DeSoto Heritage Festival Children's Parade & Party in the Park: downtown Palmetto
The De Soto Heritage Festival Children's Parade & Party in the Park is March 29. The Children's Parade featuring floats engineered and built in Manatee County schoolrooms and at home with wholesome themes and bright colors begins at 10 a.m. See the kids parade along the historic avenues of Palmetto, from the Manatee County Fairgrounds, south on 10th Avenue West and then along Fifth Street West to Lamb Park. Food and fun activities for children, including games and a magic show, will fill the day after the parade ends in Sutton and Lamb Parks until 2 p.m. The parade will feature awards for "Best Performance" as well as "Best Cheerleading Performance" and a non-float "School Spirit" cash award. There will also be a $1,000 award to the participating school who's float entry best represents this year's theme. Information: www.desotohq.com.
Music in the Park: City Hall Field, 5801 Marina Dr., Holmes Beach
Join the Anna Maria Island Concert Chorus and Orchestra 5-10 p.m. March 29 for a night of blues, popular and country music by Karen Greenley 5-6 p.m., Steve Avery 6-7 p.m., Blues Pig 7-8 p.m. and One Night Rodeo 8-10 p.m. Vistors can enjoy shopping, and have dinner at local restaurants or purchase from food and beverage vendors. Proceeds from the event benefits AMICCO. Bring a chair or blanket. No coolers allowed. Information: 941-799-2181.
Jungle Gardens "Jungle Trails and Bunny Tails: 3701 Bay Shore Road, Sarasota
Sarasota Jungle Gardens will host its 12th annual Jungle Trails and Bunny Tails 10 a.m.-3 p.m. March 29, an Easter event featuring continuous egg hunts, a petting zoo, and a great chance to help the community. Among animals represented, the petting zoo will feature baby sheep, goats, chickens, a llama and a donkey. Local 4-H groups "Hare Raisers" and "South County Ag" will bring bunnies, guinea pigs and more for interaction. Visitors are encourages to bring non-perishable foods as donation to the All Faiths Food Bank. There will be photo opportunities with the Easter Bunny for a small fee, a prize drawing and food and beverages will be available for purchase. To participate in the egg hunt, children must either bring their own Easter basket, or purchase one in the gift shop for $2. Candy will be passed out to children after completing the Easter egg hunt. Admission: $15 adults, $5 annual pass holders of all ages and for children who bring in one non-perishable food item. Information: 941-355-1112, ext. 306 or visit www.SarasotaJungleGardens.com.
Fourth annual Easter Egg Hunt and Parade: along Pine Avenue, Anna Maria Island
The Pine Avenue businesses in Anna Maria will host the Fourth Annual Easter Parade starting with an Easter Egg Hunt 9 a.m. at the Sandbar followed by the Parade and Roll down Pine Avenue. There will be activities and lots of surprises for the children, including the Third Annual Easter Bonnet Contest at 10:30 a.m. for adults and children. Photo opportunities with the Easter Bunny will be available at the Sandbar only. Information: 941-778-8710.
Second annual "Egg Drop -- Parrish": Buffalo Creek Park, 7550 69th St. E., Palmetto
Woodland Community Church will host the second annual "Egg Drop -- Parrish," 9 a.m.-1 p.m. March 30 featuring music, local organizations and businesses, games, crafts, a colossal Easter Egg hunt with over 40,000 Easter Eggs dropped from a helicopter and scattered in the park fields at 12:30 p.m. Families can preregister at www.EggDropParrish.com. Information: 941-753-8588, ext. 224.
Anna Maria Island Heritage Day: 402 Pine Ave., Anna Maria
The Ole City Jail in Anna Maria will be the focal point of Island Heritage Day 11 a.m.-5 p.m. March 30, staged by the Anna Maria Historical Society and will feature the Island Privateers invading the museum, historical characters in Belle Haven Cottage, guided tours, toe tapping bluegrass music by State Road 64 at 4 p.m., arts and crafts, antiques, jewelry, ceramics and collectibles. There will be craft demonstrations, prize drawings and a variety of food and beverage vendors. Island authors will be selling and signing their books. Island Beach Monkeys Shuttles will pick up festivalgoers at CrossPointe Fellowship at Gulf Drive and 85th Street and transport them to the museum complex. Information: www.AMIHS.org.