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MetroCon, Shark Con, Dunedin Orange Festival: 10 things to do this weekend in Tampa Bay

There's also a chance to watch a shark movie on the beach, a summer carnival at the mall and an Apollo 11 exhibit at MOSI.

Shark Con

The annual convention dedicated to raising awareness about shark and ocean conservation returns this weekend to the Florida State Fairgrounds. Shark Con will have free activities, speakers from National Geographic and Animal Planet and hundreds of vendors selling shark and ocean-related merchandise. Go Dive Now Pool will also be on hand for people to try out scuba diving for free. Tickets to Shark Con are $19.95 for a single day adult pass. Parking at the Fairgrounds is $8.

More information here.

More: Shark Con to 'plunge' into the Florida State Fairgrounds this weekend


If you're more into My Hero Academia than superheroes, MetroCon is the geek convention for you. For the last 16 years, MetroCon has brought thousands of anime fans together in Tampa for a long weekend of cosplay, shopping and meeting their favorite voice actors. This year, celebrity guests include voice actors from Attack on Titan, Black Butler, Dragon Ball, Fullmetal Alchemist and One Piece. The event also features YouTube celebrities and famous cosplayers. Special events include a human chess match, tabletop gaming, a metro arcade room, a dance contest and raves, cosplay contests and a LARP dungeon. Single-day passes are $40 for Friday and Saturday and $35 for Sunday. Multi-day passes and packages are also available.

Find tickets and a full programming schedule here.

More: MetroCon brings more than 10K anime fans to Tampa

MOSI Apollo 11 Exhibit

Next week marks 50 years since man's first steps on the moon, and MOSI is celebrating in a big, immersive way. The Tampa museum's "One Small Step" exhibit takes visitors back to 1969 with an interactive recreation of a typical living room during this decade. Guests can watch archival footage of Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin's first steps on the lunar surface alongside historic CBS broadcast coverage from Walter Cronkite.

The exhibit also features Apollo 11 memorabilia like a replica computer, a space pen used to save the mission from disaster, a moon rock, moon dust that you can smell and vintage magazines and newspapers from that year. The exhibit is open at MOSI through September. It's included with museum admission.

More: See, hear, smell Apollo 11 mission at MOSI

Dunedin Orange Festival

This year marks a decade of celebrating Dunedin’s citrus history. The event will have live music, a craft brew competition, a pin-up girl contest, kids activities and everything orange-related. Admission is free. 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Saturday.

Edgewater Park, 51 Main Street, Dunedin

More information here.

Grown Up Night at Glazer Children’s Museum

Adults get to take over the downtown Tampa museum for a night of climbing, jumping and building in the exhibits. Admission included free snacks and beer from Florida Avenue Brewing. A cash bar will also be available. Event is 21 and up. Admission is $25 at the door.

5:30-8 p.m. Friday

110 W Gasparilla Plaza, Tampa

More information here.

Cinema on the Sand

Grab a beach blanket or inflatable unicorn to chill out on the beach while a movie plays on a jumbo screen docked on a barge in the water. Friday night’s movie is The Meg, which is about a giant, pre-historic shark attacking an underwater community, so you may feel more comfortable watching from the sand. The free movie screenings are every Friday through Aug. 23. Paradise Grille will also have food and drinks available for purchase. All movies start at 8 p.m.

Paradise Grille, Upham Beach, 6850 Beach Plaza, St. Pete Beach.

More information here.

Girl Power Fest

Saturday’s music festival will show off a bunch of local indie bands to benefit Girls Rock Camp Saint Pete. The organization brings local girls and young women together to be confident and active in their communities through music, forming bands and working on zines. Live performances include Reality Asylum, Wet Nurse, Laser Mouth, Permanent Makeup and more. Tickets for the all-ages event are $12. Doors open at 6 p.m. with the first band at 7 p.m. 

VFW Post 39, 2599 Central Ave., St. Petersburg

More information here.

Aerial Dragons: Hypnotica

This local troupe specializes in freaky, fantastical circus performances. The show titled “Theater of the Bizarre” will have circus acrobats, fire eaters, glamorous dancers and dare-devilish clowns. The troupe said the show has “mischievous characters and a hint of danger.” Tickets $27.50-$77. Shows are Saturday and Sunday in the Jaeb Theater.

More information here.

Night Nation Run

Billed as the world’s first running music festival, Night Nation Run blends live music with a fun run. The music-filled course will have live DJs, light shows, bubble zones, and neon and black lights. There will also be the main stage after-party with a headline DJ, confetti guns and giveaways. Gates open at 5:30 p.m., and the first wave kicks off at 8:30 p.m. Saturday. Registration is $25-$80.

Raymond James Stadium, 4201 N Dale Mabry Hwy, Tampa

More information here.

Summer carnival and back to school bash

There’s only about a month of summer left, and two local malls are celebrating Saturday with carnival activities and fun preps to get kids ready to go back to school. Over at Westfield Citrus Park Mall, there will be classic carnival games, cotton candy, face painting and a balloon artist. The first 200 children in line also get a carnival treat box. Registration is at Macy’s Court. 1-3 p.m. Saturday. 

More information here.

Westfield Brandon Town Center will have hands-on activities, school resources and a scavenger hunt to collect free swag during its back to school bash. The first 250 kids get a free backpack to fill up with free vendor school supplies. 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturday.

More information here.

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