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SRQ DAILY Oct 29, 2021

Friday Weekend Edition

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Friday Weekend Edition

"You have sadness, but you also have these beautiful tender moments of joy, happiness and friendship."

- Shea Petersen, At the Wake of a Dead Drag Queen

[Performance]  All The Wake's A Stage At Urbanite Theatre
Philip Lederer, Phil.Lederer@srqme.com

Navigating a wake can be a terribly complicated affair and there’s a reason most people in attendance eventually turn to drink. While there may not be an elephant in the room, there’s certainly a dead body, and this makes any celebration of life an emotionally confusing and contradictory experience. Are we crying? Are we laughing? The brain short-circuits and somewhere in the reboot the mind leaves an opening. Enter Terry Guest’s At the Wake of a Dead Drag Queen, kicking off tonight at Urbanite Theatre and running through December 5, 2021.

Set in Albany, Georgia, the intimate one-act play brings audiences behind-the-scenes of the passionate but embattled relationship between two young drag performers, Courtney Berringers (government name: Anthony) and Vickie Versailles (government name: Hunter), amidst the ongoing HIV epidemic. Through memory and monologue, dance and drag, the tale unfolds. It’s a story about blackness, queerness, and the art of drag; about intersectionality, The South, and the power of creating your own narrative. It’s joyous. It’s tragic…

“It’s a party!” says Shea Petersen, who co-stars as Vickie, opposite Donovan Session as Courtney.

Because while the title of the play may seed the story with a certain impending doom, Petersen says, the content of the play strikes an important balance between celebrating the characters’ relationship and addressing those obstacles that arise. “So you have sadness,” they say, “but you also have these beautiful tender moments of joy, happiness and friendship.” Not to mention all the singing and dancing—much of it in six-inch heels that required the performers to master their own sense of balance as well. “My quads hurt so bad,” laughs Petersen. “This is definitely one of the most demanding shows I’ve ever been a part of.” 

But it’s also a show that Petersen has followed since serving as an understudy in Guest’s original 2019 production at The Story Theatre in Chicago. “It’s a beautiful and tragic and important story, especially in this time” they say, making note of the play’s treatment of the ongoing AIDS epidemic. “People hear HIV and AIDS and think it was a thing of the past, that we’re done with that,” Petersen says. “It’s still an epidemic.”

Directed by Damian Lockhart, At the Wake of a Dead Drag Queen opens tonight at Urbanite Theatre (1487 2nd St, Sarasota). Tickets and more information found here. 

Shea Petersen (left) as Vickie Versailles and Donovan Session as Courtney Berringers. Photo by Jack Cooper.

[Performance]  Cirque Dreams Holidaze Returns to Van Wezel

Cirque Dreams Holidaze returns to the Van Wezel on Monday, Nov. 29, 2021 at 7:30 p.m. to light up the stage with a dazzling family holiday spectacular. This annual tradition wraps a whimsical, Broadway-style musical infused with contemporary circus artistry into the ultimate holiday gift for the entire family! Tickets are on sale now.  As lights dim and music plays, a fantastical cast of holiday storybook characters come to life presenting an elaborate wonderland, invoking the stories behind a child’s eye as they dream on the most magical of nights. Ballerinas, nutcrackers, snowmen, penguins, reindeer, ethereal aerialists, gingerbread people, carolers and colossal ornaments fly, balance, juggle and stretch imaginations.

Audiences will celebrate this most wonderful time of the year with over twenty of the world’s critically acclaimed and accomplished artists and circus acts all gift-wrapped in over 300 imaginative and one-of-a-kind costume designs. Broadway singers perform original music along with new twists on seasonal favorites such as “Deck the Halls,” “Winter Wonderland” and “Jingle Bell Rock.” This critically-acclaimed extravaganza is sure to dazzle any audience as Broadway World proclaims it, “The Perfect Holiday Gift … a show that everyone will enjoy.” Audiences of all ages will marvel at soaring acrobatics, gravity-defying feats and extravagant theatrical production numbers the Boston Globe hails as “Entrancing … Las Vegas meets family entertainment. 

Tickets are $37-$106 and can be purchased at VanWezel.org, by visiting the box office or calling at 941-263-6799. 

