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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


Twitter: @SharonKWn

Blog: Whoa, Momma!

  1. Oktoberfest season hits Tampa Bay with lots of ways to get your oompah on


    Thousands of people are expected to hoist large steins of beer at Tampa's Oktoberfest in Curtis Hixon Park this weekend. There are now nonstop Lufthansa flights between Frankfurt and Tampa. And people are beating down the doors to get into the new Hofbrauhaus in St. Petersburg.

    Ein Prosit, ein Prosit (the German toast goes), what's up with Oktoberfest fever in Tampa Bay?

    The Germans had us at beer, but the goofy games like stein races and costumes with curve-hugging bodices don't hurt either. ...

    Albert Chytil and Laurie Manzi enjoy a cold beverage after being named Mr. and Mrs. Oktoberfest during the 2012 festivities at Curtis Hixon Park.
  2. NBC's first sports bar may open at Universal CityWalk today


    It appears NBC is set to open its first sports bar, the NBC Sports Grill & Brew at Universal CityWalk, with a massive HD stadium screen more than 100 feet wide at the entrance.

    Steven Jayson, executive chef at Universal Orlando, posted "We are ready!" on his Twitter account, and said it would be open at 5 p.m. Tuesday, although Universal has not officially released the news.

    Taking the place where the NASCAR Sports Grille was located before it closed in November, Universal has said the eatery will be stocked with more than 100 beers and food prepared on open kettle grills. One hundred HD TV screens will play a constant stream of live sports content. ...

    . Rendering of the world's first-ever NBC Sports Grill & Brew is coming to Universal CityWalk. Opening this fall, the all-new restaurant is designed to reflect the excellence and excitement of NBC Sports' coverage.
  3. South Florida Museum to unveil world's largest collection of fossilized poop


    Bradenton's South Florida Museum is mighty proud of the world's largest collection of fossilized poop that will be unveiled Saturday for National Fossil Day — a day of half-priced admission and a poo specimen nicknamed "Precious" because of the dungstone's connection to an ancient crocodile with a Tolkien tie.

    There's some serious science behind this No. 1 collection of No. 2 samples. George Frandsen's compilation of 1,277 guano clusters are what paleontologists call coprolite, and the fossilized doo-doo provides valuable information about the lifestyles and diets of prehistoric animals....

    South Florida Museum director of education Jeff Rodgers holds “Precious,” the largest coprolite in the Guinness-certified largest collection.
  4. Yo ho! Disney reopens Pirates of the Caribbean ride


    Yo ho, yo ho, the pirates are back at the Magic Kingdom, and you might notice some new smells.

    Walt Disney World announced this week that the popular Pirates of the Caribbean ride is open again after undergoing a summer of fine tuning.

    Capt. Jack Sparrow and his pals now have better lighting effects, fresh paint and the animatronic characters are cleaned up with new outfits. And you might catch a whiff of salty sea air or smoke from cannon fire....

    Captain Jack Sparrow on Disney’s Pirates of the Caribbean attraction.
  5. Plan your weekend Oct. 2-4


    Plan your weekend


    Oddball Comedy Festival: More than 20 comedians will be at the Oddball Comedy & Curiosity Festival in Tampa Saturday. Presented by Funny or Die, the festival brings Aziz Ansari of NBC's Parks and Recreation as well as Amy Schumer, who has a fresh Emmy for Inside Amy Schumer on Comedy Central and the hit movie Trainwreck. Other comics include Anthony Jeselnik, Ashley Barnhill, Bridget Everett, Dave Attell, Donnell Rawlings, Jay Pharoah, Jeff Ross, Jim Norton, John Mulaney, Michael Che, Nick Kroll, Nick Thune, Nikki Glaser, Rachel Feinstein, Rory Scovel, Sebastian Maniscalco, Tim Minchin, T.J. Miller and Todd Barr. Starts 5:15 p.m. at the MidFlorida Credit Union Ampitheatre, 4802 N U.S. 301, Tampa. Tickets $22.75-$92.75. ...

