Thursday, February 23, 2012

Surf's Up!

For all of the surf dudes and dudettes out there in radio land, this week show hosts Gary Guertin and Robin Hicks-Connors are hitting the beaches of the Treasure Coast. From Sebastian to Jupiter, the Treasure Coast has some of the finest beaches in Florida. We'll explore these with Ohana Surf Shop owner Jordan Schwartz and veteran surfer Justin Beard. Having lived the surfer life-style for years and actually moving to Florida from the chilly New England waters in search of the perfect wave (or at least warmer water), Radio Man surfed all of these beach years ago. Want to know the best surf breaks along the Treasure Coast?  What's the latest on the surfing scene? This week's show will reveal those answers and more!

Speaking of surfing, while we have Jordan and Justin in the studio, we'll give all the details of the 4th Annual Single Fin Showdown, taking place at Stuart Beach on March 17th.  This retro and popular surf contest has gotten bigger and better every year. What’s on tap this year? Based upon past showdowns, this event will continue to draw surfers and friends to Stuart from across the state.  We'll cover those points, along with the local non-profit that will benefit from the funds raised during the event. The last couple of years, Talkin’ Tourism's own Gary Guertin has been a judge. Will he judge again this year? Tune in for the scoop.

And, depending on the time, all the usual and sometimes unusual regular show features, upcoming events and more will be covered. If you are a local, thanks for supporting the tourism industry! And, if you are a visitor, thanks for spending time on Florida's Treasure Coast.

The fun begins on Friday at 10:05 a.m. You can catch the live radio broadcast on WPSL 1590 AM or you can catch the live Internet stream at Time to wax up. See you in the morning!

Eco-Education and Rediscovery

Ellie Van Os, the director of education and exhibits at
the Florida Oceanographic Society, on the docks of Sailfish Marina
with  Talkin' Tourism co-host Robin Hicks-Connors
There are times when you have a great guests, and then there are times when you have GREAT guests.  And Ellie Van Os, Director of Education and Exhibits for the Florida Oceanographic Society (FOS), was certainly a GREAT guest! As one of Martin County’s signature attractions, the Florida Oceanographic Society’s Coastal Center is the hallmark of eco-education tourism.  Ellie has had an amazing career, from leading polar bear expeditions to working for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Ellie has found her “perfect fit” with FOS.

Ellie updated Talkin' Tourism listeners with on all of the new features of the Coastal Center, as well as all of the educational outreach programs offered by the Society. There are many great programs you won't want to miss!

We asked how attendance has been at the Coastal Center so far this season and Ellie was pleased to report that attendance is at an all-time high. It is gratifying to know visitors from across the country want to learn about the importance of the stewardship of our ocean and coastal environments.  Let’s face it, where else can your children hand feed a stingray or observe gamefish, nurse sharks and sea turtles in a man-made replica of the Indian River Lagoon? The only place we know is the Florida Oceanographic Coastal Center, unless you're planning to snorkel one of the world's great barrier reefs!

Talkin' Tourism host Gary Guertin also shared his “rediscovery” of the Treasure Coast as the new co-publisher of the Treasure Coast edition of Coastal Angler Magazine.  Although he's lived on the Treasure Coast for over 30 years, he shared some great insights that all long-timers too have an opportunity to re-discover.

The hour always flies, but co-host Robin Hicks-Connors and Gary managed to get in some Bahamas updates, information on great trip deals to Washington, Philadelphia and Boston aboard Gray Line Bus from New York, and much more.

If you missed the show, click here for the February 17 replay of Talkin' Tourism.

See you on Friday!

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Oceans and Our Coastal Environments

The Florida Oceanographic Society (FOS), headquartered on Hutchinson Island in Stuart, Florida has been a vigilant advocate in promoting the stewardship of our ocean and coastal resources for several decades.  Now, with the continued expansion of the FOS Coastal Center, visitors and locals can learn more about  the importance of these precious resources.

This week , we welcome Ellie Van Os, the Director of Education and Exhibits for the Florida Oceanographic Society as our featured guest.  Talkin’ Tourism host Gary Guertin and co-host Robin Hicks-Connors want to help our listeners get caught up on what is new at the center. Some of our host's questions will include:

  • How attendance has been or not impacted in the current challenged economy?  
  • Is eco-education an important activity for visitors to the Treasure Coast?  
We know that Robin, former executive director of the Martin County Historical Society, and Ellie will have a lively conversation about “exhibits” and visitor interaction.

With host Gary and his wife Misti now the co-publishers of the Treasure Coast edition of Coastal Angler Magazine, in addition to the Bahamas edition, Gary will share his thoughts on his first week of “rediscovering” the Treasure Coast as the new co-publisher. Are there only strangers in this world, or just friends we haven’t met yet?

