FAIRS, FESTIVALS & MORE
Eleventh annual Embracing Our Differences Exhibit: Riverwalk, Bradenton and Sarasota Island Park, Sarasota
Embracing Our Differences, an annual juried art exhibit, will be on display simultaneously in Sarasota's Island Park and at Bradenton's Riverwalk, through June 1 featuring billboard-sized images created by artists, writers and students from around the world reflecting their interpretation of the message "enriching lives through diversity." Information: 941-404-5710 or www.embracingourdifferences.org.
Sailor Circus 65th Anniversary Show: Sailor Circus Arena, 2075 Bahia Vista St., Sarasota
The Sailor Circus 65th Anniversary Show, a patriotic-themed show saluting veterans and their families, runs through April 5. Kids of all ages can enjoy performances by the "Greatest Little" Show on Earth, the Sailor Circus Academy, a youth circus which will perform various acrobatic and artistic acts, including walking the tight rope and trapeze. Show times are 7 p.m. April 3-4 and 5 and 7 p.m. April 5. Tickets: $12-$16. Information: 941-355-9805 or www.circusarts.org.
"Live from downtown, it's Friday Night": Palm Avenue Main and First streets, Sarasota
"Live from downtown, it's Friday Night" will be 6-9 p.m. April 4 and every first Friday of the month featuring live performances by Sarasota's premier entertainers and performing arts organizations and enjoy shopping at a unique mix of boutiques, galleries and salons. Businesses will be open with extended hours. Admission is free. Information: 941-366-7040 or www.DSAsarasota.com.
Music on Main: Main Street, Lakewood Ranch
Main Street at Lakewood Ranch will host a Music on Main concert 6-9 p.m. April 4 featuring live music by The Venturas. Beer, wine and food sales benefit Parent Project Muscular Dystrophy. Bring chairs and blankets. No coolers allowed. Dogs on short leashes are permitted. Admission is free. Information: 941-907-9243 or visit www.lakewoodranch.com/mainstreet.
First Fridays Car & Bike Show: Slick's Garage, 923 Fifth St. W., Palmetto
Slick's Garage hosts a First Fridays Car & Bike Show and community party 5-11 p.m. April 4 and the first Friday of each month. The event features live music, food and drink vendors, children's entertainment, charity auctions and more. Information: 941-776-7298.
Film Rush 2014 -- A Jim Harbin Student Media Festival: South Florida Museum, 201 10th St. W., Bradenton
The most talented, creative, and innovative student filmmakers in the Manatee County School District will showcase their films on the big screen at 6 p.m. April 4. A jury of the Film club of State College of Florida evaluated student films and selected the top entries to showcase at the festival and include the following categories: animation, book trailers, comedy, documentary, drama, instructional, music video, news feature, news show and PSA. Admission is free and the public is welcome. Information: 941-751-8200, ext. 2075.
Bradenton Riverwalk "Music in the Park": Mosaic Amphitheater at Riverwalk, 452 Third Ave. W., Bradenton
Realize Bradenton's popular "Music in the Park" series offers free concerts including Brian Spainhower, 6-8 p.m. April 4; and Kristopher James, 6-8 p.m. April 11. Food and beverages will be available for purchase. Guests are encouraged to bring lawn chairs or blankets. Information: 941-840-0013.
Village of the Arts Art Walk and Garden Tour: Village of the Arts, 1113 12th St. W., Bradenton
Enjoy an art walk through Bradenton's acclaimed artist colony and visit the Village's gardens and gates featuring artsy sculpture gardens, bamboo waterfall gardens, clay in the garden, garden art, traditional gardens and more 11 a.m.-4 p.m. and 6-9:30 p.m. April 4 and 11 a.m.-4 p.m. April 5 with art on display at the more than 25 galleries. Information: www.villageofthearts.com.
