18th Annual Orange Beach Billfish Classic

Are you ready for a new adventure?  Join the top anglers in the country and lots of cheering fans at the 18th Annual Orange Beach Billfish Classic.  This event takes place out of the marina at The Wharf.  The events start on the 18th of May and go through the 22nd.  You can keep track of your favorite team and check often for their weigh-ins.  The fishing starts at noon on the 19th and goes until weigh in on at 11 AM on the 22nd. There is a Weigh in on Saturday also on Saturday from 6 until 10 PM.  So come enjoy all the fun activities at The wharf and then see if your favorite team won the big prize!  Below are all the details from the Orange Beach Billfish Classic Website.

First of the Gulf Coast tournament season and the kickoff tournament of the Gulf Coast Triple Crown Championship series.  The Orange Beach Billfish Classic was formed in 1998 for the express purpose of providing financial support for organizations that speak effectively for all recreational fishermen. The OBBC quickly became a top event on the Gulf Coast tournament circuit and serves as an important fundraiser for The Billfish Foundation and the Coastal Conservation Association (CCA). In 2011, over $50,000 was donated to these organizations, bringing the total contributed over the history of the tournament to over $500,000.

2014- Triple Crown trophy
2014- Triple Crown trophy

The OBBC is the country’s only non-profit billfish tournament with 100% of all net profit donated to qualified 501(c)(3) conservation organizations. The OBBC is an all-volunteer effort so there is no overhead to deduct from the financial support that’s provided to our conservation beneficiaries.

Beginning in 2013, The Wharf Marina Entertainment Complex hosted the Orange Beach Billfish Classic for the first time, and hosted the tournament again in 2014 and 2015. Over the course of the four day event, the crews, anglers and participants enjoy a series of fun and food-filled events, with a Captain’s Meeting on Wednesday evening and culminating with an awards brunch on Sunday morning. The organizers look forward to a big turnout this year in order to continue to support the organizations that fight for our resources.

10361061_634166736676009_1355216962380415182_n“I’d like to take a minute to personally invite everyone to join us for the 2016 Orange Beach Billfish Classic,” Dorland said in a recent interview. “Our staff will welcome you with open arms and we’ll all do our best to show you what a great experience this event has become, from the great fishing to our world-famous Gulf Coast hospitality. Come fishing with us this year — you won’t be disappointed.”

Interested participants are welcome to contact Dorland personally at (251) 402-8190 for more information.

Orange Beach Billfish Classic schedule of events is as follows.
Wednesday, May 18th• 4-11 pm: Registration and Optional Cash Awards open under the big tent • 6 pm: Cocktails and Hors d ’Oeuvres • 7 pm: Dinner • 8-11 pm: Optional Cash Awards Pot Party 2016

Schedule Of Events Thursday, May 19th • 10:00 am: Mandatory Captain’s Meeting under the big tent • 10:30 am: Boats may leave The Wharf through Perdido Bay to Perdido Pass • 12 noon: Boats may leave Perdido Pass. Any boat choosing to leave through Sailboat Bay may not leave The Wharf Marina until NOON, May 19th • 12 noon: Fishing Commences Friday, May 20th • 7-10 pm: Weigh in at The Wharf Saturday, May 21st • 6-10 pm: Weigh in at The Wharf Sunday, May 22nd • 9-11 am: Tournament Awards Breakfast

 

Delta Wildlife Boat Eco Tour

A don’t miss trip for nature lovers big and small take a Delta Safari!  This charter departs daily from Tacky Jacks in Gulf Shores and tours the scenic and historical and Mobile Delta system.  You can learn local history enjoy beautiful scenery and learn about our unique ecosystem and the animals that live here on this family friendly hour and a half trip.

Experience the swamps of the lower Mobile-Tensaw Delta on this highly rated wildlife tour. This is the “must do” tour for all avid lovers of nature and its creatures when visiting Mobile, Alabama. The Mobile-Tensaw Delta is Mobile’s biggest jewel – If you do nothing else, take this trip!

TOUR COST: Adult: $19.99, Child (6-15): $14.99, Under 5: FREE.20160328_165924
DEPARTS: Daily. Charters available 7 days.
LENGTH: 1.5 hours. Reservations suggested.

