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City of St. Petersburg, Florida
—  City  —
St Pete Skyline from Pier.jpg
Downtown skyline from The Pier
Flag of St. Petersburg, Florida.gif
Flag
Wordmark of St. Petersburg, Florida.png
Seal
Nickname(s): Florida's Sunshine City
Motto: Always in Season
Pinellas County Florida Incorporated and Unincorporated areas St. Petersburg Highlighted.svg
Location in Pinellas County and the state of Florida
Coordinates: 27°46′23″N 82°38′24″W / 27.77306, -82.64
Country United States
State Florida
County Pinellas County
Founded 1876
Incorporated February 29, 1892
Government
 • Type Strong Mayor-Commission
 • Mayor Bill Foster
Area
 • City 133.1 sq mi (344.7 km2)
 • Land 59.6 sq mi (154.4 km2)
 • Water 73.4 sq mi (190.2 km2)
Elevation 44 ft (13.4 m)
Population (2008)
 • City 248,098
 • Density 4,162.7/sq mi (1,606.8/km2)
 • Metro 2,733,761
Time zone Eastern (EST) (UTC-5)
 • Summer (DST) EDT (UTC-4)
Area code(s) 727
Website http://www.stpete.org/

St. Petersburg (often shortened to St. Pete) is a city in Pinellas County, Florida, United States long known as a vacation destination for both American and foreign tourists. As of 2008, the population estimate by the U.S. Census Bureau is 245,314,[1] making St. Petersburg the fourth largest city in the state of Florida and the largest city in Florida that is not a county seat. Although the city of Clearwater is the county seat of Pinellas County, all county services are available through county offices in St. Petersburg. St. Petersburg is the second largest city in the Tampa Bay Area, which is composed of roughly 2.7 million residents,[2] making it the second largest Metropolitan Statistical Area in the state.

The city is commonly referred to by locals as "St. Pete"; neighboring St. Pete Beach, Florida formally shortened its name in 1994 after a vote by its residents.

The city is located on a peninsula between Tampa Bay and the Gulf of Mexico. It is connected to mainland Florida to the north; with the city of Tampa to the east by causeways and bridges across Tampa Bay; and to Bradenton in the south by the Sunshine Skyway Bridge (Interstate 275), which traverses the mouth of the bay. It is also served by Interstates 175 and 375, which branch off I-275 into the southern and northern areas of downtown respectively. The Gandy Bridge, conceived by George Gandy and opened in 1924, was the first causeway to be built across Tampa Bay, connecting St. Petersburg and Tampa cities without a circuitous 43-mile (69 km) trip around the Bay through Oldsmar.

With a purported average of some 360 days of sunshine each year, it is nicknamed "The Sunshine City."[3] For that reason, the city has long been a popular retirement destination, especially for those in the United States from colder Northern climates. This reputation earned the city the derisive nickname of "God's waiting room". However, in recent years the population has shifted in a more youthful direction.[4]

HistoryEdit

St. Petersburg (Florida) SPOT 1287

St. Petersburg seen from Spot Satellite

The city was co-founded by John C. Williams, formerly of Detroit, Michigan, who purchased the land in 1876, and by Peter Demens, who was instrumental in bringing the terminus of a railroad there in 1888. St. Petersburg was incorporated on February 29, 1892, when it had a population of only some 300 people.

It was named after Saint Petersburg, Russia, where Peter Demens had spent half of his youth. A local legend says that John C. Williams and Peter Demens flipped a coin to see who would have the honor of naming the city.[5] Peter Demens won and named the city after his birthplace, while John C. Williams named the first hotel after his birthplace, Detroit (a hotel built by Demens[6]). The Detroit Hotel still exists downtown, but has been turned into a condominium. The oldest running hotels are the historic Pier Hotel, built in 1921, formally Hotel Cordova and The Heritage Hotel, built in 1926.

Philadelphia publisher F. A. Davis turned on St. Petersburg's first electrical service in 1897 and its first trolley service in 1904.[7] The city's first major industry was born in 1899 when Henry W. Hibbs, 1862–1942, a native of Newport, North Carolina, established his wholesale fish business at the end of the railroad pier, which extended out to the shipping channel. Within a year, Hibbs Fish Company was shipping more than a thousand pounds (454 kg) of fish each day.

