Free and cheap things to do with the kids this week
Pirates invade Madeira Beach, kids in Brandon finally have their own skate park and a historic train station celebrates National Train Day. We have these and more wallet-friendly diversions to entertain you and the kids this week.
Celebrate the discovery of John’s Pass with John Levique Pirate Days, featuring a variety of pirate-themed events including a sea battle and a boat parade, a family treasure hunt and costume contests. There are also lots of vendors for shopping and food and a bounty of pirate performers. Free at John’s Pass Village and Boardwalk in Madeira Beach (though Friday’s Pirate’s Ball from 7-11 p.m. is $20). 10 a.m.-8 p.m. Saturday, 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Sunday. johnspassfestivals.com.
The Brandon Skate Park has already been open a few weeks, but bad weather hosed the original grand opening party a few weeks ago. Still, skaters have waited a long time to invite the community to the grand opening ceremony of its new 11,000 square-foot “obstacle street and bowl” in Brandon. After the ribbon cutting ceremony, the dudes take over with demonstrations by local skateboarders. Entrance is free all summer. After that, skate fees will be $4 per day, and annual skate park’s passes are available at $150. The event is 1 p.m. Saturday at 5720 Providence Road, Riverview. (813) 635-3500.
This might be more for a date night, but you can bike from stop to stop at the St. Pete Bike n’ Eat, a restaurant hop with free samples at each stop starting at 3 p.m. Saturday. Follow the leader, grab a snack and roll on to the next stop. The group meets at Trek Bicycle Store and makes stops at Casita Taqueria (3:15 p.m.), Meze 119 (3:45 p.m.), the Ale and the Witch (4:20 p.m.), Parkshore Grill (4:50 p.m.) and back to Trek (5:30 p.m.) for a party designed to promote physical fitness and economic growth within St. Petersburg community. Registration required at (727) 498-8655. It’s free, with free samples at the stops, but drinks and menu items additional. Trek Bicycle Store of St. Petersburg, 3169 Fourth St. N, St. Petersburg.
The historic Union Station in Tampa — which is celebrating its centennial — is marking National Train Day with live music, tours of Amtrak equipment, model railroad displays and exhibits, telegraph demonstrations, food trucks and a history program. It’s all free at 601 N Nebraska Ave., Tampa, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday.
Bueller? ... Bueller? ... Bueller? Found him! The classic ’80s comedy Ferris Bueller’s Day Off is playing on the big screen Friday in Clearwater. Today’s fun fact: Remember Ben Stein, left< as the painfully dull economics teacher? His lines were unscripted. Director John Hughes just told Stein, who has a degree in economics, to present an actual lecture in his scenes. The movie, rated PG-13, is at 7:30 p.m. Friday at the Capital Theatre, 405 Cleveland St., Clearwater. $5.
Friday is a big day at the Dali Museum. Celebrate Salvador Dali’s birthday with mustache painting, films, kid’s crafts, balloon artists, tarot readers and free cake pops from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Friday. Free, but admission required to see galleries: $21, $19 seniors, $15 students and children ages 13-17, $7 children ages 6-12. Then at 7, the adult party swings into action with live music, craft beer, cash bar and look-alike contest ($10). Dali Museum, One Dali Blvd., St. Petersburg. (727) 823-3767.
Since the Rays are out of town playing the Baltimore Orioles, catch the game on the beach at a family-friendly Rays watch party with a giant screen set up on the sand. 620-AM WDAE will broadcast live starting with their pre-game show. The Rays Street Team will also be on hand with giveaways. Get a coupon for unlimited sliding on the giant slide for $10 (normally $30). Proceeds benefit the Rays Foundation. 7:05 p.m. Friday. Free admission. $10 parking on site. Food and drink additional. Tradewinds Island Grand Resort, 5500 Gulf Blvd., St. Pete Beach. (727) 367-6461.
--Sharon Kennedy Wynne
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