From outdoor festivals, family fun to FREE, there is plenty to keep you busy and your belly full this weekend in Tampa Bay!

Beer, Bourbon and BBQ Festival, Tampa’s Downtown, Curtis Hixon Waterfront Park
Saturday, Feb. 22nd (2 p.m. to 6 p.m.)
Hot diggity dog y’all! You know I am all about a good ol’ southern-fried good time paired with beer and bourbon!  This Saturday, Beer, Bourbon and BBQ will take over downtown Tampa’s Curtis Hixon Waterfront Park with tastings of 60 beers, 40 bourbons and all the scrumptious BBQ that your little heart desires.  If you didn’t get your tickets in advance, you can purchase them at the door (as long as it isn’t sold out) for $40.  Tickets include a souvenir glass for the unlimited beer and bourbon tastings (you don’t have to try them all y’all). Doors open at 2 p.m. until 6 p.m.  For more information visit:

67th Annual Fiesta Day and 11th Annual Flan Fest, Ybor City
Saturday, Feb. 22nd (Fiesta Day: 11 a.m. to 6 p.m./Flan Fest: 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.)
This FREE family-friendly street festival celebrates the cuisine, culture and heritage of the Latin immigrants who settled in Ybor City at the turn on the 19th Century for the 67th year. The festival started out as a “verbena” or day of rest for the cigar workers who settled from Spain, Cuba and Italy and now attracts thousands of people to the festival’s authentic, ethnic food and entertainment. The same day 40 contestants will be competing for the Top Flan in Tampa Bay in Centennial Park.  You can taste-test tons of flan, and the judging starts at Noon.  Overall, it is going to be a Flan-tastic weekend in Ybor City! For more information visit:

Nuclear Cowboyz, Tampa Bay Times Forum
Friday, Feb. 21st 7:30 p.m., Saturday, Feb. 22nd 7:30 p.m. and Sunday, Feb. 23rd at 2 p.m.
The world’s most explosive, choreographed, arena-based freestyle motocross (FMX) touring production, returns for the fifth straight year to Tampa Bay. With over 1,000 gravity-defying stunts performed by 29 of the globe’s most dominant freestyle athletes, complete with stunning laser effects, the largest indoor pyrotechnics show and an infections soundtrack of heavy metal, electronic dubstep and alternative hip hop this show will not disappoint! Tickets start around $20 and go up to $100.  For ticket info and more information visit:

Rays Fan Fest, Tropicana Field, St. Petersburg
Saturday, Feb. 22nd 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.
I don’t know a single Rays fan that doesn’t miss the opportunity to run around the field and meet all their favorite Tampa Bay Ray baseball players during Rays Fan Fest.  This family-friendly event is FREE, and guests will have the chance to get autographs, enjoy coach clinics as well as an interactive zone with big-league batting cages, an obstacle course and a home-run derby sponsored by All-Children’s Hospital.  For more information visit:

MOSI: MythBusters Explosive Exhibition
Exhibition is open daily, now through May 8th
The NEW MOSI MythBusters Explosive Exhibition is a MUST-SEE for kids of all ages.  This exhibition is family-friendly and completely hands-on, full of interactive experiences combining scientific facts with innovative displays.  Bust myths… do you get more wet walking versus running in the rain? Step in the rain chamber and find out! How many seconds does it take to “dodge a bullet”? Suit up in the MythBusters productive suit with googles and find out your reaction time with real paintballs coming at you full-speed.  This has been one of my favorite exhibitions as MOSI and I totally recommend it even for the adults! Tickets are $24.95 for adults and $19.95 for children (2-12) and include admission to either MOSI’s permanent exhibits or a documentary IMAX film. For more information visit:

$6 Zoo Day, Tampa’s Lowry Park Zoo
Sunday, Feb. 23rd 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Treat the entire family to a day of fun and adventure! Discover more than 1,000 animals, including my favorite, the TWO adorable baby African elephants for only $6 per person (kids under 3 are free).  Only Tampa’s Lowry Park Zoo, the #1 ZOO in the U.S., can offer all this wild fun! For more information visit:

Bay Area Renaissance Festival, MOSI (Museum of Science and Industry)
10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays through April 6th Rain or Shine!
This 16th century village takes you back in time with more than 100 merchants, live jousting, entertainment, food, beer and fun for the whole family.  Each of the seven weekends, there will be different themes.  This weekend’s theme, Wine Chocolate and Romance Weekend! And if you are a residence of Orlando or Temple Terrace you get $3 discount (must have proof of residency).  Parking is FREE, tickets range from $10 to $30.  They even have “dog admission” for only $10, so Fido is invited too! For more information visit:

“Hot Havana Night” Rock the Yacht, Yacht StarShip
Saturday, Feb. 22nd Boards, 8:30 p.m. Departs, 9 p.m. Returns, 12:00 a.m.
If you haven’t experienced a night on board the Yacht StarShip you are missing out!  Almost every weekend different musical genres “Rock the Yacht”.  This Saturday, Hot Havana Nights with Gumbi Ortiz and New Groove City will rock the yacht with hardcore timba and real Cuban salsa music. Tickets are $30 (21+ only). For more information visit:!rock-the-yacht/c1wqe

Tampa’s Downtown Market, 601 N. Ashley Street, Downtown Tampa
Every Sunday 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
I just love, love, love the Tampa’s Downtown Market on Sunday mornings.  I try to go every weekend and stock up on goodies like fresh local produce, doggy treats, unique sweets and more!  Since 2008, the Tampa downtown Market has served as a community gathering site providing economic opportunities to small businesses. There are so many treasures to discover and take home like fresh breads, dairy cheeses, locally made pickles, sauces and artistic creations from some of Tampa’s best artisans. I usually take my dog Lilly with me (it’s family-friendly and dog-friendly) and we do some shopping then grab a bite for lunch there from one of the local vendors.  Oh… and parking is FREE on Sundays, north of Kennedy! For more information visit:

Gasparilla Distance Classic
Saturday, Feb. 22nd and Sunday, Feb. 23rd
Thousands will test their endurance this weekend at the Gasparilla Distance Classic.  Since 1978, the Gasparilla Distance Classic has donated $3.9 million to the Boys & Girls Clubs of Tampa, Girls Inc. of Pinellas, The Friends of Tampa Parks & Recreation and youth running related programs.  Saturday and Sunday there will be certain road closures, so check out street closures and times here: