Tourism and Travel News Briefs

Sunbury News Staff

Director of Key West Attractions Clinton Curry Sounds The Conch Shell At The Governor’s Tourism Press Conference In Key West On October 4, 2017

Director of Key West Attractions Clinton Curry Sounds The Conch Shell At The Governor’s Tourism Press Conference In Key West On October 4, 2017

Put-in-Bay Oktoberfest is this weekend!

Saturday October, 14th 11-7p and Sunday October 15th from noon-5 p.m. Come Enjoy many wonderful German themed dishes as well as German Beer in the Beer Tent. Deutscher Musik Verein – a German Brass Band- will perform in DeRivera Park on Saturday @ Noon. Polka Revolution will perform this weekend also.

AAA Travel: The Caribbean is Open for Business

Travel Experts Offer Tips on Caribbean Travel Following Recent Hurricanes

ORLANDO, Fla. (October 12, 2017) – Travelers be well advised, the Caribbean is open for business despite last month’s hurricanes. Fortunately, most Caribbean islands did not see major damage from Hurricanes Irma and Maria, making the region a top AAA recommended destination for fall and winter getaways.

“The Caribbean remains home to some of the world’s most popular travel destinations,” said Bill Sutherland, AAA senior vice president, Travel and Publishing. “Vacationers, travel suppliers and the islands welcome guests to enjoy the relaxation, culture and recreation of the Caribbean.”

AAA experts recommend that travelers look to these popular Caribbean destinations, which sustained minimal or no damage, for their upcoming travels:

  • Antigua
  • Aruba
  • Bahamas
  • Barbados
  • Belize
  • Bermuda
  • Bonaire
  • Curaçao
  • Dominican Republic
  • Jamaica
  • Martinique
  • Saint Lucia
  • St. Kitts & Nevis
  • St. Vincent & The Grenadines
  • The Cayman Islands
  • Trinidad and Tobago
  • Turks & Caicos
  • St. Vincent & The Grenadines

Additionally, the Florida Keys have reopened to travelers ahead of schedule following Hurricane Irma, and Mexico saw little impact to its tourism infrastructure following two recent earthquakes and Hurricane Katia, which made landfall in the eastern part of the country.

“While recovery efforts are ongoing, we do not anticipate that the recent storms will have a long-term impact on the travel industry. As the islands work towards a full recovery, AAA shares our care and concern to everyone affected,” added Sutherland. “In addition to making a donation to the recovery charity of your choice, we also can help the Caribbean recover by stimulating their local economies, which rely heavily on travel and tourism.”

For anyone planning a trip during hurricane season (June 1 – November 30) or to a destination recently affected by a storm, AAA Travel experts offer the following tips:

Work with a travel agent – A trusted travel agent can serve as the travelers’ advocate, helping them remain informed and assisting with any itinerary changes that need to be made in the event of a storm.

Consider purchasing travel insurance – Travel insurance is designed to offer protection against sudden and unforeseen events, such as hurricanes. Typically, travelers must have purchased travel insurance prior to a storm being “named” to receive hurricane-related coverage benefits.

Remain informed – Before, during and after a storm, travelers should check with their travel providers—including hotels, airlines, car rental companies, cruise lines, and tour operators—for the latest updates to itineraries or cancellation and rebooking policies.

Be flexible and remember to pack your patience – In the event of a hurricane, travel plans may be disrupted, even for those not traveling to an affected area. For example, cruise ships often adjust their itineraries to avoid storms or help accommodate travelers on other routes.

Share your plans – Before any international trip, enroll in the U.S. Department of State’s Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP). This makes it easier for the nearest embassy or consulate to contact U.S. citizens in case of an emergency.

Check for Diamonds – AAA’s professional inspectors conduct on-site evaluations of nearly 59,000 Diamond Rated hotels and restaurants across the Caribbean, United States, Canada and Mexico. If something goes wrong at one of these properties, AAA’s member relations team is available to help members resolve their concerns.

Travelers should also remember that Atlantic hurricane season continues through November 30, and it’s important for anyone traveling during this time to heed the advice of travel experts and plan ahead for any unforeseen severe weather.

