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5 things to do in January

1 CRAZY for ballet. The world's top professional dancers take the stage for one performance only of Ballet's Greatest Hits at 8 p.m. Jan. 5 at the David A. Straz Jr. Center for the Performing Arts, 1010 N MacInnes Place, Tampa. Tickets are $32.50-$74.50 and available at strazcenter.org.

To really make an evening of it, you can enjoy catering by Maestro's Restaurant as you mingle with some of ballet's biggest stars from Joffrey Ballet, New York City Ballet, American Ballet Theatre, San Francisco Ballet, National Ballet of Canada, Pacific Northwest Ballet and Mariinsky Ballet in a meet-and-greet immediately after the show. Tickets are $25. Call (813) 222-1275 to make a reservation.

2 CRAZY over pirates. Have you always wanted to be part of the Gasparilla invasion? Well, here's your chance to be in the flotilla alongside the "Jose Gaspar" pirate ship — and, if you can manage it with that hook on your arm, you can eat and drink, too. The Yacht Starship Gasparilla Brunch Cruise departs the Channelside dock, 603 Channelside Drive, Tampa, at 10:30 a.m. Jan. 26 (boarding starts at 10) and cruises alongside the "Jose Gaspar" pirate ship and the flotilla as it crosses the Tampa side of the bay. Your ticket — $117.95 for adults, $75.15 for children, under 4 free — includes a brunch buffet, a DJ and spectacular views. A cash bar is available on board. The dress code is casual attire or your best pirate garb. You'll be dropped back at Channelside at 1 p.m. so you can catch the parade. Details at yachtstarship.com.

3 13th Annual Tampa Bay Black Heritage Festival. The 13th Annual Tampa Bay Black Heritage Festival will begin Jan. 17 in Curtis Hixon Park, on E Zack Street in Tampa, and run through Jan. 26. The 10-day celebration includes a Living History Art Exhibit featuring pioneer civil rights leaders Harry and Harriette Moore, the annual Martin Luther King Jr. Day parade, a special film screening, seminars and musical entertainment from jazz saxophonist Eric Darius to pop/R&B band Klymaxx. Details at tampablackheritage.org.

4 The Best of Tampa Bay Film Festival. In celebration of Tampa Bay's award-winning, talented filmmakers, this film festival and party, presented by the Florida Film Network, will give awards for best actor, actress, editing, screenplay, cinematography, directing and film as well as the audience favorite. 11 a.m.-9 p.m. Jan. 20 at the Tampa Pitcher Show, 14416 N Dale Mabry Highway, Tampa. Advance tickets are $25; $30 day of show. Details at floridafilmnetwork.com/events/the-best-of-tampa-bay-film-festival.

5 CRAZY over Patsy. Learn about Patsy Cline from a woman who channels her. C.J. Harding has been impersonating the late country music singer for 17 years and now, as part of the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at Eckerd College, she'll lecture about Patsy Cline, who died at the young age of 30 in a plane crash in 1963, in three 90-minute sessions in Largo, Palm Harbor and at Eckerd itself Jan. 17 and 18. "I'll share with you my historical and personal knowledge of Patsy and how our lives have intertwined," Harding, a snowbird who spends half the year in a condo near the Sunshine Skyway bridge and the other half in Minnesota, said. The fee for the noncredit course is $10. Details at eckerd.edu/olli/index.php.

Patti Ewald, Times staff writer

5 things to do in January 12/18/12 [Last modified: Tuesday, December 18, 2012 3:30am]
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