On the St. Johns Author William Belleville reads and signs his book River of Lakes (University of Georgia Press) the story of his journey down the length of Florida's St. Johns River, at 7 p.m. at Inkwood Books. With the companionship and expertise of environmentalists, fisherman and folk historians, Belleville captures the essence and value of the river, as he tells of his experiences kayaking, cave diving and hiking the banks. He also makes a case for the river and its wetlands to be left to bend to their own will. Inkwood is at 216 S. Armenia Ave., Tampa (813-253-2638).
Family Portraits Hyde Part Fine Arts opens Toys in Babeland, a multimedia exhibition of work by the Peters family, showcasing their collective talents. The four Tampa artists (Brandt Elling-Peters, Kathie Peters-Olivas, Karen Peters and Michael Peters) consider themselves revisionary artists, recycling nostalgic images and popular icons in order to re-appropriate their meanings and tell different versions of the past. A reception takes place 7-10 p.m., and the exhibition runs through Oct. 27. Hours are 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday. Hyde Park Fine Arts is at 937 S. Howard Ave., Tampa (813-258-8883).
Mane Attraction MAD (Music, Acting, Dance) Theatre of Tampa presents Hair, the American tribal love-rock musical, at HCC's Ybor Theater, through Oct. 7. A special meet-and-greet reception at 6:30 p.m. opening night allows the audience to visit with original Broadway producer Michael Butler, writer Jim Rado and others from the original production. (The reception costs $40 and includes the show.) The Tony-nominated musical caused a good deal of controversy during its run on Broadway (1968-'72) over its anti-war, free-love sentiments and brief nudity. (Note: there's a li'l nakedness in MAD's production as well). Show times are at 7:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday and 2 p.m. Sunday. Tickets cost $10-$12. HCC's theater is at the northwest corner of Palm Avenue and 15th Street, Ybor City. Call 813-786-6291. www.madtheatre.com.
Put up Your Dukes Kickboxing grand master Frank Dukes, the subject of the Jean-Claude Van Damme movie Blood Sport, provides commentary at the Battle of Tampa Bay III. The main event pits British champion Phil Herridge against U.S. champion Andy Brown in a fight for the World Kickboxing Title. A special exhibition boxing match features Tampa Bay's own David Santos against Ali Tareh, a former kickboxing champion from Iran. Three other title fights among world-class amateur kickboxers round out the undercard. Tickets cost $35, $25 and $12. Doors open at 6 p.m. The event takes place at the Bayfront Center's St. Petersburg Times Arena, 400 First St. S., St. Petersburg (727-892-5767).
Preach, Papa The third annual SubGenius Devival is upon us, the SubGenius being a congregation of folks who're fanatical about poking fun at organized religion. The hidden teachings of their leader, J.R. 'Bob' Dobbs, are revealed in the books, The Book of the SubGenius (Simon & Schuster) and Revelation X: The 'Bob' Apocryphon (Fireside). The devival takes place at 9 p.m. at The Orpheum, featuring the rhetoric of Suzie the Floozie, Papa Joe Mama, Dr. Legume, Popess Lilith, Rev. Pee Kitty and Commandrix Jewyl; also music by Jackie Papers, Saint'N and more. Tickets cost $8 advance, $10 at the door. The Orpheum is at 1902 Republica de Cuba Ave., Ybor City (813-248-9500).
The Beat of a Different Tom A great rhythm section in and of itself, Tom Tom Club is Chris Frantz and Tina Weymouth, who for years led double musical lives playing with David Byrne in Talking Heads. As innovators of numerous funky sounds, the band's work has been widely sampled by Grandmaster Flash, Ziggy Marley and The Melody Makers and P. Diddy. And when they weren't recording or touring ('93, '94), they produced albums such as Angelfish, for Shirley Manson, and the platinum-selling Rey Azucar, for Grammy-winners Los Fabulosos Cadillacs. Their latest release, 10 originals and two classic covers, is appropriately titled, The Good the Bad and the Funky. Local act Soulsystem opens the show. Tickets cost $15 advance, $17 at the door. Doors open at 8 p.m. at the State Theatre, 687 Central Ave., St. Petersburg (727-895-3045).
To Craft Drawn from the collection of the American Craft Museum in New York, Craft is a Verb surveys the history of the American craft movement from the late 1950s to the present. The exhibit displays a significant overview of handmade objects, admired for their functional, ceremonial and aesthetic beauty, as well as the skill of the artisans. The exhibit runs through Dec. 30, at the Tampa Museum of Arts. Hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday-Saturday (extended to 8 p.m. on Thursday) and 1 to 5 p.m. Sunday. Admission costs $3-$5 by donation only 5 to 8 p.m. on Thursdays and 10 a.m. to noon on Saturday. The museum is at 600 N. Ashley Drive, Tampa (813-274-8130).
Men in Blue Blues Skipper's Smokehouse presents the Red White & Blues Jam to aid those affected by the loss of New York police and firefighters who fell in the line of duty during the terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center. The lineup features the Quivering Rhythm Hounds, whose drummer, Scott Peterson, is the union representative of the local firefighters union; Code Blues, which includes Tampa policemen; Straight Up, composed of Clearwater policemen; and Blues Pig, featuring Sarasota policemen. The Suncoast Blues Society hopes that a blues band of firefighters also participates. Admission is by donation, with all proceeds being donated. The show takes place from 1 to 9 p.m. Skipper's is at 910 Skipper Road, Tampa (813-971-0666).
Precautious Parenting Gymboree Play & Music offers American Safety and Health Institute courses in Adult, Infant and Child CPR and Standard First Aid, at their facility through Oct. 2. The cost is $35 and includes a snack break. The class is open to the public but registration is limited. Gymboree offers weekly classes, such as Tummy Time, on how infants should spend time on their bellies, developing upper-body strength. Gymboree is at 1220 S. Dale Mabry, Tampa (813-254-9626).
Flavor Fair The Ybor City Chamber of Commerce and Ybor City Main Street host the fifth annual Ybor City Business Expo & Food Fair from 6 to 8:30 p.m. at The Florida Aquarium. The unique setting allows guests to sample the flavors of Ybor while exploring the aquatic wonders. Exhibitor booth space costs $150 for non-Ybor Chamber members. Tickets to attend the event cost $10 advance, $15 at the door, available at the Centro Ybor Visitor Information Center, 1800 E. Ninth Ave., Tampa (813-248-3712). The Florida Aquarium is at 701 Channelside Drive, Tampa (813-273-4000). www.ybor.org
Free Verse Poet Dionisio Martinez reads his poetry at 7 p.m. in the Teaching Auditorium on St. Petersburg College's Clearwater campus. The Cuban-born poet resides in Tampa, where he teaches creative writing workshops at the YMCA Writer's Voice. Martinez is the author of two collections of poetry published by W.W. Norton, Bad Alchemy and Climbing Back. His subjects range from the Tiananmen Square massacre to altruism, borrowing from elements of jazz and often featuring an alter ego, the Prodigal Son. The auditorium on the Clearwater campus is at 2465 Drew St., Clearwater. Call 727-791-2695.