Florida Diary – Day 9 (2)

After writing the first half of my Day 9 journal, we went to Downtown St. Petersburg for the night. Friday night, downtown, should be pretty hopping, right?

Our first stop was Dan Marino’s restaurant. I had driven past the restaurant earlier in the week when we visited the Dali Museum, and I thought it sounded interesting. In addition to that, we heard from a waitress at old faithful (the Conch Republic) that it was a cool place. So, we went there for dinner.

Dan Marino’s was very nice inside. It was much swankier than I anticipated, and was very upscale. Good thing Tyler and I came equipped with our finest of striped shirts. I’m not sure if there’s anything gayer than two tan guys dressed nicely eating dinner together at a fancy restaurant. Well, there probably is, but neither of us brought our assless chaps with us on the trip.

I ordered a rare Tuna dish that was fab-o. Ty got some Mahi Mahi, and he was quite pleased with his dish as well. I was sober cab, so I only had a beer. Tyler wasn’t sober cab, and imbibed accordingly. We talked to a waitress to ask what was going on that night, and she mentioned she and some of the wait staff were going to the Pelican for cheap drinks. I’m not sure if I trust the opinions of area waitresses anymore, but perhaps we can give her the benefit of the doubt.

We leave Marino’s and explore the surrounding area. The area is very nice! It looks as if they demolished an entire city block and built a huge dining/entertainment complex in the area, complete with a 20 screen movie theater. There’s some nice urban renewal going on in St. Pete!

After exploring that area, we decided to leave this new complex to try looking for the Pelican bar. We got there and there were no places to sit, it was smoky as hell, and was quite small. We decided to look for other places. We walked a one square block radius, and nothing seemed appealing. There were no bars that appealed to us, and many of the places were very upscale (martini bars, wine bars). We walked the same one block radius 2.5 times before we decided to go back to the area where Dan Marino’s is housed. I think we decided that because the people who saw us walking probably thought we were just a couple of gay dudes prancing around. Not really sure there.

Back at Marino Pavillion (it’s not really called that, but since it’s where Dan Marino’s restaurant is located, will call it that), we went to a place that was in the middle of the action; a wonderful people watching spot. However, the only negative is that they only served three kinds of beer (Bud, Bud Light and Heineken), and flavored daiquiris (no liquor or wine at all). So, we only sat there for a beer and people watched.

After people watching got old, we decided to go back to the Pelican area to give it another shot. After doing another square block walk, we noticed that a concert was letting out from an outdoor courtyard, so we decided to go in. We went in and checked out the place – the venue was sweet! It’s probably one of the coolest live music venues I have seen in person. They also get a lot of national acts to play there. For example, tomorrow Wu Tang is playing. That’s a pretty big band to be playing in such a small venue! Then later in the week, there’s NOFX. Then in two weeks they have both Less Than Jake and Dropkick Murphy’s. Those are some great acts! The drawing power of the clubs earned the St. Pete’s area some immediate respect on my part. We left with a great feeling of the area.

Our only complaint is that the downtown area didn’t have enough people! They hardly had anyone filling these awesome night clubs and pavilions. It’s pretty much the opposite of Minneapolis.

About Jeff Sauer

I started blogging in the year 2000, and go in spurts of inspiration followed by long dormancy. I love writing, and your comments keep me going, so comment!

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