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ALABAMA COAST OBSERVER ~ JULY 2014
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    STRUMILA PUBLISHING Mailing Address PO BOX 1334 Gulf Shores, AL 36547 (251) 504.1001 OFFICE www.coastobserver.com Coast Observer Virtual www.myvirtualpaper.com/doc/ GulfCoastObserver/current/ www.facebook.com/alcoastobserver OBSERVER STAFF Cheli Strumila Editor/ Owner / Graphic Design cheli@coastobserver.com Ben Fant Graphic Design Robert Baudier Photographer WRITERS Kelly Lott Restaurant Reviewer kelly@coastobserver.com Kelli Parris Attractions & Bar/Nightclub Writer kelli@coastobserver.com ADVERTISING SALES Kelli Parris Advertising Rep kelli@coastobserver.com Coast Observer strives to provide a very accurate informative publication. At times entertainment listings change and mistakes are made by Human Error...or they are put there for those of you looking for error...if this happens we apologize but are not responsible for any typographical errors that occur or changes in listings. The contents of Coast Observer may not be reproduced in any form without written permission by the Publisher and Owner, Cheli Strumila. All rights reserved. If you have anything you would like listed in Coast Observer, any stories or poems that uplift the spirit, or if you have any ideas you think would interest the rest of our readers, we are always open to new ideas!! This is your paper too!! This Month’s Features w Tacky Jacks.....Page 4 w Deep Sea Fishing Rodeo.....Page 5 w DeSoto’s....Page 9 w Island Time Daiquiri’s.....Page 12 Adventures & Watersports Page 6 w Beach Services w Boat Rentals w Fishing & Charter Boats w Kayak & Canoe Rentals Attractions Page 8 w Amusement Parks w Bazooka Ball & Laser Tag w BiPlanes w Dolphin Cruises Dining Heeelllloooo Gulf Shores Orange Beach & Foley!! Summertime...& the Livin’s Easy.. OK, can someone please tell me what happened to the first part of the year!?! Can you believe 2014 is already half way over, OMG, time sure does fly when you’re having fun!! It seemed like spring and summer were just starting and now we’ve only got one month left till the kids start planning their return to school. Whatever happened to the Endless Days of Summer we all had as kids!! It seemed that summertime lasted forever, and now the older I get the faster it flies by!! With the summertime weather, many will be flocking to our beaches and outdoor venues!! It’s for that reason that I decided to revisit some of our favorite outdoor venues as well as share with you some great Alabama Gulf Coast venues that we feel really allow us to get out, breath in the fresh air and feel the sun on our face!! So in this issue we’re gonna take you back to some of our favorite outdoor and seasonal venues you wanna make sure to check out!! As you know, we Love Tacky Jacks!! Sitting out on the patio, watching the boats cruise down the intercoastal and water ways as we enjoy some great dishes, cocktails and music really gets us in the mood for summer!! Their Summer of Fun with some exciting events planned Tuesday‐Friday for Kids of All Ages, so make sure you stop by and see what kinda fun you can get into!! While you’re at the Wharf, stop into our favorite daiquiri shop, Island Time Daiquiri and say hi to our friends Bobby, Kelli, and Brittany!! Not only can they whip you up one mean daiquiri, but they are never at a loss for great conversation!! And make sure you stop w Check out our Review on Diamond Jim’s & Mrs Donna’s w Cold Mil Dolphine Cruises.....Page 14 w Reachin’ Inside to Touch Your Soul w Florabama Yacht Club.....Page 17 w City Grill.....Page 19 w Paddleboard Rentals w Parasailing w Sailing w Waverunner & Jet Ski Rentals w Go Carts w Hot Air Balloon Rides w Miniature Golf w Zoo w Dine at our Restaurant Advertisers Golf Courses Page 15 Museums & Historic Sites Page 15 by City Grill for some Awesome dishes created by Matt and his staff, everything is fabulous, and make sure you order the Gouda Grits..OMG the Gouda Grits!! A coast Legend to us as far as restaurants go, DeSotos in Gulf Shores is your one stop shop for true southern‐just like grandmamade homemade and seafood dishes!! And of course with the beautiful weather, you must make it down to Florabama’s newest hot spot, Florabama Yacht Club which has all the Florabama style and atmosphere with delectible entrees at affordable prices!! Just