Local Music Festivals and Events

Amazing live music, exceptional talent, and it’s all taking place in practically our own backyard. These local music festivals and events are sure to impress.
Take a look at all the sweet-sounding occasions that occur every year in our area.

Anna Maria Island 

Symphony on the Sand
Symphony on the Sand is an event that takes place every year at Coquina Gulfside Park in Bradenton Beach. This event features live music by the Anna Maria Island Concert Chorus & Orchestra (AMICCO). There will also be delicious small plates prepared by local restaurants, and of course beer and wine.  Take a visit AMI’s pristine Coquina Beach , all while enjoying live music and a picturesque sunset over the Gulf of Mexcio.
Where: Gulf Dr S, Bradenton Beach, FL 34217
When: Second Saturday of November
Time: 4:30pm – 7:30pm
Tickets: Tickets for Symphony on the Sand range from $20 to $150

 

Bradenton 

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

 

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).
Where: Mosaic Amphitheater at the Bradenton Riverwalk (606 3rd Ave. West Bradenton, FL 34205)
When: Begins the second Friday of March, and continues every Friday until the last Friday of April.
Time: 6pm – 8pm
Tickets: Free event

Sarasota

Sarasota Music Festival
The Sarasota Music Festival is a three week long event that occurs every June. This musical affair features internationally recognized guest artists, and student musicians from around the world. The beautiful music and amazing talent that is produced at this musical event is enough reason to make the Sarasota Music Festival one of the most exceptional classical-music events in the country.
Where: Holley Hall at the Beatrice Friedman Symphony Center, 709 North Tamiami Trail, Sarasota, FL 34236
AND Sarasota Opera House, 61 N. Pineapple Avenue, Sarasota, FL 34236
When: Typically the event begins the first Sunday of June, and ends the last Sunday of June
Tickets: To purchase tickets for this event please go to the the Sarasota Orchestra website

 

 

Giving Hunger the Blues & Jazz on the Bay 
Known as “Sarasota’s Favorite Outdoor Music Festival”, the Giving Hunger the Blues & Jazz on the Bay Festival raises awareness and funds a local not-for-profit organization called The Mayors Feed The Hungry Program. This event takes place at the grounds of the Van Wezel Performing Arts Center along Sarasota Bay. featuring local and regional talent, and tons of tasty food from the areas finest restaurants. All proceeds from Giving Hunger the Blues & Jazz on the Bay go to supporting local hungry families over the holiday season.
Where: 777 N Tamiami Trail, Sarasota, FL 34236
When: The 2018 event was different compared to the prior years.
The 2018 event features not one but TWO days of music during the second weekend of October (Saturday and Sunday).
Time: Begins 3:00pm Saturday and ends 8:30pm Sunday
Tickets: Tickets for the event are $15

 

Top Ten Night Spots – Libations Anna Maria Island

If you are looking to enjoy a little night life while visiting Anna Maria Island we have got you covered! Here is our top ten night spots on Anna Maria Island.  By the way in no particular order and tried to include the normal outfits found for patrons visiting the night spot.  We would classify night spots into three categories; Motorcycle bar, Coastal Vacationer bar, Local bar or a mixture of Vacationer and Local.

Top Ten Night Spots

1. Hurricane Hanks– Laid-back sports bar with a fantastic menu!  I have never had a bad meal at Hurricane’s so grab a drink and enjoy some great eat’s.  My father love’s grabbing a gin and tonic with the scallops and bacon appetizer.  Business casual is normally the outfits found at Hurricane Hanks and this is a mixture of Coastal Vacationer and Locals.

5346 Gulf Drive,
Holmes Beach, FL
(941) 778-5788

mermaid drinks
Enjoy a fruity drink for the ultimate mermaid experience!

2. Island Time Bar & Grill– Great atmosphere with live music & a tasty menu!  Coastal casual wear is what would be found at Island time and this is a mixture of Coastal Vacationer and Locals.

111 Gulf Drive
South Bradenton Beach, FL 34217
1st Floor
TEL: 941-782-1122

3. Cortez Kitchen– Located not too far off the Cortez Bridge, this outdoors, laid back restaurant most likely will have a live band, good food, and a good time in store for you.  Good mix of coastal visitors and locals makes this a good choice for any type of evening you are looking for.

