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New ways to shop at Today’s Boutique LADIES UPSCALE FASHION & ACCESSORIES

With the changing times, Today’s has decided to temporarily close our doors, but that won’t keep you from shopping. Here are some new ways to shop safely as we embrace our fashion concierge style service!

Private Appointments Facetime Appointments or Texted Photos Shop from the comfort of your home as we show your favorite lines with a personal tour! Just select what you would like and purchase. We will ship for free or you can swing by and we will pop it in your trunk.

Appointments are one hour of one-on-one shopping time. Keeping the traffic to a minimum makes it simple for us to keep a high level of cleanliness and keep everyone safe. We also encourage everyone to reschedule if they are not feeling 100%.

Gift cards Gift cards are a great idea for a friend’s birthday, or if you want to buy from us but would rather wait until you can visit in person.

Facebook Store Coming very soon we will have a Facebook web shop up and running. If you don’t see your favorite brands, please let us know via message or call. We will happily get it on there – We have so many lovely things in stock!

We have loved being in your lives for 39 years and will continue to do so. Please stay strong and safe. If we can help you get away for a moment through fashion and fun, we will be here for you!

Fashionably yours ≠ Jim, Kim, Kristin & Today!s Team Voted Best Boutique and Best Local Retailer

BEST Locally Owned Retailer BEST Womení s Clothing

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OVER THE LAST 17 YEARS!

850.837.5565

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! " # $ % & ' ( % ) * ' & + & ' % ) , - - .

SAVOR THE CLASSIC & SOPHISTICATED One of the fi nest dining destinations along Floridaí s Gulf Coast, Seagarí s Prime Steaks & Seafood features an award≠ winning 600≠ label wine list, hand selected prime steaks and Gulf≠ to≠ table seafood dishes. With fresh, seasonally inspired ingredients, Seagarí s prides itself on providing the most decadent and indulgent meals. The Emerald Coastí s only AAA Four≠ Diamond Steakhouse RESERVATIONS 850≠ 622≠ 1500 | 4000 Sandestin Blvd. South, Miramar Beach, FL 32550 | SEAGARS.com

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SANDESTIN BEACH GOLF RESORT & SPA

Since 2000

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contents

;+$"A(//B;</C/<&&"(/<;

events 15 VIP Destin Magazine’s Black Tie Ball 29 Shrimp & Grits Festival 31 2021 Kia Seltos Launch 39 Ladies Night Out 45 Tea Fore Her 51 Cinderella 55 Artful Night Under the Stars 58 Sunset at the Penthouse Benefiting Aletha’s Legacy 62 ECCAC Gala 65 MKAF Love for the Arts Art Guild Luncheon 69 Mardi Gras Parade 2020 73 St. Paddy’s Day Family Party 74 Corks & Canines 78 Boys & Girls Club Annual Dinner

on the cover !"#$%&'()*+$,$-.(//) 01&'2+*" !"#$#%&'(")*+) !"#$$#%&#$'()*$ '$*,-.$#/*0'/123$-/*42'5"*6#.7* 823#&$*9*0(' :;!*<23$-/*='%'>-/2?3 *4.'5@*A-2*4'..*

departments 26 36 42 48 60 76 82

Adventure Out Swizzle Destin Style May We Suggest Coastal Cuisine Locale I Am Destin

features 15 2020 Black Tie Ball Take a look at our Best in Destin winners at this year’s Black Tie Ball.

;<!/6(&.%1/0-2->%1(/?.-@@ !"#$%&'() Greg Alexander *&&+,%-.(/!"#$%&'() Verla Price 0-1-2%12/34%.+) Steve Barber !)+4",.%+1/34%.+) Jessica Graña *45().%&%12 Steve Barber Verla Price Jeff Sarault !"#$%&'()&/*&&%&.-1. Anna Stockton

6(&%21() Priscilla Atkins Sheila McDiarmid 7+1.)%#".%12/8)%.()&9 !'+.+2)-:'()& Greg Alexander Zhalman Harris Shanna Magnuson Verla Price Liesel Schmidt Kristina Wright ;<!/=+"14() Jeff Watson

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!"##"$%&$'(%#)"%*+,!-.)"$ To all of our readers, partners, organizations, non-profits, and events in the Destin community we love to serve - we hope that you and yours are staying safe and well. In this uncertain time, we are doing our best to remain positive and proactive and we will continue to do so each day. So many of you devote yourselves to helping others and in this uncertain time, we need to support each other now more than ever. We will be here to assist our fellow small businesses in any way possible to help navigate through each day. We hope that you can use this issue to briefly escape your social distancing by remembering fun times, seeing pictures of your friends, and to look forward to future events when we overcome this tribulation. We have always promoted the community in a profound and meaningful way by showcasing the events, business leaders, nonprofits, and the people that make Destin great. Right now, that philosophy could not be more important or more resounding as we, just like you, plan and strategize about how to remain engaged, keep our employees working, and continue with a business we have worked so hard to build. Right now, we are more focused than ever on getting the message of our advertisers and supporters out to the community. We are doing things like never before to get our new issue in the hands and homes of readers. We are implementing new channels to get both the digital version and the hard copy of the magazine to our readers, some of which we expect you will like so well that we will keep in place. It often takes a challenging time to reboot what you are doing and find different and maybe even better ways of doing things. While this COVID-19 crisis is beyond what any of us could have imagined, our community, our state, and our country shall come out stronger and more viable. Enjoy this issue and hopefully you have extra time to soak in the people, places, businesses, and culture through these pages.

!"#$%&'#()*+#" Publisher Greg@VIPMag.com

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NEW DATE!

AUGUST 21â&#x2030; 22, 2020 PRESENTED BY THE

JUMONVILLE FAMILY

DCWAF.ORG

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!!!"#$!%&'()*!+(!(,&!-).(/*!0+*1&'()*!2&+3,!4/.5!6&'/7(!8!09+

March 14, 2020 photos by Zhalman Harris, Shanna Manguson, Kristina Wright, Epic and Elegant Events

O

story by Greg Alexander

n Saturday, March 14, many excited Destin business owners and operators gathered to celebrate an event that they had looked forward to for months. There was certainly cause for a celebration as their dedicated efforts to their businesses, their jobs and the community had earned them the title Best In Destin by the readers of VIP Destin Magazine. Although Best In Destin voting has been going on for much longer, this was the seventh year that VIP Destin Magazine regaled the winners with the Black Tie Ball celebration. Again, this year, the event was held at the Hilton Sandestin Golf Beach Resort and Spa with grand style. As winners arrived on the red carpet, they were greeted by the VIP Destin Magazine team, including photographers, of course. As guests reminisced about the yearâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s past magazine covers on display, they gathered in the lounge area. The air was full of excitement with attendees dressed in their most glorious attire and the exclusive

crowd was so glad to mingle with new and old friends. The ballroom fi lled with 250 people and a fabulous celebratory dinner was served. Awards got underway as each Best In Destin winner was acknowledged on stage. The winners were so grateful to the readers of Best In Destin for their patronage and their confidence in voting for them. Guests stayed after the presentation to soak in the occasion and for more photo opportunities including a photobooth. DJ entertainment was provided by Epic and Elegant Events, who kept the excitement going. VIP Destin Magazine is proud to be a forum for readers to express their devotion and appreciation to the many businesses that make the Destin area so great. With over 300,000 certified votes this year, every winner and nominee should be proud of their accomplishment and that their peers and patrons took the time to support the people and places they believe in.