For more information or to begin planning a trip, visit

As North America’s largest motoring and leisure travel organization, AAA provides more than 58 million members with travel, insurance, financial and automotive-related services. Since its founding in 1902, the not-for-profit, fully tax-paying AAA has been a leader and advocate for the safety and security of all travelers. Motorists can map a route, identify gas prices, find discounts, book a hotel and access AAA roadside assistance with the AAA Mobile app for iPhone, iPad and Android. Learn more at AAA clubs can be visited on the Internet at

Historic Tours of America® Welcomes Guests Back To Key West

Key West, FL (October 6, 2017) – The Southernmost City is officially open for business and everyone is celebrating the great news. The water’s warm, the weather’s amazing, and the world-famous Key West sunsets are as pretty as ever.

Less than a month since Hurricane Irma, the first cruise ship has docked in Key West and the city is welcoming back visitors. Airlines have resumed service to Key West International Airport and the Overseas Highway is open and safe for travel. And not a moment too soon—as fall is a great time to visit this island paradise.

Determined to get back to life as usual, many Key West businesses and local tour operators are offering special deals for tourists. Historic Tours of America® (HTA) is showing their appreciation for visitors and locals alike. Visit their website for more information on special deals for visitors.

As a post-hurricane break for Monroe County residents and First-Responders, HTA is offering complimentary tickets to a selection of their tours and attractions through October 31, 2017 including: Old Town Trolley Tours®, Ghosts & GravestonesSM, Key West Shipwreck Treasure Museum, Conch Tour Train, Harry S. Truman Little White House and Key West Aquarium. Local ID is required.

City officials also want folks to know that their favorite fall events will take place as usual, including the Bahama Village Goombay Festival, Zombie Bike Ride, Powerboat Races, and of course, the two-week long 38th annual Fantasy Fest. HTA’s Ghosts & GravestonesSM Tour is ready to transport visitors to the most haunted spots in the city, a popular way to celebrate Halloween in Key West.

Restaurants, bars and local shops have reopened and are eager to welcome back tourists. Duval Street is beginning to regain its bustle, with music spilling out onto the sidewalks and restaurants serving up cold drinks and great food—a sign that the festive vibe is back.

Media and bloggers interested in visiting Key West are invited to Complete This Form for free ticket requests.

About Historic Tours of America

Historic Tours of America® (HTA) is a Key West, FL-based entertainment company featuring sightseeing tours, historic attractions, themed retail shops and marketplaces. Separating HTA from other tour and attraction companies is its commitment to customer service and backing all of their tours and attractions with a 100% money back guarantee. In addition to Key West, HTA operates in St. Augustine, Savannah, Nashville, Boston, Washington, DC and San Diego.


Powell, OH – Three tiger cubs born at the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium this summer are set to make their public debut this weekend. Starting on Saturday, the cubs—two males and one female—will have access to their habitat from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. with their mother, Mara.

Two of the cubs were born during the evening of Wednesday, July 12, and the third cub was born during the early morning hours of Thursday, July 13. During the last few months, the three unnamed cubs have been growing stronger in a behind-the-scenes denning area under the watchful eye of their mother. In recent weeks, the animal care team began the process of introducing cubs to the outdoor habitat. The first step included providing time for just the cubs to acclimate to the habitat alongside the animal care team, followed by then introducing the cubs and Mara into the habitat together while the care team observed from the public pathways. Each day, the curious cubs gained more confidence, resulting in them venturing farther into the habitat, while Mara—ever the protective mother—looked after them.

“It is an incredible experience watching the playful cubs interact with each other and their mother, and we are pleased to be able to share this opportunity with our guests as we continue our mission of connecting people to wildlife,” said President/CEO Tom Stalf. “The cubs have been a wonderful addition to the Columbus Zoo family, but even more importantly, they represent hope for the future of this endangered species.”

The tiger is the largest of all cat species. Native to Asia, there are six living and three extinct subspecies of tiger. Currently, there are 126 Amur tigers at 47 AZA-accredited facilities in North America. These tigers are considered pedigreed since they have a known ancestry, and breeding recommendations to maintain genetic diversity are managed by a studbook.

Amur tigers (Panthera tigris altaica), also historically referred to as Siberian tigers, are endangered; fewer than 400 individuals are believed to exist in the forests of the Russian Far East. Their populations are dwindling due to overhunting of prey species such as deer and wild boar, habitat loss, and poaching for skins and body parts used in traditional Chinese medicine. Humans directly cause 75 to 85 percent of tiger deaths, and Amur tigers are listed as endangered on the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List of Threatened Species™.

