Flora-Bama owners: MTV show called "Floribama Shore" is profiting from name, reputation
ORANGE BEACH, Ala. (WPMI) —
Emotions are running high as owners of the Flora-Bama are accusing MTV of using its name and reputation for their new show.
The Flora-Bama has been associated with good times and good music on the Gulf Coast for decades but many people are concerned it could soon be associated with the show instead.
A trailer for MTV's show called "FloriBama Shore", set in Panama City Beach, has now been released.
NBC 15 showed the video to Flora-Bama regulars and they weren't happy.
"That's wrong. They need to stop using the name of the Flora-Bama because that's not what the Flora-Bama is all about," said Faith Kramer, who frequents the business.
Michele Whitney said she and her friends have been coming to Flora-Bama for years and believe the show could give people the wrong idea.
"We see families in there with their children and I don't think that show is was what we just saw," Whitney said.
The Flora-Bama issued the following statement on Tuesday;
"For 53 years THE Flora-Bama has been slinging drinks, tossing mullets, entertaining people from around the world, and hosting live music. Hunkered down smack in the middle of the Florida/Alabama state line, THE Flora-Bama has survived a fire, several hurricanes, bad economies, and the worst oil spill in our nation’s history. Yet, we’ve recently learned that MTV and Viacom are using our name and reputation to promote their latest “reality” series, after approaching us in 2013 about the same. We’ve asked them to stop. They’ve refused. As made clear by the CMT documentary that Viacom aired on THE Flora-Bama in 2014 to millions, there is only ONE Flora-Bama."
Vince Kilborn, attorney for Flora-Bama owner John McInnis, said they plan to file a lawsuit.
"An Alabama jury will dismantle them. It's an obvious theft of our reputation and our name which we spent more than 50 years trying to develop," said Kilborn.
Kramer said she believes that it could cause confusion from people who don't know any better.
"It's gonna make you think that they're talking about the Flora-Bama, not the Floribama. That's ridiculous. They can't do that," Kramer said.
Daniel Blell, a Flora-Bama patron, said he's concerned the MTV show could cause a negative perception of the Flora-Bama from a national audience.
"High school and college people partying and drinking wasn't the image I had of this. So I would hate to see that image change," Blell said.
Flora-Bama owners say they appreciate all the support they've had and but are not commenting further at this time.
NBC 15 has reached out to the MTV network for comment but we have not heard back.