All area codes are 850 unless specified.
Mardi Gras Parade/Festival: The Krewe de Yak’s 10th Annual Mardi Gras Parade and Festival will be held Feb. 9 on Circle Drive in DeFuniak Springs. The Street Fair and Car Show will begin at 11 a.m., and GrasFest will be the place to be for food, fun, and family-friendly entertainment celebrating the Carnival season. The Grand Parade will roll at 3 p.m. Call 419-5977 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Senior Citizen Prom: The wisdom generation may enjoy the Senior Citizen Prom, hosted by the South Walton High School Student Government Association, from 6-9:30 p.m. Feb. 9, costing $10 per person. The evening includes the crowning of the prom queen and king, refreshments, a photo booth, door prizes, music and dancing. For information, email email@example.com.
ECTC Auditions: Emerald Coast Theatre Company will hold auditions for Wind in the Willows and Much Ado About Nothing at 5:30 p.m. Feb. 10 at UWF College, Studio Theatre, and at 4:30 p.m. Feb 17 at 560 Grand Blvd. #200 in Miramar Beach. Performers should bring a recent headshot and updated resume and be prepared to do a 45-60 second contemporary monologue for Wind in the Willows and a 45-60 second comedic Shakespeare monologue. Actors can audition for one or both shows. All positions are paid. Housing possible. For questions or audition conflicts, email Bridgett@emeraldcoasttheatre.org.
Parkinson’s Support Group: Caregivers of persons suffering with Parkinson’s disease will meet at 9:30 a.m. Feb. 12 at Somerby Senior Living, 164 West Hewett Road in Santa Rosa Beach. Refreshments are provided.
Winter Community Programs: Learn about community and neighbors at these programs at 10 a.m. Wednesdays at the Coastal Branch Library in Santa Rosa Beach. Discover the “Silverlinings” in Your Everyday Life with Tolliny Rankins Feb. 13.
• Feb. 20: Great Art Rescues by Helen Ballance
• Feb. 27: A Musical Presentation, “Living the Dream” with Dr. Cheryl Jones and Company
StoryTeller Series: Emerald Coast Theatre Company offers the StoryTeller series, featuring professional actors and authors presenting compelling stories and dramatic works, at ECTC’s performance space, 560 Grand Boulevard (upstairs) in Grand Boulevard at Sandestin in Miramar Beach. At 7 p.m. Feb. 13, it’s “So Others May Live: Coast Guard Rescue Swimmers Saving Lives, Defying Death” features the telling of 14 true, amazing, and inspiring stories of some of the bravest men and women you’ll ever meet. Theater patrons are encouraged to come early (doors open at 6:30 p.m.) to browse artwork by local artists showcased in the ECTC Lobby Gallery. Tickets are $25/event. A subscription to all four is $90. Purchase tickets at emeraldcoastheatre.org/tickets or call 684-0323.
• Feb. 20: “Winston Churchill: Through the Storm,” is a one-man show featuring DeFuniak Springs actor, writer, editor and former public defender Bruce Collier and set in July of 1945.
• Feb. 27: “The Iliad,” adapted by Lisa Peterson and Denis O’Hare and featuring actor/teacher Allen Walker of Panama City, is a retelling of Homer’s classic story of the Trojan war and the clashing of its two greatest warriors, Achilles and Hector.
Choctawhatchee Audubon Society: Birdwalk at the Wright Landfill and Okaloosa Holding ponds with experienced birder Alan Knothe Feb. 16 in an expedition to find ducks, waders, hawks and winter residents. Meet at Pepito’s parking lot, 1313 Lewis Turner Blvd., at 7:30 a.m. Wear closed toe shoes, a hat and possibly rain gear. Bring binoculars and/or a camera. Call 208-1780.
Valentine Breakfast/Grand Opening: See South Walton's new development, Hidden Palms, from 8-11 a.m. Feb. 14. Tour the model home and preview the neighborhood while enjoying a catered breakfast by Sunset Bay Cafe. Enter a drawing for a 2-night comp stay at the beach in a ResortQuest 2-bedroom condo and for gift certificates to popular local restaurants and shops.From Hwy. 98 turn south on Holiday Road. Take the first right onto Hatchew Road. Hidden Palms will be on the left. Call 812-3261.
Gumbo Festival: Sample a variety of gumbo and vote your favorite as the "People's Choice" winner at the 30th Annual Sandestin Gumbo Festival from 5-7 p.m. Feb. 15 and 12-4 p.m. Feb. 16 at The Village of Baytowne Wharf. Gulf Coast restaurants will be featured along with live music from Dikki Du and the Zydeco Krewe and children's activities. A new Best Bloody Mary's at The Beach let’s you be the judge. Purchase tickets at www.sandestingumbofestival.com/.
