Thursday, May 18, 2017

June Events and Activities in Franklin County

Let's Camp At The Beach!
Many visitors think of the Dr. Julian G. Bruce St. George Island State Park as just a secluded beach perfect for a quiet weekend stroll. However, this 1,962 acre park offers a full facility family campground that would rival some of the best campgrounds in the region. The park features 60 campsites, a playground, electricity, water hookups and dump station nearby. Two buildings provide hot showers and restrooms. The park also has a youth camp available for group camping. Two primitive campsites can be accessed by a 2.5-mile trail or by canoe or kayak. A group camp area is available for scouts and other organized groups.  There are three camping areas within the park. Click here to learn more.
Camping Elsewhere in the County
Whether it be primitive camping in the State or National Forest, beach camping or full service RV park lodging, Franklin County offers unsurpassed beauty and wildness vista not found elsewhere in the State.  
There are more than 40 camping areas and campgrounds in Franklin County ranging from luxury waterfront RV parks to primitive woods sites. Many feature boat launches and nearby hiking opportunities. Most of the wilderness camping areas are located within either the Tate’s Hell State Forest, the Apalachicola National Forest or the Florida State Park system.  
There are a growing number of campgrounds in the county. Click here for a link to all.
Turtle Season Begins 
Sea turtle nesting season 2017 is off to a great start in Franklin County. Staff from ANERR and volunteers throughout the county are already finding and marking nests along Franklin County beaches. Visitors interested in learning about sea turtle nesting can visit the St. George Island Visitor’s Center (at the St. George Island Lighthouse Park) to pick up turtle information.
Please note that Franklin County recently adopted a Leave No Trace Ordinance that requires chairs, umbrellas and equipment to removed nightly from the public beaches in order to help mama turtles more easily navigate the beaches to nest and allow hatchlings a clear path back to the water from their nests in the dunes.
Want to learn more? The Apalachicola National Estuarine Research Reserve will host weekly "turtle talks" beginning in June at the ANERR's Eastpoint Visitor Center each Wednesday from 2-3 pm to educate visitors about the nesting sea turtles. 
June Event Glance
Fish Free in June!
You can fish free in state saltwater areas June 3-4. The State’s free fishing days in June for freshwater areas is June 10-11. Free fishing days provide an excellent opportunity for parents who don’t yet have licenses to take youth fishing, or avid anglers to introduce a friend to fishing without having to purchase a license. On these days, the fishing license requirement is waived for all recreational anglers (residents and non-residents). 
Saltwater Fishing 
Whether you’re ready to head offshore in search of grouper, snapper or shark or you’re more into shallow skinny water fly-fishing,  saltwater fishing in Franklin County is all about the action. There are four fishing piers here and more than 40 boat ramps and kayak/canoes launches that will help you get there fast! 
Freshwater Fishing
Franklin County is a freshwater fisherman’s paradise. Miles of freshwater creeks, sloughs and rivers flow through the North Florida wilds and empty into nutrient-rich Apalachicola Bay and surrounding waters. Depending on the time of year, tide and weather, fishermen trolling the fresh and brackish backwaters here can expect to land redfish, trout, largemouth bass, bream, snook and catfish. 
Hiring a guide is probably the best way to safely enjoy this high-energy saltwater fishing experience. Need some dockage, tackle, guide or advice? There are  several marinas and boat rentals, fishing guides and bait and tackle shops just waiting to help. Click here to connect.
Ladies Let's Go Fishing!
A free Womens' Fishing Clinic will be held at the Dr. Julian G. Bruce St. George Island State Park on Saturday, June 10 from 9-5 pm. Hosted by the Florida Wildlife Commission, the day-long clinic will teach basic angling skills, safety, ethics and conservation stewardship in a fun laid-back atmosphere. Participants will learn knot tying, cast netting rod and reel rigging, fish and habitat identification and catch-and-release techniques. All participants must have a valid recreational fishing license. Registration is limited; click here for details.
Fishing Tourneys
Here are a few of the upcoming fishing tournaments scheduled throughout the county.
June 10 - The Tallahassee Builders Association 29th Annual Saltwater Fishing Tournament will be held at C-Quarters Marina. There will be cash prizes for In-Shore and Off-Shore Grand Slams and the largest fish of various species. 
June 10 – Annual Fisherman's Choice Youth Fishing Tournament. Kids 16 and under will fish for fresh and saltwater species. Entry is free. 
June 16-17 Annual Big Bend Saltwater Classic
The Moorings of Carrabelle will serve as a weigh-in station for the 29th Annual Big Bend Classic on Father's Day Weekend, June 16-17, 2017
July 22 - C-Quarters Youth Fishing Tournament
Kids from all over the South are invited to attend the 13th Annual Youth Fishing Tournament. Open to all kids 16 and younger. Registration is required on-site. 

August 5-6, 2017
 - 14th Annual Kingfish Shootout. This weekend event gives everyone an opportunity to enjoy themselves while advocating a wonderful cause that helps so many.  
Independence Day Festivities Planned
From Alligator Point to Apalachicola, almost every community is planning Independence Day festivities. 

In Apalachicola, the Apalachicola Main Street group presents Apalachicola’s Independence Eve Celebration on Monday, July 3featuring an all-American cook-out in the park, parade, ice cream social, veterans’ tribute, music and fireworks. Leading up to the fireworks display, Main Street provides live music, great food, and beverages starting at 5 p.m. at Riverfront Park. This year’s featured entertainment will be the Johnny & The Loveseats.  The Red, White and Blue Parade coordinated by Franklin’s Promise Coalition, starts at Lafayette Park at 6:30. It’s an Apalachicola tradition that welcomes golf carts, people on bicycles, and even dogs to get decked out in patriotic colors and form a parade. Free ice cream brings everyone together at Riverfront Park at the end of the parade.  
St. George Island
On St. George Island, everyone is welcome to join in the annual July 4th celebration. Stick around all day and enjoy festivities and fireworks on the beach behind the Blue Parrot Grill about dark-thirty. 
The Carrabelle Boat Club will host the First Annual Carrabelle Boat Show July 4 from noon - 5 pm at the Carrabelle Boat Club. Local boat dealers will be on hand and there will be popular models displayed such as Grady White, Boston Whaler, Black Jack, Twin Vee, Chapparal and Robalo. Exhibit booths, vendors and live music is planned. 
Lodging Providers Offer Online Specials
Many lodging providers in Franklin County are offering Summer vacation deals.  Click here
 for a complete listing of accommodations.
Full Moon Climb
The St. George Lighthouse will host a full moon climb June 9from 8:30-10 pm. Climb to the top of the Cape St. George Light to watch the sunset and the rise of the full moon. The Sunset/Full Moon Climb includes light hors d'oeuvres and a sparkling cider toast to the full moon.  Cost is $15.00 for the general public and $10.00 for members of the St. George Lighthouse Association.
SGI Mullet Toss June 10
The St. George Island Mullet Toss will take place Saturday, June 10from 10 a.m till 5 p.m on the beach in front of Blue Parrot Oceanfront Cafe on St. George Island. This annual  event is sponsored by The Blue Parrot for the benefit of the Apalachicola bay Charter School. For a nominal entry fee you get a unique Mullet Toss T Shirt, and 2 mullet to throw. Visitors and Locals compete for prizes and bragging rights. There are prizes for the longest throws in the men’s, women’s and kids divisions. 
Franklin County Tourist Development Council • 731 Hwy. 98, Eastpoint, FL 32329 • 866-914-2068