Wednesday, September 19, 2018


Christopher Spata

Christopher Spata

Christopher Spata is a web producer and features writer for the Tampa Bay Times, focusing on entertainment, pop culture, social media and things to do. He also contributes to The Feed blog. A lifelong Floridian, he previously worked as a web producer and entertainment reporter for the Tampa Tribune, and covered sports for the Ocala Star-Star Banner. He graduated from the University of South Florida in 2011, and joined the Times in 2016.

The characters Sir Henry and Ominous Grimm are seen at the I-4 Fear Park: Sir Henry's Haunted Trail featuring Ominous Descent. [Photo from I-4 Fear Park]

Shoot zombies with a paintball gun or escape a real WWII ship at Tampa Bay haunted houses

Here’s a look at some haunted houses and Halloween-themed attractions coming to Tampa, Plant City and Pasco County.SCREAM-A-GEDDON
Updated: 1 hour ago
Major Ryan Fitzpatrick, Buccaneers quarterback, prolific writer of letters to

Say hello to Major Ryan Fitzpatrick, Bucs QB and Civil War pen pal

You’ve probably heard about the #FitzMagic phenomenon by now, but are you following Major Ryan...
Published: 09/18/18
A punk vampire seen at Vamp 85, a New Year\u2019s Eve-themed vampire haunt at Universal Studios\u2019 Halloween Horror Nights. (Universal Studios)

Halloween Horror Nights, Howl-O-Scream look to the '80s and classics for horror nostalgia

A thin guy with perfectly Purple Rain era Prince curly mullet hair, blood dripping from his mouth to the front of his puffy shirt, struts past a group of theme park guests onto the streets of "New York City."
Published: 09/18/18
Alex Melvin and Chelsea Criner pose as characters from Fallout 3 at the 2018 Tampa Bay Comic Con at the Tampa Convention Center.  LUIS SANTANA   |   Times

Tampa Bay Comic Con changes name in wake of San Diego Comic Con trademark case

The change comes less than two weeks after a federal judge in California ordered organizers of Salt Lake Comic Con to pay nearly $4 million in attorneys' fees and costs to San Diego Comic Convention in a trademark infringement suit
Published: 09/05/18
Photos by CHRISTOPHER SPATA   |   Times
Tampa natives, sisters Theresa Raymondo, left, and Jeannette Tamburello grew up speaking English, Cuban and Sicilian.\uFEFF

Is there a Tampa accent? How about a Florida accent? It’s complicated, but maybe.

If there is a Tampa accent, it shares something with Supreme Court Justice Potter Stewart’s famous 1964 definition of obscenity. He couldn’t quite describe it, but said, "I know it when I see it."In the case of Tampa’s supposedly distinct...
Updated one month ago
Rainn Wilson appeared in a Facebook video to promote Overflow Brewing Company's

Rainn Wilson announces ‘The Office’ trivia night at St. Pete brewery Overflow

Rainn Wilson, the actor best known for portraying beet farmer and assistant (to the) regional manager Dwight Schrute on NBC’s The Office, has given St. Petersburg’s Overflow Brewing Company a big hand promoting an upcoming...
Updated one month ago
7venth Sun Brewing announced a fundraiser for domestic violence charities titled Break the Silence. [Jay Cridlin | Times]

7venth Sun Brewery announces Break the Silence domestic violence fundraiser after accusations against co-owner

Days after news that its co-owner was accused of battering an ex-girlfriend, 7venth Sun Brewery has...
Updated one month ago
OCTAVIO JONES   |   Times 
Danielle Rice, 46, takes a photo of her two daughters Haley, 15, left, Hannah, 17, right, and her husband Paul, 47, center, while taking a tour of Raymond James Stadium.  Bill Charles, a tour coordinator leads a group on a tour of Raymond James Stadium. 
Football fans take a tour of Raymond James Stadium where the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and the USF Bulls play their home games along with other entertainment industries will hold events in Tampa, Florida on Wednesday, August 1, 2018.

From churches to breweries, 10 behind-the-scenes tours you can take in Tampa Bay

A good number of these tours are free.
Updated one month ago
Tampa Theatre will screen all six of the original

27 scary (and not so scary) movies to see at Tampa Theatre this Halloween season

Don’t dare doze off during the all-day, 14-hour movie marathon at Tampa Theatre on Oct. 20 — Freddy Krueger might follow you to dreamland.
Updated one month ago
David Katz after winning a Madden Tournament in 2017. [Twitter]

Jacksonville shooting brings attention to world of competitive video games

It has been called "the biggest thing you haven’t heard of." But with an estimated 250 million fans regularly watching competitive video gaming online or in person, even that description of esports is quickly becoming outdated.Tech titans and...
Updated one month ago