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Businesses get creative to scare up tourism for Halloween in Martin County

Stuart water captain creates 'Ghost Cruise Spooktacular'
Posted at 5:36 PM, Oct 27, 2020
and last updated 2020-10-27 18:27:28-04

STUART, Fla.  — Businesses on the Treasure Coast are not letting COVID-19 scare away their customers this Halloween.

For Jamison, Bonner COVID-19 is a real-life nightmare.

"Scarier than Halloween, no doubt," said Bonner, the Stuart Water Taxi captain.

The pandemic almost steered business to the grave.

"It's been very difficult," he said.

Jamison Bonner
Jamison Bonner says his "Ghost Cruise Spooktacular" is mix between a history lesson and ghost stories.

However, Bonner came up with a spooky idea.

"[It is] a mix between a history lesson and just having some fun and telling some ghost stories," Bonner said.

It's called "Ghost Cruise Spooktacular."

"We're doing a kids tour at 7 p.m. and then an adult tour at 8 p.m.," Bonner said.

The idea has garnered attention across the county.

Narrissa Okie
"We want to be able to showcase [the creativity of businesses]," Narrissa Okie with Discover Martin County said.

"For us, when we see businesses that are getting creative and really pivoting in terms of what they are doing, we want to be able to showcase that," Narrissa Okie with Discover Martin County said.

She said creativity is key to reviving the industry ahead of the tourism season.

"Capitalizing on things that we do have, wide-open spaces. We have a smaller footprint. You don't necessarily have to worry about over-tourism here because we have limited hotel inventory, so that makes us unique, and it's an experience people want to do," said Okie.