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Press Release


Florida-Caribbean Cruise Association's 10th Annual Gala Raises Funds for the Caribbean


Pembroke Pines, FL. - (March 28, 2004) - More than 500 cruise industry partners and top cruise executives joined the Florida-Caribbean Cruise Association (FCCA) at the American Airlines Arena for the 10th Annual Gala Dinner Extravaganza on March 18th, 2004. This year's Gala raised funds approximately $200,000 to distribute to worthy causes in the Caribbean through its' Foundation. The FCCA Foundation for the Caribbean serves as a tangible vehicle for the cruise industry to participate in the effort to improve the lives of Caribbean citizens through its funding of humanitarian and social causes. The Foundation has impacted the lives of thousands of Caribbean citizens providing more than $2 million in funding to causes and charities throughout the region.


The evening celebrations began with a cocktail reception on the East Plaza of the Arena, overlooking the Port of Miami. Guests eagerly placed their bids on the silent art auction items, sponsored by Park West Gallery, who donated over 100 pieces of magnificent artwork by artists such as Peter Max, Salvador Dali, Tarkay and many more.


Guests were escorted to center court of the Arena which was transformed into a elegant dining atmosphere, with cruise industry partners and top cruise executive spending the evening exchanging views and ideas while dining in a social atmosphere. "Now that I am on the "other side of the fence," this particular event is an important opportunity to establish new contacts in the industry. I was particularly pleased that the music during dinner was soft enough to allow for easy conversation with others seated at the table. It was a very productive, and at the same time enjoyable evening," Tom Anderson, President, Destination Florida.


During dinner Howard Frank, Vice Chairman & COO, Carnival Corporation, gave the opening remarks and thanked the FCCA for its dedication to this worthy cause. He also the industry partners for their continued support.


Security Operations Committee Chairman, Stephen A. Nielsen, VP, Caribbean & Atlantic Shore Operations, Princess Cruises, presented an educational scholarship of $2,500 each to both first place winners of the 2004 Foundation's Environmental Poster Competition, Ilena George (senior division) from Turks and Caicos and Marlow Brown (junior division) from Jamaica. Bill Panoff, President, PPI Group, presented a donation of $30,000 to the FCCA Foundation. The Port of Miami and the Miami Convention & Visitor's Bureau were honored as this year's event sponsors. The Dan Leslie Entertainers provided a splendid evening of dancing entertainment.


"The Foundation's good works provide an excellent mechanism for the cruise industry to show their commitment to its destination partners by assisting worthy causes in their destinations," said Michele M. Paige, President, FCCA.




Created in 1972, the FCCA is a not-for-profit trade organization that provides a forum for discussion on tourism development, ports, safety, security, and other cruise industry issues and builds bilateral relationships with destinations’ private and public sectors. By fostering an understanding of the cruise industry and its operating practices, the FCCA works with governments, ports and private sector representatives to maximize cruise passenger, crew and cruise line spending, as well as enhance the destination experience and increase the amount of cruise passengers returning as stay-over visitors. For more information, visit F-CCA.com and @FCCAupdates on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.


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