Exploring Entertainment in Florida's 850 & Beyond
by Nikki Hedrick
It’s no secret that The Beachcomber – a Destin-based in-print publication – has shuttered. I don’t know the reasons why or if it will ever return in some capacity but the last issue was in early 2020.
I’m not sure when I first noticed – but instead of keeping the website alive in some capacity to host past articles, news, and reviews it’s been shuttered as well. The website doesn’t exist except via internet tools like archive.org.
So my idea is to resurrect them in some capacity. Giving band’s those linkbacks, information, and a sense of history via a simple repost.
It’s also no secret that my plate is pretty full these days. I’m fortunate to be full-time with photography with my husband doing close to 200 beach weddings, events, and more under the Edward A McGrath Photography brand. 850ME has grown to be home to an amazing bunch of photographers that are in the region covering the shows they can. But I’ve long been the primary writer for the website and given that it’s never made enough to pay its own bills regularly there isn’t a budget for a regular writing staff.
That’s why content is often slow beyond the press releases that are sent my way. And I so often wish local artists would learn the art of the press release to announce the big things because all press is spread thin. You have to be your own advocate in that way. That means learning what a complete press release looks like – not just a couple sentences hoping someone else has the time to fill in the rest.
Back to the past, I have a chunk of articles I will slowly go through that span my years with the Beachcomber. My goal is to house them here, warts and all. They will likely have different titles than what they were originally printed with as that was part of the polish my editor Chris Manson gave them – and sadly I don’t have a note on that or their final form.
I cannot express how massive the Beachcomber and Chris were for me during those years. I was able to do things and talk to people I never thought possible. I didn’t always know what I was doing and too often album reviews were written at 2am – but it meant so much to me. It helped develop my voice and my confidence – it helped me feel like a grown-up.
There is no definitive time frame of when or how often the old pieces will be shared. But this post serves as the backstory that I can link to as they re-appear on the internet.
Thank you for walking down memory lane with me.