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SRQ DAILY Oct 2, 2019

Wednesday Philanthropy Edition

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Wednesday Philanthropy Edition

"While we are tremendously proud of these results, what these numbers ultimately reflect is the generosity of our community and our commitment to community impact."

- Roxie Jerde, Community Foundation of Sarasota County

[Philanthropy]  It Takes a Village . . . To Save a Village
Brittany Mattie, brittany.mattie@srqme.com

This past Sunday, four mainstay Siesta Key Village businesses banded together to benefit the Bahamas Red Cross Relief Program with the "It Takes a Village" fundraising event. Participating bars included Daiquiri Deck Raw Bar, Siesta Key Oyster Bar, 3.14 Pi Craft Beer & Spirits and Gilligan's Island Bar. Locals and visitors alike showed up for the cause—enjoying outdoor performances from seven live music acts located in the Pi parking lot and a complimentary drink at each location. All proceeds from the cover fee and custom tee sales will go to Bahamian Relief to combat the devastation from Hurricane Dorian. Nearly $10,000 was raised from "It Takes a Village" proceeds alone.

Beyond the donation from the weekend event, Siesta Key Oyster Bar (SKOB)'s surprised everyone with another historic donation on behalf of restaurant patrons who have adorned their walls with various paper currencies while visiting the restaurant over many years. 

It took the entire month of September to unfasten thousands of dollar bills stapled all over the walls and columns of the restaurant’s famed interior. From that effort, an additional $15,000 was collected and counted.  With even more bills still hanging from SKOB's ceiling, employees plan to continue pulling them down to add to the donation to the Bahamas Red Cross. Now anyone who had ever shared a George Washington or two on SKOB's walls has auspiciously helped to support the rebuilding of homes on an island neighbor. 

SKOB employees working hard to take down all the dollar bills from its walls to donate to the Bahamas Hurricane Relief fund.

[Philanthropy]  Community Foundation of Sarasota County Ranked Top Nationally by Industry Analyst

The Community Foundation of Sarasota County has been identified as a national leader among community foundations according to an independent third-party that evaluates philanthropic funders for effectiveness. The Center for Effective Philanthropy (CEP) ranked CFSC in the top 99th percentile for overall donor satisfaction and impact on the community after conducting a 2019 Donor Perception Report that compared local results with CEP’s broad dataset of nearly 10,000 donors from more than 70 community foundations across the United States. “While we are tremendously proud of these results, what these numbers ultimately reflect is the generosity of our community and our commitment to community impact,” said Roxie Jerde, President & CEO of the Community Foundation of Sarasota County. “These numbers represent the passions of the donors making a difference every day in the lives of families and individuals. 

Additionally, CFSC was ranked as the largest community foundation in Florida by asset size, according to the results of the 2018 Columbus Survey released in August by CF Insights, a knowledge-sharing platform operated by Candid, a national nonprofit organization focused on transparency among charitable funders. Read more here.  

[Staffing]  Take Stock in Children of Manatee County (TSICM) Names Anne Heller as Interim Executive Director

Anne has stepped out of the position as TSICM Board Vice Chair and we are grateful for her willingness to serve. We will begin the recruitment process for a permanent Executive Director over the next several months. Board member and former President of USF Sarasota Manatee, Dr. Laurey Stryker, will chair the search committee.

Our TSIC Manatee students shine with a 97% high school graduation rate and 90% college attendance. Each student has a mentor who makes an incredible commitment to meet with their student weekly. Our community continues to invest in our students’ success. Because of this support, TSICM is enjoying a banner year supporting the students of Manatee County and is on track toward 50 scholarships for students to attend universities, colleges or technical colleges for the upcoming year. 

More info.

[Opening]  All Faiths Food Bank Opens New Facility in DeSoto County

All Faiths Food Bank will celebrate the official opening of the new DeSoto Food and Resource Center located at 1021 E Oak Street in Arcadia. The ribbon cutting ceremony will welcome and introduce the community to the only Food and Resource Center in DeSoto and one of the few across the nation. Initiated as a pilot program in May 2019, the Food and Resource Center is a one-stop shop that provides greater access to nutritious food and builds partnerships with other services and programs in the community.

