It should be hard to tell it's Christmas in Florida. There's no snow. Most trees don't change colors. People are still wearing flip-flops in December.
But Floridians are so Christmas crazy, they go bonkers for lights and boat parades and even pay to ship in snow. Now that we are fully into the season, we have your guide the best light displays, the cutest meetups with Santa and the most dazzling illuminated neighborhoods and parades on land and sea.
• We set sail. There are a dozen boat parades between now and Dec. 22 — yes, 12 — so Rudolph is going to need some water wings. You'll see everything from simple strands of lights from stem to stern to scenes of Santa and the Abominable Snowman cage fighting while the elves look on. The creativity makes a boat parade a must-see.
• We make our own snow. Sometimes it's fake soapy "snowflakes" but sometimes it's the real cold stuff like the 20 tons coming to Tarpon Springs this weekend or the Snow Blast at Tyrone Mall where you can pay $20 to throw snow balls or go down a snow slide.
• We love lights. Without any sign of winter, you know it's Christmas because every street, park and downtown waterfront is blinking back at you. For 25 years, the families of Lake Park Estates have invited hundreds of motorists to tour the three-mile route of their elaborately-decorated homes. They do this in memory of a neighbor who died of cancer, collecting cash for Suncoast Hospice and raising more than more than $800,000 since 1993. Now that's the Christmas spirit.
Refreshments, music, visits with Santa and a boat parade. Free. 6:15 p.m. Friday. Barbara Gilberg Habitat Park, 1600 Pasadena Ave. (727) 384-0701.
St. Pete Beach
Viewing in the park with music, hot chocolate, children's art projects and a visit from Santa. Free. 6 p.m. Friday. St. Pete Beach Community Center and Horan Park, 7701 Boca Ciega Drive. (727) 363-9245.
The annual lighted boat parade on the Anclote River follows bayous and ends with Santa giving treats to children in Spring Bayou. Free. 7-9 p.m. Friday. Craig Park, 100 Beekman Way. (727) 942-5628.
The Tampa Sailing Squadron hosts this event and party afterward with a chili cook off. Good viewing from the clubhouse and docks. 6 p.m. Saturday. Tampa Sailing Squadron, 1250 Apollo Beach Blvd., Ruskin. Free. (813) 586-4279.
Members of the Boca Ciega Yacht Club decorate boats for the parade through Town Shores, Kipps Colony, Pasadena Yacht and Country Club, Pasadena Gulf Club Estates and Isla del Sol. Free. 6-8 p.m. Saturday. Gulfport Municipal Marina, 4630 29th Ave. S. (727) 254-1000.
Island Estates Yacht Club
Decorated boats assemble in Mandalay Channel and head to Coachman Park, under the Memorial Causeway Bridge and to the Clearwater Yacht Club's judging stand. Free. 6:30 p.m. Saturday. Coachman Park, 301 Drew St., Clearwater. (727) 461-3949.
Planning your weekend?
Subscribe to our free Top 5 things to do newsletter
You’re all signed up!
Want more of our free, weekly newsletters in your inbox? Let’s get started.Explore all your options
The 52nd annual "Festival of Lights" boat parade heads to John's Pass Village. Free. 6:30 p.m. Saturday. ROC (Remember Our Children) Park, 300 Municipal Drive. (727) 399-2631.
More than 50 decorated boats participate. Recommended viewing spots include 115th Avenue on Isle of Palms, Treasure Island Causeway Bridge, Kingfish Drive at John's Pass and Blind Pass Bridge. Free. 6:20 p.m. Dec. 14. The Club at Treasure Island, 400 Treasure Island Causeway. (727) 367-4511.
Indian Rocks Beach
See motor boats, sail boats, canoes and even row boats in this boat parade with awards by division. It begins at the Holiday Inn Harbourside and weaves throughout the "fingers." Free. 6:30 p.m. Dec. 15. 401 Second St., Indian Rocks Beach. (727) 595-6889.
Decorate your boat and enter or watch the parade from the yacht club. Travels to Marlin Canal, Cheeks Creek Canal, Tarpon Canal and returns to the dock. Expect a visit from Santa. Parade entry fee is one new unwrapped toy. Free. 6 p.m. Dec. 15. Hernando Beach Yacht Club, 4163 Shoal Line Blvd. (206) 919-8921.
Redington Beach/Indian Shores
Starts on the north side of the Tom Stuart Causeway, passes along the shorelines of Redington Beach, North Redington Beach, Redington Shores and Indian Shores and ends at Caddy's Pub for an awards ceremony and party. Free. 6 p.m. Dec. 16. McDonald's Restaurant, 650 150th Ave. (727) 391-3874.
Twinkle in Tampa Bay
Tampa's holiday lighted boat parade takes place along the Riverwalk, down the Hillsborough River and through downtown Tampa. Good viewing spots can be found all along the waterfront near downtown Tampa. Free. Riverwalk, 601 Old Water St., Tampa. (813) 731-4508. 6:30 p.m. Dec. 22.
Historic Old Northeast Candlelight Tour of Homes
The 21st annual event features tours of private homes in St. Petersburg's Historic Old Northeast neighborhood. All homes are decorated for the holidays. The tour brochure is your admission ticket to each home. A free red trolley is available to take those needing assistance house to house. $25 advance, $30 day of tour. 3-8 p.m. Sunday. Pick up your tour brochure and map at Westminster Palm View, 939 Beach Drive NE, St. Petersburg. (727) 289-7663.
Celebration of Lights
A one-mile drive-through light display with holiday music and interactive games for kids leads to Jingle Bell Junction where you meet Santa and enjoy seasonal snacks. $10 car load. 6-9 p.m. today, Dec. 13 and 20; 6-10 p.m. Friday-Saturday, Dec. 14-15 and 21-22; 6-9 p.m. Sunday-Wednesday, Dec. 16-19 and 23. The Concourse, 11919 Alric Pottberg Road, Shady Hills. (727) 233-2968.
Christmas House at the Old Lutz Schoolhouse
The 22nd annual display of holiday trees decorated with glimmering lights, model railroads and Christmas displays. Free. 6-8:30 p.m. today, Saturday and Tuesday; Also, Dec. 13, 15, 16 and 18, 20-22 and 26. 18819 U.S. 41. (813) 244-2256.
