Biggest and Longest Lunar Eclipse in Years this September!

Set your sights towards the heavens on the night of Sunday, September 27th for one of the longest and biggest total Lunar eclipses you may ever see!  The Moon will be closest to the Earth less than an hour before mid-eclipse, thus appearing closer and larger than any recent eclipses.  For those of us in the Central Time Zone, the penumbral phase of the eclipse will begin at 7:40 p.m.; partial eclipse begins at 8:07 p.m.; with the total eclipse beginning at 9:11 p.m. and lasting through 10:23 p.m., a whopping one hour and 12 minutes of totality!  Partial eclipse ends at 12:27 p.m. and the final penumbral stage will end at 11:55.

The Moon should exhibit a deep orange or reddish glow during totality.  This is the light that comes from the sunrises and sunsets on the Earth.  Depending on the amount of particulates in the upper atmosphere due to the several volcanic eruptions in recent months, totality could be a much darker red or even nearly black.

This will be the most favorable total Lunar eclipse for most of the eastern half of North America for some years to come.  Get outside with just your eyes, binoculars, or even a telescope to see this wonderful act of Nature!  Bass Pro Shops has a wide selection of binoculars suited to astronomy that can also be used for other viewing pursuits.

Here's hoping for clear skies!

Gary Feduccia

Photo by Cynthia Lea Howard

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Outdoor Activities Surround Destin Bass Pro Shops and Uncle Buck's Fish Bowl & Grill

Destin's Bass Pro Shops (foreground) and Uncle Buck's Fish Bowl & Grill (turquoise roof upper left of center) are located in the popular Destin Commons open-air town center at the intersection of Highway 98 and the Mid-Bay Bridge Road in Destin.  Our proximity to the Gulf of Mexico (on the left) and Choctawhatchee Bay (on the right) allows plenty of beach activities and fishing opportunities for our customers.

One of our most popular activities is our free surf fishing classes at the nearby beautiful Henderson Beach State Park (undeveloped beach area in upper left).  We offer these limited free classes every Saturday mornings in April and October.

Besides salt and brackish water fishing there are numerous nearby lakes, rivers, and streams for the fresh water fishermen.  Eglin Reservation and other State Forests and Wildlife Management Areas provide almost unlimited camping and hunting opportunities.

After a long day of the great outdoors, come relax at Uncle Buck's Fish Bowl & Grill to have a great meal, bowl on our underwater-themed lanes, or enjoy an adult beverage at our fully-stocked boat-shaped bar.

Truly, paradise exists all around us.  We just have to take the time to find and explore it!

Visit us at www.basspro.com/destin to see everything that's happening in the our store!

Gary Feduccia

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International Sun-Day Astronomy Event at Destin Bass Pro Shops

The Northwest Florida Astronomy Association helped celebrate International Sun-Day on Sunday, June 21st at Destin Bass Pro Shops.  Volunteer members brought several telescopes equipped with proper filters for observing the solar disc.  Many of our Associates and our customers enjoyed seeing close up views of the sun, sunspots and prominences through the various telescopes.  Both white light and hydrogen-alpha filtered telescopes were available to anyone who wanted to look.

Club membership is open to anyone with an interest in astronomy, even those who don't own a telescope or for those who plan to purchase one soon and would like information before deciding what to purchase.  This is the best local organization to get one-on-one instruction before getting into astrophotography, including needed equipment, software, and post processing.  Periodic free public star gazes are planned throughout the year at various nearby State Parks; other gazes are scheduled for schools, boy and girl scouts; and basic astronomy classes are offered from time to time at the Emerald Coast Science Center in Fort Walton Beach.

The NWFAA meets on the 4th Friday of every month at the observatory on the campus of Northwest Florida State College in Niceville.  Check out their website at www.nwfastro.org or call Mr. Bob Gaskin at (850) 585-9531 (cell) or (850) 837-1966.

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Destination Destin

 

WHERE TO GO AND WHAT TO DO IN THE DESTIN AREA

 

EATERIES:

            PANDORA’S STEAKHOUSE - BEST PRIME RIB & STEAKS

            1226 SANTA ROSA BEACH BLVD., FORT WALTON BEACH, FL  (850) 244-8669

 

            OLD BAY STEAMER – SEAFOOD BUCKETS, LOBSTER, SHRIMP, CRABS

            102 SANTA ROSA BLVD., FORT WALTON BEACH, FL  (850) 664-2795

 

            AJ’S SEAFOOD & OYSTER BAR – FRESH GULF SEAFOOD

            116 HARBOR BLVD., DESTIN, FL  (850) 837-1913

 

