McDonald's®
Children's Gasparilla Extravaganza

Another Piratical Season Invades Tampa Bay

CONTACT:    DARRELL STEFANY, EVENTFEST
(813) 251-3378

DON BARNES, YMKG
(813) 251-4500

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

TAMPA, FL – EventFest, Inc. and Ye Mystic Krewe of Gasparilla are proud to welcome back McDonald’s® as title sponsor of the 2016 Children’s Gasparilla Extravaganza. This is McDonald’s® sixth consecutive year as title sponsor of the Children’s Gasparilla Extravaganza, the alcohol-free kick-off event to Tampa’s historic Gasparilla celebration.

“The McDonald’s® Children’s Gasparilla Extravaganza has grown to be recognized as one of the nation’s premier family events, and is now recognized as the largest children’s parade in the country” said Darrell Stefany, President of EventFest, Inc. “Tampa has enjoyed Gasparilla for generations, and with the support of our friends at McDonald’s®, Ye Mystic Krewe of Gasparilla and all our Gasparilla sponsors and participating krewes, this tradition continues for our next generation to enjoy.”

FOX13 Tampa Bay returns as exclusive television sponsor, and will broadcast the Children’s Gasparilla Parade live on January 23, 2016 from 4 – 6 p.m. The entire parade will also be streamed live on www.MyFoxTampBay.com beginning at 4 p.m. Following their evening news, FOX 13 will return “live” to Show Center near Howard and Bayshore and broadcast the Gasparilla “Piratechnic” Extravaganza, presented by McDonald’s® from 7 –7:30 p.m.

The 2016 McDonald’s® Children’s Gasparilla Extravaganza will take place on Saturday, January 23, 2016 from 11 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. The alcohol-free McDonald’s® Children’s Gasparilla Extravaganza focuses on family friendly activities along Bayshore Boulevard and will feature the Gasparilla Preschooler’s Stroll, the Gasparilla Air Invasion, the Children’s Gasparilla Parade, and the Gasparilla “Piratechnic” Extravaganza presented by McDonald’s®. Details can be found at www.GasparillaExtravaganza.com.

The 2016 Gasparilla Preschooler’s Stroll will begin at Howard and Bayshore and conclude at Rome Avenue. This half mile route is limited to Tampa’s “pint-sized” pirates, children 5 and under, (and their families) and provides families and groups the opportunity to dress up and creatively decorate their wagons and strollers as they celebrate the return of the Gasparilla season. The 2016 Stroll will feature over 1,200 participants, as Tampa’s next generation of pirates make their way up Bayshore Boulevard to the delight of thousands. The Stroll begins at 1:30 p.m.

“The Para-Commandos” – the United States Special Operations Command Parachute Team, will be featured at 3 p.m. as part of the event’s Gasparilla Air Invasion as they land on Bayshore Boulevard near show center just prior to the start of the Children’s Gasparilla Parade.

The Children’s Gasparilla Parade –part of Tampa’s Gasparilla celebration since 1947, will begin at Bay to Bay and Bayshore at 3:30 p.m. Children ages 6 and older will dance, march and parade down Bayshore Boulevard and will end at Edison and Bayshore. The 2016 Children’s Gasparilla Parade will include over 100 units, featuring dance units, spectacular floats, and over 40 Krewes. For the third year, the Children’s Gasparilla Parade will be broadcast live on FOX13 on January 23, 2016 from 4 – 6 p.m. The parade will also be streamed live on www.MyFoxTampBay.com.

The event concludes with the Gasparilla “Piratechnic” Extravaganza presented by McDonald’s®, with Tampa Bay’s largest pyrotechnic display of the year launched over western Hillsborough Bay. This year’s show will be produced for the first time by PYROTECHNICO, presenting a specially choreographed presentation re-creating the imaginary battle between the City of Tampa and the pirates of Ye Mystic Krewe of Gasparilla. Following another successful “attack” that the invading pirates have won since 1904, the City of Tampa is “defenseless” and the stage is set for a smooth and festive Gasparilla Invasion by the pirates of Ye Mystic Krewe of Gasparilla on the following Saturday (January 30, 2016).

The musical soundtrack which accompanies the “Piratechnic” Extravaganza is played over concert-quality speakers near Show Center at Howard and Bayshore. Due to the precision of the bursts timed with the music, the Show is best seen and heard from near Show Center at Howard and Bayshore  Special McDonald’s memories will be seen and heard during the Gasparilla “Piratechnic” Extravaganza broadcast live on FOX 13 at 7 p.m. on January 23, 2016.  A separate release will detail the 2016 “Piratechnic” Extravaganza presentation in mid-January 2016.

Finally, the evening debuts a magnificent and unique presentation of Ye Mystic Krewe of Gasparilla’s pirate Ship – the Jose Gasparilla, as specially rigged up-lighting will lite-up the ship’s masts and rigging in a magical display of color and special effects. This visual display will be presented each evening from approximately 6:30 p.m. until 9 p.m.  starting on January 23rd and ending on Tuesday, January 26th off of ye waters east of Howard Avenue and Bayshore Boulevard in South Tampa.

Reserved Children’s Gasparilla Parade bleacher seating tickets are $35 and First Mate chair seating is $49, plus tax. For additional information or to purchase Children’s Gasparilla Parade tickets and/or officially licensed Gasparilla Treasures merchandise, please visitwww.GasparillaTreasures.com.  Tickets can also be ordered over the phone by calling EventFest’s Gasparilla Ticket Reservation Line at (813) 251- 8844.  A ticket representative will be available between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday – Friday.

Reserved Seating for the McDonald’s® Children’s Gasparilla Extravaganza is limited for the 2016 event. All reserved ticket orders are filled in the order they are received, therefore guests should order their reserved tickets early to best accommodate any seating preference they may desire.

 Sponsors as of the date of this release include: 

Title Sponsor – McDonald’s®

Amalie Oil Company; Circle K; Coca Cola Company; iHeartRadio Stations including: WBTP-FM 95.7 The Beat, WFLZ-FM 93.3 FLZ, WFUS-FM US 103.5, WMTX-FM MIX 100.7, 620 WDAE The Sports Animal, 970 WFLA NewsRadio; City of Tampa, FOX 13, MyFoxTampaBay.com, The Tampa Tribune, TBO.com, Verizon Wireless; Water Ventures and Ye Mystic Krewe of Gasparilla

Tampa’s Official Gasparilla events, including the McDonald’s® Children’s Gasparilla Extravaganza, the Seminole Hard Rock Gasparilla Pirate Fest and Gasparilla Outbound Voyage are marketed, managed and produced annually by EventFest, Inc. of Tampa.

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