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Sharon Kennedy Wynne, Times Staff Writer

Sharon Kennedy Wynne

Sharon Kennedy Wynne is a Tampa Bay Times writer and editor who focuses mostly on events and fun Things To Do, but also veers off into stories of parenting on the Whoa, Momma! blog, as well as cool gadgets or whatever captures her short attention span. A lifelong St. Petersburg resident, she has been a journalist since 1988 and joined her hometown Times in 1994. She is married and has two sons.

Phone: (727) 893-8595

Email: wynne@tampabay.com

Twitter: @SharonKWn

Blog: Whoa, Momma!

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  1. Sea World's Aquatica water park offers big price break on select nights

    Florida

    Aquatica, SeaWorld Orlando's water park, will lop off more than half its admission price for three nights in May and have extended hours to celebrate the one-year anniversary of Ihu's Breakaway Falls, its new drop-tower water slide.

    The park is calling it Challenge Nights on three consecutive Fridays: this week, May 15 and May 22. Tickets are $25 (regular admission is $57), which includes parking and a picnic meal at Aquatica's Banana Beach restaurant. The water park typically closes at 5 p.m., but for Challenge Nights, visitors will have full access to the park 4 to 5 p.m., then a picnic meal with "animal ambassador" visits, and from 6:15 to 8 p.m. the park will have select rides open, including Ihu's Breakaway Falls, Whanau Way, Omaka Rocka and wave pools....

    Aquatica, SeaWorld??as Waterpark Ihu??as Breakaway Falls the tallest, steepest and only multi-drop tower slide of its kind in Orlando  officially opens at Aquatica, SeaWorld??as Waterpark
  2. Top things to do in Tampa Bay for May 6

    Events

    Flogging Molly: The seven-piece Irish band combines punk, rock and folk to create hits like Swagger and Devil's Dance Floor. 6:30 p.m., Jannus Live, 200 First Ave. N, St. Petersburg. $29.50 advance, $32 day of show.

    The Relationship: Something of an alt-rock supergroup this band features Weezer guitarist, Brian Bell. 8 p.m., Crowbar, 1812 N 17th St., Tampa. $11. ...

    Dave King of Flogging Molly performs in St. Petersburg in 2012.  [Luis Santana | Times]
  3. 5 ways to have fun giving back today for Give Day Tampa Bay

    Events

    Today is Give Day Tampa Bay, a 24-hour giving event that benefits 550 local nonprofits. You can find your favorite charity and give them a boost at givedaytampabay.org. We found five off-beat ways to have fun while giving back:

    1 Time your donation

    Some of the corporate donors have set up some bonus prizes so that if you time your donation right, you can earn your favorite charity some extra money. The prizes are timed for:...

  4. Free and cheap fun: 5 things to do under $5 May 7-13

    Events

    1 John LeVique Pirate Days: Pirates invade Madeira Beach for a three-day festival that celebrates the discovery of John's Pass. There will be a Pirate's Ball Friday night, a sea battle and boat parade at noon Saturday, a family treasure hunt, adult and children's costume contests, merchandise, a pub crawl, artisans and craftsmen, food and beverage vendors and an abundance of pirate performers. It's free at John's Pass Village and Boardwalk, 150 John's Pass Boardwalk, Madeira Beach, 3-11 p.m. Friday, 10 a.m.-8 p.m. Saturday and 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Sunday. There is extra parking for $5 and a free shuttle available at the school parking lot at Madeira Beach Fundamental at 591 Tom Stuart Causeway. See the complete schedule at johnleviquepiratedays.com....

    Pink inflatable ring in blue swimming pool
  5. Top things to do in Tampa Bay for the week of May 4-10

    Events

    Cinco de Mayo: It's a low-level Mexican holiday on Tuesday, but in Dunedin, there's a street festival and dance party starting at 4 p.m. in front of Casa Tina, 365 Main St. And in St. Petersburg, Pale Horse Lucha will have a wrestling and arts experience at Nova 535 to celebrate Cinco de Mayo. $15 online, $20 at the door. palehorselucha.com.

