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FUN IN THE SUN Activities, Dining, Events and More

J A M AT THE BEACH

Music festivals that will leave you rocking

WET BUT STILL WILD

Rainy day plans that won’t leave you high and dry

I N TO U C H W I T H N AT U R E Get active outdoors in Panama City Beach

CO M P L I M E N TA R Y


14521 FRONT BEACH RD ・ 850.634.4884

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$

Check out our

Early Bird HAPPY HOUR Specials

3pm-5:30pm DAILY

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Crab Legs

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8752 Thomas Drive | 850.233.3907 | HammerheadFreds.com

EV ERYO N ES FAV O R IT

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ERS OYSMT A C IT Y B EA C H IN PA NA

FRESH

SEAFOOD

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MUSIC

LOC AL

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PEPPER CRUSTED TUNA

BLACK & BLUE CHICKEN SALAD

RAW OYSTERS

KEY WEST SHRIMP


CO N T E N T S

FEATURES 50 Eco-Tourism A bevy of beautiful state parks in the area will reconnect you to nature 54

Hurricane Michael The PCB community finds strength after the storm’s devastation

BEACH LIFE 60 Beach Itinerary Here are a few tips to make your beach excursion even better 66 Golf & Tennis PCB has plenty of sports options, whether you prefer racquets or clubs

50 IN EVERY ISSUE

EVENTS

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Welcome to the Beach

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About Resort Collection

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Your View of Paradise

30 Pepsi Gulf Coast Jam Country music’s top names make Panama City Beach a prime destination

DINING 20 Firefly Perfect for romance and fine dining, Firefly is a one-of-a-kind experience 26

Chef’s Beach Cocktails & Recipes Sunny days are back, and here are a couple concoctions to keep you cool

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SandJam New alt-rock showcase has made a name for itself after only two years

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UNwineD Savor the best in wine, craft beer and food at this two-day festival

44 Races IRONMAN, PCB Marathon have athletes running to the beach

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Gulf World Marine Park This family-friendly attraction both educates and entertains

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Beach Vacations by Resort Collection Let us help you make this beach vacation one you’ll always remember

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Rainy Day Fun Here are some fun diversions when the weather doesn’t cooperate

88 Sports Complex Q&A This new facility looks to make PCB a year-round destination for sports 95

Skywheel Reach new heights with one of the area’s newest, and tallest, attractions

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PUBLISHING TEAM DIRECTOR OF PRODUCTION AND TECHNOLOGY

Daniel Vitter CREATIVE DIRECTOR

Jennifer Ekrut EDITORIAL DESIGNER

Sarah Burger ADVERTISING DESIGNER

Lindsey Masterson MANAGING EDITOR

Jeff Price CUSTOM PUBLISHING MANAGER

Sara Goldfarb ACCOUNT EXECUTIVES

Julie Dorr, Darla Harrison, Rhonda Lynn Murray, Dan Parker AD SERVICES COORDINATOR

Tracy Mulligan

RESORT COLLECTION TEAM CHIEF OPERATIONS OFFICER

Mike Stange VICE PRESIDENT OF BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT

Paul Wohlford DIRECTOR OF MARKETING

Catherine Collins, CCollins@ResortCollection.com MARKETING MANAGER

Lauren Shaw, LShaw@ResortCollection.com

PUBLISHED BY:

PUBLICATION DESIGN, PRODUCTION AND MANAGEMENT ROWLAND PUBLISHING, INC. PRESIDENT/PUBLISHER Brian E. Rowland VICE PRESIDENT/CORPORATE DEVELOPMENT

McKenzie Burleigh 1932 Miccosukee Road, Tallahassee, FL 32308 RowlandPublishing.com • (850) 878-0554 8

G O I N ’ TO T H E B E AC H 2019


, r a e y t x e n e b y a M

! r a e y y r e ev Resort Collection is thrilled to be giving one lucky winner a free vacation to Panama City Beach for LIFE. Enter today for the opportunity of a “lifetime.�

ResortCollection.com


YOUR TABLE AWAITS OPEN DAILY 5PM

Firefly Restaurant & Lounge at the Shoppes of Edgewater Panama City Beach, Florida 850.249.3359 | fireflypcb.com Steak | Seafood | Sushi | Pizza | Dessert | Cocktails Private Rooms & Full-Service Catering Available


Northwest Florida’s Premier Wedding & Event Planners Full Service Wedding Coordination World Class Chef & Culinary Team Indoor & Outdoor Venues Newly Renovated Facilities

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WEDDINGS + EVENTS

Contact us to receive a free information kit. (850) 233-4029 | Weddings@ResortCollection.com

RESORTCOLLECTION.COM


A NOTE FROM PAUL WOHLFORD

Welcome to the Beach

Panama City Beach is ready for you

I

believe in the present and the future of Panama City Beach, and I’ll be the first to share my passion for the area with everyone I meet. Our small beach community has a newfound sense of strength and togetherness and is better than ever for our guests to experience.

I have always said the thing I love most about Panama City Beach is the people. My wife and I are both in the hospitality business, and it is the people — the whole community, in fact — that made us want to stay here. They make a great destination even better. Nothing proves truer than after facing and overcoming a major natural disaster together. Resort Collection stands out above the rest because we have been in the vacation rental industry and involved with homeowner associations for over 30 years. We’ve had the ability to diversify ourselves by remaining the largest locally owned and operated rental organization in Bay County and Panama City Beach. Time and again, we have proven our stability in the marketplace by overcoming obstacles that not all businesses survived: the Deepwater Horizon oil spill, a recession, new spring break ordinances and the most recent natural disaster — Hurricane Michael.

BY PAUL WOHLFORD

Beach & Golf Resort and acquired two new unique beach resorts. Panama City Beach is nearing completion on its brand-new sports complex, which is already geared to host over 40 new sporting events and hundreds of teams in 2019. It goes without saying that the beach is still PAUL WOHLFORD our greatest outdoor amenity and activity. Vice President of Business Between surfing, diving, deep-sea fishing Development, Resort Collection and paddleboarding, there is an abundance of activities to do on the sandy beaches. The weather here is perfect for runners, too. Being an avid runner myself and having an entire family that is outdoor driven, we take full advantage of the nearly 300 days of sunshine on the Emerald Coast. Our area is also very eco-active; there are state parks and a conservation park, as well as biking trails and pet-friendly parks, all within walking or biking distance to the beach and our resorts.

We credit our resilience to our dedicated employees and their commitment to our company. Hospitality is at the core of everything we do. We value integrity, teamwork, accountability, service, loyalty, respect and, most of all, fun. The mindset of all of our employees is that every day is the first day of someone’s vacation, and it’s our job to make sure they have the best time during their stay with us.

Watching my kids grow up in this great community surrounded by wonderful people is by far my favorite Panama City Beach memory, and I invite you to make your own. Our magazine is full of wonderful day-trip, activity and dining options to give you and your family an unforgettable vacation experience. Between its relaxed, hospitality-driven culture and big-city-meets-small-town character, this section of Northwest Florida has tremendous amounts of fun in store for everyone.

Northwest Florida and Resort Collection are constantly evolving, which means there is always something new to appreciate. In the past year, we renovated our state-of-the-art conference center at Edgewater

While our area might have 80 years of history, it’s a brand-new beach that you will want to get to know all over again. Stay with Resort Collection — Panama City Beach is ready for you. R E S O R TCO L L E C T I O N . CO M

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WHO WE ARE Resort Collection manages over 1,000 Gulf-front and Gulf-view vacation rentals, golf villas, and townhomes, over 90,000 square feet of combined indoor and outdoor meeting space, tennis, multiple upscale retail shops, eateries and coffee shops, state-of-the-art fitness rooms, an outdoor basketball court, 38 luxurious pools, a nine-hole executive golf course and more on Northwest Florida’s Gulf Coast. Our success can be attributed to an expert insight into the hospitality, destination travel and real estate and property management industries. With counsel from a select team of industry veterans, we have charted a course of careful and calculated growth, expanding services across a range of allied industries. Through the adoption of technology, the application of sophisticated marketing techniques and the creation of a flexible and scalable infrastructure, Resort Collection has evolved to become a trusted industry leader and the choice of owners and investors throughout North America. ResortCollectionCorporate.com

OUR BRANDS AND SERVICES Resort Collection Beach Properties Resort Collection invites sun worshippers to visit America’s favorite beach destination, Panama City Beach, and stay at one of its many properties, which include the amenity-abundant Edgewater Beach and Golf Resort, the magnificent Majestic Beach Resort, the luxurious Emerald Beach Resort, the vast Long Beach Resort, the contemporary Grandview East Resort, the fun-filled Summit Beach Resort, the elegant Shores of Panama, the beautiful Sunbird Beach Resort, the spacious Laketown Wharf Resort, the laid-back Top of the Gulf Condominiums, the family-friendly Continental Condominiums, the relaxing Gulf Highlands Beach Resort and the exclusive En Soleil — all located on the “World’s Most Beautiful Beaches.” ResortCollection.com

TOP OF THE

B Y RE SORT COLLE CTION ®

CONDOMINIUMS

Resort Collection Hospitality Management This full-service hospitality management and consulting team has been giving owners the highest level of year-round revenue while maintaining their properties in top condition for over 20 years. When developing a new hotel or resort, establishing a new hospitality or leisure business or brand, or acquiring and refurbishing an existing property, it is important that effective and wellconsidered long-term decisions are made from the outset. From guest comfort to activities, from financial planning to the hiring of staff, Resort Collection’s seasoned professionals will work with your team to ensure that the vision becomes a reality. Call (800) 331-6338 for more information.

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ABOUT RESORT COLLECTION

Resort Collection Association Management The Resort Collection Association Management team (RCAM) offers professional property management services for a variety of properties. Designated by the Community Associations Institute as an Accredited Association Management Company, RCAM has been serving communities for over 30 years, offering proven management programs for multiple associations, local market knowledge, and the expertise expected from an industry leader. RCAM’s professional accounting team delivers financial stability and security to its clients, including expense tracking, cash flow control, collections strategies and budget and reserves management. The team provides proven programs that will lower operating costs while adding stability, value and a harmonious environment to each community it serves. ResortCollection.com/RC-Association-Management

Beach Vacations by Resort Collection With over 1,000 individually owned vacation rental units, Resort Collection continues to experience careful and controlled growth due to a thorough knowledge of the vacation rental industry, a careful selection of only the most desirable properties and a genuine concern for the best interests of its owners. In addition to providing a variety of rental management options for owners, Beach Vacations by Resort Collection helps guests find the perfect accommodations to suit their needs at their favorite Panama City Beach resorts such as Seychelles, Grand Panama, Ocean Reef and many others. Whether vacationers are seeking a relaxing couple’s getaway or a family beach trip full of fun and excitement, Beach Vacations by Resort Collection has properties to suit everyone. BeachVacationsByRC.com

RC Real Estate Group When it comes to maneuvering the often-choppy waters of the area’s real estate market, you definitely want a seasoned captain and crew at the helm. The team at RC Real Estate Group, formerly Edgewater Beach Realty, is just the team you’re looking for. Although the name is new, the brokerage has been satisfying the real estate needs of thousands of clients for over 30 years. RC Real Estate Group is a full-service real estate company that specializes not only in residential sales of single-family homes, condominiums and homesites, but also in commercial sales, leasing and property management. For more information on real estate opportunities at RC Real Estate Group, call (850) 249-6100. RCRealEstateGroup.com

Interested in becoming part of our professional team? We work hard to ensure each resort exceeds the expectations of our guests and that our rental services support the needs of our owners. We are committed to our values of “Integrity, Teamwork, Accountability, Service, Loyalty, Respect and FUN.” Visit our website to see what makes Workin’ at the Beach so amazing and to view available job openings. ResortCollectionCorporate.com/Careers/Culture

Resort Collection is proud to be a member of these esteemed organizations:

Onsite Property Management Association

Florida Restaurant and Lodging Association

TheOPMA.org

FRLA.org

VISIT FLORIDA VisitFlorida.com

Panama City Beach Convention and Visitors Bureau

Panama City Beach Chamber of Commerce

Bay County Chamber of Commerce

VisitPanamaCity Beach.com

PCBeach.org

PanamaCity.org

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Your lawn deserves better. Let us do the dirty work.

