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A few weeks ago, after attending a Pinellas International Council event, I stopped in at the Train Station. I have loved this building since moving to St Pete 11 years ago and am so happy that it is being used for such great things.

I absolutely love this quote from Keep St Pete Lit’s website, “Do you read? Do you write? Do you live in or around St. Petersburg? Well then, welcome to Keep St. Pete Lit, where we celebrate and promote the area’s literary community. Whether you’re a writer, a reader or just love the arts, we want you to help us Keep St. Pete Lit. Read and Write on, my friend!” I come from a family of writers, avid book readers, former book reps and bookstore managers. My biggest moving expense is always books & records!

Keep St. Pete Lit wants to instill a love of reading, writing and storytelling in all  generations in the Sunshine City but now has special programs for the younger generations. Keep St. Pete wants to help children find their creative gifts with a new week-long summer camp.

The organizers behind the camp want to ensure that this opportunity is open to all children and families interested. So Keep St. Pete Lit is offering two Creative Writing Summer Camp tuition-free for low income families at the Morean Center for Clay.

They’re accepting 15 students each week ages 9-12. To help cover the cost of teacher’s salaries, supplies and rent, KSPL launched an online fundraising campaign. So far, they’ve raised $745 of a total $3,000 goal. A $100 donation sponsors one child.

The first camp runs from July 17-21, the second runs from July 24-28 at the Morean Center for Clay (420 22nd Street South). The creative writing workshop sessions begin at 9:30am and end at 12:30pm each day. To learn more visit  http://keepstpetelit.org/

So many things to do & so little time …this weekend in the St Pete, Florida area. Such a variety that something should tickle your fancy.

Friday, June 9th

Brucie Klay Dance Center: Happily Ever After at The Mahaffey
A show containing all types of dance starring children ages 3-18. Includes many well known stories such as ‘Sleeping Beauty’, ‘Babes in Toyland’ and ‘Alice in Wonderland’. 7pm. $21. The Mahaffey, 400 1st Street South.

Cocktails at the Chihuly Collection
View the new special exhibition at the Chihuly Collection – Solas: Light Informs Glass while enjoying cocktails, light eats and a talk by Chihuly Collection Executive Director Andy Schlauch. 6-8pm. $25 per person. Chihuly Collection, 720 Central Avenue.

Tampa Bay Rays vs Oakland A’s at Tropicana Field (All Weekend)
The Rays face the Athletics this weekend in St. Pete. 7:10pm on Friday, 2:10pm on Saturday, 1:10pmon Sunday. On Friday, the Rays host their PRIDE Night! OneBlood will be on-site collecting blood donations from 4-9pm, and the Rays will salute Pulse Nightclub survivors with a recognition on the field, beginning at 6:30pm. Use code PRIDE5 at checkout for discount tickets. Special performances of the National Anthem and flag ceremony are also planned. Tropicana Field, 1 Tropicana Drive.

Ink Mania: See the wide range of artistic, often beautiful forms of self expression at the Ink Mania tattoo convention this weekend at St. Petersburg’s Coliseum. You can get inked by a number of award-winning tattoo artists from around the world, get a body piercing, attend seminars and enter a tattoo contest. There’s an art fusion wall and a graffiti contest, as well as a pin-up pageant. The family-friendly expo features specialty vendors, live entertainment and a DJ battle. There will be beer and food trucks. Proceeds help benefit children with autism. Admission is $25 for a single-day ticket, $48 for two days or $60 for three. It runs from 2-11 p.m. Friday, noon to midnight Saturday and noon to 8 p.m. Sunday. 535 Fourth Ave. N. inkmaniaexpo.com.

Project: Art Lounge: St. Petersburg’s Museum of Fine Arts invited area brewing companies to create Florida-themed limited batch “liquid art” for a one-night-only exhibition and tasting party on Friday. The evening will also include a special Florida-themed beer in celebration of the upcoming “Skyway: A Contemporary Collaboration,” crafted by 2016’s Best of Show winner and the St. Pete Homebrew Club. The taps will be open at 7 p.m. at 255 Beach Drive NE, St. Petersburg. $60, $45 for members in advance; $75 at door; $30 designated drivers. Includes beer tastings, glassware, food and the galleries.

