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Katherine Snow Smith, Times Staff Writer

Katherine Snow Smith

Katherine Snow Smith has been at the Times either fulltime or parttime since 1995. She started as a business reporter then spent a decade writing the Rookie Mom column with stories from her own family and advice from other average moms and the experts. She now covers business in south Pinellas County. Katherine has a degree in journalism from the University of North Carolina and is married to Times political editor Adam Smith. They have three children, two dogs and still feel like rookie parents much of the time.

Phone: (727) 893-8785


  1. Where should Tampa Bay's downtowns find inspiration? Check out Raleigh, N.C.

    Economic Development

    RALEIGH, N.C. — Downtown Tampa after dark isn't as deserted as it used to be, but it's far from vibrant. Downtown St. Petersburg may be humming with bars, restaurants and new apartments, but it has few corporate employers.

    A decade ago downtown Raleigh, N.C., combined the worst of both worlds. Now it has become a mecca for millennials. They ride the bus, dine at hip restaurants on once-sketchy streets and walk to concerts at an often-packed amphitheater. Some are also highly sought employees for nearby corporations....

    As St. Petersburg and Tampa see their downtowns grow, they might want to look north to Raleigh, NC, which has had a resurgence to their downtown that is attracting thousands of people all downtowns covet most -- millennials. DCIM\100GOPRO
  2. Gourmet pop shop adds to Central Avenue's cool factor


    ST. PETERSBURG — A gourmet frozen fruit bars store is among three new businesses in the 600 block of Central Avenue.

    Hyppo Gourmet Ice Pops, 627 Central Ave., will serve up flavors such as strawberry-basil, pineapple-cilantro and avocado-coconut by the end of August. The St. Augustine-based company has three stores in Florida's oldest city and three in Gainesville.

    "St. Petersburg and Tampa have been on our growth chart. We knew that's where we would go next," said Hyppo spokeswoman Crystal Libby....

    Hyppo Gourmet Ice Pops, one of three new businesses on the block, will serve 20 kinds of frozen treats at a time out of its nearly 400 flavors. It will open by the end of August at 627 Central Ave.
  3. Deal Diva on the road


    A Deal Diva may take a vacation from the office, but she never takes a vacation from finding deals.

    I'm in New York just for a couple days and not even leaving Brooklyn. But I was lured into the Neiman Marcus Last Call Studio with this fabulous motto: Look Fabulous. Be frugal. 

    Who'd have thunk that Nieman's, home of the $35,000 cocktail shaker, the $300,000 custom, mini race track and the $450,000 custom perfume in a 24-karat gold bottle would dare utter the word "frugal."...

  4. School clothes available free or at low prices across the area


    While back-to-school shopping may be fun for kids, it can be daunting for the parents who have to pay for it all. But there are plenty of stylish shirts and jeans out there for $7 or less, and even free clothes if you don't mind items that are gently used.

    Thrift-store finds and hand-me-down clothes have gained popularity in recent years, not just because of their affordability, but also for their individuality and the thrill of the hunt....

    Jennifer Fleming of Goodwill Industries sent some examples of what shoppers can find at area Goodwill stores: A skort and polo shirt for school uniforms for $2.17.
  5. Who wore it better? Oprah, me or Hannah Montana's Mamaw?


    The endless who-wore-it-better comparisons are often mean spirited, but I think celebrities in some cases gain some clout when they are seen as sharing the same fashion sense as another famous glamour girl.

    Mariah Carey must have good taste or a good stylist if she's wearing the same sexy, sheer black dress as Beyonce, the reining queen of music, and, pretty much, America.

    The picture of Caitlyn Jenner wowing the ESPY awards in a white Versace gown has been continuously shown next to Angelina Jolie wearing the same dress a few years ago at a movie premiere. I think Angie (as Brad and I call her) would like being seen as having the same strong and elegant style as Caitlyn....

    Comedy legend Vicky Lawrence, my fashion muse, as Hannah Montana's "Mamaw."
  6. Hotel Zamora in St. Pete Beach opens rooftop lounge


    ST. PETE BEACH — There's a swanky new lounge with a view called 360 Rooftop at Hotel Zamora. About a year after the Spanish style boutique hotel debuted at 3701 Gulf Blvd., the rooftop is now open to the public with a full bar.

    There are numerous sitting areas with lush furniture and several furnished cabanas. The cabanas can be rented for several hours at a time. Rates vary based on the time and day....

    360 Rooftop, the lounge above the Hotel Zamora, offers seating, drinks and views of the Gulf.

 Photo by  Diamond Public Relations
  7. St. Louis developers buying Raytheon site in St. Petersburg


    ST. PETERSBURG — After at least seven years on the market, lawsuits, angry neighbors and a toxic plume, the long-vacant Raytheon facility is about to get new life.

    Commercial Development Co., a St. Louis company that specializes in challenged properties for development or resale is poised to buy most of the 32-acre property with 500,000 square feet of buildings in the coming days.

    The company talked with city and neighborhood leaders Wednesday to learn what they would like to see on the large tract just west of Tyrone Square Mall on 22nd Avenue N and shared some of the potential outcomes....

