1. Fun

5 things to do under $5 in Tampa Bay: Nerd literary con, free park fun, Pride dance party

Kids enjoy the splash pad at Julian B. Lane Riverfront Park in Tampa. The park’s summer series gives kids and parents free access to oversized games through July 29. [OCTAVIO JONES | Times (2018)]
Kids enjoy the splash pad at Julian B. Lane Riverfront Park in Tampa. The park’s summer series gives kids and parents free access to oversized games through July 29. [OCTAVIO JONES | Times (2018)]
Published Jul. 17, 2019

1. Nerdier Than Thou Literary Con: Two days of nerdy, literary programming will be held at Emerald City Comics featuring local sci-fi, horror, fantasy and steampunk writers, journalists, comic book writers, comedians, satirists and paranormal investigators. Panels will discuss topics like "Strange but True Florida" and "Why Dark Fiction and Horror Is Coming Back Big Time." Participating authors include Steph Post, Gale Massey, Craig Pittman, Kimberly Lojewski, Stefani Deoul and Arin Greenwood. $5. 11 a.m.-7 p.m. Saturday, noon-5 p.m. Sunday. Emerald City Comics, 4902 113th Ave. N, Clearwater. (516) 906-2140.

2. Pride Closer: Celebrate dance music's LGBTQ roots at this dance party with a set by special guest LEM from Mood II Swing. As a songwriter, Lem Springsteen worked heavily in the studio with Masters at Work and was behind radio and club hits like Ultra Nate's Free, Barbara Tucker's Beautiful People and other classic DJ favorites. Free before 11 p.m., $5 before midnight, $15 after. 10 p.m. Monday. Morph, 1833 First Ave. S, St. Petersburg. (321) 289-8929.

3. Summer Series at Julian B. Lane Riverfront Park: This free summer series at Tampa's newest park offers kids and parents a break from the sun and rain with free access to oversized games under a 12,000-square-foot shaded area. 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. daily through July 29 at Julian B. Lane Riverfront Park, 1001 North Blvd., Tampa.

4. Peace Memorial Piano Concert: Come hear young pianists from the Rebecca Penneys Piano Festival perform on the full concert grand and in the excellent acoustics of the Peace sanctuary, followed by a meet and greet with the musicians. Free. 3 p.m. Sunday. Peace Memorial Church, 110 S Fort Harrison Ave., Clearwater.

5. Cult Classics: The Dalí Museum continues its summer music series, inviting fans to dress in theme attire and bring a low-seating lawn chair for a free movie screening. Food trucks will be on site. Thursday's movie is Clueless, the '90s teen comedy set in Beverly Hills, and Aug. 15 is Mean Girls, the 2004 teen comedy set in a wealthy Chicago suburb, so there seems to be a theme this summer. Free. Get out your plaid skirts, knee socks and hats and head out. 7 p.m. 1 Dalí Blvd., St. Petersburg. (727) 823-3767.


  1. Yacht StarShip, a dining and water taxi company, has added the Lost Pearl pirate ship to its fleet just in time for Gasparilla. [Yacht StarShip]
    After years entertaining tourists in Virginia Beach, the Lost Pearl is settling into its new Tampa Bay home.
  2. Dave Bautista, shown here at his South Tampa office, has been named grand marshal of the 2020 Gasparilla Parade of Pirates.
    The Guardians of the Galaxy star will lead the Pirate invasion along with Tampa police Lt. Travis Maus, who recently served in the Middle East.
  3. Halsey performs during the European MTV Awards in Seville, Spain, in 2019. [Joel C Ryan/Invision/AP]
    A mix of new hits and blockbuster blasts from the past.
  4. Roberto Gomez, of Puerto Rico, dressed as Darth Vader, attends the world premiere of "Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker" on Dec. 16, 2019, in Los Angeles. [CHRIS PIZZELLO  |  Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP]
    The massive fandom was built on the strength of a universe that continues to expand beyond the movie theater.
  5. Fashions by De Johnea Bianca, a designer involved in the Fashion Market that will take place in Tampa on Jan. 18. [Courtesy of De Johnea Bianca]
    Plus, a pre- Gasparilla fashion and hair event and markets dedicated to a healthy lifestyle.
  6. Clay Goodison, of Brandon, pulls sons Parker and Davis and wife Krissy in a pirate ship float after the Gasparilla Preschooler's Stroll in Tampa in 2015. The stroll took place before the Gasparilla children's parade on Bayshore Boulevard. [Tampa Bay Times (2015)]
    Kids plunder the Gasparilla children’s parade, the best college players are here for the East-West Shrine Bowl and more.
  7. British actor Charlie Chaplin performs on the high wire during the filming of "The Circus." Theater organ virtuoso Tom Hoehn will perform at the United Methodist Church of Sun City Center while the film plays on Jan. 17. [AP]
    Watch a theater organ pro perform or wheelchair rugby, attend a steel drum party and more.
  8. Employees working inside Tabanero Cigars, which is one of the stops on a new self-led audio tour produced byt Visit Tampa Bay. [Times 2016)]
    Hillsborough tourism bureau launches audio tour of historic Cuban district.
  9. Jan. 13• Arts & Entertainment
    Celine Dion will perform at Amalie Arena in Tampa on Jan. 15. [ANDREW WHELAN  |  Columbia Records]
    Celine Dion brings her pipes to town, the Gasparilla children’s parade starts rolling and bands get ready for next week’s big MLK parade.
  10. Rod Stewart performs at Papp Laszlo Sports Arena in Budapest, Hungary, in 2018. [BALAZS MOHAI  |  AP]
    Starting Friday, you can secure a spot at a few upcoming shows.