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SRQ DAILY Aug 28, 2018

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"But if they allow, they must treat us no different than pharmacies."

- Todd Beckwith, AltMed

[Government]  Can County Stop Weekend Marijuana Sales?
Jacob Ogles, jacob.ogles@srqme.com

State law says medical marijuana dispensaries should be regulated the same as pharmacies, but Sarasota County governs one of these business’ hours more akin to a bar or liquor store.

Todd Beckwith, marketing director for Altmed Florida, says the company’s MÜV Medical Cannabis Dispensary, which opened this month on Fruitville Road, cannot sell its products in the store after noon on Saturdays or at all on Sundays. That’s in direct contradiction to a state law that says marijuana can be dispensed between 7am and 9pm.

Beckwith says jurisdictions have a choice whether to allow dispensaries from opening or prohibiting them entirely. “But if they allow, they must treat us no different than pharmacies,” he says.

County officials, though, note that the restrictions came with the approval of a special exception petition allowing the Fruitville location to operate. In a staff report recommending Sarasota County Commissioners approve the permit, it includes an applicant response to the time conditions. “With respect to operating hours of the MMD [Medical Marijuana Dispensary], the dispensary will comply with all valid conditions of approval," the report reads.

Commissioners in April voted 4-1 in favor of allowing the dispensary to open. County Commissioner Paul Caragiulo noted the entire medical marijuana industry is new to Florida, so governments must exhibit some precaution. "We're in uncharted territory here," he said.

As far as regulating dispensaries exactly like pharmacies, Caragiulo noted the two can't operate exactly the same for a bevy of reasons. Marijuana remains a banned substance under federal law, for example, forcing dispensaries to operate on a 100-percent cash basis. Regardless of any concerns about the product itself, that business model brings its own land-use concerns.

After a six-month approval process for the petition, Beckwith says Sarasota-based Altmed wanted to cooperate with county officials and get its first retail location open in its home county. But since other jurisdictions in the immediate area don’t place the same restrictions on dispensaries, the decision could now put the location at a competitive disadvantage.

For example, Trulieve plans to open a dispensary on Beneva Road inside the city limits for the City of Sarasota, which puts it blocks from the MÜV dispensary. But Sarasota spokeswoman Jan Thornburg confirms the city will place no set hours of operations for cannabis retailers in that jurisdiction.

In the meantime, Beckwith says Altmed plans to sell on Saturday afternoons and Sundays, just not over the counter. As a workaround to county code, the MÜV dispensary last weekend started offering free deliveries on Saturday and Sunday between 10am and 5pm, waiving a normal $20 delivery fee for anyone living within 25 miles of the Sarasota location. That means staff will man the store during delivery hours and can consult at the dispensary but cannot sell the product outside the times allowed by county rules. 

[GoodBite]  Seeing Red for Labor Day
Brittany Mattie, brittany.mattie@srqme.com

Celebrate Labor Day weekend with “Big Red”—no, it’s not Clifford the dog or the southern cream soda—it’s Brick’s massive live fire Oyler pit which has seemingly revolutionized the art and science of barbecue. Capable of turning out 1800 lbs. of meat, the offset red oven encompasses multiple shelves inside its chamber which rotate the rotisserie like a ferris-wheel—constantly basting its contents inside low and slow, and massaging them as they pass through alternate temperature zones while revolving through the wee hours of the night.Ever get the feeling once you’ve left the house that you left the oven on? Pitmaster Clint Michael does all the time, but it’s a good thing. Every evening, he puts a load of sausages, spare ribs, pulled pork, brisket and turkey breast into the insulated red eye machine to slow cook throughout the whole night, to which he returns in the morning to retrieve the meats’ from their smoldering slumber party. The results: miraculous, mouth-watering grub with the smokey flavor of solid white oak.

