Valentine's Day: In Thursday's Weekend section, our critics will bring you quintessential Tampa Bay dates. But first, here are local institutions cranking up the charm:
Florida Orchestra: The Valentine's Pops concerts include songs from the Beatles, Love Story, Forrest Gump, Pirates of Penzance, West Side Story and Star Wars, Friday at the Straz Center in Tampa, Saturday at the Mahaffey Theater in St. Petersburg and Sunday at Ruth Eckerd Hall in Clearwater. $15-$45.
Total Eclipse of the Heart: It's the dinner 'round the world Saturday and Sunday in MOSI's planetarium, where the sky transforms into Paris, Buenos Aires and Fiji. $120 per couple, $90 per couple members.
Valentine's Night Safari: You can see the wild animals of Africa without leaving Tampa at Busch Gardens' safari Saturday and Sunday with drinks, appetizers and desserts. $250 per couple.
OTHER DATE NIGHTS
Comedy: Vegas veteran Rita Rudner brings her one-liners Tuesday to the Capitol Theatre ($29-$49). MADtv regular Aries Spears performs Thursday to Sunday at the Tampa Improv ($25-$27; $52 with dinner Sunday). And cult Canadian comedy show Trailer Park Boys cast members Randy and Mr. Lahey perform Sunday at Ybor's Crowbar (sold out).
Music: Queen of Motown Diana Ross comes Wednesday to Ruth Eckerd Hall ($58.75-$128.75). Legendary tenor Andrea Bocelli brings the love with arias and crossover hits Thursday at Amalie Arena ($75-$365). Singer-songwriter Todd Rundgren plays the Mahaffey Theater on Sunday ($37.50-$55.50), and 11-time Grammy nominee Alan Parsons brings "Live Project" to Ruth Eckerd Hall on Friday ($45-$79).
Dunedin Mardi Gras: Fat Tuesday sees the good times rolling right down Main Street with live music in Pioneer Park starting at 4 p.m. Free, $55 VIP.
KIDS AND FAMILY
R5: The pop quintet of TV fame brings its tour to Ruth Eckerd Hall on Saturday. $33.25-$53.25.
Bay Area Renaissance Festival: Week 2 of the festival at MOSI is a "Chocolate Fantasy" with wine and chocolate tasting, a chocolate festival, gingerbread house building competition, children's cookie decorating and more. $12.95-$20.95; $10 dogs.
More to explore
Find more date night ideas at tampabay.com/things-to-do.