Like him or not, President Obama and his family might be in Panama City Beach for a “personal” vacation August 14 to enjoy our emerald green waters and crystal white sand, the same as hundreds of thousands of tourists do each year. Note the word, “might”, used in the first sentence.
Local media outlets owned by Freedom Communication (News Herald, Walton Sun, and the Northwest Florida Daily News) have all reported that they will be vacationing in Panama City Beach. However, the only release I can find states that they will be visiting the Gulf Coast area with the specific area being, at this time, undisclosed.
Either way, news of President Obama coming to our treasured area is sure to boost tourism. With all the media activity we’ve seen over the last couple months, news of the First Family vacationing along our stretch of beach is certainly not to be looked over as anything but great.
Last we talked about the Obama family and their relation to our beach, in that the First Lady sifted her toes through our snowy sand, we had a huge backlash from our readers and a wave of unsubscribes. I found this perplexing, to say the least.
I’ll be the first to admit, I didn’t vote for President Obama. And, I don’t agree with much he stands for or supports. But, I will say this: He is our president. I would never say that his office should grant him immediate respect as a person, but his office as the presidency certainly cannot be looked over in that it is quite fantastic that our little quaint beach town is now known by something of such global recognition. I mean. . . come on. . . that’s awesome. Admit it.
So what does all this mean for us? Whether the First Family comes to Panama City Beach, or any other area in the Gulf Coast, this is huge for tourism on our waters. Any of you that have been down here over the last two months know as well as I that we live in paradise. Absolute paradise. People dream of spending just a few choice moments in our waters all year long. We get to do it every day. And, now that the President and his family has chosen to spend a few days before their summer vacation in our waters is sure to give one last push for our tourism season.
Local officials have reported that the visit of the First Lady, Michelle Obama last month has done wonders for encouraging people to come down, leave their flops at the beach entrance and enjoy a day in the Gulf. If President Obama and the family come here to Panama City Beach, I want to be the first to welcome them to the beach and sincerely wish them a great time.