2012: PRESIDENT OBAMA SPEAKS IN FORT MYERS
- LIVE BLOG/CHAT - President Obama to speak in Fort Myers
- TRANSCRIPT: President's speech in Fort Myers, remarks on Colo. shooting
- Video: President Obama speaks in Fort Myers
- Photos: President Obama visits Fort Myers
- Cell Phone Photos: President Obama's visit to Fort Myers
- Photos: Getting Obama tickets
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- Story: Middle class, jobs to be Obama's focus during Fort Myers stop
- Story: Obama then and now: A look back at the president's last visit to Southwest Florida
- Story: Obama supporters line up for chance to see the president Friday
- Story: Brent Batten: Obama hoping things don't change at Harborside
- Story: Tickets available Wednesday for Obama visit to Fort Myers on Friday
- Special Section: Get complete coverage of President Barack Obama's visit to Fort Myers
UPDATE:Campaign officials said they have not yet released the number of tickets being distributed today, but said early reports of about 300 tickets per location was incorrect.
Officials said around 2:30 p.m. that tickets were still available in Fort Myers.
UPDATE: Although no tickets are still available at the Democratic Executive Committee Collier County Office in Marquesa Plaza off Livingston Road in Naples, tickets to attend the Obama event are still available at the Naples and Fort Myers offices of Obama For America-Florida.
UPDATE: Tickets are still being distributed at Collier County's Democratic executive committee headquarters in Naples. Officials with the campaign said each location has about 300 tickets to hand out.
A line wrapped around the building shortly before noon. People of all ages waited in line for a "golden ticket."
"We need to get the word out," said Silvia Dinneen, a North Naples resident. "There's a lot of people with the same beliefs."
Obama will be in Fort Myers at 9 am Friday.
President Barack Obama will talk about the economy when he returns to a downtown Fort Myers civic center Friday, more than three years after he first visited.
Campaign officials said Tuesday night that Obama will hold a public rally Friday morning at Harborside Event Center in downtown Fort Myers. That’s the same place the president held a town hall meeting in 2009 to rally support for his $800 billion-plus stimulus package.
Obama is expected to speak at 11:20 a.m.
Friday’s event is free and open to the public, campaign officials said. Tickets will be available starting at noon Wednesday at:
■ Obama For America-Florida, Fort Myers office, 1716 Fowler St., Fort Myers.
■ Democratic Executive Committee Collier County Office, 13040 Livingston Road, Suite 2, Naples.
■ Obama For America-Florida, Collier County office, Golden Gate Parkway, Suite 2, Naples.
About 1,500 tickets were advertised for the president’s last visit to Fort Myers and tickets for the last event ran out in about 25 minutes. Campaign staff didn’t say Tuesday night how many tickets would be available, referring to it only as “limited.”
Obama’s campaign staff described his talk Friday as “the choice in this election between two fundamentally different visions of how to grow the economy from the middle out and not the top down, create strong and secure middle-class jobs, and responsibly pay down the nation’s debt.”
Fort Myers Mayor Randy Henderson said Tuesday if the 2009 trip was any indication, Air Force One will touch down at Southwest Florida International Airport, and the president’s motorcade will travel down Interstate 75 before taking Martin Luther King Boulevard to Harborside.
Vicki Moreland, an airport spokeswoman, said she couldn’t release any details about the president’s visit, but said Private Sky Aviation, located at Southwest Florida International, is the fixed base operator for Air Force One.
Air Force One flew into Private Sky Aviation in 2009.
Henderson said Fort Myers is abuzz with news of the president’s visit.
“I take it very seriously when a sitting president is coming to (my) city,” said Henderson, who attended the 2009 event and plans to attend Friday’s rally. “I’m a registered Republican, but whether it’s a Democrat or a Republican, this mayor, Mayor Henderson, is going to roll out the red carpet.”
The visit has been in the works for a couple of months, and Henderson said Secret Service agents and campaign advance teams have been in town checking out locations and securing the area.
“It’s a very inconspicuous presence,” Henderson said. “The process of securing Harborside began two or three months ago. It’s always made with a tentative nature, but the time is blocked and from that point forward in a period of weeks (campaign officials) are planning and inspecting.”
Obama’s visit will be the third in a two-day swing through the state. The president will be in Jacksonville and West Palm Beach on Thursday. He’ll then stop in Fort Myers before heading to Orlando on Friday afternoon.