There’s always something exciting going on at the Orlando theme parks, and February and March are no exception. Whether you’re visiting Walt Disney World, Universal Orlando Resort, or SeaWorld Orlando, you’ll have the chance to try tasty cuisine, attend special concerts, see seasonal parades and entertainment, and more while enjoying sunny but pleasantly cool weather. Here are some of the highlights of the February/March season:

SeaWorld Orlando
SeaWorld Orlando celebrates Bands, Brew and BBQ from February 9 to March 17. Every Saturday and Sunday the delicious smell of BBQ takes over the lakeside path leading to Bayside Stadium as local BBQ restaurants and SeaWorld’s own chefs cook up tasty creations. Try cuisine from Sonny’s BBQ, Cecil’s Texas-Style BBQ, and Tony Roma’s Ribs. Adults can buy beer samples, and kids can dance and play with Shamu and his friends. The “Bands” part of the event means free concerts by artists like Styx, Merle Haggard, and Sheryl Crow.

Bands, Brew, and BBQ

Bands, Brew and BBQ is always a huge hit.

Universal Studios Florida
How about a Mardi Gras celebration? No, it’s not New Orleans, but you might forget that fact for a moment as you watch the Mardi Gras parade at Universal Studios Florida. The park celebrates Mardi Gras on select nights between February 9 and April 20, with authentic floats, street performers, colorfully costumed stilt walkers, Cajun cuisine, and concerts by stars like Demi Lovato and Pitbull. The event is so family friendly that kids even get their own “Little Jesters” area to watch the parade and catch a stash of beads and doubloons.

The Hawthorn Suites by Wyndham Orlando Convention Center is a perfect lodging spot for visits to both SeaWorld and Universal Studios Florida because its International Drive location puts you just a short drive away from both parks.

Epcot at Walt Disney World
Spring comes early to Orlando, and the Epcot International Flower and Garden Show kicks off on March 6. The festivities run through May 19 and include amazingly detailed topiaries all around the park. You’ll see plenty of colorful flowers, too, and both kids and adults delight in the butterfly garden, which features Tinkerbell, Fawn, and other Pixie Hollow friends. There are also special playgrounds for youngsters, themed to Radiator Springs and the Land of Oz, and special food booths scattered around World Showcase if the family is looking for a snack. Mom and Dad might want to stick around for a free Flower Power Concert, featuring artists from the 1960s and 1970s, like Mickey Dolenz and the Village People.

Raglan Road at Walt Disney World
March also brings the Great Irish Hooley to Raglan Road at Downtown Disney. Raglan Road is a popular Irish restaurant and pub all year ’round, but St. Patrick’s Day weekend brings a host of special activities. The fun runs for four days, from March 14 through 17. Enjoy the bands and let the kids join in on the Riverdance-style dancing, then feast on authentic Irish cuisine. Stay at the Best Western Lake Buena Vista Resort Hotel inside Walt Disney World and you’ll be right in the Downtown Disney area and just a couple minutes away from Epcot.

Many hotels, like the Holiday Inn Resort Lake Buena Vista, Grand Beach Resort at Lake Buena Vista, and Grande Villas Resort at Lake Buena Vista, put you in a convenient spot to get to any of these special events. Check out the orlandovacation.com website or call 1-800-641-4008 to find out more details and book your February or March visit to Orlando.