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  1. Christmas Town at Busch Gardens

    Editor's pick

    Busch Gardens

    Tampa : 3605 Bougainvillea Ave., Tampa, 33612

    The park is transformed into a nighttime holiday wonderland with miles of lights, special food and treats, entertainment, a bottle Christmas tree, live music and holiday shopping. This year, Christmas Town is included with daily admission.

    Price: $95, $90 for ages 3-9

  2. Holiday FantaSea

    Florida Aquarium

    Channelside : 701 Channelside Drive, Tampa, 33602

    At this party between Christmas and New Year's, the aquarium will have extended hours until 6:30 p.m., light shows and a snow play area for children that opens at noon. Included with daily admission.

    Price: $23.95, $20.95 for seniors 60+, $18.95 for kids 3-12. Prices are generally about $2 cheaper if you buy them online at the aquarium's site.

  3. Tampa's Downtown on Ice

    Editor's pick

    Curtis Hixon Park

    Downtown Tampa : 600 N Ashley Drive, Tampa, 33602

    Even in Florida, you can get in the holiday spirit by skating on an outdoor rink in the park. Each 90-minute session includes skate rental. The rink is open through Jan. 4.

    Price: $10.

  4. Ice!

    Gaylord Palms Resort

    Kissimmee : 6000 W Osceola Parkway, Kissimmee, 34746

    The resort has 2 million pounds of hand-carved ice sculptures created by artists brought in from China and 40 tons of snow. It's only 9 degrees inside, but they supply you with heavy parkas. Still, gloves and warm socks are recommended. This year features a Nutcracker theme, ice slides and artis …

    Price: $28.99-$29.99, $26.99-$28.99 seniors, $14.99-$16.99 ages 4-12, 3 and younger free. $18 parking fee (validated if dining at resort restaurant).

  5. Phantom of the Opera

    Editor's pick

    Carol Morsani Hall at the Straz Center for the Performing Arts

    Downtown Tampa : 1010 N MacInnes Place, Tampa, 33602

    After an acclaimed sold-out tour of the United Kingdom, this production of Andrew Lloyd Webber's classic musical has reinvented staging and scenic designs described as stunning. A cast and orchestra of 52 perform songs like Music of the Night and Masquerade in the tale of a beautiful soprano who …

    Price: $25-$128.50.

  6. Holiday Lights in the Gardens

    Editor's pick

    Florida Botanical Gardens

    Largo : 12520 Ulmerton Road, Largo, 33774

    Stroll through the gardens with more than 750,000 twinkly lights, lasers, animated figures and entertainers lining the pathways. This year, visit with Santa and Mrs. Claus in a decorated gazebo on select nights. Check flbg.org for complete schedule.

    Price: $4, 12 and younger free.

  7. Nights of Shimmering Lights

    Hillsborough County Fairgrounds

    Brandon : Corner of Sydney Washer Road and Hwy 60, Brandon, 33567

    Drive your vehicle through a light and sound show including more than 2-miles of lights with 750 larger-than-life lighted scenes, tunnels and dancing lights. Open at dusk daily through Dec. 30.

    Price: $15 Mon.-Wed., $20 Thur.-Sun. per car load.

  8. Wild Wonderland

    Editor's pick

    Lowry Park Zoo

    Seminole Heights : 1101 W Sligh Ave., Tampa, 33604

    The zoo closes at 5 p.m. and reopens at 6:30 for the annual evening winter festival on select nights with live reindeer, Santa, a million twinkling lights, rides, games, African penguins, animated displays and "Florida snow." Select nights through Dec. 30.

    Price: $15, $13 ages 3-11, 2 and younger free.

  9. Saigon Kick

    State Theatre

    Downtown St. Petersburg : 687 Central Ave., St. Petersburg, 33701

    After performing at this year's 98 Rockfest, the rockers return to perform at the St. Petersburg venue with Save the Radio and Pitbull Toddler.

    Price: $25, $30 day of show.

  10. Contra Dance

    Pinellas Park Auditorium

    Pinellas Park : 7690 59th St. N , Pinellas Park, 33780

    You don't need a partner to dance to contra dance. Pre-dance lessons available at 7:30 p.m.

    This portion features live music by the Rafter Ringers with Stan Prince calling.

    Price: $10, $5 ages 13-21, 12 and younger free.

