Navy Week Kickoff Party
Join active duty sailors aboard the SS American Victory. Activities include tours of the ship to learn about the Navy's past, rock music by the Navy band Pride and a meet and greet with members of today's Navy. 5 p.m. 705 Channelside Drive, Tampa. Free. (813) 228-8766; americanvictory.org.
Mayor Iorio's Fitness Walk
Sailors join Tampa Mayor Pam Iorio for her biannual walk. Registration at 6:30 a.m. Walk begins at 7:30. First 200 walkers registered on walk day get a "Walking with the Mayor — Keeping Tampa Fit" T-shirt. 7:30 a.m. Hunt Community Center at Al Lopez Park, 4810 N Himes Ave., Tampa. Free. (813) 274-8615; tampagov.net/parksandrec.
Opening Weekend at Adventure Island
The Navy helps open the water park for the season. Rock out to live music by the Navy band Pride, play volleyball against the crew of the USS Florida and swim with Navy divers until 1 p.m. Included with regular daily admission. 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Sat.-Sun. Adventure Island, 10001 McKinley Drive (40th Street), Tampa. $41.95, $37.95 ages 3-9, age 2 and younger free. (813) 987-5600; adventureisland.com.
Mayor's Proclamation Ceremony Concert
In honor of Iorio proclaiming next week Tampa Navy Week, the Navy band Pride presents an outdoor jam. Meet and shake hands with some of the hometown crew members of the USS Florida. 11:15 a.m.-1:15 p.m. Lykes Gaslight Park, 410 Franklin St., Tampa. Free. (901) 874-5806; navyweek.org/tampa2010.soe.html.
Navy Visits the Aquarium
Check out Navy divers underwater. Watch them swim in the aquarium and then meet them. Included with daily admission. 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Mon.-Wed. Clearwater Marine Aquarium, 249 Windward Passage, Clearwater. $12.95, $9.95 ages 60 and older, $8.95 ages 3-12, 2 and younger free. Toll-free 1-888-239-9414 or (727) 441-1790; cmaquarium.org.
Join the Navy for Hockey: Tampa Bay Lightning vs. Phoenix Coyotes
Before the NHL game, a sailor sings the National Anthem with a Navy color guard at his side. Puck drop will be done by a sailor. 7:30 p.m. St. Pete Times Forum, 401 Channelside Drive, Tampa. $20-$245. (813) 301-6600; lightning.nhl.com.
Cooking Demo: Navy Week event
Chefs from the USS Florida cook for customers and teach some tricks. 11 a.m.-1 p.m. Shoppes of Citrus Park at Publix Supermarket, 7835 Gunn Highway, Tampa. Free. (901) 874-5806.
Navy Day at Busch Gardens
A flag raising, swearing in of new sailors and music by the Navy band Pride. Events run through 3:30 p.m.; included with regular daily admission. 9:30 a.m. Busch Gardens, 3605 Bougainvillea Ave., Tampa. $69.95, $59.95 ages 3-9. (901) 874-5806; navyweek.org/tampa2010/soe.html.
Tampa Navy Week kicks off with a party Friday and runs through next week. It's all about getting up close with the sailors and their mission, which shouldn't be hard because they will be just about everywhere. (Not to be confused with Fleet Week featured in an episode of Sex and the City; that's all about sailors letting loose.) Navy Week leads up to the MacDill AirFest on March 20-21, featuring the wildly popular Blue Angels, shown below, this year. Here are some Navy Week events. Find a complete list at navyweek.org.