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Tarpon Bay Explorers lauded for excellent customer service

By Staff | Sep 8, 2010

TBE staff attended the EAwards ceremony on Sept. 1. Pictured from left are Jenna Fulghum, Brieanna Coffman, Alex Werner, Wendy Schnapp (Honorable Mention winner), Steve Shay and Stephanie Ray.

Every year, professionals throughout Lee County go above and beyond the call of duty to provide a warm and welcoming destination to visitors from around the world. 

On Sept. 1, the Elaine McLaughlin Outstanding Hospitality Service Awards (the EAwards) recognized many of these local stars, including twelve members of the Tarpon Bay Explorers’ staff. 

The Explorers operate in partnership with the U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service as the concessionaire to the J. N. “Ding” Darling National Wildlife Refuge. They offer naturalist-guided tours of the refuge by boat, tram and kayak, as well as rental of equipment such as kayaks, canoes, bicycles and pontoon boats. 

The Explorers take pride in upholding the highest standards of service excellence, and are frequently complimented by visitors for their friendly and knowledgeable staff. 

Guests can nominate staff for an EAward throughout the year and nominees are invited to attend an annual awards ceremony. 

Nominees from the Explorers’ staff for 2010 were Andrew Sares, Brieanna Coffman, Charlie Frese, Alex Werner, Jenna Fulghum, Margie Klein, Stephanie Ray (2009 Honorable Mention winner), Robert Findlay, Colleen Boyle, Tim Monaghan, Steve Shay, and Wendy Schnapp. This hard-working group was nominated for their smiling faces, helpful information, and educational yet entertaining dialogue during tours. 

This year, two Explorers were awarded Honorable Mentions for their customer service. Wendy Schnapp and Tim Monaghan were nominated for their assistance to a guest who had lost their very expensive electronic car keys while kayaking. Wendy and Tim went out of their way to help their guests by waiting patiently beyond business hours for a tow truck to arrive and by searching over 50 kayaks for the missing keys. They were ultimately found the following day and returned to the owners, saving them hundreds of dollars.

It is this friendly attitude and willingness to go above the normal requirements of the job that makes the Explorers team outstanding representatives of the refuge. 

If you would like to experience their friendly and exceptional service, visit Tarpon Bay Explorers in the J. N. “Ding” Darling National Wildlife Refuge at 900 Tarpon Bay Road on Sanibel. Call 239-472-8900 for information and reservations or visit www.tarponbayexplorers.com.