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SRQ Daily Oct 19, 2017

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"We need to stop using healthcare as a potential weapon and make it affordable. Lives are at stake."

- David Shapiro, Congressional candidate

[Festival]  RIAF 2017 Begins in Stunning Style
Philip Lederer, Phil.Lederer@srqme.com

A hungry audience sipping cocktails and eating hors douevres, a sea of folding chairs filled to standing room only and a three-story-high projector screen spewing smoke as two Italian performers dangle from the rafters—the 2017 Ringling International Arts Festival has arrived. Kicking off last night in stunning style at the Ringling Museum with a performance from eVenti Verticali, RIAF 2017 promises four days of contemporary performance art from across the globe (this year, including Sarasota). Including eVenti Verticali, this year’s festival brings seven productions to various locations on Ringling Museum grounds, highlighting the latest in music, dance and theater.

Next to the large-scale buffoonery and antics of eVenti Verticali, Volker Gerling’s “thumb cinemas” may seem small, but pack an emotional punch as Gerling recounts the stories of the people behind his miniature video portraits. For music-lovers, RIAF 2017 brings performance from both near and far. Nobuntu, an acclaimed (mostly) a cappella quintet from Zimbabwe, melds Afro Jazz and gospel with traditional Zimbabwean folk songs for an energetic production as vibrant as it is harmonious. From closer to home, ensemblenewSRQ showcases the virtuosity of some of Sarasota’s own talented musicians, who will be performing (in a festival first) at two locations in the Museum proper—the Turrell Skyspace and the Huntington Gallery.

In the world of dance, James McGinn’s bold and ambitious Ing an Die revels in the technical side of dance, with an almost operatic three-act post-apocalyptic love story told through body language, while the dancers of Monica Bill Barnes and Company (performing behind the Circus Museum in a ‘café’ created just for them) celebrate the childlike joy of dance as an escape. Rounding out the lineup, Nassim Soleimanpour’s White Rabbit Red Rabbit presents the ultimate wild card in a one-person show with a new actor encountering the script for the first time each night. With no one knowing what to expect (not even RIAF organizers), it’s a moment of exploration for both actor and audience.

The Ringling International Arts Festival runs through Oct. 21. For more information or tickets to any of the shows, follow the link below. 

Ringling International Arts Festival

[Politics]  Democrat Shapiro Challenging Buchanan
Jacob Ogles, jacob.ogles@srqme.com

Prominent Sarasota attorney David Shapiro announced his candidacy for the US House of Representatives as a Democrat, challenging six-term incumbent Rep. Vern Buchanan, R-Sarasota. The candidate’s entry into the race provides the most credible challenge to the incumbent this cycle, at a time when national Democrats have already announced Buchanan’s seat as a target district.

Florida’s 16th Congressional District includes all of Manatee County and north Sarasota County, as well as parts of south Hillsborough County. The district leans Republican by 7 percentage points, according to Cook Political Report. President Donald Trump beat Democrat Hillary Clinton in the district by 10.7 percent in November.

The Democrat in his announcement indicated a platform focused on health care and the environment. “Republicans and Vern Buchanan have spent months trying to rip healthcare away from millions of Americans and roll back vital protections for people with pre-existing conditions. We need to stop using healthcare as a potential weapon and make it affordable. Lives are at stake,” Shapiro said in a statement. “Finally, we need to protect our children, our grandchildren, and our way of life by making sure climate change does not devastate our Florida coastlines. That takes decisive action. We can no longer ignore the urgency of the problem in order to protect special interests who put their own profits over our safety.”

Federal Elections Commission records show Shapiro filed on Oct. 14. Democrat Calen Dean Cristiani filed in March but has raised no money thus far. Democrat Jan Schneider, who ran unsuccessfully against Buchanan last year, also filed with the state this week. Additionally, Andrew Edward Smyth filed against Buchanan in the Republican primary in January but has raised no money beyond $100 contributed by the candidate to his own campaign. Green party candidate Eric Allen has also filed with the state.

Buchanan, meanwhile, has more than $2 million in cash on hand, including nearly $790,000 raised this year. The incumbent first won office in a close race against Democratic candidate Christine Jennings in 2006, with a razor-thin 369-vote lead. But in subsequent cycles, Buchanan has won more decisive victories, beating Jennings by a 19-percent margin in 2008. His closest contest since his first election came in 2012, when he defeated Democrat Keith Fitzgerald by more than a 7-percent margin.

As for this cycle, campaign officials for Buchanan say the congressman's focus right now remains on doing a good job in Washington, D.C. "There will be plenty of time for campaigning after Democrats settle on a nominee next year," said Buchanan spokesman Max Goodman.

The party primary in Florida will be held Aug. 28, 2018. The general election is scheduled for Nov. 6, 2018. 

