“As part of the "Wish You Were Here" marketing and public relations campaign funded by BP to bring tourists back to the Coast after the Gulf oil spill we invited radio talk show hosts from markets across America to broadcast live from the Gulf Coast on Thursday, November 18 and Friday, November 19,” said Mary Beth Wilkerson, director of Tourism for the Mississippi Development Authority. “Great Mississippians shared the inspiring stories of our citizens and about Mississippi’s dynamic tourism destinations, delicious seafood and various economic opportunities across the pristine Gulf Coast.”
Guests on programs included Mississippi restaurant owners, relief and redevelopment, tourism and marine resource officials, and real estate and investment professionals. Even popular comedian Martin Short got into the act. Short interviewed with Fargo, ND radio host Scott Hennen on Friday before the Saturday Night Live alum performed his one-man show at the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Biloxi. Short told Hennen about Mississippi: “Why go to the Riviera? This is the most expansive view of water you’ve ever seen in your life. It’s so spectacularly beautiful; it’s breathtaking. It really is. It’s a unique part of the world.”
Other hosts who beamed hundreds of hours of radio coverage and dozens of online stories across the country on Gulf recovery included nationally syndicated programs: The Lars Larson Show; Doug Stephan's Good Day; Kate Delaney’s America Tonight; Battleline with Alan Nathan; and Talk Radio News’ Ellen Ratner, Geoff Holtzman and Lovisa Frost. Regional shows included: WGSO’s Jeff Crouere’s Ringside Politics with in New Orleans, LA; The Martha Zoller Show, heard statewide in Georgia; WVVE in Panama City’s Angie Rose andShawn Wild; Steve Bowers’ Daybreak on WNWS in Jackson, TN; George Russell’s The George Russell Experience from WSMN in Nashua, NH. Bloggers and online commentators and reporters include: Ed Morrissey from HotAir.com; Kerry Picket from The Washington Times; Rob Port from SayAnythingBlog.com in North Dakota and the Mississippi Development Authority.