Bay Area Renaissance Festival: Museum of Science and Industry, 11315 N. 46th St., Tampa
Experience the High Seas Adventure at the Bay Area Festival 10 a.m.-6 p.m. weekends through April 6. The festival is on a mission to discover the best beards and are asking contenders to showcase their face follicles in the annual free beard competition. The Festival offer daily Royal Pub Crawls featuring different pubs on the Festival grounds and a "Swig a Pig" beer and bacon tasting. A special day for schools and seniors is April 4. Admission: $19.95 adults, $11.95 children ages 5-12, children ages four and younger are admitted free. Information: www.BayAreaRenFest.com.
DeSoto Heritage Festival Seafood Fest: Sutton Park, 1050 Sixth St. W., Palmetto
The DeSoto Heritage Festival Seafood Fest will be 5-10 p.m. April 4, 11 a.m.-10 p.m. April 5, and noon-7 p.m. April 6. The event will feature some of the tastiest seafood, arts and crafts and commercial vendors, games and fun for the children in the Kids Zone. There will be entertainment throughout the weekend featuring Friday night's headliner country music entertainer Travis Tritt, and Saturday night's headliner rapper Vanilla Ice. The following bands will perform throughout the weekend including Whiskey Blind, Triggerfish, Kim Betts, Boss Hawg, Boneshakers, Gladesmen/Gator Nate, AC/DC Highway to Hell "tribute band," Blue Mason Barter and Renegade. A boat shuttle service will depart from Regatta Point Marina every hour, 5-10 p.m. April 4, 11 a.m.-10 p.m. April 5, and noon-6 p.m. April 6, from Riviera Dunes Marina Fuel Dock every 20 minutes past the hour, 5:20-10:20 p.m. April 4, 11:20 a.m.-10:20 p.m. April 5, 12:20-6:20 p.m. April 6, and from the Bradenton Riverwalk Day Dock, leaving every 40 minutes past the hour 5:40-10:40 p.m. April 4, 11:40 a.m.-10:40 p.m. April 5, and 12:40-6:40 p.m. April 6. Admission: $3, children ages 11 and younger are admitted free. Information: www.desotohq.com.
Fish fry dinner: Holy Cross Church Hall, 505 26th St. W., Palmetto
The Knights of Columbus Council 7414 will host a Lenten fish fry dinner 4:30-7 p.m. Fridays through April 11. The dinner includes fish, baked potato, slaw, roll, dessert and a beverage. Cost: free will donation. Information: 941-722-8253.
Sarasota Film Festival "Moonlight Movies": various locations, Sarasota
The last of the free Moonlight Movies screenings, covering a variety of genres from family classics to historical drama, Hollywood blockbusters to experimental cinema, will be "The Little Mermaid" at sunset April 5. Information: www.sarasotafilmfestival.com.
Yard sale and psychic fair: 2408 43rd Ave. W., Bradenton
A psychic fair and yard sale benefitting the Church of Light will be 10 a.m.-4 p.m. April 5 featuring top national and local psychics offering tarot, crystal ball, tea leaves, shaman body scanning, psychometry, aura reading, palm analysis and more. There will be a gift shop with a unique selection of metaphysical books, supplies and gifts. Information: 941-751-5683.
Spring Florida Native Plant Festival and Sale: Sweet Bay Nursery, 10824 Erie Road, Parrish
The Florida Native Plant Society and the Sarasota Bay Estuary Program will hold its 13th annual Spring Native Plant Festival and Sale 9 a.m.-3 p.m. April 5 featuring a large selection of native trees, shrubs, grasses and blooming wildflowers for use in any garden. There will also be FloriMulch for sale, which is made from the exotic, invasive melaleuca tree and is an excellent garden mulch alternative to non-sustainable cypress. Local nature groups, including the Manatee Audubon and the Sarasota Bay Estuary Program will be available for consultations. The event is free and open to the public. Information: Karen Fraley at 941-776-0510 or www.sweetbaynursery.com.
Magician variety show: Sunny Shores Community Center, 3827 116th St. W., Bradenton
Chandler and Dan Tong, the magician "dream team," will present their Amazing Magic and Mind Illusions show, 7 p.m. April 5. Seating is limited, reservations are encouraged. Tickets: $15. Information: 941-705-9244.