Sinfonia Gulf Coast, Crescendo! Sinfonia Gulf Coast's annual fundraiser Crescendo!, a cultural and culinary extravaganza, begins at 5 p.m. Feb. 15 with vintner dinners hosted in elegant homes and venues. Vintner Dinner tickets are $295/person and include all food, wine, and gratuities. This year’s main event is “Lunch en Blanc" and is set for 11:30 a.m. Feb. 17 at the Hilton Sandestin Beach Golf Resort & Spa in Miramar Beach. Enjoy reserved table seating, hors-d'oeuvres, a full, seated lunch, live and silent auctions, and an all-inclusive afternoon of incredible fun. Tickets are $150/person and include all food, wine, reserved table seating, performance and valet parking. Proceeds from Crescendo! will benefit Sinfonia and its music education programs. Purchase tickets at http://www.sinfoniagulfcoast.org/web/events.aspx/
Topsail Talks: The monthly educational discovery series presents Coastal Dune Lakes by Choctawhatchee Basin at 10 a.m. Feb. 15 at Topsail Hill Preserve State Park in Santa Rosa Beach. This program is free with regular park admission. Call 267-8330. Registration required in advance at www.topsailparkfriends.org
‒ March 15: Shipwrecks of the Florida Panhandle by the Florida Public Archaeology Network
Valentine’s Dinner Cruises: SunQuest Cruises Solaris Valentine's dinner cruises will be held from 7-10 p.m. Feb. 14 as well as 7-10 p.m. Feb. 15 and 5-8 p.m. Feb. 16. The Solaris yacht is docked within the Sandestin Golf and Beach Resort. The cost, including a three hour cruise, three-course meal and live entertainment, is $165/couple. Reservations required at www.SunQuestCruises.com or 650-2519.
Americana Music Concerts: Enjoy the music of Lis & Lon Williamson from 6:30-8 p.m. Feb. 16 in the Lodge at Camp Helen State Park. Admission is free. The Friends of Camp Helen will accept donations, all of which will be used to benefit the park.
• March 2: The Rough & Tumble
Dungeons and Dragons Club: Walton County Coastal Branch Library will host the club Fridays from 3:30-5 p.m. for ages ninth grade to 25. Pre-register at the Coastal Library or post on the Friends of Coastal Library Facebook D&D Club. Each meeting will be set in a rich fantasy world that will be developed and expanded upon by the choices you make while playing. This is a pen and paper role playing game where players will have to investigate mysteries, solve puzzles and defeat a goblin or two. All materials will be provided. For more information, call 267-2809.
Dog Walk: Dog-Harmony hosts the second annual Hops for Hounds Dog Walk from 10 a.m. to noon Feb. 16 at the Grayton Beer Company Taproom. The 2-mile walk is followed by local craft beer, live music by Robert Romans, food from Cafe Rico, a raffle and more. Tickets are $35/adult walkers and $25/child walkers, including hounds. All proceeds from the event benefit Dog-Harmony.
The Market Shops Winter Concerts: The Market Shops at the entrance to Sandestin Golf and Beach Resort presents the free 2019 Winter Concerts from 1-3 p.m. with Ron Adams on Feb. 16 on the main lawn. Bring chairs and blankets.
Love Tracks: A 5K Fun Run/Walk will be held from 7-10:30 a.m. Feb. 16 at Topsail Hill Preserve State Park in Santa Rosa Beach. While on a paved trail through the park race participants will enjoy a beautiful view of longleaf pines, saw palmettos and a variety of other plants and animals. Those running or walking the 5K without a dog will start at 8 a.m. Race entrance fees for the 8 a.m. wave are $10/children and $25/adults. Those running or walking with a dog will start at 8:45 a.m. and entrance fees are $5/children, $10/adults, $15/adults with a dog and $5 for each additional dog. Post-race celebration will be from 8:30-10:30 a.m. and includes food, music and door prizes. Advanced online registration is available until Feb. 13 at www.topsailparkfriends.org. Limited race day registration will be available on a first come first serve basis between 7-8:40 a.m.
Valentine Tour of Homes: The annual Valentine Tour of Homes presented by the CAA will open the doors to several gorgeously designed South Walton homes from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Feb. 16 and 12-4 p.m. Feb. 17. Tickets are available at eventbrite.com and at the door day of event.