            DEWEY DESTIN’S – FRESH GULF SEAFOOD

            202 HARBOR BLVD., DESTIN, FL OR

            9 CALHOUN AVE., DESTIN FL  (850) 837-7525

 

            McGUIRE’S IRISH PUB – PRIME STEAKS, BURGERS, CRAFT BEERS & ALES

            33 US 98, DESTIN, FL  (850) 650-0000

            MARGARITAVILLE – SEAFOOD, BURGERS, NACHOS, MARGARITAS

            76 HARBOR BLVD., DESTIN, FL  (850) 460-7700

 

            HARBOR DOCKS –  AWARD WINNING GULF SEAFOOD, SUSHI

            538 HARBOR BLVD., DESTIN, FL  (850) 837-2506

 

            THE PANCAKERY – BREAKFAST & BRUNCH

            960 US 98, DESTIN, FL  (850) 269-0791

 

            THE DONUT HOLE BAKERY CAFÉ – BREAKFAST, LUNCH, SUPPER, BAKERY

            635 HARBOR BLVD., DESTIN, FL  (850) 837-8824

 

            LOUISIANA LAGNIAPPE – CREOLE, SEAFOOD, & STEAKS

            775 GULF SHORE DRIVE, DESTIN, FL  (850) 837-0881

 

            THE BACK PORCH – GULF SEAFOOD & OYSTER BAR

            1740 SCENIC HWY 98, DESTIN, FL  (850) 837-2022

 

            LULU’S – SEAFOOD, BURGERS, & MORE (JIMMY BUFFETT’S SISTER)

            4607 LEGENDARY MARINA DRIVE, DESTIN, FL  (850) 710-5858

 

CAPTAIN DAVE’S ON THE GULF – FRESH SEAFOOD, STEAKS, COCKTAILS

            3796 OLD HWY 98, DESTIN, FL  (850) 837-2627

 

KENNY D’S BEACH BAR & GRILL – NEW ORLEANS SEAFOOD, OYSTERS, PO-BOYS

            2964 SCENIC GULF DRIVE, MIRIMAR BEACH, FL  (850) 650-0755

 

            ACME OYSTER HOUSE – NEW ORLEANS SPECIALTIES, PO-BOYS, GRILLED OYSTERS,

            140 FISHERMAN’S COVE, SANDESTIN, FL (BAYTOWNE WHARF)  (850) 622-0200

 

            SOLARIS DINNER CRUISE – FINE DINING, DANCING, PIANO BAR, SUNSET CRUISING

            BAYTOWN MARINA, SANDESTIN, FL  (850) 650-2519

 

THINGS TO DO:

            UNCLE BUCK’S FISHBOWL & GRILL (UNDERWATER-THEMED BOWLING & EATS)

            DESTIN COMMONS SHOPPING CENTER, DESTIN, FL  (850) 269-6100

           

DESTIN HISTORY & FISHING MUSEUM (EARLY DESTIN, OLDEST SEINE BOAT, FEE CHARGED)  108 STAHLMAN AVE., DESTIN, FL  (850) 837-6611

 

            BUCCANEER PIRATE CRUISE

            100 HARBOR BLVD., STE. B, DESTIN, FL  (850) 269-0896

 

            PELICAN ADVENTURES SNORKELING

            314 HARBOR BLVD., DESTIN, FL  (850) 650-3800

 

            SEA BLASTER (FAST BOAT RIDES, SNORKELING, DOLPHIN CRUISES)

            60 G HARBOR DRIVE, DESTIN, FL 

 

            GULFARIUM & OKALOOSA ISLAND PIER (DOLPHIN, SEA LION SHOWS)

            1010 MIRACLE STRIP PKWY. SE, FORT WALTON BEACH, FL  (850) 243-9046

 

 

            DESTIN SNORKEL

            66 HARBOR BLVD., DESTIN, FL  (850) 269-2329

 

            BIG KAHUNA’S WATER PARK & MINIATURE GOLF

            1007 US 98 E., DESTIN, FL  (850) 837-8319

 

JUST CHUTE ME PARA-SAILING

            500 HARBOR BLVD., DESTIN, FL  (850) 650-4630

 

            THE TRACK  (KIDS’ RIDES, MINIATURE GOLF & ACTIVITIES)

            1125 HWY 98 E., DESTIN, FL  (850) 654-4668

 

            BOOGIES  (PARA-SAILING, WAVERUNNERS, PONTOON BOATS, DOLPHIN EXCURSIONS,

            GLASS BOTTOMED BOAT)

