Visit Florida

Santa Rosa businesses miss opportunity with Visit Florida marketing program

Santa Rosa businesses miss opportunity with Visit Florida marketing program

Visit Florida, the state’s official tourism marketing corporation, announced April 1 that 152 Florida businesses were accepted into the organization’s free 2019 Targeted Marketing Assistance Program (TMAP). None were in Santa Rosa County. Read the full article in the April 11 issue of Navarre Press. Visit https://navarrepress.com/subscribe/ to view subscription options – or sign up […]

The penalties for not supporting Williamson

The penalties for not supporting Williamson

The penalties are stiff for not supporting our current commissioner Williamson – just ask Jack Sanborn. He found out the hard way. The maestro of manipulation orchestrated a move during the board of county commission meeting Monday to remove longtime Tourist Development Council member Jack Sanborn from the TDC. It wasn’t even on the agenda. […]

Gulf Islands National Seashore in USA Today’s 10 Best

Gulf Islands National Seashore in USA Today’s 10 Best

USA Today has named Gulf Islands National Seashore the 10Best Readers’ Choice 2018 Best Florida Attraction. This top spot was determined by a period of public voting on destinations nominated by an expert panel. The top 10 were published to 10Best.com, where Gulf Islands took the top spot over contenders including Disney World and the […]

New Year rings in new chamber events

New Year rings in new chamber events

FunFest has gone the way of the wayside, but Navarre Beach Area Chamber of Commerce CEO Tamara Fountain said there are bigger and better things to come. To reveal these new plans, the chamber will be releasing the “12 Days of Christmas,” a video series that will showcase the events and initiatives the chamber has […]

Hotels crammed with Irma evacuees over weekend

Hotels crammed with Irma evacuees over weekend

In the afternoon hours of Sept. 6, uncertain projection models for the future of then category 5 Hurricane Irma began to shift north putting the peninsula of Florida in the direct line of fire. The entire state had been preparing for catastrophe, from the eastern tip of Escambia County to the southernmost Keys. News reports […]

Tourism council answers rebuke with an invitation

Tourism council answers rebuke with an invitation

Santa Rosa officials bristled at the recent scolding they received from House Speaker Richard Corcoran about the financial practices of the county’s Tourist Development Office. But they rejected a first impulse to fire off a terse letter to Corcoran—deciding instead to invite him here to prove the transparency with which the county handles its annual […]

House Speaker scolds tourism office

House Speaker scolds tourism office

Santa Rosa officials have sidestepped the volunteer Tourist Development Council to revoke the county’s longtime membership in the state’s leisure industry marketing agency–Visit Florida–prompting a warning from state House Speaker Richard Corcoran. Corcoran described the move led by County Tourism Director Julie Morgan as a “futile attempt to shield financial information from public scrutiny” in […]

Budget cuts send chill through tourist industry

Budget cuts send chill through tourist industry

Tallahassee budget cuts could have negative economic impacts close to home. Despite far higher proposals by Gov. Rick Scott, state economic development partnership Enterprise Florida and tourism marketing agency Visit Florida will see sharp funding reductions under the budget passed last week by the Florida House of Representatives and Senate. Read the full article in […]

House passes oversight bill for Visit Florida

House passes oversight bill for Visit Florida

In its first week of session the Florida House of Representatives passed two bills Friday that took aim economic programs eliminating Enterprise Florida, Inc. and restructuring Visit Florida. Read the full article in the March 16 issue of Navarre Press. Subscribe online at navarrepress.com for as little as $38 per year.

Proposed legislation could eliminate Visit Florida and Enterprise Florida, Inc.

Proposed legislation could eliminate Visit Florida and Enterprise Florida, Inc.

Proposed legislation that would eliminate state tourism marketing group Visit Florida and state economic development agency Enterprise Florida, Inc. was introduced Feb. 8 to the Florida House of Representatives Careers and Competition Subcommittee. Read the full article in the Feb. 16 issue of Navarre Press. Subscribe online at navarrepress.com for as little as $38 per […]

Five Things to Know in Florida for Jan. 11

Five Things to Know in Florida for Jan. 11

VISIT FLORIDA TO PAY $73,000 TO CEO AFTER RAPPER KERFUFFLE The Visit Florida board of directors agreed Tuesday to pay Will Seccombe, who agreed to resign after pressure from Gov. Rick Scott. Visit Florida is hiring Ken Lawson, the current secretary of the Department of Business and Professional Regulation as a replacement. Seccombe led the […]

Visit Florida scrutinized for clandestine contracts

Visit Florida scrutinized for clandestine contracts

Florida’s contracted tourism agency Visit Florida came under fire just months before the legislature would meet to decide whether to approve a $76 million budget for the organization. The criticism has resulted in the resignation of the company’s President and CEO Will Seccombe. The drama centered on a supposedly privileged $1 million contract between Visit […]

Proposal on sharing tourist tax meets resistance

Proposal on sharing tourist tax meets resistance

Wresting control of some local tourist tax dollars to use for statewide leisure industry promotion and fund law enforcement may sound like a good idea in Tallahassee, but it’s getting mixed reviews hereabout. State Rep. Matthew Gaetz, chairman of the House Tax and Finance Committee, recently proposed legislation allowing up to 10 percent of bed […]

Santa Rosa Visitor Center Earns Certification

Santa Rosa Visitor Center Earns Certification

The Santa Rosa County Visitor Information Center has been designated an official Florida Certified Tourism Information Center by VISIT FLORIDA, the state’s official tourism marketing corporation. The VISIT FLORIDA Certified Tourism Information Centers is a program which recognizes visitor services centers around the state that provide facilities and that promote travel in the county and throughout […]

VISIT FLORIDA: State hits all-time tourism record

VISIT FLORIDA: State hits all-time tourism record

Florida set another record in tourism by welcoming the highest amount of visitors of any six months in the state’s history – 54.1 million – according to VISIT FLORIDA. The number represents a 5.8 increase over the year. In the second quarter of 2015 (April through June), 25.8 million visitors came to the state, an […]

Tourism numbers at all-time high

Tourism numbers at all-time high

Gov. Rick Scott announced that Florida set another record in tourism numbers by welcoming the highest amount of visitors of any quarter in the state’s history according to VISIT FLORIDA. According to preliminary numbers, in the first quarter of 2015 (January through March), 28.4 million people  visited the state, an increase of 6.2 percent over the […]

Revised numbers: more than 98M tourists in 2014

Revised numbers: more than 98M tourists in 2014

Gov. Rick Scott announced Thursday that according to the revised preliminary 2014 visitation figure released by VISIT FLORIDA, 98.9 million people visited Florida last year, a 5.1 percent increase over the previous high of 93.7 million in 2013. This marks the second largest year-over-year visitor increase Florida has experienced in a decade, according to a release […]