ST. PETE BEACH
Beach Palooza is a wild, wacky obstacle run
Suit up in your best beach bum attire and pull on your pineapple hat for the Beach Palooza, a wild and wacky 5K run with beach-themed obstacles, at 11 a.m. Saturday beginning at the St. Pete Beach Access, 4700 Gulf Blvd. The challenge of running in the sand kicks it up a notch as participants bounce through a sea of beach balls, dart over fire, plunge into arctic waters, weave through a noodle forest and balance on a sandy see-saw. Doggy Paloozers can participate, but they must remain on a leash. The beer starts flowing an hour before the first wave starts and keeps going to three hours after the final wave. Stick around for the Coast Roast with a bonfire and sand dance. Participants must be 14 or older. $45-$55. For more information, call (312) 980-9983 or visit BeachPalooza.com.
Beach fest is for water sports enthusiasts
A day of beach activities for all ages and experience levels, the Kite4Kids Water Sports Festival will be from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday at the Treasure Island Beach Access, 10400 Gulf Blvd. The event will include kiteboarding, stand-up paddleboarding and skim boarding. There will also be a kiteboard downwind race and stand-up paddleboard races. Proceeds benefit All Children's Hospital. $10 for pro clinics only, $20 for all three experiences, and $45-$75 for races. For more information call (727) 510-8441.
Homecoming dress giveaway is at mall
The Belle of the Ball Project will distribute homecoming dresses to in-need, low-income high school girls from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday in the Seminole Mall, 11201 Park Blvd. Distributions are open to all Pinellas and Hillsborough County high school teens. Donations of dresses can also be made at the distributions. Free. For information, visit belleoftheballproject.com.
USF St. Petersburg holds fall open house
Prospective students and their families can learn about USF St. Petersburg's academic programs, admissions, financial aid, residential housing and other university organizations at the fall open house at USF St. Petersburg from 9 a.m. to noon Saturday at Harborwalk at USF St. Pete, 140 Seventh Ave. S. For more information, call (727) 873-4456 or visit usfsp.edu/openhouse.
Hugs of Florida holds Hydrocephalus Walk
Hugs of Florida, a nonprofit group supporting families who are affected by hydrocephalus, will hold the Hydrocephalus Walk from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday at Largo Central Park, 101 Central Park Drive. The event is free. For more information, contact Paula Keyser at (727) 851-6705 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Get dirty at park's fall habitat replanting
George C. McGough Nature Park, 11901 146th St. N, will hold a fall habitat replanting from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. Saturday. Volunteers are needed. Wear closed-toe shoes and expect to get a little dirty. For more information, call (727) 518-3047.
Seniors, these free workshops are for you
The Senior Learning Council, a Florida not-for-profit providing education to seniors regarding health care, daily living, government programs and assistance, is sponsoring a series of free workshops of particular interest to seniors. The series "What Consumers Need to Know" includes the topic Reverse Mortgages. The workshops will be held at 10 a.m. Thursday at the Pinellas Park Library, 7770 52nd St. N, 2 p.m. Nov. 8 at the Seminole Community Library, 9200 113th St., and at 1 p.m. Nov. 17 in the Gulfport Public Library, 5501 28th Ave. S.
For reservations or more information, call Donna at (727) 278-6338. Reservations are appreciated to assure material availability and room setup.
TAMPA BAY AREA
Volunteers needed to prepare taxes
The AARP Tax-Aide program is looking for volunteers to prepare federal taxes. The nation's largest free, volunteer-run tax preparation service serves low to middle-income taxpayers with special attention to those 60 and older. Volunteers receive IRS-certified training (five to six days in January), reimbursement for mileage and the camaraderie of a great team. Computer knowledge is necessary. A minimum commitment of four hours a week during February, March and early April is required. For more details, e-mail email@example.com or call volunteer coordinator Sylvia Scoble at (727) 595-7408.
Goodies needed for troop care packages
Troops in the Middle East need candy, cookies, microwave popcorn, peanut butter, crackers, canned fruits and meats, flavored soft drink mix, beef jerky, small microwavable products, women's hygiene products, baby wipes, lip balm, sunscreen, bandannas, socks, resealable plastic food-storage bags and cotton swabs. Donations can be dropped off at: the Army Recruiting Office, 11223 78th Ave. N, Seminole; American Legion Post 7, 1760 Turner St., Clearwater; and Extra Space Storage, 4319 Duhme Road, Madeira Beach. Cash donations are also needed to cover shipping. Checks should be made payable to UPS Store and mailed to Joe Tapp, P.O. Box 86223, Madeira Beach, FL 33738. For more information, contact Joe Tapp at (727) 432-1057.