Ashton Burks on Porchin’, Beach Lovin’ & Holiday Merry Makin’

Ashton Burks, Sales & Events Manager, The Pearl Hotel

What’s your favorite way to stay fit on 30A?

One of my first dates with my now-husband Brett was a run down 30A/Grayton and into the state parks. Seeing the vintage rovers and everyone’s smiling faces as they pass by on beach cruisers always keeps me motivated. Other than that, you can usually find me at the Rosemary Beach Fitness Center in the mornings. Patty and her team are like family, and it’s such a lovely facility.

Where do you go when you need some quality me-time?

I first moved to 30A to join the WaterColor Weddings team, and those venues still hold a special place in my heart. Just across the Western Lake Bridge, swing left and you will find an adorable dock over Western Lake and a patio around a small pond. It’s a great place to take the dogs and a great book, and enjoy one of the beautiful Coastal Dune Lakes that we are known for.

What’s your favorite month on 30A? And why?

December! December is one of my favorite months on 30A. We tend to have a “sandy” white holiday season and still get to enjoy the warm weather. I love how much design and celebration each of the communities dons for the season. We never miss “Every Christmas Story Ever Told” at The Rep. It’s a family tradition at this point (that and mojitos from Great Southern)!

What local restaurant/ park/ activity is underrated or underappreciated?

Restaurant: Café Tango has been a family favorite for years. It is quaint, hidden and always delicious for a classic meal. Most of us forget that little red shack is a total treat for a date night out!

Activity: Porchin’ – yes, porchin’ is an activity. I recently learned that while visiting Palmetto Bluff when a friend mentioned that it is one of their hotel’s most popular activities. There is something peaceful about sitting on the porch with a cup of coffee and watching the morning go by. We have these amazing pedestrian communities that are filled with so much laughter and nature, which many of us often forget to slow down and enjoy.

Park: Our community has put so much work into the snorkeling reefs and Underwater Museum of Art. Everyone knows they are there, but how many of us are actually out in the water checking them out?

What makes living at the beach so special?

I heard the best statement about this a few weeks ago. My client asked a coworker why they chose to live on 30A – having come from a bigger city with a variety of work and activity options, she was curious. He promptly answered, “Our guests spend their life saving to retire and spend what’s left of their life at the beach. Why would I start from the beginning when I am already at the finish line?” I could not agree more.

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