Emerald Coast Fitness Foundation to Host Second Annual Fundraising Event

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Sip and Splash: An Aquatic Affair presented by Tim Smith Acura

The Emerald Coast Fitness Foundation (ECFF) is pleased to announce they will host their second annual fundraising event, Sip and Splash: An Aquatic Affair presented by Tim Smith Acura, on Saturday, May 20 at the Taj Renee Community Aquatic Center.

Located at 4345 Commons Drive West in Destin, The Taj was officially renamed and dedicated during the Inaugural Sip and Splash event in 2022, which raised over $74,000. Those who attended last year’s event are encouraged to attend once again as the food, cocktails, music, and overall experience will be completely new and fresh.

“We are so thankful for the support we received from last year’s event,” said Kevin Leibold, ECFF President. “There was no hesitation that we wanted to host this event for the second year to bring even more people to our pool and experience this magical evening.”

Upon entry, guests will receive a glass of Good Clean sparkling champagne before making their way into the fully transformed community pool, courtesy of Title Wave Sponsors, including Bitterroot, Boshamps Seafood and Oyster House, Emerald Coast Magazine, Ohana Heating and Air, and Splash RV Resort and Waterpark. A sunset cocktail hour will kick off the evening before guests take their seats for an upscale dinner under the stars. Throughout the night, Better Together Beverage will be pouring whimsical craft cocktails made with local spirits, including Distillery 98 and Campesino Rum, in signature cups sponsored by Hand Arendall Harrison Sale. There will also be local craft brews from Odd Pelican Beer Company, red and white wine from Good Clean Wine, and hard seltzers from Palm Folly. Cocktail hour will also feature an Epic Photo Co. photo booth, hand rolled sushi by Destin’s own Yoshie Eddings from Camille’s at Crystal Beach, a live painting experience with Maxine Orange, and an extensive silent auction.

After cocktail hour, attendees will then make their way to the main dining area to indulge in a multi-course seated dinner served by the Emerald Coast’s most iconic chefs and restaurants, including Dewey Destin’s Harborside, Signature Catering of 30A, Marrow Private Chefs, and more. Dishes will be both gulf and farm-to-table, showcasing the various cuisines of each restaurant and chef. Emerald Coast’s own Al Alvarado will be entertaining guests throughout dinner, along with a special ceremony to induct the 2023 honorees into the Okaloosa Swimming and Diving Hall of Fame.

“We love having these local chefs come out and show off their skills and cuisine to our guests,” said Kathi Heapy, ECFF Treasurer. “This night is about celebrating our surrounding local communities. From the food and drinks to the art, supporters, and swimmers in attendance, we want to honor our locals all while celebrating together at our own local, community pool.”

All proceeds raised from the silent auction, ticket sales, sponsorship, and general donations will go directly to ECFF. The Emerald Coast Fitness Foundation is a public charity formed to develop physical fitness and water safety among the youth and adults of Okaloosa County. ECFF’s facilities and programs in Destin, Crestview, and Fort Walton Beach deliver opportunities for instruction, training, and competitive excellence, in the sports of swimming, running, and cycling to those and the surrounding communities. Since 2015, the ECFF has been managing the public pools at the Bernie R. Lefebvre Aquatic Center in Fort Walton Beach, Taj Renee Community Aquatic Center in Destin, and the ROC Pool in Crestview for the benefit of the community.

ECFF would also like to thank the local community businesses and individuals who are sponsoring the second annual event, including Gilmore Insurance, James Ward, Legendary Marine, Mattie Kelly Arts Foundation, United Fidelity Bank, Valparaiso Coca Cola Bottling Company, and Warren Averett Accounting. ECFF would also like to extend their gratitude to those sponsors who are sponsoring the event for a second year, including Alpha Lit Emerald Coast, Cardinal Financial, Costa Enterprises McDonald’s, Destin Life, Eglin Federal Credit Union, HomeFi Mortgage, MidSouth Bank, SoWal Life, and VIP Destin Magazine.

Tickets and tables are currently on sale through Eventbrite for $150 per individual or $1,000 for a table of ten. Only a few sponsorship opportunities remain, however ECFF is collecting silent auction items from area businesses and individuals wanting to support the event. To learn more about the evening, please visit https://ecfitnessfoundation.org. Those interested in sponsoring or donating an auction item, please email taylor@proffittpr.com

Emerald Coast Fitness Foundation to Host Second Annual Fundraising Event

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