New Exhibit Highlights Tampa’s Oldest Community Festival

On Saturday, January 20, 2024, Gasparilla: A Tampa Tradition will sail into the Henry B. Plant Museum highlighting Tampa’s oldest and most fun-loving community festival, with special emphasis on the 1933 Gasparilla in honor of the Museum’s 90th anniversary this year. This exhibit will feature more than 110 years of parades, pirate invasions, coronation balls, and more.

“Gasparilla is uniquely Tampa, and it is often what comes to mind when locals and visitors alike think of our city,” said Daniel Carpenter, Museum Relations Manager. “This exhibit brings fun for everyone and it will help visitors get into the Gasparilla spirit just in time for the invasion and parade.”

Visitors will have the chance to see vintage photographs, unique memorabilia, and gowns worn by Gasparilla queens and members of their courts, including a gown from 1957 that was designed by famed African American fashion designer, Ann Lowe. Visitors will also enjoy a film, “Memories of Gasparilla Festivals” that includes scenes from the 1920’s and images of early parades. Those who attended the Victorian Christmas Stroll and saved their brochure may use the coupon for free family admission to this fun and unique exhibit.

Gasparilla: A Tampa Tradition is included with admission to the Museum and sails until March 3, 2024. It is generously underwritten by Ye Mystic Krewe of Gasparilla and Brett, Pam, Ryan, and Hayley Divers and the Henry B. Plant Museum Society, Inc.

The Henry Plant Museum interprets the Tampa Bay Hotel and the experiences of the diverse individuals who contributed to its success. The Museum ignites thought and transports visitors to another era through exhibits and innovative programs, so that they may be educated and inspired by the lifestyles, times and experiences of Florida’s early tourist industry. The Museum is open Tuesday through Saturday, 10 am to 5 pm, Sunday, noon to 5 pm. Closed Mondays and select other dates.


Media Contact:
Daniel Carpenter