As we float among the open Marsh watching for a variety of wildlife including Alligators, Bald Eagle, Osprey, Heron, Cormorant, Pelicans, Nutria and more, learn about these unique animals of the swamp and how they live. Commentary includes points on the history, geology, ecology and characters of the Delta, as well as Alabama State Lands mission in the Mobile-Tensaw Delta and the ‘Forever Wild’ program.

Perfect for children of all ages, Delta Safaris operates over 100 school field trips annually – we know kids and welcome yours aboard. For Children 5 and Under, please email us after booking and we will add their FREE tickets to your booking.

All commentary provided by experienced Delta Nature Guides.

Includes: The best eco-tour in Alabama, showing off the best delta eco-system in the USA. As seen in National Geographic – Adventure Magazine, Southern Living Magazine and on National Morning Shows.

Operates: Additional tours are offered on busy days. This public tour operates 5 days a week from February 15 – December 31st each year. From January 7 – February 14, it operates on Saturdays and Sundays only. Closed on Easter Sunday, Thanksgiving Day and Christmas Day. Private Group Charters available year round. Book Online above, Call: (251) 259-8531 or Email: info@5RDS.com for more information.

Delta Safaris is the only State of Alabama authorized Concessionaire offering tours of the Mobile-Tensaw Delta, Bottle Creek Indian Mounds and Champion Cypress. We believe in a Leave No Trace policy, in educating and preserving these amazing jewels for future generations.

IMG_3369

Policies & Disclaimers:
Cancellation Policy: Rainchecks will be provided in the event of inclement weather. Unsafe passage call will be made by Captain on day of event. All other cancellations require 24 hour notice for refund.

What to Bring: Comfortable clothing, cameras and binoculars. Packed food and drink is welcome on board – no glass containers please.

Should I Tip?: Tips are not required but are graciously received. Our guides strive hard to educate and entertain. Please let your guides know how they did.GS Sunset

Cancellations: Rainchecks will be provided in the event of inclement weather. An unsafe passage call will be made by Captain on day of event. All other cancellations require 24 hour notice for refund.

Be sure to call and book your trip to enjoy this unique trip with your family!

12th Annual Gulf Coast Hot Air Balloon Festival

Balloon_Festival0
May 5th until the 8th enjoy all of the fantasy and adventure that follows hot air balloons. I know as a child it was such a special even to get to see even one hot air balloon floating along. In early May you have a chance to see up to 30 hot air balloonists from across the country floating through and around our area to celebrate the 12th Annual Gulf Coast Hot Air Balloon Festival.

Of course It is not just balloons that are at this festival. The big events are as follows.
May 5 – Balloon Glow at Tanger Outlets from 6pm – 7pm
May 6 – Festival Grounds from 2pm – 10pm (open to public)
May 7 – Festival Grounds from 9am – 10pm (open to public)
May 8 – Enjoy the balloons from afar as they soar through the sky! (NOT open to public)
This is just a taste of what is happening at the balloon festival that weekend.

Take a look at all the fun you and your family can enjoy.  Information provided by The Foley Chamber of Commerce

Thursday, May 5

Balloon Glow at Tanger Outlets in Foley, Alabama. Come get up close and personal with 10 hot air balloons as they light the sky! Talk to pilots and crew and see the inside of balloons!
6:00 pm – 7:00 pm17653977852_96b456f226_c

Friday, May 6

Color Dash 5k. Run under 40 balloons and get colorful! Run begins at the Chamber office and ends at the Festival Grounds! Learn more and register today by clicking here. Also check out where to park.
Registration begins at 6:00am Race starts at 7:00am
Festival Grounds open to the public
2:00pm
Disconnected K’9s Frisbee Dog Show presented by Papa John’s
3:00pm, 5:00pm, 7:00pm
Interactive Hot Air Balloon Display (weather permitting). Walk inside a hot air balloon!
5:00pm – Dusk
Tethered Rides. Purchase tickets here to go up in a hot air balloon! (weather permitting)
Dusk
Balloon Glow and Mass Ascension! Watch the balloons glow and soar through the night sky! (weather permitting)
Dusk
Have fun with the kiddos at the carnival that will be available all day! (rides for the whole family!) Purchase your tickets early by clicking here.
2:00pm – 10:00pm
Live Music featuring Mustache The Band! Check out their band here.
8:00pm – 10:00pm

