Welcome to our new KSPL website! We hope you like our fresh, new look! Since KSPL introduced itself to the community on November 19, 2011 (known as "America Unchained Day"), we've sought to honor our past, our legacy businesses, and the pioneers who took incredible risks to start their ventures in our amazing city. Our previous website's vintage style harked back to the golden era of the "Mom & Pop Shops," before malls and Amazon.
As St. Pete has changed, we too, have to move with the times. Our new reality means that we have to amplify our "Keep Saint Petersburg Local" message, and spread it even wider. We hope our new site will help us reach many more of our residents, especially those who have recently moved here, and haven't been conditioned to "Think Local First" these past 8+ years. We also hope to reach more visitors seeking to find what is "unique to St. Pete."
Just because we look different, doesn't mean that KSPL has changed. Our mission is still the same – we're still "working to build a thriving local economy and a unique community." As the Founder/Executive Director of this non-profit Independent Business Alliance, I'm still as passionate, and committed, to supporting our city's locally-owned, independent businesses (and fellow community organizations), as I was the day I started KSPL. In fact, I'm even more committed. You know why? Because in this "new St. Pete" our indies and local non-profits need our support now more than ever!
As St. Pete continues to grow, we've noticed that it is increasingly more common for our local bloggers to feature stories that aren't about our local businesses. We can appreciate that advertising may influence what stories get told. We're not saying that's a bad thing. We completely understand that advertising pays salaries, so that they can continue to operate. They're local businesses too,and they’re providing the community with valuable insight and information. However, their missions differ from that of KSPL’s.
What you will find is the same passion and authentic voice we've had since we came to be.
As this coming year our local businesses will need all the support they can get, we'll now be blogging on our new site! As our focus is solely on the City of St. Petersburg's locally-owned, independent businesses and local non-profits, we'll only be sharing stories about them. Since we started KSPL we've been featuring them on our social media channels, but adding the blog component will help us reach a wider audience. Some of you may recall that I wrote as "The Localista" for two years, even before I started KSPL. I've always enjoyed sharing the journeys of our awesome local business owners with our community. Btw, the stories of those journeys can't always be told in a few sentences! ;)
We're not going to be the first to tell you what business is opening, just opened, etc. Our stories won't be "sponsored by," or "brought to you by" anyone, but KSPL. What you will find, is the same passion, and authentic voice, we've had since we came to be.
We'll also be highlighting our KSPL members' events in a more streamlined way. Again, we're not going to be listing all of our city's events (an impossible task!). The events you'll find here are hosted by our member businesses and non-profits, many of which don't get featured elsewhere, but are key to our local vibe.
Finally, you may notice that we're now toggling between our original logo and a newer "Keep St. Pete Local" one. We honor the creator of what became the KSPL logo, Michael Keller, of Classic Tattoos. We'll be sharing the story of how the KSPL logo came to be in an upcoming post. With the new site launch, we thought we'd also recognize that most everyone refers to us by the shortened "Keep St. Pete Local."
However you refer to us – Keep Saint Petersburg Local, Keep St. Pete Local, or KSPL, please know that we value your support, as do our members. We're so proud that we've helped to instill our palpable fierce city pride, and that to "Keep St. Pete Local" has become part of our lexicon. This coming year, it can't just be a saying; it has to be a rallying cry! We've got to "walk our talk" to keep our local vibe alive! Some of our favorite local businesses have already had to close. If you don't Buy Local, it's Bye-Bye Local! We hope this new site helps YOU to #KeepStPeteLocal. We hope you'll see it as your resource for #AllThingsLocalinStPeteFL! Be sure to "Think Local First" by searching our directory for all your needs! Read about those who make St. Pete even more awesome. Hit up their events! Our local businesses, and local non-profits are counting on you, #NowMoreThanEver!