Make us your home page

'Eurobird' campaign to lure European nudists to Pasco resorts

Lesson No. 1 in marketing to European nudists: Florida's warm weather is the selling point.

"You go to Europe and what do you have? You have seasonal weather," said Paul Brenot, who recently stepped down as president of the Pasco Area Naturist Development Association. "Come wintertime, you get a cold snap. We're just like anybody else, we're going to throw something on. Here, you have the opportunity to be natural all the time."

This summer, Brenot and other group members are rolling out their inaugural "Eurobird" marketing campaign aimed at naturists across the pond. They met with county tourism officials and representatives of several local nudist resorts to discuss the campaign, which won a $3,800 grant in December from the County Commission.

Pasco tourism officials say they are looking forward to a wave of au naturel Europeans. Even if nudists don't tend to have pockets, they do have cash that could prop up the local economy.

"They stay longer, spend more money," said county tourism director Eric Keaton, adding that international tourism is up across Florida. "Pasco County has to find a way of capturing some of that business."

The campaign includes ads in magazines like Naturally that are read by the large European nudist community. The goal is to persuade naturists from the United Kingdom, the Netherlands, France and Germany to come in July and August. That's the peak travel season in Europe and a slow time for Florida tourism.

Stan McGahey, a Saint Leo University professor of hospitality and tourism, helped the group develop the marketing plan.

"Pasco County is basically the naturist capital of the U.S.," he said. "There should be a huge market to attract Europeans to Pasco."

McGahey said visitors could use Pasco as a "base camp" while taking day trips to Orlando theme parks or Pinellas beaches. "There's a lot of things to do within an easy day's drive," he said. Visitors can also spend the day at nudist resorts and sleep at "textile" hotels. You know, places where people wear pants.

Brenot said nudism in Pasco has a unique history. The scene began in 1941 with Lake Como and now includes a dozen resorts and communities in central and west Pasco.

"One night they might have dinner at a fine dining establishment," he said. "Then they turn around the next day and they kind of want to get a little more rustic."

And there's everything in between. Want to play a game of tennis in your birthday suit? Check. Topless sailing or boating? Check. Move to a Pasco naturist community and you can check your mail and walk the dog — all in the buff.

Now the group is working out the mechanics of the marketing effort. One problem: How will organizers know if the campaign is successful?

"We don't have a way of tracking it," said Vernon Allen, PANDA's new president. "We won't know until they either get here, or they contact us and say, 'We're coming.'"

Keaton had one idea. Give visitors an "entertainment card" that offers discounts at nearby restaurants and attractions. That could help provide detailed figures on the campaign's economic impact.

The group must submit itemized receipts for its marketing efforts to collect the county tourism grant, which comes from hotel taxes — including overnight stays at nudist resorts — and is set aside to promote tourism.

Even if the inaugural Eurobird season is just a trickle and not a flood, Allen said it will be a successful first step because it forces the resorts to work on a common goal.

"It is the first time that I know of that we were able to get the resorts together," he said.

Lee Logan can be reached at or (727) 869-6236.

'Eurobird' campaign to lure European nudists to Pasco resorts 05/09/12 [Last modified: Wednesday, May 9, 2012 8:11pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. In advertising, marketing diversity needs a boost in Tampa Bay, nationally


    TAMPA — Trimeka Benjamin was focused on a career in broadcast journalism when she entered Bethune-Cookman University.

    From left, Swim Digital marketing owner Trimeka Benjamin discusses the broad lack of diversity in advertising and marketing with 22 Squared copywriter Luke Sokolewicz, University of Tampa advertising/PR professor Jennifer Whelihan, Rumbo creative director George Zwierko and Nancy Vaughn of the White Book Agency. The group recently met at The Bunker in Ybor City.
  2. Tampa Club president seeks assessment fee from members


    TAMPA — The president of the Tampa Club said he asked members last month to pay an additional assessment fee to provide "additional revenue." However, Ron Licata said Friday that the downtown business group is not in a dire financial situation.

    Ron Licata, president of the Tampa Club in downtown Tampa. [Tampa Club]
  3. Under Republican health care bill, Florida must make up $7.5 billion


    If a Senate bill called the Better Care Reconciliation Act of 2017 becomes law, Florida's government would need to make up about $7.5 billion to maintain its current health care system. The bill, which is one of the Republican Party's long-promised answers to the Affordable Care Act imposes a cap on funding per enrollee …

    Florida would need to cover $7.5 billion to keep its health care program under the Republican-proposed Better Care Reconciliation Act of 2017.  [Times file photo]
  4. Amid U.S. real estate buying binge by foreign investors, Florida remains first choice

    Real Estate

    Foreign investment in U.S. residential real estate recently skyrocketed to a new high with nearly half of all foreign sales happening in Florida, California and Texas.

    A National Association of Realtors annual survey found record volume and activity by foreign buyers of U.S. real estate. Florida had the highest foreign investment activity, followed by California and Texas. [National Association of Realtors]
  5. Trigaux: Tampa Bay health care leaders wary of getting too far ahead in disruptive times


    Are attempts to repeal Obamacare dead for the foreseeable future? Might the Affordable Care Act (ACA), now in dire limbo, be revived? Will Medicaid coverage for the most in need be gutted? Can Republicans now in charge of the White House, Senate and House ever agree to deliver a substitute health care plan that people …

    Natalia Ricabal of Lutz, 12 years old, joined other pediatric cancer patients in Washington in July to urge Congress to protect Medicaid coverage that helped patients like Ricabal fight cancer. She was diagnosed with Ewing's sarcoma in 2013 and has undergone extensive treatments at BayCare's St. Joseph's Children's Hospital in Tampa. [Courtesy of BayCare]