The first-ever Best Fest, coordinated by the SouthShore Chamber of Commerce, will take place Saturday and Sunday, November 5 and 6.

If you are looking for a festival with something to please every member of your family, mark your calendars! The SouthShore Chamber of Commerce is hosting Best Fest, five fabulous festivals in one, on Saturday and Sunday, November 5 and 6 in Wimauma.

According to Chamber Executive Director Melanie Davis, in July 2011, the SouthShore Chamber was born from a combination of the former Apollo Beach Chamber and the Ruskin Chamber.

“The combined chambers hosted the Ruskin Seafood Festival for 32 years and the Apollo Beach Manatee Festival of the Arts for 27 years,” said Davis. “The two festivals were combined in 2017 and then canceled in 2020 and 2021 due to the pandemic. The chamber is excited to jump back into the festival game as the host of the brand-new SouthShore’s Best Fest.”

Visitors to the festival will experience Día de los Muertos, Soul Fest, Oktoberfest, St. Patrick’s Day and Mardi Gras with art, performances, displays, music, food and drinks typical of each theme. In addition, a large SouthShore Life area at the center will feature local businesses, nonprofits, the main entertainment stage, a Cultural Food Adventure and the Buccaneer Pirate B’aaarrrrrr.

“There will truly be something for everyone,” said Davis. Events like this raise funds for our chamber, which enable us to work hard for our business community all year round. We also take on special projects related to our 24 local schools, local veterans, active-duty families, the migrant population and the homeless.”

The event will take place on the grounds of the Masonic Park and Campgrounds in Wimauma, which is located at 18050 U.S. 301. On November 5, the hours will be 11 a.m.-9 p.m., and on Sunday, November 6, the hours will be 12 Noon-5 p.m.

“We connect the needs of the community to the resources available,” said Davis. “Together, we help to make SouthShore the ultimate place to play, work and live.”

Anyone interested in becoming a sponsor for the event can contact Davis at 813-645-1366 or email To learn more about the chamber, visit

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Assignment Editor Kate Quesada started working at the Osprey Observer in 2004 after graduating from the University of South Florida with a masters degree in Mass Communications. Since then, she has held various positions at the paper and has been working as the assignment editor since January 2020. She lives in Lithia with her husband Mike and sons Dylan and Max and stays active in the community on school PTA boards and volunteering with local organizations.