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SRQ DAILY Feb 4, 2021

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"This is not only concerning for the safety of these critical care workers, their loved ones and the already vulnerable patients that they serve, but could also serve as a significant barrier to essential health care services for those in need."

- Rep. Vern Buchanan, R-Sarasota

-From Scratch, as seen in SRQ's February 2021 edition out now. Click photo for the full article.
[Pandemic]  Buchanan Wants Hospice Workers Vaccinated
Jacob Ogles, jacob.ogles@srqme.com

While nurses and doctors dealing daily with coronavirus patients were first in line to receive COVID-19 vaccines, hospice care workers have often lacked access. U.S. Rep. Vern Buchanan, R-Sarasota, said that needs to change.

The congressman on Wednesday sent a letter to Gov. Ron DeSantis asking for a higher priority to be placed on these health care professionals. “Given the critical role that these hardworking men and women play in taking care of more than 140,000 patients throughout the state, we must ensure that these vital caregivers are able to be vaccinated as soon as possible,” Buchanan wrote.

It’s a sentiment appreciated by Sarasota hospice providers. “Thank you Congressman for your never ending support of the hospice mission,” tweeted Tidewell Hospice President and CEO Jonathan Fleece after Buchanan sent the letter.

The only groups currently eligible to receive the vaccine in Florida to date are health professionals and individuals age 65 and older. Buchanan’s office said that the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services do deem hospice workers as essential frontline health professionals. But because many do not work in a centralized location it’s been difficult for many to get in line for vaccines. Many shift work locations between medical facilities, assisted living and nursing homes, and even individuals’ personal residences.

“According to the Florida Hospice and Palliative Care Association, a majority of our state’s 20,000 frontline hospice workers have been unable to receive the vaccine to date,” Buchanan wrote. “This is not only concerning for the safety of these critical care workers, their loved ones and the already vulnerable patients that they serve, but could also serve as a significant barrier to essential health care services for those in need.”

Through Wednesday at 12:05 p.m., a total of 27,635 individuals in Manatee County and 42,661 in Sarasota County had received at least one dose of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines, according to the Florida Department of Health. Through Wednesday morning, Manatee County health officials reported 28,948 had been infected with COVID-19, as well as 25,064 in Sarasota County. In the two-county area, a total of 1,141 individuals have died from COVID-19-related causes. 

Image courtesy Pixabay.

[Gardening]  Mobile Plant Clinic Comes to Bradenton
Brittany Mattie, brittany.mattie@srqme.com

A new Master Gardener Mobile Plant Clinic will be taking place the first Thursday of every month, from 9:00 am to 12:00 pm at St. George’s Episcopal Church. Hosted by Manatee County's Agriculture and Extension Service, the Florida Master Gardener Program was created to assist Extension Agents in providing research-based horticultural education to Florida residents. Avid gardeners and local residents alike will be able to bring their horticultural questions to the pop-up clinics where master gardeners will be available to share their knowledge with the community. Soil testing for pH and soluble salts is also available for a small fee. Educational garden tours are available at the Agriculture and Extension Service in Palmetto, where various educational classes in residential horticulture are offered throughout the year to the public as well. 

Contact the Manatee County Agriculture and Extension Service, 941-722-4524 to be put on the mailing list for the Master Gardener monthly e-newsletter.  If you have an interest in residential horticulture, consider becoming a Master Gardener Volunteer.  This training program is offered annually.   

[Fundraising]  Making a Delicious Difference in Literacy in Manatee County

Flavors of Literacy, the Manatee Literacy Council’s annual dinner and fundraising event, will be a vibrant but in-home affair this year as the event is held virtually throughout the Suncoast on February 21 at 6pm. Long driven by its mission to empower adults in Manatee County through literacy, the Council this year is carrying on despite the challenges of COVID-19. "We are excited to partner with Manatee Literacy Council to help strengthen our community,” said Shawn Kaleta of AMI Locals. “I've seen firsthand how low literacy holds people back from reaching their potential and we want to do everything possible to give people a hand in learning to read. Reading with my own kids is a great gift - and I hope this donation will help others in being able to do the same.” Participants can choose from several options at this year’s event. They can contribute $30/household to attend the virtual event or make a $75 donation to “attend” and to pick up one of two delicious dinner options from Mattison’s Riverwalk (meal delivery is available for an additional fee). Attendees may purchase a virtual table for $400, a price that includes event access and six takeout meals. 

