VISIT FLORIDA

beach chairs
Pixabay

Florida continues to see record numbers of visitors while the state's tourism-marketing agency has been forced to reinvent its approach after months of legislative turmoil.

  Today on “First Coast Connect,” we talked about the future of Visit Florida with Robert Skrob (01:02), executive director of the Florida Association of Destination Marketing Organizations. We learned about the future of the use of drones with Jameson Rice (21:34), associate with the law firm Holland and Knight. Our latest edition of “Movable Feast” hosted by Leigh Cort of the Women’s Food Alliance features Lorna McDonald (36:40) from St. Augustine’s The Raintree restaurant. Dr. Arun Gulani (46:23) from Gulana Vision Care talks about how corneal transplants might become a thing of the past.  

 

Ryan Benk / WJCT News

Florida Governor Rick Scott was in Jacksonville Tuesday to celebrate the grand opening of a new aluminum bottle plant on the Westside.


Tuesday on “First Coast Connect,” we spoke with Visit Jacksonville CEO Paul Astleford (1:02) about THE PLAYERS Championship’s impact on the region and concerns about the funding of Visit Florida. Attorney Wayne Hogan, Donna Orender and Director of Development at the ALS Association Florida Chapter Carmen Stokes (21:24) spoke about May 21  ALS fundraiser at the Baseball Grounds. Our new segment “Moveable Feast,” hosted by Women’s Food Alliance founder Leigh Cort, spoke with Casa Marina Hotel General Manager Mark Vandeloo (32:45), and this month’s First Coast Connect Book Club with blogger Stacey Goldring (40:53) discussed the book “A Man Called Ove” by Fredrik Backman. 

 

Cyd Hoskinson / WJCT Public Broadcasting

In observance of National Travel and Tourism Week, Northeast Florida officials are celebrating the tourism industry as an economic engine.

Cyd Hoskinson / WJCT Public Broadcasting

Gov. Rick Scott was in Jacksonville Tuesday to congratulate a local transportation and logistics company for creating jobs.

Ryan Benk / WJCT News

For the fourth time since the start of the legislative session, Governor Rick Scott held a roundtable Tuesday in Jacksonville defending the state’s business-incentive program.

This time the two-term Republican governor focused on the intersection of employment and education, joining Mayor Lenny Curry and leaders from the city’s largest college and university.


Department of Economic Opportunity

The head of Florida’s economic and workforce agency is pushing back against claims business subsidies don’t spur economic development.


Our weekly Media Roundtable included Florida Times-Union reporter Dan Scanlan, Jacksonville Business Journal Editor Timothy Gibbons, Florida Politics reporter A.G. Gancarski and WJCT business analyst John Burr. Artists Tracie Thornton, Jenny Hager and Lance Vickery told us about the exhibit “Humanity: The Value of a Life,” beginning Friday at the Karpeles Manuscript Museum. HGTV star Tyler Wisler joined the program to discuss the Home and Patio show at the Prime Osborn Center and we met “Show Boat” cast members Billy Clark Taylor, Annabelle Fox and Peter Jackson. 


A Florida house budget panel recently voted against funding an economic development agency as well as the state’s tourism bureau.

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