Compiled by Adrienne Cutway, Orlando Sentinel
March 13, 2013
Check out festivals and events in April across the state.
This list is organized by region.
Central Florida (including Orlando, Kissimmee, Daytona Beach, Sanford, the Space Coast, Lakeland/Polk and Lake County)
April 1-6: Sun 'n Fun International Fly-in and Expo, Lakeland. Educational forums, seminars and "hands-on" workshops; plus commercial exhibitors who offer aviation products and services for everyone. Enjoy a daily air show that showcases both new and old airplanes.The daily airshow will begin at 3 p.m. Tuesday and Wednesday, noon on Thursday, 2 p.m. on Friday and 1 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. At Lakeland Linder Regional Aiport. Starts at 9 a.m. Adults $37, children $15. 863-644-2431. http://www.visitkissimmee.com/leisure/things-to-do/festivals--events-calendar/details?id=450
April 4: Jazz Friday at Foosaner Museum of Art. Melbourne. Every first Friday of the month the Foosaner Museum of Art hosts Jazz Friday in their galleries. Expect great music from local favorites. Admission is free for members of the Museum and $10 for non-members. 1463 Highland Avenue, Melbourne FL 32901. 321-433-4470. www.foosanerartmuseum.org
April 4-5: Central Florida Dragon Boat Festival, Tavares. Dragon boat racing was born out of myth and legend more than 2,000 years ago in southern China, commemorating the life and death of a great patriot who threw himself into the Mi Lo River. When news of his death spread, local fishermen raced out onto the water and splashed their paddles to prevent fish from eating his body. Today, worldwide, some two million people participate in dragon races. Activities kick off with the Awakening of the Dragon Ceremony, traditional Dragon/Lion dance and banquet. Action-packed contests begin with a crew of 20 paddlers led by the loud, steady beat of the drummer. As the long and colorful boats compete, an ancient rite is revisited, all in the spirit of charity and fun. At Wooten Park. 352-504-8158. www.cfdragonboat.org
April 5: First Saturday Jam, Barberville. On the first Saturday each month visit the Pioneer Settlement for entertainment and fun for the entire family. 9 a.m to 4 p.m. Includes informal music jams, free workshops, a chili cook-off, yard sale. Admission is free. 386-749-2959. www.pioneersettlement.org
April 10-13: Celebration Exotic Car Festival, Celebration, Orlando and Daytona Beach. Check out some sweet rides at the Celebration Exotic Car Festival on April 10-13. This four-day event showcases North America's largest collection of exotic cars, race cars and iconic Hollywood movie cars. The event also lets registered participants take to the track at Daytona International Speedway, while regular folk can view the rides for free while listening to music along the waterfront of Celebration. The four-day event benefits Make-a-Wish Foundation, Special Olympics and Arnold Palmer Children's Hospital. VIP package available for $495. The Thursday and Friday rallies at Daytona are for driving participants only, but interested drivers can register on the festival website. For more information, call 407-566-2200 or visit www.celebrationexoticcars.com
April 11: Friday Fest. Melbourne Held the second Friday of the month in Historic Downtown, it's a family-oriented event that includes art craft and business vendors, lots of great food, beer and wine, a children's activity. Highland Avenue, Melbourne FL 32922. Free. 321-724-1741. www.downtownmelbourne.com
April 12-13: Blues at the Winery, Clermont. For those who enjoy sipping a glass of Lakeridge wine and listening to the blues, this event is a must see. The event attracts the area's most talented blues musicians such as "Beautiful" Bobby Blackmon, who will perform on the outdoor stage the entire weekend. Lakeridge wine, beer, soft drinks and a variety of food will be available for purchase, along with complimentary Winery tours and wine tasting. At Lakeridge Winery and Vineyards on U.S. 27 in North Clermont. Event is from 10 a.m.-5 p.m. on Saturday, 11 a.m.-5 p.m. on Sunday. Admission: $2 donation. 800-768-WINE. http://www.lakeridgewinery.com
April 12-13: Florida Ice Cream Festival, Lakeland. In 2013, this festival’s inaugural year, it saw 30,000 people to the surprise of organizers. Now in its second year, the festival is set to impress yet again with two full days of music, vendors and more. Guests also have the chance to see Joey Chestnut, one of the most celebrated competitive eaters, participate in a six-minute ice cream eating contest. The festival runs from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. on Saturday and noon to 7 p.m. on Sunday for the church and family day. Tickets are $3 each. www.floridaicecreamfestival.org
