Gobble, Gobble season is upon us. This is our favourite time to spend with our families as we gather around the dinner table with cousins and family members we haven’t seen in months. It is a time of reflecting on past memories, cultivating new ones and reminding ourselves to be grateful of all the beauty this earth provides for us on a daily basis. There are families that come together and dive into the world of old traditions and there are some who are just beginning to create new ones.
But of course, what a better day of flag football in the front yard, sitting in front of the big screen to watch this years football teams rally it off, while the bountiful of foods is in the kitchen cooking waiting to be devoured.
So we thought at the Solely Beachfront Team, we would share some of our favourite holiday dishes! Bon Appetit!
To many of us here by the Gulf, the hurricane season is wrapping up and the humidity is taken a turn for the better. So that means cool weather & fall activities. What better way to enjoy this beautiful shift in temperature then by picking out some pumpkins from our favourite venues to carve and sharing some warm apple cider with the family.
One of our favourites is Holland Farms which is located in Milton, Fl. They are open Mon-Sat 8AM-6PM and Sunday 9AM-6PM. It is a family owned and operated peanut , produce, and row crop farm. There are hayrides, pumpkin patch picking. Additional kid friendly activities like the sand box, cart racing and the petting zoo. There is even a corn maze to get lost in while you enjoy their famous boiled peanuts that are grown on site. Children 2 and under are free to activities. Inquire here for pricing for different tickets based on activities! Totally recommending the full admission tickets!
Labor day is this weekend and with that comes the beautiful transition into fall. Whose ready for a little chilly weather and pumpkin patches? What’s even better than that is fall by the beaches. An alluring, crisp morning reading a book and drinking some hot green tea as the sun rises and you are enjoying the beach alone before the joys of the holiday wake everyone.
Destin host a few events for labor day weekend. We want to share some of our favorite events. We recommend being safe, keeping your distance and wearing a mask, but having fun none-the-less.
Labor Day Weekend at The Palms Bistro
Dueling Pianos all weekend Thirday through Saturday 8pm to 11:30PM!
Friday 9/4 Ron Adams pm
Saturday 9/5 Kelsey Hickman 7pm
Sunday 9’6 Kelsey Hickman 11am-2pm
12 Eleven 6pm-10pm
Come hangout enjoy good food, good drinks, & good vibes.
Labor Day Concert Celebration
HarborWalk Village is sending our sizzling summer off with a band. Live music all weekend long with Fireworks over the Destin Harbor, Sunday night!
Saturday 9/5 Flash Flood 7pm
Sunday 9-6 Tobacco Road 7pm
Fireworks 9pm followed by firespinning
We hope you have a beautiful holiday and enjoy the beach, on us 😉
Below is a list of beach necessities your family may want to take into consideration in packing for your vacation. These are some of our families favorites!
- This tent is great for keeping your babies out of the sun, and away from bugs. It sets itself up, and comes with two tent pegs to secure it in the sand or ground around it. The tent is made with UV protective fabric and a super lightweight mesh making it breathable and easily portable.
- The beach bag cooler has been a game charger for our family. It has many pockets on the outside for cell phones, sunglasses, etc, and then a detachable compartment on the bottom that keeps cold foods protected and cool throughout your day at the beach. This bag has a large surface area with a mesh top making it easy to take to the beach and throw sand toys in.
- This beach wagon is helpful to families who want to bring each of these necessities to the beach in one trip. With heavy traffic on roads near the beach, this wagon assists in packing all of the heavy water bottles, towels, and beach toys into one area. It is also easy to roll through the sand, and easy to clean out after a long day at the beach.
- This beach blanket has come in handy with many kids running around in and out of the water all day. They can run on over and get the blanket wet and sany, but it dries quickly and is sand proof allowing the sand to just run right off it. It can be staked down in each corner, making it comfortable to lay out on even in the wind.
- Goggles are always a smart thing to have when coming to the beach with kids. The salt water to the eyes is not always ideal and these are some of our favorite kid goggle brands. These goggles are very durable and last much longer than dollar store goggles.
- A backpack chair is an item that is made to make your load lighter. It is nice when walking to the beach from anywhere and frees up your hands. Chairs on the beach are also very handy when you are looking to stay less sandy or just laying out and enjoying the sun. These chairs are lower to the ground allowing you to lay out more and put your legs in the warm sand.