Pictured: Susan MacLeod (right), a volunteer with Manatee Literacy Council since 2009, working with Tonya Furnice, an adult basic education learner, during a session at the Downtown Manatee Central Library. Courtesy photo.

Click here for more information.

[Opening ]  Amore Restaurant Re-Opens Doors at New Location

Following a large renovation and overcoming some unforeseen circumstances, Amore Restaurant will be opening its doors to the public on Tuesday, February 9 in its new location at 180 North Lime Avenue in Sarasota. Their menu will offer traditional Italian dishes with a Portuguese twist that are unique to Sarasota County. 

For reservations, please call 941-383-1111.

Click here for more information.

[Superbowl ]  A “Behind the Scenes” Super Bowl LV Teamplayer

Super Bowl LV is only days away and the B&I Service Department is excited to have been a key player all season.  In June of 2020, B&I was approached by AdventHealth Training Center Director of Facilities, Bill Burch, to perform the installation of UV-C light racks in all air handlers. This UV technology would reduce airborne pathogens such as bacteria, mold and viruses, including COVID-19.  

Click here for more information.

[Hiring]  Economic Development Corporation Board of Directors Resumes Search for President & CEO

The EDC of Sarasota County has resumed search activity for President/CEO position after putting this project on hold last spring due to the pandemic and subsequent shutdown. The EDC board has appointed a transition/search team composed of members of the EDC board of directors and Dave Bullock, and have contracted with Jorgenson Consulting to lead the search. Charlie Murphy, EDC board chair comments, “After an extensive search of recruitment firms, the EDC board of directors selected Jorgenson Consulting to lead the search efforts for the next CEO. Their years of specialized experience set Jorgenson Consulting apart from other firms, and the EDC board of directors has the utmost confidence that they will identify and recruit the most qualified and best suited executive for the CEO position.” 

Click here for more information.

[New Hire]  Lorrie Liang Appointed President of Sarasota Memorial Hospital

Sarasota Memorial Health Care System is changing its leadership structure this year to integrate and coordinate care across the health system’s expanding hospital network. This fall, Sarasota Memorial’s transformation into a regional health system will take another step forward with the opening of a new hospital in Venice. Lorrie Liang, who previously served as Sarasota Memorial Health Care System’s Chief Operating Officer, has been appointed president of the Sarasota Memorial Hospital – Sarasota campus. In her expanded role, Liang will oversee strategic initiatives, operations and overall performance of the main hospital in Sarasota. 

[Community Input]  Manatee County Invites Public Input to Proposed Impact Fee Changes

Manatee County is looking for public input over the next month for a new set of proposed impact fees, a one-time charge the County imposes on new development to pay costs of providing public services to the new development. "As part of the update study process, we are offering the public an opportunity to review the results of the technical study, provide feedback, and ask questions," said Nicole Knapp, Manatee County Impact Fee Administrator. Manatee County will hold an online public comment period from February 5 through March 8. 

Public comment or questions can be emailed to Nicole.knapp@mymanatee.org.

Click here for more information.

[Tribute To Business]  February 2021 Tribute to Business is Now Online

As a locally grown, locally owned company, SRQ MEDIA pays tribute to our community’s visionary local businesses and the people behind them.

Printed in the February magazine but available to view online and downloadTribute to Business highlights local luminaries who work hard to create economic opportunities on the Gulf Coast of Florida. Featuring: Children First, Fergeson Skipper, P.A., Howard, Howard and Hodges, Morton's Gourmet Market, PGT Innovations, Tiger Lily Flowers, and Toale Brothers. 