April 15: Climb to the Moon, Ponce Inlet. Climb to the Moon at Ponce Inlet Lighthouse offers views of the sunset and moonrise from atop the lighthouse. The lighthouse keeper relates the story of this National Historic Landmark. Sparkling cider and hors d'oeuvres are provided by Inlet Harbor Restaurant. The lighthouse is at 4931 South Peninsula Drive. Participation is limited to 25 people and tickets ($25) must be purchased in advance by calling Mary at 386-761-1821 ext. 10. www.PonceInlet.org
April 17-20: 50th Annual Ron Jon Surf Shop Easter Surfing Festival, Cocoa Beach. Championship surfers, ages 12-80, come from around the world to Cocoa Beach to compete in the 50th Annual Ron Jon Surf Shop Easter Surfing Festival on April 17-20. An Easter egg hunt and food court, as well as surf clinics and demonstrations, are part of the fun. Admission is free. www.eastersurffest.com
April 18-19: The Ultimate National Cheerleading Championship, Kissimmee. Cheerleaders compete for the Ultimate National Championship. At Gaylord Palms Resort and Convention Center. Admission. 877-490-0010. www.COAcheer.com
April 19: Cruisin' Downtown DeLand Classic Car Show. DeLand. Every 3rd Saturday of the month (except November). East Indiana Avenue in Downtown DeLand. Classic cars & rods line East Indiana Avenue in Downtown DeLand. Live DJ, giveaways, shopping & dining. 3 p.m. - 7 p.m. Free. 386-624-5027. www.MainStreetDeLand.org
April 19: Florida Lighthouse Day, Ponce Inlet. Florida Lighthouse Day at the Ponce Inlet Lighthouse commemorates the 29 lighthouses that remain standing in Florida on April 19. The event offers an opportunity to learn more about these towers that have kept mariners safe since the first lighthouse was lit in Florida in 1824. Visitors can participate in family-oriented activities and meet the “Old Lighthouse Keeper” as he describes his duties at the lighthouse. Special workshops have been developed in celebration of the statewide Viva Florida 500 and Positively Ponce, commemorating the Town of Ponce Inlet’s 50 years of incorporation. Event hours are from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Activities are included in the cost of regular admission ($5 for adults, $1.50 for children). For details, visit www.PonceInlet.org.
April 19: Earth Day. Orlando. Take the time to find out how to help the planet while having fun during the 9th Annual Central Florida Earth Day on April 19. This event at Lake Eola Park (east side) features music, guest speakers and activities for the family. Admission is free. Event hours are from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. For information, visit www.cfearthday.org.
April 20: Easter Sunrise Service, Lake Wales. Bok Tower Gardens sets the scene for an Easter Sunrise Service on April 20. The Gardens offers Easter morning worshippers free admission from 6 a.m. to 8 a.m. to experience the sun rising over the horizon on this special day while listening to a 60-bell carillon. The Lake Wales Chorale, an adult vocal group of community residents is slated to perform. An Easter buffet in the Blue Palmetto Café at the Gardens will be available for a fee. Bok Tower Gardens is located at 1151 Tower Boulevard. www.boktowergardens.org
April 25: 4th Fridays in Artisan Alley & DeLand Art Walk. DeLand. Gather with friends every fourth Friday of the month at Artisan Alley and also enjoy the DeLand Art Walk. DeLand Art Walk is a free, self-guided tour of the Historic Downtown area. Enjoy music, food, drinks, arts, crafts and more. Art galleries, museums, cultural venues, restaurants and boutiques host artists within their businesses on the fourth Friday of every month, rain or shine. Look for an official Art Walk banner in the front of each stop to identify the participating venues. Choose your own route, or begin from Museum of Florida Art. Downtown, 100 N. Woodland Blvd., DeLand FL 32720. 6-9 p.m. 386-738-0649. mainstreetdeland.org
April 25: Fourth Fridays Art Walk, Sanford. Central Florida's only monthly juried art show. With exhibits and music at participating venues. 6 p.m.-9 p.m. Downtown Sanford, First Street, Sanford, FL, 32771. Free. 407-323-2774. www.sanfordartwalk.com
April 25-27: Blueberry Jerry Jamboree, Spring Hill Small, blue and tart is the order of the festival featuring live music, food, arts and crafts, and, of course, blueberries. This family-friendly event returns for the second year in a row from April 27-29 at the Rotary Pavilion on the Concourse. For more information, visit pascoblueberryfestival.com.
