WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. (April 10, 2020) – While the team at the West Palm Beach Downtown Development Authority (DDA) is busy providing a wide array of assistance for its constituents, as businesses, landlords, residents and essential workers adapt to manage in the COVID-19 context, the DDA staff wants to offer ways for the community to decompress and reduce the stress everyone is experiencing through these unexpected changes by also offering an alternative to get together virtually.

“The success of our ‘Saturday Soiree’ on Facebook Live at the end of March shows just how united our Downtown community remains,” said Raphael Clemente, DDA Executive Director. The organization is responding to that success by launching two weekly virtual series, the new DowntownWPB Coffee Break and an expansion of its Saturday Soiree programming. Both events will be broadcasted on Zoom and Facebook Live and participants are encouraged to order take-out from Downtown West Palm Beach businesses for both events to bring the Downtown experience home.

“Even though we are physically distancing ourselves to stay healthy, we can still be socially connected as a community through virtual platforms,” said Sherryl Muriente, Manager of Urban Placemaking. “These events not only connect our residents and businesses but also serve as a showcase for local talent.”

The DowntownWPB Coffee Break is a five-week collaboration with 1909, the trendy coworking space and business incubator. This event series kicks off on Wednesday, April 15 and will feature experts on how to tackle new challenges in our daily life and community. The first event will focus on working from home more effectively and features Andres Espinosa of Pixel and Gamelab Marketing, who will present the best technologies and programs to telecommute.  Karen Talavera of The Accidental Seeker will provide insight on staying focused, and Nikki Arensman will offer ways to set up your work-from-home area. The events will run every Wednesday through May 13 from 2:00 – 3:00 p.m. with a different topic of discussion each week. Those interested in participating in DowntownWPB Coffee Break can find more information at DowntownWPB.com/CoffeeBreak.

For the entire month of April, the DDA will also host virtual concerts every Saturday at 5:30 p.m. as part of its Saturday Soiree series. Originally created to forge a connection between people who live and work west of the Tri-Rail tracks with the rest of the Downtown District, it’s now online and all are welcome.  

         The musicians for the next Saturday Soiree on April 11 include soul and indie-pop artist PRD, R&B and reggae-pop artist Sierra Lane, and Theo Matz of the local indie-folk band American Sigh. For more details on the artists, and to access the live stream on the day of the concert, please visit DowntownWPB.com/SaturdaySoiree.

In addition to their calendar of events, the DDA will soon be providing DowntownWPB coloring pages and DowntownWPB Zoom backgrounds for everyone to enjoy from home. For more information on the DDA and DowntownWPB, including updates on your favorite downtown businesses, please visit their website at DowntownWPB.com, or their social media channels at the handle @DowntownWPB.

About the Downtown Development Authority

The West Palm Beach DDA is an independent taxing district created in 1967 by a special act of the Florida Legislature. Its mission is to promote and enhance a safe, vibrant Downtown for our residents, businesses and visitors through the strategic development of economic, social and cultural opportunities.

For more information about the DDA or Downtown West Palm Beach, please visit downtownwpb.com or call the DDA at (561) 833-8873.