With Arts & Entertainment Editor Kathy L. Collins

Tampa’s majestic movie palace, the Tampa Theatre, is proud to announce the return of one of its most glamorous events, Hollywood Awards Night, on Sunday, February 26. Celebrate Hollywood’s biggest night of the year with a Red Carpet Reception and VIP watch party for the live telecast of the 89th annual Academy Awards on the big screen.

For those who really want to be a celebrity, you can get a “Backstage Pass” ticket which includes exclusive access to the Tampa Theatre Green Room and a spread of complimentary appetizers, beer, wine and signature cocktails until 11 p.m. The Hollywood Awards Night Red Carpet Reception begins at 7 p.m. on Franklin St. under the historic marquee. Guests first get to experience a limo ride around the block courtesy of Skyline Limousines. Superstar guests will walk the red carpet past adoring fans and paparazzi, rub shoulders with costumed characters representing Hollywood’s biggest bigwigs, pose for a picture with a living award “statue,” and chat with “Roan Jivers.”

Guests are encouraged to show off their star status with a movie-themed costume or let the glamour of Hollywood inspire an outfit.
Inside the Tampa Theatre, there will be games, prizes, free popcorn and soda, hair and makeup touch-ups with stylists from Paul Mitchell the School, the Oscar Red Carpet Live pre-show on the big screen, and a cash bar. ABC’s live coverage of the Academy Awards begins at 8:30 p.m., and guests who stay until the Best Picture is announced at the end of the telecast will enjoy donuts and coffee in the lobby.

Jill Witecki with the Tampa Theatre said, “Tampa Theatre has been hosting the city’s longest-running OSCAR watch party for 18 years, and it is one of our favorite fundraisers. Our guests love getting dressed up, the limo rides, and walking the red carpet, and we love that all of it supports our artistic and educational programming.”

Backstage Passes are $75 per person ($70 for members). General admission tickets are $20 ($15 for members). Tickets are on sale at the historic Tampa Theatre Box Office located at 711 N. Franklin St. in downtown Tampa or at www.tampatheatre.org.