April 26: Art Walk on Flagler, New Smyrna Beach. Held on the fourth Saturday each month, Flagler Avenue livens up with entertainment and wine tastings at participating venues. 10 a.m.-6 p.m. (wine walk 1-7 p.m.). Free ($25 for wine walk). Flagler Avenue, 100 Flagler Ave., New Smyrna Beach, FL, 32169. 386-428-1770. www.flaglergallerygroup.com
April 26: Concert Under the Stars at Bok Tower Gardens, Lake Wales. Join the Bok Tower Gardens for an evening of fun and inspiring performances with their annual springtime Concert Under The Stars. Admission is $20 for adults, $8 for children if you buy tickets in advance. 863-676-1408. www.boksanctuary.org
April 26-27: The Great American Pie Festival, Celebration. Oh, yum, yum! Lakeside Park in the town of Celebration in Central Florida sets the scene for the annual Great American Pie Festival. The fest features demonstrations, bake-offs, pie tastings and pie-eating contests on April 26-27. Admission is free. Ticket prices for the Never-Ending Pie Buffet featuring ice creams, pies, toppings and beverages are $10 for adults and $5 for children and seniors. 407-566-1200. www.piecouncil.org/Events/GreatAmericanPieFestival/
April 26-27: Halifax Oyster & Music Festival, Daytona Beach. Oysters will be available raw or steamed by the dozen as guests enjoy music, activities and drinks at Manatee Island Park all in the name of charity. Admission is $10 and children under 6 are free. www.halifaxoysterfestival.com
Through May 17: Sea World presents Viva La Musica, Orlando. SeaWorld Orlando hosts Viva La Musica, a celebration of Hispanic music, food and culture on April 26-May 17. The event features the sights, sounds and tastes of various Latin cultures through music, dance, crafts, food and concerts. It is included in regular park admission. For details, visit www.seaworldorlando.com
Through May 18: Epcot International Flower and Garden Festival, Lake Buena Vista. Spring special event filled with flowers, gardens, topiaries, live music and educational events. See millions of blooming flowers and a vibrant collection of specially themed topiaries. Stars from HGTV will be present during the weekend to host home and garden seminars. At Walt Disney World's EPCOT with admission. 407-824-4321. At Walt Disney World's EPCOT with admission. 407-824-4321. http://www.disneyworld.com/flower
Through May 31: Universal Studios Mardi Gras, Orlando.This year's Mardi Gras concert line-up includes Daughtry, Weezer and Lynyrd Skynyrd. Concerts begin at 8 p.m. Feb. 8 - March 8, and at 8:30 March 14 - May 31. Included with Universal Studios ticket. 407-363-8000. www.universalorlando.com/Events/Mardi-Gras/Live-Concerts.aspx
Tampa Bay-Sarasota (including Tampa, St. Petersburg, Clearwater, Sarasota, Anna Maria Island, Bradenton, Tarpon Springs and Homosassa)
April 4-13: Sarasota Film Festival, Sarasota. The festival screens more than 180 films including features, shorts, documentaries and kid-friendly picks. During the event films run from 10 a.m. to midnight daily at Regal Cinemas Hollywood 20 on Main Street in Downtown Sarasota. Various tickets and packages are available. A regular film ticket is $12. For information, visit www.sarasotafilmfestival.com.
