Twitter Weekly Updates for 2009-06-30

  • rt @thebeachshow Sneak Peek tomorrow’s show: Steal in Wild Heron $152/ft, house ON THE BEACH (50ft) for $850k, Gulffront condo $210/ft #
  • A break from the cloudy weather? #
  • Rt @seepcb You can’t believe how amazingly comfortable and beautiful our it is tonight. @pierpark #
  • I’m at Veterans Memorial Park – #
  • Rt @seepcb at a mid summer nights dream in @pierpark panama city beach #
  • rt @pierpark dude. Neville’s rockin it out. #
  • how’s the sunset going to be tonight? I’ll tell you in a few. Neville is rocking. #
  • Rt @pierpark Shooting timelapse at the concerts in the park at pier park. Cyrille Neville tonight. #
  • 14 things to know about the future development of the existing airport site. Tommorrow. #
  • the goal is to keep the development as walkable as possible. It’s a little more than 1 square mile. #
  • there will be plenty of access with 8 roads feeding into the development. #
  • the new development may have up to 3200 units. 60% detached single fam 40% multi family. #
  • should o have to pay for parking web coming to an open house at the airport? #
  • Going up to the existing airport site for an open house. Supposed to find out what the future holds for it. Stay tuned. #
  • Washington County rep said, “we can’t go out and have a drink because there are no restaurants that serve alcohol. That’s just insane. #
  • Washington County has no major restaurants or lodging. Entreprenuers take note. #
  • Jimmy and Johnny Patronis to be elected into FRLA Hall of Fame. Cool. #
  • Beyond taxi cabs, we might need a plan to get people off the planes and into PCB rather than Walton Cnty. #
  • Conversations have veered to airport talk. The consensus is that PCB is not ready. #
  • Did you know in order for a cab to pick you up at a airport he must be certified to do so? #
  • Cab drivers really need hospitality training. Nothing is worse than getting off a plane and the first person you meet is a smelly cab driver #
  • Paul Walford (sp) talking airport transportation. We need better ground transportation. #
  • Hotel and Condo staff need training as well. #
  • Lots of training services provided for restaurants but nothing for hospitality service training. #
  • Didn’t realize how slight bed tax increases truly effect the restaurant and lodging communities. #
  • Meeting called to order by Matt Griffits. #
  • At the newly opened Palms Conference Center for the FRLA meeting. Should be interesting. #
  • another teeser. For 125 a foot. Newer home. #

Free Yoga on the Beach

Saturday July 4th, Paul Zipes will be holding a free yoga class on the beach at 5:30 am.  Yogi’s will be found that morning, literally on the beach at Rick Seltzer Park, across from Mr. Surf’s Surf Shop.  The class is free, but donations will be accepted.  All donations will go to providing yoga mats to a U.S. military base in Iraq where soldiers requested them.

I’m just now getting back into yoga, and if you are a yogi, or an aspiring one, come out for a sampling of this area’s only stand-alone yoga studio.

15 Things to Know About the Development of the Old Airport Site

Leucadia National Corporation/CAR/SABLC: Leucadia National Corporation is the parent company of Community Airport Redevelopment, which was changed to the St. Andrew Bay Land Company.  Leucadia has home offices in Salt Lake City, UT and New York City.  Labeled as a “mini Berkshire Hathaway” as noted in their Wiki page, Leudadia was a $6.6 billion company in 2006 generating revenue in a variety of ways including mining & drilling services, telecommunications, health-care services, manufacturing, banking and lending, real estate, and winery businesses.  Other notable developments by Leucadia include Rosemary Beach and Draper Lake.

The community will be walkable: With 703 acres, the property consists of a little more than a square mile.  From the center, it would take approximately 10 minutes to walk to the edge of the property, and from one end to another a walk would take around 10 minutes; unless you’re a speed walker, in which it would take about 8.3 minutes.  Although little design conceptuals have been made, it is anticipated that it will be an open community that is very ped-friendly.

3,200 total residential units: The development has the capacity to hold 3,200 residential units with an expected spread of approximately 60% single family and 40% multi-family (including condos and townhomes).  Development time-tables will be completely subject to market demand and the expected build-out time is in upwards of 15 years.

Wide open community areas: Some of the discussions the other day included creating an area that Panama City could collect for events and holidays and enjoy company and the water.  Right now, Panama City has no area like Pier Park to hold these community events.  I believe Panama City could greatly benefit from this.  If they were to bring in the right marketing team and layout the initial public development right, they could create a community before there’s actually a community there.  Talk about buzz.