            HARBORWALK VILLAGE – FOOT OF DESTIN BRIDGE  (850) 654-7787

 

GOLF:

EMERALD BAY GOLF CLUB

            4781 CLUBHOUSE DR. ON HWY 98  (850) 837-5197

 

            REGATTA BAY GOLF & YAGHT CLUB

            REGATTA BAY BLVD., DESTIN, FL  (866) 480-8618

 

            SANDESTIN GOLF AND BEACH RESORT

            9300 EMERALD COAST PKWY. W., SANDESTIN, FL  (855) 218-4042

 

            SEASCAPE RESORT GOLF CLUB

            174 SEASCAPE DR. ON HWY 98, MIRAMAR BEACH, FL  (850) 654-7888

 

SHOPPING AND OTHER RESTAURANTS:

            DESTIN COMMONS (#1 SHOPPING CENTER IN DESTIN)

            LEGENDARY DRIVE, DESTIN, FL (HWY 98 & MID-BAY BRIDGE ROAD)

 

            HARBORWALK VILLAGE

            10 HARBOR BLVD., DESTIN, FL (JUST EAST OF DESTIN BRIDGE)

 

            SILVER SANDS OUTLETS

            10562 US 98, DESTIN, FL (JUST WEST OF SANDESTIN)

 

            VILLAGE OF BAYTOWNE WHARF

            SANDESTIN (NORTH OF HWY 98)

 

            GRAND BOULEVARD

            SANDESTIN AREA (JUST EAST OF SANDESTIN, NORTH OF HWY 98)

 

BEST PUBLIC BEACH ACCESS:

            HENDERSON BEACH STATE PARK (ACROSS FROM DESTIN WALMART - FEE CHARGED)

            17000 EMERALD COAST PKWY., DESTIN, FL  (850) 837-7550

 

            THE BOARDWALK AT OKALOOSA ISLAND (OKALOOSA ISLAND PIER)

            1450 MIRACLE STRIP PKWY., FORT WALTON BEACH

 

            JAMES LEE PARK (ADJACENT TO THE CRAB TRAP RESTAURANT)

            3510 SCENIC HWY 98, DESTIN, FL

 

            JOHN C. BEASLEY PARK (EAST OF THE PIER AND BOARDWALK)

            1550 MIRACLE STRIP PKWY., FORT WALTON BEACH

 

 

            GULF ISLANDS NATIONAL SEASHORE/MARLER PARK (CHOCTAWHATCHEE BAY)

            1275 SANTA ROSA BLVD., FORT WALTON BEACH, FL

 

BEST FISHING ADVENTURES AND CHARTERS:

            FLYLINER CHARTERS, INC.  (850) 376-0400

            LAST CAST CHARTERS  (850) 499-3811

            BAY GULF CHARTERS (850) 814-3367

            DESTINY UNBOUND ANGLING (850) 225-3813

            FISHIN’ WITH PHIL (850) 814-5045

            FISH FINDER (850) 699-1033

            PERFECT SHOT (850) 218-0232

            MARY LOU (850) 509-2455

            REDFISH UNIVERSITY (PENSACOLA) (850) 748-4368

            WOUNDED WARRIOR FISHING (FREEPORT) (850) 499-8385

            EMERALD COAST ANGLERS (850) 855-8596

            JARED@DESTINOUTDOORADVENTURES.COM (KAYAK FISHING) (850) 685-6112

            OKALOOSA ISLAND PIER (TACKLE RENTING, BAIT, FISHING INSTRUCTIONS)

            1010 MIRACLE STRIP PKWY., SE, FORT WALTON BEACH, FL

            THE JETTIES AND BEACHES UNDER THE DESTIN BRIDGE (GREAT FISHING SPOTS)

 

 

RESEARCHED, COMPILED, AND EDITED BY EXPERIENCED EPICURIANS, SHOPPERS, DOERS, AND FISHER FOLKS, CYNTHIA LEA HOWARD AND GARY FEDUCCIA FROM DESTIN’S BASS PRO SHOPS . . . .

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Get All of Your Beach Supplies at Bass Pro Shops

Whether spending a day, week, or more on the beach, Destin's Bass Pro Shops has everything you need for fun-in-the-sun and fun in the water!  For those who want to snorkel in our emerald green waters, Bass Pro Shops carries Aqua Lung men's, women's, and children's sized premium matched snorkel sets with adjustable silicone mask, splashguard snorkel, and professional grade fins.  For those on a budget, check out our other snorkeling sets by Cressi or our Speedo and Aqua goggles and kid's Aqua masks!  For safety sake and to comply with Florida Law, make sure to pick up one of our red and white, "Divers Down Flag"  These flags are usually mounted on a short mast on a float tethered to the swimmer and must be displayed by anyone or groups of snorklers to warn off boats and other watercraft that could collide with you if you are unseen!

