Bradenton Riverwalk Events You Won’t Want to Miss

Check Out All the Fun That’s Going on Throughout the Year 

Bradenton Blues Festival:
A weekend full of exceptional live blues music, food vendors, and local craft beer is exactly what you’re in store for at the annual Bradenton Blues Festival in Downtown Bradenton. This event sells out FAST, so if you’re going to be in town or on the island during this time of year and want to attend this fun filled festival, purchase your tickets ASAP! This event is produced by the non-profit organization Realize Bradenton, and proceeds will support Realize Bradenton’s free youth, art, and music programs for the community.
When: First weekend of December (Friday – Sunday)
Time: Begins 6pm Friday, ends 2pm Sunday
Tickets: Tickets for the festival range from $10 – $100 depending on type of ticket purchased.

Fourth of July Firework Display:
The Bradenton Riverwalk puts on a Zambelli International fireworks show on the 4th of July ever year (weather permitting). Take a walk down Main Street, maybe grab a drink while you’re there, and then head over to the Riverwalk for a spectacular firework display over the Manatee River.
When: July 4th
Time: The grand firework finale will begin at 9pm

Music in the Park:
Picture yourself watching a beautiful sunset over the Manatee River, all while listening to amazing local musicians. That is exactly what the event Music in the Park is all about. This family-friendly occasion also offers snacks and beverages, including local craft beer and wine, for purchase. It is encouraged to bring a picnic basket, blankets and chairs, and even your furry friend (as long as they’re on a leash of course).
When: Begins the second Friday of March, and continues every Friday until the last Friday of April.
Time: 6pm – 8pm

Manatee Pride:
Manatee Pride is all about empowering and supporting the local LGBTQ (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and questioning) community. The event is put on by volunteers and has been taking place every year since 2014. Manatee Pride features different local vendors, live entertainment, and food and beverages, which includes the “Manatee Pride” beer.
When: Third Saturday of March
Time: 12pm – 5pm

Local Festivals You Won’t Want to Miss

Below you’ll find information on all of the fun local festivals taking place on and off the island! You’ll end up wanting to take part in every single one.

On Anna Maria Island:

. Beach’N Food Truck and Music Festival:
If you’re interested in a food and music festival on a white sandy beach with turquoise waters as your view, then you need to stop by the Beach’N Food Truck and Music Festival on Coquina Beach in the month of April! This all day event is family friendly and entrance is free. There will be a kid zone, car show, live music, adult beverages, and a variety of delicious food trucks.
Where: 2650 Gulf Drive South, Bradenton Beach, FL, 34217
When: The past few years dates have varied, though the event is held on a Saturday in the month of April
Time: 10am – 8pm

. Springfest:
Springfest (just like Winterfest) is a Festival of Fine Arts & Crafts that takes  place in Holmes Beach every March. This weekend event features art, activities, food, drinks and live music! Proceeds will benefit the Anna Maria Island Art League which offers scholarships and other art education programs to local students.
Where: City Hall Field  (5901 Marina Drive, Holmes Beach, FL, 34217)
When: Second weekend of March (Saturday and Sunday)
Time: 10am – 5pm

Bayfest:
We have an entire blog about Bayfest, check it out!

 

Off the Island:

. Bradenton Blues Festival:
A weekend full of exceptional live blues music, food vendors, and local craft beer is exactly what you’re in store for at the annual Bradenton Blues Festival in Downtown Bradenton. This event sells out FAST, so if you’re going to be in town or on the island during this time of year and want to attend this fun filled festival, purchase your tickets ASAP! This event is produced by the non-profit organization Realize Bradenton, and proceeds will support Realize Bradenton’s free youth, art, and music programs for the community.
Where: 452 3rd Ave W, Bradenton, FL, 34205
When: First weekend of December (Friday – Sunday)
Time: Begins 6pm Friday, ends 2pm Sunday
Tickets: Tickets for the festival range from $10 – $100 depending on type of ticket purchased.

. Florida Strawberry Festival:
If you are visiting Anna Maria Island in the Spring then the Florida Strawberry Festival is a great event to visit.  The Florida Strawberry festival takes place in Plant City, Fl and typically lasts 11 days. There are crafts you can purchase, rides to go on, plenty of choices for lunch or dinner and of course every variety of strawberry dessert you can imagine. The Strawberry Festival is definitely worth the drive!
Where: 303 N Lemon St, Plant City, FL 33563
When: Usually begins the first Friday of March, and continues 11 consecutive days.
Time: The gates open daily at 10am, and close at 10pm
Ticket Price(s): Ages 13 and up are $10, ages 6-12 are $5, and ages 5 and under are FREE with paid adult admission.