HORTICULTURE ROOTED IN SCIENCE CConner@ResortCollection.com | (850) 235-6812

RC-LANDSCAPES.COM


YOUR V IEW OF

Paradise

Picture it…a scenic sunset, emerald green water and the perfect beach cocktail in hand. At about this time, a camera or smartphone is being used to capture and post this Insta-worthy moment. At all of Resort Collection’s 13 resorts, the views and experiences are all worth sharing. Wouldn’t you do the same?

GET SOCIAL with Resort Collection by following us on:

Facebook.com/ ResortCollection

Shannon J.

Kayla J.

Kristen S.

Staci C.

Meredith S.

Lindsey C.

Tara B.

The Curly Coopers

Andrea S.

@ResortCollection

@ResortsPCBeach

YouTube.com/ ResortCollection

LinkedIn.com/company/ Resort-Collection

#GOINTOTHEBEACH To share your view of PCB paradise with us!

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L O N G B E AC H RESORT AMENITIES Relaxation is key at Long Beach Resort. Sip on a cool drink while basking in the Florida rays alongside one of three lagoon pools and enjoy the sound of the waves crashing on silver sands by night from oversized balconies. Enjoy poolside dining at The Hangout tiki bar while chatting and catching up with friends and loved ones or bring along a good book and soak up the warm rays on the beach. No matter what, total relaxation is a sure thing. Long Beach is a palm-fringed oasis tucked away from the busy shops and streets of Panama City Beach, but it’s only moments away from the excitement if you’re seeking a night on the town or some shopping. At the end of the day, guests are invited to spend the evening in our seasonally heated Polynesian pools and whirlpool spas. It’s a fitting end to such a relaxing day, and it’s just what you can expect at Long Beach Resort.

 Three tropical lagoon pools  Poolside dining at The Hangout tiki bar  One-, two- and threebedroom suites  Complete kitchens  Spacious living rooms  Efficiency units  Beachfront views  Private balconies  Outdoor grill area  Free Wi-Fi

FOR RESERVATIONS OR MORE INFORMATION, PLEASE CALL (888) 722-3224. 10511 Front Beach Road, Panama City Beach, FL 32407 • LBResort.com 18

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Firefly rises up Offering the same elegance and casual fine dining after the storm PHOTOGRAPHY COURTESY OF FIREFLY

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DINING

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hether you’re looking for the perfect romantic date destination, a fun night out with friends and family, or a private space to hold your next meeting or event, Firefly has something for everyone.

It’s no wonder that Firefly is a seven-time Florida Trend Golden Spoon Award winner, has won the Wine Spectator Award of Excellence 11 years running, and has been included in OpenTable.com’s “100 Most Romantic Restaurants” and Urbanspoon. com’s “Top 250 High-End Restaurants in the World.” Firefly’s friendly staff and expert culinary team will ensure that your casual fine dining experience is one to remember.

“It’s easy to say the food makes Firefly special, but it really is so much more than that. It’s the whole experience — the service, the atmosphere and the attention to detail.” — DAVE TREPANIER, OWNER OF FIREFLY

Firefly’s owner, Dave Trepanier, attributes the success of his restaurant — opened in 2007 — to many things. “It’s easy to say the food makes Firefly special, but it really is so much more than that,” he says. “It’s the whole experience — the service, the atmosphere and the attention to detail.” Its motto is “casual fine dining,” but Firefly exceeds that label. With the addition of the sushi bar and multiple private dining rooms, the restaurant brought something for everyone to the table. Patrons can enjoy filet mignon and lobster in the main dining room underneath a beautiful, sprawling tree — complete with ambient lights and twinkling “fire-flies” in its branches. Like many other local businesses in Panama City Beach, Firefly was damaged when Hurricane Michael made landfall in October of 2018. It was a devastating time for the famed restaurant, but Trepanier says it was the unknown that was the hardest part. “Not knowing when you can get a roofer to start, how is insurance going to work and, most importantly, how is my staff?” he explained. “There was zero communication for

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DINING

so long that I didn’t know who was safe, who lost their homes or who left the area. It was a very scary couple of weeks. I had to actually hop a fence to go find Chef Derek and see if he was OK. It was a big relief knowing that no one was killed or injured.” Firefly’s executive chef, Derek Langford, joined their team in the summer of 2015. No stranger to Gulf Coast and Southern cuisines, Langford has previous professional experience with WaterColor Inn in Santa Rosa Beach, Florida; Bud & Alley’s in Seaside, Florida; Farm 255 in Athens, Georgia; and Château Élan Winery and Resort in Braselton, Georgia. With much anticipation and perseverance from Trepanier and his staff, Firefly reopened its doors in April of 2019 after being closed for renovations following the hurricane. The same warmth of a classic steakhouse with the intimacy of an outdoor Mediterranean bistro waits to welcome customers once again. “Our kitchen was destroyed, so we rebuilt it 22

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with all new equipment,” Trepanier said about Firefly’s renovations. “We also made a few changes to the interior with carpet, lighting, etc. But for the most part, it’s still the same Firefly — if it’s not broke, don’t fix it!” The 535 Library Lounge remains the perfect spot to cozy up with good friends and enjoy a drink while waiting for your table. The Firefly Bar has HD screens for watching the big game, and it’s a great place for grabbing an appetizer or enjoying a full meal in a more casual setting. The sushi bar serves creative, delicious handmade rolls that are sure to impress. Combine all these elements with a diverse menu that includes steaks, seafood, pasta, pizzas, sushi, desserts, specialty cocktails and over 200 wines, and it’s easy to see why Firefly has become a favorite dining destination for Panama City Beach locals and visitors. Trepanier says choosing a favorite meal at Firefly would be next to impossible. “It all depends what you’re in the mood for,”


DINING

“You can’t help but feel that the community is going to be stronger, especially after what we have all been through...” — DAVE TREPANIER, OWNER OF FIREFLY

he says. “The she-crab soup is a classic. The pepper-crusted stuffed filet, the homemade pasta Bolognese, the espresso-braised pork shank — honestly, all of the menu items are excellent. Chef Derek is making several changes to the menu reflecting his style, but the old favorites aren’t going anywhere.” As for how Trepanier feels about his community after the storm, he says rising up together is what made us get through a tough time. “You can't help but feel that the community is going to be stronger, especially after what we have all been through — it tests your character,” Trepanier said. “I've been through wildfires and earthquakes in southern California, and while both can be devastating, I've never witnessed anything like Hurricane Michael. The pictures and

video don't do it justice; you had to see it with your own eyes.” Patrons can find Firefly’s Sunset Special menu, happy hour specials such as Tini Tuesdays, and weekly chef ’s specials, on its website at FireflyPCB.com. Visitors to the site can explore all that Firefly has to offer, browse the restaurant’s menus and make reservations online — something important to stress as the dining room is often full. Any occasion is the perfect one for a visit to Firefly in Panama City Beach. From the moment you pass through the wood front doors, you’ll feel as if you’ve stepped into a cozy hideaway that certainly has an air of je ne sais quoi — it’s difficult to pinpoint why, but you just know you’ve found someplace special. R E S O R TCO L L E C T I O N . CO M

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Pier Park . 30Avenue

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EN SOLEIL AMENITIES One of the most exclusive and desirable properties in Panama City Beach, luxury seekers can look no further than En Soleil. Each of this property’s two- and three-bedroom units and four-bedroom penthouses face the turquoise waters of the Gulf of Mexico. Modern appliances, spacious floor plans and oversized balconies ensure that every guest experiences the ultimate in comfort and style when staying at En Soleil. Families, honeymooners and winter residents alike will love the exclusivity and comfort offered at En Soleil. Minutes from world-class golf, challenging sport fishing and exquisite restaurants and boutiques, the resort features over 6,500 feet of immaculately designed pools, two hot tubs, two grand waterfall features and two circular waterfall fountains, all with beautiful Mediterranean vegetation throughout.

 Pristine beach frontage  Beachfront private balconies  Underground parking and secured gates  6,500 square feet of exclusively designed pools  Two hot tubs  Two waterfall features and two circular waterfall fountains  Fitness center  Free Wi-Fi

FOR RESERVATIONS OR MORE INFORMATION, PLEASE CALL (877) 233-4001. 7509 Thomas Drive, Panama City Beach, FL 32408 • EnSoleilRentals.com R E S O R TCO L L E C T I O N . CO M

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Beach A TA S T E O F T H E

Toast to sunny days and sandy toes COCKTAILS COURTESY OF RESORT COLLECTION

CALYPSO PUNCH

CARIBBEAN C OC O N U T COLADA

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DINING

CARIBBEAN COCONUT COLADA

♪ “If you’re not into yoga”

CALYPSO PUNCH

and “have half a brain,” this classic piña colada recipe is everything you want in a tropical drink. Give in to your sweet side and enjoy this cocktail with friends.

The closest drink you’ll find to what tasting the beach might be like. This tropical rum cocktail creates a flavor that puts you in instant vacation mode.

INGREDIENTS

INGREDIENTS

 2½ oz. coconut rum

 2 oz. silver rum

 2 oz. silver rum

 2 oz. coconut rum

 6 oz. Piña colada mix

 ½ oz. 151 rum

 ½ oz. dark rum

 6 oz. cranberry juice

 1 pineapple slice

 6 oz. pineapple juice

 2 maraschino cherries

 1 orange slice

In a blender, mix the first three ingredients with a glass of cubed ice and blend until smooth and frosty. Pour into a glass and float the dark rum on top. Garnish with a pineapple slice and maraschino cherries.

 2 maraschino cherries Mix the first five ingredients together and pour over an ice-filled glass. To finish, garnish with the orange slice and maraschino cherries.

