Monday, December 28, 2009

Rum punch, egg nog and Boxing Day!

Talkin' Tourism on Florida’s Treasure Coast hopes that all of our listeners had a great Christmas Day and are enjoying the holidays to the max. Show hosts Gary Guertin and Robin Hicks-Connors, through the magic of radio, spent Christmas morning with their listeners as they celebrated the 50th show. Besides enjoying a little eggnog (with just a hint of rum) and some Christmas cookies, 'Radio Man' and 'History Lady' covered a lot of ground, including their thoughts on what all of the tourism promotional organizations along the Treasure Coast would want to find under the tree this year. Did anyone find a lump of coal in their stocking? Listen to the show to find out.

Have you been a resident of the Treasure Cost long enough to remember the one-of-a-kind Christmas parties Janet Hutchinson threw at the Elliott Museum? Well if you ever attended one, you will remember Ms. Hutchinson's famous Christmas Punch. Robin shared the famous recipe with our listeners and talked about the 'measuring device' Ms. Hutchinson used to ensure proportions were exact. Wonder if any of our listeners have the same device in their kitchens?

In the British Commonwealth, Boxing Day is a celebrated holiday. Most of our listeners have heard of Boxing Day but don't know the origin of the tradition. Gary shared a number of possible origins, but is still wondering how Junkanoo got involved.

Last, but certainly not least, Robin and Gary took a look back at some of the shows and topics covered over the past months. Show listeners are certain to agree that possible tourism topics are indeed endless! If you missed Talkin' Tourism Christmas Day, the show is available here.

Gary, Robin and the entire support crew of Talkin' Tourism on Florida's Treasure Coast wish you and your family a healthy and prosperours New Year.

NOTE:  Talkin' Tourism takes a break this coming week; returning to the air on Friday, January 8, 2010.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Talkin' Tourism's Holiday Wish List? How about an iguana in a Christmas tree?

This week Talkin' Tourism on Florida’s Treasure Coast celebrates the BIG 5-0. That’s right folks; this week’s Special Christmas Show marks the 50th edition of Talkin' Tourism on Florida’s Treasure Coast.

While you and your loved ones are opening presents, listening to the Christmas music on WPSL 1590 AM and enjoying Christmas morning, Talkin' Tourism hosts Gary Guertin and Robin Hicks-Connors will be joining you from the Captain’s Lounge at Harborage Yacht Club. While sipping eggnog (laced with rum??) and munching on Christmas cookies, Gary and Robin will be taking a nostalgic look back on the highlights of the past year for Talkin' Tourism.

Certainly Treasure Coast tourism promotion organizations—Treasure Coast Sports Commission, St. Lucie County Tourism Development Council, Martin County Convention and Visitors Burean and more—all have their “Christmas Wish Lists." Gary and Robin will see what Santa may have left under the tree for them (in a perfect world) and clue you into who has been naughty or nice.

Robin will share some “historical Christmas in Martin County trivia” along with her “things to do, places to go and people to see” segment.

And to wrap it all up into a unforgettable holiday package, Gary and Robin will throw in a little Bahamian flavor (no they will not be drinking Bahama Mama’s) by exploring the beginnings of Boxing Day, which is a tradition in the Bahamas and countries throughout the British Commonwealth, and Junkanoo!

So sit back, relax and enjoy the last show of 2009 this Friday, December 25, at 10 a.m. on WPSL 1590 AM or via your computer at

Monday, December 21, 2009

Stu, Carol, Paul, Mary and a dog named Taz

The latest Talkin' Tourism on Florida’s Treasure Coast took the show to the man and woman on the “streets” or should we say the “waterways." For the first time since the show's inception, hosts Gary Guertin and Robin Hicks-Connors had the opportunity to speak with “Valued Seasonal Boaters" and learn first-hand their perceptions of the Treasure Coast.