Former aircraft mechanic for 20 years, turned chef for the Tampa Ray’s, pitmaster Clint has been with Brick’s since their inception and while he claims he lost his sense for heat a while back when trying his friend's home grown jalapenos which accidentally cross-pollinated with habaneros—"It blew my spice taste buds right off my tongue"—the monarch of Big Red still knows a thing or two about braising and glazing. Brick’s house specialty and staple entree, the prime brisket marinades and slow cooks for over 16 hours, “It’s a lot of work, but it’s a labor of love,” says Clint. “Only 2% of the beef in the U.S. is prime grade, so we try not to cover any of its natural flavor,” speaking of the simple salt and pepper rub, letting the quality beef speak for itself.

If you want that tried-and-true Texas flavor for a guaranteed hit at your next neighborhood BBQ, birthday party or wedding rehearsal, "We offer full-service catering with our full menu for any size event," says Clint. Whether at the Annual Labor Day Regatta, at the beach pavillion or your backyard, Brick’s brings the food, equipment, dining ware and the service all to you. Order anything off the menu for an effortless, rustic barbeque party—from the gamut of smoked meats, Nachos Deluxe, chicken wings, sandwich melts, Porto“Bellies” platter, kale apple salad or the sweet desserts like Brulee Banana Pudding served in a mini Mason jar. Clint will be onsite for every event and depending on the amount of food, mentions their capability of setting up stations such as a carving station, taco station, burnt ends side station, etc., including offerings of all Brick’s house sauces—because who doesn’t love the thrill of getting a little messy on their last chance to wear white until next year’s Memorial weekend?

“New menu items are coming soon as well,” says Clint. “We’re playing around with an apple-chip crusted grouper special, a spinach salad with bacon vinaigrette and caramelized red onions, more vegetarian options and new desserts like a deep fried sponge cake.” Where’s the bib? Labor Day weekend feasting is about to go down Lone Star-style.

Guests who order $200 or more for catering will receive a $25 gift card for a future visit. Special running Friday, August 31–Monday, September 3. Please order 24 hours in advance. For catering inquiries email SmokinQ@BricksSRQ.com or call 941-993-1435. 

Image provided by Brick's

Brick's Smoked Meats, 1528 State St., Sarasota.

[Government]  Manatee County Announces Next Steps in Red Tide Cleanup

Manatee County has announced a new program to maintain local canals and waterways impacted by the August red tide outbreak. The Nets to Neighbors campaign will provide local homeowner associations and neighborhoods with nets and buckets for local cleanup efforts. Manatee County will continue its daily cleanup of public beaches and parks on Anna Maria Island. The County now will move to a maintenance effort. Neighborhoods or homeowner associations can join the Nets to Neighbors campaign or request a dumpster by calling the County's red tide hotline, (941) 749-3547. With fewer incoming calls the County's red tide hotline will no longer be staffed on weekends. Manatee County Parks and Natural Resources will host another volunteer cleanup event of Palma Sola Causeway on Sat., September 1 at Palma Sola Causeway boat ramp from 7:30am to 9am. Parks and Natural Resources staff will provide basic masks, buckets and gloves. The County’s public resource for updates on these cleanup efforts are posted daily at the website below. 

Manatee County Red Tide Updates

[Business]  Sleep Inn / Mainstay Suites Hotel Opens Today

The Sleep Inn / MainStay Suites Hotel is opening today with a small ribbon cutting, inviting some key leaders, government officials and dignitaries. Once the second hotel is opened on the same parcel of land next year, there will be a larger, more public-facing grand celebration event. The new hospitality venue will be located at 5965 Brookhill Boulevard., off Fruitville Road and I-75, near Exit 210 and next to Bob Evans Restaurant. A dual-concept hotel, the venue will also focus on making guests aware of beaches, local parks and arts and culture opportunities. 