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Ashley Long & Allyson Shirley

Wayne Paul & Susan Kiley

Lesley Ballinger, Sena Kwon & Mable Mallens

Daniel Peters & Melissa Malcolm

Raffel & Jennifer Hemsworth 16

Mary Chris Murry & Joe Capers

Taylor Goode & Nelgar Rondon

Maggie Koleva, Beth Hill & Tammy Damiano

Shane & Michell Blalock

Chris & Loretta Meyers

Juan & Yolanda Martillo

Dr. Francia & Eric Squatrito

Lexi Cruz, Nathan Wilson & Mable Mallens

Brenda & Brock McLean

Chris & Ewa Ruyan

Steve Barber, Jonathan Browning & Greg Arriola

Dr. Richard Chern & Amanda Monti

Evan & Dina Meeks

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Keasha Jones & Mary-Frances Mullins

Dr. Michael & Johnna Stickler

Alex Kelly

Clayton & Kristy Green, Marcia & Tom Green, Heather Cory & Preston Green

Heidi & Hunter Willits

Jearl McCall & Michelle Proctor

Kathy & Ken Whidden, JD & Whitney Whidden

Julia & Andre Drevinskas

Brian & Erin Noyes

Steve Barber & Ashley Hall

Laâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;Quana Cooper, Melissa Malcom & Justine Lunsford

Michael & Erica Rutledge

Carolyn & Gary Dietzen

Kaylea Windes

Ricardo Magna

Denise & Ed Kendust

Tina & Todd Jackson April 2020 | 17

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Matt & Jacqui Luberto

Jorge Lopez

Marcella McCall & David Forbes Jr.

Lara Laigh Shaffell, Bianca Browning, Michelle Blalock & Heather Bates

David Kirk & Ken Kraft

Megan & Mimmo LaInnusa

Maggie Weaver, Savannah Juneau & Lauren Hargraves

Karen & Bobby Emmons

Angie Sutherland, Lakin Deveaux, Stevie McInnes, Amber Scheel & Shennon Jundt

Patti Hall & Chae Kyle

Steve Barber & Chris Sailors

Kaylie Sause & Jaclyn Celestini

Susan Holden & Capt Paul Dale Wagner

Kyle Petit

Emily Dunn, Lauren Anderson & Sarah Beth Stephenson

Karl & Dana Hunter

Matt Morgan & Dr. Heidi Gonzalez April 2020 | 19

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Simona Ghile & Vasi Rosu

Steve Barber & Mary Anne Windes

Verla Price & Aanan Patel

Chris Thornton & Celeste Bell

Young Kim, Evie & John Morrow

Alyssa Jesmain & Mark Bartak

Bob & Debbie West, Tisha & Jimi Koumalatsos

Brandt Reid 20

Bob & Gwyn Wendt

Steve Barber & Jon Lovett

Elena Bochkareva & Ray Proffitt

Teresa Kaliski & Erin Harrold

Kristin & Jay Ammons

Kellie Jo Kilberg & Kelly Webb

Fernando Pettit

Jennifer Knight & Shanelle Lucas

Terry Lovelady & Kyle Strong

Erica & John Walsh

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Chris Valentine & Lea Valentine

Maggie Yelverton & Jeff Watson

Steve Barber, Jorge Saiz, Mary Lamb, Mackenzie Gardner & Todd Reeves

Grace & Scott Livingston

Seth & Julia Palmer

Bryce & Miranda Jarvis, Megan & Kris Harrison

Nichole Standridge

Ben Sanseela & Scott Camp

Susan Bradley, Lea & Joe Capers, Melissa Bergeron-Neeb

Kerri & Dr. Nicholas Papajohn

Victoria & Troy Klamerus

Casey & Jason Draughn

Julie & Jeff Sarault, Jessica GraĂąa

Rick Scheel & Rachel Strayer Corey Kotowske, Steve Barber, Thris Le, Nicholas Reimer & Brandon Blyden Rebekah Permenter, Kristen Komm & Haley Silva April 2020 | 21

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!!!"#$!%&'()*!+(!(,&!-.+/0!1)&!-+..

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photos & story provided by Gr

W

ould you rather make lifelong memories with your children, family or friends or spend that time mowing your lawn? You no longer have to make that choice. Gr nbots Inc is a new company in your area that offers affordable robotic automowers for residents and commercial properties.

nbots

more efficient, the smaller clippings created by continual cutting is better for the grass too”. Shelley, “I personally love the smart home integration. Customers can connect to Amazon Alexa or Google Home. Imagine simply saying, ‘Alexa, mow the grass.’ Yep, it really can be that easy.”

Gr nbots is the exclusive dealer for Husqvarna and Echo Automowers from Panama City to Mississippi.

We offer mowers that:

• Mow up to 6 acres • Are smartphone controlled • Are weather resistant • Are GPS and theft protection Owners Steve and Shelley Black have been in the Green Industry for over 32 years. Their knowledge, experience and professionalism has made them leaders in this field along the Gulf Coast. In Europe today over half of all lawns are mowed by robotic mowers and more than half of those are Husqvarna. “Husqvarna is the world’s number one selling robotic lawn mower. They have been selling these in Europe for the last 20 years” states Steve. “The concept behind the automower comes straight out of nature - the principle of the grazing animal. The grass is cut a little and often. This is not only 26

| VIPDestinMagazine.com

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• Quiet • Emission-free, low energy • Less fertilizer needed • Long lasting, rechargeable battery The units are controlled by your smartphone, enabling you to monitor and keep track of them in real time. Want to park your unit when your kids come home, run the unit when your pet is inside, you are in control of the automowers schedule with a push of a button. Husqvarna’s intelligent design allows the Automower to maneuver around your lawn without supervision, even over tricky terrain and around obstacles. It knows when it needs to be charged and directs itself back to the charging station. With convenient control options, the Automower allows you to set it and forget it, even from your smartphone. Gr nbots can install and set up your units, or install kits are available to purchase for that do it yourself individual. On the Professional Side - Robotic mowers are the perfect addition to the fleet of any green care company. While they tirelessly spend their days producing a carpet-like lawn quality, you can spend your days doing other things. And since our professional robotic mowers all come with Husqvarna Fleet Services™ built-in, you can control them from anywhere.

Want to see one in action? Come visit us at our location, 2629 S. Hwy 29, Cantonment. We can ensure Christmas delivery if ordered by December 15. Oh, did we say we gift wrap?!

