Florida Keys Blitzes Philadelphia For U.S. Island Vacations

The Florida Keys & Key West tourism council has launched a major travel marketing blitz in Philadelphia that is to feature a Keys food and libation competition judged by native son Pat Croce and Keys chef Bobby Stoky.

The Philadelphia campaign runs throughout March to generate consumer vacation awareness of the subtropical 125-mile-long Florida Keys island chain.

On Monday, March 6, Croce and Stoky are to judge Keys-inspired cooking and cocktail competitions -- with Philadelphia area food writers, bloggers and influencers as rivals -- at The Restaurant School at Walnut Hill College. An “honorary Keys chef” and the top mixologist win Keys trips.

Croce, former president of the Philadelphia 76ers basketball team, owns several businesses in Key West including the Rum Barrel Bar & Grill, billed as Key West’s “southernmost Philly sports bar.” Keys restaurateur Stoky is author of the cookbook, “Recipes and Tall Tales from Legendary Restaurants of the Florida Keys.”

The ad campaign features nearly 1,400 public transportation ads blanketing the city, 5.8 million targeted digital impressions and broadcast and print components. 

One ad showcases a famed Keys sunset with the tag line, “Where Eagles and Dolphins Play.” Another shows a photograph of the Southernmost Point Marker in the Continental U.S. with the headline, “From the Liberty Bell to Total Freedom.”

In addition, Florida Keys & Key West destination sales representatives are to attend the Third Annual Philadelphia Travel & Adventure Show, March 25-26, at the Pennsylvania Convention Center.