Thursday, October 18, 2018


Christopher Spata

Christopher Spata

Christopher Spata is a web producer and features writer for the Tampa Bay Times, focusing on entertainment, pop culture, social media and things to do. He also contributes to The Feed blog. A lifelong Floridian, he previously worked as a web producer and entertainment reporter for the Tampa Tribune, and covered sports for the Ocala Star-Star Banner. He graduated from the University of South Florida in 2011, and joined the Times in 2016.

Customers enjoy drinks and conversation at the SpookEasy Lounge, a spooky themed bar hidden behind a bookshelf on the second floor of the Stone Soup Company in Ybor City. [Luis Santana | Times]

To get to Ybor’s spookiest bar, step through the secret bookcase

TAMPAAsked to describe his newly opened SpookEasy Lounge in Ybor City, you’d expect EvanChristopher Traver to go with any number of words. "Goth." "Victorian." "Hidden." Even an on-the-nose "spooky speakeasy" would have worked.His actual...
Updated: 7 hours ago
Ira Flatow, host of NPR's

Hey, NPR geeks: ‘Science Friday’ is coming to Tampa

Ready for some “brain fun for curious people," live on stage? Science Friday, one of NPR’s most popular radio shows and podcasts, is coming to Tampa Theatre on Nov. 17 at 8 p.m. for a live show with host Ira...
Published: 10/16/18
Jared Sanchez shows off one of his animatronic lions known as the Kings from Chuck E. Cheese at his Tampa home. He now has four and makes YouTube videos with them singing parody songs like Don't Go Breaking My Parts, a spin of Elton John's Don't Go Breaking My Heart. JAMES BORCHUCK  |  Times

He was lost. A Chuck E. Cheese robot helped him find his way.

A Tampa man is living his dream, the dream of finding an obscure robot from Chuck E. Cheese's Pizza Time Theatre and making it sing again.
Published: 10/11/18
NBC Nightly News anchor Lester Holt is skipping his planned trip to Tampa. [JOSE LUIS VILLEGAS | Sacramento Bee via AP (2015)]

Lester Holt cancels NBC 'Nightly News’ from Tampa, heads for Panhandle

The realities of breaking news have interrupted Lester Holt’s planned NBC Nightly News broadcast from Tampa that was to be part of the anchor’s Across America tour.Holt will instead report tonight from Panama City in...
Published: 10/10/18
Courtesy of Susanne Nielsen
German-language podcast host Susanne Nielsen, left, at a celebration in Pinellas Park.

We asked German people what they think of American Oktoberfest

For one, don’t wear fake lederhosen. For two, the celebration is way better in Germany, and caters to a younger crowd.
Published: 10/09/18
R. Kelly will perform in Tampa on Nov. 10. [Frank Franklin II | Associated Press file]

R. Kelly announces Memory Lane concert in Tampa

With short notice, R. Kelly is coming to the Yuengling Center in Tampa on Nov. 10 as an extension of the R&B singer’s Memory Lane Tour.Tickets for the concert, which will also feature Keshia Cole and Adina Howard, go on sale...
Published: 10/09/18
JOSE LUIS VILLEGAS   |   Sacramento Bee via AP (2015)
Lester Holt said Red Tide would be the biggest Tampa story on the broadcast.

Lester Holt bringing NBC Nightly News to Tampa next week

Lester Holt is coming to Tampa on Wednesday, Oct.10 as part of NBC Nightly News’ Across America series, which sends the anchor to five cities in five days to report on issues that "impact Americans in their...
Published: 10/05/18
Antique dolls hang from the ceiling inside of the Margoza's Galleon on Nebraska Avenue in Tampa in 2017. [OCTAVIO JONES | Times]

Tell us, what’s the creepiest thing in Tampa Bay?

What is the creepiest thing in Tampa Bay?It could be a place, too, or maybe a person (but let’s try to be nice).Maybe it’s that old, empty house in your neighborhood. Didn’t you used to bicycle past it just a little faster, like a kid in...
Published: 10/05/18
Aziz Ansari announces ‘small pop up show’ in St. Petersburg

Aziz Ansari announces ‘small pop up show’ in St. Petersburg

Aziz Ansari is hitting the road for a surprise series of “small pop up shows to work on new material” that will bring him to Orlando and St. Petersburg next month.The standup comic and star of Netflix’s Master of None...
Updated one month ago

Dickey Betts cancels Clearwater concert after brain surgery, Billy Gibbons moves venues

Allman Brothers Band founding guitarist Dickey Betts has canceled his Nov. 5 concert at Clearwater’s Ruth Eckerd Hall after reports he underwent
Updated one month ago