Laura Ruane, Laura Layden News-Press; Naples Daily News Published 3:16 p.m. UTC Sep 2, 2018 Best case, the Labor Day weekend brings a welcome three-day splash of visitor spending in Southwest Florida during what’s often the slowest month for tourism. It’s a respite from the more-languid business pace of late summer, which prompted some wag to call the month of September, “Death-tember.” But this holiday weekend isn’t looking like a best case: Far from it. Reports of toxic algal blooms – chiefly red tide and blue-green algae – continue to make national news headlines and social media, keeping some visitors away. Red tide has been worse than usual this year, plaguing Collier and Lee counties, killing off fish and stinking up the air. On top of that, Lee is still cleaning up the toxic blue-green algae tied to Lake Okeechobee discharges. The algae has invaded the Caloosahatchee River and its canals. More: What travelers should know about Florida’s red tide outbreak More: Red tide has sparked a state of emergency in Florida. What is red tide? Collier County might be at less of a disadvantage, but even there, optimism for a strong September is muted at best. For the rest of the month – at least –… Read full this story
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