Meet Our Featured Members

Meet Our Featured Members

Get to know our monthly Featured Members! 

2018 August Featured Journalist of the Month: Tom Bartel
Wednesday, August 01, 2018 12:00 AM

 Tom Bartel:

Tom Bartel and his wife Kristin Henning upended their lifestyle in 2010 when they sold their home, business, and possessions to travel the world. What started as teaching stint in South America turned into a series of adventures across more than 60 countries on six continents, including walking the 500-mile Camino de Santiago in Spain, hiking jungles and volcanos, house and horse sitting, and visiting scores of UNESCO World Heritage Sites and National Parks. 

 Kris and Tom spent their careers in Minneapolis/St. Paul (MN) as newspaper and magazine publishers (City Pages, Minnesota Parent, The Rake magazine). Today, they keep up their writing and photography chops by producing their own award-winning blog,, and contributing to other travel and lifestyle publications. 

2018 August Featured Destination of the Month: Destination Salem
Wednesday, August 01, 2018 12:00 AM

 Destination Salem:

Destination Salem is the Office of Tourism and Cultural Affairs for the city of Salem, Massachusetts. Salem is recognized around the world for its rich history, which includes the tragic Salem Witch Trials of 1692, a glorious maritime era that left its indelible mark on Salem through architecture, museums, and artifacts, and for its month-long celebration of Halloween. Today more than one million people visit Salem annually. For more information, visit

2018 July Featured Member of the Month: Tim Trudell
Sunday, July 01, 2018 12:00 PM

Tim Trudell

Tim Trudell has been a journalist, manager and project manager in his life. However, he has returned to his roots as a writer. Based in Omaha, Tim, along with his wife Life, writes the travel blog The Walking Tourists ( Tim worked in community newspaper before leaving the industry for hotel sales. Throughout his other careers, he stayed interested in writing and even covered sports part-time for an Omaha-area newspaper. Today, he and Lisa are the authors of “100 Things to Do in Omaha Before You Die,” a bucket list of attractions and restaurants in the Metro area. Tim is currently working on their next book, “Unique Eats and Eateries of Omaha.” He has written pieces for military-related publications and travel guides. Tim is working on expanding his freelance writing as a full-time business.

Tim is a Nebraska native. He is a member of the Santee Sioux tribe, and has included his heritage in some articles relating to Midwest attractions that have a personal connection, such as his great-great grandparents being imprisoned at Minnesota’s Fort Snelling in the 1860s following the US-Dakota war.

Tim and Lisa have two daughters from his first marriage – Stephanie and Mallory. They are the proud cat parents of a “Psych” team of Gus, Lassiter and Shawn.

2018 July Featured Journalist of the Month: Lucy Tobias
Sunday, July 01, 2018 12:00 AM

 Lucy Tobias

Lucy Tobias is a travel journalist and author of the award winning book 50 Great Walks in Florida, along with two editions of a gardening book and a children’s book about manatees available in English and Spanish. She is a correspondent for newspapers and magazines.

Her monthly blog Saturday Morning Magazine takes subscribers to undiscovered places both in Florida and beyond.

A former reporter and photographer for the New York Times Regional Group she also served as Authentic Florida Expert for Visit Florida doing videos, blogs and podcasts around the state.

Her newest book is Circle the Center Labyrinths in Florida. Learn more at

Lucy spent two years visiting 138 labyrinths around the state and gathering stories of their creation and the people who walk them – 95 labyrinths are featured in the book.

2018 July Featured Destination of the Month: Greensboro Area Convention & Visitors Bureau
Sunday, July 01, 2018 12:00 AM

Greensboro Area Convention & Visitors Bureau

Play in the Center of it All – Greensboro, North Carolina

Centrally located in the heart of North Carolina’s scenic Piedmont region, and in the center of the Eastern Seaboard, Greensboro has it all for everyone. Not only is Greensboro in the center of the state of North Carolina, but Greensboro is also in the center of everything going on in North Carolina!  Fun and exciting things are happening here.

