Mike Matz

Broker / Owner

850.685.5968

mike@lp30a.com

4th of July in Seaside

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This year’s 4th of July festivities in Seaside looks like a wonderful way to enjoy the day with your family and friends! Seaside is providing us with a parade, live entertainment and fireworks to make this a fun filled day for all! .On Sunday, July 4th, the Annual South Walton 4th of July Parade

4th of July in Seaside

will begin at 8A.M. at Seagrove Plaza and will end at the Seaside Ampitheater. We’ll get to enjoy an old-fashioned community parade of people, dogs and vehicles dressed in holiday garb. Judges in Seaside will select the winning entries and hand out prizes. Everyone is invited to participate – hop on your scooter, golf cart, bike or create a float and join in the parade fun.

Seaside Ampitheater will be the scene for music from 30A Radio until 11A.M. along with face painting and lots of other fun. The celebration will continue in the evening with Stars and Stripes at Seaside at 7P.M. with live music for all and the fantastic fireworks display at 9P.M. They are best viewed from the beach in front of Seaside Pavillion and will be choreographed  by 30A Radio. If you really love fireworks and are not satisfied with only one display, Bud & Alley’s will host a display on the beach behind their restaurant on Friday night at 9P.M.

All of this sounds like a wonderful way to spend the 4th of July holiday and enjoy yourself as you celebrate our nation’s birthday!

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Grayton Beach State Park on 30A

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Amazing Grayton Beach

I am very appreciative of  all the National and State Parks  that are maintained for each of us who cares to explore them – and I hope you do explore them. I am especially appreciative of this country’s parks systems because I know that the  funding has been severely decreased  to these agencies and the cost of operating our National and State Parks may become prohibitive in the future.

We are fortunate to have such a park right in our own back yard – Grayton Beach State Park! The nearly 2,000 acre park provides us with pristine beaches for swimming, sunning, and sunset watching. The Park boasts a 4 mile off road trail for hiking or biking which trails through natural communities. Take your binoculars for wild life viewing and bird watching. There is a boat ramp available on Western Lake. Bring your kayak or canoe and explore the backwaters of Western Lake, a 10 acre lake surrounded by the natural areas of the park.

Enjoy fishing for saltwater species in the Gulf of Mexico’s surf , or try to catch a few fresh and saltwater fish in Western Lake’s brackish water. Then, enjoy lunch at a large picnic pavillion which overlooks the Gulf of Mexico. Public showers are provided for all visitors.

Overnight facilities are also availabe for visitors. Grayton Beach State Park offers 30 modern cabins for reasonable rent and you may choose to stay for 2 nights or rent your cabin by the week. To ensure that you are really “getting away from it all,” the cabins do not offer television phones or internet services.The cabins are equipped with central heating, a gas fireplace, central cooling, a kitchen with basic cooking and dining utensils, screened in porch and an outdoor grill. Linens, pillows, blankets and towels are also provided for guests.

Camping facilities are provided at the park for tent or RV camping. Pets are welcome in the campground! And, of course campers are provided with electricity, restroom and hot showers.

Adjoining the campground is an ampitheater. Rangers lead interpretive programs on the lake peninsula during summer months.

I do hope you make good use of Grayton Beach State Park. As a state operated park, you really do own a piece of it . Make it a big part of your back yard, too.

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South Walton’s Bit of History

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Scenic Grayton Beach

I’m a little bit of a history buff so I took an opportunity and did a little research on the history of South Walton. It seems that our stunning beaches were created by the weathering of the Appalachian Mountains over millions of years. Particles of quartz  from the Appalachians were washed into riverbeds and eventually transported by these rivers to the Gulf of Mexico. The ebb and flow of the water over this long distance broke down these particles and buffed their edges, making the sand as fine as sugar when it finally reached the Florida Panhandle. The reflection of the sun on the white sandy bottom of the Gulf of Mexico creates the water’s brilliant turquoise hue!

There was some activity along the beach. However, the federal government owned much of the land and few people had reason to settle there. The soil was too sandy and the lumber industry was better inland. Port Washington was the closest settlement to the Grayton Beach area. Five years later, William Miller and William Wilson moved their families to the Grayton Beach area and mapped out a town.

Reaching Grayton Beach was not easy due to a lack of bridges and no real roads. But, the Butlers made the trip from De Funiak and decided to stay. The Butler family decided to start a resort and built some cottages and operated a general store and dance hall. As bridges were built, Grayton started booming. And is still booming today.

If you explore Grayton Beach you”ll find a host of lovely shops – many filled with beautiful things for your home. I can tell you that Grayton has a big night life, also. Music fills the air as you pass Pandora’s and we all know about the happenings at the Red  Bar.

I have a feeling that Grayton Beach’s future will be as full as its past as a viable part of 30A!

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