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SRQ DAILY May 20, 2022

Friday Weekend Edition

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Friday Weekend Edition

"We wanted to break the cycle of panic and complacency that delays care."

- Manuel Gordillo, MD, Medical Director of SMH Infection Prevention and Control

[Arts & Entertainment]  New Exhibits at the Art Ovation Hotel
Dylan Campbell, dylan@srqme.com

Last week on May 12th, the Art Ovation Hotel unveiled two new exhibitions, in both the Overture and Crescendo Gallery spaces. The first exhibition, which shows until November, features works from Stephen P. Goodman, a New England-based artist and graphic designer.

“Stephen’s works are abstract and truly beautiful. They are photography prints on metal--all inspired by landscapes,” says Francine Birbragher, PhD, and Senior Curator of the Art Ovation Hotel.

The other exhibition, featuring works from four separate artists, was the product of a collaboration between Art Ovation Hotel and the Libertine Fine Art Gallery of St. Petersburg.

“Currently, this is the only gallery that we’ve collaborated with--I typically prefer to work with the artists directly. However, because of Libertine’s diverse array of art and the fact that they are based in St. Petersburg, we became interested in working together,” attests Birbragher.

The collaboration features works from four different artists - Christopher (who goes by his first name only), a world-renowned fashion photographer with over forty years of experience; Shane Bowden, an artist who makes prints and paintings inspired by pop culture; Jason Brueck, an artist who creates prints that combine images of past and present, blurring the lines between the real and surreal; and lastly Kate Harrold, another surrealist photographer whose work is inspired by her childhood.

As the Senior Curator, Birbragher collaborates with the hotel’s committee to decide which artists they want to feature. From there, she determines which works will be showcased and where they’re placed. "I also oversee all of the additional materials--additional text, signage, labels, and the digital presence on our website. A lot to be said about how the owners of the hotel support the arts,” Birbragher states.

Art Ovation Hotel, 1255 N Palm Ave, Sarasota, 914-316-0808. 

Pictured: "Greetings from Florida" by artist Jason Brueck. Photo courtesy of the artist.

To learn more, visit

[Poetry ]  Arts and Cultural Alliance of Sarasota County Announces Launch of Area Youth Poet Laureate Program

The Arts and Cultural Alliance of Sarasota County and partnering sponsor, Bookstore1Sarasota, will follow the lead of the nation in acknowledging a student who has achieved excellence in poetry, allowing them to be a leader for their community in raising the profile of poetry and developing its audience. The laureateship is an honorary position held by an emerging poet between the ages of 13 and 19 who is a Sarasota county or surrounding county resident with an interest to be involved in the literary arts community, in volunteer and community service, and in clubs, sports, or other co-curricular activities. Each Youth Poet Laureate serves a one-year term of service, during which they promote a wide range of literary arts and participate in ceremonial, educational and cultural activities throughout the region. They represent and celebrate the diversity and history, and vision of the youth for the suncoast region.

The Arts and Cultural Alliance of Sarasota County will accept submissions from talented Sarasota, Manatee, DeSoto and Charlotte County writers to be considered for the area’s top literary honor for youth. Applications for the 2022 - 2023 Sarasota Youth Poet Laureate are due no later than September 30, 2022 by 5:00 PM EST. A Youth Poetry Laureate Committee, which broadly represents the region's literary community, will review submissions and recommend candidates for consideration. The Arts and Cultural Alliance of Sarasota County will make the final appointment of the Youth Poet Laureate, who earns a $500 stipend and embarks on a year of opportunities as an ambassador for literary arts and youth expression. They also qualify to be selected as the National Youth Poet Laureate. The National Youth Poet Laureate initiative is a program of Urban Word, an award-winning youth literary arts and youth development organization, with offices in New York City and Los Angeles. 

To learn more, visit

[Health News]  Local Care Providers Unite to Ensure Quicker, Easier Access to COVID-19 Outpatient Treatments on the Suncoast

As COVID infections begin to rise on the Suncoast and throughout Florida, Sarasota Memorial Health Care System and its community partners have united to ensure those who need it have access to new antiviral treatments available in the community. The Sarasota County COVID Therapy Coalition formed this spring to make the process less confusing for local residents and care providers – and help prevent severe illness and hospitalization among the elderly and other high-risk individuals during this next phase of the pandemic.

"We wanted to break the cycle of panic and complacency that delays care,” said Manuel Gordillo, MD, medical director of SMH Infection Prevention and Control. “We now have effective outpatient treatments, but it’s important that people get prescriptions in a timely manner and start treatment within the first 5 days of symptoms. Knowing if patients qualify for any of these potentially lifesaving interventions and how to access them can be confusing, even for physicians."

