X-small to XX-Large and everything in between.

To buy this tee or browse through our range of cool beach gear, check out the Official 30A Gear website.

30A South Walton PicMonkey Collage3 A+ Art One Size Fits All Show and Sale   Oct 3

Art works by (L to R): Donnelle Clark, Suzanne LeLoup West and Lori Drew

The A+ Art “One Size Fits All” show and sale is on the horizon with an exceptional artist reception set for October 3rd, from 5 – 7 pm at Northwest Florida State College, South Walton Center.

This second annual show, which will run through December 8th, will include over a hundred 10-inch by 10-inch wood panels, featuring the fine and funky work of over 50 local artists. All featured artwork will be $100 each.

“Last year’s Friday night reception was packed with enthusiasm and excitement as collectors quickly tagged the art of their choice while the A+ team assisted with the gathering and purchasing process,” said Lori Drew, 2014 show organizer. “It was so alive and filled with energy. It’s just the perfect place to pick up a special piece at a really affordable price.”

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30A South Walton 5k The Alys Foundation ‘Fun Run’ Raises $60,000 for Autism

Ready, set, help! More than 400 runners of all ages raced to the end of summer at the third annual Alys Beach 5K & 1 Mile Fun Run, organized by The Alys Foundation.

The run became a town tour of sorts leading runners down roadways, pathways and nature trails on a sunny late summer morning throughout the beautiful community of Alys Beach in South Walton. After the races, racers relaxed at a post-race awards party featuring Grayton Beer, Vivo Spa Salon, Piper’s and 30A Pop Stop including a raffle contest and music by Shane from Rock the House. Little racers cooled off in the Fountain and chilled on the grass in the Amphitheater. Many returned later in the evening to enjoy a live concert and fireworks display.

Proceeds from the event raised $60,000. The Alys Foundation provided $20,000 each in the name of the Starkey Family to Autism Society Emerald Coast, Autism Society Georgia and Autism Society of America, the nation’s leading grassroots autism organization.

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By Gaye Patton
30A South Walton hazel Alaqua’s Pet of the Week   Hazel

Hazel – waiting for her ‘forever home’

Eight-year-old Hazel is an easy-going, bright-eyed furry delight, who loves little puppies.

Hazel, Hazel, our happy little pearl of a girl,
hair the color of pumpkins, her tail with a precious curl.
That tail is a perfect measure of her happiness and delight,
wagging so rapidly, it could make her take flight!
Her eyes are deep and lovely, the color of the darkest coal,
and as you look deep into them you will see her thoughtful soul.

Hazel, Hazel, our helpful little sweetie.
Always willing to lend a little assistance, never mean or greedy.
Well behaved, well mannered, always playing well with others.
Her expertise in the kennels, is assisting with the new mothers.
She loves the little puppies, helping with their comfort and care.
She is selfless and loving, concerned only with their welfare. Continue Reading…

30A South Walton unnamed 30A Songwriter Radios Inaugural BoostaBand Competition

30A Songwriter Radio’s BoostaBand competition is set for Tueday, October 14th.  Doors open at 6pm and the event starts at 7pmPandora’s Steakhouse and Lounge at Grayton Beach will host this year’s inaugural and unprecedented event.

Throughout the year, regional bands have submitted applications in hopes to be one of the six bands chosen by an anonymous panel. Bands must consist of at least three members, and perform all original music. There was no rule on genre, creating a truly unique and exciting event for spectators. The six bands will be evaluated by a panel of three judges. The winner of Boostaband takes all.

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30A South Walton Shaun O’Brien1 New Chef and Restaurant Manager join Fish Out of Water

Shaun O’Brien

New Chef de Cuisine, Shaun O’Brien, and Restaurant Manager, Kyle Davis, have their sights set on making 30A restaurant Fish Out of Water a ‘foodie destination’ across the South.

O’Brien, who joined the restaurant’s kitchen team earlier this year after winning countless trophies and awards at Sandestin’s Bistro Bijoux, has now been appointed Chef de Cuisine.

“I came to Fish Out of Water to work with the great team making this restaurant famous – not just here in South Walton, but throughout the South,” said O’Brien, who is no stranger to the 30A food scene, having previously been Executive Chef at Paradis in Rosemary Beach when it first opened.

“I know from my previous experiences in South Walton that locals and visitors are very discerning,” said O’Brien. “I am focused on providing dishes that will surprise, excite and even amuse diners – but know we have to do it in a way that is true to the special way of life we enjoy on the Emerald Coast.

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