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SRQ Daily Sep 28, 2017

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"Administrative approval of projects is not something any city is required to do. It's not a property right."

- Eileen Normile, STOP

[SB2]  How Does Your City Grow?
Jacob Ogles, jacob.ogles@srqme.com

Who makes the best case about the process for approving major developments in Sarasota? At the most recent installment of SB2 Rumble, SRQ’s debate series, neighborhood and business leaders gathered for “civil bloodsport” and to argue the level of community input for decisions. Attendees ultimately sided with STOP Steering Committee members, who argued that public hearings should be held for all large-scale developments in the city, over a team of development advocates, who took a counter position.

STOP member Kate Lowman said the citizen input at hearings could ultimately benefit both land-owners planning developments and neighbors already living in a community. “That’s what public hearings are really all about,” she said. “They are almost never about stopping the project. Usually, they are about making a project fit better.” But Kevin Cooper, president and CEO of the Greater Sarasota Chamber of Commerce, said the current administrative review process necessarily protects the rights of land-owners, including some 1,800 property owners who saw down-zonings with the approval of the Downtown Master Plan. “The other side of that was always administrative review, a simplified, stream-lined process,” he said.

Former Mayor Mollie Cardamone, arguing for the STOP position, said the city would best return to a time when major developments still landed at public hearings; otherwise elected officials often had to answer for projects approved without their input. In the past year, conversation erupted about major projects like The Vue without extensive conversation, a project she said was attractive but had too narrow sidewalks separating the building from the road. “There’s some problems I would take issue with,” the former elected official said. Chris Gallagher, a partner at Hoyt Architects, argued however that more positive developments came into place because of the master plan and administrative review, and that broader planning efforts like improved streetscapes and roundabouts meant more. “Public hearings for individual buildings do not lead to high quality walkable streets,” he said, while noting Sarasota’s WalkScore is the fourth best in America.

Slamming an eight-pound copy of the city development code on the table, former City Commissioner Eileen Normile, a STOP member, said asking the public to be constantly involved in public conversation about the broader city code wasn’t fair to citizens who simply want input on projects that could soon change their own neighborhood. She also said that praise of walkability downtown ignored that the community has been ranked as the 10th most dangerous for pedestrians. “Administrative approval of projects is not something any city is required to do,” she said. “It’s not a property right.”

Javi Suarez, a principal at Apex Studio Suarez, took umbrage at the notion developers didn’t share a concern for the community, and he said professional city staff involved in review provide the oversight needed to make sure projects serve community needs. “It cannot take away public input and allow the staff to make decisions,” he said. “What it can do is determine dimensional standards, building design standards and so forth.”

Attendees at Mildred Sainer Pavillion on Tuesday who voted on the issue before the debate favored the STOP position, but the winner of the debate was determined not just on raw support but by how many minds were changed. A tally at the end of the Rumble event showed that both those arguing for public hearings and against them won over some undecided attendees, and the STOP position drew more people to their side, securing victory at the event. 

Photo by Wyatt Kostygan: Javi Suarez speaks during the SB2 Rumble.

[Ryan Flies]  From the Cockpit Part 39: Piper L-4 Grasshopper
Philip Lederer, Phil.Lederer@srqme.com

Editor’s Note: This is part 39 of an ongoing series documenting the flights of active-duty US Navy Pilot Ryan Rankin on his journey to fly 52 planes in 52 weeks through the year 2017.

Settling into the cockpit of the Piper L-4 Grasshopper, there’s a comforting sense of familiarity for Rankin. Extremely similar to the Piper J-3 Cub that he’s flown before, even the manufacturers joke that the greatest change is in the paint job. But at least one important change is evident—extended windows reaching aft across the cockpit, where observers with binoculars and cameras can sit and scrutinize the goings-on below. That one change made the Grasshopper a valuable asset in World War II, where the modified Cub was produced in large numbers as an observation deck for recon, and the one Rankin’s in likely saw combat.

During WWII, the Grasshopper was intended for recon, artillery spotting and medevac (thanks to the bush skills inherent in the Cub), but some also saw a fair bit of action, with bazookas strapped to the wings for some makeshift missile-type action. One famous Grasshopper, Rosie the Rocketeer, was flown by “Bazooka Charlie” Carpenter and credited with destroying six enemy tanks and a number of other armored vehicles. And after flying the Grasshopper, Rankin’s even more amazed. Not just that it could happen, but that pilots would have the courage to take on the war machine in an old, slow, largely weaponless fabric aircraft. “When you’re going around at 70 knots, you’re a sitting duck for ground fire,” he says.

Taking off with Eric Buckelew, a civilian WWII buff, they talk history. There is no official record of this particular Grasshopper seeing action in WWII, but there’s no doubt that it was in the Pacific theater for several months before the war ended. Buckelew strongly believes it did, and between old records and the chaos of war, Rankin admits the strong possibility. Either way, the plane was flown by pilots in war, and sharing that seat, even across decades, has weight. And it’s more than nostalgia. “The feeling is very somber, in a way, but also an honor,” says Rankin. “It never gets old and it never wears off.”

