Fort Meade Outdoor Recreation Area, US 98 E, welcomes bluegrass and country headliners Hwy 41 S, 7# of Bacon, We Three Strings, Flatland Band and Southerndipity Band from noon to 9 p.m. Saturday, November 16. Admission is $10 a car. Bring lawn chairs. For more information, visit https://fortmeadeflmuseum.com or call 863-285-7474.
November 1-2, Apalachicola
56th annual Florida Seafood Festival
Held at Battery Park overlooking the mouth of the Apalachicola River, this event draws thousands and features fresh Apalachicola Bay seafood, arts and crafts exhibits, and an oyster eating and shucking contest.
Kick off the holiday shopping season in historic downtown with 80-plus original artists and work from 10 mediums competing for thousands in scholarships. Live jazz, a wine garden, performances and strolling street theater provide nonstop entertainment. Local restaurants and mobile food vendors provide culinary.
Everglades Foundation Scientist Steve Davis speaks about “Everglades Restoration: Protecting Habitats, Conserving Water and Strengthening Our Economy” at 6 p.m. at Keys History & Discovery Center, MM82. Admission is $10 for nonmembers. Reservations are recommended.
More than 150 businesses showcase their products and services from 4 to 7:30 p.m. at the Bradenton Area Convention Center. Area restaurants offer free bites, a DJ spins tunes, and photo booths and cash bars are available. Admission is $5. Parking is free.
Antique engines and tractors of every color—including a 1914 400-horsepower snow engine—are on display from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Florida Flywheelers Antique Engine Club, 7000 Avon Park Cut Off Road. Parades are at 10:30 a.m. and 2 p.m., and a Model T put-together is at 11 a.m. and 3 p.m. Sawmill demonstrations, tractor pulls, a huge flea market and an old-time village also are featured.
Learn about the amazing things the CCC did for the park service when blacksmithing, beekeeping, hide tanning and antler carving were a way of life—and see those skills demonstrated. The event from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Highlands Hammock State Park includes live bluegrass and folk bands, heritage crafts, arts and crafts vendors, CCC worker reenactments, a model railroad display, antique cars, tram rides, food vendors, pony rides, storytelling and children’s activities.
Teams from central Florida compete for best chili from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. in historic downtown. All chili is cooked on site, with samples available. The event also features a chili dog-eating contest and a car show. Proceeds benefit Honor Flight, South Florida State College Scholarship Foundation, Born to Read, Today’s Veteran Organization, Vets First and other local charities.
Fourteen stations—from alligators and beef to bees and citrus and dairy to forestry—provide hands-on learning for third graders. Local commodity group experts and farmers staff each station at the Highlands County Fairgrounds. On Tuesday, November 12, the entire family is invited from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. for guided tours of the stations, entertainment and a steak dinner. Volunteers are needed.
Pay regular gate admission to The Swamp OffRoad Park, 3690 Mobile Swamp Road, and jam to live music at no extra cost. Ride trails, climb hills, play in mud and conquer obstacles. Wash stations, hot showers, clean toilets and food are offered. The cost is $10 for adults and $10 per off-road toy. Those younger than 12 are admitted free.
The West Nassau Historical Society’s third autumn celebration opens at 9 a.m. and runs all day around the Callahan Train Depot and adjoining Florida Railroad bed. The event features arts/crafts and food vendors, a judged car show, a kids’ play area and activities, live entertainment, and tours of the history museum, train depot, turpentine artifact exhibit and 1940s-era caboose. Veterans will are honored at 11 a.m. Vendors, car show participants, volunteers and sponsors are needed.
Author Willie Drye speaks about “Storm of the Century: The Labor Day Hurricane of 1935” at 6 p.m. at Keys History & Discovery Center, MM82. Admission is $10 for nonmembers. Reservations are recommended.
Shop for crafts, vintage items, baked goods and stocking stuffers at San Pablo Church, MM53.5, from 4 to 7 p.m. Friday and 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday. Fishing charters, hotel stays, restaurant gift certificates, stone crab claws and signature art work are among the items available during a silent auction.
28th annual Ponies Under the Palms Mustang and Ford Show
Car enthusiasts compete for awards at the Mustang Club of West Central Florida’s show from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m.
on Main Street in Lakewood Ranch off I-75 at exit 213. The cost to register a car is $25 before November 18 or $30 the day of the show. The public is invited free of charge. A weekend in Sarasota will be raffled. Tickets are $5. Proceeds benefit Southeastern Guide Dogs and Take Stock in Children.
Wave goodbye to fall and welcome Santa Claus to town with s’mores, carol-themed concerts and activities for the kids at Aaron Bessant Park. The event is headlined by Scotty McCreery on Friday and the Panama City POPS Orchestra on Saturday. Fireworks conclude each night behind the 36-foot Christmas tree.
Marathon Garden Club, MM 50, features gently used Christmas decorations and holiday items from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. The event includes a bake sale, raffle items, grab bags, gourmet goodies, plant sale, orchids and unique holiday gifts.
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