Wine Pairing Affair: Pescado Seafood Grill & Rooftop Bar will host its first Wine Pairing Affair, Chocolate and Cheese, from 7-9 p.m. Feb. 17 at 74 Town Hall Road #4b in Rosemary Beach. Guests will enjoy fine wine and food pairings selected by Pescado's resident Sommelier Doruk Gurunlu in collaboration with Executive Chef Ken Duenas. The event is $50/person plus tax and 20 percent gratuity. Reservations needed at 213-4600 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Annual David Seering Concert: The David Seering Benefit Concert for Children in Crisis will be held at 7 p.m. Feb. 18 at Village Church, 101 Matthew Blvd. in Destin. Tickets are $25 and can be purchased at snowbird meetings, https://davidseering.brownpapertickets.com/ or 864-4242.
Moonlight Paddle: Topsail Hill Preserve State Park in Santa Rosa Beach hosts a Moonlight Paddle from 4:30-7:30 p.m. Feb. 18 and March 20. Experience Campbell Lake on a Ranger guided paddling tour. Participants must be experienced canoers/kayakers over 12 years old. Program is $40/person and includes watercraft rental, PFD, paddle, park admission fee, glow sticks, tram ride to Campbell Lake and a donation to the Friends of Topsail Hill Preserve State Park.
Garden Club: The Green Thumb Garden Club will meet at 9:45 a.m. Feb. 20 at the Linkside Bayside Ballroom in Sandestin. The program will feature Orchids by Okaloosa County Master Gardener Lee Vanderpool. Price is $25 or $8 for meeting and program. RSVP at 267-2557 or email@example.com by 8 p.m. Feb. 13.
Bubbly Baytowne: Enjoy an evening full of free champagne and shopping as you Sip and Shop through The Village of Baytowne Wharf from 5-7 p.m. Feb. 21. The event is for 21 and up only.
Blood Drive: The OneBlood Big Red Bus will be at The Market Shops, 9375 Emerald Coast Parkway in Miramar Beach, from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Feb. 22.
Fish Fry Fridays: Saint Rita Catholic Church hosts a fish fry from 3-7 p.m. Feb. 22 and March 8 at 137 Moll Drive in Santa Rosa Beach. Cost for complete meal including drink and dessert is $10 and children under 10 eat free. Take out orders are available. Proceeds benefit community service programs including the St Vincent DePaul Society for the poor. Call 267-2558.
Spring Fling Charity: The Men of Resurrection presents its 10th annual Spring Fling Charity event at 11:45 a.m. Feb. 24 at Resurrection Catholic Church, 259 Miramar Beach Drive in Miramar Beach. This fun family event includes lunch catered by Carrabbas, live entertainment, live and silent auctions, plus a magician and games for the kids. All net proceeds go to local charities. Last year, $27,000 was raised. Tickets are $12/advance and $15/door. Tickets can be purchased at Resurrection Catholic Church, at the door or call 513-295-4073.
ECTC ‘Bad Dates’: Emerald Coast Theatre Company presents “Bad Dates” starring Jennifer Steele March 7-10 . Performances are at 7:30 p.m. Thursday through Saturday and 2 p.m. Sunday at ECTC’s performance space, 560 Grand Boulevard (upstairs) in Grand Boulevard at Sandestin in Miramar Beach. Tickets are $35/adults and $32/seniors (55 years old and up), students, and military. Purchase at emeraldcoastheatre.org/tickets or call 684-0323.
‒ March 28-April 7: “Around the World in 80 Days”
Bernstein, Broadway & Beyond: To continue the worldwide celebrations of the Leonard Bernstein centennial in 2018, Sinfonia Gulf Coast teams up with Broadway star and recording artist Morgan James, star of the concert stage, screen and Broadway, Nicholas Rodriguez, and Bernstein’s oldest daughter, Jamie, to feature the best of Bernstein’s timeless concert and Broadway masterpieces including “West Side Story,” “On the Town,” and “Candide.” Bernstein’s oldest daughter, Jamie, will serve as host for the evening. The event will be held from 7:30-9:30 p.m. March 2 at Village Baptist Church, 101 Matthew Blvd. in Destin. Tickets range from $29.50-$55.00/person and may be purchased at sinfoniagulfcoast.org.
Mardi Gras Dog Parade: The 16th Annual Mardi Gras Dog Parade is a fun time for you and your furry canine friends from 2-4 p.m. March 3 in The Village of Baytowne Wharf. Join in a unique parade dedicated just to dogs, with the theme Bone Appetite.
