Plan your weekend
Hairspray: There's a pay-what-you-can preview at 8 p.m. today, and then the American Stage in the Park production starts at 8 p.m. Friday and runs through May 14 at Demens Landing Park, St. Petersburg. Artistic staff are planning a concert-like experience. An adaptation of a 1988 John Waters cult classic, the first park production chosen by producing artistic director Stephanie Gularte, Hairspray falls in line with the season's theme, "In Search of America," covering issues like race and body image with a lighthearted touch. $18 and up. Opening night Gala Under the Stars 6 p.m. Friday, $200. (727) 823-7529. americanstage.org.
Mainsail Art Festival: The grand dame of all Tampa Bay art festivals sets up Saturday and Sunday at Vinoy Park, 701 Bay Shore Drive NE. This will mark the juried festival's 42nd year showcasing the cream of the crop of local and national artists working in fine art and fine craft. For the festival part if it, there's live music, food vendors and activities. For the first time, local glass artist Duncan McClellan's DMG School Project will bring his mobile class lab to the show. There's an activity tent for kids. Free to attend, there's a shuttle service will be available both days (schedule at stpetetrolley.com). For more see mainsailart.org.
Neil Diamond: We suggest you pick up a collection like Neil Diamond 50 — 50th Anniversary Collection, a new 50-song retrospective released to commemorate the golden anniversary of his first hit, Solitary Man. You'll be reminded how sharp and snappy Diamond's early songs were, from Cherry, Cherry to I'm a Believer and sure, Sweet Caroline has mutated into a cultural monster no one can control. Don't miss the 76-year-old icon at 7 p.m. Sunday at Amalie Arena, 401 Channelside Drive, Tampa. $35.75 and up. (813) 301-2500. amaliearena.com.
Singin' and Swingin': A Century of Ella: The Florida Orchestra Pops show brings Grammy Award-winning jazz vocalist Carmen Bradford and conductor Jeff Tyzik for the music that made the "First Lady of Song" unforgettable. 8 p.m. Straz Center for the Performing Arts, 1010 N MacInnes Place, Tampa, Saturday 8 p.m. Mahaffey Theater, 400 First St. S, St. Petersburg and Sunday 7:30 p.m. Ruth Eckerd Hall, 1111 N McMullen-Booth Road, Clearwater. $15-$45. (727) 892-3331. floridaorchestra.org
EcoFest: A celebration of the local businesses, organizations and individuals dedicated to sustainability (ecology, equity and economy) includes demonstrations, informational booths, green living products and services from local artists, green businesses, environmental organizations and organic farms. Also, a parkour agility course, kid friendly yoga, crafts and games. Free. Lowry Park Bandshell, 7525 North Blvd., Tampa. (813) 948-4190. 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Saturday. For more Earth Day activities around the Tampa Bay area see tampabay.com/thingstodo.
Festivals: Head to Ybor City for the Taste of Ybor on Saturday, in which 10 restaurants set up a Tapas Trail from 3 to 6 p.m. Tiny nibbles not enough? Then there's the after-party from 6 to 8 p.m. at the Ybor City Jazz House (think live music, cocktails, dessert and cigars). $25 advance, $30 day of. E Seventh Avenue and N 14th Street, Tampa. In St. Petersburg, the Veg Out! 2017 and Bloody Mary Competition in Williams Park pays tribute to Earth Day on Sunday from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Free admission to Veg Out, food and drink prices vary; Bloody Mary competition $25 advance, $30 at door. Fourth Street and First Avenue N.
Alton Brown: The TV chef's new live show promises to be messy, funny and full of songs, comedy, puppets and potentially dangerous food demonstrations. "Plus, you'll see things I've never been allowed to do on TV," he said. 7:30 p.m. Friday at the Straz Center for the Performing Arts, 1010 N MacInnes Place, Tampa. $59.50 and up. (813) 229-7827. strazcenter.org.
Antiquarian Book Fair: The three-day fair for book worms brings more than 100 specialty booksellers from across the United States. They'll be offering vintage books, maps, prints, postcards and other paper collectibles at the Coliseum, 535 Fourth Ave. N, St. Petersburg. 5-9 p.m. Friday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday. $10 for a weekend pass; $6 for Saturday or Sunday; children 12 and younger and students with ID free.
Green Thumb Festival: While the weekend is filled with Earth Day events, you can really get into the dirt at the Green Thumb Festival at Walter Fuller Park. There will be loads of plants, garden art and accessories for sale. Bring questions to "Ask an Arborist'' and tools to be sharpened for a nominal fee, get soil and water tested and check out the garden club flower show. There will be free mulch, free butterfly plants (while supplies last) and 1,200 trees available for $5. 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. 7891 26th Ave. N, St. Petersburg.
Contact Sharon Kennedy Wynne at [email protected] Follow @SharonKWn.