[Ryan Flies]  From the Cockpit Part 42: T-34 Mentor
Philip Lederer, Phil.Lederer@srqme.com

Editor’s Note: This is part 42 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.

Rankin takes another flight down Memory Lane, taking to the air in a T-34 Mentor—the first plane he ever flew with the US Navy when he began training back in 2009. Frustrating back then (the students not-so-affectionately dubbed the craft the “turbo-weenie”), Rankin was eager to step back into the cockpit and give it another shot.

Introduced in the late 1940s, the Mentor eventually replaced the original T-6 Texan as one of the US military’s flight training aircraft of choice, and it wasn’t until fairly recently that the Mentor was retired in favor of the new T-6B Texan II. Rankin regularly flies the T-6B, and it’s “on a different planet,” he says, with its pressurized cockpit, ejection seats and “fighter-jet feel.”

But the turbo-weenie is a pretty cool plane too. In retrospect, Rankin admits it wasn’t the aircraft itself that was so frustrating, as much as it was the rigor of the flight training regimen. “It’s not designed to be fun,” he says. “It’s designed to stress you.” He distinctly remembers one of his first aerobatic flights, early in his training. Airsick, Rankin threw up in the back seat, but the lesson wasn’t over and the instructor kept going. Rankin had no choice but to power through. The plane just became a talisman for all that frustration. And Rankin wasn’t going to give up. “People paint because they love painting, not because they’re great at it,” he says. “Flying is that for me.”

Taking off out of Destin with friend Tony Diaz, the Mentor does not disappoint. A sturdy, reliable craft with open-canopy capabilities and aerobatic ability, the Mentor lends itself readily to the kind of flying Rankin enjoys most—hanging out at 15,000 feet. Though a Navy pilot by trade, the civilian side of flying has always appealed more to him, and trying out the Mentor under more relaxed circumstances made all the difference. “Not being graded is nice too,” he says.

At the time, flying the Mentor in training, Rankin itched to try out the new T-6, and felt a pang of envy at the idea that the next class would be training on a much newer aircraft. But time and experience offer a different view. “Last time I flew [the Mentor], I was a know-nothing student,” Rankin says. “I took it for granted when I flew it back then, but I wouldn’t trade it now.”

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

Pictured: Ryan Rankin flies the T-34 Mentor. Photo courtesy of Ryan Rankin.

Ryan Flies

[Daily Shop]  La Fleur
Dylan Howell, dylanh@srqme.com

The Eternal Bloom dress from Elysian Fields exudes a flirty bohemian look with its flattering cut. Created by Soul Flower, a company that prides itself in making clothing from recycled materials and organic cotton, is a purchase with thought. Hand-drawn flowers create a zen-friendly detail, incorporating an eastern influence. Slip on this fair-trade mini t-shirt dress for a stroll downtown with your pooch. If there’s a chill in the air, why not accessorize with a textured cardigan and a favorite pair of UGGs?  

Photo by Dylan Howell.

Elysian Fields, 1273 South Tamiami Trl., Sarasota. 941-361-3006.

[Exec Moves]  SCF Foundation Names Bourgoin Director of Development

The State College of Florida Foundation has hired a new director of development to lead fundraising for scholarships, equipment and capital campaigns at SCF. Barbara Lewis Bourgoin has been working in fundraising for more than a decade in Manatee and Sarasota counties. She comes to the SCF Foundation after serving as chief development officer for the Boys & Girls Clubs of Manatee County. Bourgoin, a certified fundraising executive, also has served as the development director for Safe Place and Rape Crisis Center (SPARCC) and the University of Florida, Sarasota-Manatee. In her new role, she will be take part in ongoing capital projects at the College, including the Studio for the Performing Arts, Health and Human Performance Center, and the newest project, SCF Parrish. 

State College of Florida Foundation

[Expansion]  Ringling College Introduces Virtual Reality BFA

In fall 2018, Ringling College of Art and Design will be the first art college—and one of the first educational institutions—to offer a degree in the expanding field of Virtual Reality for artists and designers. The Ringling College Virtual Reality Development major, a four-year, BFA degree program, is accepting applications now for 2018-19. Students enrolled in the VR major will create experiences for countless industries, including healthcare, advertising, architecture, education, and entertainment. Students will take courses in Visual Scripting, Concept Development for Virtual Worlds, Visual Development for VR, and VR Development, creating 3D content and VR experiences. 

