From The Bench Nov '17

From The Bench: November 2017

Photo by City of St Petersburg

Shop Local This Holiday (And Other Times Too)

This issue we’re shining a bright light on independent businesses and like Keep Saint Petersburg Local always says, urging you to ‘Think Local First’ this Holiday season. With the average American planning to spend close to a $1,000 on gifts, it’s important to think about where we spend it. Because when we shop at at an independent retailer (vs. a chain) three times more money stays right here in St. Pete. This adds up and could mean better education, infrastructure, and more. Vote with your wallet; keep the money in St. Pete. Don’t know where to start? Keep reading and be sure to check out the center-spread for specific gift ideas to get you started.

Officer Ray Merritt accepting award presented by the Magnolia Heights Neighborhood Association
Officer Ray Merritt accepting award presented by the Magnolia Heights Neighborhood Association

Thank You Officer Merritt

Last month, 32-year St. Petersburg Police Department veteran, Officer Ray Merritt announced his retirement. Officer Merritt proudly served as community patrol for more than 16-years. We are grateful for his service and also happy to hear he’ll be sticking around on a part-time basis to help SPPD in between tee times. Photo Left: Officer Ray Merritt receives plaque presented by Magnolia Heights Neighborhood Association.

In Loving Memory of Oscar

Strands of Sunshine shop ambassador and part-time model, Oscar, passed away peacefully last month after twelve happy years with his dad, Chad and

Strands of Sunshine shop ambassador/part-time model, Oscar
Strands of Sunshine shop ambassador/part-time model, Oscar

mom/shop owner, Amy. Always brightening the day of those around him, he will be greatly missed by many. Thanks for sharing your light, Oscar. We hope you have fun in doggie heaven. Strands of Sunshine will be collecting donations for Friends of Strays now through the end of the year in Oscar’s honor.

TFO Ticket Giveaway

Last month we asked readers to tell us what they love most about St. Pete for a chance to win tickets to The Florida Orchestra. One thing was loud and clear— there is a lot to love about St. Pete! Thanks for the highlights and congratulations to Marsha D., Tina T., Shiva N., Joyce Y., Eileen S. Hope you enjoy the show! Here are a few of our favorite excerpts:

“A beautiful city that embraces artistic and eccentric people!”

“I can eat Thai, Indian or Italian”

“I love the passionate people…”

“…big city with a small town vibe”

“…the kind, friendly people”

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Upcoming Events

  1. Waterfront Lights and Display

    November 24, 2017 - January 1, 2018
  2. Guided Holiday Walking & Bicycling Tours with Saint Petersburg Preservation

    November 25, 2017 - January 6, 2018
  3. Pictures With Santa at Crescent Lake Park

    December 16 @ 11:00 am - 2:00 pm
  4. Crescent Lake Neighborhood Association’s Holiday Movie in the Park

    December 16 @ 5:00 pm - 9:00 pm
  5. First Night St. Petersburg 2018

    December 31 @ 9:30 pm