Spring break begins in Destin

Hundreds of coeds descend on Destin beaches

Annie Blanks | 315-4450 | @DestinLogAnnie |

Spring breakers were out in full force in Destin on Monday, as students from dozens of colleges and universities descended on the beaches for the unofficial first day of spring break.

The Crystal Beach neighborhood, which is historically popular with the spring break crowd, was bustling with coeds in bikinis, board shorts and upside down visors walking on the sidewalks to and from the beach.

The wind and choppy water didn’t stop the visitors from enjoying the day.

“The wind isn’t great, but other than that it’s nice out today,” said William Mitchell, a student from the University of North Carolina at Charlotte.  

Down the beach, near the Back Porch restaurant, hundreds of spring breakers were gathered. Some were enjoying drinks in their beach chairs, others were having impromptu dance parties. The mood was tempered somewhat when one female student was arrested and taken away for underage drinking by Okaloosa County sheriff’s deputies.

“Someone just got arrested, so that wasn’t too fun,” said Addison Rose, a student from the University of South Carolina. “Other than that, it’s fun, but it’s a little windy and the waves are crazy. Nobody’s being too obnoxious and the weather is pretty good.”

Griffin Jones and Daulton Mason, students at Middle Tennessee State University, were enjoying the day — without alcohol — as they soaked up the sun in their beach chairs. They said they planned to abide by the rules during their time in Destin.

“We’re not getting in any trouble this week,” Mason said. “We’re just hanging out and having fun with friends, sober. We’ll hang out here and at the pool.” 

In addition to the heavy deputy presence along the beaches, electronic signs on the roads leading into town warned visitors of the police-enforced zero-tolerance underage drinking policy. 

At press time, five people had been arrested, booked and released from the Okaloosa County jail on underage drinking charges.