Walton County Master Gardeners host pruning lecture Dec. 3

masterlogoThe Walton County Master Gardeners will continue their popular lecture series on Wednesday, Dec. 3, 2014.  This series is designed with the local home gardener in mind. Andrea Schnapp, an arborist and master gardener, will give a program on pruning.  She will cover proper techniques for woody ornamentals and trees.  Use and care of tools will also be discussed.  Participants will learn what months are best for pruning particular plants.  Landscape plants are valuable investments and their care will keep them happy and looking their best.

The program will be held at the Padgett Park Community Room, 810 J.D. Miller Road north off US 98 just west of US 331 in Santa Rosa Beach.  It will be from 10 – 11:30 a.m.  Light refreshments will be served and master gardeners will be on hand to take gardening questions.  Soil testing kits and instruction will be available for $8.

The lecture series is free and open to the public, however, seating is limited and reservations are required.  Call Cheryl at 850-892-8172 by Dec. 1 to reserve your seat.  These and other programs are offered by the UF/IFAS Walton County Extension.

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Florida lifetime sportsman license costs for youth reduced Nov. 24 – Dec. 31, 2014

fwclogo20072On Nov. 13, 2014, Governor Rick Scott signed an executive order authorizing the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission to offer Lifetime Sportsman’s Licenses for Florida children and young adults at a greatly reduced cost. The license now costs up to $1000 but from Nov. 24 through Dec. 31, 2014, the price will be reduced to $500 for Florida residents who are 21-years-old and younger. The lifetime license covers saltwater and freshwater recreational fishing, hunting and most associated permits.

Governor Scott said, “Our state’s natural treasures give families wonderful opportunities for both fishing and hunting from the Panhandle to the Keys. This Lifetime Sportsman’s License will provide Florida’s youth with the opportunity to spend time outdoors with their families. Fishing and hunting are time-honored traditions in our state, and I encourage all Floridians to spend some time enjoying the great outdoors.”

A Lifetime Sportsman’s License allows fishing and hunting in Florida for the rest of the license holder’s life, even if that person is no longer a resident of the state.

The license may be purchased at all Florida county tax collectors’ offices, online at License.MyFWC.com and by calling toll-free 888-FISH-FLORIDA (888-347-4356). Residency must be verified. For more information about a Lifetime Sportsman’s License and this limited time offer, visit http://myfwc.com/license/recreational/lifetime-licenses/

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South Walton holiday parade and Seaside lighting of Christmas tree Nov. 29

 It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas…which means it’s time to show off your holiday spirit with the Annual South Walton Holiday Parade, Saturday, November 29 beginning at 4 p.m. As is the case each and every year, the parade will stage in front of the Seagrove Plaza (home to Garrett Realty & Bruno’s Pizza), and roll down Scenic Highway 30A, past the rows of spectators and end in Seaside.

The celebration continues with Turn on the Town at the conclusion of the parade as Santa and Mrs. Claus take the stage in the Seaside Amphitheater. Santa, master of ceremonies for the evening, will invite all of the kids to join him in front of the stage for a sing-a-long before magically brightening up the town.

Children had the opportunity to tell Santa what they were wishing for this Chritmas in Seaside Nov. 28.

Then, the countdown begins in unison to “Turn on the Town” and exactly on cue, the magnificent 24-foot tree lights up; all of downtown Seaside is illuminated with bright, holiday lights! Following the lighting, bring your camera for photos with the jolly man from 5:30 – 8 p.m.

Want to be in the parade? Click here to download 2014 Holiday Parade Registration Form

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Walton county fishing report for Nov. 12

flounder1Fishing is good!

Choctawhatchee Bay area: Flounder bite is on with some catching with hook and line. Still trouts and reds along the causeway.

River: Hybrids at the mouths of the river, and a few crappie being caught.

Click here for fishing forecast

Bay and river report brought to you by Copeland’s. “Where the locals shop and the tourists are welcome.”

Click here to find out more about Copeland’s.
Copeland’s Gun and Tackle Shop
17290 U.S. Hwy. 331 S
Freeport, Florida 32439

(850) 835-4277
Store hours:
Mon. – Fri.: 6 a.m. – 5:30 p.m.
Sat.: 6 a.m. – 4 p.m.
Sun.: Closed

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South Walton Fire District hosting Caring and Sharing Angel Tree

angeltreeSouth Walton Fire District is once again sponsoring the Caring and Sharing “Angel Tree.”

Each holiday season the “Angel Tree” is filled with names of children throughout Walton County that otherwise may not receive Christmas gifts without your assistance. This year the Fire District will receive over 300 angel names.

“Angels” will be available for selection beginning Wednesday, November 12, 2014 from 9:00 a.m-4:00 p.m. at Station 3/Headquarters, 911 North County Highway 393, Santa Rosa Beach.

Gifts may be returned to Station 3/Headquarters no later than Monday, December 8, 2014.

Please reach into your heart and choose your own special child or family to help make their Christmas wishes come true.

