Florida Events & Festival Roundup

August 3, Key West

Get Into Your Sanctuary Eco-Fair
Learn about the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary’s underwater habitats and animals, coral reef restoration efforts, and how to responsibly enjoy the natural marine environment that drives the local economy and the unique way of life in the Keys. The event—which is weather dependent—is hosted at the Florida Keys Eco-Discovery Center, 35 E. Quay Road, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Admission is free.
www.floridakeys.noaa.gov; 305-809-4750

 


August 4, Florida Keys

Kilts in the Keys
The Florida Keys Celtic Festival’s summer party is Sunday, August 4, from 5 to 7 p.m. at Herbie’s Bar and Chowder House, 6350 Overseas Highway, Marathon. The event features food, games, a raffle, door prizes, a free bounce house and live music by the Celtic band West of Galway. Herbie’s is donating a portion of sales that day to The Hammock House—a free afterschool and camp program that provides education, nutrition and fun to children in the Middle Keys. To volunteer or for more information, call 305-743-6412 or email info@floridakeyscelticfestival.com. For information, visit www.FLKeysCelticFestival.com or flkeyscelticfest on Facebook.

 

August 8-25, Bradenton

West Side Story
Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet are transported to modern-day New York City as two young, idealistic lovers find themselves caught between warring street gangs, struggling to survive in a world of hate, violence and prejudice. Rated PG-13. Shows are 7:30 p.m. Wednesdays and Thursdays, 8 p.m. Saturdays and 2 p.m. Sundays at Manatee Performing Arts Center’s Stone Hall.
www.manateeperformingartscenter.com;
941-748-5875

 

August 10, Chipley

An Evening of Southern Gospel
Groups and individuals perform Gospel favorites with the accompaniment of a live band at 7 p.m. at the Spanish Trail Playhouse. Tickets are $15. Seating is reserved.
www.spanishtrailplayhouse.com; 850-638-9113

 

August 16-18, Gulf Breeze

Third annual Collectibles and More Sale
Art, collectibles, jewelry, gifts, linens, bicycles, holiday decor, tools, small appliances, furniture, gardening equipment, toys and games, vintage dishes and fishing rods are among the offerings at the event hosted by the Episcopal Church Women of St. Francis of Assisi Church in the parish hall at 1 St. Francis Drive. A pre-sale reception at 6 p.m. Friday includes wine, refreshments, music and time to browse the inventory of sale items. Tickets are $10 each or two for $15. Admission is free from 8 a.m. to
3 p.m. Saturday and noon to 5 p.m. Sunday.
All sale items are lightly used but in like-new, fully operational condition.
850-889-3517; leo@leomcyr.com

 

August 16-September 1, Sebring

9 to 5, The Musical
Pushed to the boiling point, three female coworkers concoct a plan to get even with the sexist, egotistical, lying, hypocritical bigot they call their boss. Shows are 7:30 p.m. Wednesdays, Fridays and Saturdays and 2:30 p.m. Sundays at Lakeside Playhouse. Tickets are $20 to $30 for adults and $10 for youth. May not be suitable for children younger than 13.
www.highlandslittletheatre.org; 863-382-2525

 

August 21, Islamorada

Immerse Yourself!
McKenna Anderson of Mote Marine speaks about spotted eagle ray conservation at 7 p.m.
at the History of Diving Museum, MM83.
www.divingmuseum.org; 305-664-9737

 

August 23, Bradenton

40th annual Manatee Small Business of the Year Awards
Celebrate small businesses and nonprofit organizations nominated for stellar customer service, dedicated employees, business growth and supporting the community. Breakfast and networking is 7:30 to 8:15 a.m. in the gallery and lobby of the Manatee Performing Arts Center, 502 3rd Ave. W. The awards ceremony is in theater-style seating in Stone Hall from 8:15 to 9:30 a.m. Tickets start at $45. The registration deadline is August 16.
www.manateechamber.com/smallbiz;
ericam@manateechamber.com

 

August 24, Bradenton

Mixon Farms Craft Fair
The indoor fair is in the back of the processing plant at 2525 27th St. East from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. the fourth Saturday of the month from April to September. Fifteen to 25 craft vendors participate.
www.mixon.com; 941-748-5829 ext. 239

