Emerald Coast Events | May 2023

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Can you believe we're already approaching the month of May? Warm weather, beautiful spring blooms, and the glimpse into all the possibilities of summer make May an exciting month! There are a plethora of fun local festivals and events, so it's a great time to socialize, enjoy good food, drink, and entertainment all month long. Check out some of the events happening along the Emerald Coast and plan a visit. If you're lucky enough to be local – enjoy them all!

May the Fourth Party
WhenMay 4th | 4-10:30pm
WhereFarm & Fire
Description: Celebrate the "unofficial" Star Wars Day at Farm & Fire as the host their May the Fourth Party on Thursday, May 4th from 4 - 10:30PM. Enjoy Star Wars-themed cocktail and menu specials, a costume contest, a movie marathon, a DJ from 8:30–10:30PM, and more. Farm & Fire will have pizza by the slice and Happiness Hour pricing for everyone who shows up in costume!
Pairing & Sharing Wine Dinner Benefitting Caring & Sharing
When: May 4th | 6:00pm
WhereRosemary Town Hall
Description: Sip, savor and share a glass among friends while supporting a worthy cause. The inaugural wine dinner, Pairing and Sharing, to benefit Caring & Sharing of South Walton, will kick off with a cocktail hour with passed hors d'oeuvres at 6PM on May 4 at Rosemary Beach Town Hall. Guests will then enjoy a 3-course dinner by Swiftly Catering paired with five wines from Dry Farm Wines. 
Tickets are $250 per guest. Purchase Tickets HERE. 
All funds raised at the Annual Fashion Show will allow Caring and Sharing of South Walton to continue providing food, utility, prescription, and basic need assistance to residents of South Walton County. https://linktr.ee/caringandsharing.
Burning Up the Beaches Car Show
When: May 4-6th
WhereDestin Commons
Description: Burning Up The Beaches is a fun-filled weekend with gearheads from all over the United States taking place May 4 - 6, 2023. Participating attendees will enjoy three days of events and showing off their cars on the sugar-white beaches of Destin and Fort Walton Beach. 
For more information on Burning Up the Beaches and to register, visit burningupthebeaches.com. 
Drivers will cruise throughout Ft. Walton Beach with designated stops from 9AM – 3PM on Friday, May 5, followed by a Cinco de Mayo themed party with entertainment provided by Flash Flood. Join in the fun on Saturday, May 6 for Car Show Central at Destin Commons from 9AM – 3PM. There will be raffle baskets and 50/50 tickets throughout the event. This event is free for spectators. 
All funds raised during Burning Up The Beaches weekend will support The Arc of the Emerald Coast’s mission to provide a path from disability to capability.
Cinco de Mayo Party
When: May 5th |  All Day
Where: Aj's Grayton Beach
Description: Dig out your fiesta hat and join AJ's Grayton Beach for a Cinco de Mayo celebration on Friday, May 5th! Enjoy tacos, margaritas, and tequila specials! Live music starts at 4PM with Will & Linda followed by DJ Charles at 8PM and "Scratch 2020" at 9PM. 
AJ's is featuring food and drink specials all day to keep you feeling festive: 
• 4 different taco specials all day ; choice of chicken, pork, fish, or shrimp. 
• House margaritas - $5.00 
• House Tequila Shots - $4.00 
• Bucket of Corona or Dos Equis 5 for $20 
Learn more at: ajsgrayton.com
Cinco de Mayo Celebration
When: May 5th
Where: Red Fish Taco | All Day
Description: Celebrate Cinco de Mayo at Red Fish Taco's Day of The Dread celebration on May 5th. Enjoy cold drinks, great food and live music with Dread Clampitt in the Garden Room - where tacos are tasty and the margaritas come in different flavors and sizes. 
Red Fish Taco | Cinco de Mayo Day of the Dread 
Time: TBD 
LIVE MUSIC: Dread Clampitt
Kerr Cellars Wine Dinner Benefitting MKAF
When: May 10th | 6pm
Where: Vintij Food & Wine
Description: Join Mattie Kelly Arts Foundation at Vin'tij Food & Wine in Grand Boulevard on Wednesday, May 10 at 6:00PM for the next ArtFul Dining series of wine dinners benefiting MKAF. Vin’tij Executive Chef Iganacio Bernal will orchestrate a culinary palette to pair with the incredible Kerr Wines from Napa Valley personally poured by GM Adriana Chinsky. 
Purchase Tickets HERE. Tickets are $195 for non-members and $175 for members and includes all food and wine. 
For more information on MKAF events, community outreach program, volunteering or investing in the arts, visit online at MKAF.org or call (850) 650-2226 to get involved.

