Put these Tampa Bay area MLK events on your radar

Tampa and St. Pete are home to a variety of events this weekend, from parades and service days to scavenger hunts.


A variety of organizations and bands take part in Tampa’s annual parade.

Photo via @cityoftampa

Monday, Jan. 15, is Martin Luther King Jr. Day, a federal holiday honoring the life of the Civil Rights Movement giant.

Looking for ways to observe the holiday? We’ve got you covered:

  • Arts Legacy Remix: MLK Commemoration | Friday, Jan. 12 | 7:30-9 p.m. | The Straz Center for the Performing Arts, 1010 N. MacInnes Pl., Tampa | Free | Listen to a range of Dr. King’s writing, along with gospel music, and a host of young voices discussing hope for the future.
  • Learn and Serve Tampa: MLK Day of Service United Way Suncoast | Saturday, Jan. 13 | 8:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. | McKay Bay Nature Park, 134 34th St., Tampa | Free | Spend the morning taking part in cleanup and beautification work, then enjoy a cook-out style lunch and environmental education fair.
  • MLK Treasure Hunt | Saturday, Jan. 13 | 11 a.m.-2 p.m. | Throughout the City of St. Petersburg | Gather your kiddos and friends to join in a citywide, educational scavenger hunt — register teams with Advantage Village Academy at 727-321-7919.
  • Tampa Bay Black Heritage Festival: Music Fest | Saturday, Jan. 13-Sunday, Jan. 14 | 12-9 p.m. | Curtis Hixon Waterfront Park, 600 N. Ashley Dr., Tampa | $34-$310 | Rock out to the musical stylings of local and national artists, Zydeco bands, DJs, and more — plus check out more festival events on their website.
  • MLK Band Showcase | Sunday, Jan. 14 | 5-8:30 p.m. | Lakewood High School, 1400 54th Ave. S., St. Petersburg | Watch college bands from Tuskegee University, Savannah State University, and Albany State University showcase their best stuff.

We recommend showing up a bit early to the parades to grab a good spot.

Photo via @cityoftampa

  • Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Parade | Monday, Jan. 15 | 11 a.m.-2 p.m. | First St. S., St. Petersburg | Free | Take in the array of floats, marching bands from visiting local schools and colleges, and more at this massive St. Pete celebration of Dr. King — then head to the Tropicana Field’s Lot 4 for a family fun day.
  • City of Tampa MLK Jr. Parade | Monday, Jan. 15 | 12 p.m. | Cuscaden Park, 2900 N. 15th St., Tampa | Free | This year’s parade will be helmed by Grand Marshal Gwen Miller, the first African American woman elected to the Tampa City Council, and feature bands from Florida A&M University, among others.

Find even more community gatherings and offerings in honor of the holiday on our events calendar. And, we’ll leave you with one final tip: PSTA is offering free rides on routes 5, the SunRunner and the Central Avenue Trolley on Monday, Jan. 15 to help you get to the St. Pete parade sans sitting in traffic.