 

August 24-25, Sebring

Battle at the Bridge Drag Racing
Rev your engines and head to Sebring International Raceway for its late summer marquee drag racing event that features a car show, drift circuit, live DJ and lots of racing. Tickets and competition entry are available at the gate.
Facebook @SebringDragRacing

 

August 30-September 1, Chipley

A Streetcar Named Desire
In the Tennessee Williams classic set in New Orleans, Blanche du Bois—a woman whose life has been undermined by her romantic illusions—deals with pressure brought upon her by her sister and brother-in-law, which leads to a revelation of her tragic self-delusion and, in the end, madness. Shows are 7 p.m. Friday and Saturday and 2 p.m. Sunday at Spanish Trail Playhouse. Tickets are $15.
www.spanishtrailplayhouse.com; 850-638-9113

 

August 30-September 1, Marathon

Heroes Salute Tribute Weekend
Now in its 11th year, the event is a thank you to the military, fire and rescue, law enforcement and medical personnel who serve our nation. The family-friendly activities at Hawks Cay Resort on Duck Key includes a barbecue, heroes’ tribute, live music and fireworks show.
www.floridakeysheroes.com; 877-484-9342

 

August 30-September 1, Panama City Beach

Sixth annual Pepsi Gulf Coast Jam
Enjoy sun, fun and a country music extravaganza during the three-day celebration at Frank Brown Park. Headliners are Tim McGraw, Jason Aldean and Kid Rock.
www.gulfcoastjam.com

 

August 30-September 1, Pensacola

Seventh annual Family Fishing Rodeo
Compete in freshwater and saltwater fishing categories at Grand Lagoon Yacht Club to win prizes, enter raffles and bid on silent auction items in the fundraiser for Backpack Project USA, which provides weekend food for disadvantaged children in Escambia County’s elementary schools. The entry fee is $15 in the open class. Juniors 10 and younger enter for free with the purchase of an adult ticket. A fried fish dinner is offered at the end of the day Sunday.
www.backpackprojectusa.com; 850-595-0135

 

August 31-September 1, Pensacola

Fourth annual Gulf Coast Summer Fest—Jazz Edition
The event features two days of jazz on the water at Pensacola Community Maritime Park.
www.gulfcoastsummerfestjazzedition.com;
850-432-0800

 

August 31-September 2, Sebring

Tour of Sebring
Enjoy one, two or three days of cycling in the gently rolling hills of Highlands County. Riders will appreciate low-traffic roads, friendly motorists, citrus groves, cattle ranches and small central Florida towns.
www.tourofsebring.com

 

Through October 22, Avon Park

Fall Decorations at Hotel Jacaranda
Embrace the festive fall season at this 1920s historic hotel where Babe Ruth, Clark Gable and Al Capone once stayed. Free to visit; excludes meals and overnight stays.
www.hoteljac.com; 863-453-2211

 

September 2, Islamorada

Annual Labor Day Service
Matecumbe Historical Trust presents a Labor Day service at 9 a.m. at the hurricane monument at MM 81.8. Each year, tribute is paid to the more than 500 men, women and children who died September 2, 1935. The event begins with an invocation, short service, brief history of the monument’s significance, a presentation of the colors, the national anthem, placing of a wreath, taps and a benediction.
www.matecumbehistoricaltrust.com; 305-393-0940

 

September 3-October 13, Florida Keys

Kids Free Florida Keys
During a 40-day celebration, kids are treated to free admission to participating museums and attractions throughout the Keys, along with complementary meals and other perks.
www.keywestattractions.org; 305-293-7249

 

September 5, Pensacola

Free Film Screening
Join WSRE in the Amos Studio at 7 p.m. for a free 45-minute advance screening of Ken Burns’ 16-hour documentary, “Country Music.” A panel discussion and audience question-and-answer session follow. Please preregister.
www.wsre.org/CountryMusic; 850-484-1200

 