Under the Sea UMA Fundraiser

When: May 11th | 6-9pm
Where: Grand Park at Grand Boulevard
Description: Join the Cultural Arts Alliance on Wednesday, May 11th for an evening to benefit the Underwater Museum of Art (UMA). The annual Under The Sea UMA Fundraiser takes place at Grand Park in the heart of Grand Boulevard in South Walton, Florida from 6 - 9PM. Guests are invited to view several of the UMA sculptures, enjoy a full cash bar with specialty cocktails, meet and greet with the artists, and taste featured items from popular area restaurants and celebrated chefs. 
Enjoy live musical entertainment from opening act Stormfolk followed by headliners, The Cleverlys! The Cleverlys are a one-of-a-kind comedy/music blend. They tour nationally, performing at music venues, PAC’S, and some of the nation’s largest festivals like Stagecoach, Telluride, CMA Music Fest and even The Grand Ole Opry. 
The 5th annual "Under the Sea" fundraising event is the official kick-off event for Art Month South Walton and will celebrate the Underwater Museum of Art's fifth installation with a night of art, dancing, cocktails, food, and fun!
Brandi Carlisle's Mothership Weekend
When: May 12-14th | All Day
Where: Seascape Resort
Description: Brandi Carlile's Mothership Weekend will be held at Seascape Resort in Miramar Beach, Florida May 12 -14. Brandi Carlile invites you and yours to celebrate Mother's Day in a whole new way – with a 3-day music vacation in Miramar Beach, Fl. Enjoy curated activities, unforgettable adventures, and plenty of relaxing beach time during the day before you cozy up together in your reserved Cove each night for a musical journey under the stars. 
To purchase tickets and learn more, visit mothership.topeka.live. 
Artists Include: Brandi Carlile, Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats, Danielle Ponder, Hozier, Mavis Staples, The Milk Carton Kids, Katie Pruitt, Bonnie Raitt, and Fancy Hagood. 
Join the conversation on Facebook, Brandi Carlile's Mothership Weekend.
Tequila & Taco Fest
When: May 12-14th | Various Times
Where: The Village of Baytowne Wharf
Description: Hosted at The Village of Baytowne Wharf, the Tequila & Taco Fest is set for Friday, May 12th - Sunday, May 14th. Purchase Tickets, efestevents.com. 
Local restaurants and food trucks will be competing for the Best Taco on The Emerald Coast with a first-place prize of $2,500, and you, will have a say in the People's choice Award. Sample many types of Tequilas and Margaritas from Blancos, Resposados, Anjieos, and even Mezcals while indulging on some of the area's best tacos. 
To learn more about Tequila & Taco Fest, visit baytownewharf.com 
Event Schedule: 
Friday , May 12: Pre Party | 6pm-9pm 
Saturday, May 13: Main Event | 1pm-5pm 
Sunday, May 14: Bye Bye Brunch | 11am-2pm
Foam Fest
When: May 13th | 2pm
Where: 30Avenue
Description: Presented by 30Avenue and Idyll Hound Proper, the Inaugural 30A Foam Fest is Saturday, May 13th. Beginning at 2PM, enjoy four hours of unlimited tastes of craft brews poured by an array of regional and local breweries, along with a plethora of food options for purchase from 30Avenue merchants and restaurants, live music, a photo booth, shopping, and more! 
Proceeds from 30A Foam Fest will benefit Food for Thought Outreach, a local 501(c)3 organization that works to bridge the meal gap in the lives of food insecure children in Walton and Okaloosa counties and empower them to get the most out of their education.