FIND BOTH OF THESE RECIPES AT MOST RESORT COLLECTION RESORTS AND MONTEGO BAY.

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E DG E WAT E R B E AC H & GOLF RESORT

Edgewater Beach and Golf Resort is an expansive full-service resort on Panama City Beach. Luxurious amenities such as the gulf-front Lagoon Pool, Ocean’s Bar and Grill beachfront restaurant, The Shoppes at Edgewater, and more will provide enjoyment for every minute of your stay. During your stay at the resort, take in the gorgeous views and sunsets, and enjoy being near all that Panama City Beach has to offer. With eleven pools scattered about the property, spacious units with private balconies, Adventure Zone and seasonal activities for kids, and our par-three executive golf course, Edgewater is a great getaway for the whole family. Mom and Dad can relax or enjoy a round of golf while the kids participate in activities such as tie-dyeing T-shirts, dive-in movies, and surf lessons on the beach! Known worldwide for its golf course and amenities, Edgewater is also one of the best resorts for getting down to business. Not only is the resort a winner of five Gold Tee awards from Meetings & Conventions magazine, but Edgewater Beach and Golf Resort also boasts a 32,700-square-foot, newly renovated meeting and conference center with flexible spaces and theaterstyle seating for up to two thousand attendees.

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AMENITIES  110 acres along some of the world’s most beautiful beaches  Nine-hole executive golf course  On-property dining at Ocean’s Bar and Grill, Paradise Pizza, Blenders, and Edgie’s Corner Market  Adventure Zone, open seasonally, including dive-in movies on the pool deck and activities scheduled for all ages  Tiki Airbrush shop open seasonally  Winter guest programs  Full-service market featuring Starbucks®  Free Wi-Fi  Conference center and meeting spaces  Ten Plexicushion tennis courts  Basketball court  Fitness center and massage services  Eleven outdoor pools, including the resort’s famous 11,500-squarefoot Lagoon Pool with cascading waterfalls and surrounding hot tubs, 45,000 square feet of deck space, and children’s Splash Pad

FOR RESERVATIONS OR MORE INFORMATION, PLEASE CALL (855) 874-8686. 11212 Front Beach Road, Panama City Beach, FL 32407 • EdgewaterBeachResort.com R E S O R TCO L L E C T I O N . CO M

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EVENTS

W E L I K E I T, WE LOVE IT Pepsi Gulf Coast Jam nails the country-rock music festival PHOTOS COURTESY OF PCB ENTERTAINMENT, LLC

C

ontinuing to bring the biggest names in country and rock music to its stage in Panama City Beach, Pepsi Gulf Coast Jam is returning for its seventh year in 2019. This year, over Labor Day weekend, festivalgoers from across the world will travel to listen to today’s top hits in “This Crazy Town!”

What makes Gulf Coast Jam special? Rendy Lovelady, Pepsi Gulf Coast Jam’s executive producer, said it best at the inaugural 2013 event: “I want to bring something that everyone can continue to enjoy for the next 10, 15, 20 years. This festival will become a staple in Panama City Beach!” Lovelady, COO Mark Sheldon and Dave Trepanier, have proven that Pepsi Gulf Coast Jam is here to stay and never fails to bring the best artists in the industry to the World’s Most Beautiful Beaches. Fans are already looking forward to this year’s festival, which will feature major headliners each night. “It just became the natural progress of growth,” Rendy says. “We are beyond excited about the headliners for our seventh year,”

said Lovelady. “These guys are proven hit makers and put on some of the best shows in the business. Add the fourth — and biggest — headliner, the beautiful Gulf Coast beaches, and you have the best concert experience in the country.” Kicking off the festival weekend on Friday night is none other than Tim McGraw, with decades worth of hits such as “Just to See You Smile,” “Live Like You Were Dying,” and his most recent Grammy winner for Best Country Song, “Humble and Kind.” On Saturday, back for a second year and even more epic performance is Jason Aldean, bringing the jams with “Drowns the Whiskey,” “Dirt Road Anthem,” and “You Make It Easy.” Kid Rock will bring the rock n’ roll side of country music to close the festival on Sunday. Rock is known for songs like “Picture,” “Cowboy,” and the perfect beach anthem, “All Summer Long.” Due to the devastating impact that Hurricane Michael had on Panama City and its surrounding areas, Pepsi Gulf Coast Jam producers decided to give back to the communities that have given so much to them. For every ticket purchased for the

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EVENTS

The first year, however, was all about learning so that the festival could be bigger and better in the years to follow. However, more than on-site logistics have made this event successful. “The support from the city of Panama City Beach has been tremendous,” Sheldon insists. “From the Tourist Development Council board to the police, fire rescue, and all city offices — it has been a team effort to make this event great!” The 2014 lineup nearly blew Panama City Beach out of its emerald waters and made a lot of Pepsi Gulf Coast Jammers especially happy. When you throw Carrie Underwood, Blake Shelton and Dierks Bentley on the stage in the same weekend, fans will travel from anywhere to see them — and travel they did. Over 18,000 concertgoers attended Pepsi Gulf Jam on Labor Day weekend in 2014, and almost every condominium on the beach was sold out. Did we forget to mention that Carrie Underwood announced that she was expecting her first child two days after her performance? It was the perfect surprise to wrap up an unforgettable weekend.

TICKETS FOR 2019 are already on sale and include general admission, the VIP pit experience, skybox, side stage and golden circle. Preferred lodging packages are also available through booking online with Resort Collection. Hurry before they sell out.

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2019 festival, $10 of that ticket will be donated to hurricane relief funds and organizations. They realized that, now more than ever, it is important to support and love each other through these difficult times. Behind the music, these three men and their brilliant production team bring everything to life at this impressive event. “I was in the music industry for 15 years,” says Pepsi Gulf Coast Jam producer Dave Trepanier. “Music has always been my passion, and Mark and Rendy share that same love. The headliners we bring in don’t typically come to a small town like ours, so for me, whether you like country music or not, it validates Panama City Beach as a great destination!” In 2013, Trace Adkins, Brantley Gilbert and Toby Keith headlined the three-day music festival and brought in a crowd of 13,000 people from 49 states and 14 countries. To boast such a large crowd right off the bat — even before the event was held during Labor Day weekend — was a major accomplishment. “Pepsi Gulf Coast Jam is a festival different from any other,” says Pepsi Gulf Coast Jam COO Mark Sheldon. “It’s a perfect combination of vacation and music all rolled into one.”

From the moment you purchase your ticket to the second you walk through the gates at Frank Brown Park, every detail has been meticulously thought out to maximize the fan experience. Also available are military and children’s discounts, will call and handicap seating. Don’t worry about food and beverages — there are vendors located throughout the Pepsi Gulf Coast Jam site to provide fresh Gulf seafood, festival favorites and more! In 2015, Rendy promised that the lineup would be the biggest one to date. There was a mix of charttopping acts, up-and-coming stars and country music legends throughout the three-day festival. Headlining acts included Lady Antebellum, Miranda Lambert and Keith Urban, and they were joined by other big acts such as Hunter Hayes, Martina McBride and Sam Hunt. That year, every nomination category at the CMT Music Awards had at least one performer from Pepsi Gulf Coast Jam. “I think it reiterates just how strong of a lineup we put together,” Lovelady says. “There really are only a handful of acts that we haven’t yet brought down to the Panhandle. Each year, we’re just going to get bigger and better.” Due to circumstances beyond their control, the festival was cancelled in 2016 by Hurricane Hermine’s dangerous approach on the Gulf Coast. It was a devastating blow to both the producers and eager concertgoers. But the disappointment didn’t


last long as promise of a huge lineup in 2017 certainly delivered. The fifth annual Pepsi Gulf Coast Jam brought 15 acts to join headliners Jason Aldean, Little Big Town and honorary Panama City Beach local Luke Bryan. Festival organizers also continued a commitment to raise funds for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, which focuses on treating and defeating childhood cancer and other lifethreatening diseases. For every ticket sold at Pepsi Gulf Coast Jam, $2 went to support the life-saving work of St. Jude. Pepsi Gulf Coast Jam is clearly known to give back in multiple ways and has a generous heart. Since its beginning, Jammers who are either active or retired military have been able to purchase tickets at a lower price. This price will not increase, and it includes all the general admission benefits. Who could forget the list of established entertainers Pepsi Gulf Coat Jam brought to the stage in 2018? Headliners included Florida Georgia Line, Eric Church and Thomas Rhett, with huge supporting acts like Justin Moore, Chris Janson, Dustin Lynch, Chase Rice and Brett Young. The festival has been bringing the freshest

sounds in country music, and this year was no exception. They make it extremely hard to pass up spending Labor Day weekend at the beach listening to live country music. Trepanier says that the crowd reaction is, hands down, the best part of the entire festival weekend. “It’s so fun watching people laugh, scream and cry tears of joy because Thomas Rhett or Brett Young just took a selfie with them,” he says. “That, to me, makes it all worthwhile.” If you weren’t planning on visiting Panama City Beach over Labor Day weekend, but you want the ultimate experience of fun, sun and music, Pepsi Gulf Coast Jam is definitely the place to be. Enjoying everything the community has to offer is not something to pass up. As Trepanier says, “You can see these artists anywhere in the country, but there is only one place you can see them and spend the day on the World’s Most Beautiful Beaches!” Don’t miss all the country coming to the emerald coast Aug. 30–Sept. 1, 2019. For ticket options and all other Pepsi Gulf Coast Jam information, please visit GulfCoastJam.com. Fans can also follow Pepsi Gulf Coast Jam on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. R E S O R TCO L L E C T I O N . CO M

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E NTER SANDJAM Where music meets the white-sand beaches PHOTOS COURTESY OF PCB ENTERTAINMENT, LLC

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here is a free-spirit atmosphere about the beach. One where everyone is welcome, everyone has something in common and life is less stressful — if just for a moment.

