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Best Budget Culture Events In Tampa

There's no shortage of spring and summertime events in the Tampa Bay area, but you don't have to spend much to enjoy them all. With free cultural activities everywhere from the beach to the park to the streets, there's something for everyone in the coming months. Enjoy the following events without breaking the bank.
Art in the Park

Art In The Park 
R.E. Olds Park
107 Shore Dr. West
Oldsmar, FL 34677
(813) 749-1260

Price: Free
Hours: Sat, April 14 – 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Oldsmar city volunteers created this event to bring the community together for an educational celebration of the fine arts. Take a hands-on class, watch demonstrations or bring the kids along for family events like Lowe's Build and Grow Clinic or the Sunburst pageant and model search. When you need to take a break from the day's activities, relax and enjoy the live music and entertainment provided in the park's open air amphitheater.

Bridge Street Market

Bridge Street Market
107 Bridge St.
Bradenton Beach, FL 34217
(215) 906-0668

Price: Free
Hours: Sun, April 15, 22, 29 – 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Now in its fifth year, this weekly event has bloomed into the destination to purchase real Florida funky arts and crafts. Grab the family and spend the whole day here. In addition to the shopping, dining and art, historic Bridge Street offers incredible sunrise and sunset views.

Related: Tampa's Best Year Round Farmer's Market

Fun 'N Sun Festival
Coachman Park
300 Drew St.
Clearwater, Florida 33755
(727) 562-4800
www.myclearwater.comPrice: Free admission to most events
Hours: Fri, April 29 – 5:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m., Sat, April 30 – 1 p.m. to 10 p.m., Sun, May 1 –1:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m., Fri, May 6 – 4:30 p.m. to 10:30 p.m., Sat, May 7 – 12:30 p.m. to 10 p.m., Sun, May 8 – 12:30 p.m. to 9:35 p.m.Join 100,000 others for a series of more than 35 events scheduled throughout the city. Highlights include a concert series, sports competitions, food, arts and crafts and family-friendly activities.
Storytelling Festival

32nd Annual Tampa-Hillsborough County Storytelling Festival 
Hillsborough High School
5000 N Central Ave.
Tampa, FL 33603
(813) 276-5620

Price: Free
Hours: Sat, April 21 – 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Join featured Storyteller Elizabeth Ellis as she tells stories of Appalachia, heroic American women, and her own life. You'll also hear tales from 300 youth tellers and 25 adults on four separate stages. The festival will also feature ballads, puppets, a parade of fairy tale characters and a performance of "The Fairy Tales of Grimm."

Pirate Girls at Johsn Pass
(credit: Sarah Dees)

John LeVique Pirate Days
John's Pass Village
1100 Village Blvd.
Madeira Beach, FL 33708
(727) 322-5217

Price: Free, with suggested $2 donation
Hours: Fri, May 13 – 7 p.m. to 10:30 p.m., Sat, May 14 – 9 a.m. to 7:30 p.m., Sun, May 15 – 9 a.m. to 7:30 p.m.

John LeVique Pirate Days celebrates the discovery of John's Pass with a Pirate's Ball, sea battle, boat parade, a family treasure hunt, costume contests for adults and children, and nautical-themed arts and crafts activities. Adult pirates can participate in in pub crawls, while families can bring the kids for face painting and street performers. As always, the proceeds from this 10-year-old event are donated to the Florida Fisherman Lost at Sea Memorial Fund.

Andy Warhol and Friends exhibit
Self-Portrait (Fright Wig), 1986 © 2012 The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, Inc. / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

Andy Warhol & Friends Exhibit
Florida Museum of Photographic Arts
400 N. Ashley Dr.
Tampa, FL 33602
(813) 221-2222

Price: $6
Hours: March 10 to May 27, Mon to Thurs – 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., Fri – 10 a.m. to 8 p.m., Sat – 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., Sun – 12 p.m. to 5 p.m.

This exhibit showcases brightly colored screen prints, photographs and photo booth strips by the infamous Andy Warhol. Spanning three decades, featured works include celebrity portraits of John Wayne, Liza Minnelli, Sting, Mick Jagger, Jack Nicholson, Sylvester Stallone, Grace Jones and Dennis Hopper. Warhol's famous self-portraits are also in the collection.


Saturday Sunsets on the Trail
10400 Gulf Blvd.
Treasure Island, FL 33706
(727) 549-6165 

Price: Free
Hours: Saturdays during summer – 5 p.m. to 9 p.m.

Take a hike on Treasure Island for a sunset celebration. Saturdays throughout the summer, you and the family can take in street performers, artisans and live entertainment as you stroll along the gulf. Prepare yourself for stilt walkers, living statues, escape artists, break dancers, jugglers and, of course, magnificent sunsets.

Related: Best Art Museums In Tampa

Holmes Beach Concerts in the Park
5801 Marina Drive
Holmes Beach, FL 34217
(941) 536-4257
Facebook pagePrice: Free
Hours: Sat – 5 p.m. to 10 p.m.Join local musicians, artists and retailers the last Saturday of each month for a "taste of the island." In addition to the entertainment, be sure to check out the various food and drink options available. Some sales will go to benefit various local non-profit organizations.
Sarah Dees is an accomplished artist, writer, educator, and entrepreneur, with over twenty-five years of professional experience. Sarah attended Eckerd College for two years, and graduated with a BFA from Parsons School of Design in New York City. She is a freelance writer in Tampa Bay. Her work can be found at

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