in case you want a little more water action, head on over to Cold Mil Fleet Dolphin Cruises!! If you’ve never been on a Alabama Gulf Coast Dolphin Cruise, you are really missing out!! The way they get the dolphins to play with the waves is truly a magical sight to behold!! And when you’re done, grab a bite to eat or a cocktail at Flipper’s!! Eddie Boy and his staff really know how to make you feel right at home!! With the warmer weather comes the ever poplular fishing tournaments!! From the Deep Sea Fishing Rodeo, the Blue Marlin Grand Championship, the MGBFC Billfish Limited Tournament and many others, head on down to the weigh‐in areas to see as the fishermen bring in some of the most gorgeous creatures of the gulf and try to break the records!! So what are you waiting for...Get out & have some fun and enjoy everything that life and Gulf Shores / Orange Beach / Foley / Perdido Key has to offer!! I know I’m going to, so I’ll see ya there!! Until Next Month ... Cheli PS...Don’t forget to join our facebook page www.facebook.com/alcoastobserver or download our smartphone app for more updates and to post your fun & exciting events!! And you can always check out our most current issue virtual on the web by going to our website coastobserver.com and clicking on “Alabama Coast Observer” cover. Alabama Coast Observer w July 2014 w 3

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    Orange Beach, AL­­This little marina started supplying fuel and fishing tackle to the local fisherman where the fisherman would nosh, drink and share their “tales” after a long day of fishing. Located in Orange Beach off Marine Rd., the quaint marina evolved into Tacky Jacks Grill & Tavern in 1980. An already successful business man, George Skipper, purchased the marina in the late 1990’s and gave it the loving improvements that have set the standards for todays Tacky Jacks franchise. Having become a major tourist destination for breakfast, lunch and dinner, there are now 4 locations in the area. Tacky Jacks objective is to provide a fun atmosphere with a well­trained staff offering a visit that one can’t wait to repeat! And, Cheli and I can’t wait to return, we went twice in this one day for the overall Alabama Gulf experience! Beginning with meeting Susan Sizemore, head of PR and event planning to being greeted by our precious waitress, I was amazed at the size and hominess of the newest location in Gulf Shores at the curve on Canal Rd., just southeast under the Intercoastal Waterway. Each Tacky Jack’s has it’s own personality with the same goal; providing quality, value, family and community ideals. Each location sports a huge fish hanging from a scale to have your picture taken with, and, all donations go to the Make a Wish Foundation and are matched by the corporation! Our waitress served me a Famous Tacky Jacks Bushwacker topped with 151 and an Abita Root Beer that I used as a chaser. This combo was very satisfying, almost like a root beer float. At this point, we understood that our day was going to be fabulous!! For appetizers we had Blackened Gator Tails, now one of my new favorites! Tacky Jacks version of a Southern Favorite­­ Fried Green Tomato Fries, Firecracker Shrimp ­ fried and glazed in Asian chili sauce ­ move over bangbang, these are awesome! Smoked Tuna Dip ­ seared ahi­tuna that is the Perfect Coastal Treat, and Mexican Garbage ­ the ultimate loaded beef and cheese nachos served in a mountain a top a tin resembling a garbage lid! I was very happy with all apps as each had it’s spin on coast favorites with a special Tacky Jacks touch!! Since Cheli makes sure she breakfasts at Tacky Jacks on every overnight trip, she asked if they would please make the Farmer’s Omelets for me to try. Voted One of the “Top 100 things not to miss while in Alabama,” the Farmers Omelets was a deluge of diced smoked ham, sausage, and slab bacon with onions, peppers, mushrooms, and home fries folded into a fluffy omelette smothered in cheese served with homemade biscuits just like Grandma used to make!! Oh my, if you are anywhere near a Tacky Jacks at breakfast time, you Must do it!! We then sampled the Shrimp and Grits ­ one of the latest southern crazes, served perfectly ­ spicy seasoned shrimp over cheesy grits. At this point I had the award winning Bloody Mary, doing everything all backwards anyway, right??!! Even though we are sampling, when we