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Friday, May 25, 2018
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Best Bets: Fun stuff to do this week

Not sure what to do this week? Don't worry, we've got you covered. Here are our editors' picks, from a trio of stand-up comics to the Rays' summer concert series.
(Opening today)
Giant robots take on strange beasts in "Pacific Rim," director Guillermo del Toro's modernized, big-budget, big-effects take on the classic "kaiju" genre that spawned "King Kong," and "Godzilla." Idris Elba stars as part of a force of earthlings who don specially designed robot suits to defend Earth from invading monsters.
Kick off the weekend with a fleet of food trucks, craft beers and summer cocktails on the downtown waterfront during the monthly Brews and Bites party, starting at 6 p.m. at the Sail Pavilion, next door to the Tampa Convention Center.
(Friday through Sunday)
There are stand-up comedy shows for all tastes around the Tampa Bay area, with Kathy Griffin bringing her gossipy, no-holds-barred act to Clearwater on Saturday, while Pauly Shore of "Encino Man" fame plays the Tampa Improv and Jamie Kennedy, of "Malibu's Most Wanted," hits Side Splitters for shows throughout the weekend.
(Friday through July 21)
Learn something about relationships as two local acting companies tackle sticky situations in new productions. In Jobsite's presentation of "The Lonesome West," two brothers are at odds after their father's death, and in "Good Egg," the first play presented by A Simple Theatre, bioethics, siblings and unconditional love take center stage.
Cheer on your favorite contestant, such as Miss Tampa Ashley Ramsey, when 47 talented and beautiful contestants compete in evening gown, swimsuit, interview and talent in hopes of wearing the crown at the 2013 Miss Florida Scholarship Pageant at the Mahaffey Theater. The pageant is a preliminary to Miss America.
Wordplay master, hip-hop superstar and Skate Park of Tampa regular Lil Wayne leads the America's Most Wanted Festival into the MidFlorida Amphitheatre. He brings along T.I., Tyga and others. Tickets range from $25 to $89.50.
(Saturday through July 18)
More than 500 veterans are in town to compete in events including swimming, trapshooting and weightlifting as part of the 33rd National Veterans Wheelchair Games at the Tampa Convention Center. The event is free for spectators.
(Saturday and Sunday)
The Tampa Bay Rays' summer concert series goes from old school to new school overnight, with disco-era stars KC and the Sunshine Band playing after Saturday's game, and "Call Me Maybe" singer Carly Rae Jepsen performing after Sunday's game. Sunday is also DJ Kitty confetti globe day, so ages 14 and younger get a free snow globe while they last. Tickets are $21 to $121.50, and a wrist band to get field access during the concerts is an extra $11.
Celebrate the 40th anniversary of George Lucas' 1973 classic with the Tampa Theatre's screening of "American Graffiti," the 1960s nostalgia film that helped launch the careers of Ron Howard, Harrison Ford, Richard Dreyfuss and Suzanne Somers. After the screening, USF film professor Harriet Deer will lead a discussion about the movie's cultural significance. Tickets are $9, or $7 for Tampa Theatre members.


At this point, Dave Matthews Band is as much a part of the summer as afternoon thunderstorms. Their rabid fan base will probably make this a sellout, but those who've never seen the seven-piece, rock, folk and jazz-fusion collective live should prepare for epic jamming and a spirited performance from a band who makes you feel how much they love playing music together.
Get ready for some good vibrations as The Beach Boys' current lineup, featuring founding member Mike Love, but no Brian Wilson, bring their sunny sounds to the Hard Rock casino, where they'll surely play "Surfin' USA," "California Girls" and other hits from their 50-year history. Tickets are $69.
Kids ride free: Two children, ages 3 to 11, can ride free per paid adult when departing from the historic Parrish Train Station weekends in July; 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. Saturday and Sunday; adults $14; Florida Railroad Museum, 12210 83rd St. E., Parrish; (941) 776-0906.
Roller derby: Come watch ringside as Demolition Dolls, Cigar City Mafia, Team Knockout and Black Widows go head-to-head; 6 p.m. Saturday; $10; Downtown Skate, 5313 E Busch Blvd., Temple Terrace; (813) 421-2688.
Tropical plant fair: Annual event celebrates beautiful and exotic fruit trees and blooming plants. Bring a decorated pepper for the pepper beauty contest and be admitted free on Sunday; 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Sunday; $5, children younger than 12 admitted free; USF Botanical Gardens, 12210 USF Pine Drive, Tampa; (813) 974-2329
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