FORT WALTON BEACH — Raeleen McDaniel was the first Friday the 13th customer to line the sidewalk of U.S. Highway 98 in downtown Fort Walton Beach as she waited to take advantage of the special at Defiance Tattoo Company.
McDaniel, who said she received her first tattoo of a microphone last Friday the 13th, prepared to get nine new tattoos before noon Friday.
“We got here at 6:40 this morning,” McDaniel said. “I’m so pumped and excited. I’m getting trees, a mountain, a sunset, a flower, Harry Potter glasses, a shark, an anchor, a ship and a sparrow.”
Each Friday the 13th, Defiance Tattoo owner “Impala Pat” opens his doors for clients to receive small tattoos for a discounted price. The tattoos cost $13 plus a $7 tip.
At 10 a.m. Friday, over 100 clients were already lined outside waiting to receive a new tattoo.
“We opened in 2014 and have been doing this every Friday the 13th,” Impala Pat said. “It’s awesome to see people coming out and wanting to participate.”
Impala Pat said his clients enjoy the experience not only for the ink, but also for the experience that comes with waiting in line alongside fellow tattoo enthusiasts.
The Defiance Tattoo Co. artists work before each event, Impala Pat said, to come up with about 150 designs offered for that day. A Tide Pod, the Tom Thumb logo and a Facebook thumbs up were among the more quirky tattoo choices this year.
The event, which began at 10 a.m. Friday, is expected to continue on until 7 a.m. Saturday. The Defiance rule for Friday the 13th is that artists don’t stop until every person in line has been tattooed.
“That’s the thing that’s really turned this into a monster,” Impala Pat said. “People wait a long time. It’s a fun event.”