Spring Break is Here – Total List of Schools on Break

Every year the weather warms, the skies clear and the college kids go on break, flocking to the beach.  And after a few months of studies, who can blame them?  You know I’ve had a tattered relationship with spring break, and consistent with many in the community, I cringe at the thought of what some of them do while they are here.  However, being in the Panama City Beach vacation rental business (shameless SEO plug), I know first hand that spring breakers are just about the only business to be had during the month of March.

Technically, Spring Break started the last week in February.  But this week is the first real week of the season with the majority of the traveler influx starting next week.

Total list of schools on spring break this week (2-9).

Ball State University (In)
Boston College (Ma)
Bowling Green State University (Oh)
Central Michigan University
College Of Charleston (Sc)
College Of William & Mary (Va)
Columbus State University (Ga)
Duke University (Nc) Mar 3-17
Eastern Michigan University
Emerson College (Ma)
Florida Atlantic University
Geaorgetown University (Dc)
Grand Valley State University (Ma)
James Madison University (Va)
Loyola University Of Chicago
Michigan State University
Northeastern University (Ma)
Northern Michigan University
Pennsylvania State University
Santa Fe Community College (Fl)
Southern Illonois University – Edwardsville
Universite Laval (Qb, Ca)
University Of Central Florida
University Of Florida
University Of Michigan
University Of Mobile (Al)
University Of North Carolina – Charlotte
University Of Pennsylvania
University Of South Dakota
Valencia Community College (Fl)
Valparaiso University(In)
Vanderbilt University (Tn)
Villanova University (Pa)
Virginia Western Community College
West Virginia University
Western Michigan University

Total list of schools on spring break NEXT week (9-16).

Auburn University(Al)
Belhaven University (Ms)
Bentley University (Ma)
Boston University (Ma)
Bridgewater State University (Ma)
Colgate University
Duke University (Nc) Mar 3-17
East Tennessee State University
Eastern Illonois University
Eastern Kentucky University
Emory Uiversity (Ga)
Ferris State University (Ma)
Florida State University
Geaorge Wahington University (Dc)
Harding University (Ar)
Howard University (Dc)
Illonois State University
Indiana State University
Iona College (Ny)
Liberty University (Va)
Miami University – Oxford (Oh)
Middle Tennesee State University
Misouri State University
Mississippi State University
North Carolina State University
North Dakota State University
Northern Illonois University
Ohio State University
Old Dominion University (Va)
Purdue University (In)
Sam Houston State University (Tx)
Southern Illonois University – Carbondale
St. Cloud State University (Mn)
St. Louis University (Mo)
Syracuse University (Ny)
Temple University (Pa)
Tennessee State University
Texas A&M University
Texas State University
Texas Tech University
Troy State University(Al)
University Of Bridgeport (Ct)
University Of Idaho
University Of Kentucky
University Of Louisville (Ky)
University Of Memphis
University Of Miami (Fl)
University Of Mississippi
University Of North Carolina – Chapel Hill
University Of North Dakota
University Of Notre Dame (In)
University Of Pittsburg (Pa)
University Of Rochester (Ny)
University Of South Alabama
University Of South Carolina
University Of South Florida
University Of Southern Indiana
University Of Southern Mississippi
University Of Texas – Austin
University Of Utah
University Of Virginia
Utah State University
Virginia Tech University
Webster University (Mo)
Western Illonois University
Western Kentucky University
Winthrop University (Sc)

Sterling Resorts Receives Award for Innovative Marketing

Last summer, in response to the BP Oil Spill and the lull in tourism, Sterling Resorts began a “Happy Hour” promotional campaign.  This campaign countered the increasing number of cancellations and led them to win the Flagler Award, which recognizes outstanding tourism marketing on behalf of the Florida Commission on Tourism.

About the Award

A competition for the Flagler award is held in conjunction with the Annual Florida Governor’s Conference on Tourism  This award is based on the pillars of creativity, innovation, vision, and commitment. The standout entry in the Flagler Awards is also awarded The Henry Award, which Sterling Resorts received.  They were awarded top scores by five judges in the Direct Marketing segment.  Sterling Resorts was competing against top competitors in areas like The Keys/Key West and St. Pete/Clearwater.  The awards are open to all individuals, private businesses and not-for-profit organizations offering a product or service that promotes tourism to or within the state of Florida.