were served the Mahi Fish Tacos, we were like “stop it already!!” About to explode from the large portion sizes of each dish, we shared one of these delicious tacos! We had ours with fried Mahi Mahi in a warm & soft flour tortilla topped with shredded lettuce, and blended cheeses served with a special spicy sauce, with hot and crispy tortilla chips! Susan was now trying to convince us that we had to try so many more menu items, but, alas, we could not do it at this point! So we promised her that after we finished refilling all our newspaper racks across the coast, we would make our way to the Original Tacky Jacks in Orange Beach and try to sample other menu favorites!! Another breathtaking view before us, the hunger just was not!! (Imagine that!!) Yet, we still, just for you the readers, ordered a couple more items!! Ugh!! I’m so full I can barely breath as it is!! We had the Seafood Salad ­ choosing our shrimp and crawfish blackened, over romaine lettuce with tomato and cheese. Cheli says, “I really like this blackening seasoning!” And, if she wasn’t such a chicken, would have loved it on the Gator Bites as well!! Tacky Jacks Build a Burger offers a 1/2 lb chuck, hand pattied burger served just about anyway you could want. We had the Bleu Burger topped with bleu cheese crumbles. And yippers it was delish!! Our server laughed at us when we ate 2 bites of each dish and had them boxed up as well!! I wondered out loud to Cheli, “where do they find all these beautiful waitresses?!” As we rolled our butts out the door, some tourists were asking for recommendations. Well, the funny thing is, we are here reviewing their food...so we made sure to tell them all about our favorites which were many!! LOL, it seems the tourist at my employment seem to find me for that very same question! Let me tell you...!!! Tootles Alabama I can’t wait till we meet again!! Kelly

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    Orange Beach, AL­­The dates of the 81st Alabama Deep Sea Fishing Rodeo have been set for July 18­20, 2014, with the weigh station operating from 10:00am ­ 7:00pm on Friday and Saturday, and from 10:00am ­ 5:00pm on Sunday. Fishing will begin with a ceremonial cannon blast on Friday, July 18th at 5:00am and will conclude with an additional ceremonial cannon blast on Sunday, July 20th at 5:00pm. Recognized in 2011 as the World’s Largest Fishing Tournament by Guinness World Records, the Alabama Deep Sea Fishing Rodeo typically attracts over 3,000 anglers competing in 30 categories for nearly $500,000 in cash and prizes. Over the last 10 years, the Alabama Deep Sea Fishing Rodeo has donated more than $200,000 towards marine research and scholarships to the University Of South Alabama Department Of Marine Science. Alabama Deep Sea Fishing Rodeo & Roy Martin Young Anglers Tournament tickets will go on sale on June 20th and will be sold at the following locations: Academy Sports and Outdoors, Quint’s Hardware & Sporting Goods, Coastal Bank and Trust, Greer’s Food Store (DIP), Dauphin Island Marina, Pronto Pawn, Lap’s Bar & Grill, Sportsman’s Marine, Blue Water Ships Store, J&M Tackle, and Southern Bama. The 56th Annual Roy Martin Young Anglers Tournament, sponsored by Exxon­Mobil, will be held Saturday, July 12th. The weigh station will be open from 9:00 a.m. until 5:00 p.m. with the tournament beginning at 5:00 a.m. This event is open to all anglers 15 years old and younger. Every angler that enters a fish will receive a Zeigler hot dog, a bag of Golden Flake potato chips, an ice cold Coca Cola, and a Blue Bell ice cream. The proceeds from the Roy Martin Young Angler’s Tournament will go towards the annual Children’s Christmas Shopping Tour sponsored by the Mobile Jaycees. The awards ceremony for the Roy Martin Young Anglers Tournament will be held immediately following the tournament at the ADSFR site. The Alabama Deep Sea Fishing Rodeo is proud to host Doug Houston’s Kids Wishing to go Fishing Project at the Roy Martin Young Anglers Tournament. The festivities for the Alabama Deep Sea Fishing Rodeo will kick­off at the Rodeo site with the Bayou Rum Liar’s Contest on Thursday, July 17th at 6:30PM. Rodeo ticket holders can participate in the competition by telling their best, or worst, fish tale. A “distinguished” panel of invited judges will determine the winners. Live music by Rollin’ in the Hay will follow the Liar’s