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First Coast Connect

Riverfront Plaza; Bailey's Fitness; Lupus Study; Sing Out Loud Festival

The site of the former Jacksonville Landing.
The site of the former Jacksonville Landing.

After the demolition of The Jacksonville Landing, at least some public park space at Riverfront Plaza looks to be in Downtown Jacksonville's future.

Last week, an all-day design festival was held, during which developers presented potential ideas for the lot that was once home to the Landing. The festival ended without a winner declared, but three finalists were named. The finalists include Agency Landscape and Planning, Olin Partnership, and Perkins & Will

David Bauerlein of The Florida Times Union has been covering the story, and joined us to discuss the Riverfront Plaza proposals.  

Bailey's Fitness

Bailey's Health and Fitness Club has become a Jacksonville institution. It’s now grown to 16 different locations throughout the city. The gym was started by Don Bailey, who was then joined by his brothers Darryl and David Bailey. While 2020 brought challenges to every business, it was especially tough for Darryl due the loss of his brother and business partner Don.

Darryl Bailey, the Chief Operating Officer of Bailey’s Health and Fitness  joined us to talk about the success of the gym and overcoming loss. 

Lupus Research 

A new study out of the University of Florida has presented a potential new treatment for lupus. The study has found that a peptide may be a cutting edge new treatment which could help those who suffer from the autoimmune disease.

The study, which used mice, saw that the test subjects who took the peptide had reduced symptoms of lupus. The next phase of the research will include seeing if the treatment is safe in people, and then seeing if it could be effective in people who struggle with lupus. 

Joseph Larkin III, an Associate Professor at UF in the IFAS Department of Microbiology and Cell Science, and senior author of the study, joined us to talk about the study. 

Sing Out Loud Festival 

The Sing Out Loud Festival is returning to St. Augustine after going virtual for 2020. The festival line up includes performers such as TLC, Mayday Parade, and Yola. The festival has upwards of 100 different acts booked at a variety of different venues throughout September. The festival kicks off on September 10 and runs through September 26 - which has led to September being dubbed “The (unofficial) Month of Music” .

Ryan Hall, the Marketing and Promotions Specialist with Ponte Vedra Concert Hall, and  The St. Augustine Amphitheatre joined us to discuss the festival. 

Mackenzie Guiry can be reached at

First Coast Connect first coast connect
Mackenzie Guiry is a senior multimedia journalism major at the University of North Florida. She spent her first two years of college at Florida Atlantic University.