1. Fun

Top things to do in Tampa Bay for the week of April 29-May 5

The crowd at RiverFest 2017 watched hot air ballons at Curtis Hixon Waterfront Park. Riverfest, and the nighttime hot-air balloon glow, return May 3-4 to downtown Tampa. Times staff (2017)
Published Apr. 29

Riverfest: Celebrate downtown Tampa's Riverwalk on Friday and Saturday with a free lineup of concerts, a taco festival, a hot air balloon glow on Saturday and the Wiener Dog Derby.

Yom HaShoah: To mark Holocaust Remembrance Day there will free admission, memorial services and talks Thursday at the Florida Holocaust Museum, 55 Fifth St. S, St. Petersburg.


Music: Grammy-winning duo Indigo Girls play Ruth Eckerd Hall on Thursday ($38.25-$68.25). L.A.'s Chicano Batman brings its signature psychedelic soul Friday to the Crowbar in Ybor City ($20). Reggaeton superstar Don Omar headlines Fiesta Maxima on Sunday at the Yuengling Center ($25 and up). Christian music's MercyMe hits Amalie Arena on Sunday with Crowder and Micah Taylor ($25). California folk outfit Milk Carton Kids perform Friday at Clearwater's Capitol Theatre ($29.50). Named one of the country artists "you need to know" by Rolling Stone, Phoebe Hunt plays Ybor's the Attic on Sunday ($15-$25).

Florida Orchestra: For its Masterworks series, Mahler's spellbinding Symphony No. 1. Michael Francis conducts Friday at the Straz Center in Tampa and Saturday at Mahaffey Theater in St. Petersburg. ($18-$48)

Movies in the Park: Every Thursday in May brings a good excuse for a picnic at St. Petersburg's Straub Park. This installment brings Raiders of the Lost Ark. The music starts at 7 p.m., with the movie at dusk.

Star Wars Day: The inside joke of fans greeting, "May the 4th be with you," has turned into a full-fledged geek holiday. The Castle in Ybor will offer costume and Wookie-howling contests starting at 10:30 p.m. Saturday. $15.

Collectors Day: More than two dozen private collections will set up around the Tampa Bay History Center on Sunday, offering everything from political memorabilia to meteorites. 801 Old Water St., Tampa.


Free Comic Book Day: Visit a local comic book shop on Saturday, when many will have special appearances by artists and have more than 50 titles in a range of styles for any age group to choose from. Find a participating comic shop at

Clearwater Threshers: The team is getting in on the Star Wars Day action on Saturday with dozens of characters from the 501st Legion on hand for photos and post-game fireworks at Spectrum Field. $6-$10.

Sunflower Mazes: The spring tradition returns Saturdays and Sundays through May at two of the biggest farms in the Hernando County town of Masaryktown. HarvestMoon Fun Farm and Sweetfields Farm both have labyrinths set up and lots of side activities such as farm animals, crafts and rides. and

. MOre to explore

Find lots of ways to have fun outside.


  1. On Saturday, Disturbed will perform at Amalie Arena in Tampa. TRAVIS SHINN  |  Warner Records
    The Bucs Beach Bash goes down in St. Pete Beach, Disturbed plays Amalie Arena and the Dance Hall Festival continues at the Studio@620.
  2. Visitor Sara Crigger of Nashville views the Dali masterwork painting "The Hallucinogenic Toreador" (1969-1970) this month with the aid of the Dali app on her smartphone. "Using this is like holding an art history class in your hand," Crigger said. The "Visual Magic: Masterworks in Augmented Reality" exhibit runs through Nov. 3 at the Dali Museum in St. Petersburg. SCOTT KEELER  |   Times
    With augmented reality, 19th century prints, bronzes and food photography, a well-rounded experience awaits.
  3. Salman Rushdie is the author of "Quichotte." Rachel Eliza Griffiths
    The acclaimed author will talk about the book at Tampa Theatre on Sept. 25. | Review
  4. Aaron Shulman is the author of "The Age of Disenchantments." Ecco Books
    The author is reading ‘City of Quartz,’ a history of Los Angeles.
  5. A scene from a balcony cabin on a 2017 Alaskan cruise. BOYZELL HOSEY  |  Tampa Bay Times
    You can have the trip of a lifetime without paying for it for the rest of your life.
  6. Margaret Loflin leads Maggie on the Move, one of the local food trucks set to serve at Flavors of Asia. Tampa Bay Times (2012)
    Food trucks offer Flavors of Asia in St. Petersburg, plus the Palladium presents ‘Crossing the Bay’ and Howl-O-Scream invades Busch Gardens.
  7. REO Speedwagon will perform at Clearwater's Ruth Eckerd Hall in Clearwater on March 1, 2020. Courtesy of Randee St. Nicholas
    REO Speedwagon, Gladys Knight, Kidz Bop, Art Garfunkel and more.
  8. Michael Francis leads a community chorus during one of the Florida Orchestra's Sing Out Tampa Bay sing-alongs. MICHAEL FRANCIS  |  Florida Orchestra
    The music director is entering his fifth year with the orchestra, which has a Beethoven-heavy season opening Sept. 27 in Tampa.
  9. Suzanne Natzke, an artist and teacher with the Pasco Fine Arts Council, arranges her watercolor paintings for an upcoming exhibit, 'Moments in Time.' The exhibit will be held through Oct. 21 at the council's new gallery at Avalon Park West in Wesley Chapel. MICHELE MILLER  |  Michele Miller
    The countywide Council will exhibit work at the Avalon Park West community.
  10. On Thursday, Spymonkey's "Hysteria" will bring absurdity and physical comedy to the Straz Center through Nov. 3. Courtesy of Jane Hobson
    Spymonky’s ‘Hysteria’ opens at the Straz, the Capitol Theatre celebrates ‘Abbey Road’ and a banned books drag show hits St. Pete Shuffle.