View the Feature Here

[In This Issue]  Weathering the Storm

Pantone's 2021 Colors of the Year. 

Click here to read the full article from SRQ's February 2021 edition - out now!

[SOON]  MUSIC: Virtual: Sarasota Concert Association: Musically Speaking , February 25 – March 25, 7pm

The Sarasota Concert Association (SCA) today announced “Musically Speaking,” a free, three-concert virtual series featuring preeminent classical musicians in unique performances, highlighted by informal conversations with the artists. World-acclaimed pianists Garrick Ohlsson and Kirill Gerstein launch the series with a duo piano performance and conversation on Thursday, February 25, at 7pm. Violinist Samantha Bennett and percussionist George Nickson will share their unique artistry on Thursday, March 11, at 7pm. The world-renowned chamber orchestra, Academy of St. Martin in the Fields, concludes the series on Thursday, March 25, at 7pm. Conducting the conversations with the artists is Charles Turon, a musician, educator, and SCA board member. The series is free, but registration is required. Each link will be viewable for seven days.

[SOON]  GRAB BAG: Virtual: SUPER Auction & Peloton Drawing , February 4, 7pm

Virtual Fundraiser benefitting the Child Protection Center and the Prevention, Intervention, & Treatment of Child Abuse. Bidding for the SUPER BrewBurgers Party runs February 2nd at 7am through February 4th at 7:15pm. Ticket Purchases for the Peloton Drawing are open now through February 4th at 7pm. Both the auction and drawing will conclude on a LIVE video hosted here on Thursday, February 4th at 7pm. To participate in the auction, you must register free of charge and bid through the Givi app. Not to worry- instructions will be e-mailed to you.

[SOON]  MUSIC: Music Compound: 5th Year Celebration , February 5, 6pm

Join Music Compound’s celebration at Robart's Arena on February 5th at 6pm. We are excited to celebrate our 5th year anniversary. Guests will experience the journey first hand through a unique entrance after walking the red carpet. Ages 4 and up are welcome to celebrate with food, dancing, and a cash bar. Kid activities available. Active members can attend as our guest. Enter the promo code provided to receive your complimentary ticket. Select the VIP ticket. Past members and staff members can attend at a reduced ticketed price. Select the Wanna Be Ticket. Community partners, friends, and family members are encouraged and welcome to attend our celebration. Select the Groupie Ticket. The event will follow CDC guidelines and is limiting ticket sales. The facility is 15,000 square feet. Ages 4 and up welcome. Kid activities available. Food will only be served from 6pm until 8pm. Attire is cocktail. We encourage you to wear red, black, and white. Cash bar onsite. All attendees must sign a COVID Waiver. If you have been sick or experience flu-like symptoms, please do not attend. If you have traveled within 30 days, you will not be permitted to attend.

[SOON]  SEMINAR: Suncoast Black Arts Collaborative: Diversity, Equity & Inclusion in the Performing Arts , March 1, 5pm-6:30pm

The Suncoast Black Arts Collaborative, a nonprofit organization that promotes using the unifying power of the arts to nurture inclusion and diversity across the regional arts and cultural landscape, presents "Diversity, Equity & Inclusion in the Performing Arts,” part of its free Arts & Racial Justice Panel series, on Monday, March 1 from 5pm to 6:30pm, via the Zoom webinar platform. The moderator for the discussion is Georgia Court, the owner of Bookstore1Sarasota, and a former journalist, author, educator, and proprietor of a public relations company. Panel members include Murray Chase, the producing executive director of Venice Theatre; Richard Hopkins, the CEO of Florida Studio Theatre; Julie Leach, executive director of became Westcoast Black Theatre Troupe; and Daniel Bernard Roumain, a composer, violinist and educator. The series is sponsored by the Community Foundation of Sarasota County, and is a collaboration with Florida Studio Theatre’s Forum Series. The event is free, but registration is required at www.suncoastblackartscollaborative.org by February 26.

