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March 12, 2020

Our 10+ Favorite Things to Do This Week in Tampa Bay and Beyond

By Laura Byrne

We say it every week and we’ll say it again… the forecast for FUN is 100% with this list of our favorite family-friendly Tampa bay things to do this weekend with the kids! Let’s get to it!

Don’t Miss It: The Busch Gardens + Adventure Island FREE Preschool Pass is Back! for a limited time

Extra Credit: Start your research on a summer camp for the kids in Tampa Bay! Our 2020 Summer Camp Guide is growing by the day!


Family-Friendly Fun in Tampa Bay This Weekend:

It’s opening weekend of Adventure Island which includes the debut of the NEW Solar Vortex waterslide! Park will closed on Monday, March 16 through the end of the month as a precaution against coronavirus.

Ongoing family fun:

*Closed starting Monday, March 16 through end of the month. Busch Gardens’ Food and Wine Festival | Now through April 26
Savor culinary delights and sample an expanded selection of wines, craft brews and cocktails from around the world at Busch Gardens in Tampa. Some of the biggest acts in musical entertainment will take the stage every weekend!  buschgardens.com

*Temporarily not sailing. Pirate Water Taxi is still on the water though! The Lost Pearl Pirate Ship sets sail in Tampa! | NOW Boarding 
Tampa finally has a pirate ship of its own! The Pirate Water Taxi crew has expanded its fleet, including adding a new bright red pirate ship that will offer one of a kind pirate adventures for families! Real pirates will entertain with swashbuckling fun and there are even some super cool water cannons on board! Use the promo code TAMPA at check out to take advantage of the BOGO deal during the month of February!

PAW Patrol: Adventure Play OPENS at Glazer Children’s Museum | Now-May 25 
Head over to Glazer Children’s Museum and join Marshall, Chase, Skye, Rubble, Everest, Rocky, Zuma, and Tracker as you explore Adventure Bay. “There’s no job too big, no pup too small!” The museum will be closed Feb. 10-11 for the installation of this exhibit. You can see our INSIDE LOOK here with Glazer Children’s Museum CEO Sarah Cole so you know what to expect. glazermuseum.org

Bay Area Renaissance Festival  | Now-Mar. 29, Saturdays and Sundays  from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. 
Fair maidens and merciful gents are invited out to the Tampa Bay Renaissance Festival that takes guests back to the 16th century. With over 100 artisans, enjoy a truly one-of-a-kind shopping experience and go back 400 years when you view live action jousting. bayarearenfest.com

Washed Ashore: Art to Save the Sea at the Florida Aquarium | now through August 30
This awe-inspiring and thought provoking art exhibit was created using plastic pollution and debris washed onto the shorelines of the West Coast. The goal is to educate us about the impact one time use plastics is having on our environment and why we should focus on the three R’s: Reduce, Reuse, Recycle. You’ll find the 18 sculptures throughout the Aquarium. There are plenty of photo opps, so keep the cameras ready! Check out our INSIDE LOOK!

Dinos Alive! at ZooTampa | Now through May 31
Head over to ZooTampa to discover species that haven’t been seen for millions of years! Enjoy activities such as fossil digs, life-size animatronic dinosaurs, and fun for the whole family! zootampa.org  WATCH our INSIDE LOOK here so you know what to expect before you go!

*Closed Monday, March 16 through end of the month. Epcot International Flower and Garden Festival | Now through June 1 
Experience spring through brilliant blooms, live entertainment, flavorful dishes and interactive playgrounds as a part of this annual springtime celebration at Disney’s EPCOT. Guests can check out outdoor kitchens, more than 70 Disney-themed topiaries, vibrant gardens, flower towers, exhibits and outdoor rock concerts. disneyworld.com

This Week:

Gilbert and Sullivan’s The Pirates of Penzance | March 13-15, various times
This opera focuses on the life of Frederic, a young Englishman who just completed his apprenticeship with a band of pirates. Sing along to the musical’s satirical lyrics, as they will be displayed on a screen for everyone to see!  strazcenter.org

Jersey Boys  at the Straz | March 13-15, various times
This award-winning musical tells the story of The Four Seasons, a famous rock band from the 1960s. Enjoy live music and entertain yourself with the life of all four members of the band with this true-life musical! Jersey Boys contains profane language and is recommended for mature audiences. strazcenter.org