April 11-13: Gulf Coast Rhythm and Ribfest, Palmetto. The nation's top Rib Masters will serve their award-winning specialties as they compete for this year's coveted 2014 Gulf Coast BBQ Champion award. Entertainment includes a variety of local, regional and national bands performing a mix of Country, Blues, Jazz, Pop, and Rock, and for children, the Interactive Kid Challenge Fun Zone. At Manatee County Fairgrounds. Admission. 941-746-7470. www.gulfcoastribfest.com
April 11-13: Tampa Bay Blues Festival, St. Petersburg. The festival established itself as one of the world's preeminent blues music events, having presented more than 195 of the world's greatest blues performers. This year's line-up includes Roomful of Blues, Los Lonely Boys, Tower of Power, Jimmie Vaughan, Charles Bradley and Delbert McClinton. In addition to world class music, you can enjoy arts and crafts, taste treats from seafood and barbecue to Cuban cuisine, plus premium beer and wine. $40 on Friday and Sunday, $50 on Saturday or $110 for three days. 727-502-5000. Vinoy Waterfront Park. www.tampabaybluesfest.com
April 12-13: Tarpon Springs Sponge Docks Art and Craft Festival, Tarpon Springs. Dodecanese Boulevard sets the scene for the Sponge Docks Arts & Crafts Festival on April 12-13. More than 90 artists and crafters will be displaying their creations including jewelry, homemade soap, ceramics, paintings and photography. Admission is free. www.tnteventsinc.com
April 12-13: Florida Blueberry Festival, Brooksville. This year’s blueberry festival will feature 60 artisans selling their creations alongside 20 food vendors that promise to offer a variety of blueberry treats and more. There will also be zip lining, a Blueberry Derby, a Masters Putting Challenge and a Monster Transmission Car Show. Hours are 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Saturday and 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday. Tickets are $5 for adults, $3 for anyone ages 6 to 17 and free for children 5 and younger. www.floridablueberryfestival.org
April 25-27: The Cotee River Seafood & Blues Festival, New Port Richey. This fest serves up music and food plus arts and crafts and other family-friendly activities along the river in Sims Park Friday-Sunday. Bands include national, local and student bands. Dig into fresh seafood, made-to-order sushi, and the Food Trucks of Tampa. Other highlights include the Mermaids of Weeki Wachee, a boat show, car show, kayaking and fly fishing demonstrations. For more information, call 727-842-8066 or visit www.nprmainstreet.com/specialevent/cotee-river-seafood-blues-festival-2014/.
April 26-27: The 36th Annual Siesta Fiesta, Sarasota. The Siesta Fiesta displays arts and crafts along Ocean Boulevard and Beach Road in Siesta Key Village on April 26-27. Some 250 artists and crafters will feature their creations and the fair also offers a Green Market. Admission is free. Fair hours are from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. For information, log on to www.artfestival.com.
Southwest Florida (including Naples, Fort Myers, Venice, Port Charlotte and Punta Gorda)
April 4-5: Cardboard Boat Regatta, Cape Coral. Pre-event party kicks off April 4. Event begin April 5 at 10 a.m. and include food, beer, live music and children's playground. At Four Freedoms Park. 239-245-0021. www.capecoralregatta.com
April 5-6: The Marco Island Art Festival, Marco Island. The festival displays original artwork in a variety of media on April 5-6. The outdoor festival is along Winterberry Drive, two blocks off South Collier Boulevard in front of the Marco Island Center for the Arts and Jewish Congregation of Marco Island. The fest has free admission. Event hours are from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday and from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Sunday. www.artfestival.com
April 6: BBQ, Bands & Brew, Fort Myers. This Southwest Florida city sets the scene for the BBQ, Bands & Brew on April 6. On the agenda are a barbecue competition, live music, games and vendors. Admission is $10. Children 12 and under are free. The event, which raises funds for local charities, is from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. at the Lee County Alliance for the Arts, 10091 McGregor Boulevard. www.bbqbandsandbrew.com
April 11-13: Florida's Creative Coast Weekend, Pine Island. On the second weekend each month November-April, Pine Island businesses offer themed artistic events. Galleries and shops are open extended hours on Friday, many offering special openings. Take a cooking class, or listen to live music. Other special events and workshops are planned at individual shops on Saturday and Sunday. 239-283-4842. www.floridascreativecoast.com
April 11-13: Sharks Tooth Festival, Venice. Go hunting for shark tooth fossils at the shark tooth's capital of the world. This annual event, which also includes food, entertainment, arts and crafts, and children's activities. At Airport Festival Grounds. Adults $3, children 12 and under free. 941-412-0402. www.sharkstoothfest.com
