Last week, DEMA sponsored “Dive in Day” at the Florida Capitol. The annual event provides Members the opportunity to visit the Capitol, showcase their diving-related products and services, and promote issues that are important to the scuba diving industry.
This year’s Dive in Day at the Capitol hosted Florida’s 160 legislators; the Governor and his staff; and hundreds of Florida visitors. The first floor of the Capitol was reserved by DEMA so Florida dive businesses had the opportunity to showcase Florida’s recreational diving businesses. Among those attending were students from Covenant Christian School who had developed and demonstrated a lionfish trap for deployment in deep water, beyond recreational diving limits. The Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission (FWC) co-located with DEMA’s event, with FWC on the second floor of the Capitol Building, giving visitors the opportunity to try lionfish samples. Additionally a mobile aquarium exhibition from the Gulf Specimen Lab was on display to demonstrate the perils caused by the number of lionfish invading Florida waters.
DEMA Members and DEMA Staff also met with Florida state Senators and Representatives over the course of the event to discuss the lionfish issue. In addition to showcasing local businesses, DEMA distributed information to Legislators and visitors educating them on the size of the diving industry in Florida and its importance to jobs, tourism and the economy, with a focus on lionfish awareness.
Thank you to everyone who helped make this year’s Dive in Day such a success! We appreciate your support!