ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (WFLA) — The Offshore Grand Prix wrapped up in St. Petersburg on Sunday. Crowds of people hit the pier to enjoy the power boat races, which brought in big bucks for local businesses.
Ferdian Jap, spokesperson with the St. Pete Pier, said the event brought in more than 20,000 people over the Labor Day weekend. “The pier is really, really busy. Everyday we get more and more people,” he said.
60 teams from all over the world participated in the races. Attendees at the pier had front row seats to all of the action.
“It’s been pretty good. I talked to a few of the drivers and it’s been pretty interesting,” said Aj Owens.
The pier was not only a hot spot for fun. Cameron Cuellar, with Doc Ford’s Bar and Grille, said the business also boomed thanks to the crowds.
“Everybody wants to get outside and have some fun so definitely people will see a beautiful restaurant like this on the water and can’t complain by stopping in and having some good food,” Cuellar said.
Cuellar told 8 On Your Side this is usually a big weekend for those working on the pier, and it feels good to have their normal turnout, after several pandemic years. “This is the second year after things have been going, up and running. So it’s brought a lot of business, a lot of foot traffic. A lot of drink sales and food sales.”
Jap said this event is also good exposure, especially since it’s televised nationally and internationally.
“The pier will be in the background and hopefully that’ll draw in a pretty amazing view from people all over the world and they’ll want to come back to St. Pete,” Jap said. He hopes events like this continue to boost tourism in this area.