This year, the St. Petersburg Pride Parade and festival will be held June 23rd through the 25th. The weekend is a celebration of solidarity for the LGBT+ community, and is the biggest Pride event in the state of Florida!
As a local St. Pete business, we at GBY & Associates love to show our support for the St. Pete Pride celebration. On festival day, Sunday June 25, pay us a visit at our booth! We are excited to celebrate Pride, the city of St. Petersburg, and our neighborhood: the Grand Central District.
The Origin of St. Pete Pride
In 2001, the city of St. Pete designated the area between the 1600 and 3000 blocks as the “Grand Central District”. The primary focus of this area was to increase economic development and support historical preservation. Since then, Grand Central has become the home of many LGBT+ owned businesses.
As a result, in 2003, St. Pete’s Pride celebration was held in the Grand Central District. Since its inception, the parade has continued to grow with about 250,000 attendees in 2016. To offer some perspective, the city of St. Petersburg has a population of about 259,906.
Today, the festival is broken down into three main events: Friday, June 23 is the SP2 Concert, which raises funds for community organizations around Tampa Bay. The famous Pride Parade is held on Saturday night, and the Pride Festival will be held on Sunday. If you’ve been keeping up with the news, you might already know that this year, the parade has been moved from the Grand Central District to Downtown. However, the festival will stay in St. Pete Pride’s home neighborhood.
In general, the Grand Central District is a fun and popular corner of St. Pete. Below is a list of a few things that we love about this low-key and artsy part of town.
1. Finding a Parking Spot
Downtown St. Pete is fun, but most of the time, it can be a hassle to find decent parking. However, you aren’t likely to experience this problem when trying to find a parking space in the Grand Central District.
Not only is parking more widely available, but there’s just less congestion in general. You won’t find any streets flooded with pedestrians on the weekends. As another perk, many of the businesses are within walking distance of each other.
2. Beer, Beer, and more Beer!
This corner of St. Petersburg is in no short supply of craft beer! Cage Brewing, Pinellas Ale Works, and 3 Daughters Brewing are three popular breweries within walking distance of each other. Here, you’ll have the opportunity to complete a decent brewery crawl completely on foot. Talk about safe!
Not only is this part of town adorned with beautiful murals like the rest of St. Petersburg, but once a month, you can participate in the the Second Saturday Artwalk, which features over 40 art galleries and studios. This festivity is a downtown tradition that has been ongoing for over 20 years.
Interestingly, our neighboring district, the Warehouse Arts District, is also a neat area populated with old industrial buildings which have been reconstructed into art studios by local artists seeking to rent large spaces for a reasonable price.
4. Historic Kenwood
If you appreciate beautiful architecture, you may want to visit Historic Kenwood, nearby the Central District. Take a quick bike ride, stroll down the beautiful brick roads, or stop by Seminole Park and see for yourself the unique attributes of Kenwood that attract so many potential residents.
There’s no other time of the year in the city that can compare to the fun and excitement that accompanies St. Pete Pride. It’s a massive celebration of the LGBT+ community and all are welcome to participate. We look forward to seeing you there!