Sleep Inn/Mainstay Suites

[Healthcare]  AAASWFL Honored at Golden Image Awards

The Area Agency on Aging for Southwest Florida (AAASWFL), a nonprofit organization serving Charlotte, Collier, DeSoto, Glades, Hendry, Lee, and Sarasota Counties, has been honored with two statewide awards for public relations. The awards were presented at the Florida Public Relations Association (FPRA) Golden Image Awards ceremony. AAASWFL earned an Award of Distinction and a Judges’ Award for the agency’s “SHINE on” public affairs campaign, which educated Southwest Florida residents about the importance of free, unbiased Medicare counseling and encouraged citizens to advocate for continued federal funding for these programs. The Golden Image Awards have set the standard of public relations excellence in the Sunshine State since 1968. Awards of distinction are presented to entries that meet the standards of excellence set by a panel of judges. Judges’ Awards may additionally be conferred upon entries that achieve maximum results while using a minimal budget.

The Agency’s “SHINE on” public affairs campaign was seen by more than half a million Southwest Floridians at an expense of only $250 to AAASWFL. In 2017, AAASWFL assisted more than 33,000 older adults, caregivers and others in Southwest Florida through its programs and services, including the Elder Helpline, SHINE Medicare counseling, and health and wellness workshops. 

Area Agency on Aging for Southwest Florida

[TODAY]  GALLERY: VOLUMES , August 12 – October 9

This summer light and sound come into play with a special installation by the artist Ezra Masch. VOLUMES harnesses the speed of light to reveal the volume of sound and space. This immersive audio and visual installation will feature a 3-d grid of LED lights that will fill the interior of the Ringling’s Monda Gallery.

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

[SOON]  THEATER: Gilbert & Sullivan Unplugged , August 21 – September 23

Pour the pirate sherry, braid the raven hair, polish up the handle of the big brass door, and celebrate Gilbert & Sullivan’s most beloved songs. Gilbert & Sullivan Unplugged has delighted audiences across the US with lovingly loopy renditions and joyfully irreverent excerpts from HMS Pinafore, The Mikado, and The Pirates of Penzance. Last seen at New York’s 54 Below, this isn’t your grandmother’s Gilbert & Sullivan!

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

[SOON]  GALLERY: Elsewhere , August 30 – October 5

This juried exhibition opens with a reception on August 30th.

Art Center Sarasota, 707 N Tamiami Trail, Sarasota, FL 34236

[SOON]  THEATER: Wakey, Wakey , August 3 – September 2

How do we confront the uncomfortable inevitability of death? Obie-award-winning playwright Will Eno chooses to celebrate life’s lingering gifts with an uplifting mix of gratitude, absurdity and humor in a profound rumination on life and humanity.

Urbanite Theatre, 1487 2nd St., Sarasota

[SOON]  GALLERY: Florida Watercolor Show , September 7 – October 26

Considered one of the finest watercolor shows in the country, whether one credits the local talent or local beauty, watercolorists from around the state will be showing in all three galleries of the art center, taking over the entire space for this premier exhibition.

ArtCenter Manatee, 209 9th St. W, Bradenton.

[SOON]  MUSEUM: Storytelling: French Art from the Horvitz Collection , September 9 – December 2

Explore two exhibitions selected from one of the world’s finest private collections of French art, “Imaging Text: French Drawings for Book Illustration” and “17th and 18th Century French Paintings,” from The Horvitz Collection. Features 60 drawings and 10 related prints for book illustration, created between the 16th and 19th centuries, as well as a selection of 10 paintings. Subjects range from mythological and religious scenes to more playful genre imagery.

The Ringling Museum of Art, 5401 Bay Shore Rd., Sarasota.

[SOON]  THEATER: Salute to the Queen: A Tribute to Aretha Franklin , September 11 – September 15

Nate Jacobs directs this special tribute to the life and legacy of the Queen of Soul, featuring WBTT favorites Naarai Jacobs and Teresa Stanley. The evening highlights Franklin's classic hits and musical impact, while ongoing narration spotlights her professional achiecements and lasting influence.

