5 Things To Do

February 17äóñ 23

Itäó»s spriiiiiiing! At least, spiritually. At least, in Florida. Actually, in Florida, itäó»s already summer. So no wonder this week in Pinellas features not just one, but two music festivals, showcasing jazz in St. Pete and blues in Clearwater. Weäó»ve also got raucous improv comedy, beloved author George Saunders, and the rip-roaring country rock of Lucinda Williams.

Also, donäó»t forget, the Florida State Fair is still ongoing, so go grab a corndog/fried Snickers bar. Because itäó»s summer! Right?

Upright Citizens Brigade äóñ Friday, February 17

Letäó»s just get this out of the way äóñ this is the UCB touring company, which Amy Poehler and Matt Besser wonäó»t be anywhere within a 100-mile radius of. But their top-tier improve students will be dishing out absurdist improv in the foundersäó» mold, and doing it in the amazingly intimate confines of the Palladiumäó»s Side Door stage.

8 p.m., $25-40

The Side Door at the Palladium Theatre, 253 Fifth Ave. North, St. Petersburg

Tickets and Info Here

George Saunders – Saturday, February 18

George Saunders has accomplished the near-impossible, crafting a thriving career as a writer of short stories in a day and age where the novel is pretty nearly the only way for a fiction writer to get respect. Now, heäó»s finally made the jump to longform with a novel, Lincoln in the Bardo, which hits on some of his frequent themes äóñ specifically, the Civil War and ghosts. Itäó»s well worth crossing the bridge for this Q&A/book signing.

Also note, this may look a little pricey for an author Q&A, but the ticket price apparently includes a copy of the new book.

2:30 p.m., $38.50

Tampa Theatre, 711 N. Franklin Street, Tampa

Info and Tickets Here

Clearwater Sea-Blues Festival äóñ Saturday and Sunday, February 18Œæäóñ 19

Seafood and the blues? Not exactly an intuitive connection, but weäó»ll go with it. Bands include JJ Grey and Mofro, the Ries Brothers, The Sheepdogs, and The Betty Fox Band.

FREE, but reserve tickets in advance.

Coachman Park, 301 Drew Street, Clearwater

Info and Tickets Here

St. Petersburg Jazz Festival, Feb 2226

This five-night run of up-and-coming and established jazz artists isnäó»t quite Montreaux, but it presents a great opportunity to connect with your fellow local fans. This weekäó»s Wednesday and Thursday shows feature the progressive ensemble Robotman and time-tested bebop from Miamiäó»s Martin Beherano Trio.

7:30 p.m. $15 per show, or $65 for all five shows.

The Side Door at the Palladium, 253 Fifth Ave North, St. Petersburg

Info and Tickets Here

Lucinda Williams äóñ Thursday, February 23

Back in the 1990s, Alt-Country was a thing whispered about in cultish record stores, a close-held promise of the resurrected glories of Waylon and Willie and Tammy and the rest of that rough-edged crew. Then, in 1998, Lucinda Williamsäó» Car Wheels on a Gravel Road made everything old new again, and while it hasnäó»t ended up exactly revolutionizing commercial country, she at least laid down a path.

8 p.m., $48-$65

Capitol Theatre, 405 Cleveland Street, Clearwater

Info and Tickets Here


Honorable Mentions:

The Human Library äóñ February 18, 3 p.m. An offbeat but worthy experiment by Wordier than Thou, this is your chance to äóÖcheck outäó» a Human Book, in the hopes of opening up dialogue and crossing boundaries. St. Pete Brewing Co, 544 1st Avenue North, St. Pete. Info Here

Comedy Open Mic – Tuesday, February 21st, 9pm. Hopefully this lauded restaurant attracts talent to match the grub. 9pm, Iberian Rooster, 475 Central Ave. St. Pete. Info Here

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