The Columbus Zoo is a long-term supporter of the Siberian Tiger Project, which was established in 1992 by the Wildlife Conservation Society. The Zoo’s privately raised funding contributes to improving human-tiger conflict mitigation, increasing capacity for young Russian scientists, and biological monitoring of tigers through camera trapping, track surveys and radio collaring. Since 2006, the Zoo has raised more than $200,000 for the Siberian Tiger Project through various fundraisers, including the annual Wine for Wildlife event, to continue to support tiger conservation around the world.

About the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium

Home to more than 10,000 animals representing over 600 species from around the globe, the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium leads and inspires by connecting people and wildlife. The Zoo complex is a recreational and education destination that includes the 22-acre Zoombezi Bay water park and 18-hole Safari Golf Course. The Columbus Zoo and Aquarium also operates The Wilds, a 10,000-acre conservation center and safari park located in southeastern Ohio. The Zoo is a regional attraction with global impact; annually contributing more than $4 million of privately raised funds to support conservation projects worldwide. A 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, the Columbus Zoo has earned Charity Navigator’s prestigious 4-star rating.

Top 20 Foodie Cities in America

With Oct. 16 being World Food Day and restaurant prices rising, the personal-finance website WalletHub today released its report on 2017’s Best Foodie Cities in America.

To determine the best and cheapest local foodie scenes, WalletHub compared more than 180 of the largest U.S. cities across 24 key metrics. The data set ranges from affordability and accessibility of high-quality restaurants to food festivals per capita to craft breweries and wineries per capita.

1 San Francisco, CA

2 Portland, OR

3 New York, NY

4 Los Angeles, CA

5 Miami, FL

6 Orlando, FL

7 Austin, TX

8 Las Vegas, NV

9 San Diego, CA

10 Seattle, WA

11 Tampa, FL

12 Atlanta, GA

13 Chicago, IL

14 Philadelphia, PA

15 Sacramento, CA

16 Houston, TX

17 St. Louis, MO

18 Denver, CO

19 Washington, DC

20 Cincinnati, OH

Best vs. Worst

New York has the most gourmet specialty-food stores (per square root of population), 1.3907, which is 56.5 times more than in West Valley City, Utah, the city with the fewest at 0.0246.

San Francisco has the most cooking schools (per square root of population), 0.0567, which is 37.8 times more than in Omaha, Nebraska, the city with the fewest at 0.0015.

New York, has the most restaurants (per square root of population), 10.59, which is 37.8 times more than in Pearl City, Hawaii, the city with the fewest at 0.28.

Orlando, Florida, has the most ice cream and frozen yogurt shops (per square root of population), 0.3158, which is 38.5 times more than in West Valley City, Utah, the city with the fewest at 0.0082.

Santa Rosa, California, has the highest ratio of full-service restaurants to fast-food establishments, 1.69, which is 3.1 times higher than in Jackson, Mississippi, the city with the lowest at 0.55.

To view the full report and your city’s rank, please visit:

Hotel LeVeque Unveils Star Treatment Package

Columbus, OH — The stylish Hotel LeVeque, an Autograph Collection Hotel with stunning views of Columbus’ riverfront, today announced a getaway package that allows travelers to truly feel like royalty. The just-launched “Star Treatment Package” offers guests a one-of-a-kind, VIP experience, that’s exactly like nothing else. The package includes prime, river-view accommodations, a private dinner for two prepared by a local chef and an in-room couple’s massage. A glamorous night on the town ends with a romantic helicopter ride with scenic views from high above the city. Reservations and complete Hotel LeVeque information are available at

Hotel LeVeque’s Star Treatment package includes:

A deluxe guestroom with a spectacular view of the city’s riverfront

An in-room telescope with constellation guide for unparalleled stargazing

Couple’s massage at a local spa with bottle of chilled champagne

Evening helicopter ride, including a flight over artist James Turrell’s celebrated multi-hued lighted art installation at the Franklin Park Conservatory

Chauffeured ride through downtown Columbus’ riverfront featuring stops on the guests’ choice of the Columbus Coffee Trail, the Columbus Ale Trail or the Made in CBus Trail

Dinner for two at the Chef’s Table in The Keep restaurant, including a bottle of wine (up to $50 wine value)

Prohibition-style nightcap in The Keep Bar

Turndown service with starlight planetarium room lighting and your choice of handcrafted sweet or savory treats for two

The Star Treatment package starts at $2,099 per night. Due to its exclusive nature and its specialty amenities, reservations for The Star Treatment must be made two weeks in advance.

