Healthy Living Expo

The 2013 Emerald Coast Healthy Living Expo will be held from 9 a.m. to noon Jan. 5 at the Saint Mary Parish Life Center, 110 Saint Mary Ave. in Fort Walton Beach. The Expo is free, and the public is invited for health-focused activities and information for children, adults and seniors.

Topsail tour

Learn to identify palms and pines at 2 p.m. Jan. 5 at Topsail Hill Preserve State Park in Santa Rosa Beach. Entry admission is $6. Outside tours are canceled during severe weather. Call 267-8330.

All area codes are 850 unless noted.

Citizens Academy

Ride along with a deputy, tour the courthouse, go to the firing range and more during the Okaloosa County Sheriffs Citizens Academy from 6-9 p.m. Monday nights, Jan. 7 through April 1, at the Okaloosa County Sheriffs Administrative Building. Contact Ashley Bailey, crime prevention specialist, at 651-7153 or email

Book discussion

The Destin Library will host local author Don Schroeder at 4:30 p.m. Jan. 8 to discuss his book Air Raid Nights & Radio Days: Hanging on for Dear Life. The program is free and open to the general public. An informal question and answer session will be held to discuss the authors memoir of growing up on the home front during and after the Second World War. Call 837-8572.

League of Women Voters

Florida Representative Matt Gaetz will join the League of Women Voters of Okaloosa County for lunch at noon Jan. 8 in the lounge of the Fort Walton Yacht Club, 180 Ferry Dr NE, to provide an overview of what he expects for the 2013 legislative session. Cost is $15, payable at the door. RSVP by Jan. 7 at 621-4088) or email

ACT/SAT workshop

A workshop to assist students in Okaloosa County High Schools who will take the Feb. 9 ACT and the Jan. 26 SAT will be held from 2-5 p.m. Jan. 22, 23, 28 and 29 at Niceville High School and from 2-5 p.m. Jan. 24, 25, 30 and 31 at Fort Walton Beach High School. All materials, snacks and drinks are furnished. Students need to bring calculators. Registration deadline is Jan. 8. For information, contact Alice Hart at 615-585-2401, email or contact your high school Guidance Department.

Topsail tours

Topsail Hill Preserve State Park in Santa Rosa Beach will hold the following tours. All programs except Breakfast with a Ranger require a $6 entry admission into the park. Outside tours are canceled during severe weather. For information, call 267-8330.

Jan. 11: Learn the history of Floridas most famous reptile, the alligator, at 2 p.m.
Jan. 12: Breakfast with a Ranger at 9 a.m. and ask them all the questions you can think of about park wildlife. To cover the cost of food please bring $5, which goes to Friends of Topsail Hill Preserve State Park to enhance the park or bring your own breakfast.
Jan. 18: A night hike begins at 4:45 p.m. by watching the sunset, then a 1 mile hike to the day use parking lot.
Jan. 19: Learn which spiders in Florida are poisonous, where they live, what they eat, and the benefits they bring to us at 2 p.m.
Jan. 26: Learn what type of creatures, on land and sea, can be found in this area at 2 p.m.

Choctawhatchee Audubon Society

Jan. 12: A bird walk at Big Sabine Point on Santa Rosa Island led by local ornithologist Alan Knothe. Meet at uptown station at 7:30 a.m. or at the Navarre Butterfly House on U.S. 98 at 8 a.m. Call 850-208-1780.
Jan. 26: Join Bruce Purdy for a bird walk at the Okaloosa Landfill and Sprayfields to see a wide variety of interesting birds. Meet at the Coach and Four Restaurant on N. Lewis Turner Blvd. at 7:30 a.m. Call 305-359-5334 or 582-7064.

Hormones and weight loss seminar

Dr. Nitin Bawa, president and founder of Dr. Bawa and Associates, will present Common Misconceptions About Hormones and Weight Loss at 5 p.m. Jan. 16 at 155 Crystal Beach Drive in Destin. Call 424-7320 to reserve your spot. The first ten seats can be reserved at no charge but after that it will cost $10 per person. The $10 can be applied toward any service purchased at the clinic other than co pays.

