1. Arts & Entertainment

5 things to do under $5 in Tampa Bay this weekend: Dec. 13-15

More boat parades, prancing horses, a fashion show and free fitness classes provide free and cheap fun.
Lighted boats cruise along Boca Ciega Bay in South Pasadena in 2015. [Tampa Bay Times (2015)]
Lighted boats cruise along Boca Ciega Bay in South Pasadena in 2015. [Tampa Bay Times (2015)]
Published Dec. 11, 2019
Updated Dec. 13, 2019

1. Boat parades: Get out your water wings, Rudolph, we’ve got another fleet of illuminated boat parades this weekend. Friday brings the Treasure Island Holiday Boat Parade, leaving the Club at Treasure Island at 6:20 p.m. and ending at John’s Pass at about 8:15 p.m. 400 Treasure Island Causeway. On Saturday, Gulfport’s Boca Ciega Yacht Club Lighted Christmas Boat Parade starts at the Gulfport Municipal Marina at 6 p.m. and winds through Pasadena and Isla del Sol. 4600 Tifton Drive S, Gulfport. Clearwater’s Island Estates Yacht Club Boat Parade assembles at 6:30 p.m. Saturday in Mandalay Channel and heads to Coachman Park, 301 Drew St., Clearwater. The Madeira Beach Boat Parade starts at 6:30 p.m. Saturday and works through the canals before ending at Johns Pass. 15004 Madeira Way, Madeira Beach. The Hernando Beach Christmas Boat Parade leaves the dock at the Hernando Beach Yacht Club, 4163 Shoal Line Blvd., at 6:30 p.m. Saturday, and Santa will visit after. And the Friends of the River invite all boaters and paddlers of canoes and kayaks to join the free Hillsborough River Holiday Boat Parade on Sunday, which has grown to more than 150 boats. Check-in starts at 4:45 p.m. and the parade begins at 6 at Lowry Park, 7525 N Boulevard, Tampa.

2. Arabian and Half Arabian Horse Show: It’s the 51st year for these lords of the prance to strut their stuff for the judges at this show put on by the Arabian Horse Association of Florida. The beautiful show horses and riders are judged on dressage, performance, halter, sport horse, open breed and academy classes. Free for spectators. 9 a.m. Friday through Sunday. Florida State Fairgrounds Equestrian Center, 4802 U.S. 301 N, Tampa.

3. Fashion Design Runway: Feast your eyes on 28 wearable works of art created by teen designers in this year’s Fashion Design at the Dalí program. Drawing inspiration from Salvador Dalí's life and works, budding Tampa Bay high school talents (grades 9-12) learn the fundamentals of design, construction and runway presentation from experienced artists and designers. Free (registration required at 6:30 p.m. Sunday. Gibbs High School, 850 34th St. S, St. Petersburg. (727) 893-5452.

4. Holiday movies in the park: Two different St. Petersburg parks are inviting families to bring blankets and low chairs for a night of holiday movies in the park. The Crescent Lake neighborhood association is encouraging children to come in their pajamas and snuggle up to watch Kung Fu Panda Holiday followed by The Grinch (2018) under the stars at the historic Huggins Stengel baseball field. Free. 5-9 p.m. Saturday. 1320 Fifth St. N, St. Petersburg. In Vinoy Park, they see a screening of The Search for Santa Paws. Free. 7 p.m. Saturday. 501 Fifth Ave. NE, St. Petersburg.

5. Free fitness classes: Going outside is in at the free weekly fitness classes in Curtis Hixon Park. The Tampa Downtown Partnership hosts five different evening classes, including Zumba (Tuesdays) and Barre in the Park (Thursdays), which choreographs elements of Pilates, dance, yoga and functional training. 6 p.m. 600 N Ashley Drive. Find a schedule at

Zumba is one of the free fitness classes Tampa's Curtis Hixon Park offers every Tuesday. [Tampa Bay Times (2016)]


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    Plant City's Fancy Farms off County Line Road will host its annual U-pick event on Feb. 22.
  5. Jeff Foxworthy will perform at the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Tampa on Feb. 20.
  6. Joe Bonamassa will perform at Ruth Eckerd Hall in Clearwater on Feb. 24-25.
  7. John C. Turner played saxophone and oboe for the Florida A&M University "Marching 100," and later became marching band director for the high-stepping Plant High School band in the '70s and early '80s. For a while, he also performed in a band during Tampa Bay Buccaneers games. He died on Feb. 9, 2020.
  8. Little Big Town will perform at Ruth Eckerd Hall in Clearwater on Feb. 26 and 27.
  9. Blue crab chilau at West Ybor Barterhouse.
  10. Daily recreations like this Bible scene at the Holy Land Experience in Orlando will be ending at the Christian theme park, which has been suffering from low attendance and debt for years.
  11. Johnson Barbeque's brisket berry tacos, served as part of Florida Strawberry Restaurant Month this year.
  12. Iriann Paynewhite of Dade City enjoys a ride on a lady bug on opening day at the Pasco County Fair. The fair continues through Feb. 23 at the county fairgrounds in Dade City.