17050418414_0e2cbce9b7_cSaturday, May 7

8:00am – 10:00pm
Arts & Crafts Vendors, Retail Vendors and Food Vendors (open at 8am for Color Dash 5k runners only. Open at 9am to public)
8:00am – 10:00pm
Disconnected K’9s Frisbee Dog Show presented by Papa John’s, Faulkner State, Global Marketing Solutions and Bon Secour Fisheries
10:00am, 3:00pm, 7:00pm
Interactive Hot Air Balloon Display (weather permitting). Walk inside a hot air balloon!
5:00pm – Dusk
Tethered Rides. Purchase tickets here to go up in a hot air balloon! (weather permitting)
Dusk
Mass Ascension! Watch the balloons all take off at the same time! (weather permitting). Check out all the balloons and their pictures by clicking here.
Dusk
Have fun with the kiddos at the carnival that will be available all day! Purchase your tickets early by clicking here. (open at 8am for Color Dash 5k runners only. Open at 9am to public)
Live Music featuring The Molly Ringwalds! Check out their band here.
8:00pm – 10:00pm

Sunday, May 8

Unfortunately the grounds are not open but we would encourage you to be on the lookout for the balloons in the sky!
7:00am
Balloons Fly
7:00am
Cote’s Music Factory (formally known as the Bamaboys Band)
3:00pm – 5:00pm
Dancing Story Lady (provided by “The Melting Pot”, a multicultrual experience presented by the Snooke Youth Club and a grant from the Alabama State Council on the Arts)
2:00pm – 2:50pm
Winners from BCCA Baldwin Star Search (provided by “The Melting Pot”, a multicultrual experience presented by the Snooke Youth Club and a grant from the Alabama State Council on the Arts)
1:15pm – 1:45pm
Snook Youth Club Angel Bells and Fiddlers (provided by “The Melting Pot”, a multicultrual experience presented by the Snooke Youth Club and a grant from the Alabama State Council on the Arts)
1:00pm – 1:15pm
Color Dash Runners end at the festival grounds. Grounds open ONLY to those who ran!!
8:00am
9:00am
Festival Grounds open to public
Arts & Crafts Vendors, Retail Vendors and Food Vendors17468590078_c4e2cb04e4_c
2:00pm – 10:00pm
Festival Grounds close
10:00pm
Check out these other fun things going on…
Tara McMeans with Design Print Promote designed our beautiful 2016 poster and t-shirts. Click here to view and purchase merchandise. She will be onsite both days signing posters and shirts as well as painting the scenery. Come meet the artist!

Our VIP tent is new and beautiful with incredible appetizers from Wolf Bay Lodge Foley, a full bar and beautiful new furniture. Also, don’t miss out on meeting John and Johnna from 97.5 WABD Cumulus Radio. Our VIP tent is sponsored by: Cumulus Radio, South Baldwin Regional Medical Center, Meyer Vacation Rentals and Southern Linc Wireless. Click here to purchase passes.

Check out some really cool trucks provided by Southern Comfort!

Want to keep the kids entertained while you enjoy yourself? No worries, we have a gaming truck that is over 50′ long and has all your kids’ favorite games inside. For a small fee, drop the kids off and let them enjoy their favorites; from x-box, wii, x-box 360 and more!

Kewl Kites will be joining us this year! Check out their HUGE kites and come to the festival both days to watch them fly!

Our interactive balloon, provided by Taking Off Hot Air Balloon Company and our very own Balloonmeister Tommy Rachel and powered by the Foley Fire Explorers, will be at the Festival Grounds both days. Walk inside the balloon and get great pictures!

Rainy Summer Vacation

It is that time of year  We are getting tons of calls from people planning their summer vacation.  It is also the time of year for us to get tons of rain. Unfortunately, travel insurance does not cover if you have a rainy summer vacation , but just because its rainy does not limit your fun things to do in the area.  We wanted to give you a few hits and helpful tips over the next few weeks so you will be completely prepared for your trip no matter what happens. This week I just wanted to talk to you about an alternate plan.

