Markets galore!

Street market‘Tis the season for street markets and there will be a record number of them here in downtown! Saturdays in particular are going to be something special.

FARMER’S MARKET every Wednesday (starting Oct 21), 9:00 to 2:00, on Cleveland Street in the 500 block. Colorful tents and booths will be filled with farm-fresh produce, ready-to-eat foods, gourmet cheeses, live vegetable plants, orchids and a host of other items. There will be live music from 11 to 1.

NEW!!! SATURDAY MARKET (starting Oct 24), 9:00 to 2:00, on Cleveland Street in the 600 block. It will feature local organic and natural food products, body care products, pet items, household goods and arts and crafts. There will be live entertainment and special events.

NEW!!! PIERCE STREET MARKET every second Saturday (starting Oct 10), 10:00 to 4:00, under the bridge next to the marina.  It will feature more than 40 local artists and independent businesses who will sell jewelry, clothes, vintage items, crafts and food.

NEW!!! ART IN THE PARK every third Saturday (starting Nov 21), 9:00 to 2:00, in Station Square in conjunction with the Saturday Market in Station Square. Features local artists.

Scientology buildings open to the public

Flag public buildings 2It is well known that downtown Clearwater contains the headquarters of the Church of Scientology. Previously, none of its buildings were open to the public except for special events. Now there are 7 buildings open to visitors 7 days a week, 10am to 10pm.

The buildings are located along Fort Harrison between Cleveland and Drew, providing a substantial upgrade to the downtown area. The Church also opened a public park on the corner of Drew and Fort Harrison.

The former Clearwater Bank building contains the Scientology Information Center. A little further along Fort Harrison to the north are a series of newly renovated and remodeled storefronts that contain exhibits for the Church’s social betterment activities, including: human rights, Way to Happiness, drug-free world, crime-free world, volunteer community service, and the exposure of mental health & human rights abuses (this last exhibit is particularly thought-provoking and some might say shocking).

New additions to the list of things to do in downtown Clearwater!

Visit a downtown treasure

Peace Memorial exterior 2The pink Peace Memorial Presbyterian Church on Fort Harrison Avenue has been a downtown icon for 90 years.

We met with its new pastor, Reverend Bob Scott, to discuss not only his Church but also his thoughts about downtown in general, including his views on the CMA proposal and what it’s like to be next door to the sizeable facilities of the Church of Scientology.

History

Peace Memorial has a long and rich history. It started out in 1891 as the “Little White Church”. After World War I, an army chaplain took over the Church. He had a vision of building a memorial to peace. Construction soon began on the big pink Church and it was completed in 1922. The dedication ceremony was led by William Jennings Bryan.

Pastor Bob

Pastor Bob

Pastor Bob

Reverend Bob Scott prefers to be known as “Pastor Bob”. He arrived here in March of this year after serving in Palatka, Florida (30 miles southwest of St. Augustine). His wife and daughter joined him in June.

Membership

The Church has 250 primary members along with many unofficial members. Every Sunday they pray for peace. Pastor Bob says: “That’s what we are. The people of peace.”

Downtown

Pastor Bob loves downtown. He told us: “It’s such a beautiful place. I walk around the area almost every day. I’ve tried to eat my way through downtown! In Palatka, I was a member of the Main Street organization, and our goal was to make downtown a place where locals and residents want to go. Hopefully this will become a destination place for the wider area. Our Church wants to be a partner and participant in what’s going on here. We like seeing life and vibrancy downtown.” Continue reading

Farmer’s Market every Saturday (gateway area)

The Clearwater Gateway Farmers Market  is open every Saturday from 9am to 2pm, October through May (closed during summer hurricane season).

It fills the 1200 block of Cleveland near Missouri and offers a delicious variety of fruits, vegetables, backed goods and cooking ingredients. Not to mention interesting gifts and music.

It’s a cultural extravaganza! Parking is available nearby.