Central Avenue, Looking West, St. Petersburg, FL

Central Avenue in c. 1910

Dredging of a deeper shipping channel from 1906 to 1908 opened St. Petersburg to larger shipping. Further dredging improved the port facilities through the 1910s. By then the city's population had quadrupled to 4,127.

In 1914, airplane service across Tampa Bay from St. Petersburg to Tampa and back was initiated, generally considered the first commercial airline. The company name was the St. Petersburg–Tampa Airboat Line and the pilot was Tony Jannus, flying a Benoist XIV flying boat. The Tony Jannus Award is presented annually for outstanding achievement in the airline industry. Jannus Landing, a local music/entertainment venue on Central Avenue in downtown, is also named after him.

The city population continued to multiply during the 20th century. Booming in the 1940s and 50s with the advent of air-conditioning and through the 1970s as the town became a popular retirement destination for Americans from midwestern cities, reaching 238,647 in the 1980 census. By that time, however, the population had levelled off, and has grown by only 10,000 since then; this is primarily a result of the city being largely "built out".

Geography and climateEdit

St. Petersburg is located at 27°46′23″N 82°38′24″W / 27.77306, -82.64 (27.773053, -82.639983)[8].

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 133.1 square miles (344.7 km²)— 59.6 square miles (154.4 km²) of it is land and 73.4 square miles (190.2 km²) of it (55.19%) is water.

Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Rec high °F (°C) 87 (30) 86 (30) 90 (32) 93 (33) 96 (35) 100 (37) 99 (37) 97 (36) 97 (36) 94 (34) 90 (32) 89 (31) 100 (37)
Avg high °F (°C) 72 (22) 73 (22) 77 (25) 83 (28) 89 (31) 90 (32) 92 (33) 92 (33) 90 (32) 85 (29) 79 (26) 74 (23) 81 (28)
Avg low °F (°C) 54 (12) 56 (13) 60 (16) 65 (18) 72 (22) 76 (24) 77 (25) 77 (25) 75 (24) 70 (21) 65 (18) 56 (13) 67 (19)
Rec low °F (°C) 25 (-4) 30 (-1) 32 (0) 41 (5) 55 (12) 54 (12) 67 (19) 68 (20) 61 (16) 43 (6) 29 (-2) 20 (-7) 20 (-7)
Precipitation in. (mm) 2.3 (58) 2.8 (71) 3.4 (86) 1.6 (41) 2.6 (66) 5.7 (145) 7.0 (178) 7.8 (198) 6.1 (155) 2.5 (64) 1.9 (48) 2.2 (56) 45.8 (1160)
Source: Weatherbase[9]

St. Petersburg has a humid subtropical climate (Koppen Cfa), with a definite rainy season from June through September. St Petersburg, like the rest of the Tampa Bay Area, is occasionally affected by tropical storms and hurricanes. However, the last time a hurricane directly struck the city was in 1921. Many portions of St. Petersburg, especially along the bay and in south St. Petersburg, have tropical microclimates. Royal palms and coconut palms, as well as other tropicals, grow to maturity and fruit.

DemographicsEdit

Historical populations
Census Pop.
1910 4,127
1920 14,237 245.0%
1930 40,425 183.9%
1940 60,812 50.4%
1950 96,738 59.1%
1960 181,298 87.4%
1970 216,232 19.3%
1980 238,647 10.4%
1990 238,629 0%
2000 248,232 4.0%
2010 244,760 −1.4%
Source: 2010[10]
St. Petersburg Demographics
2010 CensusSt. PetersburgPinellas CountyFlorida
Total population244,769916,54218,801,310
Population, percent change, 2000 to 2010-1.4%-0.5%+17.6%
Population density3,964.4/sq mi3,347.5/sq mi350.6/sq mi
White or Caucasian (including White Hispanic)68.7%82.1%75.0%
(Non-Hispanic White or Caucasian)64.3%76.9%57.9%
Black or African-American23.9%10.3%16.0%
Hispanic or Latino (of any race)6.6%8.0%22.5%
Asian3.2%3.0%2.4%
Native American or Native Alaskan0.3%0.3%0.4%
Pacific Islander or Native Hawaiian0.1%0.1%0.1%
Two or more races (Multiracial)2.5%2.2%2.5%
Some Other Race1.3%2.0%3.6%

As of 2010, there were 129,401 households out of which 15.9% were vacant. As of 2000, 23.85% of households had children under the age of 18 living with them, 37.295% were married couples living together, 13.8% had a female householder with no adult living partner present, and 43.8% were non-families. 35.6% of all households were made up of individuals and 13.3% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.10 and the average family size was 2.865.

