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Things to do in Tampa Bay for the week of Jan. 24

Polar Obsession: Paul Nicklen took a three-month journey into the arctic and came back with some wild photos. Join him at 7 p.m. Tuesday for part of the National Geographic Live Series at the Straz Center in Tampa. Tickets start at $25.50.

'Billy Elliot' screening: The musical is coming to the Straz Center on Feb. 2, but you can see the movie that inspired it for free at 7 p.m. Tuesday at Tampa Theatre.

Ace of Cakes: Don't even get Food Network star Duff Goldman started on the cupcake trend. The baker, musician and artist speaks at 7 p.m. Wednesday in the free USF Lecture Series at the Marshall Student Center in Tampa. (813) 974-9057.

John Waters: This Filthy World: The filmmaker, actor, author and artist isn't called the Pope of Trash for nothing. Join him for his one-man show at 7 p.m. Thursday at University of South Florida Theater I in Tampa. Reception and book signing afterward at USF Contemporary Art Museum. Free.

Gasparilla: Beads and beer, baby! The pirate invasion starts with the fully rigged Jose Gasparilla and its flotilla, which sails into Hillsborough Bay in Tampa about 11:30 a.m. Saturday. The big, rowdy parade — look for grand marshal Jim Belushi — starts at 2 p.m. and goes along Bayshore Boulevard, then toward Curtis Hixon Park, where a street festival goes from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. with rides, games and music. It's all free, but you can reserve bleacher seats for the parade for $28.

Date Night

Kenny Loggins and Christopher Cross: Sail along with the two coolest captains of "yacht rock" at 8 p.m. Tuesday at Ruth Eckerd Hall. $45-$85. (727) 791-7400.

Art on the House: If you haven't been to the Tampa Museum of Art lately, here's a treat: free admission from 4 to 8 p.m. Fridays, thanks to Hill Ward Henderson law firm. It's at 120 W Gasparilla Plaza, Tampa.

George Strait and Reba McEntire: Wow, Tampa will be busy Saturday, with Gasparilla and then this powerhouse concert. The Nashville team, along with Lee Ann Womack, is rich in voice and hits. The show is 7:30 p.m. Saturday at St. Pete Times Forum. $39.50-$89.50. (813) 301-2500.

Kids and Family

Kumquat Festival: This quirky festival for the tangy citrus has caught the attention of the Travel Channel for its old-fashioned charm. Sample pies, cookies and more from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday in downtown Dade City. Free admission.

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Things to do in Tampa Bay for the week of Jan. 24 01/23/11 [Last modified: Sunday, January 23, 2011 5:58pm]
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