02 January 2012
with Ron Childs
$80,000 in New Artificial Reefs
January is a great month to slow down and get some really good perspective on life. Life is truly short, so take some time to enjoy this beautiful area and all that it offers to each of us. Talk to some snow birds about this daily high of 63 and a low of 41. They will tell you how nice it is right here in Mexico Beach. No snow, no ice, no below zero temperatures.
And how about some special concerts with world class musicians! With Panama City and Apalachicola right near Mexico Beach, there is an abundance of fabulous entertainment available to all citizens in this area.
For example, in December the Marina Civic Center in Panama City hosted five -time Grammy Award winner Michael McDonald of the Doobie Brothers, the Russian Ballet Company from St. Petersburg (dancing the Nutcracker), and the musical Miracle on 34th Street was a fabulous way to get excited about Christmas. The civic center underwent a 6 million dollar renovation in l994, and it is really a wonderful venue for 2,508 people. All seats are good seats and very close to the stage. This is a truly wonderful place for a concert.
The quality of entertainment close by is superb. In the last l8 months the Marina Civic Center has hosted Willie Nelson, Michael Bolton, George Jones, Foreigner, Neil Young, Merle Haggard, Mel Tillis, Travis Tritt and much more. The Foreigner concert was one of the best concerts ever.
The PC Pops Orchestra, B B King, the musical comedy Rock of Ages, and the River City Brass Band from Pittsburg are all coming in January. Jerry Seinfeld is coming in February. Check their website for a complete list of coming events.
In January Apalachicola will have Adam Kossler, a world renowned classical guitarist. Tallahassee’s premier ballet company, Pas de Vie Ballet, will be in Apalachicola January 20-22, and the FSU School of Music will present pianist David Kalhous on January 29. There is so much quality entertainment all around us.
Most of the locals are taking January to get their boats ready for the spring fishing season which is right around the corner. Repairs on the motor, some new fiberglass work, fixing broken rods and reels - maybe fixing the trailer. January is a good time to get those things out of the way. Spanish mackerel and cobia will be here in March. Get ready now.
The MBARA is getting ready to deploy another $80,000 worth of artificial reefs out in the Gulf of Mexico which will put them well over the one million dollar mark raised and spent for artificial reefs. They will be using some new prototypes of reefs in order to conduct research on the best structures for new fish habitat. Their work is truly amazing. Visit them at www.mbara.org and see what they have accomplished since l997.
Fishing for whiting in the surf is hot in January. Get some rods, a chair, some shrimp for bait, and cast away in the surf for these tasty treats. Speckled trout and red fish are being caught on a regular basis at Crooked Isle and the St. Joe Bay.
By the way, be sure to get February 18 on your calendar for the amazing Gumbo Festival at Mexico Beach. Go to www.mexico-beach.com for all details and updates. Enter the gumbo contest and win some money; come sample them all for just a dollar a cup; come dance and have a cold one; or just come and watch. This is one party you do not want to miss. -30-