Destin's Bass Pro Shops also carries beach chairs, sunglasses, sunscreen, towels, pop-up shelters and canopies, water shoes, boogie boards, coolers, noodles, squirt guns, floats, and toys.

Enjoy your time at the beach and be safe.  Read the warning flags . . . Green means water conditions are safe; Yellow means to use caution; Red means water conditions are rough and rip currents are possible; and Purple means sea creatures such as jellyfish, rays, or perhaps even sharks are present and you should stay out of the water.  Be wary of rip currents.  These are areas where underwater depressions in the sand drain the water out to the Gulf from the waves that wash high up on the beaches.  This water has to flow back out, so these are just the pooled waves draining back into deeper water.  Do not try to swim against a rip current!  Either go with the flow until it dissipates a little farther out from shore or try swimming parallel to the beach to get out of the flow.

Again, Safe Swimming from all of us at Destin's Bass Pro Shops!

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Pompano Fishing Workshops at Bass Pro

Destin's Bass Pro Shops held its first in-house pompano fishing workshops on Saturday, January 10th and Sunday, January 11th, even though spring pompano fishing won't pick up for several more weeks, when the weather warms up.  Our Fishing Department Staff, Bo Corbitt and Chuck Formes, who hosted the 2-day workshops, spend most of their days off fishing in the surf or from the piers, catching redfish, Spanish mackerel, bluefish, and pompano among others.  Topics covered included types of surf fishing combos, tackle and pompano rigs, jigs, live bait, presentation, and where to look for the deep cuts in the surf where pompano are most likely to lurk.  The proper use of sand flea rakes along the tide line to catch live pompano bait was also demonstrated.

For the past several years, Destin's Bass Pro Shops has hosted spring and fall surf fishing classes in April and October at the beautiful Henderson Beach State Park on the Gulf in Destin.  Everything is provided to participants, including tackle, bait, and expert instruction from our experienced fishing staff.  There is no charge for the classes and admission to the State Park is free.  Participants must have a current Florida Saltwater Fishing License and pre-registration is required, since class size is limited.  Check the Destin store's events site in March and September to see when our next surf fishing classes are scheduled.  Once the classes are announced, one may call the store at (850) 269-6200 to pre-register.

Gary Feduccia

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Mississippi Comeback Sauce

Back before 4-lane highways, before FM radios became common, before most homes had air conditioning, and before grocery stores offered a hundred different flavors of salad dressings, many Mom and Pop restaurants had their own special homemade sauces and dressings.  Here are two that are similar, but different.  A good friend of mine in Mississippi offered both recipes and I thought I would share them with our Bass Pro Shops' friends.  The first is a similar to the dressings used on salads at the famous Mayflower Café, the Rotisserie, and Crechalles restaurants in Jackson, Mississippi.  It can also be found locally at Tucker Duke's Restaurant in Valparaiso, Florida, served on their salads and even on their huge hamburgers!  The second was concocted by Mr. Bob Dorff who ran the restaurant on Beulah Lake south of Rosedale, Mississippi and also established the famous Bob's Drive in in Cleveland, where it was served on salads.  This type of sauce or dressing is known as "comeback", since most folks will want a second helping or comeback for more.  The photo shown is from Tucker Duke's in Valparaiso, Florida, which is almost exactly like the version used at the Mayflower in Jackson, Mississippi.  Okay, it may resemble a souped-up version of Thousand Island dressing, but it is nothing like the run-of-the-mill store-bought kind.  I hope you will try these and enjoy the tastes of yesteryear.  Gary Feduccia

 

Mississippi Comeback Sauce

1 button garlic, grated

1 cup mayo

1 cup bottled chile sauce

1 teaspoon yellow mustard

1 cup salad oil

1 teaspoon worchestershire sauce

1 teaspoon black pepper

1 teaspoon paprika

1 small onion, grated

Juice of one lemon

Dash or two of tabasco

1 or 2 tablespoons water

Salt to taste

Place all in blender and puree.  Chill before serving.

 

Bob Dorff's Famous Dressing

1 quart Blue Plate mayo

6 1/2 ounces salad oil

4 pods garlic, grated

4 small onions, grated

4 1/2 tablespoons yellow mustard

4 teaspoons black pepper

4 1/2 tablespoons worchestershire sauce

1/3 small can tomato paste

Place all in blender and puree.  Chill before using.