Immerse yourself in Greensboro’s historical attractions and explore over 200 years of rich history!  Learn about the city’s history at the newly renovated Greensboro Historical Museum.  Located in Greensboro’s thriving downtown is the International Civil Rights Center & Museum.  The museum occupies the historic Woolworth Building, site of the original February 1 lunch counter sit in of 1960.  Visit the Guilford Courthouse National Military Park, honoring one of the most pivotal battles of the Revolutionary War.

The arts & entertainment are alive in Greensboro!  From concerts, over 40 art museums, theatre, parks and gardens, sporting events, Greensboro has something for everyone.

In the spring and summer, you'll always win with the Greensboro Grasshoppers, a South Atlantic League Class A farm club of the Florida Marlins, playing at First National Bank Field downtown.  Every fall, Greensboro is home to one of the oldest PGA TOUR stops, the Wyndham Championship at Sedgefield Country Club.

2018 June Featured Journalist of the Month: Eric Stoen
Friday, June 01, 2018 06:00 AM

2018 June Featured Member: Eric StoenEric Stoen:

Eric is a writer and photographer specializing in family travel, providing first-hand information through to inspire families to travel to unique, adventurous destinations. He’s traveled with his three kids (8, 10 and 12) to 49 countries on 7 continents. Every year each of his kids gets to choose any destination in the world (literally) for a one-on-one trip. Eric is an Ambassador for AFAR Magazine, Universal Orlando, Capital One and Travelocity.


2018 June Featured Journalist of the Month: Lois Alter Mark
Friday, June 01, 2018 06:00 AM

2018 June Featured Member: Lois Alter MarkLois Alter Mark:

Lois Alter Mark is a Travel Expert for USA Today and a contributor to, where she writes seven travel columns a month. She writes about everything from luxury spas, cruises and hotels to quirky museums and street food, and is also a regular contributor to AAA Midwest Traveler and Southern Traveler.

 When she’s not traveling around the world – and even when she is – Lois blogs at Midlife at the Oasis, her award-winning website for baby boomers. Because of her blog, Oprah Winfrey selected Lois to accompany her on the Ultimate Australian Adventure in 2010. Since then, Lois has won three BlogHer Voices of the Year awards, was twice named a Finalist in the NATJA Awards and was named Humor Writer of the Month by Erma Bombeck Writers Workshop. 

Lois is a former publicist who loves helping destinations tell their stories. Native New Yorkers, she and her husband are empty nesters now living in Southern California, where they’re still searching for a good slice of pizza. 

2018 June Featured Destination: Santa Rosa County Tourist Development Office
Friday, June 01, 2018 06:00 AM

2018 Featured Destination: Santa Rosa CountySanta Rosa County Tourist Development Office:

 Located between Pensacola and Destin/Fort Walton Beach, Florida's Most Relaxing Place – whose communities include Navarre Beach, Gulf Breeze, historic Milton -- is an easy drive from most anywhere in the Southeast. It features Florida’s most relaxing beaches, spectacular sunsets and inland waterway adventures to savor at an un-rushed pace in an uncrowded atmosphere. Pensacola International Airport is just 30 miles away with air service provided by American, Delta, United, US Airways and Southwest; while Destin-Fort Walton Beach Airport is 25 miles away and is serviced by Allegiant Airlines, American and Delta. Accolades 2017: Navarre Beach rated #6 out of 365 worldwide beaches by Travel+Leisure magazine, and listed one of “The South’s Best Tiny Towns” by Southern Living Magazine. For more information, please visit

2018 May Featured Journalist: Melody Pittman
Monday, April 30, 2018 01:30 PM

2018 May Featured Member of the Month: Melody PittmanMelody Pittman:

Melody Pittman is one half of the Wherever I May Roam blog team. Along with her daughter, Taylor Hardy, they write about luxury travel, culture, and food with a side of smart spending. Melody freelances for both online and print publications as well as belonging to NATJA, TBIN, and TravelingMoms. She most recently started her second blog, Travel the South Bloggers, with daughter Taylor, to showcase Southern state travels, CVB’s, and local businesses. Melody resides in Vero Beach, Florida and Boquete, Panama.


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