Contest. Anyone interested in participating as a “Liars Contestant” should contact the Jaycee office at 251­471­0025. This event is free and open to the public. Every angler that weighs in a legal fish in the 81st Alabama Deep Sea Fishing Rodeo will be entered into a drawing for a 21’ Contender Boat outfitted with a Yamaha motor with trailer. In addition to the ADSFR Open Competition, anglers may also enter any of our Jackpots: The Pronto Pawn King Mackerel Jackpot pays cash for 1st through 10th place with a 1st place prize of $10,000 based on 125 entries. SYN­FAB will provide a flat screen television to the daily winners of the King Mackerel Jackpot. There will also be a random drawing for a Honda Recon 4­wheeler among all anglers who enter an eligible fish in the King Mackerel Jackpot. The top 23’ & under boat will receive a Raymarine Dragonfly GPS/ Sonar with Down Vision. An optional cash prize division will be available for all king mackerel jackpot participants. The Raymarine Big Game Jackpot pays cash for the largest Tuna, Dolphin, Wahoo, and Swordfish. In addition, there will be two random drawings among all anglers that enter an eligible fish in the Big Game jackpot for a Team Simco Boatlift and a Raymarine Dragonfly GPS/ Sonar with Down Vision. An optional cash prize division is available for all big game jackpot participants, with no additional entry fee required. The Carolina Skiff / Sunrise Marine Speckled Trout Jackpot will pay cash for 1st through 10th place. There will be a random drawing from all anglers weighing a legal speckled trout for a Carolina Skiff 18’ JVX with a Yamaha 70 hp motor with trailer. The top angler in the Speckled Trout Jackpot Non­Motorized Division will win a Bote Board provided by Bote Paddle Boards. There will also be multiple random drawings from all anglers who weigh a fish in the Non­Motorized Division. An optional cash prize division will be available for all speckled trout jackpot participants. There is a MANDATORY Captain’s Meeting and Sign­Out for all boats entered in the Raymarine Big Game Jackpot, Pronto Pawn King Mackerel Jackpot, and the optional cash prize divisions. The meetings will be at the ADSFR site on Dauphin Island and J&M Tackle in Orange Beach on Thursday July 17th from 6:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m. If you owned waterfront property along the Gulf Coast between April 20, and December 31, 2010, you may be eligible for thousands of dollars in compensation through BP settlement fund (as long as you have not already signed a release with BP), simply for owning your waterfront property during that time, and regardless of whether you had vacation rentals or not. If you sold waterfront property along the Gulf Coast between April 20, and December 31, 2010, you may be eligible for tens of thousands of dollars in compensation through BP settlement fund (as long as you have not already signed a release with BP). If you entered into a sales agreement to sell your waterfront property after April 20, 2010, and closed prior to December 31, 2010, you are automatically entitled to compensation regardless of whether you can prove loss of value to your waterfront property or not. Our process for this type of claim is simple, and we do everything for you. Our 15% fee is due only if we collect from BP. Otherwise there is no obligation. Call us or email us now with your waterfront physical address and we will check your waterfront property’s eligibility on our interactive map for potential loss compensation. Areas covered in Alabama include all Gulf front beaches, Dauphin Island, Ft. Morgan, Little Lagoon, Cotton Bayou, Terry Cove, Wolf Bay, Palmetto Creek, Soldiers Creek, Ole River, Bayou St. John, and other areas.