April 2020 | 27

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| VIPDestinMagazine.com

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VIP Destin at Harbor Walk

Joey Reichelt & Samara Potter photos & story by Zhalman Harris

D Andrea Ganous & Ashley Collins

Morgan Alford & Monica Shidemantle

Owen, Heather, Olivia & Dennis Ruiz

estin Habor was filled with variations of shrimp and grits by local restaurateurs and chefs from Fort Walton Beach to 30A, all competing to be crowned the best shrimp and grits on the Emerald Coast on February 29, for the first ever Shrimp & Grits Festival. The event started with a bang as it sold out within 20 minutes of its commencement. Almost 1,000 attendees enjoyed over 850 pounds of jumbo shrimp and over 160 gallons of cheesy grits. Topped with everything from fresh grilled corn, bacon, and andouille sausage to crispy fried okra from 13 local restaurants and chefs, including Shunk Gulley Oyster Bar, Sunset Bay Café, Brotula’s Seafood House & Steamer, Tailfins Ale House & Oyster Bar, Harry T’s Lighthouse, Half Shell Oyster House, 790 on The Gulf, Flambé After Dark, The Henderson Beach Resort, Mama Clemenza’s, Fudpucker’s, Knife’s Edge Private Chef & Catering, and Beach Walk Café. Cocktail booths offered samples of local brews by Idyll Hounds Brewery and craft cocktails from Tito’s Handmade Vodka, White Claw Seltzer, Bacardi and Hornitos to complete the afternoon. Rocking the docks were the sounds of local bands the Shenanigans, and Cadillac Willy. For Best Overall, the judge’s choice winner went to Knife’s Edge Private Chef & Catering, Best Grits winner was Fudpuckers, and Most Creative went to Flambe After Dark. People’s Choice awards went to Sunset Bay Café, who came first, Shunk Gully Oyster Bar coming second, and Knife’s Edge Private Chef & Catering snatching up the third place crown. The first year festival raised more than $20,000, with all the profits going to benefit the Boys & Girls Clubs of the Emerald Coast, a nonprofit devoted to “enhancing the development of boys and girls by instilling a sense of competence, usefulness, belonging and influence through its programs focused on academic success, good character and citizenship, and healthy lifestyles.”

Ashley Mosley, Taye, Larry & Rosario Vollatto April 2020 | 29

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Thank You for Voting for Us!

New Homes & Complete Home Remodeling Solutions Randy Wise Homes, Inc. is a locally owned general contracting company located in Niceville, Florida. Since 1977, they have provided new homes and remodeling services to Okaloosa and Walton counties. Randy Wise Homes can build on your lot and builds within many communities in your area. Many have models open daily. Visit the website to view model hours and addresses, before and after photos, new homes available, testimonials and more!

850.678.9473 | RandyWiseHomes.com

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RG 0029913

3/27/20 10:14 AM


VIP Destin at Kia of Fort Walton

Jared Marquardt & Amanda Davis

Andres Ferraro, Federico Tincani & Fernando Arellano

2021 Kia Seltos Launch Event photos & story by Zhalman Harris

T

he 2021 Kia Seltos was unveiled at the Fort Walton Beach Kia on March 5. As usual, guests enjoyed a great reveal party put together by Step One Automotive Group. Guests indulged in music, dancing, food, refreshments, and won door prizes, including a weekend with the Seltos and dinner.

Tiffany & Shon Kingrey

Maureen Bierman, David & Michelle Moreland

Dion Stakley & Nico Gara

Distinguished Young Womenâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Brooklyn Peters thanked Step One Automotive for their support and also presented them with a special engraved plaque. The CEO of Step One Automotive, Fernando Arellano, presented a plaque of appreciation to Col. David Moreland of the USAF. Arellano also reiterated Step One Autoâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s commitment to being a partner of the community and serving the community in a positive way.

Shawn Petley & Mike Coupe

Heather, Brooklyn & Jeff Peters April 2020 | 31

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VIP Destin at 2021 Kia Seltos Launch Event

Meagan Reed & Leigha Holloway

Jamil Harris, Jackie Kirley & Sue Fritz

Marlon Wilson & Vanessa Benjamin

Laurie Gray, Judy Hoepfl & Mariah Colvin 32

Kat Brown & Kelli Creft

Rachelle & Victor Benfatto

John Anzivino & Mike Mondel

Jason Host, Brett Pate & Eddie Gilchrist

Tori Jones, Jeff Sarault & Verla Price

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AT HOME story by Liesel Schmidt

T

he taste of a well-mixed cocktail or a sip of a silky smooth spirit is something that can make us relax and unwind after a long day at work, and for the hard working men of the 1950s, those after-hours drinks were the very reason behind the advent of the home bar. After all, those hours spent at the office were stressful, and coming home meant it was time to loosen the tie, settle in, and let the stress melt away like the ice cubes in a Scotch rocks. And while the wood-paneled, male-centric domestic bars of yesteryear may have become outdated and sexist, the allure of a well-stocked liquor cabinet and all its accouterments has never lost its luster. Looking back over the history books,

36

home bars hit the scene after World War II, when men returned from the war and were reestablishing themselves. They popped up in suburban homes all over the map, making a nightly cocktail or drink not only possible, but a sign of having made it. Consequently, home bars became part of everyoneâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s dream house, an aspirational feature that could be shown off during dinner parties or social gatherings. And despite the fact that many of them were in the basement, people made a point of decking them out, often modeling them after supper clubs with fancy bars and inviting their friends over for a dressy night in. These days, we might not have the same ideas about home bars as they did back then, but they still have great appeal and

are a common feature in home design. And whether they are a part of the blueprint or simply occupy a special cabinet in your home, there are still some basics that every home bar must have. Firstly, there are the liquors: dry gin, premium vodka, bourbon, Scotch, gold tequila for mixed drinks, sliver tequila for straight drinking, dark rum for punches, and light rum for cocktails. And, of course, donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t forget various types of craft beers and wine varietals. Mixers are next, and a properly stocked home bar must have club soda, tonic water (both regular and diet), cola, lemon-lime soda, ginger ale, orange juice, tomato juice, cranberry juice, pineapple juice, and bitters.

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No craft drink is complete without garnish, so stock up on cocktail olives, horseradish, limes, lemons, oranges, maraschino cherries, cocktail onions, Tabasco sauce, salt, pepper, and rim sugar. And, of course, make sure you have ice. Have we mentioned accouterments? Naturally, you’ll need a cocktail shaker for making those mixed drinks, but you’ll also need a wide variety of glasses, as each drink has a specific glass associated with it. Line your shelves with Pilsner glasses, beer mugs, red and white wine glasses, champagne flutes, highballs, and shot glasses, just to name a few. These specialized glasses are made for a reason, as their size and shape help maximize the flavor, aroma, and mouthfeel of a beverage and make drinking it even more pleasurable. You’ll also need foil cutters, corkscrews, jiggers, speed pour spouts with flapper tops for the liquor bottles, ample prep space, and a trash can be placed somewhere close but out of sight. If you have a fullsize home bar, take it to the next level by adding a sink, kegerator, and a wine fridge. Take the idea of luxury and socialization up a notch with a real bar space, complete with a counter and seating. Get bar stools that are comfortable and stylish, and equip the bar with a foot rail. Both are finishing details that can make an incredible difference to the overall look of your bar and make it even more enjoyable to use. Whether you want to have the best home for entertaining or simply appreciate a good nightcap and want your ritual to have its own sacred space, creating your very own home bar is the perfect way to make sure your perfect drink is never far away.

