12/06/13 Bars & Spirits
The Sunshine City is home to a burgeoning arts AND craft community — craft beer, that is.
In recent years, several bars and pubs have been offering the libation, but when Three Daughters Brewing opens its doors this week, it will be one of the largest breweries in the county.
Nestled on the edge of the Warehouse Arts and Grand Central districts, the 18,000-square-foot space at 222 22nd St. S, is named for owner Mike Harding's daughters....
An exciting movement has been gaining traction in the shadows of City Hall.
Each week 1 Million Cups St. Petersburg hosts a standing-room-only crowd where some of the most innovative thinkers in the Sunshine City gather to pitch ideas and engage new businesses.
So what is the goal of the group?
"We help grow entrepreneurs and startups in the community," said Danielle Weitlauf, manager at the Tampa Bay Innovation Center....
11/22/13 Human Interest
As the holiday season beckons, many will pause to give thanks for the blessings of a good harvest.
For some, gratitude is as simple as celebrating the journey. Of being thankful for the bounty of good intentions, and of experiencing triumphs over unspeakable obstacles.
Such is the case for Claudia Strano.
The native of Curitiba, Brazil, moved to the Sunshine City from Williamsburg, N.Y., not long after Sept. 11. She said she saw the World Trade Center towers come down from her home, just across the East River....
Two young entrepreneurs based in St. Petersburg are making a mark with a tech startup, one conference at a time.
The platform EXMO helps convention and workshop organizers plan for an interactive experience with attendees in ways that a printed program won't allow.
I met team EXMO at the recent TEDx: Exploring the Past, Embracing the Future conference held at the Palladium.
The schedule for the daylong event came in the form of an app that attendees had to download on their smartphones....
Each year civic groups throughout the Tampa Bay area pitch in to help worthy nonprofits.
This year, the Leadership Pinellas Class of 2014 is stepping in to help with a basic need for low-income children by partnering with Clothes to Kids to collect underwear.
The nonprofit says it has provided more than 80,000 wardrobes to schoolchildren since 2003.
The numbers are staggering: 53,000 Pinellas County public school students qualify for free or reduced-price lunch. Lost in the mix are other needs the students face each day....
A former environmental sciences professor at Eckerd College is making a difference in the lives of scores of south Pinellas County children, one garden at a time.
Kip Curtis is the founder and executive director of the Edible Peace Patch — a nonprofit project that is in four schools in the Sunshine City.
The goal is simple: "Build gardens. Feed bodies. Expand minds. Grow community."...
It's a cause that is rarely in the spotlight.
It lurks in the shadows because of the stigma associated with it.
Most associate this month with breast cancer awareness, but October is also Domestic Violence Awareness month.
The fallout from the effects of the abuse extends beyond the front lines. Like secondhand smoke, its younger victims — who are witnesses to the abuse — have no control....
Thousands drive past its shores each day, in a hurry to get to anywhere but there.
The 380-acre lake at 3801 Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. St. S is the largest in the Sunshine City — and one of the most beautiful. Yet these days, few residents take advantage of its peaceful setting.
The city has 2,400 acres of parkland and more than 150 parks. But Lake Maggiore Park is unique, from its amenities to its potential....
Filmmaker Spike Lee did it. So have countless other nameless groups in search of funding to launch worthy art and film projects.
Crowdfunding is growing in popularity and two of the top sites are kickstarter.com and indiegogo.com.
Kickstarter is an all-or-nothing fund: Reach the goal, the money's yours, but fall short and all the money goes back to the folks who tried to offer help. On the other hand, indiegogo is a "keep it all" fund — even if the project falls short of the goal....
Take a look skyward and one of the first things you notice are the cranes brushing broad strokes of development in the heart of downtown St. Petersburg.
There are at least a half dozen developments under construction.
These signs of growth offer opportunities for small businesses, restaurants and job seekers.
And though new apartments and other development are welcome additions of change and progress, it's not all rainbows and unicorns....
Years before the Grand Central Business District set up shop, a pair of women took bold steps to open a store in a part of the Sunshine City that few would consider a shopping destination.
Owners Mary Coyle and Durella Rodriguez will soon celebrate RoCo Traders' 11th anniversary.
The shop, at 2115 Central Ave., is planning a daylong block party on Sept. 28.
The Grand Central District is a stretch of Central Avenue from 18th Street to 31st Street where revitalization is gaining traction....
The Sunshine City always seems to land on a list of some sort.
This week, there are two mentions: one praising the beautiful area beaches, the other claiming the city is a "dead zone for cuisine."
Let's get the slightly unappetizing critique out the way.
A real estate blog claimed that St. Petersburg sat near the top of the list of "Worst Cities in America for Food Lovers."
It's too bad art doesn't count as food for thought....
Back in May, they broke ground to begin the buildout of the lower level of the historic Manhattan Casino.
Sylvia's "Queen of Soul Food" restaurant — famous for its Harlem location — is expected to open in October.
But last week, representatives of Urban Development Solutions and city officials held a grand opening for the facility's event space on the second floor.
In 2005, the city spent $2.8 million to refurbish the Casino....
Nearly a year ago, I wrote about changes — including key departures — at the Boys & Girls Clubs of the Suncoast housed at the Royal Theater in Midtown.
The facility was home to the Senior Conservatory, which had been popular among teens interested in the arts. The program featured classes in drama, dance, music development, graphic arts and recording arts production. But that program was nixed when the Juvenile Welfare Board opted to only fund programs targeting children under 14 years old....
The buzz started more than a month ago.
Of late, downtown dwellers and business owners in the Sunshine City have started to hum with enthusiasm since learning that the Marbleside Building at 33 Sixth St. S is being restored. The midcentury modern building is home to City Gym and Lab Corp.
But the office space on the upper floors has been vacant.
The building was recently acquired by Maryann Lynch, owner of Times Square Properties, who has had a large presence downtown since moving to Florida in 1995....