'More condensed' spring break comes to an end

Published: Tuesday, April 9, 2013 at 09:25 AM.

Last year, deputies issued a total of 667 underage drinking citations.

“We had a definite increase in calls for service,” Howell said. “We think it’s because of the way the calendar fell this year. There was a more condensed spring break period, a smaller time frame and more people at the same time.”

Howell estimated some weeks had about 5,000 students in just one section of the beach near Whale’s Tail restaurant.

According to Lt. Charlie Nix with the Okaloosa County Sheriff’s Office, not nearly as many students flocked to Okaloosa’s beaches.

He said officials believe some students heard about the crowds in Walton County and made the trek over to join them. Nix added that cool weather also sent the larger packs of students away to other areas of the county.

“They were here but it was sporadic,” Nix said. “We had our groups out there, but the weather kept them inside. The groups that were out there were pretty good.”

In the past five weeks, Okaloosa County deputies arrested 337 people under 21 and issued 220 notices to appear for underage drinking.

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