Outdoor Family Fun

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Dog Talk: Choosing your new best friend ‘for life’

Some things to consider if getting a new puppy is part of the plan this Christmas I find it fascinating to consider a person’s choice of breed for a family pet.  It seems that with some owners, there has clearly been careful consideration choosing the “right dog.” With other owners, less thought appears to have gone into choosing their pet than in deciding where to vacation for a weekend. This has always seemed a little strange to me as the...

5K and 10K run at Hammock Bay Dec. 20

Celebrate the holidays doing the Santa Shuffle Hammock Bay is joining with The Walton County YMCA to host the First Annual Hammock Bay and YMCA Santa Shuffle on Saturday Dec. 20. The event will start at 8:00 a.m. near the Lake Club at Hammock Bay. The courses are flat, out and back on a wide bending boulevard. The 10k course includes the 5k course plus it’s own ‘out and back’ course. There will also be a kids, 10 years and...

Volunteers need to help plant trees

Eglin AFB Natural Resources looking for help in preserving forest habitat The trees stabilize the soil and reduce the sediment from erosion that enters our streams and smothers fragile habitat. The trees also help to restore degraded areas to natural, forested conditions. Below is the schedule for December. There will only be one tree planting in December, the other dates are prep work days that prepare the sites for the trees to be planted. Volunteer Dates 16 December – Tree...

Hunting in Walton County WMAs

General Gun season reopens Dec. 13 – Feb. 4, small game open through Mar. 1 There are three Wildlife Management Areas available in Walton County on which hunting and fishing is available. The WMAs are Choctawhatchee River Wildlife Management Area, the Lafayette Creek WMA and the Point Washington State Forest and WMA. GENERAL GUN SEASON: December 13 through February 4 (except Holmes Creek  Unit and East River Island). Permit, Stamp and License Requirements – Hunting license, management area  permit, migratory...

Winter Market at WaterColor Dec. 20

A German Christmas style market with crafts, music and food WaterColor Inn and Resort and the WaterColor Community Association will host a Winter Market on Sat. Dec. 20,  from 12:00 – 7:00 p.m. The event will take place at WaterColor’s Town Center. The ‘Winter Market’ concept is reminiscent of a traditional German Christmas market, where a variety of vendors display merchandise and crafts in a street fair setting – making the sites, smells and sounds of the season come alive...

Florida Trail hike at Nokuse

Hike the new Nokuse trail just north of Bruce Take a hike on the newly opened Nokuse section of the Florida Trail on Lafayette Creek  Saturday, January 3, 2009 at 8:00 a.m. Join the Florida Trail Association for a hike on the Nokuse section.  Choose either 3 miles or 9.9 miles.  For more information: (850) 682-6098 or http://choctaw.floridatrail.org...

Audubon Christmas bird count Dec. 15

Volunteer locally in the annual winter bird count held across the country every year The Choctawhatchee Audubon Society will conduct the annual Choctawhatchee Bay Christmas Bird Count (CBC) on Monday, Dec. 15.  Volunteers are needed to assist experienced leaders as recorders or spotters; no experience necessary.  This is the 108th annual winter count since ornithologist Frank Chapman, in 1900, proposed that counting birds should replace the custom of shooting birds during the holidays. Today, over 55,000 volunteers from all 50...

A holiday gift to the birds

Decorated edibles adorn cedar tree at Coastal Branch Library As one of the Friends of the Library activities, children gathered to decorate a cedar tree in front of the Coastal Branch Library on Dec. 6. Pinecones were coated with peanut butter and seed, along with stars made from pipe cleaners strung with Cheerios. The children then hung with care as a special treat for the birds. Brian Mitchell, Kianna and Indica Riggins, Maddox Rhea, Michael Fontaine of Santa Rosa Beach,...

Duck hunters out in numbers, urged to wear life jackets

Life jacket an excellent holiday gift for boating hunters Law enforcement officers are unsure why, but they’re seeing more duck hunters out on lakes around Tallahassee than any time in the past few years. “This weekend we checked 150 hunters on Lake Jackson and 60 on Lake Miccosukee,” said Lt. Kent Harvey, Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) area law enforcement supervisor.  “Maybe it’s the fact that permanent blinds are banned from four lakes around Tallahassee, but more duck...

Toys for Tots motorcycle run Nov. 23

Join the fun and brighten a child’s Christmas Even if you don’t ride a scooter, come down and see the huge bike parade and donate a toy for a tot. Sunday, Nov 23 Registration starts at 8:30 a.m. Ride pulls out at 11 a.m. Bring: $10 and a toy or gift certificate Parade starts at Sam’s Club, Fort Walton Beach on Beal Pkwy., and ends at the Mullet Festival Fairgrounds in Niceville. Proceeds go to the Emerald Coast Children’s Advocacy...