In a town where tourism is the economic backbone for everything else, providing 1900 jobs and $137 million in economic activity last year, the Florence Area Chamber of Commerce is looking for the public’s participation in gaining another national recognition to boost its visibility and attract additional tourism dollars.
USHarbors.com, an organization with 4 million members, is looking for the best harbors in the country. Bettina Hannigan, executive director for the Chamber, says people can vote for Florence at https://usharbors.com/bestharbor2019.
“Voters simply click Florence, Oregon, from the list, and complete two questions to vote. The site only allows one vote per user, so voting ‘early and often’ is not an option. We need everyone to vote on this one. Florence is up against 155 other ports from 23 coastal states, and Astoria, Brookings, Charleston, Garibaldi, and Tillamook in Oregon,” says Hannigan. Winners will be announced April 15.
“Some of the reasons we think our harbor worth voting for include the excellent boating, fishing, crabbing, and clamming; and our vibrant river side Historic Old Town district with its excellent food and drink, galleries and shops, and award-winning hotels overlooking the water,” says Hannigan.
“We are also an official Coast Guard City with an awesome local Coast Guard crew. Our annual July 4 fireworks are among the best on the coast because we launch them from a barge on the river to add the drama of their reflection on the water. There is also our historic bridge, public art, farmer’s markets, Rhododendron Festival carnival, concerts, Gazebo Park, the Siuslaw River Interpretive Center, and funwildlife viewing including birds, sea lions, otters, and occasional orcas,” she adds.
Other similar efforts to boost Florence’s profile have resulted in Florence gaining recognition as a Coast Guard City, one of Expedia.com’s Best Places to Propose in the US, one of TripAdvisor’s 25 Best Family Weekend Getaways With Kids, USA Today’s number-two Best Small Town in the Northwest and number-two Small Town In America for Adventure, Expedia.com’s Most Beautiful Town, Oregonian readers’ Favorite Coastal Getaway, and one of Flight.com’s8 Coolest Cities You Must Experience for Yourself.
“We’re really getting known to vacationers around the country, and even the world,” adds Hannigan. “After all, we are Oregon’s Coastal Playground, and all these attributes and accolades prove it.”