Despite being amid Southwest Florida’s tourist slow season, Collier County Convention and Visitors Bureau continues to adjust from the impacts of Hurricane Ian while keeping the area’s tourism numbers close to record highs.
The tourism industry had two major successes this month. Less than three weeks before Independence Day, Naples City Council postponed the city’s traditional fireworks display over concerns the beach wasn’t ready to handle a large influx of people, along with security worries about vacant homes and buildings near the beach after dark. Instead, Collier County’s Paradise Coast Sports Complex in East Naples hosted a Fourth of July celebration with fireworks attended by an estimated 7,500 people.
“The collaboration was absolutely impressive, and as a result, we really heard little to no feedback that was anything other than completely positive,” Collier County Tourism Director Paul Beirnes said. “Some challenges were getting that many people back out onto Collier Boulevard afterward, but, honestly, with that many cars, we kind of expected there be some [traffic]. So, we’re already looking at that location for next year’s July Fourth celebration and for other events similar to that, so pretty exciting.”
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