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Dining Planner: Ugly sweater party, 'Nutcracker' tea and other holiday goodies

Food trucks: Holiday cheer

Got a suitably hideous holiday sweater? Don we now our gay apparel and head to the Food Trucks Around Town: Eat, Drink and Be Ugly event at 6 p.m. Friday at the Port of St. Petersburg. Enjoy an evening of food truck dining that also has waterfront and indoor air-conditioned seating with live music. Plus, there will be a visit from Santa. Admission is free; food individually priced (but use extra napkins to protect your ugly sweater). 250 Eighth Ave. SE, St. Petersburg.

Sugarplum Fairies: Land of Sweets

If you're planning to head to the Straz Center for the Performing Arts to see the iconic Nutcracker on Sunday, consider making a day of it because Maestro's will be offering a Land of the Sweets celebration from 3:30-5:30 p.m. It's perfect either after the 1 p.m. matinee or before the 6 p.m. performance in Morsani Hall. A buffet of seasonal desserts and delicate tea sandwiches will be offered at the restaurant, which will be festively decorated for the holidays. Father Christmas and performers from Next Generation Ballet will be on hand for souvenir photos. Land of the Sweets is $22.50, $13.50 for kids 12 and under. Nutcracker tickets $30-$125. (813) 229-7827. strazcenter.org.

Dreaming of a … White dog

Here's a holiday event of sorts strictly for grownups. On Saturday at noon, meet Tim Smith of Discovery Channel's Moonshiners series at B-21 Fine Wines & Spirits in Tarpon Springs. He's the guy from the show in the overalls sans shirt who hails from Climax, Va. (yes, a real place). He's a third-generation moonshiner who in 2013 took the plunge and went legit. These days he's making Climax Moonshine. Just what is 'shine? It's American whiskey without the oak age. Smith will be signing purchased bottles and kibitzing about whiskey. 43380 U.S. 19 N, Tarpon Springs. (727) 937-5049.

Book lovers: Celebrate Florida

On Saturday at 10 a.m., Florida seafood lovers can head to Weedon Island Preserve for a book talk with Bruce Hunt, author of Seafood Lovers Florida. From fish camps to fine dining establishments, Hunt will talk about hot Florida seafood dining spots. Free, registration required. 1800 Weedon Drive NE, St. Petersburg, (727) 453-6500.

On the other hand, three authors and a rancher will convene at noon Saturday for a book talk at Bok Tower Gardens. Field to Feast, Recipes Celebrating Florida Farmers, Chefs, and Artisans co-authors Heather McPherson, Pam Brandon and Katie Farmand, and members of the Lightsey Cattle family, will all host a Celebrated Chef series gathering and cook up small bites from grilled ribeye to olive oil cake, and entertain guests with stories. Guests receive a signed copy of Field to Feast, and authors will personalize copies. $55, includes signed copy of Field to Feast. 1151 Tower Blvd., Lake Wales. (863) 676-1408.

Dining Planner: Ugly sweater party, 'Nutcracker' tea and other holiday goodies 12/14/16 [Last modified: Wednesday, December 14, 2016 11:34am]
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