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SRQ DAILY May 31, 2021

Monday Business Edition

Monday Business Edition

"It is the most pronounced sellers market, maybe ever,"

- Alex Krumm, Realtor Association Sarasota and Manatee president

[Real Estate]  Median Home Sales Prices Skyrocket
Jacob Ogles, jacob.ogles@srqme.com

A resilient seller’s market continued in the region as the median home price climbed above $400,000 for both Sarasota and Manatee Counties.

For the entire North Port-Sarasota-Bradenton area, the median price rolled in at $422,810, with Manatee County’s median sale coming in at $406,699 and above the $400,000 mark for the first time in the current boom. The frequently cited statistic may tell just part of  the story as the luxury market performs well, outing the average sale price in April for the metropolitan area at $595,748.

Moreover, the association reports the median percentage of list price for units sold was 100% in April.

“It is the most pronounced seller’s market— maybe ever,” said Alex Krumm, broker owner of NextHome Excellence and 2021 President of the Realtor Association of Sarasota and Manatee.

Krumm said he hasn’t seen this type of growth in the market in the Sarasota-Manatee region since the real estate boom that pre-dated the Great Recession. But lest that comparison clench too many a fist, Krumm said this market appears to be driven by organ factors instead of speculation. “Investors are priced out of this market,” Krumm said. “Some want a buy and hold pattern, where they put a tenant in place. That’s a possibility, but that’s the only area of investment that makes sense. That’s very different than 15 years ago when there was not a supply-and-demand problem.”

What’s really driving up prices now, data from the Realtors Association shows, is the low inventory of available homes to purchase.  In April 2020, the area had a 3.4-month supply of homes available. As the end of April. That inventory was around 21 days.

During the month of April, Realtors reported 2,991 sales of homes and condominium units in the two-county area. That level of activity represents an 83.7% increase over the same month last year, though such comparisons are especially difficult to make for the month, as last April Florida entered a statewide lockdown because of the pandemic.

The biggest downside to this market, Krumm said, is that many sellers even after moving their own units don’t have the ability to buy another home and end up seeking places to rent. That will start to change, Krumm said, if supply can start to meet demand in region. That may not be happening soon as outside forces have forces the costs for homebuilding to increase. 

Graphic courtesy Realtor Association: data for North Port-Sarasota-Bradenton MSA.

[New Hire]  The Florida Center Names New COO

The Florida Center for Early Childhood recently hired Kimberly Treharne, a licensed mental health counselor, as Chief Operating Officer. Treharne has a long history with the organization, providing nearly a decade of service in various roles. “The experience impressed upon me the importance of early intervention and collaboration across systems to best serve children and families,” Treharne said. “I will make sure these core components continue to be the heart of the programs at The Florida Center in my new role.” 

Click here for more information.

[Job Opportunity ]  Lighthouse Vision Loss Education Center is Seeking Business Partners

Lighthouse Vision Loss Education Center is seeking individuals from the business community to partner with its Work-Based Learning Experience Program, a summer program that assists teenagers, affected by vision loss and interested in various careers,  to gain valuable work experiences. The Learning Experiences can be from one week to four weeks during the month of July 2021. “The Work-Based Learning Experience gives high school students, affected by vision loss, the opportunity to learn valuable workplace skills they can use for the rest of their life,” said Lisa Howard, Lighthouse CEO. “We encourage local businesses to partner with the Lighthouse to support our young clients' goal of being independent .” 

Click here for more information.

[Recognition]  Local Insurance Agency Featured in Top Industry Publication

Sarasota-based Atlas Insurance was recently featured in Rough Notes magazine, the insurance industry’s most prestigious publication since its first press run in 1878. The cover story reflected on the agency’s journey from generalist to specialist and touted Atlas’ leadership team: President Robert Brown, CIC, Vice President Tommy Kochis, CIC, CRM, and Vice President Darren Howard, CPCU.  

Click here for more information.

[New Hire]  Visible Men Academy Names New CEO and Directors

Visible Men Academy (VMA), founded in 2012 to provide boys with outstanding academic, character, and social education in a nurturing school environment, announced today the addition of seven new members to its Board of Directors. In addition to these appointments, the Bradenton K-5 charter school also announced the permanent appointment of Interim CEO and co-founder A. Louis Parker as CEO.  “All of us – leadership, administration, faculty and staff – are proud of what we have accomplished in developing young men of high character and achievement here at Visible Men Academy,” said Parker. “As we prepare this summer for our ninth year of service to the people of Manatee and Sarasota counties, we look forward to doing even more for the boys entrusted into our care.” 

[New Hire]  Manatee Chamber Announces Hiring of Tara Poulton as Vice President, Public Policy & Workforce Partnerships

The Manatee Chamber of Commerce is pleased to announce that Tara Poulton will join its staff as Vice President, Public Policy & Workforce Partnerships, beginning on June 21, 2021. Ms. Poulton’s focus will include the Manatee Chamber’s policy development and advocacy efforts at the local, state, and federal level, as well as strategic partnerships and resources for workforce development. 

