Bruno Mars: The Grammy winner and Honolulu native started out as a pure pop guy (Just the Way You Are, Grenade), but has branched out with synth cut Treasure, yet another smash from latest album Unorthodox Jukebox. Show is 7:30 p.m. Wednesday at Tampa Bay Times Forum in Tampa. $37.25-$81.25. (813) 301-2500.
National Dog Day: Like we need an official day to go crazy for our dogs. But today also is to highlight pooches that need to be rescued. The Sail Pavilion on the Riverwalk in Tampa celebrates from 2 to 8 p.m. with free dog treats, Frosty Paws for purchase and drink specials for owners.
Flow Tour: Who knew there were professional indoor surfers? They'll do tricks on an artificial wave and surf simulator inside the Clearwater Surf Style Mega Store (311 S Gulfview Blvd.) for the 2013 Carbon U.S. National Flow Tour all day Tuesday. It's also open to non-pros for $15-$40 fee; free for spectators and parking is $2.50 an hour or $15 per day. Toll-free 1-888-787-3789.
Old Skool Labor Day Weekend: You can start celebrating Labor Day early at Shephard's annual four-day party on Clearwater Beach. It starts Friday and features music by Black Sheep and the Ying Yang Twins (Saturday) and Run DMC's Rev Run, DJ Ruckus and DJ Skribble (Sunday). $20. shephards.com
Toni Braxton: Before lupus and Braxton Family Values, she was one of the top R&B divas of the '90s, with Un-Break My Heart. Now she's back on tour, with a stop 7:30 p.m. Wednesday at the Mahaffey Theater in St. Petersburg. $45.50-$99.50. (727) 893-7832.
Below Deck Wrap Party: The Seminole Hard Rock Hotel and Casino is holding a wrap party tonight for the Bravo reality show Below Deck with South Tampa resident Adrienne Gang, who is the chief steward on the featured yacht. Starts at 8 p.m. at 5223 N Orient Road, Tampa. Free entry, cash bar.
Kids and Family
Gecko Fest: Gulfport has made geckos its thing. The whimsical street festival has a walking parade, mermaids, acrobats, live music and ends with its famous Street Dance on Saturday along Beach Boulevard. Free.
Giant Food Truck Rally: The goal is more than 100 food trucks from across the Southeast at the Florida State Fairgrounds in Tampa to break the Guinness World Record for the largest rally (62 in Miami). It's free admission Saturday; $6 parking.
more to explore
Check out our Ultimate Bar Guide at tampabay.com/bars.