This weekend you can take a guided tour of Bradenton's most festive Christmas decorations and do something good for needy families.
The annual Ted Nowosad Tour of Lights is set for Friday and Saturday. Each year, hundreds of people board Manatee County Area Transit and Manatee County School District buses at State College of Florida Manatee-Sarasota for a 90-minute ride through local neighborhoods decorated for the holidays.
There's no charge except for a nonperishable food item or an unwrapped toy. The food will go to the Food Bank of Manatee and the toys go to Toys for Tots. (Toys for children between ages 11 and 16 years are often in short supply, so you may want to consider something aimed at that age group.)
Besides being a great time for the people who take the tour, the event is significant for both the food bank. Last year, Tour of Lights riders donated between 1,000 and 1,500 pounds of food for the Food Bank of Manatee.
The tour starts at 6:30 p.m., but it's a good idea to get to SCF by 6 p.m. at the latest. The tour is a popular event -- last year, about 2,000 people took the tour -- and there may not be enough bus seats for everyone who want to ride.
Details: 6:30 p.m. Dec. 18-19, State College of Florida Building 29, 5840 26th St. W., Bradenton, Tickets: Nonperishable food item or unwrapped toy. Information: 941-747-8621.
-- Marty Clear