Walk through woods transformed into several different Christmas storybook scenes with thousands of twinkling lights, snow, snowball fights, giant Christmas trees, Santa, Jack Frost, face painting, music and animated characters. Free. 5:30-10 p.m. Friday-Saturday and Dec. 14-15; 5:30-9:30 p.m. Sunday and Dec. 16. 5:30-9:30 p.m. Dec. 20, 5:30-10 p.m. Dec. 21-22 and 5:30-9:30 p.m. Dec. 23. 2837 S Frontage Road, Plant City. (863) 944-0748.
Clearwater Winter Wonderland
Enter a complete Christmas village with tens of thousands of lights, entertainment, photos with Santa, cookie decorating with Mrs. Claus, petting zoo, pony rides, playground, bouncy house, a Holiday Express train, giant slide and hot chocolate shop. Donations of nonperishable food and unwrapped toys will be accepted. Benefits children of Pinellas County. Free; charge for some rides and refreshments. 6-9 p.m. today-Sunday and Wednesday; Dec. 13-16 and 19-22. At corner of Fort Harrison Avenue and Drew Street. (727) 442-2099.
Holiday Lights in the Gardens
Stroll through garden pathways with more than 1 million colorful, twinkly LED lights, plus laser lights and lighted figures, music synchronization, and Florida-style displays, entertainers, visits from Santa, and food, drinks and ice cream from vendors. $5 suggested; 12 and younger free. 5:30-9:30 p.m. daily through Dec. 30. Florida Botanical Gardens, 12520 Ulmerton Road, Largo. (727) 582-5800.
Largo Holiday Lights
The 70-acre park plays host to a light display with multiple scenes constructed of 2-million LED lights, a carousel and a seven story Ferris wheel. On Dec. 15, enjoy a holiday craft fair, live entertainment and concessions after a visit with Santa (6:30-9 p.m.). Free, $5 rides. 5-11 p.m. daily through Jan. 1. Largo Central Park, 101 Central Park Drive. (727) 587-6740, ext. 5014.
Lights of Lake Park
Since 1993, the neighborhoods of Lake Park Estates, Wieker, Lakeside Estates and Lake Seminole Village have collected donations for Suncoast Hospice from motorists touring the three-mile route of elaborately decorated homes. Free (donations appreciated). 6-10 p.m. daily through Dec. 31. Lake Park Estates, Bryan Dairy Road and 109th Ave. N, Largo. (727) 467-7423.
Plant City Lights of Winter
More then 45,000 lights on two homes dancing to 14 holiday songs with a character sing-along. Free. 6-10 p.m. daily through Jan. 2. 3212 Bella Garden Lane, Plant City. (813) 857-5304.
Brooksville Night of Lights Tour
Tour the 14-room Victorian mansion decorated for the holidays. There will be games for children, Christmas carols, hot chocolate and cookies. Santa will visit. $5. 6 p.m. Saturday, May-Stringer House Museum, 601 Museum Court, Brooksville. (352) 799-0129.
Nights of Shimmering Lights
Walk at your own pace through this quarter-mile walking trail of dancing lights set to music. Scenes include Old Man Winter, penguins, bears, the Nativity and Star of David. $6, 3 and younger free. 5:30-10 p.m. today-Sunday, Dec. 13-16 and 20-23. Sun Kissed Acres, 2302 N Dover Road, Dover.
Oakdale Mega Light Display
The annual Christmas display (also known as the Kresge house) includes 10 trailer-truck loads of lights, an 18-train model railroad, inflatables, flying planes, water fountains, a working carnival, bubble machines, games and a pond. Free. 6-10 p.m. daily through Jan. 3. South St. Petersburg MegaLight Display, 2719 Oakdale St. S, St. Petersburg. (727) 822-5562.
River of Lights Christmas Cruise
Board the Pirate Taxi for a 45-minute cruise up the Hillsborough River to see festively lighted bridges and shimmering downtown skylines. Includes hot cocoa, cookies and Christmas carols. $28, $18 children. Departs hourly between 6 and 10 p.m. Friday-Sunday; and Dec. 13-16, 20-21, 23-24 and 26. 333 S Franklin St., Tampa. (813) 223-7999.
Symphony in Lights
The holiday light show features a 55-foot tree with more than 250,000 LED lights choreographed to holiday favorites by Trans-Siberian Orchestra. On Sunday, join Chabad at Wiregrass outside Dillard's for the Grand Menorah Lighting Celebration at 5 p.m. with food and family activities. Free. Hourly 6-9 p.m. through Dec. 31. The Shops at Wiregrass, 28211 Paseo Drive, Wesley Chapel. (813) 994-2242.
St. Pete Waterfront
Stroll along a pedestrian walkway to see decorations including snowflake lights and a giant greeting card display. In parts of Straub Park, Pioneer Park, Al Lang Park and Albert Whitted Park. Free. 6 p.m. daily through Jan. 1. Beach Drive and Fifth Avenue NE, St. Petersburg. (727) 893-7441.
Dunedin Lights Tour
Enjoy refreshments and holiday music before boarding a bus for a guided tour of area holiday light displays. $8. 6-9 p.m. Dec. 19. Dr. William E. Hale Senior Activity Center, 330 Douglas Ave., Dunedin. (727) 298-3299.
Tampa Winter Village
The riverfront park turns into a winter wonderland with a 360 degree light display set to holiday music, ice skating, the Winter Village Express, 10 pop-up boutiques, food and drink. Hours are for the ice rink, other hours vary. Free (skating/skate rental/trolley additional). 4-9 p.m. today and Dec. 13; 4-10 p.m. Friday and Dec. 14; 10 a.m.-10 p.m. Saturday and Dec. 15; noon-9 p.m. Sunday and Dec. 16; 4-9 p.m. Monday-Wednesday and Dec. 17-19; Hours for Christmas week are: 4-9 p.m. Dec. 20, 4-10 p.m. Dec. 21, 10 a.m.-10 p.m. Dec. 22, noon-9 p.m. Dec. 23, 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Dec. 24, 4-10 p.m. Dec. 25 and 4-9 p.m. Dec. 26; Various times Dec. 27-Jan. 5. Curtis Hixon Park, 600 N Ashley Drive, Tampa. (813) 221-3686.
Fairgrounds Wonderland of Lights
Drive through 1-mile of animated and still light displays, as well as a Christmas village featuring animals of Bethlehem, camel rides, a comedy show, magic and photos with Santa. $20-$25. 6-9 p.m. today, 6-10 p.m. Friday-Saturday, 6-9 p.m. Sunday and Wednesday; 6-9 p.m. Dec. 13, 6-10 p.m. Dec. 14-15, 6-9 p.m. Dec. 16-19; Christmas week hours: 6-9 p.m. Dec. 20, 6-10 p.m. Dec. 21-22, 6-9 p.m. Dec. 23 and 6-9 p.m. Dec. 24-26; also at 6 p.m. Dec. 27-29. Hillsborough County Fairgrounds, Corner of Sydney Washer Road and Hwy 60, Brandon. (800) 377-4625.
