Turn a typically cliché holiday into a healthy tradition, while supporting local restaurants, businesses and the Seaside Neighborhood School in its 25th year.

Valentine’s Day is an important day for the Seaside Virtual Race!

First, February 14th is the final day to participate in our Taste of the Race Grub for Good presented by Silver Sands Premium Outlets and Pepsi | Buffalo Rock. You can visit a participating restaurant now through February 14th, and a portion of your purchase will go to Seaside Neighborhood School’s Culinary Program. (This may also apply to take-out, delivery or even gift cards!) This is a win-win when you make your Valentine dining plans. See a list of local participating restaurants here.

Also, February 14th is the kick-off day to running, walking or strolling the Seaside Virtual Race! What a perfect health and fitness-conscious V-day gift for your loved one by gifting a race registration, maybe tied up with some new shoelaces! (Much healthier than a box of chocolates.) And, they’ll have until February 28th to complete their race.

Looking for some additional unique Valentine gift ideas? Here is a list of our “Top 10 Favorites” from a few of our sponsors:

  1. We love our Seaside local fashion icon Vera Bradley, and her bags just never go out of style. Did you know race registrants receive a Vera Bradley Sling bag and mask this year? Check out the numerous other patterns and styles at her shop at the Silver Sand Premier Outlets. (The beach towels are my personal favorites!)
  2. Grab your partner and go have a romantic lunch or dinner at Bud and Alley’s with the best view in town. This time of year you can easily snag a table in the downstairs dining room, facing the Gulf. (One of those local secret spots especially at lunchtime.)
  3. Everyone knows Grove Fisher of Fisher Flowers, is the go-to source for the freshest and most beautiful blooms on 30A. Give her a call and reserve your Valentine bouquet.
  4. Wine, sushi and people watching in Seaside. 45 Central Wine and Sushi Bar covers all of these bases. We especially love their Paella on Tuesday nights!  (Another local secret.)
  5. Watercolor Inn & Resort is the ultimate getaway in your own backyard.  This time of year is the perfect chance to book a room, stroll the beach unbothered and gather around the fire pit, crowd-free…if only for a night or two away from the kids.
  6. Need a new ride for you and your cycling partner? Frankie’s Bike Shop has THE best beach cruisers. (I am personally looking for an upgrade and plan on dropping a few hints.) They are located at The Shops at The Hub where you can find unique and eclectic gifts. Adaro Art is one of my favorite shops there, for their sculptures, family portraits and gallery…where I could spend endless hours.
  7. Chick-Fil-A! Grab a chicken nugget platter for the kids while you leave them with the babysitter on Valentine’s night!
  8. Who doesn’t love an old fashioned, local hardware store? We are lucky to have just that in Frank’s Cash and Carry in Grayton Beach. Support local and give your husband or wife a gift card to knock out that “honey-do” list.
  9. Nate and Lane Design Company makes the most idyllic porch bed swings. This would make the perfect Valentine’s gift, outfitted with a new throw and pillows, to relax with that special someone. (I love my Nate and Lane bed-swing… although our Goldendoodle has claimed it as her own.)
  10. Need a new ride? Who wouldn’t love a red, white or black Land Rover from Land Rover of the Gulf Coast.

Finally, save some of your Valentine funds to spend at the Seaside School Virtual Silent Auction, opening February 21st! Featuring close to 300 items, they’ve got you covered with show-stopper gifts ranging from exquisite art, vacation stays all over the country, private chef dinners, jewelry, gift certificates, signed sports memorabilia, must-have gifts… it’s a must see!

Rebecca Balkcom

Author Rebecca Balkcom

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