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SRQ DAILY Jun 18, 2020

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"Providing students with an authentic, hands-on experience to learn about human body systems, organs and functions was my main goal, and I wanted to expose them to information about medical careers."

- Karen Senarens, Fifth-Grade Teacher at Laurel-Nokomis

[Film]  After Laying Off Film Office, EDC Studies Incentives
Jacob Ogles, jacob.ogles@srqme.com

The COVID-19 pandemic forced all film projects in the region to stop production. As the crisis lingered, the Economic Development Corporation of Sarasota County also laid off its entire Film and Entertainment Office.

Interim CEO Dave Bullock, who recently agreed to stay in his position into 2021, said the activity stoppage meant a time to study all expenses. Bullock said the rest of the EDC’s seven employees during the pandemic have been focused on an emergency loan program. It became clear, he said, there’s no need for a film commission immediately.

“Film was an area we wanted to relook at,” he said. “The world has changed from the 1990s and 2000s, when it was, let’s try and get a movie production here. The world now is so much more about the digital medium. The whole technology around it and the way it works has advanced.”

The government structure has also shifted around film. The state of Florida years ago spent all funds for a state incentives program, and while lawmakers — including Sarasota Sen. Joe Gruters and Venice Rep. James Buchanan last session — have pursued establishing a new program, little progress has been made in Tallahassee. A state Film Commission still exists but facilitating incentives has been relegated largely to local governments.

So the company parted ways with long-time Film Commissioner Jeanne Corcoran and one other employer. Corcoran, he held the job for 13 years, referred all questions to the EDC.

Bullock said he isn’t sure what direction the office will take, but it’s an issue that needs to be studied quickly. The EDC was just asked to look at all incentive programs funded by Sarasota County, including a film rebate program. Bullock told County Commissioners in a Monday memo that he will have a presentation prepared for September to discuss strategy.

As far as film itself goes, Bullock has had conversations with Visit Sarasota County, which works closely with the EDC on incentive funding. He’s also talked with Ringling College of Art & Design, which has partnered closely with the film office developing area infrastructure like soundstages and post-production facilities, many of which are located on the Sarasota school’s campus.

The focus for the EDC moving forward, Bullock said, will be on the development of a broader “creative sector,” one focused not just on artistic film but the creation of content. He notes businesses from live show producer Feld Entertainment to a growing number of virtual technology businesses continues to enjoy success in the region.

“The stuff I used to think of as games is now out in the business world,” he said.

What specific form any incentive program will take in the future, and what the focus of any content division in the EDC may be, remains, as studios say, in development. “If I had all those answers, I wouldn’t be learning,” Bullock said. 

[In the Classroom]  EducateSRQ: Operating Room Classroom Transformation at Laurel-Nokomis School
Earl Young, Associate Director of Education Investments

Fifth-grade science students at Laurel-Nokomis School rotated through classroom surgical suites, dressed in surgical attire, demonstrating knowledge of Florida science standards by identifying organs and their functions.They examined and enjoyed an edible model of the human integumentary system (skin) with Jell-O, marshmallows, fruit rolls, and licorice. Karen Senarens, fifth-grade teacher at Laurel-Nokomis, observed with delighted satisfaction that the project’s goal was being met with enthusiasm and curiosity.

“Providing students with an authentic, hands-on experience to learn about human body systems, organs and functions was my main goal, and I wanted to expose them to information about medical careers,” Senarens said. “In this project, students learned about the human body systems and what an operating room looks like and the roles the various medical staff play. They gained real world experience in wearing hospital gowns, masks and caps, and they studied organs of the human body in a fun and authentic way.

At-risk students flourished in this real-world simulation as they rotated with ‘charts’ in hand and helped each other find organs and document them within their ‘records.’” Senarens credits the $200 grant, awarded through the Education Foundation’s EducateSRQ teacher and classroom grant program, with helping her design more innovative approaches to lessons that increase motivation and impact critical-thinking skills. “Thank you, Education Foundation, for the profound impact that you make on the students of Sarasota County.”

We will be sharing a monthly column featuring EducateSRQ, the teacher and classroom grants signature program of The Education Foundation of Sarasota County. 

Click here for more information on how to get involved.

[Recognition]  Four Sarasota County Commissioners Earn Presidential Advocate Honors

The Florida Association of Counties (FAC) has recognized four Sarasota County Commissioners as a Presidential Advocate for their work during the 2020 Florida Legislative Session.Commission Chairman Michael A. Moran, and Vice-Chairman Alan Maio; along with Commissioners Nancy Detert and Charles Hines, received the honors. 