Homosassa Celebration of Lights
Marvel at Sebastian's Winter Wonderland, a synchronized light and sound show. Refreshments available. $7; $3 children. 5:30-9 p.m. Dec. 19-24 and 26. Homosassa Springs State Wildlife Park, 4150 S Suncoast Blvd. (352) 628-5343.
Chick-fil-A Christmas Lights
A branch of the fast food restaurant dazzles with its annual lights display, decorations and hourly "snow" falls. Free. Lights come on Friday through Dec. 31 from 6 p.m. to closing Mondays through Saturdays. 6299 W Waters Ave., Tampa.
Don't miss the Indian Trails neighborhood, south of Alderman and east of Omaha Street in Palm Harbor, where homeowners go all out every year, boasting one jaw-dropping scene after the next.
Lights in Bloom
Tropical gardens are transformed into a glowing rainforest with lights depicting giant flowers, butterflies and dragonflies. Children's activities, crafts, entertainment and appearances by Santa and his elves. $25, $20 members, $7 ages 5-12, 4 and younger free. 6-9 p.m. Dec. 20-26; Dec. 27-Jan. 6. Marie Selby Botanical Gardens, 811 S Palm Ave., Sarasota. (941) 366-5731.
POSSIBLE SNOW FLURRIES
There's Snow Place Like Tarpon Springs
Historic downtown Tarpon Springs welcomes Christmas with a giant party including a tree lighting ceremony (6 p.m.), carriage and hay rides, 20 tons of snow, visits with Santa, DJ dancing, an illuminated boat parade (8:15 p.m.), a slide and an obstacle course. Free. (727) 942-5628. 5-10 p.m. Friday. 1 N Pinellas Ave.
Dunedin Holiday Parade and Old Fashioned Christmas
Santa comes to Dunedin early along with an old-fashioned holiday festival, featuring live music, carriage rides and snow slides. Donations will be collected to benefit the Dunedin for Youth Scholarship Fund. Free. 4-9 p.m. Saturday. Along Main Street. (727) 812-4530.
Down Home Holiday Show
An interactive musical show of holiday favorites, sing-a-longs, crafts and snow. Free. 2:30-3:15 p.m. Monday. North Tampa Branch Library, 8916 N Boulevard. (813) 273-3652.
Magic of Christmas
Kids ages 3 to 9 can join Buffalo and Brandy for an interactive show with holiday crafts, sing-a-longs and snow. Free. 3-4 p.m. Saturday. Arthenia L. Joyner University Area Community Library, 13619 N 22nd St., Tampa. (813) 273-3652.
Nightly Snow Fall
Get a little piece of the North Pole as you shop. Snow falls every 30 minutes nightly starting at 6 p.m. through Dec. 31. Free. Sundial, 151 Second Ave. N, St. Petersburg. (727) 800-3201.
Wear long pants and closed toed shoes for a day in the snow with activities including snowball fights, snow tubing, snow slides, make and take crafts, entertainment, stage shows and karaoke. $25, 2 and younger free. 10 a.m.-10 p.m. daily through Jan. 7. Tyrone Square Mall, 6901 Tyrone Square, St. Petersburg. (727) 828-9584.
Snow on 7th Holiday Parade
The Tampa Bay Pride Band and Mayor Bob Buckhorn lead the parade with more than 15 marching bands, dance groups, snow flurries and an appearance by Santa and Mrs. Claus. Free. 7 p.m. Saturday. Snow on Seventh District, Seventh Avenue between 15th and 17th Streets, Tampa. (813) 247-2555.
Parades and festivals
Pinellas Park Holiday Parade
The 45th annual Pinellas Park Holiday parade features bands, floats, soldiers, dancers and equestrian groups. The parade steps off at the 58th Street railroad tracks and proceeds down Park Boulevard to the Shoppes at Park Place. Road closures begin at 1 p.m. and prime spots for viewing begin filling around 4:30 p.m. Free. Pinellas Park Parade Route, Park Boulevard and 58th Street, Pinellas Park. (727) 369-5746. 6 p.m. Saturday .
Brooksville Christmas Parade
The Kiwanis Club of Brooksville presents this parade, which begins on Oakwood Drive, and winds down Howell Avenue and Main Street, then turns down Broad Street and ends at Bell Avenue. Free. Downtown Brooksville, Main Street, Brooksville. (352) 540-3850. 10 a.m. Saturday .
Christmas On Main Street
Enjoy an old-fashioned Christmas with entertainment and vendors along Main Street and on the courthouse lawn. The lighting of the 25-foot Christmas tree at the courthouse steps will begin at 7 p.m., followed by musical performances by Live Oak Theatre Company. Downtown Brooksville, Main Street, Brooksville. (352) 540-3830. 5-8 p.m. today. .
Festival of Lights
Main Street Zephyrhills throws this holiday event with children's activities and live music. The highlight of the day is the lighted holiday parade at 6 p.m. This year's theme is "Florida Christmas." Free. Downtown Zephyrhills, Fifth Avenue, Zephyrhills. (813) 780-1414. 4-9 p.m. Saturday .
You'll find rides, games, music and family fun. Free (tickets required for rides). Coachman Park, 301 Drew St., Clearwater. 5-10 p.m. Friday, noon-10 p.m. Saturday-Sunday.
Combine a nautical atmosphere with holiday cheer and you get Gulfport's Holiday Hoopla featuring arts and crafts, roaming characters, holiday themed music, caroling and dance performances. Benefits Operation Santa and Gulfport residents in need. Free. Gulfport, along Beach Boulevard, Gulfport. (727) 322-5217. 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Saturday .
Light Up the Eastside Christmas Festival
The Christmas celebration includes children's games and activities, Christmas carolers, music and a visit from Santa. Free. Eastside Elementary School, 27151 Roper Road, Brooksville. (352) 796-0697. 6-8 p.m. Friday.
Magical Night Dade City
The Christmas season officially kicks off in downtown Dade City with a parade down Seventh Street featuring floats, dancers, marching bands and Santa Claus. Free. Downtown Dade City, Meridian Avenue and Seventh Street, Dade City. (352) 567-3769. 7 p.m. Friday.
