Twitter Weekly Updates for 2009-03-31

  • just signed up for twittervision, wondering how it works. #
  • Tootsies is packed out. And I was told this is nothing, wait til 11 #
  • Tootsies is packed out. I was told that this is nothing though. They said wait until 11 #
  • oh sweet success. everything is in order, in place and good! super stoked. #
  • maybe all my stuff is still on it? that would be nice. #
  • so far so good, fingers crossed. #
  • yay, I just got my mackbookpro back. lets see if it works. they were supposed to have fixed it! #
  • ooo, it’s raining hard now. getting dark outsite. #
  • Where nikki allen volleyball chick fainted on tv with wayne gentry – Photo: http://bkite.com/05Xj1 #
  • They’ll play its raining, but the wind is what mkes it tough – Photo: http://bkite.com/05XiB #
  • Trying to get my media pass. Funny how these outsiders come in here and lock down our area. #
  • Avp at sharkys. Winds probably 20mph gusts. Blowing me over. – Photo: http://bkite.com/05XhI #
  • On top of seahaven. Winds are scary up here, and its starting to rain. #
  • will tweet for food! #
  • But, getting ready to go up to GCCC for back end demo on new panama city beach web site. #
  • came home with my middle son – crazy bad weather, tornado warning and torrential rain. scary #
  • Let’s see what the board thinks. I think the creative was great. Huge improvement over last year. #
  • Realfunbeach would be the new url for the campign #
  • Ypartnership’ summer marketing campaign creative art is way better than last year. #
  • Peter yesawich is up. Talking about summer marketing plan. #
  • Huge social push. The site will update pcb’s network of social sites. #
  • Jbinc is going to create custom facebook apps for the new site. #
  • Eventually partners will be able to add their own videos. #
  • Partners will be able to add their own promos. And even specify it towards certain “personalities” #
  • Ooo, has partner login section for . . . Well, partners. #
  • Name recall using cookies. Displays name across top of page. Says welcome back *name* at the top. #
  • Amazingly simple content management system (cms). Very straightforward and easy to navigate. #
  • Front end of the visitpanamacitybeach.com website is amazing. Let’s look at the backend. Inovative cms #
  • Trip planner plots out where you’re going on maps mashup #
  • Entire site changes based on the anwers to the “fun quizes”. #
  • “Fun” is the theme. #
  • Uses boulean search. Searches index of everything on the site. Text, image tags, everything. Cool. #
  • heading to the TDC meeting to see the new VisitPanamaCityBeach web site from @JenniferBarbee #
  • @Sunjammers the flowrider? Miracle Strip Loop http://tinyurl.com/cgj3aq in reply to Sunjammers #
  • Just ordered the big daddy jack burger at bww #
  • I’m at Buffalo Wild Wings Grill & Bar – http://bkite.com/05TOc #
  • going to pier park for lunch with @beachaccesspcb #
  • http://twitpic.com/2gnfc – Breaking news! Indoor flowrider in panama city beach #
  • The pros are out practicing even though rain approaches #
  • Avp is getting cranked up behind sharkys. – Photo: http://bkite.com/05RIu #

Litter on our beach, pay $500 fine.

Last week the Beach City Council changed the way it enforces “beach litter” on Panama City Beach.  Before, as long as the trash was picked up within 24 hours, it was ok.  Now, property owners can be fined if any trash is found on their property – period- regardless of how long it has been there.  The only check in place is that the decision has to be made with “common-sense.”

This new ordinance would require that property owners continuously police the beach to ensure that it is clean so as to prevent fines.  The baseline penalty for each infraction is $250 per day.

I think that the spirit behind this decision is well intended, but I’m not so sure this is the way a clean beach campaign should be carried out.  I was talking to a friend the other day, who is a beachfront property owner that was outraged at this decision.  Her argument was that if beachgoers trash the beach in front of her condo building, but are not actually occupying a residence there, why should the condo community be held liable for their littering?  I can see how this could be applicable to a larger beachfront resort or club when the majority of the trash left behind would be a result of their concerted efforts, but what about the little guy?  If I own a beachfront house next to a public beach access, why should I have to pay a fine when someone else trashes the beach behind my home?

