9th Annual Gulf Coast Hot Air Balloon Festival

Dates & TimesJun 14, 2013 – Jun 16, 2013


Foley Sportspark,18507 U.S. Highway 98, Foley, AL 36535
South Baldwin Chamber of Commerce, 18507 U.S. Highway 98, Foley, AL 36535


The Gulf Coast Hot Air Balloon Festival, presented by Tanger Outlets, welcomes more than 50 hot air balloonists from across the country. Enjoy the floating works of art as they grace the skies of South Baldwin County on Friday and Saturday morning*. Get up close and personal as the hot air balloons and their pilots light up the evening skies at the nightly balloon glows, held Friday and Saturday night*.
Guests enjoy free, fun entertainment featuring something for every member of your family. Spread out your blanket, grab an ice cold drink and enjoy a variety of live music daily, from country to rock and roll. Be sure to catch one of the many shows by the Disc Connected K-9 World Famous Frisbee Dog Show. Toss after toss you will be amazed as man’s best friend defies gravity catching their prized flying saucers.
Pet a baby alligator, dance like a butterfly to fun kid’s tunes, paint your face like a tiger or try a little family friendly game of limbo. The free Kid’s Fun Zone offers hours of fun for any age.
Grab a cone of homemade ice cream or delicious BBQ plate as you shop through an eclectic array of local crafters, artisans, and retailers. Many crafters provide onsite demonstrations, find a one of kind piece of art, or grab a souvenir to commemorate your visit.
Admission: Shuttle service is FREE to the public and will be available Friday and Saturday from 2 p.m. until 10:30 p.m. Shuttle pick up is from the Tanger Center, behind the Nike store and shuttle passengers will be dropped off conveniently at the front of the Festival grounds. Parking is available on the Festival grounds for $5 per day.

Contact Us

Phone: 251-943-3291

Sinking of the Lulu!

It has been a blustery day today with tropical storm Andrea hitting land today near Tallahassee.  The weather today reminded me of the show “Reef Wranglers” that comes on the weather channel.  It is about a local company, “Walter Marine”, that sinks artificial fishing reefs and memorial reefs off the coast of Gulf Shores, Orange Beach and Pensacola.

You see the weather in this area is subject to change at any moment.  The gentlemen who do this work of creating reefs always say the weather is unpredictable in this area and they are certainly telling the truth.  The weather was beautiful today
despite the closeness of the storm but the waves were too dangerous to get in the water.  Everyone is enjoying themselves this week though and things should be back to normal beach weather tomorrow!

Recently, The Reef Wranglers set “The Lulu” to rest just off the coast of Gulf Shores / Orange Beach.   This is the first local reef that I am aware of that was sponsored by a local business and the community as a whole.  We are very excited about this addition to our local wildlife.  This reef will be great for fishing and diving for our diving enthusiast.

We wanted to share some great videos with you of the sinking of our newest local attraction, The Lulu!  We hope you enjoy the video.  Give us a call if you are ready to make your vacation plans we are running some great specials!

New Fun Happenings in Gulf Shores!

We have so many new things in going on the the Gulf Shores area we wanted to make sure you guys were in on the FUN!

Waterville, our local water park has added a new slide to the FUN.

This is a racing slide where you and all of your friends can race each other. It is called the Dune Racer and up to 6 people can race down the slide at one time!  They call it the Dune Racer because it is taller than a Sand Dune!   Be sure to try it on your trip to Waterville.

The University of Alabama, is thrilled to announce that 2013 marks the tenth anniversaryof bringing professional musical theatre to Gulf Shores. In June 2013, SummerTide Theatre will present Jubilee – Songs of and about Alabama. Running Friday, May 31through Friday, June 28, 2013, performances are Tuesday to Sunday evenings at 8:00PM.

Paying homage to the great musical heritage of Alabama, Jubilee is a riveting compilation of songs about or invoking the “Heart of Dixie” state. From blues and country to rock and gospel, the state of Alabama has played a central role in the development of America’s musical legacy. Jubilee showcases the rich and varied musical flavors, from the foothills of the Appalachian mountains to the white sandy beaches of the Gulf Coast. 

Jubileewill run Friday, May 31 to Friday, June 28, 2013, with performances every Tuesday through Sunday evening at 8:00PM. Tickets may be purchased, starting in April 2013, by visiting the SummerTide online ticketing system or by calling The University of Alabama Box Office at 205/348-3400. Tickets prices are $20.00 for adults, $15.00 for children under 12. More information on group rates, theatre location and on-site theatre box office hours will be available later in 2013.