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    A Orange Beach Sailing Adventure 4575 S Wilson Boulevard Orange Beach, AL 36561 251.981.SAIL (7245) www.sailob.com Gulf sailing adventures specializing in family day trips and romantic sunset getaways. Come experience true offshore sailing just 10 minutes from our dock! Located at Hudson Marina. ABC Parasail 26651 Perdido Beach Blvd. East Orange Beach, AL 36561 251.981.8877 www.abcparasail.com Float high above beautiful coastal Alabama waters. Visit our website for complete details. Action Charter Service 888­558­3889 www.FishEmeraldSpirit.com www.ActionCatCharters.com As local family owned boats, our personalized customer service and southern hospitality excel. Capt. George and his lifetime passion for fishing (and catching) is unsurpassed. We are consistently rated 5­star in every category by our customers. We provide year round fishing trips from 4 to 48 hours to meet your wants, needs and budget. Visit our Facebook page for specials or call toll free any time to book your Reel Fun! Alabama Kayak Adventures 251.379.5143 www.Alabamakayakadventures.com Kayak the Gulf Coast with Alabama Kayak Adventures Inc. Paddle inshore waters and discover native wildlife, or hook the big one on an inshore or gulf fishing trip. "get the paddling you deserve". Alabama PaddleSports 251.279.0703 www.alabamapaddlesports.com Alabama PaddleSports is a delivery only, kayak and stand up paddleboard rental company that offers the Gulf Coast area the best in paddlesports delivery. Bad Habit Charters 23650 Cotton Bayou Drive Orange Beach, AL 36561 251.981.6899 48' Newton, air conditioned, three bedroom, two bath enclosed salon on board cooking facility. BeachnRiver Kayak Rentals 18743 Keller Road ­ Foley, AL 36535 251.971.8359 beachnriverkayakrentals.com Offering single and double sit­on­top kayaks for self­guided still water floats from a shaded, onsite shallow launch at river's end of the cool, clear, spring­fed waters of the Bon Secour River located just 10 min from Gulf Shores beaches. Blue Reef Watersports­Parasail 27075 Marina Road Orange Beach, AL 36561 251.504.7411 www.bluereefwatersports.com Group discounts. Your premier watersports activity center. Offering Parasailing, Jet Ski rentals, 2­hour guided jet ski tours and Dolphin tours. Call for reservations. Serving Gulf Shores, Orange Beach and Perdido Key. Chute em up Parasail 27212 Marina Rd Orange Beach, AL 36561 251.981.7673 Have a birds­eye view of the beautiful gulf coast aboard the largest most comfortable parasail boat. Longest flight time. Bring your cooler! Down Under Dive Shop 1129 Gulf Shores Parkway Gulf Shores, AL 36542 251.968.3483 www.downunderdiveshop.com Specializing in exciting scuba charters, guided snorkel trips, PADI and NAUI instruction, exotic group trips, equipment repair, and an excellent selection of quality scuba equipment. Gary's Gulf Divers 27844 Canal Rd. Orange Beach, AL 36561 251.747.6563 www.gulfdiver.net We are a full­service scuba diving center. We offer rental gear and charter boats for scuba trips, scuba training, spearfishing trips, snorkeling and much more. Located at Sportsman Marina. Gulf of Mexico Trips 1577 Hwy 180 Gulf Shores, AL 36542 251.540.2628 www.gulfofmexicotrips.com We offer a fleet of rental boats and watercraft including pontoon boats, jet skis, kayaks, surfboards and bicycles. In­shore and deep sea fishing charters and scuba diving charters are both available. Gulf Shores Beach Rentals 3873 Gulf Shores Pkwy Gulf Shores, AL 36542 251.609.4577 Toll Free: 888.896.9854 www.gulfshoresalbeachrentals.com For all your vacation needs! We Deliver: Beach Chairs/Umbrellas, Kayaks, Bicycles, Grills, Baby Equipment and much more! Call today to set up a reservation! Happy Harbor Water Sports at Sun Harbor 27212 Marina Road Orange Beach, AL 36561 251.981.6111 www.happyharbors.com Pontoons with slides, waverunners, craigcats, run­a­bouts, kayaks, bikes and more! Ships Store, Fuel Dock and boat storage.. Hudson Marina 4575 S Wilson Boulevard Orange Beach, AL 36561 251.981.4127 Toll Free: 877.783.3474 www.hudsonmarina.net At Hudson Marina you can experience it all. Fishing, dolphin cruises, dinner cruises, jet ski and pontoon boat rentals. You will have fun here year round! Ike's Beach Service, Inc. 800 West Beach Blvd Gulf Shores, AL 36542 251.948.3757 www.ikesbeachservice.com Beach chairs, umbrellas, full size cribs and beach wheelchairs, kayaks, high chairs, roll away beds. Lucy L Charters 26350 Cotton Bayou Drive Orange Beach, AL 36561 251.454.6693 www.lucylcharters.com It's all about you! Fish, fun, family and friends. We take up to six people. The boat offers the luxuries of home. We offer fishing trips, sunset cruises or design your own trips.. Orange Beach Parasail 26619 Perdido Beach Blvd Orange Beach, AL 36561 251.981.8359 www.obparasail.com Up to 2 passangers can ride at the same time! Experience the thrill of a sky high ride over the beautiful Gulf Coast beaches of Gulf Shores, Orange Beach Our boat ­ Six Chute'R is docked @ Zeke's