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Kids & Family

  1. Christmas lights, shows go up around Tampa Bay hours after turkey

    Events

    By now you're just about done digesting that big turkey dinner so ... on to Christmas! Here are some holiday events to check out, many of them starting today.

    The Kresge House in St. Petersburg’s Oakdale neighborhood takes more than three months to install and has been on TV.
  2. Have visitors for the holiday? Here are things to do with them in the Tampa Bay area

    Events

    If you have relatives in town or kids at home on break this weekend, you may be in need of some diversions. Here are some destinations to get people out of your house and enjoying the local sights:

    Only in Florida

    Florida theme parks are a good bet, but keep in mind that this is one of the busiest times of the year. Big crowds build before and around Thanksgiving and last until about Tuesday.
Orlando Sentinel (2009)
  3. ICE! returns to Orlando resort with cool ice wonders

    Florida

    The Gaylord Palms Resort in Kissimmee has once again turned its massive convention center space over to ICE!, its annual winter wonder you can walk through to marvel at 2 million pounds of hand-carved ice sculptures.

    at the Gaylord Palms Resort in Kissimmee. Credit: Gaylord Hotel

  4. SeaWorld, Busch Gardens offers slew of ticket deals for 'Blue Friday'

    Florida

    SeaWorld and Busch Gardens are getting in on holiday shopping with buy one, get one free ticket deals worth up to $180 in an online-only sale. First, you have to register for the parks' email updates at seaworldorlando.com or at buschgardenstampa.com. Then at …

    Orcas during a show at the Shamu Up Close attraction at Sea World in Orlando, Fla., Jan. 7, 2014. (Joshua C. Cruey/Orlando Sentinel/MCT) 1148374
  5. Free Smithsonian animal exhibit making a Tampa stop this weekend

    Events

    A free interactive exhibit from the Smithsonian is making the final stop on its U.S. tour at Tampa's Lowry Park Zoo this weekend. Animal Connections: Our Journey Together will be parked by the main entrance to the zoo at 1101 W Sligh Ave. in Tampa to introduce visitors to the special relationship humans share with …

    A free Smithsonian exhibit, Animal Connections: Our Journey Together will end its U.S. tour this weekend at Tampa's Lowry Park Zoo, parked by the main entrance. Lowry Park Zoo
  6. Video shows ride on world's tallest roller coaster being built in Orlando

    Florida

    The company behind the world's tallest roller coaster coming to Orlando in 2017 has released a stomach-turning video simulating what the twisting Skyscraper will look like when it terrifies people riding it over International Drive.

    This rendering shows the “polercoaster” Skyscraper, which will stand 570 feet tall over International Drive.
  7. Series at Clearwater's Capitol Theatre puts classic Christmas movies on the big screen

    Events

    Clearwater's Capitol Theatre has announced a new Holiday Classic Movie Series. It's full of movies that will be played endlessly on cable in the coming weeks, but maybe it's time to see these holiday chestnuts on the big screen.

    Tim Allen stars in The Santa Clause, which will be shown at the Capitol Theatre on Dec. 20.
  8. Top things to do in Tampa Bay the week of Nov. 17-23

    Events

    Ybor Tree Lighting: Can you believe it's this time of year again? Wednesday is 36 days before Christmas, but head out to Centro Ybor as Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn and Santa light the 37-foot tree. Plus there's caroling and you can get free hot chocolate (hey, forecast temps are 50s-60s). Free. (813) 274-7936.

    santa ornament on christmas tree from istock
  9. 'Harry Potter' actors at Universal Orlando fan weekend to include Hagrid, Dumbledore

    Florida

    Hagrid, Dumbledore, Luna and the Weasley twins will be coming to Orlando in January for Universal Orlando's second Celebration of Harry Potter, a weekend of fan events at the theme park with actors, panel discussion and demonstrations from film's creators.

    Among the actors coming for Universal Orlando’s second Celebration of Harry Potter is Michael Gambon, who plays Dumbledore. Ticket packages start at $219.
  10. Free One Direction concert at Universal on Monday

    Events

    That screaming you'll hear Monday will be coming from the direction of One Direction, performing a free show at Universal Orlando for NBC's Today show to promote their new album, Four. No admission is required because the boys will be out in CityWalk, which is open to the public for no charge. Well, except …

    One Direction performs during the German game show "Wetten Dass" or Bet it...? in Graz, Austria, Saturday Nov. 8, 2014. (AP Photo/Ronald Zak) XRZ116