For those of you playing the home game, I spent the bulk of the week in Kentuckiana, where I ate excellent Vietnamese food, strolled through a pseudo-hipster-y town, and spent some time searching for the final resting place of Colonel Sanders (and made a math error whilst remarking about his age, because I don't math. Well.)
Being the in faux Deep South/sortakindamidwest reinforced one thing: Florida weather kicks ass, because, unlike Kentuckiana, our temps hit 80º on the reg now, and also, hey, pollen season is almost over. Also, I'm headed to the panhandle as I write this, so I'm at an oysters-and-beer place right now. Consider yourselves warned.
I will assume you are not in the panhandle, but that's OK, because locally our Solo cup runneth over with shit to do. We have about four weeks before it gets face-of-the-sun hot and all I do is tell you to grab a cold beer and bucket of oysters. In fact, why not start this weekend that way, just for practice? Treasure Island's R Bar has its own beer and sells Apalachicola oysters (they're the best), so grab a seat and settle in for a while. When you're done, you have two choices: Continue the outdoor vibe with a trolley ride (trust us, don't try and find parking) to Pass-a-Grille's Beach Goes Pops, or head inland to watch The Messenger at Studio@620.
Or, you know, you could park yourself at R Bar and work your way through the all-you-can-eat catfish. Your call, Loafers, but make sure you're awake for the Sunrise Hike at Boyd Hill Saturday morning. If that sounds far too healthy and awesome for you, reward yourself with a post-hike breakfast at Munch's, where they've never been accused of serving health food. First time? Try the southern breakfast or the field hash and remember, you can add a pork chop. I'm not being sarcastic; Weight Watchers suggests making breakfast a substantial meal, so there you go.
Springfest Garden Art and Faerie Festival, then lunch at Fish (memo to our food critic: that mint brownie thing tastes like a slice of heaven) where you can get oysters and beer; Art in Bloom at the MFA and an oyster tasting at St. Pete's Sea Salt... there's no shortage of stuff this Saturday. Saturday night, head to Ybor's Silver Meteor Gallery for the opening reception for Kym O'Donnell's exhibit of unusual ephemera, How the Ghost of You Clings, or to Sarasota for a powerful production about Muslims in America, Disgraced (our critic gave it five stars, so you can go and tell us if he got it right).
That leaves Sunday free to lay on the beach and slurp oysters. G'head, you've earned it. Might we suggest a Corona Light, bottled in 2016, to accompany those salty bivalves?
Bonus: Inject a spot of weekend fun into Tuesday. That's right, Tuesday. At the Tampa Museum of Art, Jaume Plensa (the artistic mind behind the current exhibit, Human Landscape) will give a lecture. RSVP here.