8 Fun Facts you didn’t know about St. Pete Beach

Home to crystal clear waters, pristine white sands and plenty of family fun, St. Pete Beach is one of the finest beaches in Florida. In fact, it’s ranked #1 on Trip Advisor’s 2020 list of the Top 25 Beaches in the United States. But there’s so much more to this barrier island that sets it apart from Florida’s wealth of award-winning beaches. Here are 8 fun facts about St. Pete Beach that will inspire you to visit this blissful Floridian favorite.

The silky white powder that lines the beach was once mountains of impenetrable quartz hundreds of miles from Florida’s shores. It took Mother Earth more than two million years to produce the velvety smooth sand you’ll find here today. Much of the sand on Florida beaches is produced by the weathering of continental land masses like the Appalachian Mountains and washed down America’s rivers into the Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico.

Once a playground for America’s social elite, the iconic Don CeSar Beach Resort was built in 1926 by Thomas Rowe to resemble a Mediterranean-style castle. When it opened two years later, a room on the European plan went for $24 per night. The “Pink Palace” can be seen for miles to the east and west and has its place on nautical charts as a permanent marker for boaters. Today, the color is protected by law as a mariner’s guide.

The 47-mile Fred Marquis Pinellas Trail is one of Florida’s most popular and unique urban pathways. Grab some skates or rent a bike and venture down the trail which connects St. Petersburg to Tarpon Springs along an old railroad route. Along the way, you’ll pass several county parks, coastal areas and communities. It also provides access points to nearly every town in the area.

The St. Pete Road Runners, the premier running club in the St. Pete/Tampa area, invites runners and walkers every month to join their evening St. Pete Beach 5k Race. The Alden’s Director of Community Relations, Mary Ann Renfrow, is one of the founding members of this group! The largest beach race in the area is run entirely on the beach, in the sand, and is a great way to stay fit on vacation. Pack your sneakers and retain your summer beach bod while you’re away from the gym.

The sunset at Pass-A-Grille features a rare sight as the last sliver of light dips below the waterline: The Green Flash. This phenomenon—named for the sudden and briefly changing color—only lasts about a second or two but, if you have a chance to witness it, your love for St. Pete Beach sunsets will grow even stronger. Pack a few beers and head down to the southern end of the beach to catch this natural wonder.

Grouper is a dinner table staple in St. Pete Beach. Head down to Sea Critters Cafe—where it’s always island time—to sample their grouper sandwich, voted Best in the South by Southern Living Magazine. You can have it made to order and served in six different ways. They also serve grouper tacos, fritters and salads, all freshly prepared to order and worth every bit of the wait.

Right next door is St. Petersburg where you’ll find some incredibly unique boutiques, eateries and hordes of vintage goodies tucked away on Central Avenue. Come here for a fresh and funky Florida vibe where old St. Pete mixes with new for an artsy and authentic local experience. “God’s waiting room” as it was once known is more like a heavenly rave these days with downtown bursting on weekend nights with music and street life.

We’re called The Sunshine City for a reason. The average amount of days of sunshine per year here is 361 but we do hold the Guinness World Record for logging the most consecutive days of sunshine: 768 days which began in 1967. The year-round gorgeous weather makes St. Pete the perfect destination for your getaway no matter the time of year. We can’t wait to welcome you!

Things to Do in St. Pete Beach: March 2021

Spring’s arrival in St. Pete/Clearwater brings milder temperatures along with a diverse lineup of events, from high-speed to low-key. There are art festivals, cultural celebrations, sporting events and a sprinkling of major festivals devoted to art, music and food. Here’s a look at just some of the most anticipated happenings in St. Pete/Clearwater in March. The weather is perfect for getting out to explore these fantastic events with the Alden as your happy home base!

Mollusc Mania: Squid Dissection

March 2 and 4

Learn about the miraculous world of molluscs, snails, octopus, squids and more! During this squid dissection you will learn about the unique adaptations of squids. Space is limited so register online or at the front desk of the Tampa Bay Discovery Center.

2021 Spring Training

All Month Long

The Grapefruit League schedule was recently revised to limit travel, so the Blue Jays will play their 28 exhibition games against the Yankees, Pirates, Phillies, Tigers and Orioles. You’ll see players following health protocols on the field, in the dugout and around the complex, but the day-to-day workings of Spring Training and the players in camp will be different, too.

For the Blue Jays, this means a heavy dose of top prospects in camp. This will be a valuable development tool for many young players, especially coming off a missed 2020 Minor League season. In a typical Spring Training, many of these prospects would be across town at the club’s training complex, which is separate from TD Ballpark. Having them over on the Major League side to start camp will provide a clear look at the Blue Jays’ young talent, and should make the latter innings of exhibition games worth watching as they get some reps.

https://www.mlb.com/bluejays/schedule/2021-03

16th annual Pink Flamingo Tour of Gardens

March 6

Rediscover Gulfport during the 16th annual Pink Flamingo Tour of Gardens on Saturday, March 6, 11am – 5pm.

The annual home tour will be a Covid-ready, all-outdoor event. Visitors will have the opportunity to see everything from an under-construction rain garden to a manicured backyard art gallery to meditation spaces, edible landscapes, and chickens, chickens, chickens.

Feel free to go at your own pace, seeing properties in any order. Due to Covid-19, transportation will not be proviced. The tour skims Gulfport’s waterfront district, so there will be plenty of time to take a lunch break or shop in our historic downtown.

Registration will take place at the Gulfport Rec Center, 5730 Shore Blvd., where you’ll receive a map and wristband.

Busch Gardens Food & Wine Festival

March  – April 25

Flavors are in bloom at Busch Gardens with the return of the Food & Wine Festival! Sample more than 110 tasty treats, including 22 new dishes. Serving guests every weekend from Now through April 25 with limited capacity, this year’s menu features festival favorites and fresh twists on classic cuisines from around the country that pair perfectly with more than 80 wines, brews, and cocktails.

https://buschgardens.com/tampa/events/food-and-wine-festival/

Reggae Rise Up

March 18- 21

Reggae Rise Up Florida Music Festival is back at Vinoy Park in St. Petersburg, March 18th through 21st. It is 3 full days with positive vibes and great music! For the full music line up visit their website here. https://www.facebook.com/events/695500121061728/?acontext=%7B%22event_action_history%22%3A[%7B%22mechanism%22%3A%22search_results%22%2C%22surface%22%3A%22bookmark%22%7D]%7D

Music in the Afternoon at Horan Park

March 28

 The Music in the Afternoon Series is back in Horan Park on select Sundays. Lew Barrows & the Rhythm Kings will be performing live music while guest either sit back and enjoy the beautiful scenery at Horan Park. This is a free event; seating is not provided.  https://spbrec.com/382/Music-in-the-Afternoons

St. Pete Saturday Morning Market

Every Saturday

The 2021 season of the Saturday Morning Market has joyfully begun. Not surprisingly, the Market operates quite differently during this season.  In addition to very strong safety practices, the following are some notable changes: They are requiring vendors and customers to wear a face mask at all times. To maximize mask wearing within Market, there will be no eating or drinking allowed within the Market.  There are a tables and chairs setup beside the stadium and on the east lawn as pleasant options for enjoying your favorite foods.

Whales: Living with Giants

All Month Long

Clearwater Marine Aquarium has a new exhibition that explores the fascinating world of whales. Whales: Living with Giants is in the newly expanded visitor center. Activities in the exhibit include multi-media exhibits, a virtual reality experience, walk-through life size whale gallery, kid’s interactive zone, and a theater featuring whale related films and speakers.

https://www.cmaquarium.org/