Foodies Rejoice!! Spring Tampa Festivals

It’s that time of year again… yo know all the holidays and spending money but when that is all over with we have the best spring here in Tampa. Being a newbie here, there seems to always be a festival of some sort going on. Check out some of the foodie festivities coming up this Spring.


Schedule of Events


Busch Gardens Food & Wine Festival

Location: Busch Gardens
Time(s): Various

Busch Garden hosts their annual Food and Wine Festival and invite guests to enjoy a variety of sample-size cuisine and spirits. Guests will be able to unleash their inner foodie and try an assortment of delicacies.  The festival is included with the purchase of a Pass, Fun Card or daily admission. Stay tuned for more information about the dates for 2017.

Mayor’s Mac & Cheese Throwdown

April 2017
Location: Curtis Hixon Park
Time: 4 p.m.- 7:30 p.m.

This event is presented by Friends of the Riverwalk, along with the City of Tampa and Mayor Bob Buckhorn.  It will feature Mac & Cheese tastings, the Mayor’s Mac & Cheese throw down and a stage for live entertainment of local an regional artists, craft beer, wine vendors and games. All ages are welcomed and the event is free. This will celebrate the Tampa Riverwalk and numerous local Tampa restaurants.

Tampa Bay Margarita Festival

May 2017
Location: Curtis Hixon Park
Time: 12 p.m.- 11 p.m.

Join Tampa as they celebrate the 4th Annual Margarita Festival.  The festival includes a wide variety of margaritas, a lineup of bands with the headliner Blues Traveler and a huge fireworks show to end the night. All of the margaritas are handcrafted by professional bartenders with the freshest ingredients. This year there will be more shade and seating, improved cashless wrist bands and a new VIP experience.  Come join Tampa for the Margarita Festival of the year!

Capture Florida’s most local flavor on your plate and in your glass during our season of foodie festivals. Bite into the traditional and tasty Tampa Cuban sandwich. And discover who’s making the best of the best at the annual Cuban Sandwich Festival, hosted at Ybor City’s Centennial Park. Read more here

Tailgate Taste Fest

October 1, 2017
Location: Curtis Hixon Park
Time: 3 p.m.- 10:30 p.m.

Some of the top restaurants in the Tampa Bay area will be cooking up the best tailgate food including, sliders, chicken, barbeque and small plates. Their will also be awards given out to the restaurants in the categories that they entered. The event is free, but wrist bands can be purchased by guests to be able to sample the foods. Family and friends are encouraged to bring their own chairs and enjoy some of the best tailgate foods.

Cuban Sandwich Festival

March 31, 2017
Location: HCC-Ybor Campus
Time: Noon- 5 p.m.

At this event they will attempt to create the biggest Cuban sandwich in the world. The goal is to make a 125 foot Cuban sandwich with the help of several VIPs and celebrities. At the end of the event the sandwich will be donated to feed almost 400 homeless people. This is a free art and food community event and guests have the opportunity to meet winners of the 5th Annual Cuban Sandwich Smackdown and some of the members of the Cuban Sandwich Hall of Fame.

19th Annual Festa Italiana

Location(s): Varies depending on the day
Time(s): Varies

Festa Italiana Weekend started in the spring of 1997 and is an annual multi-day event that honors Italian culture and heritage by showcasing the finest cuisine from the Tampa Bay area’s top restaurants and catering companies, exciting entertainment from world renowned performers, a variety of premier wines and spirits, and a diverse assortment of activities for guests of all ages.Over 35 of Tampa Bay’s top restaurants and catering companies will serve delicious dishes and tastings.

32nd Annual Best of Tampa Bay

Saturday, April 29, 2017
Location: Straz Center for the Performing Arts

In 2016, the event hosted 51 restaurants, 14 microbreweries, more than 2,000 people in attendance, and so much more. Proceeds from the event help the Straz Center to continue to provide high-quality artistic and educational programs. Pricing for tickets has not been released for 2017, but stay tuned to their website for more information.

Taste of South Tampa

May 2017
Location: Tampa Garden Club
Time(s): 1 p.m. – 4 p.m.

Tickets include unlimited food and beverage samples, live entertainment, access to activities in the Kids Zone, give-aways from sponsors, opportunity to win prizes by participating in the canned food drive and voting for the “Best of South Tampa” awards. There will also be a food drive at the event and an opportunity to win prizes if you bring boxed or canned nonperishable goods.


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