Ringling College Virtual Reality Development

[Expansion]  Fort Hamer Bridge Now Open

Local officials hailed the opening of the Fort Hamer Bridge as a historic event for Manatee County and praised the new bridge's benefits to the community during a ribbon cutting event yesterday morning. The bridge was opened to traffic by 11am the same day. The bridge creates faster routes for emergency responders, a new evacuation route for East Manatee residents and it will alleviate some traffic on U.S. 301, Interstate 75 and Rye Road. County Commissioners broke ground to begin the project on March 19, 2015. The $32 million project was funded entirely through local dollars and includes the bridge, and improvements to Upper Manatee River Road and Fort Hamer Road. The Fort Hamer Bridge extends nearly one-half mile across the Manatee River and connects Upper Manatee River Road to Fort Hamer Road. It includes 5-foot sidewalks and 4-foot paved bike lanes. The bridge is the longest span to be designed and maintained by Manatee County 

Fort Hamer Bridge

[TODAY]  BUSINESS: 2018 Best of SRQ Local Competition , February 12

The 10th annual “Best of SRQ Local” Readers’ Competition is officially open! It is time to sound the alarm, rally the troops, take to social media and VOTE for your favorite Sarasota establishments and causes to be recognized in one of our most popular editions of the year.

Readers can vote on local eats, shopping, arts, luminaries and hotspots culminating in the compendium published in the April 2018 edition of SRQ Magazine. We hope you’ll share your favorite local experiences—from stellar sushi, most memorable on-stage productions to best happy hour.

SRQ Magazine

[TODAY]  BUSINESS: 22nd Annual Share the Light Luncheon , October 19, 11:30am

Join Second Chance Last Opportunity for the 22nd Annual Share the Light Luncheon on October 19 at Michael’s on East. Emceed by Bobeth Yates of ABC7 and Justin Mosely of The Suncoast News Network, the event will honor Lee-En Chung, P.E., LEED AP, Founder and Construction Consulting Engineer and Valerie Powell-Stafford, FACHE, CEO at Englewood Community Hospital. Standard tickets are $65/person or $520 for a table of eight. 

Michaelís on East, 1212 S East Ave, Sarasota, FL 34239

[TODAY]  BUSINESS: Grid Un-locked , September 25 – October 30, 6:00-7:00pm

Join The Chamber, in partnership with Gulf Coast Community Foundation and SRQ Media, as we explore the facts, plans, and future of mobility and transportation in the Sarasota region. This six-week series will cover everything from traffic basics and land use impacts, to traffic studies and roadway improvement plans, and will wrap-up with a look at creative solutions. This session will be an introduction to automobile congestion, peak hours, and peak season and will cover local and national facts plus information on peer communities. Demian Miller, Principal at Tindale Oliver will be the featured speaker for this weeks’ event. Each event in the series is $10 and will be hosted at The Francis.  Click here for more info.

The Francis, Downtown Sarasota, 1289 N. Palm Avenue, Sarasota, FL 34236

[SOON]  FESTIVAL: Night of Fish, Fun and Fright , October 20, 6:00pm

Buoys and ghouls of all ages are invited to dress up in costume for a Night of Fish, Fun and Fright at Mote Marine Laboratory and Aquarium. Unearth shark teeth in Coffin Creek, enjoy deep sea delights in the Diner of the Dead and take part in Mad Science experiments and activities. Don’t miss Mote’s signature underwater pumpkin carving in their spooktacular shark habitats and enjoy entertainment from students at EveryOneRocks.

Mote Marine Laboratory and Aquarium , 1600 Ken Thompson Pkwy, Sarasota, FL 34236

[SOON]  MUSIC: The Woodwork , October 20, 8pm

Formed in March of 2016, the indie band has shown mastery in their music and performances. Their music is an almalgam of genres, with a blend of folk and jazz music coupled with hints of Latin jazz and fingerstyle guitar. 

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

[SOON]  GALA: 2nd Annual Womenís Sports Museum Gala, "A Celebration of Women in Sports" , October 20, 6:30pm

Join the Women’s Sports Museum for their Second Annual Gala, “A Celebration of Women in Sports” on October 20. Trailblazers from the world of sports will be honored at this year’s gala, including sports broadcast journalist Lesley Visser, mountain biker and extreme athlete Rebecca Rusch and groundbreaking equestrian Donna Cheek. This year, the event moves to Michael’s on the Bay at Selby Gardens. The museum will present two scholarships to Sarasota County female student athletes. Sponsorships, in-kind donations and contributions are also being accepted, with all proceeds benefiting the nonprofit foundation’s efforts to build the nation’s first standalone museum dedicated to women in sports right here in Sarasota.


Michaelís on the Bay at Selby Gardens, 811 S Palm Ave, Sarasota, FL 34236

[SOON]  BUSINESS: Nosh and Knowledge , October 23, 12:00pm

Join Aviva: A Campus for Senior Life over lunch on October 23 at Michael’s on East for their new lecture Series, Nosh and Knowledge.  Don Burris, the senior attorney who successfully argued the “Woman in Gold” legal case before the U.S. Supreme Court will be here to share this incredible story and participate in audience Q & A. 

