SNOWBIRD NEWS: Parties, gatherings filled with snowbirds

Staff Writer
The Destin Log
Mary Pierce

It was a first. Chairpersons Cindy and Ray Varnell could not recall a time when snowbirds had to be turned away from a T.G.I.T. (Thank Goodness It’s Tuesday) party; neither could the previous chairpersons, Barbara and George Olson.

“We were absolutely filled to capacity,” said George. “We had to turn at least a dozen people away.”

The draw was entertainer Todd Herendeen and his band. Herendeen was the performer for the Tuesday morning meetings, and obviously many of the nearly 2,000 attendees wanted an encore that afternoon at the Seascape Conference Center. No doubt the next T.G.I.T. party, scheduled for Feb. 13, will experience the same problem because Crystal Gage also always attracts a large crowd.

Next Tuesday morning, snowbirds will be treated to a preview of the talent and exuberance that the Northwest Florida State College students will provide at the 29th annual Soundsations Snowbird Concert. The concert, which benefits the NWFSC Performing Arts Scholarship program, will be held at the Mattie Kelly Arts Center at 2 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 18. Tickets for this spectacular variety performance can be purchased at the Tuesday morning meetings for $10. If you are unable to purchase your tickets at the meetings, space permitting, they may also be available at the door.

The first Harbor Party Boat Cruise took place last Monday and it was a huge, sold-out success. David Hall entertained a flock of singing, dancing and dolphin-watching snowbirds on a beautiful sunny, though slightly crisp, day. Tickets for the Feb. 5 cruise are selling out quickly. However, just like last year, a third cruise has been added and will occur Feb. 12. Chairman Ted Spring will be available at every snowbird meeting sharing information and selling tickets.

Welcome to our newly arriving February snowbirds. It’s unfortunate that many of our popular events, such as the New Orleans Mardi Gras Trip, Fashion Show and Valentine Dinner Dance, are sold out, but there continues to be plenty of events and activities to enjoy. Registrations are still available on Feb. 6 and 13, from 7:30-8:15 a.m. and again from 10-10:45 a.m. Activity sheets will be available when you register or you can visit at If you register this Tuesday, be sure to stick around for not only the Soundsations performance, but also to shop the handiworks of our creative snowbirds as it will be the second craft show of the season.

Singles are always welcome in the Friendship Club. The group will meet for lunch at P.F.Chang’s in Sandestin immediately following Tuesday’s 11 a.m. meeting.

Snowbirds are welcome to join the Destin seniors in the annual Emerald Coast Senior Games. Competition will be available in 17 sports throughout the month of February. Included are basketball, billiards, bowling, croquet, golf, horseshoes, pickleball, swimming, racquetball, ping-pong, tennis, track and Field and volleyball. In most cases, you can register right up to four days before the event. Entry forms are available at the Destin Community Center.

Golfers are encouraged to check their emails for information on future outings. If you aren’t receiving these email messages, feel free to contact me. My contact information is included at the end of this column. All snowbirds are encouraged to check our website. New information is added regularly and old information is often subject to change. Webmaster Bob Baker has done an excellent job of keeping all the snowbird information informal, interesting and up-to-date.

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