SHORE THINGS: A Super Summer Season Wish List

Published: Thursday, May 16, 2013 at 03:26 PM.
PANAMA CITY BEACH — Harley Pummill, who is among other things the voice of the Morning Vibe on WKGC 90.7-FM, knows how he’d like to spend the coming summer season.

“Well, I’d like to think that I’ll get out and do some beach time, maybe cruise the coast a bit,” he said early this week. “I sometimes find myself driving to work along West Beach Drive, looking out over the bay and thinking, ‘People save all year long to come stay here for a few days. You LIVE here! Get out and enjoy it!’ But frankly, I’ll probably be right here working.”

Harley was one of literally hundreds of people who responded when we asked them two questions: What do you look forward to doing in the area this summer, and what do you love about the place?

“One of the things I love about the area? I’d have to say the people,” Harley said. “I’ve lived all over the world and have never been any place where the people are so friendly. I recently had a British couple who now live in the L.A. area come visit. They were completely amazed at how kind and helpful people were.”

Bettina Mead of the Bay County Public Library is looking forward to “waiting for and watching huge black clouds and big afternoon rains each afternoon in July.” But what she loves about the area takes a little more telling:

“From 6 weeks of age, I was raised in New Mexico, but my mother’s family homesteaded in Defuniak Springs,” Bettina said. “My grandfather would take the West Bay Ferry into Panama City to go to work (he had the Brewer’s Rexall Drug Store on Harrison). We would come and visit once a year. It was so different from New Mexico — the humidity, the bugs, the Blue Jays, the vegetation.

“And oh, the Southern food. Fresh peaches every morning. Totally unmatched dishes and silverware. Heaven to a little girl’s heart. Even to this day, my sister and I will walk outside and say ‘it smells like Florida’ — a place of wonderful memories.”

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