One step onto South Walton’s white sandy beaches was all it took to convert casual visitor Dr. Michael Stickler to loyal local.
In 2006, this dermatologist and Mohs Surgeon at Dermatology Specialists of Florida was completing his residency at University of Florida, when he and his wife Johnna (then pregnant with their first child) visited 30A for a quick weekend getaway.
They instantly fell in love with the area and began planning to retire here. It was amid the retirement planning that their son Noah jumped in and promptly kicked for the first time. The couple got Noah’s message loud and clear and knew that the time for converting to locals was right then. So, within the year, the family of three had packed up and changed its zip code to the beach.
More than a decade later, the Stickler family is now a family of five and has kept all ten feet planted firmly in the white sand…flip-flop tan lines and all.
In his free time, Dr. Stickler cheers on his boys (Noah, Christian, and Silas) at soccer and tennis tournaments. He can also be found coaching youth basketball, sponsoring the local boy scouts, or serving on the Seaside Neighborhood School board. With such a hectic schedule, he takes heed to what they say about all work and no play.
When the Sticklers play, they play the 30A way. They each have their own YOLO board. “As a family, we paddleboard regularly for unforgettable morning encounters with dolphin pods, sea turtles, and the occasional manatee.”
Of course, Dr. Stickler recommends getting on up and enjoying the beach in the early morning hours to avoid the intense UV rays of the midday sun. Sunscreen is vital!
“The reality is there simply isn’t anywhere like 30A. It’s such an amazing place to raise our three children,” he said.
The sense of family in the community among the locals was evident which was important to us when deciding to make a home here. Where else can you experience small town life with such pristine beaches?”
A step in the sand (and a nudge from Noah), and the Stickler family is very glad they stuck around.
Dermatology Specialists of Florida, 82 Mack Bayou Loop, Santa Rosa Beach, FL. Treating everything from acne to more serious conditions such as skin cancer and melanoma, patients are offered state-of-the-art therapies and treatment. Learn more at mydermspecialists.com.