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Mako, the Best Saltwater Boats in the Industry

         

Anglers searching for the ultimate saltwater boat need look no farther than the Mako lineup at Destin's Bass Pro Shops!  From skinny-water fishing to offshore runs, Mako makes a boat to meet or exceed your needs.  From 16 foot inshore skiffs to 28 foot Deep V offshore models, each one is meticulously built using the latest leading edge technology and marine design.  100% composite materials and marine grade components assure you of many, many years of trouble free boating.  Moreover, every Mako boat carries a certification label from the National Marine Manufacturers Association (NMMA).

Each model employs wide-open casting spaces and non-skid decks, gear storage, and a baitwell and rod holders on the center console models.  Our Mako lineup is powered by world famous and reliable Mercury engines, still going strong since 1939.

Mako boats have the best warranty in the business and is backed by Tracker Marine Group, America's #1 boat builder, in business since 1978, and a division of Bass Pro Group.  This includes a limited lifetime structural hull warranty, 5-year "stem to stern" coverage, 3 year gelcoat coverage, and a warranty that is transferable to a second owner!

Bass Pro Shops "No Haggle, No Hassle" pricing assures that prices are the same everywhere and guarantees the best deal possible.

So, for the finest and best backed inshore or offshore fishing experience, stop by Destin's Bass Pro Shops and check out our full line up of quality Mako boats!

Gary Feduccia

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Destin's Bass Pro Shops Christmas Parade and Opening of Santa's Wonderland

Pack up the kids, family, and friends and come to Destin's Bass Pro Shops at the Destin Commons on Saturday, November 15th for our annual Christmas Parade and grand opening of Santa's Wonderland, beginning around 4:30 that afternoon!  Decorated 4-wheelers and other floats and marching groups will accompany the parade through the Destin Commons and the United States Marine Corps will be escorting Santa in a decorated and Christmas themed Mako boat, as the Head Elf makes his way to the entrance of Bass Pro Shops.

Make sure to get here early and get a good spot because starting around 4 pm and during the parade, Bass Pro Shops will be providing cookies and hot chocolate, throw-outs for the kids, and drawings for gift cards.

The Marines will be kicking off our 5th annual Toys for Tots Campaign and TFT boxes and our "Boat" will be available and in place for new toys or monetary donations.

As Santa makes his way into the building, he will pause to light the vast decorations in the store, then to the back to officially (and magically) open Santa's Wonderland. 

Make sure to check our "Store Events" schedules for available times for Santa photos and all of the fun activities available.  Please remember that the line for the Free Santa photo can get very long (one to over 2 hours) the closer we get to Christmas.  Everyone is advised to arrive toward the beginning of the advertised daily hours to assure that you will get a Free picture during the scheduled photo times.  Santa is here on a contractual basis and we will be cutting off the photo line at a particular point each evening in order to allow those already in line to complete their photos and to allow Santa to exit at the end of his scheduled times.

Gary Feduccia

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Join the Marines at Destin's Bass Pro Shops for the Toys for Tots Kickoff

Destin Bass Pro Shops will be kicking off our 5th annual Toys For Tots campaign on Saturday, November 15th at 5 pm.  Come and join with the United States Marines who will be coming to the store every Saturday through the holidays.  Bring a new toy or purchase one in the store to donate to needy children and teens.  The Marines will be on hand for monetary donations, if you prefer. 

Many folks do not realize how many families are affected by the economy, the high prices of food, fuel, and energy.  These necessary essentials leave little extra in income to provide presents for children during the holidays.  Too, teenaged children are also affected and monetary donations are used to buy gifts appropriate for the older needy children.

We at Destin's Bass Pro Shops hope to surpass our previous years' donations.  We will again be "cramming the boat" with toys at the entrance of the store.  All toys and donations serve the Okaloosa and Walton County areas and collection and distribution is done by volunteers.  We are proud to be associated with the United States Marine Corp and the Toys for Tots campaign and have become one of the largest drop-off collection points in the two county area.  Your support for Toys for Tots will be greatly appreciated.   

Gary Feduccia

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Bass Pro Shops Again Supports Our Wounded Warriors

There was a happy crew of Wounded Warriors and their families who returned to the Destin Harbor on Saturday, October 11th, after a successful day of fishing on board the Pescador III.  Plentiful Red Snapper, King Mackeral, and other fish were the catch of the day!  Destin Bass Pro Shops donated a number of items, including the Bass Pro Shops caps shown in the photo to make this fishing trip a memorable outing for these Wounded Warriors.

