Franklin Street Block Party and Screening

Come Meet Your Downtown Neighbors for a Franklin Street Block Party!

Tampa Theatre to Host an Evening of Interactive Community Fun for the Opening of New Mr. Rogers Documentary on June 14

TAMPA, Fla. (May 21, 2018) – Minister, musician, educator, and father Fred Rogers spent 50 years on television encouraging us to be good neighbors. “Imagine what our real neighborhoods would be like if each of us offered, as a matter of course, just one kind word to another person,” he said.

On Thursday, June 14, Tampa Theatre will be one of only a handful of theatres in the country to open the new documentary Won’t You Be My Neighbor? And in the spirit of Mr. Rogers’ enduring message, the historic movie palace and the Tampa Downtown Partnership will host a Franklin Street Block Party from 5:00 to 7:00pm before the 7:30pm screening of the film.

Restaurants along the surrounding blocks of Franklin Street, including Bavaro’s Pizza Napoletana & Pastaria, Jerk Hut, 1895 Kitchen – Bar – Market, Indigo Coffee House + Social Bar, SoFresh, and Vale Food Co., will be sampling house favorites out on the sidewalks in front of each location. Under the Theatre’s historic marquee at 711 N. Franklin Street, guests will experience a pop-up art exhibit courtesy of Illsol Space; live chalk art with Holland King, courtesy of Tampa Bay Businesses for Culture and the Arts; artLAB artists live-painting Mr. Rogers-themed canvases, courtesy of the Thornhill Foundation; and the opportunity to meet representatives from community organizations including the Heart Gallery of Tampa Bay, the Henry B. Plant Museum, The Florida Museum of Photographic Arts, the Tampa Bay International Gay & Lesbian Film Festival, WEDU-PBS, and more.

Inside, Tampa Theatre will be collecting new and gently used sweaters and sneakers for adults and children to benefit The Spring of Tampa Bay and other local charities who care for our neighbors in need. The Sweater & Sneaker Drive will continue throughout the film’s multi-week run, because as Mr. Rogers said, “We live in a world in which we need to share responsibility. It’s easy to say ‘It’s not my child, not my community, not my world, not my problem.’ Then there are those who see the need and respond. I consider those people my heroes.”

MEDIA CONTACT: Jill Revelle Witecki at or (813) 274-8287.