Phoenix Rising: Judgement Day by William W. & J. A. Johnstone

The newest book in a trilogy about the Fort Morgan area.

This is a fictional story about the collapse of the American society and what the locals in Fort Morgan do to uphold the American society in their little part of the world.  Take a look at the promotional video on Phoenix Rising to learn more about about this thrilling series.

New airline coming to Gulf Shores

A common question I get when guests are booking reservations is what is the closest airport the beach?  Now I have a new answer!

As reported By Fox 10News

GULF SHORES, Ala. (WALA) – A new airline is coming to Southern Baldwin County. Memphis-based Southern Airways Express is expected to start flying out of Jack Edwards Airport in Gulf Shores in late May.

The airline will feature daily non-stop Gulf Shores service to and from Memphis, Tenn., New Orleans, La. and Birmingham, Ala. Southern is also offering service to cities like Tampa and Panama City in Florida.

Southern is banking on vacationers who rather take short plane ride rather than a long road trip for that next getaway but that’s not all.

Chairman and CEO Stan Little said, “Not only do we expect to bring vacationers to the Alabama beaches, but we also hope to provide local residents and business people in Baldwin and Mobile Counties with a quick and affordable alternative to connecting through Atlanta.”

Southern is touting a number of perks including no baggage fees, no parking fees and no TSA security hassles. Passengers will be able to arrive 15 minutes prior to departure.

Southern says complimentary iPads with preloaded movies will be available to passengers during the flight.

Fares on all flights systems-wide will range from $129 to $249. Southern is not yet offering tickets for sale, but the company expect its website, www.iFlySouthern.com , to be live and online by May 24.

We can’t wait to try out our NEW airline choice for the Gulf Shores area!

Endless Summer, Gulf Front 6 Bedroom, Handicapped Accessible

Endless Summer is located in the most impressive row of Gulf Front Homes in Gulf Shores & Fort Morgan.  This incredible beach home was completed in the summer of 2006.   Endless Summer’s elevator will carry you to each of the 4 levels.

Endless Summer’s decks surround all three levels facing the Gulf and bay side of the home. The views from this house are incredible! If you must work or simply want to surf your laptop while gazing out at the view, wireless DSL is throughout. The architecture of this home is magnificent: 10 ft. Ceiling Heights; 8 ft. Interior Doors; Tile & Heart Pine Flooring; Two Color Kitchen Cabinets with Granite Tops; Maytag Stainless Steel Appliances; Dual Sinks & Dual Dishwashers; 48″ & Two Drawer Refrigerators; Wet Bar with Ice Maker, Wine Chiller & Decorative Sink. The bathrooms in this incredible home features travertine slab bath counters; 4′ x 6′ .  Air Jetted Garden Tub & Shower Stall With dual body sprays; double shower stall with rain head & body sprays. To accommodate all 6 baths, the home contains two 80 Gallon water heaters. Guests of

Endless Summer have access to 2 pools and 2 hot tubs and a fitness center.  This property was formerly known as East Meets West and while the shell of the house is still there and FANTASTIC the furnishings are completely different.  This house is comfortable, with all new and very classicly designed furnishings.  The decks overlook the Gulf and the secluded Fort Morgan Beach.   There is sleeping for 16 in this home.

One of the most important features to this home in our opinion is the that is handicapped accessible.  This home has an elevator for your family member who may need the lift or just to get your groceries up to the kitchen!

There is a bedroom with it own private bath that is completely equipped for a family member with special needs.  This bath is equipped with a roll in shower, roll under sink, a taller toilet and pull bars in all necessary places.   From the elevator you have easy beach access by a board walk.  We are happy to answer any questions you may have!  So if something comes to mind give us a call.  This home is in the process of being decorated.  It currently has a  King , 3 queens, two sets of bunk beds, and a bunk bed with a double bed on the bottom and a twin bunk on top.  Be sure to  look at our website for more photos of this beautiful home.

Beach Power Rentals, Motorized Beach Wheelchair Rentals

Beach accessibility on the Alabama Gulf Coast is no longer a dream – Beach Power Rentals can make it happen.

The motorized beach wheelchairs will take you to the water’s edge.  their unique, beach wheelchairs have a heavy duty aluminum frame, a heavily padded adjustable seat, conventional wheelchair joystick controls, fold-up arm rests, infinitely adjustable foot-rests, rear anti- tip wheels, automotive style seat belts, built in umbrella stand, an optional 8 ft. umbrella, and our chairs can accommodate any one from 50 pounds to 350 pounds.  Now going to the beach is no longer a spectator sport for individuals tat are injured or disabled.

