After word got out that Hurricane Ian destroyed Sanibel Island’s only bridge and decimated the islands, the Sanibel Causeway, the Tampa Bay Beaches Chamber of Commerce CEO Robin Miller said she knew she had to do something.
Her mind automatically went to Taste of the Beaches, a high-grossing fundraiser that benefits one charity every year, and this year the Tampa Bay Beaches Chamber decided to shift the benefactor to The Islands of Sanibel Captiva Chamber.
The money will help the Sanibel and Captiva rebuild the area’s tourism industry. Originally, the benefiting charity was PARC Center for Disabilities, but given the circumstances, Miller said they agreed to the last minute change with no issues. The week-long event is set to kickoff on Oct. 7.
“I stayed up all night trying to figure out what to do and how to help,” Miller told The Gabber. “This event is an avenue that is already created. As soon as I brought it up to Michelle [PARC CEO Michelle Detweiler] she told me not to say another word, she completely understood.”
PARC will be the benefactor for 2023’s Taste of the Beaches.
“Parc Center for Disabilities wholeheartedly supports the shift of support from our organization to the support of those who have traumatically been affected by Hurricane Ian. We feel blessed to be a part of the Tampa Bay Beaches Chamber and are here to support this effort,” Detweiler said. “We will continue to do what we can to promote the Taste of the Beaches so that the maximum amount of funds can be used to help those in need.”
Taste of the Beaches begins with a kickoff event in Horan Park on Oct. 7 and will bring participants all over the Gulf Beaches through Oct. 17. If you’d like to help donate to the hurricane fund, get a ticket online.