May 12, 2009
Governor Crist Endorses Viva Florida! Program
www.VivaFlorida.org, and Spanish Colonial Heritage Trail Guide. The Web site provides Spanish- and English-speaking travelers with details on the trail guide’s historic locations as well as an interactive calendar highlighting local events that promote Florida’s Hispanic culture, art and cuisine. The bilingual trail guide highlights Florida/Spanish history, showcases historical sites and provides information on early Spanish explorers. Cultural and historical activities provide a tremendous economic benefit to Florida. According to the Economic Impacts of Historic Preservation in Florida study by the University of Florida, nearly $4 billion is spent annually in Florida by tourists who visit historic sites. VISIT FLORIDA surveys show that nearly 50 percent of Florida visitors participate in history-based activities while on vacation. VISIT FLORIDA and the Florida Department of State are working together to promote Viva Florida! by mobilizing their partners to educate consumers about Florida’s unique history. Important milestones in Florida and United States history include:
- In 2009, Pensacola’s 450th anniversary marks one of the first attempts at European settlement in the United States. The anniversary celebration launched with a royal visit from King Juan Carlos I and Queen Sofia of Spain in February 2009. Many events and activities are planned throughout the remainder of the year. For more information visit www.celebratepensacola.com and www.visitpensacola.com.
- In 2013, Florida’s Quincentennial will honor the 1513 arrival and exploration by Juan Ponce de Leon and the 500th anniversary of Florida. For more information visit www.VivaFlorida.org.
- In 2015, St. Augustine’s 450th anniversary will be honored. The St. Augustine Commemoration Commission is planning a series of events in America’s oldest city, remembering Pedro Menéndez de Avilés’ arrival in 1565, when he established the settlement of St. Augustine. For more information visit www.visitoldcity.com.
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