Anna Maria Island Art and Craft Festival: Holmes Beach City Hall Field, 5801 Marina Drive, Holmes Beach
The Anna Maria Island Art and Craft Festival will be 10 a.m.-5 p.m. April 5 and 10 a,m.-4 p.m. April 6, featuring fine arts and crafts. Food and beverages will be available for purchase. Proceeds will benefit the Butterfly Park. Information: 352-344-0657.
Palmetto Historical Park and Manatee County Agricultural Museum guided tours: 515 10th Ave. W., Palmetto
Guided tours will be offered during the DeSoto Seafood Festival at 12:30, 2:30 and 4:30 p.m. April 5-6. Tours will begin under the oak tree in the center of the park, adjacent to the festival. Children's crafts will be available during this time as well. In case of rain, tours will be cancelled. Information: 941-721-2034.
Sarasota Post-Alternative Music Festival: Fogartyville Community Media and Arts Center, 525 Kumquat Court, Sarasota
As a first in a series of occasional salons, showcasing unusual and distinctive performers, artists and creative minds, in differing combinations, across a wide variety of styles and approaches, the Sarasota Post Alternative Music Festival will highlight the Bilderberg Jazz Arkestra, the Immersion Project and La Lucha, featuring Jun Bustamante 4-9 p.m. April 6. Short films will be shown between acts. Tickets: $8-$10. Information: 941-894-6469 or www.wslr.com.
Tampa Theatre Classic Movie Series "Family Favorites": Tampa Theatre, 711 N. Franklin St., Tampa
Young fans will get the chance to see some of their parents' most beloved childhood films on the big screen at the return of the popular family favorites classic movie series, including "Who Framed Roger Rabbit," April 6, "October Sky," April 13, "The Karate Kid," April 20, and "The Wizard of Oz," April 27. All movie times are 3 p.m. Tickets: $10 adults, $8 children ages 12 and younger. Information: 813-274-8981 or www.tampatheatre.org.
Sail Pavilion "Brews and Bites": 333 S. Franklin St., Tampa
Sail Pavilion will be hosting a monthly Brews and Bites Food Truck Rally 6-10 p.m. April 11 and every second Friday of the month. There will be live entertainment by local musicians, specialty cocktails, craft beers and multiple food trucks offering something for every taste bud. Information: 813-373-1193.
"Live from downtown, it's Friday Night": Burns Square, Sarasota
"Live from downtown, it's Friday Night" will be 6-9 p.m. April 11 and every second Friday of the month featuring live performances by Sarasota's premier entertainers and performing arts organizations and enjoy shopping at a unique mix of boutiques, galleries and salons. Businesses will be open with extended hours. Admission is free. Information: 941-366-7040 or www.DSAsarasota.com.
Holmes Beach downtown art walks: various locations, Holmes Beach
Holmes Beach art walk will be 5:30-7:30 p.m. April 11. Eleven participating galleries, and dozens of artists, include Island Gallery West, Arts for the Earth, Fukinsei Art Lab, SteamDesigns, Libby's Island Jewelry, Beach Life AMI, Anna Maria Island Art League, Artists' Guild Gallery, Restless Natives, and The Sidebar Gallery and Island Tattoo. Information: 941-779-9108 or Melissa@SteamDesigns.com.
Anna Maria Island Privateers Thieve's Markets: Coquina Beach Field, Bradenton Beach
The Anna Maria Island Privateers will kick off the 2014 season of Thieve's Markets 8 a.m.-3 p.m. April 12 featuring special treasures in part craft bizarre, part flea market. Admission and parking are free. Information: 941-812-8318.
DeSoto Heritage Festival Bottle Boat Regatta: Palma Sola Causeway Southside, Manatee Ave. W., Bradenton
The DeSoto Heritage Festival Bottle Boat Regatta will be 10 a.m.-2 p.m. April 12 featuring wet, wild and colorful hand constructed exotic boats that float on plastic bottles and have only paddles for propulsion. Various teams of friends, family, co-workers and children will participate. Information: www.desotohq.com.
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 27. 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.