I think we’re close, but not there yet.  I agree that someone needs to be held accountable for the trash, but I think I’m going to side with the property owners this time, even though I don’t always agree with what they are trying to do (talking more to the big clubs, etc.).  I believe by telling the property owners that they need to keep their property clean regardless or they get fined, we are NOT moving in the direction of telling the offenders that they are in the wrong by putting the trash on the ground in the first place.  By doing this, we are simply continuing to encourage visitors to our area to litter, enforcing the attitude, “Don’t worry, just throw your trash on the ground, someone will come by and pick it up later.”

Will fining the property owners work in deterring trash build-up on our beaches?  I think so, but it sends the wrong message, and that’s the point. Plus, it is only a batch over a gaping hole, when in actuallity a whole new pair of jeans is needed.  What’s the right message?  We need to convey to visitors of our area that they can be on vacation from school or work, but not their civic responsibility of keeping the environment clean.  They aren’t allowed to throw trash on the ground at home, and they shouldn’t be allowed to throw trash on the ground here.

So, what do I propose?  I thought you’d never ask.  I propose that we keep the same ordinance in place (sorry owners) but it needs to be more specific, plus we need to fine those that are littering our beaches with their waste.

For the property owners

  • If you are a club or resort
    • You must have staff present and visible during activities cleaning and picking up trash where reasonable (obviously staff couldn’t be expected to be in the middle of 15,000 people at a concert)
    • If staff is not present or some sort of cleanup process is not taking place, then the property owner is given a warning, then fined if the problem is not taken care of by the same time the next day.
    • You are required to hand out a beach awareness flier that not only includes information about the flag system but also informs their guests of the penalties and fine associated with littering.  This flyer would also inform them that there are xx number of trash receptacles on the beach for trash disposal and plastic bags available at no charge to them available at the front desk (provided by the city/tdc).
  • If you are a private property owner (beach front residence single family or attached or residence only condo development)
    • If significant amount of trash is found behind residence, the owner is given a warning with the opportunity to verbally dispute.  If an agreement was made that the trash was the result of someone other than the owner, then the owner is not held liable.

For the Visitors to our area

  • If you litter on the beach and are caught, you’ll be given a $500 fine.  This includes cigarette butts.  This rule would be enforced using common sense.
  • When you check in to a condo or hotel, you’ll be given a flier notifying you of this and you will have the option of taking plastic bags with you to the beach should you feel that walking back and forth from your post on the beach to the trash receptical for every beer can is not worth your time.
  • You’ll be expected to keep your area clean with trash in a plastic bag, not laying about to be cleaned up at the end of the day.
  • Obviously, this law would be enforced within reason.  If there are 15,000 people at a concert behind Boardwalk, patrons couldn’t be expected to be walking around with plastic bags.

Does a $500 fine sound steep?  Well, Don’t Mess with the Beach.  TDC, you can have that slogan free of charge from me.  The problem is that our visitors think they can just throw the trash on the ground and someone else will clean up after them.  We have to change this message and make it clear that it is never ok to leave your garbage on the beach.  This is our most valued asset, but no one would know it because the rules we have in place don’t reflect that.

As part of the marketing campaign that the TDC is putting on, we need to allocate a budget to put up billboards, print flyers, advertise on web sites (mine please) that we are serious about keeping our beach clean.  We need to hire FloRida to sing a music video about putting trash in its place and play it on local TV stations for all to see that come to our area.  And, lastly, and certainly most importantly, we need to give officers the ticketing authority to go out and enforce this.  If we need to hire people that can do this, it will be well worth the effort.  We will make money off this immediately, but in the long-term, that money will slowly go away, as people realize that we don’t play around with litterers.

The eventual effect will be that people, when they think of our area, will remember that we value our beach greatly and that littering here is out of the question.  Some will be deterred by this and won’t come anymore, and we’re better off that way, as they are dirty and disrespectful.  Others will tell everyone they know about the great beautiful place they visit every year called Panama City Beach and that it never has trash on its beaches.  Our area will be virtually trash free because the burden of responsibility will not be too large as the burden will rest on those that are creating it on an individual basis.

thoughts?

Airport bringing in third-party for commercial and industrial development

This news is a little stale, but I needed to get this up.

