30A Q&A: How to BEach LOCAL!

Kelly Layman
Business Investor, Vacation Rental Owner & Board Member, Safe Water for Walton (volunteer non-profit)

1. What makes living at the beach so special?

Our world-renowned coastal dune lakes, hands down. Each one is its own fascinating mini-ecosystem. The County has established special land use protections for building on them; it might now be time in our population growth for a professional dune lakes czar/dedicated scientist, to help them thrive for generations to come.

2. Three favorite local spots?

The Bay Restaurant — My blood pressure always does a dive the minute I walk in. The cool vibe transports me to growing up barefoot on the Loxahatchee River in Jupiter, Florida. Their regular commitment to booking local musicians is phenomenal. (Hey thanks, 30A.com, for that Farewell Angelina concert/Songwriters Weekend after-party! Encore, please!?)

Longleaf Trail in Point Washington State Forest. We’re blessed with one of the largest amounts of combined State conservation lands and parks anywhere in Northwest Florida (per capita and that’s actively managed for public use).

Bijoux Restaurant — Perfectly consistent yet never the same experience twice.

3. Best place for a night out?

If the weather dials in, then a pound of just-steamed beauties from Shrimp Shack out on the beach with some cold beer is my definition of nirvana.

4. Most delicious menu item?

I may make a lot of hard-working chefs whom I adore all over 30A mad but have to give props here to Goatfeathers—it came to my rescue this summer in a bind! I was the belle of the ball at a house party because I showed up with a tub of crabcakes ready to roll/sear/cook. (Be sure to grab that Dijon herb aioli out of the cash-n-carry case, too!)

5. What do you do in your free time?

Normally, it’s plopping a YOLO paddleboard in the water with friends, rescuing Monarch caterpillars/butterfly eggs from wasps and lizards, or learning more guitar songs. Most of my free time lately has been spent with special local leaders on www.safewaterforwalton.org

Are you a local or know someone who is? Want to be part of our ongoing 30A Q&A series?  Answer the five questions above and send a high-quality headshot (preferably horizontal. Only you in the photo, no kids, no pets, no spouse) to Feedback@30A.com, and we just may include you next!  Due to number of submissions, we may not be able to use every submission, but we certainly thank you for taking part!

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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.