We're starting to see the end of 90-degree afternoons and nasty thunderstorms, which means it's time for all the cool outdoor stuff to start up again.
One cool thing is the weekly Downtown Bradenton Farmers Market, which opens for the season Saturday along Old Main Street.
The market includes dozens of vendors offering locally grown fruits, vegetables, plants and prepared foods. Vendors will wear Pittsburgh Pirates caps this week to celebrate the Bucs' reaching the playoffs for the first time in 21 years.
Local artists and crafts people also turn out for the farmers market to show and sell their work.
Besides the usual market fare, festivities this year also include live music every month.
This time, the music comes from Sam Woolf, the young local singer and guitarist who will appear as a contestant on "American Idol" in January.
Each month's market will also feature a local chef offering demonstrations and advice. This month, it's David Shiplett, chef-owner of SOMA Creek Side. Shiplett will be at the market from 11 a.m. until 1 p.m.
One major attraction for opening day is the Manatee County Central Library's fourth annual Mana-Con Comics Convention, featuring local comic shop booths, art workshops and a student art show.
There's free parking around downtown and you're welcome to bring your dogs as long as you keep them leashed.
Details: 9 a.m.-2 p.m. Saturdays on Old Main Street between Manatee Avenue West and Fourth Avenue West, Bradenton. Tickets: free. Information: bradentonfarmersmarket.com.
-- Marty Clear