You never know from one day to the next what will happen on your vacation so the biggest tip is to be FLEXIBLE…  Flexibility will save hurt feelings, and bad attitudes from taking over the trip.  A little extra planning will allow for seamless transitions if it rains or if your group has just had enough sun for that week. Lucky you are on the Gulf coast it is the place to be when its rainy outside!

If you are just a group of adults looking for some great activities when it rains on your vacation.  Everything from shopping at the outlet mall or beach souvenir stores to Local cultural experiences at one of the many theaters or museums in the area.  Of course there is always a choice of movies and we have two movie theaters in the area  The Cobb Pinnacle Theaters, and Carmike Cinemas at the Wharf.  

When it rains on your summer vacation and you are planning for the ever-board teens that are here with you try Blond Johns for all of their surfing dreams.  Or if surfing and skating are not on their radar and movies or shopping is not their thing visit Adventure Island they have indoor laser tag and an arcade.  Or you could try Arena Next Play at the Wharf, or the indoor arcades at Waterville, or The Track.

Children have the most selections by far on rainy summer vacation days.  So when planning if you have little ones all you need to know is what they are interested in.  Of course just like above there are movie options shopping and arcades.  But specifically for kids or anyone interested in science or animals check out the Esturairum at The Dauphin Island Sea Lab. The Esturarium is just a quick ferry ride away over to Dauphin Island.  If you are up for a little bit of a car ride take a day trip to Mobile or Pensacola.  In Mobile those science lovers in the family would enjoy The

Rainy Summer Vacation ideas
Rainy Summer Vacation ideas

href=”https://www.exploreum.com/”>Gulf Coast Exploreum Science Center.  With rotating exhibits throughout the year this is a fantastic place to spend the day for the entire family.

Our all time favorite spot to direct families to is the Naval Air Station in Pensacola Museum.  It is free to the public although they always accept donations.  The museum has more planes that you can see in a day in every corner and even hanging from the ceiling.  History surrounds you at every turn and even in the cafe.  They have flight simulators, cockpit trainers, and a virtual flight deck.  Not to mention the Blue Angel’s practice here.  The 325-seat giant screen theater features the latest in state-of-the-art motion picture projection. The theater has upgraded from 70mm film projection to stunning premium laser-illuminated 2D projection system boasting full 4K resolution—nearly 9 million pixels on-screen—the first of its kind installed in an institutional theater.

So no worries!  There is plenty to do on rainy summer vacation it just takes a little planning ahead.  You will be sure to have the best vacation no matter what the weather happens to do while you are on vacation.

 

 

The 24th Annual Orange Beach Seafood Festival

Are you looking for a fun Saturday event?  Of Course it needs to have something for everyone in the Family!  Well look no further.   Take the entire family out to The 24th Annual Orange Beach Seafood Festival.  Not only will you have fantastic seafood but there is also a craft show, fun games and activities for kids and a classic Car Show.  This entire event is held annually and is the to raise money for the Association’s major fundraiser to support sports-related activities in our community, specifically youth baseball, softball and T-Ball.  Proceeds are used to purchase uniforms, equipment, insurance, and pay for expenses of officials and sponsor clinics.

The Festival remains the same full day of delicious food, 85 arts & crafts vendors and music for the whole family. The festival includes a silent auction, food booths, car show featuring antique, classic & hot rod vehicles, a Kids Zone with climbing wall, activities & more.

– 85 Arts & Crafts Vendorssky and cobra

– Food Booths

– Musical Entertainment

– Military Display & Memorabilia

– Open Car Show

– Silent Auction

– Kids Zone with Activities & More

Dates & Times

Feb 27, 2016   10:00 AM – 4:00 PM

Location

4830 Main St.Orange Beach, AL, 36561

From I-10 – Take Exit 44, Gulf Shores Parkway, and head south.  Just north of Foley turn left onto the Foley Beach Express.  The distance from the beginning of the Expressway to Orange Beach is 14 miles.  The toll for the Expressway is $3.50 per car.  After going over the bridge, the Expressway ends at Hwy. 180, Canal Road and The Wharf.  Parking will be on both sides of the Expressway.  Follow signs for parking directions.