For more information or to schedule a special time to select an angel name, please contact Robbie Lund, Administrative Assistant at Station 3/Headquarters, 850-267-1298, via email at rlund@swfd.org or visit their website at www.swfd.org

 

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Honor our veterans on Nov. 11

The military Branch Flags raised at Nov. 11, 2013 ceremony at the Freeport Veterans Memorial. Lori Ceier/Walton Outdoors

The military Branch Flags raised at Nov. 11, 2013 ceremony at the Freeport Veterans Memorial. Lori Ceier/Walton Outdoors

Ceremony at DeFuniak Springs Airport

The City of DeFuniak Springs in partnership with the American Veterans, the Disabled American Veterans, the Veterans of Foreign Wars, and program participants wish to invite you to the 9th Annual Veterans Day Program to honor the men and women who have fought for the freedom of this Country.

The program will be held at the DeFuniak Springs Municipal Airport, located at 1931 US Highway 90 West, DeFuniak Springs, Florida. The program will begin at 11:00 a.m. on November 11, 2014 with Congressman Jeff Miller as guest speaker.

Enjoy free entry into Florida State Parks along with discounts at many area restaurants such as Applebee’s, Olive Garden, Chiles, Starbucks, Krispy Kreme, Outback Steakhouse, and Golden Corral. Contact your local restaurant to inquire about their specials.

 

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Take a guided hike along No Name Lake at Topsail Hill Preserve State Park Nov. 21

topsailDate/time: Friday Nov. 21st, 3:30 – 5 p.m.

Topsail Hill Preserve State Park invites you on a hike to view the parks natural beauty. This ranger led hike will take you through several of the ecosystems that make this park unique. The walk will culminate on the shore of No Name Lake and perhaps with a glimpse of the resident alligator. Please no open toe shoes. This is an all ages program. Enter the park through the main gate and the staff will direct you to Tram Stop 1. Outside tours canceled during severe weather.

A $6.00 entry admission per vehicle into the park. Topsail Hill Preserve State Park is located at 7525 W. Scenic Highway 30A, Santa Rosa Beach, Florida 32459. For more information, call (850) 267-8330 ::MAP::

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Pioneer Day at Rocky Bayou State Park Nov. 15

pioneerdayThe Friends of Emerald Coast State Parks are hosting Pioneer Day on Saturday, November 15, 2014 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Fred Gannon Rocky Bayou State Park in Niceville (4281 State Highway 20, just east of the Rocky Bayou Bridge).   It is a free, family-oriented event and everyone is invited. Park fees are waived and food will be available for purchase. For more information, call the park at 833-9144. The rain date is Sunday, November 16, 2014 from noon to 3 p.m.

Activities will include making rag dolls, dipping candles, learning pioneer survival skills, and playing old fashioned games. Demonstrations will include campfire cooking, basket weaving and making shingles.  A 19th Century chuck wagon will be displayed as well as tools and implements used in the lumbering and turpentining industries which flourished in the  Panhandle decades ago.  Visitors will listen to live flute music and children will enjoy the storyteller.

Pioneer Day is a great event for the entire family to learn some history and enjoy a day out in nature. It would not be possible without help from the community. If you are interested in volunteering, email Volunteer Coordinator Gary Wood at gwood4848@cox.net with your name and contact information.

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Dead River Landing in Bruce now offers 16 campsites

A view from the boat ramp at Dead River landing. Lori Ceier/Walton Outdoors

A view from the boat ramp at Dead River landing. Lori Ceier/Walton Outdoors

Eight new campsites now open

Located at the eastern end of Seven Runs Creek, just north of Bruce, there is a waterway area called Dead River which slowly opens up into the Choctawhatchee River.

Dead River Landing park is a beautiful spot offering panoramic views of large bald cypress trees along the wetlands. The park offers a boat ramp, ample parking, and now has 16 RV/tent camping areas with picnic tables, grills, and fire rings. Eight sites large enough for RVs and trailers, and eight smaller sites offering tent pads. There are two picnic pavilions at each campsite area with grills, and a portable toilet. There are no electrical hookups in the park. Cost: Free

Double pavilion area near boat ramp ad Dead River Landing park. Lori Ceier/Walton Outdoors

Double pavilion area near boat ramp ad Dead River Landing park. Lori Ceier/Walton Outdoors

Dead River Landing is also slated to become part of the proposed Choctawhatchee River Paddling Trail, and is part of the Choctawhatchee River Wildlife Management Area. It is managed by Northwest Florida Water Management District.

It is a popular location for fishing and hunting. The landing is located at the end of Dead River Road. ::MAP::

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Learn about white tail deer at Topsail Hill Preserve State Park Nov. 14

deerDate/time: Friday Nov. 14th, 3-4 p.m.

Topsail Hill Preserve State Park invites you come learn about our most ubiquitous mammal, the White Tailed Deer. This program will cover the general life cycle of our deer, where they bed down, what the rut is, and where to find them. This is an all ages program. Enter the park through the main gate and the staff will direct you to the park’s clubhouse.

A $6.00 entry admission per vehicle into the park. Topsail Hill Preserve State Park is located at 7525 W. Scenic Highway 30A, Santa Rosa Beach, Florida 32459. For more information, call (850) 267-8330 ::MAP::

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