Safety Harbor Holiday Parade
Help welcome Santa to Safety Harbor as he makes his way down Main Street in the holiday parade that includes Shriners, antique cars, fire trucks, high school bands and scout troupes. Free. Main Street Safety Harbor, 750 Main St., Safety Harbor. (727) 724-1555. 1 p.m. Dec. 15.
Tarpon Springs Christmas Parade
The annual parade includes Shriners clowns and members on a wide variety of vehicles, floats and community marching units. After the parade, the fun moves to Craig Park for a candy cane hunt and a visit from Santa. Free. Manatee Village, 955 S Pinellas Ave., Tarpon Springs. (727) 942-5628. 10 a.m. Dec. 15.
North Pole Inspired
A Harbor Holiday
Jump aboard one of eight holiday trolleys and join elves for a six stop trip packed with holiday spirited activities. 5:30 p.m. Saturday , Downtown Safety Harbor, 401 Main St., Safety Harbor. Free. (727) 724-1530. cityofsafetyharbor.com
Breakfast with Santa
The holidays are here and Santa has added The Florida Aquarium to his list of destinations. Meet Santa and his animal friends for a buffet breakfast and photos. 8 a.m. Saturday , The Florida Aquarium, 701 Channelside Drive, Tampa. $35.95, $30.95 children, 2 and younger free. (813) 273-4000. flaquarium.org
Breakfast with Santa
Help Santa check his list twice, see if you've made the naughty or nice list at this full pancake breakfast with photos. 10 a.m. Saturday , Countryside Recreation Center, 2640 Sabal Springs Drive, Clearwater. $3, $2 rec. card. (727) 669-1914.
Breakfast with Santa and Holiday Market
Join Santa for a hot breakfast with photos and stories with Mrs. Claus. Seatings at 9 and 11:30 a.m. Then, move to the park for a holiday market with entertainment, children's activities and more stories with Mrs. Claus (9 a.m.-2 p.m.). Benefits community projects of the Temple Terrace Junior Woman's Club. 9 a.m. Saturday , Woodmont Clubhouse and Park, 415 Woodmond Ave., Temple Terrace. $15. (813) 276-8250. artstampabay.com
Have your dog or cat photo taken with Santa. All pets must be leashed or in a cage with a harness. Free (photo packages additional). International Plaza and Bay Street, 2223 N West Shore Blvd., Tampa. (813) 342-3790. 7-9 a.m. Sunday and 7-8:30 a.m. Dec. 16.
Breakfast with Santa
Listen to music and stories told by Mrs. Claus as you feast on a hot breakfast and pose for photos with Santa. Seatings at 9 and 11:30 a.m. A holiday market available for shopping. $15. Woodmont Park Clubhouse, 415 Woodmont Ave., Temple Terrace. (813) 299-0679. 9 a.m.-2 p.m. Saturday .
Meet Santa in the Park
Santa is escaping the cold of the North Pole and taking a vacation in Florida, but has agreed to take time to visit with children and hear their holiday wish lists in the park. Free. North Straub Park, Fifth Avenue NE and Bayshore Drive, St. Petersburg. (727) 893-7441. 6-9 p.m. today and Sunday; Dec. 13 and 23.
The Dunedin Express
Families enter the historic 1924 train station for a 1.5 hour trip to the North Pole and a visit with Santa and his elves. Includes games, crafts, cookies and cocoa. Takes place at 5:45 and 7:30 p.m. Mondays-Thursdays and 4:45, 6:30 and 8:15 p.m. Fridays-Sundays Dec. 7-19 (closed Dec. 8, 11 and 17). Dunedin History Museum, 349 Main St., Dunedin. $25, $20 members. (727) 736-1176. DunedinMuseum.org.
Florida Holiday Halfathon
Dress like Santa or one of his elves for a flat, fast and visually varied course through Pinellas beach communities, along smoothly paved Pinellas Trail and through shaded public parks. The point-to-point race ends at Taylor Park in Largo. $65-$140. Madeira Beach City Hall, 300 Municipal Drive, Madeira Beach. (727) 347-4440. 7:05 a.m. Dec. 9.
Old Lutz Schoolhouse Breakfast with Santa
Children are invited for donuts, juice and crafts with Santa among the community trees decorated with glimmering lights, model trains and Christmas displays. $4. Old Lutz Schoolhouse, 18819 U.S. 41, Lutz. (813) 244-2256. 8:30-11 a.m. Saturday .
Light Up Inverness
The lights of Inverness will shine throughout the Courthouse Square during the annual event with free train rides, food trucks, merchant specials, visits with Santa and Mrs. Claus and the lighting of the town's Christmas tree (6 p.m.). Free. Downtown Inverness Court House Square, 1 Courthouse Square, Inverness. (352) 726-2611, ext. 1306. 5-8 p.m. Friday.
North Pole Express
Take a 90-minute journey through two million LED lights to watch elves make holiday crafts and treats and hear a story by Mrs. Claus. $25. Largo Central Park, 101 Central Park Drive, Largo. (727) 587-6720. 5:30 p.m. Friday-Sunday.
Join Avalon Park's Christmas celebration with fireworks, photos with Santa, music, dancing and food. Free. Avalon Park West Community Center, 5227 Autumn Ridge Drive, Wesley Chapel. (813) 783-1515. 5-8 p.m. Saturday .
Country Christmas Open House
Bring the family for Christmas cookies, punch, holiday music and visits with Santa. Also, a barrel train ride, cookie decorating, face painting, barking dogs, handbell choirs and vintage vendors. $10, $5 children, 4 and younger free; $5 with the donation of a toy or pantry item. Pioneer Florida Museum, 15602 Pioneer Museum Road, Dade City. (352) 567-0262. 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Saturday .
Run Run Reindeer
Ages 12 and older can dress like a reindeer and run a holiday themed obstacle course. Benefits A Kid's Place of Tampa Bay. Noon-4 p.m. Saturday , Little Harbor Resort, 536 Bahia Beach Blvd., Ruskin. $20. (813) 846-1316. jens-market.com
Santa's Flight Academy
Enjoy a special visit with Santa and become a member of his crew. Members try on a virtual flight suit, dance in the snow and receive a personalized cadet badge. Check mall hours for end times. Free. International Plaza and Bay Street, 2223 N West Shore Blvd., Tampa. (813) 342-3790. 10 a.m. today-Saturday, 11 a.m. Sunday, 9 a.m. Dec. 10-12; and 9 a.m. Dec. 13-14, 8 a.m. Dec. 15, 10 a.m. Dec. 16 and 9 a.m. Dec. 17-19; and 9 a.m. Dec. 20-21, 8 a.m. Dec. 22 and 9 a.m. Dec. 23-24.
