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Volunteer FAM Trip

Wed, May 09, 2018 at 2:05PM

Volunteer FAM Trip




VOLUNTEERS, we can’t live without em’ at the Cocoa Beach Convention & Visitor Bureau! We rely heavily on the dedication and support of our enthusiastic volunteers. They help us to effectively run our two visitor centers and they are the first faces visitors see when entering. When guests have questions regarding the area, they have the answers and are happy to make suggestions on what to do and where to go, always promoting our CVB partner businesses first. We show appreciation to our volunteers in a number of ways including:  free access to chamber events, discounts at specific partners, luncheons, holiday parties and quarterly FAM trips. FAM (short for familiarization), are a great way for our volunteers to get first-hand experience at ‘seeing our community through a visitors eyes’. Each trip includes a visit to one or more CVB partner members to experience the hotel, restaurant, attraction or service first hand, what is a better way to make a suggestion than to experience it first hand?


Our first FAM trip of 2018 was in Cocoa Beach, and included a visit at Wildside Tours , and lunch oceanside at Mambo’s @ International Plaza The beautiful weather really set a precedent for how the day was going to go. We spent the first part of our day cruising the Thousand Islands Nature Preserve and the Banana River with Wildside Tours . The company is owned and managed by two lovely women, Jeanette and Tanya, and I CAN NOT say enough about them! Knowledgeable, professional, down to earth and kind are the words that come to mind. The boat is clean and so comfortable; I seriously could have taken a nap while sitting in the sun. They supply complementary drinks for each guest with a logo’d holder. We saw many dolphins, gorgeous birds, a manatee and even a swimming raccoon! A cool device they had on board was a waterproof microphone, so when we got close to the dolphins, they dropped the microphone into the water and we could hear dolphins communicate! Jeanette did a great job captaining the boat while Tanya shared information and fun facts with us and answered any questions we had. I HIGHLY recommend Wildside Tours if you are looking for an eco-tour or just something to do for a few hours. The tour is two hours long and depending on the season they have two or three tours a day, reserve your spot by calling them at 321.799.5495 or online at https://wildsidetours.com/. They leave from Ramp Road in downtown Cocoa Beach where there is easy and free parking. Check out their website along with Trip Advisor to see what others thought.


The second stop, and most delicious, was at Mambo’s Beachside Bar and Grill located at the International Palms Resort. This was my first time to Mambo’s and the view is phenomenal as the restaurant leads right on to the beach. Kerry was gracious enough to welcome and speak to us about both Mambo’s and the International Palms Resort. The resort is the largest in the area with over 500 rooms, ranging from one bed, to villas with cabanas. One of the biggest pros I found to be is that International Palms Resort is pet friendly. It also happens to be located right next to Lori Wilson’s pubic dog park, so during your stay you can pop over for some doggie fun. The resort offers oceanfront access, a junior Olympic sized swimming pool and a pirate themed splash pool. There are beach rentals, surf lessons, an arcade room, fitness center and four restaurants on site. Of the four restaurants, Mambo’s is the largest. There are two levels to this beachside bar and grill with a bar located on the bottom. There are no solid walls so you can feel the ocean breeze. The menu consists of fish tacos, sandwiches, Mahi bowls, seared tuna and shrimp to name a few. Portions were big and everyone was pleased with their meal. This is definitely a place to go grab lunch or maybe to enjoy one of their many signature cocktails while soaking up the sun. Mambo’s is open to the public and features live music Friday-Sunday.


Once again, a HUGE thank you to Wildside and Mambo’s for allowing our volunteers to have an amazing day. I know they will not quickly forget it and are sure to be pushing business your way. If you are a partner and are interested in the possibility of hosting a FAM trip please reach out! Or if you want to join our awesome team of volunteers, email cvb@cocoabeachchamber.com


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