Your Weekend: Tailgating for summer

If summer is the Superbowl, shouldn't we all be tailgating?

Fun fact: No one on our editorial staff, on any given day, knows the right date. By the time you pick up the May 19 Creative Loafing, we're already missing meeting deadlines for the May 26 issue. For example: I'm writing a Do This for next week (if I told you what it was you would totally lose your sense of wonder next week when you opened our issue), and I almost told you to do it in this weekend's blog post. My mind is on Memorial Day, is what I'm saying, and it's not just me — everyone in our office, even the ghost cat we always hear but never see — is thinking in terms of the stuff that will happen between May 26 and June 1.

The May 26 issue is our Summer Guide, in which we do all the heavy lifting so you have a phenomenal summer with almost no effort. It's a huge issue, packed with the best shit in town over the next few months (we're also kicking off summer with an awesome pool party). It's the Superbowl of Summertime. And, as any self-respecting football fan will tell you, tailgating is what makes your team win (editor's note: Cathy may never have actually seen a football game).

In preparation for next week's Summer Guide, let's tailgate, shall we? You bring the wings, I'll do the rest. 

10. Sweeter Than Justice . Yes, it's in Sarasota. So what? It's a St. Pete Beach playwright, so it's sorta kinda not entirely not local. This is the final weekend for the show, so don't miss your chance. Plus, it's an excuse to get dinner at... Rippers Roadside. While you're down south, treat yourself to a dinner of heart disease deliciousness: deep-fried hot dogs. Want to go whole hog (heh)? Get the Barking Pig, a hot dog fried until the skin rips, then topped with bacon sauerkraut. Yes, bacon sauerkraut . The healthy news? The canola oil used to deep-fry the dogs? "All natural." #WinningAtHealthFood #That'sNotHowThisWorks

9. Stay in town and hear Bill DeYoung talk about the Skyway Bridge Disaster. His presentation delves into the life of the harbor pilot who brought down the Skyway. Creepy factor: He has the ship-to-shore call from the day it happened. Plus, free booze, which you kind of need when you're talking about the bridge disaster.

8. Florida peaches. Who knew you could pick your own peaches not so far from the hustle and bustle (as much as we hustle or bustle as the mercury gets up to a respectable 90º) of Tampa? Pick your own peaches, along with blackberries, at Keel & Curley Winery in Plant City at their second annual peach festival. Now, I have no use for peach wine, but peaches themselves? Yes, please. Also, go early for the best selection of fruit. Or don't, actually. More for me...

7. The world's exploding with Alice in Wonderland shit right now. I blame Tim Burton. Better than Burton?  Down the Rabbit Hole at Bloom Saturday night. Think of it as Wonderland in the 'Burg. 

6. Get into an orange state of mind at the Morean's Orange State. This exhibit of artists showing us their sides of Florida  — ones that have precious few "Sunsets on Pass-A-Grille" paintings. That's right, I'm looking at you, Corey Arts and Crafts Festival.

5. Guess who's getting a waterpark? That's right, Indian Rocks Beach. Suck it, Adventure Island. OK, so it's not as big, but we like to think of it as less kids peeing in the lazy river. Splash Harbour Water Park has two water slides, a lazy river, bunches of other water things and, of course, a bar. Because that's how you do water parks, people. 

4. Need to cool off? If/Then at the Straz is a must-see (so say David W. and myself, who both went to see it Tuesday). It's a musical that plays with the idea "What would happen if I'd done that instead?" Bonus for Rent fans: Guess who's one of the leads? No, we're not going to tell you; go see it. We can't do everything around here.

On a more serious note, Terry Tomalin died yesterday and those of us who loved his work and his passion for Florida are all still in shock. Tomalin wrote for the Times, but his real love was twofold: First, his family, and second, Florida. You want to pay your respects? Get outside. Go see the Florida he loved so dearly. Our top three weekend suggestions?

3. Go fishing.

2. Go hiking at Fort DeSoto.

1. Kayak the Hillsborough River

The weekend, like life, doesn't last forever. Make the most of it.

About The Author

Cathy Salustri

Cathy's portfolio includes pieces for Visit Florida, USA Today and regional and local press. In 2016, UPF published Backroads of Paradise, her travel narrative about retracing the WPA-era Florida driving tours that was featured in The New York Times. Cathy speaks about Florida history for the Osher Lifelong Learning...
Scroll to read more Events & Film articles
Join the Creative Loafing Tampa Bay Press Club

Local journalism is information. Information is power. And we believe everyone deserves access to accurate independent coverage of their community and state.
Help us keep this coverage going with a one-time donation or an ongoing membership pledge.


Join Creative Loafing Tampa Bay Newsletters

Subscribe now to get the latest news delivered right to your inbox.

We welcome readers to submit letters regarding articles and content in Creative Loafing Tampa Bay. Letters should be a minimum of 150 words, refer to content that has appeared on Creative Loafing Tampa Bay, and must include the writer's full name, address, and phone number for verification purposes. No attachments will be considered. Writers of letters selected for publication will be notified via email. Letters may be edited and shortened for space.

Email us at [email protected]