The holidays are right around the corner and there are so many cool things to do this month we can hardly contain ourselves! Whether you’re looking for fun, family-friendly events, things to do with your furry friend, or adult-only activities, Discover Bradenton has got you covered. Check it out!
1. The Big Bounce America
November 1st, 2nd, and 3rd
Nathan Benderson Park: 5851 Nathan Benderson Circle, Sarasota, Florida 34235
Are you ready for one of the most FUN and memorable experiences of the year?! Then you won’t want to miss The Big Bounce America. This epic adventure features the world’s biggest bounce house, America’s biggest inflatable obstacle course, and airSPACE — featuring slides, ball pits, a 60-foot tall maze and more!
Individual sessions are available for all ages from toddlers to adults. One price gives you three hours of fun and all three experiences. Purchase your tickets here! They’re already very limited, so don’t delay.
Wondering what to expect? Check out this video!
2. Festival of the Skeletons
Friday, November 1st from 6 p.m. until 9:30 p.m.
Saturday, November 2nd from 11 a.m. until 4 p.m.
Village of the Arts: 12th Street West Bradenton, Florida 34205
Did you know Florida’s largest Dias De Los Muertos party is located in Bradenton’s Village of the Arts? The 15th annual Festival of the Skeletons features food trucks, a community shrine, memory wall, individual shrines and altars, and special art exhibits throughout the village. There will also be a village-wide scavenger hunt with a raffle drawing for prizes.
There will be live music throughout the village, including:
- Bird Rock Taco Shack: The Divebombers & Red Elvises (Friday), The Jason Haram Group (Saturday)
- The Dancing Crane Gallery: SCF Jazz Band (Friday)
- Art Junkies: Koko Ray (Friday)
- Jerk Dog Records: Ugly Couple & Reservoir Dawgs (Friday)
- Monark Custom Framing and Art Gallery: The Brothers Gabriel (Friday)
Admission is free! Find out more here: The Village of the Arts Festival of the Skeletons.
3. Peace and Love Tour
Saturday, November 2nd from 7 p.m. until 9 p.m.
Neel Auditorium 5840 26th St W, Bradenton, Florida 34207
Return to Woodstock with this fun musical Peace and Love Tour performed by the psychedelic group Paisley Craze Band who has been playing 60s music since Woodstock! They’ll also be accompanied by solo artist Robert Garcia and Harry Havery of California Toe Jam.
Enjoy listening to the sounds of Creedence Clearwater Revival, the Grateful Dead, Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin, Crosby, Stills, and Nash, The Who & more. Plan to arrive early so you can enjoy pre-show festivities including Woodstock trivia, tie-dye merchandise, photo-booths, and live music BEFORE THE SHOW! The event starts at 5:30 p.m. The opener hits the stage at 6:30 p.m. and the concert begins at 7:00 p.m. Tickets start at just $25 and you can purchase them here.
4. Chamber Expo
Wednesday, November 6th from 4 p.m. until 7:30 p.m.
Bradenton Area Convention Center: 1 Haben Blvd, Palmetto, Florida 34221
Join the Manatee Chamber of Commerce and the Sarasota Chamber of Commerce for the 2019 Chamber Expo. This awesome event is open to the public and is attended by more than 1,000 individuals interested in learning about local companies’ products and services. The cost to attend is just $5 per person (parking is free) and includes light bites from 13 area restaurants, tons of door prizes, a $500 grand prize, photo booths, DJ, networking, and fun. You can register ahead of time at www.ManateeChamber.com/Expo or just show up and enjoy the fun!
5. Flight to the North Pole Benefit Car & Motorcycle Show
Saturday, November 9th from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m.
Manatee County Sheriff’s Office Operations Center: 600 U.S. 301 Blvd W #202, Bradenton, FL 34205
“Flight to the North Pole” is one of the Manatee County Sheriff’s office’s charities. This organization is dedicated to putting on an annual Christmas event that “provides compassion and good-will for local families dealing with a child suffering from life-threatening or special health problems.” For some of these children, this Christmas may be their last.
Support this cause by coming out to the Flight to the North Pole Benefit Car & Motorcycle Show. There will be a ton of cool cars and motorcycles on display as well as raffles, door prizes, 50/50, silent auction, show trophies, DJ, food & vendors, face painting and live music by Sarah Santiago & Friends.
6. Taste of Mixon
Saturday, November 9th from 11 a.m. until 3 p.m.
