Gulfport

gulfport1Retaining much of its yesteryear charm, yet also exuding an eclectic artistic and bohemian vibe, the quaint City of Gulfport is one of the most interesting communities in Pinellas County. Known for its tranquil Old South atmosphere, the city also boasts chic boutiques, shops and art galleries thanks in part to the active community of artists drawn here by the tropical light and natural beauty of the place.

Gulfport is also home to the beautiful campus of  Stetson University College of Law, Florida’s first law school.

Old Florida
 As of the 2010 U.S. Census, Gulfport had 12,029 residents. These residents are fortunate to enjoy the splendid setting overlooking beautiful Boca Ciega Bay. Housing choices are diverse, ranging from a restored 1920s Mediterranean villa to a newly-built waterfront condo, a comfortable 1960s ranch house to an elegant country club home. Residents take pride in rehabbing old housing stock in creative ways. The spirit of the community is to maintain the throwback-to-old-Florida charm.

gulfport2Small but Active
Gulfport residents are proud of their city pier, an ideal location for catching a fish or just watching the sunset. Other civic institutions include a state-of-the-art performance hall, the Catherine Hickman Theater, and the Gulfport Casino, a waterfront landmark which is home to dances, musical performances, and other activities. Hop on the free trolley the first Friday of the month to experience Art Walk, an evening of street performances, craftsman exhibits, and a variety of galleries, shops, restaurants and clubs open late for your enjoyment. Art walks take place on the first Friday and third Saturday of every month.

The city parks are numerous and varied – from a nature preserve with boardwalk trails to a neighborhood park with softball fields.

“There is a remarkable sense of place in Gulfport. It’s the hometown you grew up in or wish you’d grown up in.” Greg Stemm, eight-year resident.


Factoids:

Population: 12,029 as of the 2010 U.S. Census
Land Area: 2.83 Sq. Miles
 

Points of Interest: City pier, Beach, Fishing, Performance hall, The Catherine Hickman Theater, and Gulfport Casino, Free Trolley, Art Walk takes place on the first Friday and third Saturday of every month, City parks are numerous and varied – from a nature preserve with boardwalk trails to a neighborhood park with softball fields.

Tierra Verde

tierraverde1At the southern tip of Pinellas County, where Tampa Bay meets the Gulf of Mexico, is a string of islands collectively called Tierra Verde. This exclusive, unincorporated area is home to 3,721 residents according to the 2010 U.S. Census, with a little more than a third living in single family homes and the balance residing in condominiums and townhomes.

tierraverde2

Residents enjoy all the luxuries and conveniences right here with a wide range of restaurants, specialty shops, spa services, boutiques and more. The Tierra Verde Marina is a full-service facility catering to the many boaters who live nearby. The waterways, 150 to 350 feet wide and some 15 feet deep, have been especially engineered to allow the Gulf of Mexico’s tidal actions to help sweep them clean.

At the southern tip of Tierra Verde is one of the world’s most pristine and famous beaches, Fort DeSoto Park, designated as the #1 U.S. Beach in 2005 and named America’s Top Beach in 2009 by Trip Advisor.

A morning stroll on soft white sand, an afternoon of fishing, or an evening out at a fine restaurant can all be found “at home” when home is Tierra Verde. But should you want to venture out, St. Petersburg is only 15 minutes away, and downtown Tampa can be reached in 35 minutes.

Factoids:

Population: 3,721 according to the 2010 U.S. Census
Land Area: 1.5 Sq. Miles
 

Points of Interest: Fort De Soto Park – At the southern tip of Tierra Verde. Tierra Verde Marina.

Dunedin

dunedin1A tropical beachfront community, Dunedin offers a relaxed lifestyle with a historic, quaint downtown and superb natural beauty for you to enjoy. Cozy bungalows and historic residences as well as new condominiums and modern beach homes provide a wide range of housing styles for those lucky enough to live here. As of the 2010 U.S. Census, Dunedin was the permanent residence of 35,321 people. The area attracts artists, business owners, sun-lovers and sailors making Dunedin a rich and diverse community. With four miles of picture-perfect waterfront, you are always within walking or biking distance to the beach and sidewalks along the waterline. Don’t be surprised if you see dolphins jump as you gaze out over the Intercoastal.

Two of the most beautiful beaches in the world are easily accessible from Dunedin. A nature preserve, Honeymoon Island, offers bird-watching along the three mile Osprey trail where you may spot American Bald Eagles, Red-shouldered Hawks, or Great Horned Owls. Look down and you may see gopher tortoises and armadillos by your side. Caladesi Island State Park, took the coveted #1 spot for best beach in America in 2008. It offers a rare glimpse of Florida’s precious nature. After a short ferry or boat ride you are taken away to a tropical paradise. How many can say they have that only five minutes away from home?

Traditional Main Street
Downtown Dunedin offers boutiques, antique shops, fine and casual dining with a relaxing seaside atmosphere and even a historic museum housed in a former railroad station. Here you can enjoy lunch at a restaurant alongside a portion of the 34-mile long Pinellas Trail which winds its way through town.

Arts, Culture and Festivals
Arts and sports get equal billing here. The Dunedin Fine Art Center offers world-class exhibitions and houses an interactive hands-on children’s art museum. At any given time of the year, the Fine Art Center offers over 80 classes to all ages in every conceivable mode of expression. One of Florida’s favorite juried art shows, Art Harvest, is hosted in Dunedin, along with dozens of art, music and food festivals throughout the year. The nine-day annual Highland Games and Festival pay tribute to the city’s Scottish heritage.

For Youngsters
Dunedin is a wonderful place to raise a family, with excellent neighborhood public schools, including Pinellas County’s first charter school, Academie DaVinci, which provides an enriching fine and performing arts curriculum. Many private schools are also available.

Sports leagues, nature programs, art workshops, golfing lessons, sailing and tennis clubs, softball, basketball and theater camps are just a smattering of the many and diverse activities available to children and teens.

dunedin2Parks & Recreation
Kids aren’t the only ones having fun in Dunedin. The city’s leisure services division sponsors year-round activities and operates four recreation facilities for residents of all ages. Community sports leagues for adults and youth as well as the everyday recreational opportunities provided by biking and hiking trails, the beaches, marinas and the Gulf of Mexico keep Dunedin residents active 365 days of the year. The Dunedin Golf Club caters to golfers, while the municipal marina is a haven for boaters. Along the Dunedin Causeway, windsurfers, sailors, kayakers and jet skiers enjoy the protected waters of St. Joseph Sound. No fewer than 29 city parks offer amazing recreational opportunities. In addition Dunedin is also the spring training home for the Toronto Blue Jays.

“Dunedin is an exciting town to be a part of – a place with a true sense of community  focused on families, where kids can be kids, where people care about each other and where I feel safe and don’t worry about anything.” Tony Scruton, 20-year resident.

 

Factoids:
Population: 35,321 as of the 2010 U.S. Census
Land Area: 10.4 Sq. Miles
 

Points of Interest: The Dunedin Fine Art Center, Dozens of art; music and food festivals, The nine-day annual Highland Games and Festival, Dunedin Country Club caters to golfers, The municipal marina, Dunedin Causeway, Windsurfing, Sailing, Kayaking and Jet sking,The protected waters of St. Joseph Sound, 29 city parks, Pinellas Trail, Toronto Blue Jays.