By CHARLOTTE SUTTON
© St. Petersburg Times, published January 25, 2001
Whether you've just arrived in town for the Super Bowl, or you've lived here for years, we think you'll find this a weekend to remember.
Your most lasting memory may be grabbing fistfuls of pirate beads at the Gasparilla parade. Being transported back to your high school days by the (pick one: Styx, Lynyrd Skynrd, Richard Marx, Three Dog Night, Parliament/Funkadelic) concert. Dining in that fabulous restaurant you'd heard about for years. Seeing a piece of art you'd only known from books. Finding a great local band in a tiny bar with very cold beer.
Some of the best sights around here are also the cheapest: The shells you collect on a sunrise walk on the beach. The ribbons of blue and pink that wrap the sky at sunset. The gator that slips beneath the surface as you dip your canoe paddle into a river deep in the woods.
Oh, and yes, there's that game on Sunday.
With so much going on, we decided to expand today's Weekend section with more entertainment, shopping, dining and recreation information, plus our staff's recommendations. We hope you'll hang onto the entire section to use this week and beyond.
But if you need something to put in a pocket, you can pull out the area map in the middle of the section; on the back of it, we've repeated the special Super Bowl and Gasparilla events schedules for easy reference.
(Alert readers will note that this map takes the place of Datebook, our end-of-the-month calendar that previews the month ahead. The Datebook for February will appear in the Feb. 1 issue of Weekend.)
Within these pages, you'll also find a photographic guide to local highlights, many of them shot in the past few weeks by Times photographer Jamie Francis. For the cover, Jamie wanted to capture a glimpse of the area's natural beauty, and he found it at sunset over the Gulf of Mexico, seen from the roof of the Hurricane Restaurant in St. Pete Beach. The coin-operated viewfinder he found there was a bonus, a reminder of family trips to places of scenic beauty.
From all of us to all of you, have a great weekend.
-- Charlotte Sutton, Arts & Entertainment Editor