.Cortez Fishing Festival:
We have an entire blog about the Cortez Fishing Festival, check it out!

. Chalk Festival:
The International Chalk Festival is four day event that takes place typically in Sarasota Florida, or Venice Florida. Watch the largest gathering of extremely talented, and famous pavement artists create masterpieces from start to finish. Other featured activities include food trucks, beer gardens, live music, and interactive art areas.
Where: After six seasons of taking place in Burns Square in downtown Sarasota, the 2017 and 2018 events have taken place at the Venice Airport Fairgrounds (675 Airport Ave East, Venice, FL 34285).
When: Begins the second Friday of November, and runs until the following Monday.
Time: 8am – 6pm

. Sarasota Film Festival:
With over 200 movies screened each year (including documentaries, shorts, features, kid-friendly picks, and more), the Sarasota Film Festival is a wonderful event to attend if you’re a cinema enthusiast. Taking place in Sarasota, Florida, this film festival is among the best in the world. It is a 10 day celebration of film that has been going on for over 20 years, and with how popular it is, it is sure to keep going on for another 20.
Where: 332 Cocoanut Avenue Sarasota, FL 34236
When: This event takes place at the end of March/beginning of April, for ten consecutive days. Make sure you look up the event dates for the year you’ll be attending.
Time: Take a look at the film guide for dates and times of the films being shown and activities taking place.
Ticket(s):

  • General Public is $15
  • SFF Members are $11
  • Students, Educators, and School Administrators (with valid ID) are $10

. Fine Arts Festival of Manatee County:
A 2 day event full of spectacular works of art in all different forms is exactly what you’ll find at the Fine Arts Festival of Manatee County! Yet another art event taking place in Downtown Bradenton, this event showcases; ceramics, digital media, drawing, glass, jewelry, leather, acrylic, oil, watercolor, photography, and so much more.
Where: Riverwalk, Downtown Bradenton, FL, 34205
When: Last weekend of February (Saturday and Sunday)
Time: 10am – 5pm Saturday and 10am – 4pm Sunday

. Sarasota Spring Fine Arts Festival:
If you’ve been needing a new art piece for your home, or enjoy collecting art, you want to visit the Sarasota Spring Fine Arts Festival. The event is hosted by Sarasota Downtown Merchants Association and features; paintings, sculptures, jewelry, photography, glass, ceramics, fiber and wearable art, mixed-media, woodworking, etc.
Where: 33 Gulf Stream, Sarasota, FL  34236
When: Second weekend of March (Saturday and Sunday)
Time: 10am – 5pm

Tampa Bay Buccaneers 2012 Home Games

Tampa Bay Buccaneers logoEnjoy NFL action live and in person at the next home Tampa Bay Buccaneers Game, just less than an hour from the beaches of Anna Maria Island!  Sunday November 25th at 1pm in Raymond James Stadium the Bucs take on the Atlanta Falcons in a classic NFC South Divisional matchup.  Catch Josh Freeman, future Hall of Famer Ronde Barber and the November 4th Offensive Player of the Week RB Doug Martin in action.  Tickets available from just $35 at www.buccaneers.com.

Sarasota Medieval Fair is great day trip for Anna Maria Visitors

Renaissance Festival

Hear ye, hear ye!  The Sarasota Medieval Fair occurs annually in the month of November.  Just a short trip from Anna Maria Island it is a perfect day trip for visitors.  The Sarasota Medieval Fair is located at the Sarasota Fairgrounds on Fruitville Road rain or shine from 10-6 each weekend.  Enjoy performances by Jousters and Human Combat Chess.  Jump in and participate in craft demonstrations of pottery, basket weaving, blacksmith work, torched glass beading and even leather working.  Bring your appetite because the turkey legs are HUGE and the beer is served cold.

Tickets are available at the Medieval Fair website.

Visit Island Real Estate’s top ten list of things to do for more ideas of what to do when visiting Anna Maria Island.

Island Players Theater Anna Maria

 

Join the Island Players Theater
of Anna Maria Island for an evening of fun while you are on the island!

The theater, located on the corner of Gulf Dr and Pine Ave in Anna Maria, offers a season of theatrical events.

Performances are evenings at 8pm and Sunday matinees are at 2pm.

Box Office telephone: 941-778-5755

The 64th Season started with the show Postmortem which was performed October 4-14.

