Learning from the Locals: 30A Q&A

Balder Saunders
Co-founder of Dread Clampitt/Music Teacher at Seaside Neighborhood School

1. What makes living at the beach so special?

Being able to go to my favorite beach access and fish with my son is top of the list. Going floundering off of the beach on a full moon night. Being able to see all of the stars at night when there is no moon. When you drive over the Western Lake bridge and someone is Instagraming the sunset, you say to yourself, “Yeah! It’s awesome, right? Welcome to our backyard!” 

2. Three favorite local spots?

Saturday grocery shopping at Publix!! Just kidding. 

Starting the day with breakfast at The Perfect Pig in Gulf Place. Lunch at Chanticleer in Grayton is a must for any visitor wishing to appear local. Stinky’s Fish Camp is our favorite place to get fresh seafood. My wife loves the “Taste of Stinky’s.” (That sounds awful now that I’m typing it!) 

3. Best place for a night out?

Café Tango is our favorite for a couple’s night out low key dinner. I love everything on their menu.

4. Most delicious menu item?

I’m going to throw it over to Christiano’s Ristorante for this one and their escargot. But only if you like butter, garlic, fresh herbs, and fresh-baked bread. 

5. What do you do in your free time?

Stand up paddleboarding is my favorite way to be out on the water. Either one of our coastal dune lakes or fishing in the bay. Other than that, I love to cook at the house and hang with my family.

Bonus: How long have you been a local?

I was raised in Parker, Florida, and have been coming to 30A since 1980. My aunt Suzette, and Uncle Potter had a house near Stallworth Lake. I became a permanent resident of Walton County in 2000 after serving in the United States Marine Corps (Band).

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Enjoy a summer getaway at Alys Beach, the premier luxury resort town on Florida's Gulf Coast. Alys Beach is a unique New Urbanist community that combines stunning architecture with the gracious character of courtyard living. Guests can tailor their vacation to include the finest culinary talents in the region, distinctive shopping choices, outdoor activities on an exclusive beach, winding nature trails, and a state of the art wellness center. The utmost in beauty and luxury awaits.