The Airport Authority decided last week to bring in a third-party developer to manage the development of the 1,400 acres set aside for commercial and industrial uses.  Authority members voted for Jones Lang LeSalle over four other companies including Hunt Development Group, St. Joe/Haskell, Taylor & Mathis and TranSystems.

The Jones Lang LeSalle website touts that they are a global company with over 750 locations worldwide, and they manage properties in countries ranging from India to New Zealand and everywhere in between.  They will bring their expertise here not only to ensure that the area around the airport is developed correctly, but that it has the best opportunity to be occupied by quality businesses and/or services.

I think this is great as it, again, opens up our area to people and organizations that are outside our market and operate on a much larger scale.

11th Annual Zap Pro/Am Skim Jam Competition at Edgewater Beach Resort

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Surf’s up! Edgewater Beach & Golf Resort, a property of The Resort Collection of Panama City Beach, announced they will host the 11th Annual Zap Pro/Am Skim Jam Friday, April 17 through Sunday, April 19, 2009. Edgewater was the accommodations host for this competition last year, and anticipation for this year’s event has grown so much that Edgewater is already booked to capacity. Because of this, The Resort Collection is offering special rates for Edgewater’s sister property Long Beach Resort.

Located less than a mile away from Edgewater along 1,300 feet of emerald water and sugar-white sand, Long Beach Resort offers luxurious suites, private amenities and breathtaking waterfront views. Guests can enjoy oversized balconies, the tropical Lagoon Pool, two all-weather tennis courts, seasonally heated Polynesian pools and whirlpool spas at a 15% discount, with rates starting at just $110 per night when they book online with the promotional code: SKIM.

“Skim Jam is always an exciting event at Edgewater. We are proud to be the accommodations sponsor for this fun-filled, family-friendly competition,” said Paul Wohlford, vice president of sales and marketing at The Resort Collection.

Skimboarding enthusiasts from near and far are getting ready to put on their gear, wax their boards and prepare for the most thrilling skimboarding competition of the year. Skim Jam has truly made its name in the record books and features the best pro and amateur skimboard talent in the world. This nationally recognized sporting competition, organized by Tony and Lib Johnson of Mr. Surf’s Surf Shop, offers free admission to observers. Net proceeds from contestants’ entry fees go to benefit the Boys & Girls Club at Frank Brown Park and Skim USA.

Edgewater Beach & Golf Resort is offering a weekend full of exciting events, beginning with Global Surf Industries and Surftech’s Surf/ Stand-up Paddleboard Demo and Regatta, plus a chance to meet the pros of skimboarding at pre-check-in on Friday, April 17. The annual Zap Pro/Am Skim Jam Contest will begin on Saturday, April 18 at 8:30 a.m. and will run until 4:00 p.m. A treasure hunt in the sand for kids 11 and under called Panama Jack’s Lil’ Sandiggers Treasure Hunt will be held at 1:00 p.m., along with other fun-filled family activities on the beach. Sunday’s events will begin with Church On The Beach, a non-denominational praise and worship service, from 7:30 to 8:30 a.m. before the Skim Jam Finals begin at 9:00 a.m. The day will culminate with an awards ceremony for the competition’s winners.

AVP Pro Volleyball Tourney Results and Pictures

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After only a single day of play, the tournament ended just before sundown with 4 winners between two teams.  Phil Dalhausser and Todd Rogers took the first title in the AVP Crocs tour in Panama City Beach Sunday.  Heavy winds and rain cancelled play on Saturday and resulted in an abbreviated single-elimination tournament that ended around 7 pm.  The women’s title was won by Nicole Branagh and Elaine Youngs.

It was a battle of Beijing Olympians in the men’s final, with gold medalists Dalhausser and Rogers facing off against fellow Team USA members and No. 2 seeds Jake Gibb (Costa Mesa, Calif.) and Sean Rosenthal (Corona Del Mar, Calif.). The gold medalists bested the fifth-place finishers 19-21, 21-18, 15-9.

“Jake and Sean played really well the first set and halfway through the second,” said Dalhausser. “Coming back was such a mental boost. We rarely play this many matches in a day, but we’re in pretty good shape as a team.”

