Here's What's Going on This Weekend

Wondering what to do? Here's some ideas.


The Greater Brandon Community Foundation'S annual Winterfest continues today and tomorrow at Winthrop Town Centre on Bloomingdale Avenue.

Saturday, Dec. 1 from 11 a.m. to sunset and Sunday, Dec. 2 from noon to 5 p.m., there will be bounce houses, hay rides, Santa's workshop, face painting, entertainment and craft vendors.


The Hillsborough County Fair is hosting its second annual Night of Shimmering Lights Thursdays through Sundays until Dec. 17 and then nightly up until Christmas at the fairgrounds at 4810 State Road 60 in Dover.

Nearly 1 million twinkling lights will decorate the fairgrounds. There will be an animated light show, a Christmas village, an outdoor holiday movie, arts and crafts vendors, pictures with Santa and fresh doughnuts. Admission is $20 per car.


Congregation Beth Shalom of Brandon will present its annual All Jazzed Up Art Festival Saturday, Dec. 1 at the Winthrop Barn Theatre, 11349 W. Bloomingdale Ave., Riverview. A VIP reception will begin at 6 p.m. and the event begins at 7 p.m.

The evening will feature fine art, food by Little Greek, a holiday boutique with original handcrafted items, a silent auction and entertainment by the Bloomingdale High School Jazz Band. On the patio, Guinness Book of World Records-holding cigar roller Walter Reyes will demonstrate cigar rolling. Artists' works to be featured include works by fused glass artist Virginia Spalter, watercolor artist Doreen Donovan, clay artist Alice Valazquez-Suarez and sculptor Susan O'Hara. Proceeds will benefit A Kid's Place in Brandon, a home for abused and neglected children.


Santa and Mrs. Claus will make their debut appearance for the Bloomingdale Homeowners Association Saturday, Dec. 1 from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Bloomingdale Special Taxing District office, 3509 Bell Shoals Rd., Valrico, behind SunTrust Bank.

Children throughout the community are invited to meet the jolly old couple and share their Christmas wish lists. Each child will receive a complimentary digital photo with Santa. The event is free but those attending are asked to bring a nonperishable food donation for area food banks.


Book lovers seeking bargains to give as holiday gifts or to keep and read themselves will finds hundreds of titles at the annual Friends of the Bloomingdale Regional Library Book Sale Dec. 1 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. The book sale will take place the McLean Community Room at the Bloomingdale Regional Library, 1906 Bloomingdale Ave., Valrico.

For the past few months, the Friends have been setting aside choice selections donated to the Bookends bookstore located off the library's lobby for this year's sale. Offerings on Saturday will include Christmas books, coffee table books, cookbooks, large-print books, children's books, DVDs and CDs and barely read hardback best sellers.


Dog Gone Holistic, 5620 Fishhawk Crossing Blvd., Lithia, will host its fifth annual Dog Gone Healthy Pet Fest Saturday, Dec. 1 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. in the parking lot in front of the store and from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. inside the store.

Several tents in the parking lot will feature pet products, holistic dog food companies, local pet businesses and gift basket raffles to support pet charities. Smokey Bones of Brandon and Kona Ice will sell food and drinks and music will be provided by Pure Power Productions. Inside the store, Dog Gone Holistic will off 15 percent off all items. Pets are welcome to attend but must be on a leash.


Brandon Christian Church, 910 S. Bryan Rd., Brandon, will host its fifth annual Craft Bazaar Saturday, Dec. 1 from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.

There will be a variety of local crafters and vendors selling items for holiday gift giving.


The Bloomingdale Regional Library, 1906 Bloomingdale Ave., Valrico, will present "No Fuss Foods: Mediterranean Flavors" Friday, Nov. 30 at 10:30 a.m. 

Join Rowena Sjovall of No Fuss Foods as she demonstrates how to make easy Mediterranean dishes. Free samples will be available for participants to taste. Shellfish or seafood may be used in these recipes. Participants must register in advance at the Ask Me Kiosk or by calling 813-273-3652. There is a limit of 10 participants.


The Village Players will present the holiday production of Miracle on 34th Street Dec. 1, 7-8 and 14-15. Curtain time is 8:15 p.m. A matinee show is Dec. 9 at 3 p.m.

The show, directed by Gail Pierce, features Kris Kringle, a white-bearded, older man from a retirement home who gets a job working as Santa at Macy's in New York City. Tickets cost $12 for adults and $10 for students, senior citizens and military.


