Universal truth: Whether or not you celebrate Christmas, the season can deplete your bank account. (Thanks, near-constant holiday sales.)
Chances are, by today, you've decided it would be wise not to run up that bar tab or take your family to expensive theme parks.
So, why not stroll through downtown Clearwater (and earn bonus points for burning off that pecan pie)? Blast Friday, a free street festival presented by Bright House Networks, goes from 5:30 to 10 p.m. today.
Molly Hatchet, the Lynyrd Skynyrd-inspired rockers from Jacksonville, will provide head-bangin', foot-tappin' jams on the Tampa Bay Times Cleveland Street stage, right outside the Capitol Theatre. (You may recall the band's hit single from the early '80s: Flirtin' With Disaster.)
The block will become a dance party, organizers say. Blast Friday was established in 2009 as downtown Clearwater's free, family-friendly street festival. Supported by the city of Clearwater, the Cleveland Street District and the Downtown Development Board and produced by Ruth Eckerd Hall on the Road, Blast Friday hosts 10 events per year, bringing more than 40,000 people to downtown Clearwater.
Bring your partner or kids or dog. There will be pizza, hot-dog and gyro stands (to name a few), so you shouldn't leave hungry.
And, for those 21 and older, you can enjoy a brew outside. There's plenty on draft at the Capitol Beer House, next to Tony's Pizzeria.
Call it a warmup for the New Year's holiday, or just a chance to take the family out for a night without being forced to break the bank.
Danielle Paquette can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or (727) 445-4224.