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Strutting with Pride

By SHANNON BREEN, Times Staff Writer
© St. Petersburg Times
published July 5, 2002

You don't have to be gay to participate in the 17th annual PrideFest 2002 celebration.

But it may help.

The festivities, which began on Tuesday, continue through Sunday with DivaFest, Gay Day at Busch Gardens and a handful of parties.

MEET THE STARS RECEPTION. Don't let your mascara run on account of the absence of Tammy Faye Bakker Messner, a PrideFest attendee last year.

Another makeup caker, Sharon Gless (known for her "PFLAG Mom" character on Showtime's Queer As Folk and "Cagney" on Cagney & Lacey) will deliver a keynote speech during the festivities today.

There is also a reception offering an opportunity to meet several of the stars of this year's PrideFest cast. A select few items from the PrideAuction will be voice auctioned at the end of the reception. Hors d'oeuvres are included in the admission fee. $35; 6:30 to 8 p.m.; Mise En Place, 422 W Kennedy Blvd. Call 254-5373.

DIVAFEST. Saturday, Raymond James Stadium plays host to DivaFest, part of PrideFest, featuring Pat Benatar of Hit Me With Your Best Shot fame, Jennifer Holliday, Suzanne Palmer, Halcyon and the ladies of "Wigstock." $15 advance, $20 at the door; 11 a.m. Call Ticketmaster at 287-8844.

Founded in 1986, PrideFest is also chock-full of partying and other Pride-sanctioned events.

THE WET PARTY. Saturday night, about 2,500 people (mostly men in swimwear) converge at the Florida Aquarium for a party. $25 advanced, $35 at the door; 10 p.m. to 3 a.m. Call 273-4000.

THE WILD PARTY. Also Saturday night, a Tampa women's party with entertainment, including female impersonators, drag kings, female revue, plus the Cherokee Dancin' Vixens. $8-$10; 9 p.m. to 3 a.m. Cherokee Club, 1320 Ninth Ave. (above Cafe Creole), Ybor City. Call 247-9966.

FAMILY VALUES PICNIC. Picnic sponsored by Equality Florida. $5 admission includes lunch, free without lunch; Sunday, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.; Fort DeSoto Beach, 3500 S Pinellas Bayway, Tierra Verde.

SUNDAZE FEATURING HALCYON. The area's newest women's bar, Sundaze, will showcase Halcyon in concert from 7 to 10 p.m. Sunday. $8 at the door; 3 p.m. to 3 a.m.; 701 S Third Ave, St. Petersburg. Call (727) 692-8613.

GAY DAY AT BUSCH GARDENS caps off the festivities Sunday. So leave your Jungle Jim safari garb in the closet, and take your rainbow colors out of the closet. $43.81-$53.44 at the gate; 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. Call 987-5082.

5 -- TODAY.

SHEAR MADNESS. This Broadway play is the story of Tony Whitcomb, proprietor of the Shear Madness salon, and Barbara DeMarco, the gum-chewing manicurist, as they comb through the tasks of a normal day until an eccentric concert pianist is murdered.

Tony, Barbara and the Shear Madness customers -- socialite Eleanor Shubert, antique dealer Eddie Lawrence and cops Nick Rosetti and Mikey Thomas -- are suspects. Audiences get a chance to figure out the mystery amid gales of laughter and merriment. Runs through Sept. 1.

Show times are Thursdays and Fridays at 8 p.m., Saturdays at 2 and 8 p.m., and Sundays at 4 p.m.; $27.50-$29.50; Tampa Bay Performing Arts Center, Jaeb Theater, 1010 N MacInnes Place, Tampa. For tickets, call 229-7827.

IMPROV COMEDY THEATRE. Release some tension by laughing or heckling three headliners: Guy Torry, Flex Alexander and Ralph Harris. 8 and 10:30 p.m. today and Saturday; 7 p.m. Sunday; $16 advance tonight, $18 advance Saturday, $10 advance Sunday; Improv Comedy Theatre, Centro Ybor. Call 864-4000.


FREE MUSIC LESSONS. If you're getting burned out from strumming an air guitar in your underwear like Tom Cruise in Risky Business, professionals can help. Though you may not turn into an overnight sensation, free drum, guitar and keyboard lessons will be given at Mars Music throughout July. Instruments are provided. Appointments are requested. 10-10:30 a.m. Mars Music, 3906 W Hillsborough Ave. Call 354-1103.

WILDLIFE ON EASY STREET NAKOMA FAMILY DAY. It all rewinds back to an emaciated lion named Nakoma who got help from humans. Nakoma's Family Day is expected to raise money for an on-site animal hospital at this Citrus Park wildlife refuge.