Bone Fishing Slam and BBQ: A family friendly weekend of fishing, live music and barbecue with pig races each day is coming to Madeira Beach. “The Baddest BBQ on the Bone”, running in conjunction with the Bone Fishing Slam, will also have a boat showcase, marine and art vendors, a kids fishing rodeo, live concerts and a kids zone. Anglers of all ages and skill levels will compete in a multiple species, inshore and offshore fishing tournament with more than $25,000 in prizes up for grabs. Friday night will be one of the largest seawall fishing tournaments for kids in the state, and it’s free admission, free parking, free water ferry from parking lot to event site and even free fishing rods to the first 250 kids. The festival runs 5-11 p.m. today and Friday, noon-11 p.m. Saturday at the Madeira Beach recreation field at 200 Rex Place. oldsaltfishing.org.

Saturday, June 10th

International Young Eagles Day Flight Rally at Albert Whitted Airport  AWESOME!!!
Come experience the thrill of flying with free flights for kids ages 8-17. You will have the chance to actually fly in an airplane and look at the world below you. You are invited to take to the skies and become a Young Eagle! 10am-1pm. Albert Whitted Airport, 451 8th Avenue Southeast.

Retro double-header: The Tampa Bay Rays will be in faux ’70s jerseys for a Turn Back the Clock event Saturday at the ballpark with ’70s music, “Hamburger Helper in a cone,” as well as TV dinners, fried Twinkies rolled in monster cereals, fried Kool-Aid and a Buzz Aldrin drink special. SAY WHAT?!?!??  For the 2:10 p.m. first game Saturday, the Rays will wear their retro uniforms, there will be a banner parade after the first game that fans are invited to join. One ticket gets admission to both games; prices start at $26. raysbaseball.com.

Fringe Flea Market at Urban Deli and Drafts
Flea market under the stars during the St. Pete Art Walk in Grand Central District. Vendors include B + G Succulents; Soydles Candle Co.; Organic Beard Supply; Feathers, Fate & Steel Boutique; Crochet Diva; Nativa Accessories; Gems N Jewels By Delilah; Hahn’s Kettle Corn. 7-10pm. Urban Deli and Drafts, 2410 Central Avenue.

Works in Lego at Studio@620   YES!!!!
The Studio@620 presents a unique exhibition of artwork created with LEGO blocks from local artist Jay Hoff. Works are inspired by everything from Star Wars to your neighbor’s dog… that is to say something for everyone! Opening reception begins at 5pm. Free and open to the public. Studio@620, 620 1st Avenue South.

Tampa Bay Rowdies vs Rochester Rhinos at Al Lang Stadium
Bring #MLS2STPETE by packing the stadium. Join us this Saturday, June 10, to celebrate Pride Night at Al Lang Stadium!
The Rowdies host the Rochester Rhinos, presented by USAmeriBank, with kickoff set for 7:30 p.m. With the Green & Gold in second place in the USL East, the players need your support now more than ever to fight for first place! Come watch 90 minutes of nonstop soccer action! Tickets start at just $11 for kids, students and members of the military. Al Lang Stadium, 230 1st Street Southeast, St Pete

Third Eye Blind: The band’s self-titled debut has aged so well that it’s spawned a 20-year anniversary reissue and tour, during which they’ll play it front to back in full. Their show with Silversun Pickups hits Clearwater’s Coachman Park at 7 p.m. Saturday. $25.25 and up. (727) 791-7400. rutheckerdhall.com.

Sunday, June 11th

Yoga on Tap at Green Bench Brewing with Alix, Zach & with musical guests DUO VIDA for a Flow Down in the great outdoors. These talented beauties will create an atmosphere that invites transformation. Begins at 11am. $10 in advance/$5 BE members (yearly or monthly unlimited)/$15 at the door. Green Bench, 1133 Baum Avenue North.

Rainwater Harvesting Workshop with Anthony Paglino at St. Pete Eco-Village
Learn how to build and install an internet connected rainwater harvesting system for your home garden from Anthony Paglino, creator of Raincube.io. 1-5pm. St. Pete Eco-Village, 302 15th Street North.