Dalhausser and Rogers advanced to Sunday’s final after defeating No. 4 seeds Brad Keenan (Costa Mesa, Calif.) and Florida State graduate Nick Lucena (Santa Barbara, Calif.) 21-12, 21-10. Gibb and Rosenthal reached the final by eliminating No. 6 seeds Matt Olson (Carlsbad, Calif.) and Kevin Wong (Honolulu) to the tune of 21-15, 21-10.

On the women’s side, the top seeds also bested the second-seeds, with Branagh and Youngs toppling Jen Kessy (San Clemente, Calif.) and April Ross (Costa Mesa, Calif.) in three games:16-21, 21-18, 15-9.

“Jen and April came out on fire serving,” said Youngs. “But we put the pressure on them with our serving and Nicole played incredible defense. When you play single elimination, you go point by point, balls to the wall, play smart, play aggressive.”

Youngs claimed her 43rd career title, solidifying her spot in the Top 10 career wins on the women’s side. 2008 AVP Crocs Tour Most Improved Player Branagh claimed her 8th.

Branagh and Youngs advanced to the final by defeating No. 4 seeds Angie Akers (Redondo Beach, Calif.) and Tyra Turner (Fort Myers Beach, Fla.) 30-28, 21-13. Kessy and Boss took out No, 3 seeds Annett Davis (Valencia, Calif.) and Jenny Johnson Jordan (Wexford, Pa.), 21-19, 19-21, 21-19.  Source: avp.com

The weather yesterday was perfect, the crowds mild and the action intense.  Being Sunday, I was only there for a bit, but managed to get some great pictures and video (which will be posted later this week).

Check out the pictures uploaded to our Flickr gallery below, and don’t forget to check our Facebook Fan Page for exclusive pictures and video.

Summer Marketing Campaign for Panama City Beach is LOADS Better This Year

As many of you remember, I (along with many of our contributors) was very vocal in the obvious failure of the Summer White Sale campaign that was rolled out last year.  Although the idea wasn’t quite right, it was the creative that I was so outraged by.  We spent a lot of money for an all around crappy campaign.  Now, with that lovely negative intro, this year’s campaign looks MUCH better.  The creative is way stronger.

I have some exclusive footage of what some of the animated banner ads may look like posted to my Facebook Fan Page.  Check it out. Be sure to become a “fan”.

I’m going to keep this short and let you see some of the advertising ideas.

You may, from time to time, notice I use words like “loads” or “brilliant”.  Today’s random fact of the day about Jason Koertge is that I LOVE Harry Potter (actually our whole family does) and I have a secret desire to speak with a British accent.  I know, lame, but I don’t care.

Wonderworks Coming to Panama City Beach

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“Let your imagination run wild, that’s the wonder of Wonderworks,” or so goes the tune on the Wonderworks web site.  Wonderworks, essentially a huge place to play seems to be coming to Panama City Beach.  I use the word “seems” because I still have yet to be able to get in contact with someone that has any solid information on this.  Perhaps this is where an “investigative reporter” would come in. Currently there is a location in Pigeon Forge, TN and Orlando, FL.

So far, I’ve found full building plans (thanks Aaron!), information for bidders of the project and heard from a dozen or so people that it will be located next to Walgreens at the intersection of Front Beach and Middle Beach Road.

According to some of the information I’ve found, the building will be a 4 story 36,000 square foot space filled with entertainment including exhibits, small rides, video games and more.

As quoted from the Pigeon Forge, TV location’s web site:

When you enter the building, everything will be upside down, so in order to participate in the fun, you must be inverted. Once you’re properly aligned for your adventure, Family Fun awaits with more than 120 interactive, hands-on exhibits. As the Building hurtled skyward it encountered what can only be described as a time portal.

The building from the outside looks as though it has been planted in the ground upside down, apparently the one here will look the same, according to the elevation that I’ve seen.  The site next to Walgreens is cleared and ready for development.  I’ve heard that the Walsinghams (they own Ripley’s) are the ones behind Wonderworks here, which would make sense as it is the same basic concept as their Ripley’s museum.  Of course, it helps that he owns the property also, all .68 acres of it.

In quoting Ignacio, the Luchador: So anywayz – I’ll keep you updated as I find more info, in my strretchy paunts.