Click here for more information.

[Re-Opening]  Grand Reopening and 9th Anniversary Event for Bayside Pet Resort of Sarasota

Just in time for their 9th Anniversary, Bayside Pet Resort has completed renovations to their Sarasota location. Join them for a celebration on Saturday, June 12 from 10 am to 2 pm to welcome new and long-term clients into the freshly revamped space. Angeline Pantazis, Director of Operations said, “This renovation was motivated by the desire to rejuvenate our community and we look forward to welcoming your furry family members for years to come.” 

Click here for more information.

[Learning Program]  Area Teachers Complete Yearlong Embracing Our Differences' Education Ambassador Initiative to Create More Inclusive School Cultures

Twenty-five teachers from 20 Sarasota and Manatee schools engaged in a yearlong Education Ambassadors initiative coordinated by Embracing Our Differences. According to Ben Jewell-Plocher, EOD’s education director, the program was designed “to empower teachers and school staff to carry messages of diversity, inclusion, respect and integrity into their schools in innovative ways.” Each teacher worked with their students to create original, EOD-inspired projects centered on community-building activities that inspired cooperation, communication, and empathy. The teachers received funding towards their EOD-inspired projects and a $500 stipend at the end of the project. The initiative was funded by Charles & Margery Barancik Foundation. 

[Water Conservation]  Manatee County Utilities Reminds Customers to Conserve Water

Manatee County Utilities Department (MCUD) is reminding customers of local watering conservation efforts during the dry weeks leading up to the rainy summer months. Avoiding unnecessary water use, Utilities officials say, will help avoid stressing water supplies. "Although there is more than an adequate supply of our water sources, and because the rainy season has not yet started, we're asking MCUD customers to adhere to our year-round watering restrictions," said Mike Gore, Manatee County Utilities Director. "May is one of the drier months of the year with conditions this year even drier than usual." 

Click here for more information.

[New Hire]  District Announces New Principal for Englewood Elementary School

Sarasota County Schools is pleased to announce the appointment of Curt Schwartz as Principal of Englewood Elementary School. Mr. Schwartz will start his new position at the end of the 2020-21 school year. 

Click here for more information.

[Transportation]  MCAT Launches New On-Demand Route to Port Manatee on June 14

Manatee County Area Transit (MCAT) next week will host an open house-style information meeting at the Palmetto City Hall to explain and promote its new Mobility OnDemand service beginning June 14 that will deliver passengers to and from the Port Manatee area with convenient transit connections in Palmetto, served by MCAT Routes 1, 13, 201, and 203. 

Click here for more information.

[New Grant]  Gulf Coast Community Foundation and Virginia B. Toulmin Foundation Bolster Million Dollar plus Challenge Match in Support of Children and Families

Children First is proud to announce a $60,000 grant from the Gulf Coast Community Foundation and a $50,000 grant from the Virginia B. Toulmin Foundation. These grants are in support of The Challenge for Changing Lives, the agency’s $1,060,000 challenge match that launched earlier this year in recognition of Children First’s 60th anniversary. 

Click here for more information.

[SOON]  SCIENCE AND NATURE: Selby Gardens: Roy Lichtenstein: Monet's Garden Goes Pop , February 13 – June 27, 10am-5pm

This exhibition showcases the legendary Pop artist's screen prints based on Monet's world-famous paintings of waterlilies and haystacks from February 13 until June 27, 10am to 5pm. Lichtenstein's rarely seen Water Lilies and Haystacks provide an unexpected homage to a staple of the public imagination - Monet's paintings of his garden and home at Giverny that inspired them. The display of Lichtenstein's art in the midst of a horticultural evocation of Giverny creates a unique experience for more than 100,000 garden visitors. Selby Gardens, transformed into Monet's famed gardens at Giverny through the Pop Art lens of Roy Lichtenstein, includes iconic elements of Monet's garden such as the green Japanese bridge, trellises, and benches. This conjuring of Lichtenstein's world also serves as the dynamic backdrop to the lush plantings and mixed borders for which Monet's paintings were renowned. An avid gardener, Monet once said, "My garden is my most beautiful masterpiece." Marie Selby Botanical Gardens evokes this crowning achievement with a surprising Pop Art twist.

[SOON]  GALLERY: The Ringling: Sam Gilliam , February 21 – August 15, Museum hours.