- A parent favorite has to be the amazing brumate. These helpful can holders will keep your drink cold from start to finish. It is a double wall, stainless steel koozie. It does not sweat, and it allows you to drink in style. It can be used for alcoholic beverages and some soda and energy drinks.
- GoPod’s are helpful when it comes to babies on the go. It allows them to stand up without letting their feet touch any undesired surfaces. It also has holders for drinks and snacks. These are also adjustable and grow with the baby.
- Much like the baby tent seen in (1) this tent protects your baby from the outside, while allowing them to stay cool in their own safe pool
**Helpful Hack – baby powder is very useful in removing sand from all areas
Rumor on the street is, staying in is the new going out. With the increase in COVID-19 cases, home cooked meals are making a comeback. We are so thankful you chose to stay with us, and so we would like to provide you with our favorite homemade breakfast, lunch and dinner. Feel free to use all of the kitchen utensils and get the whole family involved in this kitchen frenzy.
TIP** stop at the grocery store on your way in. The farther out, the less clustered the store will be; it is also a way to kill time before your 4PM check in.
- Pillsbury Cinnamon Rolls
- Your Choice of Toppings
- Chocolate chips
- Coconut shavings
- Preheat your oven to recommended temperature on the package
- Unroll each cinnamon roll onto a non stick baking sheet and stretch it out length wise.
- Have each person fill their stick with whatever toppings they please
- Fold the cinnamon stick in half and begin to twist it together
- Place sticks in the oven for allotted time on the package
- Place icing (provided in Pillsbury can) in a separate bowl and heat in microwave to desired temperature and consistency
- Let cinnamon sticks cool down
- Serve and either dip each stick into a bowl of icing, or drizzle over the top of each
- If you want you can also add powdered sugar for extra taste and a finished look
- Sauce Ingredients (serving 4)
- ¾ cup of sour cream
- ¾ cup of salsa
- 1½ Tbsp of taco seasoning
- Wrap Ingredients
- 4 large tortillas (wrap size)
- ⅓ cup of lettuce (shredded)
- ½ of a tomato (diced)
- 1 whole avocado (diced)
- ½ cup che Instructions Mix together all sauce ingredients in one bowl until blended
Spread sauce on each tortilla leaving a small border on each
Sprinkle lettuce, tomato, avocado, cheese and chicken evenly among each wrap
Crush Fritos in separate bowl and sprinkle over the top of each wrap
Drizzle remaining sauce over the ingredients
Fold each end in and wrap tightly
ENJOY! ddar cheese (shredded)
- 2 cups of Cooked chicken (grilled or breaded) (shredded)
- 1 cup of crushed Fritos
- Mix together all sauce ingredients in one bowl until blended
- Spread sauce on each tortilla leaving a small border on each
- Sprinkle lettuce, tomato, avocado, cheese and chicken evenly among each wrap
- Crush Fritos in separate bowl and sprinkle over the top of each wrap
- Drizzle remaining sauce over the ingredients
- Fold each end in and wrap tightly
- Ingredients (serving 8)
- 2 lbs Boneless skinless chicken breasts
- ¼ cup of olive oil (we provide this for you @solelybeachfront)
- ¼ tsp of pepper (we provide this for you @solelybeachfront)
- 3 tbsp of ranch seasoning
- 16 oz of bacon
- Skewers (if using wooden ones, make sure to soak first)
- (optional onions, peppers, or mushrooms)
- Slice chicken breasts into small 1” or 2” pieces
- In a small bowl, mix together olive oil, pepper, and ranch seasoning
- Marinate the chicken breasts in the ranch mixture above for 3-4 hours
- Microwave the bacon on high for 90 seconds and then cut them into 2” pieces as well
- Thread the chicken, bacon, and other desired ingredients onto the skewer until it is full
- Place on the preheated (350 degrees) grill
- Grill for 6-8 minutes on each side or until chicken has reached 160 degrees and is fully cooked
We hope these meals have helped you with meal preparation or have sparked some new ideas of what to cook in our kitchen. If you have any new recipes you’ve used in our kitchen, share with us through social media! Post a picture to your instagram or facebook using the hashtag #cookingwithsolely and tag us @solelybeachfront.
Destin is the best place to watch those beautiful Red, White & Blue fireworks with the backdrop of the Emerald blue ocean. To make it easier for you, we have created a list of our favorite places. Our advice would be to get there early, set up camp and enjoy the show. Each location we have chosen has the family-friendly environment in mind! Happy Fourth!
