By Stephanie Hyland, Storage.com
St. Petersburg is the second largest city in the Tampa Bay Area and home to nearly 250,000 Floridians. With plenty of sunshine and beaches, amazing food trucks, proximity to Tampa military bases, and hot spots for just about any interest, St. Pete has it going on. Whether you’re a current resident of “Florida’s Sunshine City” or moving to the area, check out this list of reasons to love living in St. Petersburg!
1. BECOME A BURGER.
Why does everyone keep talking about burgers in this city? Residents from the St. Petersburg area often refer to themselves as “Burgers” to show their love for “The Burg.” Coolest nickname ever? We think so.
2. CATCH SOME RAYS.
St. Petersburg isn’t called “Florida’s Sunshine City” for nothing! With approximately 250 days of sunshine and mild temperatures during the winter months, residents and visitors can spend a lot of time outside enjoying what the city has to offer. One of the many places where Burgers enjoy the sunshine is at Fort De Soto Park. Besides oceanfront views and miles of white sandy beaches, this area has campgrounds and boat launch sites, a fishing pier, and nature trails.
Learn more about using boat storage in St. Petersburg.
3. A WELCOME HOME FOR MILITARY.
Thousands of military personnel and their families live in the Tampa Bay Area because of the proximity to military training centers and bases. St. Petersburg is home to U.S. Army Reserve Training and a sector of the U.S. Coast Guard, and the city is also about a 30-minute drive to MacDill Air Force Base in Tampa.
See how military storage can help with a move to St. Petersburg.
4. GRAB A BITE ANYWHERE.
The food truck industry is booming in St. Petersburg! If you’re in the area and hungry, grab a crab cake gyro from Maggie on the Move, a buffalo-philly from The Cheesesteak Truck, or a meatball sampler from Jimmy Meatball. If you’re looking for something sweet, get a scoop of gelato from Tropiccool and enjoy your treat from one of the patio tables located on the top of this double-decker bus.
5. GET SAUCED.
Not only are you eating delicious BBQ when you attend Ribfest, you’re also supporting a variety of youth-inspired causes. This three-day charity fundraiser features some of the best barbecue cooks in the world, touring bands playing classic rock and country hits, and several other kid-friendly events. The annual event, now in its 26th year, has continued to help the community in its efforts to prevent child abuse, build a new children’s hospital, contribute to youth-oriented causes, and help individuals in need.
6. A HUGE ART SCENE.
If you’re looking for something to do other than lie on the beach, St. Petersburg is home to a number of museums that will keep you entertained! There’s the The Dali Museum, the Museum of Fine Arts, the Chihuly Collection at the Morean Arts Center, the Florida Holocaust Museum, and the Great Explorations Children’s Museum, just to name a few. If you’re a garden lover, you will love Sunken Gardens, a botanical garden full of exotic plants, flowers, and waterfalls. If you want to check out some local artists, head over to the St. Pete Indie Market for a taste of what St. Petersburg artists are creating.
7. CLASSIC CAR PARADISE.
Calling all car lovers! You can see all of your favorite classics at the St. Petersburg Yacht Club Vintage Motor Classic. This popular event is considered one of the best vintage car, boat, and motorcycle collector shows in the southeastern United States. Each year, approximately 300+ vintage vehicles are displayed at the South Straub Park in Downtown St. Petersburg for the public to enjoy.
8. THE FOUNTAIN OF YOUTH.
Sorry, this Fountain of Youth won’t make your wrinkles go away! But it is a landmark commemorating Spanish explorer Ponce de Leon, who searched the area for the fabled Fountain of Youth around 1313. You can find this fountain in Waterfront Park in Downtown St. Petersburg and grab a few pictures so you can pass on the tale to your family and friends!
9. GOT A NEED FOR SPEED?
The Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg is a three-day downtown event that’s been going on for ten years and has something for everyone, including an IndyCar series and the Pro Mazda Championship.
10. ST. PETE LOVES DOGS.
You love your dog, and so does St. Petersburg! Your furry friend can enjoy a number of off-leash parks and dog-friendly locations, such as Fort De Soto Paw Playground and Beach and the Gandy Bridge Causeway. If you’re hungry after a day in the sun, you don’t have to run your pup home before grabbing lunch! St. Petersburg is home to a number of dog-friendly restaurants, too, such as the Three Birds Tavern, Flippers Pizzeria, and Ceviche Tapas Bar and Restaurant.
11. A MERRY ST. PETE CHRISTMAS.
Even though there won’t be any snow or ice, St. Petersburg still knows how to get into the Christmas spirit. Every year, The Oakdale Christmas House stages a computerized light show with 500,000 lights! This free event has been drawing visitors to the area from all over since 1977.
12. JAM OUT.
You’ll never be at a loss for something to do on the weekends in St. Petersburg. This area is home to a number of nightclubs and concert venues that are sure to keep you entertained. Some of the most popular stops in Downtown St. Petersburg are Jannus Live, The State Theatre, The Local 662, Fubar Downtown, and The Hideaway Cafe and Recording Studio.
13. HIT THE MARKET.
This isn’t your average farmer’s market. The Saturday Morning Market has become an iconic pastime for residents during early October to late May every year (A smaller summer market is held from June to August). This event is in its 13th season and prides itself on being an event in the heart of Downtown St. Petersburg, where residents and visitors can feel a “strong sense of joyful connectedness and creative community.” The market can be found in the Al Lang Field parking lot on the corner of 1st Street and 1st Avenue South. Enjoy some fresh food and music!
14. THE PYRAMID PIER.
The St. Petersburg Pier, known to locals as “The Pier,” was a landmark and tourist destination that was constructed in 1973 and extended into Tampa Bay from Downtown St. Petersburg. The Pier was a five-story inverted pyramid and a focal point in the St. Petersburg waters. However, the Pier and its activities were closed to the public in May 2013. In May 2015, the city approved a design for the new pier with plans for construction around 2017 or 2018.
15. “FINEST BALLROOM IN THE SOUTH.”
Known as the “Finest Ballroom in The South,” The Coliseum is a venue in the Downtown St. Petersburg historic district. Constructed in 1924, the Coliseum’s floor hosts a range of events, from ballroom dances and auctions to concerts and business meetings.
16. BEACH + BOOKS.
Looking for a college with small classes and proximity to the ocean? University of South Florida – St. Petersburg would be a great fit for you! This waterfront campus serves more than 6,000 students and offers a variety of certificates, as well as undergraduate, graduate, and doctoral programs.
Find out how you can use self storage during college.
17. CATCH A SHOW.
If live theatre is what you enjoy, you’ll have a hard time deciding what show to catch in St. Petersburg! There are a number of venues in the area—including American Stage, The Mahaffey Theatre, The Palladium Theatre, and St. Petersburg City Theatre—where you can watch Broadway musicals, stand-up comedians, musical acts, contemporary plays, or the St. Petersburg Opera Company.
Is there anything we’ve missed? Let us know in the comments below.