ST. PETERSBURG, Florida – Mayor Rick Kriseman announced Tuesday a new plan to bring live events back to St. Petersburg … with a set of new rules to keep attendees safe.
One of the biggest events coming back to town soon is the St. Pete Grand Prix, which takes place October 23-25 and has a limited number of racing fans.
The grandstands at Albert Whitted Airport have been empty for six months since the race was canceled in March.
Lee Aquino, who works as a chef at Birchwood and Teak restaurants in downtown St. Petersburg, can’t wait for the event to return.
“We are very happy that this loud noise is coming back down here. It’s huge. For us it is one of those central hospitality holidays every year,” he said.
Carly Craven, just down the street at the Adventures in Paradise retail shop, agrees.
“Having the race again will be great. This last corner is like right in front of the store, ”she said with a smile.
St. Pete officials announced on Tuesday that permits for other events could be requested from Monday, October 5th. However, the organizers must now submit a COVID-19 reduction plan and have it approved by the city authorities.
The plan must have strict guidelines for the operation of the event to prevent the virus from spreading. This includes the key factor: “If you cannot maintain social distance and are not with members of your family or party, please put on a mask,” added Mayor Kriseman.
St. Pete leaders say it is also important to keep the COVID-19 positivity rate below 5%. Business employees tell ABC Action News that they will continue to do their part.
“At the moment everyone is coming in, they put their mask on right outside the door, we have opened our changing rooms. We clean them every time someone uses them, ”added Craven.
Libraries, leisure centers, and city buildings in St. Pete can also fully reopen on Monday.