The Happy Hour Sale

The campaign involved a weekly email sent on Friday afternoons to offer exclusive savings to regional subscribers with time-sensitive offers.  These offers were available at select Sterling properties located in Panama City Beach, 30-A, and Destin.  They also used weekly Gulf updates and offered a ‘100% Clean Beach’ guarantee.  The promotion was aimed at reassuring travelers and combating cancellations, similarly; it produced more then 2,600 inquiries and 300 reservations.  This campaign generated $212,000 in revenue and provided for many vacation relationships to be built.  The Happy Hour Sale was brought back this summer by popular demand.

About Sterling Resorts

Sterling Resorts is one of the leading vacation rental companies in the Southeast, a division of Encore Enterprises.  They have over 20 condominium resorts in Panama City Beach, Destin, and 30-A.  In Panama City Beach, they manage Laketown Wharf, Calypso Resort and Towers, Celadon Beach Resort, Emerald Beach Resort, Emerald Isle, Grand Panama, Ocean Villa, Majestic Beach Towers, Ocean Ritz Resort, Splash, Southwind, Reflections at Bay Point, Sterling Beach, Sterling Breeze, Sterling Reef, Sunrise Beach, Tropic Winds, Tidewater Beach Resort, and Twin Palms Resort.

Congratulations to Sterling Resorts and all of those involved in the Happy Hour Sale!

This Week:Pirates, Ghosts, Witches, Gymnasts, and Disney Characters!

The week of October 5th to October 12th is filled with Pirates, ghosts and witches, gymnasts, and Disney Princesses in Panama City.

Pirates of the High Seas Festival

October 7th and 8th, 2011

Pirates are invading Panama City Beach Friday and Saturday at the High Seas Festival.  The festival will include pirate and wench costume contests, pet costume competitions, Mardi Gras style parades, beach ball drops, a 5K and half marathon, treasure hunts, face painting, pirate ship battles, children’s pirate parade, movie screenings, balloon making, and firework shows.

Please see the full article for detailed information and a complete event schedule.

Camp Helen State Park Ghost Walk and History Tour

October 8th, 2011

Saturday, for only $5.00 for adults and $3.00 for children, you can join Camp Helen State Park for storytelling and historic re-enactments.  The event will take place from 5 – 8:30pm and is family-friendly.  Dress up in your favorite costume and bring a flashlight.  Please park at Winn Dixie and ride the free shuttle if you are able, parking at the park is limited to handicapped.

7th Annual Fall Into Edgewater

October 8th– 10th, 2011

Expecting a record number of athletes this year, is the Gymnastics Invitational competition at the Edgewater Beach Resort.  USAG levels 2-10 will be competing based on Region 8 Rules and Florida Rules, as well as AAU levels 2-8.  There will be a pool party from 6pm-8pm on Saturday to kick the competition off, followed by a weekend with two gyms full of talented gymnasts.

Three Classic Fairy Tales

October 9th, 2011

You can see Mickey, Minnie, Goofy, and Donald Duck bringing alive Snow White, Cinderella, and Beauty and the Beast.  Disney Live! is an experience for the whole family – adventure, humor, and romance.  Tickets start at $17 and we’re offering a special discount to PCBDaily readers.  When you buy using this phone number (850-763-4696) and mention the name “BELLE” you’ll save $5.00 from total ticket price.  Not valid on Front Row/VIP.  Additional service/handling fees may apply.  The show is at 2:30 and 5:30pm at the Marianna Civic Center.

Have an amazing weekend, there are definitely a plethora of events to choose from!

 

High Seas Pirate Festival Invades PCB

October 7th and 8th Pirates of the High Seas Fest invade Panama City Beach for a weekend of family fun and entertainment.  The weekends schedule is below.  All events will be held at Pier Park, unless otherwise mentioned.  Several events will involve the Krewe of Dominique Youx, the proud sponsors of Mardi Gras at the Beach in Panama City.