For more about the flight in Rankin's own words and a video of the flight, follow the link below. 

Pictured: Ryan Rankin and Eric Buckelew in the Piper L-4 Grasshopper. Photo courtesy of Ryan Rankin.

Ryan Flies

[Daily Shop]  Feathery Florals
Rebecca Thompson

The timeless way to pair elegant decoration with organization, this stand-up calendar by Rifle Paper Co. complements any dresser or desk. This member of the new 2018 collection features illustrated bouquets for each month of the year, with gold accents on warm white text paper. Measuring 7.5 inches tall and 6 inches wide, the floral-filled, simplistic styles add a gentle, artistic dazzle to any space. All designed by the stationary and lifestyle brand Rifle Paper Co. based in Winter Park, Florida, founded and owned by a husband and wife team, Anna and Nathan Bond. A company worthy of praise found locally at Write-On Sarasota. Enjoy for $18. 

Photo by Rebecca Thompson.

Write-On Sarasota, 1423 1st St., Sarasota, 941-953-2800.

[Recognition]  Ford-Coates Receives State Legacy Award

Barbara Ford-Coates, Tax Collector for Sarasota County, has again earned a special designation for excellence in the field of financial operations—the Legacy Award. The process involved for consideration of the Legacy Award is rigorous and includes a comprehensive review of the financial functions of the Tax Collector’s Office, to include a meticulous review, by a judging panel, of the Tax Collectors’ financial records, practices and use of technology. A five person judging panel made up of government financial executives from throughout Florida examined the Tax Collector’s processes as related to the following four areas of competency: innovation and automation; perfect annual audit report; customer focus; and budgeting. Ford-Coates has consistently earned the Excellence in Financial Operations Award after exhibiting proficiency in these four areas of expertise. However, for the 2017 Legacy Award, Ford-Coates demonstrated that her office had even further enhanced its financial operations. 

Sarasota County Tax Collector's Office

[Synergy]  Mote Receives $300K Grant from Barancik Foundation

Mote Marine Laboratory was recently awarded a $300,000 grant from the Charles & Margery Barancik Foundation to support Mote’s efforts in restoring the rapidly declining reef habitats within the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary. The goals for this grant include microfragmenting coral in Mote’s inland coral nursery to support outplanting efforts, continuing genetic testing of coral to measure resiliency for future ocean conditions and training international researchers in reef restoration. These efforts will ultimately support Mote’s overall efforts to outplant a minimum of 25,000 corals in the coming year. 

Mote Marine Laboratory and Aquarium

[TODAY]  THEATER: The Will Rogers Follies , September 28 – October 15

Anyone who has heard of Will Rogers knows his signature phrase:  “I’ve never met a man I didn’t like”. This philosophy is the jumping off point for this showy piece of Americana that follows his many accomplishments as well as his tumultuous personal life. It was the winner of the Tony Award for Best Musical and Best original score!

The Players Theatre, 838 N Tamiami Trl., Sarasota

[TODAY]  THEATER: Beehive: The '60s Musical , September 28 – October 22, Tuesday to Saturday at 8pm; Sunday at 2pm

This musical will go back in time to the days of miniskirts, transistor radios and flower power. Told from the perspective of six young women who came of age in this enigmatic decade, the muscial looks back on the challenges they facesd alongside memorable songs from the era. Tickets are $30 for adults, $17 for college students and $15 for children.

Venice Theatre, 140 W. Tampa Ave., Venice

[TODAY]  FOOD: Dining for a Difference , September 28, 5pm to close

Dine at one of 18 participating restaurants to support local nonprofits through this event. Restaurants will donate 15% of food and beverage sales from 5pm to close to the Designing Daughters Grant Program, which will benefit a variety of Sarasota area charities and causes.

[SOON]  SPORTS: Row for the Cure , October 1

In honor of the first day of Breast Cancer Awareness Month, a "Row for the Cure Erg-a-Thon" will be hosted. Stationary rowing machines on land will be used to provide access to participants who do not have any previous rowing experience. Proceeds from the event will benefit the Susan G. Komen Foundation. 

Nathan Benderson Park, 5851 Nathan Benderson Circle, Sarasota

[SOON]  SEMINAR: Forty Carrots 15th Anniversary Educational Community Speaker Event , October 3, 7:00pm

The not-for-profit Forty Carrots Family Center is commemorating 15 years of free annual education talks with its most prominent speaker to date. Dr. Siegel will explain how to cultivate healthy emotional and intellectual development so that children can lead balanced, meaningful and connected lives by drawing insights from his best-selling book, The Whole-Brain Child: 12 Revolutionary Strategies to Nurture Your Child's Developing Mind.  Dr. Siegel will offer parents, teachers and other professional strategies to nurture children’s minds at all ages, survive everyday parenting struggles, and help your family thrive. Along with Dr. Siegel’s sage advice, attendees will receive a free copy of the book and Sarasota County educators will have the opportunity to earn continuing education credits (CEUs). While admission is free, tickets are required and available starting August 1.

