Plus, 2,000 wookiees descend on Lakeland (kind of)
March 16, 2023 6AM-Top banner logo-small (1).png


Today's Note
Please excuse our dust. We're currently working to bring you an even better newsletter. Over the next couple weeks, you may see some things that are still in the works. We're excited for you to see what we've been up to.
Table for the whole group
The Lounge is perfect for your next cozy gathering. | Photo by LALtoday
While party sizes and amenities may differ, use this list of 15 Lakeland restaurants for groups to plan your next celebration.

Private rooms

Looking for more rentable venues? Check out our list for more details.

A mini golf sign is lit up in the darkening sky.

What says family gathering like a round of putt-putt after dinner?


Photo via Family Fun Center


  • The Back Nine | Play simulated sports and enjoy American fare at one of two Lakeland locations.
  • Ax-Caliber | Order from the breakfast, lunch, dinner, or late-night menus at this ax and virtual gun range.
  • Family Fun Center | Enjoy different gameplay and dinner options, including one that’s two slices of pizza and a medium soft drink for $3.99 per person.
Two hands holding pints of beer at Swan Brewing

There’s a brew for you at Swan Brewing.


Photo by LALtoday

Outdoor spaces

On the swankier side

  • Bay Street Bistro | This quaint downtown spot is known for its superb menu and ambiance.
  • Grillsmith | Treat your troupe to a meal in Lakeside Village.
  • Red Door | Nestled in a Lake Morton bungalow, Red Door offers indoor and outdoor seating with views of Lake Morton.
Did we miss your favorite? Tell us at the button below.

Thursday, March 16
  • The Aquarian Market | Thursday, Mar. 16 | 6-10 p.m. | The Yard on Mass, 802 N. Massachusetts Ave., Lakeland | Free | Shop from vegan food vendors while you peruse hand-crafted items at this night market.
  • Harrison School for the Arts Sr. Visual Art Exhibit and Receptions | Thursday, Mar. 16-Saturday, Mar. 18 | 6-8 p.m. | Polk Museum of Art, 800 E. Palmetto St., Lakeland | Free | View this exhibition featuring work done by visual arts department seniors.
Friday, March 17
  • Spring Piano Concert | Friday, Mar. 17 | 6-7 p.m. | Fellowship Baptist Church, 4625 Cleveland Heights Blvd., Lakeland | Free | Join Eileen Sutton for a piano concert of classical, sacred, and contemporary piano music.
  • St. Patrick’s Day Party | Friday, Mar. 17 | 7-10 p.m. | Union Taproom, 245 W. Central Ave., Ste. 102, Winter Haven | Free | Head to union taproom for green beer on tap and live music by Just Fun Celtic.
Saturday, March 18
  • Heritage Day | Saturday, Mar. 18 | 8 a.m.-2 p.m. | Heritage Park, 8950 N. Campbell Rd., Lakeland | Free | Enjoy live music, Southern-style food, pioneer demonstrations, and more at this fundraiser for the Kathleen Area Historical Society.
  • Architectural Tour at Polk County History Center | Saturday, Mar. 18 | 11 a.m.-12 p.m. | Polk County History Center, 100 E. Main St., Bartow | Free | Join this tour of the History Center to discover its neoclassical architectural elements, ongoing restoration, and historic preservation resources.
Sunday, March 19
  • Live Music: Melissa Lee | Sunday, Mar. 19 | 12:30-4:30 p.m. | Keel Farms, 5202 Thonotosassa Rd., Plant City | Free | Enjoy live acoustic music while you grab lunch and a locally made glass of wine or cider.
  • Misty Hike | Sunday, Mar. 19 | 4-6 p.m. | Painting with a Twist, 3670 Harden Blvd., Lakeland | $39 | Paint your own canvas with a mountain and flower design with friends and refreshments.
Monday, March 20
  • Alzheimer Association’s In-Person Caregiver Support Group | Monday, Mar. 20 | 11 a.m.-12 p.m. | Schalamar Creek Clubhouse, Garden Room, 4500 US Hwy. 92, Lakeland | Free | Connect with other caregivers at this group that meets on the third Monday of each month.
  • Give Back Monday: Chase Sanctuary | Monday, Mar. 20 | 5-9 p.m. | Keel Farms, 5202 Thonotosassa Rd., Plant City | Free | Your dinner can make a difference — a portion of proceeds from the Tasting Room will go to Chase Sanctuary for animals.

We have a calendar filled with events and activities you can plan for in advance. Click the button below to bookmark ideas for upcoming date nights, family outings, and time with friends.