Mixon Fruit Farms: 2525 27th St. E. Bradenton, FL 34208
Whether you’ve never been to Mixon’s or you’re a long-time fan, you won’t want to miss Taste of Mixon’s. During this fun event, every guest is given a passport which you can use at stations around the store to taste treats like Kettle Korn, Orange Salsa, Butterfinger Milkshake, Mixon Select Wine, Cream and Butter Fudge, and a deli item. Get a stamp at each station, then drop your completed passport into a box for your chance to win a cool prize!
This event is free, and there will also be entertainment throughout the day. Stop by and say hi, you’ll be glad you did!
7. 24th Annual Christmas Market
Saturday, November 9th from 9 a.m. until 1 p.m.
Kirkwood Presbyterian Church: 6101 Cortez Rd W, Bradenton, Florida 34210
Are you ready to get a jumpstart on your holiday shopping and support a ton of local businesses and great causes? Then you’ll want to check out the 24th Annual Christmas Market. Here you’ll find unique gifts for your friends and family while also learning about how to support local, national, and international charities and organizations.
The Kiwanis Book Mobile will be there handing out free books to kids and the Kirkwood Youth will be selling grilled food to support their summer mission trip. Other organizations that will be at the market include: Beth-El Farmworkers Ministry, Cedarkirk Camp & Conference Center, Crafty Cut Ups, Feeding Empty Little Tummies, HOPE Family Services, Hope4 Communities, Hope Seeds, Humane Society of Manatee, J-316 Ministries, Kirkwood Youth, Learn To Fish Recovery, Manatee Sunrise Kiwanis Foundation, Manatee Literacy Council, My Choice Pregnancy Center, Project Heart, Selah Freedom, and Ten Thousand Villages.
8. Suncoast Food and Wine Fest
Saturday, November 9th from 1 p.m. until 4 p.m.
Premier Sports Campus: 5895 Post Blvd. Lakewood Ranch, FL 34211
Join the Rotary Club of Lakewood Ranch for their annual Suncoast Food and Wine Fest. This extremely popular event includes samplings from some of the area’s best restaurants and over 100 wines from around the world. There’s also craft beers and soft drinks, live entertainment, cooking demonstrations, giveaways, and a grand prize drawing at the end of the event.
Your $85 ticket covers everything! Note that tickets will not be sold at the door. You can purchase them using this link.
9. Symphony on the Sand
Saturday, November 9th from 4:30 p.m. until 7:30 p.m.
Coquina Beach: Gulf Dr. S, Bradenton Beach, FL
You’ll love this elegant evening on Coquina Beach featuring Anna Maria Island’s 45-piece orchestra, noted local soloists, and a professional chorus. VIP tickets include a catered presentation of small plates offered by local restaurateurs with complimentary wine, select beer, and access to luxury restrooms exclusive for VIP table guests. There will also be concessions and a cash bar for all other ticket holders. Learn more and buy your tickets here.
10. Manatee Community Concert Band Fall Concert
Saturday, November 9th at 7 p.m.
Neel Performing Arts Center (SCF): 11 East 60th Ave W, Bradenton, FL 34207
Join the Manatee Community Concert Band (MCCB) for the opening of their 125th season with a free Fall concert conducted by JR Boatwright. This is a general seating event that’s open to the public. Want to learn more about MCCB? They were just featured on Discover Bradenton! Check out the article here.
11. Stone Crab Festival
Saturday, November 9th and Sunday, November 10th from 10 a.m. until 6 p.m.
Parking Lot of Swordfish Gill & Tiki: 4628 119th St W. Cortez, Florida 34215
Come down to the Cortez Fishing Village to celebrate two days of live music, fresh seafood, and family-friendly entertainment. There will be three stages with multiple bands both days, a beer tent, kid’s area, and local vendors selling art, crafts, and more. Admission is FREE. You won’t want to miss this!
12. Women’s Wellness Weekend: Art, Play, Love
Friday, November 15th at 12 p.m. until Sunday, November 17th at 3 p.m.
Waterline Marina Resort & Beach Club, Autograph Collection: 5325 Marina Drive, Holmes Beach, Florida 34217
The second annual Women’s Wellness Weekend is a three-day event geared towards supporting art, creativity, and wellness. There will be a wide variety of interactive, heart-fulfilling, and inspiring workshops including:
- Circle of Light Meditation with Frannie Hoffman
- Singing bowls with Jody Tschida
- Yoga Classes to help you align your body and energetic field
- Sheryl Spikes speaking about softening your spirit and reminding you to take moments to breathe in your life
- Lori Heinz moving you with color and whimsy
- Karen Chambers sharing about clearing energy and healing (plus a practice you can take home with you)
- Casey Hoffman speaking about how to improve your life practice with easy to use spiritual tools
- And more!