4 more shows will round out the season:

Continue reading Island Players Theater Anna Maria

Anna Maria Island Labor Day

An Anna Maria Island Labor day is fantastic! With temperatures in the low 90’s during the day and mid 70’s in the evenings as well as plenty of island activities, it’s going to be a great Labor Day Weekend on Anna Maria Island! There are plenty of Labor Day Activities on Anna Maria Island.  Just a few things to remember, garbage pickup for Anna Maria, Holmes Beach, and Bradenton will be postponed by 1 day for the holiday. The Anna Maria Island Trolley will run during regularly scheduled hours on Labor Day, and we have put together a list of activities for the holiday weekend. Have a great Anna Maria Island Labor day weekend!

4pm – 7pm – Labor Day Weekend Nostalgia Nights – Concert & Car Show Bradenton Municipal Auditorium – 100 Barcarrota Blvd West Bradenton For more information call: 941-748-5875 5:30pm – Close –

Mike Sales Signs & Sunset Drum Circle Anna Maria Island Beach Cafe – 4000 Gulf Drive Holmes Beach For more information call: 941-448-5798 6pm – Galati Yacht Sales Labor Day Billfish Tournament Captains Meeting Galati Yacht Basin – 900 South Bay Blvd For more information call: 941-778-0755 7pm – 10pm –

Live Music – Russ Adams Project Island Time Bar and Grill – 111 Gulf Drive South Bradenton Beach For more information call: 941-782-1122 9:30pm – 1:30am – Live Music – Democracy DCoy Ducks – 5410 Marina Drive Holmes Beach For more information call: 941-778-5888 Saturday September 1ST 6am – Galati Yacht Sales Labor Day Billfish Tournament Begins Galati Yacht Basin – 900 South Bay Blvd For more information call: 941-778-0755 1pm – 4pm – Live Music – Doug Bidwell Island Time Bar and Grill – 111 Gulf Drive South Bradenton Beach For more information call: 941-782-1122 6:30pm – Bradenton Marauders Baseball Game McKechnie Field -1611 9th Street West, Bradenton For more information call: 941-747-3031 7pm – 10pm – Live Music – Ted Stevens Island Time Bar and Grill – 111 Gulf Drive South Bradenton Beach For more information call: 941-782-1122 9:30pm – 1:30am – Live Music – Burning Tree DCoy Ducks – 5410 Marina Drive Holmes Beach For more information call: 941-778-5888 Sunday September 2ND 10:30am – Bradenton Marauders Baseball Game McKechnie Field -1611 9th Street West, Bradenton For more information call: 941-747-3031 5pm – 18pm – Live Music – Moon Dr’s Unplugged Island Time Bar and Grill – 111 Gulf Drive South Bradenton Beach For more information call: 941-782-1122 6pm – 9pm –

Live Music – Ricci D’ Island Time Bar and Grill – 111 Gulf Drive South Bradenton Beach For more information call: 941-782-1122 Labor Day – September 3RD 5pm – Picnic and Old Fashioned Ice Cream Social Gloria Dei Lutheran Church – 6608 Marina Drive Holmes Beach For more information call: 941-778-1813

Annual Cortez Fishing Festival

This weekend there is something fishy going on in the Village of Cortez… With live music, fresh Florida seafood, arts and crafts displays, the Cortez Fishing Festival is sure to be fun for the whole family. The annual Cortez commercial fishing festival is expecting more than 20,000 people in the Historic Village of Cortez this weekend.

The festival starts this Saturday February 18th and will continue through Sunday February 19th from 10am to 6pm on both days. Admission is only $3, and kids under 12 get in FREE! The proceeds benefit the F.I.S.H. Preserve.

There are a couple of different Parking options available for you this year: There will be free parking east of Festival area at the F.I.S.H. Preserve, space is limited and will defiantly fill up early.

Remote Parking will be available at G. T. Bray Park in Bradenton located at – 5502 33rd Avenue Drive West Bradenton, 34209. Additional parking will be available at Coquina Beach on Anna Maria Island – Anna Maria Island residents can take the free trolley to the parking site. Round-trip shuttle service from remote parking lots is only $2.50.

