Just minutes from downtown's bustling shops and overlooking the glassy waters of Tampa Bay, The Mahaffey's picturesque building hosts some of Florida's most entertaining art and performance offerings. Originally built in 1965, the renovated building's floor-to-ceiling glass façade pierces the night with softly glowing light, cordially inviting patrons inside and awakening desires in moths that can never be fulfilled. The box-style seating of the theater ensures clear sightlines for all patrons, and its excellent acoustics make the venue suitable for both thunderous rock bands and delicate chamber ensembles.
Formed in the glory days of heavy metal, Queensrÿche rocks audiences with songs that reveal the fierce polish of 30 years of evolving artistry. The band's distinctive mix of prog rock, metal, and subliminal messaging rocketed their Empire album up the charts, launching hits such as "Silent Lucidity," "Jet City Woman," and "Best I Can." Normally reserved only for members of Queensrÿche's fan club, a backstage meet-and-greet lets a small group of the devoted make personal connections with the four lords of loudness, shaking their lightning-fast hands and comparing headbanging techniques. With experience opening for Nickelback and Staind, opening band The Fifth's wailing guitars rally fist pumps and head thrashes as raging as a riverbed full of angry bulls.
Named Billboard's top Hot 100 artist of 2010, electropop sensation Ke$ha electrifies fans with catchy tunes, punchy lyrics, and a larger-than-life persona. With a list of chart-topping hits that includes "TiK ToK," "We R Who We R," and "Your Love is My Drug," Ke$ha charms even the most curmudgeonly, highbrow ears with irreverent, catchy lyrics and taut, shimmering beats that get stuck in listeners' heads like peanut-butter-covered dreams. Presided over by a quirkily becostumed Ke$ha, the Get $leazy tour sucks fans into a nonstop, glitter-filled night of dancing, performance, and languor-shattering rapture. LMFAO, the tuneful twosome behind the high-energy hit "Party Rock Anthem," and electro-rapper Spank Rock complement Ke$ha's sonic spectacle with their own dulcet melodies.
Located a stone’s throw from Symphony Lake, Koka Booth Amphitheatre emerges out of 14 acres of hardwoods and pines to offer up its stage to traveling national acts, theatrical productions, and movie screenings. Although its wood and earth-toned beams camouflage the venue within its natural surroundings, passersby can notice its sleek exterior glistening in the moonlight during nighttime performances. The outdoor amphitheater––designed by William Rawn Associates of Boston, which also constructed the Cambridge Public Library––seats up to 7,000 people on its spacious lawn, crescent deck, or loft bird nests.
Owner and vintner Dr. Lane Gregory and his staff of merry winemakers harvest their wine grapes from the fertile muscadine vines that flourish on Gregory Vineyards' 120 acres of lush farmland. The winery's Old World tasting room and wood furniture lend a rustic atmosphere to samplings of cleverly named wines such as Sly Fox, Ruth Walton, or the dry white known as Bald Eagle. Like North Carolina's banana trees, the regional muscadine grape thrives from late August until early October, giving Dr. Gregory and company only a matter of weeks to harvest the tough-skinned fruit. In addition to tastings, the handsome property plays host to weddings and other special events. And, on an average day, visitors may be spotted taking wine tours with Dr. Gregory or exploring the vineyard's lake on romantic two-person pedal boats.
South Main Speedway lets customers mix and match rounds of mini golf and go-kart racing to fashion a full day of family-friendly recreation. Clamber into a one- or two-seater speed machine to race friends, loved ones, and renegade Mario Kart characters for 15 ferocious laps around the Speedway’s sinuous track (a $6 value/race). Then, head to the outdoor putt-putt course (a $6 value/game) to send dimpled balls skittering past squat shrubs, plashing waterfalls, and nostalgic windmill operators into 18 waiting holes. The Groupon's eight games or races can be parceled out to multiple people on a single day, facilitating bonding within families or semipro hide-and-seek teams. Afterward, venture outside to browse The Factory's complex of shops, restaurants, and sports facilities.