Stock Up Stay Home April 2020 | 37

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3/27/20 10:18 AM


VIP Destin at The Henderson Beach Resort

photos & story by Shanna Magnuson

T

he Henderson Beach Resort hosted the Ladies Night Out event, along with Fort Walton Beach Medical Center and Twin Cities Hospital, on March 5. This was an all-about-the-ladies evening where guests could learn, explore, and laugh in celebration of health, wellness, and fun. A room filled with vendors offering massages, mini makeovers, hydration therapy, botox, goodies to fill up the tote bags, and even the opportunity to talk with over 18 physicians about women’s health; all while being greeted with champagne and delicious hors d’oeuvres, with the chance to win over 25 door prizes. The exclusive event, which partnered with Destin Chamber of Commerce, sold out again this year. Ladies Night Out not only offers an evening of fun, but also knowledge and the ability to have questions answered directly from the area’s physicians about women specific health and wellness. It creates a place for women to understand new equipment, procedures, and more with in depth conversations in a relaxed atmosphere. This event was a lovely night filled with women supporting and encouraging other women.

Tucker McPherson & Sarah Valeski

Regina Schmidt & Misty Cole

Teresa Halverson & Nancy Watson

Lori Ward & Melanie Cuff

Wanda Liphard & Nancy Matherne

Leslie Anderson & Cara Riccio April 2020 | 39

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VIP Destin at Ladies Night Out

Rissa Wyant & Pam White

Belinda Neal, Marie Hoover, Janet Ingly & Janet Gray

Christie Benoit & Kristen Wyatt

Jennifer Laskaskie, Kelly Torres, Francia Squatrito & Lauren Woodliff

Alli Noah & Lisa Curray 40

Kat Breeden & Paris Wilson

Beverly Crews & Ashley Siner

Tammy Tilley & Yolanda Martillo

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Emily Ballant, Bria Galvan & Sara Jackson

Kristin Lockart, Kelly Oâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;Brian & Linda Catlow

Whitney Smith, Jennifer Galati & Becky Ratcliff

Megan Craig, Adrianne Bracket & Pearl Ricard April 2020 | 41

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Spring Forecast new trends for

2020

Floral & Nature Print Flowers, foliage, petals, and leaves. Whether it’s on a classy dress or a fun top- floral is hot this season. High-Waisted Shorts/Hot Pants Long legs are here! Shorts are going higher and shorter to show off more leg room. Minty Fresh One of the hottest colors for spring is mint. Add a pop to an accessory, or be bold with a solid skirt. Vests Dress up your work-day shirt with a vest. That’s rightvests are back! Play with a bold print or a textured fabric to add style and sophistication to your outfit. Fringe Benefits Playful. Whimsical. Chic. Fringe is the perfect touch to add a little personality to your ensemble. Crochet & Knit Try using a crocheted piece to elevate your wardrobe, adding texture, pattern, and a hint of skin through the stitches! Pleats & Layers Skirts have a lot to offer this season. Choose one with layers to add movement and shape to your look. Crop Tops Crop tops, tube tops, and bralettes are a fun way to shake things up this season. Paired with highwaisted shorts or a fringe skirt and you’re all set for the spring season!

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3/27/20 10:31 AM


VIP Destin at The Vue on 30A

photos & story by Shanna Magnuson

T

he 6th annual Tea Fore Her event with tea, lunch, dessert, and gorgeous views at The Vue on 30A took place on February 9 to help raise funds for breast cancer patients along the Emerald Coast. The Hive Creative Consulting welcomed guests from 1-3pm as Emma Clark played the violin. Attendees were treated to all things pink from champagne to decor. 30A Life Photo Booth provided a fun backdrop and photos, and there was a silent auction for event-goers to participate in during the party. Guests were also encouraged to wear their best “big hats” for a chance to win a prize announced by Jessica Foster, a breast caner survivor; this year’s winner was William Delaney. Master of Ceremonies, Aimee Shaffer introduced the women speaking this year including recipient Tami Scott RN Clinical Liaison, and Platinum Pink Sponsor Melissa Beadle, and Founder of Fore Her Amy Walsh. Amy started this organization in memory of her mother and aunt who both lost their battle with breast cancer. It’s now expanded into a far-reaching support organization, and in 2019 over $55,000 in bills were paid to those battling with breast cancer here on the coast. Amy noted, “Last month alone $5900 in bills were paid,” and she is projecting more giving with each year. It was a happy teared-filled room as women shared their stories about how this organization impacts women and families along the Emerald Coast.

Leila Harris & Samantha Garrick

Kellie Velasquez & Bonnie Rarick

Erin Bakker, Katherine Green & Ali Weil

Angela McLaughlan & Renee Couch

Daphne Martin & Melissa Beadle

Andrea Wheeler, Carole Nelson, Sue Robson & Brenda Whitwell April 2020 | 45

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VIP Destin at Tea Fore Her

William Delaney & Indigo Ussery

Ginny Richerson, Daphne Martin, Amy Walsh & Kellyanne Bartleson

Ashley Ryan & Becky Arnold

Ann Perry & Sarah Modica

Caitlyn Rem, Jessica Scott & Indigo Ussery 46

Aimee Shaffer & Laura Atton

Jessica Foster & Jordan McCool

Grace Andrews & Margaret Rogers

Shawna Dunaway, Nancy Abraham & Debbie Pearson

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6/""#+47%4"*%(8(+'(9'$ 850.796.2424 â&#x2C6;&#x2018; 415 Mary Esther Cut Off NW, FWB PetlandFortWaltonBeach April 2020 | 47

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Pileas Air Comfort Chair by American Leather Fabric Starting at: $3399/Leather $3999 isidro dunbar Modern Interiors www.idMIdesign.com

Husqvarna 450XH - $3499 Grēnbots Grenbots.com | (850) 390-4777

Intellishade® Matte age-defying tinted moisturizer with sunscreen $65 Retail- 25% off in May (for Skin Cancer Awareness Month) Available at Aqua Medical Spa (located inside of Dermatology Specialists of FL) www.AquaMedicalSpa.com

Cirrus Comfort Air Chair by American Leather Fabric Starting at $3199/Leather $3799 isidro dunbar Modern Interiors www.idMIdesign.com

48 MayWeSuggest_Apr20.indd 1

“Nature Lashes” - naturally based lash growth serum, works perfectly with OR without lash extensions - also works on eyebrows! One package lasts about 4-6 months with daily use. - $80 Amazing Lash Studio 850-424-4779

3/27/20 10:24 AM


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3/27/20 10:25 AM


VIP Destin at Mattie Kelly Art Center

Nick & Solange Jazayeri

Zach & Kasey Brady

Eric & Julia Sandwith

photos & story by Zhalman Harris

N

orthwest Florida Ballet returned to the Mattie Kelly Arts Center again with the classic fairytale Cinderella on Friday, February 28 and Sunday, March 1. The live music by the NFB Symphony Orchestra featured the acclaimed choreography of NFB Artistic Director Todd Eric Allen, and the beautiful music of Serge Prokofiev. This timeless classic was presented in three acts and brought to life a cavalcade of enchanting characters, brilliant dancing, vibrant costumes, and a magical set that held the audience under its spell. The commemorative 15th anniversary gala took place on Saturday, February 28. With guests making appearances in their formal wear and masks for the masquerade party.NFB is sponsored in part by the Florida Division of Cultural Affairs.

