Sunsets, Sushi & More ‒ Kara Whatley Spills the Tea on 30A’s Best-Kept Secrets

Kara Whatley, Marketing & Events Director, Old Florida Fish House

What’s your favorite local event?

There are just so many weekly events and large annual events, it is hard to pick just one. We all know and love Sunday Funday at Local Catch. Grayt Vibes just had a major debut and I love what that can be. There are the shows at the REP in Seaside that Kevin Boyle and the crew put on that are amazing! ArtsQuest in Grand Boulevard and the Foster Gallery opening receptions are always on my calendar. And the never-ending wine festivals are a must.

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

October on 30A is my favorite. The weather is absolutely beautiful. It’s still warm enough to go on the beach and put your feet in the ocean, but not miserably hot. The tourists have vacated for the most part & I would be lying if I said I didn’t enjoy having the beach to myself. The constant hustle slows down & gives locals the opportunity to truly enjoy 30A at its best. My birthday is on Halloween as well, so that’s a perk!

What makes living at the beach so special?

30A isn’t just any beach; it has a certain character about it. What I love more than anything is the quality of life here.

On any day of the week, I can peel away from work and relax in the sand, go have coffee at Black Bear with friends, or take my sketchbook to Ruskin at Seaside.

There is also this burgeoning creative scene that has started to take off. Chefs, artists, and designers are leveraging the 30A platform and really able to expose their work to an international audience. As an artist and creative, it is a beautiful thing to be surrounded by like-minded individuals within our close-knit community – people that always support your latest projects. I love what Justin Lyons and Nicole Paloma are doing right now.

What’s your favorite way to spend time outdoors?

I know it’s cliche – but our beaches are hard to beat. I’ve had my toes in the sand of all of our coastlines & believe me when I say, there is truly nothing like our sugar sand beaches. Combine the most beautiful beaches with our rare coastal dune lakes, the outdoors is the only place to be in this area. I’m also a big fan of biking down 30A & getting lost in Rosemary and Alys or paddleboarding in Grayton. No matter what my day consists of, enjoying the outdoors in some form or fashion is on my agenda.

Three favorite local spots?

The sunsets at Pescado are killer. The rooftop is a whole scene & unlike anything else on 30A. You couldn’t ask for a better date night spot. Let Slayde take care of you at the bar!

I cannot get enough of the Old Florida Fish House Sushi Bar. Chef DJ McCracken is changing the sushi game in our area. If you’re a sushi lover, take a seat at DJ’s chef table – you’re welcome.

The Bay is my other favorite. I love listening to music by the water and the food is delicious. I like to go see Blake, who runs the place, and always have a great time – tell him I sent you!

Are you a 30A local? We’d love to hear from you! Email a little bit about yourself to feedback@30A.com. We might just feature you in our next 30A Q&A! In the meantime, follow 30A on FacebookInstagram (@hey30A) and YouTube.

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