 

 

Starting off on Friday, March 31st 7-9pm -2157 !st Ave S, St Petersburg, FLORIDA

Funky Film and Flea Market at Black Crow Coffee Roasting
Shop at Black Crow Coffee Roasting & watch a class B movie. The Night BoHo Market will have booths set up for local vendors including St. Pete Ferments, 9 Lamps, Anchor Skate Supply, Black Moth Candle Company, Bluebird Books & more.  The B-movie classic is Jesse James and Frankenstein’s Daughter. Urban Brew & BBQ will be serving food.

Saturday, April 1st

Tampa Bay Rays Kids Pep Rally at Tropicana Field 10am-1pm
Attend the Kids Pep Rally, presented by Sagicor Life Insurance Company. Free gift for all kids 14 and under. Family oriented entertainers & games, plus kids get to run the bases at Tropicana. Hot cool is that?!?!

Tiny Home Festival at St. Pete Eco Village  10am-6pm 302 15th St N
Learn about the Tiny Home & see some tiny homes. Learn from experts who have studied & made the transition to tiny living. For me-my tiny home is going to have to be on or near the water for it to work.

St. Pete Indie Market in the EDGE District 11am-4pm. 1133 Baum Avenue North.
Local vendors in the Burg gather on Baum Avenue between 10th & 11th Streets N outside of Green Bench Brewing.  Fine art, skateboards, cards, candles, vintage items, furniture, & much more.

Orchid Lei Making Class at Museum of Fine Arts 11am-noon 255 Beach Dr NE
Leis are associated with the graciousness of Hawaii. The MFA, in honor of Art in Bloom, invites you to make your very own orchid lei. Classes are limited to 30 individuals, ages 7 and older. All supplies included. $20 for MFA members, $30 for non-members. Must register in advance.

Feast with the Beasts at Lowry Park Zoo Saturday & Sunday 4-9pm, 1101 West Sligh Ave, 
Tampa’s Lowry Park Zoo is hosting its brand-new food, spirits & wine fundraising festival, Feast with the Beasts! Unlimited sips & bites from restaurants in Tampa among the dinosaurs & live entertainment. Help save animals.
Tampa Bay Rowdies vs Toronto FC II 7:30pm Al Lang Stadium, 230 1st St SE
“Pack the stadium and help show support our local soccer squad as they make the push to join Major League Soccer!” so sayth the Rowdies
Sunday, April 2nd Opening Day for Baseball 
The Rays regular season begins this Sunday at Tropicana Field against the New York Yankees. Support your team!

There is always a special kind of excitement in the weeks leading up to the race. Our city’s streets are turned into a 1.8 mile racetrack along the waterfront. The track has 14 turns and goes past the Dali Museum, Mahaffey Theatre, around Pioneer Park, along the waterfront past the St Petersburg Harbor & Marina and onto the runways of Albert Whitted Airport. The races include Verizon IndyCar Series, Pirelli World Challenge, Speed Energy Stadium Super Trucks, Indy Lights & Pro Mazda. It has been fun to walk down the middle of the downtown city streets with partial track walls closing in on both streets. I have lived here for 11 years now & I still find all of this so cool.

People come from all over the world to see this race. Some watch from the track stands, others watch from their boats, and some watch from their condos balconies. Of course, it will also be shown on national TV. I will go into the grounds on Friday where one can see the cars up close & sometimes even meet the drivers before or after their practice & qualifying runs.  On Sunday, I will be on the top floor of my parents’ condo building watching with great glee as the race speeds past the building on 2 sides with 2 hairpin turns. Yes, it IS noisy but oh, so awesome!

You can purchase tickets & get more info at  http://gpstpete.com/  in advance or at the gate.

Please come join us this evening for networking, eating, drinking & visiting the Museum of Fine Arts at a reduced price. Held on the steps of the museum-right across the street from our Coastal Properties Group-Christie’s International Real Estate office on Beach Drive in downtown St Petersburg. Last month, a great time was had by all.

porch-party-flyer-feb-2017-final-1

 

Grateful Dead-Themed Pub & Lounge has opened in St Petersburg, Florida. Grateful Fed is on the ground floor of Urban Style Flats at 300 10th Street South. For late night, the restaurant will be one of the first St Pete places to offer homemade food until 4am, but will deliver food until 5am. What? Now that could be really good. I know some pub-crawlers, students, swing shift employees & service workers from pubs, restaurants & bars who will definitely like that!

