Coast tourism officials say South Mississippi remains open for business.
During Monday’s Harrison County Tourism Commission luncheon at Beau Rivage, event organizers and business owners said they are being contacted by potential visitors since the oil spill in the Gulf.
Tom Becker, president of the Mississippi Charter Boat Captains Association, said charter boats aren’t allowed in federal waters but captains still are running charters in state waters, but tourists aren’t coming. “The phones have quit ringing except to cancel,” he said.
Linda Hornsby, director of the Mississippi Hotel and Lodging Association, said she is getting a few calls checking on conditions.
“I’m telling everybody it’s business as usual,” she said. “We have evolved into a multi-faceted destination,” she said. Besides the beach, there’s golf, casinos, a water park and other attractions, she said.
Wednesday is the start of the Southern Gaming Summit in Biloxi and Beverly Martin, director of the Mississippi Casino Operators Association, said she’s even had calls asking how many casinos are closed. She tells callers the casinos are