4528 119th Street West Cortez, FL 34215
(941) 798-9404

4Bridge Tender Inn & Dockside Bar– Inside is the sports bar and restaurant, outside’s a tiki bar with live music, right on the water, and even a flat screen for game days!  Located in Bradenton Beach just of Bridge Street.  Parking can be a challenge so bring your patience or ride the trolley!  Good mixture of Coastal Vacationers and Locals.

155 Bridge Street
Bradenton Beach, FL, 34217
(941) 778-4849

5. Dcoy Ducks – Great nightspot with live music, poker nights and more!  Located in the heart of Holmes Beach right next to the Feast.  Go grab some fabulous food at the Feast and walk less than 30 feet to Dcoy Duck’s!  Normal outfit would be a tshirt with some casual shorts.  Leather could be included but this is a good mix of visitors and locals that patronize this bar.  Mixture of locals, coastal vacationers and motorcyle patrons.

5410 Marina Drive,
Holmes Beach, FL
(941) 778-5888

6Drift Inn– Small town bar on historic bridge street.  Normal outfit could include a little leather but likely includes a t-shirt and some torn up blue jeans.  More of a feel of motorcycle patrons along with locals.

120 Bridge Street,
Bradenton Beach, FL
(941) 778-9088

7Anchor Inn– Friendly bar with pool tables and darts.  This is one of several local bars located just South of Publix.  Normal outfit would include a little leather.  More of a feel of motorcycle patrons along with locals.

3007 Gulf Drive,
Holmes Beach, FL
(941) 778-3085

8Bortells – Pinball, video games, and pool tables.  Normal outfit would include a little leather and some blue jeans.

10002 Gulf Drive
Anna Maria, FL
(941) 778-5487

9.  The Doctor’s office is located within a short 2-3 minute stroll from the Feast or Dcoy Ducks.  The Doctor’s Office is a craft cocktail bar.  They have small bites, wine, beer and some unique cocktails to offer.  This is a very quaint and cozy bar that reminds me more of a cigar parlor with comfy seats and fabulous staff that works to meet your every whim.  Normal outfit would be business casual and this has strong coastal vacationer feel.

5312 Holmes Blvd
Holmes Beach, FL
(941) 213-9926

10. Slim’s– Great place to watch sports! Great food, billiards and live entertainment.  This for sure is a local hang out and many nights they host after party teams from the Anna Maria community Center extracurricular evening sports activities.  Normal outfit would be coastal wear with some shorts.  Coastal vacationer and local hangout.

9701 Gulf Dr.
Anna Maria, FL
(941) 567-4056

We have plenty of more suggestions for places to visit while on Anna Maria Island.  Visit our nightlife information page.

Anna Maria Island Real Estate

By the way – there is no reason to drink and drive on Anna Maria Island.  Check out the free monkey bus or the free Anna Maria Island Trolley for plans to let someone else handle the heavy lifting while out on the town!

Music in the Park at Bradenton Riverwalk

Music in the park at Bradenton RiverwalkGrab the kids, family, and friends and head downtown to Music in the Park at Bradenton Riverwalk for some live music. Realize Bradenton will be hosting Music in the Park Thursday evenings at the brand new Riverwalk downtown Bradenton.  This family friendly concert series begins October 25th and will continue Thursday evenings from 5pm – 7pm until November 15th at the Riverfront Pavilion and Mosaic Amphitheater.

Riverfront Pavilion and Mosaic Amphitheater
452 3rd Avenue West
Bradenton Florida

Riverwalk is a fabulous Anna Maria Island activity.  Walk along the river and take in all there is to offer.  Swings, a playground, water park, a skate park, pavilion and much more.  There are plenty of restaurants to choose from in Downtown Bradenton.

Clancy’s Irish Sports Pub In Bradenton

Clancy's Irish Pub Bradenton Florida
Clancy’s Irish Pub In Bradenton Florida

Clancy’s Irish Sports Pub and Grill is Bradenton’s biggest and best tiki bar and your hot spot for live music, karaoke, cocktails and more!  Their one of a kind open-air tiki bar and tavern is home to numerous Bradenton-area events, including Monday through Friday Happy Hour Special from 4-7pm, Wednesday and Thursday karaoke, and NFL Sundays in front of our large-screen TV’s.

