Gulf World Marine Institute Receives Disney Conservation Grant

Gulf World Marine Institute (GWMI) has been awarded a $5,000 grant from the Disney Conservation Fund after working in conjunction with New England Aquarium to care for 50 cold stunned sea turtles. The grant will help offset the costs of the rehabilitation process for the New England cold stunned sea turtles that have since been medically cleared and released into the Gulf of Mexico.

Harboring a Heritage in Destin, Florida

In the grand scheme of things, Destin is a young city - both physically and at heart. In fact, Destin didn’t officially become a municipality until 1984. Just prior to that, the first condominiums began to rise from Destin's sandy shores. Today, it’s hard to imagine the intimate piece of paradise unadorned by its prestigious tourism industry.

For most of its life, our western neighbor Destin was known simply for fabulous fishing and amazing beaches. Before the renown, Destin was a simple place, and traces of its heritage can still be experienced first hand.

Dread Clampitt Kicks off Scallop Festival in Port St Joe Sep 12

Make plans to attend Florida Scallop & Music Festival Sep. 12-13, 2014 along beautiful St. Joseph Bay in Port St. Joe, Florida. It's a short day trip from South Walton along the coast to Port St. Joe on The Forgotten Coast. The annual Scallop Festival draws big crowds eager to celebrate this Gulf County delicacy. Sample scallops cooked in many tasty ways, enjoy a variety of great southern foods, a lot of live music, arts and crafts, a car show, and a kid’s zone all overlooking beautiful St. Joseph Bay.

Florida Seafood Festival Celebrates Golden Anniversary in Apalachicola

Most of the seafood we enjoy in South Walton comes from the Apalachicola Bay area - one of the world's richest marine estuaries. For true seafood lovers, there's no better place or time to celebrate delicious seafood and the rich heritage of the seafood industry than the annual Florida Seafood Festival on the banks of the Apalachicola river.

Apalachicola Is a Wonderful Day Trip from South Walton

We love the snow-white quartz sands of SoWal beaches that squeak when we walk on them with bare feet, the emerald green and turquoise waters of the Gulf; a bay pregnant with fish and oysters; the delta of the Choctawhatchee River; our 18,000 acres of forest, parks and preserves; plus our unique coastal dune lakes that make South Walton one of the most desirable places on earth to live and visit.

But last June, my wife Karen and I promised to take our thirteen-year-old grandson, Nathan, 80 miles east to the old river town of Apalachicola for a day of fishing.

A Nearby Secret Spot On The Forgotten Coast

If you promise to keep it to yourself, I’ll share a longtime secret spot where many locals go to escape the Summer SoWal craziness for a few days. Just two hours east, past the hustle and bustle of Panama City, you’ll find a quiet and quaint area between Port St. Joe and Apalachicola. 

The water’s not as clear and the sand’s not as white but there’s something striking about the landscape, and endearing about the people of what’s commonly referred to as the Forgotten Coast of Florida. 

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