In 2000, the city's population was spread out with 21.5% under the age of 18, 7.7% from 18 to 24, 30.2% from 25 to 44, 23.1% from 45 to 64, and 17.4% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 39.24 years. For every 100 females there were 91.2 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 87.7 males.

As of 2000, the median income for a household in the city was $34,597, and the median income for a family was $43,198. Males had a median income of $30,794 versus $27,860 for females. The per capita income for the city was $21,107. About 9.2% of families and 13.3% of the population were below the poverty line, including 19.1% of those under age 18 and 10.8% of those age 65 or over.

LanguagesEdit

As of 2000, speakers of English as their first language were 88.53% of residents, Spanish as a mother tongue was 4.43%, German accounted for 0.78%, French made up 0.72% of speakers, Vietnamese at 0.67%, Serbo-Croatian 0.52%, and Laotian comprised 0.51% of the population.[11]

Largest employersEdit

According to the City's 2009 Comprehensive Annual Financial Report,[12] the largest employers in the city are:

# Employer # of Employees
1 Raymond James 2,700
2 All Children's Hospital 2,300
3 Bayfront Medical Center 2,200
4 Fidelity National Information Services 2,000
5 Home Shopping Network 1,700
6 Jabil Circuit 1,400
7 Bright House Networks 1,400
8 St. Anthony's Hospital 1,400
9 Times Publishing Company 1,000
10 Progress Energy 1,000

Attractions and points of interestEdit

Downtown St Petersburg, FL, during 2005 Grand Prix

Downtown waterfront (2005) — the barriers in the foreground mark the border of the Honda Grand Prix racetrack.

The city has a children's museum (Great Explorations), Museum of Fine Arts, a History Museum (which has a full-size replica of the Benoist seaplane and is located near the approximate spot by the St. Petersburg Pier where the first flight took place), a Holocaust Museum, and the Salvador Dalí Museum, which houses the largest collection of Dalí's outside of Europe, including a number of famous and large-scale paintings such as The Discovery of America by Christopher Columbus. There are also various other smaller art galleries and entertainment venues, especially in the downtown area, which has seen a boom in development since the mid 1990s; these include: The Mahaffey Theater complex, American Stage (an equity regional theater), The Coliseum, and Palladium Theatre, and The Midtown Royal Theater, The Arts Center, and the Florida Craftsmen Gallery.

The St. Petersburg Pier is a popular tourist attraction. It contains a small aquarium open to the public, retail shopping, adventure activities, and both casual and fine dining restaurants. Various sightseeing boat rides are also offered. The Bounty II, a replica of HMS Bounty that was used in the 1962 MGM movie starring Marlon Brando was permanently docked near the Pier for many years until the ship was sold to Ted Turner in 1986.[13] The Bounty II, however, still makes St. Petersburg its winter home. In 2010, the St. Petersburg City Council voted to demolish and rebuild the pier within two years.

Downtown is the location of the BayWalk shopping complex which contains an IMAX Muvico 20 screen movie theater, as well as many chain restaurants and retail shops, catering to more of a middle and upper class audience. Baywalk is also a nightlife destination although it is less well attended than the block surrounding Jannus Landing, just south of BayWalk. Central Avenue, from the Yacht Club east to 8th Street, is also both more vibrant and "organic" than BayWalk with the exception of a couple underdeveloped blocks. Restaurants serving ethnic and domestic culinary specialties can be found throughout the downtown area. Every Saturday morning, from October to May, the downtown area hosts a farmers market in the parking area of Al Lang Field (aka Progress Energy Park). Local vendors sell the fruits of their labors (whether edible or decorative) alongside artists of all kinds including live music. As of 2010, Baywalk is virtually deserted, with only Muvico remaining to anchor the complex.