Visit with Santa at Tyrone Square
Children can visit with Santa, tell them what they want for Christmas and get their holiday photos taken. On Sunday, children with sensory, physical and developmental disabilities can visit with Santa in an environment adjusted to their needs from 9 to 10:30 a.m. Monday, bring your furry friend for pet photos with Santa from 6 to 8 p.m. On Dec. 17, pet also get photos with Santa from 6 to 8 p.m. Free (photos additional). Tyrone Square Mall, 6901 Tyrone Square, St. Petersburg. (727) 347-3889. 11 a.m.-8 p.m. daily.
Santa and Suds
Watch the sunset as you run across the Clearwater bridge in this 5K to benefit the Deaf Literacy Center. Then there's a post-race party with beer and food for all athletes. Sign up at santa5k.racehawk.com. $25-$35 day of. 400 Block of Cleveland Street, Osceola Avenue and Cleveland Street, Clearwater. (727) 724-1525, ext. 4120. 4-7 p.m. Dec. 23.
Let Your Light Shine
Bring non-perishable food items and join the lighting of the large menorah with a sing-a-long of Hanukkah songs, dreidel games and a latke bar. 5:30 p.m. Sunday , Congregation B'nai Israel, 300 58th St. N, St. Petersburg. Free. (727) 381-4900.
Grand Family Hanukkah Celebration
Chabad of Clearwater lights a menorah at this festival with live music by Tali Yess, hot latkes, donuts, dreidels, gelt drop and a light dairy dinner. Free. Surf Style Mega Store, 311 S Gulfview Blvd., Clearwater Beach. (727) 265-2770. 4-6 p.m. Sunday.
Wiregrass Grand Hanukkah Celebration
Light up the night with Chabad at this annual celebration with a large menorah lighting, train rides, DJ dancing, face painting, games, a stilt walker, hot latkes and doughnuts. 5 p.m. Sunday, The Shops at Wiregrass, 28211 Paseo Drive, Wesley Chapel. Free. (813) 642-3244.
The biggest social event of the year for young Jewish singles and couples is always held on Christmas Eve when the Christians are busy. The night includes food, games and two drinks followed by a cash bar. Benefits the Tampa Jewish Federation. The party goes on until 1 a.m. 9 p.m. Dec. 24, Cavu, 1601 N Franklin St., Tampa. $45 advance, $54 at door. (813) 769-4723.
Candlelight Processional at Epcot
Epcot's World Showcase comes alive during the holidays with the grand Candlelight Processional. A giant tree shaped choir of cast members is joined by a 50-piece orchestra, select choirs and celebrity guest readers nightly at 5, 6:45 and 8:15 p.m. through Dec. 30. Featured readers include: Neil Patrick Harris ( today), Whoopi Goldberg (Friday-Sunday). Also, Blair Underwood (Dec. 13-14), Gary Sinise (Dec. 15-17, Pat Sajak (Dec. 18-20). Also, TBA (Dec. 21-23, Edward James Olmos (Dec. 24-25, Jodi Benson (Dec. 26). Included with daily admission: $102-$122, $96-$116 ages 3-9, 2 and younger free. Epcot at Walt Disney World, 1515 N Buena Vista Drive, Lake Buena Vista. (407) 934-7639. 5-8:15 p.m. daily through Dec. 26.
Christmas Town at Busch Gardens
More than 2 million twinkling lights transform the park into a holiday wonderland with Rudolph, Christmas-themed entertainment and visits with Santa in his house. Included with admission through Dec. 31. $104, 2 and younger free. Save $15 if you order online. Busch Gardens, 10165 N McKinley Drive, Tampa. (813) 884-4386. 10 a.m.-7 p.m. daily, open until 10 p.m. on weekends.
Christmas in the Country
Bring the family to experience a 19th century Florida Christmas featuring seasonal decor, music and rural traditions. $8, $7 seniors/students, 5 and younger free; $6 parking. Cracker Country at the Florida State Fairgrounds, 4800 N U.S. 301, Tampa. (813) 627-4225. 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Dec. 8.
Christmas in the Wild
The animals come out at night for the zoo's holiday party with carolers, a 50-foot animated Christmas tree, a holiday hoedown, storytime with Mrs. Claus and a Candy Cane Lane. Runs through Dec. 30 on select nights. Included with admission: $34.95, $25.95 ages 3-11, 2 and younger free; or $24.95 after 4 p.m. on event days. ZooTampa at Lowry Park, 1101 W Sligh Ave., Tampa. (813) 935-8552. 4 p.m. Dec. 7-8 and Dec. 14-16. Also at 4 p.m. Dec. 20-23 and 26.
Holidays Around the World
The World Showcase comes alive with holiday traditions from around the globe. Meet Pere Noel (France), La Befana (Italy), the Daruma doll (Japan) and many other characters. Each day ends with an extended holiday version of Illuminations: Reflections of Earth. This year, offers an expanded selection of holiday kitchens around World Showcase (food additional). Included with admission: $102-$122, $96-$116 ages 3-9, 2 and younger free. Epcot at Walt Disney World, 1515 N Buena Vista Drive, Lake Buena Vista. (407) 934-7639. 9 a.m.-9 p.m. daily through Dec. 30.
The resort has 2 million pounds of hand-carved ice sculptures created by artists brought in from China and 40 tons of snow. It's only 9 degrees inside, but they supply you with heavy parkas. Still, gloves and warm socks are recommended. This year features "A Christmas Story" theme, eight lanes of snow tubing, a Secret Santa scavenger hunt and the Naughty or Nice Escape Room. Closing times vary by day. From $28.99, $26.99 seniors, $14.99 ages 4-12, 3 and younger free. $20 parking. Gaylord Palms Resort, 6000 W Osceola Parkway, Kissimmee. (407) 586-0373. 10 a.m. daily through Jan. 6.
Mickey's Very Merry Christmas Party
Disney's ever popular after-hours Christmas celebration with Mickey's Once Upon a Christmastime Parade, holiday themed fireworks extravaganza, holiday characters and "snow" on Main Street. Held on select nights through Dec. 21. $95-$125, $90-$120 children. Walt Disney World, 1515 N Buena Vista Drive, Lake Buena Vista. (407) 934-7639. 7 p.m.-midnight today-Friday, Sunday and Tuesday; and Dec. 13-14, 16, 18 and 20-21.