Matt & Rachel Norman

Sherri & Larry Bunch

Trina Pullen, Kathy Halprin, Tracy Marks & Katie Doyle April 2020 | 51

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VIP Destin at Cinderella

Shane & Brooke Marschand

Michelle Bishop & Harmony Boeh

Will Mayberry, Kendell & David Ibsten

Rachel & Mabel Prescott

Bernadette Sims, Shari Allen & Amber Hill 52

Kelly & Jared Oâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;Neal

Elizabeth Kelly, Kaori Mier & Prisca Bichler

Jon & Fuchsia Mclnerney

Megan Gordan & Lacey McAlister

Ian & Haley Blaise

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April 2020 | 53

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VIP Destin at Rosemary Beach Town Hall

photos & story by Shanna Magnuson

T

he Ninth Annual Artful Night Under the Stars took place at Rosemary Beach Town Hall on February 22, with proceeds benefiting the Tree House Episcopal Montessori School’s scholarship program. Attendees shopped the silent auction and enjoyed both indoor and outdoor locations. Guests also indulged in the selection of New Orleans-inspired cuisine from Townsend Catering, including the king cake, to help celebrate while Zydeco music by Les Chants set the mood. One-hundred percent of the proceeds went to the scholarship program. Along with a silent auction filled with unique experiences and gifts, a live auction included artwork and collaborative pieces from the students themselves. The Tree House Episcopal Montessori School in Santa Rosa Beach “provides an environment that celebrates and empowers the genius of each child, cultivates a love of learning, and fosters an appreciation of diversity.” Serving approximately 65 students ages 2- Kindergarten, they rely on fundraising events to provide the scholarship opportunities for the students and families. With over 150 guests, the Mardi Gras-themed event was truly a beautiful night under the stars.

Kate & Lee Owen

Peter Horn & Beth Westerman

Nichole & Alex Moraitis

Carol Rauschkolb & Anne Mclemore

Raven Kight & Peyton Gore

Casey King & Katherine Tait April 2020 | 55

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VIP Destin at Artful Night Under the Stars

James & Donna Leblanc

Coleen Smith & Julie Porterfield

Larry Davis, Cindy Geeker, Lori Davis & Van Geeker

56

Andy & Patty Phillips

Laura & Chris Hayden

Stacy & Autumn Craig

Sonya Powell & Amy Usewicz

Pam & Doug Crandall

Alice Smith & Chelsea Kavanagh

Summer Stough, Jamie Lynn, Julie Cumby & Ali Well

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Dawn Silk & Carol Ziegler

Jessica Standley, Adrienne & Wes Seaborn

!"#$%&'()*"(+#,(-&#,.(/, 850.650.8511

DESTIN FLOORING AMERICA 12889 Emerald Coast Parkway Suite 113B â&#x2C6;&#x2018; Miramar Beach, FL Miranda Jordan, Erin Machen, & Crystal Bovard

850.689.8977

DESTIN FLOORING AMERICA 2254 South Ferdon Boulevard Crestview, FL

Glenn & Rachel Feazel, Michele Werner

de s t in flo oring americades tin. com April 2020 | 57

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VIP Destin at The Grand Mariner Condominium

Benefiting Alethaí s Legacy photos & story by Shanna Magnuson

A

letha’s Legacy hosted an intimate benefit on on February 28 at The Grand Mariner Condominium. Overlooking the Gulf with a Penthouse view, guests enjoyed delicious appetizers from Tyler Jarvis and Chris Ruyan, drinks, and a silent auction. Founder and President of Aletha’s Legacy, and Liberian native, Zhalman Harris created this non-profit to honor his mother, Aletha, who lost her life and their home during the 14-year civil war that ravaged their country in West Africa. The primary objective of the foundation is to renovate their school, creating a better learning environment for the children. Amara Konneh, Liberia’s former Minister of Finance and Development Planning, also made a guest appearance and spoke about his and Zhalman’s time together there as young adults. Amara spoke about how proud he is of the organization and stated, “I have been moved by the commitment to the worthy cause. Beyond school building, it’s about giving the children a future.” It was a truly heart-warming and touching presentation as all learned about the life and hope for these children, and goals to keep building. Zhalman also expressed his gratitude for the Destin and surrounding Emerald Coast area for their continued support- stepping in for this organization that helps these kids receive the education they deserve.

Gabriel Killian & Jaysa Hunter

Bob & Teresa Halverson

58

Bruce & Sandie O’Neal

Amanda Schrand & Marcia Hull

Carmen Wilkinson & Brodie Bowman

Zhalman Harris, Amara Konneh, Joe Capers & Young Kim

Valerie Harrington & Peter Mohylsky

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Parker Destin, Rebecca King & Candice Floyd

Renee Launiere, Tami Bilbro & Niki Noblin Sliger

Stephen Carter, Susan Kiley & Joan Carter

Cindy Garrard, Jennifer Jones & Kelly Layman April 2020 | 59

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A Tasty

story by Liesel Schmidt

A

s pretty much anyone knows, pretzels are traditionally dough formed into the shape of a knot before being baked. Their shape is distinctively symmetrical, with the ends of a long strip of dough intertwined and then twisted back onto itself in a loop. Generally speaking, pretzels are seasoned with course salt, which complements the process of using sodium carbonate or lye to create their signature skin and flavor, and their loops may have once served a practical purpose, as bakers of old could hang them on sticks. These days, pretzels come in all shapes, sizes, forms, and even flavors. Bits, bites, sticks, minis…salty, sweet, savory, spicy…hard or soft. And it’s understandable. They’re tasty enough on their own merits but neutral enough in flavor to be the perfect canvas for a wide range of spices and flavorings, making them wildly appealing and extremely popular as a snack. Add to that the fact that they’re low in fat (unless, of course, you get one of the fully-loaded versions that make them the equivalent of a decadent dessert), and you’ve got the perfect way to munch without feeling terribly guilty. But just where did these baked delights get their beginnings? There are many unreliable stories surrounding the origin of pretzels, as well as the origin of their name, though most accept the idea that they were invented by European monks. Popular legend has it that an Italian monk invented pretzels as a way to reward children who learned their prayers and that he called the strips of baked dough, which he had folded to resemble arms crossing the chest, “pretiola”—Italian for “little reward.” Other stories credit the invention of the pretzel to a monastery in southern France, while Germany holds to the story that pretzels were the invention of anxious bakers who were being held hostage by local dignitaries. The German name “Brezel” may derive Latin terms meaning “bracelet” or “little arms.”

