Thursday, June 2, 2011

Been, been, been to Abaco! (And ready to return!)

You could be here at the Abaco Inn, Elbow Cay, Abaco Bahamas.
Another great road and sea trip, this time featuring the fun and adventure of Abaco, Bahamas. If you missed this show, you missed one of the best.

Sitting in for co-host Robin Hicks-Connors, Michael Albury, the president of the Abaco Chamber of Commerce and Abaco Community Tourism Foundation, jumped right into the groove in the co-host seat and was right at home even before the show began.

The conversation was fast and flowing. Judy Fortenberry, manager of the Abaco Inn, our host venue for the show, shared all the details of this fabulous property focusing in on the “Barefoot Excellence” the resort is known for. What is "Barefoot Ellegance?" If you tuned into the show, you heard. If you didn't turn into the show, you can find out by listening to the recorded audio file.

Judy Fortenberry, Michael Albury, Olivia Patterson,
Lindsey McCoy, Gary Guertin and Michelle Mikula
in a post-show, relaxed photo poolside at the Abaco Inn.
Besides providing "Barefoot Ellegance" every day, raising funds to restore a vintage 1965 Land Rover fire truck on Elbow Cay is one of Judy’s current community efforts. Can you help? Glad you asked and YES you can!! Make your $20 Hope Town Fire Truck restoration donation here!

Moving on, the conversation headed into the realm of current tourism efforts in Abaco. Michelle Mikula, from the Abaco Tourist Office, gave us a great update on her involvement on assisting wedding and other group tourism activity in Abaco. Thinking of a Bahamas wedding ceremony? Learn how long you have to be in the country and other necessary requirements you need to be aware of to make your dream wedding come true. Want to know what’s happening in Abaco over the next couple months? From the Summer Junkanoo Festival to the world famed Abaco Regatta, there is truly something for everyone.

Michael Albury outlined some of the concepts unfolding to launch a collaborative effort among the private sector to market Abaco as a tourism destination. Radio Man (aka Gary Guertin) and Michael share many same beliefs that destination development is a community-wide effort.

In most non-urban tourism destinations, the environment plays a huge role in developing and sustaining the tourism industry. The Bahamas, comprised of over 700 islands and cays with offshore, near-shore and inshore eco-systems, has a huge stake in ensuring that these precious habitats remain intact. Meet Olivia Patterson, the program coordinator for Friends of the Environment, an Abaco based conservation and education organization. This non-profit's efforts are extremely important in educating both Bahamians and visitors to respect, understand and appreciate the value of these resources for generations to come. Olivia’s comments are relevant to tourism destinations around the world.

Are you hungry yet? Lindsey McCoy, producer of Conch Salad TV, was next on the show menu. What she and her director partner Matt are doing is awesome. Want to experience the Bahamas like a local? Then dial in Conch Salad TV at Some t'ings we learned from Lindsay include: who is Gary the Explorer, where are cave shrimp found, are they sightless and how many does it take for a Cave Shrimp Cocktail, how long does it take for an experienced “conch cracker” to clean a conch, and much more. Thanks for all the great cocktail party conversation Lindsey!

Before we knew it, the hour was over. What does that mean? It means we definitely have to go, go, go back to Abaco for Part II of Talkin’ Tourism’s Abaco Adventures. So many cays, so much rum and so little time…island time that is.

Here's the link to the Abaco show's audio file. Pour yourself a nice fruity tropical cocktail, sit back, and enjoy the show! We certainly did.

Show Album

Abaco Album

Friends of the Environment 2011 Lionfish Derby

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