Previously, on Friday evening, September 26th, Destin's Bass Pro Shops held an old-fashioned fish fry for another group of Wounded Warriors and their families at beautiful Live Oak Landing on Black Creek near Freeport.  Our local Pro Fishing Staff were on hand and Nick's Seafood Restaurant brought additional food.  Lodging was provided that night by Live Oak Landing and the next morning, the Warriors and their families were treated to a day of freshwater and Bay fishing by our Pro Fishing Staff and members of the local bass clubs.

Destin's Bass Pro Shops supports our active and retired military community and will continue to support Wounded Warrior functions in the local area.  Please remember that Bass Pro Shops offers a 10% discount to all active and retired military personnel with proper ID.

Gary Feduccia

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Adopt a Pet at Destin Bass Pro Shops

Come to the Destin Bass Pro Shops this Saturday, October 11th as we again host the Walton County Animal Shelter.  There will scores of puppies, dogs, cats, and kittens available for adoption.  All animals are neutered and have had their shots.  Costs for an animal is around $55, which is much lower than that charged by other adoption agencies.  With a quick home suitability survey, you can take your new pet home today.

We will be hosting the Animal Shelter again on Sunday, October 19th.  Otherwise, and weather permitting they plan on coming to the Destin Bass Pro Shops every 2nd Saturday of the month.  So far some 16 animals have been adopted here at Bass Pro Shops, and that was over just two days!  Remember, each animal that is adopted leaves a space at the Shelter for another one that has been abandoned or unwanted. 

So come on out to Bass Pro Shops to pick up your favorite outdoor gear and take home a new family member!  Bass Pro Shops in Destin is proud to support the efforts of the volunteers of the Walton County Animal Shelter and all the humane work they do.

Gary Feduccia

 

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Fall Weather and SEC Football - Time to Get Out the Grill

Who can resist sharing wonderful food with friends and family watching some SEC football?  Football rivalry runs thicker than your Grandma's molasses down here in the deep South, especially among teams in the Southeastern Conference!  Weekends are a great time to crank up the grill or smoker to prepare a tailgate feast to please even the most opinionated armchair quarterback. 

Whether you decide to cook pork, beef, chicken, fish, or even veggies, Bass Pro Shops has a complete selection of rubs, marinades, injectable solutions, and other supplies needed to make your cookout a success.  To many, it seems that many commercial rubs, marinades, and injectables are all the same.  For many ingredients, they are very similar.  The difference is found in the catchall word on the label, "spices".  A little bit of one spice or another one can make all the difference in the overall taste.  Try several different ones and pick those that best suit the type of meat or vegetables you plan to cook.

In addition, you can add an another level of flavor by using one of our specialty wood chips or pellets that add flavored smoke to your cooking.  We have all of the traditional favorites including hickory, apple, mesquite, and others, as well as several varieties of citrus, which are particularly good with fish.

So, score big-time with one-stop shopping at Bass Pro Shops for all your grilling and smoking needs.  Your friends and family will be thanking you for that Hail-Mary Bar-Be-Oue!

Gary Feduccia

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One-Stop Shopping for Game and Meat Processing

Bass Pro Shops has everything you need for meat and game processing.  For skinning and quartering your game in the field, we offer complete Game Processing and Knife sets.  Once you get your game home, BPS carries several sizes of the professional grade LEM "Big Bite" meat grinders with a 2 year manufacturer's warranty.  We carry heavy duty Meat Slicers to make anything from steaks to thinner cuts.  For jerky and sausage making, we offer food grade meat tubs and scales, as well as a huge assortment of jerky and sausage seasonings. 

Electric Meat Mixers, Sausage Stuffers, and manual and electric Tenderizers are available as well.  Both natural and collagen sausage casings are in stock and for preserving or freezing your game or catch, we carry large rolls of freezer paper and freezer sheets.  Our selection of Game Saver Vacuum Food Savers will keep your meats, fish, and other foodstuffs fresh much longer without freezer burn.

Even if you don't process game, a meat grinder and slicer will allow you to save big bucks by purchasing large cuts of meats and cutting them into individual portions.  I use my meat grinder to make sausage and hamburger without all the fat in the commercial stuff and avoid the preservatives (nitrites and nitrates) that they include.  I make wonderful beef jerky without preservatives using thinly sliced round steak seasoned and placed in my dehydrator for about 7 hours.  Did I mention that I grind up pork shoulder and mix with my own seasonings for the stuffing in home-made hot tamales?

Make Bass Pro Shops your one-stop shopping place for all of your game or meat processing needs.  Even if you have never tried home-processing before, our selection of equipment will make your experience much easier and help to insure your game and other meat products have a professional quality.

