By Lauren Lege

30A South Walton unnamed 22 1024x422 Klear Kanoos    Klearly the Next Big Thing Along The Emerald Coast

“It’s like scuba diving without the wet suits and tanks.” –Vicki Baker, Klear Kanoo enthusiast.

Klear Kanoo which debuted its original transparent canoe last summer, is releasing an updated version this season. The new Klear Kanoo has shed its original aluminum frame, is equipped with two clear seats, and comes with two clear paddles. With no visible boundary between you and the world below, this craft is ideal for fishermen.

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30A South Walton PicMonkey Collage 1 Get Your Tickets: 30A Songwriters Festival Line up Announced

From L to R: Graham Nash, Indigo Girls and Jason Isbell

The 30A Songwriters Festival has announced the initial line-up for its 6th annual celebration to be held January 16-18, 2015.

The festival will feature performances by esteemed artists Graham Nash, Indigo Girls, Leon Russell, Jason Isbell, Shawn Mullins, Sara Watkins (Nickel Creek), Glen Phillips (Toad the Wet Sprocket). Also confirmed are Jeffrey Steele, Chely Wright, Bobby Bare Jr., Steve Poltz, Angaleena Presley, Over the Rhine, Jesse Harris, Mary Gauthier, Hayes Carll, Bob Schneider, Ellis Paul, Allison Moorer, Deana Carter and Peter Karp & Sue Foley.

Graham Nash has been inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame twice (with The Hollies in 2010 and with Crosby, Stills & Nash in 1997) as well as the Songwriters Hall of Fame in 2009. Simply put, he is one of music’s most legendary singer-songwriters and vocal harmony singers (and a renowned photographer and leading activist).

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30A South Walton golf players 2nd Annual 30A Charity Golf Classic Raises $28,056 for Alaqua Animal Refuge

Event Photography by Shelly Swanger Photography

The 2014 30A Charity Golf Classic raised $28,056 for Alaqua Animal Refuge. The second annual event was held at Santa Rosa Golf & Beach Club and was presented by The Aesthetic Clinique.

“We raised $23,000 for charity last year, so we’re very excited that support for this event is growing,” said 30A’s Angela Ragsdale, who founded the tournament. “We are so grateful to all of our sponsors and players for supporting this local event and cause.”

30A South Walton Screen Shot 2014 10 22 at 12.08.40 PM 300x227 2nd Annual 30A Charity Golf Classic Raises $28,056 for Alaqua Animal Refuge

Ralph Gage’s Million Dollar Smile

One of the highlights of the day was an incredible shot made by player Ralph Gage during the $1 Million Hole-In-One Challenge, presented by 30A Television. Gage’s 187-yard shot came within three feet of the hole… and the $1 million prize.

“The crowd went crazy,” said Ragsdale. “It was a fun and exciting way to end the day.”

The 2014 30A Charity Golf Classic was won by a team consisting of Dewayne Youngblood, Jeff Cooper, Robert Reeder and Tommy Brantley. Each year, 100 percent of the proceeds from the 30A Charity Golf Classic are donated to a different local charity.

“This comes at a really great time, because we need to raise $150,000 by December 31st, in order to move all of our animals to a larger location,” said Laurie Hood, Alaqua Animal Refuge’s president and founder. “Even though we have a long way to go, this donation gets us off to a great start.”

Big Rich of Pandora's taking shots with Mallory Fraiche of the Ladies European Tour:

For more info about Alaqua Animal Refuge, please visit

Congrats to 30A’s homegrown talent, Kelsey Anna —  She just inked a publishing deal with Little Extra Music in Nashville!

30A South Walton Kelsey Deal 30As Kelsey Anna Lands Publishing Deal

A true 30A local, Kelsey has been creating her unique brand of music since she was 12 years old. For a decade, her haunting voice, powerful messages and youthful spirit made her a popular draw at venues and festivals along Scenic Highway 30A.

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30A South Walton Solaris Sunset MoonMed 300x248 Full Moon Cruise to Benefit Junior League   Nov 7

Sunquest Cruises’ SOLARIS

Cruise for a cause as SunQuest Cruises partners with the Junior League of the Emerald Coast for a Full Moon Cruise on the SOLARIS yacht in Sandestin on Friday, November 7.

The Junior League of the Emerald Coast is celebrating 50 years of making a difference in the community with a night of dining and dancing under the moonlight. The cost is $60 per person, which includes a three-hour cruise, food and live entertainment.

The event is the first in a series of full moon cruises.

“Evenings on the water take on a whole new luster under the light of a full moon,” said James Murray, General Manager for SunQuest Cruises. “We’re thrilled to partner with this great organization to raise money to further their mission and make an impact in our community.”

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30A South Walton savor 5th Annual ‘Savor the Season’ Event at Caliza   Nov 6The 5th Annual Savor the Season event, benefiting the Taylor Haugen Foundation, will be held on Thursday, November 6th, from 5:30-8:30 pm at Caliza Pool and Restaurant in Alys Beach. 

The Taylor Haugen Foundation provides support and recognition to faith-based, athletic students and community organizations through awards, scholarships and funding.

National recording artist Michael J. Thomas will provide live entertainment. There will also be wine tastings, silent and live auctions, and delicious gourmet cuisine made by the finest local chefs from Panama City to Destin.

Tickets are $50 per person and can be purchased online.

For more info, visit Savor the Season or email.

Truman — 30A’s classic “Sand Rover” mascot — was the proud subject of a “Battle of the Brushes” hosted by Artists at Gulf Place last week. The fun-spirited competition was held during Gulf Place’s Third Thursday Wine Walkabout.

30A South Walton Battle of the Brushes at Gulf Place Artists at Gulf Place Hosts Battle of the Brushes

Left to Right: David Hansel, Billie Gaffrey, Maxine Orange & Libbo Morgan (Photo by: John Hollan)

Each month, Dwight Ward of Artists at Gulf Place secretly selects a different subject for the competition, which features four local artists. Once the topic is revealed, the artists have less than two hours to create their interpretation of the subject matter. Past subjects have included a beach sunset and 30A’s famous Western Lake.

The large crowd in attendance for the Third Thursday Wine Walkabout was mesmerized by the real-time creativity of these local talents, and this month’s winner (decided by a different secret judge each month) was Libbo Morgan, who only recently joined the artist collective at Gulf Place.

Here are close-ups of each artists’ impromptu interpretation…

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30A South Walton foundation press release 360 Blue Employees Establish New Foundation to Help Underprivileged ChildrenThe employees of 360 Blue — a luxury vacation rental company along Scenic Highway 30A and in Destin — recently launched the 360 Blue Foundation, a charitable foundation aimed at helping those in the world suffering the most.

360 Blue’s employees also announced an initial commitment of $100,000 in 2015, which will be used to help with the Foundation’s initial efforts to build schools for children struggling in extreme poverty in Africa.

“We are so proud that our employees have decided to work together to identify ways to help those less fortunate in the world,” said Jeremy Sprenkle, one of 360 Blue’s owners.

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