Make us your home page
Instagram

Sharon Kennedy Wynne, Times Staff Writer

Sharon Kennedy Wynne

Sharon Kennedy Wynne is a Tampa Bay Times writer and editor who focuses mostly on events and fun Things to Do. A lifelong St. Petersburg resident, she has been a journalist since 1988 and joined her hometown Times in 1994. She is married and has two sons.

Phone: (727) 893-8595

Email: wynne@tampabay.com

Twitter: @SharonKWn

link
  1. Plan your weekend July 28-30: Comic Con, Lady Antebellum, Margarita Wars, Tampa's Fourth Friday

    Events

    Plan your weekend

    Geek out

    Tampa Bay Comic Con: The fan convention returns to the Tampa Convention Center this weekend, bringing actors Val Kilmer, Kate Beckinsale, Nichelle Nichols (Star Trek's Lt. Uhura), Khary Payton (Ezekiel in The Walking Dead) and the "inconceivable" Wallace Shawn from The Princess Bride. But best of all is a huge hall packed with overflowing tables of comic books and collectibles and chances to mingle with cosplayers, celebrities and artists. See tampabaycomiccon.com for each day's schedule or on the event's free app. It opens at noon Friday, 8 a.m. Saturday and runs 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Sunday at the convention center, 333 S Franklin St. $30 Friday or Sunday, $40 Saturday, $60 for a three-day pass. Kids 12 and younger are free....

    CULVER CITY, CA - JUNE 24:  Actor Kevin Farley arrives at the premiere of Crackle's "Joe Dirt 2: Beautiful Loser" at Sony Studios on June 24, 2015 in Culver City, California.  (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images)
  2. Top things to do in Tampa Bay this week: Margarita Wars, Tampa Bay Comic Con

    Events

    GEEK OUT: Tampa Bay Comic Con

    Now in its seventh year, Tampa Bay Comic Con returns to the Tampa Convention Center this weekend, bringing actors Kate Beckinsale, left, Nichelle Nichols (Star Trek's Lt. Uhura), Khary Payton (Ezekiel in The Walking Dead) and the "inconceivable" Wallace Shawn, right, from The Princess Bride. Val Kilmer canceled on Tuesday. But best of all is a huge hall packed with overflowing tables of comic books and collectibles and chances to mingle with cosplayers, celebrities and artists. With a packed schedule of Nerdy Speed Dating, a Harry Potter musical tribute, panels and celebrity Q&A sessions, you need to plan in advance to make the most it. This is the first year without a printed program. Instead, schedules for panels, contests, registrations and a list of celebs and their Q&A sessions are at tampabaycomiccon.com or on the event's free app. It opens at noon Friday, 8 a.m. Saturday and 9 a.m. Sunday at the convention center, 333 S Franklin St. $30 Friday or Sunday, $40 Saturday, $60 for a three-day pass. Kids 12 and younger are free. ...

    Seth Alderman, left, and Kieron Phoenix both dressed as the Spiderman at the 2016 Tampa Bay Comic Con.
  3. 5 things to do under $5 July: Bucs training camp, Dive-In Movie, free Glazer Museum admission

    Events

    1 Bucs Training Camp: The public is invited to a series of free Bucs practices through Aug. 26. And don't forget this season HBO's Hard Knocks will focus on the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, including quarterback Jameis Winston, right. There will be discounted concessions, merchandise tents, appearances by cheerleaders and Captain Fear, and autographs from players after each practice. 8:45-10:30 a.m. Friday, Saturday, Sunday, and Wednesday this week. One Buc Place, 1 Buccaneer Place, Tampa. Free. buccaneers.com....

    LOREN ELLIOTT   |   Times (2016) Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Jameis Winston.
  4. Could Floo Powder or a Triwizard maze be in Universal's future?

    Blog

    As we reported here, Universal Orlando announced Monday that it will close the coaster Dragon Challenge for a new “highly themed” Harry Potter ride to open in 2019. Accio educated guesses!! 

    The news sent Potter fans into a tizzy with hopes for a Floo Powder Network or the maze from the Triwizard Tournament. And they have pretty good reasons for their guesses....

    Universal Orlando announced Monday that it will close Dragon Challenge on Sept. 5 for a new "highly themed" Harry Potter ride to open in 2019.
  5. Dragon ride in Harry Potter section of Universal closing for new themed ride

    Florida

    Universal Orlando announced Monday that it will close Dragon Challenge for a new "highly themed" Harry Potter ride to open in 2019 — sending wizard fans into a guessing game with hopes for a Floo Powder Network or the maze from the Triwizard Tournament.

    Originally the Dueling Dragons roller coaster, the Dragon Challenge was part of Universal's Islands of Adventure before the Harry Potter section was built. It was renamed and incorporated into the Wizarding World of Harry Potter when the hugely popular area opened in 2010. ...