Gary Feduccia

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Halloween Celebration at Bass Pro Shops

Join Bass Pro Shops beginning Friday, October 24th, as we kick off a full week-long celebration of Halloween.  We will be offering candies to the Trick or Treaters, having free photos in the Punkin' Patch, putting on a Scavenger Hunt and a Costume Parade.  Halloween crafts will be available, as well.  Weekdays our hours of celebration will be from 5 til 8 pm, with the exception of Friday, October 31st, when we will start earlier at 4 pm.  Saturday, October 25th, we will start at noon and will be joined in Trick or Treating at 5 pm by many other stores in the Destin Commons!  The Commons will also be hosting many activities and an awesome costume contest!  That Saturday, October 25th, Bass Pro Shops will continue the activities until 8 pm!  Sunday, October 26th, we will celebrate from Noon til 5.

This year, we won't be hosting the Scout Fun Day or the Scouts' Haunted Tent, since that weekend falls on a date when all Scouts from the Gulf Coast Council will be attending Camporee up at Spanish Trails Scout Reservation near DeFuniak Springs.  They will return to our parking lot in October, 2015.

So, whether you are all "grow'd up" or still have some child in you, put on your costume and mischievious attitude, get a little spooky and come on down to Bass Pro Shops for some Halloween fun.

Gary Feduccia

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Try Tailgating with a Dutch Oven

September is here, fall is around the corner, and football season is in full swing.  What a great combination to get out the dutch oven and have a backyard "tailgate party" for your friends.  Most anything that one can cook indoors can be successfully cooked over charcoal in a dutch oven.  Use more than one dutch oven and cook for a crowd or use a smaller one and cook just for yourself.  Fry, steam, simmer, bake, boil, or roast in a Lodge dutch oven. 

Bass Pro Shops has a complete selection of Lodge Dutch Ovens and cast iron products to meet your indoor and outdoor cooking needs.  We even carry the Lodge Dutch Oven Table to make your cooking experience easier!  Don't forget to pick up some heat resistant gloves, a steel lid lifter, and a steel spider to set the lid on.  A charcoal chimney is handy for lighting the coals and to keep some going as they expire.

Need recipe ideas?  Google "Dutch Oven Cooking" and find recipes for all types of food from snacks and appetizers to gourmet meals.  Bass Pro Shops even carries dutch oven recipe cookbooks with tips on how to get started and how to season and maintain your cast iron dutch oven. Chili anyone?

Gary Feduccia

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Free Surf Fishing Classes!

With cooler weather around the corner, Destin's Bass Pro Shops will again be offering free Surf Fishing Classes at beautiful Henderson Beach State Park.  We've had a lot of success with these classes offered in the spring and fall over the past few years and have received many positive comments.  We provide everything one needs except the saltwater license, drinks, and sunscreen.  Even admission to Henderson Beach State Park is free.

Bass Pro Shops provides all the tackle and bait and experienced staff instructors.  Classes are limited to 10 people and pre-registration is required.  You may stop by the store or call our Customer Service Department at (850) 269-6200 to make reservations.  Classes will be held on Saturday, October 4th and Saturday, October 11th from 8 am til noon.  If we get more interest and demand, we will schedule additional Saturday classes.

So, if you've never tried surf fishing or are an old hand at it, come join us for a beautiful morning fishing at Henderson Beach State Park across from the Destin WalMart.

Gary Feduccia

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Uncle Buck's Fishbowl & Grill Now Open!

Long awaited Bass Pro Shops' Uncle Buck's Fishbowl and Grill opened with great fanfare and standing room only on Thursday, July 3rd!  The underwater themed bowling alley and restaurant also features private rooms for meetings or parties.  Ultra-modern teleconferencing capabilities are available.  Behind the huge centrally located full-service boat-shaped bar is another richly paneled dining, meeting, and billiards room complete with fireplace.  I could envision rich 19th century aristocrats sitting around this beautiful room smoking their cigars.  Out front, a fenced outdoor kiosk bar serves as a pleasing seating area for waiting patrons.

Diners, bowlers, and others enter the building by crossing a bridge flanked on either side by running waterfalls.  Once inside, one is immediately immersed in a stunning underwater visual experience.  Over 800 replicas of sharks, groupers, tunas, morays, sea turtles, and other marine creatures hang from the ceilings and complement the undersea murals painstakingly painted on the walls.  Special motion lighting striking the wavy ceilings over the bowling lanes create the effects of sunlight refracting off the waves above.  Uniquely designed sea creatures serve as bowling ball returns.

