Today starts a long weekend for most of us. For me, that means finishing a project I started when Elizabeth and Kelly both left. I am going through my condo, shelf by shelf, room by room and clearing out the clutter. I am not exactly picking up each item and asking myself “Does this spark joy?” as Marie Kondo might say but am going through everything. Amazing how many promo items I found in my kitchen alone – from cups, water bottles, bag clips and more. Those are gone. But I also found some great pictures that I haven’t seen in some time.  

I found this short article for you this week, and though it sounds kind of “heavy” it really isn’t: “These 5 Questions Will Define Where You’re Going in Life" by
Jim Rohn. For those of you that might be hitting the beach, having cocktails by the pool or simply having some downtime, maybe ask yourself these questions? Write down your ideas and get started.   

What do I want to do? 
Who do I want to be? 
What do I want to see? 
What do I want to have? 
Where do I want to go? 

But before you take off for the long weekend, here are a few updates from this week.  
We often share information or resources from the Florida Chamber of Commerce and now they are working on their 2021 Florida Chamber Legislative Agenda. They are asking for your feedback – this is an opportunity to share what is important to you and maybe have it included in their priorities and have more power behind it.  

“Our team is seeking your important input in a time when a united business community around one agenda to "Relaunch and Recover" Florida’s economy is more important than ever. Each year, the Florida Chamber presents the Legislature and Executive Branch with a policy road map for how to grow Florida’s economy. Florida’s Business Agenda is a member-driven, pro-jobs agenda based on sound policy and built by thousands of chamber members, research from our research foundation, local chambers, and partnering associations. Please complete our short survey and help us set Florida’s 2021 Business Agenda today. “ 
Florida’s tourism economy accounts for more than 1.5 million jobs and $91 billion in annual revenue. However, Florida visitation has dropped by more than 60 percent year-over-year in the second quarter of 2020 due to the pandemic. If you want to see the impact of COVID on our State's tourism industry, VISIT FLORIDA has a dashboard sharing data on where we stand now.

With this in mind, Dana Young, President & CEO and the team from VISIT FLORIDA launched an in-state tourism marketing campaign, LOVEFL, to support the State’s economic recovery and struggling tourism industry. The campaign, which runs from August 31 to November 22, aims to remind Floridians that their home State offers world-class tourism opportunities that most people travel far distances to experience. Details of VISIT FLORIDA’s marketing campaign are below.

Campaign Objectives 
To inspire pride amongst Floridians about where they live and support Florida’s tourism economy with a boost from In-State travel. 

There are so many places across the state that look otherworldly, or at least like they’re not in Florida. And many Floridians haven’t ever visited these unique places that are within a short drive. This campaign introduces Floridians to new horizons within their own state, that they thought they’d have to fly to other countries or drive to other states to experience. 

View more information on the impact of COVID-19 on Florida Tourism. 
As a reminder, the Lee Cares Individual Assistance Application Round 2 is expiring on September 18. Through LeeCares, if you are in need of rent, mortgage or utilities assistance, eligible applicants can receive up to $3,000 in aid per household. Payments will be made directly to landlords, mortgage companies and/or utilities. Funds are available through the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act federal stimulus package.  
Some hometown recognition to start your weekend: 

On September 2, Governor Ron DeSantis appointed State Representative and House Majority Leader Dane Eagle, Cape Coral resident, to become the next executive director of the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity. We wish him the best of luck with this new opportunity! 
Gulfshore Business announced this year's "40 Under 40" and we are excited to see so many of those honored are employees of Chamber member businesses, including:

Congratulations to ALL who were recognized!
Wishing everyone a great long weekend.

Stay safe!