Treasure Island Drum Circle – a Good Time for Even the Skeptical
In Tampa, it’s sometimes hard to find an activity that’s inexpensive, fun, and that you and your friends can participate in without having to get drunk beforehand. With that in mind, you can imagine my excitement when my friend and I heard about a weekly event that we could go to and have a good time: Treasure Island’s Sunday drum circle.
At first, I was skeptical, as you probably are. I thought, “Drum circle? That’s not really my scene.” But as my friend and I made that 30 minute drive from Tampa out to Treasure Island’s beautiful beaches, we realized we may be on to something special. We used the car ride to reconnect after a hectic week of work; it was the perfect amount of time to calm down and prepare ourselves for a novel activity we’d never experience. We arrived, walked across the street next to the Bilmar Hotel, kicked off our shoes, and as we made our way across that Treasure Island beach, we both realized that the drum circle was bigger than we had imagined it. There was a bustling group of people, young and old alike, all intermingling among each other like stereotypes and prejudice never existed. Even though this wasn’t really “our scene”, we came to find that the drum circle didn’t care about the amount of trees we hug or the hallucinogenic drugs we did or didn’t do, it was a place everyone could go and feel at home.
Forget the mental picture that comes to mind while you’re reading this. Yes, surprisingly enough, there are more than “dirty hippies” dancing around stoned out of their minds. The drum circle is frequented by an unexpectedly large number of people of all different cultures, ages, and cliques that one would like to place them into. Just looking around, we realized that this almost-spiritual experience bridges the gap between generations and sexes, social classes and preferences. The drum circle welcomed all groups, all colors, all ages. The drum circle certainly didn’t discriminate against two goofy teenage girls ready to get down in front of a bunch of strangers. There was a sense of acceptance, but over that, the pounding drums set the rhythm for what we knew will be a good time.
My friend and I love to dance, so once we got there, we had no hesitations jumping in the middle of the drum circle and moving to the beat like fools. That’s another thing the drum circle doesn’t discriminate against: bad dancers. There’s no need to worry about people laughing at you while you’re busting a move, everyone is just there to have a good time. 60-year-old ex-Flower children, 19-year-old USF students, 40-year-old moms with their 8-year-old kids can all come together and get into the music, feel the pulsing drum vibrations taking them over. It’s a truly extraordinary experience.
It may take some convincing, but you can get all of your friends interested in the drum circle. If they aren’t sold by the idea of being near the water watching the sun set while a large group of people dance and play percussion instruments, maybe they’ll be sold by the fact that the event is free and a great way to connect with others. The drum circle is a fun, relaxing place to spend your Sunday sunset hours. Overall, it’s just a nice place to go and wind down before you have to go back to work on Monday. You’re not required to drum, you’re not required to dance … you’re not required to even have a good time. But trust me, it may be a little hard to avoid having a good time on Treasure Island.