Here, in the land of fun-shine, festivities abound — especially over the next 10 days as the 58th Fun 'n Sun Festival gets under way. It's Clearwater's tribute to great weather, good times and fabulous food and music.
The happening begins tonight with Blast Friday, a street festival on Cleveland Street, and culminates May 8, Mother's Day, with the Fun 'n Sun Toyota Country Concert. The country concert is the finale of a four-concert series that kicks off this weekend at Coachman Park on the waterfront, so round up the blankets, folding chairs and kiddos and get ready to soak up some sun and sounds.
Saturday is for smooth jazz-festing and Sunday brings the sounds of yesteryear via QFest.
The city's annual Knology Clearwater Sea-Blues Festival, normally held in February, joins the Fun 'n Sun musical lineup on May 6-7.
General admission to the concerts is $5 at the gates, free for children 10 and under. Reserved seating tickets vary in price and may be purchased at Coachman Park. Both general and reserved seating tickets are available at ticketmaster.com.
Or, you can get in free. Pick up complimentary tickets at select sponsors listed at myclearwater.com/events. Also, free tickets may be found and printed at facebook.com/cityofclearwater. Just click the Fun 'n Sun Festival link.
All shows offer a variety of food and drinks, vendor items and a children's play area.
Gate times are subject to change. Coolers, food, drinks, pets, fireworks, umbrellas, tents and canopies are not permitted at Coachman Park.
Baseball fans won't want to miss the 8th annual Charity Softball Challenge, which will benefit the families of slain lawmen Sgt. Thomas Baitinger and Officers Jeffrey Yaslowitz and David Crawford.
There's a disc golf tournament, too, presented by the Tampa Bay Disc Sports Club.
For Fun 'n Sun information, call (727) 562-4700. And happy fun-shining.
Live entertainment by Rick Derringer. Streetfest takes place from 5:30 to 9:30 p.m. on Cleveland Street, between Osceola and Fort Harrison avenues, in downtown Clearwater. blastfriday.com
8th Annual Police Charity Softball Game
The charity game (Clearwater and Largo police departments vs. St. Petersburg's) starts at 4 p.m. at Bright House Field, 601 N Old Coachman Road, Clearwater. It's followed by the Clearwater Threshers vs. Tampa Yankees game at 6:30 p.m. Tickets are $17 and include admission to both games. They can be purchased at the gate or in advance by calling the Clearwater Police Department at (727) 562-4304 or the Largo Police Department at (727) 586-7433. Regular Threshers tickets are $5 to $9. (727) 467-4457 or threshersbaseball.com.
16th Annual Smooth Jazz Fest
The City of Clearwater and radio station WSJT-HD2 present this jazz jubilee with the Rippingtons, featuring Russ Freeman, headlining the event from 8:30 to 10 p.m. at Coachman Park, 301 Drew St. Gates open at 1 p.m. smooth987hd2.com.
Saturday and Sunday
Disc Golf Tournament
Presented by the Tampa Bay Disc Sports Club, the tourney takes place at Northeast Coachman Park, 1120 Old Coachman Road. Starts at 8 a.m. Saturday, 10 a.m. Sunday and costs $30 to $60, plus $10 for those who aren't members of the Professional Disc Golf Association. pdga.com or (727) 692-0443.
QFest presented by Q105
It's the '70s all over again with Kansas, Little River Band, Greg West and more performing until 9:30 p.m. at Coachman Park. Gates open at 1:30 p.m. myq105.com.
Friday and Saturday, May 6-7
Knology Clearwater Sea-Blues Festival
Seafood and soothing sounds mark this festival at Coachman Park. Jimmy Hall and Wet Willie headline May 6. Gates open at 4:30 p.m. Taj Mahal tops off a whole day of music May 7. Gates open that day at 12:30 p.m. Knology customers receive up to four free tickets when they present a cable bill. clearwaterseablues.com.
Sunday, May 8
Fun 'n Sun Toyota Country Concert
A day of country music is presented by radio station WQYK and the city of Clearwater at Coachman Park. Rodney Atkins headlines from 8:20 to 9:35 p.m. Gates open at 12:30 p.m. wqyk.com.