Meet Our Featured Members

Meet Our Featured Members

Get to know our monthly Featured Members! 

2019 March Featured Destination of the Month: Florida Keys & Key West
Friday, March 01, 2019 04:11 PM

Florida Keys and Key West:

Curving below the southern tip of the Florida mainland, the Florida Keys are connected by the famed Overseas Highway’s 42 bridges over the Atlantic Ocean and Gulf of Mexico. The region is divided into five unique districts, beginning with the northernmost island of Key Largo, known for its unparalleled diving and snorkeling.

Farther down lies the sport-fishing paradise of Islamorada, the Middle Keys and the historic, iconic Seven Mile Bridge at Marathon; the unspoiled nature preserves of Big Pine and the Lower Keys, and at the southernmost tip of the continental United States, quirky and charming Key West.

The Keys are characterized by a rich seafaring history, flourishing creative community, balmy subtropical climate, natural environment that includes continental America’s only living coral barrier reef and a laidback vibe that seems worlds away from the mainland.

2019 March Featured Journalist of the Month: J.M. Pasquesi
Friday, March 01, 2019 04:07 PM

J.M. Pasquesi:

Author and contributing editor, J.M. Pasquesi's primary focus is on Rome, Italy. Her award-winning guide, "ROME WITH KIDS: an insider's guide" (Second edition, 2014) has won several awards, including the 2014 Silver Medal NATJA award for excellence in travel writing (travel guides). It can be found in bookstores throughout the U.S.A. and Rome, Italy. J.M. has been a contributing editor to CARA (Aer Lingus); Ling Magazine (Barcelona); Northstar's Italy guide, Rome City guide, and Chicago City guide; Travelworld Magazine; City Parent; and She has been featured as a Rome expert for USA Today, and for syndicated radio shows such as Rick Steves Radio, KZBN's "Around the World", WOR's "Joe Reynold's Show, and KFMB's "Travel Talk Radio". Her career in advertising included work for DMB&B Chicago, The Bitter End Yacht Club, B.V.I.
J.M. graduated cum laude from Loyola University, Chicago with a BA in English and a minor in Classical Civilizations.
2019 March Featured Journalist of the Month: Gary Crow
Friday, March 01, 2019 04:02 PM

Gary Crow:

Gary Crow is an adventurous photographer, inventor, and lakeside resort owner. Any day is a good day for boating or diving somewhere in the world. Gary’s goal is to be in the right place at the right time as often as possible.


2019 February Featured Journalist of the Month: Candyce Stapen
Friday, February 01, 2019 06:00 AM

Candyce Stapen:

Candyce Stapen is a syndicated travel columnist (3 million+ circulation) with a Ph.D from University of Maryland, Bindu Trips editor, founder of Great Family Vacations Blog, she won Society of American Travel Writers’ Lowell Thomas Travel Award six times and was awarded the Caribbean Travel Writer of the Year for North America in 2004.

She founded Henny’s Kids, a charity to bring solar-powered laptops to school children in rural Africa. in June 2014 she delivered computers, solar panels, and training to a school in Zambia. In  2015, 2016, and 2017, Henny’s Kids brought additional computers to Zambia, as well as raised money to install solar panels on a school in Zimbabwe that lacked electricity. In 2018, Candyce delivered computers and training to the Zimbabwe school, making that school the first in the country to have computers. Henny’s  Kids also gives soccer balls to the schools so that the children don’t have to play with plastic bags tied with twine.

Candyce raised her family in Washington, D.C., and currently resides there with her husband and two dogs, Cleo, a chocolate Labrador Retriever, and Maggie, a Newfoundland.

2019 February Featured Journalist of the Month: Clark Norton
Friday, February 01, 2019 06:00 AM

Clark Norton:

Clark Norton is a veteran freelance writer who has specialized in travel for 25 years – ever since realizing that his forays into newspaper work and Hollywood screenwriting, while more lucrative, didn’t get him out of the office enough. His work has appeared in many major national and regional publications including The Washington Post Magazine, Outside, Rolling Stone, Health, Family Fun, Parenting, Hemispheres, Reader’s Digest, EnCompass, and Porthole Cruise Magazine (where his theme cruise columns garnered two straight NATJA gold awards for best magazine travel series). Clark is also the author of 17 guidebooks to California, Alaska, the Dominican Republic, and Tucson, Arizona, where he now lives. Having chronicled the travels of baby boomers since his early days backpacking in Europe, he now blogs about baby boomer travel at And despite having traveled to 120 countries, 50 states, and seven continents, his bucket list just keeps getting longer.

2019 February Featured Destination of the Month: Naples, Marco Island, Everglades CVB
Friday, February 01, 2019 06:00 AM

Naples, Marco Island, Everglades CVB:

Floridas Paradise Coast
A natural and cultural gem tucked away in Southwest Florida, the Paradise Coast is where the Gulf of Mexico's turquoise water meets white sand, wild islands and downtowns filled with artful treasures, culinary delights and countless other discoveries. Explore Naples, Marco Island, Everglades City, Immokalee and Ave Maria and find your most idyllic Florida vacation.

2019 January Featured Journalist of the Month: Linda Aksomitis
Tuesday, January 01, 2019 12:00 AM

Linda Aksomitis

Linda Aksomitis is an award winning author of 30+ books, both traditionally published in five countries, and indie-published, including three travel guides as well as fiction and nonfiction for adults and children. She has a Master of Vocational Technical Education degree and works part of the year as an instructional designer for Saskatchewan Polytechnic, as well as teaching three writing courses worldwide through the Education To Go network. Her travels have included many adventures from walking 20 feet under the South China Sea with a "fishbowl" on her head, to climbing Canyon Sainte-Anne's via Ferrata, to packing her laptop on a snowmobile for five days across the Chic-Choc Mountains on the Gaspe Peninsula. 

She lives in Qu'Appelle, Saskatchewan, with her husband of 45 years, David Aksomitis, who often shares her travel adventures. 

2019 January Featured Journalist of the Month: Douglas Peebles
Tuesday, January 01, 2019 12:00 AM

Douglas Peebles

Douglas Peebles works out of Kaneohe, Oahu. He has been photographing Hawaii and the South Pacific for over 30 years. His distinctive images appear regularly in magazines, ads, annual reports, and other publications. Douglas has done 50 photo books on Hawaii. including "Hawaii", "Kauai", "Maui" "Oahu" and "Island of Hawaii” a series panoramic images of the islands.


2019 January Featured Destination of the Month: Visit Frederick
Tuesday, January 01, 2019 12:00 AM

 Visit Frederick:

Here, museums meet martini bars, scenic landscapes provide thrill seekers with adventure, and cutting edge cuisine is served up in Civil War-era buildings alongside unique specialty shops, galleries, museums, and theaters. Located less than one hour from Washington, D.C., Baltimore, and Gettysburg, the city of Frederick, Maryland is surrounded by mountain views, wineries, orchards and vibrant Main Street communities. Visitors can hike the Appalachian Trail, visit Maryland's largest brewery, and tour a battlefield all in one day.

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