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SRQ DAILY May 23, 2018

Wednesday Philanthropy Edition

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Wednesday Philanthropy Edition

"We're facilitating this community conversation and reacting to what we hear. It's important that we hear your voices, and that we continue to hear your voices."

- Bill Waddill, SBPO

[Bayfront]  No Longer the Nay-front, Bayfront Plans Continue Apace
Philip Lederer, Phil.Lederer@srqme.com

Editor’s note: This is a condensed version of a longer article comprising further history of the process and detail of the various proposed plans of the past and today. The full article can be found on the SRQ magazine website.

With near 200 folks at the Sarasota Municipal Auditorium and unknown more watching live via Facebook, Bill Waddill of the Sarasota Bayfront Planning Organization and Sasaki Designers Gina Ford and Susannah Ross presented the latest plans for the Bayfront yesterday evening, before opening both up to community input. Using the previously released Bridge the Divide plan as a foundation, Ford cited many advantages, including slight community preference, centrally located but unobtrusive parking, simplified phasing for inevitable construction and a great opportunity for iconic architecture to enhance the Bayfront. Also, in response to a very vocal minority (roughly 10% of respondents to April’s survey) concerned with the future of the Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall, this plan takes that into account.

The refined plans have taken more solid shape in the south, says Ford, where changes to the design reflected concerns about pedestrian access from the Boulevard of the Arts area, activating the space with shaded recreation and capturing and preserving Bay views from the Bayfront and surrounding areas. The current plans incorporate the previously planned three pedestrian bridges, but revamp the southernmost one to arc over the coming roundabout at Boulevard of the Arts and Tamiami Trail, before looping out over the water, becoming its own destination. The rest of that corridor will then be filled in with options like casual dining, athletic courts and picnic spaces. These plans also leave options open for the Van Wezel, though it will likely be repurposed in some way. Additionally, both plans leave ample green space in the west and southwest areas for “adventure playspaces”—highly engineered open-air parks that emphasize connectivity with nature.

One area where the community and the designers disagree lies in the possibility of a waterfront drive. Respondents expressed concern over the presence of streets and resulting traffic, but Ford and the rest are “holding steady” on that point. Access remains king, she says, and a leisurely driving route—nothing high-speed—can help avoid inactivated areas and the “undesirable activities” they often contain.

But that’s where the plans—known as The Bridge and Canal District—begin to diverge, and Sasaki and SBPO want more input from the locals.

The Bridge calls for a performance arts hall spanning the canal, which keeps the current boat ramp where it is, in turn pushing dining to the south side of the 10th Street canal. An outdoor amphitheater takes the southwest corner of the Bayfront, with the Van Wezel being repurposed into the design. Canal District moves that performance arts hall south of the waterway, and migrates the boat ramp north, freeing the canal from utilitarian use and creating a wraparound dining district. For iconic architecture, the plan imagines a pedestrian bridge beginning at an elevated position in the north and ramping down over the canal to end at a sea-level pier jutting out above the water, all flanking a larger outdoor amphitheater.

Before moving forward with either, SBPO and Sasaki are asking for another round of community input by launching another survey. Open through 11:59pm, Wednesday, May 30, those interested can access the website below, peruse the plans and cast their vote as planning continues. “We’re facilitating this community conversation and reacting to what we hear,” says Waddill. “It’s important that we hear your voices, and that we continue to hear your voices.” 

Pictured: Renderings of both The Bridge and Canal District plans. Images courtesy of SBPO and Sasaki.

The Bay Master Plan Survey

[Community Foundation]  Lives Transformed
Brittany Mattie, brittany.mattie@srqme.com

Habitat for Humanity Sarasota excitedly kicked off its capital initiative, Lives Transformed: The Campaign for Hammock Place, by announcing a $3 million commitment through a partnership with The Kolter Group and the Community Foundation of Sarasota County—hurtling Habitat Sarasota that much closer to its $7 million goal. The profoundly impactful campaign is the first of its kind in this area, aiming to fund construction of 40 new affordable homes in a safe, secured neighborhood.

The Hammock Place has been designed to look like a market-rate community—each house featuring three or four bedrooms, and including two-car garages. It will be deed-restricted, include lawn maintenance and have a gated entry. And Habitat Sarasota is continuously improving its sustainable construction methods with the incorporation of an insulated concrete form (ICF) system. This innovative interlocking system for reinforced concrete is made with a rigid thermal insulation that stays in place as a permanent substrate for walls, floors and roofs. Because of this, ICF homes have a significantly higher fire-resistance rating, are more energy efficient and have a hurricane safety rating that exceeds 150 miles per hour. “This cutting-edge construction method is also extremely volunteer-friendly, which allows us to reduce building costs while exceeding green building standards,” says Renee Snyder, President and CEO of Habitat for Humanity Sarasota.