Shot of Cirque Dreams Holidaze, courtesy of Van Wezel

[Film Festival]  Kids First! Best of the Fest Features on Planet Classroom Network

Planet Classroom is proud to showcase KIDS FIRST! Film Festival best films created by youth filmmakers worldwide to celebrate KIDS FIRST! 30th Anniversary. Beginning on November 1, 2021, the Planet Classroom Network’s YouTube Channel will stream a stunning collection of shorts and features from some of the most talented and up-and-coming indie and youth filmmakers worldwide. The stories are grouped under Planet Classroom’s themes of LGBTQ+, Race and Tolerance, Environmental Action, Wellness and Self-Esteem, Teen Musical, Teaching Empathy, and Girl Power. KIDS FIRST! Film Festival is an initiative of the non-profit Coalition for Quality Children’s Media founded in 1991 whose mission is to teach children critical viewing skills and to increase the visibility and availability of quality children’s media. KIDS FIRST! Film Festival is a showcase for new and classic children’s films from independent and student filmmakers worldwide in addition to select studio films. The Planet Classroom Network, organized by CMRubinWorld, brings together musicians, dancers, video game creators, filmmakers, learning innovators and emerging technologists from around the world to entertain, educate and engage youth, and to provide a rich cultural experience for all. Content showcased for youth and by youth on the Planet Classroom Network is provided by 29 cultural organizations from around the world. Young people globally played a significant role in conceptualizing, creating, and producing the network’s vision and programming. 

For more information click here

[Art Show]  Mark Runge: Peace is Patriotic Art Opening Veteran's Day

On Veteran’s Day, Thursday, November 11, Fogartyville will open its 2021/2022 Visual Arts Gallery season with Peace is Patriotic, a solo show by artist and educator Mark Runge of Miami, Florida. Mark will demonstrate his longtime work using gunpowder as an art medium. A reception will be held from 7-10pm and includes a social hosted by the Florida Veterans for Common Sense, a cash bar, a gunpowder art demonstration, and live music with Bill Schustik (dulcimer) and Ray Hodges (guitar).  The exhibit and reception are free and open to the public.  Gallery hours are Tuesday and Thursday from 5-7pm.  Runge, a U.S. Army veteran who served with the 5th Combat Engineer Group during Operations Desert Shield and Desert Storm, said he expresses his memories, or “mis-remembrances,” through his art work. While he is grateful to have served in the Army, he would rather be thanked for his lifetime membership and service with the Veterans for Peace organization. Several pieces in Runge’s exhibit were created using gunpowder and pyrography. He said he began drawing with gunpowder around 2005, when he was teaching at a small college in Florida. Several students were veterans, and they decided to have a show about their wartime experiences. Mark Runge has received many awards for his artwork in local, state and national art competitions. 

The Fogartyville entrance is located at the west side of WSLR building on 525 Kumquat Court, Sarasota, 34236.   

[Free Event]  Fresh Fridays Finalizes Programming For "Best Night Ever" Kick-Off Event

The Fresh Fridays team announces the final programming for its kick-off event, “Best Night Ever.” The first of downtown Sarasota’s elevated first-Friday events initiative seeks to offer residents and visitors dynamic opportunities to engage with the city’s diverse food, music, and cultural assets, reactivating downtown Sarasota as a hub for nightlife, entertainment and recreation. From 8pm - 11pm on Friday, November 5, Lemon Avenue and State Street will be closed to vehicles for the pedestrian-only event. Free food tastings will be provided throughout the event zone courtesy of Cask & Ale, Tsunami Sushi & Hibachi, Duval’s Fresh. Local. Seafood., and Serenity Wellness & Smoothie Café. Guests can also purchase their favorite refreshments from participating restaurants within the event zone. Several live music options will also be spread throughout the two-block event zone that cater to a wide variety of preferences, including a jazz guitar duo, a Country cover band, and a DJ spinning contemporary and classic hits. The vibrant block party will be glowing in a dazzling digital light display, making this a comprehensive event for the senses. The first 500 guests will receive a Fresh Fridays cup to go along with other party favors, and guests are encouraged to utilize the Fresh Fridays step-and-repeat photo set up to get their photos taken.

This 100% free event is an easy walk from just about any parking spot in the Downtown Improvement District including the State Street garage, where the first two hours of parking are free. Easily accessible and broadly inclusive of tastes, guests may enter the event from either end of State Street (including The Mark’s breezeway) and from Lemon Avenue at Main Street or Pineapple Avenue.  

Photo courtesy of Fresh Fridays Sarasota. Learn more here.