    Amy Schumer is one of the headliners of the Oddball Comedy Festival.
  6. Things to do planner: Gay and lesbian film fest, corn mazes, Race for the Cure glows at night


    FILM FEST: Tampa International Gay and Lesbian Film Festival

    This year the Tampa International Gay and Lesbian Film Festival won't be centered in Tampa Theatre but across the bay in Pinellas County and in sidebar presentations at Tampa venues Friday through Oct. 10. St. Petersburg's Palladium Theater is the festival's setting for opening and closing night celebrations, plus key weekend screenings. The Tampa Theatre said in a statement it was proud to host the festival over the years and, "Our doors are always open." The festival has an ambitious slate of films — 87 in all, from 25 countries — and Orange is the New Black's "Big Boo" is making an appearance. The Palladium's opening night film — presented free of charge — is Kiss Me, Kill Me, an exercise in gay noir. Director Casper Andreas, writer/producer David Michael Barrett and actor Van Hansis are expected to introduce the film and join the after-show party in the theater's cabaret. The film starts at 8 p.m. Friday at the Palladium, 253 Fifth Ave. N, St. Petersburg. On Saturday the festival welcomes comedian-actor Lea DeLaria, right, from Orange is the New Black for a standup comedy show at 6 p.m., and tickets are $35-$75. See for the film schedule. Single film tickets are $12, $10 for students with proper ID. Children under 18 are admitted free to age-appropriate films. Festival passes are available, ranging from a six-pack of admissions ($60) to the Simply Fabulous VIP access pass ($500). ...

    Kids play on bales of hay at Masaryktown’s Sweetfields Farms.
  7. Grab your tote bag, outdoor markets are returning


    Like an urban Brigadoon, outdoor markets are once again about to emerge out of bare parking lots around Tampa Bay, buzz with activity for several hours and disappear again until next week when we need to stock up on artisan jams, organic cucumbers and yard art.

    The St. Petersburg Saturday Market, which claims to have given birth to more than two dozen brick and mortar businesses, will open for the season Saturday. There will be live music by the Urban Gypsies, performances from St. Pete Opera, and barbecue, empanadas and freshly squeezed lemonade among more than 130 stalls. One of the largest outdoor markets in the Southeast, it attracts some 10,000 people on a typical Saturday....

    St. Pete’s Saturday Market, which claims to have given birth to more than two dozen businesses, will open for the season Saturday.  
Times files (2011)
  8. 5 things to do under $5 Oct. 1-7: Movies in the park, music festival, Straz open house


    1 Screen on the Green: Tampa's Water Works Park will have a series of family-friendly Halloween-themed movies in October beginning with Ghostbusters Saturday. The movies will be shown on a large, inflatable, outdoor movie screen and will begin at 7:30 p.m. Popcorn, candy and drinks will be available to purchase and a food truck will also be on site. Bring some water shoes because the park has a fun splash play area. You can pack picnic baskets and bring coolers, blankets, low-back lawn chairs, and well-behaved, leashed dogs. Alcohol is prohibited. Coming up in the series: Hotel Transylvania (Oct. 10), The Goonies (Oct. 17) and Frankenweenie (Oct. 24)....

    Gaby Espino
  9. Undead invited to stagger to Tampa Bay Rays game for Zombie Night


    Zombies are taking over Tropicana Field Friday night and it's not just dead attendance they are trying to lift from the grave.

    When the Tampa Bay Rays take on the Toronto Blue Jays Friday at 7:10 p.m. there will be hordes of the undead in the tbt* Party Deck, where a $25 ($35 value) special ticket package gets you a seat there and a special Zombie Night T-shirt.

    No word on brains for sale in the concession stand but fans are encouraged to dress up, said Rays spokeswoman Carli Todd. ...

Press (2013)
  10. Rob Thomas to headline Mistletoe Show with 'Fight Song' singer Rachel Platten


    Merry Christmas from Rob Thomas to us.

    Fans were bumming when Thomas postponed his July concert at Ruth Eckerd Hall to be with his wife as she underwent treatment for a brain lesion. But the Matchbox Twenty frontman showed up in August just as his new solo album The Great Unknown, was released. And reports are his wife's surgery went well....

