Fall In Love Downtown this Valentine's Day
Posted: Jan 28, 2019 9:03 PMUpdated: Feb 27, 2019 9:03 PM
Planning the perfect Valentine’s Day can be a daunting task. Whether you are in a new relationship, celebrating a lasting one, or enjoying the company of beloved friends with a Leslie Knope-inspired “Galentine’s Day,” February 14 is a day to celebrate love.The Perfect Gift Downtown Pensacola is blooming with ideas to sweeten your Valentine’s Day plans this year. Local chocoholics are smitten by the colorful, delectable bins at Bubba’s Sweet Spot—the delicious  chocolates, candies, cakes and even puppy treats are sure to earn you a smooch (and some bonus points from your pooch.) Just a few doors away, Susan Campbell Jewelry's heart-shaped gold and silver charms will "charm" your valentine (and the  buy-one-get-one-free charm Valentine's Day special will certainly charm you, as well). For your budding romance, Fiore of Pensacola's uniquely lush, handmade arrangements in romantic hues of red, pink and purple go along perfectly with the thoughtful cards at Rusted Arrow Mercantile.The Perfect FlavorsSome of our favorite restaurants in Downtown Pensacola are stirring up romance with Valentine’s Day events that are perfectly seasoned with the flavors of love. So Gourmet's cooking classes will help you improve your skills and impress your special someone. Or, leave the cooking to the professionals with the Valentine’s Day Sweetheart Dinner at Pot Roast & Pinot or a special Valentine’s Dinner designed by Chef Irv Miller at Jackson’s Steakhouse. If gold and silver aren’t your go-to, reserve your seat at Restaurant Iron for a four-course tasting menu specially prepared by Chef Alex. Five Sisters Blues Cafe is cooking up a lunch and dinner special featuring pan-seared salmon, baked lobster mac and cheese and roasted root vegetables that is sure to melt hearts. The Perfect EveningThis year, give them a night to remember. Downtown Pensacola boasts a full lineup of February date night ideas including Pensacola Opera’s “Some Enchanted Valentine” and Pensacola Children’s Chorus’ “One World, Many Voices” at the Saenger Theatre. Experience a live performance at Vinyl Music Hall—in February The Magpie Salute and Matt and Kim will perform there. Or keep it simple and sweet with a gallery-night-for-two at Artel Gallery, Blue Morning Gallery, Quayside Art Gallery or Pensacola Museum of Art, or a sweet sunset stroll along Palafox Pier, the perfect romantic setting and one of Pensacola's most Instagram-worthy backdrops.Downtown Pensacola is the heart of the city, and our walkable, historic streets and beautiful views, paired with premier restaurants, galleries and shops, are the perfect place to melt your Valentine's heart this year.
Pensacon: Episode VI
Posted: Jan 28, 2019 8:12 PMUpdated: Feb 27, 2019 7:49 PM
Pensacon ... the final frontier .... These are the voyages of Downtown Pensacola. It’s a three-day mission: to explore strange new events.... To seek out celebrity photo ops and unique speakers and panels.... To boldly go to the Pensacola Bay Center on Feb. 22-24, where many fans have gone before!Founded in 2013, Pensacon (Pensacola Comic Con) is the premiere comic book and pop culture convention on the Gulf Coast, an all-inclusive event that encompasses Sci-Fi, Fantasy, Horror, Comics, Anime, Gaming and more. For three days each February, Wookiees, Daleks, Hogwarts students and Ghostbusters become a common sight in our historic downtown. The event has become well-known for its eclectic celebrity panels that reunite casts from classic favorites and introduce the latest fan faves as well.Over the years Pensacon has brought many celebrities to Pensacola, and Pensacon 2019 features a full lineup of celebrity guests, writers, actors and artists—from Batman and Star Wars to Battlestar Galactica and Stranger Things—including actor William Shatner, actress Tara Reid, skateboard pro Bam Margera and more than 100 other fan favorites. The schedule includes immersive events for the whole family including a Cosplay Contest, Lip Sync Showdown, IHMC Robotics Tours and a Short Film Festival. The event is expected