Packed house at Destin Snowbird Club first meeting of 2023 at the Roost

The Destin Log

It was a “standing-room-only" crowd at the first Destin snowbird meeting of 2023 at the Roost on Jan. 10. 

A “Standing-room-only” crowd filled the Roost on Jan. 10 for the first Destin Snowbird meeting of the New Year.

Perhaps it was because word had gotten out about the awesome entertaining quality of the Lloyd Carter Band, who had snowbirds dancing in the isles. Or perhaps it was because membership numbers are soaring.  

To date, there are well over 800 registered Destin snowbirds, and by the time this article hits the newsstands, it will likely be over 1,000. The Roost was so packed that several vendors had to make use of an adjacent room to tender their tasty treats, and even that room had folks lined up outside the door. 

Snowbirds arrive at the Roost early on Tuesday mornings to be sure to get their names in the drawing bucket for the generous vendor door prizes.

No one walked away disappointed. Not only was the music exceptional, but the information shared about all the planned activities seemed endless. Then, of course, came the reason so many attend the meetings, a plethora of prizes was distributed to the lucky winners of the door-prize drawings. 

Next Tuesday’s entertainer will be Todd Herendeen. I don’t need to tell the seasoned snowbirds that he will, no doubt, draw a crowd that may surpass all previous meetings. As for newcomers, it might be wise to arrive early if you want to find a parking spot or a comfortable chair. 

The mark of a successful snowbird entertainer is the ability to get snowbirds out of their seats and up on their feet dancing. The Lloyd Carter Band was able to do just that on Jan. 10.

Jan. 10 was also the date of the season’s first T.G.I.T. (Thank Goodness It’s Tuesday) party at Lulu’s on Legendary Marina Drive. According to chairs Cindy and Ray Varnell, over 160 snowbirds were in attendance. Nine of them registered on the spot, most likely so that they could enjoy the upbeat music of the Lloyd Carter Band. The next T.G.I.T. party will be at the same place on Jan. 24, with Todd Herendeen as the entertainment. 

The Lloyd Carter Band was able to get the oldsters singing and swinging at the first T.G.I.T. party at Lulu’s on Jan. 10.

Having a robust snowbird club is a win-win situation for both the club and the Destin community. Members are always encouraged to patronize our vendors and the majority take that request to heart. One of our vendors, the Knights of Columbus, are holding Fish Fries every other Friday during snowbird season at Resurrection Catholic Church in Miramar Beach. The first was held on Jan. 13, and nearly 500 fish lovers showed up. Resurrection’s pastor, Fr. Tom Guido, joked that the miracle of the fishes might be needed, but the Knights were well-prepared, and everyone went home totally satisfied. The next fish fry will be on Jan. 27. 

Due to the large number of snowbirds attending the Jan. 10 snowbird meeting, manager Scott Parker and owner Ed Ward of 790 On the Gulf had to share samples of their delicacies from an adjacent room at the Roost.

Having a growing membership also means that all the favorite annual events like the Harbor Party Cruises, the Mardi Gras Trip, the Valentine’s Dinner Dance, the Todd Herendeen Dinner Theater trip, and the Ladies Luncheon, will likely be sold out. Tickets will be available, while they last, before each Tuesday morning meeting. Also, even though most of the activities, such as card games and sporting events, have already met, newly arriving snowbirds can still participate. Most of the chairpersons will also be available at the Tuesday morning meetings. 

Registrations are held at the Roost every Tuesday from 8:30 to 9:45 a.m. Activity sheets, listing all the activities and events and the chairpersons’ names and numbers, are also available in the registration room. Registrations and activity information can also be found on the website at

Terry Roberson of Maine dances with his wife Jackie to the music of The Lloyd Carter Band, but he’s obviously identifying with the 1960’s hit, Barefootin’ at the first T.G.I.T. Party at Lulu’s on Jan. 10.

Volunteering with the Destin snowbirds is a great way to meet a lot of fun and interesting people. A wide range of opportunities is available that includes just smiling and welcoming folks to the meetings, to serving on the board. If you want to learn more, contact Dean Harper at 865-336-0421. 

Storage lockers will be available on Saturday from 8 to 9 a.m. through January. If you need to get your items at a different time, contact Tom Franklin at 218-230-3212. 

The director for Northwest Florida State College Symphony Orchestra, Todd Craven, attended the Jan. 10 meeting to invite the Destin snowbirds to the Mattie Kelly Arts Center in Niceville for their concerts. Craven fits right in with the snowbirds; he is originally from Michigan and had previously been the director of Toledo, Ohio’s Symphony Orchestra.

The Singles Friendship Club will meet for lunch at The Surf Hut after the Jan. 24 meeting. 

Enjoy your week! 

Mary Pierce is the publicity person for the Destin Snowbird Club. 

Mary Pierce