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Riverfest is a public, two-day, free event that is held the first weekend in May. The festival spans the entire length of the Riverwalk and includes several parks and features family-friendly activities and events showcasing Tampa’s cultural institutions, local music and restaurants.

Tampa Riverfest 2024 is scheduled for May 3rd and 4th! We were so happy with how our 2023 event turned out and we are working tirelessly to make it even bigger and better this year. We look forward to seeing you!

July 4th Boat Parade 

Friends of the Riverwalk hosts our 2nd annual July 4th Boat Parade and Blessing of the Fleet.  Similar route to our holiday light boat parade, however, this parade includes a blessing of the fleet station and a poker run! The Blessing of the Fleet is a tradition that began years ago but is still practiced in many fishing and boating communities around the world to ensure a safe and bountiful season. 

Boats will be decorated in red, white and blue and compete for the most patriotic boat trophy and a Tampa-themed gift basket.  Prior to the parade, spectators will be amazed by the Tampa Bay Water Ski Team. The boat parade will be followed by fireworks displays at Sparkman Wharf.   

Trick or Treat

This is a FREE community event!  Children in costume and their families are invited to come and trick or treat along the Riverwalk as well as enjoy fun activities.  We will have over 50 treat stations participating along the Riverwalk from Water Works Park to MacDill Park including Curtis Hixon Waterfront Park.  Kids of all ages are encouraged to participate in our costume parade at Water Works Park.  At the conclusion of the event, we invite you to stick around and enjoy the Halloween Lighted Boat Parade along the Hillsborough River.


Don’t miss all 2.6 miles of the Tampa Riverwalk decked out festive holiday lights and floating displays on the Hillsborough River. The displays will begin after Thanksgiving run through New Year’s Eve.


Tampa’s largest lighted boat parade will happen Saturday, December 23, 2023, along the Hillsborough River in Downtown Tampa. The parade begins in the Convention Center basin, travels to the Heights, and ends at Sparkman Wharf. Judges are pairs from Big Brothers and Big Sisters and the winner of the sailboat and motorboat competitions will each receive a trophy.