Marina Perdido Beach Services 25328 Canal Road Orange Beach, AL 36561 251.981.4807 www.perdidobeachservices.com Lounge chair and umbrella rentals. Delivery of beach equipment to private homes and condos. Water sports rentals: Kayaks, Sailing, Boogie Boards, and Sunscreen product sales. Perdido Key Parasail 401 East Beach Blvd. Gulf Shores, AL 36542 251.948.7433 www.perdidokeyparasail.net From 800 feet in the air, enjoy spectacular views of our emerald waters and stunning beaches. We offer Jet Ski and Banana Boat rides. No trip to the beach is complete without a stop at Perdido Key Parasail. Sea Rocket 27212 Marina Rd Orange Beach, AL 36561 251.923.9862 Cruise the scenic gulf coast and intracoastal waterways. Dolphin tours. We'll pick you up. Shoreline Pontoon Boat Rentals 251.989.2205 Toll Free: 877.637.9527 www.pontoonboatrentals.com Boats are delivered to the customer at a boat launch within a 20 mile radius of Foley. Very nice, clean and maintained boats. Must be 21 years or older to rent or operate. Sky High and Pleasure Island Parasail at SanRoc Cay 27267 Perdido Beach Blvd Orange Beach, AL 36561 251.946.9000 www.pleasureislandparasail.com Independently owned and operated, Pleasure Island Parasail is your one stop beach destination for Jet Ski rentals, beach chair rentals and world class parasailing adventures.Two Locations: Pink Pony Pub and San Roc Cay Marina. Wahoo Water Sports 29603 Perdido Blvd Orange Beach, AL 36561 251.979.0150 www.wahoowatersports.com Waverunners, pontoon boats, and dolphin cruises. Open 9 a.m.­ 6 p.m. Seven days a week. Located at Flora­Bama 6 w July 2014 w Alabama Coast Observer

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    Adventure Island 24559 Perdido Beach Boulevard Orange Beach, AL 36561 251.974.1500 www.adventure­island.com Rides and thrills for entire family! Mini­golf, bumper boats, gokarts, paddle boats, and lazer tag arena. Kiddie rides and 100+ arcade games. See the 5­story volcano erupt nightly! Alabama Gulf Coast Zoo 1204 Gulf Shores Parkway Gulf Shores, AL 36542 251.968.5731 www.alabamagulfcoastzoo.org Explore the natural habitats of more than 400 animals. Elevated viewing decks offer close­up viewing of everything from alligators to wallabies, plus Reptile House, Aviary, Petting Zoo, Gift Shop, Concessions, shaded picnic area. LIONS, TIGERS AND BEACH. OH MY! Alligator Alley 19950 County Road 71 Summerdale, AL 36580 251.946.BITE (2483) www.gatoralleyfarm.com See over 150 alligators in their natural environment with an opportunity to feed them! Meet Captain Crunch, the world record holder for bite strength­he's over 13 feet long! Enjoy bird watching and a Giant Snake Safari. Seasonal feeding times: 11:00 a.m.­ 1:00 p.m.­4:00 p.m. Arena the Next Level 4720 Main Street Ste 205 Orange Beach, AL 36561 251.224.5297 www.arenaorangebeach.com The newest and prettiest family attraction on the Gulf Coast. Our Lazer Tag and Bazooka Ball are safe and fun for all ages. Bird of Paradise Biplane Rides 3190 Airport Drive Gulf Shores, AL 36542 251.609.2043 Toll Free: 866.687.8359 www.866mustfly.com The Bird of Paradise takes flying to a new level…providing adventurous passengers open cockpit flights and romance of yesterday. Ferris Wheel at The Wharf 4985 Wharf Parkway Orange Beach, AL 36561 251.224.1000 Toll Free: 877.942.7325 www.thewharfal.com The Southeast’s tallest Ferris Wheel at The Wharf. Open Monday through Saturday from 10am­10pm and Sunday from 1pm­8pm. Tickets are $4.00 each. Gulf Bowl 2881 South Juniper Foley, AL 36535 251.943.4575 www.gulfbowl.com Join a league, have a party, or just bowl for fun. Restaurant, snack bar, party rooms, mezzanine viewing area, pool table room, family arcade/redemption and much more. Jimmy's Casino Shuttles 8275 Hwy 59 South Foley, AL 36535 251.943.2744 Toll Free: 866.943.2744 www.casinoshuttles.com Biloxi Casino trips are available from Orange Beach, Gulf Shores, Foley, and Loxley, Alabama. Visit the IP Casino and The Beau Rivage Casino. At either casino, you get $15.00 in FREE PLAY. Exciting daily trips to the fabulous Biloxi casinos. The best deal in town. Call for reservations. Lakewood Stables 15523 Lillie Lane Summerdale, AL 36580 251.945.6711 Trail rides, Group parties, Riding lessons. Landmark Tours 26 Hoffren Drive Fairhope, AL 36533 251.928.0207 www.landmarktours.com Day tours aboard luxury buses. Trips planned for your group of 20 