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Other popular stories assert that pretzels were invented by a Christian monk to represent arms crossed in prayer to the Trinity, while some modern scholars believe the pretzel to be a symbol of human sacrifice to a Celtic goddess. In the Christian church, pretzels were once considered to have religious significance for both their ingredients and their shape. Pretzels made using only flour and water could be eaten during Lent, when eating eggs, lard, or dairy products such as milk and butter were forbidden. Over time, pretzels became associated with both Lent and Easter, and pretzels were hidden on Easter. Fast-forward to the late 18th century, and you’ll see the presence of the traditional soft pretzels pop up in Pennsylvania, where many German immigrants made their homes. As their popularity spread, the rest of the country began to fall in love and even eventually welcomed the advent of the hard pretzel in 1850; and by the 20th century, larger cities were mass-producing pretzels of both kinds. So important to Pennsylvania’s history and economy is the pretzel, in fact, that Pennsylvania governor Ed Rendell declared April 26 to be “National Pretzel Day” in 2003. Regardless of whether one prefers hard or soft, one of the beautiful things about pretzels is that they can be eaten at any time, for any occasion. Snack time, lunch time, even during cocktail hour— depending, of course, on how much they’ve been dressed up or down. For some, the simplicity of course salt isn’t enough, and popular ways to impart flavor and interest to the humble pretzel are the addition of cheese, sugar and cinnamon, chocolate, glazes, nuts, and butter, though the imagination would hardly limit the possibilities. Of course, soft pretzels should be eaten when fresh, while hard-baked pretzels allow a greater window of opportunity for consumption.

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Pretzels !"#$%&!%"'() 1 1/2 cups warm water 1 tbsp. sugar 2 tsp. kosher salt 1 pckg. active dry yeast 4 1/2 cups all-purpose flour 2 oz. unsalted butter, melted 10 cups water 2/3 cup baking soda 1 large egg yolk, beaten with 1 tbsp. water Pretzel salt Vegetable oil &!$%*'!+"() Combine the first three ingredients in the bowl of a stand mixer and sprinkle yeast on top. Allow to sit for 5 minutes, or until the mixture begins to foam, then add flour and butter. Using the dough hook attachment, mix on low speed until well combined, then increase to medium speed and knead until the dough is smooth and pulls away from the side of the bowl (approximately 4 to 5 minutes). Remove dough from the bowl and clean it. Oil it well with vegetable oil and place the dough into the bowl, then cover with plastic wrap and allow it to sit in a warm place until the dough has doubled in size (approximately 50 to 55 minutes). Preheat the oven to 450 degrees. Line two sheet pans with parchment paper and lightly brush with vegetable oil. Bring the water and the baking soda to a rolling boil in an 8-quart saucepan or roasting pan. Meanwhile, place the dough on a slightly oiled work surface and divide into 8 equal pieces. Roll out each piece of dough into a 24-inch rope and make a U-shape with the rope. Holding the ends, cross them over each other and press onto the bottom of the U in order to form the shape of a pretzel. Place onto the parchment-lined sheet pan. Place the pretzels into the boiling water, one at a time, for 30 seconds. Remove them from the water using a large flat spatula, then place back onto the sheet pan. Brush the top of each pretzel with the egg yolk and water mixture and sprinkle with the pretzel salt. Bake until dark golden brown in color, approximately 12 to 14 minutes. Allow to cool for at least 5 minutes before serving. April 2020 | 61

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VIP Destin at Hilton Sandestin Beach Golf Resort & Spa

photos & story by Kay Phelan

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aising over $250,000, this year’s Emerald Coast Children’s Advocacy Center’s (ECCAC) 20th annual Gala & Golf events were a big success thanks to the generosity of sponsors and guests. Both events benefited children to help ECCAC provide services at no cost to identify, treat and support children and their families in abusive situations. This year’s Roaring 20’s themed Gala honored Zeke Bratkowski, an NFL professional football player, and an assistant coach in the NFL for over two decades. He passed away in 2019, and was a passionate supporter of ECCAC, founding the first Gala & Golf in 1999. The recipient of the first Zeke Bratkowski Advocate Award was longtime ECCAC supporter and volunteer, Doug Ingram, owner of Coastal Accounting. David Seering emceed the sold-out Gala that was held at the Hilton Sandestin Beach Golf Resort & Spa, as well as being the auctioneer for the successful live auction. Mr. Big provided lively entertainment throughout the evening. The Kieran May Memorial Golf Classic was held the day after the Gala at Kelly Plantation Golf Club with golfers taking to the greens on the golf course. ECCAC wishes to thank their generous top level supporters – Gala Title Sponsor: The Jumonville Family. Golf Tournament Title Sponsors: Coastal Accounting and Krueger, Fosdyck & Associates.

Hilary & Cory Fosdyck

Tripp & Lendy Cash

Dr. Chad & Marybeth Marshall 62

Juan Juarez, Dr. Dennis & Glenda Lichorowic, Jacob Ketz

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Greg & Yvonne Lala

Merrisa & Doug Ingram

Annie & Phillip Stutts

Steve Barber & Dusty Hale

Cody with Demetria & Richard McNeese

Leighann Elliott, Chelsea Fox & Alexis Poff

John & Audrey Colletta, Renee Pellegrino

Janet Parker & Sharon Brockenbrough

Joe Capers, Jim & Jennie Bagby April 2020 | 63

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VIP Destin at Emerald Grand at HaborWalk Village

Gilda Jackson & Maxine Orange Bern

Lisa Snuggs, Garnet Fleming & Gail Pelto

!"#$%&"'%()$ *'(+ ART GUILD LUNCHEON photos & story by Zhalman Harris

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n honor of the Mattie Kelly Arts Foundation’s (MKAF) 25-year historical journey, the popular Arts Guild Luncheon titled “Love for the Arts” returned to the Emerald Grande with an Art Guild Luncheon on February 20. The event, which was sponsored in part by Emerald Grande and held in the Emerald Grande Ballroom, featured acclaimed guest speaker Wendy Rodrigue, who presented the Life & Legacy Tour of George Rodrigue, her late husband. Windy also talked about her struggles after she lost “her” George, how she coped and was able to come out of the dark times in her life to getting back on track and doing the things she once loved. The George Rodrigue Life & Legacy Program inspires audiences with the life and art of George Rodrigue (1944-2013), explaining his vision by showing how one person can overcome obstacles to achieve their dreams, while also making a positive difference in the world. Within each piece of Rodrigue’s artwork, audiences will find common elements, including the distinctive Rodrigue Oak, the Cajun people, the “famed” Blue Dog as well as flowers, suns, butterflies, and even hurricanes. The enlightening program featured many works from Rodrigue’s private collection.

Heather Parker & Melanie Moore

Jeff Dannelly & Jennifer Howard

Heather Ruiz & Tracy Louthain

Kathy Whidden, Jenifer Tomasello, Odette Lumbreras & Maria Ramos April 2020 | 65

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VIP Destin at Love for the Arts Art Guild Luncheon

Janae Ericson & Linda Pannelli

Alice & Tess Radomski

Kris Billhorn & Michelle Jannazo

Kevin Louthain & Ed Kendust 66

Megan Harrison & Marcia Hull

Leigh Westman & Ann Waters

Beth Clavier & Demetrius Fuller

Kellie Jo Kilberg & Trisha Marks

Denise Kendest & Tracy Wood

Herb Peterson & Dale Hull

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VIP Destin at The Village of Baytowne Wharf

