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The Social Portal: How to spend the summer nights

Ed Magowan
A shot from a previous stargaze event.

Summertime and the living is fun, especially if you take part in any of the many events, classes, or festivals happening in our area.

Spend an evening on the beach with the Escambia Amateur Astronomy group and enjoy stargazing. The group is happy to share their telescopes and knowledge of stars and planets you may be looking at. Seeing the rings of Saturn always evokes a sense of wonder among both children and adults. The stargazing events are free and held beginning sundown on select Friday or Saturday evenings at Gulfside Pavilion at Casino Beach. The EAAA also host nights at Big Lagoon State Park. Check out eaaa.net website for event dates.

Bands on the Bayou
You can stargaze (without telescopes) and enjoy a summer breeze by the water at Bands on the Bayou, on July 30, at 6 p.m. It all takes place at the new Bayview Community Center. So come by land or by water. Bring your chairs, blankets, family and friends. Food is available from local food trucks. The event is free, but donations are welcome and benefit selected local non-profits.

Salsa on the Edge
Bayview Park has become a happening place lately. Sunday nights Salsa on the Edge, a lively and friendly group, meets on the pier with free dance instruction provided from 5 until 6 p.m. No partner required. The music and dancing continue until whenever your feet give out.

Ghosts, Murders and Mayhem
Even locals learn a bit of unusual history when taking the Emerald Coast Segway Tour of the supernatural and dark side of Pensacola. Who knew downtown Pensacola had the first drive-through funeral home in the country. This is just one of many other walking and bike tours Emerald Coast Tours offers. See what outings they have to offer at emeraldcoasttours.net.

The Way to See the Bay
Pensacola Bay City Ferry cruises are not just for tourists. It’s a fun excursion to plan when friends or family come to visit. However, we locals can take advantage of the opportunity to escape from the day-to-day by taking a sunset cruise, ordering a cocktail, sitting back, relaxing, and enjoying the sights as the sun goes down. Great way to wind down the week. Or rev it up with the Blue Angels practice cruise. See pensacolabaycityferry.com for details.

We live where other people vacation and wish they could be residents. So get out, and enjoy any of the many events happening here. You can also check the WUWF Community Calendar for more ideas. Laissez les bon temps rouler!