Friday October 7th, 2011

6:00 pm– Adult Pirate and Wench Costume Contest

6:00 pm– Pet Costume Contest

7:00 pm– Second Line Parade led by Krewe of Dominique Youx (Mardi Gras style parade celebrating piracy this weekend)

8:00 pm– Tervis Family Beach Ball Drop (More than 7,000 beach balls will fall onto Pier Park Drive)

Saturday October 8th, 2011

8:00 am– Run for the Treasure (pirate-themed fun run savenger hunt, 5K, and Half Marathon at Aaron Bessant Park)

12:00 pm– Children’s Costume Contest, Treasure Hunt on Bookit.com Beach, and Face Painting

2:00 pm– Lookout for Pirates on the Gulf of Mexico (The Midnight Princess and Sea Dragon battle on the waters)

3:00 pm– Pirates Raid Panama City Beach Pier to Capture the Keys to the City (pirates will invade the City Pier and have a children’s pirate parade, wear a costume and join in!)

5:00 pm– Main Pirate Parade (Krewe of Dominique Youx pirates join the costume contest winners and street performers)

6:15 pm– Pirate Movie Screening and Balloon Making

9:00 pm– Dueling Fireworks Show (Fireworks Battle between the two piers as a pirate ship arrives off shore)

Have an amazing weekend of piracy in Panama City Beach!  Don’t forget your pirate and wench costumes!

 

This Weekend in PCB – Thunder Beach, Oktoberfest, and Murder Mystery

This coming fall weekend promises to be another full one in Panama City Beach.  The Autumn Thunder Beach Motorcycle Rally is coming to the beaches from Wednesday till Sunday, Downtown Panama City is celebrating Oktoberfest Friday and Saturday, and there will be a Murder Mystery Cruise.

Thunder Beach Motorcycle Rally

September 27th – October 2nd

Wednesday will start the Annual Thunder Beach Autumn Motorcycle Rally, with Kick-off parties at The Sandpiper Beacon Resort, The Shores of Panama, and Pineapple Willies.  (Officially, the rally doesn’t begin till the 28th.)  This year’s event will include Miss Thunder Beach and Mrs. Thunder Beach pageants, poker runs, memorial parades, and a custom bike show.  Please see Thunder Beach website for a detailed listing of this weeks festivities.

Oktoberfest

September 30th-October 1st

Friday and Saturday in the Downtown area of Panama City, the Annual Oktoberfest will transform the area into a quaint village in Germany.  Visitors to the event should expect to see carnival rides, accordions, sausage eating contests,  and more.  As one would expect, there will be plenty of musical stylings, including polka music.  Keeping children busy with rides, clowns, and face-painting the festival will also be occupying adults with a wide selection of beers.  There will be Omm-Pah-Pah concerts and ceremonial keg tapping!

Murder Mystery Cruise

September 30th

This coming Friday evening The Betsy Ann Riverboat Cruise will be hosting a Murder Mystery Cruise.  Taking off at 6:30pm from the Sun Harbor Marina at the base of the Hathway Bridge, The Betsy Ann Riverboat will return at 8:30pm.  The price is $38.95 per person and $26.95 for children 5-12 years old.  The cruise promises to send you back in time to learn the history of steam paddle wheel boats and when the original Hathaway Bridge was built.

Have fun this weekend exploring Panama City Beach and please “look twice- save a life” of a motorcyclist!

 

A Successful Country Fest Weekend

This past weekend, the “Fun Never Sets” concert series held the two-night Country Fest featuring Miranda Lambert and Jason Aldean.  Opening acts were The Randy Rodgers Band, Justin Moore, The Dirt Drifters, and Corey Smith.

Saturday night was estimated to host over 12,000 people, and judging by the screams when asked where everyone was from, most of the attendees were from out of state.  The cheers for Alabama were the loudest, with Georgia a close second.  Gates opened at 6:30pm each night, but had a line through the parking lot by 6:00pm.

At the concert, there were several food choices for concert goers to choose from, including seafood, funnel cakes, gator bites, BBQ, and hot dogs.  There were also T-shirts, vanity items, and cowboy hats available for sale.

Friday’s Show

Friday night, the concerts were focused on appeasing the “Rednecks” in the crowd.  The Randy Rodgers Band warmed up the night, with Justin Moore setting the Redneck tone and getting everyone excited for Miranda Lambert.  Miranda Lambert began her set with Beyonce’s “Run the World (Girls)” music video, leading into her most female-empowering songs, “Kerosene” and “Gunpowder and Lead”.  She continued to thank her fans for her award at this years Country Music Awards as Female Vocalist of the Year, which she thinks of as a wedding present from her fans – due to hearing the news while on her honeymoon with Blake Shelton.  Miranda ended the concert with a few of her songs of her upcoming album set to launch on November 1st.

