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eNewsletter · October 2012

14th Annual Art & Wine Festival

Our 14th Annual Art & Wine Festival was a big success this year. We had so many artists that we had to limit the number after we ran out of space. We had some very creative people and great music—plus a large selection of wines. It was a great time and if you couldn’t make it, please add it to your calendar for next year. The date next year will be the same as this year—Columbus Day weekend!

Best in Show
Jackie King from Mexico Beach, FL

1st:  Deanna Wheeler from Pinetta, FL
2nd:  Sean Barry from Atlanta, GA

1st:  Joe Kotzman from Carrabelle, FL
2nd:  Kathy Geller from Lynn Haven, FL


1st:  Tom Wood from Mexico Beach, FL
2nd:  Karen Babb from Orlando, FL

Stained Glass/Jewelry
1st:  Debby Delashmet from Jackson, MS
2nd:  Linda Chirby from Panama City Beach, FL

Wood Carving/Turning/Furniture
1st:  Bobby Pollock from Mexico Beach, FL
2nd:  John Russell from Mexico Beach, FL

1st:  Kaila Bruner from Leesburg, GA
2nd:  Sandie Yarbrough from Mexico Beach, FL

Digital Art
1st:  Amanda Fagan from Panama City Beach, FL

Weddings on the Beach

Ed & Frankie
September was a busy month for weddings, and we have several to report. First is the story of Ed and Frankie from Bristol, Florida. They were the winners in the drawing to renew their wedding vows. After forty-one years of marriage they came to the beach with their three children and seven grandchildren and had a beautiful sunset vow renewal ceremony. Congratulations, Ed and Frankie!

Joe & Elizabeth
Next, we had another vow renewal that was exciting. Joe and Elizabeth came to Mexico Beach from northern Alabama to renew their vows after fifteen years—and they brought their family of seven children!! The children are all musically talented like their music-instructor grandmother; after the ceremony, they serenaded us with a couple of songs while they all played their instruments!! A truly unforgettable afternoon. Congratulations, Joe and Elizabeth!

Billy Jean & Stephen
We also want to recognize Billy Jean and Stephen, who came to our beaches from Opelika, Alabama, to proclaim their love to the world. It was a beautiful wedding on the beach with friends and family in attendance. Congratulations, Billy Jean and Stephen!


We're Still Looking for Historical Pictures

The history project that Cathey Parker Hobbs and Al Cathey have volunteered to do is still active. If you have pictures of Mexico Beach in the past, we would be delighted to have a copy. If you have any that you would like to submit, please do so by the end of the month. You can e-mail them to and she will get them to Cathey. Thank you!

Mark Your Calendars

Music in the Park
Our Concert in the Park series has concluded after four Thursday evenings of outstanding music. We thank all the performers that serenaded us, and we give a special salute to the 98th Army Band from Fort Rucker, Alabama, who treated us to an upbeat musical evening.

Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony
December 2
Our next event is the annual Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony, which will be held December 2nd at Sunset Park (next to the El Governor) at 6 p.m. The evening starts with the traditional tree lighting, singing Christmas songs by candlelight, a parade of decorated golf carts, and the arrival of Santa Claus. Bring the children for a magical evening and a chance to talk to Santa Claus.

New Year's Eve
December 31
At the end of December, we have our annual celebration of the New Year, and everyone can celebrate twice! We will again be providing bus service, so our guests and locals can celebrate the New Year in the eastern time zone and then again in the central time zone. It’s a lot of fun and we keep it safe. More information on the festivities and about bus stops will be posted in the November newsletter, so be sure to stay tuned. Come join us!

Recipe of the Month

Cheese Grits & Shrimp
What could be more Southern than Cheese Grits with Shrimp? Well, we have a great recipe this month that will have your guests and family asking for the recipe.

4 1/2 cups of water
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup grits
3/4 cup grated sharp cheddar cheese
Butter, Tabasco, and white pepper to taste
1 pound fresh deveined and headless shrimp
6 slices bacon
Peanut oil
2 cups sliced mushrooms
1 cup finely sliced green onions
1 large clove garlic, peeled
4 teaspoons lemon juice
2 tablespoons fresh chopped parsley
Salt and pepper to taste

1. Bring water to boil in a saucepan and stir in grits.
2. Stir grits and reduce heat to low until an occasional bubble is seen.
3. Continue cooking for 30–40 minutes, stirring frequently to prevent scorching.
4. Beat in a good quantity of butter, Tabasco, and white pepper.
5. Stir in the cheese; set aside and keep warm.
6. Dice bacon and sauté lightly in a skillet until the edges are brown but not crisp; set aside.
7. Pour enough peanut oil into the skillet to create a 1/8-inch depth.
8. When hot, add shrimp in an even layer.
9. Turn shrimp and as they start to color, add mushrooms and sauté about 4 minutes.
10. Turn occasionally and add the green onions.
11. Add the garlic through a press and stir around.
12. Season with lemon juice, dash of Tabasco, parsley, salt, and pepper.
13. Spoon the shrimp over the grits and serve. Serves 4.

Thought for the Month

Dolly Parton is perhaps the greatest singer/songwriter of all time. She is a performer who has brought enjoyment to thousands of fans, and she has keen insights into human nature. Here are a few of her notable quotes:

“The way I see it, if you want the rainbow, you gotta put up with the rain!”

“If your actions create a legacy that inspires others to dream more, learn more, do more and become more, then, you are an excellent leader.”

“Don’t get so busy making a living that you forget to make a life.”

“I’m not offended by all the dumb blonde jokes because I know I’m not dumb—and I’m not blonde either.”

“Storms make trees take deeper roots.”

“I always just thought if you see somebody without a smile, give ’em yours!”

“It costs a lot of money to look this cheap.”

“People always ask me how long it takes to do my hair. I don’t know, I’m never there.”

“We cannot direct the wind, but we can adjust the sails.”

“God is in everything I do and all my work glorifies Him.”

“When someone shows you their true colors, believe them.”

“I would never stoop so low as to be fashionable.”

Photo credit: Featureflash /

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