SandJam, an adult-alternative music festival in Panama City Beach, makes way for concert-goers to experience a truly surreal event while watching well-recognized artists take stage. In only its second year, SandJam has become known as the go-to spring music festival in the Southeast by bringing some of the industry’s biggest household names to the beach. It also doesn’t hurt that over 20 acts perform on two massive stages set right on the beautiful white-sand. The producers stepped it up a notch (or 10) with the second annual festival in 2019. SandJam headliners were Kings of Leon, Third Eye Blind and Young the Giant,

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EVENTS

bringing a composition of chart-topping ballads and mind-blowing performances. “We were beyond excited about these headliners,” said SandJam executive producer Rendy Lovelady. “Kings of Leon and Third Eye Blind are absolutely huge, as is Young the Giant with a current chart-topping single.” The headliners were joined by Cold War Kids, Dirty Heads, The Revivalists, Blackberry Smoke, JJ Grey & Mofro, Matt and Kim, Anderson East, Yeasayer, COIN, KONGOS, Alice Merton, Parachute, Max Frost, The Shadowboxers, We The Kings, Brandon “Taz” Niederauer, The War and Treaty, Them Dirty Roses, Kirstie Lovelady, Heritage Band and Welles. The concert venue, M.B. Miller Pier, was transformed into the ultimate beach hangout for SandJam. Temporary roads were built on the sand for more stable access, while food, drink, clothing and craft vendors filled the parking lots, creating a fun environment for attendees to congregate and grab a quick bite to eat. In 2018, over 20,000 music lovers descended on Panama City Beach at the inaugural SandJam. Incubus, Sublime with Rome, and Fitz and the Tantrums were the headliners along with 20 other musical performances. The event was deemed so significant that the Bay County Commission, the Panama City Beach Tourism Development Council and SandJam organizers committed to bring the festival back to the same location for at least the next three years. Setting up two large stages directly on the beach is unique to large-scale music festivals. Artists alternate from one stage to the other, so there is very little down time between acts, making music performances virtually non-stop during the event. "We'll have an act perform on one stage, and the next act will perform on a stage about 250 yards away," Lovelady said. "This will be exciting for our Jammers, as they'll have non-stop music throughout the day and into the night." Sharing the sandy beach with thousands of likeminded fans while rocking out and saying, “this is my song!” sounds like the ideal music festival. But there is always an exclusive VIP opportunity to take SandJam a step further. Private cabanas offer the deluxe experience of a private entrance, complimentary drinks and parking passes, VIP restrooms, a daily snack basket and Gulf-view seating for 20 people. Sounds like our kind of cabana! Come for the music. Stay for the beaches. Make lasting memories. Check out SandJamFest.com for more information, and we’ll see you on the sandy beaches soon. R E S O R TCO L L E C T I O N . CO M

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MAJESTIC B E AC H RESORT

Majestic Beach Resort has captured the spirit of life on the beach in a condominium resort with over 650 feet of beachfront, spacious suites and private balconies. During your stay at Majestic Beach Resort, take advantage of all the activities available on the sugarwhite sands of Panama City Beach right outside your door. Dive into the emerald green waters of the Gulf of Mexico, indulge your senses at our health club and spa or plan activities for the whole family. Whether it’s golf, sunbathing or fine dining that you’re looking for, you will find it here. Spend your vacation surrounded by palm trees and enjoy a relaxing swim in one of Majestic’s outdoor or indoor pools, or pack a picnic and spend some time on the beach with your loved ones. No matter what you like to do when you go to the beach, Majestic has what you’re looking for.

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AMENITIES  The Majestic Theatre  The Majestic Market featuring Starbucks®  The poolside H20 Bar and Grill  Beach services and rentals  Conference center/meeting space for up to 400 attendees  Free Wi-Fi  Private beach access  State-of-the-art fitness center  Two tennis courts  Three outdoor pools and two heated indoor pools  Seasonal kids and winter guest activities

FOR RESERVATIONS OR MORE INFORMATION, PLEASE CALL (866) 494-3364. 10901 Front Beach Road, Panama City Beach, FL 32407 • MajesticBeachResort.com R E S O R TCO L L E C T I O N . CO M

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ALL ABOUT

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Southern


Spirit(s)

EVENTS

UNwineD brings craft beer, wine, creative cocktails and culinary creations to PCB PHOTOS COURTESY OF VISIT PANAMA CITY BEACH

I

t’s time to savor, indulge and enjoy. Whether a local, loyal visitor or just passing through, Panama City Beach has one event sure to pique the interest of the most avid beer and wine connoisseurs. For the fourth consecutive year, Visit Panama City Beach hosted a delightful two-day festival at Aaron Bessant Park. UNwineD, presented in partnership with Southern Living, featured craft beer and wine tastings, creative cocktails and culinary creations by some of the South’s leading chefs, including Top Chef finalist Kevin Gillespie of Red Beard Restaurants. Adding more excitement to the event were live musical performances, including national recording artist JOHNNYSWIM and threetime Grammy Award winner Brandi Carlile, known for chart-topping records like “The Story,” “Party of One” and “The Joke.” “We are thrilled to announce the return of our award-winning UNwineD to Panama City Beach and partnership with Southern Living,” says Visit Panama City Beach President and CEO Dan Rowe. “With Brandi Carlile, JOHNNYSWIM, Chef Kevin Gillespie and mixologist Mercedes O’Brien joining the lineup, this year’s garden party and grand tasting… featured the best cuisine, cocktails and live music in Northwest Florida.” R E S O R TCO L L E C T I O N . CO M

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EVENTS

2019 Headliner, Brandi Carlile

Guests experienced the same bold flavors and delicious plays on ingredients that Chef Kevin uses in his two restaurants, Gunshow in Atlanta and Revival in Decatur, along with the same cocktail creativity that Mercedes uses at Gunshow and soon-to-open Cold Beer. Whether a pour from a freshly uncorked bottle of wine or a perfectly brewed beer was the preference, there seemed to be a camaraderie between both types of beverage enthusiasts. The “tasting event” trend that has swept across the nation is unique in its capability of pulling a mixed crowd of people from various demographics, and it’s no different in Panama City Beach. People from all walks of life came together for a few days of festive fun and mutual enjoyment. Nothing can compete with savoring your favorite drink while enjoying the salty air and warm breezes coming off the Gulf of Mexico. The annual UNwineD festival brings all the senses together for an epic event, steps away from Panama City Beach’s famous white sands. So next time you’re visiting, stop, sip, relax and UNwineD. 40

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Southern Food Family Style Dining Southern Hospitality

Florida Locations Pier Park

Destin Commons

601 Pier Park Dr , Suite 103 Panama City Beach, FL 32413

4237 Legendary Drive, Ste. H-100 Destin, Florida 32541

850-312-5354

850-312-5353

Facebook.com/PDFKPanamaCity

Facebook.com/PDFKDestin

Learn more at www.ilovepdî‚›.com


EMERALD B E AC H RESORT

The beach has never felt more like home than at Emerald Beach Resort. Each carefully crafted one-, two- and three-bedroom suite was designed with families and comfort in mind. Each unit has all the luxuries of home, including a full kitchen, washer and dryer, and inviting decor that you will love coming home to after a long day of fun on the beach. With spacious floor plans and sweeping views of the Gulf, families of all sizes and interests will make memories here to last a lifetime. Emerald Beach Resort is within walking distance of many of Panama City Beach’s exciting attractions, including Pier Park, an outdoor shopping and entertainment mecca that features stores, restaurants, nightlife, a movie theater, carnival rides and children’s play areas.

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AMENITIES  Expansive floor plans  Spectacular beachfront views  Convenience of a washer and dryer and a full-sized kitchen  One-, two- and three-bedroom suites  Lagoon pool with kids’ water feature  Gulf-front pool with tiki bar  Fitness center  Covered parking garage  Light fare at scenic Skybar and Starbucks®  Free Wi-Fi  Within walking distance of Pier Park and Aaron Bessant Park

FOR RESERVATIONS OR MORE INFORMATION, PLEASE CALL (855) 528-6174. 14700 Front Beach Road, Panama City Beach, FL 32413 • EmeraldBeachResort.com R E S O R TCO L L E C T I O N . CO M

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EVENTS

CO M P E T E AT THE

B E AC H W

ith the Gulf of Mexico as the backdrop and an average of 300 days of sunshine for perfect running, biking or swimming weather, thousands of people sign up each year to participate in one or more competitions at the beach. Panama City Beach has become a mecca for marathoners and triathletes, who are provided plenty of opportunities to visit the area with a variety of race events. Pushing physical and mental limits is part of the runner’s rush for triathletes and marathoners. Crossing the barrier of what they thought they were capable of is something they will travel anywhere to experience. When combining their need for accomplishment with competitions along the “World’s Most Beautiful Beaches,” who wouldn’t jump at the opportunity? Here are Panama City Beach’s top triathlon and marathon events throughout the year. Who knows, you might just decide to sign up too.

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EVENTS

IRONMAN 70.3 GULF COAST Becoming a staple event at Resort Collection’s Edgewater Beach & Golf Resort, competitors can look forward to IRONMAN 70.3 Gulf Coast. Occurring in May, this IRONMAN-branded event has become a noteworthy triathlon in Panama City Beach and one that triathletes from all over the country look forward to. Between the race, Gulf-front location and ideal spring weather, this competition is a perfect trifecta in a runner’s paradise. This spring race provides the perfect course preview for athletes planning on racing the November IRONMAN, also hosted in Panama City Beach. The competition will begin with an open water 1.2-mile swim in the Gulf of Mexico. Competitors will then continue on to bike 56 miles on an out-and-back course through rural areas of Bay County and Panama City Beach. Much like IRONMAN Florida, it is a flat and fast course, perfect for athletes looking to obtain a personal best. The 13.1-mile run segment will feature some of the most attractive beachfront areas and have participants cross the finish line back at Edgewater Beach & Golf Resort. Top finishing athletes will not only be granted extreme bragging rights but also the opportunity to compete alongside the nation’s best at the IRONMAN 70.3 World Championship. Qualifying slots will be handed out to the top 40 finishers. An additional 25 slots will be given out to the top 25 finishers of IRONMAN 70.3 Gulf Coast, dedicated to the Women for Tri initiative. Ironman.com

PANAMA CITY BEACH MARATHON Run through paradise alongside our award-winning beaches at the Panama City Beach Marathon. Expanding from a previous half marathon and 5K competition, the race incorporates more areas of the beach, such as St. Andrews State Park and the Historic East End. The certified 26.2-mile out-and-back course is relatively flat and follows alongside the Gulf of Mexico, through neighborhoods and the state park, before it loops back to the finish line at Pier Park. Filling a void in its December calendar of events, the Panama City Beach Chamber of Commerce hosted the city’s inaugural Panama City Beach Marathon in 2015, bringing in hundred of runners from 36 states and five countries. The event also includes half marathon and 5K competitions, allowing runners of all levels to participate. A free kids’ fun run takes place in the streets of Pier Park, with all children receiving a finisher’s ribbon. Don’t forget the extraordinary after-party at Jimmy Buffet’s Margaritaville, kicking off as soon as the first runner crosses the finish line. Free beer, gumbo and live music are available to all runners. The Panama City Beach Marathon is truly fun to be had by all. PCBMarathon.com

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PHOTO BY JOSHUA BOUCHER, THE NEWS HERALD

IRONMAN FLORIDA Described as “one of the most storied North American races,” IRONMAN Florida has been around for 20 years. Just as the busy season of Panama City Beach starts to quiet down and the wonderful fall temperatures make their appearance, IRONMAN makes visiting Panama City Beach in November the perfect destination for an all-in-one, adrenaline-fueled race and mini vacation. This race is where only the most elite triathletes compete for a coveted slot in the IRONMAN race in Kona, Hawaii. The swim is a two-loop, 2.4-mile course that takes place in — you guessed it — the Gulf of Mexico. As if the swim wasn’t challenging enough, athletes will also have a short beach run between laps. Competitors will next complete a 112-mile bike ride at only

161 feet above sea level. Concluding the daylong race is one of the flattest runs on the IRONMAN circuit. Spectators and supporters line the roads and cheer on runners as they finish a full marathon (26.2 miles). This late-season IRONMAN competition has “personal best” written all over it, with almost 140 miles of flat course and light winds. IRONMAN Florida is a community favorite, and thousands of volunteers and community members come out to celebrate with the competitors at the finish line. This is a not-to-bemissed race for the avid triathlete. Ironman.com

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CO N T I N E N TA L CO N DO M I N I U M S AMENITIES Situated just steps away from the gorgeous shores of the Gulf of Mexico, Continental Condominiums’ vacation rentals offer comfy beachfront accommodations with endless opportunities for a delightful beach escape. If convenience and proximity to some of the best attractions on Panama City Beach are what you want, then Continental Condominiums is the place to stay. Located just across the street is the famous Gulf World Marine Park, proudly offering an up close and personal experience with some of the Gulf’s most intriguing animals. We are also a quick 3-minute drive to the popular outdoor mall Pier Park. This is definitely the resort for you if you are looking to be in the middle of all the action!