[Grant]  FDEO Awards $1M+ in Community Block Grant Programming to Centerstone

Centerstone, a not-for-profit health system specializing in mental health and substance use disorder treatments, recently received awards of more than $1M for Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) programming by the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity (FDEO). The funding was awarded for two different programs that will serve residents of greater Manatee County in the coming year. A $625K+ award will be used to renovate a 41-year old building on Centerstone’s hospital campus that currently serves clients of its family intensive treatment programming. The Samoset Community Resource Center, as the site will be called, will benefit low and moderate income individuals/households, individuals at risk of or experiencing homelessness, and those with special needs living in Manatee County.  Centerstone will take the lead on coordinating affordable behavioral health and social services at the center. In addition, Centerstone received $480K+ to fund a COVID-19 Mobile Care Team, called Project Hope, that will benefit homeless individuals who are at heightened risk for serious medical, mental and substance use conditions. This funding will support a multi-disciplinary clinical care team and a specially-equipped van.  Project Hope is modeled after the successful Lazarus Project in Miami-Dade County. Tentative launch date for Project Hope is November 2021; the Samoset Community Resource Center is expected to open and accept clients beginning in November 2022. 

To learn about Centerstone click here

[Special Training]  CPC's Team Coordinator Will Train Teams on Forensic Interviews

Danielle Hughes, Team Coordinator of the Child Protection Team (CPT) at the Child Protection Center (CPC), has been selected to provide the upcoming Forensic Interview Training through the Florida Department of Health for CPT Case Coordinators across the state. 11 teams are partaking in the specialized 40-hour training, which will enable the participating CPT Case Coordinators to provide forensic interviews. These interviews are child-friendly, non-leading, and legally sound conversations with alleged victims of child abuse, which are recorded and submitted as evidence. The coordinators meet with the child, ensure they’re comfortable, build report, and are then able to transition to the topics of concern and explore the details of disclosure if abuse has occurred. By having the Case Coordinators within Child Protection Teams trained in forensic interviewing, it alleviates the need for children to be interviewed by DCF and law enforcement. This training enables more teams around the state to provide these interviews, which will benefit numerous children across Florida. "Child Protection Teams are a neutral party that assist in the investigations held by DCF and law enforcement,” Danielle states. “It’s not ideal for law enforcement to do these interviews because officers are often perceived as intimidating with the badge and gun, and DCF makes the decision about whether a child should be removed from their home. Having Child Protection Teams conduct the forensic interviews removes a lot of that fear and hesitancy because they are the neutral party.” 

For more information on CPC visit

[SOON]  GRAB BAG: DOG-A-WEEN Dog Costume Contest , October 30, 10am-11am

The Sarasota 13th Annual Dog-A-Ween costume contest is returning Saturday, October 30th from 10am to 11am to the Sarasota Farmers Market Halloween Festival. All proceeds benefit the Donte’s Den Foundation. 9am to 9:45am: Check in and get your entry number at Lemon Ave. & 1st Street Downtown Sarasota.  Parking is available in Whole Foods Parking Plaza. 10am: Parade from the water fountain on Lemon and First Street proceeding to Paul Thorpe Park. 10:15am: Contest in Paul Thorpe Park. GPS Address: 135 S. Pineapple Ave. Rules: Dogs must be on a leash at all times. No retractable leashes are allowed. Well-behaved dogs please out of due caution and concern for safety. Have your dog go potty before arrival. When the contest is over, show off your pup in costume along Main Street, enjoy pet-friendly patios, indulge in sweet treats, and walk the beautiful Sarasota bayfront. 

[SOON]  FESTIVAL: Stranger Things Drive-In , October 29 – October 30, 8:30pm and 10pm

You know the Netflix story: After the mysterious and sudden vanishing of a young boy, the people of a small town begin to uncover secrets of a government lab, portals to another world and sinister monsters. The boy’s mother desperately tries to find him, convinced he is in grave danger, while the police chief searches for answers. Fans can’t get enough of the retro vibe of the hit series Stranger Things. Take a trip to the upside-down world in safety on October 29 at 8:30pm and 10pm and October 3o at 8:30pm and 10pm. Experience the 80s tunes and soundscapes from the show reinterpreted in brilliant laser light and visual effects. See intense beams zoom over your head as you freak out to STRANGER THINGS. Be there if you dare. This program is designed to be family friendly.  