April 11-13: Charlotte Harbor Super Boat Grand Prix, Charlotte Harbour and the Gulf Islands. This inaugural powerboat race will take place at noon and 2 p.m. on Sunday, with festivities leading up to the big event on both Friday and Saturday. Expect a parade, food, live music, contests and more. General admission tickets are $15 in advance. www.chsbgp.com
April 12: Sharks Tooth 10K run, Venice. Runners will run through neighborhoods, along the beach-front road, into Caspersen Beach Park and return along the Venetian Waterway Trail to finish at the Venice Airport Festival Grounds. Starts at 7:30 a.m. Participants will receive complimentary entry into the Shark's Tooth Festival on race day with bib. Also included, door prizes and a post-race party. Pre-registration encouraged but not required. 941-412-0402. www.sharkstooth10k.com
April 12-13: Island Earth Days, Honeymoon Island State Park. This event features great live outdoor music and entertainment on the big stage and environmental vendors. Highlights include fresh seafood, plus a variety of other food & beverages including beer and wine, fine artists, quality craft vendors with a bigger than ever environmental area called Osprey Village. There will also be guided walks in the woods and on the beach, plus nature talks, presentations, and lots of activities and crafts for kids. At Honeymoon Island State Park. Donation of $8 per vehicle. 727-469-5943. www.islandearthdays.com/
April 17: Downtown Gallery Walk, Punta Gorda. Held monthly on the third Thursday, 5 p.m. - 8 p.m. Visit any of the downtown merchants, restaurants and galleries for your game card. As always, there will be live entertainment, food and drink samplings, art, beauty and health demonstrations, a free trolley, and an evening of fun. Free; free parking. 941-505-1915. www.charlotteharbortravel.com
April 19-20: 39th Annual Mainsail Arts Festival, St. Petersburg. The waterfront of downtown St. Petersburg provides a picturesque setting for the 39th Annual Mainsail Arts festival at Vinoy Park just north of the pier. Named by Sunshine Artist Magazine as one of the "100 Best" fine art events in the U.S., organizers expect more than 100,000 visitors to attend the art showcase of 250 juried exhibitors competing for $50,000 in prize money. The two-day event combines visual and performing arts along with opportunities for children to actively engage in art activities. Also on hand will be an assortment of culinary arts and souvenirs. From 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Saturday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Sunday. Admission is free. At Vinoy Park. 727-892-5885. www.mainsailartsfestival.org
April 23-27: Fort Myers Beach Film Festival. Fort Myers Beach. This fest provides movie-goers the opportunity to see independent films and be a part of events designed to cultivate the spirit of visual creativity and harbor the talents of local and upcoming film makers on April 23-27. For details, visit fmbfilmfest.com
April 26-27: The Seminole Casino Balloons Over Paradise, Immokalee. Balloons Over Paradise is a hot air balloon festival just outside of Naples on April 19-20. More than 50 custom hot air balloons will be featured as well as tethered balloon rides, live music, acrobatic kite demonstrations, carnival games, and children’s activities. Admission is free. Food will be available for purchase. www.boulderbrook.net/balloons-over-paradise-april
South Florida and the Keys (including Miami, Fort Lauderdale, West Palm Beach, Key Largo, Key West and the Treasure Coast)
April 4-5: 15th Annual O.J. McDuffie Spring Celebrity Golf Classic, Lauderhill. Tee-off at one of the most popular golf tournaments in South Florida alongside O.J. McDuffie and others from the world of sports and entertainment. Golfers will receive gift bags, tickets to the VIP reception premium open bar and dinner, welcome luncheon at the course, unlimited food and beverages, and numerous contests and prizes. Ticket prices vary; all proceeds benefit the Catch 81 Charities. VIP Reception: April 4 - Passion Night Club. Golf Tournament: April 5 - The Club at Emerald Hills. 877-584-2301. www.catch81foundation.org/events/celebrity-golf-classic/
April 5: TurtleFest, Juno Beach. Guests of all ages can enjoy up-close encounters with threatened and endangered sea turtles during the 11th Annual TurtleFest on April 5 from 10 a.m.-6 p.m. at Loggerhead Marinelife Center and Loggerhead Park. Local bands will take the stage while educational activities, art, shopping and other activities are available for children. Admission is free. For more information, call 561-627-8280. www.marinelife.org/turtlefest
April 5: Seven-Mile Bridge Run, Marathon. The 33rd annual Seven Mile Bridge Run is expected to draw 1,500 runners to a foot race across the longest segmental bridge in the world on April 5. The action kicks off at 7:30 a.m. For information, visit www.southernmostrunners.com/.