SeaWorld's Christmas Celebration
SeaWorld's celebration welcomes guests with everything from a sparkling Sea of Trees, classic holiday tunes and a Christmas market. Included with park admission: $99.99, 2 and younger free. SeaWorld, 7007 SeaWorld Drive, Orlando. Toll-free 1-800-327-2424. 9 a.m.-10 p.m. Dec. 8-9 and weekends through Dec. 30.
Wish a happy holidays to the resident animals tucked snuggly in their holiday themed habitats. Also, kids can play in the third floor fun zone and catch Santa and his elves Scuba diving in Mavis's Rescue Hideaway. Included with admission: $22.95, $20.95 ages 60-older, $17.95 ages 3-12, 2 and younger free; or $12.99 after 4 p.m. Friday-Sunday. Clearwater Marine Aquarium, 249 Windward Passage, Clearwater. (727) 441-1790. 10 a.m.-6 p.m. daily through Jan. 6.
Families can build their own gingerbread house from recycled materials including cardboard, pipe cleaners and bottlecaps. Then, add them to the ever growing village. $15, $12.50 military/seniors, $9.50 children, 1 and younger free. Glazer Children's Museum, 110 W Gasparilla Plaza, Tampa. (813) 443-3861. 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Dec. 15, 1-6 p.m. Dec. 16, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Dec. 17-21.
Also at 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Dec. 22, 1-6 p.m. Dec. 23 and 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Dec. 26; also taking place Dec. 27-30.
The Florida Orchestra presents a free concert of holiday songs in the courtyard. 5:30 p.m. Dec. 12, Sundial, 151 Second Ave. N, St. Petersburg. Free. (727) 800-3201.
Dress in holiday attire and be ready to dance for the Suncoast Blues Society Holiday Party with live music by The Nick Schnebelen Band and The Andy T Band with Alabama Mike. $12-$15. 8 p.m. Saturday , Skipper's Smokehouse, 910 Skipper Road, Tampa. (813) 971-0666. skipperssmokehouse.com
The New Horizons Band of Gulfport presents holiday music and popular hits. Free. Catherine Hickman Theater, 5501 27th Ave. S, Gulfport. (727) 893-1070. 7 p.m. Dec. 11.
Silver Bells Holiday Extravaganza
Maestro Mark Sforzini and artists from the St. Petersburg Opera provide entertainment for the 53rd annual gala with lunch, auction and a cider toast. Benefits the St. Petersburg Opera. $100. St. Petersburg Yacht Club, 11 Central Ave., St. Petersburg. (727) 367-2975. 11 a.m.-2 p.m. Friday.
Christmas with the Master Chorale
The singers will present a program of sacred and secular songs, along with guests from Lumina Youth Choirs. $25 adults, $15 students at the door. First Presbyterian Church St. Petersburg, 701 Beach Drive NE, St. Petersburg. (727) 822-2031. 8 p.m. Friday; Also taking place at Lake Magdalene United Methodist Church, 2902 W Fletcher Ave., Tampa. (813) 961-1254. 7:30 p.m. Sunday.
Cool Yule '18
The Pyramid Players present a holiday revue that includes the original Christmas story and seasonal tunes. An exhibition of original artwork by Pyramid artists opens at 2 p.m. Free, donations accepted. University Area Community Development Center, 14013 N 22nd St., Tampa. (813) 386-6687. 3 p.m. Sunday.
Gloria in Excelsis Deo
The choir, bell choir and instrumentalists of the Messiah Music Ministry present a collection of holiday classics and spiritual songs. Free. Messiah Lutheran Church, 14920 Hutchison Road, Tampa. (813) 961-2182. 7 p.m. Saturday .
Holiday spirit and music combine at this party with a choral performance by the St. Pete High Pitchforks, jazz by Henry Ashwood, wine, beer, appetizers and twinkling lights. Benefits the Children's Educational Garden. $50. Sunken Gardens, 1825 Fourth St. N, St. Petersburg. (727) 892-5715. 6-8:30 p.m. today.
Making Spirits Bright
The Plant City Community Chorale and the Florida Southern Girls Chorus join to present a collection of holiday songs. 7:30 p.m. Saturday , First United Methodist Church, 303 N Evers St., Plant City. $10 advance, $15 at door. (813) 757-0212. pccchorale.org
The Magic of Christmas
The International Chorale presents a program of music ranging from secular to gospel, Americana and international songs, as well as comedy. $5 at the door. Dr. William E. Hale Senior Activity Center, 330 Douglas Ave., Dunedin. (727) 298-3299. 2 p.m. Sunday.
Florida Brass Alumni Holiday Concert
The Florida Brass Alumni Drum and Bugle Corps will put on this free holiday concert in the park. Free. Coachman Park, 301 Drew St., Clearwater. 4 p.m. Dec. 15.
Enjoy a holiday concert from the Carrollwood Cultural Center Choir and the DeArmon Cast Chorus in front of the giant Christmas tree. Free. Chick-fil-A, 6299 W Waters Ave., Tampa. (813) 880-0808. 5-9 p.m. Dec. 17.
Tampa Bay Heralds of Harmony
The group presents "A Christmas Celebration: 2018." 3 p.m. Dec. 8, USF School of Music Concert Hall, 3755 USF West Holly Drive, Tampa. $25. (813) 530-5224. eventbrite.com
Tree Lightings and Parties
FRIENDS Down Syndrome West Florida Christmas Party
Families with children with Down Syndrome can celebrate the holidays with an Italian dinner, drinks, cookie decorating, ugly sweater contest, photos with Santa and appearances by Queen Elsa and Princess Anna. Free (registration required by Friday for a child's gift). Holiday Inn Tampa Westshore, 700 N West Shore Blvd, Tampa. (727) 463-1707. 6-9 p.m. Sunday.
Holiday Open House
Holiday cheer comes to the 68-acre campus with the lighting of the holiday tree, food and refreshments. Free. The Children's Home, 10909 Memorial Highway, Tampa. (813) 864-1537. 4-6:30 p.m. Saturday .
Kenneth City Tree Lighting
Kenneth City welcomes the holiday with music and a tree lighting. Free. Schleck Park, 6000 54th Ave. N, Kenneth City. (727) 498-8948. 6 p.m. Friday.
