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Shining Marketing Example — Alabama’s Eats

A broiled seafood platter from The Bright Star restaurant in Bessemer shows off some of the Gulf of Mexico’s succulent treasures.

A broiled seafood platter from The Bright Star restaurant in Bessemer shows off some of the Gulf of Mexico’s succulent treasures.

Photo courtesy of Alabama Tourism Department

The Alabama Tourism Department’s two-year food campaign, designed to draw residents and visitors alike to dine on the state’s tastiest samplings, has earned the South’s top award for tourism marketing.

The Alabama Food program — including food photos pictured in an exhibit that premiered in New York — received the Southeast Tourism Society’s Shining Example Award. The program included a statewide restaurant week and a “100 Dishes to Eat Before You Die” smartphone app.

It is the fourth year in the past decade that Alabama Tourism received the award, says Tourism Director Lee Sentell. Alabama previously won for The Year of Gardens in 2004, Food in 2005 and Small Towns and Downtowns in 2010, he says.

The awards, given out in mid-October in Charleston, South Carolina, were open to state and local tourism agencies in 12 states, officials said.

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