Pier Park New Year’s Eve Bash a Success [PICS]

For the third year in a row, Pier Park’s New Year’s Eve party was the largest on the beach.  With a family friendly atmosphere, tons of excellent live entertainment, 7,000 beach balls, loads of fireworks and a warm night, it’s no wonder this was the place to be.

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Pier Park Christmas Parade [Pictures]

With a brief break in the frigid weather, this year’s Christmas Parade was as great as ever.  With thousands of attendees lining the route that weaved through Pier Park and float riders passing out buckets of candy and beads, Saturday evening was a joyous time for all.

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On Sale in PCB – Pier Park

Keeping up with our series of holiday specials, here are a number of great deals going on right now in Pier Park.

If you’re not familiar with Pier Park in Panama City Beach, you can learn more about it here.  But, be sure you crawl out of the rock you’ve been under for the last two and half years before you click the link, otherwise you’ll not retain any of the great new things you learn!

Check after the break for all the deals.

Continue reading “On Sale in PCB – Pier Park”

An Update on the Newly Opened Miracle Strip at Pier Park

It started out in 2008 as just the original carousel from the bygone Miracle Strip Amusement Park being brought to Pier Park as a piece of nostalgia. Fast forward two years and with several more rides now being restored to their former glory and proudly sitting in their new home, the spirit and joy of Miracle Strip can once again be experienced in Panama City Beach. Continue reading “An Update on the Newly Opened Miracle Strip at Pier Park”

Enormous Turnout for New Year's Eve at Pier Park

Definitely smashing the turnout record number from last year, this year’s New Year’s Eve celebration at Pier Park far exceeded expectations for success.  Last year’s event was immense, but this year the added elements brought out crowds by the thousands.  All through the night, we were continually amazed by the shear numbers of people that were everywhere.

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Horses Will Be Hung Tonight on New Carousel in Pier Park

The crew is onsight and the gears are falling into place on the new carousel in Pier Park in Panama City Beach.  Workers have been bringing all the parts and peices over all day and the frame is up right now, as of 5:45 pm.

“We’ll hang the horses tonight, they have a terrible habit of coming alive and walking off in the middle of the night.” said the forman of the crew.  “This is a Herschell Carousel,” he said, “this is a ride out of Jersey, from a time when these things were actually rides.”  He was telling me that the new ones will last 10 years, if they are taken care of, but the old ones like these, they are still in use all across the country.  Apparently this is a great carousel – nice job, Teddy.

Set to open April 1, the carousel should be completely assembled by tomorrow or Sunday.  Then, all they have to do is clean it up.  If you are on the beach tonight, you should stop by and take a look.

Guy Harvey's in Pier Park to Open Soon

Guy Harvey’s Island Grill in Pier Park will be open first part of April, as long as everything goes according to schedule.  Interior construction is heavy under way on the 10,000 square foot restaurant and shop and is located at the south side of Pier Park, right next to Reggae J’s and across from Back Porch and Margaritaville.

This will be Guy Harvey’s fifth location with others located in Orange Beach, AL, Marco Island, Key West and Grand Cayman.

The Pier Park location will feature a restaurant that will seat around 200 people and a shop where tourists and locals alike can purchase merchandise from artwork to belts adorned with various sea wild-life.  There will be two levels, although at this time, I’m unsure what the second floor will hold.

The menu will include similar items as the other locations with a few “local” adaptations.  However, you will not see on the menu items such as swordfish, chilean sea bass, grouper, or any other billfish or shark species for that matter.  Guy Harvey deems these species threatened or depleted.

Visit www.GuyHarveyInc.com for more details on Guy Harvey, and check the picture below to see what the place looks like inside, right now.

Huge Hole in Sidewalk at Pier Park

With 24 peices of art and over 15 artists, the Emerald Coast Street Painting Festival (aka Madonnaro 2008) held at Pier Park in Panama city Beach this weekend was a huge success.  There were artists from as far as California, but most were local to our area.

