Category Archives: Chamber News

Be EPIC: Environmental Protection isn’t complicated!

Be EPIC: Environmental Protection isn’t complicated!

Whether you’re in business, live and work here, or come to vacation or visit, the Treasure Island & Madeira Beach Chamber of Commerce invites you to Be EPIC with us!

EPIC is a program developed by the Chamber. It stands for Environmental Preservation Initiative for our Communities. It started out as a way to get local businesses to help reduce the non-biodegradable waste (plastic straws and cups, plastic water bottles, “clamshell” take-out food carriers, etc.) that is carelessly left on our beaches.

But the effort is growing. It’s EPIC, after all!

BE EPIC. Plastic waste is a problem on shorelines around the world.

If you have read about the deadly impact plastics have on marine life and the health of the planet, or have seen videos about the plastic islands that are growing in the earth’s oceans, or had to dodge piles of plastics when walking a shoreline, you know EPIC is a project whose time has come!

How it happens

Where does all that plastic clogging our planet come from? It comes from us.

We set a plastic cup in the sand when we leave our beach towels to get a quick, cooling swim. Rambunctious or inattentive beach goers don’t notice it, and knock it over, sending the cup tumbling away.

We carry our take-out to the car and drive to the beach to enjoy a casual meal and watch the sunset. It’s a windy day, and when our meal is complete we walk the take-out container over to a trash bin that is already over-full. As we walk back to the car, we don’t notice that the wind has carried our discarded container away.

We want to stay hydrated and take a couple of bottles of water on our beach walk, then toss them carelessly aside when they’re empty, knowing City crews will be by in the morning to “rake” the beach. Unfortunately, the tide comes in and recedes before City crews arrive, and our trash is carried out to sea.

Multiply these seemingly insignificant acts of littering by the thousands of people who visit our beaches each week and you’ll soon have a very significant problem with plastics that will stay with us for decades. As the plastics accumulate, they choke our marine life, make our beaches look ugly, and gradually destroy our ecosystem.

It’s an epic problem, and it needs an equally epic solution. That’s why we’re inviting everyone to Be EPIC with us!

We have developed a voluntary program, embraced by our business community, for reducing the use of plastic straws: instead of routinely providing plastic straws, participating businesses supply straws only upon request. Some businesses are introducing old-time paper straws. We have expanded our scope to encourage businesses to use paper carry-out containers. We encourage vigorous recycling campaigns.

And we invite YOU to help! How?

How to Be EPIC

BE EPIC reusable straws
BE EPIC with reusable silicon or stainless steel straws.

You can make a small investment in a personal, reusable straw that you carry in a pocket or bag, so there are fewer plastic straws to throw away.

Use personal water bottles instead of plastic throw-aways when visiting our beaches.

If you carry food to the beach, bring a trash bag and dispose of your trash at home (remember to recycle!).

Carry a small trash bag with you when you walk. Pick up bottles, bottle caps, straws, cups, containers, and utensils that have been discarded by others who are less aware.

Forego the “paper or plastic” shopping bags at checkout, and bring your own reusable shopping bags when you go to the grocery store or produce stand.

BE EPIC with sea oats.
Sea Oat seedlings are provided by Pinellas County to help us BE EPIC about sand dune restoration.

Be actively involved in the beach clean-up and restoration programs sponsored by Treasure Island and Madeira Beach, as well as the county, throughout the year.

Be EPIC with us! Be a guardian of our beautiful beaches, and protect them for generations to come!

If we all do our part, we can keep our beaches beautiful and healthy, and protect our marine life at the same time!


Be EPIC TI Beach Cleanup
Treasure Island helps us Be EPIC by sponsoring a monthly beach clean-up.
Kiosk Volunteers Needed!

Kiosk Volunteers Needed!

