Poles, Purrs and Pop Boy Bands Take Over Tampa Bay This Weekend


The events and descriptions below were compiled by Tampa Bay Times entertainment and events reporter Sharon Wynne. To check out all of the weekend events courtesy of the Tampa Bay Times, click here.


The Jonas Brothers: They’re all in their late 20's and early 30's, but fans have welcomed their 2019 comeback with wild, screaming, open arms. This return might be the start of something even more significant. Bebe Rexha and Jordan McGraw open. $59.50 and up Saturday. Amalie Arena, 401 Channelside Drive, Tampa. (813) 301-2500. Amaliearena.com

Smithereens: The power-pop veterans get a little help from friend Marshall Crenshaw. He will sing A Girl Like You and Only a Memory in place of lead singer Pat DiNizio, who died in 2017 after battling multiple health issues. You’d think that would be the end of the Smithereens. But no, drummer Dennis Diken and guitarist Jim Babjak are forging on, with an intriguing lineup twist. On some shows, the Gin Blossoms’ Robin Wilson is filling in for DiNizio. On others — including this weekend’s return trip to Largo — it’s singer-songwriter Marshall Crenshaw. Since this tour is meant to be a tribute to DiNizio, Crenshaw won’t be singing his hits (Someday, Someway; Whenever You’re On My Mind). $29.50 and up. 8 p.m. Friday. Central Park Performing Arts Center, 105 Central Park Drive, Largo. (727) 587-6793. largoarts.com.


Pablo Francisco: Arizona native, Tampa homeboy. The MADtv veteran is a frequent presence at the Tampa Improv . His extensive stable of impressions — most famously Don LaFontane, the late movie-trailer-voiceover guy, but also everyone from Arnold Schwarzenegger to Keanu Reeves to Mark Wahlberg — keeps packing the house. When he comes to town, you never know who you’ll see on stage. $15 and up. 8 and 10:30 p.m. Friday, 7:30 and 10 p.m. Saturday, 7 p.m. Sunday. 1600 E Eighth Ave., Ybor City. (813) 864-4000. improvtampa.com.

Sleight of Humor: It’s a comedy show, but it’s also not entirely a comedy show. Quite the trick, isn’t it? Steve Marshall and Bob Burr will blend a few different stage elements in Sleight of Humor this weekend in St. Petersburg. The scope of the humor show is just having a good time, and seeing two different types of acts. It works together. $25 and up. 8 p.m. Friday. Palladium, 253 Fifth Ave. N, St. Petersburg. (727) 822-3590. mypalladium.org.

Only in Florida

Pole for a Purpose: Yes, yes, go ahead and make your jokes about Tampa hosting a giant pole-dancing competition. Are you done yet? Then show some proper respect for Pole for a Purpose, a non-profit organization that over the past eight years has raised $33,000 for causes including victims of domestic abuse, multiple sclerosis research, and the Humane Society. Their showcase event spotlights pole dancing as a physical feat that’s both athletic, artistic, acrobatic and alluring. Leave your dollar bills at home, and instead buy a ticket — or better yet, bring a check — to support the organization and its efforts. $42.50 and up 8 p.m. Saturday. Jaeb Theater at the Straz Center, 1010 N W.C. MacInnes Place, Tampa. $10 and up. (813) 229-7827. Strazcenter.org.


It sounds like a made-for-SyFy movie. The Shark Queens meet the Beach Babes in Pinellas County’s Deadly Rival Roller Derby, which features Florida’s only banked track. There’s also music (DJ’s Deadly Rival and KillaHertz) with the mayhem as well as free beer and wine (21 and older, please). Tickets $15-$20, $40 VIP on eventbrite.com. Saturday 5:30-8:30 p.m. The Slayground, 4033 35th St. N, St. Petersburg. ... Want to meet the skaters? There’s an after-party at The Wheelhouse in St. Pete (7220 Central Ave.)

Cat Show: Step away from the funny cat videos and spend some time this weekend with the real things at the TICA International Allbreed Cat Show. Hosted by the Skyway Cat Club, a TICA (The International Cat Association) chartered club, more than 25 breeds of cats will preen for the judges. Meet other cat lovers and take photos with your favorites. Breeds include round faced-Persians, blue-eyed Himalayans, giant Maine coon cats, leopard-like Bengals, and the hairless Sphynx. Adoptable kittens and cats will be on-site, as will vendors. Admission, suitable for both days, is $8, $3 ages 6-12, 5 and younger free. (Get $1 off admission with a cat food donation to benefit rescue cats.) 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. Minnreg Building, 6340 126th Ave. N, Largo. (727) 289-1989. skywaycatclub.com.

BUCS: Get a preview of your 2019 Buccaneers under new coach Bruce Arians when Tampa Bay visits the Pittsburgh Steelers for their preseason opener Friday at 7:30 p.m. TV: NBC. ... Meanwhile, training camp continues with free digital tickets still available for upcoming open practices. Training camp is free, at 4 p.m. Monday and 10 a.m. Tuesday and Wednesday. AdventHealth Training Center, 1 Buccaneer Place, Tampa. Parking is free with lots adjacent to the training center open 1½ hours before practice.