The rest of the show (if there is time) will feature select tourism topics from around the country and around the globe.  Did you know that Nik Wallenda has been given permission to tightrope across Niagara Falls, or how to visit the Freedom Trail in Boston from New York for only $149.00 per ticket? Listen in tomorrow (Friday, February 16) for these details and a whole lot more this week on Talkin’ Tourism!

If you're in listening range, tune your radio dial to 1590 AM. If you're any place in the world, you can still catch the show via your favorite Internet browser at The fun begins at 10:05 a.m. "See" you then!

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Nature and Old Florida Take Center Stage

Guests Rufus Wakeman and Chuck
Barrowclough with Talkin' Tourism
host Gary Guertin.
When you have two great guests it is not hard to have a great show!  Leading off this week was Chuck Barrowclough, the executive director of Treasured Lands Foundation.  The key reason why Chuck was on the show was to promote an event on February 26 that benefits the organization featuring award winning author Richard Louv.  Do you know what NDD (Nature Deficient Disorder) is?  You may want to check out this show and hear what Chuck has to say. We just hope it is not catchy. Also, you’ll find out why co-host Robin Hicks-Connors and Chuck spent the night together. Yes, spent the night together. Just remember, you read it here first!

Martin County is certainly blessed with a diversity of accommodations for visiting guests.  River Palm Cottages and Fish Camp owner Rufus Wakeman share with our listeners all of the amenities of this riverside gem.  Want a fun waterfront wedding?  They can do that. Want a taste of Old Florida?  You have to stay there!  The conversation quickly moved to the importance of inshore fishing in our region.  In the Bahamas, they say that every bonefish is worth $10,000.00.  So what do you think our regions snook, tarpon, redfish, trout and pompano are worth?  We know that Stuart is the Sailfish Capital of the World.  Could the Treasure Coast also be the Inshore Fishing Capital of the World?  By the way, do you know the difference between “inshore” fishing and “nearshore” fishing?  Tune into the show and you will know these little nuggets of fishing knowledge for your next cocktail party ice breaker.

Rounding out the show was of course more great Bahama updates and some special deals if you are headed to the islands any time soon.

What was the BREAKING NEWS that was to be revealed during the show? Let’s just say that there is now a bridge between the Islands of the Bahamas and Florida’s Treasure Coast!

Thanks for being a fan of the show. Here's the link to the February 10 Talkin' Tourism for those who wish to listen in again or for those of you who might have missed the live broadcast.

See you next week!

Friday, February 10, 2012

Inshore Fishing and Treasured Lands

The inshore fishing industry is just as powerful (if not more)
in terms of economic return. Learn more from guest
Rufus Wakeman, angler and owner of River Palms Cottages
and Fish Camp in Jensen Beach, Florida.

Photo courtesy of River Palms Cottages and Fish Camp.
This week, Talkin’ Tourism has the pleasure of speaking with Rufus Wakeman.  Rufus is the owner of River Palms Cottages and Fish Camp located in Jensen Beach, Florida.  Created in 1998, River Palms Cottages and Fish Camp is a very special and unique facility that provides guests with an “Old Florida State of Mind” experience.

The inshore fishing industry is a very strong part of the overall marine tourism component throughout Florida and many regions across the globe.  River Palms Cottages and Fish Camp has been instrumental in promoting the inshore fishery of the Jensen Beach/Treasure Coast area through numerous outdoor writers gatherings such as the DOA Lure Outdoor Writers Festival and the DOA Lures Paddlers event. While a lot of “ink” has been given to the sailfish sportfishing industry, the inshore fishing industry is just as powerful (if not more powerful) in terms of overall economic return. Talkin’ Tourism is thrilled to have Rufus share his knowledge with us and our listeners.

Keeping with the “outdoor/environmental theme” of the show, we are also pleased to have Chuck Barrowclough, executive director of the Treasured Lands Foundation, as an additional guest. Chuck is perhaps the most notable conservation and sensitive lands expert in the area.  Chuck will preview for our listeners an upcoming event featuring author Richard Louv. Mr. Louv is a journalist and author of eight books centering around the connection between family, nature and community.  In 2008, Louv was awarded the Audubon Medal, presented by the National Audubon Society. Where will this event take place?  You will have to listen to the show to get all of the details.

What else?  Well, Talkin' Tourism host Gary Guertin has some “BREAKING NEWS” regarding the continued development of the relationship between the Islands of the Bahamas and the Treasure Coast.
You will not want to miss the announcement!