September 5-7, Perdido Key

Seventh annual Bulls on the Beach
The high-energy, rock-and-roll rodeo hosted at 8 p.m. by the Flora-Bama Lounge features professional bull riders from across the Southeast.
www.florabama.com; 850-492-0611

 

September 6, Pensacola

Emerald Coast Beer Festival
Sample beverages from more than 45 breweries throughout the United States, more than a dozen regional homebrew clubs and major distributors from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. in the Seville Quarter. Food truck vendors are on-site, and live music is featured on several stages. Tickets are $30 in advance or $40 the day of the event. Proceeds benefit Seville Rotary and the Alfred-Washburn Center, which serves the homeless.
www.emeraldcoastbeerfest.com; 850-434-6211

 

September 7, Islamorada

Fourth annual Florida Keys Poker Paddle
Paddle to five different stops along a 4-mile route through the bayside waters of Islamorada and draw a card. The best poker hand wins. Complete the course and receive a completion medal, T-shirt and swag bag. Lunch and an awards party are at Florida Keys Brewing Co. This is a great event for all ages. Proceeds benefit veterans, first responders and their families.
www.paddleguru.com; 305-407-7939

 

September 7, Gulf Breeze

Birdwalk at Soundside Foundation Preserve
Join the Francis M. Weston Audubon Society at 8:30 a.m. at Soundside Drive (SR 191B) for a two-hour family-friendly walk to learn about area birds. Participation is free.
www.fmwaudubon.org; 315-345-3511 (text)

 

September 7, Panama City Beach

9/11 Memorial Stair Climb
The September 11, 2001, attack is remembered with a 110-flight climb at Edgewater Beach Resorts. Proceeds benefit the Emerald Coast First Responders Association and the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation.
www.pcbstairclimb.com; 850-819-1156

 

September 7, Pensacola

Pieces Adrift
The inaugural art show and auction feature trash collected from in and around the waterways of Escambia County. More than 50 local artists have signed up to submit art pieces with one restriction: Each piece must be at least 50% trash or found objects. The show is from 5 to 8 p.m. at First City Art Center, 401 North Reus St., with a silent auction for most of the pieces, interactive activities, music and food trucks. Admission is $10. Kids younger than 12 get in free.
https://bit.ly/2ZWug2E; 850-438-1178

 

September 12-15, Marathon 60th annual International

Bonefish Tournament
Compete in fly and grand slam divisions (for the top spin or fly angler who releases the largest bonefish, permit and tarpon) in one of the few tournaments where anglers can fish without a professional guide.
www.facebook.com/events/403061413646718

 

September 14, Sebring

Literacy Day and Hispanic Heritage Month Celebration
Highlands Hammock State Park hosts a bilingual story hour from 10 to 11 a.m. in the Civilian Conservation Corps Museum, followed by a nature hike and the junior ranger program.
www.floridastateparks.org; 863-386-6094

 

September 14, Islamorada

Sixth annual Swim for Alligator Lighthouse
Swimmers participate in an 8-mile roundtrip race from Islamorada to the Alligator Lighthouse and back that helps raise awareness of the need to preserve the treasured, historic offshore lighthouses along the Florida Keys. Proceeds help provide scholarship opportunities to students in need and who wish to pursue competitive swimming.
www.swimalligatorlight.com

 

September 14, Pensacola

5210 Day of Play
Enjoy activities, games, sports, contests and physical challenges for all ages from 10 a.m. to
2 p.m. at Community Maritime Park.
www.cityofpensacola.com; 850-436-5670

 

September 18, Islamorada

Immerse Yourself!
In honor of National Hispanic Heritage Month, Dr. Anne Stewart will speak about “Sacred Cenote” at 7 p.m. at the History of Diving Museum, MM83.
www.divingmuseum.org; 305-664-9737

 

September 20, Perdido Key

Flicks on the Field
Bring blankets and lawn chairs to enjoy a free showing of “The Lego Movie” at 7 p.m. at the Pensacola Greyhound Track.
www.visitperdido.com; 850-492-4660

 

