Monday, July 31, 2017

August Events & Activities Along Florida's Forgotten Coast

Paddling Trip August 26
Join the Apalachicola Riverkeepers on their monthly paddling trip on August 26 in and around the Apalachicola River and Bay. The trips are free to members and $30 for non-members. In addition to their monthly paddling trips, the Apalachicola Riverkeepers are also hosting longer paddling excursions (10+) miles which are best suited for paddlers with experience.

Paddlejam October 6-8

The fall version of the Apalachicola Paddlejam festival will be held October 6-8 in Apalachicola and on St. George Island. This three day festival celebrates the Forgotten Coast through paddle sports, muisic and food. The highlight of the event will be an attempt by paddlers to break the world record for the largest floating kayak raft. New this fall will be a paddling fishing tournament. 
No Kayak? No Problem!
Franklin County features several kayak and boat rentals. Click here to see a list of all kayak, canoe and boat rental businesses in the county.

Discover the Apalachicola River Blueway

The Apalachicola River and associated tributaries has long been a favorite destination for paddling enthusiasts. Kayaks and canoes are ideal ways to experience the Apalachicola’s 107 miles from the Jim Woodruff Dam to its mouth under the John Gorrie Bridge in Apalachicola. The scenery is beautiful and the river, sloughs, coves, and bluffs are perfect for quiet exploration. Kayaks and canoes are ideal ways to experience the river and the area’s natural habitat, and many of the best places are accessible only by paddling. The Apalachicola River is part of the State Blueway trail.
The State's Greenways and Trails Division has created a series of Blueway maps which feature access points, campsites, points of interest, and amenities. Use them in combination with the Blueway Guide when planning a paddling trip. Click here to learn more about the Apalachicola River Blueway guide, trails and to download paddling trail maps. 

Road Trip To The Forgotten Coast

Nothing says summer more than a road trip! And there's no better way to send summer packing than with a late summer getaway road trip.  Along the way, you'll encounter dozens of parks, wildlife areas, museums and recreational opportunities. Many lodging providers are pulling out the stops to offer late summer getaway packages.
APALACHICOLA
The Best Western Apalach Inn in Apalachicola is offering guests that stay 2 nights a 20% discount on the 3rd night.

The Apalachicola River Inn overlooks the Apalachicola River and features two onsite restaurants with local fresh seafood fare. Guests enjoy a welcome drink in the Spoonbill Lounge and a cooked to order breakfast. The Inn is currently offering a $30 reduction off weekend rates Sunday-Thursday holidays excluded.
The iconic Gibson Inn features a 10% military and AARP discount. The hotel is the host of the area’s popular Murder Mystery Weekends. Approximately two weeks prior to the event guests are mailed the theme of the "murder" and they can "dress the part" or not, it's all up to you! The fall 2017 event dates are Sept. 22-24Oct. 27-29 and Dec. 1-3.

ST. GEORGE ISLAND

Stay 6 consecutive nights at St. George Island's beachfront Buccaneer Inn and get the 7th one free! The Buccaneer also offers a 15% discount for seniors over 55 and/or military.
Collins Vacation Rentals features specials that include individual guest house discounts as part of their Fun in the Sun rental specials, AARP discounts, early booking discounts, book 4 nights and get the fifth free, military specials, repeat renter discounts and senior citizen discounts.
Resort Vacation Properties features last minute vacation deals, homeowner offers and advance booking specials.
Suncoast Vacation Rentals is offering a summer blowout special - save up to 20% on all remaining summer weeks.
Fickling & Company offers Repeat Guest discounts plus you can take  5% off your 7 night stay when you book the same home. This discount is valid on weekly rentals only, not monthly or three night reservations. This offer applies to select properties and is for new reservations only. 
Book now to reserve a fall vacation special with Still Waters, a large gulf view beach rental beach house on St. George Island with great gulf views and numerous resort-style amenities. During October through December rent six days and receive the 7th night free.
The St. George Inn features midweek walk-in specials. Arrive Sunday or Monday, stay 3 nights, the fourth night is FREE. The St. George Inn also offers special rates for weddings and corporate retreats (blocks of five rooms or more).
CARRABELLE
Many of the Sandy Beach Properties offer a mid-week special available Monday – Wednesday. Book Monday and Tuesday and get Wednesday free.
Receive a Great Deal when you Stay & Play at the St. James Bay Villas and Condos.  The Stay & Play packages include accommodations at the Residences Condominiums, plus unlimited rounds of golf on our perfectly manicured 18-hole championship course. 
The Moorings of Carrabelle offers a Complimentary boat slip with every room for boats under 25' with no shore power. The Moorings also offers AAA member discounts, AARP Member Discounts, AMAC Member Discounts and Military Discounts.