Mardi Gras Parade photos & story by Shanna Magnuson

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Mia Hughes & Sheila Williams

n February 23, The Fat Tuesday Mardi Gras Parade at The Village of Baytowne Wharf had every street packed.There were costumed dogs with their matching owners, unique and colorful floats, golf carts, cars, and trucks. Attendees gathered for a chance to be showered with beads, moon pies, and other trinkets. Along with a fun-filled parade, prizes for best costume, personality, best floats, and more added another level to the excitement! Alaqua Animal Refuge helps host this parade and bring awareness to â&#x20AC;&#x153;every abused and neglected and homeless animal that all deserve a second chance.â&#x20AC;? This Refuge is a full-service adoption center, no-kill refuge, that provides protection, shelter, and care to animals in need. A stop at their table, and attendees can see a few of the dogs that were ready to be adopted. Antoinette Farncia & Gretchen Parker

Patty DeFrenza, Katy Copeland & Steve Barber

Kathy & Rob Sager

Gail Hasan, Lauren Wagner & Sierra Riddell

Lorrie Miller, Linda Birdsong, Errin Moss, Linda Turner, Gary Bowman, Cara Weckerling, Debbie Depew (front), Connie Ford, Maryanne Allen, Steve Depew & Willie Allen April 2020 | 69

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VIP Destin at Mardi Gras Parade

Tina & Samantha Kasten with Sophia & Cocoa

Claude Mapp, Celi & Mark Johnson

Hilarie Taylor, Judi Abrusley, Barbara Holley, JJ Cowan, Janet Brauns, Sylvia Burton & Deb Cochran

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John & Caroline Kirby with Kandee & Piper

Trisha & Chris Longchier

Danyelle Rainer & Joe Maestas

Laura Hart, Mark & Robin Chastain, Ron Hart

Kim & Betty Lofquist with Precious

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April 2020 | 71

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VIP Destin at HarborWalk Village

Tyler Charleston & Dasia Colley

Rachel Velasquez, Brittany Byrd, Adrian Aguilar & Mae Leroy

photos & story by Zhalman Harris

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ie-hard Irish came out to celebrate the luck of the Irish at the HarborWalk Village on March 15, at the St Paddys Day Family Party. Guests enjoyed an afternoon of family fun featuring a live performance

Tyson & Dena Farr

Marie & Victor Wunderlich

from the Carpenter Academy of Irish Dance and a Leprechaun Treasure Hunt. Those with their furry friends also competed in the â&#x20AC;&#x153;pup of the Irish Pet costumeâ&#x20AC;? contest.

Johnny, Keri & John Holguin

Carpenter Academy of Irish Dance Troop April 2020 | 73

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VIP Destin at Cantina Laredo

Nancy Bown & Denise Song

Debi Carral & Claire Bassett

photos & story by Shanna Magnuson

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antina Laredo in Grand Boulevard at Sandestin were the proud hosts of Dog-Harmony’s Corks & Canines. This fundraising event included signed sports and Rock N’ Roll artist memorabilia, a silent auction, cork pull, a selection of favorite bottles of wine to bring home, and of course a night out with your pup. It was a chilly night, but guests hung out on the patio for the evening to partake in the wine and margaritas, and watch the dogs make new friends. Corks & Canines was sponsored by Grayton Brewpub, Emerald Grande at HarborWalk Village, Beach & Brew on 30A, Beach Club of Sandestin, Shunk Gulley Liquor and Wine, and Wine World; which all donated bottles of wine for the evening. Dog-Harmony is a nonprofit organization in Santa Rosa Beach “dedicated to reducing the shelter dog population through ongoing human education.” Nancy Bown founder and professional dog trainer of DogHarmony works to build these positive relationships and educate the public, along with programs that are low-cost or free microchipping, spay/ neuter, adoption, and more.

David Moore with Bonnie Blue

Kristal Edwards & Tammy D’Agostino

Sandra Brown & Sue Smith 74

Barbara Holley, Hilarie Taylor, Judi Abrusely & Deb Cochran

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Greg Trovinger & Steve Reynolds

Kathy Bowen & Kat Valdez with Kya

Erik & Samantha Graves with Guenivere

Kelli Moore & Judy Nicholson with Gino April 2020 | 75

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LOCALE O FWB Medical Center Rehabilitation Institute earns CARF Accreditation

For the eighth consecutive term, the Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities (CARF International) announced that Fort Walton Beach Medical Center/The Rehabilitation Institute of Northwest Florida has been accredited for a period of three years for its Inpatient Rehabilitation Program and Stroke Specialty Program. This designation represents the highest level of accreditation that can be given to an organization for substantial conformance to the CARF standards. Organizations that receive a three-year accreditation participate in a rigorous peer review and onsite surveyor process to demonstrate a strong commitment to offering programs and services that are measurable, accountable, and of the highest quality. CARF is an independent, nonprofit accrediting body whose mission is to promote the quality, value, and optimal outcomes of services through a consultative accreditation process and continuous improvement services that center on enhancing the lives of the persons served. Founded in 1966 as the Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities, and now known as CARF International, the accrediting body establishes consumer-focused standards to help organizations measure and improve the quality of their programs and services. For more information about the accreditation process, please visit the CARF website at www.carf.org.

Earth Day Network announces shift to global digital mobilizations for 50th anniversary of Earth Day Amid the recent coronavirus (COVID-19) global pandemic, Earth Day Network, the global organizer of Earth Day, will mark the 50th anniversary of Earth Day with 76

the first Digital Earth Day, a global digital mobilization on April 22 to address the most urgent threats to people and the planet. “At Earth Day Network, the health and safety of volunteers and participants in Earth Day events is our top concern. Amid the recent outbreak, we encourage people to rise up but to do so safely and responsibly — in many cases, that means using our voices to drive action online rather than in person,” said Kathleen Rogers, President of Earth Day Network. The pandemic will affect regions and countries differently, and some individuals and communities may decide to still hold in-person events. Earth Day Network urges everyone to assess their situation individually, take precautions and follow the recommendations and advice from the World Health Organization and the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and from local authorities from your city and country. “Whether it be coronavirus or our global climate crisis, we cannot shut down,” said Rogers.“ Instead, we must shift our energies and efforts to new ways to mobilize the world to action.” Earth Day’s updated digital-first strategy will leverage the global power of some of the world’s most innovative digital media platforms to mobilize millions in a collective call for transformative action for our planet. The coordination will deliver an Earth Day unlike any other in history as the movement marks its 50th anniversary. The global conversation will be unified and tracked by the shared hashtags #EarthDay2020 and #EARTHRISE. Earth Day Network will provide live coverage of the global digital mobilizations from its social media accounts (@earthdaynetwork). Plans are also underway to develop a major global event, coordinated across digital platforms to mark the 50th anniversary of Earth Day on April 22. Other digital events will include virtual protests, social media campaigns, online teach-ins and more. A full scope of digital actions will be available at earthday.org. Whether online or in person, the goal of Earth Day remains unchanged: to unite hundreds of millions of people around the world to pressure world leaders to act on environmental degradation and climate

change. “When 20 million Americans participated in the first Earth Day, they believed the warnings of scientists, as did the U.S. Congress,” said Denis Hayes, Board Chair Emeritus of Earth Day Network and the principal national organizer of the first Earth Day in 1970. “In a decade of bipartisan support for science, Congress passed a set of forward-thinking laws that protected human health, species and the planet.” “Our current pandemic demonstrates that governments must embrace science early. As we see now, many governments were slow to respond or even indifferent about the science of the coronavirus pandemic,” said Rogers. “But the last few weeks have also demonstrated that our society, even at the international level, is capable of mass shifts across all sectors to meet a crisis head-on. We must apply the same scale and urgency of our response to climate change.” “We hope you will stand with us as we fight for a safer, healthier and more just future for all,” added Rogers. “Together, we can build an Earth Day unlike any other — an Earth Day that defines us as a global community, united by our challenges yet unshrinking from the bold, urgent action needed to overcome them.” Earth Day Network is also postponing its live 50th anniversary of Earth Day event on the National Mall, originally scheduled for April 25, 2020, moving the live global event to October 24-25, 2020 to mark the half birthday of Earth Day. For more information go to www.earthday. org or contact: dzeck@mediaforum.org