Guests Stu and Carol Brewer are repeat visitors to Stuart, enjoying life aboard their 36-foot trawler. The Brewer's are relatively new to the boating lifestyle. During the show, Gary and Robin explore why the Brewers like to winter on the Treasure Coast, how they like life on the water, and how they made the decision to jump in to boating with both feet.

Next up was Paul and Mary Dolan, first-timers from New Market, Maryland. Their story is totally different! Here we have an entire family--mom, dad, four children (ages 17, 13, 12 and 7), and a boat dog, named Taz, on an adventure of a life-time. What possessed this family to purchase a 1977 46’ sailboat and head down the Intracoastal Waterway with dreams of visiting Florida the Islands of the Bahamas? Their story will make you think about what just may be the really important things in life. Are these teenagers missing their social scene? What about school? Is experiential education better than learning in the confines of a four walled classroom? Hear this and more by listening to their story.

Treasure Coast Airlines in up and running. Looking for quick New Year getaway? How about New Year’s Eve in Bimini? Gary and Robin cover this and more island happenings.

Trying to entice your family and friends to head south for the winter? Share the Talkin' Tourism blog link with them and tell them to leave the frigid north behind.

If your holiday plans will keep you away from your radio this week, Gary, Robin, the cast and crew of Harborage Yacht Club & Marina, the Martin County Historical Society, and those in hospitality businesses  on Florida's beautiful Treasure Coast, wish you Happy Holidays!

Miss the (December 18) show? You can listen or download the last Talkin' Tourism show HERE.

Friday, December 18, 2009

Treasure Coast Waterways a Mecca for Seasonal Boaters

Hotels, motels and condominiums are where visitors sleep, that’s a given. Where do our “valued seasonal" and visiting boats sleep? Of course the answer is marinas!

The Treasure Coast, bordering the Intracoastal Waterway on the east, Stuart serving as the east end of the Okeechobee Waterway and the Cross Florida Canal, and the St. Lucie, Fort Pierce, Sebastian and Jupiter Inlets all combine to create a boating synergy that is unsurpassed in Florida. There have been assumptions for years that marine and boating played a significant role in our tourism economy, but how much of a role? We know how many hotel, motel and condominium accommodations there are but how many slips are there? Well, a quick tally indicates there are almost as many wet slips as hotel and motel rooms! How long do seasonal boaters stay? Why did they select Stuart and the Treasure Coast for their winter homeport?

This week, Talkin' Tourism on Florida's Treasure Coast hosts Gary Guertin and Robin Hicks-Connors invite several “valued seasonal boaters” into the studio who have selected Stuart for the first time, as well as boaters who have returned time and time again, to share their thoughts about Stuart and the Treasure Coast as a boater destination.

This will be particularly interesting in light of the fact that local tourism stakeholders have just concluded a tourism summit identifying Martin County’s strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats.

Did community and tourism leaders identify the same strengths, weaknesses, and oportunities? Talkin' Tourism always enjoys hearing from our visiting guests to ensure we continue to meet their expectations as a regional destination.

Along with the valued seasonal boaters topic for the week, listeners who tune in will hear the latest updates from the Bahamas, Robin’s “This Week in Martin County History,” to fun activities and events coming up on the Treasure Coast.

Tune in to WPSL 1590 AM or at 10 a.m. today (Friday, 12/18/2009) and learn more about the tourism industry where our only job “is to help visitors have a great time.”

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Snakes, Piranha and Hemingway show available for download

The December 4 Snakes, Piranha and Hemingway---It's just "Edutainment!" show is now available for download HERE.

Safari's and Airplanes

Talkin' Tourism on Florida’s Treasure Coast took a walk on the wild side this week both on the ground and in the air with two great guests. On the ground was Joe O’Bannon, owner/operator of J&R Outfitters located in western Martin County. We have often stated that "Martin County offers a hugely diverse menu of activities," but after you listen to Friday’s show, you will know that that statement is BEYOND true.

