30 April 2011

CFP for AAG 2012!

Call for Papers Begins May 15

The 2012 Annual Meeting will be held much earlier than previous meetings; therefore, presenters will need to submit their abstracts and proposals earlier. Presenters can register for the AAG Annual Meeting and submit abstracts for presentations and sessions as early as May 15. The Call for Papers will end on September 28, 2011.

The AAG Annual Meeting is an interdisciplinary forum open to anyone with an interest in geography and related disciplines. All scholars, researchers, and students are welcome to submit abstracts for papers and presentations. The Call for Papers and abstract guidelines are available at www.aag.org/annualmeeting/call_for_papers.

25 April 2011

Urban Heat Islands

Even when adjusted for different current weather conditions, the area has grown for urban heat islands in our little town of Westfield.

How adjusted? well the median temps for each period was used to reclassify the maps into area of UHI and not. Simple right?

24 April 2011


Forsythia is in bloom. I was walking the dog in Stanley Park this morning and saw this growth patter. I mean, no flowers 2-4 feet above the ground. Can you guess why?

Well probably it is due to the cold winter and the piles of snow we got. With a couple of feet of snow on the ground from Christmas to the middle of March, a lot of buds were exposed to the elements and froze.

23 April 2011

St. Louis Airport closed indefinitely (STL)

BREAKING NEWS (http://www.lambert-stlouis.com/)

Lambert-St. Louis International Airport is closed indefinitely due to severe storm damage on Friday, April 22.

All departing and arriving flights are cancelled until further notice pending full safety assessments of Airport facilities.

Contact your airline for latest updates and options for all departing and arriving flights.

St. Louis City, St. Louis County and surrounding municipalities are actively assisting the Airport with cleanup efforts and safety review of all operations in and around the Airport complex.

You can also stay tuned to local media for further updates on the situation at Lambert.

22 April 2011

Earth Day 2011

I planted some grass seed and a few trees in my yard. Anything to grab some of that CO2 from the atmosphere AND make my little 0.67 hectares of land a better place. Oh yeah, we share it with our new friend.

10 April 2011

Travel Behavior for Medical Tourists

Hi, here is the research presentation I gave at the (click here:

The Changing World of Coastal, Island and Tropical Tourism Conference

Martinique, French West Indies

27 - 29 January 2011

Sea, sun, sand and ... Selecting Surgery, an exploration of Medical Tourist Travel Behavior

Keywords: medical tourism, travel choice behavior, sustainable tourism

A challenge for marketing coastal and island destinations is the recognition of the spatial choice behavior of tourists. Mass tourism facilities depend on repeat visitors as well as attracting new first time tourists. As these traditional sun and sand holiday destinations mature, tourism promoters are expanding opportunities to attract a different kind of tourist. Since many of these resorts are all-inclusive facilities including a Spa, one potential expansion may be to market to health, wellness or medical tourists.

One primary goal of travel research is to understand what factors might influence the decision-making process. In this manner, tourism planners can identify the determinants of patronage patterns in order to estimate the returns on investments. Travel occurs because people seek alternatives in space where participation in some activity takes place. Like any travel, medical travel is where an individual seeks to meet some desired objective by selecting among alternative hospital destinations and choosing one.

Geographic research in travel and tourism has found that individuals either repeat visits to the same destination or diversify their choices. Since medical tourists are facing travel for a sensitive personal issue, awareness of their travel behavior is important for island and coastal destinations electing to market medical tourism.

For example, in Costa Rica, the Medical Tourism Development Project is proposing the construction of a private hospital, a Robert Trent Jones golf course and complementary support and living facilities. This 1000 hectare property is minutes from the Daniel Oduber Quiros International Airport in Liberia and thirty minutes from the beaches of the Guanacaste Province. Will this facility attract individuals who have vacationed in Costa Rica before or will it attract new tourists?

This presentation highlights the finding of an survey that gathered the travel patterns and motivations, preferences of sustainable tourism management practices and socio-demographics of medical tourists. Medical tourists considered several different destinations prior to their treatment. The data suggests that repeat visitors are more likely to have a level of comfort in their chosen destination. On the other hand, those who exhibited diversified travel behavior were more likely to want their hospital choice to be affiliated with an American Hospital and accredited. There were no differences for preference of sustainable management practices between the repeat and diversified travelers.

07 April 2011

Honshu Quake number 2,317

I don't know the actual number, but it is easy to say it is a lot. Japan, found on the Pacific Rim, just happens to be in an earthquake zone. Look at the historic record of earthquakes at:


Let us hope this one, even at 7.1, does not hurt anyone. And if you are interested Google "earthquake tourism".

05 April 2011

Tourism to the States


see http://www.tinet.ita.doc.gov/outreachpages/download_data_table/Fast_Facts_2010.pdf for details about travel to the States in 2010. Better than last year, but not as good as before the Bank Crash.

02 April 2011

01 April 2011

G. W. Bush National Park

In recognition of his superior record protecting natural resources, the American Department of Interior announced today the formation of Bush National Park in Crawford, TX. The property is the former 1600 acre Prairie Chapel Ranch bought from the Engelbrecht family in 1999 for $1.00. Today, the property is worth $0.99. Dubbed "The Western White House," by some who knew the President, Crawford now enjoys some economic prosperity. Now townsfolk sip their morning coffee waiting for their Social Security Checks. Sorry no Starbucks!

Crawford invites citizens around the world to enjoy the natural wonders found in the park like sage brush and tumble weed. A local effort to clean up the discarded beer cans is underway, but is expected to take some time. For more information about Bush National Park, see www.bushnatioinalpark.com.