Carrabbas cooking class

Carrabbas Italian Grill at Silver Sands Premium Outlets will share secrets from its kitchen in a cooking class to benefit Shelter House from 11:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. Jan. 18 at 10562 U.S. Hwy. 98. The afternoon will also feature food samples, a complimentary glass of wine, a raffle and recipes to take home.
Tickets are $40 per person. Seating is limited and registration is required. For more information or to register, call 243-1201 or visit

Florida Trail Association

The Florida Trail Association will hold the following events. Visit or call the listed number.

Jan. 18-21: A 4-day 3-ight backpacking adventure on Eglin in Walton County. Call 585-5150 or 816-916-5736.
Jan. 22: Monthly meeting at 6 p.m. at Eds Hometown Seafood & Steaks in Niceville. Visitors welcome. Call 654-1172.
Jan. 26: A 3, 5, or 8 mile hike at 9 a.m. in Point Washington State Forrest near Santa Rosa Beach. Call 302-528-8284 or 816-916-5736.
Jan. 26: A 4-mile night hike around Karick Lake at 5 p.m. with dinner following at the Gator Caf in Baker. Call 651-0902 or 682-6098.

Free pancakes at IHOP

IHOP will give away free pancakes from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. Feb. 5 to celebrate National Pancake Day. The fundraiser aims to raise $3 million to kick off Childrens Miracle Network Hospitals 30th anniversary.

AARP Income Tax help

Volunteers from AARP will provide free individual federal tax assistance on an appointment only basis at the Destin Library from 9 am. to 5 p.m. beginning Feb. 7 through April 11. Call 837‐8572 and make an appointment.
According to AARP officials individual income tax preparation assistance is limited to 2012 federal income taxes only.

Destin Library

The following events are held regularly at the Destin Library. Call 837-8572

Tai Chi for Arthritis: At 7 a.m. Wednesdays. Cost is $5/class.
Cuddlers & Toddlers Storytime: From 3-3:45 p.m. Tuesdays and 9:30-10:15 a.m. Thursdays for ages 4 months to 4 years.
Independent Film Series: Independent and foreign films shown at 7 p.m. the third Tuesday of each month.
Friends of the Destin Library: Monthly meeting held at 10 a.m. the second Friday of each month.

Destin Community Center

All activities are at the Destin Community Center, unless noted. Call 654-5184 for information and to register. Persons with disabilities who require assistance are asked to notify the center 48 hours in advance.

Baton lessons: Begins in the spring. Call 699-8309.
Chair yoga: Thursday at 10 a.m. Cost is $3/class.
Duplicate bridge: At 9:30 a.m. Mondays and 12:30 p.m. Wednesdays and 9:30 a.m. Thursdays at Buck Destin Park. Entry fee: $6. No partner needed.
Game room: Open to children 10 and older and under 10 accompanied by adult from 1-9 p.m. Monday-Friday.
Intermediate party bridge: Mondays and Tuesdays at 12:45 p.m. at Buck Destin Park. Call 837-1967.
Jazzercise class: 6 p.m. on Mondays, Wednesdays and Thursdays. Call 621-3055.
Kidz Klub: After-school program from 3:30-5:30 p.m.
Modern line dance: Classes from 12:30 to 2 p.m. Wednesdays beginning Jan. 11. Fee is $5/class.
Open gym: Check ahead for times and dates open.
Pickle ball: Pickle Ball courts will be set up at noon Mondays and Thursdays for beginning players and 10 a.m. Wednesdays and Fridays for advanced players. Fee is $2.
Table tennis: 9 a.m. to noon Thursdays and 3-5 p.m. Tuesdays.
Tennis Academy: A tennis program with USPTA Professional Brian Wilson at Buck Destin Park on Legion Drive. This program will be open to all ages and abilities with days and times to be determined. Group classes will be one hour long and cost $15 a session. Private lessons will be $50 an hour. To sign up or for more information, email
Walking Club: Walk with music from 8-9 a.m. Monday-Friday.
Woodcarving: Fridays at 9 a.m. Fee is $3.
Yoga: Thursdays at noon. Cost is $5/class.
Zumba gold: Thursday at 11 a.m. Cost is $6/class.