The Birds: St. Petersburg's American Stage opens its season with the Conor McPherson play — not like the famed Alfred Hitchcock movie but with plenty of psychological horror nonetheless. It opens Friday, with previews Wednesday and Thursday. $29-$49. (727) 823-7529.
Oktoberfest: The traditional German-themed beer parties start now and run throughout October, including Literstein Heritage Night at Dunedin Brewery on Thursday. Get a 1-liter mug filled with this year's OktoBEERfest Lager for $35. More Oktoberfests at tampabay.com/things-to-do.
ShadoCon: Yet another "con," this one for anime, video game and comic book geeks. Guests include Dante Basco (Prince Zuko of Avatar: The Last Air Bender) and Kyle Hebert (teen Gohan of Dragon Ball Z). It's Friday through Sunday at Hyatt Regency Tampa. $25-$30; $50-$60 weekend pass. (813) 388-7155.
More stage: Tampa's Stageworks Theatre's new play is the classic A Raisin in the Sun, about three generations of a black family on the south side of Chicago. It opens Friday. $26, $35 opening night. (813) 727-2708. Coming to the Straz Center in Tampa are two plays: Hat Trick Theatre's Land of the Dead, based on a plague outbreak in the Globe Theatre in 1599 London, $23 and up; and Men Are From Mars — Women Are From Venus Live, based on the book. $50 and up. (813) 229-7827].
Keith Urban: The country star and American Idol judge pushes the boundaries of country music with his new album, Fuse. He's at the MidFlorida Credit Union Amphitheatre in Tampa on Friday. $29.25-$59; (813) 740-2446.
Romeo and Juliet: St. Petersburg Opera opens its season with Charles Gounod's version of the Shakespeare play with a diverse cast. Sung in French with English supertitles. It runs Friday, Sunday and Oct. 8 at the Palladium Theater. $21-$65. (727) 822-3590.
Gay and Lesbian Film Festival: The long-running festival opens Friday at Tampa Theatre with festivities and a free screening of The Happy Sad. It continues through Oct. 12, with some screenings at BayWalk in St. Petersburg. tiglff.com
Kids and Family
Dinosaur exhibit: The Glazer Children's Museum opens Dinosaurs: Land of Fire and Ice on Saturday. Kids can meet touchable dinosaurs and dig for fossils. Museum admission: $15, $9.50 children, under 1 free.
more to explore
Get an inside look, including video, at Howl-O-Scream and Halloween Horror Nights at tampabay.com/things-to-do.