The Ringling is pleased to announce a new exhibition of the work of Sam Gilliam. The exhibition, which is being drawn primarily from local collections and features work from the early 1970s to 2010, will run February 21, 2021 through August 15, 2021. Sam Gilliam is one of the most important abstract artists working today. He will have a career retrospective, at the age of 87, in 2022 at the Smithsonian Institution Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden in Washington, DC. Known for his experimental exploration of materials and constant invention, Gilliam first came to critical attention in the 1960s as a later member of the Washington Color School artists. To emancipate his art from constraints, Gilliam infused his appreciation of blues and jazz improvisation to be conceptualized in abstraction. His radical freedom to express spontaneity when working with materials created the first of his important "drape" paintings in the late 1960s that he would continue to explore throughout his career. By removing the canvas from the traditional stretcher, Gilliam created innovative work that was both painting and sculpture. His installation of the "drape" works filled galleries with painted canvases suspended off the walls or from the ceilings and often draped over objects such as sawhorses or ladders. These pieces encouraged improvisation because they could not be hung in the same manner twice.

[SOON]  GALLERY: The Ringling: Saito Kiyoshi: Graphic Awakening , March 14 – August 15, Museum hours.

The John and Mable Ringling Museum of Art is pleased to present Saito Kiyoshi: Graphic Awakening. The exhibition will open Mar 14, 2021 and run through Aug 15, 2021 in the Ringling’s Searing galleries. Comprised of recent donations of artworks by Saitō from Charles and Robyn Citrin to The Ringling and other collections, Saito Kiyoshi: Graphic Awakening is the first comprehensive exhibition of this artist’s work in the United States. The exhibition focuses on prints Saito created in the 1940s and 50s, arguably the most vibrant period of his career, and includes several rare, early designs. Saito Kiyoshi’s (Japanese 1907–1997) keen sense of design, superb technique, and engagement with an appealing variety of themes made him one of the best known and most popular Japanese print artists of the twentieth century. Dr. Rhiannon Paget, Curator of Asian Art said, “Visitors to the exhibition will see many of the imaginative designs that made Saito Kiyoshi one of Japan’s most beloved printmakers, especially in the United States. Saito’s corpus encompasses urban and natural landscapes, female subjects, theater, architecture, and cats that reveal his curious mind, sensitive eye, and playful sense of humor.” The exhibition is accompanied by a 200-page illustrated catalogue edited by Rhiannon Paget and with essays by Paul Binnie, Noriko Kuwahara, Rhiannon Paget, and Judith A. Stubbs, and published by Scala.

[SOON]  GRAB BAG: Newtown Farmer's Market: Mr. Stevey & Friends , March 27 – June 12, 12pm-3pm

The Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall’s Education and Community Engagement department is teaming up with the Newtown Farmer’s Market to present Mr. Stevey & Friends: a free, family-friendly series introducing children, teens and parents to mindfulness using games, exercises and art activities. The first event will be held on Saturday, March 27 from 12pm to 3pm at the Newtown Farmer’s Market, located at Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Park. The three-hour mindfulness-themed events will feature live demonstrations, meditation tutorials, art activities, mindful games, raffle prizes and special guests through a collaboration between the Newtown Nation, the Newtown Farmer’s Market and the Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall’s Artworks Anywhere program. Upcoming dates for the Mr. Stevey & Friends outdoor series featuring Van Wezel Teaching Artist Stevey Jones include April 24, May 29 and June 12. To learn more or pre-register, visit www.ArtworksAnywhere.org, though you may attend without registration. 

[SOON]  HEALTH: Virtual: Mote Marine: 35th Annual Run for the Turtles , April 12 – June 30

Run, walk or crawl to support our sea turtle conservation and research. Mote Marine Laboratory & Aquarium's 35th Annual Run for the Turtles is virtual, and open now through June 30. Each registration receives a special 35th Annual Run t-shirt, and goes to support Mote's sea turtle conservation efforts.

[SOON]  BUSINESS: Gecko's Hospitality Group: In-House Job Fairs , May 6 – June 17, 2pm-4:30pm

The Gecko’s Hospitality Group, an award-winning independent family of restaurants co-owned by Mike Gowan and Mike Quillen since 1992 will be hosting In-House Job Fairs at two Gecko’s Grill & Pub locations during the months of May and June, 2021. Gecko’s Job Fair schedules will be as follows: First and third Thursdays in May and June from 2pm to 4:30pm, starting May 6 through June 17, 2021 at Gecko’s Grill & Pub on SR 70 at Twelve Oaks Plaza, 7228 55th Avenue East, Bradenton and Gecko’s Grill & Pub on Clark Road at 5585 Palmer Crossing Circle. Applicants can expect to meet with a hiring manager and will be advised of the many company benefits the Gecko’s Hospitality Group offers employees, including Health, Dental and Vision insurance, paid time off, company 401(k), flexible schedule, meal allowance and opportunities for bonuses, career advancement and community involvement.