Multiple points of access: Feeding into the community are 8 points of access varying the ways with which to handle the out-flow and in-flow of the increased traffic.  Access roads include Frankford, Airport Road, Lisenby, Airport Circle, Baldwin, W 39th Street, and Jackson Way.

700,000 square foot of commercial/retail: Some mixed among the residential, others in concentrated areas, there will be approximately 700,000 square feet of commercial and retail area.  Right now, there are plans to have a “Town Center” in the middle of the community that will house the tallest of the structures, in addition to a higher concentration of retail.  There will be a small lake with a boardwalk around it and the buildings will have retail on the first floors, office space on the second floors with residential above that.

Height limitations set at 120 feet: I was told that even though maximum height is set for 120 feet as defined by the zoning (light industrial), the maximum planned height at this time is 80 feet.  In addition, the maximum height buildings will be in the center of the development, reserving the water-frontage for 2 and 3 stories.

Nothing available to purchase until 2012: The St. Andrew Bay Land Company will take possession of the land the day after the airport operations are moved to the new airport site.  Upon possession, it is estimated that infrastructure installation will take approximately 1 year with real estate product available to purchase last 2011 or early 2012.  The SABLC may build some, but it is expected that they will sell plats to developers to handle build out once infrastructure is in place.

Tons of green space: All the green areas depicted in the images will be open park-like areas that may have open grassy areas, trees, nature trails and the like.  The idea, again, is to create a pedestrian-friendly community that encourages the natural beauty of the Bay County area.

No water-front buildings: There will be plenty of water views to be had from residential units, but nothing will be right on the water, cutting off access from the general public.  The design is intended to keep the pristine areas pristine, and enjoyable by everyone.  There will be large open areas in between the buildings and the water.

All open to the public: The whole community will be open to the public.  Amenities such as shopping, dining and the marina will be open for everyone to enjoy and the community will not be gated.

150 boat marina: Quenching the thirst for much needed wet slip space, this new community will house a 150 slip marina capable of accommodating vessels up to 60 feet.  The marina depth will be 6 feet.  There is only one small spot on the whole plot of waterfrontage that will accept a marina without having a negative environmental impact; located at the top, close to where the runway terminates into the bay right now.

Marina to be developed first: Right now, talks include developing the marina first, in addition to around 10 shops and restaurants with some residential above around the marina.  The idea is to give something to the community that is usable right now (or in a couple years) until the demand for real estate product comes back.  The conversations I had were very interesting in that for once, I was talking to a developer that wasn’t acting like a developer, but a rational, reasonable person.  With my background in preconstruction sales and marketing I have quite a bit of experience working with developers and new developments, and it always seems like they are drinking their own cool-aid; not so with these guys.  They were very much verbal about the current conditions of the market and were very open with the fact that at this time its hard to tell where the market will be in two years.  This, by the way, is exactly opposite the outlook of most of the developers I’d worked with in the past.  typically with a new development such as this, you’d expect to hear aggressive development time-lines.  I was pleasantly surprised and very impressed with their level-headed outlook.

The developmental options are plenty: They’ve kept the initial planned layout open so as to offer a wide variety of developmental options.  With plats around 500 by 260 feet, it will be easy to determine where single family versus multi family will go in the future, based on market demand.  The plats are large enough to accommodate an alley system, should they decide to go that route.

Sasaki Associates brought in to help with initial planning: Sasaki and Associates are known for their master planning of the 2008 Beijing Olympics, Ruston Town Center in Virginia, The Woodlands in Houston TX, Charleston South Carolina Waterfront Park, and Harbor Town in Hilton Head, just to name a few.

Panama City Beach in the New York Times

In a very interesting article posted in the New York Times, Panama City Beach was mentioned as one of the popular vacation destinations working hard to survive in the current economy. In several recent TDC and CVB meetings, Dan Rowe, chairman of the TDC, has praised Panama City Beach as a destination that has economically clutched the black ink while other destinations have slipped deeper into the red. This sentiment was again expressed by Mr. Rowe in the New York Times.

He was quoted as saying,

“The subtler sell is a hallmark of several campaigns intended to stimulate summer travel. For instance, the Convention and Visitors Bureau in Panama City Beach, Fla., is starting an online campaign with the YouTube unit of Google. Users who upload video clips to YouTube may see ads inviting them to enter a video creation competition sponsored by Panama City Beach (, with $50,000 in cash and prizes.

