This weekend's best bets

January 17, 2014 


Mainly Art and Farmers Market: along Old Main Street and Fourth Avenue West, Bradenton

Mainly Art, an art and music filled, family friendly event at the Bradenton Farmers Market, will be 9 a.m.-2 p.m. Jan. 18, featuring local artists, artisans and crafts people displaying and selling their creations, including paintings, jewelry, baskets, glassware, photography, painted furniture, woodworks, glass and plant hangings, children's clothing and much more. The event also features live music and "Art Of" demonstrations. Information:

Progressive Art and Watercolor Opening Reception and Exhibit: various locations, Palmetto

The Palmetto Art Center, Palmetto Historical Park and the Manatee County Agricultural Museum invites the public to the Florida Suncoast Watercolor Society's progressive art experience and watercolor exhibit's opening reception 2-5 p.m. Jan. 18. The opening reception and exhibit is on display in three venues: the Palmetto Center, 907 Fifth St. W. and the Manatee County Agricultural Museum and Palmetto Historical Park at 515 10th Ave. W., all in Palmetto. The exhibit will be on display through Feb. 18. All three venues will be open to view work noon-2 p.m. Tuesdays, Thursdays-Fridays, and 1-4 p.m. Feb. 1 and 15. Information: 941-518-2109 or 941-721-2034.

Spirit and Orb Walks: Bunker Hill Vineyard and Winery, 8905 Bunker Hill Road, Duette

Spirit and Orb Walks are offered 6:30 p.m. Jan. 18 and every third Saturday of each month. Due to the "paranormal" nature of these walks, reservations are required and are limited to a maximum of 40 adults, ages 18 and older. Guest must arrive by 6:30 p.m. for a 30 minute indoctrination and discussion of the walk and activities, followed by the walk which will promptly start at 7 p.m. and will last until 8:30 p.m. Guests are requested to wear good walking shoes, long pants and a jacket. Cameras with a night flash is a must and EVP and EMF recorders, digital temperature recorders and extra batteries are encouraged. Cost: $10. Reservations and information: 941-776-0418 or

Sarasota Dollhouse Miniatures Festival: Ramada Waterfront, 7150 N. Tamiami Trail, Bradenton

The Sarasota Dollhouse Miniatures Festival will begin with a preview show 5-8 p.m. Jan. 18 and continues 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Jan. 19, featuring artisans from France, Canada, England and the United States, displaying fantasy miniature houses, including a medieval herbarium, Gothic crypt, thatched cottage and alchemist's workshop, along with various medieval moorland Pixie inhabitants. The show also features dollhouse furnishings and accessories, antique and vintage miniatures, dolls and teddy bears, porcelain and paintings, rusticated farm implements, winery and nautical related miniatures, fabrics and laces kits, tools, building and electrical components. Preview show admission: $18, includes weekend admission, early sales, cash bar, meet-the-artisans pizza part. Sunday admission: $7 adults, $4 children ages 12 and younger. Information: 941-371-3193 or

Inaugural Anna Maria Chalk Festival: along Pine Avenue, Anna Maria

The inaugural annual Anna Maria Chalk Festival "Historic Anna Maria, from Pirates to Present," will be 10 a.m.-sunset Jan. 18-19, featuring street painters, including local artists, students and children, creating masterworks of art on the street surface. The event is free and open to the public. Information: 941-778-8710

Monster Jam Shows: Raymond James Stadium, 4201 N. Dale Mabry Highway, Tampa

Two Monster Jam Shows will be 7 p.m. Jan. 18 and Feb. 1, featuring 12x12 monster trucks, custom designed machines that sit atop 66-inch-tall tires, built for short, high powered bursts of speed and can fly up to 125-130 feet and up to 35 feet in the air. Both shows will have a "Party in the Pits" 1:30-5 p.m. for fans to get a close-up view of the trucks and meet the drivers. Pit Passes may be purchased for an additional $10 at the same time tickets are purchased. Tickets: $35. Information:

Coquina Beach Market, 2650 Gulf Drive S., Bradenton Beach

Come and stroll the Beach Market at Coquina Beach 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Sundays through April 24. The market features fresh produce, arts and crafts, jewelry, local artists, apparel, pottery, purses, collectibles, health and beauty items and more. Food and beverages are available for purchase. Information: Nancy Ambrose at 941-518-4431.

Gasparilla Celebration: various locations, Tampa

Named for legendary pirate, Jose Gaspar, Tampa Bay's destination-wide annual Gasparilla celebration kicks off with the Children's Gasparilla Extravaganza, an alcohol-free event, 11 a.m.-7:30 p.m. Jan. 18 along Bayshore Boulevard and will include a children's parade, preschooler stroll, parachute jump team, "piratechnics" and much more. Information:

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