After an explosive year, you can set a match to 2021 and watch it blow away at numerous fireworks shows on New Year’s Eve in the Tampa Bay area.
First Night St. Pete 2022:
The family friendly celebration in downtown St. Petersburg will have two fireworks displays. One is at the more bedtime-friendly hour of 8 p.m. and also at midnight. The purchase of a First Night St. Pete button is required for the hands-on activities at this party and supports this volunteer organization. $5-$20. 4 p.m.-midnight Friday. South Straub Park, 250 Bayshore Drive NE, St. Petersburg. 727-823-8906.
The best viewing areas are Veterans Park and Gulfport Beach. Free parking available on Shore Boulevard. Enter via 58th Street. Free. The fireworks launch at 7 p.m. Friday. Gulfport Beach Park, 5730 Shore Blvd. 727-893-1000.
St. Pete Beach:
Upham Beach will be closed at sundown to launch fireworks on the beach. Good viewing is available all along the beach. Free. The show starts at 9 p.m. Friday. Upham Beach, Gulf Boulevard and 68th Street, St. Pete Beach. 727-363-9274.
Light It Up Clearwater:
Sink your toes in the sand and watch the display launched from the northern part of Sand Key Park (the park will be closed to the public). Best viewing area is the southern part of Clearwater Beach but the fireworks will be visible along the beach. Free at midnight Friday. 1 Causeway Blvd., Clearwater. 727-442-5107.RELATED: New Year’s Eve events abound around the Tampa Bay area
A free party with live entertainment and food trucks will be at The Sail at the Riverwalk. The party starts at 8. p.m. with fireworks over the river at midnight. 333 S Franklin St., Tampa. There will also be a free party with live music and a view of the fireworks from the lawn at Armature Works, 1910 N Ola Ave., Tampa.
Noon Year’s Eve for Kids: Take the kids to the south and west lawns at Armature Works to count down to the “noon” year with a daytime fireworks display on the Hillsborough River, inflatable slides, roaming entertainment, music and photo opportunities. Free; $25-$50 for elevated VIP experience. 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Friday. Armature Works, 1910 N Ola Ave., Tampa.
Noon Year’s Eve at the Grove: Count down to noon at this celebration for families with games, daytime fireworks, bubble and magic shows, dance parties and a confetti blast. Free. 10 a.m.-3 p.m.Friday. 6105 Wesley Grove Blvd., Wesley Chapel. 404-869-2700.
New Year’s Eve at the Track: Both nights of racing end with fireworks at Showtime Speedway. Racing begins at 7 p.m. Friday and Saturday with school bus Figure 8s and Florida State championship open wheel competition. 4398 126th Ave., Pinellas Park. $20, age 12 and younger free.
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Busch Gardens: The Tampa theme park will have fireworks at midnight on Friday, entertainment and festive activities at Christmas Town with millions of twinkling lights. $79.99 for single day tickets at buschgardens.com. 10165 McKinley Drive, Tampa.
New Year’s Eve Brooksville: Lead Foot City will have a car cruise in, entertainment and fireworks. 7 p.m.-1 a.m. $15-$100. 17109 Old Ayers Road, Brooksville