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Category Archive: Panama City Beach

Florida's Wildest Adventures

Feeling like a cup of crazy? Want to scream like a little girl? These offbeat adventures are designed to thrill. Walk on Waves For an utterly unique experience, grab a flight on the JetLev, a custom-designed, water-propelled jetpack. You'll feel like the childhood superhero of your dreams, weightless and free, suspended in the sky with nothing above or below you. Hover on the water's surface, rocket across it at 30 miles per hour or soar as high as three stories into the air. You can snag a flight at the TradeWinds Island Grand on St. Pete Beach or at Hawks Cay Resort in Duck Key . Ride a Rattler Zip lining features climbs up dizzyingly high platforms and speedy flights over the treetops; roller coasters feature twists, turns and drops designed to leave your stomach in another county. A combination of the two experiences more than doubles the thrills. “The Rattlesnake,” the nation's first zip line rollercoaster, has just slithered into the forest at Florida EcoSafaris at Forever Florida in St. Cloud . You'll launch from a 65-foot platform and fly at speeds up to 20 mph as you whoop, swoop and dip through 1,000 feet of adrenaline-inducing adventure. Fly Like an Eagle Hang gliding lets you experience flying the way a bird does. You feel the air against your face and see the world shrink into a patchwork below you; you shift your weight and ride the currents of the sky. Here in the Sunshine State you get airborne by towing up to the desired altitude behind a powered plane instead of launching from a mountain. You can try tandem hang gliding at Quest Air Hang Gliding in Groveland (west of Orlando ), The Florida Ridge between Clewiston and LaBelle , Wallaby Ranch in Davenport and Paradise Hang Gliding in Islamorada in the Florida Keys . Take a Flying Leap If you're looking for an extreme scream, try bungee jumping. At the Track Family Recreation Center in Destin , you'll tumble off a 75-foot platform before getting snapped back into space by the elastic cord. You'll spring up and down several times, ending your experience by being lowered into an oversize airbag. Cobra Adventure Park in Panama City Beach offers the Vertical Accelerator Bungee Ride. This 'reverse bungee' rockets you towards the heavens before treating you to a freefall of 160 feet. For the ultimate freefall and glide, opt for SkyCoaster at Fun Spot Amusement Park in Kissimmee . At 300 feet high, it's the world's tallest SkyCoaster. Jump out of a Perfectly Good Airplane Skydiving is the very definition of radical. First, you climb into an airplane and fly to heights of more than two miles. Next, you jump out of that perfectly good airplane. You free fall at a cheek-rippling 120 to 130 miles per hour for 60 seconds. Finally, you deploy your chute and float back to terra firma. With its abundance of open fields, flat terrain and mild winters, Florida is ideal for the sport. You can thrill to this adventure in every corner of the state, including Skydive City in Zephyrhills , Skydive Jacksonville , Skydive Palm Beach in Wellington and the Florida Skydiving Center in Lake Wales .

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Florida's Wildest Adventures

Pirates Of The High Seas Fest

A week of fun and adventures awaits all those who come out and play at the Pirates of the High Seas Fest in Panama City Beach . Events will take place all this week and the festival will culminate over Columbus Day weekend with parades, live music, costume contests, scavenger hunts, fireworks and 8,000 beach balls being dropped on the crowd at Pier Park ! It’s a wave of mischief you won’t want to miss! Want to win $1000? Beginning on Sunday, Sept. 30th, a clue will be given to guide you to a business that has info on where the “prize coin” is hidden. The last clue will be given on Friday, Oct. 5th. The person that finds the hidden treasure will win $1,000 CASHl (Adults 18 and up can participate in the scavenger hunt.) Find the daily clues at their Facebook page and in the News Herald. For more info and to see schedule of fun events for adults and kids, log on to their website: www.visitpanamacitybeach.com .

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Pirates Of The High Seas Fest

Share A Sunset With Your Lover Month

As if July wasn’t hot enough, rumor has it that it’s “Share a Sunset with Your Lover” month! From what I can gather, there is a couples’ therapist, Melissa Chamberlin, Ph.D ., who wrote the book, Share a Sunset with Your Lover , to help couples get closer. And she has proclaimed the month of July as the perfect time to get back on track and heat things up by sharing a sunset. Sounds good to me… After all, is there anything better than watching the sun splash her vibrant hues of orange, pink and purple across the sky as she sinks low on the horizon – as you snuggle with your sweetie? It’s the end of a beautiful day with promise of a new beginning. (And, we girls know that the sunset projects the most magnificent lighting that miraculously takes years off your face and gives you quite the rosy glow, naturally.) So, grab a blanket, maybe a bottle of wine (don’t forget the opener) and find a favorite spot on Florida’s 825 miles of beaches to share a sunset. Then, post a photo on Facebook ! Show us your favorite spot to watch the sunset in the Sunshine State.