Their custom-made motorized beach wheelchairs are made from a welded aluminum frame with numerous adjustments, and comes with a padded, comfortable seat that partially reclines. They do not take credit for inventing the motorized beach wheelchair. There are several manufacturers on the west coast who build and sell similar powered beach wheelchairs. The major difference between them and us is that they sell their new beach wheelchairs for $7000–$10,000 and we rent our used beach wheelchairs for $40 to $60 per day. Beach wheelchair rentals allow a much greater number of beach vacationers to enjoy getting to their beach getaway.

There is nothing like a day at the beach in one of our fantastic motorized beach wheelchairs. Their powered beach wheelchairs afford the disabled beach vacationer the mobility to access the beach with ease. Now you don’t have to watch all of the fun on the beach from the condo. Our beautiful beach sand is sugar white once again and awaits your arrival.How they got started! After retiring to the beach in March of 2004, Jerry started having problems with fatigue. In June of 2005, he was diagnosed with ALS, or, Lou Gehrig’s Disease. As his health declined, his ability to get to the beach became increasingly difficult.

While he was still able to walk he modified a fisherman’s cart by adding Wheeleez tires and PVC so that it was converted into an easy to push or pull beach cart. Soon thereafter, he added wheelchair motors and controls so that he could carry a large load with minimum effort.

Note the fordable umbrella wings, which eliminate the need to bury the umbrella pole in the sand, and they fold back when not in use.

As the legs began to weaken, Jerry started working on a beach wheelchair. Using PVC pipe and the knowledge he gained from building the electric beach cart, he was able to build a beach wheelchair prototype powered and controlled with electric wheelchair components.

Once the design was complete, he hired someone to build a metal frame. This new frame eliminated inherent PVC weakness, lowered the center of gravity and made the beach wheelchair more stable.

Before completing our full year and the beach wheelchair rental business, our chairs began rusting. We knew then that our beach wheelchairs had to be built with aluminum.  After a great deal of trial, error, and testing we came up with what you see below.

The beach wheelchair on the top was custom built for one of our customers who uses it as a camping chair or an all-terrain chair.

The beach wheelchair pictured next to the multicolored beach umbrella below is an all-terrain beach wheelchair. It is just as happy off-road as it is on the beach. This is due to the nature of the tires with which it is equipped. We almost exhausted every available tire type while researching and testing this chair.

These incredible motorized beach wheelchairs evolved over a five year period while we were renting and maintaining our beach wheelchair rental fleet. We have gained so much knowledge and insight during this process. As a result, we consider our motorized beach wheelchairs to be the finest available and we think that you will too after you experience a day in the Mercedes Benz of motorized beach wheelchairs.

Blue Collar Country

FOLEY, Alabama – As reported by Wear- ABC 3

News of an entertainment development on 525 acres off Foley Beach Express in Foley has spread quickly.

“I think it’s going to be great.” Folks like Diane Cheney want to find out now how to get one of the three thousand jobs “Blue Collar Country” is expected to bring. “Just talk to somebody about what’s going on and find out some more things about this.”

Plans are for hotels, theaters,retail shops and indoor sporting facilities. A kind of Branson, Missouri meets Baldwin county.

“This is pretty much a hybrid park,” says economic development director Jeff Rouzie. “The main developer plans a ride component to it.”

Large scale developments are risky business. Take Bama Bayou for example, ground had been broken, construction even began but it never got to the ribbon cutting. Finances fell through.

“Everything is signed, financing is in place,” says chamber of commerce president Donna Watts. “The city has gotten a grant to help with infrastructure. This group has applied for the new tourism incentives that are available.”

Not everything is ready. Work continues to secure the 200 million dollar investment but plans are moving forward. Temporary business offices are set to go up in the next couple weeks. A ground-breaking ceremony is expected near the end of the month.

“It will change the face of south Baldwin county forever,” says Watts.

For Diane Cheney that’s the best news of all. “That’d be great. There are a lot of people out of work and that’d be really good”

Construction of “Blue Collar Country” is expected to begin later this year and ready for business in 2015.

Portabella’s, A Don’t Miss Resturant in Foley!

After a very long day two, stressed out women were on a hunt for some great dinner!  We decided to give a new place a try and it was the perfect decision.  This hole in the wall restaurant holds up to it’s name.  It is not fancy on the inside or overlooking the water or some serene park but it doesn’t matter.  The inviting atmosphere and friendly local staff make you feel at home in the newly renovated restaurant.

