SNOWBIRD NEWS: Get ready for big registration

Mary Pierce
This is a new Destin Snowbird sign at the Community Center. The old one was totally destroyed by hurricane-force winds. [SPECIAL TO THE LOG]

It’s time to consider our New Year’s resolutions for 2018. For many of us, last year’s good intentions were abandoned by March. Nevertheless, we tend to list the same old, tired aspirations of eating more healthily, getting more exercise, reading more books, yadda, yadda, yadda.

How about some new, unique ideas like joining the Destin Snowbirds? And, if you are already a member, maybe you could decide to get involved in one or more of the 30-plus activities they have to offer. This is a New Year’s resolution that will be easy to keep because there are multiple opportunities to join.

The big registration will be from 1-3 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 4. Be forewarned, there may be a huge, friendly, fun crowd of people at the Destin Community Center on Stahlman Avenue (also known as The Roost) but, thanks to the organizational skills of Linda Zukonik and her team, the lines will move quickly and seamlessly. Missing this year will be the food vendors. In the past, long lines and bottlenecks were the result of visitors who enjoyed the food offerings so much that they were reluctant to vacate the facility. The golf club vendors will still be available, however. They will be distributing information on all the snowbird specials they have to offer. There will also be representatives from the various activities to entice you to join their groups.

Golf has always been a very popular snowbird activity and, while the frequency and level of play has diminished slightly over the last few years, Chairman Joe Pierce has been working hard to restore the fun and comraderie that many snowbirds remember. There will be opportunities to sign up for 18-hole play, nine-hole play (Nine & Wine & Whine), the annual Snowbird Cup and the Ladies Scramble.

The first Nine & Wine & Whine will be Jan. 7 at Seascape. More information can be found on the website at

Tom Franklin will be on hand Thursday to sign up bowlers for league bowling. He will also be signing people up on the first day of play which is Friday, Jan. 5, at 11:30 a.m. at Hurricane Lanes on Matthew Drive. Something new this year will be a non-league, special snowbird bowling night at Uncle Buck’s. Just present your snowbird badge on any Wednesday between 3 and 9 p.m., and you will be able to bowl for an hour at the half-hour rate. This will remain in place until the end of February. Reservations aren’t necessary.

Ken Yee’s weekly casino trips to Biloxi will also begin on Friday, Jan. 5, with a trip to The Golden Nugget. The cost is $15 but gamers will get that $15 back in free play plus 50 percent off the cost of the buffet. Everyone who has joined Ken on these excursions in the past knows that the bus trip itself is an adventure. The Good Time Tours guide, Monty, keeps everyone laughing with his satire. Bingo is played on the way there and a movie is enjoyed on the way home. Ken will be selling tickets on Thursday, but if you can’t be there, he can be reached at 850-837-7093 ext. 1014. This year’s casino trips will alternate between the Golden Nugget and The Hard Rock Casino.

Tickets and/or information will be available on Thursday for very popular venues such as the Harbor Party Cruises, the Mardi Gras Trip, a Caribbean Cruise, the Fashion Show, the Soundsations Benefit Concert and the Valentine Dinner Dance. Last year, most of these events were completely sold out.

For the card lovers, there will be opportunities to sign up for bridge, euchre, pinochle or poker. Looking for more a unique New Year’s resolution? Consider signing up for Mah-Jong, pickle ball, quilting or skeet shooting, among others. All are listed on the activity sheet that will be available Thursday, or find them on the website.

The suggestion to check out the website is repeated often in the paper, on the activity sheet and at the meetings. For those who have a problem doing that, Ken Lemire offers computer classes every second and fourth Tuesday from 6:30 to 8:30 at Faith Assembly Church on Geronimo Street in Miramar Beach.

If you are unable to attend the big registration on Thursday, there will be opportunities to register before every Tuesday morning meeting from 7:30 to 8:15, before the 8:30 am meetings and from 10 to 10:45 before the 11 a.m. meetings. The fee to join is still just $8 and you can pay by cash or a USA check. (Sorry, Canadian checks can’t be accepted.)

Access to the storage locker will be available Dec. 30, from 8 to 9 a.m., Jan. 4, from 2 to 3 p.m., and Jan. 6 and 13, from 8 to 9:30 a.m.

Happy New Year to all! May 2018 bring you an abundance of peace, love and joy.

Mary Pierce, publicity director, is from Toledo, Ohio, and can be reached at 419-250-9377or She will be writing the weekly column for the papers, so if you have something to share contact her.