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SRQ DAILY Mar 15, 2022

Tuesday Dining and Food Edition

Tuesday Dining and Food Edition

"Together with our partners, we are bringing the community together during these trying times, giving them the chance to offer their aid and support, while also elevating support to our Ukrainian neighbors that are right here in our local community."

- Anand Pallegar, DreamLarge Founder.

[The Dish]  Rockin' Tacos at Birdrock Taco Shack
Abby Weingarten. Abby@srqme.com

Saturday afternoons in Bradenton’s Village of the Arts have evolved into a mini ritual, bookended with gemstone shopping and taco scarfing. After a stop at The Village Mystic for selenite wands, a walk over to Birdrock Taco Shack for Baja-style fare is the flavorful finale.

At this eclectic little hideaway—which just shifted locations (still in the same neighborhood, in a century-old cracker home with patio room for Grateful Dead cover bands)—there are folded-up, savory bites for every palate.

One of the stars is the avocado bahn mi taco with pickled vegetables, pico de gallo, cilantro and lime on a corn tortilla (a twist on the Vietnamese recipe without the typical baguette). Birdrock’s chef and restaurateur Dave Shiplett actually pickles the veggies himself and scores his avocados from the local flea market.

This taco is exemplifies his belief that “food should be appreciated for its simplicity and the natural perfection of good ingredients,” says Shiplett, who is a classically trained French chef. “What makes a signature dish is some kind of simplicity in the preparation so it can be created again and again with the same high-quality, more complicated dishes.”

And simplicity is the common menu thread at Birdrock. To start things off, check out the avocado smash guacamole with tomato, lime and radish—confident enough in its perfect simplicity to be “nearly famous,” as the menu suggests. There is a slew of meaty and vegan options on the taco front—from the beef tamale corn husk, steamed with cilantro and chile butter; to the coldwater lobster nachos with Baja sauce; to the beet and goat cheese taco with sriracha and sunflower seeds. Burrito-wise, the pork carnitas with rice, beans, cabbage and pico is as crave-able as the Asian barbecue short rib with pepperjack queso and fried onion pico.

Each dish is reliably filling and easy on the finances. Seriously, a single $5 taco at Birdrock goes a long way when it’s jam-packed with protein. So wrap up a take-home taco for later, along with the aforementioned mystical finds. Both are good for the soul.

Birdrock Taco Shack, 1213 13 th Ave. W., Bradenton, 941-545-9966. birdrocktacoshack.com 

Pictured: Avocado bahn mi taco with pickled vegetables, pico de gallo, cilantro and lime. Photo by Peter Acker.

[Coming Soon]  Spice Boys Food Truck Finds Permanent Stop

One of the area’s best food trucks, Florence and the Spice Boys has found a permanent place to park. The owners – Carl Kolber and husband and wife team Florence and Steven Schmitt -- are bringing their signature modern Mediterranean and middle eastern flavors to a brick-and-mortar location at The Landings in Sarasota. The Spice Boys joined the Sarasota food truck scene in 2019 and quickly gained a loyal following for its bold, unique flavors. The business was recently rebranded Florence and The Spice Boys to include head chef Steve Schmitt’s wife, Florence, who is the talent behind the menu’s hand-made drinks and desserts.

By late summer, fans can find Florence and the Spice Boys seven days a week in beautifully renovated space on the south end of the retail center, located on U.S. 41 south of Proctor Road. Similar to the bright tropical truck, the restaurant will feature lush greenery and a mix of bohemian and eclectic décor, weaving rattan and neon to create a warm and welcoming atmosphere. Outside, the restaurant will offer plenty of patio seating that will overlook a new greenspace that is being added to the property. The restaurant menu will be served in a fast-casual setting and feature all the creative classics, like the turmeric fried chicken sandwich, vegan falafel pita taco, and chicken shawarma taco topped with pickled slaw, egg, banana peppers, tahini and zhug sauce. Now with a bigger kitchen, the owners plan to expand the menu with some new, soon-to-be favorite dishes, a variety of vegan options, more desserts and shareable family-style platters.

The Benderson-owned The Landings is being reimagined and remerchandised with an exciting lineup of new businesses, including Spice Boys, Crumbl Cookies and Mantra Fitness. Other retailers in the center include Tripletail Seafood & Spirits, Apollonia Grill, Vampire Penguin, EoS Fitness and a newly renovated Publix that is scheduled to open this summer. 