Continue reading Clancy’s Irish Sports Pub In Bradenton

D Coy Ducks Bar and Music in Holmes Beach Fl

D Coy Ducks Bar & Grill on Anna Maria Island

D Coy Ducks is one of those bars on Anna Maria Island that still has the old Florida look and feel, when you walk through the door.  Located in the Island Shopping Center on Holmes Beach D Coy Ducks has been a very popular watering hole for a long time.   D Coy Ducks is open from 10:30a.m. – 2:30a.m. has a full liquor bar, cold beers, and nightly entertainment.  If you are looking some late night action on your Anna Maria Island Vacation, you can find it here any night of the week, or you can stop in early for a drink on your way to the beach, whatever makes you happy.

Continue reading D Coy Ducks Bar and Music in Holmes Beach Fl

Sharky’s Seagrill Offers Fine Dining With Casual Flair

If you like fine dining in a casual atmosphere, visit Sharky’s Seagrill in Bradenton Beach on Anna Maria Island where award winning, European-trained Chef Anton and his wife Marie serve up great food and good times at reasonable prices.

Sharky's Seafood Gasparilla
Sharky’s Seafood Gasparilla

Sharky’s features a wide selection of Fresh Florida Seafood, Black Angus Prime Rib, Steaks and Pastas. Specialties include Seafood Gasparilla, Michigan Pork Chop, Key West Grouper and Lobster Tails. Each day Sharky’s Market Fresh Seagrill features five different varieties of fresh fish grilled to perfection. Sharky’s Pasta selections feature authentic Italian flavors in dishes such as Tortellini Gorgonzola, Rigatoni Ala Toscana, Penne Pollo Portabello, Linguini with Mussels and Fettuccine con Fruta di Mare.

Sharky’s has a full bar with Cocktails, Domestic and Imported Beers, and a selection of fine wines. Happy hour prices are in effect from 4 till 7. Sandwiches and appetizers are available at the bar until midnight daily. The restaurant is open 7 days a week, from 4pm to midnight.

Sharky’s also features live entertainment. Check the entertainment page for upcoming entertainment schedule. Friday is usually Karaoke night.

Continue reading Sharky’s Seagrill Offers Fine Dining With Casual Flair

Ace’s is perfect Anna Maria Live Music Hangout

Fantastic Bar
Fantastic Bar

Ace’s Lounge is Bradenton’s Live Music Venue and only minutes away from Anna Maria Island, Fl! Experience Live Rock, Blues, Country, Jazz and Reggae at this Ace’s bar filled with plenty of character and charm. It is a very casual environment and the interior of the Bradenton hotspot resembles a rustic barn. Ace’s Lounge sponsor’s CornHole, Flip-Cup and Beer-Pong Tournaments making it a very fun and exciting place to be!  There are drink specials almost every night and bands weekly. As of this post, Wednesday nights Ace’s bar and lounge has 40 cent wings and $5 pitchers.  That is not a typo!  Ladies drink free on Tuesdays and there are lots more specials. Continue reading Ace’s is perfect Anna Maria Live Music Hangout

Cortez Kitchen restaurant 1/2 mile from Anna Maria Island

Sign for Cortez KitchenCortez Kitchen is a unique “hangout” restaurant that may not be the perfect romantic setting however the seafood is very fresh.  Outdoor picnic bench seating both covered and uncovered are in close proximity to the boat docks.  So….while eating your inexpensive “rustic” lunch or dinner you can sometimes watch boats come in and out of the docks.  I have also personally witnessed lots of fork lift activity at the docks which my 4 year old friend’s son just loves.  If you are looking for an inexpensive fresh seafood lunch or dinner and you have children that will enjoy looking at water or boats then this could be the perfect fit. The grouper is fantastic and believe or not, try the Buffalo Grouper sandwich with Blue Cheese Dressing….its a knock Kill two fish with one stone - Fresh Seafood also availableout!  Be sure to take a look at the picture above.  The BLUE sign is a great reference point so you don’t miss the turn off of Cortez Road.  One side note is the restaurant turns more into a bar around dusk so if you are taking your family  be sure it’s at an appropriate time.  They do offer live music usually on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday nights.  Just a great all around “old Florida” bar setting.

One last thing.  They do sell fresh raw seafood in an adjacent building, so if you need tomorrow’s seafood, kill two birds with one stone, or fish that is….

Cortez Kitchen
4528 119th Street West
Cortez, FL, 34210
(941) 798-9404

Cortez Kitchen restaurant in Cortez, FL

Great Fresh Seafood restaurant, Docks just next door!

Need another rustic restaurant?  Starfish Company is just to the West a few blocks and also offers fresh seafood choices that can be cooked up at your Anna Maria Island Vacation Rental.