Registration for all three days is $150.00 per person. If you attended last year, take $15 off. For information and tickets, call 941-778-2099.
13. Santa’s Grand Arrival & Firework Spectacular
Friday, November 15th from 6 p.m. until 10 p.m.
The Mall at University Towncenter (UTC): 140 University Town Center Dr, Sarasota, Florida 34243
Whether you have little ones or you’re just young at heart, you’ll want to kick off the holiday season by checking out Santa’s Grand Arrival and Fireworks Spectacular! This will be a night filled with family fun, fireworks, and giveaways!
The event includes:
- Food Vendors
- Live Music and Entertainment
- Performances by Sailor Circus Academy
- Appearances by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Tampa Bay Lightning
- Ice Skating and Snow Tubing at UTC Holidays on the Green
- Dance Party and Meet & Greets with Holiday Characters
Be there by 7 p.m. to enjoy the Lighting of the Mall at UTC and the UTC Districts, Magical Rooftop Santa Arrival Show, and a spectacular fireworks show!
14. Wreaths Across America Scavenger Hunt
Saturday, November 16th from 10 a.m. until 6 p.m.
Firkins Chrysler Jeep Dodge Ram: 2700 1st St, Bradenton, Florida 34208
Join TriCounty Jeepers and Jeepin Divas 941 for the first annual Wreaths Across America Scavenger Hunt to raise money for Family & Friends of Sarasota National Cemetery. Last year they were able to place wreaths on over 13,000 markers at the Sarasota National Cemetery. This year that number is expected to grow by over a thousand. You can do your part to make sure every headstone receives a wreath this season by participating in this fun event.
Check-in will begin at 10 a.m. and you must return by 3:30 p.m. This is a family-friendly event and all types of vehicles are welcome. There will be prizes, raffles, and more!
15. Bishop Animal Shelter’s Canine Christmas
Saturday, November 16th and Sunday, November 17th from 10 a.m. until 4 p.m.
Bishop Animal Shelter: 5718 21st Ave W, Bradenton, Florida 34209
Kick off the holidays with your furry friend at Bishop Animal Shelter’s Canine Christmas. This FREE event features rescue animals for adoption, food trucks, dog groomers and trainers, doggy fashion show, doggie fun zone, an agility and speed obstacle course, holiday-related merchandise, pet photos with Santa, and live music performers.
16. Food Truck Rally and 73º Flea at Naughty Monk Brewery
Saturday, November 16th from 12 p.m. until 11:30 p.m.
Naughty Monk Brewery: 2507 Lakewood Ranch Blvd., Bradenton, Florida 34211
Naughty Monk Brewery is celebrating their 3rd Anniversary and you won’t want to miss it! There are a TON of activities planned including a food truck rally and 73º Flea Market from 2 p.m. until 7 p.m. and then an after-party from 7 p.m. until close. There will be special bottle releases, live music, food, craft vendors, and of course COLD BEER! This event is family and pet-friendly until 8 pm.
Check out the homebrew contest from 4 p.m. until 6 p.m. (all proceeds go to Nate’s Honor Rescue). There will be live music by DINO the one man band from 3 until 7 p.m. and then by Whiskey Dregs Celtic band from 7:00 until 11:00. Don’t forget to wear your kilt and hang out with New World Celts – Sarasota from 6 p.m. until close.
17. Murder Mystery: Death of a Gangster (Dinner & Show)
Saturday, November 16th from 6 p.m. until 9 p.m.
Seafood Shack (Neptune Room): 4110 127th Street West Cortez, FL 34215
If you’re looking for something fun and different to do, you’ll want to check out the upcoming Murder Mystery Dinner & Show at The Seafood Shack. Don’t forget to “Dress like the cat’s meow for this mafia wedding!” Flapper dresses, zoot suits, feather boas, headbands, pinstriped suits, and fedoras are all appropriate. Traditional wedding attire is nifty too!
Your $45 ticket includes access to the show, buffet dinner, and 1 drink ticket valid for the signature cocktail. There will also be a cash bar with beer, wine, and signature cocktails. This might sell out, so make sure to get your tickets soon.
18. Empty Bowls
Thursday, November 21st from 11 a.m. until 1 p.m.
Manatee Performing Arts Center: 502 3rd Ave W, Bradenton, FL 34205
Friday, November 22nd from 11 a.m. until 1 p.m.
