by: Bill Jones ~ St. Augustine Beach Civic Association

Thanks to sponsors and donations form patrons, Music by the Sea will return in 2020. Unfortunately, our schedule will be reduced in size and that can be entirely blamed on the Tourism Development Council. Despite submitting a grant application that was scored highly by the Funding panel, the TDC voted to fund us at only 25% of our request.

Typically, we have received somewhere between 40% and 60% of our annual request. This does not sit well with our Board of Directors and it should anger local businesses including hotels, condo and vacation rental owners and restauranteurs too. Music by the Sea is the only long term, consistent promotion that consistently sells our community to visitors outside of our county.

Our beach has historically generated the largest share of the Bed Tax of any area in the County. Yet we continue to see a decline in the return of bed tax dollars to the 32080.

Some of that responsibility must fall on our Mayor, who sits on the Tourism Development Council and sat quietly during the deliberations and vote on the 2020 decision. We need a strong voice on the TDC since our community is outnumbered on the panel. While we want businesses in other parts of the County to thrive, we must do everything to support and promote business here on the island. If you agree, please contact the Mayor, City and County Commissioners and share your thoughts.

Civic Association to have new

President in 2020

After more than a decade on the Board and assuming the Presidency of SABCA in 2015, Bill Jones (me) has decided not to run for the office again this fall. I will of course remain on the Board and continue to help write the grant application and assist with the planning of Music by the Sea, but my wife and I now have a 5th grandchild. It’s time to spend more time spoiling all of them.

Our Vice President Bob Samuels is our Nominating Committee Chairman and he’s busy right now putting together a slate of candidates for our upcoming November election. If you’re not a member of SABCA, you should be. In addition to Music by the Sea, Surf Illumination and other events, we are also actively involved in monitoring our local government. We try to share issues and information so citizens are not surprised and have a chance to be more engaged in the community we all call home. Join today by visiting our website at www.sabca.org

Final Concerts are fun and delicious

Our final shows of the 2019 concert season feature two great bands and two amazing local restaurants.

On September 4th, its’s great pop and dance music by Chillula and food from Little Margie’s FA Café. Our final show features a tribute to one of the great bands of the Woodstock and classic rock era. Wear your bell bottoms, beads and tie-dyed shirts as the band Almost Dead plays the hits of the Grateful Dead. Food will be served by our friends from the Sunset Grill. We hope to see you at the shows!