St Pete's Floridian Social Club, Jack Kerouac House among winners at Preserve the 'Burg awards

Ferg's, Bodega and St. Petersburg High School were winners, too.

click to enlarge The Flordian Social Club in St. Petersburg, Florida. - PHOTO VIA CITYOFSTPETE/FLICKR
Photo via cityofstpete/Flickr
The Flordian Social Club in St. Petersburg, Florida.
Every other year, Preserve the 'Burg (PTB) recognizes its neighbors—be they homeowners, business owners and even developers—who've worked to maintain the character within one of the fastest growing cities in the U.S.

Last night, the nonprofit recognized work in 17 categories including the renovation and restoration at Central Avenue's Floridian Social Club (fka State Theatre), which finally hosted its first national headliner on Tuesday and took home the award for "Renovation/Restoration of a Designated Landmark."

"Constructed in 1924 as Alexander National Bank, the building was repurposed in 1949 as a movie theater. It operated as a jazz club and, later, as a live music venue," presenters said during the awards ceremony. "Alterations in 2018 through 2020 brought back original 1924 elements and also retained and restored certain 1949 designs such as the awning above the entrance that had since gained significance and spoke to the unique evolution of the building, which will turn 100 years old in just a couple of years."

Other notable winners were Ken and Gina Burchenal ("Sense of Place, Community Storytelling") who purchased Jack Kerouac's Disston Heights home in 2020, and have hosted events to honor the revered American author.

Lechon sandwich heaven Bodega also took home hardware for its restoration of the Spanish-Italian/art deco elements in the Smalley-Green Auto Building, citing ownership's use of tax credits reserved for long-term improvements.

Ferg's even got some love for the way it saved the historic World Liquors sign.

Burt and Carole Kline, who've long plated a role in the Historic Old Northeast neighborhoods, received PTB's "Preservationist of the Year" award.

See all the winners of Preserve the 'Burg's 2022 Preservation Awards below
  • Renovation/Restoration - Residential 2710 2nd Ave. N., Andrew & Starr Blaser, owners
  • Renovation/Restoration - Institutional t. Pete High School Pinellas County Schools/Rowe Architects/Creative Contractors
  • Renovation/Restoration - Commercial  Bodega on Central-Blake Whitney Thompson, Blake Investment Partners, George & Debbie Sayegh (Bodega Owners)
  • Renovation/Restoration of a Designated Landmark Floridian Theater Kevin Chadwick, owner
  • Adaptive Reuse - Residential American Baptist Church of the Beatitudes
  • Bluewater Builders/Jason Sanchez
  • Compatible Design within a Local Historic District 700 31 St. N., Allen Campbell & Craig Hepworth and Domain Homes
  • Compatible Design within a Non-designated Historic Neighborhood Hughey Home 750 2nd St N, Pam and David Hughey, EDAD Studio.
  • Accessory Dwelling Unit 2500 Burlington Ave. N. Zach Curry, owner
  • Preservation Craftsmanship Union Trust Bank-All Trades Historical Restoration
  • Sense of Place, Community Storytelling  Jack Kerouac House of St. Petersburg-Ken and Gina Burchenal
  • Sense of Place, Community Space Polish American Society-Roger Telschow and Monika Smolarczyk
  • Historic Sign Restoration Fergs/World Liquors historic sign, Mark Ferguson
  • Preservation Publication “Sophie and Zack at Sunken Gardens” Children’s Education Project Sunken Gardens Forever Foundation (SGFF)
  • Preservation Education Howard Knapp - “Then and Now” posts in “Remember In St Petersburg When…” Facebook Page social media
  • Maureen Stafford Award New Light Restoration, Trevor Sieders (owner)
  • Preservationist of the Year Burt and Carol Kline
  • Preservation Legacy/Lifetime Achievement Howard Fenford Hansen