“It’s a police state “When there are blue lights in front of Spinnaker and La Vela every night, that’s not welcoming. The sheriff has put the message out on social media that if you come to Panama City and drink on the beach you are going to jail. Not get a citation, but go to jail.” Sparky Sparkman, the owner of Spinnaker Beach Club. here
His business is down 85 to 90 percent compared to last Spring Break as college students have found other destinations in the wake of new laws, including a ban on drinking on the beach in March. Sparkman said it’s not just the Spring Break laws that have taken its toll; it’s also the heavy presence of law enforcement that has chased away spring breakers.