to draw more than 30,000 spectators, many of whom will adorn themselves in extravagant “cosplay” costumes in honor of their favorite comic, movie or video game characters. This year once again you'll find traces of Pensacon sprinkled throughout downtown Pensacola, as the fun reaches throughout our historic streets at venues including the REX Theatre, the Saenger Theatre and several restaurants, clubs and concert venues. You’d have to be Mad-Eye Moody to miss Harry Potter’s Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry at The Fish House. Live long and prosper in the world of Star Trek at Atlas Oyster House, and don’t make the wookie mistake of missing the Cantina from Star Wars at The Deck Bar! Further north, you'll find merry musings, tall tales and lovely libations flowing in Middle Earth at Perfect Plain Brewing Co. with hoppy beers fit for a hobbit and enough tankards to satisfy a small army of trolls. Official Pensacon venues include the Pensacola Bay Center, Grand Hotel, Saenger Theatre, Pensacola Little Theatre and The REX Theatre. Look for the full schedule of events on the Pensacon website or on the Pensacon mobile app. And be sure to follow @DowntownPensacola on social media as we’ll be posting photos and updates continuously throughout the event. Help us kick-off Pensacon 2019 on Friday, Feb. 22 beginning at 5pm during a special Pensacon-themed Gallery Night and launch the weekend into an experience that will truly be out of this world![PHOTO CREDIT: Pensacon]
New Year's Resolutions--Downtown Pensacola-Style
Posted: Jan 4, 2019 5 PMUpdated: Jan 11, 2019 10 PM
A brand new year is here, and if you're ready to make some New Year's resolutions you might actually keep, head to Downtown Pensacola. Here's our list of creative ways to maintain your resolutions in 2019! Try Something NewHave you always wanted to learn how to play a musical instrument? Rent or purchase an instrument from Schmidt’s Music and give it a go. Their staff of seasoned musicians will help you select the right instrument to start your new year on a high note. History enthusiasts, consider volunteering at The Florida Public Archaeology Network (FPAN), where volunteers help to sort artifacts recovered from local archaeological sites. The professional archaeologists there are sure to have amazing stories of interesting finds–considering Pensacola is more than 450 years old.  Have you always dreamed of being an actor or comedian? Take an acting class from Pensacola Little Theatre (PLT) this year, or hone your comedic talents at an Improvable Cause improv comedy workshop.  New Year, new culinary skills? Downtown Pensacola Restaurants have cooked up classes to help you spice up your culinary skills. One example is So Gourmet, where you can learn to make everything from Spanish paella to sushi rolls.  Get Fit, Have FunForty-five percent of Americans say that losing weight and/or getting fit is their New Year's resolution. If getting healthy is on your list, join one of the local running clubs at O’Riley’s (Tuesdays), World of Beer (Wednesdays) or Seville Quarter (Mondays). The Bear Levin Studer Family YMCA and Anytime Fitness offer full workout gyms, and if you are looking for more specific workouts, Pure Pilates, Pure Barre and Ride Society offer specialized classes with professional instructors to challenge you.  Save MoneyIf your bank account needs a break after holiday spending, Downtown Pensacola has plenty of things to do that won't cost a thing, as well as opportunities to score discounts. Gallery Night and Palafox Market are free events that happen year-round. The Pensacola Museum of Art offers discounted admission to children, seniors and military members and their families. On Wednesdays, O’Riley’s Irish Pub hosts free trivia and discount drinks. Every Sunday in January 2019, Perfect Plain Brewing Co. is hosting customer appreciation days with great food and drink specials.  And downtown's historic streets and parks are always free to enjoy! New Year’s resolutions don’t have to be hard, and the activities and beautiful views of Downtown Pensacola will make them more enjoyable for you this year. 