[SOON]  PERFORMANCE: Virtual: SaraSolo WinterFest: An Evening With Gwendolyn? , February 9 – February 13, 7pm, 8:15pm, 3:15pm

An Evening With Gwendolyn? premieres on February 9 and will play on February 11 and February 13. The performance was conceived and performed by Eileen Earnest, written by Edgar Allan Poe. Gwendolyn Crosley, wife of inventor Powel Crosley, thoroughly enjoyed last night's séance. It's a shame she didn't get to speak with her favorite author, Edgar Allan Poe. She did make contact with an enigmatic friend of his, Sarah Royster. Alas, the encounter was brief and Gwendolyn returned home alone. Or did she? Eileen is an actor, improviser, and singer based in Cincinnati, Ohio. She is a member of OTRimprov (Citybeat Magazine's Best Improv Troupe 2014-2020) and ComedySportz Cincinnati, a Red Nose Doc for Healthy Humor Inc (Cincinnati Children's Hospital), a detective with Cincinnati Dinner Detective, and 50% of the comedy team, Two Sketchy Dames. In 2019, she became the Associate Artistic Director of Powel Crosley Theatre in Sarasota, FL.

[SOON]  PERFORMANCE: Virtual: SaraSolo WinterFest: As Live As It Gets These Days , February 9 – February 13, 8:15pm and 7pm

As Live As It Gets These Days will play on February 9, 12 and 13. It was conceived and performed by Stevie Coyle. Songs, tunes and stories. Stevie Is proud as Punch to be returning to the SaraSolo Festival, even though this time he will be much smaller and much, much flatter. Grammar school spelling bee champ, altar boy, ardent Catholic, Ventures fan, guitarist, complicit in Folk Masses, high school drama freak, senior class vice president, seminarian, theatre/theology major, commercial & voiceover actor, theme park announcer, stage manager/actor, touring musician, guitar shop owner, stay-at-home entertainer.

[SOON]  PERFORMANCE: Virtual: SaraSolo WinterFest: Box of Squirrels , February 10 – February 13, 7pm, 8:15pm, 2pm

Box of Squirrels will play on February 10, 12 and 13. It was written and performed by Dennis McSorley. The tale paints the picture of a young man and his serendipitous start in teaching. Doubt and fear and uncertainty open a door he discovers. Who he meets through it become life long connections to trust and learning from others shaping his life in wondrous ways. A native New Yorker based in Vermont, he's been doing theater and storytelling over 20 years, even fooling the Brighton Fringe Festival UK into a Best Actor Nomination. His three solo works have been performed in Solo Festivals in NYC, Prague, Providence RI, Waterbury VT and SaraSolo! 'Typhoon of Tenderness' was cited for excellence in Prague in 2016 and received the "Best Drama" nod at The 2019 SaraSolo Festival.

[SOON]  PERFORMANCE: Virtual: SaraSolo WinterFest: Between Two Truths , February 10 – February 13, 7pm and 8:15pm

Between Two Truths will play on February 10, 11 and 13. It was written and performed by Gabriel Ortiz directed by Bob Vernon. After the death of Trayvon Martin, a drama teacher at an at-risk high school works with a group of students to help them create theatre out of their pain. The line between fiction and reality becomes blurred as they each battle to confront their own prejudice and hidden bias. Gabe is a proud father, a professional actor, a Vice Principal and a member of the Actors Equity Association. His theatrical work has been seen on local and national stages, and he is the co-host of PBS/WEDU’s Arts Plus. Originally from Los Angeles, California, he has a B.A. in Theater Arts from Cal State Northridge and an M.F.A. in Acting from Penn State University.