Bradentucky Bombers 2014 Season and Schedule: Astro Skate of Bradenton, 3611 Third St. W., Bradenton
The Bradentucky Bombers, Manatee County's original flat track women's roller derby team 2014 season schedule is as follows: April 13, May 18, June 8, July 13, July 27, Aug. 3, Sept. 14, Oct. 12, with game itineraries: 6 p.m. tailgating, 6:30 p.m. doors open, 7 p.m. game begins, 9:15 p.m. after party at Lost Kangaroo Pub, 406 12th St. W., Bradenton. For the games it is suggested you bring a chair. Track side seating is available on a first come, first served basis for those ages 18 and older. Food and beverages will be available for purchase. An open recruit event will be 9:45 a.m. March 1 and 7 p.m. March 3 at Astro Skate of Bradenton. Tickets for the games are $10 in advance, $12 at the door. Information: www.bradentuckybombers.org.
Main Street Live: Main Street, Bradenton
Main Street Live will be 5-10 p.m. April 17 featuring live music, and arts and crafts. The event is free an open to the public. Food and beverages are available for purchase. Proceeds will benefit the revitalization of downtown's merchants and culture. Information: 941-201-6228.
"Live from downtown, it's Friday Night": Towles Court, Sarasota
"Live from downtown, it's Friday Night" will be 6-9 p.m. March 21 and every third Friday of the month featuring live performances by Sarasota's premier entertainers and performing arts organizations and enjoy shopping at a unique mix of boutiques, galleries, and salons. Businesses will be open with extended hours. Admission is free. Information: 941-366-7040 or www.DSAsarasota.com.
Spirit and Orb Walks: Bunker Hill Vineyard and Winery, 8905 Bunker Hill Road, Duette
Spirit and Orb Walks are offered 6:30 p.m. April 19 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 www.bunkerhillvineyard.com.
American Legion Post 24: 2000 75th St. W., Bradenton
Bingo, 1-3 p.m. Wednesdays and 6-9 p.m. Tuesdays. Public welcome. Information: 941-794-3489.
Bradenton Tropical Palms: 2310 14th St. W., Bradenton
Bingo 6:30 p.m. Thursdays. New progressive game. Doors open at 5:30 p.m. Information: 941-580-5044.
Casa Loma Mobile Home Park Clubhouse: 105 52nd Ave. E., Bradenton
Bingo, 6 p.m. Wednesdays. Doors open at 4:30 p.m. Licensed food vendor available. Information: 941-761-7788.
Holy Cross Church: 505 26th St. W., Palmetto
Bingo, 6 p.m. Wednesday. Doors open 4:30 p.m. Food served 4:30-6 p.m. Information: 941-779-3494.
Tidevue Estates Mobile Home Park Clubhouse: 4214 11th St. Ct. E. (off US 301 N.), Ellenton
Bingo, doors open 5 p.m., games start at 6:10 p.m. Fridays Nov.-April 2014. Information: 941-722-2557.
Bella Danza Dance and Ballroom: 5702 Manatee Ave. W., Bradenton
Friday beginner group lessons 6 p.m. Cost: $10. Friday advanced group lessons 7 p.m. Cost: $10. Friday social dance with complimentary beverage and snacks, 8-9:30 p.m. Cost: $10. Afternoon ballroom dances are 2 p.m. Tuesdays. Cost: $10. Dance Fusion for adults 7 p.m., for children 6 p.m. Thursdays; Cost: $10 adults, $5 children. Dance Information: Dwayne Biggs at 941-465-1031.
Bradenton Woman's Club: 1705 Manatee Ave. W., Bradenton
Dance to live music 8-11 p.m. Fridays. Cost is $8. Lessons from 7 to 8 p.m. Open to the public. Singles are welcome. BYOB, sodas available. Smoke-free facility. Proceeds will benefit renovation of the clubhouse, built in 1921. Information: 941-773-0177 or www.bradentonwomansclub.com.
