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Top things to do in Tampa Bay the week of Dec. 25-31.

By Maggie Duffy, Times Staff Writer
Published: December 21, 2017 Updated: December 24, 2017 at 04:30 PM
A large crowd watched the fireworks at midnight that helped usher in the new year (2007) at Vinoy basin along the St. Petersburg waterfront during the First Night celebration on Sunday, Dec. 31, 2006. JOE WALLES I Times

New Year’s Eve: As 2018 approaches, the Tampa Bay area is ready to celebrate on Sunday with champagne toasts, fireworks and dimpled Extra host and Saved by the Bell alum Mario Lopez, who will be in Tampa for the Pied Piper New Year’s Eve party ($75 and up at And there will be midnight fireworks displays in downtown St. Petersburg, Tampa’s Cotanchobee Fort Brooke Park, Clearwater Beach and Apollo Beach. For info, visit

Outback Bowl Festivities: The big game is next Monday, but Saturday you can join the Michigan Wolverines and the South Carolina Gamecocks, their marching bands and cheerleaders as they take to the beach adjacent to Pier 60 on Clearwater Beach for a day of live music, skydivers and contests. Then on Sunday, they’ll hit the streets of Ybor City for a New Year’s Eve parade and pep rally. Free.

WWE Live Holiday Tour: Jinder Mahal with the Singh Brothers, United States champion AJ Styles, SmackDown women’s champion Natalya, SmackDown tag team champions The New Day, Randy Orton and Kevin Owens and more take Tampa’s Amalie Arena on Saturday ($20-$115).

date night

Music: Tonight, Tampa label New Granada has its Xmas Night Extravaganza at Crowbar in Ybor City, reuniting headliners Tomorrow ($7 and up). Groove-heavy dance band Donna the Buffalo plays Skipper’s Smokehouse in Tampa Saturday-Sunday ($25-$40). The Ritz Ybor gets the EDM party started Friday with Slander ($20 and up), Sam Feldt on Saturday ($20 and up) and Slushii on Sunday ($30 and up).

Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets in Concert: The Florida Orchestra presents John Williams’ score to the film while it plays on a 40-foot screen, Thursday-Saturday at Tampa’s Straz Center ($49-$99).

Kids and Family

First Night St. Petersburg: The family-oriented New Year’s Eve celebrates its 25th with arts, music and entertainment at more than 20 venues around St. Pete, including Straub Park. It’s free to wander around, but you need a button to participate in activities and enter venues. $12-$15, $5-$10 ages 6-12, 5 and younger free.

more to explore

Find more ways to ring in the new year at