Best Of Tampa Bay Weekend: OctoberFest, Pet Walks, Jazz Holiday

By Barbara Ann Kelley,

We’ve got the scoop on the events that are guaranteed to help you blow off your work week stress. There’s 2 OctoberFests, haunted houses, jazz in the park, and a Rattlesnake Festival. Here’s our list of the best of Tampa Bay’s fun things to do for the weekend of October 19 – 21.


Clearwater Jazz Holiday 2012
Friday – Sunday Oct. 19-21
Coachman Park
301 Drew St.| Clearwater, 33769
(727) 461-5200 | Website:

The 33rd annual Clearwater Jazz Holiday is a four-day smooth jazz concert performed on stage at Clearwater’s Coachman Park. Headlining artists include: Bonnie Raitt, Mindy Abair, Esperanza Spalding, and The Avett Brothers.


St. Pete Octoberfest
Friday – Saturday, October 19-20
Grand Central District
2429 Central Ave. | St. Petersburg, 33713

Join 10,000 beer enthusiasts for St. Pete’s largest and best annual craft beer festival. Price: $25 advance, $35 at the gate. Hours: Friday 7-10pm, Saturday 5-10pm. *21 and up only.


Top O’ Bay Oktoberfest
Thursday – Sunday, October 18-21
Tampa Bay Downs Racetrack
11225 Race Track Rd. | Tampa, 33626
(813) 855-4401 | Website:

The Upper Tampa Bay Chamber Oktoberfest with authentic German food, German beer and a Munich style tent is considered by many to be the largest, most authentic Oktoberfest in West Central Florida. Carnival rides,log sawing, barrel rolling, stein holding, keg tossing plus, German food, Beer & music. Hours: Friday 5-11pm | Saturday 11-11pm | Sunday 12-7pm. | Cost: $5 – 12 and younger free (carnival rides additional).


Rattlesnake Festival
Saturday – Sunday, October 20-21
32819 Pennsylvania Ave. | San Antonio, FL 33576
(352) 588-4444 | Website:

Only a short drive from Tampa, this festival features gopher races, snake shows, arts and crafts and ample food options along the streets of San Antonio. Admission is free, parking is free and most of the entertainment is free. The Snakes Alive snake show, as well as the reptile show, costs $5 for adults and $2 for children under 12. To get to the Rattlesnake Festival, take Highway 52 to San Antonio and follow the signs.


Hellview Cemetery
510 49th Avenue N St.| Petersburg, FL 33703

Dates & times: Saturday: October 20 – 7pm – 10:30pm. Full Run: Friday – Sunday: October 26, 27, 28, 31 – 7pm – 10:30pm. Free (donations appreciated).

Related: Scariest Haunted Houses In Tampa Bay This October.


Repticon Tampa Reptile & Exotic Animal Show
Saturday, Oct. 20 from 10-4pm
Florida State Fairgrounds
Charles M. Davis Special Events Center
4800 North US Highway 301 | Tampa, 33610

Admission: Adults – $10, Children (5-12) – $5, 4 & under – Free

Related: Best Reptile Stores In Tampa and Pinellas


SPCA of Tampa Bay 3k Pet Walk
Saturday, Oct 20 from 9am – 1pm
South Straub Park
198 Bayshore Drive NE
Saint Petersburg, 33701

Join WQYK’s Dave McKay for a fun, 1.8 mile walk along the waterfront in downtown St. Petersburg in South Straub Park. Register today and walk with thousands of other animal lovers. Pet Parade, best dressed pet competition, doggie Fun Zone / agility course, & K9 demos.

Related: Tampa Bay’s Best Dog Beaches And Parks


Florida Home Show
Friday-Sunday, October 19-21
Florida Sate Fair Grounds
4800 North US Highway 301 | Tampa, 3361

Friday: 11am – 6pm | Saturday: 11am – 8pm | Sunday: 11am – 6pm | Admission: Adults: $8 | Seniors: $7 | Children under 12: FREE


New Orleans Saints vs. TB Buccaneers
Sunday, October 21 at 1pm
Raymond James Stadium
4201 North Dale Mabry Hwy | Tampa 33607
Tickets: $30-$255 | Website:

Cars: $25 at all parking lots. Buses/Campers: $75 – $100. ALL public parking lots open at 9:30 a.m. General admission gates (A, B, C and D) open at 11:30am | West and east club/suite entrances open at 10:30am.

For more Raymond James parking and tailgating info click HERE.


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