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Best Exhibits To Visit This Summer In Tampa Bay

Tampa Bay is home to tons of amazing museums celebrating everything from art to history to science. This summer, some of the Bay Area's most popular museums will be hosting some limited-time, must-see exhibits that you won't want to miss. Whether you're interested in sneakers or sea monsters, there's an exhibit for you.

Sea Monsters Revealed
Museum of Science and Industry (MOSI)
4801 E. Fowler Ave.
Tampa, FL 33617
(813) 375-9358

Date: Now through September 2, 2013

If you enjoyed MOSI's wildly popular "Bodies" exhibit, your next stop ought to be "Sea Monsters Revealed." MOSI is hosting the world premier of this exhibit, which is the world's largest collection of plastinated sea creatures. Real animal specimens are preserved using the polymer preservation technique, bringing massive creatures such as a six-foot manta ray, 15-foot mako shark, giant squid and a 3,000-pound whale shark up close and personal. After touring the exhibit hall, visitors can engage with live animals in a touch pool -- no SCUBA certification required.

Utility And Aesthetics In Ancient Art

Tampa Museum of Art
120 W. Gasparilla Plaza
Tampa, FL 33602
(813) 274-8130

Date: Now through July 14, 2013

Many types of ancient art have been lost to the ages, never to be recovered. By contrast, ancient pottery -- bowls, pots and vases, for example -- seem to be in abundance. These seemingly humble items, depicting everything from flora to athletics to battle scenes, were created by laypeople and not fine artists. Even though they were regarded as next to worthless during their time, they provide keen insight to art created by ancient civilizations. The Tampa Museum of Art is hosting a collection of over 500 antiques in this summer exhibit.

Antique Appraisal Fair
Heritage Village Home
11909 125th St. N.
Largo, FL 33774
(727) 582-2123

Date: June 16, 2013 at 9 a.m.

The Antique Appraisal Fair, sponsored by the Pinellas County Historical Society, is a great place to take that family heirloom you've always hated but can't seem to get rid of. Noted Tampa Bay-area antique experts will be present to examine your items and give you an estimate of how much they're worth. If you've got jewelry or clocks, gemstone and clock specialists will be on site to assist with appraisals. Other items of interest are stringed musical instruments, pre-1950's dolls, vintage books and weapons. Appraisal fees are $5 per item or $12 for three items and all proceeds will benefit Heritage Village.

Related: The Best Art Museums In Tampa Bay

Innovative Quilters' Challenge And Small Quilt Auction
Dunedin Fine Art Center
1143 Michigan Blvd.
Dunedin, FL 34698
(727) 298-3322

Date: May 31 through August 11, 2013

From the end of May through August, the Meta B. Brown gallery of the Dunedin Fine Art Center will be home to hundreds of finely crafted quilts. The museum's resident quilting guild will share its beautiful creations with the community. Each year, the museum selects a traditional quilt pattern and quilters interpret it in a modern way. Some quilts will be entered in the museum's competition, while others will be up for auction. If you love DIY art, this is the place to be.

Bay Area Soleciety Sneaker and Apparel Expo
Museum of Science and Industry (MOSI)
4801 E. Fowler Ave.
Tampa, FL 33617
(813) 375-9358

Date: June 15, 2013 at 6:30 p.m.

Footwear fanatics, rejoice! There is an exhibit just for you coming to the Museum of Science and Industry. Here, you can buy, sell or trade your favorite sneakers, or check out some of the most exclusive clothing brands in the industry. A ticket to the Expo also lets you into the main museum. A portion of profits will go to a selected charity.

Related: Best Places For Glass Art In Tampa Bay

Head to CBS Tampa's Best Of pages for more local tips on family fun, shopping, nightlife, food, culture and more!

Amanda Mole has been writing since she was old enough to hold a pencil and cooking since she was tall enough to reach the stove. She believes that food provides more than just vital nutrients: it is an irreplaceable part of countless cultural and social activities. As a Tampa Bay resident for the past 21 years, she is well acquainted with the incredibly diverse range of restaurants, bars, and food festivals that the area has to offer. Her work can be found at

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