Addressing rural hunger has been a key focus for All Faiths Food Bank and, over the past 15 years, it has distributed millions of meals throughout rural DeSoto County.  A community assessment funded by Gulf Coast Community Foundation and its donors recommended the need for a Food Bank facility in DeSoto County.  Since the soft opening in May 2019, the DeSoto Food and Resource Center has surpassed expectations, serving more than 1,700 clients of whom 62% have never received food before from an All Faiths distribution. 

More info.

[Board of Trustees]  Conservation Foundation announces Board of Trustees

Conservation Foundation of the Gulf Coast announces its Board of Trustees for the 2019-2020 fiscal year. Officers elected are Glenn Shipley, Chairman; Mario Bernardis, Vice-Chairman; Rhonda O. Deems, Ph.D., Treasurer; and Mickey Davis, Secretary. Newly elected trustee Sherry Davis joins trustees Rob Brown; Stephen Cetrulo; Harold L. Johnson, MD; Ken Johnson; Mike Knupp; Elizabeth Moore; Lowe Morrison; Nora Patterson; Eileen Scudder-Zimmermann; and Jim Westman. Under the direction of chairman, Glenn Shipley, senior vice-president at Northern Trust, the board will finalize the new strategic vision for Conservation Foundation and guide the implementation of its plan. 

More info.

[Philanthropy]  United Way Grant Helps to Fund the New Earl & Mary Watts After-school Program at Janie's Garden

The Earl & Mary Watts After-school Program at Janie’s Garden opened at the beginning of this week to a packed crowd. The program provides academic support to families with 6- to 12-year-old children living at Janie’s Garden, a mixed-income housing community in North Sarasota. Programming centers on homework support, study skills, reading achievement, social and emotional skills learning and character building.  

The new program is named for two well-loved and influential members of the community, Earl and Mary Watts. These notable community members were well-known Sarasota County educators and among Sarasota County’s first black school administrators. The big reveal of the program’s name was announced during the grand opening this past Monday.  The couple’s son, Edwin Watts, was at the event to speak on behalf of his family. Attendees included various members of the United Way Suncoast Sarasota Area Board including United Way Suncoast Chair Dan Vigne, Sarasota County Schools Superintendent Todd Bowden, Director of Education for USF Sarasota-Manatee Dr. Marie Byrd and President and CEO of the Sarasota County Housing Authority, William Russell. 

The Earl & Mary Watts After-school Program at Janie’s Garden was made possible through a gift to United Way from Dave and Debbie Walker, social service coordination from Better Tomorrows and USF Sarasota-Manatee, who is providing six students to serve as tutors/mentors at the center. Children who are reading at grade level by the end of third grade are FOUR TIMES more likely to graduate high school. High-school graduates have greater career opportunities and the potential to earn 75% more over a lifetime than those who do not graduate.

Pictured: Derrick Kirce & Edwin Watts 

[Philanthropy]  Sponsor a Puppy To Help Change a Life With Southeastern Guide Dogs

The new fundraising initiative, 'Sponsor a Puppy' program, launched to support the partnerships forged between working dogs and the people who need them. A donor can choose to sponsor a puppy (or multiple puppies) for themselves or as a gift, for as little as $19 per dog, per month. After selecting “their” puppy, sponsors follow the two-year path from puppy preschool and kindergarten, to life with a volunteer puppy raiser, classes with a certified trainer in Canine University, and finally, the graduation to certified guide dog. Regular Pupdates will provide engaging progress reports and photos of dogs-in-training as each one matures and learns.

Southeastern Guide Dogs receives no government funding and relies upon donations to breed, train and raise puppies into service dogs for disabled recipients at no cost. With the Sponsor a Puppy initiative, the non profit hopes to pair more dogs with handlers who suffer from vision loss, veterans with a disability, and children with challenges.

For more information, watch video here.  

[Philanthropy]  Sarasota County Schools Launches Annual United Way Campaign

Sarasota County Schools announces this year’s United Way Campaign, an awareness and fundraising partnership between the school district and United Way Suncoast, benefitting families in our community. The campaign will take place district-wide from October 1 to October 31, 2019.

United Way Suncoast serves the people of DeSoto, Hillsborough, Manatee, Pinellas and Sarasota counties by operating and funding support services and initiatives to help create stronger, more vibrant communities. The organization advocates for the education and financial stability of every person in the community through educational programs that give children the skills to succeed and help adults achieve long-term financial stability. Sarasota County Schools appreciates and supports community-centric organizations, like United Way Suncoast, that share our vision for equipping the young people of today to be the empowering leaders of tomorrow.