  8. Dockside Dave's to close St. Pete Beach location


    ST. PETE BEACH — Dockside Dave's, a longtime fixture on Boga Ciega Bay is closing July 31. The restaurant is a favorite spot with locals and tourists for its fried grouper sandwiches, grouper bites, grouper tacos, blackened grouper and, well, you get the point. The Dockside Dave's on Madeira Beach will remain open.

    Mark Ballos, a manAger at the Madeira Beach store, said owner Carol Bates put the St. Pete Beach location at 7141 Gulf Blvd. up for sale several months ago and an offer recently came through. He didn't know what the new owner is planning for the 3,300-square-foot building....

  9. My outfit Monday salutes yellow


    I don't think I've ever owned anything in solid yellow but now I will never go without it. I bought this shirt at a sample sale a friend hosts a few times a year. It has enabled me to wear several other printed pieces that I never had a good top to go with. It's such light weight I can wear it in summer and the long sleeves are great for the office where it's freezing.

     It's almost worth being so cold at work so there's a conversation topic for those awkward elevator rides. I saw that in a tweet a few weeks ago and am not claiming it as my own. If I'm going to steal something it's not going to be a tweet....

    My $8 flowered watch from N.Y. & Company.
  10. Madeira Beach Courtyard Marriott is open


    MADEIRA BEACH — The Courtyard Marriott that has been in the works since 2011 is officially open at 601 American Legion Drive. It's the first major hotel for the city since a Holiday Inn was demolished several years ago to make way for a condo building boom.

    The property next to the American Legion and behind McDonald's was originally the site of a restaurant that several years ago was cleared for a townhome development. But when the housing market collapsed, that project never materialized. Marriott, however, saw the potential of a hotel on Intracoastal waters with boat slips across the bridge from the Gulf of Mexico....

  11. Bill Edwards tears down Snell Isle house to rebuild

    Human Interest

    ST. PETERSBURG — Sundial and Rowdies owner Bill Edwards has razed the Brightwaters Circle NE house he bought this year that's next to his own residence.

    "I bought it for the land. I'm going to build a guest house. It will be a very nice addition to our estate," Edwards said.

    Edwards paid $2.9 million for the 6,117-square-foot house he razed and $9 million for the 12,412-square-foot house he lives in....

  12. Local 'Etsian' crafters share tips on gaining a global reach from their kitchen tables

    Human Interest

    Some artisans who sell their creations on can support themselves, even a family, while others barely break even after paying for materials. They try their hand at entrepreneurship with a variety of financial goals and an even wider array of products.

    For Coryn Enfinger and her husband, Adam, selling on Etsy is a full-time job. Since 2009, the Tampa couple has sold more than 100,000 T-shirts for about $20 each, most with Adam Enfinger's whimsical drawings of animals on bikes....

    Crafters make origami bows at the Paper Seahorse booth at the Etsy Craft Party. The event allows buyers to meet the people they are purchasing items from online in person.
  13. Get your shoppin' self out of bed early for Sunrise Sale Thursday


    Plan on having a bad hair day Thursday 'cause you don’t want to waste time with a flat iron when there are bargains to be had. The 42nd annual Sunrise Sale starts at 6:48 a.m. in downtown St. Petersburg.

    The earlier you hit these independent stores the better the deals. Some will even give you extra discounts or freebies for wearing your pajamas.

    This is the biggest Sunrise Sale yet because it includes retailers on 4th Street, Central Avenue and Sundial along with merchants on and slightly off Beach Drive. The earlier you go, the better the deals. A lot of stores have specials just for the first hour or two. Skip breakfast along with any personal grooming because a lot of places give out donuts, fruit coffee and mimosas....

    Decked out in his pajamas, Steele Gebicke, 3, rides on his dad Scott Gebicke's shoulders while heading down Beach Drive during the 42nd Annual Sunrise Sale in downtown St. Petersburg Thursday morning (07/16/15). Also present was Scott's wife, Natalie Gebicke and their younger son Cole, 20 months. Thursday was Scott's birthday. (he declined to give his age saying he is thirty-something. "It's how we send my birthday morning," Scott Gebicke said. "Breakfast and shopping at the Sunrise Sale." Shops opened at 6:43am with over 55 businesses participating Shoppers were encouraged to wear their PJs for extra savings.
  14. The Hurricane settles lawsuit over pay practices


    ST. PETE BEACH — The Hurricane Restaurant, the local landmark known for its grouper sandwiches, has reached a legal settlement with 45 employees alleging unfair pay practices.

    The 37-year-old restaurant with rooftop views of the Gulf of Mexico will pay $67,000 to employees in varying amounts based on the hours worked and pay received from February to September 2013. Thirteen employees are getting more than $3,000....

    The Hurricane Restaurant, the local landmark known for its grouper sandwiches, has reached a legal settlement with 45 employees alleging unfair pay practices.   [LARA CERRI, Times]
  15. St. Petersburg Hofbrauhaus aims for August opening


    ST. PETERSBURG— Time to get your dirndl to the dry cleaners. Joe Matuschka, owner of Hofbrauhaus St. Petersburg, hopes the beer garden and restaurant in the works at 123 Fourth St. S will have its soft opening Aug. 6. A grand opening for the restaurant going into the former Tramor Cafeteria is planned for Sept. 8.