The wait is finally over: Gasparilla 2013 has arrived at last. While University of Tampa Gasparilla veterans are gearing up for what has surely been a memorable celebration in years past, there is one University of Central Florida student that is driving all the way to Tampa to experience the festivities for the first time. Zack Bergamini, a sophomore at UCF, expresses his enthusiasm as the big day approaches. “I really have no idea what to expect. I’ve heard it gets really crazy, though,” Bergamini said the day before the event, “I have plenty of friends that go to UT and have wanted to come for Gasparilla since I first heard about it but just never got the chance to actually go.”
The infamous “holiday” brings mixed emotions with it in the Tampa area as its reputation is controversial to say the least. University of Tampa sophomore, James Craig, mentioned the morning of the event, “I just hope I can make it through the day without passing out. I made that mistake last year and am definitely going to pace myself come Saturday.” It seems that there is much to be said about Gasparilla from anyone that has experienced it for themselves.
The excessive drinking, partying, and overall chaos that surrounds the all day event is surely what attracts such a large audience. It is said that over 100,000 people will be in attendance for the pirate festivities, which will make for an overly crowded and lively Bayshore Boulevard, the street that the parade will be held.
“I just hope UT doesn’t disappoint and Gasparilla lives up to its insane reputation. I have high expectations for sure,” Bergamini mentioned before heading to the liquor store with some of his friends. Only time will tell what Gasparilla will have in store for us in Tampa this year.