VISIT FLORIDA Launches First Ever Black History Month Campaign with BET

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (February 12, 2015) – For the first time ever, VISIT FLORIDA has partnered with BET to launch a nationwide campaign for Black History Month.

VISIT FLORIDA collaborated with destination partners in Miami, Overtown, Orlando and Eatonville, as well as prominent African Americans in the travel and tourism community, to create a series of short stories that tell of the rich heritage and culture found around the state.

The first two 60-second stories, which run for the next 3 weeks across national and cable networks, highlight two of Florida’s world famous tourist destinations, as well as two of the state’s hidden gems.

Minutes from Orlando and its world-famous attractions is Eatonville, "the town that freedom built." Founded in 1887 as the nation's first all-black city, Eatonville also is important in African-American history as home of Zora Neale Hurston, the Harlem Renaissance writer known for her novel Their Eyes Were Watching God. To view the entire 60-second narrative, click here.

The second story airs later in the week and focuses on Miami and Overtown, a neighborhood northwest of Miami, and home to the original Booker T. Washington High School. This was the first high school educating black students south of Palm Beach. Overtown is also known as an entertainment center, and in the 40s and 50s, many music legends like Ella Fitzgerald, Billie Holiday and Nat King Cole could be found performing in the area. To view, click here.

Will Seccombe, President & CEO of VISIT FLORIDA states: “In addition to its 825 miles of beaches and enviable theme parks, Florida is home to an abundance of culturally relevant hidden gems – from the earliest settlement of free Blacks in America to the vibrant music and artistry surrounding the chitlin circuit. Florida is the number one destination choice for African Americans traveling for vacation. By working with BET – the leading provider of entertainment for African Americans – VISIT FLORIDA is able to reach an audience of 91 million and provide viewers with even more reasons to explore the Sunshine State.”

The stories air in Atlanta, New York City, Chicago, Philadelphia, Washington D.C., Detroit and Dallas.

For more information about VISIT FLORIDA’s efforts in promoting Black History Month, or to set up an interview with a member of the Executive Staff, contact Lucille Spann at or (850) 312-0052. 


As the Sunshine State’s No. 1 industry, tourism was responsible for welcoming 93.7 million visitors in 2013 who spent $76.1 billion, generating 23 percent of the state’s sales tax revenue and employing nearly 1.1 million Floridians. For every $1 spent on tourism marketing, VISIT FLORIDA – the official tourism marketing corporation for the state of Florida – generates more than $300 in tourism spending and $18 in new sales tax collections, paid by visitors, not residents. VISIT FLORIDA promotes tourism to Florida through sales, advertising, promotions, public relations and visitor services programs. As a public/private partnership, VISIT FLORIDA serves more than 12,000 tourism industry businesses, including major strategic alliance partnerships with Disney Destinations, The Hertz Corporation, LEGOLAND Florida Resort, SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment, Simon Shopping Destinations and Universal Orlando Resort. To learn more about VISIT FLORIDA, please go to or follow our corporate blog at

Contact Information: 
Lucille Spann
PR Representative
(850) 312-0052