"See you" from Sailfish Marina on Friday, (February 10) at 10:05 a.m. Catch the show on your radio dial on WPSL1590 AM or on your computer screen at

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Tourism Leaders and Rebirths and It's Time for the Martin County Fair

Ed Griffith, show host Robin Hicks Connors
and Martin County Fair and Youth Livestock Show
spokesperson Darryl Magill.
It is always a pleasure having special guest co-host Ed Griffith on the show as a real guest.  To start things off, Ed shared with us the plans Ocean Properties. Inc. has for the former Holiday Inn on Hutchinson Island in Jensen Beach, Florida. After sitting idle since the hurricanes of 2004, there is now great excitement regarding the rebirth of this well-known property.  There are not very many oceanfront rooms in Martin County so the addition of 180 rooms on the ocean will certainly be a draw to the area.  We are looking forward to the detailed plans!

Martin County Fair and Youth Livestock Show spokesperson Darryl Magill could not be a better cheerleader for this great American tradition. In his words, he likes to use the acronym F.A.I.R.E. to describe all that can be found by attending this event.  Here it is folks:
  • F….is for family
  • A…is for agriculture
  • I…is for industry
  • R…is for recreation and
  • E…is for entertainment.  
Want more FAIRE details?  Check out the show's audio file and we know you’ll then be making plans to head on over to this year’s Martin County Fair.

There was a great three way conversation between the Talkin' Tourism heads---Gary, Robin and Ed---encompassing the growth in the leadership of the tourism industry in Martin County.  With new members on the Martin County Convention and Visitors Bureau’s board of directors and seasoned leadership, the continued growth and recognition of the importance of the hospitality is in good hands. 

So listeners and blog fans, download the February 3 Talkin' Tourism show and in addition to all the information above you're certain to pick up some tourism gems of wisdom only found on Talkin’ Tourism!

Thursday, February 2, 2012

A Tourism Leader and off to the Martin County Fair

Having been involved with the promotion of the tourism industry in the Treasure Coast, Florida region for many years, Talkin’ Tourism host Gary Guertin has viewed the industry's revolution from a perspective few others in the area have experienced. One key aspect to the successful promotion of the hospitality industry in any region is leadership. This week, Talkin’ Tourism would like to introduce our listeners to Ed Griffith, the newly elected chairman of the Martin County Convention and Visitors Bureau. Ed has an exceptional background in the tourism industry and a track record of proven leadership. A past president of the Jensen Beach Chamber of Commerce and the Martin County Hotel/Motel Association, as well as involvement in countless other civic and community organizations over the years, Ed is the perfect leader to take the Martin County  Convention and Visitors Bureau and tourism in Martin County to the next level.  Join us to hear Ed’s thought and vision for the future.

There is one staple of Florida life (as well as in many other parts of the country) that has truly become a tradition.  That tradition is the local county fair. Martin County’s 53rd annual fair is just a little more than 1 week away. Darryl Magill, the chairman of the Entertainment Committee and the official spokesperson for the Martin County Fair and Youth Livestock Show, will be on the show to share how the fair fits into the community’s tourism fabric.

And, as usual, there will be lots of great tourism news and updates from around the block, as well as around the world!

Join us on Friday for another edition of Talkin’ Tourism. The fun begins at 10:05 a.m. and you can tune us in on WPSL 1590 AM or catch the live stream at We're looking forward to "seeing you" on the radio!

Hot Air Ballooning, Cruising and Sleuthing!

Debbie Mientus and Chris Sommers with Talkin' Tourism
host Gary Guertin.
Now, Radio Man and History Lady know just about everything you need to know about the sport and adventure of hot air ballooning!  Guests Debbie Mientus and Chris Sommers were very knowledgeable about their passion. Here is just a little about what we learned:

  • Despite being a hot air balloon pilot, Chris is afraid of heights…go figure. 
  • Chris has flown through every state in the country except Alaska and Hawaii.  
  • We also know why hot air balloon flying in the Bahamas isn't done and what happened a number of years ago when someone organize a “Bimini to Ft. Lauderdale” balloon race!  
Hopefully after this show you will definitely want to add a ride in a hot air balloon to your “bucket list”.

Lisa Higgins and Gary Smith from AAA Auto Club South
gave great insider information on cruising and a
Slueth's Mystery Day Trip to Orlando.
For those who are interested in learning the very best deals on cruises and tours, Gary Smith and Lisa Higgins from AAA Auto Club South definitely whet the appetite for taking a cruise. Besides cruising, Lisa, who is in charge of domestic travel, also gave us some great information on the Sleuth’s Mystery Day Trip to Orlando scheduled for Tuesday, February 28. This trip is being organized by AAA. Visit the AAA Auto Club South website for more information.

And for you Bahamas lovers, it's true! Bimini Sands Resort and Marina is now offering free five-day dockage under certain special conditions. If you missed the details, you can still pick them up by listening to last week's show.

See you on Friday with another edutaining hour filled with tourism news and tidbits you won't want to miss!

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