April 6: Suntrust Sunday Jazz Brunch, Fort Lauderdale. Live outdoor concert series bringing the area's best local jazz artists to the city's scenic Riverwalk the first Sunday of each month. Listen to the soulful sounds on four different stages. Everyone is welcome to attend, including well-behaved, leashed pets, and there is ample room to set up chairs, blankets and picnic baskets. 11 a.m.-2 p.m. Free admission. 954-828-5363. www.fortlauderdale.gov/events/jazzbrunch/jazzbrunch.htm
April 9-12: Miami Wine and Food Festival, Miami. Ranked as one of the top ten wine events in the nation, the festival features an array of culinary and wine events including wine tasting and interactive dinner with a top chef, live and silent auctions offering exotic travel packages, and some of the highest quality wine lots in South Florida. Admission. 305-646-7111. www.miamiwinefestival.org
April 12: Earth Day Celebration at Bahia Honda State Park, Big Pine Key. Features live music, sand sculpture contest, puppet shows, face painting, environmental exhibits and booths, marine life touch tanks, telescopes with special viewing lenses, and food from hot dogs to sloppy joes. 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Free park entry, free event. 305-872-9807. www.floridastateparks.org/bahiahonda/Events.cfm
April 12-13: Park Arts & Crafts Show, Key Largo. An Easter egg hunt and appearances by the Easter bunny are on the agenda during the Easter in the Park Arts & Crafts Show at Central Park on April 12-13. Artists and crafters exhibit their work as well. Admission is free. Event hours are from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Largo Central Park is at 101 Central Park Drive. www.loganjadepromotions.com
April 13-14: 23rd Annual Florida Keys Island Fest, Islamorada. One hundred artists and crafters from around the state will display their work and food will be available for purchase. Live music and a "Taste of the Islands" competition where the best Upper Keys restaurants compete for coveted awards round out the event at Founder’s Park, Mile Marker 87, bayside. Admission is free. For information, visit www.islamoradachamber.com.
April 17: Third Thursday Art Walk. Islamorada The Morada Way Third Thursday Art Walk presents local fine arts, music and culinary specialties on April 17. The galleries of Morada Way are between Mile Markers 81 and 82. Event hours are from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. For details, visit www.fla-keys.com.
April 18-27: Conch Republic Independence Celebration, Key West. Commemorates the founding of the Conch Republic in 1982, when the Keys seceded in response to a U.S. Border Patrol roadblock that halted traffic in and out of the Florida Keys. Begins with a Conch Republic Military Muster at Fort Taylor and includes a drag race, cruiser car show, Reef Relief party, bed race, "World's Longest Parade" down Duval Street from the Atlantic to the Gulf at the Schooner Wharf Bar, craft show, and the Naval Parade and Great Battle for the Conch Republic. 305-294-6019. www.conchrepublic.com/schedule.htm
April 25-27: The 52nd Annual Delray Affair, Delray Beach. The Annual Delray Affair showcases the work of more than 750 local, regional, national and international artists on April 25-27. The event is along the palm-tree-lined streets of downtown Delray Beach for 12 blocks from the Intracoastal to Northwest Second Avenue, grounds of the Delray Beach Center for the Arts and Old School Square Park. Entertainment and street performances are also on the agenda. Admission is free. For information, visit www.delrayaffair.com.