Michaelís on East, 1212 S East Ave, Sarasota, FL 34239

[SOON]  PERFORMANCE: White Rabbit Red Rabbit , October 25 – November 5

The play you are about to see is sealed inside an envelope. One actor will perform it, but they’ve never seen the script and never rehearsed it. In fact, there is a new actor every performance. There is no director. Slyly humorous and audaciously pointed, this theater-entertainment-meets-social-experiment is unlike anything you’ve experienced. In collaboration with Ringling International Arts Festival, this special event will play just 10 performances at Urbanite Theatre, with 10 different actors. We dare you not to Google for more. For more information please visit www.urbanitetheatre.com for show times and tickets. 

Urbanite Theatre , 1487 Second Street, Sarasota

[SOON]  MUSIC: Charles Wesley Godwin , October 26, 8pm

A singer and songwriter born and raised in West Virginia, Charles' music has been shaped by his experiences growing up. His songs and stories, which center around his childhood spent in Appalachia, have captivated audiences with their one-of-a-kind sound.

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

[SOON]  THEATER: A Little Night Music , October 26 – November 12, 8pm

Get whisked away by romantic nineteenth century waltz from Stephen Sondheim. His music is sure to transport listeners to a weekend in the country. Tickets are $27, $30 or $37, depending on seating.

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

[SOON]  THEATER: The Rocky Horror Show , October 27 – October 31, Friday 8pm and midnight, Saturday 8pm and midnight, Tuesday 8pm

Get in the mood for Halloween with The Rocky Horror Show. Follow the story of newlyweds Brad and Janet as they seek shelter at a mysterious castle and meet the esoteric host Dr. Frank 'N' Furter and his creation Rocky. Catch the cult-classic musical and join in on the fun as an audience participant.

Venice Theatre, 140 West Tampa Ave., Venice

[SOON]  MUSIC: Driftwood , October 27, 8pm

Creating a name for themselves with electric performances, Driftwood has been a notable group to have come out of Binghamton, New York. Their musical palette is broad, with origins in the Americana and Roots scenes. 

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

[SOON]  THEATER: Buddy Returns , October 29 – October 30, Sunday 8pm, Monday 3pm and 8pm

See Matt McClure come to life as Buddy Holly on stage, with. Watch him perform classic songs live in concert complete with Ritchie Valens and The Big Bopper. This high energy event is complemented by an engaging performance and a stellar cast. Tickets are $30.

Venice Theatre, 140 West Tampa Ave., Venice

[SOON]  MUSIC: Dan Bern , November 1

A singer, songwriter, guitarist, novelist and painter, Dan Bern is a jack of all trades. Most notable of all is his penchant for composing, having written over one thousand songs. His albums contain songs with influences from well-known artists including Bob Dylan, Woody Guthrie, Bruce Sprinteen and Elvis Costello. 

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

[SOON]  THEATER: Moon Over Buffalo , November 2 – November 19

In the madcap comedy tradition of Lend Me A Tenor, this theatrical farce centers on George and Charlotte Hay, fading stars of the 1950s.  On the brink of a disastrous split-up caused by George’s dalliance with a young ingénue, the nearly washed-up stage duo receive word that they might just have one last shot at stardom!

The Players Theatre, 838 N Tamiami Trl., Sarasota

[SOON]  PERFORMANCE: Flip Flops & Fashion , November 2, 11:00AM

Get ready for an easy breezy afternoon with your toes in the sand Children First’s 10th Annual Flip Flops and Fashion Luncheon. Guests will gather together at Sharky’s on the Pier under a tent on the beach to enjoy dazzling views of the Gulf and tropical fare, while supporting at-risk children and families in our community. See fashionable finds from L. Boutique, Scout & Molly's and Sun Bug modeled by Children First supporters adorable children as well. There will be a chance drawing, an opportunity to purchase orchids and many other ways to support Children First.

Sharky's on the Pier , 1600 Harbor Drive South Venice, FL 34285

[SOON]  THEATER: Flaming Guns of The Purple Sage , November 2 – November 19, Tuesday to Saturday at 8pm; Sunday at 2pm

Jane Martin's bodacious and satirical play combines humor with horror. A rodeo competitor is facing hard financial times on her ranch where she helps injured cowboys. Find out what happens when she comes face to face with the one-eyed Black Dog, a Ukrainian biker. Tickets are $27 for adults, $17 for college students and $15 for children.

Venice Theatre, 140 West Tampa Ave., Venice

[SOON]  PERFORMANCE: La traviata , November 3 – November 21

Violetta, a famed Parisian courtesan, has lived a life of lavish parties with influential friends. She abandons it all to be with her beloved Alfredo, but when her past threatens his family’s honor, she must forsake her dream of love.
Verdi’s awe-inspiring music combined with a heart-breaking libretto has made La traviata one of the repertoire cornerstones of opera companies around the world.

Sarasota Opera , 61 N Pineapple Ave. Sarasota

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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