    Universal Orlando announced Monday that it will close Dragon Challenge on Sept. 5 for a new "highly themed" Harry Potter ride to open in 2019. The ride, originally the Dueling Dragons roller coaster, was renamed and incorporated into the Wizarding World of Harry Potter when the hugely popular area opened in 2010.
  6. Plan your weekend: DJ Kitty Onesie, Taking Back Sunday, Kid Day, comic Felipe Esparza

    Events

    Fashion

    DJ Kitty Onesie: The first 15,000 ticket holders who arrive to the Rays-Rangers game Saturday will score the most questionable fashion statement of the season: a free adult-sized DJ Kitty Onesie. It's complete with a tail, a hood featuring a cat face and "DJ Kitty" written across the back. Saturday is also "Baseball Forever Night" and the city of St. Petersburg wants fans to pack the stadium to show the team how much they love them. Mayor Rick Kriseman will throw out the first pitch at 7:10 p.m. Saturday. Tropicana Field, 1 Tropicana Drive, St. Petersburg. Toll-free 1-888-326-7297. raysbaseball.com....

    An adult-sized DJ Kitty onesie will be the giveaway when the Tampa Bay Rays play the Rangers July 22.
  7. Snag a DJ Kitty onsie for adults at Saturday's Rays game

    Events

    The first 15,000 ticketholders who arrive to the Rays-Rangers game Saturday will score the most questionable fashion statement of the season: a free adult-sized DJ Kitty Onesie.

    The Tampa Bay Rays have pushed the envelope on game day giveaways before, like with the sorta creepy Zim Bear, a teddy with the face of the late adviser Don Zimmer. And earlier this season Evan Longoria looked like the king of Westeros as a Game of Thrones-themed bobblehead....

    An adult-sized DJ Kitty onesie will be the giveaway when the Tampa Bay Rays play the Rangers July 22.
  8. Top things to do this week: Celebrate Shark Week and Snooty the manatee

    Events

     

    TAKE A BITE: Aquarium salutes Shark Week

    Shark Week starts Sunday on the Discovery Channel and the Clearwater Marine Aquarium is using the occasion to highlight its toothy residents, Thelma and Louise. A special $25 Shark Adoption gets you a tote bag, a plush shark and a bio on the aquarium's two nurse sharks. CMA is also launching a social media contest on Facebook. The picture of a kid in a shark costume with the most likes on CMA's Facebook page will win a Shark Prize Package. Three of the stars from the Dolphin Tale movies, Nathan Gamble (Sawyer), Cozi Zuehlsdorff (Hazel) and Austin Highsmith (Phoebe) will be making appearances at the aquarium Saturday through July 29. Check seewinter.com for details on the times and locations. For Shark Week, Zuehlsdorff and Highsmith will be at the aquarium to feed the sharks at 2 p.m. on July 28. CMA will carry this live on its Facebook page if you can't make it in person. Admission is $21.95, $19.95 ages 60-older, $16.95 ages 3-12, 2 and younger free at 249 Windward Passage, Clearwater. (727) 441-1790....

    Snooty the manatee is the oldest documented manatee in captivity.
  9. 5 things to do under $5: Ringling Museum, mobile photo class, 'Iron Giant' in the park

    Events

    1. Iron Giant: You can see a free Movie on the Green in Curtis Hixon Park on Friday, when an inflatable screen will be set up to show the animated favorite Iron Giant at 8:30 p.m. at 110 W Gasparilla Plaza, Tampa. Bring a blanket or chairs to sit on. Concessions will be available for purchase.

    2. Free museum admission: Every Monday, the Ringling Museum of Art offers free admission, including special exhibition galleries. This is a museum with a world-class collection including a Rubens gallery, Asian art and classical sculptures that fill the grand courtyard. It's free to the public 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday, but regular admission applies to the Circus Museum or Ca'd'Zan, the mansion of John and Mable Ringling. Regular museum admission is $25, $23 seniors, $5 children/students, 5 and younger free. 5401 Bay Shore Road, Sarasota. (941) 359-5700. ringling.org....

    iStockphoto
  10. Quick! Do these fun things with the kids before school starts!

    Kids

    Three weekends. That's all we have left before the new school year is upon us.

    Because Florida kids have to go back so much earlier than their Northeast cousins who get all the way through Labor Day before the school bell rings, our summers can slip away from us. Schools open for students in Pinellas and Hillsborough counties on Aug. 10, and in Pasco and Hernando counties Aug. 14....

