Radio St. Pete Thrives Downtown

For over 10 years those in the know have been grooving to beat of homegrown singers and songwriters, enjoying programs, podcasts, and more on Sunshine 96.7 FM (on the radio) and on your computer, phone, tablet, Siri, and Alexa. 

This March, Radio St. Pete moved its studio to the bustling co-working and art space that is Thrive DTSP, at 136 4th Street N., across from Williams Park. The sleek co-workspace has an urban vibe, an espresso machine, and the glass studio. It’s a big step for the station, expanding their local sports, news, and entertainment/arts coverage.

“Our new studio in the heart of downtown St. Pete was the next logical step in our evolution,” said Radio St. Pete President Joe Bourdow. “We now can produce in-studio more local interviews and coverage of the arts and entertainment, non-profits, education, government, and business.” 

Thrive DTSP a growing co-working space in the heart of downtown. It’s also the home of Radio St. Pete, the station’s first home base. Photo courtesy of Thrive DTSP

Bourdow is also a familiar, but not always identified, voice on the station – one of many locals who lend their voices to the tapestry that is Radio St. Pete. In 2024, journalist Nanette Wiser joined the team as news director, delivering expanded entertainment with blogs online and on LinkedIn, including the Let’s Go Guide. The expanded Florida Sports Stream, led by Mike Rickord, showcases the Rays, Bucs, and Bolts, plus high school sports, golf, local sports, and is live from both Ferg’s and, on Monday, from Treasure Island’s Sea Dog Brewing Co.

Radio Roots

You might trace Radio St. Pete’s roots back to 2004, when long-time radio DJ Rick Crandall built the first local music website,, and began assembling local music tracks online. Crandall ultimately formed a 501c3 and received a construction permit from the FCC for 96.7 FM. The station’s transmitter site was built unassumingly on the 14th floor of the Arlington Arbor Apartments.

In 2013, Bourdow, along with North Carolina-based broadcaster Patrick Kinas, launched and began streaming local events. Bourdow, who had joined the board for Music Tampa Bay, acquired the transmitter and FM radio license from Music Tampa Bay in 2020/21. The station ultimately merged with Radio St. Pete and a new baby was formed: 96.7 FM Radio St. Pete. 

Radio St. Pete Music Director J Kolb on the air

“Radio was once always local, until the ‘80s,” Bourdow said. “It changed, and that’s one of the reasons I didn’t stay. Then, the internet came along, and I realized that it’s a place for a local radio station, where we can bring the nature of our town online. We are purposely hyper-focused on our community, from downtown St. Pete to the beaches.” 

Local Culture, Local Voices

Radio St. Pete programming, which includes four streaming options, is a blend of music, local happenings, sports, and interviews with many of St. Pete’s familiar ‘Burgers. Music Director J Kolb works to showcase local musicians and songwriters, with 4,000 songs in the library – most of which were created right here in the Sunshine City. The radio library also houses more than 6,000 archived podcasts and audio blogs, with more added daily. Here you’ll find the voices of local leaders and artists such as Paul Wilborn, Matthew McGee, Book + Bottle, Rui Farias, The Edge, Green Light Cinema, St. Pete poets, and more to come. In fact, dozens of podcasts and new partnerships are debuting this summer.

Karen Carmichael, who hosts programs for Radio St. Pete such as The Sunshine Sisters – Women Making a Difference, handles social media, and sits on the Board of Directors, says one of the greatest things about the station is the platform it provides.

“We are fortunate to live in a city where information is readily available to residents. This presents an opportunity to network with many other associations and organizations including the City of St. Petersburg,” she says. “I enjoy creating partnerships with Radio St. Pete and helping local St. Pete organizations to help expand their messaging.”

ean Pierce, left, Alvinette Downing McCleave, President with Al Downing Tampa Bay Jazz Association.

Pete Gallagher, host of the Florida Folk Show, has been playing his grassroots tunes on air for 20 years, previously with community radio station WMNF (88.5 FM). The Florida Folk Show moved to Radio St. Pete three years ago when WMNF changed its format. 

“They were going to change our time from Saturday mornings, and we never miss a Saturday,” Gallagher said. 

The move to Thrive won’t affect The Florida Folk Show. Most of the time they play live on the front porch of the Craftsman House – unless it rains. But Gallagher loves the fact that folks can get a little bit of Florida – and St. Pete – no matter where they roam. “With the online radio, you can listen wherever, all over the world,” Gallagher said. 

The Florida Folk Show is a Saturday morning staple of Radio St. Pete. Photo courtesy of Pete Gallagher.

On June 5, Radio St. Pete invites folks to their “Welcome Summer” fundraiser at Green Light Cinema, 221 2nd Avenue N., from 2-8 pm. Enjoy local singers, songwriters, and bands, plus other entertainment with special guests live on air.

Radio St. Pete is supported solely by the community and gladly welcomes volunteers, members, and donations. Listen locally by tuning into 96.7 FM. Check out for a program guide, click on audio/blogs for the podcasts. Sign up for the newsletter and tune in anytime, anywhere, online.