Emerald Grande at Harbor Walk Village
Independence day three day festivities on the Harbor-
Thursday, July 2nd–
All American Hero Salute & Vintage Flyover 6:30pm
The Modern Eldorados 7-9pm
Friday, July 3rd–
Flash Flood 7-9pm
Saturday, July 4th–
Eli Hannon & The Manly Hero 7:00-9:00 pm
*On-site parking $10
Hilton Sandestin Beach
Kids Krew Carnival 10am-2pm
Live Music- Ben Loftin & the Family 4pm-9pm
Warbirds Flyover 7:30pm
Fireworks show 9pm
*Poolside activities are offered exclusively to guest of Hilton Sandestin Beach
Red, White & Baytowne
Live music on the events plaza stage from DonovanKeith at 7pm.
Sandestin 4th of July BBQ-Baytowne Marina
Enjoy mouthwatering BBQ favourites, live entertainment, face painting, bounce house, and much more from 6-9pm.
Fireworks over the Choctawhatchee Bay is at 9:15pm
Here is a link to purchase the tickets- https://www.bigtickets.com/events/sandestin-golf-and-beach-resort/4th-of-july-bbq?_ga-ft=1U+vXk.0.0.0.0.1UPjx9-ASN-4Y7-B_P-nALHpHRb.0.0
Destin isn’t known to be “the Luckiest Fishing Village” for nothing. There is actually a geographical reason behind it. However we won’t bore you with this step. We can skip to the part of what exactly that means! Loads and loads of fish in a contained area. This means you can spend all day on the water and expect to come home to a variety of fish. It will definitely be worthwhile. What makes this even better is that you can have your own private boat or can rent from a number of boat rental places from four, five and six-hour trips to overnight adventures.
Some of the best beach locations for fishing are as follows:
The Destin Bridge
Is home to Sheepshead, Gray snapper, Grouper, Redfish, and Spadefish. Located on the Gulf Breeze Parkway, you can walk around to find different spots that may be less crowded.
East and West Jetty
Due to tidal changes, this area is a prime feeding ground for a large variety of fish like Sheepshead, Flounder, Reedfish, Trout, Spanish Mackerel, King Mackerel, Shark, and baitfish. Just to forewarn, this area is constructed of large boulders. So it is best without young children. West Jetty access is best by parking on the southwest end of the Destin HWY 98 bridge and walking along the shore of the east pass. Locating the East Jetty is best by turning south off of HWY 98 by Target onto Gulfshore Drive. Follow Gulfshore Drive to the end of the street, along the south side of the Destin Harbor.
Coast Guard Station
This area has grass beds and a rock wall that create the ideal environment for a lot of different fish. Trout, Redfish, Mullet, Ladyfish, and Pinfish are popular in this area. Although certain spots are marked as “keep out”areas, there are plenty of pockets where anglers are allowed to fish. Located by the USCG Station Destin.
You can find Ladyfish, Redfish, Trout, Jacks, and lots of baitfish. It is a white sand peninsula located at the end of Gulf Shore Drive on Holiday Isle.
Okaloosa Island Fishing Pier
This area is great to buy fish and you don’t need a license here. It is also perfect for anglers of all ages and skills levels. You can catch a wide variety of saltwater fish. It is located 4 miles west of the Destin Bridge.
Offshore Deep Sea Fishing
Snapper, Grouper, Mahi Mahi, King Mackeral, and much more. Check out https://oneshotcharters.com/ (This is a smaller 24ft boat for 4 people but extremely flexible fishing $750 for 6 hour trips OR https://www.swooppartyboat.com/ This is a Large Boats 50+ people $69/ person for 6 hour trips.
Walton County Beaches
As of May 1st at 12:01AM, the beaches will be open. There will be no restrictions on hours of use, but activities will be limited to walking, jogging, fishing, swimming, paddleboarding, surfing and boating. There is no sunbathing, which means specifically laying down. However, you can have a chair and an umbrella. Beach Service is currently unavailable; along with no beach bonfires. As long as you maintain a 6 feet separation and a no more than 10 in your party you should be fine.