September 20-22, Islamorada

Herman Lucerne Memorial Backcountry Fishing Championship
Named after the man known affectionately as “Mr. Everglades,” the event is headquartered at the Islander Resort, MM 82.1. Anglers are challenged to target seven species of fish in two days during this one-of-a-kind tournament, staged in the boundaries of Everglades National Park.
www.hermanlucernememorial.com

 

September 21, three Florida state parks

Coastal Cleanup Day
Volunteer to remove litter at one of three Florida state parks: Camp Helen in Panama City Beach, 8 a.m. to noon CDT; Topsail Hill in Santa Rosa Beach, 9:15 to 11:30 a.m. CDT; or Wakulla Springs south of Tallahassee, 9 a.m. to noon EDT.
www.floridastateparks.org

 

September 21, Sebring

ChampCar Sebring 14
Street cars of just about every make and model—including vans and station wagons—are raced by amateur drivers in a 14-hour endurance event on the famous 3.74-mile Sebring road course.
www.champcar.org; 434-996-6721

 

September 21, nationwide

Smithsonian Magazine’s Free Museum Day
Visitors to the website who download and present a Museum Day ticket gain free entrance for two at participating venues.
www.smithsonianmag.com

 

September 27, Bushnell

Eighth annual Intertribal Pow-wow
Enjoy native crafts and food, music, storytelling, singing and dancing from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. at Dade Battlefield State Park.
www.floridastateparks.org; 352-793-2654

 

September 27-28, Islamorada

Conch Scramble Charity Golf Tournament
Floating greens, golf boats and biodegradable fish food balls highlight the one-of-a-kind “par-tee” on the water that raises money for charity. Up to 50 teams can enter. Teams stop at eight Islamorada waterfront venues and come ashore to tee off. Each player has two shots at the floating holes using biodegradable golf balls that dissolve into fish food after 90 hours in the water.
www.conchscramble.com; 305-509-0315

 

September 27-28, Pensacola

Vettes at the Beach
The Miracle Strip expects 300 Corvettes from across the country from 8 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. in the Casino Beach parking lot. The event—which features music and vendors—is free for spectators. Competitors pay an entry fee.
www.miraclestripcorvette.com; 850-375-6993

 

September 27-29, Key Largo

20th annual Take Stock in Children Backcountry Challenge
Anglers compete for trophies for trout, snook and redfish in catch-and-release fishing around the clock. Proceeds support vocational scholarships for all ages and Take Stock in Children scholarships for financially challenged Upper Keys students. Headquartered at the Tavernier Elks Club, the annual event presented by the Rotary Club of Key Largo features a silent and live auction showcase and Sunday evening dinner open to the public.
www.keylargorotary.org; 305-331-0525

 

September 27-29, Pensacola

40th annual Seafood Festival
Sample mouth-watering dishes and enjoy entertainment at the free event in Seville Square Park from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. Friday, 10 a.m. to
11 p.m. Saturday and 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday.
www.pensacolaseafoodfestival.com; 850-433-6512

 

September 28-November 3, Milton

11th Annual Corn Maze and Fall Fun Festival

Celebrate 11 years of agritourism fun weekends from September 28 through November 3 at Sweet Season Farms in Milton. Learn about agriculture, navigate your way through a themed 8-acre corn maze and play on more than 20 farm-themed activities such as the corn popper jumping pillow, beeline and the cow train. Enjoy games, goodies and farm-themed foods. Hours are 6 to 10 p.m. Fridays, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturdays and 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sundays. Admission is required for entry. For more information, visit www.sweetseasonfarms.com or call 850-675-3573.

 

September 28, Bradenton

Mixon Farms Craft Fair
The indoor fair is in the back of the processing plant at 2525 27th St. East from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
the fourth Saturday of the month, April to September. Fifteen to 25 craft vendors participate.
www.mixon.com; 941-748-5829 ext. 239

 

September 28, nationwide

National Public Lands Day
Enjoy free entrance to 124 national parks.
www.nps.gov

 

September 28, Bradenton

Third annual Chef’s Challenge
Appetizer and dessert chefs compete for your vote, and art is created as you watch at a 6 p.m. fundraiser for the nonprofit ArtCenter Manatee.
www.artcentermanatee.org; 941-746-2862