New Partnership Brings Weeklong ‘Pop‐Up’ Experience for Tampa Moviegoers and Film Lovers GIFF dates set for March 24‐29, 2015
TAMPA – November 3, 2014 – Channelside Bay Plaza and the Gasparilla International Film Festival (GIFF) announce a new relationship that will sustain investment in Tampa’s growing arts and film community. As a result of this agreement, Channelside Bay Plaza will serve as the exclusive theatre partner for GIFF’s 2015 season, bringing a unique pop‐up experience to the Channelside District for the duration of the weeklong festival.
Now in its ninth season, GIFF has emerged as an anchor event for the Tampa Bay community, drawing attention and interest from visitors worldwide. Last year’s festival captured more than 17,000 attendees from 980 cities around the world. The resulting increased traffic translated into over $1.4 million in direct spending during the festival and more than 1,200 additional room nights.
“The Gasparilla International Film Festival continues to break records year‐over‐year for its attendance, caliber of films, and overall economic impact,” said Rachel Feinman, President of the Gasparilla International Film Festival. “We are extremely grateful to Franklin Street and Channelside Bay Plaza for their support – and for recognizing the positive impact that art and film can have on shaping our city’s future.”
Channelside Cinemas 10, located in the heart of Channelside Bay Plaza, has 10 screens including an IMAX and will operate as a fully functional theatre for the duration of the weeklong festival.
“In true ‘pop‐up’ fashion, attendees can expect a host of surprises both on‐screen and off,” said Monica Varner, Partner at Big City Events, the Production Company for the Gasparilla International Film Festival. “The goal is to activate the entire plaza with red carpet events, immersive experiences and celebrity gatherings.”
GIFF will bring in popcorn machines and other concession‐style treats for moviegoers as well as supporting the area’s open container policy, allowing guests to bring both alcoholic and nonalcoholic drinks from surrounding venues.
Channelside Bay Plaza, purchased by Strategic Property Partners, LLC (an entity controlled by Tampa Bay Lightning owner Jeff Vinik) in August 2014, has significant plans for renovation as a mixed‐use urban center.
“This new relationship between Channelside Bay Plaza and the Gasparilla International Film Festival is a nice early step in our broad vision to develop America’s next great urban waterfront,” said Jim Shimberg, chief operating officer of Strategic Property Partners. “We will
continue to work with our partners at Franklin Street to better develop and activate Channelside Bay Plaza while we carefully consider our all of our long term options for the entire district.”
According to Franklin Street CEO and managing partner Andrew Wright, boosting foot traffic at the plaza to support existing tenants and showcase the area as a neighborhood on the rise.
“The Gasparilla International Film Festival is a magnet for Tampa’s active and cultured population who are looking for fun and entertaining things to do in the area,” said Wright. “Our partnership is a perfect synergy as we collectively aim to revitalize Tampa’s downtown district as a center for arts and culture.”
Wright adds that while this partnership will initially be for the 2015 season, both organizations anticipate an ongoing relationship as future developments for the district unfold.
Gasparilla International Film Festival’s 2015 season has been set for March 24‐29, 2015. Film submissions are now being accepted online. Please visit www.gasparillafilmfestival.com for more information.
About The Gasparilla International Film Festival (GIFF)
First launched in the summer of 2006, the Gasparilla International Film Festival (GIFF) has grown into an entertaining and educational year‐round entity in Tampa Bay. Well‐known for its annual film festival, GIFF is operated by the 501(c)(3) non‐profit Tampa Film Institute and continually upholds its mission to provide yearlong support for film screening, production, and education throughout Tampa Bay and the region. For more information on GIFF including sponsor and volunteer opportunities, visit: www.gasparillafilmfestival.com.
About Franklin Street
Franklin Street is a family of real estate companies focused on delivering value‐added solutions to meet the evolving needs of our clients. Through a collaborative philosophy of leveraging the resources, expertise, and experience of each of its divisions—Real Estate, Capital, Insurance and Management—Franklin Street offers unmatched value and optimal solutions for clients nationwide. For more information on Franklin Street, please see the company’s website at FranklinSt.com.
About Channelside Bay Plaza
Channelside Bay Plaza is a 230,532 square foot, two story regional entertainment lifestyle center located along the Garrison Channel waterfront at the southeast corner of the intersection of Garrison Street and Channelside Drive in Tampa’s historic Channel District. Anchored by Channelside Cinemas, Hooters and Splitsville, the property is home to a diverse mix of retail, restaurant, and entertainment tenants. It was purchased by an entity controlled by the Lightning owner Jeff Vinik in 2014 and is leased and managed by Franklin Street. For more information on the plaza and its tenants, visit ChannelsideBayPlaza.com. For leasing opportunities, visit ChannelsideLeasing.com.