Hotel LeVeque opened to stellar reviews in March with 149 guest rooms and suites in the historic LeVeque Tower at 50 E. Broad St. in the heart of downtown in Ohio’s capital city. An Autograph Collection property, Hotel LeVeque is part of Marriott International’s boutique collection of hotels, each of which is carefully selected for its quality, bold originality, rich character and uncommon details that embody a truly unique sense of place. Details and reservations can be found at

Originally built in 1927 as the American Insurance Union Citadel, the LeVeque Tower was architect Charles Howard Crane’s masterpiece. At the time, the LeVeque Tower was the tallest skyscraper between New York City and Chicago, and the fifth tallest building in the world. It was home to the graceful Deshler Wallick Hotel. It later became known as the Lincoln LeVeque Tower, then simply the LeVeque Tower, after its purchase in 1945. The LeVeque Tower’s remarkable art deco architecture remains the city’s most recognizable feature and is among Columbus’ most photographed and revered architectural treasures. Illuminating the night skyline as a soaring tower bathed in light, its architectural beauty is carefully preserved and highlighted in elegant design by Columbus-based Schooley Caldwell architects.

About First Hospitality Group

First Hospitality Group, Inc. (FHG) is a leading hotel management, acquisition and development company with more than 30 years of award-winning experience. FHG’s unique people-driven professional culture fosters a team of highly skilled and motivated hospitality experts who consistently deliver outstanding property level performance, as well as memorable and engaging guest experiences. Headquartered in Chicago, FHG’s portfolio features 19 brands and 42 properties throughout the Midwest. Recognized in Forbes America’s Best Midsize Employers 2016, FHG received a #28 ranking out of the 250 best midsize employers in the country, #1 in the travel category, and #3 amongst all of America’s best travel companies. For more information, visit, Follow FHG on Facebook at @FHGinc and Twitter at @FHGroup_Inc.

About Autograph Collection Hotels

Autograph Collection Hotels celebrates individuality by curating one-of-a-kind travel experiences at more than 100 luxury lifestyle hotels found in the world’s most desirable destinations. Exactly like nothing else, Autograph Collection properties are hand selected for their rich character and uncommon details. A personal realization of an individual founder’s vision, these hotels are defined by unique design, differentiated guest experiences and their meaningful role in locality. For more information, please visit, and explore our social media channels on Instagram Twitter and Facebook to learn more about championing the independent spirit that is #ExactlyLikeNothingElse. Autograph Collection Hotels is proud to participate in the industry’s award-winning loyalty program, Marriott Rewards®, in which members can link accounts with Starwood Preferred Guest® and The Ritz-Carlton Rewards® for instant elite status matching and unlimited points transfer.

Marriott International, Inc. (NASDAQ: MAR) is the world’s largest hotel company based in Bethesda, Maryland, USA, with nearly 6,000 properties in 120 countries and territories. Marriott operates and franchises hotels and licenses vacation ownership resorts. The company’s 30 leading brands include: Bulgari®, The Ritz-Carlton® and The Ritz-Carlton Reserve®, St. Regis®, W®, EDITION®, JW Marriott®, The Luxury Collection®, Marriott Hotels®, Westin®, Le Méridien®, Renaissance® Hotels, Sheraton®, Delta Hotels by MarriottSM, Marriott Executive Apartments®, Marriott Vacation Club®, Autograph Collection® Hotels, Tribute Portfolio™, Design Hotels™, Gaylord Hotels®, Courtyard®, Four Points® by Sheraton, SpringHill Suites®, Fairfield Inn & Suites®, Residence Inn®, TownePlace Suites®, AC Hotels by Marriott®, Aloft®, Element®, Moxy® Hotels, and Protea Hotels by Marriott®. The company also operates award-winning loyalty programs: Marriott Rewards®, which includes The Ritz-Carlton Rewards®, and Starwood Preferred Guest®. For more information, please visit our website at, and for the latest company news, visit and @MarriottIntl.

Director of Key West Attractions Clinton Curry Sounds The Conch Shell At The Governor’s Tourism Press Conference In Key West On October 4, 2017 of Key West Attractions Clinton Curry Sounds The Conch Shell At The Governor’s Tourism Press Conference In Key West On October 4, 2017

Sunbury News Staff

For more information about the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium’s commitment to global conservation, please visit

For more information about the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium’s commitment to global conservation, please visit