Through Habitat Sarasota’s fundraising efforts, and the support of community partners and volunteers, the organization will be able to provide housing with a zero percent interest rate mortgage to qualified candidates. Hammock Place’s stable neighborhood will soon transform the lives of 40 families and more than 100 children—alleviating financial hardship and providing a sense of community pride.

“A Habitat Sarasota home relieves two main stresses for families: time and money. Parents with an affordable mortgage have more quality time to spend with their children, by often eliminating the financial need to work multiple jobs. Parents are available to help with homework, cook healthy meals and provide better healthcare for their children.” says Habitat Program Director Rhonda Leiberick. “Children that grow up in a Habitat home even see improved grades in school and have a better opportunity to go to college than those that live in substandard/overcrowded living conditions.”

Site development recently launched, including building infrastructure such as roads, and with the first three to four homes undergoing construction August 2018. Within the next two and a half years, the remaining of the 40 homes will become ready for families to move in and start their new life.

The Community Foundation of Sarasota County is proud to partner with SRQ Media Group to highlight stories about community impact powered by philanthropy in our region, thanks to the support of donors and our local nonprofit partners. The Community Foundation is a public charity founded in 1979 by the Southwest Florida Estate Planning Council as a resource for caring individuals and the causes they support, enabling them to make a charitable impact on the community. For more information, visit www.CFSarasota.org  

Rendering provided by Habitat for Humanity Sarasota

Habitat for Humanity Sarasota, 1757 North East Ave., Sarasota, 941-365-0700.

[SRQ Story Project Partner Spotlight ]  Mote Manatees Burn a Few Calories for Conservation Science

The resident manatees at Mote Marine Laboratory & Aquarium have been swimming against an Endless Pool water flume—a swimmer’s “treadmill” used by human athletes—for the first study of energetic costs in continuously swimming manatees.

Manatees Hugh and Buffett participate voluntarily in this project co-led by Mote and the University of California, Santa Cruz. The manatees were trained, using positive-reinforcement rewards like apples and carrots, to rest or swim at specific speeds and then breathe under an acrylic dome connected to an oxygen analyzer. By calculating the manatees’ oxygen consumption every minute and converting to calories burned, the researchers are investigating the energetic cost of healthy manatees in a controlled setting.

 “We want to better understand how much energy a healthy manatee burns, which gives us a better idea of the caloric intake needed for an animal of a given size,” said Senior Mote Aquarium Biologist Kat Boerner.

This baseline data can help inform wild manatee rescue, rehabilitation and research.

Wild manatees must swim to warmer waters during cold weather. “It’s important to know how much energy manatees expend while swimming to or between warm water refugia, and how that might affect the amount of food they need to maintain body condition during those times,” said Jason John, Ph.D. Candidate in the lab of Dr. Terrie Williams at UC Santa Cruz.

Williams and Dr. Joseph Gaspard initiated this project, in collaboration with a manatee expert at Mote, the late Dr. John Reynolds. 

Full Story

[Government]  Manatee County Finalizes Purchase for Johnson Preserve

Manatee County Government and the Conservation Foundation of the Gulf Coast has announced the permanent protection of a 44.5-acre preserve on the Braden River that will be named the Floyd C. Johnson & Flo Singer Johnson Preserve at Braden River. Located on the Braden River east of I-75, the 44.5-acre oasis of nature is home to a diversity of plants and animals not normally seen in similar suburban areas, with mature live oaks, tall long leaf pines, important wetlands that store water preventing flooding, imperiled swallowtail kites and gopher tortoises. The land’s riverfront and floodplain forests are part of a corridor linking natural habitat along the Braden River, which supplies drinking water for the City of Bradenton. Empowered by the Floyd C. Johnson & Flo Singer Johnson Foundation’s challenge grant of $500,000, the Conservation Foundation raised more than $1.29 million toward the $3 million purchase. County Commissioners agreed to fund the remaining $1.7 million. The land purchase was completed yesterday. 