Tide and Seek is Shell Hunt Game

Well, it was bound to happen. The “Tide & Seek” shell and rock hiding phenomenon has grown into one of the summer’s hottest crazes here along Florida’s Forgotten Coast. More than 800 folks have joined the official facebook page administered by the Apalachicola Bay Chamber of Commerce. The idea is to decorate rocks and shells and then hide them around the county and offer clues on Facebook to help find them.
Tide and Seek is akin to another popular hide and seek activity in Franklin County - Geocaching.
If you plan to visit one of Franklin County’s state parks this fall, make sure you bring your hiking shoes, your smart phone and a sense of adventure. The Bald Point State Park on Alligator Point and St. George Island State Park are participants in Operation Recreation GeoTour - a high-tech treasure hunt that requires players to use a smartphone or GPS device to find hidden treasures. The State Park GeoTour stretches from Pensacola to Key West and currently includes 64 state parks and state trails. Cachers can visit the GeoTourswebpage to view each one of the 69 caches hidden within the parks.  
In addition to the two state parks, other areas in Franklin County feature geocaching opportunities There are an estimated more 200+ geocache sites dotting the coast between Alligator Point and the western edge of Franklin County. Click here to learn more. 
Full Moon Climb 
The St. George Lighthouse will host a full moon climb August 7 from 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 for the general public and $10 for members of the St. George Lighthouse Association. 
SGI Sizzler
August 5

The 20th Annual and FINAL St. George Island Sizzler 5K Race & One Mile Fun Run will be held Saturday, August 5, 2017 - All proceeds benefit the Franklin County Humane Society. 2017 will be their 20th and FINAL year. The One Mile Fun Run begins at 6:30pm and the 5K Race begins at 7:00pm. Post Race Party and awards at St. George Lighthouse Park at 7:30pm.
Rock By The SeaSept. 21-24
Rock By The Sea Charity Music Fest Sept. 21-24
Rock By The Sea present this charity music festival hosted at Harry A's on St. George Island, will feature artists including Steve Everett, Amy Gerhartz, Alex Guthrie Music, @Boo Radley, Brian Fechino, Caleb Hawley, The Currys, David Borné, The Georgia Flood, Lindsey Matthews, Michael Tolcher, and Stolen Rhodes. 
Celebrate The Bay Day Sept. 29
It's all about the Bay on Sept 29 as the Apalachicola National Estuarine Research Reserve (ANERR) celebrates National Estuaries Day at its Nature Center in Eastpoint. Activities will include dozens of free, fun and educational activities for kids and adults including marine animal touch tanks, and estuary-themed games. The Sea Turtles of the Forgotten Coast exhibit will demonstrate what a sea turtle nest might look like, and show videos of nesting sea turtles and hatchlings! Attendees can also tour the ANERR’s impressive 5,400 square foot Nature Center with its three large aquariums filled with local estuarine and marine life, an 80-foot long mural depicting the area ecosystems, and a hands-on Bay Discovery Room.
Historical Railroad Talk Sept. 30
The Carrabelle History Museum is featuring another fascinating talk about the railroad industry on Saturday, September 30 from 10 am to noon at the upstairs meeting room of the C-Quarters Marina.  The program will focus on the era when trains brought visitors to the coast and shipped seafood, lumber and naval stores throughout the country. Nelson Martin from the Sopchoppy Railroad Depot Museum will speak about the booming industries brought here by the railroads during the turn of the century. A special feature of this program will be musician and folklorist Frank Lindamood. 

Gag Grouper Fall Season Approved

The gag grouper recreational season in state waters off Franklin, Wakulla, Jefferson and Taylor counties will open Sept. 1 and run through Dec. 31. State officials say the longer season will make fishing opportunities in the four-county area more comparable with the rest of the Gulf.  Access the most current fishing license and fishing regulations here. 

Annual Kingfish Shootout August 5-6
14th Annual Kingfish Shootout. This weekend event gives everyone an opportunity to enjoy themselves while advocating a wonderful cause that helps so many. 
Events
August 2, 9, 16, 23, 30 - Bowery Market
August 5 - Kingfish Tournament
August 5 - St. George Island Sizzler
August 7 - SGI Full Moon Climb
September 4 - Rib Cookoff
September 21-24 - Rock By The Sea LiteOctober 7 - Whatever Floats Your Boat Regatta
October 7-9 - Watercolor with Michael Harrell
October 28 - Autos & Oysters
October 28 - Lanternfest
October 28 - Ghostwalk


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