Due west of downtown on Central is a district called Grand Central which is contained within Historic Kenwood. It is known for its artistic community, LGBT presence and hosting of the annual St. Pete Pride parade.[14] Like its name implies, Old Northeast is adjacent to downtown from the northeast. It is known for its historic status and eclectic architecture.[15][16] Roser Park is another historic district, located just south of downtown. It is known for its stately architecture and somewhat dubiously for its proximity to the "South Side." Together, these areas comprise the urban core of St. Petersburg.[17][18]

North of downtown is Great Explorations, The Children's Museum, an interactive museum featuring a Children's Village with giant pretend stores, Fire House and Pet Vet Clinic, and preschool, science, music, art, and water exhibits. The museum is located next to Sunken Gardens. 4th Street as a whole, from Downtown up to Gandy Boulevard, is home to many restaurants and bars running the gamut from fast food to haute cuisine. This area is called the "Garden District", although as of 2010 this name is not widely in use.[19]

Boyd Hill Nature Park located on Lake Maggiore is a 245-acre (0.991 km2) preserve where you can see many of the endangered plants and rare wildlife of Tampa Bay. There is a bird exhibit which houses bald eagles, owls, hawks, and other species.

St. Petersburg is well regarded for its beaches. In 2005, Fort Desoto was rated the number one beach in America by the annual Dr. Beach rankings.[20] TripAdvisor also has the beach ranked number one in the nation for 2008.[21] Also noted for its arts community, St. Petersburg regularly places top 25 in the nation among arts destinations[22] Recently, St. Petersburg has become known and regarded as one of America's most livable cities.[23]

DowntownEdit

St. Pete City Hall pano01

City hall

Downtown St. Petersburg is the Central Business District, containing high rises for office use, most notably the Bank of America Tower. The St. Petersburg Times newspaper is headquartered in the downtown area.[24][25] The Poynter Institute, which owns the paper, is located on 3rd St. S.

The Mahaffey Theater complex, the Morean Arts Center, dozens of other art galleries, Haslam's used book store, The Coliseum, Palladium Theatre, and Jannus Landing are among the galleries and cultural venues featured downtown. Several prominent museums are located in the perimeter. Four of them have received notable accolades: Chihuly Collection presented by the Morean Arts Center, Museum of Fine Arts, Salvador Dalí Museum, the Florida International Museum, and the Holocaust Museum. The city also plays host to many festivals throughout the year.[26]

Downtown contains the University of South Florida St. Petersburg, and a downtown branch of St. Petersburg College. The downtown perimeter also houses several parks, most of which are waterfront or lakefront. Straub Park is nearly a half mile long, boasts a waterfront location, and is home of the Museum of Fine Arts. The Vinoy Hotel has a waterfront location, a spot on the National Historic Register, and a AAA Four-Diamond rating. This area also contains Vinoy Park, which is known to hold music festivals, including the Vans Warped Tour. Nearby is the historic Tramor Cafeteria building, now part of the St. Petersburg Times. All of the above are connected via the Looper Trolley.

Most of the dining downtown can be found on or near Central Avenue or on Beach Drive near the waterfront. Central Avenue and adjacent streets also contain most of the active nightlife scene which includes bars, lounges and clubs to suit most tastes as well as two busy concert venues: Jannus Landing and the State Theatre. The nightlife scene is credited to recent demographic and regulatory changes.[27][28] In 2010, the city council voted to extend bar hours until 3 A.M., identical to cross-bay "rival" Tampa.[29][30][31]

Tropicana Field, home of MLB's Tampa Bay Rays is located in the western part of downtown. Until 2008, the team played its spring training games at Progress Energy Park, right down the road. This setup was unique, making St. Petersburg the first city that played host to its baseball team during spring training as well as the regular season since the 1919 Philadelphia Athletics.[32] At the end of 2007, there was a debate over a new stadium to be built on the downtown waterfront at the current Progress Energy Park site. This new ballpark would have an overhead sail to cool game-time temperatures and catch rain. Tropicana Field would be demolished and replaced with prime residential and retail space. Completion of the stadium was planned for 2012; however, the proposal has been tabled indefinitely while a community-based organization investigates all alternatives for new stadium construction.[33][34][35]
S. H. Kress and Co. Building (St. Petersburg, Florida)

The S. H. Kress and Co. Building is on the National Register of Historic Places.

Jutting a half mile into the Bay is the St. Petersburg Pier, a major tourist attraction with various activities. Due to its livability and myriad amenities, St. Petersburg's downtown has been rated among the best in the South.[36] The area's beaches are a 10-mile (16 km) drive from downtown.

