Area weekend events offer thrills among the chill
LARA CERRI | Times (2008)
Jill Poorman enjoys craniosacral therapy from therapist Diana Grove at 2008’s Circus McGurkis. This year’s event runs 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday at Lake Vista Park, 16th Street and 62nd Avenue S.
The chill in the air that kicked off the workweek signals the time of year when Tampa Bay area residents take to the outdoors for a bustling fall lineup of events for the family.
This weekend's lineup includes Circus McGurkis, the 19th annual Pet Walk, the Spook Central block party, the Thrill St. Pete/Thrill the World dance event and the official opening of Art in the Park at Williams Park.
Circus McGurkis, the people's fair at Lake Vista Park from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, will expand beyond the sprawling venue under the oaks. It features arts, crafts, music and games, with a focus on activities for kids and families. This year, musicians will perform in the park's recreation center.
Organizers say mayoral candidates Kathleen Ford and Bill Foster will be on hand. Lake Vista Park is at 16th Street S and 62nd Avenue S.
Saturday also marks the opening of Art in the Park from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Williams Park, which runs Saturdays through May. The event offers artists and stage entertainment.
"The event has grown to 40 artists, and a used-books station will be added. That feature came from the Wednesdays at Williams book tent, which was really popular," said Christine Silvia, coordinator of Art in the Park.
The park is at First Avenue and Third Street N. Call (727) 804-6993.
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Friday through Sunday
• TASCO's Howl-O-Fest 2009, Friday through Sunday at the Pioneer Park Settlement at Boyd Hill Nature Park, Environmental Studies entrance, 2900 31st St. S. Admission is $3. The event also includes a kids trick-or-treat trail for an additional $5 admission. The event runs 6 to 10 p.m. Friday and Saturday and 6 to 9 p.m. Sunday. Also during the Howl-O-Fest, visit Field of Screams "Quarantined," a haunted house and trail in the woods at the park. Admission is $5 and runs 7 to 11 p.m. A costume contest is 8 p.m. Saturday. For information, call (727) 893-7813.
• SPCA Tampa Bay's 19th annual Pet Walk at North Shore Park. 8:30 a.m. registration, 9 a.m. walk. The event will include obedience and agility demonstrations, a pet parade and a pet howl-o-ween costume contest. Music, Pet Walk mascot photos and a food court for you and your pet. For more information, visit petwalk.org or call (727) 586-3591.
• Green Living Expo and Sustainable Science Fair is 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Science Center of Pinellas County, 7701 22nd Ave. N. For more information, call (727) 341-3092.
• 17th annual St. Petersburg Times Festival of Reading is 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., 140 Seventh Ave. S at Bayboro Harbor USF St. Petersburg. For details, visit festivalofreading.com or call (727) 893-8523.
• Enjoy an Evening for the Bay from 6 to 10 p.m. at Tampa Bay Watch Marine Center, 3000 Pinellas Bayway S. The event will include a concert by Jim Morris, a silent auction and delicious food, all to benefit Tampa Bay Watch. Visit tampabaywatch.org or call (727) 867-8166.
• Spook Central, a free block party along Central Avenue in the Dome District, includes ghost tours of the Gas Plant Antique Arcade from 6 to 9 p.m. The block party will be between 11th and 16th streets and will include open houses, street performers and a Thriller dance-along. E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or call (727) 894-5611.
• Calling all Michael Jackson fans. Thrill St. Pete/Thrill the World is at the Pier. Sign-in begins at 6:30 p.m.; the dance begins at 8:30 p.m. The event is an attempt to break the Guinness World Record for the largest simultaneous dance to Jackson's Thriller. Thousands worldwide will learn the Thriller dance and perform it together Saturday. For more information, visit thrillstpete.com, stpetepier.com or call (727) 895-6620. The Pier is at 800 Second Ave. NE.