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Holiday Boat Parade and More Stuff to Do in Tampa Bay

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Your weekend plans are here! We have boat parades, a murder mystery dinner, a virtual scavenger hunt, and so many more holiday festivities. Grab your friends and family and enjoy the best things to do in Tampa Bay this weekend!

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Table of Contents

Events

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Holiday Lighted Boat Parade

There’s nothing more Tampa Bay than a boat parade!  Stand by as an onlooker or participate in this fun Christmastime event.  The Holiday Lighted Boat Parade is tons of fun for everyone, as decorated boats make their way along the Tampa Riverwalk in Downtown Tampa.  You’ll fully be in the holiday spirit after viewing the creativity and dedication of Tampa locals to spreading some Christmas cheer on their boats!

Local boat enthusiasts will compete for first, second, and third place trophies for the best Christmas light displays!

Event Details
🗓  DEC 19 | 630PM-830PM
📍 Tampa Riverwalk

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Murder at the Mansion

Help find out who killed Lord Heathcliff at this themed dinner social, Murder at the Mansion. Get thrown into a night of mystery, intrigue, and murder you will never forget! This event will have you looking over your shoulder and bribing suspects for clues. Just be careful, because you might be next!

Dress in your best evening wear wear and suits. The show starts at 7pm and the buffet starts at 8:15pm. Don’t miss out on this fun night of gathering clues to figure out which guest is the murderer.

Event Details
🗓 DEC 17 | 7PM-10PM
📍 11703 Thonanassa Rd, Thonotosassa, FL 33592

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Vintage Roost

If you need to do some last minute holiday shopping, this is the place to go to. Vendors will be bringing in unique finds just for you. There will be so many amazing vintage treasure so be ready to hunt! Shop from 16 vendors with so many fabulous pieces for you to discover. For your safety and the safety of others, masks are required and always try to social distance.

Event Details
🗓 DEC 19 & 20
📍 Vintage Roost

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📷 Photo Credit: Tampa Riverwalk

Tampa Riverwalk's Holiday Spectacular & Virtual Hunt

The Tampa Riverwalk is already a sight to see, now imagine it all lit up and decked out for the holidays! The hotels, restaurants, and bars along the Riverwalk will also have lighted displays making it the perfect place to experience the holiday season. Displays include a 35′ tall LED lighted Christmas tree floating in the harbor, several other lighted displays floating on barges in the river, and the lighted garland and red bows on the Riverwalk light poles.

Don’t forget to do the holiday scavenger hunt where you’ll be solving puzzles, completing holiday challenges, and answering historical Tampa trivia! Check out our Tik Tok video to see how you can participate.

Event Details
🗓 NOW – JAN 2 
📍 Tampa Riverwalk

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Wesley Chapel Holiday Tree and Light Display

Where can you find a Christmas park with Santa visits, lights, trees, decorations, games, food, and entertainment? Right here at the Wesley Chapel Holiday Tree and Light Display! Enjoy carnival rides, snow, and Christmas vendors at this must visit holiday event.

Santa will be there everyday except December 13. There will also be sleigh rides on select nights. If you’ve already gotten your Santa photos, you can meet the Grinch. He’ll be there every weekend except Christmas. It’s the best way to get into the holiday spirit with friends and family.

Event Details
🗓 NOW – JAN 3
📍 The Grove at Wesley Chapel

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Christmas in the Country and Festival of Lights

Celebrate the holidays at a 30 acre farm this weekend! Day passes include an animal experience, hay ride, hay chute slide, play fort, mini Christmas village, and so much more. You’ll also get a visit with Santa!

The farm is decorated for the holidays so you’ll definitely get the perfect family photo. There will be a variety of great vendors to get some gifts or yummy treats from. That’s not all though, make sure to check out the Festival of Lights with over 1 MILLION Christmas lights and a lighted gingerbread hayride. Trust us, you don’t want to miss this spectacular holiday event. 

Event Details
🗓 Select Days DEC 3 – 30
📍 Raprager Family Farms

Local Business Spotlight

Island Fin Poke

Pet Friendly Stuff To Do

Pet ShopsThe Tampa Bay area is one of the most pet-friendly metros in the US, so we’ve partnered with Petzey to bring all the possibilities for adventure with your fur-babies to the palm of your hand.

Now through the end of the year get FREE wellness checks for your pup with our code UNATION. It gives you a peace of mind so you can take your furry friend with you on all of your Tampa adventures!

While the winter holidays here are a bit different here and we trade out snow for sand, there are still so many fun holiday activities to do! 
 
Every year I try to go visit Christmas town at Busch Gardens, the light displays around the park are amazing (especially the view from a coaster) and they have a Winter Village with all the holiday treats and comfort food. Cue the specialty hot chocolate!
 
Around town though, my go to place for Christmas lights is Hyde Park and it’s giant Christmas tree in the Village, plus this year they’re doing a pop-up Poinsettias in the Park that benefits Make a Wish FL! Curtis Hixon also has a Winter Village with an ice skating rink and little local shops to buy gifts from. Super cute to go there at night, walk the Riverwalk and then skate!
 

St Pete definitely gets into spirit too, you can’t miss when Intermezzo in turns into a Christmas bar ‘Miracle at Mezzo’. They seriously go all out decor from the roof down and their seasonal craft cocktails are delicious. You can even buy the cute T-rex mugs too ☺️ 

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More Things to Do in Tampa Bay

What's New

Grand Central Brewhouse is officially open in St. Pete! Make sure to go show some love to this thoughtfully designed brewery and beer garden. They’ll be serving up world-class beer. Grab your friends and enjoy a night out with good beer!

St. Pete is on a roll with another cool spot that just opened up. Copper Shaker is a cocktail bar serving handmade craft cocktails and new American gastropub cuisine.

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How cool is it that the Raptor’s are playing their home games in Tampa Bay!? Let’s give them a warm Tampa welcome this Friday as they play their first game at the Amalie Arena. Although you can’t get tickets, Tampa has so many sports bars to watch games. Check out these blogs to plan where you’ll be watching the games.

Sports Bars in Dunedin
Sports Bars in Carrollwood
Sports Bars in Downtown St Pete
Sports Bars in Downtown Tampa

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Natalie Monzon

Natalie Monzon

Natalie is a City Manager for UNATION and author of the Stuff to Do in Orlando City Guide. For more insight on the best events and things to do in the Orlando area, download the UNATION app and follow @StufftoDoinOrlando on social.

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