Light Up the Night Tree Lighting
Purchase a "Love Light" to attend the hospital's donor celebration and tree lighting party with desserts and caroling. $10 per Love Light, $25 three. St. Anthony's Hospital, 1200 Seventh Ave. N, St. Petersburg. (727) 825-1086. 5:30 p.m. today.
Wear red for this holiday mixer with food and drink by area businesses, entertainment, door prizes and a cash bar. Bring a new, unwrapped gift to donate to area needy. $20. Chapel on the Hill, 12601 Park Blvd., Seminole. (727) 423-9825. 6-9 p.m. Friday.
Safety Harbor Tree Lighting Ceremony
Listen to traditional holiday songs sung by local choirs, watch the huge Christmas tree being lit and visit with Santa Claus. Free. John Wilson Park and Gazebo, 401 Main St., Safety Harbor. (727) 724-1530. 6-9 p.m. Friday.
St. Nicholas Day
Celebrate the unofficial beginning of the Christmas holiday season in Poland with Polish food tastings, beer, wine and Polish vodkas. $40. Kozuba and Sons Distillery, 1960 Fifth Ave. S, St. Petersburg. (727) 201-9078. 6:30-10 p.m. today.
Ugly Sweater Crawl
Grab your Santa hat and crawl koozie for this multi-stop bar crawl with holiday themed drink specials, DJ music and a photo. 21 and older only. $20. Thirsty First, 119 First Ave. N, St. Petersburg. (727) 317-3333. 5-11:30 p.m. Saturday .
Tampa's Ugly Sweater Bar Crawl
Slip into your most hideous holiday sweater for an evening of Christmas naughtiness on a four stop tour with bus transportation, one free shot at each stop, a sweater contest, food and drink specials and shotgun beers while on board the bus. 5 p.m. Saturday, Zydeco Brew Werks, 1902 E Seventh Ave., Tampa. $20-$120. (650) 440-2390. downtowncrawlers.com
Rockin' Lights Family Fun Night
Enjoy the tree lighting, visits with Santa, holiday chalk fest and the holiday gift market. Free; onsite parking for $10. Largo Central Park, 101 Central Park Drive, Largo. (727) 586-7415. 6:30-9 p.m. Dec. 15.
Arc Nature Coast's Christmas Dance Party
The event will include refreshments, food and a gift from Santa Claus. Entertainment provided by P.J. the D.J. $5, 10 and younger are free. Arc Nature Coast Education Center and Regional Evacuation Shelter, 6495 Mariner Blvd., Spring Hill. (352) 544-2322, ext. 109. 7-10 p.m. Dec. 14.
13 Ugly Men: Ugly Sweater Party
13 Ugly Men wear Ugly Sweaters and "party for a purpose" at this holiday party with Santa's Village and a second level of "blizzardy" dance floors, multiple DJ's , photos with Santa and eggnog drink specials. Benefits Clothes for Kids. 8 p.m. Dec. 14, American Social, 601 S Harbour Island Blvd., Tampa. $20. (813) 605-3333.
Rock the Yacht: Christmas
Board a yacht for this 2.5-hour Christmas party on the open water with dancing on two decks and live Motown music by Unique. 21 and older only. $35. Yacht StarShip, 603 Channelside Drive, Tampa. (813) 223-7999. 9-11:30 p.m. Dec. 22.
Films and Theatrical
A Charlie Brown Christmas Live
The Peanuts gang put on their own Christmas play and find the true meaning of the holiday. Part of the Broadway series. $35-$150. Ruth Eckerd Hall, 1111 N McMullen-Booth Road, Clearwater. (727) 791-7400. 7 p.m. Dec. 12.
Sunset Cinema at Pier 60: Holiday Edition
Bring blankets or low lawn chairs to watch A Christmas Story(PG) (Friday ), The Man Who Invented Christmas(PG) (Saturday), White Christmas(1954) (Dec. 15), Elf (PG) (Dec. 21) and Disney'sA Christmas Carol(PG) (Dec. 22) on a jumbo sized screen. Free. Pier 60, 10 Pier 60 Drive, Clearwater Beach. (727) 449-1036. 5:45 p.m. Dec. 7-8, Dec. 15 and 21-22.
Tampa Theatre Holiday Classic Series
The month long series features Elf (Sunday) and It's A Wonderful Life Dec. 14-17 and 19-20. Also, White Christmas(1954) Dec. 23. Bring non-perishable food items to feed area hungry. Benefits Metropolitan Ministries. $10. Tampa Theatre, 711 Franklin St., Tampa. (813) 274-8982. 3 p.m. Dec. 9; 7:30 p.m. Dec. 14, 3 and 7:30 p.m. Dec. 15-16,, 7:30 p.m. Dec. 17 and 19. Times for the final week are: 7:30 p.m. Dec. 20 and 3 p.m. Dec. 23.
Storyteller and playwright Nan Colton presents a series of holiday stories, folklore and traditional tales. Free. Safety Harbor Library, 101 Second St. N, Safety Harbor. (727) 724-1525. 6:30 p.m. today.
Holiday Movies in the Park
Bring a picnic and enjoy a classic holiday movie screening on the waterfront. Families are encouraged to ride their bicycles to the films. Free and secure valet bicycle parking available. Holiday movies include: A Christmas Story (Friday), The Santa Clause (Dec. 14) and Santa Buddies: The Legend of Santa Paws (Dec. 21). Free (donations appreciated). North Straub Park, Fifth Avenue NE and Bayshore Drive, St. Petersburg. (727) 824-7802. 7 p.m. Dec. 7, 14 and 21.
Children's Series: Holiday Edition
This portion of a series of family oriented plays designed to introduce children to live theater features Santa's Holiday Revue. $8.50, $7.50 children. Pinellas Park Performing Arts Center, 4951 78th Ave. N, Pinellas Park. (727) 587-6793. 11 a.m. Dec. 15.
Drive-in Movie: Holiday Edition
Dunedin Parks and Recreation presents an evening of music, trivia and a screening of The Santa Clause under the night sky. $10 per car. Highlander Park, 1920 Pinehurst Road, Dunedin. (727) 812-4537. 5 p.m. Dec. 14.
Holiday Movie Night
Holiday treats and snacks available during a screening of National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation (Dec. 16) and Polar Express Dec. 23. Free. Station Square Park, 612 Cleveland St., Clearwater. (727) 562-4800. 6 p.m. Dec. 16 and 23.
A play depicting the birth of Christ and incorporates live animals. 6 p.m. Dec. 15, First Seventh Day Adventist Church, 822 W Linebaugh Ave., Tampa. Free. (863) 873-1188.