    Beauty and the Beast: The Disney musical returns Tuesday through Sunday at the Straz Center in Tampa. $46-$120. (813) 229-7827. strazcenter.org. ...

    iStockphoto.com
  6. Top things to do in Tampa Bay for May 5

    Events

    Cinco de Mayo: Lots of Mexican-themed parties all over the area today, including a street festival in Dunedin. 4 p.m., Casa Tina Gourmet Mexican & Vegetarian, 365 Main St., Dunedin.

    Cinco de Give-O: Cinco de Mayo and Give Day Tampa Bay combine in this party at Ferg's with a mustache contest, games, prizes, live music and drink specials. Buy a bucket of Corona, Corona Light or Negra Modelo and $1 benefits the Animal Coalition of Tampa. 2 p.m., Ferg's Live, 490 Channelside Drive, Tampa. No cover. (813) 443-8403; .fergslive.com....

  7. For Mother's Day, encourage healthy eating habits by cooking with kids

    Cooking

    What better Mother's Day gift than creating a memory by cooking something with your kid?

    You will get some much-desired alone time with your kids away from a screen, and cooking together is also a sneaky way to get the kids to eat healthier, too.

    Kellie Gilmore, coordinator for All Children's Hospital Johns Hopkins Medicine's Fit4Allkids program, says numerous studies show that cooking with kids is a way to combat picky eating because kids are more likely to eat something they had a part in making. ...

    Zykiqurio Lofton, 8, and his grandmother, Vivki Glenn, cut an avocado at a Fit4Allkids cooking class at the Community Health Centers of Pinellas Johnnie Ruth Clarke Center in St. Petersburg.
  8. Cook hack: Different things you can do with a cheese grater

    Cooking

    Different things you can do with a cheese grater

    Your cheese grater is really just an old-school food processer, except it's a lot easier to work with. And you can just throw it in the dishwasher when you're done. Here are some other ways to use it:

    • When a recipe calls for cutting butter into flour, freeze a stick of butter and use your cheese grater on the hard stick to quickly create small pieces of butter. This is a great way to combine butter and flour for biscuits or pie crust....

  9. May the Fourth be with you: Star Wars shopping and events popping up today

    Events

    Today is Star Wars Day, so prepare to be greeted with "May the Fourth be with you," by your nerdiest friends.

    Just announced this morning on the Walt Disney World parks blog, there are some special Star Wars T-shirts and commemorative items on sale today and this week only in Florida at Disney's Hollywood Studios theme park.

    Disney is selling two T-shirts — one with Jedi Mickey for "May the 4th" and one with Goofy dressed as Darth Vader for "Revenge of the 5th." The same artwork was used on two limited edition pins. A matching water bottle will be released in Florida only....

  10. The Force is strong with these Star Wars Day events in Tampa Bay

    Events

    Can you feel a disturbance in the Force?

    Monday is Star Wars Day, as in, "May the Fourth be with you," and the nerdosphere is tingling with special excitement this year with The Force Awakens due in December and Star Wars Weekends at Disney World bringing Frank Oz (Yoda) and Ian McDiarmid (Palpatine) for their first appearances.

    Locally there are Star Wars parties and May 4 gatherings to rival the Mos Eisley Cantina. ...

    Get your Mos Eisley Cantina on at the Bricks, the Glazer Children’s Museum and more. (This Cantina set is at Star Wars Celebration 2015 in California, though.)
  11. Top things to do in Tampa Bay for Sunday May 3

    Events

    Fun 'n Country Festival: The newly named festival will feature headliner, The Eli Young Band who scored No. 1 country hits with Crazy Girl and Even If It Breaks Your Heart. Joining them are Thompson Square, Gloriana and Jana Kramer. Bring towels, blankets and chairs. 12:30 p.m., Coachman Park, 301 Drew St., Clearwater. $15.

    Tampa RiverFest: The celebration of the 1.8-mile RiverWalk continues at various parks and stops along the route, including a carnival and Cigar City River Run at Cotanchobee Park, 601 Old Water St., a Bloody Mary Festival in Curtis Hixon Park ($32 for unlimited samples of Bloody Marys from a variety of local eateries) from 11 a.m.-3 p.m. See a full schedule at tampariverfest.com....

