Festivals

Best Kid-Friendly Weekend Activities in Tampa

Tampa News No Comments

We all struggle with that sinking feeling accompanied by, “What am I going to do with the kids this weekend?” You want to plan an elaborate, fun-filled kid-friendly weekend full of activities. We’ve got you covered. Here are some of the best weekend activities with the kids in the Tampa Bay area:

1. Adventure Island

A water park is a great way to beat the heat and get the kids (and you) having a blast.

2. The Big Red Balloon

Take the kids for a ride in a hot air balloon this weekend. No, really- right here in Tampa!

3. DFAC Children’s Art Museum

Spend an educational weekend with the kids at one of Tampa’s best children’s museums.

4. Big Cat Rescue

Tour Tampa’s Big Cat Rescue and get up close and personal with some REALLY big cats!

5. Bay Area Renaissance Festival

Dress up, eat some turkey legs, and cheer on knights with your kids at the Bay Area Ren Fest.

6. Captain Memo’s Pirate Cruise

Most kids have a pirate phase. Make a weekend experience they’ll never experience and take them on a real pirate cruise that’s perfect for families.

7. Weeki Wachee’s Mermaid Show

Not into pirates? Bet your kids would love to see a mermaid right here in Tampa.

8. Tampa Theatre

Tampa Theatre has regular kids’ shows that are perfect for a rainy Florida weekend indoors.

9. Heritage Village

Step into a history with this historically accurate village and sneak in some weekend learning while having fun!

10. Busch Gardens

Don’t overthink it. Take the kids to Busch Gardens, ride every ride twice, and eat a bunch of junk food.

11. Lowry Park Zoo

One of the best zoos in the country is located right here in Tampa- get wild!

12. TECO Line Streetcars

Ride in one of Tampa’s historic streetcars and give the kids one of those fun “first” experiences.

13. Spinner’s Rotating Restaurant

For a special dinner, take the family to Spinner’s and take in a gorgeous 360-degree view of Tampa like no other.

14. Dinosaur World

How many kids can say they saw a giant (animatronic) dinosaur up close? Take your little paleontologists to explore Dinosaur World.

15. Paleo Discoveries

Speaking of ancient history, your kids can go hunting for fossils at Tampa’s Paleo Discoveries this weekend.

16. The Florida Aquarium

Another kid-friendly gem that’s located right here in Tampa, the Florida Aquarium is a surefire way to make a memorable weekend activity fun for the kids.

17. Tampa Electric’s Manatee Viewing Center

There aren’t many kids in the U.S. that can take a weekend trip to see manatees in the wild. Your kids are lucky. Teach them more about Tampa’s ecosystem and foster an appreciation for the environment.

18. Ghost Tours of Historic Tampa

Want to scare the daylights out of the kids? Take them on a ghost tour just in time for Halloween. They’ll probably be way braver than you.

19. Tampa Bay Water Bike Company

That’s right- a water bike. Tour Tampa a new way with the kids this weekend.

20. Drive-In Movies in Tampa

You’d be surprised at the number of old-fashioned drive-in movie theatres in the Tampa Bay area. Pack up the car and let the kids experience a piece of iconic American history together.

Tampa’s Year Round Festival Lifestyle

Tampa News No Comments

Tampa Bay is a place that has gorgeous weather year round, so it is no wonder this Florida location is a great place for travelers and locals alike. Because of the weather, you can attend a new festival almost every weekend. Floridians will give any excuse to have a good time, so of course this means that Tampa Bay is well known for their year round festivals. We will take a look
at some of the most popular festivals you can attend, throughout any season!

Winter

Many people dread the word winter because they think of snowy, cold weather. Tampa Bay has generally dry, mild winters. Some locals might claim it is freezing, but the Northern part of the United States finds it a great getaway in the winter months. During the holiday season you might like to attend one of the many outdoor festivals. The Rough Riders Parade and Santa Festival allows individuals the opportunity to watch a fun, holiday parade, followed by a Christmas Market, ice skating, and pictures with Santa. Another Christmas filled festival to attend in the winter months is the Winterville Festival. Kids can come take their picture with Santa and Mrs. Claus while other Christmas characters walk around. There is no shortage of hot cocoa and cider, while guests sit back and enjoy a holiday show.

Nearing the end of the winter season, why not attend the Gasparilla Pirate Festival? This festival takes place from the end of January to the middle of March. This festival gives tribute to Tampa Bay’s last known buccaneer, Jose Gaspar. Some even say his treasure is still buried along Tampa’s coast. Because this festival is a couple of months long, there is nearly something new
and fun, relating to pirates, every day. Adults and children alike will find fun in street parades, film festivals, and a farewell voyage back to sea by some local pirates!

Spring

In spring the weather begins to stay consistently warm, thus creating more outdoor festivals that are fun for all. Feeling artsy? The Tarpon Springs Fine Arts Festival, held in April gathers over 200 local and national artists, who can show off their work. Guests can view millions of art pieces for purchase, while watching live entertainment, and enjoying an assortment of food and drinks.

Another fun music festival, suitable for kids and adults, is the Tampa Bay Blues Festival. It will be held April 8-10 of this coming year. The event is held at the waterfront along downtown St. Petersburg. Musicians gather to sing and play exciting classic and new blues music. Of course no festival is complete without a variety of foods and premium beer. Local food favorites, such as Cuban cuisine, barbecue, and seafood, are all available at the Blues Festival. The festival continues for three days, so you have plenty of time to catch a great blues show.

Summer

Around the United States, summer is host to many food and music festivals around the country. Tampa Bay is no different. They are host to The Big Guava Music Festival. Last year’s acts featured Hozier, Pixies, Passion Pit, Ryan Adams and The Strokes, along with several other up and coming artists. This event is held at the Florida State Fairgrounds and MidFlorida Credit Union Amphitheater, and is a two day event. Next year’s lineup is sure to be as amazing as it was in 2015!

For beer drinkers there is the WaZoo Beer Fest, which was placed in the Top 10 Greatest Beer Festivals in the country! The event takes place at the Lowry Park Zoo in Tampa. Of course guests must be at least 21 years old to enter. A selection of over 275 beers and other drinks are available, as well as food and entertainment. For the safety of all involved, it is important to note, animals will not be on display during the event!

Fall

What a gorgeous time of year, especially if you live in Tampa Bay. With Halloween right around the corner, there are tons of festivals to celebrate this favorite season. If you want to attend a spooky and fun Halloween festival, then Guavaween Halloween Festival is in its 30th year. This year’s theme is based on a post-apocalyptic world. The event takes place at the Cuban Club Courtyard, and features plenty of fun for adults. There will be a costume contest, plenty of scary theatrics, and live entertainment. This is definitely a festival to attend if you love Halloween. Don’t forget the costume contest comes with a $1000 prize for the best costume!

If you are looking for a more family friendly event, visit the Pumpkin Palooza Family Fall Festival. This event will take place in the beginning of October and is located at the Northside Baptist Church in St. Petersburg. The best part about this festival is that it is free! A pumpkin patch, inflatable jumping station, arts & crafts station, face & hair painting station, and game station will all be set up for kids of all ages to enjoy. The only thing guests pay for is food and drink, which there is plenty of. If you are feeling generous, the church will be collecting boxed and canned food for those in need.

This is just a small sample of the types of festivals going on year round in Tampa Bay Florida. Visiting the Tampa Bay Tourist Bureau can help you find the exact festival you are looking for! When you are in Tampa Bay, you can never say there is nothing to do, because guaranteed, there is a festival any time of the year, perfect for you!