Bye L-Train, Hello Hemingway

By : Anonymous
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L Train closes
A chapter of St. Petersburg LGBT history closed on Sunday, June 30, when the L-Train Bar located downtown held a final, farewell celebration. Owner Laura Cipriani decided to close the doors to the bar after struggling for several years in its location at 900 Central Avenue. Cipriani said her heart was heavy with the decision, but that she was ready to move on to the next chapter of her life. Cipriani first opened the bar as a movie theater, called Pink Pelicans, back in 2009. When her partners bowed out of the business, she renamed the facility and opened the doors to fundraisers, drag shows, movies, live theater and singing competitions. The L-Train also offered specialty beers from throughout the world. We wish Cipriani the best of luck in her next endeavor. The L-Train will be missed.

Hemingway’s Grill opens at Flamingo
On June 20, the Flamingo Resort officially introduced the community to its newest addition, Hemmingway’s Key West Grill restaurant, with a special VIP introductory gala. The new restaurant resides in the space that was once called the “Blu Room” and the varied menu offers a sample of Key West cuisine. Staffers shelled out offerings of Paella Valencia, Snapper Catalana, Steak Salteado and Pork Milanesa while the bar offered complimentary Spanish wines and sangria to those invited. Many attending the grand opening were heard complimenting the food and offering congratulations to Resort Director David Baker on the new digs. Baker took a few minutes to welcome the crowd before introducing entertainer Iman, who sang live as people sampled the array of menu items. Hemingway’s is open throughout the week but is closed during Country Line Dancing night on Fridays.

Fondue thing in Sarasota
On Thursday, June 27, Outings & Adventures hosted the first-ever Pride Fondue Fundraiser at the Melting Pot in Sarasota. The event, created by Robert Geller of O&A, helped raise money for the Smart Ride, which helps a variety of HIV/AIDS organizations throughout the state. The success of the Sarasota event has inspired a similar celebration at The Melting Pot in St. Petersburg scheduled for Wednesday, July 17. The evening of friends and fondue begins at 6:30 with free raffles and then a four-course sit-down dining experience at the restaurant. A full menu is available online. Geller hopes to continue growing the Pride Fondue parties. “It’s a very exciting and unique fundraiser supported by an international restaurant chain,” Geller said. The Melting Pot is fully on board, Geller said, and recently approved a logo so the restaurant chain can begin marketing it throughout Florida. Tickets are $38.50 and available at

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