From I-65 – Take Exit 37, Gulf Shores Parkway, and head south.  It is approximately 50 miles from I-65 to Orange Beach.  Just north of Foley turn left onto the Foley Beach Express.  The distance from the beginning of the Expressway to Orange Beach is 14 miles.  The toll for the Expressway is $3.50 per car.  After going over the bridge the Expressway ends at Hwy. 180, Canal Road and The Wharf.  Parking will be on both sides of the Expressway.  Follow signs for parking directions.

From Pensacola – Hwy. 98 – Follow Hwy. 98 from Pensacola.  Just east of Foley, turn left onto the Foley Beach Express.  The toll for the Expressway is $3.50 per car.  After going over the bridge the Expressway ends at Highway 180, Canal Road and The Wharf.  Parking will be on both sides of the Expressway.  Follow signs for parking directions.

Admission

Admission is free.

Event Info

The 24th Annual Orange Beach Seafood Festival is a major fundraiser for the Orange Beach Sports Association to support sports-related activities in our community, specifically youth baseball, softball and T-Ball. Proceeds are used to purchase uniforms, equipment, insurance, and pay for expenses of officials and sponsor clinics. The Festival is a full day of delicious food, 80 arts and crafts vendors, military memorabilia and music for the whole family. This is an alcohol-free event. The festival includes a silent auction, car show featuring antique, classic and hot rod vehicles, a Kids Zone with climbing wall, inflatables and games and a children’s performance pavilion.

Contact Us

PHONE: (251) 981-1524

 

Leave Only Footprints – Keep Alabama Beaches Clean!

As a child growing up just over the state line in the Pensacola area of Florida I remember a similar idea of leaving only your footprints behind. As I’ve gotten older I’ve always wondered why Alabama Beaches didn’t have the same signs for all the beach goers. The beaches across Alabama are implementing a similar plan and it is called Leave only Footprints!

The leave only Footprints, works off of the idea that, “you must be change you want to see in the world”. With that idea in mind and with the direction of U.S. Fish and Wildlife, the cities and areas of the Alabama Gulf Coast have enacted several new rules regarding litter and items on the beach.

1. Personally owned structures and equipment left on the beach an hour after sunset will be removed byIMG_1355 the beach patrol.

2. Avoid walking on beach vegetation. Plant roots hold together the fragile dunes.

3. Keep the natural ecosystem intact by avoiding the removal of shells, driftwood or other items you may find during your island explorations.

4. Explore away from bird nesting areas. Nests may be located in the ground and camouflaged to resemble the surrounding environment, so please watch your step!

5. Consider the best type of transportation to see the island: your feet! Walking is not only a great form of exercise, but it’s an eco-friendly way to experience the Alabama Gulf Coast.

New Trash Cans and Recycle containers will be all along the beach to help keep trash and recyclables off of the beach and out of the water. Keeping Alabama beaches clean and safe for all of its inhabitants and visitors.IMG_3017

Each year more than 5 million visitors travel from across the nation and the world to enjoy the turquoise water and white-sand beaches of Gulf Shores and Orange Beach. Come, stay, play and enjoy the striking beauty and laid-back lifestyle of our 32 miles of sugar-white sand. We simply ask that you take with you all those happy beach memories . . . and leave only your footprints.

The Leave Only Footprints program exists to ensure it stays that way for generations to come. Will you join us?

Lulu’s 8th Annual Tropical Re-Union Wedding Vow Renewal Ceremony

16531594365_75476717d5

Event Category  

Dates & Times

Feb 13, 2016   11:00 AM – 12:00 AM

Location

200 East 25th AvenueGulf Shores, AL, 36542

Event Info

16343890648_3ab0a560bf

For all of the lovebirds out there, this one is for you! Come celebrate your love and commitment at LuLu’s 8th Annual Tropical Re-union. Couples – Come out and enjoy the festivities with a complimentary champagne toast, complimentary wedding cake, flowers for the “brides”, certificates of re-union and some great music will help to make this day perfect. This event will take place on Saturday, February 13th, 2016 with registration beginning at 11 a.m. The Vow Renewal will take place at 2:00 p.m. Come spend the day with friends, family and all of us here at LuLu’s as we celebrate YOU!!