All of Sarasota County Schools’ employees can voluntarily participate in the campaign by making a one-time donation, or an on-going donation through a paycheck deduction. Staff, students, visitors, volunteers and parents are also welcome to donate their change in support of families in the community. Schools will be hosting change collections, individual events and fundraisers to foster the philanthropic spirit in their school community. Anyone interested in participating should contact their child’s school to learn more. 

United Way Suncoast

[BrandStory]  Selby Gardens' Master Plan: Facts to Frequently Asked Questions

The more people learn the facts about Selby Gardens' Master Site Plan, the more people support it. Here are four key facts:

1. Funding  Ninety-nine percent of current funding for Phase I comes from private philanthropy.

2. Parking  On peak days Selby Gardens turns away over 200 visitors due to lack of parking. Building the Sky Garden facility on U.S. 41 allows Selby Gardens to grow parking capacity and grow walkable gardens within our existing property by 50 percent, while adding nearly 50,000 square feet of free public access. 

3. Preservation  Marie Selby’s original home and gardens, the historic Payne Mansion, and the Augusta block of Palm Avenue are preserved.

4. Traffic  Traffic studies determined Selby Gardens’ visitors account for three percent of current traffic and would account for just 3.8 percent upon completion.

Learn more at Selby Gardens and join nearly 5,000 friends who have signed the petition. 

Click here for more information

[Lighthouse Vision Loss Education Center ]  Mobility Challenge - Without Sight!

Lighthouse Vision Loss Education Center is planning a different, fun way to celebrate White Cane Awareness Day on October 19. They are teaming up with merchants in Downtown Sarasota to stage a Mobility Challenge. Small groups will follow one of several trails and stop to perform tasks which illustrate life without sight, learning how to overcome vision challenges.

The community event will begin at the Selby Library Auditorium at 10 am and move onto the streets from 10:30am to Noon. Each route is a few blocks long, with instructors and volunteers to assist along the way.

Participants are encouraged to create their own team comprised of family, friends and coworkers, or come alone and join up with other team members at check-in. This is not a race, just a fun event. There are no cash jackpot prizes, just bragging rights and a few door prizes.

Registration is free. (Although donations are welcome.)
To register and find more information click HERE Or, call (941) 359-1404 

Lighthouse Vision Loss Education Center | 7318 North Tamiami Trail | Sarasota, Florida 34243

Register for the Mobility Challenge Today

[Theater]  The Players Studio Grows With New Studio Director

The Players Studio is excited to announce its new Studio Director, Jennifer Bushinger Ortiz. Jennifer Bushinger Ortiz has nearly two decades of professional theatre experience ranging from acting in two national tours or costume designing Connecticut Free Shakespeare to directing nearly 100 productions across the Tri-State area. Relocating from Manhattan with her husband and three-year-old son two and half years ago, she brings a wealth of industry experience, as well as nonprofit leadership to The Players Studio.

“I am honored to join this dynamic performing arts organization and contribute to their incredible 90-year legacy” says Bushinger Ortiz. “There are several new and exciting prospects on the horizon for The Players Studio. We only seek to add to its reputation and provide the highest quality arts education in and around our community.” 

The Players Studio offers classes in all styles of dance, singing, and acting, as well as multiple workshops from perfecting your monologue to playwriting. This season the studio expanded its curriculum by adding more classes for the homeschool student along with Mommy & Me classes. Studio class discount packages are now available. Call the studio at 941-552-8879 for a list of upcoming auditions and classes being offered. 

More about The Players Studio

[Research]  NOAA Awards $10.2 Million for Harmful Algal Bloom Research

NOAA will fund 12 new research projects around the country to better understand and predict harmful algal blooms (HABs) and improve our collective response to them.

NOAA’s National Centers for Coastal Ocean Science (NCCOS) is allocating $10.2 million in FY 2019 to fund HAB research across the nation. Approximately $8.4 million of that will cover the first year of new 3- to 5-year projects, and $1.78 million will go to 3-year projects already in process. Funded under NOAA’s ECOHAB and MERHAB programs, new projects will begin in Alaska, California, Chesapeake Bay, Florida, the Great Lakes, New England and the Pacific Northwest. Award recipients will conduct research to identify conditions that increase bloom toxicity; model toxin movement from the water into shellfish, fish and marine mammals; and improve toxin monitoring and forecasts. NCCOS research programs help states and regions around the nation  mitigate the effects of HABs, which can include contaminated drinking water, fisheries closures and disruption to recreation and tourism. 