"It's a great privilege to serve the community along with my distinguished colleagues," said Moran. "Each year, the legislative session is an important and vital opportunity for our board to work directly with state leaders to advocate for Sarasota County and advance our legislative priorities."

According to the Leon County Commissioner Nick Maddox, who serves as the FAC Immediate Past President, the legislative session allows local governments to fight to preserve the unique aspects of individual communities."This responsibility is only heightened during the Legislative Session where hundreds of bills are heard that directly impact that quality of life," Maddox added.

Moran, who serves as the District 1 commissioner, was elected to the board in 2016; Detert, county commissioner for District 3, previously served in the Florida Senate and House of Representatives, among other offices; Maio, the District 4 commissioner, was elected to the board in 2014 and previously served as the board chair; Hines, who serves District 5, was elected in 2012 and previously served as the chair and vice-chair of the county commission. 

Pictured: Top left, Chairman Michael A. Moran; top right, Vice-Chairman Alan Maio; bottom left, Nancy Deter; and bottom right, Charles Hines.

Click here for more information.

[Pool Safety]  Manatee County EMS Launches Water Safety Wednesdays

Yesterday was the first Water Safety Wednesday, marking the launch of a summer long campaign to bring pool safety awareness to local families and visitors with young children. Manatee County Emergency Medical Service (EMS) officials tomorrow will announce details of the campaign during a press conference at G.T. Bray Recreation Center Pool tomorrow at 10:30 am. EMS will partner with Manatee Sheriff's Office and Safe Kids Florida Suncoast to deliver important messages about drowning prevention/water safety for kids. During the press conference, EMS Deputy Chief Sean Dwyer will go over some important messages for parents as public and private pools begin to reopen throughout Manatee County.

"We strongly recommend parents enroll children in swimming lessons when you feel they are ready," Dwyer said. "Children need to know how to tread water, float and stay by the shore. In all cases, there's no substitute for active adult supervision." There have been six pediatric drowning and near-drowning incidents in Manatee County since March. Florida leads the country in drowning deaths for children, according to Manatee County Public Safety Department. Dwyer will relay other important pool safety messages and give local media an opportunity to ask questions during the press event tomorrow. 

Click here for more information.

[Legislative Report]  Florida Chamber of Commerce Releases 2020 Legislative Report Card

While the Florida Chamber of Commerce is continuing its efforts to ensure businesses statewide can regain their economic footing while also keeping workers and customers safe in our COVID-19 reality, today we’re also acknowledging the important work by members of the Florida Legislature and releasing the 2020 Legislative Report Card.

During the 2020 Legislative Session, lawmakers passed 12 Florida Chamber-backed bills that lower the cost of living, reduce the cost of doing business, prepare for future growth, and protect Florida’s Constitution. The legislative report card is an annual opportunity to recognize members of the Florida Legislature who placed making Florida more competitive through private-sector job creation, above special interests and their attempts to protect the status quo.

“Transparency and accountability are essential in the legislative arena, and our legislative report card helps small businesses, taxpayers and voters know if their elected officials voted to secure Florida’s future with pro-business votes,” said David Hart, Executive Vice President, Florida Chamber of Commerce.

After tabulating more than 4,000 votes cast during the 2020 Legislative Session, the Florida Chamber’s Legislative Report Card shows:

107 lawmakers earned an A or B; 52 earned a C, D, or F.
Average GPA for both legislative chambers was 86 percent.
Senate GPA was 89 percent, up from 84.59 percent in 2019.
House GPA was 85 percent, up from 77.59 percent in 2019.
Many lawmakers earned higher grades this legislative session with their renewed focus on important competitiveness issues that:

— Strengthened Florida's school choice options to serve even more students,
— Increased access to healthcare by expanding scope of practice for advanced registered nurse practitioners,
— Invested in Florida's economic development and tourism marketing programs,
— Protected the environment with long-term water quality investments,
— Ensured Florida remains the Sunshine State, not the 'melanoma state,' by preempting scientifically dubious local bans on proven sunscreens,
— Protected Florida's Constitution from special interests buying their way onto Florida's ballot,
— Invested in Florida's rural communities with cost-effective economic development efforts, and
— Fully funded Florida’s affordable housing program.