    Ya'riah Ellison,6 of Tampa works on a pop art self portrait at the Glazer Children's Museum in Tampa on Friday, July 14, 2017. On Monday, July 20th, a new pop art exhibition will open in which children will be able to create self portraits in a variety of ways including screen printing, pointillism and pop art methods.
  11. Disney news: Tron ride, 'Guardians of Galaxy' ride and a 'Star Wars' hotel coming to Florida

    Florida

    In case you missed it, this weekend brought a rush of news for Disney World fans at D23, the official Disney fan club in Anaheim, Calif., and visitors to the four theme parks in Florida can look forward to more attractions for teens and roller coaster fans.

    Coming soon will be a Guardians of the Galaxy ride at Epcot, as well as a much-hailed ride based on the Tron series at the Magic Kingdom. And an elite Star Wars-themed resort will make you feel like you are spending the night at a space station....

    Artist renderings of Disney's plans for an immersive Star Wars-themed hotel show guests would wear costumes and  interact with "Star Wars" creatures and droids. The multi-day experience would guests their own story line and each window of the hotel would look out into space.
Photo courtesy Walt Disney World
  12. Plan your weekend July 14-16: Sam Hunt, New Kids and '90s stars, Mud Wars, Little Mermaid

    Events

    Concert

    Sam Hunt: The country hunk's Body Like a Back Road, the first single from his forthcoming sophomore album, has been the No. 1 country song in America since mid-February, putting it within spitting distance of Florida Georgia Line's Cruise as the longest-running No. 1 in country history. You can also hear Hero, the stellar debut by fellow Nashville new-schooler Maren Morris, who owns the middle slot on Hunt's stacked summer tour (Buy Me a Boat rambler Chris Jansen and Ryan Follese open the show). 7 p.m. Friday. MidFlorida Credit Union Amphitheatre, 4802 U.S. 301 N, Tampa. The show is virtually sold out; check livenation.com or call (813) 740-2446 for availability....

    Disney Broadway hit "The Little Mermaid" is coming to Carol Morsani Hall at the Straz Center for the Performing Arts July 11-16.
  13. Get messy this weekend at Mud Wars or a water balloon fight/pub crawl

    Events

    MESSY FUN: Pub crawl, Mud Wars and Great Mess-Plorations

    It's the dog days of summer, so there's just no use fighting the battle to keep your hair or makeup intact. It's all coming down in a sweaty mess. So embrace it with some messy fun this week.

    • The Sun, Swimsuits and Suds pub crawl Saturday in Ybor City will have stops at local pubs and restaurants, but the twist is you will end up in Super Soaker wars and water balloon fights in the street. Included in the ticket price ($25 through Friday and $30 the day of) is a 5-ounce beverage and a small giveaway at each bar. The first 150 to sign up get a T-shirt. The block party runs 2-6 p.m. Saturday, with an after-party at Crowbar, 1812 N 17th St., Tampa. ybor.org/events....

    One of the creations at ARTpool’s Trashion Fashion event. Doors open at 8 p.m. Saturday, July 15, and the runway begins at 10 p.m.
  14. 5 things to do under $5: Kids golf free, home show, poolside Christmas in July

    Events

    1 Kids Golf Free: Thanks to the First Tee of Clearwater, kids ages 15 and younger can join a paying adult for one free round of golf this summer through Sept. 1. The Clearwater Junior Tees have provided shortened, manageable distances for children. Open 6 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. daily at the Chi Chi Rodriguez Golf Club, 3030 N McMullen-Booth Road, Clearwater. (727) 726-4673.

    2 Back to School Bash: The Westfield Brandon mall is getting a jump on things with kid-friendly fun from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday — so maybe they won't notice there's only four more weeks of summer vacation left. The first 250 kids to complete a scavenger hunt get free backpacks. There will also be giveaways and area mascots, princesses and superheroes, as well as interactive sports, craft activities and a play area. The mall itself will have information kiosks on school resources, health and wellness services and after-school programs. Free. 459 Brandon Town Center, Brandon. (727) 674-1464. ...

    Enjoy Christmas in July at an event at Dunedin’s Highlander Pool from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, July 15.
  15. Instant Pot pressure cooker again picks up steam on Amazon Prime Day

    Cooking

    Once again, the Instant Pot pressure cooker is slaying Amazon's Prime Day, according to early indications.

    Last year Amazon sold more than 215,000 in a single day, earning it the title of the world's first viral kitchen gadget.

    Today, a similar deal is back, though not as deep of a discount as last year when the $69 sale on Prime Day — down from its usual $99 price — was the tipping point for the cult of Instant Pot. ...

    This Italian Chickpea Stew is made in 20 minutes in the Instant Pot electric pressure cooker, instead of the typical 90-minute cooking time for dried chickpeas.
 Recipe from Janet A. Zimmerman?'s new cookbook "Instant Pot Obsession."

Image credit: Susan Brooks-Dammann/Stocksy United