  11. Phantom of the Opera

    Editor's pick

    Carol Morsani Hall at the Straz Center for the Performing Arts

    Downtown Tampa : 1010 N MacInnes Place, Tampa, 33602

    After an acclaimed sold-out tour of the United Kingdom, this production of Andrew Lloyd Webber's classic musical has reinvented staging and scenic designs described as stunning. A cast and orchestra of 52 perform songs like Music of the Night and Masquerade in the tale of a beautiful soprano who …

    Price: $25-$128.50.

  12. Holiday Golfing for Kids

    Ace Golf Brandon

    Brandon : 820 S Kings Ave., Brandon, 33511

    Each day through Jan. 4, kids get one free bucket of range balls so they can practice golfing during the holidays. Children must be accompanied by an adult. Also takes place at Ace Golf in Riverview.

    Price: Free.

  13. Holidays at Universal Studios

    Universal Orlando

    Orlando : 6000 Universal Blvd., Orlando, 32819

    Get into the holiday spirit at Universal Studios with the Macy's Holiday Parade including balloons and floats, and the "Grinchmas Who-liday Spectacular" live stage show based on the Dr. Seuss classic, How the Grinch Stole Christmas.

    Price: Single Day Admission: $85, $79 ages 3-9, one-park Florida resident pass purchased online. See the website for more details.

  14. Guided Photography Hike

    Brooker Creek Preserve

    Tarpon Springs : 3940 Keystone Road, Tarpon Springs, 34688

    Local photographers and master naturalists highlight the seasonal features that help participants capture the natural beauty of the preserve. Then, hit the trails and boardwalk looking for shots that reflect the season.

    Price: Free (registration required).

  15. Downtown Saturday Morning Market

    Editor's pick

    Progress Energy Park/Al Lang Field

    Downtown St. Petersburg : 180 Second Ave. SE, St. Petersburg, 33701

    More than 100 local vendors including farmers, growers with fresh produce and gourmet foods. Also, crafts, prepared foods, live entertainment, flowers and plants.

    This week, the Rowdies will be on hand at 11 a.m. to demonstrate and teach their soccer skills. They will also conduct soccer skills contests including a ball juggling contest with winners taking home free First Night buttons, Rowdies game tickets and gear.

  16. Holiday in the Gardens

    Nature Coast Botanical Gardens

    Spring Hill / West Hernando : 1489 Parker Ave., Spring Hill, 34606

    Stroll through the botanical gardens, among trees decorated by local groups and organizations, and vote for favorite tree and decorated wreaths (voting for trees continues through early January).

    Price: Free admission, $25 to sponsor and decorate a tree.

  17. Osborne Family Spectacle of Dancing Lights

    Hollywood Studios at Walt Disney World

    Lake Buena Vista : 1515 N Buena Vista Drive, Lake Buena Vista, 32830

    Cast members take months to get ready for one special guest to throw the giant switch on the seasonal display. Features millions of glittering lights perfectly synchronized to holiday music that decorate the New York street scene of Disney's Hollywood Studios. Included with daily general admissi …

    Price: $94, $88 ages 3-9, 2 and younger free.

  18. SeaWorld's Christmas Celebration

    SeaWorld

    Orlando : 7007 SeaWorld Drive (Interstate 4, Exit 71), Orlando, 32821

    SeaWorld's celebration welcomes guests with everything from a sparkling Sea of Trees, classic holiday tunes, an ice skating show, Holiday Reflections fountain and fireworks show, a Christmas market, Elmo's Christmas Wish show and a special Shamu's "Christmas - Miracles" show. Remains o …

    Price: $95, $87 ages 3-9.

  19. Our Wildest Place Hike

    Brooker Creek Preserve

    Tarpon Springs : 3940 Keystone Road, Tarpon Springs, 34688

    Take a guided walk along the trails to discover why the preserve has been called "Our Wildest Place''; wear closed toe shoes, hat, bring water. Children younger than 16 must be accompanied by adult, and younger than age six may find the hike challenging.

    Price: Free.

  20. Azalea Community Fresh Market

    Science Center of Pinellas County

    Tyrone : 7701 22nd Ave. N, St. Petersburg, 33707

    This new market in St. Petersburg's Tyrone area offers fresh produce, local and handcrafted foods, local artist's crafts and entertainment.

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