Click here to have your event featured.
News Notes
  • 80º | Sunny | 10% chance of rain
Feel Good
  • Lakeland-based OMS (Outsource Management Solutions) Group donated $25,000 to 10 local nonprofits in honor of its 25th anniversary. Beneficiaries include LkldNow, The Lakeland Symphony Orchestra, Parker Street Ministries, and seven others. Learn more about the organizations and how each plans to use the grant here. (LkldNow)
  • Dr. Arthur C. Brooks is speaking at Florida Southern College’s Founders Day Convocation tomorrow, March 17, at 11 a.m. This will make Dr. Brooks the college’s 87th Honorary Chancellor. You may recognize Dr. Brooks as the author of various books and the “How to Build a Life” column in The Atlantic.
  • $2.1 million. That’s how much PepsiCo Beverages North America donated for wetland restoration in Winter Haven. A 5,000-acre loop of planned wetlands encircling Winter Haven, known as the Sapphire Necklace, could recharge 70 billion gallons of water over 50 years according to Winter Haven Water Director Gary Hubbard. (The Ledger)
  • Florida Polytechnic University is expecting up to 2,000 attendees at this weekend’s Florida PolyCon event. This year’s theme is “fantasy,” and events including archery tag, ax throwing, martial arts displays, cosplay contests, and a light saber demonstration are on the docket. Purchase tickets online — free for Florida Poly students.
  • Bok Tower Gardens’ final Florida Carillon Festival performance of the year is on Friday, March 17th at 3 p.m. John Widmann will celebrate St. Patrick’s Day with traditional Celtic music. Attendance is included with regular admission to the gardens.
  • Calling all EDM and MTV fans — Brandon Gomes, known for his five-year run on MTV’s “Siesta Key,” is playing Union Hall tonight. Admission is free. Learn more about Florida native Brandon in this interview with News Channel 6. (WJBF)
  • Works by Polk students aged 13 and up will soon be on display in the Polk Museum of Art’s “Scholastic Art & Writing Awards” exhibition, opening on Saturday, March 25. Last year’s winner was Jazmine Neloms of Harrison School for the Arts — view her winning work, titled “Veil,” here.
  • Head to Art Centric Studio (1035 S. Florida Ave., Ste. 180) for “FRamily Paint Night” on Friday, March 31. Register online and select your one-hour time slot (available between 2-9 p.m.) to transform wooden eggs into miniature gnomes. Your $15 registration includes all supplies and two eggs.
  • Winter Haven author Marco Magiolo has released the third and final volume of his book series: “Canine Legends.” Marco is hosting a book signing on Thursday, March 23 at the Historic Ritz Theatre in Winter Haven from 6-8 p.m. Looking for more local authors? Here’s our list.
  • The Rotary Club of Auburndale is hosting its 2023 HOLE-N-WON Golf Ball Drop on Saturday, April 15. Sponsor a golf ball to be dropped from the Auburndale Fire Department’s ladder truck — the first ball to make it in the hole wins $2,500. Proceeds benefit Meals on Wheels of Polk County.
  • Preorders are open now for Bloom Shakalaka’s Easter bouquets. Check out and order the special Easter deals — ranging from $45-$170 — online.
  • We’re looking to you to help determine Lakeland’s best pizza. Remember to cast your vote in our survey before Monday, March 20, and tune in for the next round in our Tuesday, March 21 newsletter.
  • Did you know our online store Six & Main features Sourhouse, a company that creates simple tools for sourdough bakers to care for their starters? The Goldie by Sourhouse + Cooling Puck is one of the most popular items. Let’s start baking.
  • Looking for a new laptop that checks all the boxes without breaking the bank? Enter: The Acer Chromebook 311. This lightweight laptop is decked out with all the essential Google apps — like Google Chrome and Google Calendar — it’s quiet, and it has up to 10 hours of battery life.
  • Wedding season is practically upon us. If you’ve got love (or wedding planning) on the brain, a personal loan can give your wallet a break when it comes to big ticket items thanks to lower interest rates + set monthly payments. Here’s how.*
☘️ A pint and a pinch
Add a heading (88)
Nothing says “Emerald Isle” like green drinks | Photo via @mollymchughsirishpub
It’s time to break out the green clothes and shamrock swag — St. Patrick’s Day is this Friday, March 17.

Looking to spend St. Patrick’s Day the Irish way? Grab a pint (or two) at a local pub.

Molly McHugh’s Irish Pub, 111 S. Kentucky Ave.
Downtown Lakeland’s oldest pub has been serving up Guinness and green beer since 1996.

1916 Irish Pub, 2900 Buckingham Ave.
After playing a round of golf, fill up on traditional Irish dishes like corned beef and cabbage.

Paddy Wagon Irish Pub, 4204 Florida Ave. S.
Take a step into the Emerald Isle at this pub while you watch a game or play a game of pool.

Linksters Tap Room, 209 E. Main St.
This downtown spot shares owners with Paddy Wagon Irish Pub — enjoy drink deals here every day of the week.

Looking to take your St. Paddy’s celebrations to the next level? Use this map to plan a pub crawl.
The Wrap
Rilee-Delgado-Headshot-LAL Today’s Edition By:
From the Editor
This week, I’m working from my home state of South Dakota while visiting family. The most common reaction I get when I tell people I’m from SD is either “I’ve never met anyone from there” or “I’ve never been there” — change up your next vacay with my guide to Rapid City, SD.
Send Us A Scoop, Question, or Feedback     

Content marked with an * was created in partnership with 6AM City’s advertising partners. 6AM City may receive a commission on purchases made through affiliate links in this newsletter.

Change your preferences or unsubscribe here.

Copyright © 2023 6AM City Inc, All rights reserved.

P.O. Box 2505, Greenville, SC 29602