The food is upscale bowling alley fare at very reasonable prices.  Appetizers (including fried alligator), soups and salads, a huge variety of fancy burgers and sandwiches, pizza and flatbreads, main course seafood and fresh water fish dishes, along with sirloin steak and baby back ribs are offered.  The full-rack of baby back ribs is the most expensive item on the menu at just $15.  Plans call for taking reservations in the near future for bowling/pizza/birthday parties and private meetings.  Seasonal adjustments and specials to the menu are also planned.

Destin's Uncle Buck's Fishbowl and Grill is located on the northeast corner of U.S. Hwy. 98 and Mid-Bay Bridge Road in the new addition to the Destin Commons, just west of the BPS retail store.  It is the only stand-alone Bass Pro Shops restaurant in any of the nearly 75 BPS stores in the U.S. and Canada.

To check on dining or bowling lane wait times or to call for carryout orders, simply dial (850) 269-6100.  Uncle Bucks opens for lunch at 11 AM every day except Christmas and closes in the wee hours.

Gary Feduccia

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1926 - Scouting Spreads Along the Florida Panhandle

In 1926, the Scouts in the Panama City and Marianna areas were organized into the Choctawhatchee Council with headquarters in Dothan, Alabama, which was already serving a number of other counties in southeast Alabama.  The annual report of the National Council for 1926 listed 39 Scout Troops with 766 Scouts in the Choctawhatchee Council.  An interesting note shown in the cost per Scout reported $9.24 each, which would have made the Council's budget for that year, $7,077.

Mr. W. L. Sprouse was named as the first Scout Executive of the Choctawhatchee Council with offices in Dothan.  Mr. Sprouse wrote with admiration of the early days in that area, telling of Camp Cheerful in the Bear Creek section of Bay County, which at that time was the BSA Camp directed for 15 counties in Alabama and Florida.  It was a "real wilderness camp".  Today's maps show no trace of Camp Cheerful, however Bear Creek runs northeast of Saint Andrews Bay towards the Youngstown, Florida area.

Mr. Sprouse also said, "we used to ramble over Walton, Holmes, Jackson, Bay, Calhoun, and Washington counties on the Scouting Trail.  The pioneer days passed all too soon.  Even now I can see and hear the old gang gathered around the campfire at Camp Cheerful on beautiful Bear Creek where we held our summer camps".

Beginning in 1961, the Spanish Trail Scout Reservation was founded just west of Defuniak Springs.  It offers full camping facilities at two main camps; Camp Euchee and Camp Jambo.  Featuring a 40 acre lake for swimming, canoeing, and fishing, there is also a large dining hall, shooting and archery ranges, and outdoor ampitheatre.

Part of the Choctawhatchee Council was incorporated into the present day Gulf Coast Council headquartered in Pensacola and currently serves over 15,000 youth in 11 counties.  The Council encompasses four Districts:  Pensacola Bay (Escambia and Santa Rosa counties in Florida), Long Leaf Pine (Conecuh, Escambia, and Monroe counties in southwest Alabama), Choctawhatchee (Okaloosa and Walton counties in Florida), and Lake Sands (Bay, Gulf, Holmes, and Washington counties in Florida).

Camping has certainly come a long way from primitive camping, surplus canvas tents, cooking over open campfires, and dim flashlights of the 1920's.  Today's camper has a wide variety of lightweight and watertight tents, warm sleeping bags, long lasting and very bright led lanterns and flashlights, and propane or liquid fueled stoves.  Let Bass Pro Shops outfit your Scout or Troop with the very best in camping gear.

Destin Bass Pro Shops continues to support Scouting and wishes them another 100 years of success on the Gulf Coast.

Gary Feduccia

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100 Years of Scouting on the Gulf Coast

BSA logoOn January 29, 1914, the first National Charter was granted to Boy Scouting here in what is now the Gulf Coast Council.  Scouting on the Gulf Coast started in a small office in the Pensacola YMCA.  The Council's first official service territory consisted of just the Pensacola area that at the time had a total population of 23,000.  The first Council President was Judge W. B. Sheppard.  The Council started with a $200 budget and 5 registered Troops.

While Scouting first started in the United States 104 years ago, Scouting on the Gulf Coast was not far behind.  Today, the Gulf Coast Council serves Scout Districts from Pensacola, southern Alabama, to Port Saint Joe, with hundreds and hundreds of Boy Scout Troops and Cub Scout Packs.

The Destin Bass Pro Shops congratulates the Gulf Coast Council for its 100 years of Scouting service and wishes continued excellence for many, many years to come.

Gary Feduccia

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