1. Things to Do

Plan your weekend: Easter, Demi Lovato, Boys II Men at Busch Gardens, Broadway's 'Beautiful' and 'Jersey Boys'

Sunday brings the Easter holiday, filled with brunches, colored egg hunts and sunrise services. Find more events at MONICA HERNDON   |   Times (2016)
Sunday brings the Easter holiday, filled with brunches, colored egg hunts and sunrise services. Find more events at MONICA HERNDON | Times (2016)
Published Mar. 28, 2018


Easter, Passover: This is an important weekend for the faithful. The weekend starts with Good Friday, and Passover begins at sundown. Sunday brings Easter, filled with brunches, colored eggs and sunrise services. One of the most-Florida of all is the Underwater Egg Hunt and Spring Festival at the St. Pete Beach Aquatic Center where kids will dive for Easter eggs in the pool and stay to play afterward at the Spring Festival with children's activities. $5 (egg hunt); free (festival). 7701 Boca Ciega Drive, St. Pete Beach. 10 a.m.-noon Saturday. Head to for ways to join the hunt for Easter eggs or find a community service to celebrate with others for Easter or Passover.


Cuban Sandwich Festival: Nothing will get an argument started more surely than asking who has the best Cuban sandwich. Come taste the contenders this weekend as restaurants from around the world — yes, even London and Seoul, Korea — compete for the title in Ybor City. More than 40,000 aficionados are expected, culminating in Smackdown Sunday, with cultural vendors and live entertainment. The highlight Saturday is another attempt to break the record for the biggest Cuban sandwich in the world. It topped 150 feet last year, with the prize winner donated to a homeless shelter. The festival begins 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday at the Hillsborough Community College Ybor campus, 1320 E Palm Ave., Ybor City. The final judging takes place there 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday. Free admission.


Demi Lovato and DJ Khaled: The singer has been pretty open about her struggles over the years — depression, addiction, bulimia, bipolar disorder and more, all before turning 25. So her tour with Snapchat superstar DJ Khaled, which hits Amalie Arena on Saturday, includes a pre-show mental health seminar organized by CAST Centers, a mental wellness and addiction treatment program based in California. Guest speakers lined up for this tour include Iggy Azalea, Kelsea Ballerini, Fifth Harmony's Lauren Jauregui and Parkland shooting survivors. The seminar will take place around 6 p.m. at Firestick Grill, and is free for ticket holders, but you must register in advance at As for the concert, Kehlani opens at 7:30 p.m. at Amalie Arena, 401 Channelside Drive, Tampa. $29.95 and up. (813) 301–2500.

ON THE CHEAP: 5 things to do under $5, including live music and a 'Hamilton' star


Broadway: Two of the most popular Broadway shows in recent years are in the Tampa Bay area this weekend. Beautiful — The Carole King Musical traces the rise of a promising teen to a song-writing great who gave us One Fine Day, Up on the Roof and Will You Love Me Tomorrow. The show runs today through Sunday at the Straz Center for the Performing Arts in Tampa. $46 and up. (813) 229-7827. Similarly, Jersey Boys is like a jukebox musical about the Four Seasons. It's playing at Ruth Eckerd Hall for three performances Friday and Saturday. 1111 N McMullen-Booth Road, Clearwater. $35 and up. (727) 791-7400.


Dennis Miller: The sly, sardonic comic still echoes his roots on Saturday Night Live's "Weekend Update" segments. But the comedian been all over television in a wide variety of roles. Miller has had his own late-night talk show, racked up five Emmy awards with HBO's Dennis Miller Live, served as a color commentator on Monday Night Football and toured the country with Bill O'Reilly. Though he's never been shy about showing his conservative credentials, Miller says there won't be much political material in this show. 8 p.m. Friday at the Mahaffey Theater, 400 First St. S, St. Petersburg. $39.50 and up. (727) 892-5798.

Block party

Blast Friday: Billy Joel fans get a treat with a free show by the leading musicians who backed Billy Joel on his best albums. They go by the name the Lords of 52nd St. Billy Joel Experience these days. Multi-instrumentalist Richie Cannata, drummer Liberty DeVitto and guitarist Russell Javors bring songs from The Stranger to Glass Houses. There's also a family-friendly food and craft festival and a beer garden. 5:30-10 p.m. Friday. 400 Block of Cleveland Street, Clearwater.

Take the kids

Popovich Comedy Pet Theater: Famed Russian circus performer Gregory Popovich has trained a menagerie of pets to do comedic tricks for circus-like show. Combining juggling, clowning and more than 30 trained animals, he's a top Vegas act that has been featured on The Tonight Show, The Late Show With David Letterman and America's Got Talent. 3 p.m. Saturday. Mahaffey Theater, St. Petersburg. $29 and up. (727) 893-7832.

Theme park

Busch Gardens Food and Wine Festival: This weekend brings Boys II Men to the weekend food and wine fest on Saturday and excitement is high, so don't be surprised if the VIP seats sell out. More than a dozen food cabins will be serving gourmet food, wine and cocktails. Sunday brings Christian artist Natalie Grant. Included with park admission: $104, 2 and younger free. Busch Gardens, 10165 N McKinley Drive, Tampa. (813) 884-4386. Noon Saturday-Sunday.

Big top

UniverSoul Circus: A circus with a rhythm and beat all its own, UniverSoul Circus is set up in the Raymond James Stadium parking with shows running through Monday. Set to a soundtrack of soul and hip-hop music, you'll see contortionists, fire acts, clowns, motorcycles, dancers, silk aerial art and dogs, all performers from around the world. Runs through April 1 4201 N Dale Mabry Highway, Tampa. $16-$41. Toll-free 1-800-316-7439.

Contact Sharon Kennedy Wynne at Follow @SharonKWn.

FORECAST: Check the weekend's weather forecast while making your plans.

MORE EVENTS: Search By Date, Price and Neighborhood

DINING: 7 new places to eat across Tampa Bay

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