5 under $5 this week

Cheap date night - Movies and trivia: Clearwater’s Nancy and David Bilheimer Capitol Theatre heads into the final stretch of its summer movie series with two affordable date night options this weekend. Friday brings The Matrix, with a pre-movie Matrix trivia contest at 6 p.m., so bone up on what the blue pill and the red pill do. And at 3 p.m. Sunday, it’s the classic A Star is Born. No, not the one with Lady Gaga, and not the one with Judy Garland and not the original from 1937. It will be the 1976 Star is Born with Barbra Streisand and Kris Kristofferson in shaggy ‘70s hair and clothes, that gave us the song Evergreen. $5, $9 with unlimited popcorn and soda. 405 Cleveland St., Clearwater. (727) 791-7400. Atthecap.com.

Perseids meteor shower: The annual summer light show (pronounced Per-Say-uh) peaks this week, so set your alarm and set up a lawn chair to look for some shooting stars. The Perseids, which began July 17 and will last through Aug. 24, are expected to produce about 25 visible meteors per hour. This is fewer than in past years because this year the moon will be very close to full during the peak nights of Sunday through Tuesday. You can already see some now, but the pre-dawn hours starting Friday through Sunday will have less light pollution coming from the moon. The best viewing times are after midnight, and before dawn, earthsky.org advises. It can be tough to find a dark corner to look into the northeast sky around here. Many will take a boat offshore or bring blankets to watch from a dark beach or the park near the airfield on Davis Islands.

Bubble Performer: Blaise Ryndes, an 18-year-old entertainer from Land O’ Lakes, has performed at Disney World, local hospitals and last season’s America’s Got Talent. He showed off amazing bubble sculptures and a long “bubble tube” that engulfed Tyra Banks. Now, catch his bubble artistry locally. Free. 2 p.m. Saturday at the Land O’ Lakes Library, 2818 Collier Parkway, Land O’ Lakes. (813) 929-1214.

Smurfs Sing-Along: As Papa Smurf would say, “It’s the Smurfiest weekend of the year.” The Westfield shopping malls in Brandon and Citrus Park will be having Smurf-themed entertainment with dancing, singing, face painting, and games. The first 200 kids in line get a free Smurf surprise. Free. 11 a.m. Saturday at Westfield Citrus Park and 11 a.m. Sunday at Westfield Brandon.


Smile Art of the Smiley Face: More than an emoji, the new exhibit Smile: The Art of the Smiley Face, challenged artists to incorporate the classic yellow smiley face within their art. More than 40 artists couldn’t resist playing with a symbol ripe for subversion, including Robert Dennard III, Daniel “R5” Barojas, Ashley Bates and Carrie Kilgore. The chirpy icon has been grinning since the summer of love. It ranges from a cheerful corporate symbol to an acid fad, a serial killer symbol, and the overused millennial expression of joy in text. Multimedia artist Chad Mize’s gallery exhibit openings are more party than arty, thanks to his love of pop culture, music and creating a fun scene, so don’t miss Friday’s opening from 6-10 p.m. The exhibit runs through Aug. 24. Free. Gallery hours are Saturdays 11 a.m.-7 p.m. and Sundays 11 a.m.-3 p.m. 689 Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Street, St. Petersburg.

Creative Genius, A Fold in Time: Martin and Erik Demaine are father and son, geniuses who work in a seemingly impossible combination of paper and glass. They are also both mathematicians at MIT and used math to create a technique of folding paper on a curve, rather than a straight line. They’re in St. Petersburg this weekend: 

-They appearing at the Duncan McClellan Gallery on Saturday night to explain how they combine folded paper with hand blown glass in a “ship-in-a-bottle” style.

-Things get even brainier on Sunday at the Museum of Fine Arts, St. Petersburg’s where they have pieces in the “Above the Fold: New Expressions in Origami” exhibit at the museum. On Sunda6y, the Demaines will fold their “curved crease” sculptures, accompanied by jazz pianist and neurologist John C. O’Leary. The trio will create a performance piece based on the notion of the intersection of the left and right brain. Watching geniuses at work sounds fascinating. It takes place in the Marly Room. $15-$25, includes museum admission. 2-4 p.m. Sunday. 255 Beach Drive, NE. (727) 896-2667. Mfastpete.org.

St. Petersburg’s Second Saturday Art Walk: All weekend long, all the galleries stay open late. It’s a great time to start or add to a collection. Before you think you can’t afford it, know that there is plenty of affordable, original artwork out there. I’d start at the Studio@620, where Coralette Damme a.k.a. the Crafty Hag has a pop-up show of her hand-printed, nature-inspired work titled “Pick A Print.” The prints will be hung along lines with clothespins, the way they would dry in her studio, so you can physically pick up your preferred piece. Prices range from $15-$150, and her prices are perfectly practicable. Free. 5-9 p.m. Saturday. 620 First Ave. N, St. Petersburg. (727) 895-6620.


End of Summer Steampunk Bash: Get out your top hat and old-timey goggles. Matt Knowles, the author of Tales From Nocturnia, serves as emcee for a pop-up steampunk party. Steampunk is a style of clothing, gadgets, and fiction that’s easy to spot but sometimes hard to describe. Usually set in a Victorian-era of steam-powered devices, it resembles the science fiction of Jules Verne, but post-apocalyptic and Old West themes also set in. This party will have two costume contests, tea dueling, parasol dueling, a professional photographer, food and drink specials. Free. 11 a.m.-7 p.m. Sunday. StoneFire Tavern, 10637 117 Drive N, Largo. (727) 914-6881.

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