Pensacola Beach: Papa’s Pizza & Parasail Key Sailing

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When our trip to Pensacola Beach was planned, we had no plans. Our plans involved sitting our butt in the sand, maybe a drink, maybe not, eat yummy food, but the main goal was to RELAX to the MAX.

Luckily our hotel had a lazy river. Like I mentioned a bad storm blew in “yucky” ocean water between the jellyfish and the seaweed. Oy! So we spent our fair share of time in the lazy river.

One story that needs to be documented: Tbug is 12. She is a very cute 12-year-old at that. And I’ve learned I am the mother of a cute 12-year-old. There was some guy who swam up to her, asked her if her name was Brittany because she looked very familiar to him and then proceeded to spend the next couple hours going around the lazy river with our group. She hung out with her Memaw, dad, Abug and me the whole time she was in the water… and so did this boy. ha!

My grandma with her girls.

After playing in the water all morning, Abug got tired. My mom took her up to the room for a nap and then we all got around and went to find some lunch. I snagged Tbug and she and I ran off to the ocean for about 30 minutes while everyone else went and changed clothes. Then she and I quickly tried to get the sand off of us and ran to the room to change so that they weren’t waiting on us…. (But they were!)

My mom had read a review on Papa’s Pizza and really wanted to try it so we got directions, loaded up into the Suburban and headed the couple miles down the strip. Yes, we could have walked, but my grandma couldn’t really make that walk down and back without getting tired in that heat so it was just as easy to load up in the Suburban and drive.

Hubby was the chauffeur. He dropped us off at the landing that it was on and then proceeded to find a parking spot. If anything, this place, don’t drive, just walk. OMG! Hubby had to park across the road. People were circling and circling the parking lot. They need more parking but there is a public access beach right there so people arrive early in the morning for the beach and then they’re there. There’s also… Parasailing… keep that in mind…

Abug decided she needed to read the menu to decide what type of pizza she wanted.

Papa’s Pizza is known for its New York Style pizza. Do you know what that is? Aren’t you glad you’re reading because I can tell you… I watched a documentary about that on the travel channel once. Yes, yes I did that… Okay so New Yorkers are always on the go so they’re plan is to have a slice of pizza large enough to fold over and make a sandwich so they can eat on the run. Also, they aren’t known for ordering whole pizza’s like what is portrayed on Friends, or so the documentary said. They usually go, order a slice or two and either eat there or on the run. Take the documentary for what it’s worth because I grew up in the Midwest and we eat pizza at home as well as there…
Oh and Chicago style pizza, the guy who invented it wanted to have to sit down with a knife and fork to eat pizza, that’s how you got the deep dish crust.

We ordered 3 pizzas. One was Joe Pesci, which was sun-dried tomatoes, feta cheese, and artichoke hearts. It was on the New York-style pizza crust. I can’t say I was a huge fan, it was good but it isn’t something I’d want to order again… although I do prefer meat on my pizzas other than a good Margarita pizza.

Our second pizza was a 2 topping pizza on the New York Style pizza crust. We went for Pepperoni and Mushroom. I didn’t choose this pizza and wasn’t even able to eat a piece. This was a slice for Abug. After 8 of the 9 of us took a slice, there was one left. I just didn’t take one, I decided to save it for either Abug or someone else. I’m nice like that sometimes.

Then we went for a 3 topping pizza on a Sicilian crust. Now let me tell you, this crust made all the difference in the world! It was GREAT. The toppings we chose were Pepperoni, Mushroom and Canadian Bacon. I did choose these toppings. Truthfully the pizza itself was just okay in my opinion, but the crust on this particular pizza made all the difference in the world.

I mentioned in an earlier post that from our hotel we saw Parasailing in the bay. The day before my grandma commented parasailing and then hubby went online to scope out prices and where it was located. It happened to be in the area we were with Papa’s Pizza so someone said something to Tbug about if she’d like to. She said yes, grandma said yes, hubby, and I said yes and dad suggested it to hubby so they wandered off to go find out if you needed reservations and all the details.

While they were off, the rest of us wandered through stores looking at what was available. Mom wound up finding Tbug and me a sweatshirt that said Pensacola.

Now this picture. Okay, a friend of mine, Tiffany, I was interviewing her for my scuba blog I write and she got sidetracked looking at a coffee mug on top of some cabinets at a friend’s house that was in the shape of a boob. So we changed the phrase from Oooo Ball to Ooooo Boob. Lol. So when I saw this shot glass I sent her the picture. I halfway debated buying her one but didn’t.

Once Dad and Hubby met back up with us we decided to go grab an ice cream in the same shopping center area. I had Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough. It sucked… Yuck! Sorry but it did. And the gal serving us didn’t have the best, most helpful attitude. Whatever. Abug liked it and that’s really why I got some, she ate most of it. She also tried hubby’s chocolate, dad’s I forget what kind right now and Memaw’s Mint Chocolate Chip. She was in heaven.

We finally fessed up to my mom where the boys had gone and that we wanted to go Parasailing so hubby and I walked over to get the Suburban and then went back to pick everyone up. We quickly ran into the hotel, changed into our swimming suits and Tbug, dad, hubby, grandma and I loaded back up and went to go sign up to Parasail.

We went through Parasail Key Sailing with the Smile High Club :). It was $85 to go single or $90 for double so it made sense to go doubles. If you notice, there was an odd number of us so I volunteered Tbug to go twice. Not that the rest of us wouldn’t have loved to go twice, but I figured she might enjoy it. We got signed up but weren’t able to board the boat until around 5:15 and it was 3:45. Parking was so horrendous (read above) so we just decided to sit around and hang out, especially since we had to check back in at 4:45.

I think Tbug might have been a bit nervous at first. She was the second and third group to go up.

You can see our hotel there with the turquoise on it. That’s why we saw it so well!

Her first go was with grandma. She had a blast. So they usually “dunk” you (although not as bad as they dunked hubby and me in Hawaii). When they brought grandma and Tbug back down she was talking to grandma and didn’t realize she’d get the dunk and bam, mouth full of water. ha! Poor kid. Then they left her hooked up and sent her right back out with dad. When she got back on the boat she said that she’s now been more times than I have until I go up this time. I kept telling her details, details or technicality.

Finally hubby and I got our chance to catch up to Tbug’s number. ha! We figured they’d dunk us again, especially after we told the guys what happened in Hawaii but they didn’t. Just waist deep like everyone else.

Dad, hubby and I were talking about it and I’m pretty sure that we went up higher here in Florida than we did in Hawaii. We had the same amount of rope, but this guy kept the boat moving to keep you up wherein Hawaii there was more slack because the wind did all the work once they got you up.

In Hawaii, my mom stayed on the boat with my point and shoot camera while I took my water camera up with me. This time around my point and shoot camera is my water camera. I wish I’d have taken my phone on the boat and had Tbug use it for pictures from the boat so I could have taken the camera up with me… Oh well… thoughts for after the fact.

When we were done we ran (read drove) back to our hotel, changed clothes, and were ready to head to dinner.

After dinner, we went back to the pool for an hour or an hour and a half. Like I said, we were there to relax and that for us meant spending a lot of time in the water.

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