or more. We'll visit historical mansions, Civil War relics, forts and museums, nature centers, hikes, zoos, boat sightings of dolphins and alligators. Mobile Bay Ferry 51 State Highway 180 West Gulf Shores, AL 36542 251.861.3000 www.mobilebayferry.com Vehicle/passenger ferry operating between Dauphin Island and Fort Morgan. Daily departures every 1 1/2 hours. Check our website for rates and schedule. Oak Hollow Farm 14210 Greeno Road Fairhope, AL 36532 251.928.4840 Toll Free: 877.OAKHOLLOW www.oakhollowfarm.net Open six days a week by appointment. One hour guided horseback rides on a 300 acre scenic farm. Nature trails, group hayrides, horseshoes, playground. Pirates Island Adventure Golf 3201 Gulf Shores Parkway Gulf Shores, AL 36542 251.968.4653 www.piratesislandgolf.com Two 18­hole courses among waterfalls, caves, tropical plants, a pirate ship and sea fog. Sea Horse Stables 14537 State Highway 59 Foley, AL 36535 251.971.RIDE (7433) Trail rides, Pony rides, Birthday parties, and Riding lessons. Shrimpy's Mini Golf & Arcade 204 East 2nd Avenue Gulf Shores, AL 36542 251.948.6464 18 hole mini­golf with arcade inside. Candy, chips, ice cream and sodas available. Fun for the whole family! Taking Off Hot Air Balloon Company 708 West Laurel Avenue Foley, AL 36535 251.970.3598 www.gulfviewballooning.com Gently lift off into an adventure where you'll experience the scenic vistas of the Alabama Gulf Coast from a whole new vantage point! Great for weddings or honeymoon! The Track Recreation Center 3200 Gulf Shores Parkway Gulf Shores, AL 36542 251.968.8111 www.gulfshorestrack.com Go­karts, bumper boats, Kids Kountry, arcade, mini­golf, skycoaster, and refreshment center. Wales West Light Railway & Family Fun Park 13670 Smiley Street ­ Silverhill, AL 36576 888.569.5337 www.waleswest.com Real train ride, 1 mile through rural setting. Train station, gift shop, tea room. Month­long event trains at Halloween, Christmas, & Easter. Day Out With Thomas in May. Parties. Waterville USA 906 Gulf Shores Parkway Gulf Shores, AL 36542 251.948.2106 www.watervilleusa.com The ultimate in family fun, is a 20 acre Water Park and Amusement Park located in the beach resort community. Amusement park opens March 5th. Waterpark opens May 14 on weekends only and every day after May 28th. 8 w July 2014 w Alabama Coast Observer

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    Gulf Shores, AL­­Definitely a Gulf Shores tradition, DeSoto’s Seafood Kitchen, located behind Souvenir City, has been pumping out great local seafood choices for years. Winner of “Best Lunch” for 6 years, “Best Dinner” for 5 years, and “Best Seafood” for 5 years, DeSoto’s keeps a full house with the friendliest staff serving swarms of locals and tourists their favorite dishes. Alabama Coast Observer has a rack at DeSoto’s, which is always needing refilling from the throngs of customers checking­out the entertainment magazine. We’ve noticed the patrons don’t mind waiting in line to dine, and, even during the slow season the parking lot is always packed. A full parking lot is a great sign, so, we at ACO decided to see what all the fuss is about. After being seated by the up­beat hostess, the owner, Rosemary Steele, came over to meet us and was as sweet and down to earth as they come. She proudly gave a few suggestions of the diner’s best sellers, as well as her personal favorites. Pointing us in the right direction, we promptly placed an order of several entrees, for­going appetizers because we found platters on the menu that covered so many of the options together. Except for the Crab, Spinach & Artichoke Dip, served with tortilla chips. Now, I thought I had made this dip­up, a Kelly specialty, and low and behold here it is on their menu! A house specialty, I can tell you first hand this rich and cheesy concoction is wonderful and goes over well with a large group. Having had some of the leftover dip for a late dinner last night, I can savor the flavors now, and wouldn’t mind indulging in a little more as I write. A cold Bud Light and some dip would suit me just fine right now, uh­huh! It is a beautiful holiday weekend, and Cheli and I are hard at it getting this news to you. But, we are also the ones who get to enjoy the fabulous food first hand, lol! We began with Rosemary’s favorite, Shrimp and Pasta Marsala ­ fresh gulf shrimp sautéed with mushrooms and marsala wine which