Do It This Weekend: FolkFest, free museum day, And Baby Makes Seven, chili cookoff, more

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Hey, hot shot -- think you have what it takes to make an award-winning chili? Then whip up two or three gallons of your best and bring the heat to Gulfport this Saturday for the Industrial Arts Center's first Industrial Strength Chili Cookoff. In addition to the mouthwatering main event, the festivities include live entertainment and glass blowing demonstrations, and the top three entrants will win hand-blown chili pepper trophies, along with certificates for use at the Center. If you’re like me, though, you’ll take a pass on all that culinary exertion and bring a hearty appetite instead. Whether you like it con carne or meatless, mild or a little wild, there’s sure to be a chili to thrill your taste buds. Oh, and a note of warning to you amateur firestarters out there: No pulling a Chief Wiggum and spiking your crockpot with a Guatemalan Insanity Pepper. Your grub needs to be edible. Sat., Sept. 26, 6:30-8:30p.m. Gulfport Art Village Courtyard, 2902A Beach Blvd. S., Gulfport, Fl 33707. Event tickets are $9 for adults and $5 for kids.  Deadline to enter the contest is Sept. 23. Entry fee is $25 and includes an IAC membership and commemorative apron. For more information, go to or call 727-289-9365. – Anthony Salveggi

[image-1]Many parents indulge their children’s fantasies – paying for singing lessons so they can fulfill their dreams of becoming the next Beyonce, or joining debate team in preparation to be President. But some kids need a reality check  – like, um, if they’re imaginary. That’s what Anna and Ruth (a lesbian couple) and Peter (the gay father of their unborn bun in the oven) are up against in the unlikely story of And Baby Makes Seven. Three make-believe children are threatening to take over their miniscule apartment (and their lives), so how can they prepare for the real baby that's on the way? Playwright Paula Vogel explores more than GLBT relationships and family values, begging the question -- is it possible for anyone to be truly ready for parenthood -- or, for that matter, adulthood? (Pictured: David M. Jenkins, Alison Burns and Jessica Rothert in And Baby Makes Seven) Sept. 24-Oct. 11, 8 p.m. Thurs.-Sat., 4 p.m. Sun., Shimberg Playhouse, Tampa Bay Performing Arts Center, 1010 N. MacInnes Place, Tampa, $24.50, $10 student, senior and military rush tickets 30 minutes prior to curtain, 813-229-7827, – Franki Weddington

Speaking of hot stuff: Saturday is the fifth annual Fireman Auction. It's like something straight outta Sex and the City -- and these local firemen are bound to do just about everything but turn down the heat. The Krewe of Charlotte De Berry and the Krewe of St. Florian host the sizzlin' selection of men, and winning bidders get a date with the hottie of their choice. I'll leave the jokes about his "hose" to your imagination. Proceeds benefit Lance Armstrong's LIVESTRONG foundation. Sat., Sept. 26, 7 p.m., The RITZ Ybor, 1503 E. Seventh Ave., Ybor City, $15. -- Franki Weddington

Do you drool at the sight of a sexy pair of Manolo Blahnik shoes? Do you refer to Vogue as The Bible? Do you get excited at the change of seasons because it means a new wardrobe? If you said yes to any of the above, then mark the date for the Art of Fashion: 50 Golden Years of Style. This visually delicious affair includes a red carpet show, with everything from vintage to contemporary fashions of the last 50 years. There’s also a silent auction, a special cake cutting and hors d’oeuvres provided by Zante Cafeneo. Dress up as your favorite fashion icon or to wear cocktail attire – do you need a better excuse to go shopping? In honor of Jackie Onassis, Katherine Hepburn, Anita Pallenberg and all of the other fashion greats, get up, get beautiful, and take in that which is style. Sat., Sept. 26, 7-10 p.m., Leepa-Rattner Museum of Art, 600 Klosterman Rd., Palm Harbor, $50 in advance, $65 at the door, 727-712-5762, – Lily Reisman

