▪ Florida will get 10 visits from the top two jet demonstration teams in 2016 — the Air Force Thunderbirds and the Navy Blue Angels. Each team plans five stops in the Sunshine State with shows in spring, summer and fall from Key West to the Panhandle.
First up will be the Thunderbirds March 19-20 at Tampa Bay AirFest, a free event held at MacDill Air Force Base. The Air Force team’s shows will be April 9-10 at the new Gateway to Florida Air Show in Lake City; May 7-8 for the Fort Lauderdale Air Show, which has not been held since 2013; Oct 8-9 for the Embry-Riddle Wings and Waves Air Show in Daytona Beach; and Nov. 5-6 at the Wings Over Homestead show at Homestead Air Reserve Base.
The Blue Angels, whose home base is in Pensacola, will perform April 2-3 with the Southernmost Air Spectacular at the Key West Naval Air Station; Vero Beach June 25-26; Pensacola Beach July 16; the Jacksonville Sea and Sky Spectacular Air Show Nov. 5-6; and their Homecoming Air Show at Pensacola Naval Air Station. Details: www.afthunderbirds.com, www.facebook.com/USNavyBlueAngels.
▪ Some of America’s most celebrated Celtic musical masters will be featured at the third annual Florida Keys Celtic Festival on Jan. 9-10. Among the performers: the Scottish band Albannach, Rathkeltair, The Screaming Orphans, West of Galway and Marcille Wallis & Friends in a live acoustic performance. Other highlights of the weekend event include the bagpipes and drums of Police Pipe and Drum of Florida, Highland Athletics, a sanctioned women’s competition and a men’s demonstration, and the Florida State Haggis Hurling Championship. Details: www.floridakeyscelticfestival.com.
▪ Adventureland at the Magic Kingdom at Walt Disney World has a new restaurant inspired by the Jungle Cruise attraction. The Jungle Navigation Co. Ltd. Skipper Canteen features Asian, South American and African cuisine. In other Disney food news, the Ganachery chocolate shop is now open at Disney Springs (formerly Downtown Disney), featuring a decadent assortment of artisan chocolates.
▪ The Marco Island Historical Museum will hold a family-friendly Pirate Day 2016 on Jan. 23, invoking the tales of the pirates who lurked in the waters of Southwest Florida during the 1600s. Activities will include pirate-themed arts and crafts, face-painting and treasure hunts. Event is from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. To this day, tales of swashbucklers, buried treasure and the marauding pirates that pestered the Spanish sea captains during the 1600s abound in Southwest Florida. Details: www.colliermuseums.com or 239-642-1440.
▪ Allegiant has added seasonal service between Fort Lauderdale and Grand Rapids, Michigan. The nonstop flights will operate twice weekly through April 2016. Details: www.allegiant.com.
MIAMI HERALD STAFF AND WIRES