Among the new and continuing projects in Florida, totalling $2.9 million in 2019, will be efforts to help the state continue to improve how it monitors and manages HABs.  From 2017 to 2019, severe blooms of Karenia brevis, also known as red tide, occurred throughout SW Florida, contributing to the deaths of fish, turtles, marine mammals, and birds; caused neurotoxic shellfish poisoning,and even led to respiratory irritation in beachgoers. 

“Through NCCOS, NOAA is funding the latest scientific research to support environmental managers trying to cope with increasing and recurring toxic algae that continue to affect environmental and human health and coastal economies,” said NCCOS director Steven Thur, PhD. “Improved understanding of these coastal HAB threats will lead to better bloom observation and prediction, and help to mitigate effects along the U.S. coast.”

Prior NOAA-funded research on HABs has produced tools that managers now routinely use to detect, forecast and respond to the blooms and their toxins. NOAA’s NCCOS delivers ecosystem science solutions for NOAA’s National Ocean Service and its partners, bringing research, scientific information and tools to sustain thriving coastal communities and economies. 

List of New Grant Awards

[Mentorship]  Stephen D. Rees Selected as Mentor for Booker High Law Academy

Icard Merrill Attorney Stephen D. Rees, Jr., has been selected to serve as a mentor in the Booker High School Law Academy for the upcoming school year. 

The BHS Law Academy provides students with a rigorous academic program in conjunction with course work in law studies and criminal justice. Students receive innovative instruction, curriculum materials, and real world experience. A mock courtroom is set up to simulate a real courtroom to allow students to apply their knowledge and skills. The mentoring program was established by the Sarasota County Bar Association’s Council for Diversity and Inclusion and is spearheaded by Judge Frederick Mercurio. The purpose of the program is to assist in retaining students in the Law Academy program, and to provide students with a mentor who can be a shining example of quality lawyers and human beings giving back to the community. 

Rees’ law practice focuses on land use, zoning, municipal law, and real estate. He brings many years of experience to his representation of developers, landowners, and others in rezoning cases, obtaining development approvals, and handling the myriad complex issues that arise in the development and use of real estate. 

More info.

[Staffing]  Mainsail Lodging & Development Names Marriott Veteran Andrew Houghton as New Managing Partner for Mainsail Vacation Rentals

Mainsail Lodging & Development announced today the appointment of Andrew Houghton as Managing Partner for Mainsail Vacation Rentals, the company’s new vacation rental experience launched earlier this year. Houghton will oversee the acquisition, management, distribution, marketing and sales of Mainsail Vacation Rentals based in Sarasota, Florida. Mainsail is one of just six property management companies chosen for the launch of Homes & Villas by Marriott International, the global hospitality leader’s new home rental offering.

With more than 30 years of management experience at hotels and resorts around the world, Houghton comes to Mainsail from The Ritz-Carlton Shanghai, Pudong, where he served as General Manager for two years. Prior to The Ritz-Carlton, Houghton was with Marriott International as Area Vice President for the Carribean and Brazil, one of many positions he held throughout his long and distinguished career with Marriott, starting in 1986 as Director of Sales & Marketing at the London Marriott Hotel Grosvenor Square. In 1988, he moved to the Cairo Marriott, as Director of Marketing. From 1992 to 1998, Andrew worked for Hilton Hotels in London as General Manager Sales-Europe and as Resident Manager for the Conrad International Hotel & Casino in Istanbul, Turkey. In addition, Andrew worked at Marriott Headquarters in Washington, DC as Brand Executive Vice President for Full Service Brands from 2004 to 2007. While at Marriott’s corporate office, Andrew defined and managed brand positioning strategies for the Marriott, Renaissance and JW brands. 