If you’ve ever wanted to tell someone where to go, why not be a kiosk volunteer for the Chamber? Every weekend from September through April, visitors to our beaches stop by the Chamber’s Information Booth, a kiosk located at 107th Avenue and Gulf Blvd. They’re looking for directions in getting around, as well as for… Continue Reading

Red Tide Moves South

Red Tide Moves South

We’ll all be breathing easier — literally. The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) is watching as the red tide moves south, not north, and away from Pinellas beaches. On Friday, August 10, it appeared that weather patterns would bring the bloom of karenia brevis north of the Sunshine Skyway, putting the Pinellas beaches… Continue Reading

Opposing Offshore Drilling

Opposing Offshore Drilling

TREASURE ISLAND|MADEIRA BEACH ­­— The Treasure Island & Madeira Beach Chamber of Commerce, at its June 19 Board meeting, passed Resolution 2018-06 opposing offshore drilling and urging the United States government to refrain from oil drilling and exploration along Florida’s Atlantic coast and in the eastern Gulf of Mexico. “Our ecosystem is fragile,” pointed out… Continue Reading

Minning Heads Environmental Preservation Committee

Minning Heads Environmental Preservation Committee

TREASURE ISLAND | MADEIRA BEACH ­­— Robert Minning, formerly Mayor of Treasure Island, was appointed on July 6 to chair the EPIC (Environmental Preservation Initiative for our Communities) committee of the Treasure Island & Madeira Beach Chamber of Commerce. “Mayor Minning has a long history of environmental advocacy,” said Chamber Board Chairman Joe Dise in… Continue Reading

MEMBER HIGHLIGHT: Pocket Change Inshore Fishing Charters

MEMBER HIGHLIGHT: Pocket Change Inshore Fishing Charters

Pocket Change Inshore Fishing Charters Reeling in Adventure!  The start of Pocket Change Inshore Fishing Charters is the stuff dreams are made of. Literally! “My son Anthony had built his own fishing boat and had been running small charter trips for about ten years while working a full-time job,” recalls Patricia Corcella. “I’d been thinking… Continue Reading

Member Highlight | The Club at Treasure Island

Member Highlight | The Club at Treasure Island

Top-flight Event Venue on the Beach “The Club at Treasure Island is a private membership club, true,” says Director of Marketing Joshua Cruz, “but we are also an attractive and affordable event venue on the beach for a variety of non-members’ special events.” Founded in 1972 as the Treasure Island Yacht & Tennis Club, this… Continue Reading

Member Highlight | Florida d’ Signs

Member Highlight | Florida d’ Signs

Owner: Andrea Yeager-Munsey 727-363-3866 Signs and … Hurricane shields! You’ve heard that old saying about necessity being the mother of invention? In Andrea Yeager-Munsey’s case, it was frustration, not necessity, that led her to start her current enterprise, Florida d’ Signs. “Andrea had a thriving water sport business for years along the beaches,” says… Continue Reading

Member Highlight | Baby’s Away

Member Highlight | Baby’s Away

Owner: Debbie Fisher 727-316-1233 / 800-252-0254   Keeping Vacations Carefree! Your ideal Florida vacation is in peril: You’re flying to the Sunshine State with an infant, a toddler, and a six-year old. “What were we thinking?” you ask your spouse. Three children in six years? And a trip to visit your parents on the… Continue Reading



RGA Network Founder and Chief Idea Officer: Mark O’Donnell 727-433-2774   Wall Street Marketing at Main Street Prices When Mark O’Donnell laid the groundwork for Revenue Generating Activities, he introduced a fresh approach to professional business networking in Pinellas County. “I’d had years of networking experience,” says Mark, “but most of the groups… Continue Reading

Beach Access is now more accessible

Beach Access is now more accessible

Beach visitors who use wheelchairs, walkers, and strollers will now have easier access to Treasure Island’s white sand beaches. “We finished putting the MobiMat® Recpath™ in place at about eleven this morning,” said Justin Tramble of the City Recreation Department on April 27. “I went later in the afternoon and there were hundreds of people… Continue Reading

Board Chairman Joe Dise Attended Governor’s Dinner

Board Chairman Joe Dise Attended Governor’s Dinner

TREASURE ISLAND | MADEIRA BEACH – Early in March, the Chairman of the Board of the Treasure Island & Madeira Beach Chamber of Commerce, Joe Dise (Dise Wealth Management), and his wife, Erin, attended Governor Rick Scott’s Leadership Dinner at the Governor’s mansion in Tallahassee. “The evening was an intimate gathering,” said Dise in describing… Continue Reading