The Wikimedia Foundation had been located in downtown St. Petersburg since its founding by Jimmy Wales. On September 25, 2007, the Foundation announced its move in late 2007 from St. Petersburg to the San Francisco Bay Area.[37][38]

St. Petersburg boasts the third largest dedicated public waterfront park system in North America,[39] with a waterfront park system that stretches seven miles and is used year round for public events, festivals and other activities. In the early 1900s, citizens and city leaders engaged in a long and boisterous debate over the future of the young city's waterfront space with one side advocating for commercial, port and industrial development and the other side advocating for a long-term commitment to parks and public access to the waterfront. The public access and park contingent won the debate when, on Christmas Eve 1909, the city announced the acquisition of the waterfront land that is encompassed by the waterfront park system.[40]

The city is also becoming one of the largest destinations in Florida for kiteboarding, a relatively new water-sport, with locations such as Ft. Desoto Park, Pass-a-Grille, and Ten-Cent. St. Petersburg locals such as Billy Parker and Alex Fox have gained a reputation for being some of the best kiteboarders in the world.

The St. Petersburg Shuffleboard Club was established in 1924 and gained attention as the "World's Largest Shuffleboard Club" with 110 courts and over 5,000 members in the 1950s and 1960s.[41]

NeighborhoodsEdit

St. Petersburg has more than 100 neighborhoods.

  • Allendale
  • Allendale Terrace
  • Arlington Park
  • Azalea Homes
  • Bahama Shores
  • Barcley Estates
  • Bartlett Park
  • Bonita Bayou
  • Bayou Highlands
  • Bayway Isles
  • Big Bayou
  • Brighton Bay
  • Broadwater [10]
  • Campbell Park
  • Carillon
  • Casler Heights
  • Causeway Isles
  • Caya Costa
  • Central Oak Park
  • Childs Park
  • Clam Bayou
  • Coquina Key [11]
  • Crescent Heights
  • Crescent Lake
  • Cromwell Heights
  • Crossroads
  • Disston Heights [12]
  • Downtown (North Downtown and University Park)
  • Driftwood
  • Eagle Crest
  • Eden Isle

  • Lake Maggiore Park
  • Lake Maggiore Shores
  • Lake Pasadena
  • Lakewood Estates
  • Lakewood Terrace
  • Live Oaks
  • Magnolia Heights
  • Mangrove Bay
  • Mangrove Bayou
  • Mariners Pass
  • Maximo
  • Meadowlawn
  • Mel-Tan Heights
  • Melrose-Mercy/Pine Acres
  • Methodist Town
  • Mobel Americana/Americana Cove
  • Northeast Park
  • North Kenwood [13]
  • Oakwood Garden/Pinefield View
  • Old Bayside/St. Petersburg Marina
  • Old Northeast
  • Old Pasadena
  • Old Southeast
  • Palmetto Park
  • Pasadena Bear Creek
  • Pasadena Vista/West Lake Estates
  • Patrician Point
  • Perkins
  • Perry Bayview
  • Pinellas Point/The Pink Streets
  • Placido Bayou

  • Ponce De Leon
  • Ponderosa Shores
  • Renaissance
  • Riviera Bay
  • Riviera Bay Subdivision
  • Roser Park Historic District
  • Round Lake Historic District/Round Lake
  • Shore Acres
  • Snell Gardens
  • Snell Isle
  • Sterling Manor
  • Sunset Drive
  • Tanglewood
  • Weedon Island Preserve
  • Thirteenth Street Heights
  • Thirty-First Street Neighborhood
  • Treasure Island
  • Tropical Shores
  • Twin Brooks
  • Tyrone Landing
  • Tyrone Park
  • Venetian Isles
  • Waterway Estates
  • West Neighborhood
  • Westminster Heights
  • Wildwood Heights
  • Windward Pointe
  • Winston Park
  • Woodlawn Circle
  • Woodlawn Oaks
  • Wyngate Townhomes
  • Yacht Club Estates

TransportationEdit

AirportsEdit

Nearby Tampa International Airport provides air transportation for most passengers. Smaller airlines, with destinations to smaller cities and towns, operate at St. Petersburg-Clearwater International Airport, with most tenants providing only seasonal services. Albert Whitted Airport provides general aviation services near the heart of downtown St. Pete.

Mass transitEdit

Mass transit in St. Petersburg is provided by the Pinellas Suncoast Transit Authority (PSTA). A sightseeing trolley, called The Looper also travels to key downtown destinations daily.