The idea for this is Sean Ford, former executive chef at Tryst. He saw the possible need for late night comfort and healthy food in the city’s downtown area. Serving burgers and wings but also some healthier things like red quinoa/grilled vegetable burrito with alfalfa sprouts, heirloom tomato and avocado. I notice that there is a Grateful Fed in Kelowna, British Columbia, Canada too. I wonder if they are connected.

“The restaurant scene has expanded in St Pete, but not for late night workers or those wanting healthy delivery,” said Ford in a press release. “It’s nearly impossible to eat healthy after hours and no one delivers commissary.”

Grateful Fed also has a small store stocked with some snacks, toiletries and the like. The store will deliver until 5am. A full liquor bar will serve some signature cocktails and craft beers.

The Sunshine City bringing eclectic small business downtown. Go St Pete!!

Current hours:
Monday through Thursday: 4pm-4am
Saturday through Sunday: 12pm-4am
Delivery available until 5am Monday through Thursday, Saturday and Sunday

To learn more about the concept follow Grateful Fed on Facebook.

Tibetan monks with horns Florida CraftArt st petersburg

Sacred Art Tour of Tibetan Monks 2017

From January 31-February 5th, Florida CraftArt welcomes eight exiled Tibetan Buddhist Monks from the Drepung Gomang Monastery in India who will create a Sacred World Peace Sand Mandala that was designed by the Dalai Lama and depicts all religions in harmony.

World Peace Sand Mandala

Saturday, February 4, 2017 10:00am
Creation of Mandala
Sunday, February 5, 2017 12:00pm
Finalization of Mandala
Sunday, February 5, 2017 1:00pm
Dissolution Ceremony

During the closing ceremony on Sunday, February 5 at 1 p.m., the monks will dismantle the mandala, sweeping up the colored sand to symbolize the impermanence of all phenomena. It is meant to be a teaching to show that everything that exists has a beginning, a middle and an end. Then monks will then lead a procession to Tampa Bay where they will deposit the sand and perform a Buddhist blessing.

Joe Turner’s Come and Gone – Saturday & Sunday 3pm

American Stage Theatre Company at Raymond James Theatre-163 Third St. N, St. Petersburg

August Wilson’s Century Cycle, owners of a boarding house play host to a makeshift family of people with connections to slavery. Some stay days, some longer. Through Feb. 26. $39-$49.

The Golden Ticket – Saturday

Coliseum-535 Fourth Ave. N, St. Petersburg

The 86th annual All Children’s Hospital Charity Ball features dinner, dancing and an auction. Benefits Johns Hopkins All Children’s Hospital. Starts at 6 or 6:30 p.m. $250.

Frida Kahlo at The Dali     through April 17th, 2017  http://thedali.org/   downtown waterfront of St Pete

This exhibits gives us some insight into the extraordinary career and life of the great 20th century Mexican artist. More than 60 Kahlo pieces are on display, including 15 paintings, seven drawings and numerous personal photographs from the celebrated female artist. The outdoor portion of the exhibition includes a special collection of flowers and plants representative of those in Kahlo’s own garden at Casa Azul. I have been lucky enough to visit her beloved Casa Azul in the Coyoacán district of Mexico City with a dear friend. I was in cielo (or heaven)!

 

 

Happy New Year!  ¡Feliz año nuevo! Frohes neues Jahr! Bonne année! Feliz Ano Novo!

Ευτυχισμένο το νέο έτος! Athbhliain faoi mhaise daoibh! Godt nytt år! Manuia le tausaga fou!

Felice anno nuovo! 新年快乐!Xīnnián kuàilè!  明けましておめでとうございます!

Do you need some ideas on where to celebrate this New Year’s Eve? From First Night to rooftop parties to white sand celebrations, here are some of the many ways to ring in the NEW YEAR:

  First Night St. Petersburg’s 24th Annual New Year’s Eve celebration of the Arts. A family-friendly event featuring live music, entertainment, drama, dance, games, art, fireworks, musical petting zoo, a poetry celebration at Studio@620 and a New Year’s Salsa at Museum of Fine Arts.  The festivities begin at 4pm and run through midnight.  Day of tickets are $15 for adults, $10 for children (6-12) and children 5 and under enjoy the events for free. http://www.firstnightstpete.com

New Year’s Eve Takes Flight at Loews Don CeSar, St Pete Beach
Have your “passport” & your imagination ready to return to the Golden Age of travel without leaving the white sands of St Pete Beach. “Experience the flavors of Havana, the revelry of New Orleans and immerse yourself in the glamour of Mumbai’s Bollywood”. Enjoy a premium open bar, action stations, hors d’oeuvres and decedant desserts throughout the entire 5th Floor of the classic 1920’s elegant Pink Hotel. Dance to the sounds of Blonde Ambition, playing top 40, pop, rock, country and cross-over Latin music hits along with our top dance DJs. Event runs from 9pm-1am. Tickets are $229 per person. Loews Don CeSar, 3400 Gulf Boulevard.