Signature artist, Tracy Stum returned this year to share her interactive talent with the crowds that often surrounded her performance.  I say performance, because all weekend, the artists could be viewed creating their work.  I have to say, it was one of the coolest events I’ve been to all year.  The energy of being outside, with beautiful weather all weekend, with all the people was amazing.

This was her second year to come to Bay County for this event.  Last year she did a painting of the Dalai Lama that actually looked like she was sitting next to him.  This year, she did a Alice in Wonderland piece where it actually looked like there was a huge hole in the ground with colorful cartoon mushrooms planted in the bottom.  The caps looked as though they were level with the pavement, it was amazing.


Madonnaro 2008 – Street Painting Festival in Panama City Beach from Jason Koertge on Vimeo.

Jeanie Burns did a painting of a scene from Jack and the Beanstalk.  The detail was amazing, regardless of the rough and pitted surface.  The colors were vivid and the effect was amazing.

Ellen Killough, from the Visual Arts Center, painted a recreation of Lord Frederic Leighton’s Fisherman and the Siren.  The detail was amazing, the colors perfect, and the size was actually quite enormous.

Other paintings included an excavation site, beautiful parrots with an azalea, a portrait of Edgar Allen Poe, and the logo from the Panama City Beach Seafood Wine and Music Festival just to name a few.

My day at Pier Park – Madonnaro Street Painting Festival

I believe this is the first time I’ve spent almost all afternoon at Pier Park.  The weather was perfect, people were everywhere, kids were laughing, it was a great time.

Today and tomorrow is the Madonnaro Street Painting Festival, hosted by the Visual Arts Center of Panama City.  Local artists and a few from out of town gathered on Panama City Beach to create art that will inevitably wash away, only to be preserved in pictures and video.

The day started out cool and overcast, but around noon, I watched the clouds be pushed away by crystal clear blue sky.  The air warmed to nearly 80 degrees.  Artists shed layers as they crouched on their knees smoothing and blending fresh chalk with their hands.

Lunch time brought an original Viking Hot Dog.  Stuffed in a fresh baget with a hole in the middle the all natural dog had a crunchy skin, and perfect inside.  The flavor was exceptional, but the price for how it filled my belly was twice too much at $5. The cart was from Seaside, out here for the weekend.

As the day wore on, the artists knees and backs grew sore, but the paintings grew more vivid and elaborate.

Tracy Stums flew in from California to share her talent with The Beach.  Last year, she created an interactive piece of the Dali Lama that, when looked at from a specific angle, appeared to be sitting next to her.  This year, she is painting an Alice in Wonderland scene.  Other paintings include Jack and the Bean Stalk, Iron Man, and a dinosaur excavation site to name just a few.

The street painting festival brings out an interesting culture, something I was very glad to be a part of.  Who knows, maybe next year, I’ll paint something.

Last night rain washed away most of what was created yesterday, but tonight, all that threatens is cold, expected to get in the high 30’s tonight.  All afternoon, we could feel the temperature dropping, most likely a 25 degree change from this afternoon to 5 this evening.

Tomorrow, the artists will all return to finish off their paintings.  Provided we don’t get any rain, many will last for a couple weeks.

Madonnaro has begun!

This weekend’s street painting festival at Pier Park in Panama City Beach began yesterday with artists from around the county and around the country.  High school students started their paintings yesterday, despite the threat of rain, and the two signature artists are beginning their paintings as I write this.

As they cordoned off their square many of the artists spoke their concern of rain, as it threatened the entire festival this weekend.  Today is overcast with a chance of rain.  The temperature is a almost perfect, but a little chilly 65.

The artists will be out all day, painting in various spots around the main boardwalk area of Pier Park, and bring the kids, as there will be a special kids painting section.

The Modannaro Street Painting Festival is put on by the Visual Arts Center of Panama City.