Transparent Grading Process

The Florida Chamber’s legislative grading process is both transparent and accountable. The Florida Business Agenda (FBA) was announced prior to the 2019 Legislative Session,The Florida Business Agenda, outlined in Where We Stand, was hand delivered and mailed to each member of the Florida Legislature.Florida Chamber leadership met with numerous newspaper editorial boards, and legislators and staff in advance of session. Most importantly, prior to each vote graded on the report card, a “Your Vote Matters” letter outlining the pro-business position and the Florida Chamber’s intent to score the vote was transmitted to voting members of the legislature – in total, about 4,000 scored votes letters were transmitted in advance. 

Click to see the 2020 Legislative Report Card.

[Recognition]  Shutts & Bowen Attorneys Recognized as 2020 Florida Super Lawyers and Rising Stars

Shutts & Bowen LLP is proud to announce that fifty-five attorneys have been recognized as 2020 Super Lawyers and Rising Stars, with Sarasota partner Charla Burchett achieving the milestone accomplishment of being recognized on the list for five consecutive years. Recognized for the fifth consecutive year, Sarasota partner Charla M. Burchett is one of the few local attorneys to garner the Super Lawyers distinction, having earned the respect of her peers as one of the top-rated Estate Planning & Probate attorneys in the nation. Charla is a Board Certified Specialist in Wills, Trusts and Estates by The Florida Bar, and has more than thirty years of experience assisting clients to preserve their legacies across generations. 

[In This Issue]  Snapshots of Sarasota During COVID-19

Moments captured during the pandemic. 

Click here to read the full article from SRQ's Summer 2020 edition.

[SOON]  SEMINAR: Salon D'Art, Agnes Pelton , June 19, 4-5pm

Join us for Salon d' Art via Zoom group video chat from 4-5pm. Patricia Rockwood and Elizabeth Goodwill will be co-hosting. Patricia and Elizabeth will talk about Agnes Pelton and her work. After the presentation have a discussion and Q&A. If you have a suggestion for Salon or would like to present an artist or art movement please email Elizabeth. Please pre-register by clicking this link or emailing Elizabeth at elizabeth@artsarasota.org. Also visit the Facebook group page for more information.


[SOON]  MUSEUM: The Ringling: Syd Solomon, Concealed and Revealed , December 19 – January 24, Museum hours.

Syd Solomon: Concealed and Revealed offers a unique selection of paintings by the artist, along with numerous objects from the Solomon Archive on view for the first time. Syd Solomon (American, 1917-2004) described himself as an “Abstract Impressionist” alluding to the fact that his work infused impressionism into the processes, scale and concepts of Abstract Expressionism. Solomon moved to Sarasota in 1946 with his wife Annie. His was the first work of contemporary art to be collected by The Ringling in 1962. His paintings were greatly influenced by climatic factors and reveal a fascination and concern for Florida’s aquatic environment. Solomon incorporated his experience as a camouflage designer during World War II into his painting. It is not well-known that he was also an accomplished graphic artist, who in his early years designed commercial signage for prominent hotels and businesses in Sarasota. Like his work in camouflage, Solomon’s calligraphic skill was essential to the development of his later gestural abstraction. The exhibition began December 19, 2019 and will end January 24, 2021, during museum hours.

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

[SOON]  MUSEUM: The Ringling: Being Seen: Recent Photography Acquisitions , April 19 – January 3, Museum hours.

Curated from The Ringling’s photography collection, this exhibition features works by photographers who examine the complexities of identity and the staging of selfhood. Consisting primarily of self-portraits and portraits of empowered subjects, these works explore personal agency at the intersection of politics and the female body. Many of the artists in the exhibition are recognized as leading voices in contemporary art and offer diverse perspectives on issues surrounding power, sexuality, and self-representation. Each photograph presents a unique invitation to renew the dialogue on the authority of the gaze in the twentieth-first century. Being Seen also includes numerous works by significant women photographers from the twentieth century, added to the collection in recent years. This exhibition offers visitors a rare opportunity to explore themes of agency, visibility, and gender through the lens of a broader historical context. This exhibit began April 19, 2020 and will end on January 3, 2021, during museum hours.

The John and Mable Ringling Museum of Art, 5401 Bay Shore Road

[SOON]  GALLERY: Online: Art Center Member's Juried Exhibition , May 28 – July 30, Online.

Jurors include: Dustin Juengel and Nathan Skiles, Curators.  Art Center Sarasota invites contemporary Member artists to submit work for Sarasota’s all media, all subjects, juried exhibition. This exhibition gives visitors an opportunity to see the diverse artistic mediums and enormous talent of today’s artists online. Click on the artworks below for more information, all work is for sale. Enter the media or artist name in the search bar.

Art and Vision, 707 N. Tamiami Trail, Sarasota

[SOON]  GRAB BAG: Virtual: Art Center Summer Art Camps , June 15 – August 7, Varied.