[SOON]  PERFORMANCE: The Players Centre: In Love with Shakespeare , February 4 – February 14, 7:30pm and 2pm

February 4 through 14, The Players Centre for Performing Arts presents, In Love with Shakespeare, just in time for Valentine’s Day. Featuring scenes from A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Taming of the Shrew, Romeo and Juliet and more. Experience passion through Shakespeare’s words because, as the Bard wrote in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, “The course of true love never did run smooth.” Masks are required for this outdoor event. Temperature checks will be conducted, and patrons will be socially distanced. Hamlet's Food Truck will be available Thursday through Sunday (will be closing 30 minutes prior to performance). Seats are provided. NO TICKETS will be printed for this event. Upon making your purchase your name will be on a reservation list. Tickets are $20 for adults and $12.50 for students (under 24). Performances February 4-6 and 9-13 will begin at 7:30pm and performances on February 7 and 14 will begin at 2pm.

[SOON]  GRAB BAG: Boys & Girls Club: Steak & Burger , February 5, 6pm

Boys & Girls Clubs of Sarasota and DeSoto Counties presents Steak & Burger on February 5 at 6pm at Lee Washington Boys & Girls Club as a safe, socially-distanced outdoor event. For this Drive-In edition, bring your lawn chairs, wear your boots and buckle down as we celebrate our Youth of the Year in our very own backyard. Individual tickets are $100 for lone star homesteads, dinner delivered, honkytonk tunes, a watering hole, and a feature western film. RSVP by January 22 as spaces are extremely limited. 

[SOON]  PERFORMANCE: Virtual: Florida Studio Theatre: The Drolls , February 5, 3pm

Join us for an online reading of The Drolls, a new work in progress by playwright Deborah Brevoort. Cox, Littlewood, and Etherege are drolls - street performers plying their forbidden trade in London’s back alleys while avoiding the ill-intentioned Constable Cowly - on February 5 at 3pm. Cox and Littlewood are more than happy to entertain the English citizens with low-brow humor and silly voices; Etherege is not. When Etherege finds the work of a seminal writer known as Shakespeare, Etherege and Cox engage in an epic battle between the competing art forms of dramatic tragedy and lowball comedy. Following the reading, stay for a chance to give feedback and ask questions of the playwright. FST is requesting a suggested donation of $10 to attend this event. Reservations are limited to one per order, per device. Attendees will need to download the Zoom mobile or desktop app to participate in this event.

[SOON]  PERFORMANCE: Asolo Repertory: Laura Osnes in Concert , February 5 – February 6, 7pm

The season kicks off with Laura Osnes in Concert on February 5 and 6 at 7pm, with music direction by Fred Lassen. Ms. Osnes is a two-time Tony-nominated Broadway superstar known for her memorable performances as Cinderella in Rodgers + Hammerstein's Cinderella and Bonnie Parker in Bonnie & Clyde, a role she created in Asolo Rep's 2010 pre-Broadway run. Her other Broadway credits include Julia Trojan in Bandstand, Hope Harcourt in Anything Goes, Nellie Forbush in Lincoln Center Theater's South Pacific, and Sandy in Grease. She has performed in prestigious cabaret and symphony venues across the country and can currently be seen starring on television in three Hallmark channel original movies; In the Key of Love, A Homecoming for the Holidays and One Royal Holiday. 

[SOON]  SEMINAR: An Evening with Pulitzer Prize and Tony Award-Winning Playwright David Auburn , February 5, 5pm

Hermitage Fellow David Auburn will speak about his work and his creative process and may even share from his new work-in-progress on February 5 at 5pm. Moderated by Hermitage Artistic Director and CEO Andy Sandberg. This program, which is a collaboration with Florida Studio Theatre, is offered both in-person on the Hermitage beach and via live stream. Auburn is a playwright, screenwriter, and director. His most recent play, The Adventures of Augie March, based on the Saul Bellow novel, premiered in Chicago in 2019. A new play, Summer, 1976, will premiere in 2021-2. Other plays include Lost Lake, The Columnist and Proof, the latter of which was awarded the 2001 Pulitzer Prize, Tony Award, and New York Drama Critics Circle Award. Hermitage Beach; entrance at 6660 Manasota Key Road, Englewood; also available via live stream. Registration required at HermitageArtistRetreat.org.

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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