SHARKCON: Richard Dreyfuss and Sharknado stars
In its fifth year, SharkCon has expanded from a weekend all about sharks with a touch tank, ocean bounce house and science talks, adding a comic con element with celebrity appearances by Richard Dreyfuss, left, of Jaws and stars from Sharknado, including Ian Ziering, Cassie Scerbo and Gena Lee Nolin. There’s a pop-culture element, with panels featuring stars and screenwriters, but there is also a strong conservation message between the shark tooth dig pit, paddleboard clinic, scuba pool, shark ride, mermaids, marine rescue exhibits, STEM projects and shark dissection. At Jawing With Richard Dreyfuss from 5:30-7 p.m. Saturday, the Oscar winner will talk about his career and his first big cult-hit movie, though he has had many others (Close Encounters of the Third Kind, What About Bob?). $49.99 admission to the Dreyfuss talk includes VIP front-line access to panels and meet and greets all weekend. Selfies and autographs are cash only, $50-$100. Regular SharkCon admission is $14.95, $4.95 3-13 (one day); $19.95, $7.50 children for two days. 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Saturday-Sunday. Florida State Fairgrounds, 4802 U.S. 301 N, Tampa. (941) 539-0833. shark-con.com.
CinemaSTEM: The Perfect Storm
A new series at Tampa Theatre pairs popular films with experts to discuss themes of science, technology, engineering and math in the film. This week brings The Perfect Storm, the story of a crew trapped aboard a fishing vessel stuck in a giant storm, with George Clooney. After the screening, Fox 13 meteorologist Dave Osterberg discusses weather patterns that created the "perfect story," and what a perfect storm in Tampa Bay would look like, and provides tips on weathering the 2018 hurricane season. 4 p.m. Friday. 711 Franklin St., Tampa. $10, $8 ages 2-12, $7 members, 1 and younger free. (813) 274-8982. tampatheatre.org.
PLAY DIRTY: Extreme Mud Wars
The wildly popular day of rolling in a mud pit and slinging dirt returns to St. Petersburg, though at a new location. Extreme Mud Wars will have contests in ultimate football, belly bumpers, dodgeball, tug-of-war, an obstacle course, joust pit, the eliminator and mud volleyball. Teams of six to 10 must have two women or more per team. It takes 10 8-ton dump trucks of soil and eight fire hoses to create this messy fun at Lake Vista Park this year, since construction around the Pier made the previous Spa Beach location impossible. It’s free for spectators, with food trucks and a beer garden on site. To play, it’s $500 for a team, and individuals can be placed on a team for $65. Sign up at extrememudwars.com. 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturday. 1401 62nd Ave. S, St. Petersburg. (877) 820-2582.