*CANCELLED Day Out with Thomas: Big Adventures Tour 2020 | Mar. 13-15 & 21-22, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Children are invited to spend a day with Thomas at the Florida Railroad Museum in Parrish, Florida! Multiple activities will be offered, including a 25-minute ride with a talking Thomas the Tank Engine and a chance to meet Sir Topham Hatt, the controller of the highway. dayoutwiththomas.com

*CANCELLED* 2020 Mayor’s O’Green Fest in Tampa | March 14, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Watch the Hillsborough River turn brilliant green in celebration of St. Patrick’s Day. Children can enjoy free activities and crafts at the Kids Tent, which will include family fun from Busch Gardens, The Florida Aquarium, MOSI and more!  riverogreen.com

St. Patrick’s Day Run in Tampa | March 14, times vary 
Celebrate St. Patrick’s Day by joining the 3rd Annual Leprechaun’s 5k, 10k, Challenge, and Kid’s Fun Run. Only those who dare to complete both the 5k and 10k runs will pass the leprechaun’s challenge and will be the worthy winners of 3 medals. Kids are welcome to participate in the 100m Fun Run at AI Lopez Park! runsignup.com/Race/FL/Tampa/TheLeprechaunsRun5k

*POSTPONED Pi Day at Glazer Children’s Museum | March 14, 3:14 p.m.
Celebrate Albert Einstein’s birthday at the Glazer Children’s Museum’s second annual Pi Day. Take part in a pie fight at Curtis Hixon Waterfront Park while Mozart plays in the background. The fight will start exactly at 3:14 p.m.! glazermuseum.org

The 36th Annual Art in the Park | March 14-15, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Encouraging, promoting and supporting all creative artists with more than 130 fine art and craft exhibitors all in a beautiful tree-shaded park in Hernando County. The event includes a special performance from the Hernando Symphony Orchestra, a food court and children’s art activities. hernandoarts.org

Reptilepalooza  at CMA | March 14-15, times vary 
Along with discovering the diverse marine life the Clearwater Marine Aquarium has to offer, now you can also learn and have an up-close encounter with the aquarium’s rescued snakes and reptiles! Check out their website for more information on times and ticket prices. seewinter.com

*POSTPONED* Gasparilla International Film Festival | March 17-22
Join in a celebration of film, community outreach and social awareness at the Gasparilla International Film Festival. This festival includes screenings of a diverse group of films that hope to showcase new talent in support of the cinematic arts. The festival will also include industry panels where top industry players will share knowledge with filmmakers and attendees.  gasparillafilmfestival.com

112 Years of Broadway at Ruth Eckerd Hall | March 19, 1 p.m. 
Enjoy the new and the old of Broadway at a show that has it all! Neil Berg’s production has some of the original stars of these all-time favorite shows, from classics, such as The Phantom of the Opera, to newer musical productions.  rutheckerdhall.com

*CANCELLED* 2020 Valspar Championship Week | March 16-22, times vary
The Valspar Championship is Tampa Bay’s PGA TOUR event held at Innisbrook Resort from March 16-22. In addition to a top-ranking field, the family-friendly event offers activities for every member of the family, such as a 16’ rock-climbing wall, putting holes, and various arts and crafts. Chris Young, multi-platinum country music star, headlines the tournament’s concert, Valspar® LIVE 6, on Saturday night. Kids 15 and under admitted free with a ticketed adult. valsparchampionship.com


Don’t forget Date Night!

*Our partners at Tampa Bay Date Night Guide are sharing some of their favorite things to do around Tampa Bay too!


MORE Family-Friendly Tampa Bay FUN to try:



Spring Training in Tampa Bay

Take advantage of Florida’s beautiful weather and watch baseball teams practice at fields throughout Tampa Bay. Learn more here.




parks and playgrounds in Tampa Bay
Pier 60
Discover a NEW Place to Play!

Why not discover a new park or playground in the Tampa Bay Area?

There are so many great parks for families which is why we’ve put together a list of our favorites with the help of our Family Fun contributor Heather DeManche! Check it out here!


Dinovations-Lab-MOSI7 Local Museums Kids Love in Tampa Bay! 

If the temps are a bit too cold for outdoor fun, why not go and play at one of our favorite 7 museums for kiddos in Tampa Bay!







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