Parking Amnesty Week in Time for Holiday Shopping
Posted: Nov 19, 2018 5:47 PMUpdated: Feb 27, 2019 7:51 PM
The holidays are almost upon us and soon we'll be turning on the holiday lights for the First City Lights Festival, immediately following the Winterfest Elf Parade on Friday, Nov. 23. Our historic streets are at their most beautiful under the glow of twinkling lights, and downtown shops, restaurants, galleries, bars and attractions are welcoming holiday shoppers with open arms. If you need further incentive, from Dec. 17-25 you can park for free at any DIB-managed on-street parking space, when the Downtown Parking Ambassadors will transform into holiday elves and help you carry large purchases to your car. Just call the "Elf Line": (850) 434-5371."We have more than 150 shops and galleries in Downtown Pensacola bursting with an eclectic mix of gifts for everyone on your list," said Downtown Improvement Board executive director Lissa Dees. "And from Dec. 17-25 we’re spreading cheer with free parking!"From half a million white lights to Santa and his elves to Winterfest trolley and train rides, you'll find a never-ending list of things to enjoy with friends and family once everyone is checked off your gift list. Check the downtown holiday calendar of events for a complete list of downtown happenings!Funded in part by grants from the City of Pensacola and Visit Pensacola, the dazzling lights have become a popular attraction for visitors and residents alike. Pensacola’s Downtown Improvement Board (DIB) conceived the idea of lighting up the district, then coordinating, supporting and branding all of the district’s diverse holiday events synchronously.
Best Holiday Shopping Experience Ever + 15 Places to Find the Perfect Gift
Posted: Oct 24, 2018 9:02 PMUpdated: Jan 29, 2019 3:31 PM
Black Friday is almost here. Prepare yourself. If thinking about a dizzying crush of frantic shoppers makes your head spin, may we suggest shopping along the historic streets of downtown Pensacola, where you can stroll at your own pace and browse an eclectic mix of unique shops, boutiques and galleries? The heart of the city is at its most festive this time of year, when the “traffic” you’ll encounter will likely include a miniature replica train, a holiday trolley, a horse-drawn carriage and, possibly, a gaggle of Segways.Below you’ll find our list of more than a dozen downtown shops that are just brimming with great gifts. Be sure to catch Palafox Market on Saturdays from 9am-2pm if you’re looking for one-of-a-kind art, handcrafted soaps, candles, toys, fresh flowers, produce and other locally-grown, locally-sourced, locally-crafted gifts. [TIP: Park in the Jefferson St. Garage and ask your downtown retailer to validate your parking. See the big sign inside the garage and enjoy free parking while you shop!]New to downtown, The Pensacola Merchant was founded “for those looking for all things Pensacola!”—their collection includes Pensacola-themed clothing, accessories, ornaments, gifts, books, toys, pet items, coffees and more. Is there a new homeowner or newly-married or engaged couple on your list? They will love the conversation-starting throw pillows, rugs, glassware and unique light fixtures at Urban Objects, and the engraved and personalized glassware carefully handcrafted by A&J Mugs. For your favorite holiday party host and hostess, make a pit stop at Bubba’s Sweet Spot and build a custom fudge box (more than 10 tasty fudge options, including allergy-sensitive flavors!). And for your sweet-toothed friends, drop by Adonna’s Bakery for macaroons and cannoli sets. PS—Adonna’s even offers a selection of treats for your furry, four-legged friends. For your favorite home chef, check out the humorous dish towels and unique kitchen accessories at Rusted Arrow Mercantile. Head to Ride Society, Pure Barre and Gracie for a gift that’s perfect for your favorite athlete. These fitness spots offer group classes as well as merchandise. Or pick up an “850” hat from The South Outfitters (better hurry—these hats fly off the shelf!). For clothing and accessories, we recommend Indigeaux, Melobay, and Gray, where you can find the latest fashions and accessories for women, and Don Alans for menswear, leather goods and gifts for the special men in your life. These are just a few of the shopping hot spots in downtown Pensacola, where gifts can be found at every corner, including art galleries and museums (we love the Trader Jon tees at T.T. Wentworth Museum!). No matter the size of your budget, downtown Pensacola will gift to you a truly different, truly enjoyable shopping experience. Happy (stress-free) hunting!Funded in part by grants from the City of Pensacola and Visit Pensacola, the dazzling lights have become a popular attraction for visitors and residents alike. Pensacola’s Downtown Improvement Board (DIB) conceived the idea of lighting up the district, then coordinating, supporting and branding all of the district’s diverse holiday events synchronously.