Adult Singles Dance Club: YMCA, 1075 S. Euclid Ave., Sarasota (corner of Bahia Vista)
Dance with live bands plus a DJ, 7:30-10:30 p.m. every Saturday. Admission: $10. Complimentary snacks. Information: 941-756-8303 or 941-807-2226.
Sara Dance Center: 5000 Fruitville Road, Sarasota
Ballroom dancing lessons 7-8 p.m. and general dancing 8-10 p.m. Mondays. No partners necessary. Admission: $8 members, $10 nonmembers. Call for complete schedule 941-685-7026.
West Coast Woman's Club of Manatee County: H2U, 6670 Cortez Road, Bradenton
Let's Dance! a monthly social dance will be held 7-10 p.m. April 12 and every second Saturday of each month. Dance lessons are 6:15-7 p.m. at no additional charge. Music will be provided by Ellsworth and Company. Light snacks will be provided. Water and sodas are available for purchase. BYOB. Cost: $8. Information: Kelly Helm at 941-447-8238.
Bradenton Farmers' Market: Old Main St., Bradenton
The Bradenton Farmers Market will be 9 a.m.-2 p.m. Saturdays, featuring more than 30 vendors offering locally grown fruits, vegetables, plants, organic products, prepared foods, and the work of local artists and craftspeople. The market expands to welcome Mainly Art, a gathering of local artists and craftspeople displaying and selling their handmade goods, every third Saturday of the month. Information: 941-840-0017 or visit www.bradentonfarmersmarket.com.
Central Sarasota Farmer's Market: Sarasota County Technical Institute, 4748 S. Beneva Road, Sarasota
The Central Sarasota Farmer's Market will be 8 a.m.-1 p.m. Saturdays, featuring locally grown fresh produce, local artisan products, live music, and a variety of food vendors. Information: 941-677-0078 or http://centralsarasota
Ellenton Farmers Market: 5309 29th St. E., Ellenton
The Ellenton Farmers Market is 9 a.m.-2 p.m. Saturdays and specializes in "green" natural, organic and environmentally friendly products that makes for a healthier lifestyle and a better environment. Information: 941-725-0205.
Phillippi Farmhouse Market: 5500 S. Tamiami Trail, Sarasota
The Phillippi Farmhouse Market will be 9 a.m.-2 p.m. Wednesdays featuring fruits and vegetables from local groves and farms including herbs, plants, cut flowers, prepared foods, seafood, ice cream, kettle corn, barbecue and multiple organic products. Local arts and craftsmen will be selling soaps and essential oils, organic treat for pets, fabric fantasies, books and much more. The midweek market runs through April. Information: 941-366-1323 or visit www.farmhousemarket.org.
San Marco Plaza Market: San Marco Plaza at 8209 Natures Way, Lakewood Ranch
Shop for local produce 9 a.m.-2 p.m. Fridays featuring cut flowers, fresh seafood, coffees, pottery, herbs and more. The market features live entertainment performed by local musicians. Information: 941-799-4213.
Sarasota farmers market: Lemon Avenue at the intersection of Main Street, Sarasota
Fresh produce, plants, coffee, crafts, food and more are available 7 a.m.-1 p.m. Saturdays. Information: 941-951-2656.
American Legion Kirby Stewart Post 24: 2000 75th St. W., Bradenton
Lunch is served 11-2 p.m. Monday-Friday. Spaghetti dinner and salad bar 5-7 p.m., music by TBD Trio 7:30-9:30 p.m., and Queen of Hearts 8 p.m., Mondays. Hamburgers 5-7 p.m., Bingo 1-3 p.m., Tuesdays. Ladies Auxiliary sponsored Bingo 1-3 p.m., chicken wings 5-8 p.m., karaoke with Franky Allen 7-10 p.m. Wednesdays. Fried or baked fish 5-7 p.m., dancing and live music 7-10 p.m. Fridays. Foxhole Lounge: hot dogs 11 a.m.-7 p.m. Saturdays. Breakfast 8-11:30 a.m., dancing and live music by Bob Dewart Band with Eddie Tobin on piano 2-5 p.m. Sundays; Cost: $5 members, $5 nonmembers. The public is welcome. Information: 941-794-3489 or www.americanlegionpost24.com.