RailroadsEdit

CSX operates a former Atlantic Coast Line Railroad branch line which sees daily rail traffic from north Tampa though Safety Harbor, Clearwater, Largo. As of March 2008, the portion that ran into downtown St. Petersburg and the adjacent western industrial areas was abandoned. There is a small rail yard to the northwest of downtown St. Petersburg at the new end of the rail line with several spur lines serving industries in the area.

The former Seaboard Air Line branch from the western coastal portion of the county was abandoned in the 1980s and converted to a popular recreational trail called the Pinellas Trail.

EducationEdit

Primary and secondary educationEdit

Public primary and secondary schools in St. Petersburg are administered by Pinellas County Schools. High schools in the city include:

The non-profit Science Center of Pinellas County educates more than 22,000 school children annually through field trip classes and offers winter, spring and summer workshops for 2,000 more.[42]

Higher educationEdit

St. Petersburg is home to several institutions of higher education. The University of South Florida St. Petersburg is an autonomous campus in the University of South Florida system. Eckerd College, founded in 1958, is a private four-year liberal arts college.[43] St. Petersburg College is a state college in the Florida College System.[44] Also in St. Petersburg is the Poynter Institute, a journalism institute which owns the St. Petersburg Times in a unique arrangement.

Other colleges and universities in the wider Tampa Bay Area include the University of Tampa in Tampa and Hillsborough Community College, with campuses across Hillsborough County.[45]

MediaEdit

The city's main daily morning newspapers are the St. Petersburg Times as well as its free daily sister publication tbt*. Other newspapers available in the area are the daily The Tampa Tribune and the free weekly alternative newspaper Creative Loafing.

St. Petersburg is in the Tampa-St. Petersburg television and radio markets. WTSP channel 10 (CBS) and WTOG channel 44 (The CW) are licensed to St. Petersburg, with studios in unincorporated Pinellas County in the Gandy Boulevard area just north of the St. Petersburg limits. Bay News 9, the local cable TV news service, is based in northeast St. Petersburg. Independent station WTTA is licensed to St. Petersburg, with studios in Tampa. The city of St. Petersburg owns WSPF-CA channel 35, which broadcasts city government programming.

Cable television service is provided by Bright House Networks and Knology, as well as fiber optic service provider Verizon FiOS.

Template:Tampa Bay TV Template:Tampa Bay Radio

SportsEdit

Club Sport League Venue
FC Tampa Bay Soccer North American Soccer League (NASL) Al Lang Stadium, St. Petersburg
Tampa Bay Buccaneers Football National Football League (NFL) - NFC Raymond James Stadium, Tampa
Tampa Bay Lightning Hockey National Hockey League (NHL) - Eastern Conference St. Pete Times Forum, Tampa
Tampa Bay Rays Baseball Major League Baseball (MLB) - AL Tropicana Field
Tampa Bay Storm Arena Football Arena Football League (AFL) St. Pete Times Forum, Tampa
Bay Area Pelicans Rugby USA Rugby Union Sawgrass Park, St. Petersburg
Honda Grand Prix of St. Petersburg Indy Car Indy Racing League (IRL) Downtown Waterfront
Acura Sports Car Challenge of St. Petersburg Le Mans Street Race American Le Mans Series (ALMS) Downtown Waterfront

St. Petersburg is represented by teams in three major professional sports (football, baseball, and hockey), and several minor sports. One, the Tampa Bay Rays of Major League Baseball, plays in St. Petersburg proper, while the other two play across the bay in Tampa. All of the teams are considered to represent the entire Tampa Bay metropolitan area. The Rays began play in 1998, finishing last in the American League's East Division in first nine of the first ten seasons they had played, including their last year known as the "Devil Rays: 2007. However, in 2008, their 11th season, they held off the Boston Red Sox and won the AL East Division Championship for the first time. In the playoffs, they again faced the Red Sox in the ALCS. They defeated Boston and won the American League Pennant. However, they lost to the Philadelphia Phillies in the 2008 World Series.

From their inception until 2008, the Rays played their regular season games at Tropicana Field and their Spring Training games at Progress Energy Park, giving them the unique distinction of being the only team in Major League Baseball that played its Spring Training games in their home city in more than 70 years. However, starting in 2009, the Rays have held Spring Training at Charlotte Sports Park in Port Charlotte, ending a 94-year streak of springtime baseball in the city.

