The 2013 Florida Strawbrerry Festival kicks off today, Saturday, March 9, with the Gaither Vocal Band set to perform at 3:30 p.m., followed by Bret Michaels "Get Your Rock On 2013" at 7:30 p.m.
2013 Florida Strawberry Festival: Need To Know Saturday, March 9
Today is Farm Worker Appreciation Day at the 2013 Florida Strawberry Festival.
- Sponsored by Astin Farms.
Also at the festival today:
- Gates open and close at 10 a.m.
- The midway opens at 10 a.m.
- Admission is $10 for people age 13 and up and $5 for children ages 6 to 12. Children age 5 and under are admitted for free when accompanied by a paying adult.
- The Gaither Vocal Band is set to perform 3:30 p.m. on the Wish Farms Soundstage.
- Kari & Billy are scheduled for 6 p.m. at the Borden Dairy Strawberry Tent.
- The CF Industries Youth Steer Sale is set for 7 p.m. at the Patterson Co. Livestock Arena.
- The Rev. Art Jones and the Bible-Based Fellowship Church Cathedral Choir is set for 7:30 to 10 p.m. at the Sweetbay Supermarket Showcase Tent.
- Bret Michaels "Get Your Rock On 2013" is set to perform 7:30 p.m. on the Wish Farms Soundstage.
In all, 22 headliner acts are set to perform at the 78th festival, for which this year's Florida Strawberry Festival Queen, Kelsey Fry, and her court will be in full swing promoting. The festival runs through March 10.
- See 2013 Florida Strawberry Festival Headliner and Entertainment Lineup
A celebration for the festival was held Feb. 23 at the Evelyn and Batista Madonia Agricultural Center on the Florida Strawbrerry Festival Fairgrounds. There, Dennis Lee and his band performed; Lee has been performing at the festival for 31 years, first as a clown, then with his band.
"I like the opportunity to touch people's lives in a way where you can make a difference and bring happiness to them," Lee said. "I thought through music and comedy, that's the way I could do it."
- See Plant City Gears Up for 2013 Florida Strawberry Festival
- See Video: Dennis Lee Introduces His Band
Lee performs throughout the festival at 1 p.m., 4 p.m. and 7 p.m., at the Sweetbay Supermarket Showcase Tent. There will be no 7 p.m. show on March 1, 2, 8 and 9.
Also performing at the tent:
- The Jay Taylor Band — 11 a.m., 2 p.m. and 5 p.m., with no 5 p.m. show March 3.
- The Sweeney Family Band Country Comedy Revue — Noon, 3 p.m. and 6 p.m., with no 6 p.m. show on March 3.
Set to perform at the Borden Dairy Strawberry Tent:
- Ron Diamond — 11 a.m., 3 p.m. and 7 p.m.
- The Gothard Sisters — 1 p.m, 5 p.m. and 8:30 p.m., Feb. 28 through March 5 only.
- Lloyd Mabrey — 1 p.m., 5 p.m. and 8:30 p.m., March 6-10 only.
Appearing on the Wish Farms Soundstage (but not headliner entertainment):
- Jimmy Stuff and Orchestra — Feb. 28 at 10:30 a.m., for Senior Days at the Florida Strawberry Festival. The concert is free.
- Caroline Kole — Feb. 28 at 10:30 a.m., for Senior Days at the Florida Strawberry Festival. The concert is free.
- Steve Hall and the Shotgun Red Show — March 7 at 10:30 a.m., for Senior Days at the Florida Strawberry Festival. The concert is free.
Additional 2013 Strawberry Festival Entertainment:ON-GROUNDS ENTERTAINMENT Kandu Magic Show Daily, 11:30 a.m., 4:30 p.m., 7:30 p.m. Also, Saturday and Sunday, 1:30 p.m. Vision Auto Glass Runa Pacha "Indian World" Daily, 11 a.m, noon, 2 p.m, 4 p.m, 6 p.m., 8 p.m. Verison Wireless Robinson's Racing Pigs 11 a.m., noon, 2 p.m., 4 p.m., 6 p.m., 8 p.m. Netterifield's Concessions World Champion Lumberjills 11 a.m., 2:30 p.m., 5:30 p.m. Also, Saturday and Sunday, 7:30 p.m. Home Depot JUMP! The Ultimate Dog Show 1 p.m., 4 p.m., 8 p.m. Hartz Rock-It the Robot 11 a.m., 2 p.m., 7 p.m. Softub Express SouthWest Dairy Farmers Milking Show 11 a.m., 1 p.m., 3 p.m, 5 p.m. Southbay Sod Outdoor Services SPECIAL SHOWCASE ACTS Karaoke Contest March 1, March 8, at 7 p.m. Sweetbay Supermarket Showcase Tent Next Radical Generation March 2, 7 p.m. Sweetbay Supermarket Showcase Tent Kari & Billy March 8, March 9, at 6 p.m. Borden Dairy Strawberry Tent The Rev. Art Jones and the Bible-Based Fellowship Cathedral Choir March 9, 7:30 p.m. Sweetbay Supermarket Showcase Tent
Madonia Agricultural Show Center Livestock shows, sales and contests
Astin Farms Pavilion Swine Exhibit Feb. 28 - March 2 Dairy Exhibit Feb. 28 - March 3 Steer Exhibit March 5 - March 9 Swindle Family Pavilion Poultry and Rabbit Shows Daily, 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Arthur Boring Civic Center Garden Club Horticulture Show Daily, 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Roy and Helen Parke Building Photography Contest Daily, 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Shoebox Float Display Daily, 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Strawberry Queen Exhibit Daily, 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Lost and Found Caboose East end of the building Milton E. Hull Armory Building Neighborhood Village Daily, 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Strawberry Production Exhibit South of the building Art Show Building East Hillsborough Art Guild Show Daily, 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Pioneer Village Demonstration of Pioneer Skills Daily, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.