Fat Tuesday Baytowne Bash Parade: “Laissez les bon temps rouler" (let the good times roll) with the free 17th annual Fat Tuesday Mardi Gras Parade at 5 p.m. March 5 at the Village of Baytowne Wharf. Unique and colorful floats, golf carts, and pick-up trucks roll down the streets. The post-parade celebration continues into the night with street performers, "throws" tossed from balconies and parties at various village merchants.
Free tax preparation: Free Federal income tax preparation is being offered through April 15 for low to middle-income families and individuals, with special attention to senior citizens. This service is sponsored by the AARP Foundation and the IRS. Taxpayers need to bring last year's tax return, Social Security cards for the taxpayer(s) and all dependents, picture ID, and all tax documents received. Taxpayers who wish to itemize deductions must bring appropriate documents. Find a more detailed list at https://www.aarp.org/money/taxes/info-01-2011/important-tax-documents.html.
Walton County Coastal Branch Library
437 Greenway Trail, Santa Rosa Beach
Monday — 12:30-6 p.m.
Tuesday — 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
76 Highway 20W, Freeport
Thursday — 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Note: This location requires appointment sign-up in person.
DeFuniak Springs Library
3 Circle Dr., DeFuniak Springs
Thursday — 12-4:30 p.m.
Tai Chi Tuesday: Topsail Hill Preserve State Park will host Tai Chi Tuesday the third Tuesday of each month. Seated Tai Chi is 8:30-9:15 a.m. and Standing Tai Chi is 9:30-10:15 a.m. Class fee is $13 and does not include park admission. Call the park store at 267-8333 for more information.
Turtle Talk Tuesdays: While enjoying coffee, tea, and sweet treats, a South Walton Turtle Watch volunteer will talk about sea turtles from 9-10 a.m. Tuesdays at Amavida Coffee, 104 North Barrett Square in Rosemary Beach. Ask questions and get information, stickers, and sometimes see preserved specimens.
Family Challenge: Check in at the Topsail Hill Preserve State Park camp store between 9 a.m. and 2 p.m. Saturdays for the challenge package. When completed, return to camp store for a treat.
Baytowne On Ice: Dust off those skates and get in the winter spirit at The Village of Baytowne Wharf’s Baytowne on Ice. Ice rink is open Oct. 27 through Feb. 2. Hours vary daily.
30A Brew Tours: Gulf Coast Go provides South Walton’s only beer tour. The 30A Brew Tour will now make three stops over three hours at Grayton Beer Tap Room, Idyll Hounds Tap Room, and Grayton Beer Brewpub, beginning at 1:45 p.m. every Saturday at the public parking on 283 South in Grayton Beach. The cost of the tour is $55 at https://gulfcoastgofl.com/30abrewtours.
Sunday Pickin’ at The Bay: The Bay Restaurant, on the Choctawhatchee Bay at the southern foot of the 331 bridge, will host Sunday Pickin’ at The Bay every Sunday. Local musician Mike Whitty and Friends will get together in the garden for a jam session. All local musicians are invited to come and join in. Happy Hour is from 7-9 p.m.
Geocache Around Topsail: Explore Topsail Hill Preserve State Park with a special 10 station geocache program from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Wednesdays and Saturdays. Check in at the camp store for your coordinates. Upon completion, return to the camp store for a prize.
Beach Service: Worship at the beach with Hope Lutheran Church from 8-9 a.m. at Ed Walline Regional Beach Access across on Scenic Hwy. 30A in Santa Rosa Beach. Bring a towel, chair, or stand on the boardwalk. Call 267-0322.
45 Central Wine Bar: Enjoy live music with Tropic Breeze from 7-9 p.m. Thursdays in Santa Rosa Beach.
30A Farmers’ Market: Walk through the park like setting with shade trees, a fountain, cobblestone walkways and visit friendly farmers and bakers from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Wednesdays at Seascape Resort Towne Centre in Miramar Beach.
Grand Boulevard Farmers’ Market: The market will be held from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. every Saturday in Grand Park in Miramar Beach between Cantina Laredo and Tommy Bahama’s. Vendors will offer locally sourced food-based items including produce, eggs, milk, butter, grass-fed beef, chicken, lamb, and pork, honey, pickled vegetables and gourmet jams. Market is held on Wednesdays from Memorial Day through Labor Day.
Seaside Farmers Market: Get your pick of fresh produce, baked goods, dairy products, native plants and other unique offerings Saturday from 8 a.m. to noon in the Amphitheatre behind Raw & Juicy. Enjoy special cooking demos and activities.
Vintage Market: New in Santa Rosa Beach is the Vintage Market at Elmore’s Landing from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. every Sunday. Check out various artists and unique vintage finds along with food and produce.