Portabella’s is located in the heart of historic Foley on hwy 59 on the east side of the road.  Almost at the end of the historic district it shares a building with the Foley Fish Company.  There is parking in front and just to the South of the building.  As you enter the glass front doors you can enjoy a view out the large plate glass windows in front that have a view of 59 and all of the comings and going in town.

As we came in our friendly waiter welcomed us in and offered us nay table in the place.  He brought us menu’s and some great sweet tea.  After we perused the menu for a while we decided to each get a salad and to share a pizza.  Not just a basic pizza we actually asked for a half meat and half what was most closely called a supreme pizza.  I got the Spinach Salad with the house green onion vinaigrette dressing.  This salad was beautifully fresh spinach, feta cheese, olives, pecans, and a little red onion and the dressing.  I could have had just a giant plate of this salad and been very very happy.  It was a fantastic flavor combination and I will absolutely get it again!  My mom who came to dinner with me got a basic house salad that was mixed greens, cheese, bacon, tomato and croutons.  She loved her salad as much as I did.

Now for the main dish our pizza!  It was a beautiful 14 inch pizza half covered in meat.  It is called The Lion!  Sausage, pepperoni, ham, bacon, and prosciutto on top of this pizza worthy of the carnivore .  It was unique in that the meat was all amazing not the norm that you would get on a chain meat Pizza.  The other half of our pizza was a “Foley.”   The “Foley” includes peppers, onions, olives, mushrooms, pepperoni, sausage.  Again with beautifully fresh veggies and uniquely fresh meat the “Foley”only honors this community with it’s goodness.

There is always a soup of the day, great salad menu.  Sandwiches with the same beautiful ingredients that were on our pizza and even healthier lighter choices.  Oh, and pasta!  I am going to try some pasta sometime soon.  So as you are coming in on that shopping day you make to Foley, don’t miss Portabella’s. Instead of sitting in traffic pull over and have a great dinner at this don’t miss yummy Italian jewel to our community.

American Fun, The Perfect Little House For Your Getaway!

This is a quaint two story house, close to the Dunes Community Pool, and NEWLY updated in 2012. There is plenty of room for the family in this 1,600 Sq Ft 3 bedroom, 3 bath duplex.  The beach beckons to you from behind the houses just 150 yards away.  You get sneak peaks of a view from both balconies and a really nice view off to the West of the Sunset.

American Fun 3
American Fun 4

                                                                                             As you enter the house you will notice the spacious living room with ocean colored walls and modern furniture. The couch is a sleeper sofa.

American Fun1

 The adjoined dining area has a table for 6 with additional seating at the kitchen bar. The fully stocked, fully equipped kitchen with full size appliances is perfect for cooking your favorite seafood dishes at meal time. The floors are tiled throughout except for the bedrooms. Right off of the kitchen is the “lavender” room that has a King size bed and access to a shared bathroom.

American Fun 2

Upstairs to the left is the kid’s room with two twin beds and a full private bath. The Gulf facing Master bedroom has a King bed with its own private bath as well as access to a balcony. Each room has its own TV. This house also has underneath parking. As a guest of the Dunes Community, you have access to the Dunes Community pool and hot tub as well as the Dunes Condo pool, hot tub, sauna, and work out facility.

This house rents from Saturday to Saturday during the spring and summer, but is available for shorter stays outside of these times. Give us a call for pricing on less than weekly stays 1-888-877-9270!

Fishing In Fort Morgan

It is time to come Fishing!!! Fort Morgan is one of the areas favorite fishing destinations.
With the pass just at the end of the island, the Gulf on one said and the quiet waters of the bay on the other side of the island, I can see why our tiny little hidaway is the perfect place to some fish.  March 15th was the start of the Alabama’s Gulf Coast for Pompano, Flounder, Mackerel, Whiting and a Cobia Tournament this tournament goes until April 30th.  There are people out fishing everyday in this tournament vieing for the best catch.  If you are a pier fishing enthausiest now is the time to be in Gulf Shores.  Not only can you try for the largest fish but once you have it weighed and measured you can have it cooked to order by one of our great Fort Morgan resturants like Tacky Jacks or Sassy Bass.

There is another local  tournament  The Captian Hook Classic Fishing Tournament May 11th, 2013.  This tournament added a new category this year of kayak fishing.  So all of you kayak fishermen this is the tournament for you.  It takes place here in Fort Morgan.  Hurry and sign up soon so you can catch your next monster.  Call us to book your fishing getaway today!