[Airport News]  SRQ February Passengers Up More Than Double Previous Year

For the Month of February, 340,465 passengers traveled through the Sarasota Bradenton International Airport, compared to 159,772 passengers in February 2021. This is an increase of 113% and is the
highest number of passengers for the month of February in the history of SRQ. Record-breaking growth at SRQ has continued in 2022 with a new airline, Avelo, starting service to New Haven, CT on January 13th, Allegiant Air starting service to Akron-Canton, OH on March 3rd and to Appleton, WI on March 11th, and another new airline, Breeze Airways, announcing service at SRQ
with nonstop flights to Hartford, CT starting June 4th. “It is amazing to see the passenger growth that has occurred at our airport over the last few years. Just four years ago SRQ had 6 airlines and 12 nonstop destinations. Today we have 11 airlines providing nonstop service to 53 destinations. All this growth could not have happened without the support of the community and our airline partners. We are so grateful and appreciative for all this new air service and the low fares and convenient travel options it brings,” stated Rick Piccolo, President, CEO of the Sarasota Bradenton International Airport. 

[Fundraising Event]  DreamLarge to Host Fundraiser for Ukraine on Saturday March 19th

Rosemary Art & Design District businesses and others are coming together to host RADD for Ukraine, a fundraising event in support of Ukraine. This free, outdoor event will be held on Saturday, March 19 from 6-11pm in the DreamLarge Yard (600 Central Avenue) and includes a supply drive, lineup of live music from local artists, food trucks, and both RADD and Ukrainian vendors.
Designed to provide a platform for the community to gather, raise funds, and give their support for Ukraine, 100% of ALL proceeds donated will go to support humanitarian and emergency
response work in Ukraine and its neighboring nations. 100% of every dollar contributed will go to support those in Ukraine. The supply drive will be  accepting any tangible donations including: first aid kits, toothbrushes/toothpaste, bed sheets, towels, blankets, socks, diapers, and more. A complete list of acceptable items can be found at www.RADDforUkraine.org.

“With many of us feeling powerless from this unjust attack on Ukraine, and uncertainty on how to help, RADD for Ukraine will provide an opportunity for the community to do just that,” says Anand
Pallegar, Founder of DreamLarge. “Together with our partners, we are bringing the community together during these trying times, giving them the chance to offer their aid and support, while
also elevating support to our Ukrainian neighbors that are right here in our local community.” 

For more information click here

[Grant Awarded]  Child Protection Center’s Therapy Programs Receive Funding

The Child Protection Center, Inc. (CPC) was awarded a generous grant in the amount of $25,000. This funding was provided by The Hurlburt Foundation, Inc. in support of the treatment of child abuse through CPC’s Therapy Programs. CPC’s Therapy Programs consist of the Sexual Abuse Treatment Program (SATP) and the Kid Kindness Program (KKP), both designed to serve children who have been physically and/or sexually abused, those children exhibiting problematic sexual behaviors, and their non-offending caregivers and siblings. These pivotal programs provide free mental health support with the goal of restoring health, development, and safety among victims and their families as they heal from the trauma of abuse. This grant provides essential resources necessary for expanding the nonprofit’s Therapy Programs and meeting the growing needs for services throughout the county. The Child Protection Center is the only provider in Sarasota County with a specialized focus on the physical and sexual abuse of children and is consistently among the top scores in the state of Florida for the Department of Health’s Clinical Monitoring of Sexual Abuse Treatment Programs. In the program’s most recent Clinical Monitoring, 100% of interviewed clients reported improvements in coping because of services received at CPC.


Pictured: A CPC therapy session.

To learn more, click here

[Community Service]  Boys & Girls Clubs Teens Mobilize During Spring Break and Partner with 9 Local Nonprofits for a Week of Service and Impact to Community

While high school students typically associate Spring Break with trips to the beach or a week of relaxation, 40 teens will join Boys & Girls Clubs of Sarasota and DeSoto Counties for the 8th Annual Alternative Spring Break (ASB) March 14-18 and dedicate hundreds of hours of community service to 9 local nonprofit organizations and community sites. ASB is a free opportunity offered each year by the Boys & Girls Clubs of Sarasota and DeSoto Counties for teens to experience, discuss and understand community issues in a meaningful way while earning community service hours. 

