NEWS

Information, fried fish and a game of Jeopardy set stage for annual Destin Open House

Tina Harbuck
The Destin Log
Destin Parks and Recreation Director Lisa Firth helps on the serving line at the open house Thursday at the Destin Community Center.

More than 200 people came out Thursday for the annual City of Destin Open House at the Destin Community Center. 

The open house was a chance for the community to see what their city has to offer as well as enjoy some fried fish, cheese grits and hushpuppies. Lunch was provided by local chef Jim Shirah of Dewey Destin’s. Waste Management provided “eco-friendly” plates, napkins, cups and utensils.

The city had booths set up around the community center, as did other entities that partner with the city. Those represented included Destin Water Users, Emerald Coast Wildlife Refuge, Okaloosa County Sheriff’s Office, Destin Fire Rescue, Destin Garden Club, Harvest House Destin, Destin Library and Destin Chamber of Commerce. 

More than 200 people came out for the annual Open House at the Destin Community Center on Thursday.

After everyone had a chance to stop by the booths and enjoy lunch, the city put together a Jeopardy type game with former councilman Parker Destin serving as game host. The three contestants were former councilman Chatham Morgan, Okaloosa County Commissioner Mel Ponder and Destin Mayor Gary Jarvis. 

Former councilman Chatham Morgan, Okaloosa County Commissioner Mel Ponder and Destin Mayor Gary Jarvis were the contestants for the  Jeopardy type game at the Open House on Thursday.

The Jeopardy game was entertaining as well as informative. The game was divided into categories such as Gulf Coast History, Commercial Recreational Fishing, Hurricanes, Marine Biology and Destin History. 

Although Mayor Jarvis said he was feeling a little apprehensive before the game, he was the winner by 200 points with Morgan running a close second. 

Destin City Manager Lance Johnson welcomes guests to the annual Open House before former councilman Cyron Marler led a prayer.

The questions ranged from, “The center of a hurricane is named after which part of the human anatomy?” to “The name of the mineral that makes up 90% of Destin’s sugar white beaches?” 

Destin's Jimmy Neilson was all smiles at the annual Open House on Thursday at the Destin Community Center.

The one question that stumped all three contestants was “The first year the month-long October Fishing Rodeo was held?” 

“I knew it was something that ended in an 8,” Jarvis said. He had guessed 1958.

Parker Destin served as the game show host during the Destin version of Jeopardy at the annual Open House at the Destin Community Center.

The correct answer was 1948. The Destin Fishing Rodeo is in its 74th year. 

Matt Taylor of Destin Fire Rescue chats with Terry Watkins, who was instrumental in the early days of the Destin Fire Department.

Destin said the Jeopardy game may become part of the annual open house celebration. But until next year, Jarvis has bragging rights.