Mainsail Vacation Rentals

[SOON]  FILM: Flamenco, Flamenco , October 4, 6:30pm

Directed by legendary Spanish filmmaker Carlos Saura, Flamenco, Flamenco is an evolutionary musical journey through the light, song and dance of a dynamic and alive art form. Beautifully photographed by famed Academy Award-winning cinematographer Vittorio Storaro (Apocalypse Now), and showcasing a powerful new Flamenco through dazzling musical and dance performances by emerging talents, and the greatest living Flamenco masters, this unique musical odyssey reaches beyond the borders of Flamenco and Spanish culture toward a universal artistic expression.

Historic Asolo Theatre, 5401 Bay Shore Road

[SOON]  FOOD: 3rd Annual Taste of New Orleans Benefit Dinner , October 5, 7pm

Truly Valued presents its 3rd Annual Taste of New Orleans Benefit Dinner with speaker Edward James III. Enjoy an evening of elegant dining and live entertainment by the Soul Sensations. Proceeds support Truly Valued programs and services for youth designed to provide knowledge, skills and inspiration that will help them grow to lead happy and successful lives as adults. If you are unable to attend the event, please consider making a tax-deductible contribution. Tickets are $50. Visit www.trulyvalued.org to purchase tickets. Sponsorship and underwriting opportunities are available.

Laurel Oak Country Club, 2700 Gary Player Blvd, Sarasota, FL 34240

[SOON]  FESTIVAL: Hotel Indigo Oktoberfest , October 5, 3pm-7pm

Joining the recent “boom” of the Rosemary District, Hotel Indigo is hosting their first annual Oktoberfest event on the premises of their hotel with a cultural, community event supporting Mayors’ Feed the Hungry Charity, over a three-day celebration of food, music, games and neighborhood connections. Taking place in the parking lot, the main event will be the Oktoberfest on October 5 from 3-7pm, including Bavarian beer and food, Derby games, Stein Holding competition, Das Boot Chugging Competition and much more. There will also be an Oktoberfest Happy Hour from 5-8pm on Friday October 4, and an Oktoberfest Brunch from 11am-2pm on October 6.

Hotel Indigo's Back Parking Lot , 1223 Boulevard of the Arts, Sarasota, FL 34236

[SOON]  DANCE: Sarasota Contemporary Dance: Voices - Rising Choreographers , October 10 – October 13

The 14th Main Stage Season will kick off with four performances, October 10-13, 2019, titled "Voices – Rising Choreographers," at which the local audience gets to see future choreographers of contemporary dance as they are just blossoming. This show presents rising choreographers who were selected by adjudication from SCD's Summer Intensive Program. The group is a combination of company members and guests invited to expand and set their work for the main stage. This idea of fostering choreographic voices is beginning to draw more and more attention to SCD's performances. 

Jane B. Cook Theatre, FSU Center for the Performing Arts, 5555 N. Tamiami Trl, Sarasota, FL 34243

[SOON]  SEMINAR: DreamLarge Weekends , October 11 – October 13, 5pm

DreamLarge Weekends is a program designed to educate and inspire tomorrow’s generation about community issues and philanthropy, empowering their imagination to create innovative solutions and make our community a brighter place. This hands-on, weekend-long program invites students and mentors to work together towards a goal of figuring out creative, unique, and collaborative solutions to community challenges. Over the course of the weekend, students will have spent time creatively exploring a real-world issue, honed in to a single solution, prototyped their plan to create social impact, and pitched their ideas to a panel of local community leaders.

Ringling College of Art + Design Academic Center, 2700 N Tamiami Trail, Sarasota, FL 34234

[SOON]  SCIENCE AND NATURE: Local Planning for Sea Level and Climate Change , October 11, Networking, 6:30pm. Meeting, 7pm.

Join CONA - Sarasota County Council of Neighborhood Associations when Lee Hayes Byron, the director of the Sarasota County-University of Florida/IFAS extension and sustainability, Stevie Freeman-Montes, the sustainability manager for the city of Sarasota, and Darcy Young, the director of planning and communications for the Sarasota Bay Estuary Program discuss current planning by our local governments regarding adaptation to sea level and climate change. They will lead the discussion among a panel of municipal representatives. Bring questions to submit for discussion. Following a traditional half-hour networking opportunity, the meeting will open with brief neighborhood updates about their issues.      

