After welcoming record crowds in 2015, the Gasparilla Music Foundation is getting ready to Fire It Up for Tampa Bay's favorite homegrown music festival, the Gasparilla Music Festival ("GMF"). Expanding to five stages for the 5th Annual Festival, GMF 2016 will be bigger and better than ever before.  With over 50 musical acts, an elevated VIP Experience sponsored by the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Tampa, a Kids Fest, Yoga & Meditation sessions, a Sunday Only Latin Stage, local vendors and delicious eats from some of Tampa Bay's favorite restaurants, the only question to ask is, how should I fest?

Headlined by Erykah Badu, Curtis Hixon Waterfront Park, Kiley Gardens and the new MacDill Stage in Downtown Tampa will be rockin' and rollin' to the sounds of New Orleans' own Kermit Ruffins & the Barbecue Swings, theNEWDEAL, Greensky Bluegrass, a Silent Disco, the Mt. Zion Gospel Choir, Grammy Award-winning reggae artist Stephen "Ragga" Marley, Carlos Varela, a 1,000 Laser Light Performance by Savoy, The Woolly Bushmen, New Breed Brass Band and many, many more on Saturday and Sunday March 12th & 13th.  If you're not familiar with any of the bands, don't worry. The Gaparilla Music Foundation crew works tirelessly to bring an eclectic mix of artists to town and I guarantee you'll discover a new favorite band or two. 

The Silent Disco returns in 2016!

To maximize your festival experience, the only way to be is VIP! If you thought last year's VIP areas were spectacular, prepare to be blown away. Sponsored by the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Tampa, this year's VIP Experience will feature three exclusive VIP areas including the Seminole Hard Rock VIP Tent (Curtis Hixon Stage), the Rock Spa's Rhythm & Motion VIP Tent (Kiley Garden Stage) and the Hard Rock Energy VIP Tent (near the new MacDill Stage).  

VIP Private Entrance with re-entry privileges and plenty of clean, air-conditioned restrooms

VIP ticket holders enjoy a special VIP entrance to the festival as well as special, up-close viewing areas at 3 stages, plenty of space to lounge, ample bars, air conditioned restrooms, three complimentary beverages, access to all three VIP Tents and re-entry into the festival.

Like to be close to the stage? You'll be jamming in front of this gate if you're a VIP!

Dance the day away in the exclusive VIP stage viewing areas, re-energize at the Hard Rock Energy VIP Tent and then head to the Rock Spa's Rhythm & Motion VIP Tent for a "rhythmic massage journey".  The Rock Spa, located at the Seminole Hard Rock Tampa, is bringing their signature “Rhythm & Motion” massage to GMF, but only for VIP's. The Rock Spa's Rhythm & Motion massage "is the world’s first fully immersive music-centric spa menu utilizing amplified vibrations, pressures and patterns as the foundation of its treatment" according to the website. Melt into the table and experience music and massage in a whole new way. This is definitely a one of a kind festival experience! 

Plenty of space to relax & chill

Want to be a VIP? Better be quick! Last year, both Saturday and Sunday VIP tickets sold out well in advance and tickets for this year are going fast.  For more information and to purchase tickets, click here.  For a sneak peek of the sounds of GMF 2016, check out this playlist on Spotify.

We'll see you at the Gasparilla Music Festival on March 12th & 13th. 

*Photo credit: Cover Image - Nicole Abbett, additional photos provided by Gasparilla Music Foundation