The Gasparilla Pirate Fest is an historic Tampa Bay celebration since 1904. The celebration includes a reenactment of an invasion of the city by the mythical Spanish pirate Jose Gaspar. The event offers a Children’s Extravanga on a separate weekend than the invasion events. For further information on the children’s event, read Gasparilla Season – Children’s Parade. Gasparilla events include a pre-invasion celebration, a Gasparilla invasion, and the Parade of Pirates.
Friday January 29, 2016 is the Gasparilla pre-invasion celebration at 5 pm at the Curtis Hixon Waterfront Park in Downtown Tampa. There will be live music entertainment featuring The Swon Brothers, Howie Day, and The Hip Abduction. The gates will open at 5 pm with The Hip Abduction playing at 6 pm. The Swon Brothers will take the stage at 9 pm. For general admission (lawn seating) ticket information visit GasparillaPirateFest.com.
The Gasparilla Invasion
“Land, ho! Hoist the mizzen ‘n’ set sail for Tampa!”
Shouts from the legendary pirate Jose Gaspar and his band of marauding buccaneers will ring out across the waters of Hillsborough Bay as they return to invade the City of Tampa.
The Gasparilla Invasion will be Saturday January 30 from 11:30 am to 1:00 pm. Jose Gasparilla, the worlds only fully rigged pirate ship will invade the city at the south end of Hillsborough Bay. Numerous vessels join forces with Gasparilla Flotilla to defend the city. They move across Hillsborough Bay and into Seddon Channel. This marks the beginning of the invasion. Canons fire from the ship as The Gasparilla Flotilla travels the Seddon Channel towards downtown. The Gasparilla Flotilla will dock at the Tampa Convention Center at 1 pm where the Mayor surrender the Key to the City of Tampa into the hands of the Captain of Ye Mystic Krewe of Gasparilla.
The Parade of Pirates begins as the Krewe celebrates their victory through the streets of the city.
Parade of Pirates
With the key to the city in hand, the pirates parade down Bayshore Boulevard and share their wealth by handing out glittering beads and other treasures. The Parade of Pirates is 3.8 miles and will be lively and colorful with floats, marching bands, the Krewe, and the infamous YMKG pirates. This is a free event, but there are reserved seating for the bleachers available for purchase.
We, at South Tampa Smiles, hope you can enjoy this 2016 Gasparilla Pirate Fest and remember your family’s dental checkups. Give us a call at (813) 289 – 0560 to make your appointment with Dr. John Cannariato, your South Tampa Dentist.