 

The Laser Comedy Show at Unscripted Theatre, St Pete
Before you ring in the New Year, see the show Chicago can’t stop talking about. Chris Fair brings his incredible improv talents to the Burg for the Laser Comedy Show, a glow in the dark etch-a-sketch show that illustrates an improvised story. Shows at 11am and 2pm. Tickets are $10 online, $15 at the door OR two tickets from $25. Unscripted Theatre, 14 18th Street South.

The Witch’s New Year’s Eve Private Party, downtown St Pete
Join the Ale and the Witch as they close out 2016 with their traditional house party. Only 60 seats are sold and the ticket enables full access to all items at the bar. Event runs from 8pm-1am. Tickets are $66 and are available for purchase at The Ale and The Witch, 111 2nd Avenue Northeast.

Toast by the Coast New Year’s Eve Party at TradeWinds, St Pete Beach
TradeWinds Island Resorts on St. Pete Beach hosts their annual gala in the Grand Ballroom, featuring an open bar, an extensive hors d’oeuvres buffet, and dancing to live music from Motel Funk. From 9pm-1am. Click HERE for more details. TradeWinds, 5500 Gulf Boulevard.

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New Year’s Eve Havana Nights at The Canopy
Join The Canopy for the hottest New Year’s Eve party in the Burg. Enjoy two floors of open bar, hors d’oeuvres, dinner buffet, live band in the grand ballroom, DJ on the rooftop and a champagne toast at midnight. Doors open at 8pm. Tickets are $182.65 in advance, $195 at the door if available. The Canopy at The Birchwood, 340 Beach Drive Northeast.

Swingin’ in the New Year at the St. Pete Coliseum
All-ages welcome to dance to the music of Mitch Woods and his Rocket 88’s Band. Balloon drop, party favors, noisemakers, chocolates, prize giveaways, cash bar. PLUS a vintage fashion photo shoot and contest, so dress accordingly! Doors open at 7:30pm, with a swing dance lesson from 8-9pm. The party continues until 1am. Tickets are $30. St. Pete Coliseum, 535 4th Avenue North.

Taste of Bavaria Party at Hofbrauhaus, St Pete
Welcome in 2017 with a taste of Bavaria featuring live German music a balloon drop and a champagne toast. Order all three of the special courses & receive a free bottle of champagne with two Hofbrauhaus flutes, midnight balloon drop and champagne toast. Click HERE to make your reservation or call 727.898.3333. Hofbrauhaus, 123 4th Street South.

DAYA at Jannus Live, downtown St Pete
High-energy dance party for anyone 18+, Oh and it’s “All You Can Responsibly Drink” for the 21 and older crowd. Music by DJ T-Quest, DJ Knex, and  DAYA. Gates open at 8pm. $20 for 18+, $30 for 21+. Click here to purchase. Jannus Live, 200 1st Avenue North.

Gatsby Gala at Mastry’s Brewing, St Pete Beach
Mastry’s Brewing Co on St. Pete Beach hosts a 1920’s-style evening featuring a new Berliner beer release called “Bubbly,” tapas, photo booth, and DJ. Free entry from 7pm-1am. Parking on-site is limited; additional parking can be found at the community center one block behind the brewery. Mastry’s Brewing, 7701 Blind Pass Road.

Marchand’s New Year’s Eve Party at The Vinoy, downtown St Pete 

Special hors d’ oeuvres from 8-8:30pm. Food stations will be open from 8:45-10pm. Food options include: seafood raw bar, beef tenderloin, herb crusted lamb, butter champagne poached lobster. The dessert at 11pm, featuring dark chocolate chambord truffles, black forest cupcakes, bourbon old fashioned bon bons, drunken cherry tartlets, passion fruit custard, broken vanilla macaroons and more. Click HERE for a full menu. $150 per person. Black tie optional. Call 727.824.8072 for reservations. The Vinoy, 501 5th Avenue North.