Westcoast Black Theatre Troupe, 1012 North Orange Ave., Sarasota.

[SOON]  MUSIC: Friday Fest: Dr. Dave Band , September 14, 5pm-9pm

Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall is wrapping up their Friday Fest summertime concert series this September with the Dr. Dave Band. A Bradenton favorite performing for more than a decade as a top-choice house band, this group knows how to wow a crowd with high-energy Southern Rock blended with bluegrass banjo and fiddle. During the show, don’t forget to indulge in the refreshments provided by Van Wezel, including local food trucks and popular beverage vendors. Bring a blanket, lawn chairs and settle in for a good time.

Van Wezel, 777 North Tamiami Trl., Sarasota.

[SOON]  MUSEUM: Watercolors from the Permanent Collection , September 15 – February 3

A selection of watercolors drawn from The Ringling’s permanent collections, illustrating various ways artists have used the medium. The exhibition will feature works by Edward Hopper, Charles Burchfield and Childe Hassam, among others.

The Ringling Museum of Art, 5401 Bay Shore Rd., Sarasota.

[SOON]  FOOD: Dining for a Difference , September 20, 5pm-10pm

Join the Designing Daughters for Dining for a Difference, a community wide, dine out event featuring 20+ local Sarasota and Manatee County Restaurants who will donate a portion of all sales made on September 20 back to the Designing Daughters Grants Program for local Children and Family charities. Simply grab your friends, colleagues and neighbors, pick a participating restaurant and enjoy a meal. No ticket, no fancy clothes, just a night out with your favorite people.This simple act will make a huge impact for local families in need.

Multiple locations, Multiple locations

[SOON]  THEATER: Annie Get Your Gun , September 20 – October 7

Sure-shootin’ Annie Oakley can win prizes with her marksmanship, but she can’t get a man…or can she? This slice of magical American musical theatre still thrills audiences with the classic tunes of the legendary Irving Berlin.

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

[SOON]  GALA: 2nd Annual Taste of New Orleans Benefit Dinner , September 22, 6pm-9pm

Truly Valued presents its 2nd Annual Taste of New Orleans Benefit Dinner, at Michaels on the Bay at Selby Gardens with speaker Captain Todd Shear of the Manatee County Sheriff's Office and a night of entertainment with NuJazz. All proceeds support Truly Valued's mission of building self-esteem, confidence and character to promote a positive self- image, positively impact educational and career aspirations and improve academic achievement in adolescent girls. Dinner is complimentary and an opportunity to make a financial gift will be extended during the event.

Michaels on the Bay at Marie Selby Botanical Gardens', 900 South Palm Ave., Sarasota.

[SOON]  FOOD: Boards for Bravery: A Charity Charcuterie Event , September 23, 4:30pm–7pm

Learn how to build the perfect charcuterie board while supporting pediatric cancer research. Inspired by Benjamin Gilkey’s love of charcuterie, admission includes wine and appetizers from Louies Modern, a handcrafted charcuterie board to take home, pairing education from local experts and the chance to create your own palette of fine meats, cheeses and delicious accoutrements, provided by local artisans. Proceeds benefit The Benjamin Gilkey Fund for Innovative Pediatric Cancer Research, which supports groundbreaking studies led by physicians at Johns Hopkins All Children’s Hospital.

Louies Modern, 1289 North Palm Ave., Sarasota.

[SOON]  PERFORMANCE: iconcept jr: The Future of Fashion , September 23, 12pm

25 designers ages 8–16 are encouraged to use repurposed/recyled materials in their creations. Most of them will also wear their outfits in the runway show, adding self-confidence and stage presence as skills gained. The participants are treated to a professional fashion photoshoot for the program guide, as well as professional hair and makeup stylists backstage to complete their look. Proceeds from the event benefit the expansion of the Art Center's youth art education programs and help students who are in need of financial assistance receive scholarships.

Art Center Sarasota, 707 North Tamiami Trl., Sarasota.

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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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