American Legion Post 312: 1610 67th Ave. E., Oneco
Queen of Hearts drawing, 7 p.m. Monday; bar poker, 6 p.m. Wednesday; Wings and strings, 6-9 p.m. first and third Thursday; dinner 5-7 p.m. and music 6-10 p.m. Fridays; music 2-6 p.m. Saturdays; and $5 all-you-can-eat breakfast 8 a.m.-11 a.m. and bingo 12:30 p.m. Sundays. Information: 941-758-6616.
American Legion Post 325: 3420 U.S. 301, Ellenton
Feather Your Nest 1 p.m., hamburgers 2-4 p.m. Sundays. Queen of Hearts, 7 p.m. Mondays. Hot dogs on Wednesdays. Information: 941-981-3819.
AmVets Post 301: 2443 U.S. 301 N., Ellenton
Tacos, 5-7 p.m. Tuesdays. Cheeseburger night, 5-7 p.m. Thursday. Karaoke on Friday nights. Music 5-8 p.m. Sundays. Back arcade open daily. Information: 941-722-0393.
Disabled American Veterans Chapter 18: 111 63rd Ave. E., Bradenton
Enjoy music 7:30-10:30 p.m. Fridays. Karaoke first Saturday of every month. Bar Bingo 4-7 p.m. Tuesdays and 1-4 p.m. Saturdays. Information: 941-755-5425.
Fraternal Order of Eagles Chapter 3171: 5831 15th St. E., Bradenton
All-you-can-eat breakfast 8:30-11 a.m., Feather Your Nest 1-5 p.m., Sundays; breakfast: $5. Tacos, 11 a.m.-6 p.m. Mondays, open to the public; tacos: $4. A varied lunch menu is served noon-2 p.m. Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Fridays. A weekly varied menu dinner is served 5-7 p.m. Wednesdays. Fun night 6-7:30 p.m., Thursdays. All-you-can-eat fried fish 5-7 p.m., Feather Your Nest 7-9 p.m., Fridays. Information: 941-756-2113.
Marine Corps League Desoto Detachment 588: 5225 26th St. W., Bradenton
Pork on the grill cookout, 4 p.m. April 12. Numerous side dishes will be served. The event is open to the public. All past and present military personnel and their guests are welcome to the Bunker Bar for fellowship, camaraderie, entertainment, and refreshments. Bar hours: 2-8 p.m. Tuesdays-Sundays. Information: 941-301-4598.
North Manatee American Legion Post 309: 2419 Bayshore Road, Palmetto
Bingo, 4 p.m. Thursdays. Soft-tip darts 8 p.m. Thursdays. Feather your nest 1-3 p.m. Saturdays. Information: 941-722-8689.
VFW Post 2488: 810 Sixth St. W., Palmetto
Lunch, 11 a.m.-2 p.m. Monday-Fridays. Karaoke with Bob Dunn, 6-9 p.m. Wednesdays and Fridays. Fish fry, 5:30-7:30 p.m. Fridays. Information: 941-722-9588.
VFW Post 9226: 3511 12th St. E., Ellenton
Euchre, 6:30 p.m. Thursdays. Fish Fry, 4:30-6:30 p.m. Fridays. All you can eat breakfast 8-11 p.m., bar poker 4:30 p.m. Sundays. Ladies Auxiliary Feather Your Nest 4:30-6:30 p.m.; $2 crockpot meal Mondays. Queen of Hearts, 7 p.m. Wednesdays. Information: 941-729-8535.
VFW Palma Sola Post 10141: 5105 Manatee Ave. W., Bradenton
Mac McConnell, guitar, 7:30-10:30 p.m. April 5. Lunch served 11 a.m.-3 p.m. Mondays-Fridays. Sunday breakfast, 9 a.m.-noon. TC and The Troublemakers, 4:30 p.m. every third Sunday. Monday night dinner, 5-7 p.m. Bingo 6:30 p.m. Thursdays. The public is welcome to all dinners and events. Information: 941-794-6394.