The Discovery Channel is coming to Key West!

August 19 – A new diving show will focus on the Florida Keys on the Discovery Channel.

Andy Newman of the Tourist Development Council joined Good Morning Keys on KeysTalk 96.9/102.5FM yesterday morning to talk about various events in the Keys.

Newman first provided listeners with a public service announcement about maintaining tires on boat trailers.

He had quite an experience recently while taking his boat to be serviced. He had changed the front tires on his trailer a while ago, but did not change the back tires. On the way to the service station for his boat, both back tires blew within an hour or two on the trip.

Newman said, “The lesson of the story is that especially in the Keys, unless you can keep that trailer fully covered, the UV of the sun rays will eventually do a number on your tires and good idea probably every four years or so to get them replaced. I certainly learned that lesson for sure.”

The Tourist Development Council is responsible for getting the word out about tourism in the Keys and a new project with the Discovery Channel will promote the Keys nationally and internationally.

Newman said, “A south-Florida based producer has come up with a brand new recreational diving show entitled Destination Dive.”

It will premiere on Discovery on September 4 at 7:30 a.m.

Newman said, “It has an emphasis on conservation, protection and environmental activism, meaning doing something about it besides talking about it. Destination Dive will be taking viewers on exciting adventures in the Florida Keys. It is a complete Keys focused TV show.”

The first episode will cover coral restoration, family diving and the Florida Keys Wreck Trek. It will be hosted by Captain Eric Billips, a dive operator in Tavernier.  

Newman said, “We’re very excited to have a local host, being our anchor person for Destination Dive.”

The show is already slated to return in July 2023 with five new episodes all originating in the Florida Keys.

Newman said, “This is a great show. It is creating awareness of projects that have become near and dear to the TDC. You’ve got a number of different coral restoration practitioners in the Keys who have been leading efforts in the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary to develop new techniques in terms of coral restoration. It is certainly hoped that this is going to have a positive impact on declining coral reefs, not just in the Keys, but actually around the world. Showcasing these efforts as well as ways for Florida Keys visitors and residents alike to connect with and protect our marine resources is absolutely paramount.”

The TDC has actually had a campaign for a while now called Connect and Protect so visitors can connect with the environment while at the same time protecting the environment.

The Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary is hard at work on a sanctuary coral restoration blueprint that will hopefully be unveiled by the end of 2023 or early 2024.

Newman said, “I think the one thing that we can all agree on is that that resource does need to be protected. It needs to be enhanced and because that’s our livelihood. That sanctuary, those marine resources, that’s what makes us the Florida Keys. That’s the reason why people live in the Florida Keys and that’s the reason why people come to visit the Florida Keys.”

The TDC is helping with the mooring buoy issue by funding the anchors for the buoys, as well as providing funding for different coral reef practitioners up and down the Keys.

Newman said, “That’s certainly one of the benefit of the TDC taxes, that we can utilize some of that money to go ahead and fund very, very important infrastructure projects designed to protect our resources.”

Mike Stapleford of KeysTalk 96.9/102.5FM pointed out, “The TDC does so much more than just marketing and advertising. It’s very encompassing and that’s just another example is your relationship with the marine sanctuary and taking part in helping in those efforts. So thank you for that as well.”

For more information on upcoming events, click here: