Tampa and St. Petersburg are the latest cities featured in the Un-Tourist Guide series, which helps those new to the area make their home in the Tampa Bay region.
The concept was originally launched in 2013 by Florida-based publisher Voyager Media, Inc. with the first title: “Moving to Naples: The Un-Tourist Guide
.” The Sarasota title
was added the same year, as well as Charlotte, NC. Cities were selected strategically based on a high potential for growth, jobs and housing activity.
In the Tampa guide
you’ll learn about the legacy of the old Tampa Bay hotel that now houses the University of Tampa
. The guide also features the world class educational system from pre-K through post graduate study and the diversity that can be experienced through festivals, parades and ethnic restaurants. Tampa's rich history and modern culture are used to show why it’s a great place to live and work for people in all stages of life.
"For me, the great thing about Tampa is the fact that it is so diverse. I really wanted the book to share that," says the Mary Lou Janson, the guide’s author and publicist.
Janson says the easiest chapter to write was how to assimilate into the community by volunteering, noting the ample opportunities Tampa nonprofits have to offer for all ages and interests.
The St. Petersburg guide
focuses on the area’s low cost of living, excellent healthcare, vibrant arts and enterainment, and frequent dolphin sightings. Other hidden gems can be discovered through the guide, including dog-friendly beaches, year-round fruits and flowers and citywide pride in the "burg."
Both Janson and the St. Petersburg Guide’s author, Cindy Dobyns of AboveWater Public Relations and Marketing
, grew up in the Tampa Bay area. Each of them lived in one or more other states as an adult, but eventually found their way back, vowing never to leave again.
"Once you move here and find out how much this area has to offer, you’ll probably wonder why you didn’t move here sooner," says Janson.
Writer: Megan Hendricks
Source: Mary Lou Janson, The Un-Tourist Guide