[SOON]  PERFORMANCE: Westcoast Black Theatre Troupe: Sistas in the Name of Soul , May 8 – June 6, 7:30pm

Westcoast Black Theatre Troupe is thrilled to continue its “Light Up the Night” open-air concert series with “Sistas in the Name of Soul.” This celebration of the female soul and R&B artists of the ‘70s (and some from the late ‘60s) will run from Saturday, May 8 through Sunday, June 6. Featured vocalists for the show are Ariel Blue, Syreeta Shonteé, Delores McKenzie and Stephanie Zandra. Audiences will enjoy hits by renowned artists such as Freda Payne, Aretha Franklin, The Supremes, Gladys Knight and the Pips, Donna Summer and The Pointer Sisters. Favorites will include “I’m So Excited,” “Midnight Train to Georgia,” “Respect,” “Bad Girl” and “Band of Gold,” among many others. The performance will be enhanced by brand new dance routines created by WBTT’s Resident Choreographer Donald Frison. The "Sistas" performers will be backed by WBTT’s electrifying live band: Brennan Stylez, music director/keyboard, Lynette Williams on auxiliary keys, Brad Foutch on guitar, Mathew McKinnon on bass, and Etienne “EJ” Porter and Mike Andrews taking turns on drums. COVID-19 protocols - temperature checks upon entry, distanced seating and mandatory masks - remain in place. Performances are Tuesdays through Sundays at 7:30pm. Tickets are $40/person with seating in socially distanced parties of one or two. Go to westcoastblacktheatre.org or call the Box Office at 941-366-1505.

[SOON]  GRAB BAG: Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at Ringling College: 2021 Summer Semester , May 10 – July 2

Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at Ringling College Announces Its 2021 Summer Semester from May 10 to July 2. Registration Opens April 27. The summer semester features dozens of classes and programs covering a wide variety of topics. Highlights include Segregated Sand: Florida’s Beaches in the Civil Rights Movement: An exploration into Florida’s struggle to racially integrate public spaces and institutions; Responding to Grief: An experiential workshop that invites participants to gain a deeper understanding of the grief process; Shakespeare in the Time of COVID, and the Baha’i Faith: A Guide for the Perplexed. Classes and lectures are offered in-person on the Ringling College Museum Campus and online via the Zoom platform. Registration opens on April 27 for the summer 2021 semester at Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at Ringling College (OLLI at Ringling College), which runs from May 10 to July 2, 2021. The semester features dozens of classes and programs covering a wide variety of topics. Classes are offered in-person on the Ringling College Museum Campus and online via the Zoom platform. Classes cover a rich diversity of topics, including art and music appreciation, health and well-being, global issues, philosophy, religion, culture and travel, and science. The Ringling College Museum Campus is at 1001 S. Tamiami Trail, Sarasota. Masks and physical distancing are required. To register for classes and lectures, visit www.OLLIatRinglingCollege.org or call 941-309-5111.

[SOON]  GALLERY: Florida CraftArt: Beautiful Bountiful Bowls Exhibition of Fine Craft , May 14 – June 26

Beautiful Bountiful Bowls is a juried exhibition of handmade bowls by outstanding contemporary fine craft artists. From around the state, 33 artists created 100 pieces in ceramics, fiber, glass, metal and wood.  Community programming (virtual and in person) includes a singing bowl sound healing and demonstrations about creating bowls in clay and wood. Glass artist and gallery owner Duncan McClellan will present an in-depth look at glass blowing bowls. At the virtual opening and awards reception on Friday, May 14 at 6pm, people will have the opportunity to virtually meet the artists and the show’s judge Catherine Bergmann (curator of Dunedin Fine Art Center). The show runs through June 26 when the People’s Choice Award will be presented. People can vote for their favorite work of art in the Florida CraftArt Exhibition Gallery and on Facebook. The exhibition’s sponsor is Tyler Jones of Premier Sotheby’s International Real Estate, along with support from Perry and Lisa Everett,  the City of St. Petersburg, and Florida’s Division of Cultural Affairs. Florida CraftArt is located at 501 Central Avenue in St. Petersburg. Gallery hours are Monday-Saturday, 10am to 5:30pm. and Sunday, noon to 5pm. For more information, visit www.FloridaCraftArt.org. On Friday, May 14 at 6pm Virtual opening with artists and judge Catherine Bergmann, Curator of Dunedin Fine Art Center. On Tuesday, May 25 at 6pm “Throwing and Turning” Learn about throwing clay on the wheel with Tyler Jones and woodturning with Nick Reale at this virtual event. On Tuesday, June 8 at 6pm Singing Bowls sound healing with Master Gopali, virtual and in person (space is limited to 10, reservations are required.) On Saturday, June 12 from 5:30pm to 9pm Second Saturday ArtWalk - Visit ArtLofts on our second floor. On Tuesday, June 22 at 6pm Renowned glass artist and gallery owner Duncan McClellan talks virtually about creating bowls in glass.

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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