Tropicana Field, the home venue of the Rays, played host to the 1999 Final Four. St. Petersburg is also home to the Honda Grand Prix of St. Petersburg, the inaugural race was held in April 2005. The circuit itself is made of downtown streets passing Progress Energy Park, the marina, and a runway in Albert Whitted Airport, and streets are temporarily blocked off for the annual Indy Racing League's IndyCar Series race, which was last held on April 6, 2008. The race has been confirmed to return every year until at least 2013.

See the Tampa Bay Area page for more details.

St. Petersburg is the home of many past and present sports icons. In the area of hails the WBC and IBF Light Middleweight Champion Ronald "Winky" Wright and IBF, IBO, and WBO Champion Jeff Lacy. Football is a big interest in the area. Ernest Givins, Stacey Simmons, William Floyd, and Pat Terrell are some of the famous retired NFL players from the city. Shaun King, Marquell Blackell, Aveion Cason, Darren Howard, Tim Carter, Kenny Heatly, and DeAndrew Rubin are some players currently in the NFL from the city. Major League Baseball pitcher Doug Waechter is also from St. Pete, as well as Minnesota Twins pitcher Boof Bonser. Indy Racing League driver and 2005 Indianapolis 500 Champion Dan Wheldon resides in St. Pete as well.

The Bay Area Pelicans Rugby Football Club has also made their home in St. Petersburg since 1977. The Pelicans play in USA Rugby's Division II competing against teams throughout Florida and the United States. Throughout its history, the teams have won honors as Florida Cup Champions as well as berths in National Championship Tournaments.

Despite not having a team in the city since 2000 (with the St. Petersburg Devil Rays), St. Petersburg is also home to Minor League Baseball's main headquarters.[46] It is located on Bayshore Drive, adjacent to Progress Energy Park and its parking lot.

The International Shuffleboard Association was founded in St. Petersburg in 1979.

GalleryEdit

Sister citiesEdit

Notable residentsEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "U.S. Census Bureau Fact Sheet". http://factfinder.census.gov/servlet/GCTTable?-ds_name=PEP_2008_EST&-mt_name=PEP_2008_EST_GCTT1R_ST9S&-geo_id=04000US12&-format=ST-9&-tree_id=806&-context=gct. Retrieved 2010-08-05. 
  2. ^ "2007 U.S. Census Statistics". http://www.census.gov/population/www/estimates/CBSA-est2007-pop-chg.html. Retrieved 2010-08-05. 
  3. ^ "The Sunshine City". http://www.stpete.org/sunshine.htm. 
  4. ^ ""God's waiting room"? Try "great place to live" -St. Pete Times". http://www.sptimes.com/2004/03/03/Tampabay/_God_s_waiting_room__.shtml. 
  5. ^ A founding grandfather lives in lore. MONICA DAVEY. St. Petersburg Times (Florida). LARGO-SEMINOLE TIMES; Pg. 6. May 23, 1994.
  6. ^ Historical Marker Database
  7. ^ Hartzell, Scott Taylor (2006). "Frank Allston Davis: He Lit Up the Town". Remembering St. Petersburg, Florida: Sunshine City Stories. The History Press. pp. 53. ISBN 1596291206. http://books.google.com/books?id=9ibVfj8Ql4MC&pg=PA51&lpg=PA51&dq=frank+allston+davis&source=web&ots=5v3zZfewk1&sig=QmbjAh43qoN76xgcThGYvlG73QU. 
  8. ^ "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990". United States Census Bureau. 2011-02-12. http://www.census.gov/geo/www/gazetteer/gazette.html. Retrieved 2011-04-23. 
  9. ^ "Weatherbase: Historical Weather for St. Petersburg, Florida, United States of America". Weatherbase. 2007. http://www.weatherbase.com/weather/weather.php3?s=88747&refer=&units=us. Retrieved 2007-06-26. 
  10. ^ http://2010.census.gov/news/releases/operations/cb11-cn95.html
  11. ^ "Data Center Results – St. Petersburg, Florida"]. Modern Language Association. http://www.mla.org/map_data_results&SRVY_YEAR=2000&geo=&state_id=12&county_id=&mode=&lang_id=&zip=&place_id=63000&cty_id=&region_id=&division_id=&ll=&a=&ea=&order=r&pc=1. Retrieved 2011-04-11. 
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Coordinates: 27°46′56″N 82°40′03″W / 27.782254, -82.667619


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