THINGS TO DO THIS WEEKEND IN TAMPA BAY
The events and descriptions below were compiled by Tampa Bay Times entertainment and events reporter Sharon Wynne. To check out all of the weekend events courtesy of the Tampa Bay Times, click here.
Shephard's on Clearwater Beach has a Labor Day weekend celebration includes concerts by Sam Feldt on Saturday and Nervo on Sunday ($16 and up).
Summer of Rum Festival: The seventh annual rum lovers party with more than 40 varieties of rum drinks will have live music by Sublime, Rome, the Expandables and Inner Circle. $15. Noon-11 p.m. Saturday in Julian B. Lane Riverfront Park in Tampa.
Sparkman Wharf: There will be a lineup of free concerts all weekend featuring a variety of local artists.
At last, Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge has opened to earthlings today at Walt Disney World. The opening in Hollywood Studios marks one of the most unusual and expensive moves Disney has ever undertaken. The 14-acre land, which cost $1 billion and has a nearly identical counterpart in California, is devoted to the world George Lucas dreamed up.
Check out Sharon Wynne's full review of her time at the theme park.
Epcot's International Food and Wine Festival also opened today. The festival, open daily, is busier on nights and weekends, so lines tend to be shorter during the weekdays and mid-day hours. This year's festival runs for a record 87 days, through late October. Leaving the festival this year are Greece and New Zealand's marketplaces. In their place, a new Swiss-inspired Alps Marketplace is debuting as is the Appleseed Orchard Marketplace in the O Canada! Theater. The Plain White T's have a free concert there this week as part of the Eat to the Beat series, followed by country's Sawyer Brown on Sept. 1 and 2. Other acts include Sheena Easton (Oct. 31 and Nov. 1), 98 Degrees (Oct. 7 to 9), Kenny G (Oct. 14 and 15), Smash Mouth ( Sept. 16 and 17) and Boyz II Men (Nov. 4 to 6).
Sharon Wynne has a preview of the Food and Wine Festival.
Chris Brown: The controversial Grammy-winning R&B star will play his fourth Tampa show in five years in support of his latest album, Indigo. Tory Lanez, Ty Dolla $ign, Joyner Lucas and Yella Beezy are tagging along. The show starts at 6:30 p.m. Saturday at Amalie Arena in Tampa.
Florida Georgia Line: Hitmaking country artists bring Dan and Shay, who produced one of last year's best country songs in Tequila, along for the ride. Morgan Wallen and Canaan Smith open. $80 and up. 7 p.m. Friday. MidFlorida Credit Union Amphitheatre, 4802 U.S. 301 N, Tampa.
Smooth '70s pop and rock will be in the air when Firefall (Just Remember I Love You, Strange Way), Poco (Heart of the Night)and Prairie League (Let Me Love You Tonight) stop in Saturday at Ruth Eckerd Hall ($39-$83.75).
Comedian Lavell Crawford, a fan favorite on AMC's Breaking Bad, will be at Tampa's Improv Friday through Sunday ($37.55). The performance relies as much on Crawford's hefty physique as it does his sense of humor. Even if you love Huell, you're not getting the full Lavell experience. The man's a prolific voice-over actor and stand-up comic. He's also slimmed down quite a bit, which he talked about during his latest Showtime special, Lavell Crawford: New Look Same Funny. So get out there and watch him do what he does best this weekend in Ybor City. $30 and up. 8 and 10:30 p.m. Friday, 7:30 and 10 p.m. Saturday, 7 p.m. Sunday. Improv, 1600 E Eighth Ave.
The Palladium in St. Petersburg hosts the comedy show Kick the Bucket List. It isdubbed "the world according to AARP," on Friday with comics Scott Novotny, John Carfi and Bob Burr poking fun at growing older. George Burns notwithstanding, comedy's not always a game that caters to older audiences. So it's refreshing to see Kick the Bucket List delve into issues and insights gleaned from getting older, as well as a few "trips down memory lane." It's a clean show, too, which means even the most buttoned-up member of your knitting circle can attend. $25 and up. Side Door Cabaret at the Palladium, 253 Fifth Ave. N, St. Petersburg
How's this for an opener? The University of South Florida Bulls hosts preseason No. 19 Wisconsin Badgers. This game will give us a good read on how competitive Charlie Strong's team will be this season. Here's our take courtesy of the Times' Joey Knight: "The suffocating, seasonal humidity ... should benefit the Bulls. So should the fact the Badgers will roll out a refurbished offensive line featuring four new starters. But the matchup of Heisman candidate Jonathan Taylor against a USF defense that struggled mightily against the run last year should make Bulls fans cringe." 7 p.m. Friday. Raymond James Stadium.
