Contact: Olga Bof, Founder/Executive Director, Keep Saint Petersburg Local
What: WestFest – Savor West St. Pete’s Local Flavor
When: Thursday, October 26, 2017 | 6-10 pm
Where: freeFall Theatre Company, 6099 Central Avenue, St. Petersburg, FL 33710
Who: Organized by Keep Saint Petersburg Local
Cost: FREE family-friendly and pet-friendly event
More info: www.facebook.com/events/1715555152087175/
WestFest, a FREE family-friendly and pet-friendly festival, features:
- 40+ vendors, including some of West St. Pete’s favorite restaurants, shops, health & wellness providers – some of which have never vended outside their brick-and-mortar locations
- Night Maker’s Market with artists & artisans, jewelry, clothing, home goods, plants, honey, tea, and more
- Beer from Mastry’s Brewing Co. + Special “WestFest Punch” created by the Reading Room
- DJ SugarBear + kids activities + more surprises
“We’re very excited to be presenting the first event to celebrate West St. Pete’s local flavor. It’s an area of our city we’ve wanted to spotlight for quite a while now. As prices continue to rise for both commercial and residential properties, especially downtown, there has been a movement westward. We thought it was time to shine a light on the local gems that have existed on the west side for years, as well as those that have recently opened, particularly because many chains also exist in the area.
We had always hoped to be able to hold the event at freeFall Theatre’s gorgeous campus, in the evening – that’s why their enchanting tree they illuminate at night is the central image in our promotional material. Thankfully, even though freeFall sustained substantial damage because of Hurricane Irma, we’re able to proceed with WestFest. It’ll be a great way to showcase the theater, which will be wrapping up its world premiere, White Fang; the Reading Room restaurant that opened earlier this year onsite, as well as some of the area’s favorite local businesses. We’re thrilled that some of them have agreed to vend outside their brick-and-mortar locations for the first time. We’ve also added a Makers Market component to broaden the opportunities for attendees to shop, eat and drink local,” said Olga Bof, Founder/Executive Director of Keep Saint Petersburg Local (KSPL).
Bof went on to add, “KSPL has presented several events highlighting areas that need to be celebrated more, e.g. the Deuces, where we held “In the Dip” in October, 2015 (part of Localicious Week – the first Localicious Week in 2014 kicked off at the Pinellas Pioneer Settlement). Williams Park, the venue for the biggest event KSPL presents, Localtopia, was purposefully selected because we wanted to help change our community’s mindset about our city’s first park. We continue to grow the event at Williams Park, are proud to have inspired changes at the park, and to have inspired others to hold more events there. With WestFest, we hope to bring residents out to experience the west side and for those who live there to get to know what’s in their own backyard.”
About Keep Saint Petersburg Local:
Keep Saint Petersburg Local is a non-profit organization, affiliated with the American Independent Business Alliance, working to build a thriving local economy and a unique community. The Alliance does this by nurturing
connections for and acting as the voice of locally-owned, independent businesses and by raising awareness of the importance of buying local.
About Local Businesses:
Independent, locally-owned businesses are essential to a vital local economy and community character. They use the goods and services of other local businesses. They’re owned by our friends and neighbors, or maybe even you (they employ our friends and neighbors too). Community-serving businesses are the backbone of local economies, civic life, local charities and wealth creation for millions of citizens, as well as a training ground for future generations of entrepreneurs.
The problem is that today, independent businesses face unprecedented competition from larger chain competitors, internet merchants and franchises that enjoy national or international branding power and major economies of scale. As a result, community-based businesses comprise a smaller portion of our economy than ever before. We’ll lose much more than places to shop, dine or do business if we allow current trends to continue.