 Beachfront pool  Gulf-front dining at Flipper’s Beach Bar  Free Wi-Fi  Outdoor grilling area  Spacious game room with pool table, flat screen TVs and Gulf views  Across the street from Gulf World Marine Park  Private beach access  Walking distance to Pier Park and Aaron Bessant Park Amphitheater

BY R E SORT C OLLE C TI O N ®

FOR RESERVATIONS OR MORE INFORMATION, PLEASE CALL (877) 416-5156. 15413 Front Beach Road, Panama City Beach, FL 32413 • ContinentalCondos.com R E S O R TCO L L E C T I O N . CO M

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Journey A Look at Panama City Beach’s Wild Side

BY SUVA ANG-MENDOZA PHOTOGRAPHY PROVIDED BY VISIT PANAMA CITY BEACH

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FEATURES

Live in the sunshine,

swim in the crystal clear waters, breathe the wild air and discover what it is to be in the great outdoors surrounding Panama City Beach, Florida. Imagine a scenic retreat without the use of cellphones, iPads or any other electronic devices — just quality time building lasting memories with your loved ones on an adventure with the native wildlife of Northwest Florida. That old-fashioned idea of family fun still exists. Get your adrenaline pumping as you discover the natural surroundings and fall in love with the beautiful landscapes of Panama City Beach.

S T. A N D R E W S S TAT E PA R K

Known for its stretch of sugary white sands and its waters with colors ranging from saturated emerald green to blue, St. Andrews State Park sits in the heart of Panama City Beach, bordered by the Gulf of Mexico and the St. Andrews Bay. The park is welcoming, with a nationally ranked beach and countless activities that are perfect for one or for a whole family. Enjoy a leisurely day soaking in the sun or running on the shores of the beach at Shell Island, or make a splash enjoying water sports such as swimming, snorkeling, scuba diving, kayaking and canoeing. There are also two fishing piers that provide sufficient opportunities for anglers. Experience nature with a hike or a bike ride through the preserves. The superior campgrounds offer 176 sites equipped with electricity, water, picnic tables and grills — plus a nature trail that winds through the coastal plant communities and is great for bird watching. Continue your adventure on a shuttle or pontoon boat (available for rent) and head to Shell Island for some sightseeing: many critters inhabit the 700-acre island, including deer, turtles, pelicans, sandpipers, gulls and even alligators. FloridaStateParks.org/Park/St-Andrews

PA N A M A C I T Y B E AC H CO N S E R VAT I O N PA R K

Hidden in plain sight, this park is a gem located just north of Highway 98 in Panama City Beach and focuses on protecting wildlife while providing outdoor recreational opportunities. The Panama City Beach Conservation Park stretches across 2,900 acres and offers 24 miles of trails split into 12 different routes ranging in lengths from a little over half a mile up to 11 miles, with over a mile of wooden boardwalks leading through cypress domes. Experience nature from sunup to sundown, when you’ll likely observe native wildlife roaming around. Remember to bring binoculars while you’re at it to discover the wide range of birds — from herons to owls — hiding off in the wetland areas. The park continues to draw in locals and tourists alike with its beautiful preserved environments and activities to enjoy with the whole family. PanamaCityBeachParksandRecreation.com/ Conservation-Park

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FEATURES

G AY L E ’ S T R A I L S

Crafted since 1998, Gayle’s Trails continue to bring hiking and biking aficionados to Panama City Beach for expansive and challenging trails. What began as construction for walking paths is now a network of linear-paved trails radiating from a central trailhead at Frank Brown Park in Panama City Beach. With three route options, the trail system includes 5 miles up State Road 79 across the West Bay Bridge, 3.5 miles at Frank Brown Park and 1.5 miles at Aaron Bessant Park. The trails also connect at the Panama City Beach Conservation Park east of State Road 79.

E CO N F I N A C R E E K

Whether you’re there to take in the scenic beauty and relax or to paddle your way down Econfina Creek, one thing’s for sure: this is one of Florida’s most spectacular canoe trails. Nestled in a recreational area less than 30 miles from Panama City Beach, this stunning creek is crystal clear and perfect for exploring by canoe — on foot, off-road bicycle or, if you’re feeling adventurous, on horseback through the miles of wooded trails surrounding the creek. The exploration is highlighted by breathtaking views of coastal Florida featuring lush vegetation, white sand dunes and crystal clear water to splash around in. CanoeEconfinaCreek.net

C A M P H E L E N S TAT E PA R K

F R A N K B R O W N PA R K

Located to the west of Panama City Beach, Camp Helen State Park is rich in natural and cultural resources. Situated between the Gulf of Mexico and Lake Powell, one of the largest coastal dune lakes in the world, the park grounds host five distinct natural communities — mesic flatwoods, scrub oaks, basin swamps, depression marshes and marine unconsolidated substrate. The area is believed to have been colonized over 4,000 years ago; today it is designated as an archaeological site. The property became a popular resort for employees of Avondale Mills (a large textile mill near Birmingham, Alabama) in the 1940s, and it is now a 180-acre park for visitors to enjoy bird-watching, beachcombing, boating, canoeing, fishing, hiking, kayaking, swimming, wildlife viewing and relaxing beach activities.

Encompassing 200 acres dedicated to outdoor fun, Frank Brown Park is definitely not your ordinary park. This family- and dogfriendly park has something for everyone. The park is enriched with playgrounds, picnic areas, a saltwater fishing pier, a freshwater fishing lake, greenways, a dog park and running/walking paths. Into heavy sports? It’s all here: an indoor gymnasium, tennis, baseball, soccer and basketball facilities — and a state-of-the-art aquatic center and splash park. As one of Panama City Beach’s primary attractions, the park is often used for festivals, live music and concerts, such as Gulf Coast Jam, baseball tournaments such as the Grand Slam and other events.

FloridaStateParks.org/parks-and-trails/camp-helen-state-park

PCBeach.org/frank-brown-park

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A A R O N B E S S A N T PA R K

Located adjacent to Pier Park is Panama City Beach’s newest and most manicured park, Aaron Bessant Park, which also doubles as a state-of-theart amphitheater for live events, movies and more. Since its opening in 2012, the 70-acre park has hosted many concerts featuring world-famous musicians, such as Blues Traveler, the Band Perry, Foreigner, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Rascal Flatts and many more. The park also features a veterans memorial, three looping trails that are great for walking or jogging and an open, large patch of lush green grass perfect for picnics, cloud watching and other leisure activities with friends and family. PanamaCityBeachParksandRecreation.com/aaron-bessant-park

F O R M O R E I N F O R M AT I O N , G O TO V I S I T PA N A M AC I T Y B E AC H . CO M . R E S O R TCO L L E C T I O N . CO M

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FEATURES

THREE ST R A N DS Faith. Neighbors. Community. BY LAUREN SHAW

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FEATURES

“I survived.” That’s a common phrase among Bay County locals since Oct. 10, 2018, the day Hurricane Michael made landfall as a catastrophic Category 5 storm. It’s also a day that changed the course of history for Panama City Beach and our much more severely impacted neighbors to the east. We were fortunate that Panama City Beach and most of the 13 Resort Collection resorts fared well in the path of Hurricane Michael. During the days following the storm, our team displayed extraordinary strength and dedication to Resort Collection, putting

their personal needs second to the company they work for. It was no easy task to show up to work the days following. Between downed power lines, trees and debris, nonexistent lines of communication and closed roadways, a commute that normally took 30 minutes was now over two hours. But one-by-one, Resort Collection employees arrived to help in any way they could. Almost immediately, action was taken to inspect resort damage, open any lines of communication, protect assets and deliver important information. The Panama City Beach community banded together to start the clean-up process. Neighbors pulled trees off each other’s homes, and returning families who evacuated brought in trailers full of supplies, such as water and batteries. R E S O R TCO L L E C T I O N . CO M

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FEATURES

“Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves. A cord of three strands is not quickly broken.” – Ecclesiastes 4:12

amazing efforts by Gulf Power. Thanks to this response, Resort Collection was then ready to coordinate with local, state and federal officials in their relief efforts. Between all our resorts, we were able to house displaced families, first responders and recovery teams. Before long, Panama City Beach was ready to open its doors again to visitors. All your favorite restaurants are open, Pier Park is still a shopping mecca, and the resorts are already getting booked for the year. But if you look a little closer at the community, don’t be surprised if you feel a sense of pride from the locals. A pride that represents the mark of a survivor in the midst of unimaginable terror. Commitment in the face of such devastation was a true revelation of our community’s character. A major hurricane is not something you know how to prepare for. It’s one of those, “until it happens to you,” moments that makes you count your blessings a little more. The days and weeks post-Michael presented many unknowns in the community. When will power be restored? Where will first responders and recovery teams stay? Are we ready for visitors to return to Panama City Beach? Looking back, it seems trivial to have asked these questions. The power was restored within a week on Panama City Beach thanks to the 56

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While it might be awhile before we forget what a chorus of chainsaws against tree trunks sound like, or the never-ending shades of blue across neighborhood roof tops, the community of Panama City Beach and Bay County is stronger than ever. Ecclesiastes 4:12 says, “Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves. A cord of three strands is not quickly broken.” Our three strands are made up of our faith in God, our trust in our neighbors and our support from the community. Strength and resilience may not be the most common reactions in times of crisis, but it is our reaction.


RELAX. WE’VE GOT IT FROM HERE! Vacation rental ownership should be rewarding. Put our team of professionals to work for you.

rholt2@resortcollection.com

(850) 233-4176


L A K E TOW N WHARF RESORT AMENITIES Laketown Wharf Resort offers guests unparalleled amenities: five unique pools, 52,000 square feet of lakefront boardwalk, a fully equipped fitness center, covered parking and on-site dining options. As the largest resort with some of the best values in Panama City Beach and amazing Gulf views, Laketown Wharf Resort is a prime location for a fun-filled getaway.