April 25-27: Pompano Beach Seafood Festival, Pompano Beach. In its 30th year, this beachside food festival promises to serve up great seafood and entertainment for guests of all ages. Friday’s hours are 5 p.m. to 10 p.m.; 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. on Saturday and 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Sunday. Admission is $15. www.pompanobeachseafoodfestival.com
Northeast Florida (including Jacksonville, St. Augustine, Flagler County and Amelia Island)
April 3-5: Antique Tractor and Engine Show, White Springs. Farm machinery representing 200 years of American history. Vintage farm equipment, tractor pulls and races for adults. Children's games and races. Demonstrations of wheat threshing and shingle milling. Food concessions. 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. At Stephen Foster Folk Culture Center State Park. Park admission $5 per vehicle. 386-397-7005. www.floridastateparks.org/thingstodo/events.cfm
April 4: First Friday Art Walk, St. Augustine. One of the city's most popular cultural events, held the first Friday of each month. Enjoy new exhibits, music, entertainment and refreshments at more than 20 participating galleries, plus great food courtesy of the St. Augustine Independent Restaurant Assn. Tours begin at Rembrandtz American Craft Gallery. St. Augustine Sightseeing Trains and Old Town Trolleys offer complimentary shuttle service to most galleries. Shuttles run on a continuous loop every 30 minutes. 904-829-0065.www.artgalleriesofstaugustine.com
April 4-6: George's Music Springing the Blues, Jacksonville Beach. Bring the entire family to celebrate blues music and the arts at this three-day oceanfront event. Named one of the top 50 Music Festivals in the World by Downbeat Magazine. It features a number of renowned blues performers as well as numerous displays and activities geared for the entire family. At SeaWalk Pavilion. Free. 904-465-2426. www.springingtheblues.com/
April 4-6: 19th Annual St. Augustine Rhythm & Ribs Festival, St. Augustine. If you are looking for a treat for your taste buds and ear candy too you may wish to check out this one: The 19th Annual St. Augustine Rhythm & Ribs Festival will be serving up scrumptious barbecue and music all weekend long on April 4-6. Admission is $2 except on Saturday evening when it is $5 (children 13 and under are free). The event is at Francis Field on Castillo Drive. Festival hours are from 5 p.m. to 10 p.m. on Friday; 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. on Saturday; and 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Sunday. www.rhythmandribs.net
April 11-13: Jacksonville International Boat Show, Jacksonville. Largest in-water boat show in the region. The hottest boats and boating accessories will be on display along with live entertainment, fresh seafood and a riverfront tiki bar. You will also enjoy an antique boat display, Nautical Signal Flag decoding hunt and a Maritime History display. At Metropolitan Park and Marina. Adults $10 and children 16 are free. 904-673-0093. www.jaxboatshow.com
April 12-13: Old Town Art & Craft Show, St. Augustine. The Old City puts on the Old Town Art & Craft Show on April 12-13. The juried outdoors fair features the work of local, regional and national artists and takes place at Francis Field, 25 West Castillo Drive. Admission is free. Hours are from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. each day. www.holidayartshows.com
April 26: Taste of St. Augustine. St. Augustine. The Old City serves up the 18th Annual Merrill Lynch A Taste of St. Augustine on April 26. The event showcases the culinary delights and signature dishes of more than 30 area restaurants that are judged for “the best of” in numerous categories as well as the “People’s Choice” award at the St. Augustine Amphitheater. Additionally, cookbooks, cooking equipment and specialty food items will be available for purchase. Admission tickets to A Taste of St. Augustine are $5 and taste tickets are $1 each with restaurants charging 1-5 tickets per taste. The family-friendly festival also features live entertainment. The Race to the Taste 5K is also presented during this event. Festival hours are from noon to 8 p.m. For additional information on A Taste of St. Augustine, visit www.epiccommunityservices.org.
April 30 - May 4: Florida’s Birding and Photo Fest, Ponte Vedra Beach. This annual event shines the spotlight on Northeast Florida’s abundant bird life and natural beauty. More than 110 birding and photography events are featured during the festival. The fest is headquartered at the GTM Research Reserve, 505 Guana River Road. For details, visit www.FloridasBirdingandPhotoFest.com.