Normally, visitors to the refuge must be 10 or older. But this event allows visitors of all ages. WildLife on Easy Street is a permanent retirement home to more than 170 exotic cats representing 23 species and subspecies. $10; 1-3 p.m.; WildLife on Easy Street, near Citrus Park Boulevard and Gunn Highway across from the Citrus Park Town Center. Call 920-4130.

SHANA BANANA BEACH PARTY. Shana Smith is a children's singer from St. Petersburg who got her nickname from her father as a child. Known mostly as Shana Banana, the award-winning musician will perform for the kiddies at the Florida Aquarium from 1 to 3 p.m. throughout July. Free with aquarium admission ($15 for seniors, $11 for children). Call 273-4000.


ARENA FOOTBALL: ORLANDO PREDATORS AT TAMPA BAY STORM. $10.25-$100.25; 2 p.m.; Ice Palace Arena. Call Ticketmaster at 287-8844.

POCKET CHANGE. This funk band from Fort Lauderdale has rekindled the musical landscape with punchy R&B, funk and soul. Their music is mostly influenced by the Isley Brothers. $5; 8 p.m. Skipper's Smokehouse, 910 Skipper Road. Call Ticketmaster, 287-8844.

BASEBALL: CLEARWATER PHILLIES AT TAMPA YANKEES. $3-5; 1 p.m.; Legends Field. Call 879-2244.

UNDERCURRENT/OVERVIEW 6. For the sixth summer, this annual exhibition highlights work created by both prominent and emerging local artists. Through Sept. 22. Tampa Museum of Art. Call 274-8130.


BASEBALL: DAYTONA CUBS AT TAMPA YANKEES. $3-$5; 7 p.m.; Legends Field. Call 879-2244.


COMEDIAN JIMMY SHUBERT. Shubert got his break when he toured with Sam Kinison's "Outlaws of Comedy" for several years. Much like the late Kinison, Shubert is an angry man on a soapbox, fuming his tirades. Some may recognize him from the movies Go and Coyote Ugly or from his small recurring role as a security guard on ER. $5; 8:30 p.m.; Side Splitters, 12938 N Dale Mabry Highway, Tampa. Call (813) 960-1197.

BASEBALL: DAYTONA CUBS AT TAMPA YANKEES. $3-$5; 11 a.m.; Legends Field. Call 879-2244.


IMPULSE. Reggae under the stars has been a Skipper's Smokehouse tradition since 1984 and has no sign of going anywhere. 8 p.m.; $4; Skipper's, 910 Skipper Road. Call 971-0666.

BASEBALL: VERO BEACH DODGERS AT TAMPA YANKEES. $3-$5; 7 p.m.; Legends Field. Call 879-2244.


BASEBALL: VERO BEACH DODGERS AT TAMPA YANKEES. $3-$5; 7 p.m.; Legends Field. Call 879-2244.

TINTYPES. Who were Americans at the turn of the 20th century? A musical by Mary Kyte presents glimpses of American life, circa 1900. The nostalgic revue harkens back to slower days of ice cream socials and hoop skirts, followed by automobiles, electricity and the telephone. Music by Scott Joplin, George M. Cohan and John Philip Sousa. Through July 28. Presented by Eight O'Clock Theatre. $16 adults, $6 students; 8 p.m. Thur.-Sat., 2 p.m. Sun.; Largo Cultural Center, 105 Central Park Drive, Largo. Call (727) 587-6793.


  • SEVEN NATIONS: July 12, Jannus Landing.
  • FLATLANDERS: July 14, Skipper's Smokehouse.
  • USHER: July 13, Ice Palace.


  • OZZFEST 2002: July 26, West Palm Beach, Mars Music Amphitheatre.
  • SYSTEM OF A DOWN: July 27, USF Sun Dome.
  • BAD COMPANY: July 28, Ruth Eckerd Hall.
  • SAMMY HAGAR and DAVID LEE ROTH: Aug. 1, Ice Palace
  • BLONDIE: Aug. 6, House of Blues, Orlando.
  • BILLY RAY CYRUS: Aug. 17, Ruth Eckerd Hall.
  • THE MALE INTELLECT: AN OXYMORON: Aug. 20, Tampa Bay Performing Arts Center.
  • EMINEM: Aug. 31, Ice Palace.
  • CHER AND CYNDI LAUPER: Sept. 2, Ice Palace.
  • ELTON JOHN AND BILLY JOEL: Sept. 13, Ice Palace.
  • MARC ANTHONY: Sept. 17, Ice Palace.
  • OLIVIA NEWTON-JOHN: Sept. 21, Ruth Eckerd Hall.
  • FOUR BITCHIN' BABES: Nov. 22, Mahaffey Theater.

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  • Monument rises with new name
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  • Strutting with Pride
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