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Santa, Sea Lions and Races Dominate Weekend

Weekend Events: Holiday Parade | Michael Bolton | Sea Lions at Mote | Reindeer Trot | Holiday Toy Run | AIDS Walk | Craft Show | Jingle & Jog | Tough Mudder

Sarasota has so much going on this weekend, we can't keep it to just five for this edition of Weekend Things.

1. Santa Claus is coming to town on Saturday for Sarasota's annual Holiday Parade.

The parade starts at 7 p.m. Saturday at Main Street and U.S. 301 and travel west on Main Street to Bayfront Drive. The parade route will be closed to traffic at 5 p.m. and is expected to reopen by 10 p.m.

Spread the holiday cheer by posting your photos of the parade to our Pics and Clips gallery.

2. Tell me how am I supposed to live without you? Receive the answer tonight when Michael Bolton takes the stage at the Van Wezel. Show begins at 8 p.m.

3. A trio of sea lions make their debut Saturday as well at The Aquarium at Mote Marine Laboratory.

Stella, Rose and Kitty are part of the Sea Lions: On The Water's Edge exhibit that runs through April 28, 2013, allowing aquarium visitors get close to these Patagonian and California sea lions that Mote scientists will conduct health tests on during their visit.

Narrated presentations will be offered 11:30 a.m., 1:30 p.m. and 3:30 p.m. each day.

Admission to the exhibit is included with Mote admission. For more information visit www.mote.org/sealions.

4. The second annual Achieva Credit Union Reindeer Trot gets off to a galloping start 8:30 a.m. Saturday at Payne Park. The event is free to attend and proceeds from race registration goes to Sarasota County schools. 

New for this year is the first-ever dog walk. Your dog will receive a doggie goody bag for participating and a photo with Santa. Dress your dog up in a festive costume and you could win a prize. The dog walk begins at 8:45 a.m.

Races include a 5K for $25, a 10K for $40, Ages 17 and under can enter for $10. The dog walk costs $10 as well. Each participant receives a T-shirt as well.

You still can register today or at the day of the race. For more information, call Chelsey Wilson at 727-431-7362 or Emily Williams at 941-907-4094.

5. Suncoast Motorsports is bringing car enthusiasts together for a special Toys For Tots drive on Saturday.

Come to the car dealership at 8 a.m. Saturday with an unwrapped gift to donate for Toys for Tots or $10 to donate to buy a new toy. The day starts off with a Coffee and Cars events for car enthusiasts to chat about their cars before a Holiday Toy Run starts with an 80-mile leisurely caravan. Check out our preview story for more information.

6. CARES Outreach Services is hosting the 7th annual AIDS Walk at New College's Sudakoff Center on Saturday starting at 8 a.m. Pets are also welcome to attend dressed for the holidays. The event benefits Trinity Charities support services for those infected and affected by HIV. The event features food, raffles, music and prizes as well as free HIV screenings.

Visit  www.trinitycharities.org for registration information.

7. The Sarasota Craft Show returns for the 20th year featuring This year's show is at Robarts Arena from 10 a.m, to 6 p.m. Friday and Saturday and 10 am. to 4 p.m. Sunday. Tickets are $9 per day; $8 for seniors, $5 for students and $12 for a three-day pass. 

8. Somehow you're going to get your walking or running in this weekend. The Community Haven for Adults and Children with Disabilities has its 15th annual Jingle & Jog at 8 a.m. Saturday, at 4405 Desoto Road. The 5K road race is sanctioned by the Manasota Track Club. There's also a 1 mile walk. Registration opens at 7 a.m. You can print a registration form here.

Registration costs $30; $20 for Manasota Track Club members. Checks are payable to Community Haven.

 For more information contact Anny Barker Schefler @ 941-355-8808 ext. 258 

9. The world famous Tough Mudder takes over Hi Hat Ranch, 11265 Fla. Route 72 on Saturday and Sunday mornings. 

(Tip: Arrive very, very early if you want to watch or participate. These events attract a ton of people and this one is about sold out.)

The 10-mile obstacle course features well, mud, and electrical wires, fire, and tight tunnels and it's not for the physical faint of heart. 

If you want to watch, the ticket costs $20 before Tough Mudder or $40 at the gate. Visit the Sarasota Tough Mudder page for more information.

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