Saturday’s Show

The concerts on Saturday night, were still geared toward the “Redneck” audience, but also had a focus on remembering the “good ole days.”  The Dirt Drifters opened the night with a focus on getting their name out there and having a good night.  Corey Smith followed with songs  reminiscing on spring breaks in Panama City, growing up a Redneck, and life as a Georgia native.  The main artist of the evening, Jason Aldean, began his set with a silhouette of himself and played some of his most recent hits, “Big Green Tractor” and “Dirt Road Anthem.”  He focused on making sure the audience was having fun and sharing personal anecdotes.  He ended the evening covering a Kid Rock song “Cowboy,” and with a re-vamped version of his first single “Hicktown.”

Overall Impressions

All in all, Frank Brown Park was a perfect location for the crowd and the stage, hidden away from the road, yet still easily accessible.  Parking and traffic were as organized as a crowd of this size could be.  The security and volunteers were polite to concert-goers and helped them with any questions as quickly as possible when they did not have the specific answer.  The crowd, decked out in cowboy boots, cowboy hats, plaid, and camouflage all seemed to be having a great time and were engaged in the artists. Hopefully, Panama City Beach will see similar events in the future!

*More information will be available about how much revenue the concerts brought to Panama City Beach, and we will get that out as soon as possible.*

Did you go to the concerts? What did you think of them?

Concert Preview- Country Fest

Country music artists Miranda Lambert and Jason Aldean will be coming to Panama City Beach’s Frank Brown Park across from Pier Park this coming weekend.  Miranda Lambert was first introduced to the public through Nashville Star, while Jason Aldean was introduced through his self-titled album.  These concerts are a part of “The Fun Never Sets Fall Concert Series on Panama City Beach” concert series.

Friday night

Friday night’s line up will include Justin Moore and The Randy Rogers Band opening up for Miranda Lambert.  The gates will open at 6:30 pm (or earlier, crossing fingers) and the show is set to begin at 7:30.  They are actually erecting the stage, lighting and sound right now.

Friday night schedule

  • 7:30 PM The Randy Rogers Band
  • 8:10 PM Justin Moore
  • 9:15 PM Miranda Lambert

The Randy Rogers Band is known for:

  • “Tonight’s Not the Night”
  • “Kiss Me in the Dark”
  • “Too Late for Goodbye”
  • “Steal You Away.”
  • Visit the Randy Rogers Band’s website.

Justin Moore is best known for:

  • “Back that thing up”
  • “Backwoods”
  • “Redneck Side”
  • “Small Town USA.”
  • Visit Justin Moore’s website.

Some of Miranda Lambert’s best known songs are:

  • “Kerosene”
  • “The House that Built Me”
  • “White Liar”
  • “Dead Flowers”
  • “Only Prettier”
  • Visit Miranda Lambert’s website.

In addition to these, Lambert has had many more hits and popular songs.

Saturday night

Gates will open at 6:30PM, for The Dirt Drifter’s, Corey Smith, and headline Jason Aldean, with the concert scheduled to start at 7:25pm.

Saturday night schedule :

7:25PM The Dirt Drifters

8:00PM Corey Smith

9:15PM Jason Aldean

Corey Smith is best known for:

  • “If I Could Do it Again”
  • “Twenty-One”
  • “Maybe Next Year”
  • Visit Corey Smith’s website.

The Dirt Drifter’s are known for:

  • “Something Better”
  • “Always a Reason”
  • Visit The Dirt Drifter’s website.

A Few of Jason Aldean’s Singles are:

  • “She’s Country”
  • “Big Green Tractor”
  • “My Kinda Party”
  • “Dirt Road Anthem”
  • “Hicktown”
  • Visit Jason Aldean’s website.

If you’re a fan of music, especially country music, there is no doubt that you’ll enjoy the Country Music Fest this weekend.  If you haven’t gotten your ticket yet, visit Ticketmaster or book with local lodging partners!  See you out there!  And don’t forget your lawn chair or blanket!