Archive for Tampa Bay

18 Feb 2015

A Lesson from Annie in Optimism

No Comments Review, Sponsored, Tampa, Tampa Bay

I took my 9 year old daughter to her first musical, Annie. She absolutely loved every minute of this show. From the cast, the songs she had memorized from the movie and the entire experience that the Straz Center offers for bringing children into their theater for a first experience.

The Straz

But what stuck me most was the overall life lesson I really didn’t realize she got until the next day after school. It was raining and she didn’t too too well on a test. She was a little bummed but we don’t dwell on things. We address. Fix. And move on. She said, “Well, I bet there will be sun tomorrow!” all with a smile. Optimism is not something that is not inherent. Kids will learn how to handle situations based on how they see adults handle situations. I think that when kids (or adults) mess up or have a bad day, you do really have to remember that the “sun will come out tomorrow.” And it’s not easy all the time. Our actions speak louder than words and attitude is everything.

The show Annie is a delightful show full of the classic songs we remember from the movie and some new songs and plot twists that will have you watching until the very end. The young cast that is now on tour (through July 2015) is an extremely talented cast that will make you think you are on Broadway!

The set design was was purely magical as it transformed you from the streets of New York to with the skyline as real as it could be.

The optimistic Annie was played by Issie Swickle who is a Florida native of Davie and is making her National Tour debut. She voice is captivating as she sings the one of the most memorable songs of many childhoods, “Tomorrow.” While she is on stage alone (with the dog Sandy) you are in awe of her talents and captivated by the song. Of course, Miss Hannigna, played by Lynn Andrews, is a show stopper for she is still as mean as the day is long, just like we remember.

Take you kids to see Annie. It’s a life lesson that every child (and some adults) need to hear. And a musical that every child will remember forever as well.

*This post was sponsored by the Straz Center and through the Tampa Bay Bloggers Network. Search hashtags ‪#‎BroadwayInTampa‬ ‪#‎AnnieOnTour‬ to see first-hand how others enjoyed the show.

12 Feb 2015

5 Reasons Why Ulele is the Ultimate Date Night Restaurant in Tampa

2 Comments Family Travel, Florida, Opinion, Review, Sponsored, Tampa, Tampa Bay

Kids screaming. Baby crying. Homework is coming out of your ears. Laundry is to the ceiling. Girl Scout badges need to be sewn on. Grocery shopping needs to be done. The house needs a super deep clean. Better start filing taxes… And on and on the list goes. I get it. You need a break. We all do. A night. Take three hours. To relax. Enjoy your significant other or even a friendship. Just an escape. Even a three-hour break each week can immensely improve your mood for the other 165 hours I need to be on the clock.

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11 Feb 2015

The Story of Go Abby Go

No Comments Adventures, CAH, Everyday, Tampa, Tampa Bay

On Your Mark…Get Set…Go!

Abby is off to her very first race this Saturday. It’s a big race…30 yards. But that 30 yards has taken us 30 months to prepare for.

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16 Jan 2015

Best Family Events in Tampa Bay for Weekend of January 17-18

No Comments Adventures, Tampa, Tampa Bay

There are some really great events happening this weekend all over Tampa Bay! We think all these will be a huge hit with your kids (of all ages)!

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What: Monster Jam
When: Saturday, January 17
Where: Raymond James Stadium
Tickets: Buy now
Why: Big & loud trucks, loud music and lots if really cool tricks by professional drivers will have your kids standing on their feet and just having an awesome time at the annual Monster Jam that comes to Tampa each year. Bring ear plugs or sound blocking gear for the little ones. Might be cold, so bundle up, but getting their early means you’ll be able to see how big these trucks are up close at the “pit party! ” And they are HUGE! Go have fun and enjoy the show!
Details: Pit Party 1:30pm-5pm
Show starts at 7pm

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What: Bolts Family Carnival
When: Sunday, January 18
Where: Amalie Arena
Tickets: Tampa Bay Lightning
Why: The Lightning Foundation has created it’s first ever Bolts Family Carnival to help support the foundation as it supports more than 250 local non-profits to distribute funds and services. The carnival will be held under the “big top” (AKA Amalie Arena) and will have all Lightning players in attendance, the Stanley Cup for pictures and lots of awesome carnival-style games and food! Tickets can be purchased based on how long you’d like to stay. I know a day of fun with the Lightening us going to be awesome so we can’t wait to attend! Take the whole family and support the Tampa Bay community while having fun!

What: 18th Annual Treasure Island Sport Kite Festival
When: Saturday, January 17- Sunday, January 18
Where: Thunderbird On Treasure Island
Why: January at the beach has a chance to be chilly but when the sun is out the blue skies are the prettiest and the day itself is gorgeous! Enjoy a day at the beach while watching professional kite fliers fly kites with great precision! The whole family will have a great time just enjoying the beautiful weather and the activity in the sky!

23 Dec 2014

Experience Phantom of the Opera

No Comments Adventures, Review, Sponsored, Tampa, Tampa Bay

If you can’t get to New York City this lifetime and you want to experience what most tourists will do on their trip, treat yourself to an experience like no other when the Phantom of the Opera comes to you.