To learn more click here

[SOON]  MUSIC: Sarasota Orchestra: Great Escapes: Journey on the Orient Express , March 16 – March 20, 5:30pm, 7:30pm, 8pm and 4pm

Join an unfolding murder mystery as the orchestra, conducted by Steven Jarvi, travels the fabled route of Europe's most famous train, enjoying the music along the way on Wednesday, March 16 at 5:30pm, Thursday, March 17 at 7:30pm, Friday, March 18 at 5:30pm, Saturday, March 19 at 8pm, and Sunday, March 20 at 4pm at Holley Hall.

[SOON]  PERFORMANCE: The Players Centre: Some Enchanted Evening , March 16 – March 27, 7:30pm and 2pm

More than those of any composer or lyricist writing for the stage, the songs of Rodgers & Hammerstein have become an integral part of our everyday lives. This stunning collection of their compositions places five performers in a theatrical setting: first ‘backstage,’ where the songs are sung as personal interplay, and then ‘onstage,’ where the songs are presented to an audience. Offering its performers an opportunity to explore timeless songs within their own styles and sensibilities, SOME ENCHANTED EVENING delights its audience with a glorious parade of genuine hits. Single tickets available Sept. 1, 2021 ($26.50 preview/ $29.50 single/ $14 student). Subscriptions are available now. The show dates March 16-19, 22-26 at 7:30pm and March 20, 26-27 at 2pm.

[SOON]  SEMINAR: Arts Advocates Gallery: Monthly Speaker: Fine Art Photography , March 17, 11am

March 17, 2022, 11am, Fine Art Photography – Who are today’s leading fine art photographers and rising stars? We will hear from Christopher Jones, curator of photography and new media at The Ringling Museum. Arts Advocates is keeping a close eye on the COVID-19 situation and will decide whether their monthly speaker programs will be in-person luncheons at Bird Key Yacht Club or held via Zoom as each event nears. These programs are open to the public. Visit ArtsAdvocates.org for more information.

[SOON]  GRAB BAG: The Ringling: Homeschool Third Thursday: Women in the Circus , March 17, 10am-12pm

Women in the Circus will take place on March 17, 2022. March is Women’s History Month and this year we’re exploring the important role women played in circus history. Learn about circus greats like equestrian May Wirth, aerialist Lilian Leitzel, and human cannonball Silvana “Cha Cha” Zacchini. Students will learn about these amazing women and more, and discover how phenomenal performers challenged traditional gender roles in the early 20th century. Join us on the third Thursday of each month, for a special day designed just for homeschool families. Tickets are timed in order to avoid over-crowding; please check in at the Visitors Pavilion at the time noted on your ticket. Please note that this is a self-guiding program. Wristbands, a map, and a program packet with activities and information will be provided at check-in and families are invited to explore the museum at their own pace.

[SOON]  PERFORMANCE: Van Wezel: An Evening with Chris Botti , March 17, 8pm

For over two decades, Grammy Award-winning master trumpeter and composer CHRIS BOTTI has amassed a spectacular variety of honors, including multiple gold and platinum albums, to become the nation’s largest-selling instrumental artist. His mesmerizing performances with a stunning array of legends such as Sting, Barbra Streisand, Tony Bennett, Yo-Yo Ma, Frank Sinatra, Paul Simon and Andrea Bocelli have cemented his place as one of the most brilliant and inspiring forces of the contemporary music scene. Whether he’s performing with illustrious symphonies or at renowned venues around the globe, his unparalleled crystalline and poetic sound transcends musical boundaries. Chris Botti will perform on Thursday, March 17 at 8pm.

[SOON]  PERFORMANCE: Key Chorale: Cirque des Voix The Next Decade of Wonder , March 18 – March 20, 7:30pm-9:30pm, 2pm-4pm, and 1pm-3pm

Cirque des Voix® is Key Chorale’s dynamic collaboration with The Circus Arts Conservatory. Join us on March 18 7:30pm-9:30pm, March 19 2pm-4pm, and March 20 1pm-3pm as we celebrate the next decade of Cirque des Voix®! Experience this unique fusion of the circus and musical arts in a performance unlike any other. See world-class circus artists combined with the 100+ voices of Key Chorale and the musical mastery of the 40-piece Cirque Orchestra in our biggest and boldest production yet.