Live Music Schedule

Saturday February 18th Stage #1 – Waterfront
10:30 am: Soul R Coaster
12:00 pm: Awards and Introductions
12:30 pm: Eric von Hahmann
2:00 pm: Shaman
4:00 pm: Razing Cane

Saturday February 18th Stage #2 – Bratton Store
10:30 am: Eric von Hahmann
11:45 am: Passerine
1:00 pm: Brian Smalley
2:15 pm: St Pete & Main Hatch Motley Sea Shanty Singers
2:45 pm: Eric von Hahmann
4:00 pm: Jimmy Johnson

Sunday February 19th Stage #1 – Waterfront
10:30 am: Soupy Davis and his Band
12:00 pm: Eric von Hahmann
1:30 pm: Dr. Dave Band
3:30 pm: Gumbo Boogie Band

Sunday February 19th Stage #2 – Bratton Store
10:30 am: Main Hatch Motley Sea Shanty Singers
11:15 am: Jimmy Johnson
12:30 pm: Terry Blauvelt
1:45 pm: Sister Act – Lane & Val
3:00 pm: Eric von Hahmann
4:00 pm: Eric & Jimmy

Anna Maria Island Activities, Day Trips, and Things To Do

Sailing On Anna Maria IslandDiscover the old Florida charm of Anna Maria Island with a plethora of activities in a gorgeous natural setting.  Plan a day trip to go Parasailing, boating, paddle boarding, or take a guided SEGWAY tour of the island. You can rent just about anything on Anna Maria Island from bikes to beach toys.

Anna Maria Island has plenty of retail recreation as well; jump on the free Anna Maria Island Trolley for your perfect day of shopping, dining, looking for seashells or a quite walk on the beautiful sugar sand beaches.

Both Manatee Public Beach and Coquina Beach are excellent spots for an afternoon volleyball game with friends, family, or a cold draft beer. If you’re looking for the perfect picnic spot, check out Bean Point, or Bay Front Park in Anna Maria.

Anna Maria City PierOn the north end of Anna Maria Island, is the famous Anna Maria City Pier built in 1911 to accommodate steamers bringing the crème de la crème from Tampa and St. Petersburg to Anna Maria Island shops and restaurants before the first bridge was built to the island.

And on the other end of the Island, in Bradenton Beach is Bridge Street a great place for walking, Shopping, Dining, Family Activities, and breathtaking views of both the Gulf of Mexico and Sarasota Bay.

If you decide to venture off the Island, check out the activities and events in Bradenton, Sarasota, Tampa, or even a day trip to the theme parks in Orlando. Whatever you decide to do, slow down and savor it. You’re on island time.

Manatee County Fair 2011

Manatee County Fair 2011
Manatee County Fair 2011

Yeah it’s that time of year again, so gather up your family and head to the Manatee County Fair.  As always the Manatee County Fair has a fully packed midway, with games, food, Live Music, Magic Shows, and more.  Let’s not forget about the fair food, deep fried everything, funnel cake, corndogs, burgers, BBQ, and all of your other favorites that you only get at the fair.

The Manatee County Fair is held each January at the Manatee County Fairgrounds in Palmetto, Florida. The City of Palmetto is located in Manatee County on the northern banks of the Manatee River and is approximately 40 miles south of Tampa, and 15 miles north of Sarasota with convenient access to Interstate 75 from S.R. 64 and S.R. 70 in Bradenton and Interstate 275 from U.S. 41 and U.S. 301 in Parrish.

Just remember in your quest for area events, dining, fishing, shopping, and entertainment, check in with one of our Anna Maria Island vacation specialists and make sure that you get the most out of your Anna Maria Island Vacation. We have beach house rentals all over Anna Maria Island. Call Island Real Estate today 877-778-6066 and book your island getaway!

Anna Maria Island’s Winterfest 2010

Click here for Winterfest 2012!

This year’s Winterfest had over 100 artists, southern style comfort food, live Cajun and Blue Grass music.  Saturday was a beautiful sunny day with a bit of winter chill in the air, we showed up at about 11:00 A.M. and were graciously greeted by the volunteers who were selling tickets, water, and soda at the entrance.  Winterfest was underway, the band was playing, and people were browsing the art exhibits.

This year’s Winterfest had an amazing showcase of jewelry, pottery, paintings, photography, and sculptures.  But my favorite was the Wildlife, Inc Rescue and Rehabilitation Center. They had the most beautiful hawks and owls on display in their booth.  I actually had to take a closer look to realize that they were alive.

Winterfest is hosted by the Anna Maria Island Art League in Holmes Beach City Hall Park every year in December.  For more information on This Year’s Holiday Events, and Anna Maria Island information, contact an Anna Maria Island Vacation Rental Specialist or follow us on Facebook.