Power Boat Exclusive

After tearing through public records about IMG Academy and other tourism initiatives, the lead tourism folks for the county decided to bring an exclusive to me about a major event planned for Bradenton.

It showed they trusted me and that I could do a thorough job. And sure, they wanted to have more control over the story…and they were asking my publisher for sponsorship money.

Still, it turned out to be a nice get. And the event itself was a success during its first year. A few minor hiccups with food, access and beer, but plenty of people turned out.

The one thing I regret not doing in my reporting was calling people in Pittsburgh about this event not associated with it. After I left the paper, I found out that the company that was bringing the festival to Bradenton, ISM-USA, lost the contract for the Pittsburgh event the following year as the city wanted to have someone new at the helm.

Not major but it would explain some of the motivation.

As the year progressed, I would cover minor updates from tourism council meetings and the urban affairs reporter would focus on the city issues from both Palmetto and Bradenton as this became more of a municipal story until the event itself.

Bradenton area could host powerboat race in 2015 on Manatee River

Manatee River powerboat race tweaks schedule, asking for tourism dollars

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