 Putting green  Five resort-style pools  Private beach access  Freshwater lake  Over 52,000 square feet of lakefront boardwalk  Dancing fountain and light displays nightly on the lake  Fitness center  Splash Pool Bar & Grill  Covered parking garage

FOR RESERVATIONS OR MORE INFORMATION, PLEASE CALL (866) 695-8734. 9902 South Thomas Drive, Panama City Beach, FL 32408 • LaketownWharfPCB.com 58

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MAKE THE MOST

Panama City Beach OF YOUR DAYS IN

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BEACH LIFE

LET’S BE HONEST:

there is no wrong way to start a vacation at the beach. Your days are left to be spent enjoying clear Gulf waters, authentic hospitality and making lifelong memories. While we hope your trip to our slice of the Emerald Coast will be great no matter what, here are a few fun suggestions to make your getaway even better. You’ve finally made it to the beach! Now what? After you make it to your room at your favorite Resort Collection property, it is finally time to soak in all the sights and sun.

W H IT E SA NDS AWA IT

G E T ADVE N TURO US

It’s no secret why people venture from around the country just to visit this little town in Northwest Florida. The sandy beaches of Panama City Beach are the main attraction and have been for over 80 years. The reason our beaches stay powder-white is thanks to the quartz crystal that was moved by flowing rivers from the Appalachian Mountains after the last Ice Age. When you’re staying with Resort Collection, the white-sand beach along the Gulf of Mexico is right outside your door.

Book a trip on a catamaran yacht for a relaxing and fun cruise, complete with great music and a wonderful crew to make sure you have a great time. Check out Island Time Sailing or Paradise Adventures for a cruise not to be missed. Wanting to go a little faster? Get your thrills in on the Sea Screamer! If getting an up-close and personal view of dolphins, sea turtles and other sea life is your wish, you can’t go wrong with Blue Dolphin Tours. R E S O R TCO L L E C T I O N . CO M

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S HOP U N TI L YO U DR OP Panama City Beach is a mecca for excellent shopping, dining and entertainment! No matter what you’re in the mood for, Pier Park North has the variety that puts the ‘all’ in mall. There is truly something for everyone of any style, hobby or taste. Pier Park North is your destination for fun, food and fantastic shopping — all near one of the country’s most beautiful beaches.

WATER YOU WAI TI N G F O R? Wet’s up! With waterslides galore plus a lazy river, a tipping bucket, kids’ activity pools, a giant wave pool and more, Shipwreck Island Waterpark is the place to be when you want a break from the Gulf but still want fun in the water. With on-site dining, beverages and ice cream, you can’t go wrong with a day at the waterpark. Shipwreck Island is open April–September, and season passes are available. Don’t miss their offer for Resort Collection guests on our Rewards Partner page at ResortCollection.com/ Rewards.

B UT W HER E TO EAT? If you have never tasted Gulf seafood fresh off the boat, then you haven’t lived. For Gulf-front dining, savor the food and the view at favorites like Schooners, Sharky’s Beachfront Restaurant and Runaway Island Bar & Grill. If you want an upscale experience, you can’t go wrong at Captain Anderson’s, The Grand Marlin, Saltwater Grill or Firefly. Take the family for truly delicious food with generous portions at Triple J Steaks & Seafood, Hammerhead Fred’s or Captain Jack’s Family Buffet. The newest dining establishment in Panama City Beach, Paula Deen’s Family Kitchen, is also a must-try! 62

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N OT A SAN D FAN? Take advantage of our resorts’ gorgeous and spacious pool decks for a little me-time. Of our 13 resorts, 12 offer Gulf-front pools, and nine have poolside dining or Tiki bars. So grab a float, don’t forget the sunscreen and watch all your troubles fade away.

LIG H T UP YO UR N I G HT While everyone is used to spending their days on the beach soaking up some good Vitamin D, the tranquil evenings by the sea make it a prime location for sandy beach bonfires. They are just as relaxing as they seem. Imagine the waves crashing in the background, roasting marshmallows for s’mores and making unforgettable memories with friends. With local law now allowing it, beach bonfires are here to stay. Book yours through GoinToTheBeach.com, and we’ll take care of everything for you — including cleanup. R E S O R TCO L L E C T I O N . CO M

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R EM EM BER THE M OM ENT The worst part of your beach vacation is when it ends. Don’t worry, you can still take a little piece of Panama City Beach home with you to remember a fantastic time had with family and friends. Whether it is a family portrait at the shore or a souvenir from your favorite resort, find something to remind you of a time well spent — until your next trip.

The Best Dolphin Cruise on the Beach

Visit SeaScreamer.net to make reservations and check out our second boat the Sea Screamer 2

DOLPHIN TOURS • SUNSET CRUISES • SNORKEL TRIPS The Sea Screamer is an exciting way to experience the beauty of Panama City Beach. The spacious and comfortable twin turbo powered 73-foot boat offers a smooth yet thrilling ride, unlike any other. Join us on our fun filled 2-hour cruises. (850) 235-3000 3605 Thomas Drive, Panama City Beach Treasure Island Marina seascreamer.net

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SHORES O F PA N A M A AMENITIES With the emerald waters and white sandy beaches of the Gulf of Mexico as its playground, the Shores of Panama entice sun seekers, water adventure lovers and vacationers of all ages who are eager to get away and reconnect with friends and family. With sprawling beaches and a Gulf-front pool that spans 13,966 square feet, guests can relax for days or dive into an array of beach and Gulf activities. All of our room types feature balconies with beautiful views of the Gulf and pool deck, flatscreen televisions and fully equipped kitchens with granite countertops. You deserve a memorable beach escape, and the Shores of Panama grants Florida vacation getaways that delight and surpass expectations. Choose your home away from home — a stylish, luxury condominium rental in a studio, one-, two- or three-bedroom unit. Reserve your spot at this beachfront vacation resort by selecting the accommodations that best suit your needs.

 Gulf-side lagoon pool  Gulf-side hot tub  Heated indoor pool and hot tub  Two tiki bars*  Free Wi-Fi  Covered parking garage  Fitness center and spa  Kids’ Club* * Seasonal availability

FOR RESERVATIONS OR MORE INFORMATION, PLEASE CALL (877) 713-4651. 9900 South Thomas Drive, Panama City Beach, FL 32408 • ShoresofPCB.com R E S O R TCO L L E C T I O N . CO M

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Swing TA K E A

AT I T

The turquoise and emerald hues of the Gulf of Mexico aren’t the only greens to enjoy in Panama City Beach. Why not hit the golf course or tennis courts and enjoy your time in the sun while working on your game or taking part in some friendly competition? Resort Collection guests have access to an unparalleled number of recreational activities.

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HIT THE COURT — BUT NOT THE NET! For avid tennis players or beginners looking to improve their game, opportunities abound at Resort Collection. Tennis courts are available at Edgewater Beach and Golf Resort, Majestic Beach Resort, Gulf Highlands Beach Resort and Summit Beach Resort. Courts are free for Resort Collection guests to use on a first-come, first-served (get it?) basis. Pricing is available for guests who did not book through Resort Collection. Edgewater Beach and Golf Resort features professional instruction and state-of-the-art Plexicushion courts at The Club at Edgewater; the courts may be reserved by guests staying at the resort. The Club’s professional team offers lessons for all ages and skill levels, including summer camps for kids. Private tennis lessons and clinics are under the instruction of the resident tennis pro, Donavan September, who has over 15 years of teaching experience and participation in the U.S. Open and Australian Open. Tennis clinics encompass a wide range of experience levels from a complete beginner’s clinic, which teaches the fundamentals, to “boot camp” for the ultimate tennis workout, featuring conditioning, stroke analysis, drills and strategy.

DRIVE, CHIP AND PUTT

THE NICKLAUS COURSE The Nicklaus Course at Bay Point is the first and only Nicklaus Design in Northwest Florida. Recognized for its premium conditioning and risk-reward opportunities, The Nicklaus Course is set against the backdrop of St. Andrew’s Bay and a marshland wildlife sanctuary. Panoramic vistas of the bay, marsh and scenic wetlands abound throughout the course as it stretches more than 7,000 yards from the championship tees. Set on a serene nature preserve nestled between St. Andrews Bay and Grand Lagoon on Panama City Beach’s east end, Bay Point Golf Club invites players of all skill levels to enjoy the fullservice club and championship course. The par-72 Nicklaus Design championship layout stretches over 7,100 yards from the back tees with a challenging course rating of 74.3 and slope of 143 and has hosted numerous regional and local events including the USGA U.S. Open Qualifier in 2016. Public play is welcome seven days a week. Visit BayPointGolfClub.com for more information.

COURTESY OF BAY POINT GOLF CLUB

Also available at The Club at Edgewater is the exclusive ninehole executive golf course. Spend a leisurely afternoon out on the fairways among lush greenery, lakes and the Edgewater Golf Villas. Cart rentals are available, and tee times are required. For information about golf and tennis membership with The Club at Edgewater, call the Pro Shop at (850) 235-7324 or dial extension 324 from your suite.

DID YOU KNOW? Resort Collection guests receive 20 percent off on tennis lessons and court fees at The Club at Edgewater and between $10 and $30 off tee time rates at Bay Point Golf Club during their stay. Don’t forget to mention Resort Collection to receive these perks. Visit ResortCollection. com/reward to see more. Bay Point Golf Club discount varies by season.

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SWIM WITH DOLPHINS WATER

PLANET

abla Se H

EXPERTS IN DOLPHIN ENCOUNTER TOURS FOR THE WHOLE FAMILY

Specialized help for small children by request (based on availability) • Reservations Required • Cancellations 24 hr.

Explore Shell Island — Snorkel for Shells & Shipwrecks

WATERPLANETUSA.COM • 850.230.6030 Located at the corner of Thomas Dr. and North Lagoon Dr., Panama City Beach

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GULF HIGHLANDS B E AC H R E S O R T AMENITIES Gulf Highlands Beach Resort is a family-oriented resort conveniently located near Panama City Beach’s most popular restaurants, amusement parks, shopping and more. Relax during your stay knowing your family is safe inside this gated community. Gulf Highlands Beach Resort offers an array of townhomes, varying from studios to three bedrooms. Amenities include 11 pools (5 of which are heated seasonally), tennis courts, shuffleboard courts, a playground, an 18-hole putt-putt course, a fitness center and more. Located across Front Beach Road from the World’s Most Beautiful Beaches, guests have private access to the sandy beach via the Gulf Highlands Beach House Restaurant. The Beach House comprises a beachside pool, full-service restaurant and private beach access.

 11 pools, five heated seasonally  Fitness center  18-hole miniature golf course  Four shuffleboard courts  Four tennis courts  Beachfront dining at the Beach House Restaurant  Gated facility  Golf-cart friendly community

FOR RESERVATIONS OR MORE INFORMATION, PLEASE CALL (855) 512-3843. 10997 Hutchison Boulevard, Panama City Beach, FL 32407 • GulfHighlandsBchResort.com R E S O R TCO L L E C T I O N . CO M

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OPEN 7 days a week • rockitlanes.com

850.249.2695 513 Richard Jackson Blvd. • Panama City Beach, FL

BALLISTIC BOWLING

MEGA ARCADE

ROLLER SKATING

SPORTS BAR & GRILLE

NOW OPEN

NEXT DOOR


BEACH LIFE

A F lippin’ I Good Time

t’s an understood notion that when most people go on a beach vacation, they want to plop their chair in the sand, have a drink in their hand and do nothing else the rest of the day. While there is nothing wrong with a little beach lounging, there is much more to explore in Panama City Beach.