The University of Tampa Film Society hosts the Black Box Film Festival, a showcase of the year's best student-directed films [image-2]complete with a plethora of panel discussions and workshops with film industry professionals from across the country. Highlights include a lecture on the pitfalls of indie filmmaking (and how to avoid them) with The Reel Truth author Reed Martin; a presentation by the EXTREME stunt and driving team; and a screening of National Campus Movie Festival winner Sarah Wilson's latest flick. The fest also secured an advance screening of Touching Home, starring Ed Harris and Robert Forester, which sees nationwide theater distribution in April 2010. Brothers Logan and Noah Miller, the co-producers, directors and actors of Touching Home (which also screens at Muvico BayWalk), lead a free "Guerrilla Filmmaking" workshop in conjunction with the Sunscreen Film Festival, and the dynamic movie-making duo are on hand to answer audience questions and sign copies of Either You're In…Or You're In the Way, their book documenting the whole crazy ride, from Hollywood nobodies to a silver screen debut with Oscar-nom actors on board. (Pictured: Noah Miller (left), Ed Harris and Logan Miller in Touching Home. Photo by David Moir) Black Box Film Festival, Sept. 24-26, University of Tampa, 401 W. Kennedy Blvd., Tampa,, contact [email protected] for complete schedule of events; Guerilla Filmmaking workshop and Touching Home BayWalk screening, Fri., Sept. 25, Muvico BayWalk 20, 151 Second Ave. N., St. Petersburg, 5:15 p.m. workshop, 7 p.m. screening, book signing to follow screening, –Franki Weddington

Live After Dark is a benefit for the November launch of S.L.A.M. (Support Local Arts and Music) magazine  -- and they’re out to show us what Tampa Bay is workin' with. With more than 50 artist installations, body painting and henna tattoos, live art and music, a short-film fest, free libations and more, there’s good reason to show some love to the local arts scene. Sat., Sept. 26, 6 p.m.-midnight, Ybor Art Studio, 2702 Seventh Ave., Ybor City, cover by donation, – Franki Weddington

Artist/owner Marina Williams is at it again for ARTpool’s twice-monthly opening Record Remix Art Party, this time with art installations created from and on vinyl, an LP fashion show by Cindy Linville, and a record sell-off to that’ll put the vinyl purists out there in a frenzy. The $10 cover gets you in with the indie crowd along with a drink and hors d'oeuvres. Fri., Sept. 25, 6 p.m.-12 a.m. ARTPool, 919 First Ave. N., St. Petersburg, $10, 727-324-3878, – Franki Weddington

The city closes down two blocks of Central Avenue for the third edition of Creative Clay’s now-annual fundraiser, FolkFest St. Pete. The free two-day street party celebrates all things folk with food and drink, art booths spotlighting the works of a range of local artisans, and a solid lineup of music throughout. Florida’s finest singer-songwriters, and folk and blues artists join a few national talents on the outdoor stage. South Carolina kicks off the music on Saturday, with sets by Dave Hardin, Green Grass Boys and TC Carr, Sarasota Slim and Nitro, Rebekah Pulley and the Reluctant Prophets, Ben Prestage, and The New Familiars of Charlotte, S.C. to follow (and in that order). The Sunday bill features Veronica Jackson, Ella Jet, a “Tribute to Woodstock,” Have Gun Will Travel and the main headliners and a big score for the fest – NY’s Donna the Buffalo (pictured), their folky, rootsy jams marked by elements of zydeco, old time fiddle music and three-part harmonies. Sept. 26-27, beginning at 10 a.m. both days, Central Avenue, between 11th and 13 streets N., St. Petersburg, free admission. –Leilani Polk

Time to start mapping a route that hits every major museum and attraction this side of the Bay: ArtsAlive 2009: Free Museum Day includes the Salvador Dali Museum, the Dr. Carter G. Woodson Museum, the Florida Holocaust Museum, Florida International Museum, Great Explorations, the Fine Arts Museum, the St. Pete Museum of History, the Morean Arts Center, the Pier Aquarium, the Leepa-Rattner Museum of Art, the Florida Craftsmen Gallery and more. Visit for museum hours and more info. Sat., Sept. 26.

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