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Contact: Brittany Lesser
850.245.6522

MEDIA ADVISORY: Florida Department of State Brings Travel Writer to Panhandle to #DISCOVERNWFL

TALLAHASSEE, FLA. – Oct. 6, 2014 – This week, the Florida Department of State welcomes travel writers from key market publications to #DiscoverNWFL, showcasing the rich heritage and diverse historic landmarks beyond the famous shores of Northwest Florida. Staying in the Crowne Plaza Pensacola Grand – located on the site of the historic L & N Railroad passenger depot – journalists will spend four days immersed in Viva Florida Northwest Floridasites along the Panhandle. Journalists will also experience delectable Fresh from Florida dishes presented by Pensacola’s Celebrity Chefs, ultimately resulting in feature stories encouraging potential Florida tourists to #DiscoverNWFL. Regional and local media are invited to a press dinner, to learn more about the Department of State promotional efforts around the campaign.

 When:            Thursday, Oct. 9, 2014
                         5:30 p.m.

Where:           Jackson’s Steakhouse
                        400 S Palafox St,
                        Pensacola, FL 32502

 “Each visitor to Florida represents an opportunity to share the history of our great state through cultural heritage tourism,” said Secretary of State Ken Detzner. “In fact, a recent study from VISIT FLORIDA found that 65 percent of visitors to the state participate in culturally based activities. We are excited to welcome writers to #DiscoverNWFL and share the hidden gems of Florida with their readers.”

 Florida’s story is key to the nation’s story, and as this story is shared, the economy is strengthened and visitors gain a broader understanding of the state’s deep history and diverse culture. From August 2012 to August 2013, more than $2.5 billion in direct spending by Florida residents was attributed to cultural and heritage tourism activities in Florida. This number shows that the Florida experience can incorporate many educational and historical sites across the state while also bolstering its economy. Viva Florida Northwest Florida – created in 2014 as a part of the statewide Viva Florida campaign to promote Florida’s history and culture – offers numerous museums, sites and events, all perfectly poised between Pensacola and Tallahassee. Spreading the word by tagging #DiscoverNWFL in posts, visitors discover that Northwest Florida provides sun-kissed guests with much more than meets the eye. The campaign engages socially-minded individuals with opportunities to win getaways to the region throughout 2014.

 To #DiscoverNWFL, visit vivaflorida.org/Northwest.

For more information, contact Brittany Lesser at Brittany.Lesser@dos.myflorida.com or 850.245.6522.

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About Viva Florida

In 2013, Florida reached a significant milestone, the 500th anniversary of Juan Ponce de León's arrival on Florida's east coast. Building on the success of Viva Florida 500 in 2013, The Florida Department of State continues to work with partners statewide to promote cultural and historical experiences through a multi-year campaign called Viva Florida, which promotes 12,000 years of Florida’s people, places and cultural achievements.