Lakewood Ranch Mainstreet: 8100 Lakewood Main St. Lakewood Ranch, FL 34202
Join The Food Bank of Manatee as they celebrate Hunger Relief in Manatee County. The annual Empty Bowls event is one you definitely won’t want to miss! Your admission ticket gets you a selection of soups, breads, and desserts made by local restaurants, and you get to take home your own one-of-a-kind, hand-painted bowl to commemorate the event! Tickets are just $30 ($50 for VIP) and you can get yours here.
There are TWO opportunities to enjoy this event: Thursday the 21st in downtown Bradenton and Friday the 22nd in Lakewood Ranch! Want to learn more about the Food Bank? Check out this article that was recently featured on Discover Bradenton.
19. Taps, Tacos & Tequila Festival
Saturday, November 23rd from 12 p.m. until 6 p.m.
Nathan Benderson Park: 5851 Nathan Benderson Cir, Sarasota, FL 34235
Craft beer, tacos, and tequila — what more do you need?! This awesome event will feature over 15 food vendors, including some of the best taco trucks around. There will also be multiple cocktail booths where you can try premium margaritas, high-end tequilas, and other spirits and cocktails. Tickets start at just $35. Learn more and buy your tickets here.
20. Harvest Festival Craft Fair
Saturday, November 23rd from 9 a.m. until 5 p.m.
Mixson Fruit Farm: 2525 27th St. E. Bradenton, FL 34208
Now is the perfect time to get a jump on your holiday shopping and SHOP LOCAL! During the free Harvest Festival Craft Fair at Mixon farms, there will be over 60 vendors offering home decor, candles, jewelry, soap, antiques, and much more. There will also be live entertainment, lots of unique food items, and a scavenger hunt with prizes.
21. Run for Tidewell Hospice Turkey Trot 5k
Saturday, November 23rd from 6:30 a.m. until 11 a.m.
Lakewood Ranch Main Street: 8100 Lakewood Main St, Bradenton, Florida 34202
Come on out and support Tidewell Hospice patients and families during the 2019 Turkey Trot 5k. This Thanksgiving-themed run/walk will also feature an exclusive after-party by Craft Growlers To Go and an awards ceremony.
Registration is at 6:30 am. The Kids Turkey Dashes start at 7:15 am and the Run/Walk begins at 8:00 am. Get your tickets here!
22. Mixology Cocktail Class
Monday, November 25th at 6:30 p.m. to 8:15 p.m.
Loaded Cannon Distillery: 3115 Lakewood Ranch Blvd. Ste. 110, Bradenton, Florida 34211
Have you checked out Loaded Cannon Distillery yet? Their Mixology Class is a great idea for date night or group activities. During this hour-and-a-half class, you’ll learn about cocktail history and fundamentals while sipping on the subject matter. This is an interactive, hands-on class that’s limited to a minimum of 10 and maximum of 15 people.
This month will be a vodka class. You’ll pay a $20 set-up fee and $22.99 for your bottle of vodka. They provide light snacks and you’re also welcome to bring your own or some to share.
To sign up for the class or join a waiting list, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 941-900-1482.
23. Main Street Live
Wednesday, November 27th from 6 p.m. until Midnight
Old Main St. Downtown Bradenton
The night before Thanksgiving is the biggest party day of the year, and you’ll want to spend it at downtown Bradenton’s Main Street Live — the biggest and best block party in town! There will be food trucks, merchants, vendors, and live rock-n-roll music by Whisky Blind.
24. Night Market & Food Truck Rally
Friday, November 29th from 6 p.m. until 10 p.m.
Motorworks Brewing: 1014 9th Street West, Bradenton, Florida 34205
On the last Friday of every month, Motorworks Brewing hosts a Night Market & Food Truck Rally. Come relax in the beer garden and browse original art, handmade crafts, and one-of-a-kind goods from over 30 different local vendors. There will also be plenty of food trucks, live music from 7 p.m. until 11 p.m., and (of course!) delicious beer. This FREE event is both family and pet-friendly.
25. Friendly City Flea
Saturday, November 30th from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m.
540 13th Street W, Bradenton, Florida 34205
What better way to celebrate Small Business Saturday than by shopping local at the Friendly City Flea. Here you’ll find lots of cool artists, makers, and creatives with tons of cool things for your holiday needs!
There you have it, Now you know about all of the Coolest Things to do in Bradenton this month. If you liked this post, please share it, and don’t forget to Follow Discover Bradenton on Facebook so you can keep your finger on the pulse of all the great things happening around town.
Check back later this month for the December edition of “Get of the Couch, Bradenton!” There are a lot of exciting events coming up and you won’t want to miss them!