Plan your weekend
An American in Paris: The hit Broadway show based on the 1951 film starring Gene Kelly and Leslie Caron is at Tampa's Straz Center for the Performing Arts through Sunday. The story follows an American soldier who stays in Paris after the war to pursue his painting and falls in love with a French ballerina. It includes a score made up of tunes by George and Ira Gershwin. Songs include I Got Rhythm, 'S Wonderful, They Can't Take That Away From Me, and the title track, An American in Paris. Runs through Sunday, 1010 N MacInnes Place, Tampa. $39-$125. (813) 229-7827. strazcenter.org.
Christmas at the Mahaffey: BridgePoint Church throws a public holiday celebration at St. Petersburg's Mahaffey Theater Friday and Saturday. There will be live contemporary music, spiritual messages, refreshments and family activities. Free (tickets required). Mahaffey Theater, 400 First St. S, St. Petersburg. (727) 384-3400. 6-7 and 8-9 p.m. Friday; 2-3, 4-5 and 6-7 p.m. Saturday.
Hanukkah: Dozens of menorahs will go up around the Tampa Bay area during the holiday, which begins Saturday at sundown. Our favorite is the Pizza Menorah from Chabad of Clearwater. They will light the 9-foot edible menorah made of pizza at a festival on Sunday with music by the Freylekh Klezmer band, entertainment by Dallas the Fire Guy, dancing, singing, hot latkes, doughnuts, drinks, chocolate gelt, kosher pizza and gifts for children. In past years, Chabad of Clearwater has erected menorahs with marshmallows and doughnuts, above. Free. Surf Style Mega Store, 311 S Gulfview Blvd., Clearwater Beach. (727) 265-2770. 4:30 p.m. Sunday.
Fourth Fridays Tampa: Museums and performing arts venues offer extended hours with free, special or added-value admission deals or special programming. It's a great opportunity to see fantastic art for a reasonable price. The Tampa Museum of Art participates by staying open till 10 p.m. and asking for a donation rather than the usual admission fee. (813) 274-8130. tampamuseum.org. Not far away, the Florida Museum of Photographic Arts, or FMoPA, will host author and artist Kai McBride for a talk about his book, About Face: Picturing Tampa, at 6 p.m. The monograph contains 52 works that the Columbia University photography professor shot while on a trip to Tampa in 2007. The event is pay as you choose, with a suggested donation of $10. (813) 221-2222. fmopa.org.
New Granada's Xmas Night Extravaganza: If you're seeking refuge from the holiday hubbub, head to New World for its annual Christmas Night blowout that's turned into a yearly reunion for the local indie music community. Career, a local supergroup whose members are often busy with other projects, will play. Joining them are noise punks Permanent Makeup, Orlando punk trio Expert Timing and indie pop outfit Pajamas. 8 p.m. Sunday at New World Brewery, 1313 E Eighth Ave., Tampa.