definitely make a delightfully different brown gravy served with a bed of fettuccine alfredo. The two sauces together were a delicious combination and really enhanced the shrimp as well as the mushrooms. Served with a house salad and toasted French bread, the meal was unlike anything we had had before, and, we both really enjoyed it. Our waitress had urged us toward the Stuffed Shrimp ­ bacon wrapped, stuffed with crab meat dressing and Monterey jack cheese then baked. This covered the crab cake as well, and, has been a favorite of mine since childhood. The savory stuffed shrimp came with 2 sides and we opted for fried green tomatoes and steamed veggies. You can never go wrong with fried green tomatoes or fresh veggies in the south! Another house specialty, the Paneed Catch ­ fresh Grouper dipped in buttermilk & cracker crumbs, pan seared in a compound garlic butter and topped with Bearnaise sauce was mouthwatering fresh fish that I was completely in love with. I do love a paneed fish over a deep fried fish any day, and, I do love fresh Grouper. Served with 2 sides as well, we had 2 servings of a creamy sweet potato casserole, pecans, and brown sugar included, yummm. We also did the Caribbean Platter ­ Coconut Shrimp, Jerk Chicken & Grilled Grouper with mango­pineapple sauce. Cheli and I love our spicy Caribbean jerk, and I had the Grouper blackened to boot. The Coconut Shrimp complimented this platter perfectly as did the seasoned yellow rice, and some more fried green tomatoes! The menu options are endless at DeSoto’s including, of course, seafood of any kind served everyway, pastas, steaks, chicken, gumbo and bisques’. Local favorites such as Royal Red Shrimp, and Bon Secour Oysters, are offered along with many fresh catches and snow crab or creole dishes and Caribbean succulents. They also offer a Seniors Only menu, a Kids menu, and an array of sinful desserts. After having an amazing meal, we finished it off with an enticing warm bread pudding swimming in a delicious sweet sauce. Overwhelmed at how speedily we were taken care of and how tasty all of our food was, I can now see why people don’t mind the short wait for a truly enjoyable meal! DeSoto’s Seafood Kitchen holds a reputation as the best in family dining and I understand fully why they are so successful. Christopher and Rosemary Steele have a warm and friendly staff, consistently fine cuisine including coastal and Cajun flare, and prices that can’t be beat, that will pack­out a venue any and every day! See y’all soon now, you hear?! Until Next Month... Kelly DeSoto’s Seafood Kitchen ­ Gulf Shores 138 W 1st Ave Gulf Shores, AL 36542 Phone:(251) 948­7294 www.desotosseafoodkitchen.com Open Daily at 11:00am

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    Page 10

    Tacky Jacks Gulf Shores presents a Summer Series of Art and Nature Events, Beach Games, and a Waterfront Oyster Bake Hands on Habitat, Art al Fresco, Coast 360 Beach Games, and Oyster Bake Fridays make up a series of weekly lunch time activities offered at the waterfront venue. Gulf Shores, AL – If you are looking for some afternoon fun this summer then look no further than Tacky Jacks in Gulf Shores. The Summer of Fun series is off to a popular start with free fun for the whole family. The series will feature different events to include regional artists, local organizations, and musicians each Tuesday through Friday. A monthly schedule of events is online at www.tackyjacks.com. Tuesdays Every Tuesday at 11am Free for all ages! Hands on Habitat is a fun and educational hands on nature series presented by Ocean Camp, Gulf State Park Nature Center, Alabama Gulf Coast Zoo, and Down Under Dive Shop. Kids & adults alike can learn about our ecosystem and interact with the animals that live here with us. The event is free for all ages from 11am­12pm (arrive 15 minutes early), no RSVP required. 10 w June 2014 w Alabama Coast Observer O w s a c w f Wednesdays a Every Wednesday at 11am with a new artist weekly. Fee includes lunch & art project. RSVP Req. Live Demonstration days are free to the public and lunch is optional. Art al Fresco “A hands on lunch & learn for starving artists of all ages.” Create different works of art & crafts every Wednesday this summer. Painting with Austin Boyd, Clay with Abby Leach, Jewelry with Eliza Husky, master the art

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