Emerald City


My family and I were lucky enough to renew some friendships and create some new ones last week. We went to the Panhandle where I spoke to the Northwest Florida Gator Club and the Emerald Coast Gator Club. It was a great way to spend the last few days before the craziness envelops us all.

In Pensacola, we stayed with our friends Dave and Angie Sapp. Had a great time and the club was enthusiastic. Went to dinner at McGuire’s after which an amazing place with great food. I put up another dollar on the ceiling (they have to audit every year and there is something like 850,000 dollar bills on walls and beams around the restaurant) and on this one I wrote “Maddux” after my late dog.

From there it was off to Destin and a place that made me decide that when I win the lottery I’m moving there instead of my original plan to move to St. Augustine ( I would, of course, keep a home in Gainesville; like it’s going to happen). We stayed at this two-year old resort called the Emerald Grande which was unbelievable. They took us to a private beach by pontoon boat where we frolicked in crystal clear water and sunned ourselves on white sand. I mean, it was about rhe nicest place I have ever been.

Not only are their tons of things to do along the Harbor Walk that runs along the back of the hotel, it’s like they created Bourbon Street without the strip clubs, t-shirt shops and people throwing up on your feet.

Chad Wallace, Thomas Manning and Todd Royall are our new friends and they showed us an amazing time. I’m already looking forward to next year.


  1. Hey Pat, did you play any golf while in Destin? I lived there for 5 years and after moving here to G’ville I sure miss the great courses. I was a member at the Raven which is in SanDestin Resort, just wondering if you played there?

    Thanks, Jason

  2. If it were not for all of the hurricanes that come that way, I would have to agree with you about living there. I have stayed at the Hilton in San Destin, met Joe Theisman there, and it is absolutely gorgeous there. I live in St. Augustine and love every minute of it so I guess I would have to keep a home here also. If you are ever here in St. Augustine, look me and my wife up. We would love to host you and yours in a night out on the town. Go Gators!

  3. I’m forever telling people the panhandle is way more than the title “Redneck Riviera”, especially Destin.

    Don’t get me wrong, born in P’cola, wife’s from Pan. City, I can’t tell you how many times I’ve passed the dude with his foot out the window on the way down to the beach. On the way back, the same guy looks like a tomatoe, he’s so red from putting oil, rather than sunscreen on.

    As the country song says “I aint gotta a condo in Panama City”.

    You gotta love it.