Chasco Fiesta kicks off in Pasco

Chasco Fiesta is the largest, longest and oldest event in Pasco County, and it opens again today with 11 straight nights of entertainment, food, athletic contests, arts and crafts, parades, a carnival and an ongoing Native American Pow Wow and Festival at its heart.

It all takes place in and around Sims Park on the banks of the Pithlachascotee River in New Port Richey (go east off U.S. 19 on Main Street, over the bridge, park is on the north side of the street; free parking around town). Here are highlights:

Native American Pow Wow and Festival: Grand entries and intertribal and intratribal dance competition with $11,000 in prizes, today through Sunday; arts and crafts vendors, educational talks 5-9 p.m. Monday-Wednesday, 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. March 26, 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. March 27 and 28 and 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. March 29.

Parades: Chasco Street Parade, 1 p.m. Saturday, Grand Boulevard and Main Street; Chasco Boat Parade, 1 p.m. March 28, Pithlachascotee River from Miller's Bayou to Sims Park.

Carnival: 5-10 p.m. Mondays-Thursdays, 5-11 p.m. Fridays, 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. Saturdays, 1 to 6 p.m. Sundays.

Races: Foot and bike races, Starkey Wilderness Park, 8 a.m. March 27; kayak race, Cotee River, 9 a.m. March 28.

Arts and crafts: Chasco Flea Market, arts, crafts and antiques sale, Central Avenue between Madison Avenue and Adams Street, Saturday and Sunday; Chasco Wine and Art Festival, Orange Lake, 11 a.m.-5 p.m. March 28.

Entertainment, amphitheater in Sims Park: Native American Night with Gabriel Ayala, classical guitarist, Native American Dancers, 7 tonight; Contemporary Christian Family Music Night, 6-11 p.m. Friday; Rock 'n' Roll Tribute, 4-11 p.m. Saturday; Talent Showcase, 11 a.m.-4 p.m. Sunday; A Magical Night of Entertainment, 5-9 p.m. Sunday; Bluegrass Music, 6-10 p.m. Monday; Noche Latina (Latin Night), 6-10 p.m. Tuesday; Dancing Under the Stars competition and show, 6-10 p.m. Wednesday; Rhythm & Bluesmasters ($5), 6-10 p.m. March 26; True Oldies Night ($5), 6-11 p.m. March 27; Chasco Fiesta Country Concert with Jimmy Wayne and Jason Michael Carroll ($15-$25), 5:45 p.m. March 28.

Call (727) 842-7651 for concert tickets and event details or go to chascofiesta.com.

Barbara L. Fredricksen, Times staff writer

Chasco Fiesta kicks off in Pasco 03/18/09 [Last modified: Wednesday, March 18, 2009 4:30am]

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