Manatee County Government

[Recognition]  Andrews Named Barnes & Noble Teacher of the Year

Barnes & Noble has named Lem Andrews from Booker High School in Sarasota, FL, as the 2018 national winner and “Teacher of the Year” in the Barnes & Noble My Favorite Teacher Contest. Andrews was nominated by his former student, Ellen Bausback, and was chosen from more than 4,700 entries nationwide. From January 2018 to March 2018, Barnes & Noble invited students to nominate their favorite teacher by writing essays, poems or thank you letters that share how their teacher has influenced their life and why they appreciate and admire their teacher. Entries were accepted at Barnes & Noble stores, and were judged on the compelling nature of the teacher’s qualities, the sincerity of the student’s appreciation and the quality of expression and writing. Along with the title of “Teacher of the Year,” Andrews received $5,000 and was recognized at a special community celebration at his school. Andrews’ school, Booker High, also received $5,000 for a total prize of $10,000. 

Booker High School

[Recognition]  GSAHEC Tobacco Manager Named 'Member of the Year'

At the DeSoto County Tobacco Free Partnership Annual Meeting, Gulfcoast South AHEC’s Xenia Rosado-Merced became the proud recipient of the Tobacco Free Partnership Member of the Year Award for her outstanding dedication towards a tobacco free future. Rosado-Merced is an active contributor of the Partnership and has offered tobacco cessation services to the DeSoto County area for the last eight years. The mission of the Tobacco Free Partnership of DeSoto County is to mobilize community partners to establish long-lasting system and policy changes that promote tobacco-free social norms in order to prevent usage of tobacco products by youth/young adults, encourage and support tobacco cessation, eliminate the hazards of secondhand smoke and decrease the number of deaths due to tobacco products. 

Gulfcoast South Area Health Education Center

[Exec Moves]  Vaughan-Birch Re-Nominated for Mote Advisory Council

Norman Vaughan-Birch, a member of the full-service law firm Kirk-Pinkerton, has been re-nominated to serve on the advisory council for Mote Marine Laboratory & Aquarium. In this capacity, he will continue to serve as an ambassador for positive community relations through informed and targeted communication of Mote’s research and education programs, initiatives and events. Vaughan-Birch also serves on the research committee, a sub-committee of the Mote Marine Laboratory’s board of trustees. Vaughan-Birch is certified as a civil mediator and an arbitrator by the Florida Supreme Court and Federal Court. He has been a member of The Florida Bar since 1969 and was also a representative of the board of governors for the Twelfth Judicial Circuit in Sarasota, Manatee and DeSoto Counties of the Florida Bar. A Florida resident since 1950, Vaughan-Birch has been working at Kirk-Pinkerton for 49 years. 

Mote Marine Laboratory & Aquarium

[TODAY]  GALLERY: Circle of Animals / Zodiac Heads , June 9 – June 1

The Ringling is pleased to announce the presentation of the Chinese artist Ai Weiwei’s 12 monumental bronze sculptures, Circle of Animals/Zodiac Heads. A sculptor, photographer, installation artist, architect and social activist, Ai is one of the most renowned artists working today. Circle of Animals/Zodiac Heads was inspired by the fabled fountain-clock of the Yuanming Yuan, an 18th-century imperial retreat just outside Beijing. The 12 bronze Zodiac Heads stand on bronze columns. Each animal head measures approximately 4 feet high and 3 feet wide. The animal heads on their columns reach between 9.8 and 12 feet high, with each one weighing approximately 800 lbs. The sculptures will be on The Ringling’s grounds, which are free and open to the public. For more information please visit www.ringling.org

The Ringling, 5401 Bayshore Rd., Sarasota

[TODAY]  GALLERY: Sea Debris - Awareness Through Art , December 9 – June 15, 10am to 5pm

Artwork made of marine debris including Greta the Great White Shark and Natasha the Turtle will arrive to Mote Marine this winter. This exhibit will bring awareness to the 4.4 pounds on average of trash genereated by each American daily. These larger-than-life sculptures are entirely made from plastic and other debris gathered from the Oregon Coast.

Mote Marine, 600 Ken Thompson Pkwy., Sarasota

[TODAY]  GALLERY: Warhol: Flowers In the Factory , February 11 – June 30

This exhibition showcases the surprising and little examined, role of nature in Warhol’s art and life. The spectacular 15-acre tropical setting of Marie Selby Botanical Gardens on Sarasota Bay will provide a matchless context for examining Warhol’s fascination with the natural world in this focused, immersive exhibition. It is curated by Carol Ockman, Ph.D., curator-at-large of Marie Selby Botanical Gardens and the Robert Sterling Clark Professor of Art History at Williams College

Marie Selby Botanical Gardens, 811 South Palm Ave., Sarasota.

