WWE superstar ‘Batista’ is grand marshal for 2020 Gasparilla Pirate Fest

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Dave Bautista

FILE -In this July 10, 2019, file photo, Dave Bautista attends the LA Premiere of “Stuber” at the Regal LA Live on Wednesday, July 10, 2019, in Los Angeles. A Florida animal shelter sent out a desperate plea after someone had abandoned two pit bull dogs. But volunteers never expected the post would catch the attention of actor Bautista. The 6-year-old pit bulls, Maggie and Ollie, were handed over to the county after their owner had a baby. (Photo by Willy Sanjuan/Invision/AP, File)

TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) – Dave Bautista, known to World Wrestling Entertainment fans as “Batista,” will serve as the grand marshal for the 2020 Seminole Hard Rock Gasparilla Pirate Fest.

Bautista will serve as grand marshal alongside this year’s honorary community hero, Lieutenant Travis Maus from the Tampa Police Department.

Maus is a member of the US Army Reserve and a senior instructor pilot on Blackhawk helicopters. During his latest deployment to Iraq, Maus and his company successfully flew several hundred missions in and out of five different countries in the Middle East.

“Each year, Ye Mystic Krewe of Gasparilla selects accomplished individuals that shine a spotlight on our city and give back to others,” said Captain Richard Champman of Ye Mystic Krewe of Gasparilla. “Both of these gentlemen exemplify these traits and we look forward to welcoming them in the 2020 Gasparilla Parade of Pirates.”

The Gasparilla Pirate Fest will take place on Jan. 25. Beginning at 2 p.m., Bautista and Maus will lead more than 103 parade floats, 50 krewes, five marching bands and the infamous Ye Mystic Krewe of Gasparilla pirates down a four-and-a-half-mile parade route along Bayshore Boulevard.

Bautista is a six-time WWE World Champion and has starred as “Drax the Destroyer” in Marvel Studios’ Guardians of the Galaxy movies, as well as played in “Spectre” and “Stuber.” He will also be inducted into WWE’s Hall of Fame during WrestleMania 36, which takes place at Raymond James Stadium.

The Gasparilla Invasion and Parade of Pirates is set for Saturday, Jan. 25. You can watch the parade live on News Channel 8.

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