Summer Camp will be virtual this year from June 15 to August 7, 2020! We have decided for the health and safety of our teachers and campers that we will host camp virtually. Camp hours: 10am – 3pm. Cost: $75 for members | $100 for non-members (youth membership is $25) for one week. Space is limited please register for the weeks that your child is interested in.

The Creative Kids Summer Camp is for ages 6-9 years old. The Emerging Artists Summer Camp is for ages 10-13 years old. Contemporary Studies Summer Camp is for ages 14-18.

A Supply List will be sent to parents a few weeks before the camp week starts. The supply lists contain basic materials that your camper will be able to use more than once and where to find them. The camp project packet will be downloadable, for printing at home, on the Friday before the camp week starts and contains the projects for the next week. A printed version of the Camp project packet will be available upon request for pickup at the Art Center the Friday before camp from 10-2pm.

Art Center Sarasota, 707 N. Tamiami Trail, Sarasota

[SOON]  THEATER: Online: Asolo Rep Ground Floor Series Presents Making Musicals-Maya, July 2 , July 2, Online at 6pm

Tune in to our Facebook and YouTube pages this Thursday at 6pm for the first installment in Asolo Rep's new Making Musicals competition, designed specifically for an online audience. On May 21, June 4, June 18 and July 2 at 6pm, we will preview four completely new and original musicals on our Facebook and YouTube pages. Each 30-minute session will consist of a fifteen-minute preview performance of one new musical, followed by a fifteen-minute discussion with the playwright/composer and James Monaghan, Asolo Rep Dramaturg and Literary Manager, and Celine Rosenthal, Asolo Rep Associate Artistic Director, who serves as the Director of the Ground Floor Series and is also directing all four musicals. To add to the fun, we're incorporating a Virtual Happy Hour into the presentation. One day prior to each performance, you will receive an email notice of the broadcast that includes a cocktail recipe specifically chosen to compliment the theme of that week’s new musical.

July 2 at 6pm: Maya. Book and Music by Cheeyang Ng; Book and Lyrics by Eric Sorrels.

At the center of the story is Maya Mehta, a Cambridge-educated girl from India striving for recognition as a poet in the West, while her family plans her wedding to a wealthy prince. But in one life-changing moment, the Salt March, led by Mahatma Gandhi against the tyranny of the British Empire, arrives on Maya’s doorstep. When Maya joins the thousands in their quest to shake the foundations of an empire, the Mehta family’s world changes forever. With a score that fuses Western pop and Indian Classical music, MĀYĀ is about the ties that hold us, the illusions that bind us and the truth that can finally set us free.

[SOON]  PERFORMANCE: Virtual: Choral Artists of Sarasota's July 4th American Fanfare Concert , July 4, 4pm

For the last 15 years, Choral Artists of Sarasota has honored Independence Day with a concert of rousing songs celebrating the United States. The choral group will continue that tradition this July 4—with a twist. To ensure the safety of its singers and audience, the concert will be virtual. According to Artistic Director Joseph Holt, this year’s concert will feature highlights of previous Independence Day celebrations—and will be streamed over various platforms, including Facebook and YouTube. “Audiences should prepare to tune in and sing along on July 4 at 4 pm,” says Holt. “We’ll be safe, and we’ll be celebrating.”

Holt explains that Choral Artists’ July 4th concert “has been a vital part of our community’s celebration of Independence Day for the past 15 years. These concerts featured musical pieces that form the heart and soul of our collective national sense of pride and patriotism. For all these years, Choral Artists has celebrated, through music, the thread of ‘liberty and justice for all’ that characterizes our nation.” He adds that, last year, Choral Artists moved the concert to the Sarasota Opera House due to popular demand. It also partnered with the Sarasota Concert Band last year to present a “musical tradition that is as American as hot dogs, apple pie and fireworks.” Original plans for the live performance of “American Fanfare” were to include patriotic music composed by female composers. This year’s virtual performance will feature one of those works, “The March of the Women” composed by suffragette Ethel Smyth, recorded specifically for this concert.

Holt says the July 4th video will feature hits from the past years, including such patriotic standards as the "Battle Hymn of the Republic,” “God Bless America,” and “America the Beautiful.” According to Holt, with the cancellation of the group’s “Listen to the Earth” in April and the July 4th concert, Choral Artists has lost more than $50,000 in ticket sales. “This represents a significant loss of income for our singers,” he says. “As we are all freelance musicians in this organization with incomes derived from a variety of performing opportunities, the pandemic has been financially devastating.”


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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