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Share A Sunset With Your Lover Month

Favorite Florida Ice Cream Shops: Sweet!

Since July is National Ice Cream Month , and I happen to be a big fan of this sweet and creamy treat, I decided to pay homage to my favorite ice cream shops around the Sunshine State. If your favorite didn't make my list, tell me all about it on Facebook . Boca Raton Those lucky enough to be staying at the Boca Raton Resort & Club, a Waldorf Astoria Resort, can dine at Serendipity – of New York fame. Be sure to have their iconic Frrrozen Hot Chocolate. Worth every calorie. Dania Jaxson’s Ice Cream Parlour and Restaurant opened in 1956 and all of their ice creams and topping are made daily onsite. Check out their world-class automobile license plate collection, too. Daytona Beach Shores Cow Licks has lots of homemade ice cream flavors including favorites like birthday cake, death by chocolate and pralines and cream. There’s an arcade for the kids and you can order a hot dog or bbq sandwich (but the ice cream is the star). Jacksonville Since 1948, Dreamette has been serving up delicious soft-serve ice cream. They also serve milkshakes, floats, sundaes and slushes. Best of all, they're open seven days a week. Madiera Beach Kilwin’s in the Johns Pass Boardwalk is a great place for a creamy cone of goodness. They have everything from chocolates to candy apples, too. Kilwin’s has several Florida locations including South Beach, Fort Myers Beach, Downtown Hollywood, Panama City Beach and others. Miami Across from University of Miami, Swenson’s is an institution that’s famous for its thin, tasty wafers that adorn their sundaes, as well as their freshly made sandwiches, burgers and salads. Hot fudge bonanza sundae is a favorite. St. Augustine Tedi’s Old Tyme Ice Cream is made in small batches and their homemade waffle cones are their signature item. It’s located right in the historic downtown area so as you stroll, you can duck in and get a scoop. They also make hand-squeezed lemonade, espresso and other goodies. Tallahassee Barb’s Gourmet Brittles is on Lake Ella in the Cottage Shops and the brittle is amazing. But this story is about ice cream – so try their homemade brittle flavors like Orange Cream Pecan, “Mintal Escape” Hot Chocolate, and their “Whatever” flavor, a combo of whatever doesn't fit in the buckets.

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Favorite Florida Ice Cream Shops: Sweet!

Florida's Favorite Family Beaches

Fabulous family-friendly beach getaways share some qualities. The beaches are gradually sloping, so your little ones can wade in and out of the water easily, and the waters are shallow. They feature ample restrooms and showers as well as attentive life guards. They offer plenty to do, for everyone from tiny tots and teens to mom and dad – and it’s as obvious as fins on a fish that affordable accommodations are a must. These Florida beaches offer all of this and more. Read on to see which ones sound like your family’s perfect cup of sunshine. Clearwater Beach Lively Clearwater Beach , on the Central West coast, greets you with parasailing adventures, rides on Captain Memo’s Pirate Cruise and stunning views from Pier 60 . Its luscious, sugar-soft sand and clear, shallow waters make for the perfect family playground – and, not to mention, a great place for mom and dad to relax. Nightly sunset celebrations at Pier 60, countless water sports and family-friendly resorts promise to keep your whole crew entertained. pullquote While you’re in the area, make sure to splash over to Clearwater Marine Aquarium to see Winter the Dolphin, star of the movie Dolphin Tale . Siesta Key Farther south on the Gulf, award-winning Siesta Key boasts activities like water sports, snorkeling and beach volleyball; a charming village brimming with affordable restaurants and shops; and the convenience of a trolley. Erin Duggan, communications director for the Sarasota CVB, says, “Siesta Key is a great spot for families because it offers such a variety of things to do, right at their fingertips.” In addition to the charms of the town, the public beach area features a concession stand, an ice cream shop and a playground, and it’s one of softest, whitest beaches your toes will ever encounter. Amelia Island In northeast Florida, historic Amelia Island is a laid-back destination that boasts miles of wide, quiet, Atlantic beaches. The whole gang will love kayaking the pristine waters, horseback riding on the beach and discovering history firsthand at Fort Clinch State Park . Accommodations range from affordable hotels to quaint B&Bs to upscale resorts. As Gil Langley, president and CEO of the Amelia Island TDC, points out, “Both the Ritz-Carlton and Omni Amelia Island Plantation offer amazing children’s programs, giving parents quality, guilt-free time to explore on their own.” Make sure to visit Fernandina’s Beach ’s unique shops and eateries – and don’t leave without indulging your sweet tooth at Fernandina’s Fantastic Fudge . Panama City Beach This vibrant, affordable northwest Florida destination is home to 27 miles of stunning, white-sand beaches, which mean there’s a Gulf-front room with your family’s name on it. President and CEO of the Panama City Beach CVB Dan Rowe says, “We offer something for everyone – from our array of family-friendly restaurants and enriching eco-adventures to exhilarating water sports and interactive attractions.” There’s more: Pier Park offers a staggering 1 million square feet of shopping and entertainment, including the kid-friendly Miracle Strip at Pier Park featuring classic amusement park rides and a butterfly garden. Plus, the city’s event calendar is overflowing with family-friendly happenings. Daytona Beach The family atmosphere of this famed Central Florida destination is just as exciting as its car racing tradition. Throw your gear in the car and drive out to snag your perfect beach spot. Or, opt for the car-free beach. Recreational vendors here are often located right on the beach, making for ultimate convenience. As Daytona Beach CVB spokeswoman Tangela Boyd explains, “They offer everything from snacks to sunscreen and experiences that include bicycle, scooter, boogie board and ATV rentals, and even surfing lessons.” Other family favorites include the Daytona Lagoon water park, the Marine Science Center , Ponce Inlet Lighthouse & Museum and, of course, Daytona International Speedway .

