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Here are the businesses that received funding from Fighting Chance – and some that were denied

Megan Holmes



City of St. Pete Flickr

Earlier this week, the St. Pete Catalyst reported that the City of St. Peterburg’s Covid-19 emergency relief fund, the Fighting Chance Fund, closed out the first round of its applications, distributing $2.1 million to individuals and businesses within the city.

Now, St. Pete Catalyst has received a full list of the approved and denied business applications for Fighting Chance. Based on figures provided by City Development Administrator Alan DeLisle, the city approved just under 30 percent of business applications in the first round, and 34 percent of individual applications.

The first round of funding required that business be located in St. Petersburg, and that the owner of the business live within city limits. It required the business to be operational for at least one year, employ a total of 25 employees or less, full-time and part-time, that the business be brick and mortar. Businesses had to prove a loss of income from Covid-19 and fall into one of the following industries: restaurant; bar; retail; personal service; hair, beauty and other personal services (salons, barbers, day spas, tattoos); laundry services; cleaning services; pet care services; personal care service (funeral, child care, elder and disabled care); repair and maintenance; fitness centers and gyms; event spaces.

Some highlights of the 356 businesses that were approved in round one include:

  • Restaurants: WEPA Cucina De Puerto Rico, The Wooden Rooster, Pineapple Espresso, The Burg Diner, (swah-rey), Sophia’s Cucina + Enoteca, Plant Love Ice Cream, Pizza Box, Old Key West Bar & Grill, Love Food Central, Lolita’s Wine Market, Urban Brew & BBQ, Buya Ramen, Casita Taqueria, Black Crow Coffee, Bandit Coffee Co., Bacchus, Baba on Central, Alesia
  • Bars/breweries: the Dog Bar, The Ale and The Witch, St. Pete Brewing Co., The Bends, If I Brewed the World, Hawthorne Bottle Shoppe, Right Around the Corner, Avid Brewing,
  • Retail: Zen Glass Inc, Tombolo Books, The Merchant, St. Pete Running Company, MISRED Outfitters, Twig, Cultured Books, Craftsman House, Busters Antiques, Bodhi Basics, Bananas Records, Ashe Couture, Brick Street Farms
  • Gyms/Fitness Centers: CrossFit 727,Rush Cycle St Pete, Xtreme Fitness and Cycling Studio, SukhaLife Yoga Studio, CrossFit9
  • Event spaces: St. Petersburg Shuffleboard Club
  • Salon, beauty, tattoo: Salty Roots Salon, Salon Swank, Salon Luxe, Beauty Bungalow, Dollylocks, Classic Tattoos, 13 Arrows Tattoo, Central Beauty Bar
  • Personal services: mindbodylab.com, Spa 801, Broadway Arts & Dance Academy, Creative Clay, Moxy Medical Spa, Spitfire Improv, St. Pete Salt Works


Some highlights of the more than 800 businesses that were denied in round one include:

  • Restaurants/food: Zaytoon Grill, Fortunato’s Italian Restaurant, Petes General, Nitallys ThaiMex, Gypsy Souls Coffeehouse, karma juice bar & eatery, Trophy Fish, Squeeze Juice Works, Bodega on Central, Katie’s Fine Cookies, Beau N Mo
  • Bars: Courigans Irish Pub, Flying Boat Brewing Company, The Mandarin Hide
  • Retail: Wilsons Book World, Florida CraftArt, Atlas Body + Home, Salty Roots Boutique, Book + Bottle, The Refillery
  • Pet Services: One Lucky Dog, Pet Pal Rescue, Sit Happens: Dog Training & Behavior Mod
  • Salon/beauty: The Hive Salon and Spa, Sip & Dry
  • Services/miscellaneous: Suncoast Developers Guild, St. Petersburg Historical Society, ELITE Body Cryotherapy, Urban Ink Tattoo Company, Indi-ED Foundation, Rubin Health Center, Back to Normal Physical Therapy, St Petersburg Opera
  • Gyms/Fitness: Crossfit StPete, Burg North, The Body Shoppe, Central Cycling


Applications were denied for a variety of reasons. Based on a word search of denial reasons provided by the city, nearly 90 were denied because they were classified as a franchise or chain business, nearly 150 were classified as non-eligible, 12 were in business for less than one year, approximately 150 were denied because the owners resided outside of the city or failed to prove residency, and 12 were denied due to the business’ location outside of city limits. Over 150 applications were marked incomplete, and more than 100 were denied because they were home-based, rather than brick and mortar businesses.

The second round of Fighting Chance relief launched April 30 with expanded eligibility to St. Petersburg business owners who live outside of the bounds of the city, and those who had been in business six months or more, rather than the full year required in the previous round.

The second round also added two industry sectors: travel agencies and tour operators, and clarified that individual businesses operating in another business’ space, whether a co-working or leasing space directly from another business owner. can apply to the program.


See the full list of approved businesses here.

See the full list of denied businesses here.

1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. Chuck Egerter

    Chuck Egerter

    May 11, 2020at7:26 am

    Excellent information! So glad to see some of our favorites getting help!
    By the Way, if you are able to help our fellow businesses, you can donate here: https://pinellascf.org/fightingchance/

    Thank you Catalyst and City Leadership!

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