Joe took Talkin' Tourism hosts Robin Hicks-Connors and Gary Guertin on safari describing the workings a true game reserve, how they are saving critically endangered species, providing a nature experience that could only be replicated in many instances, by traveling Sub-Sahara Africa. Listeners learned what the differences are between a game farm, a game ranch and a true game reserve. They also learned that J&R Outfitters isn't the only place to hunt in Martin County, and how many State owned hunting areas there are in Martin County.

Big news! Stuart now has a on-demand, scheduled airlift to Walker’s Cay and Marsh Harbour, Abaco. Treasure Coast Airlines owner Danny Krachun’s service is receiving huge interest from Treasure Coast residents and visitors who wish to spend time in the Bahamas. Other points discussed was the issue of filling empty seats on the run back to the Treasure Coast.

The Treasure Coast is definitely on the cutting edge of some great new tourism happenings. Stay tuned to Talkin' Tourism weekly to learn about the lastest tourism news first!

If you missed this show, you can download it here.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Hunting and Fishing on Florida's Treasure Coast and a 'New' Way to Hit the Bahamas

The Treasure Coast is verifiably diverse in its attractions, offerings and activities to visitors who chose the area as a vacation destination. Most locals and visitors are attracted to the area for our beaches, waterways, small town charm, arts/culture, and more. But there is more to the Treasure Coast than the coast. As we have discussed on prior shows, the western portions of Indian River, Martin and St. Lucie counties offer vistas, activities and experiences that differ dramatically from a beach experience.

In Florida, and many other states, hunting and fishing represent millions in tourism dollars. A few hunting and fishing factoids for you to digest:

•  Sportsmen support more jobs than Disney World (85,000 vs. 61,000)
•  There are 214,000 resident hunters in Florida
•  Florida sportsmen spend $4.8 billion annually.
•  Florida ranks number two in the nation in total economic impact from hunting and fishing. Texas is number one in the nation.

J&R Outfitters, the largest preserve east of the Mississippi River, is located in Martin County. Guest Joe O’Bannon will describe the fascinating and unique hunting opportunities to be experienced at this hunting lodge. But it is more than just hunting. The 3,000-acre preserve is home to dozens of Florida native species. Some of the topics we'll explore with Jim this week is how hunting at J&R Outfitter’s compares with hunting in Africa. Two more factoids:  Mr. O’Bannon is one of the few hunters licensed in several African countries. And, swamp buggy photo safaris are one of the adventures offered by J&R Outfitters.

Are the Bahamas getting closer? It certainly seems so to many Treasure Coast residents with the announcement this week by Treasure Coast Airlines beginning service to the Bahamas from Witham Field in Stuart and from St. Lucie County International Airport, Ft. Pierce. Guest Danny Krachun will be a guest in the studio this Friday to provide details on this much needed airlift to the Bahamas. Some of the questions Talkin' Tourism on Florida's Treasure Coast plans to explore is what destinations will be serviced and will Bahamians utilize this service to come to the Treasure Coast? Talkin' Tourism hosts Gary Guertin and Robin Hicks-Connor predict the new service will be a HUGE success.

Tune in this Friday, December 11, 10 a.m. to 11 a.m. by radio (WPSL 1590 AM) or computer ( 'See' you then!

Monday, December 7, 2009

Snakes, Piranha and Hemingway---It's just "Edutainment!"

Amazing, unbelievable, outrageous! These are just some of the words that come to mind when Talkin' Tourism on Florida's Treasure Coast show guest Dr. Doug Noble took us on our tour of the "Amazon Voyage: Vicious Fishes and Other Riches" exhibit, now on exhibit at the Florida Musuem of Natural History.

Can you believe a snake vertebrae fossils the size a grapefruit? How big would the snake have been? Go swimming in a lake with Piranha? Dr. Noble did and lived to tell about it.

