Turtle Season Begins Along The Forgotten Coast
May 1 marks the beginning of  sea turtle nesting season on St. George Island and other beaches throughout Franklin County and Florida. The turtles will lay their eggs from May – September, with 50-150 baby turtles hatching after 45-60 days, usually at night. One female may nest several times in a season.

May also heralds the season when local volunteer turtlers begin walking the beach in order to find, mark and protect turtle nests. When homeowners and visitors are educated about measures they can help nesting sea turtles such as turning off lights and clearing the beach of gear. Visitors interested in learning about sea turtle nesting can visit the St. George Island Visitor’s Center (at the St. George Island Lighthouse Park) to pick up turtle information.  Click here to learn more about our turtless and how you can help protect them.

Please note that Franklin County has a Leave No Trace Ordinance that requires chairs, umbrellas and equipment to be removed nightly from the public beaches in order to help mama turtles more easily navigate the beaches to nest and allow hatchlings a clear path back to the water from their nests in the dunes. And, if you dig a hole on the beach during the day, fill it in!

Inaugural St. George Island ShrimpFest May 14
The St. George Lighthouse Association will host the inaugural SGI ShrimpFest on May 14  from 11am to 5pm in the western parking area adjacent to Lighthouse Park. This family and community-oriented festival will be a one-day event offering patrons great outdoor musical entertainment, a fairway of games for the children sponsored by the Forgotten Coast Parrothead Club, and the chance to dine on the freshest and most delicious local shrimp dishes. Learn more here.

Celebrate Nature on Estuary Day May 6

Mark your calendars for Friday May 6 from 1:30-5:30 pm as the Apalachicola National Estuarine Research Reserve (ANERR) celebrates National Estuaries Day. This  free, fun and educational event features stations for kids and adults like the marine animal touch tanks, kid friendly nature-themed games including a sea turtle game, a waterfront race, a prescribed fire activity, learn to throw a cast net and more. Attendees can also tour ANERR’s 5,400 square-foot Nature Center an 80-foot long mural depicting the area ecosystems, historical exhibits, and a hands-on Bay Discovery Room. The first 600 visitors will receive a free t-shirt. Details.
If This House Could Talk Home Tour May 6-19 in Apalachicola
What if the houses in Apalachicola could talk? What stories would they tell? The Apalachicola Area Historical Society invites you to come to find out, by viewing storyboards posted in front of about 30 homes and businesses between Friday, May 6 and Thursday, May 19. The storyboards, created by property owners, tell tales of past residents, neighborhood events and personalities, and historical facts. Learn more here.
Last Chance to Enter to Win a St. George Island Girls Getaway!
The countdown is on to May 16 when we will draw the winner of this amazing getaway for you and  three of your friends! The Franklin County TDC launched its inaugural  St. George Island Girls' Getaway Sweepstakes earlier this Spring and we will soon pick a winner! Winners of this package will stay on St. George Island, bask on the beach, explore the sights (including the nightlife!) and enjoy fresh Apalachicola Bay seafood in our award-winning restaurants. Click here to enter!
SGI and Crooked River Lighthouse Climbs May 16
St. George Island’s historic Cape St. George Lighthouse and the Crooked River Lighthouse at Carrabelle Beach will host Full Moon Climbs this month on May 16. Visitors can climb to the top of the lighthouse to see views of the bay as the sun sets and the moon rises. 
Apalachicola Home and Garden Tour May 7
Apalachicola's annual Historic Apalachicola Home and Garden Tour will be held Saturday, May 7. Explore the past and present as you tour historic and new homes, plus unique gardens, located in Apalachicola’s Historic District. Browse auction offerings to place silent bids throughout the day on Saturday and make immediate purchases with our “Buy It Now” items. Details. 
Ghostwalk May 7
Enjoy the Apalachicola Area Historical Society’s annual Spring Ghost Tour of the Historic Chestnut Street Cemetery in Apalachicola on Saturday, May 7. Hauntings will abound when local history enthusiasts don the garb and take on the persona of the cemetery’s notable inhabitants to tell their tale of life and death in Apalachicola for more than 180 years ago.  The Ghostwalk will be held 6:30-8:30 pm. at the Chestnut Street Cemetery on U.S. Highway 98 in Apalachicola. Details here.
Carrabelle in the 1930s Exhibit May 1-29
The Carrabelle History Museum will host a special exhibit on “Carrabelle in the 1930s” beginning Sunday, May 1 through Sunday, May 29. In addition to exhibit items including an original jail cell door, this exhibit will also explore what Carrabelle and Franklin County were like during that era. Fun, cultural highlights will be shared as well as serious items of note happening in the world to provide context to 1930s Carrabelle. Carrabelle History Museum is located, one block from Carrabelle Harbor, at 106 SE Avenue B, Carrabelle. Learn more here.
Camp Gordon Johnston Hosts Philippines Exhibit
Camp Gordon Johnston WWII Museum in Carrabelle will host a special exhibit on the Philippines campaign. This exhibit will open Tuesday, May 3, and will be on display at the museum until Saturday, May 28. This exhibit will chronicle the major battles and participants of the Philippines campaign, from the loss to the Japanese in 1942 to the final mopping up of residual forces in 1945. Details here.
Amberjack Season Opens This Month 
The recreational Greater Amberjack season opens this month (May) but closes again in June-July until it reopens August through September.  Information about bag and size limits, gear restrictions and fishing seasons, including a map of the Atlantic and Gulf grouper fishing boundaries, is available online at MyFWC.com/Marine; select “Recreational Regulations.” 

Need a guided tour? Charter captains are booking trips now!
For a list of Franklin County's fishing charter guides, click here.  
Fishing Tourneys
Here are a few of the upcoming fishing tournaments scheduled throughout the county beginning early this summer.

June 11 - The Tallahassee Builders Association 34th Annual Saltwater Fishing Tournament. 
July 16 - C-Quarters Youth Fishing Tournament. 
August  6-7 – Annual Kingfish Shootout

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