35th Annual ArtsQuest Fine Arts Festival
When: May 13th | 10am-5/7pm
Where: Grand Boulevard
Description: The 35th annual ArtsQuest Fine Arts Festival takes place May 13-14 at Grand Boulevard in South Walton, Florida. Produced by the Cultural Arts Alliance of Walton County, ArtsQuest provides an opportunity to view and purchase original art from over 200 artists from around the country while also experiencing live musical entertainment, ImagiNation (where kids rule), student exhibits and great food & beverage options in the Town Center of Grand Boulevard at Sandestin. 
ArtsQuest Fine Arts Festival at Grand Boulevard Schedule
Saturday, May 13: 10AM - 7PM 
Sunday, May 14: 10AM - 5PM
Destin Rotary Club Cajun Crawfish Bash
When: May 19th | 5:30-9pm
Where: Mezcal Mexican Grill at Seascape Towne Centre
Description: Destin Rotary Club Cajun Crawfish Bash When: Friday, May 19, 2023 Time: 5:30 pm to 9:00 pm Where: Mezcal Mexican Grill The Rotary Club of Destin will host its annual Cajun Crawfish Bash on Friday, May 19th from 5:30 p.m. until 9 p.m. at Mezcal Mexican Grill inside The Towne Centre at Seascape. The Rotary Club of Destin is known for serving up the best Cajun crawfish, libations and live music. This event is suitable for families of all ages and open to the public. 
Back by popular demand is Fais Do-Do Band performing their unique genre of zydeco music. Integrating a blend of R&B, soul, brass band, reggae, hip hop, ska, rock and Afro-Caribbean, you are guaranteed to be dancing! 
Regular Crawfish Meal - $40 
All You Can Eat Crawfish - $50 
Kids and Non-Crawfish Meal - $15 
Fresh crawfish from Louisiana will be dished up with the traditional potatoes, sausage and corn on the cob. For those who don’t crave crawfish, there will also be grilled hamburgers, hot dogs and rotisserie chicken prepared fresh on-site. 
Event proceeds benefit young families in need through Food For Thought, Harvest House, Boys & Girls Club of the Emerald Coast, Mattie Kelly Arts Foundation’s community outreach initiatives and The Rotary Club of Destin Scholarship Fund.

16th Annual Digital Graffiti Festival
When: May 19-20th | Various Times
Where: Alys Beach
Description: Digital Graffiti at Alys Beach is an innovative and dynamic event that celebrates the intersection of projection art and architecture. During the event, international artists display their original digital art upon the white walls of Alys Beach, transforming the SoWal town into a vibrant canvas of motion, color, light, and fun! The draws digital artists from across the globe to explore how their fluid forms connect with people and architecture to create spontaneous and wondrous experiences. Tickets go on sale now: digitalgraffiti.com/
Digital Graffiti 2023 Schedule:
Friday, May 19 | 6 - 8PM 
Awards Party Hosted by VIE Magazine 
Digital Graffiti launches the 16th annual festival at Alys Beach with a celebratory pre-party announcing the festival award winning artists. 
Friday, May 19 | 8 - 11PM 
Digital Graffiti at Alys Beach opens with an adult-only (21+), all-inclusive food and beverage experience. Stroll the festival path, lined with art installations intermixed with festive food and beverage presentations from the best local and regional chefs, restaurants, winemakers, distilleries, and breweries. This evening will be a spectacle for the senses! 
Saturday, May 20 | 8 – 11PM 
For the finale of the 16h Annual Digital Graffiti event, we welcome families and guests of all ages to experience the projection art installed along the festival path. Engage and interact with the artwork in the immersive festival experience, with food trucks and beverage stands positioned throughout the path with fun eats and drinks for purchase.
67th Annual Billy Bowlegs Pirate Festival
When: May 19th-22nd | All Day
Where: Fort Walton Beach Landing
Description: Join us for the 67th Annual Billy Bowlegs Pirate Festival this May 19-22 in Ft. Walton Beach, FL! Have fun with floats, pirates, fireworks, live music & entertainment, food & drinks and more. Let's celebrate Captain Billy Bowlegs! The 67th Annual Billy Bowlegs Pirate Festival is coming to Fort Walton Beach, Florida, this May 19 - 22! This family-friendly event is sure to be a blast for all ages.
The festival will kick off with the Skirmish, where Captain Billy Bowlegs and his Honor Guard will come to the Fort Walton Beach Landing on Friday, May 19th. The Mayor and his Police Force are prepared and have promised to arrest Captain Billy if he tries to land. 
On Saturday, May 20th, after his defeat the night prior, Captain Billy will return with his entire Krewe, his friends, and the visiting Krewes from across the country. The Mayor will unleash a secret weapon, but it will be no match for the overwhelming presence of Captain Billy's forces. The Captain is sure to prevail and will take over the City. 
Finally, on Monday night, May 22nd, there will be a Victory Torchlight Parade on Eglin Parkway from First Street to Hughes Ave. The parade will be anchored by Captain Billy and his Krewe of pirates marching down the street to celebrate Captain Billy Bowlegs’ 67th Annual capture of Fort Walton Beach. 
Throughout the weekend, there will be live music and entertainment, fireworks displays, and plenty of food and drinks available for purchase. There will also be a Downtown Pub Crawl on Thursday evening, May 18th. 
Come join us in celebrating Captain Billy Bowlegs’ capture of Fort Walton Beach with the 67th Annual Billy Bowlegs Pirate Festival this May 19 - 22!
Locals Last Stand
When: May 21st | 3-7pm
Where: Watersound Origins
Description: The Watersound Origins community will host 30A’s annual Locals Last Stand party on Sunday, May 21 from 3 - 7PM. The event will take place at Watersound Town Center Pavilion and will feature live performances by local artists. The concert is FREE and open to the public! 
The Live music schedule is as follows: 
3 p.m. – 3:40 p.m. || Siren & The Mudpuppies 
4 p.m. – 5:15 p.m. || Dion Jones & The Neon Tears 
5:30 p.m. – 7 p.m. || Will Thompson Band 
Local food trucks and vendors will also be available. Bring lawn chairs and blankets to enjoy an afternoon and evening of fun at the Watersound Town Center. 
For more info, visit localslaststand.com.