Firehouse Station, 2070 Waldemere Street, Sarasota

[SOON]  GRAB BAG: Sun Coast Jaguar Club Concours d'Elegance , October 12, Registration begins at 8am; Judging complete by 3pm; Awards Dinner and Silent Auction, 6pm

The Sun Coast Jaguar Club 34th Annual Concours d’Elegance presented by Wilde Jaguar Sarasota will be presented on St. Armands Circle. Registration for the event begins at 8 am, with judging completed by 3 pm. The public is invited to attend the showcase, free of charge. Sanctioned by Jaguar Clubs of North America, the Sun Coast Jaguar Club Concours d’Elegance attracts the finest Jaguar automobiles from across the U.S., including vintage antiques, current classics, future models and competition-modified prototypes. Vehicles are judged and awarded in a variety of classes, and all Jaguar owners are encouraged to register. The event also features a display of the latest and state-of-the-art Jaguar models. Special recognitions and club winners will be announced on the Concours lawn after judging concludes. Official JCNA trophies will be presented at 6 pm during the awards dinner and silent auction, accommodated by the Holiday Inn Sarasota-Lido Beach. Specifically, silent auction proceeds will benefit Big Cat Rescue in Tampa, helping care for Manny, a rescued Jaguar.

St. Armands Circle

[SOON]  SCIENCE AND NATURE: Fish, Fun & Fright , October 18, 5:30pm-8pm

Buoys and ghouls of all ages are invited to dress up in costume for a Night of Fish, Fun & Fright to enjoy spooky activities throughout Mote Aquarium. Unearth shark teeth in “Coffin Creek" and feast on deep sea delights in the “Diner of the Dead." Don’t miss Mote’s signature underwater pumpkin carving in spooktacular shark habitats. Pricing, additional information, and a link to purchase your tickets will be posted closer to the event on Mote's Fish, Fun & Fright website page.

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

[SOON]  FESTIVAL: Safari Sarasota , October 24 – October 26, Different festival event dates and times.

Safari Sarasota is a three-day, five event experience, produced by Michael's On East in partnership with the All Heart Fund of South Africa's Good Work Foundation. Safari Sarasota is the only event experience in the United States that brings together internationally-recognized guests from South Africa's Good Work Foundation and its founding patron, the Londolozi Reserve. There will be five sensational opportunities to experience the flavors of South Africa through food and wine, including an Interactive Cooking Experience led by Chef Anna Ridgewell from Londolozi Game Reserve and Chef Jamil Pineda of Michael's On East.  

Michael's On East, 1212 East Avenue S. Sarasota

[SOON]  FILM: Gauguin in Tahiti, Paradise Lost , October 24, 1pm

Gauguin in Tahiti: Paradise Lost traces the legendary life story of Paul Gauguin who left France for Tahiti, feverishly in search of deep immersions into lush nature, for feelings, visions and colors, ever purer and brighter. Audiences join this journey from Tahiti to American museums including New York's Metropolitan Museum of Art, The Art Institute of Chicago, National Gallery of Art in DC, and Boston's Museum of Fine Arts where Gauguin’s greatest masterpieces are now preserved.

Historic Asolo Theatre, 5401 Bay Shore Road

[SOON]  DANCE: Graziano, Retrospective , October 25 – October 27, 7:30pm evening performances and 2pm matinees

The Sarasota Ballet’s first program of the Season, titled Graziano, Retrospective, serves as a tribute to Principal Dancer and Resident Choreographer Ricardo Graziano’s tenth year with the company by featuring three of his choreographic works. Opening the program, Shostakovich Suite is his most traditionally classical ballet; premiered in 2011 and set to movements from Dmitri Shostakovich’s “Suite for Jazz Orchestra No. 2” and “Ballet Suite No. 2”, Shostakovich Suite is an eight-scene ballet demonstrating the aptitude of the company dancers whom Graziano has grown to know so well over the past decade. Graziano’s 2015 work, En las Calles de Murcia, not seen since its world premiere, returns to the stage; the choreography was inspired by the city of Murcia in southeastern Spain as well as the music of early eighteenth-century guitarist and composer Santiago de Murcia, bringing a distinctive vibrancy to the dance. The program closes with Graziano’s critically lauded In a State of Weightlessness; since its August 2015 world premiere at the Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival in Becket, MA, the production, set to Philip Glass’s “Tirol Concerto for Piano and Orchestra”, explores concepts of lightness in motion while generating its own ethereal sort of emotional gravity. 

