Panama City Least Drop in Median Sales Price in Florida

Comparing April 2007 and April 2008, Panama City had the least median sales price drop in the state of Florida.  In April 2007, the median sales price was $192,200, in April 2008, the median sales price was $188,200, a 2% drop.

ORLANDO, Fla., May 23 /PRNewswire/ — Florida Realtors(R) statewide reported an upswing in existing home and condominium sales from March to April 2008, according to the latest housing statistics released by the
Florida Association of Realtors(R) (FAR). A total of 11,200 existing single-family homes changed hands in April, a 20 percent increase over the previous month when 9,330 homes sold. Existing condo sales statewide rose 21.6 percent, with 3,900 units sold in April compared with 3,207 condos in March.

The median price for existing condos increased slightly as well during the one-month period. The median price of an existing condo in April was $179,200, up 1.6 percent from March’s figure of $176,300.

In the latest National Association of Realtors(R) (NAR) housing outlook, Chief Economist Lawrence Yun predicts that home sales and prices throughout most of the nation will improve in the second half of the year, especially if access to mortgages backed by the Federal Housing Administration, Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac increases. “There are many reasons for people to get into the housing market today, and very few
reasons not to,” Yun says. “With the plentiful supply of homes for sale at affordable prices, interest rates approaching 40-year lows, and the strong track record of housing as a good long-term investment, conditions are ripe for buyers.”

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Bootleg Barbeque Serves Local Flavor

Sorry EmeraldCoast.com and Jan Waddy. I know this is your story, and I’m totally copying it word for word on pcbdaily, but I wanted our readers to see this. I give full credit to the story and article to Jan Waddy and Florida Freedom Newspapers.

I love Bootleg Barbeque and was blown away at how good everything was and how well Josh and his staff treated us. The food was phenomenal.

The article:

PANAMA CITY BEACH – “I’ve been in the restaurant business since before I could drive,” said Josh Daugherty, owner of Bootleg Barbecue.

His first job was at “a little barbecue shack in Sandestin,” Pig’s Alley, which is still around.

“Fifteen years later, I was an executive chef at Santa Rosa Beach Club,” said Daugherty. After going the “fine dining route for many years,” he wanted to do “something a little more fun, barbecue.”

“It’s unpretentious,” said Daugherty, “but still has a lot of integrity to it.”

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Cajun Fest is this weekend at Grand Panama

Cajun Fest actually started yesterday and will last through Sunday at the Grand Panama Resort in Panama City Beach.

There should be tons of jambalaya, crawfish and gumbo with Cajun Creole music.

Originally Cajun Fest was held at Hamiltons, and according to their web site, “it just disappeared”. I, for one, love cajun food, and will definitely be taking my kids there this weekend.

check after the break for the entertainment schedule.

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Panama City Beach reviewed on GoGirlfriend.com

According to their site, “GG is a travel-based opinion site for women going places. GoGirlfriend is where intelligent women go for travel information that matters. We inform, connect and inspire women to live their travel dreams.”

The site has reviews that date back to 2007 and feature such categories as Adventure, Arts & Culture, Florida Beaches Guide, Luxury, etc.

Their latest Florida review featured Panama City Beach, quoted:

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Suggestions for Beach Attractions

Dana Holloway sent me a letter she is sending the Panama City Beach Convention and Visitors Bureau with suggestions for varying beach attractions that are centered around the family and goaled at being free or affordable in order to attract visitors that want to do more than sun at the beach.

It reads:

I am writing you in an effort to help find ways to improve PCB’s attractions without spending much money, and to help prevent any new taxes being imposed on residents here to pay for sports complexes, convention centers or the like. Please take the time to read and consider my suggestions.

Most people who choose to vacation in PCB are not wealthy. And, in reality it is going to be a long time before PCB is able to attract large groups of people with a lot of disposable income. That being said, it is important for us to first concentrate on providing lots of inexpensive or free entertainment while keeping in mind that our biggest sell is the beach. Playing up lots of fun, cheap beach activities will sell our beaches and make us stand out from other beach communities.

Right now the ‘attractions’ we advertise are still too pricey for the average family. Have you priced what it cost to take a family of four to a local attraction? We obviously cannot tell those businesses what to charge for admission, but we can provide our guests with cheaper entertainment alternatives. An attainable goal for us is to make PCB a fun and affordable place for the average family to come. Rental units on the beach cost quite a bit and we obviously can’t control that either, so let’s concentrate on what we can do to make Panama City Beach “the best affordable family vacation destination in the US” by providing cheap or free entertainment on our beaches for lots of family fun and memories. After we do that – we will see more and more people with lots of disposable income choosing our beach over all of their other choices.

Suggestions:

more after the break.

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Pier Park Summer Concert Series Schedule

Ah, summertime.  When I think of it, almost every time without fail, a certain Sublime song begins to play in my head – nevermind the underlying story.  All I remember is “Summertime and the livin’s easy.”  And easy living will surely have this fantastic summer we have coming up.

Tourism numbers are up, the weather’s been perfect lately and today we’re announcing the lineup of this summer’s Pier Park Summer Concert Series!

The series is every Thursday evening and begins at 7 pm.

Pier Park Summer Concert Series Band Lineup and Schedule

June 7  — Eric Lindell

June 14 — The Black Lillies

June 21 — Telluride

June 28 — The Kevin Jacobs Band

July 5 — Heritage

July 12 — George Porter Jr. and the Runnin’ Pardners

July 19 — The Lee Boys

July 26 — Boukou Groove

August 2 — Heat and the Zydeco Gents

August 9 — Colin Lake

August 16 — The Barry Fish Band


Panama City Beach City Pier – Driving Pilings

The city pier is moving along as scheduled with the old structure completely removed and the new structure being constructed right now. Engineering firm Baskerville Donovan’s VP, Dave Hemphill said construction is on schedule and moving forward at the scheduled pace.

Construction is “top-down” construction, meaning there will be no barge with a crane in the water driving piles. The crane will “crawl” across the top of the piles that it puts in in order to put the next series of piles. I thought this was pretty cool, as it allows them to continue work even if they have rough seas. Delays will be less likely.

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Can we expect flights from Chicago to Panama City for $99?

A buddy sent me an email from AirTran advertising one-way flights for as low as $69 with the flights from Chicago to Pensacola priced at $99. When I was in Dallas, there were one way flights all the time to Austin for $49. Heck, my parents used to fly down for the day all the time when I was in high school.

This would open up our area in a way we can only dream about right now. There have not been any airlines announced for the new airport yet, but this is what we could see a few years after the airport opens up, demand starts to rise and the number of flights increases.

Check after the break for a complete list of prices.

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Do families spend more on spring break than spring breakers? – Survey Results

At the request of the Panama City Beach Tourist Development council, The Klages Group put together a visitor profile survey to compile information about who is coming to our beaches. The report is on Quarter 1 2008 and is compared to Quarter 4 2007.

I’ve emailed and asked how to the study sample was chosen and asked how the data was collected. Having taken a class on survey methodology in undergrad school, I have some experience with this and am interested to see their reply. I had heard that their study sample was just under 500, but I want to know how the sample was chosen.

The entire study is available for download after the break.

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