Rays: The suddenly struggling Tampa Bay Rays open a home series Friday against the Cleveland Indians before the Baltimore Orioles come to town on Sept. 2.
The Pinellas Trail Challenge is an urban ultramarathon and covers more than 46 miles on the pavement. It runs the entire span of the Pinellas Trail, starting in St. Petersburg and finishing at John Chestnut Park in Palm Harbor. This event is free. 6:30 a.m. Saturday. 1st Ave. SE and Bayshore Dr. SE, St. Petersburg. trailrunner.com.
International Bacon Day: Rapp Brewing Company hosts Bacon and Beer 2.0, offering a flight of six bacon-infused brews. Look forward to pours such as Bacon Hainer, a bacon Lichtenhainer, and a bacon and peanut butter hefeweizen called the Fat Elvis. Each flight comes with sweet, bacony treats while supplies last. But should you miss out, the Mobile Diner food cart is on-site with more bacon-centric grub. No cover, but food and drink are additional. 2 p.m.-midnight Saturday. 10930 Endeavor Way, Suite C, Seminole
Vegan Food Truck Rally: Designed to appeal to all dietary persuasions, the Vegan Food Truck Rally combines craft beer with plant-based goodness in a kid- and dog-friendly setting. Seasoned Green is set to showcase its mac and "cheese" chili crunch wrap and guava pineapple "cheesecake." Gaia Donut promises its new line of cupcakes and fall menu sneak peek. (Vegan pumpkin donuts, anyone?) Escape Root Juicery, Mother Kombucha, and Nature's Food Patch are among the other featured vendors. No cover, food, and drink additional. Noon-5 p.m. Saturday. Dunedin House of Beer/HOB Brewing Company, 931 Huntley Ave.
Boatstock celebrates the two-year anniversary of Flying Boat Brewing Co. but also the iconic music festival Woodstock's 50th. Exclusive beer releases and drink specials drive this party, in addition to prizes and event merch. Keeping pace with the "Peace, Love and Craft Beer" theme, all-day live tunes round out the highlights. No cover, but food and drink are additional. 11 a.m.-11 p.m. Saturday. Flying Boat Brewing Co., 1776 11th Ave. N, St. Petersburg. (727) 800-2999. Flyingboatbrewing.com.
Now in its sixth year, the Tampa Bay Theatre Festival brings performances to a variety of stages in Tampa this weekend. It also includes workshops for playwrights, actors, and directors, as well as monologue and short play competitions. That's great if you're in the biz, and the rest of us can enjoy the featured full-length plays. There's something to meet any taste. If you love musicals, see Paper Walls, which follows six college friends on a road trip. For something heavy, check out The Consciousness, which asks what it would mean for art if an artist's consciousness lives on after death. And for something historical, see Black Women Walking, which explores the lives of black heroines through storytelling, gospel music, multimedia, humor, and contemporary dance. Performances are at Stageworks Theatre, Carrollwood Players Theatre, and the David A. Straz Jr. Center for the Performing Arts, as well as other Tampa venues. $12-$20. tampabaytheatrefestival.com.
Casablanca, a black-and-white stunner some movie buffs contend is among the most excellent flicks of all time, wraps up the Summer Classics series at Tampa Theatre. Bonus: There are two screenings instead of one. $10, $7 members. 3 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. 711 N Franklin St. (813) 274-8286. tampatheatre.org.
THIS WEEK IN DRESS-UP
GeckoFest: This year, the 19th annual Labor Day weekend party and street festival is themed "Geckos of the Round Table." Expect lots of King Arthur costumes. People are invited to dress up and join the street parade. Plus there will be live music on two stages, hundreds of vendors, kids' activities, acrobats, magicians, daredevils, fire eaters and costumed characters. Free. 10 a.m.-10 p.m. Saturday. Downtown Gulfport. Geckofest.com.