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INSIDER'S GUIDE By Ashley Wright Rio Grande Valley
Itʼs got the Gulf of Mexico…and Mexico! And more and more people are now flocking to the Rio Grande cities of McAllen, Brownsville, Harlingen and South Padre Island. The most recent U.S. census reports that the areaʼs population has surpassed one million residents for the first time in history.
Quinta Mazatlan is the McAllen wing of the World Birding Center, providing eco-tourism opportunities for groups.
Hope Davo, executive director of the Harlingen CVB, says she knows why the area is growing. "Our region is genuinely unique. We offer a myriad of attractions like the beautiful beach, fantastic fishing, 500 species of birds, the zoo, and world-class shopping."
And there seems to always be a festival or event that captures the multicultural flair of the region, according to Sylvia Soliz, sales manager at South Padre Island CVB. "Virtually every weekend, we are hosting events on the island such as kite flying, bike-a-thons, sand castle building, and for the more adventurous, a non-competitive obstacle course on the beach." ■
42 ConventionSouth SEPTEMBER 2012
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