Friday, May 24 2013 6:49 AM EDT2013-05-24 10:49:03 GMT
It's a voyage that helps introduce tourists to those small waterfront towns that they may not ordinarily think to visit. A cruise ship docked in Biloxi on Wednesday night. Then on Thursday, passengersMore >>
It's a voyage that helps introduce tourists to those small waterfront towns that they may not ordinarily think to visit. A cruise ship docked in Biloxi on Wednesday night. Then on Thursday, passengers visited several attractions including the Biloxi lighthouse and the visitors center. The Grande Caribe set sail from New Orleans and will continue on until it reaches St. Petersburg. Crew members said it's the stops along the way that makes these small cruises stand out.More >>
Monday, May 13 2013 12:24 PM EDT2013-05-13 16:24:04 GMT
MARION COUNTY, MS (WDAM) - A weekend-long drug raid left 22 individuals behind bars, and more arrests to come. According to Marion County Sheriff Berkley Hall, the drug raid is the result of severalMore >>
A weekend-long drug raid left 22 individuals behind bars, and more arrests to come.More >>
Thursday, May 23 2013 5:38 PM EDT2013-05-23 21:38:18 GMT
The picture of a George County dog set on fire is disturbing. Authorities say the circumstances surrounding how fire consumed the dog are shocking. According to George County Sheriff Dean Howell, 20-year-oldMore >>
Socks, the dog reportedly burned this week by his owner, has died. That word comes from a George County Sheriff's deputy. Socks succumbed to injuries suffered after 20-year-old Brandon Pierce allegedly set his dog on fire Tuesday night. The suspect told deputies he torched the dog because he "wanted to help the dog go to heaven."More >>
Thursday, May 23 2013 10:07 PM EDT2013-05-24 02:07:07 GMT
"Study the past if you would define the future." Those words were once said by Confucius and those are the words the Historical Society of Gulfport strives toward for its city. Wednesday, that societyMore >>
Hoping to highlight Gulfport's history, members will be making that building a museum and welcome center for the city.More >>
An 87-year-old grandmother took on billionaire Donald Trump. And on Thursday - she lost.More >>
An 87-year-old grandmother took on billionaire Donald Trump. And on Thursday, she lost.More >>
BILOXI, MS (WLOX) -
He's been a prominent figure in the coast tourism industry for several decades. And on Tuesday, John Mladinich was recognized for his many achievements in helping attract visitors to the Mississippi Gulf Coast.
Mr. Mladinich was certainly a tourism force back in the day when Biloxi was known as "America's Riviera."
"Beginning in 1950, the Mladinich family opened the Fiesta," said Louis Skrmetta, as he prepared to present the tourism award.
He then scanned a long list of tourism businesses owned and accomplishments achieved by John Mladinich.
Accepting the Don Jacobs Award for Lifetime Achievement, the son of Croation immigrants reflected on his mother working in the seafood factories.
"When that whistle blowed, they knew what factory it was. They knew where the hell to go. They all got up to go pick shrimp or whatever. But they knew the tone of the whistles in them canneries," said Mladinich.
While the seafood industry meant early opportunity, it was the tourism industry where Mr. Mladinich left a lasting mark.
"I think he's very forward as far as thinking goes and planning. He's very exacting. But the most important thing of all, he gets it done," said J.B. Richmond, a childhood friend of Mladinich.
His accomplishments in the tourism industry are numerous and significant.
"Getting the Mississippi Gulf Coast Coliseum and Convention Center off the ground. He had vision. He was one of the people that made that happen. And you can see what we have there today because of him and people like him," said tourism and advertising executive Reed Guice.
John Mladinich was also instrumental in helping get dockside gambling approved. And though he may have slowed down a bit, his latest project is reviving the iconic White Pillars restaurant.
"Getting down there and working with it and seeing the improvements and making some changes we had to make. But we feel like it's going to be another winner," said Mladinich.
Given his successful tourism track record, it would be unwise to bet against that.
The tourism award is named in honor of Don Jacobs, another tourism pioneer, who operated Marine Life, the Biloxi Shrimp Tour Train and Six Gun Junction. Mr. Jacobs passed away one year ago.
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