IMG_5195.JPGA packed house awaits the 2nd act of Phantom of the Opera at the Straz Center on December 19th, 2014 in Tampa, Florida.

Clearly, Phantom of the Opera could be considered one of the classics among attractions in New York City as it stands as the longest-running show in Broadway history with 26 years and counting, at the Majestic Theatre. In 2012, the show celebrated its 10,000th show. It is currently playing in 6 countries as well as on tour in the US North American.

Most Broadway show tours only come to cities city for a few short weeks. You should definitely take in a show, even if Broadway isn’t your thing, there is so much more to experience. When people say “On Broadway” it tends to have meaning much deeper than just a street location in New York City. It tends to have a prestige attached to it unmatched to any other. Known as the “Great White Way” for being one of America’s very first streets with lights, the marquee lights on all the theatre houses that light up Time’s Square have become iconic to people everywhere. The Theater District in New York City is now home to more than 40 professional theaters. Theaters can seat up to 500 people and host a variety of productions year round.

The Phantom of the Opera US Tour, which is happening now until January 2016, is everything a Broadway musical production should be, minus New York City of course, but pretty close to it. The stage is majestic. The voices are beautiful. The music is breathtaking. The overall experience is classic Broadway. Everything you might imagine on Broadway will come to you.

The story has never been changed from its original Andrew Lloyd Webber’s score. However, each new actor that plays the lead characters has the ability to interpret the role slightly different than the last. The special effects, including the show’s legendary chandelier, will still have the same impact on your experience, wherever you see it, just as if you were sitting inside the Majestic Theatre itself. Listening to perfect voices sing some of the most recognizable songs from the musical such as “Music of the Night” and “All I Ask of You” and “Wishing You Were Somehow Here” will have you wanting to give a standing ovation for each number.

Experiencing the theatre is an activity that the whole family will enjoy. For centuries, societies have used theatre as a form of entertainment that continues to live on into our generation and beyond. Many Broadway shows are now preformed and are geared towards the younger audiences too (Lion King, Matilda, Wicked, Cinderella just to name a few.) Phantom of the Opera might be a tad bit over the top for some kids (there are deaths that are slightly graphic by nature), but guaranteed that they will not forget the show. The meaning of mask and what it depicts might come later, but a love for theatre and the art form is what the experience is all about, no matter what the show.

The Straz Center currently is hosting its Best of Broadway series presented by Bank of America. Their shows are among some of the best that Broadway has to offer. For season tickets to these and other shows, visit them online to learn more.

Phantom of the Opera is on a US Tour until 2016. For tickets to a show in a city near you visit here. For tickets to the Tampa performances at the Straz Center from December 17th through January 4th, visit here.

Disclaimer: I was a guest of the Straz Center for the Phantom of the Opera performance. All opinions in this essay are my own.

 

11 Nov 2014

Family Friendly Dinner and a Movie at Studio Movie Grill Opens in Tampa

No Comments Ad, Dining Out, Florida, Sponsored, Studio 10 TV Segment, Tampa, Tampa Bay, Tampa Restaurants

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Studio Movie Grill has recently opened in north Tampa at the University Square Mall. Their state of the art theatre and newly renovated high tech theatre is a perfect place to brain the whole family for dinner and a movie (or even date night if you are that lucky.)

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12 Oct 2014

Blog Talk Radio: Talkupy Interview with Marisa Langford (Truck Farm Tampa + Fit Kids Playground)

No Comments Professional, Tampa Bay

Marisa Langford Truck Farm Tampa

People always ask me what I do. Yes, if you know me, you probally already know that I am busy. But that’s just me. It is in my DNA. Always has been.

About 1 year ago, I was able to do an interview on Talkupy Radio on Blog Talk Radio to talk about all the project that I have launched in Tampa Bay. I have listened to it several times and I think it is the best interview that I have ever done that highlights why I do what I do and what my project actually do for the community. It talks about the Fit Kids Playground project, why I started the project and what it does in Tampa Bay. We talk about the Truck Farm Project and hoe it came about and how I got involved with Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution for Tampa Bay.

This is my story. This is who I am. If you want to know what makes me tick, here is it. This is me.

Blog Talk Radio- Talkupy Interview with Marisa Langford

05 Oct 2014

Best Family Sunday Funday Ideas in Tampa Bay

No Comments Adventures, Family Travel, Florida, Opinion, Tampa, Tampa Bay

Launching a new series of ‘Tampa Mama Says’! This week is best family Sunday Funday ideas in Tampa Bay. These are not ads but curated lists based on what we like to do as a family in Tampa Bay on a glorious Sunday.

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17 Mar 2012

Happy St. Patrick’s Day from Tampa!

No Comments Adventures, Florida, Holidays, Tampa, Tampa Bay

Thanks to the wonderful City of Tampa and the Tampa Downtown Partnership, we now have a NEW tradition! The Hillsborough River will now be dyed GREEN and there will be a family friendly Mayor’s River O’ Green Fest that will take place at Curtis Hixon Park along the beautiful Tampa Riverwalk.
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