Memorial Day Weekend Celebration
When: May 27th | 7-9pm
Where: The Village of Baytowne Wharf
Description: The Village of Baytowne Wharf is gearing up for Memorial Day Weekend festivities with two nights of family friendly events! Admission is free and open to the public. 
Saturday, May 27: Concert 7-9 PM 
Forrest Williams Band will take the stage from 7 PM until 9 PM. Guests are invited to dance the night away as they listen to South Walton's own Forrest Williams Band, an award-winning favorite on stage among locals and visitors to the area. Forrest and Pherrel Williams perform a variety of music from southern rock to country and blues. 
Sunday, May 28: Live music, kids activities, fireworks 6-9 PM 
Baytowne Wharf will host free children activities, including face painting, balloon animals, and lawn games from 6-9 PM. Live Music with Trest Richerson Band. After the show, Baytowne Wharf will light up the sky above the lagoon with a patriotic fireworks show at 9:00 PM.

Memorial Day Weekend Celebration
When: May 27-29th | Various Times
Where: HarborWalk Village
Description: Kick-off Summer on the Destin Harbor with live music on the Main Stage all weekend long at HarborWalk Village! It’s time for flip-flops, suntans, and Summer! 
Saturday, May 27th 
7:00pm | Flash Flood 
Sunday, May 28th 
6:45pm | Vintage Air Show 
7:00pm | Alex Smith 
9:00pm | FIREWORKS & Fire Spinning by Autumn Lyfe 
Monday, May 29th 
7:00pm | Silent Disco Party
Spring It On! Concert Series @ Rosemary Beach
Mondays | 6:00-8PM
The Red Bar Jazz Band @ The Red Bar
Nightly | 5:30-9PM
Concert Series @ 30Avenue
Nightly | 6:00-9PM
Reels in the Amphitheatre @ Alys Beach
Every Thursday | 7:30PM
Awkward Oxen Improv @ Alys Beach Amphitheatre 
Every Friday | 10AM
Live Music @ Fish Out of Water | WaterColor
Every Friday | 6-9PM
Every Sunday | 11AM-1PM
Rock the Docks Concert Series @ Harborwalk Village
Every Saturday | 7PM
Farmer's Markets
Every Thursday @ The Big Chill on 30A
Every Saturday @ Seaside, Grand Boulevard, Watersound & Baytowne Wharf
Every Sunday @ Rosemary Beach, Baytowne Wharf & Hammock Bay
Last Sunday of the Month @ Destin Commons


Planning to be in town? 
Let's Chat!