“There’s a lot of destinations that have had a tougher go of it than we have,” said Dan Rowe, president and chief executive of the Panama City Beach bureau, “but it’s tough here.”

“Demand has not come up to meet an increase in supply” of hotel and motel rooms, he added, “so rates are suffering; there’s deals to be had.” The campaign for the video contest is from Jennifer Barbee Inc. in Austin, Tex.; it is part of a summer marketing initiative by Ypartnership in Orlando, Fla.”

What I found most interesting NYT article, which focused on the difficult time vacation destinations are having economically, was the places on which it chose to focus. In the article you hear the big name destinations like Miami, Mexico, The Cayman Islands and even quotes from Travelocity representatives. My question is why did Panama City Beach make this article? If Stuart Elliot, the author of the article, were looking for smaller a destination to get a better range, why not Gatlinburg or Destin or even Daytona?  Why Panama City Beach?

My only answer has to be exactly what Dan Rowe is talking about. Compared to many places around the world, Panama City Beach is one of very few who continues to do well despite the economy. It should also be considered that in the very near future, New York may well become one of Panama City Beach’s new feeder markets. I know for a fact that New York ranks in the top five on both PCBDaily as well as SeePCB for visitorship. This NYT article, in some ways, was an introduction to New York, a “Hey, look at us now, and envision 2010,” sort of thing. A city that is prosperous in hard times is a city that, when the times get good, should break new grounds. It’s too early to tell, but at least we know that the first impression on a potential game-changing relationship was one of which Panama City Beach business owners can be proud.

To read the complete NYT article click here.

Get Out and Run For The Redfish

On December 5, 2009 runners from across the Southeast will participate in the inaugural Run for the Redfish, a combined half marathon, 5k run and kids fun run will be held at Pier Park. A portion of the proceeds for event will benefit the Coast Conservation Association (CCA).

The run will begin at the Front Beach Road entrance to Pier Park and continue down Front Beach Road, looping back to end at Margaritaville. Margaritville will host the post race celebration and awards ceremony. Shotgun start to the race will be at 8am for the half marathon and 8:30am for the 5k. All runners of the half marathon and 5k will receive a Run for the Redfish long sleeve T-shirt as part of their participation.

Race committee member Joe Edgecombe said, “As an avid runner in Bay County, I’m excited to help bring a running event of this caliber to our area. The Run for the Redfish has all the bells and whistles; a certified course, professional timing, a professional race day photographer to capture the moment, and a venue that is above all the rest.  Panama City Beach, the Tourism Development Council, The Resort Collection, Pier Park, Margaritaville and a team of dedicated individuals have made this a destination event! The best location and the most “bang for the bucks’ road race in the entire region!”

The Run for the Redfish is not only a new and exciting event for Panama City Beach, but will bring awareness to the Coastal Conservation Association who works to protect our unique waterways and coastlines which are the habitat of the Redfish.

Race sponsors include Redfish Riviera Outfitters, Pier Park, The Resort Collection of Panama City Beach,, the Bay County Tourist Development Council, Beach TV, and Maragritaville. Sponsorship opportunities are still available.

For more information on the run or registration visit Runners can register for the race online or at local retailers; there will be no registration the day of the event. Registration forms and payment can be mailed to PO Box 9927 Panama City Beach, Fl 32417.

Pier Park's Star Spangled Fourth of July Spectacular Schedule

Last year Pier Park’s 4th of July celebration set the standard for Panama City Beach events. This year’s show plans to set that bar a little higher. Coupled with the opening of the new Panama City Beach pier, this event should be one to remember. Here is the show schedule.

12 – 9 P.M. on SATURDAY, JULY 4, 2009

Family fun includes free concerts, fun and fireworks!

WHAT: Pier Park invites you to its Star Spangled Spectacular on Saturday, July 4! Mayor Oberst will kick off the festivities, followed by an exciting F-15 flyover.

The day of family fun includes friendly competitions for patriotic pet costume, golf cart decorating and sidewalk chalk art contests, with awards presented to each winner.

The Family Activity Tent sponsored by GAC will be open from 12 – 7 p.m. near the carousel. There will be lots of family fun to be had by all. There will also be a Crafts and Coloring Tent sponsored by Regions Bank.

Several bands will be spread throughout the property during the day, with country music star Mark Chesnutt headlining at Aaron Bessant Park at 7:30 p.m.