These are just a small tease of what the December 4 Talkin' Tourism show was all about. The Florida Museum of Natural History is definitely a must see, especially for Florida resident's.

Today, museums truly specialize in “edutainment." What is “edutainment?" Co-host Robin Hicks-Connors calls it smart fun. If you listened to the show or if you download it for listening, you will be much more hip to the wonders of the Amazon River, one of our planet’s greatest resources. Gainsville, Florida has a lot more to brag about than just football!

Talkin' Tourism host Gary Guertin and co-host Robin also reported on the Finest Kind Quickie tournament, including who won and how much money they won, as well as the bite prediction for the Pirates Cove Sailfish Classic. According to Gary, the early prediction calls for some great sailfishing action.

Surprise guest Danielle Dunfee, Sales and Event Manager for Bimini Bay Resort and Marina, dropped in and gave a few highlights on what's happening on Bimini. Known primarily for sportfishing and also one of Ernest Hemingway’s favorites, Bimini will be the site of a Talkin' Tourism live remote after the first of the year. Talkin' Tourism hosts will explore and report on the diving and other fun activities found on this Bahamian island. Details to come.

Special thanks are in order to Kelly Donovan, Communications Specialist for the Florida Museum of Natural History, for arranging Dr. Noble’s visit, Ed Griffith, General Manager of the Courtyard Hutchinson Oceanside/Jensen Beach for providing Dr. Nobles accommodations, and the leadership of the Elliott Museum, Florida Oceanographic Society, Children’s Museum and the Maritime and Classic Boat Museum for arranging site visits for Dr. Noble during his stay on the Treasure Coast.

If you missed the show, you can listen to it or download it HERE.
See you next week!

Below, photo slideshow from Dr. Nobles Martin County Trip.

PHOTO:  Dr. Noble holding a snake vertebrae fossil the size a grapefruit.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Off to the Amazon this week!

This week Talkin’ Tourism on Florida’s Treasure Coast takes a walk on the WILD SIDE as we take a tour of the Amazon River, the most biologically diverse river in the world. Listeners will be introduced to amazing creatures includin notorious piranhas, enormous anacondas, beautiful stingrays, and mysterious pink dolphins.

Doug Noble, PH.D., Assistant Director of Exhibits, Public Programs and Assistant in Museum Administration at the Florida Museum of Natural History, is this week's scheduled guest (and tour guide). Dr. Noble will describe in full detail the museum’s current exhibit: “Amazon Voyage; Vicious Fishes and Other Riches.”

In addition to his Talkin’ Tourism appearance this Friday, Dr. Noble is in town to visit museum and cultural arts facilities in Martin County.

Co-host Robin Hicks-Connors (aka History Lady) wants listeners to know the Florida Museum of Natural History will be loaning artifacts—one, possibly two dugout canoes—to exhibit in the new Elliott Museum. Hopefully Dr. Noble's Martin County fieldtrip will be the beginning of a long collaborate cultural relationship between the Treasure Coast and the Florida Museum of Natural History.

The Florida Museum of Natural History, chartered in 1917 and located at the University of Florida, is Florida’s state museum of natural history, dedicated to understanding, preserving and interpreting biological diversity and cultural heritage. The museum has the largest natural history collection in the Southeast, and is one of the nation’s top ten natural history collections.

If you're headed north in the next month, don't miss “Amazon Voyage; Vicious Fishes and Other Riches.” The exhibit is on display at the Florida Museum of Natural History in Gainesville until January 17, 2010.

Also on Friday, get the latest on the sailfish tournament season. Who won the Finest Kind Quickie? How many boats are fishing the Pirates Cove Sailfish Classic? And much more this week on Talkin Tourism on Florida’s Treasure Coast. There may even be two special guests direct from the Amazon in the studio! Curious? Tune in this Friday, December 4 at 10 a.m. to find out who or what? Find us on your radio dial at WPSL 1590 AM or on your computer at
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