Health Fair | Trade Show | Car Show

TREASURE ISLAND ­­— The 2nd Annual Health Fair and Trade Show, sponsored jointly by the Treasure Island & Madeira Beach Chamber of Commerce (TIMB Chamber), Revenue Generating Activities (RGA) Network, the Gulfport Area Chamber of Commerce, and the Seminole Chamber of Commerce, is set for Saturday, April 21, from 10:00 a.m. till 2:00 p.m., at… Continue Reading

TIMB Chamber Presents Mayors’ Prayer Lunch

Treasure Island, FL ­­— The Treasure Island & Madeira Beach (TIMB) Chamber of Commerce presents the 14th Annual Mayors’ Prayer Lunch at 11:00 a.m. on Friday, February 23, at The Club at Treasure Island, 400 Treasure Island Causeway. Current Mayor Bob Minning and former Mayor Mary Maloof have presided over the event for the past… Continue Reading

Chamber President at Visit Florida Summit

PINELLAS COUNTY, FL — Missy H. Hahn, president of the Treasure Island & Madeira Beach Chamber of Commerce, attended the Visit Florida Tourism Leadership Summit in West Palm Beach December 11-13. The summit was “designed to explore insights, issues, and trends facing the travel and tourism industry and encourage meaningful dialogue among Florida tourism industry… Continue Reading

SBA Continues Commitment to Florida Hurricane Irma Recovery With Disaster Loan Outreach Centers and Hours of Operation

ATLANTA – The U.S. Small Business Administration has approved almost 30,000 disaster loans totaling over $1 billion for disaster survivors of Hurricane Irma in Florida, and SBA’s assistance is still available. Customer Service Representatives are stationed at 12 locations throughout Florida to answer program questions, assist in applying for an SBA disaster loan and help… Continue Reading

McDole Joins Chamber Board

TREASURE ISLAND, FL — The Treasure Island & Madeira Beach (TIMB) Chamber of Commerce announces the appointment of Kathleen McDole to its Board of Directors. McDole is president of Friendly Fisherman, L.L.C. and treasurer of Hubbard Enterprises, and brings a strong background in business and community service to the Board. She is one of the… Continue Reading

Chamber Hosts Business Forum

Treasure Island, FL ­­— The Treasure Island & Madeira Beach Chamber of Commerce invites Treasure Island businesses to meet with Board members on Monday, December 4, from 6 pm till 8 pm at the Treasure Island Community Center, 154 – 106th Avenue, Treasure Island. “Our businesses often turn to the Chamber with issues that affect… Continue Reading

Gators Café & Saloon Donates $21,175 for MobiMat® Recpath™ Beach Access Mat

TREASURE ISLAND, FLORIDA — Gators Café & Saloon, a subsidiary of HCI Group, Inc., donated $21,175 to the City of Treasure Island for the purchase of a MobiMat® Recpath™ to be installed at Treasure Island Gulf Front Park, 10400 Gulf Blvd. Paresh Patel, Chairman and CEO of HCI Group, Inc., presented the check on behalf… Continue Reading

Bilmar Beach Cafe/Sloppy Joe’s recognized for EPIC efforts

Treasure Island ­­— Bilmar Beach Café and Sloppy Joe’s Bar & Grill, both part of the Bilmar Beach Resort, at 10650 Gulf Blvd., on Treasure Island, received Certificates of Compliance in the Treasure Island and Madeira Beach Chamber of Commerce EPIC program.   The presentation by Chamber Chairman Gregory Tong came at the August 1… Continue Reading

Treasure Island/Madeira Beach Chamber certified as a Visit Florida Travel Information Center

TREASURE ISLAND—VISIT FLORIDA, the state’s official tourism marketing corporation, named the Treasure Island & Madeira Beach Chamber of Commerce as its newest Certified Travel Information Center on August 21, announced Chamber President Missy H. Hahn. “This makes our office the first and only state-certified Travel Information Center on Treasure Island,” noted Hahn, “and we are… Continue Reading

Chamber President Missy H. Hahn appointed to Visit Florida committee

     Missy H. Hahn, president of the Treasure Island & Madeira Beach Chamber of Commerce, was appointed to the Industry Relations committee of Visit Florida, effective August 1.       The Industry Relations committee is Visit Florida’s primary source of feedback on matters related to communication and engagement among businesses involvled in the Tourism industry. It aids in developing partnerships among these businesses, and encoureges participation in activities designed to increase tourism. The committee also works to improve customer… Continue Reading

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