The 360 Rooftop Lounge at Kimpton Hotel Zamora, St Pete Beach
Unrivaled views of St. Pete Beach & the fireworks. Includes an open well bar, decadent desserts and a champagne buffet. Food and drink specials start at 4pm. The Boogie Nights rooftop celebration featuring music by The Hunks of Funk begins at 9pm. $175 all inclusive, in advance online. $250 at the door. 360 Rooftop at Kimpton Hotel Zamora, 3701 Gulf Boulevard.

****Don’t drink and drive! Use SPRides downtown or Florida Free Rides at 727.512.4765. Or use Uber and Lyft & local cab companies. Help keep everyone safer.

Happy New Year!  ¡Feliz año nuevo! Frohes neues Jahr! Bonne année! Feliz Ano Novo!

Ευτυχισμένο το νέο έτος! Athbhliain faoi mhaise daoibh! Godt nytt år! Manuia le tausaga fou!

Felice anno nuovo! 新年快乐!Xīnnián kuàilè!  明けましておめでとうございます!

Saturday, November 26, 2016

Shopapalooza Part II
Skip the mall & the crowds. Support the local shops & businesses. Launch the holiday shopping season!  LocalShops1’s biggest event of the year brings together locally owned shops, restaurants, art galleries, service providers, and community organizations offering great shopping discounts!  Prizes and surprises during the 7th annual LocalShops1 community festival, featuring more than 130 local businesses, artists, food trucks and nonprofits! Estimated attendance is 5,000+ shoppers each day. 10am-7pm. South Straub Park, 198 Bayshore Drive Northeast., St Petersburg,Florida

Around the World at Great Explorations Children’s Museum
A journey around the world-explore flags, foods, fun and friends from all over the globe! Make global granola, learn Chinese calligraphy, practice origami and more! 10am-2pm. Great Explorations, 1925 4th Street North, St Pete

Classes at Pinot’s Palette, 1572 Central Avenue:
Happy Snowmen
Nothing jollier than a happy snowman, except 3 happy snowmen. Come paint this cheery trio at Pinot’s Palette! Noon-2pm. $35 per painter. Jolly Christmas Lights
The Holidays come but once a year! Share it with someone special while decorating your own Christmas tree with twinkling lights. 6-8pm. $35 per painter.

St. Pete Preservation Walking Tour – Historic Kenwood
Come along on the St. Pete Preservation tour of Historic Kenwood. Volunteer guide and Kenwood resident Richard Ahlfeld will lead this tour, telling the stories of Kenwood’s founding in the early 1900’s as St. Petersburg’s first “suburb” neighborhood for year-round residents. He’ll also point out out the design details of Craftsman, Tudor, four-square, prairie, colonial, and other architectural styles that earned this neighborhood a place on the National Register of Historic Places. Runs from 10am-noon. Free to SPP members or Historic Kenwood Neighborhood Association, $10 for non-members. Begins at Craftsman House, 2955 Central Avenue.

Shop the Blocks – Grand Central District
Shop small in the Grand Central District when you visit our collection of vintage and specialty shops, bars, breweries and studios. Wear a local t-shirt and get 10% off at participating shops! From 11am-6pm. Grand Central District – Central Avenue from 16th Street to 31st Street, St Pete


Snow, Santa and Holiday Carolers at Sundial St. Pete
The courtyard at Sundial St. Pete will transform into a Winter Wonderland this Saturday. Santa will make his debut appearance at Sundial Saturday night to take photos with families and kids. Snow will cover the courtyard and magical holiday lights will illuminate downtown. 5-8pm. Sundial St. Pete, 153 2nd Avenue North.

Free Show: Dead Dove with J. Klein at Green Bench Brewing
Dead Dove is the story of love and danger in a violent wasteland created by massive solar flares that eliminate electical current, and turn humans into survivors, or savages. The rock album included is written by Dead Dove the band, and chronicles this amazing struggle against post-apocolyptic Savages, the duty of the 3 main characters Justin, Evan, and Scotter to bring Earth’s electric grids back online, and to save the world from destruction. Concert from 8-11pm. Green Bench Brewing, 1133 Baum Avenue North.

