Aargh! A list of Gasparilla events in Tampa Bay

Tampa is about to be taken over by pirates. Here’s how you can celebrate Gasparilla.
Pirates with Ye Mystic Krewe of Gasparilla blast cannons as they approach the Tampa Convention Center aboard the Jose Gasparilla pirate ship to begin the Gasparilla invasion Saturday in Tampa.
Pirates with Ye Mystic Krewe of Gasparilla blast cannons as they approach the Tampa Convention Center aboard the Jose Gasparilla pirate ship to begin the Gasparilla invasion Saturday in Tampa. [ LUIS SANTANA | Times (2022) ]
Published Jan. 17|Updated Jan. 20

Gasparilla began in 1904 with a horseback pirate invasion. This year, members of Ye Mystic Krewe of Gasparilla will sail across Tampa Bay aboard the Jose Gasparilla and take over the city of Tampa on Jan. 28. Here are some ways to join the fun.

Gasparilla Children’s Parade: Bring the kids for a day of family-friendly events including a bicycle rodeo, two air invasions and a preschoolers stroll, capped off by a parade and fireworks. The parade begins at Bay to Bay and Bayshore Boulevard. Pirates, floats, marching bands and more proceed north along Bayshore Boulevard before ending at Edison Avenue. Free. Noon-7:30 p.m. Saturday. Bay to Bay and Bayshore Boulevard, Tampa.

Gasparilla on the Gulf Treasure Hunt: Adventure awaits! Pull together a team of up to six players and follow clues throughout Dunedin to solve riddles. Benefits Random Acts of Flowers. $25. 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturday. Main Street, downtown Dunedin.

Pirate Lore and the Legend of Gasparilla: Join historian and author Robert Jacob for a discussion on pirate history and its mythology. Included with admission. Noon-3 p.m. Saturday. Tampa Bay History Center, 801 Old Water St., Tampa. 813-228-0097.

Adult Gasparilla: This appetizer potluck includes live music. $10. 7-10 p.m. Saturday. MiraBay Clubhouse, 107 Manns Harbor Drive, Apollo Beach. 813-649-1500.

Gasparilla: A Tampa Tradition: Dive deep into the history of Tampa’s oldest community festival in this exhibit, which explores more than 110 years of parades, pirate invasions, coronation balls and more. Take in vintage photographs from 1904 to the present and memorabilia, including invitations and pirate tokens, and marvel at gowns worn by Gasparilla queens and members of their courts. Remains on display through March 5. $12, $10 seniors, $9 students, $7 children, 3 and younger free. 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Jan. 24-28, noon-5 p.m. Jan. 29. Henry B. Plant Museum, 401 W Kennedy Blvd., Tampa. 813-254-1891.

HR-aargh: Pre-Gasparilla Party: HR professionals from around Tampa Bay are invited to board Pirate Pete’s water taxi for a sunset cruise with food, drinks and pirate-related fun. Free (food/drink may be additional). 4:30-7 p.m. Jan. 26. 333 S Franklin St., Tampa.

Gasparilla Ladies Night: Women are invited to dress in pirate costumes for shopping from vendors, DJ music, a costume contest, door prizes, raffles, food and drink specials. No cover. 6-10 p.m. Jan. 26. Salty Shamrock, 6186 U.S. 41, Apollo Beach. 813-938-5282.

Gasparilla Bar Crawl 5K: Dress in your pirate best and join the Bar HWRD Run Club for a 5K run with pit stops for drinks along the way. Free. 7-9 p.m. Jan. 26. Bar HWRD, 302 S Howard Ave., Tampa. 813-906-7885.

Gasparilla Kick-Off Party: Kick-start Gasparilla weekend with happy hour and music by the Loose Cats. No cover. 6 p.m. Jan. 27. Pete’s Place, 4145 Henderson Blvd., Tampa. 813-282-9039.

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Gasparilla 2023: Enjoy live music all day and a brunch buffet. No cover (food/drink additional). 9 a.m. Jan. 28. District Tavern, 116 N 12th St., Tampa. 813-252-3444.

Junior League of Tampa Gasparilla Invasion Party: Get to the Davis Islands headquarters for this party with breakfast, lunch, an open bar, entertainment and invasion viewing. $125. 9 a.m. Jan. 28. Junior League of Tampa Headquarters, 87 Columbia Drive, Tampa. 813-254-1734.

Gasparilla Bar Crawl and Brunch: Join Downtown Crawlers and hop among more than 15 “Barrrs” on this crawl with five free shots at locations of your choice, a buffet brunch, bottomless mimosas, drink specials and a professional photographer. $29-$89. 9 a.m.-3 p.m. Jan. 28. Park and Rec, 290 S Meridian Ave., Tampa. 813-563-4777.

Gasparilla Pirate Fest: An expanded Pirate Fest features stages with live entertainment pre and post parade in Curtis Hixon Waterfront Park (Ashley and Twiggs) and MacDill Park (Ashley and Whiting). Free. 9 a.m.-8 p.m. Jan. 28. Curtis Hixon Waterfront Park, 600 N Ashley Drive, Tampa. 813-251-3378.

Gasparilla Shuttle: Climb aboard the Brew Bus for the Gasparilla Invasion of Tampa Bay. The bus will take you from the overflow parking lot at Cigar City Brewing to the Winn-Dixie on Swann Avenue. The parade route is a 15-minute walk from the drop-off location. Choose from 10 and 11 a.m. or noon pickup times. $43. 10 a.m. Jan. 28. Brew Bus Terminal, 4005 W Spruce St., Tampa. 813-990-7310.