North-Central Florida (including Ocala, Gainesville and Tallahassee)
April 3-12: Clay County Agricultural Fair, Green Cove Springs. Showcase for Clay County's agricultural, educational, civic and commercial interests. Also includes livestock, midway, stage entertainment, contests and Early Florida Pioneer Village. At fairgrounds. Admission. 904-284-1615. www.claycountyfair.org
April 4-6: Suwanee River Paddling Festival, Suwanee County. Join the Paddle Florida event and spend two days exploring the spring-fed upper Wekiwa then paddle down to the St. John's and Blue Spring State Park on this long-weekend adventure. Register on the main website. 386-364-1683. www.paddleflorida.org
April 12-13: Cedar Key's 50th Annual Fine Arts Festival, Cedar Key. A juried art show with more than $10,000 in prize money and purchase awards. Features paintings, sculptures, jewelry, crafts, ceramics, textiles, photography and more. Downtown area. Cedar Key Arts Center. 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. 352-543-5400. www.cedarkeyartsfestival.com
April 17-19: Down Home Days Festival & PCA Rodeo, Madison County. Rodeo events are slated for Friday and Saturday nights. The Saturday festival in downtown Four Freedoms Park includes a parade, classic car show, frog hop, petting zoo and other kids activities plus arts, crafts and food vendors. Festival events are free. Rodeo is $10 advance or $12 day of event for adults. Children 11 and under are free with each paid adult ticket. Festival is Saturday, 9 a.m.-3 p.m. Rodeo gates open at 6 p.m. each night. For more information, call 850-973-2788 or visit madisonflevents.com
April 26-27: 38th Annual Pioneer Days High Springs, Downtown High Springs. Saturday 9-5, Sunday 10-4. Held at James Paul Park. Hand made crafts, reenactments, Heritage village, period music and entertainment, large kids corral, parade, contests from the old days. Contact the chamber at 386-454-3120, 352-871-4992, or firstname.lastname@example.org or visit the chamber website for more information www.highsprings.com
The Panhandle (including Pensacola, Panama City Beach, Apalachicola and Destin)
April 5-6: 31st Annual Pensacola Jazz Fest, Pensacola. Smooth sounds from a variety of artists and bands are the order of the day during the 31st Annual Pensacola Jazz Fest at Seville Square on April 5-6. Admission is free. Seville Square is located at East Government Street and South Alcaniz Street. www.jazzpensacola.com
April 11-12: Pensacola Quilts, Pensacola. The Pensacola Quilters Guild presents Pensacola Quilts! In Full Bloom 2014 Quilt Show displaying handmade beauties on April 11-12. Admission to the event, at the Expo Hall Pensacola Interstate Fairgrounds, 6655 West Mobile Highway, is $7 for one day, or $10 for a two-day pass. Event hours are from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. each day. www.pensacolaquiltersguild.org
April 23-27: Seabreeze Jazz Festival. Panama City Beach. This annual fest features the smooth sounds of contemporary jazz at Pier Park on April 23-27. The event, which typically attracts more than 20,000 fans, offers three days of jazz and a themed dinner cruise. Varied tickets and passes are available. One-day general admission seating is $80 per person. For more information, visit www.seabreezejazzfestival.com.
April 19: Apalachicola Antique and Classic Boat Show, Apalachicola. Display of all types of antique boats, traditional vessels, work boats, fiberglass classics, antique outboard motors and antique cars. Free. 850-653-9419. www.antiqueboatshow.org/
April 25-26: Carrabelle Riverfront Festival, Carrabelle. Riverfront festival showcasing seafood, music, and regional and award-winning artists showing original works and prints, custom designed pottery, stained glass, sculpture, metal art, wood carving and more. Also includes seafood, maritime exhibits, sand sculptor, kid's zone and live entertainment. On Marine Street. Free. 850-697-2585. www.carrabelleriverfrontfestival.com
April 25-27: Interstate Mullet Toss and Gulf Coast's Greatest Beach Party , Pensacola. America's last great roadhouse can throw a party - and a fish - like nobody else. The is a silly event that raises serious money for local charities. Festivities take place at the Florabama Lounge & Oyster Bar. Participants can pay $15 to toss a 1-pound mullet across the state line from Alabama to Florida. Watching the event is free. For more information call 850-492-0611 or visit www.florabama.com.
Correspondent Georgina Cruz contributed to this report.
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