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Sharon Kennedy Wynne - Events, Family and Travel reporter

Events, Family and Travel reporter

I’m an editor who writes, or maybe a writer who edits. I spend time poring over hundreds of events and fun diversions in the Tampa Bay area. I used to cover City Hall and now I ride rollercoasters on a workday. But I view this as a consumer beat. I’m looking for deals and I intend to call out what’s lame or magical. I’m a lifelong St. Petersburg resident and University of Florida grad. I cut my teeth covering politics for the Fort Myers News-Press, where a county commissioner I investigated went to jail. I joined my hometown Times in 1994 where my love of pop culture led me to tbt* and now our features team. Send me a tip when you see something fun.

  1. Jo Dyke tests the lights on the branch of a cherry blossom tree. The LED lights can be programmed to display different colors. The cherry blossom trees will be pink.
  2. Christmas Town at Busch Gardens in Tampa a variety of colorful elements.
  3. The downtown Tampa Winter Village has added a new “street curling” attraction that is free to play any time the holiday district is open in Curtis Hixon Park. They will even have a new curling league that is signing up teams now.
  4. A biologist from the Clearwater Marine Aquarium helps a recently hatched sea turtle find its way from the beach to the water. While sea turtle nests are up this year, the aquarium reported an alarming number of times the hatchlings were confused by artificial lights and headed to hotels and garages instead of the ocean.
  5. In this 2018 photo, a bonnethead shark swims in a tank at the Mote Marine Aquarium in Sarasota. The aquarium houses manatees, sharks, sea turtles and otters. Visitors can explore touch pools, hands-on exhibits and windows into the real research being done by scientists in the Mote Marine Laboratory.
  6. On Tuesday morning, Disney announced new park-specific prices that are set to go into effect Dec. 8.
  7. A sea turtle caught up in Hurricane Nicole was rescued by the Clearwater Marine Aquarium. He has numerous tumors on his body and eyes that they are monitoring.
  8. Grocery prices have risen some 13 percent, according to government reports, and bird flu has made turkey prices soar. But there are ways to curb your spending without curbing your appetite for a hearty Thanksgiving meal.
  9. A volunteer in 2020 takes turkeys and other meats from the freezer to distribute during the food drive and food distribution operation at Metropolitan Ministries' holiday tent in Tampa.
  10. Willie Nelson will perform March 3 at the Florida Strawberry Festival in Plant City.
  11. From left, Swapna Chackravarthy, 48, Koruna Pathak, 60, Sapana Amin, 43, Toshina Sethi, 49, and Rama Subramanian, 47, with Academy of Odissi Dance, perform at One Tampa City Center's courtyard in front of  Unlock Tampa Bay Visitors Center in Tampa on Thursday. The dancers gave a sample of the performances that will be showcased during the 33rd annual India Festival on Saturday.
  12. At the 2018 Sanding Ovations competition, Carl Jara of Clevaland created a piece that mimics people's constant expressions. He was among several artists from around the world sculpting for the annual sand sculpture event in Treasure Island. This year's event is Nov. 17-20. The sculptures tend to last for weeks afterward.
  13. The Blue Notes big band singer Cynthony Palmer leads a chant during a rally in front of the WUSF Public Media studio on Thursday, Oct. 27, 2022, in Tampa. After 56 years, WUSF 89.7-FM announced they would eliminate “All Night Jazz,” which led to over 3,000 fans of the radio show to sign a petition calling for it to remain on air.
  14. Broc Turner of Tampa slides down a single lane of the Snowy Slopes attraction with his cousin, Bishop Griffin, 4, of Jacksonville while visiting the Snowcat Ridge alpine snow park in November 2021. The snow park will reopen Nov. 11 in Dade City.
  15. The company, which has 130 locations, is converting many of them to haunts across the country, but this is the only one in the Tampa Bay area.
  16. Philanthropist and businessman Gus Stavros, shown here in 2012 inside his office at the Bayfront Tower, helped found the Pinellas Education Foundation.
  17. SeaWorld Orlando's newest thrill ride will be its seventh entry. It promises a one-of-a-kind wave-jumping adventure.
  18. Public radio station WUSF 89.7-FM plans to pull the plug on “All Night Jazz,” a tradition that has endured for 56 years.
  19. Darius Rucker, shown here in 2015 at the CMA Music Festival in Nashville, will headline the Valspar Championship concert series in Palm Harbor in March.
  20. Mickey Mouse and Minnie Mouse wave to the crowd during the Hollywood Studios 30th anniversary parade in 2019 at Disney World. The Magic Kingdom kept its status as the most-visited park in the world with an estimated 12.7 million visitors, an increase of 83%. That still lags 2019, when it had an estimated 21 million visitors.
  21. Last year's Tampa Pig Jig, which featured headliner Darius Rucker, sold out in a record 13 days.
  22. Runners move across the Sunshine Skyway Bridge during the 2019 Skyway 10K race. Registration opens Oct. 24-31 for the 2023 race in March.
  23. Sparkman Wharf will be filled will live music this weekend as donation bins are filled with hygiene supplies for Southwest Florida communities that are rebuilding after Hurricane Ian.
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