[SOON]  PERFORMANCE: FST Improv: We're Doomed , October 29 – October 30, 7:30pm

FST Improv Presents We're Doomed Playing October 29 and October 30 at 7:30pm. In a world where blockbusters come and go, FST Improv entertains with an unforgettable, original, and fully improvised motion picture. The cast of We’re Doomed will perform an improvised horror movie based on a title provided by the audience. We’ll leave the fancy equipment behind as we use unique staging, special effects and onstage acrobatics to recreate the excitement and magic of the silver screen. You’ll even get to see improvised previews of upcoming attractions.

[SOON]  PERFORMANCE: Urbanite Theatre: At the Wake of a Dead Drag Queen , October 29 – December 5, Varies.

At the Wake of a Dead Drag Queen by Terry Guest Directed by Damian Lockhart will run from October 29 to December 5, 2021. In rural Georgia, drag star Courtney Berringers (given name: Anthony Knighton) would like to welcome you to her wake. She has recently died from complications due to AIDS, you see. But make no mistake, this isn’t your grandma’s funeral. There will be no black frocks, no perfumed flowers, and definitely no crying. Tonight is a celebration.

[SOON]  PERFORMANCE: Sarasota Opera: The Silken Ladder , October 29 – November 13

La Scala di seta (The Silken Ladder) by Gioachino Rossini with words by Giuseppe Maria Foppa. This spirited one act comedy, which will run from October 29 through November 13, begins with a well-known overture, and goes on to spin a seductive story of a secret husband and would-be lovers who scale a silken ladder into and out of a lady’s room.

[SOON]  GRAB BAG: The Bazaar on Apricot & Lime: Boo! at The Bazaar , October 30, 10am-3pm

On Saturday, October 30 from 10am to 3pm, The Bazaar on Apricot & Lime will celebrate Halloween. Kids can go trick or treating (free!) at more than 20 different spots throughout The Bazaar. Costumes are encouraged. Free Halloween Air Brush Tattoos from 11am to 1pm by Suzy of Troll Fairy Designs. Tyler Vaden will be playing live music. Special guest performances from Dingbat Theatre Project’s upcoming musical of Spongebob, coloring, make spooky spin art, and so much more.

[SOON]  GRAB BAG: Mattison's: Halloween Costume Contest , October 30, 9pm and 7pm-9pm

Don’t be scared this Halloween. Come to Mattison’s for their annual Halloween Costume Contest a day before Halloween on October 30th. Whether you are lurking around Downtown Sarasota or Downtown Bradenton stop into Mattison’s to enter the contest. Mattison’s City Grille in Sarasota will hold their contest at 9pm sharp with a $50 Mattison’s Gift Card being awarded to the Best Male costume, Best Female costume, and Best Group costume. If you are getting ghoulish up in Bradenton stop by Mattison’s Riverwalk Grille from 7pm-9pm where the prizes will be $100 Mattison’s Gift Card for first place, $50 Mattison’s Gift Card for second place and $25 Mattison’s Gift Card for third place. Enjoy Halloween themed Boozy drinks, devilishly good food and haunt the night away with live music at both locations. For more info visit mattisons.com. Boo.

[SOON]  PERFORMANCE: The Players Centre: The Legend of Sleepy Hollow , October 22 – October 30, 6pm, 4pm, and 5:30pm

The Players Centre for Performing Arts is thrilled to celebrate our 5th annual production of The Legend of Sleepy Hollow at the Sarasota Polo Club. This year, for the first time, The Players Centre is proud to introduce the Headless Horseman to South County at Selby Botanical Garden’s Historic Spanish Point. This family-friendly, yet spooky, and always festive play is based on Washington Irving's classic tale about Ichabod Crane, the object of his affection Katrina, his rival Brom Bones, and of course, one of the most famous ghosts in American Folklore, the Headless Horseman. The show runs an hour in totality and is suitable for audiences of all ages. Sarasota Polo Club shows have been known to sell out, so reserve your tickets early. The Players Centre is excited to be bringing this holiday production to an even wider audience and to be pairing with such esteemed cultural organizations to showcase the talent and beauty of our entire community. Show dates are Oct. 22 at 6pm, Oct. 23 at 4pm and 6pm at the Sarasota Polo Club, 8201 Polo Club Lane. Rain dates are Sunday, October 24, October 29 and 30 at 5:30pm at the Guptil House at Historic Spanish Point, 337 N Tamiami Trail, Osprey. Students $10, Adults $20, and Family 4-packs $50. Please bring your own chairs and/or blankets, none will be provided, this is an outdoor event. All seating will be socially distanced. Masks are recommended for those that are unvaccinated.