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VIP Destin at The Henderson Resort

photos & story by Zhalman Harris

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n Thursday, February 27 the Boys and Girls Club of the Emerald Coast held their Annual Dinner at the Henderson Beach Resort. The evening included a sit-down dinner and awards program recognizing key volunteers, community leaders, staff, and Club members who have helped drive the impact of Boys & Girls Clubs here in Northwest Florida. Corporate and foundation board members were announced that evening. Also recognized that evening were people with 5 to 10 years tenures- Jason Floyd was awarded Board Member of the Year, Todd Wilkenson and Theri Isaacs were awarded for years of service on the board. The big winners that evening were Jacinda Rassa and Camille Manzie. Camille is a nine-year-old member of the Fort Walton Beach Youth Club. She is very active in her church in the youth groups and praise dancing, and is motivated by the bunny from Zootopia, where she just wants to make the world a better place. Jacinda was awarded the Fort Walton Beach Teen Centerâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Youth of the Year. She is a seven-year member of the Boys & Girls Clubs of the Emerald Coast. She is a senior at Choctawhatchee High School graduating in May of this year. Being very involved in the community, she coordinated a drive to take personal hygiene kits for disaster victims of Hurricane Michael in Panama City two weeks after that catastrophe. As Keystone president, Jacinda has been heavily involved in suicide prevention projects.

Jacobe Turner & Rita Cummings

Breanna Johnson & Bryson Thomas

Nichole Parkton & Nicole Judge

Blessi & Dar Miller, Nathan Rolens

Mike & Kathy Catanese 78

Barb Holloman, Kylianan, Kristaline & Stacy Winters

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Amy Meyer & Antonia Poate

Jackie & Allen Scott, Jamiah Dial, Jennifer Scott

Shervin Rassa & Jason Floyd

Crystal & Talan Mays

Taylor Goode, Bert Little & Socorro Pierce

Elaine Ashman, Malayne Demars & Alisa Ghazvini

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Kevin Oâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;Rourke & Casey Haff

Kelly Jasen & Leslie Mickles April 2020 | 79

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VIP Destin at Boys & Girls Club Annual Dinner

Amanda Mccardle, Andreia Barcelos, Heath Criswell, Weston Martinez & Cydney Flynn

Shervin Rassa, Teri Isaac & Todd Wilkenson

Amanda Godbold & Teri Isaacs

Kristen Lammers & Zakina Judd

Aubrey Claxton & Chris Wade

Jennifer & Emiloiea Martinez 80

Nicole & David Mars

Cadence & Christain Gallegos, Nicole Judge, Caleb Gallegos & Amy Gallardo

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Membership Options Annual Membership Dues

Social Single $85/Month ≠ $900/Prepaid Social Family $110/Month ≠ $1165/Prepaid Full Single $145/Month ≠ $1500/Prepaid Full Family $200/Month ≠ $2100/Prepaid Military or Senior Single $120/Month ≠ $1300/Prepaid Military or Senior Family $155/Month ≠ $1650/Prepaid Corporate Membership (Contact Rick Gorman) 4 Day Golf Single (Mon≠ Thursday) (Includes Cart Plan) $220/Month ≠ $2400/Prepaid

Social Membership Benefi ts No Monthly Minimums, Club Charging Privileges, Member≠ Only Tournaments and Events, 10% Discount Food Purchases, 10% Discount Golf Shop Purchases, Preferred Rates on Golf, May Make Tee Times 14 days in Advance, Discount on Banquet Facilities.

Full Membership Benefi ts

Membership Add Ons Membership Dues Cart Plan Single $175/Month Cart Plan Family $225/Month Trail Pass Single (Use personal golf cart) $150/Month

All Social Member Benefits, Unlimited Golf, Walking Option, Special Pricing on Lessions, Preferred Rates for Accompanied Guests, Club Cleaning and Storage, Member Locker Rooms.

Trail Pass Family (Use personal golf cart) $175/Month

Student Membership Benefi ts

Unlimited Practice Ball Plan Family $30/Month

$150/Semester, Unlimited Golf Semester Membership is valid from the first day of classes of the membership semester until the first day of classes for the following semester. Membership dues must be paid in full at the beginning of each semester.

Unlimited Practice Ball Plan Single $20/Month Member Practice Ball Bags (Each) $2/Small or $6/Large Locker Rental $10/Month or $75/Year Golf Handicap $30/Year

Scenic Hills Country Club is the perfect setting for weddings in the Pensacola area. Romantic indoor/ outdoor settings with a vast array of culinary selections provide the backdrop for your perfect day! Every wedding, no matter how large or small is all about the detailsÖ Flowers, food, music, and service staff; our On≠ Staff wedding coordinator will walk through every intimate detail and answer any questions or concerns you may have. Our incredible staff of trained professionals will make the entire experience simple and elegant while creating a wonderful memory for you during the whole process. Trust Scenic Hills with your magical day!

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!"#$"%&'(!)

!"#$%&'$(()*+% What is your hometown, what brought you here to the Emerald Coast, and how log have you lived here? I was born and raised right here in Northwest Florida. I’m a multi-generation native of Walton County and grew up in DeFuniak Springs. I’ve lived here my entire life apart from my time in college, and a few years after college when I entered the workforce. My husband, Kris, (also a Walton County native) and I moved back in 2011, and we are so happy to be home. What is your profession, and what led you to choose it? I’m honestly not sure if I chose it, or it chose me! When a friend contacted me and said, “You should really consider the Chamber CEO position – you would be great for that!”, my initial thought was, “Are you serious?” Then I got to thinking about my volunteer roles with the Chamber and how much I enjoyed it, how much I love our community and the people here, and how I would love to be part of the incredible progress we were (and still are) experiencing. So, I threw my name in the hat and here I am! What do you like best about Destin? What makes it unique? There are truly so many things that make our area unique. After college, when I lived in Georgia, I would always tell friends they should give the Walton County and Destin area a try for a beach vacation. People always asked me, “How is that area any different than the Georgia coast?” I really never could pinpoint one thing and always responded, “Trust me, it’s just different. The people, the culture…everything.” And it never failed that anyone who visited came back every time and agreed – there’s just something amazingly different. What are three words that best describe you? Dedicated. Tenacious. Genuine. Finish this statement, I AM DESTIN because…

photo by Shanna Manguson

I believe in everything this community is about and committed to helping with the success and positive growth to make this the best place to live, work and play for generations to come.

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