[TODAY]  SPORTS: Sarasota Tarpon Tournament , May 12 – June 17

The Sarasota Tarpon Tournament will take place from May 12-June 17 celebrating the start of Tarpon Season and 88 continuous years of sanctioned competition. For an entry fee of just $125, anglers not only compete for an overall winner category, but also, weekly, junior, ladies, and ‘his & hers’ categories. Weekly winners and winners of the two additional categories will all compete in a 2-day Fish-Off weekend to determine overall winner whose name is inscribed on the historic trophy. A kick-off party will be held on May 9 at White Buffalo Saloon featuring live music, great food and a cash bar.

[SOON]  GALLERY: Martha's Vineyard Location - Feeling Fresh , May 24 – June 20

Nikki Sedacca Gallery is pleased to open with an exciting exhibition, “Feeling Fresh,” debuting work by nationally-acclaimed artists Kathe Fraga and Carter Wentworth, and featuring new works by Linda Richichi and Joan Konkel. This show seeks to highlight the light, bright, and joyous excitement that builds as the warm summer breeze infuses the salty air to signal the start of seasonal activity on Martha’s Vineyard, featuring diverse mediums such as oil paint, watercolor and metal mesh and fresco.

530 Burns Gallery, 530 Burns Ct., Sarasota

[SOON]  GALLERY: OPENING RECEPTION Laine Nixon: Unfixed , May 24, 5:30-8pm

This solo exhibition, the artist's first in Sarasota, Laine Nixon explores the mutable nature of art through work on paper, mixed media, and painting. The show's title, "Unfixed," refers to her working methods of creating, altering, covering up or exposing various painting techniques on a single surface.

Alfstad& Contemporary, 1419 5th St., Sarasota

[SOON]  THEATER: Studio Year End Showcase , May 25

Students from The Players Studio will showcase their talent, appearing in songs, dances and acting scenes. A must see!

The Players Centre for Performing Arts, 838 North Tamiami Trl., Sarasota

[SOON]  THEATER: Soul Man: A New Musical Revue , April 18 – May 26

As the 1960s Civil Rights movement unfolded, black music evolved from the controlled Motown performances to fiery cross rhythms sound—a little gospel, a lot of soul. The passionate soloists, such as James Brown, Otis Redding and Sam Cooke, added energetic movements and unique vocalizations that inspired many future performers. Soul Man will feature some of WBTT’s most popular male performers.

Westcoast Black Theatre Troupe, 1646 10th Way., Sarasota.


KidSpace is a program for kids who want to explore everything there is to know about space and become Masters of the Universe. From 10:15–11am on the second and fourth Saturday morning of each month, we'll unleash the awesome power of the Bishop Planetarium, taking off from Earth's surface and flying to places no human has gone before.

South Florida Museum, 201 10th St. West, Bradenton

[SOON]  MUSIC: The Roots of Unity (with Chris Kottke) , May 27, 2pm

This performance is from a jazz ensemble called The Roots of Unity, headed by trumpeter Chris Kottke. Their repertoire includes both straightahead and latin jazz, from classic standards to modern originals. Kottke attended the Berklee College of Music and was active in the Boston jazz scene for about a decade before moving to Sarasota in 2016 to pursue his day job as a math professor at New College of Florida. In addition to the Roots of Unity, Kottke can be occasionally heard in such Sarasota-based jazz ensembles such as Ocean's 11 and the Sarasota Jazz Project.

The Reserve SRQ, 1322 North Tamiami Tr., Sarasota.

[SOON]  MUSIC: Always...Patsy Cline , May 30 – July 1

A tuneful and memorable tribute, Patsy Cline's rise to legendary stardom is told through the eyes of her biggest fan, Louise Seger. From her performances in honky-tonks to the Grand Ole Opry, Patsy Cline will "always" have a place in country music, with hit songs such as, “Walking After Midnight,” “I Fall to Pieces,” “Crazy,” “Sweet Dreams,” and many more you know and love.

Florida Studio Theatre, 1241 North Palm Ave., Sarasota.

[SOON]  THEATER: Menopause the Musical , May 30 – June 10

Inspired by a hot flash and a bottle of wine, writer Jeanie Linders created Menopause The Musical® as a celebration of women who find themselves at any stage of “The Change.” Set in a department store where four women with seemingly nothing in common but a black lace bra meet by chance at a lingerie sale, the all-female cast makes fun of their woeful hot flashes, forgetfulness, mood swings, wrinkles, night sweats and chocolate binges. 