Contact Us

PHONE: 251 967-LULU (5858)

15908966804_4499b59a37

Gulf State Park; Future Plans and Updates

Recently a community meeting was held to present the final plans for the updates for Gulf State Park.  The community has been meeting for some time about the proposed changes to be made to the park with money received from the 2010 Oil spill that damaged the local wildlife and tourism industry.  Some of the ideas have been very controversial, some are extremely welcome and needed changes.  Overall the final plan appears to be s community enhancing project that will rival larger Nature preserves.

Some of the many changes proposed include rebuilding the Dune system in this area that is so protective to the island. A Convention Center will be added a little further back from the original conference center on the beach side of the refuge land. The hiking trail system will be expanded and part will be paved. Some of the streets in the park will be closed to cars and a tram system will be in place. The Camp ground will be expanded and improved. The golf course will be converted to an educational area, and much much more.

Take a look at the exciting future plans here at Gulf State Park IMG_1245

Golfing along the Gulf Coast

Alabama’s Gulf Coast boasts more than just beautiful sandy beaches and fantastic weather. Gulf Shores, Fort Morgan, and the surrounding areas are home to several of the state’s best and most beautiful golf courses. In fact, the state’s top rated course – Kiva Dunes – is located between Fort Morgan and Gulf Shores, just down the road from our beautiful beach houses and condo rentals.Golf Gulf Shores

The golf community in and around Gulf Shores and Fort Morgan is comprised of many wonderful golf courses, including four pristine and famous golf courses within the limits of Gulf Shores. Each offers challenging holes, stunning scenery, and a variety of landscapes. These beautiful courses offer unique and memorable golfing experiences, with most just minutes from the landmark of Fort Morgan.

Cotton Creek at Craft Farms

3840 Cotton Creek Circle

Gulf Shores, AL 36542

This course is the original Arnold Palmer signature design, offering challenge and Southern charm. It’s one of only two of Arnold Palmer’s Alabama projects, and it’s sure to impress. It features rolling fairways, rippling greens, dwarf Bermuda grasses, several lakes, and more than 7,000 yards from the tips.

Cypress Bend at Craft Farms

3840 Cotton Creek Circle
Gulf Shores, AL 36542

The sister course to Cotton Creek, Cypress Bend is the other Arnold Palmer masterpiece in Alabama. Year-round conditions are lush and green, making it a must-play course no matter when you visit Fort Morgan or Gulf Shores. It holds a 4 ½-star rating from Golf Digest and features “staggered tee boxes, sprawling bunkers, top-quality putting surfaces, and year-round lush conditions.” The lakes accented by cord grass offer a breezy, coastal feel at almost every hole.

 

Kiva Dunes

815 Plantation Drive
Gulf Shores, AL 36542

The number one rated golf course in Alabama, Kiva Dunes is truly stunning. It was designed by former U.S. Open Champion Jerry Pate and is Alabama’s only beachfront golf resort. It has been named among Golf Digest’s “America’s 100 Best Public Golf Courses,” and showcases the native sand dunes, lakes, and natural wildlife areas. The 7,092-yard course is secluded, seaside, and is convenient to the full-service clubhouse on site.

 

Peninsula Golf & Racquet ClubIMG_1123

20 Peninsula Blvd.
Gulf Shores, AL 36542

Created by Earl Stone, this 27-hole course on Mobile Bay features more than 7,000 yards from the tees. It is located on 820 secluded acres, with the Bon Secour Wildlife Preserve on two sides of it. It has been consistently ranked 4 stars by Golf Digest, and it is home to an abundance of natural vegetation and lakes.

There are also several wonderful courses nearby, some of which were designed by famous golf pros!

Glenlakes Golf Clubsolider creek

9530 Clubhouse Drive

Foley, AL 36535

Lost Key Golf club

625 Lost Key Drive
Perdido Key, FL 32507

Rock Creek Golf Club

140 Clubhouse Drive
Fairhope, AL 36532

TimberCreek Golf Club

9650 Timbercreek Boulevard
Daphne, AL 36527