Families are invited to enjoy a dazzling fireworks display at dark after the Mark Chesnutt concert.

COST: Free and open to the public

WHEN: Saturday, July 4 from 12 – 9 p.m.

WHERE: Pier Park
600 Pier Park Drive
Panama City Beach, FL 32413

Episode #12 – Nice New Homes for Less Than $160k

This week’s episode of The Beach Show features new homes in Whisper Dunes for less than $105 per square foot, a great move-in ready detached single family home on the east end of Panama City Beach, and a Gulf-view condo in Regency Towers, 3 bedroom for only $199k.

The Beach Show is your ONLY internet TV show all about Real Estate on Panama City Beach.

Remember, it doesn’t cost anything to work with us if you are a buyer.

Call us at 850-527-5651 to see these properties or for anything else you need regarding real estate in Panama City Beach.

Continue reading “Episode #12 – Nice New Homes for Less Than $160k”

The Secret of What Your House is NOT Worth – Revealed

Most of us Realtors face this at one time or another so I think we need to bring it out in the light. How in the world do we price the home correctly without sending the seller running screaming down the street right into the arms of another Realtor? I already told you last week that a fellow got really mad at me when I told him what I thought his house would sell for. One minute I was the bearer of information that he wanted and the next I was an enemy to be reckoned with and I suspect I am not the only Realtor who has had this experience lately.

Continue reading “The Secret of What Your House is NOT Worth – Revealed”

Median Home Prices Down 16.8%

Mortgage rates have eased slightly after their steep run up over the past three weeks. Thirty year mortgage rates now stand at 5.625% after peaking at 5.75%. Rates could have been pressured above 6% had it not been for the stalled rally on Wall Street that has seen stock prices fall modestly over the past couple of weeks. Investors are beginning to question whether the economy will pull out of the recession as soon as once thought.

Continue reading “Median Home Prices Down 16.8%”

Book Launch: Power of the Penny by Elaina Redmond

We’re a little late with this one, but you still have to get out and meet writer/filmmaker Elaina Redmond.

Author Elaina Redmond is visiting Bay County, FL for a week-long Book Launch of The Power of the Penny, a new children’s book, beginning June 22nd. Redmond will share her unique inspiration about the little penny’s big purpose.  The Power of the Penny offers an introduction to Abraham Lincoln and educates children ages 6-11 on American values such as faith, kindness and honesty. Modernizing Lincoln, the book teaches the foundations America was built upon, and how a penny is a symbol for these character-defining virtues.

During a variety of weeklong events, Redmond will read from her book, share games and activities, and be accompanied by her children’s face painter.  She will listen to the children’s favorite penny stories and why they like Lincoln. Kids will have the option to be on video for YouTube and part of a new documentary on The Power of the Penny Across America. Part of every event will include a book signing and the sale of books and T-shirts.

Redmond’s goal is to go national promoting a message through The Power of the Penny: “In small ways, we can do BIG things.” Wish Boxes are being placed in local establishments throughout Bay County; visitors and customers can put a penny in the box and make a wish. The establishment will donate their Wish Box to a church, charity, or even a person of their choice. Redmond’s idea is to get as many communities within Bay County to use a Wish Box as a tool for helping one another with kindness and inspiration to make for a better tomorrow.

Events during the week of June 22-27 include (all are open to the public except where indicated):

Monday, June 22 Read to Me Event at Junior Museum of Bay County, 10:00 AM

Tuesday, June 23 Youth Program at Panama City Downtown Public Library, 10:00 AM

Book Reading at Chautauqua Charter School, 12:30 PM

Wednesday, June 24 Kid’s Day at Pier Park, 10:00 AM – Following the movie, a book-reading,

signing and sales in the grassy area by theatre

Border’s Book Signing Event (Pier Park), 2:00 PM in Children’s Section

Sundog Book Signing Event (Seaside), 4:30 PM

Thursday, June 25 Junior Museum of Bay County Summer Camp Reading, 11:00 AM

Family Book Reading on Navy Base (NOT OPEN TO PUBLIC), 1:30-3:30 PM

FSU Summer Creative Writing Workshop, 5:00-7:30 PM

(Holley Academic Center) (NOT OPEN TO PUBLIC)

Friday, June 26 Youth Program at Panama City Beach Public Library, 10:00 AM

Saturday, June 27  Meet the Expert Event at Junior Museum of Bay County, 2:00 PM

For more information contact Elaina Redmond at (310) 927-7958