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

[SOON]  THEATER: The Twenty-Third Annual Loveland Show–Unplugged: The Best Day of Your Life! , May 31 – June 3

Venice Theatre and the Loveland Center have been partnering for 20 years to provide adults with intellectual/developmental disabilities the chance to grow and learn through theatre study. Loveland students, under the direction of professional staff and with help from community volunteers, rehearse all season to present this full-scale musical on MainStage.

Venice Theatre, 140 Tampa Ave West, Venice

[SOON]  FOOD: Reserve Spring and Summer Wine Tastings , May 31, 6pm

Come through the Reserve to help them fine tune their retail wine selection. Wines from a wide array of places such as France, Italy, Argentina and more are offered. Pair the wine with a savory meat and cheese platter and enjoy the low key evening. The event is reoccuring, so May 31 is not the last chance to take advantage of this wonderful deal.

The Reserve SRQ, 1322 North Tamiami Tr., Sarasota.

[SOON]  FESTIVAL: World Oceans Day , June 2, 10:00am-1:00pm

A worldwide ocean celebration is on the horizon. Join the fun during the World Oceans Day Family Festival on Saturday, June 2 at Mote Aquarium. Mote’s World Oceans Day event will spotlight the ocean's deep connection to the human spirit and the boundless inspirational power of our natural world's greatest resource. The family festival is free with regular paid admission to Mote Aquarium and is free for Mote Members.

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

[SOON]  FESTIVAL: All About Women Expo , June 3, 12pm–5pm

Experience a day of pampering for women with four featured areas that host Beauty, Wellness, Fashion and Girls Wanting to Have Fun. Enjoy make-up and hair care techniques, massages, sample products, talk to doctors and health professionals, watch a fashion show and more, all for free. Register to have access to the VIP area with wine tastings, a painting class, photo booth, appetizers and everyone receives a glam bag full of swag.

Westfield Sarasota Square Mall, 8201 South Tamiami Trl., Sarasota

[SOON]  MUSIC: Sarasota Music Festival , June 4 – June 23

Classical musicians from around the world converge for three weeks of breathtaking concerts, featuring artists such as Vijay Venkatesh and Robert Sirota.

Sarasota Orchestra, Beatrice Friedman Symphony Center, 709 North Tamiami Trl., Sarasota

[SOON]  THEATER: Jungle Book , June 6 – June 24

Using the same multimedia jaw-dropping approach as past hit show Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea, this reimagination of Kipling's classic stories will transport audiences to the world's jungles. Audiences will have the chance to truly meet characters like Mowgli the Man-Cub and Baloo the Bear in this upcoming performance.

Asolo Repertory Theatre, 5555 North Tamiami Trl., Sarasota

[SOON]  PERFORMANCE: Jungle Book , June 6 – June 24

Join Mowgli, Baloo and friends when Asolo Rep presents the world premiere of Jungle Book from the creators of the hit show Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea. Using the same jaw-dropping multi-media theatrical approach, Jungle Book re-imagines Rudyard Kipling’s classic stories through modern eyes to transport audiences to the world’s jungles. Family Day is June 16; Family Package pricing starts at just $15 per ticket when one person in the party is 18 or younger.

Asolo Repertory Theatre , 5555 N Tamiami Trail, Sarasota, FL 34243

[SOON]  THEATER: Incognito , June 8 – July 8

In a cerebral journey through neuroscience, amnesia, and the theft of Albert Einstein’s brain, playwright Nick Payne investigates the nature of identity in a series of mysterious and touching interwoven tales.

Urbanite Theatre, 1487 2nd St., Sarasota

[SOON]  GALLERY: Floridian Artists Exhibition , June 8 – June 30

As the warm summer heat sets in, 530 Burns Gallery is pleased to highlight artists who hail from Florida. Summertime and sunshine always bring inspiration, and each artist uses his or her diverse style to create innovative and original art works. Featured artists include Gary Borse, Linda Richichi, Katie Cassidy, Todd Andrew Babb, Randy Colbath and Bettina Sego.

530 Burns Gallery, 530 Burns Ct., Sarasota

SRQ Media Group

SRQ DAILY is produced by SRQ | The Magazine. 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. Senior Editor Jacob Ogles edits the Saturday Perspective Edition, Letters and Guest Contributor columns.In the CocoTele department, SRQ DAILY is providing excerpts from news releases as a public service. Reference to any specific product or entity does not constitute an endorsement or recommendation by SRQ DAILY. The views expressed by individuals are their own and their appearance in this section does not imply an endorsement of them or any entity they represent. For rates on SRQ DAILY banner advertising and sponsored content opportunities, please contact Ashley Ryan Cannon at 941-365-7702 x211 or via email

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