Gasparilla Invasion Brunch Cruise: The Gasparilla Invasion Brunch Cruise includes close-up views of the invasion. You can celebrate alongside pirate ship Jose Gasparilla and the pirate invasion flotilla as it makes its way through the downtown channel from Ballast Point. $129.95-$269.95. 10 a.m. Jan. 28. Yacht StarShip, 603 Channelside Drive, Tampa. 813-223-7999.

Gasparilla Brunch: Enjoy brunch just a short walking distance from the parade route. Includes buffet, an open bar and a souvenir cup. $20-$100. 10 a.m.-noon Jan. 28. University of Tampa Plant Hall, 374 UT University Drive.

Gasparilla Invasion Brunch: This year’s event takes place on the two-level private terrace-balcony overlooking the Garrison Channel, where the pirate ship will invade and kick off the 2023 Gasparilla Parade. Includes a brunch buffet, open bar, parade viewing and DJ dancing. $165-$250. 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Jan. 28. American Social Bar and Kitchen, 601 S Harbour Island Blvd., Tampa. 813-605-3333.

Gasparilla Extravaganza: The 13th annual family-friendly event features food, drink and entertainment. Benefits Father of Mine, which provides mental health services and mentorship to fatherless children. $25-$125. 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Jan. 28. Westin Harbour Island Hotel, 725 S Harbor Island Blvd., Tampa.

Big Wave Treasure Cove: Gasparilla: DJ Ekin headlines the entertainment for this fenced-in party with parade viewing, complimentary spirits sampling stations and several surprise acts. 21 and older only. Reservations required on EventBrite. Free. 10 a.m.-5:30 p.m. Jan. 28. Tony Jannus Park, 200 Bayshore Blvd., Tampa.

Alpharilla: Tampa’s largest Black Gasparilla party includes DJ dancing, music by A’lon and the Desire Band, beer pong, cornhole and prizes for best pirate costumes. $35-$190. 11 a.m.-7 p.m. Jan. 28. Hooch and Hive, 1001 W Cass St., Tampa. 813-251-1234.

Gasparilla Invasion Cruise: Set sights on the Gasparilla flotilla led by Jose Gaspar and his bootlegging buccaneers. Dress in your finest pirate garb and enjoy a free bar at sea aboard the Pirate Water Taxi. $109.95-$149.95. 11:30 a.m. Jan. 28. 333 S Franklin St., Tampa. 813-390-3711.

Gasparilla Invasion: The Jose Gasparilla pirate ship emerges at the south end of Hillsborough Bay followed by hundreds of boats. The Gasparilla flotilla then makes its way across Hillsborough Bay and into Seddon Channel (between Davis Islands and Harbour Island), kicking off the Gasparilla Invasion. Free. 11:30 a.m. Jan. 28. Seddon Channel, between Davis Islands and Harbour Island, Tampa. 813-251-3378.

Gasparilla Block Party: Party under a 5,000-square-foot tent where you’ll find a mechanical shark, full-service bars, VIP cabanas, outdoor games, an ice luge, food stations and DJ dancing. 21 and older only. $10-$50. Noon-3 a.m. Jan. 28. Bar HWRD, 302 S Howard Ave., Tampa. 813-906-7885.

Gasparilla Parade of Pirates: To celebrate their capture of the city of Tampa, the captain and his krewe share their wealth — beads, treasures and doubloons — with the crowd along the 4.5-mile parade route. The parade begins at Bay to Bay and Bayshore Boulevard, continues along Bayshore Boulevard to Brorein Street, turns east on Brorein Street, then north on Ashley Drive. It ends at Cass Street and Ashley Drive. Free. 2-6 p.m. Jan. 28. Bay to Bay and Bayshore Boulevard, Tampa. 813-251-3378.

Gasparilla Festival: Ryan Marchand hosts a party at the “notorious pirate bar.” No cover. 5-9 p.m. Jan. 28. Gaspar’s Grotto, 1805 E Seventh Ave., Tampa. 813-248-5900.

Gasparilla Invasion Party: Sam Wolfe hosts this customer appreciation EDM show with free booze for beads. Registration is required at Free. 10 p.m.-3 a.m. Jan. 28. The Ritz Ybor, 1503 E Seventh Ave., Tampa. 813-248-4050.

Gasparilla Reggae Rum Fest: Dance to your favorite Caribbean music at this party with a sexiest pirate contest. $20. 10 p.m.-3 a.m. Jan. 28. The Jerk Hut, 1241 E Fowler Ave., Tampa. 813-977-5777.

Gasparilla Night: Wind down after Gasparilla with two pirate themed drag shows, dancing to music by DJ Charles Machado and Bradley’s Boys dancing all night. No cover. 11:30 p.m. and 1 a.m. Jan. 28. Bradley’s on 7th, 1510 E Seventh Ave., Tampa. 813-241-2723.

After Gasparilla Clean Up: Join Keep Tampa Bay Beautiful and the city of Tampa to pick up beads and trash from Fred Ball Park, Bern’s Park, Kate Jackson Park and Bank of America. Free. 8-11 a.m. Jan. 29. Fred Ball Park, 2621 Bayshore Blvd., Tampa. 813-274-8184.

Aar-Ange Party: Gasparilla Tea Dance: Get your pirate spirit going and dance at the Hula Bay Club pool. Appetizers and fountain soda are included. $40. 1-6 p.m. Jan. 29. Hula Bay Club, 5210 W Tyson Ave., Tampa. 813-837-4852.