[SOON]  PERFORMANCE: McCurdy's Comedy Theatre & Humor Institute: Beneva Fruitville's Halloween Drag Queen Bingo , October 30, 8pm

Beneva Fruitville's Halloween Drag Queen Bingo will take place on Saturday, October 30 at 8pm. Rated AB. Tickets are $25. Special Saturday Night Halloween performance with Dazzling Guest Stars.

[SOON]  PERFORMANCE: Venice Theatre: She Kills Monsters: Young Adventurers Edition , October 22 – November 7, Varies.

A comedic romp into the fantasy world of Dungeons and Dragons. In this high-octane dramatic comedy laden with vicious fairies, nasty ogres and ‘90s pop culture, acclaimed playwright Qui Nguyen offers a heart-pounding homage to the geek and warrior within us all. She Kills Monsters will show from October 22 to November 7 at the Venice Theatre. Recommended for middle school and up. Strong language and themes.

[SOON]  PERFORMANCE: Crosley Theater Company: Murder, Mystery, & Poe , October 21 – October 31

Murder, Mystery, & Poe Runs from Thursday October 21 2021 to Sunday October 31 2021 at Bradenton Kiwanis Theater, 502 Third Avenue West, Bradenton. Approximate running time: 2 hours. Join the Crosley Theater Company for an eerie evening of theatrical works from the Master of the Macabre…Edgar Allan Poe! The First Act will feature Poe’s tale of Revenge & Murder, “The Cask of Amontillado”. After intermission, it is “An Evening with Gwendolyn.” 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? Watch one woman’s descent into madness in “The Telltale Heart". Produced by the Crosley Theater Company.

[SOON]  GRAB BAG: Selby Gardens: Spooktacular , October 31, 10am-12pm

Selby Gardens' Spooktacular will take place on October 31 from 10am to 12pm at the Downtown Sarasota Campus, 1534 Mound St. Family-friendly celebration including trick-or-treating, holiday crafts, and frightening (but not too scary) activities for older children. Costumes encouraged. Free for Selby Gardens’ Members and included with General Admission.

[SOON]  SPORTS: Virtual: Cat Depot: Fall Feline Fun Run , October 31

Registration for the Second Annual Fall Feline Fun Run is open now through midnight on October 31, 2021 and is $35 per registrant. In addition to participating in the run, join us on social media for several fun contests such as the Most Cat-letic Photo Contest, Most Paw-some Team Theme, and more! Visit us online for more information and to register today. If you are unable to participate in the walk/run, please consider donating to support our lifesaving work.

[SOON]  PERFORMANCE: Florida Studio Theatre: Jukebox Saturday Night , September 7 – October 31

FST’s 2021 Summer Cabaret Series concludes with an all-new show from Sarasota’s favorite swing-era territory band, The Swingaroos. A jazzy new music revue, Jukebox Saturday Night features some of The Jukebox’s greatest hits: “Get Your Kicks On Route 66,” “Heart and Soul,” and “There’s No Business Like Show Business.” Jukebox Saturday Night will play in FST’s Bowne’s Lab beginning Tuesday, September 7 and will play through October 31. Countless musical genres emerged during the first half of the 20th Century, and there was only one place you could find them all: The Jukebox. In this jazzy music revue, The Swingaroos put a dynamic twist on the Jukebox’s greatest hits, including “Get Your Kicks On Route 66,” “Heart and Soul,” and “There’s No Business Like Show Business.” Tickets are no longer available for this show.

[SOON]  SPORTS: Free Bicycle Helmet Giveaway and Fitting Event for Kids , October 30, 9am-12pm

Join the Friends of Osprey Junction Trailhead for a free bicycle helmet giveaway event on Saturday, October 30, 2021 from 9am to 12pm at Osprey Junction Trailhead Park, 939 E. Bay Street, Osprey. They will be giving away free bicycle helmets to kids from ages 1 to 18. Kids must be present to receive and be fitted for their free helmet. Limit one helmet per child. A parent or legal guardian must be present to sign up children to receive a free helmet. Helmets are given away on a first-come, first-served basis while supplies last, and at the sole discretion of the Friends of Osprey Junction Trailhead. 

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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