[SOON]  SEMINAR: The Ringling: Literati Book Club March , March 18, 10:30am

Join The Ringling Art Library for Literati, a book group that discusses books about art and subjects reflecting the Ringling collections. The March 18 book club will take place at 10:30am: Scoundrels, Cads, and Other Great Artists by Jeffrey Smith. This program will be virtual via zoom until further notice. This program is free. For further information, contact the Art Library at 359-5700, ex. 2701 or elisa.hansen@ringling.org.

[SOON]  GALLERY: SPAACES Gallery: Properties of Ground: Post (post) Painterly Abstraction , March 18 – April 2, Gallery hours.

Properties of Ground: Post (post) Painterly Abstraction, A Two Person Exhibit with Michael Crabb and Tom Stephens. The artwork in this exhibition is foregrounded by the artist’s practice, making the experience of painting paramount to the outcome. Post-painterly abstractionists rejected the mysticism of abstract expressionism and their preconceived references to the external world. They created a purely factual kind of art which functioned in terms of the basic elements of the medium itself; form, colour, texture, scale, composition and so on. Two abstract process painters, well known in the Sarasota/Bradenton/Tampa Area, Michael Crabb and Tom Stephens show their works in this very Post (post) Painterly exhibition focused on the studio experience. These painters emphasize the physical act of painting as an essential part of the finished work, taking precedence over content or representation. Opening Night Reception is Friday, March 18th, 2022 from 6pm to 8pm. Open Exhibition Dates are March 19th through April 2nd By Appointment Only.

[SOON]  GRAB BAG: SPARCC Runway Annual Fashion Show , March 18, 10am

Safe Place and Rape Crisis Center (SPARCC) is hosting its sought-after, annual fashion show on Friday, March 18, 2022 at The Ritz Carlton Sarasota. As in past years, SPARCC Runway #SRQ2022 promises to be buzzing with excitement. Guests will enjoy valet parking, a champagne toast, shopping in the premiere, pop-up fashion boutique (featuring great deals on high-end fashion pieces from SPARCC Treasure Chest), a delicious luncheon complete with wine service, and an unforgettable and fantastic runway fashion show. Registration and shopping at the pop-up boutique begin at 10am, with the seated luncheon and the fashion show following at noon. This year’s Event Chair is Diane Muldoon, and Darci Jacob is the Fashion Show Chair. All proceeds support SPARCC’s free and confidential programs and services for survivors of domestic and sexual violence. 

[SOON]  PERFORMANCE: Van Wezel: Anastasia , March 18 – March 20, Varies.

Inspired by the beloved films, the romantic and adventure-filled new musical ANASTASIA is on a journey to Sarasota at last. From the Tony Award-winning creators of the Broadway classic Ragtime, this dazzling show transports us from the twilight of the Russian Empire to the euphoria of Paris in the 1920s, as a brave young woman sets out to discover the mystery of her past. Pursued by a ruthless Soviet officer determined to silence her, Anya enlists the aid of a dashing conman and a lovable ex-aristocrat. Together, they embark on an epic adventure to help her find home, love and family. Anastasia features a book by celebrated playwright Terrence McNally, a lush new score by Stephen Flaherty (music) and Lynn Ahrens (lyrics) based on original direction by Tony Award winner Darko Tresnjak with choreography by Peggy Hickey and tour direction by Sarah Hartmann. Anastasia will take place on Friday, March 18 at 7:30pm, Saturday, March 19 at 2pm and 7:30pm, and Sunday, March 20 at 6:30pm and 1pm.

[SOON]  GALLERY: Sarasota Art Museum: David Budd: Motion Within Stillness , October 9 – March 20, Museum hours.

David Budd: Motion Within Stillness from October 9 to March 20, 2022. After painting for only six years, David Budd (1927-1991, Florida) dove into the New York art scene in the 1950s —immersing himself in Abstract Expressionism and working alongside iconic names of the movement, such as Jackson Pollock, Willem de Kooning, and Franz Kline. His paintings, like others of the time, relied on the bodily relationship between the artist and canvas —each stroke and mark of the artist encapsulated in viscous gestures of paint—and spontaneity; although, this is not to say that Budd painted hastily—each mark was placed with intention to animate the canvas’s surface.

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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