Top 5 things to do in Pensacola this weekend: Gallery Night, Aaron Lewis and Lunar New Year

Brandon Girod
Pensacola News Journal

The weekend has snuck up on us already after a four-day work week for many due to Martin Luther King Jr. Day on Monday. 

Thankfully, this weekend brings back more fun and exciting events Pensacolians have come to love. 

You can kick off the weekend right with the Lunar New Year-themed Gallery Night or spend the evening at the Saenger Theatre with Aaron Lewis, best known as the lead vocalist and rhythm guitarist in the band Staind. And the Ice Flyers are having a special Mardi Gras night, too. Check it all out below.

Gallery Night

  • When: 5 p.m. Friday
  • Where: Downtown Pensacola
  • Admission: Free

The first Gallery Night of the year is always one of the best because it features a Lunar New Year theme. You'll find downtown decorated with hanging Chinese festival lanterns, live performances from dragon dancers, martial arts demonstrations and more. Plus, you'll get to see and experience everything that makes Gallery Night such a staple.  

2022 schedule:Gallery Night 2022 schedule announced with new and familiar themes

Restaurant news:Caribbean-themed restaurant and tiki bar 'Whiskey Joe's' to open Pensacola Beach location

Aaron Lewis: Frayed at Both Ends – The Acoustic Tour

  • 7 p.m. Friday
  • Saenger Theatre, 118 S. Palafox St.
  • Admission: $35

Having recorded with George Jones, Willie Nelson, Charlie Daniels, Alison Krauss and Vince Gill, the multi-platinum Staind founder Aaron Lewis has put a traditionalist brand on his outlier country. Frayed At Both Ends offers the country star at his most personal and unplugged — making for an intimate record that reflects his Frayed At Both Ends acoustic show. Tickets start at $35. More info: 850-595-3880 or pensacolasaenger.com.

I Love the '90s Throwback Comedy Tour

  • When: 8 p.m. Saturday
  • Where: Saenger Theatre, 118 S. Palafox St.
  • Admission: $33

The I Love the '90s Throwback Comedy Tour is a celebration of 1990s comedy featuring Michael Hunter, Dirty South, Steve Brown, Redbone, Doo Doo Brown and Marvin Dixon. The show will be hosted by Double D. Tickets start at $33. More info: 850-595-3880 or pensacolasaenger.com.

Mardi Gras Night – Pensacola Ice Flyers

  • When: 7:05 p.m. Saturday
  • Where: Pensacola Bay Center, 201 E. Gregory St.
  • Admission: $17 to $30

The Pensacola Ice Flyers are always a blast to watch, but the games are even more fun when they have a special theme. Saturday night's theme is Mardi Gras. You can come dressed up with your most festive Mardi Gras costumes for a chance to be entered into a costume contest during the intermission parade.

Tickets can be purchased at ticketmaster.com or in-person at the Pensacola Bay Center Box Office. 

More events: Milton, Cantonment parades honor Dr. King; Gallery Night goes lunar

Japanese New Year Celebration 2022

  • When: Noon to 3 p.m. Saturday
  • Where: SCI Building, 220 W. Garden St.
  • Admission: Free

The Japan-America Society of Northwest Florida is celebrating the Year of the Tiger with the 28th annual Japanese New Year celebration Saturday.

Due to the recent spike of COVID cases, this year's event will be a free outdoor concert. The popular Matsuriza taiko drummers from Orlando, who regularly entertain at the Japan pavilion in Walt Disney World's Epcot, will perform three sets between noon and 3 p.m.

There will also be vendors selling Japanese food and crafts. Japan-America Society members will be eligible for prize drawings, including five $40 gift certificates courtesy of Kyoto Japanese Steakhouse.

Limited outdoor seating will be available, but attendees are encouraged to bring their own chairs or picnic blanket.