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Florida's Favorite Family Beaches

Things Are Heating Up In Panama City Beach

Although summer is right around corner, why wait to take that vacation? The heat is on now at the Holiday Inn Resort, Panama City Beach . They’ve fired up the entertainment, opened their new Ocean Front Day Spa and the Dive-In Movies are back in full swing. What about the entertainment? The short answer is yes! You can take in a Vegas Style Variety Show with Todd Herendeen, an over-the-top magic show with Merlin Award winner Noah Wells and relax by the pool with Jim Lawson spinning feel-good music. And of course, the Polynesian Fire & Dance Show will heat up the pool deck in more ways than one. They’ve also added a 3 Brothers Pizza on the pool deck, between the Bamboo Grill and the Oasis Bar. Tell me about the Ocean Front Day Spa A welcome addition, this day mini spa offers a variety of treatments from Hot Stone Massages and facials to body treatments and mani-pedis. It’s all done with the guest’s convenience in mind. You can come straight from the beach to the spa, shower the sand off and enjoy your treatment. When you’re done, just meander back to the pool or beach and enjoy the rest of the day. Hot Deals Spring and summer deals are now available online and there are plenty to choose from. That's one of the reasons I love this resort (besides the fact that they have everything a family could want). The beaches are so gorgeous and the onsite amenities are beyond extraordinary. Great pool, Aqualand for little kids, onsite lounge, new spa, live shows… and I haven’t even mentioned their fantastic Kids Club yet! For more info on how you and your family can join the fun, call 800-633-0266 or visit the Holiday Inn Resort , Panama City Beach online.

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Things Are Heating Up In Panama City Beach

Photo: Pier Park Butterfly Pavilion, Panama City Beach

The butterfly pavilion is just one of many family attractions at Pier Park in Panama City Beach.

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Photo: Pier Park Butterfly Pavilion, Panama City Beach

Rescued Atlantic Spotted Dolphin Being Monitored Around The Clock

Did you know that SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment has helped rescue and rehabilitate more than 20,000 animals in their 45 years? In fact, their animal rescue team is on call 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. ‪‪ They also work closely with other marine centers around the state and the country, like Gulf World Marine Park in Panama City Beach. Just this week, a stranded Atlantic spotted dolphin was rescued by Gulf World but due to a lack of rehabilitation space, they called SeaWorld Orlando for help. After being stabilized, the 240 lb female spotted dolphin was transported to Orlando, where she is being monitored closely. Today’s update report states that the little lady is showing good progress: she is eating on a regular basis and is receiving fluids. They are cautiously optimistic and continue to monitor her around the clock. Well done! For more status updates on this beautiful creature, visit my Facebook page .

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Rescued Atlantic Spotted Dolphin Being Monitored Around The Clock

 
Emerald Beach #1226 http://t.co/l60ZFDVaX115 hours ago