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Places to shoot, things to do in Tampa area?

Discussion in 'Special Sessions, Events, and Tour Announcements' started by Steve S, Mar 28, 2005.

  1. Steve S

    Steve S

    Feb 1, 2005
    SE Florida
    Off to Tampa next Mon for a whole wk with my 18 & 15 y.o. sons. Looking for suggestions on what we might do beyond our planned activities of golf, Busch Gardens, and a nearby Waterpark. What's it like shooting at Busch Gardens? Will I get plenty of pic ops there? Is my 28-200g going to perform ok for me there? Been really wrestling with my commitment to take only my D70 this time, with my little 28-200g travel lens attached, and maybe a 50 1.8 in my fanny pack while out & about. Last yr I took down too much gear weighing 40lbs in my travel backpack on wheels, including my new 200-400, and didn't like walking around with all that weight of a D2H+70-200 when we went somewhere. On top of that, as you guys probably know, I just got my new D2X, and I really *hate* to leave it at home, but, as I said, I have to force myself to go with minimum equipment this time. Hate leaving my 70200Vr home too, but only want to fly with, (shoulder through airports), my smallest camera bag, which is only about 12x8x10 in. This will probably only hold my D70/28-200g, an 85 1.8, and a 50 1.8 + accessories.

    While the boys have little photographic interests, I thought *somehow* I could combine certain activities we did with my interest in photography. Last yr I dragged the boys to the Miami Zoo, and Seaquarium. That went pretty well.

    So, besides the beach area, which I KNOW they want to visit for obvious reasons :shock: any suggestions on places we might want to visit? Places that they might enjoy, but would also offer some sort of animal photo ops? It's tough combing a vacation with your teenage kids with one's photographic hobby.

    Anybody been to Tampa Bay Downs? Do they allow tourists in there with their cameras? Could I get within decent range of the ponies on the track with my 28-200g? I thought that might be a fun late afternoon/evening activity. You know, teach the boys how to completely throw away (some) perfectly good money on $2 bets! ;) 

    So, if anyone has any other ideas, let's hear 'em!

    PS, if anyone can recommend the MOST comfortable water tolerant sandals you know of, I appreciate some insight there too!
  2. F15Todd


    Feb 1, 2005
    Steve, I have no input on the Tampa area, I spent
    most of my years living around Panama City. I do
    think your idea of just taking the D70 is a good one.
    It's a family trip, treat is as such (more clubs, less
    camera gear) :) 

    You might want to take something a little wider,
    like a 17-35mm, and leave one of the primes at

    Hope you guys have a great time.
  3. aaz
    Hi Steve,

    I too am at a loss on things to do in Tampa but what I do when I plan a trip, I go online and check for things to do that sound interesting to me. This might be a good thing to do. Many times you can find some places that are free to get in but good for picture taking too.

    Not to be nosy but isn't your wife going with you on this trip? She can always keep the boys interested while you take one day to go shooting. I know there are many forum members that live in Florida that could give you information. Maybe you can post this over on the Discussion fora. You should get more advice over there.

    Oh and one more thing about the tracks, don't teach your sons too much about 2 dollar bets...of course it could be worse, you could be taking them to Vegas then you would have tol end up selling your D70 there just so they can play quarters :lol:
  4. Steve S

    Steve S

    Feb 1, 2005
    SE Florida
    Mrs S won't be going, we've been divorced for 5 yrs!

    I'm slowly starting to find more stuff we could do, such as the Tampa Zoo, the Tampa Aquarium, going over to Ibor City, and Clearwater Beach, among other stuff we already planned. The Tampa Bay Downs idea was just so I could shoot some horses racing, more than anything else. Don't even know yet what their policy is for tourists with cameras. Plus, it'll be fun to waste a few bucks there on $2 bets, and not worry about it. I really don't think I'm going to corrupt them by taking them there. It'll be a unique experience for them. Normally, I never gamble on anything.
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