PUNTA GORDA, FLORIDA - Members of the St. Cloud Area Convention and Visitors Bureau are in the Fort Myers area this week trying to convince Floridians to come to Minnesota this winter.

Executive Director Julie Lunning and her staff left for Punta Gorda Airport Wednesday on the inaugural Allegiant Airlines flight from St. Cloud. She says they're in the midst of a media blitz.

We've actually had six interviews so far today with radio stations in the Fort Myers area and with the Fort Myers newspaper talking about the ease of the service and what individuals from this area can find when they come up to St. Cloud for the winter.

Lunning says, with a lot of people originally from central Minnesota having retired on the Gulf Coast of Florida, this flight can give them easy access to get back home to see friends and family.

The flight between Punta Gorda and St. Cloud runs twice weekly now through early April.