  11. Look up Sunday night for a rare "Super Blood Moon"


    The moon is getting a big star turn this weekend.

    For the first time in more than 30 years, Americans will see a supermoon and the rare total lunar eclipse — also called the "blood moon" for its reddish color — on the same night.

    The eclipse is Sunday, but the harvest moon will shine on Sunday and Monday. And it's not just any harvest moon (which earned its nickname because the strong light allowed farmers to work late into the night). It will be the biggest and closest supermoon of the year, appearing extra bright and large, according to NASA. ...

    This Sept. 13, 2015 image provided by NASA shows the moon, left, and the Earth, top, transiting the sun together, seen from the Solar Dynamics Observatory. The edge of Earth appears fuzzy because the atmosphere blocks different amounts of light at different altitudes. This image was taken in extreme ultraviolet wavelengths, invisible to human eyes, but here colorized in gold. A total lunar eclipse will share the stage with a so-called supermoon Sunday evening, Sept. 27, 2015 as seen from the United States. That combination hasn't been seen since 1982 and won't happen again until 2033. (NASA/SDO via AP)
  12. Here's the highlights of Epcot's popular Food & Wine Festival opening Friday


    Now in its 20th year, the Epcot International Food & Wine Festival opens Friday and runs through Nov. 16, with 30 different food booths and more cooking and tasting demonstrations than ever in this popular way to eat and drink your way "around the world."

    Over the next 53 days there will be nearly 400 culinary demonstrations and mixology seminars, and wine lovers will find more than 300 domestic and international wines offered. You'll find loaded mac and cheese with pepper bacon mac, Australia's grilled sweet and spicy bush berry shrimp and old favorites like Canada's cheddar cheese soup....

    Eat and drink “around the world” with 30 food booths and more demonstrations.
  13. 20 Tampa Bay museums will be free on Saturday


    It's time to get your culture on when 20 museums across Tampa Bay offer free or cheap admission on Saturday.

    The annual free museum day is part of Smithsonian Museum Day Live and St. Petersburg's Arts Alive. Many museums are also offering deep discounts and special activities.

    Living history re-enactors representing Florida's Civil War-era will appear at the Tampa Bay History Center, and the Dalí Museum will have an Escher tessellation community mural outside the museum that visitors can add to with markers. The Henry Plant Museum will have two ballet dancers from the Tampa Ballet Theatre performing a dance from Giselle at 11 a.m. ...

    Hannora Maher, 2, checks out her Dal? mustache in the reflection of Dal? Museum windows during the 2014 Arts Alive in St. Petersburg, which offers free museum admission on the same day as the Smithsonian’s Museum Day Live.
  14. Psst! It's a great time to check out Disney, other Florida attractions before snowbirds return


    Florida residents, in case you haven't noticed: The snowbirds are gone, the kids are back in school and we have Florida attractions pretty much to ourselves.

    Fall is the perfect time to ride a roller coaster, take in a show, attend a food festival or explore those places that usually are too crowded (and hot) to enjoy during the busy summer vacation season or the late winter snowbird season. ...

    Take a trip to Epcot for the Epcot International Food and Wine Festival. You have until Nov. 16.
Getty Images
  15. 5 things to do under $5 Sept. 24-30: Free Museum Day, giant Twister tournament, Chalk Walk


    1 Free Museum Day: On Saturday, not only are museums across the nation taking part in the Smithsonian day of free admission (See the list and get your ticket at but St. Petersburg's Arts Alive also brings deals and free admission to select museums and galleries. Tampa Bay museums participating in the Smithsonian event include Ringling, Cracker Country, Henry B. Plant Museum, the Tampa Bay History Center and the Florida Museum of Photographic Arts. From 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Arts Alive in St. Petersburg will have free admission at the Florida Holocaust Museum, the Dali Museum (Pinellas County residents only), Morean Glass Studio & Hot Shop and St. Petersburg Museum of History, among others, as well as $1 admission to see the Chihuly glass collection. See for a complete list. ...

    See works of chalk art Saturday and Sunday in the Chalk Walk festival around South Straub Park in St. Petersburg.