PHOTOGRAPHY COURTESY OF GULF WORLD MARINE PARK AND VISIT PANAMA CITY BEACH

If you can get your toes out of the water and pry that drink out of your hand, take an adventure to see amazing marine animals at Gulf World Marine Park. Both a fun and educational experience for the whole family, Gulf World has been a staple attraction in Panama City Beach for nearly 50 years. The park has always set the bar extremely high with its robust variety of sea life, live shows and special animal encounters. R E S O R TCO L L E C T I O N . CO M

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Gulf World is home to a variety of animal species including bottlenose dolphins, California sea lions, harbor seals, penguins, tropical birds, stingrays and African penguins. It is also home to the only collection of rough-toothed dolphins in long-term human care in North America. You’ll be hypnotized at the bottlenose dolphin show by the talented trainers and high-flipping stunts, but the sea lion and rough-toothed dolphin show will leave you laughing as the California sea lion shows off its breakdancing moves. Don’t forget to attend the “Feathers and Friends” show for an opportunity to join the trainers on stage to interact with the animals. Other interactions Gulf World hosts include touching and feeding cownose stingrays at Stingray Bay or diving in for a stingray snorkel for a chance to swim alongside them. Take home a refrigerator-worthy photo from their sea lion meet and greet. Careful though, they are known to give kisses on the cheek. But what we love most about Gulf World isn’t just the shows and encounters. Being huge animal lovers and avid activists, Gulf World established the Gulf World Marine Institute, which is solely dedicated to the rescue, rehabilitation and release of marine mammals and sea turtles in the Florida Panhandle. They have participated in stranding work since 1970 and are considered one of the leading rehabilitation facilities for sick or debilitated, stranded marine animals. If you’re lucky, you might even be able to witness a live sea turtle release into the Gulf of Mexico on Panama City Beach — a truly unforgettable vacation memory. While our beaches are always gorgeous, we encourage a day-trip to Gulf World Marine Park and promise a family-fun environment with close-up animal encounters you won’t find anywhere else. Come for the experience and leave with a mission to help the environment. Visit Gulf WorldMarinePark.com for more information on admission and shows. 72

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If no one is asking

Who does your hair? Come see us.

Located in the Shoppes at Edgewater 481 Richard Jackson Blvd., Panama City Beach

(850) 238-8554 | BellaSalonPCB.com


BEACH LIFE

T H E R E ’ S N O VAC AT I O N , L I K E A

Beach Vacation

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BEACH LIFE

IT’S A BEAUTIFUL WORLD WE ARE BLESSED TO LIVE IN, and nothing represents its beauty more than Panama City Beach. What if there were endless opportunities for visiting? Start by choosing a gorgeous beach resort with abundant activities, like beachfront pools, golf courses and tennis courts. Leave all the hassle at

home and let a hospitality expert assist with any and all vacation needs. Whether your version of the beach includes lounging in a beach chair in the sun all day or shopping and joining in the nightlife at Pier Park, there is always an adventure waiting for you in Panama City Beach. Choose Beach Vacations by Resort Collection and all you need to worry about is what sunscreen to pack.

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BeachVacationsByRC.com

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Celebrate

Together

12201 Hutchison Blvd • Panama City Beach, Florida • www.shipwreckisland.com • Phone: (850) 234-3333


SUMMIT B E AC H RESORT

The ultimate Panama City Beach adventure is at Summit Beach Resort. With 112 condos overlooking the Gulf of Mexico, this resort has everything you need for a beach vacation full of fun and excitement. Great rooms and private balconies make it perfect for large travel groups, such as sports teams, family reunions and more. Summit Beach Resort offers guests onsite amenities, such as two large swimming pools, Summit Tiki Bar, Summit Market, Bikini Bob’s Restaurant, hot tubs, saunas, picnic areas with grills, tennis courts, a basketball court, three shuffleboard courts and a fitness center. During the summer, kids can enjoy Resort Collection’s Adventure Zone activities on-site, including everyone’s favorite Dive-In Movies on the pool deck at dusk. Each suite is fully furnished, providing all the comforts of home. So whether you’re relaxing on the spacious balcony or spending quality family time in the living area, there’s something for everyone at Summit Beach Resort.

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AMENITIES  Two large outdoor pools  Beachfront views from every unit  Fitness center  Game room  Two kiddie pools  Two tennis courts  Basketball court  Shuffleboard court  Hot tubs, whirlpools and saunas  Summit Market Shop  Poolside Tiki Bar  Free Wi-Fi

FOR RESERVATIONS OR MORE INFORMATION, PLEASE CALL (800) 824-5048. 8743 Thomas Drive, Panama City Beach, FL 32408 • SummitBeachResort.com R E S O R TCO L L E C T I O N . CO M

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Beach Service

Lounge all day. Light up the night. BEACH CHAIRS | UMBRELLAS | LOUNGERS | BONFIRES

GOINTOTHEBEACH.COM

•

(850) 233-7505


At Walter Green Boutique we love beautiful and easy fashion, which is why we bring to you beautiful, easy and fun styles for your tropical vacation and everyday life!

Locally owned business with 2 physical locations and one website.

Shop our website for the widest selection! WalterGreenBoutique.com @waltergreenboutique Walter Green Boutique Walter Green Style

135 W Highway 98 Port St. Joe, FL

Featuring over 5,000 swimsuits!

From swimwear to resortwear and everything in between! 1817 Thomasville Rd. Tallahassee, FL


BEACH LIFE

IT’S RAINING

FUN

You already know Florida is the Sunshine State, and it’s true — the Gulf Coast usually experiences an average of 300 sunny days per year. Unfortunately, Mother Nature isn’t always so kind during every vacation, and although most rains in Panama City Beach tend to begin in the early afternoon and clear up in time for another amazing sunset, sometimes they are not so fleeting. But this doesn’t mean your vacation fun has to suffer. Take a look at some of the best Panama City Beach activities for a rainy day:

DAVE & BUSTER’S

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C ATC H A F L I C K The Pier Park shopping center might be predominantly outdoors, but it happens to be home to some of the best rainy day activities in Panama City Beach. The Grand Theatre 16 is an excellent choice for family movie night, fair weather or foul, but we definitely recommend it during a downpour. Relax in comfortable stadium seating or try out the D-Box immersive experience, complete with moving chairs and extra surround sound. Visit the concession stand, which offers way more than just popcorn, with options such as chicken fingers and fries, Icees and all your favorite candies. Showing all the latest feature films, some with IMAX and 3D options, the Grand 16 also presents Summer Kids’ Flicks on Tuesdays and Wednesdays at 10 a.m. for only $4, Retro Cinema nights featuring classic films from years past, and special Fathom Events showings such as Riff Trax Live and TCM Big Screen Classics. TheGrandTheatre.com

E AT. D R I N K . P L AY. In 2014, Pier Park welcomed one of its newest tenants and definitely the most fun you can have under one roof: Dave & Buster’s arcade and sports bar. You’ll forget all about the rain once you walk through the doors and experience hundreds of arcade games, including Mario Kart and a giant Pac-Man challenge, classic favorites such as Skee-Ball and air hockey, casino-inspired games and even a trivia challenge. The sports bar and grill at Dave & Buster’s is also an excellent spot to grab a bite and a beverage after an afternoon of gaming or to watch the big game on one of the multiple flat-screen TVs.

DAVE & BUSTER’S

DaveAndBusters.com

BALLISTIC BOWLING & MORE The Shoppes at Edgewater are within walking distance from all of Edgewater Beach and Golf Resort’s condos (although there is ample parking for those rainy days), and one family-fun hot spot is Rock’it Lanes. Where else can you find a massive arcade, a restaurant, a bowling alley and a skating rink all in one? If you’re out with friends or on a date at nearby Firefly, pop over for some after-dinner drinks and fun or take the kids for a whole day full of activities. Rock’it Lanes is your No. 1 stop for a variety of things to do in Panama City Beach, rain or shine. RockitLanes.com

ROCK’IT LANES

R E S O R TCO L L E C T I O N . CO M

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KARTONA

RIPLEY’S BELIEVE IT OR NOT!

EXPLORE THE ODD The incredible world of Robert Ripley lives in Panama City Beach at Ripley’s Believe It or Not! From a dozen galleries to hands-on interactives, you won’t believe your eyes — or ears. From shrunken heads to a newly built kids’ crawl area, the “odditorium” will leave you amazed. Challenge yourself and your sense of direction in Ripley’s Marvelous Mirror Maze or navigate your way through a web of lasers in the Laser Race Challenge. There is also a 7D Moving Theater with digital effects and motion seats to make you feel like you are in the movie. Experience the bizarre, explore the mysterious and enjoy the weird at Ripley’s Believe It or Not! Ripleys.com/PanamaCityBeach

JUMP AROUND Try out this brand new, state-of-the-art trampoline park in Panama City Beach and really wear-off some energy. Within its 30,000 square-foot facility, Just Jump Trampoline Park is home to an obstacle/ninja course, tumble track, dodgeball, basketball, large open jump area. The Kiddie Area is also perfect for jumpers under the age of 6 and has separate trampolines, a foam pit, climbing wall and more. You’ll be bouncing off the walls (literally) with fun in this giant, indoor park. PCB.JustJump.com

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WONDERWORKS

S TA R T YO U R E N G I N E S

L E T YO U R I M AG I N AT I O N R U N W I L D

Get ready to flip the switch! Kartona: The Electric Speedway is bringing the most exciting thing to Panama City Beach since shaved ice and board shorts. Although we love our white sand and emerald green waters, it's not always sunshine and green flags on the World's Most Beautiful Beaches. Continue the fun with the area’s first and only indoor electric go kart facility. Available for both adults and children, this is family fun at its best. Try out their helmet-mounted GoPro cameras to record your race. Not looking to participate? There is a spectator’s area to cheer on your favorite racer, arcade games and a concession bar for snacks and drinks. Find your inner NASCAR driver and get out on the track.

There is a 100 percent chance you will notice WonderWorks when you drive by its building in Panama City Beach. Within this upside down, 35,000 square foot amusement park are over 100 hands-on exhibits that challenge the mind and spark imagination. A combination of education and entertainment, there are six wonder zones inside that bring loads of family fun. Don’t miss climbing three stories in the glow-in-thedark Ropes Course or competing in a fast-paced battle in the black-light Lazer Tag maze. With the ceiling under your feet and the ground above your head, it’s impossible to miss the magic inside WonderWorks.