Come celebrate the season and the birth of our Savior with a Festival of the Nativity, a free community event hosted by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 4806 Bell Shoals Rd., Valrico, Saturday, Dec. 1 from 6 to 9 p.m.

Visitors can enjoy a display of nativities from around the world, a live nativity, musical performances of seasonal songs, family and children photos, crafts and refreshments.


On Saturday, Dec. 1, Revolution Cycle & Fitness, 524 Oakfield Dr., Brandon, will host its first “Pedal for a Cure” to raise funds for the ALS Association Florida Chapter. The event is dedicated to Belinda Poole, a 38-year-old mother of two young boys who has ALS. The indoor ride will run from 10 a.m. to noon.

The registration fee is one hour for $20 or two hours for $40. Proceeds raised will support patient care and comfort, as well as research for treatments and a cure for ALS, a fatal neurodegenerative disease that progressively paralyzes its victims, attacking nerve cells and pathways in the brain or spinal cord.

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Uncle Mike's Smokehouse Grill and Harley Davidson of Brandon, 9847 E. Adamo Dr., Tampa, will host a Holiday Shopping and Wellness Day Dec. 1 from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.

The event will benefit A Kid's Place in Brandon and Toys for Tots. The day will include live music, shopping, food, wellness experts and door prizes.


Lucky Day Emporium, 3322b Lithia-Pinecrest Rd., Valrico, will host its annual holiday sale and craft market Saturday, Dec. 1 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

The event will feature local artisans selling handmade treasures, small gifts and holiday decor, markdowns in the store and Back in the Day's famous hot cocoa and peppermint marshmallows.


The Lane family once again will present its annual Christmas Lane light and decorations exhibit starting Dec. 1 and running through Dec. 28 from 6 to 10 p.m. at 2091 Wooten Rd., Dover.

Visitors are invited to stroll through the 1 1/2-acre winter wonderland that includes Santa from 6 to 8 p.m., a kids' train ride, a manger scene and other holiday scenese, a nightly musical, hot chocolate, coffee and ice-cold drinks, freshly popped popcorn and cotton candy.


The FishHawk-Riverview Rotary Club will at the International Independent Showmen's Association, 6915 Riverview Dr., Riverview.

The free event includes photos with Santa, kid's activities, entertainment, food and beverages for purchase, a silent auction, door prizes and a chili cook-off as well as a chance to see lighted boats parade up and down the Alafia River.


For the 20th year, residents will open their holiday-decorated homes to the community as the Brandon Service League hosts its annual Holiday Home Tour Dec. 1 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

The tour will feature four decorated homes as well as a gourmet bake sale, several opportunity baskets and refreshments. Tickets for the Holiday Home Tour are $15 each and are available from any BSL member or at several area businesses including: The Green Boutique, Sumatra Café, Greg’s Hallmark and Attorney B. Lee Elam’s office.


The Summerfield Social Committee's fourth annual Holiday Craft Fair will take place Saturday, Dec. 1 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the community center gymnasium, 13011 Summerfield Blvd., Riverview.

The event will include 40 artisans and vendors. Those attending are asked to bring a new unwrapped toy for a chance to win a basket. The bake sale proceeds and toys will be donated to the Deputy Darling Foundation.


Center Place, 619 Vonderburg Dr., Brandon, will host its second annual Holiday Tea Sunday, Dec. 2 from 2 to 4 p.m.

Ladies are invited to don their best hats and holiday attire and enjoy Sugar Plum Fairy scones and holiday teas provided by The Tea Cup Tea Room. There also will be chicken salad croissants by Chick-fil-A of Lake Brandon Village, tea sandwiches and assorted specialty desserts by Jute's Box. Holiday entertainment will be provided by the Flexible Four Barbershop Quartet. The event also will include a Silent Night Auction. Prizes will be give for the best hat and best table.


The monthly FishHawk Farmer's Market will take place Sunday, Dec. 2 from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. in Park Square.

The market features homemade foods, fresh produce and fish, crafts and other items.


The 19th Cookson Hills Toy Run benefiting children in need, special-needs residents, seniors and veterans will take place Sunday, Dec. 2 at 10 a.m. at Veterans Memorial Park off U.S. 301.

There will be an auction from 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. as well as ticket sales for raffles, prizes and 50/50 drawings. The ride will leave the park at 1 p.m. and head to Evans Park, 1104 Kingsway Rd., Seffner. At the park, there will be a barbecue, Santa and Mrs. Claus, cotton candy, funnel cakes and sleigh rides with the Samoyed Dog Club. A drawing will take place at 4 p.m.


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