RACINE, Wis., May 1, 2012 – According to the OFF!® Buggiest Cities Survey, Americans agree that the No. 1 factor most likely to spoil a summer trip is bites from mosquitoes and other bugs. With this past winter being the fourth warmest on record1 and insects emerging to find food earlier in the season than usual2, OFF!® Insect Repellents ranked the top 50 American metro areas to identify which cities are most affected by mosquitoes and other biting bugs. The survey found Tampa, Fla. to be the buggiest city in America with New Orleans and Houston ranking second and third buggiest respectively.
Combating pesky mosquitoes while enjoying outdoor activities this summer will be top of mind for everyone as the unseasonably warm weather leads to the potential increase in bugs. OFF!® has partnered with Jeanne Benedict – author and host of the TV theme party show “Weekend Entertaining” on the DIY network – to provide families with sound advice on how to make the most out of the backyard and beyond.
“According to the OFF!® Buggiest Cities Survey, nearly a quarter of the U.S. population would rather go inside than deal with mosquitoes no matter where they live,” says Benedict. “OFF!® Insect Repellents offer various outdoor solutions, to ensure families can focus on creating the best memories this summer without mosquitoes getting in the way of outdoor fun.”
OFF!® Reveals the Buggiest Cities
The OFF!® Buggiest Cities Survey revealed the truth about homeowners’ attitudes and behaviors in their annual battle against annoying insects. More than 59 percent of people fear mosquitoes for their relentless itchy bites, while surprisingly only 29 percent fear mosquitoes for West Nile Virus or other diseases. Ranked below are the top 25 buggiest cities across the country:
1. Tampa, Fla.
2. New Orleans, La.
3. Houston, Texas
4. Virginia Beach, Va.
5. Miami, Fla.
6. Memphis, Tenn.
7. Birmingham, Ala.
8. Atlanta, Ga.
9. Jacksonville, Fla.
10. Richmond, Va.
11. Charlotte, N.C.
12. Nashville, Tenn.
13. Orlando, Fla.
14. San Antonio, Texas
15. Raleigh, N.C.
16. Austin, Texas
17. Dallas-Fort Worth, Texas
18. Washington D.C.
19. Baltimore, Mass.
20. Louisville, Ky.
21. Providence, R.I.
22. Oklahoma City, Okla.
23. Philadelphia, Pa.
24. Milwaukee, Wis.
25. Kansas City, Mo.
Dealing with Bugs is Determined by Region:
- Bugs Love the South – About 40 percent of New Orleans residents and 34 percent of Richmond, Va. residents said they won’t even go outside without bug spray.
- Western Residents Still Need Protection – Ninety-two percent of San Jose, Calif. residents and 88 percent of Las Vegas residents said that mosquitoes are rarely a problem at home. However, 30 percent of Western residents still say mosquitoes are most likely to ruin their summer trip when they venture outdoors.
- Party Preparations for Bugs in the Midwest – More than 90 percent of people in this region prepare their backyard against bugs in some way – lighting tiki torches and citronella candles, or providing bug spray to guests.
- Bugs Are More Annoying than Anything in the Northeast – More than 60 percent of residents in the Northeast say an itchy bug bite is what they fear most about mosquitoes.
“Whether throwing a backyard barbeque, hiking in the woods or enjoying camping trips, OFF!® provides proven protection so families can have peace of mind during any outdoor summer activity – no matter where they live,” says Kelly Semrau, Senior Vice President – Global Corporate Affairs, Communication and Sustainability at SC Johnson.
Jeanne Benedict Tips for Enjoying the Summer Season
This summer, OFF!® Insect Repellents and outdoor entertaining expert Jeanne Benedict will help outdoor enthusiasts forget about annoying mosquitoes and get back to what really matters during the season: hosting friends and family in the backyard, enjoying the patio and camping under the stars. Following are some useful tips from Benedict to start summer festivities on the right foot:
- Prep the Backyard for Fun Festivities: Start by spraying plants, trees, and shrubs with new OFF!® Bug Control Backyard Pretreat, which helps clear more than 110 different types of insects out of backyards up to a 16,000 square feet area. OFF!® Bug Control Backyard Pretreat provides up to eight weeks of protection so guests can enjoy the outdoor space.
- Enjoy an All-American Backyard Party: Add backyard toys like a croquet set or a bubble-maker for the children.
- Create a Summer Fun Pack: Memorial Day marks the beginning of summer, but many schools are still in session a week or two after Memorial Day. Before the holiday weekend, surprise the family with a “Summer Fun Pack” to get them excited about a fun-filled summer. Include inflatable pool toys, new beach towels and sunscreen. Don’t forget to have OFF!® Clip-On™ handy. These spray-less devices can easily be attached to a belt or chair to help keep mosquitoes at bay.
- Make Car Trips a Blast: Avoid cranky, cooped up children by playing car games to keep them entertained, such as spotting the alphabet from A to Z on road signs and license plates. Pick up a few travel games or dollar store trinkets as well as a few journals for the children to write in while on the road.
- Be Budget-Savvy and Plan Ahead: Between pool parties, vacations and camping trips, summer expenses can add up. Plan ahead and set up a budget for those day trips, summer camps, even new swimsuits. Shop sales and use coupons so you get the most out of your summer without breaking the bank.
Beginning in early May, check out www.KeepsBugsOFF.com for more information about the entire OFF!® Insect Repellent line of products. For more tips from Benedict, check out www.jeannebenedict.com or visit her on Facebook or Twitter.
OFF!® Insect Repellents for Your Family’s Every Summer Need
First introduced in 1957, OFF!® has been bringing trusted products and effective protection to families and individuals for more than 50 years. OFF!® lnsect Repellents are available in the insect repellents, lawn-and-garden and sporting good sections of food, drug, do-it-yourself and mass-merchandise stores such as Target, Wal-Mart and CVS.
About SC Johnson
SC Johnson is a family-owned and managed business dedicated to innovative, high-quality products, excellence in the workplace and a long-term commitment to the environment and the communities in which it operates. Based in the USA, the company is one of the world's leading manufacturers of household cleaning products and products for home storage, air care, and pest control. It markets such well-known brands as GLADE®, KIWI®, OFF!®, PLEDGE®, RAID®, SCRUBBING BUBBLES®, SHOUT®, WINDEX® and ZIPLOC® in the U.S. and beyond, with brands marketed outside the U.S. including AUTAN®, BAYGON®, TANA®, BAMA®, BRISE®, KLEAR®, MR. MUSCLE® and RIDSECT®. The 126-year old company, generates nearly $9 billion in sales, employs 13,000 people globally and sells products in virtually every country around the world. www.scjohnson.com