Great Russian Nutcracker
Moscow Ballet presents a performance featuring award-winning principal dancers, magical backdrops and props, and stunning costumes. $34-$99. Mahaffey Theater, 400 First St. S, St. Petersburg. (727) 893-7832. 7 p.m. Dec. 26.
The Family Blessing
Inspired by the Nutcracker, Jal Hinson's community production explores the blessings that come simply through having a family. 7:30 p.m. Saturday , Mahaffey Theater, 400 First Street South, Saint Petersburg. $25-$45. (727) 893-7832.
Holiday Chalk Art
Live chalk drawing by area artists in a "Holiday Windows Display" theme. Vote for your favorite. 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturday , Armature Works, 1910 N Ola Ave, Tampa. Free. (813) 250-3725. armatureworks.com
Death by Chocolate
Stroll among the holiday light displays as you indulge in delectable chocolate creations by local restaurants and chocolatiers at this chocolate meca with complimentary champagne, desserts, silent auction and selfies with Santa. Benefits local youth programs. $20 advance, $25 day of. Central Park Performing Arts Center, 105 Central Park Drive, Largo. (727) 587-6793. 7-9 p.m. Friday .
Pancake Breakfast and Toy Drive
Come hungry and feast on pancakes, sausage, coffee, tea and juice. Bloody Mary's available for $5. Bring new, unwrapped toys or non-perishable food items to benefits the Red Sled Initiative for foster children. $5. Treasure Island Community Center, 154 106th Ave., Treasure Island. (917) 941-5349. 8 a.m.-noon Dec. 9.
Holiday Tour of Homes
A tour of approximately six uniquely designed area homes which are decorated for the holiday. Benefits the Beach Art Center and community projects. $15 advance, $20 day of. Beach Art Center, 1515 Bay Palm Blvd., Indian Rocks Beach. (727) 272-5251. 1-6 p.m. Saturday .
Victorian Christmas at the Safford House
Enjoy refreshments and live performances as you take a stroll through the 1883 Safford House decked out in Victorian era holiday decorations. Includes photos with Victorian Santa, craft activities, carolers and a gift shop. 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Saturday , Safford House Museum, 23 Parkin Court, Tarpon Springs. $16, $8 children, 4 and younger free. (727) 937-1130. artstampabay.com
Victorian Christmas Stroll
Christmas trees ranging in height from a few inches to more than 14 feet, 40,000 lights and hundreds of feet of garland, plus vintage fashions and antique toy decorations create an old-fashioned holiday feel. Live music takes place from 6 to 8 p.m. $15, $13 seniors, $9 children; Discount Days: $11, $10 seniors, $7 children (Dec. 10-11 only). Henry B. Plant Museum, 401 W Kennedy Blvd., Tampa. (813) 254-1891. 10 a.m.-8 p.m. daily through Dec. 23.
Westchase Holiday Market
Original paintings, photography, ceramics, jewelry and sculpture, along with handmade craft items. Benefits Autism Speaks. Free. Westchase Golf Club, 11602 Westchase Golf Drive, Tampa. (813) 854-2331. 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Dec. 9.
Winter Wonder Ride
Dress in holiday theme and decorate your bicycle for the eighth annual Light It Up themed ride with an after party including food, DJ dancing and a sing-a-long. Benefits the purchase of bicycles and helmets for needy children. 2 p.m. Dec. 8. Curtis Hixon Park, 600 N Ashley Drive, Tampa. $55. onbikes.org
Boley's Jingle Bell Run
Downtown St. Petersburg will be lit up and jingling in this popular non-competitive 5K and 1-mile fun run with live music by 15 bands, glow zones and snow along a candlelit course. Includes T-shirt, jingle bells and glow in the dark swag. Benefits Boley Centers, a nonprofit that serves the mental disabled. $30, $25 youth. Albert Whitted Park, 107 Eighth Ave. SE, St. Petersburg. (727) 821-4819. 7:30-9 p.m. Dec. 14.
Dress in holiday attire and join the Suncoast Jazz Society to dance to the sounds of the Terry Myers Quartet. $35-$40. Cove Cay Country Club, 2612 Cove Cay Drive, Clearwater. (727) 596-7142. 6 p.m. Dec. 16.
Holiday Gift Market
More than 60 local merchants selling holiday gifts at this event with holiday characters, cookie decorating, children's crafts and Christmas photo ops. Free. Largo Central Park, 101 Central Park Drive, Largo. (727) 674-1464. 3-9:30 p.m. Dec. 15.
Holidays with the Celebrity Housewives
Teresa Giudice (New Jersey), Dorinda Medley (New York) and Kelly Dodd (Orange County) share stories about their lives and holiday traditions, and will conduct a Q&A with the audience. $45-$65. Capitol Theatre, 405 Cleveland St., Clearwater. (727) 791-7400. 8 p.m. Dec. 14.
Jingle Bell Bazaar
Enjoy live entertainment and music as you shop for holiday gifts at this market with a fashion showcase, food vendors and visits with Santa starting at 1 p.m. Free. Centennial Park, 1800 E Eighth Ave., Tampa. 1-866-281-6703. 11 a.m.-6 p.m. Dec. 16.
Children can enjoy tea and finger food with Clara and the Nutcracker Prince as they learn basic movements from the classic ballet. $30, $25 members. Glazer Children's Museum, 110 W Gasparilla Plaza, Tampa. (813) 443-3861. 11:30 a.m.-1 p.m. Dec. 16.
St. Petersburg Holiday of the Arts
Artists from across the nation display their works, including paintings, photography, sculpture, ceramics and jewelry. Free. South Straub Park, 250 Bayshore Drive NE, St. Petersburg. (812) 824-5996. 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Dec. 15-16.
Pancakes, PJs and Putt Putt
Dress in your favorite pajamas to enjoy breakfast with unlimited pancakes, toppings, drinks, photos with holiday characters, arts and crafts, and putt-putt golf. $10, $8 ages 4-12, 3 and younger free. Plantation Palms Golf Club, 23253 Plantation Blvd., Land O'Lakes. (813) 331-5579. 8:30-10:30 a.m. Dec. 15.
Star of Bethlehem
A staff astronomer leads this journey to Jerusalem by looking at the skies as they were 2,000 years ago. Find out if the star was comet, super nova or something else entirely. $10, $8 members. Bishop Planetarium at the South Florida Museum, 201 10th St. W, Bradenton. (941) 746-4131. 5:30-6:30 and 7:30-8:30 p.m. Dec. 20-21.