Hey Grandma! Southwest Airlines Announced Direct Flights from St. Louis for 2013

Hey St. Louis residents, looking for a cheap way to get to the beach?  Southwest Airlines just announced direct flights from St. Louis to Northwest Florida Beaches International Airport (ECP) starting March 9th and going through August 10th.  They experimented with daily flights last year from the great midwest to Panama City Beach, and obviously it was successful enough to warrant doing it again!

Last year they ran the non-stop flights from June to August.

So, Grandma, pack your bags, I’m flying you to the beach!

Full Press Release.

PANAMA CITY, FL (February 27, 2013) – After a successful trial in 2012, Southwest Airlines is bringing back a nonstop flight from Northwest Florida Beaches International Airport (ECP) to Lambert-St. Louis International Airport (STL). The route begins March 9th and will run every day through August 10th, covering the busy spring break and summer travel seasons in Northwest Florida.

Southwest tested the seasonal flight from June through August of last year and achieved great results. During its two month run, Southwest carried about 16,000 passengers on the roundtrip route between Panama City Beach and St. Louis.

“We are very happy about the return of the nonstop flight to St. Louis,” said Airport Executive Director John Wheat. “St. Louis is a fantastic destination for our locals to visit and at two hours flight time, it makes visiting Panama City Beach much more convenient for those in the Midwest.”

The initial March 9th flight is scheduled to depart from Panama City Beach at 10:05 a.m. while the first flight in is scheduled for a 2:45 p.m. arrival. Subsequently, the route’s regular departure time is 12:05 p.m. with arrival at 2:05 p.m.

Tickets can be purchased online at http://www.southwest.com.

Video Preview of New Airport

Having been under construction for two and a half years, the new airport in Panama City is finally about to open.  Dubbed Northwest Florida Beaches International Airport, the new facility boasts the title of being the first commercial airport build in the U.S. since 9/11.  Not only is the new airport expected to change the dynamics of travel to our area, many are expecting increased growth and prosperity that would have been difficult to realize without this new addition to our area.

The grand opening ceremonies are this weekend with the airport being open to the public on Saturday from 9 am to 4 pm.  But, if you can’t wait, here is a video of the new airport.

Mission Accomplished: An Interview with Coastal Vision 3,000’s Buddy Runnels

Over the course of the last 2 months following Coastal Vision 3000’s announcement of its disbanding, numerous articles have been written, many speculative, as to what caused the doors to close. Even more were curious as to the declaration of, “Mission Accomplished,” and what goals of Coastal Vision 3,000 were actually achieved. To answer our questions, we went directly to the source, Mr. Davage “Buddy” Runnels, who served as the chairman of CV3’s board. In his view, the mission was accomplished, but not yet completed. Continue reading “Mission Accomplished: An Interview with Coastal Vision 3,000’s Buddy Runnels”