Okaloosa County Beaches
From May 1st until May 9th, the beaches and the pier will be open from 6:30 a.m. to 9 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. daily. All beach activities, including commercial ones such as weddings and beach chair/umbrella rentals, will be allowed whenever the beaches are open. Vendors, like chair rentals, are permitted. The Board of County Commissioners is scheduled to review and take final action on Tuesday, May 5th to evaluate opening the beaches all day with restrictions.
Effective May 4th, all restaurants and food establishments are allowed to re-open, with full outdoor seating. Indoor seating will be allowed at 25 percent of building capacity, per the Florida governor.
- American Lunch will be serving free lunch to those in need Monday-Friday from 11 am – 1 pm at the following restaurants:
- Harbor Docks – Monday, Wednesday & Friday
- La Paz/Local Market – Tuesday
- Camilles at Crystal Beach – Thursday
- The Following Restaurants in Destin Commons are offering take-out orders:
- Formula Fresh
- Redbrick Pizza
- The Crab Trap, Destin
- Stewby’s Seafood Shanty
- La Paz
- Local Market
- Camille’s at Crystal Beach
- Tijuana Flats
- Destin Brewery – Growler Fills
- Giovanni’s One89
- The Palms Bistro – Coffee orders to-go
- Buffalo’s Reef
- Ben & Jerry’s
- Bonfish Grill
- Cantina Laredo
- First Watch, The Daytime Cafe
- Grimaldi’s Pizzeria
- Healthy Coast Meals
- LongHorn Steakhouse
- Miller’s Ale House of Destin
- Moe’s Original Bar B Que
- Nothing Bundt Cakes
- O’Quigley’s Seafood Steamer
- Olive Garden
- Panera Bead
- The Red Door Saloon
- Shrimp Basket
Resturants with Indoor/Outdoor seating
Mcguires Irish Pub
is offering a curbside to-go menu. It will be 11AM- 8PM daily. This restaurant is good if you need a break from seafood and you are craving a good steak and cold beer. They also offer a fantastic Sunday brunch that comes with bingets and Irish coffees. Call 850)650-0000 to place your orders.
is doing curbside pick-up only from 3PM-8PM Monday-Saturday. They are well known for its delicious and unpretentious food. Creative menus of heavy tapas allow for the interest of foodies and wine lovers galore to fight for their claim. If you would like to order from this beautiful restaurant call 850)650-9820.
is open for take out only. This is a local favorite for authentic Italian Cuisine. They have fare and traditional pizza that are not drool proof. To order at this fine establishment call 850)650-5980.
The Perfect Pig
is doing delivery and take out for up to 3 miles from the restaurant. They are open for lunch and dinner. This establishment features local grouper for dinner and award winning pork for lunch. Call 850)660-1591 to order.
The water brings warmth, especially in the spring and summer, but even the best places can produce a lot of rain before the sunshine. After a beautiful rain shower there is a glimmer over the water that sparkles almost brighter than the sunniest of days.
But the Question of the day still remains: We have our whole family on this long vacation; small kids included that are relentlessly restless for some beach action. What do we do?
This fun attraction is a great place to be to enjoy a piece of the ocean life the way the locals do everyday. There is an array of encounters you and the family can indulge in. Discovering Turtles is a family favorite. Did you know that they have an excellent sense of direction? Sea turtles can detect the Earth’s Magnetic field and use it as a compass. Yeah most of us either until going to this informative marine life exhibit.
The Gulfarium is located in the charming area of Fort Walton Beach that host this family-friendly adventure park that loves to educate visitors on sea life, conservation and just plain fun with the kids.
AMC MOVIES AND DESTIN COMMONS SHOPPING
Destin Commons is home to some of the majorly chic malls and local boutiques . It has around 90 diverse and endless hips and resturants for your budget-friendly needs and high-end desires. If the kids get tired of lugging around mom on her shopping spree, they can just skurry on over toe the AMC theare that is a state-of-the-art moviegoing kind of experience with your choice of IMAX screen, RealD #D and much more. Rainy days are a perfect time to settle in on a movie that brings the whole family to tears; take that as you will with a comedy or a sappy romantic.
Escape Zone 60
Want a little bit of a mind challenge for you and your family. Destin has a few escape rooms that encompass “real life” experiences. Destin’s Escape rooms have situations where you can solve a crime scene, scope out a UFO landing, or conquer an apolcalypse,. It is the best place to get the family together and truly connect under a 60 minute challenge with clues, hints and anything you find that guide you to your escape.