FSU Center for the Performing Arts, 5555 N. Tamiami Trail, Sarasota

[SOON]  FILM: National Theatre Live A Midsummer Night's Dream , October 25, 1pm and 6:30pm

A feuding fairy King and Queen of the forest cross paths with four runaway lovers and a troupe of actors trying to rehearse a play. As their dispute grows, the magical royal couple meddle with mortal lives leading to love triangles, mistaken identities and transformations… with hilarious, but dark consequences. Shakespeare’s most famous romantic comedy will be captured live from the Bridge Theatre in London. Gwendoline Christie (Game of Thrones), Oliver Chris (Green Wing, NT Live: Young Marx), David Moorst (NT Live: Allelujah!) and Hammed Animashaun (The Barber Shop Chronicles) lead the cast as Titania, Oberon, Puck and Bottom. Directed by Nicholas Hytner, this production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream will build on the success of his immersive staging of Julius Caesar (NT Live 2018). The Bridge Theatre will become a forest – a dream world of flying fairies, contagious fogs and moonlight revels, surrounded by a roving audience following the action on foot.

Historic Asolo Theatre, 5401 Bay Shore Road

[SOON]  FOOD: 20th Annual Morton's Firehouse Chili Cook-Off , October 27, 2-5pm

Join us in front of Morton’s Gourmet Market on Sunday, October 27 from 2-5 pm for the chili event of the year. Aspiring chefs from more than 15 local firehouses as well as Sarasota Police and County Sheriff Deputies will compete for the title of “Best Firehouse Chili.” Attendees may sample all entries and vote for their favorite for only $10. Celebrity judges and live entertainment will help make this event one of Sarasota’s best. All proceeds go to The Sarasota Firefighters’ Benevolent Fund. Find more information at mortonsmarket.com or sffbf.org. Tickets may be purchased the day of the event or in advance at Morton’s Gourmet Market.

Morton's Gourmet Market, 1924 South Osprey Avenue, between Arlington and Hyde Park Streets

[SOON]  SEMINAR: Boomer Conference, 2019 , November 1, 8:30am to 1:30pm

Retirement. What a concept! And what a challenge. Even those who have prepared financially might not be psychologically ready. Who are you when you’re not working? What do you do with all that free time? What do you want to do with the rest your life? Boomers across America are facing these questions. Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at Ringling College (OLLI at Ringling College) will address these concerns with the fourth annual Boomer Conference. The event features speakers and networking sessions offering useful strategies on retirement’s social, financial, and practical implications. Keynote speaker Marianne Oehser, a certified retirement coach and author of “Your Happiness Portfolio for Retirement: It's Not About the Money,” will challenge audiences to rethink their retirement expectations. The fee is $39.95, which includes lunch, with a $5 certificate toward OLLI membership for each registrant.

Ringling College Museum Campus, 1001 S. Tamiami Trail, Sarasota

[SOON]  MUSEUM: The Fabric of India , July 7 – October 13

This exhibition showcases over 140 examples drawn from the internationally-renowned holdings of London’s Victoria and Albert Museum and private collections. This exposition illustrates the variety, technical sophistication and adaptability of Indian textiles from the fifteenth to the twenty-first centuries. Through a range of historical dress, carefully preserved fabrics, and cutting-edge fashion, discover how Indian textiles have been interwoven with religion, politics and global trade for centuries. Or join the Curator of Asian Art Dr. Rhiannon Paget for a tour at the Gallery Walk and Talk, 10:30am–6pm on July 25. 

The Ringling, 5401 Bay Shore Road

[SOON]  THEATER: The Sound of Music , November 13 – December 28, 7:30pm and 8pm evening performances and 1:30 and 2pm matinees

Like a breath of fresh Alpine air, this beloved musical masterpiece sweeps onto the Asolo Rep stage just in time for the holidays. Maria, a young nun causing trouble at the abbey, is sent off to be governess to Captain Von Trapp’s seven troublesome children. She brings much-needed love and joy to the family – and the widowed captain – and transforms their world and hers through the power of music. But the looming threat of Nazi Germany’s invasion of their native Austria darkens their future. Overflowing with some of the most iconic songs of all time, this heart warming family musical will be helmed by Josh Rhodes, returning on the heels of his spectacular production of Evita in 2017.

