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Music, food and arts fill Pasco weekend festivals

Those hankering to get out for the day or pack the weekend with a taste of the blues, barbeque and local art have two long-standing festivals to choose from, one in Zephyrhills and one in Wesley Chapel.

• The eighth-annual annual Pigz in Z'Hills BBQ and Blues Festival kicks off at 10 a.m. Saturday at 5200 Airport Road in Zephyrhills. It features local, regional and national blues artists, and is sponsored by the Zephyrhills Chamber of Commerce.

According to the festival website, the one-day event has proved to be an economic boon, bringing more than $2 million to the local area since it's inception. It also has raised about $40,000 for nonprofit civic and youth organizations, and provide $24,000 in scholarships to Zephyrhills-area students.

This year's music lineup includes: Legendary JC's; Chuck Riley's All-Star Revue; Some Day Honey; Doug South and the Roundabouts; and the Ed Wright Duo.

A barbecue competition approved by the Florida BBQ Association will feature more than 50 professional and backyard teams competing for trophies and prizes in four categories — chicken, pork, brisket and ribs. Winners will be announced at 5 p.m.

Other activities include a Military History Museum, classic car show and an aviation showcase with static displays, drone demonstrations and aviation exhibits. For $75, attendees can take a ride in a classic Ford Tri-Motor airplane. A local skydiver will jump in while flying the American flag during the national anthem.

The family friendly event also offers a Kidz Zone with free activities, as well as pay-per-play carnival games, pony rides, train rides, bounce houses and more.

• The Suncoast Arts Fest celebrates 13 years as Pasco County's biggest arts festival, continuing its mission to develop a community culture that embraces the arts. It also encourages the talent of young artists though an "Arts for Kids" mini-grant program that supports fine and performing arts projects in Pasco County schools.

The two-day event, produced by Fine Arts of the Suncoast, features more than 110 artisans in various genres competing for $14,000 in prizes. It also includes a Picasso-themed children's area with free crafts.

The Richey Suncoast Kid's Theatre opens the show at 10 a.m. Saturday on the main stage, followed by the Wesley Chapel Wind Ensemble at 11 a.m. Other groups performing Saturday include Gypsy Wind (12:40 p.m.) and the Frankie Raye Trio (1:50 p.m.). Violectric, the current artists-in-residence at the Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts in Orlando, will present a fusion of classical string instruments and cutting-edge technology and effects at 3:40 p.m. They have opened for Sting, Adam Levine and Ne-Yo.

On Sunday, Suncoast Arts Fest radio sponsor, WGHR Hits 106, will broadcast live on the main stage. Children's musician Mr. Harley will offer an interactive performance at 11 a.m., followed by classical world guitarist, Nikola Baltic (12 noon to 1:30 p.m.) and local favorites Barefoot Bob and the Hope (2 to 4 p.m. )

As is tradition, Tampa blues legend Sarasota Slim will close out the show from 4:15 to 6 p.m..

Pigz in Z'Hills BBQ and Blues Festival runs from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.. Saturday at 5200 Airport Road in Zephyrhills. Admission is free. $10 parking. No coolers. No pets. Limited seating. Bring lawn chairs. For information, go to www.zephyrhillschamber.org/Pigz_In_Z'Hills_BBQ_&_Blues.php

• The thirteenth annual Suncoast Arts Fest, will be from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday and 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday at the Shops at Wiregrass, 28211 Paseo Drive, Wesley Chapel. Admission is free. For information, go to suncoastartsfest.com.

Music, food and arts fill Pasco weekend festivals 01/12/18 [Last modified: Friday, January 12, 2018 11:22am]
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