‘Tis the Season at Sundial – Santa Visits the Courtyard
The snow will be falling this season on to the Sundial courtyard! It’s time to finish your wish list and tell Santa in-person all of the toys and goodies that you would like to see under the tree. Santa will be appearing Thursdays, Saturdays and Sundays from November 27 through December 24 in the courtyard. He’ll be in the courtyard from 1-5pm on Sunday. Sundial St. Pete, 153 2nd Avenue North.

I think that the best way to savour the flavors of Cuba is, like I did last summer, to visit Cuba with Cuban friends & family! But if you can’t travel to Cuba, this article I came across tells you where to get the delicious tastes of Cuba locally. ¡Disfruta tu comida! Annalisa

You don’t have to be Cuban to enjoy what their cuisine has to offer. Whether you opt for the traditional Cuban sandwich, the popular mojo pork, the necessary black beans and rice, ropa vieja and other tasty staples such as the decadent pastelitos, you can’t go wrong.

By Michelle da Silva Richmond  http://www.10best.com/destinations/florida/st.-petersburg/restaurants/cuban/

Havana Harry’s takes choices to a new level with fresh ingredients and a host of tempting choices, while old favorites such as The Floridian have been winning awards – and tempting palates – with a host of sandwiches and sides since they opened in 1993. Another favorite is Tangelo’s Grille where you can pick up an array of tasty brunch options along with Cuban staples.

A not-to-be-missed hole-in-the-wall favorite is Barracuda where you’ll find an array of selections including sweet cakes and pastries. Downtown St Pete is where you’ll find the ever – popular Bodega, which has been dishing up favorites to locals and visitors alike since 2013.

Then, of course, Columbia restaurants, in several locations are always a top choice.

Caribbean Café
Located in a small strip on Central Ave. the Caribbean Café offers tasty Cuban fare, while providing a pleasant break from the outside world. The soothing décor is the perfect backdrop for the specialties served there. As you might expect, the Cuban sandwich with the typical fixings is a popular choice, as is the Cuban pork and cheese sandwich, but you’ll also find an ample selection of lighter salads, soup, crab cakes and more. Dessert offerings include flan – plain and coconut – vanilla custard with caramel sauce and tasty cookies. Ask Jimmy, the owner for menu suggestions as well as their history.

The Floridian
The awards lining the walls are testament to their tasty cuisine, but the real proof comes when you sink your teeth into their award-winning Cuban sandwich. Loaded with ham, spiced pork, Genoa salami, Swiss cheese, dill pickle, mustard and a tasty mayo mix on pressed Cuban bread, it’s a great choice. The Floridian has been serving palate-pleasing cuisine to locals since 1993, offering a varied array of favorites that includes black beans and yellow rice, Cuban toast, spiced pork sandwiches and more. You’ll also find tasty guava and cheese pastries for dessert. For special occasions, you can’t go wrong with their party trays and a selection of Cuban finger sandwiches.

Tangelo’s Grille
Located in one of the area’s most charming areas, Tangelo’s has dished up a wide selection of Cuban fare since it first opened in downtown St Petersburg in 1987. It’s also one of the few places in the area where you can get brunch on weekends. Leading the list of favorites are the porky Cuban and TG Cuban sandwiches. The chicken mojo is another winner as are the TG coconut curry rice bowls. For dinner, roasted Cuban style pork is a crowd pleaser. Desserts offer key lime, peanut butter and Mounds coconut cream pies. For brunch, tacos, sandwiches and nachos lead the list along with the island custard French toast, which features cream cheese and guava. You can also get American classics such as eggs and waffles along with an assortment of coffees, mimosas and sangrias. (7278941695)

  • Order Online

Havana Harry’s Market 2
This newest addition to Havana Harry’s just opened in July 2016 a few miles from the original and is already drawing rave reviews. The underlying theme here is “family,” and “fresh, healthy food.” This family-owned restaurant spares no detail when it comes to delivering tasty Cuban cuisine with all the trimmings. A perennial favorite is the Cuban sandwich with smoked ham, mojo pork, Genoa salami, Swiss cheese, pickles, mayo and mustard. For lighter fare, try the 1904 Cuban tossed salad with lettuce, tomatoes, smoked ham, Swiss cheese, Spanish olives, asiago pepper, lemon and house dressing. Soups are also a hit including garbanzo or chicken and kale – all made from scratch. For special occasions, clients suggest ordering the whole salmon with raspberry chipotle dressing.