    INDIO, CA - APRIL 27:  Musicians James Young (L) and Mike Eli of the Eli Young Band perform onstage  during the Stagecoach Country Music Festival held at the Empire Polo Field on April 27, 2012 in Indio, California.  (Photo by Christopher Polk/Getty Images for Stagecoach)
  12. Top things to do in Tampa Bay for Saturday May 2

    Events

    Tampa RiverFest: Tampa aims to show off the Riverwalk with its first RiverFest with an array of activities at 11 locations along the Hillsborough River. This morning brings the Pengquin Waddle fun run from the Florida Aquarium at 8:30 a.m. ($10-$32) and the Mayor's Mac and Cheese Throwdown ($10 for five tastings 4-7 p.m.) at Curtis Hixon Park, followed by a G. Love & Special Sauce concert at 7 p.m., and fireworks at 10:30 p.m., 600 N Ashley Drive, Tampa. See tampariverfest.com....

    Michael Silver, 35, gets a hand with a spoonful of mac and cheese from Dianne Triplett during the Mac N Cheese Throwdown in Curtis Hixon Park in 2014.The contest, hosted by Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn and Friends of the Riverwalk, highlighted more than 25 local eateries. 
JOHN PENDYGRAFT  |  Times
  13. Top things to do in Tampa Bay for Friday May 1

    Events

    Joan Armatrading: The award-winning singer-songwriter will celebrate her last major world tour and her first solo performance where she will accompany herself on guitar and piano at 8 p.m., Capitol Theatre, 405 Cleveland St., Clearwater. $53.75-$78.75.

    Tropical Heatwave: The 34th annual WMNF festival takes over venues throughout Ybor City including with bands playing everything from reggae and rock, to jazz, acoustic and psychedelic including MarchFourth Marching Band, The Congress, Jensen Serf Company, WAHH World Fusion Band, Come Back Alice and many more. 5 p.m. today and Saturday, Ybor City, 1700 E Seventh Ave., Tampa. $30-$50.; tropicalheatwave.org....

    LONDON - APRIL 13:  Singer/songwriter Joan Armatrading performs during the sixth and final night of a series of concerts and events in aid of Teenage Cancer Trust organised by charity Patron Roger Daltrey, at the Royal Albert Hall on April 13, 2008 in London, England.  (Photo by Jo Hale/Getty Images)
  14. RiverFest will show off Tampa's Riverwalk with weekend loaded with events

    Events

    It took 40 years to realize the dream of a 1.8-mile Riverwalk, and Tampa aims to show off its jewel with a big new event this weekend, its first RiverFest. There will be an array of activities at 11 locations along the Hillsborough River. The most high-profile will be the Mayor's Mac and Cheese Throwdown on Saturday and a new Bloody Mary Festival on Sunday, both at Curtis Hixon Waterfront Park. But there will also be events in six city parks along the Riverwalk, as well as the David A. Straz Jr. Center for Performing Arts, the Tampa Convention Center and the Florida Aquarium, many of them free. ...

    Michael Silver gets a spoonful of mac and cheese from Dianne Triplett at the Mac N Cheese Throwdown last year.
  15. Plan your weekend May 1-3

    Events

    Plan your weekend

    River of dreams

    RiverFest It took 40 years to finally realize the dream of a 1.8-mile length of Riverwalk, and Tampa aims to show off its jewel this year with a big event this weekend: a RiverFest, with an array of activities at 11 locations along the Hillsborough River. The most high-profile will be the Mayor's Mac and Cheese Throwdown ($10 for five tastings) on Saturday and a Bloody Mary Festival on Sunday ($32 for unlimited samples), both at Curtis Hixon Park. There will also be events for kids, pets and fun runs in six city parks along the Riverwalk, as well as the Straz Center for Performing Arts, the Tampa Convention Center and the Florida Aquarium, many of them free. Saturday and Sunday. For a schedule of events, visit tampariverfest.com....

    Fox