FSU Performing Arts Center, 5555 N. Tamiami Trail, Sarasota

[SOON]  SPORTS: 16th Annual Memorial Golf Tournament , November 9, 7:30am

Golf one of the country’s finest courses while supporting children, teens and young adults in grief. Before you tee off, a delicious breakfast will be generously provided by Station 400. Enjoy food and fun on the course, and then come back to the clubhouse for cigars and whiskey. All food and drink for the entire day is included in your golf registration. 

Legacy Golf Club At Lakewood Ranch, 8255 Legacy Blvd, Bradenton, FL 34202

[SOON]  FESTIVAL: Siesta Key Crystal Classic International Sand Sculpting Festival , November 15 – November 18, 10am-5pm

The Siesta Key Crystal Classic is a visual and cultural arts festival held on Siesta Beach every November. In just 24 sculpting hours, the master sculptors create sand masterpieces, some over ten feet tall, and transform the always beautiful Siesta Beach into an outdoor art gallery. And it’s more than just sand, the festival also features live music daily along with a large village of shopping and food and drink vendors. Other activities include the popular three day “Quick Sand” competition, sand sculpting lessons and an amateur competition. Hours are extended on Saturday & Sunday until 9 pm with colored lights on all the sculptures and live music!

Siesta Key Beach, 948 Beach Rd, Sarasota, FL 34242

[SOON]  SEMINAR: Children's Grief Awareness Day , November 21, 9am-11am

In honor of Children's Grief Awareness Day, please join leaders of local grief support organizations for a free community event on why childhood grief matters. 

Gold Coast Eagle Distributing, 7051 Wireless Ct, Sarasota, FL 34240

[SOON]  HEALTH: Doctors Hospital Caregiver Support Group , November 18, 10am-11:30am

On every third Monday of the month, Julie Cook Downing, President of Caregivers Comfort Creations, LLC, facilitates a Doctors Hospital Caregiver Support Group. This group focuses on the caregiver and offers a retreat from the never ending mental and physical responsibilities of caregiving. This free, open group provides compassionate support and an opportunity to explore new solutions together to caregiver challenges. The group meets in the classroom outside of the cafeteria.

Doctors Hospital of Sarasota, 5731 Bee Ridge Rd., Sarasota, FL 34233

[SOON]  FILM: Sun Xun: Time Spy , August 11 – February 16

A mesmerizing 3D animated film by Chinese painter and draughtsman, Sun Xun incorporates traditional techniques including ink painting, charcoal drawing and woodblock printing. He uses analog and digital technologies to explore pressing concerns of the time.

The Ringling, 5401 Bay Shore Road

[SOON]  THEATER: Joseph and The Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat , September 18 – October 6, 7:30pm evening performances and 2pm matinees

Celebrating its 50th anniversary in 2019, Joseph is one of the most enduring shows of all time, a reimagining of the Biblical story of Joseph, his father Jacob, 11 brothers and the coat of many colors. This magical musical is full of catchy songs with unforgettable classics like “Any Dream Will Do” and “Close Every Door.”

The Players Centre for Performing Arts, 838 N. Tamiami Trail, Sarasota, FL

[SOON]  FILM: Gazebo Starlight Cinema Series , October 4

Join the Gazebo Starlight Cinema series with this month’s movie: Book of Life. With a screen stretched around the Gazebo pillars and family flicks back-projected from within, what better place than the facing grassy knoll to relax in a beach chair or curl up on a blanket? Bring the whole family to kick off your weekend while enjoying the park! Support local Venice Avenue businesses by bringing snacks, dinner, ice cream (or gelato!) to enjoy during the movie.

Downtown Venice Centennial Park, 200 West Venice Ave.

[SOON]  DANCE: Nrityagram Dance Ensemble: Daśavatār: Ringling Art of Performance , October 11 – October 12, 730pm

One of the premier Indian Classical dance ensembles performing today, Nrityagram is more than a dance company. Founded as a village devoted to dance and the preservation of the Odissi classical dance tradition, the all-female ensemble’s daily life of intensive training and meditation brings to the stage compelling captivating performances that are at once sensual and lyrical. Daśavatār brings together brilliant dance traditions with shared ancient roots, accompanied by a live original score. The performances will take place on Friday and Saturday evening at 7:30pm, and tickets are required.

Historic Asolo Theater, 5401 Bay Shore Rd, Sarasota, FL 34243

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