KartonaElectricSpeedway.com

WonderWorksOnline.com/Panama-City-Beach R E S O R TCO L L E C T I O N . CO M

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GRANDVIEW EAST RESORT AMENITIES Grandview East Resort sits center stage upon one of the “World’s Most Beautiful Beaches” and is nestled among Panama City Beach’s best dining, shopping and entertainment opportunities. When you’re yearning for the white-sand beaches and sparkling emerald waters of Panama City Beach, Grandview’s condominiums will satisfy like no other.

 Heated Gulf-front pool and

Your vacation rental at Grandview is spacious, offering you more than 1,400 square feet of Gulf-front luxury and relaxation. After a fun and relaxing day on our private white-sand beach, take a dip in our heated pool or your condo’s private Jacuzzi tub, and then watch the sun set from your comfortable Gulf-front balcony. Join us at Grandview East Resort and make your beach vacation absolutely perfect.

 Modern, open floor plans

expansive deck  Fitness facility  Spacious Gulf-front suites

 Jacuzzi tubs in all suites  Fully equipped kitchens  Large balconies with beachfront views  Free Wi-Fi

FOR RESERVATIONS OR MORE INFORMATION, PLEASE CALL (855) 266-9400. 10713 Front Beach Road, Panama City Beach, FL 32407 • GrandviewEastResort.com 86

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o

THE BEST

o

Seafood

g IN PCB

S

ince the doors first opened in 1982 and we served our very first customer, Montego Bay has been a favorite of vacationers and locals alike. Our Caribbean-themed

“surf and turf” eatery serves up fresh Gulf seafood, mouthwatering steaks, barbecue ribs, fresh raw oysters, world-famous gumbo, and many more specialty dishes—all with a decidedly Southern twist. Good value, generous portions, and a warm,

welcoming

atmosphere

has

made

Montego Bay a regular stop on so many tourist’s itineraries when they return each year.

SEAF

SE & OYSTER BAR OOD HOU


BEACH LIFE

A Community

Home Run

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S

ports teams have been traveling to Panama City Beach for seasonal tournaments for years. With over 200 acres of land donated by St. Joe Company for the new Panama City Beach Sports Complex, the sports tourism industry is about to get even bigger. After consistent hard work and with construction complete, opening ceremonies took place in July 2019. We couldn’t think of anyone better suited to introduce the Panama City Beach Sports Complex than its general manager, J.D. Wood. Q: How did the idea begin to build a stateof-the-art sports park on the east end of Panama City Beach? JD: The Sports Complex is a project for Panama City

Beach that has been a long time coming. From my understanding, conversation of the sports park started 11 years ago and was developed with a few attributes that the community was needing. The first of those being a facility focused on rectangle field sports to fill a need in the market for the sports tourism events we are missing. The second was a facility that would bring business to the community during essential timeframes between September and May. Another element was to fill Panama City Beach with sports tourism from one end of the beach to the other. Q: What types of sports will be showcased at the sports complex? JD: The primary sports that will be showcased at the

sports complex will be rectangle-based sports such as soccer, lacrosse, football, and others. We will be able to host almost every type of event that needs a rectangle field. While rectangle sports will be the focus at the sports complex, we will still be able to host baseball and softball events as well. Q: How will the sports complex help fuel the local economy and tourism? JD: It will help by being a year-round sports destination

that will focus on bringing new visitors from rectangle sports that may have never been to a tournament in Panama City Beach during other seasons other than summer. With the focus on different sports that have never been hosted here before, as well as the time of year those events take place, the Panama City Beach Sports Complex will be a great complement to the peak-tourism periods in the community. R E S O R TCO L L E C T I O N . CO M

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Q: What type of demographic are you looking at for the average player or team? JD: We are trying to partner with as many great

events as we can that have never been to Panama City Beach before. Currently, about half of our events are soccer events, which is a group that hasn’t had a strong sports tourism presence here previously, but that is about to change in a big way. The events we will be hosting will cover many sports and ages. Our athletes will fall between the ages of 8 and 18 and bring their parents, siblings and family members with them. Most events will be a true “play-cation!”

Q: How long do you estimate it will take the new sports complex to gain traction and become a center for sports tourism in Panama City Beach? JD: Panama City Beach has always done a great job

in the sports tourism industry and is highly respected in the Southeast and United States. My goal is to add to that reputation by showing even more people what we already know as locals — that Panama City Beach is the best location for sporting events and your family to have a great experience. We are already making a splash in the sport facility market. When the first new tournaments come to town and have this experience, the word will get out and our number of events will just continue to grow.

Q: How did you get into sports park management? JD: I was very lucky from a young age that I had a

passion for not only playing sports but also being involved with sports. This love was elevated through both my degrees in sports management from Texas A&M and my involvement in many great events and organizations. At my last destination, I was able to be a part of a team that managed and operated a top10 soccer facility in the United States. The facilities, location and team allowed us to change event rosters that comprised about 22 events in its first year, to 126 events in its fifth. Q: You’re a relatively new resident of Panama City Beach. What is your favorite thing to do here? JD: I have been here seven months and love it.

When I’m not working, I really enjoy all of the live music played all over town. I feel like no matter where you go to eat, there is usually someone playing a guitar or singing — it’s great.

Q: Frank Brown Park is a favorite of locals and visitors alike. Will the new sports complex become competition? What are some of the differences in the two parks? JD: Frank Brown Park is an amazing complex that

is one of the best out there. The Panama City Beach Sports Complex will not compete with Frank Brown but will complement it to make sure we bring in all types of sport events to our community. The new complex is focusing on rectangle-based sports first, where Frank Brown Park is designed more for softball and baseball. Each park has their niche and will balance each other out very well. Additionally, the two complexes are working together on a few events. Events at Frank Brown will use a few extra fields at the Panama City Beach Sports Complex and the new complex will use a few fields at Frank Brown. Everyone in the tourism industry is working together to provide the best experience for our sports visitors. Now, it’s even better because we have two amazing facilities.

J.D. Wood, General Manager, Panama City Beach Sports Complex


Exclusive access

Find the best deals in PCB with Resort Collection Rewards. Only available for guests of Resort Collection.

RESORTCOLLECTION.COM


TO P O F T H E G U L F CO N DO M I N I U M S AMENITIES Top of the Gulf Condominiums is situated perfectly, just steps from dazzling white-sand beaches and all the attractions and nightlife on Panama City Beach’s east end. Each suite is equipped with a full kitchen, including a stove, oven, fridge and microwave, and laundry facilities are available on-site. Enjoy the sweeping views of the Gulf of Mexico and pool deck and take joy in experiencing those iconic Panama City Beach sunrises and sunsets. Enjoy nearby access to Panama City Beach’s best attractions, dining, shopping and nightlife, plus a fitness center.

 Large Gulf-front pool and pool deck  Gulf views  Kiddie pool  Kitchenette with oven, stove, and microwave  Laundry facilities on-site  Free Wi-Fi  Shuffleboard Court

TOP OF THE

CONDOMINIUMS

FOR RESERVATIONS OR MORE INFORMATION, PLEASE CALL (855) 584-2573. 8817 South Thomas Drive, Panama City Beach, FL 32408 • TopOf TheGulfPCB.com 92

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18 DIFFERENT ATTRACTIONS INCLUDING: Roller Coaster, Four Go Kart Tracks, Backlight Mini Golf, Mega Arcade, Bumper Boats, Spin Zone and much more. CHECK OUT OUR NEW ATTRACTIONS U Unlimited (850) (850) 234234-1588 1588

armbands are available!

RACECITYPCB.COM RACECITYPCB.COM

9523 9523 FRONT FRONT BEACH BEACH ROAD ROAD

PANAMA PANAMA CITY CITY BEACH BEACH


ME O C

SWIM W IT

H

dolphins

Private 2, 3 and 4 hour dolphin & snorkel cruises to Shell Island with your own captain and tour guide

Reserve Online at BlueDolphinTour.com For same day reservations call (850) 236-3467 Treasure Island Marina, 3601 Thomas Drive

BOSTON WHALER FISHING BOATS ALSO AVAILABLE 1/2 day, full day, weekly rentals available

Our 24’ Luxury Executive Pontoon Boats are perfect for snorkeling and visiting Shell Island. Half or full day rentals shellislandboatrentals.com | Treasure Island Marina, 3601 Thomas Drive | (850) 234-SAIL (7245)


BEACH LIFE

Soar

TO HIGH HEIGHTS PHOTOGRAPHY COURTESY OF VISIT PANAMA CITY BEACH PARK

“You’ll be on your way up! You’ll be seeing great sights!” — Dr. Seuss Visitors and locals alike have been looking forward to the new observation attraction in Panama City Beach. Opened in the summer of 2018, this SkyWheel was the second of three such attractions from Koch Development. The first is located in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, and the third was added in Newport, Kentucky, this past fall. Located in the increasingly popular Pier Park entertainment complex, SkyWheel provides memorable, top-flight experiences to every guest that walks down their runway. The highlight of the SkyWheel experience is the flight itself. It is an unforgettable ride that gives its customers a whole new perspective of Panama City Beach. Riders are able to sightsee for miles and get a real bird’s-eye view of all that the area has to offer. SkyWheel is open both day and night, giving guests two different experiences. Open year-round, SkyWheel offers climate-controlled gondolas that are sure to give guests a relaxing and comfortable flight no matter the outside temperature. SkyWheel is accessible for children and adults of all ages and physical capabilities. It is a unique event for the entire family. Wanting more? SkyWheel can also offer one-of-a-kind packages for custom events. They can do everything from surprise proposals to fun baby gender reveals. Nothing is left to the imagination. Email pcbinfo@skywheel.com for more information. R E S O R TCO L L E C T I O N . CO M

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SUNBIRD B E AC H R E S O R T AMENITIES Sunbird Beach Resort overlooks the “World’s Most Beautiful Beaches” and is conveniently located within strolling distance of Panama City Beach’s best dining, shopping and entertainment attractions. If an inviting tropical paradise surrounded by sugar-white beaches and breathtaking emerald waters is what you desire, Sunbird’s familyfriendly condominiums are the perfect choice. Situated just steps away from the gorgeous shores of the Gulf of Mexico, Sunbird’s vacation rentals offer beachfront accommodations with endless opportunities for a delightful escape. For an unforgettable Panama City Beach getaway, look no further than Sunbird Beach Resort.

 Three Gulf-front pools, one heated  Outdoor grills  One tennis court  Two shuffleboard courts  Gated facility  Spacious Gulf-front suites  Laundry facilities on-site  Full kitchens with appliances  Private balconies with beach views  Free Wi-Fi

FOR RESERVATIONS OR MORE INFORMATION, PLEASE CALL (877) 684-8018. 9850 South Thomas Drive, Panama City Beach, FL 32408 • SunbirdBeachResort.com 96

G O I N ’ TO T H E B E AC H 2019


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Profile for Rowland Publishing, Inc.

Goin' to the Beach 2019  

Resort Collection's Guide to Panama City Beach

Goin' to the Beach 2019  

Resort Collection's Guide to Panama City Beach