Tia’s Authentic Latin Food
This laid-back family-owned restaurant has been around for awhile and is a favorite with locals, as well as savvy tourists who crave authentic Latin American cuisine. The Cuban Reuben gets rave reviews with the addition of sauerkraut, instead of pickles to the mix. Empanadas also lead the list of top sellers. For dinner the slow roasted pernil (pork) roasted in garlic, mojo and home-made dressings is a sure winner. Daily specials and award-winning Cuban wine and beer add to the mix. For breakfast, there’s a selection of eggs, burritos, Cuban coffee and toast. Tia herself is usually on hand to greet customers.

Barracuda Deli Café
You might not expect a restaurant with such a name to be home to delicious Cuban and Mexican cuisine, but that’s just one of the pleasant surprises you’ll find at Barracuda. Tucked into the proverbial hole-in-the-wall on St Pete Beach, you’ll find an ample selection of pressed Cuban sandwiches, tacos, wraps and salads. Pork is marinated overnight and slowly cooked in a mojo sauce. The Best Cuban is a favorite as are the spicy pinto and black beans. On the lighter side you’ll find fresh salads and wraps. Side dishes include guacamole, chips and salsa and a freshly made soup of the day.

Columbia Restaurant – Sand Key
A Florida tradition – in various locations – since Cuban immigrant Casimiro Hernandez Sr opened his first restaurant in 1905 in Tampa’s Ybor City, Columbia restaurants are still owned and operated by the family’s fourth and fifth generations. Daiquiris, mojitos, margaritas and sangrias pave the way to a varied dining experience which includes Cuban mainstays such as: black bean soup, gazpacho, Cuban sandwiches, mojo chicken and more. Chicken croquettes, stuffed piquillo peppers and pork roast a la Cubana are additional hits. Desserts including flan, mango mousse cake, churros, key lime pie and more are sure to satisfy the most discerning sweet tooth. (7275968400)

Bodega
It may not look like much, but this hole-in-the-wall walk-up eatery tucked into downtown St Petersburg’s Edge District is a “must” for anyone in search of fresh – and delicious – Cuban cuisine. Choose from a surprising selection of sandwiches, salads, sides and main dishes such as their legendary roasted pork (lechón) and coconut-marinated roasted chicken breast. The Miami-style Cuban sandwich features pork, ham, Swiss cheese, pickles and mayo on pressed Cuban bread. The popular pollo (chicken) sandwich features a coconut-marinated grilled breast with avocado, mango and jicama, adding a surprising crunch to the experience. Coffee selections include typical Cuban choices.

Habana Café

Visitors and locals alike rave about the old country Cuban cuisine you can treat yourself to at the Habana Café. Tucked into charming Gulfport, it’s a favorite with locals and tourists alike. Whether you select appetizers such as the tasty lechón asado, the drunken shrimp or go for mainstays such as the palomilla steak sandwich with grilled onions or the arroz con pollo – tender chicken cooked with Valencia rice in beer and wine, seasoned with fresh garlic, cumin, oregano, bell peppers and chopped onions – you can’t go wrong.The atmosphere is sheer Havana and the Latin music is a plus. (727-321-8855)

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Pipo’s Café
This family-owned St. Petersburg landmark has been consistently dishing up tasty Cuban fare since 1979, garnering top marks as one of the best in the area. Signature sandwiches such as palomilla steak – a tasty combination of grilled and breaded steak topped with parsley and grilled onions – or entrées such as mojo pollo – marinated chicken breast with onions, peppers and cilantro – are favorites. Desserts include the typical flan and arroz con leche. Breakfasts aren’t too shabby either with choices ranging from Cuban toast and guava pastries to a selection of tortillas (omelets) all served with fresh Cuban bread. (727-394-7476)

By Michelle da Silva Richmond  http://www.10best.com/destinations/florida/st.-petersburg/restaurants/cuban/

Annalisa Weller, Realtor®, Certified International Property Specialist

(727) 804-6566
AnnalisaWeller1@gmail.com

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