Spring is in the Air Downtown

Posted: Feb 27, 2019 06:02 pm Updated: Oct 17, 2023 10:15 am

Spring is in the air, bringing longer days and plenty of sunshine. There's more time to play and fun things to do every day of the week in Downtown Pensacola. Here are a few downtown events and happenings that deserve to be on your springtime calendar. 

Laissez les bons temps rouler! It's Mardi Gras season, so head downtown on March 1 to experience the energy and excitement of the annual Krewe of Lafitte Illuminated Parade starting at 7 p.m. The Pensacola Grand Mardi Gras Parade will roll down Palafox the very next day, Sat., March 2 at 2 p.m. Come prepared to load up on beads and Moon Pies as you enjoy the music and revelry of more than 60 decorated Mardi Gras floats. 

If you’ve never sat starboard and gazed upon Pensacola Bay from a British blockade ship replica, now is your chance. After a brief visit last year, Tall Ship Lynx has returned to Downtown Pensacola, docked at Plaza De Luna until March 11. With a ticketed tour you can immerse yourself in the storied past of the Privateers who sailed these beautiful sharp-pressed Baltimore Clippers during the War of 1812. Step back in time and help the crew hoist the sails, steer the ship and enjoy the wonderful views of the Bay.

Is there such a thing as too much BBQ? Join others who would laugh at such a ridiculous notion at the Smokin’ in the Square BBQ cook-off at Maritime Park March 15–17. Roam around the vendor-lined paths and follow the scent of smoky, saucy goodness prepared by professional and amateur teams. Whether you are partial to Memphis- or Carolina-style, celebrate the Pensacola way with a BBQ meal from your favorite vendor and the beautiful waterfront views of Pensacola Bay. 

Batter up! Baseball season is back and the Blue Wahoos will suit up for their first home game on April 10 against their division rival, the Jacksonville Jumbo Shrimp. Head over to the Blue Wahoos Stadium at Maritime Park to give a warm, waterfront welcome to our favorite minor league baseball team!

Playing in the streets usually isn’t the best idea, unless you’re in Downtown Pensacola March 23 for Ciclovia, when some streets will be closed to motorized traffic and opened to bikers, walkers, runners and whoever else wants to enjoy the outdoors! Ciclovia is a grassroots movement that originated in Bogota, Columbia in the 1970s. Pensacola adopted the annual tradition in 2017, welcoming participants downtown to enjoy a little physical activity and explore the area. 

The first wave of Pensacola’s beloved annual festivals is scattered throughout April—providing perfect opportunities to enjoy the warmer weather. Maritime Park becomes a culinary caravan April 5-6 for the Food Truck Festival organized by Pensacola Habitat for Humanity. If you love the soothing vibe of jazz, head to Seville Square April 6-7 for the 36th Pensacola JazzFest. Live music, arts and crafts and, of course, crawfish—you'll find them all at the 35th Annual Crawfish Festival at this year's new Maritime Park location April 26-28. 

It's Spring, and fun things are happening throughout Downtown Pensacola. So grab your family or friends and start enjoying the artsy-foodie-fun culture of downtown!

[PHOTO CREDIT: Laura Bogan]