Riverview High School Performing Arts Center, 1 Ram Way, Sarasota, FL 34231

[SOON]  GRAB BAG: William R. Mote Memorial Snook Shindig , October 6

Don't let Mote's snook tournament be "the one that got away!" On October 6 and 7, 2017, anglers can join our William R. Mote Memorial Snook Shindig- a catch, sample and release tournament targeting snook released by scientists from Mote’s Fisheries Ecology and Enhancement Program and our colleagues at Florida’s Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission. Anglers of all ages can take home prizes (and new fish stories) in this tournament on Sarasota Bay. Participants will help Mote scientists find out how snook fare after being raised and released into the wild by Mote and FWC staff. 

Mote Marine Laboratory, 1600 Ken Thompson Prkwy., Sarasota

[SOON]  MUSEUM: Aftermath: The Fallout of War - America and the Middle East , October 8 – January 21

Active in the US and Middle East, the artists in the exhibition depict the conditions and people caught in the crossfire of wars in Iraq, Afghanistan, Syria, Lebanon, Libya, Palestine, and Israel from a variety of perspectives. The artists included are Lynsey Addario, Jananne Al-Ani, Jennifer Karady, Gloriann Liu, Rania Matar, Eman Mohammed, Farah Nosh, Suzanne Opton, Michal Rovner, Stephen Dupont, Ben Lowy and Simon Norfolk.

John and Mable Ringling Museum of Art, 5401 Bay Shore Rd., Sarasota

[SOON]  GALA: 12th Annual Key To The Cure , October 12, 5:30-9:00pm

This year marks the 12th Anniversary that Saks Fifth Avenue is partnering with Sarasota Memorial Healthcare Foundation to present Key to the Cure! To date, this event has raised more than $1,300,000 to further breast, ovarian, uterine, cervical cancer research and related projects in the Sarasota/Manatee community. This year's "Party with a Purpose" event will feature food, beverages, entertainment, shopping and an exclusive "chance drawing" that is sure to engage, excite and empower!


Saks Fifth Avenue, 120 University Town Center Drive Sarasota, Florida 34243

[SOON]  THEATER: Anna in the Tropics , October 12 – October 29, 8pm

Go back in time to a Cuban-American cigar factory in 1929 Florida. Lectors are employed to educate and entertain the workers, and when a new one comes to a certain factor and reads aloud from Anna Karenina, he influences the lives of his listeners. 

Manatee Performing Arts Center, 502 Third Ave. W., Bradenton

[SOON]  DANCE: SCD + Piazzolla , October 12 – October 15

The highly anticipated collaboration with renowned Harpist, Ann Hobson Pilot and Violinist, Tai Murray is a performance inspired by and to the music of Astor Pantaleon Piazzolla.

Jane B Cook Theatre, FSU Center for the Performing Arts, 5555 N. Tamiami Trl., Sarasota

[SOON]  MUSIC: Sarah Mac Band , October 14, 8pm

Sarah Mac Band has been called the "Next Big Thing in Florida." Musicians Sarah Mac, Claire Swindell, and Charlie Vanture make up the twelve year old trio. The group create original music that blends the styles of all three artists.

Fogartyville Community Media & Arts Center, 525 Kumquat Ct., Sarasota

[SOON]  THEATER: Remembering Red: A Tribute to Red Skelton , October 14, 2pm, 8pm

Take a trip down memory lane and reminisce Red Skelton. Brian Hoffman portrays the man and some of his popular characters in a spot-on depiction. Meet characters from Gertrude and Heathcliffe, Clem Kadiddlehopper and Freddy the Freeloader and bust you gut from laughter. Arrive early to enjoy a half hour pre-show video with celebrities from the screen in the 50s to 70s. 

Manatee Performing Arts Center, 502 Third Ave. W., Bradenton

[SOON]  PERFORMANCE: Mission: Wildlife , October 15, 2pm

Catch Wildlife Ambassador Julie Scardina and her troupe of rescue animals on the big stage. Audience participation is heavily featured and encouraged in this performance for people of all ages. Learn more about flora and fauna from across the world. Tickets are $27, $30 or $37, depending on seating.

Manatee Performing Arts Center, 502 Third Ave. W., Bradenton

SRQ Media Group

SRQ DAILY is produced by SRQ | The Magazine and edited by Senior Editor Jacob Ogles. Note: The views and opinions expressed in the Saturday Perspectives Edition and in the Letters department of SRQ DAILY are those of the author(s) and do not imply endorsement by SRQ Media. For rates on SRQ DAILY banner advertising, please contact Ashley Ryan at 941-365-7702 x211 or at her contact page. To unsubscribe, please click here.

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