Located in the shadow of the Marriott hotel, Clearwater Jet Ski and Parasail outfits beachgoers with the equipment to safely speed across or sail above the waves. Its three-seater jet skis kick up massive wakes as they roar over the sapphire surface of the water, and tandem kayaks trundle along. Staff-operated speedboats tow parasails behind them, passengers getting a seagull’s view of the waves and a firm understanding of how silly the dog paddle looks from a distance.
Clearwater Community Sailing Center engages students of all ages and abilities with safe and enriching two-hour standup-paddleboard lessons. Under the guidance of one of the center's enthusiastic teachers, guests enjoy semiprivate instruction in the art of staying afloat and fearlessly trespassing on Poseidon's property. While basking in tranquil surroundings on one of Clearwater Community Sailing Center's professional paddleboards, students will learn how to gain control over paddling techniques, mounting, and dismounting. Guests schedule lessons throughout the week to explore the benefits of nautical commuting and take part in the core-strengthening workout craze hailed by the world's most famous gondoliers.
Mac's Industrial Sports Bar's kitchen wizards conjure up hearty pub grub for dinner and lunch while tap masters top off chalices with bottled brews and 27 draft beers hailing from suds factories all over the country, including the local delights of Lift Bridge and Schell's. Bolster mastication muscles without chewing on a ThighMaster by ordering one of the amply stuffed sandwiches, such as the brisket-style reuben on grilled marble rye ($9.50) or the BLAT ($9.50), which adds avocado slices to the infamous BLT lineup. Diners can add custom flare to grilled handheld eats, including burgers, with a choice of more than 20 extra toppings, such as onion rings ($1), a fried egg ($1.50), and an array of cheeses ($0.75–$1). The build-your-own pizza ($9) allows patrons to create a personalized amalgamation of meats ($1/topping) and vegetables ($0.50/topping) for a culinary construction more inviting to the tongue than a statue of Millard Fillmore sculpted from a block of Fun Dip. For earlier eats, servers unveil a variety of appetizing mouth merriments, such as a buffalo-chicken salad ($6.50) and the corn-dog snacker ($7), which consists of six mini corn dogs, french fries, and mustard sauce.
Sky Pirate Parasail's U.S. Coast Guard–licensed captains slip through John's Pass between Madeira Beach and Treasure Island while towing parasailers on a 1,200 foot tow rope, who glide under kaleidoscopic chutes tethered up to 500 feet in the air. After fastening their passengers, who range from school-aged kids to grandparents, into a secure harness, they fill the parachute's canopy with air and shuttle the skyward rider over the saltwater waves for an aerial jaunt. As the captain slackens the line and traces the coastline from offshore, the parasailer floats over the beach, the dolphins, and the gelatinous blob monster waving at sunbathers.
Coral growing in brightly hued clusters. Translucent jellyfish floating past verdant, undulating seaweed. Schools of black bar soldierfish swimming in unison during their morning roll call. These are just a few of the myriad sights students at Gulfport Dive Center can see during their aquatic expeditions. Owned by a family of avid divers, the center gathers a community of fledgling sub-aquanauts to explore the waterways of the Sunshine State, whether the staff is training them during classroom sessions and open dives or equipping them with gear from Aqualung, Sherwood, and Akona.