The Sarasota County COVID Therapy Coalition has created a webpage (smh.com/treatcovid) with helpful links, treatment guidelines and physician referral information to help people assess their need, determine eligibility and locate available treatments. The coalition is now working to spread the word and ensure a comprehensive referral network for people who are low income, uninsured or do have a local doctor to assess their risks and provide the required prescription for treatment. While vaccination continues to provide the best protection against COVID-19, the oral anti-viral medication Paxlovid is highly effective to help reduce the risk of severe disease and hospitalization in eligible people, and is widely available from Walgreens and CVS pharmacies throughout the region. For higher risk patients who are unable to receive Paxlovid (e.g., due to a significant interaction with another medication), the monoclonal antibody Bebtelovimab is another possible option. There also is an antibody prevention therapy, Evusheld, available for those who are immunocompromised. 

To learn more, click here

[Donation Received]  Resilient Retreat Receives $3.5 Million Gift from Anonymous Donor Plus $1 Million Match Opportunity for First Endowment

Resilient Retreat has received the largest-ever single donation: a $3.5 million gift from an anonymous local donor inspired by the organization’s unique approach to address trauma among survivors of abuse and those that experience trauma in the workplace. Made in honor of longtime supporter, James “Jim” Roque, who died September 27, 2021, the gift is spurred by profound concerns over community health in the wake of the COVID pandemic. Additionally, the anonymous donor has offered up to $1 million as a match for monies raised by Resilient Retreat to establish a general endowment fund. The offer is good for one year and is contingent upon completion of fundraising for the Retreat Center. When completed in 2022, the Retreat Center will be able to further expand its capacity to offer healing services to the community, including modalities like neurofeedback, yoga, meditation, massage, time in nature, gardening, and support groups as well as enhancing self-care skills through workshops on healthy cooking, journaling, and other beneficial activities. 

[Hospital News]  Construction to Begin on New SMH Cancer Pavilion

The Sarasota County Public Hospital Board on Monday authorized Sarasota Memorial staff to move forward with construction of a new 7-story Cancer Pavilion on Waldemere Street. Preliminary plans also call for an adjacent parking garage and skybridge connecting the pavilion to the oncology tower SMH opened on its Sarasota campus last November. The pavilion will be the third in a series of premier facilities that are part of the health system’s expanding Brian D. Jellison Cancer Institute. Responding to the rising number of local cancer cases and the complexity of modern cancer care delivery, the health system launched its comprehensive cancer program in 2018 to give cancer patients, caregivers and medical providers access to the latest treatments, technologies, clinical trials and supportive care in their own community. Site work on the $220 million Cancer Pavilion is slated to begin later this year, pending regulatory permits and approvals. Conceptual plans feature a 7-story, 200,000-square-foot facility on the north side of Waldemere Street, steps away from the Jellison Cancer Institute Oncology Tower. To make room for the pavilion and parking garage with about 700 spaces, SMH plans to demolish the existing Cape Outpatient Surgery Center and smaller SMH-owned building on the southwest corner of Floyd Street and U.S 41. As part of a planned, phased approach with the recent opening of the Oncology Tower, SMH will temporarily transition outpatient surgeries currently being performed at the Cape to existing operating rooms in the hospital during construction. Outpatient surgeries will resume in the Cancer Pavilion once operational. SMH selected EYP Architects and Turner Construction/J2 Solutions to design and build the new facility. When complete, the pavilion will house a new breast health center, outpatient surgery suites, radiation oncology, infusion services, diagnostic imaging, and integrative and supportive care. The Cancer Pavilion also will be home to medical, surgical and radiation oncology physician clinics, said medical oncologist Richard Brown, MD, who serves as the Institute's chief program medical director and oversees a team of more than 90 specialists caring for local cancer patients. 

[Teacher Recognition]  Sarasota County Educator Named 2023 Florida Teacher of the Year Finalist

The Florida Department of Education (FDOE) named Jennifer Jaso, a sixth-grade teacher at Sarasota Middle School in Sarasota County, as a finalist for the 2023 Florida Teacher of the Year award. The announcement came during a surprise visit to Sarasota Middle School, with Deputy Chancellor for Educator Quality Dr. Paul Burns imparting the honor. The Florida Teacher of the Year program recognizes excellence in teaching and celebrates outstanding professional educators in schools across the state. The 2023 Florida Teacher of the Year winner will be announced on July 14 in Orlando.

Jennifer Jaso is a social studies teacher who is highly regarded for her ability to build relationships with students and work with them to develop critical thinking skills amid content knowledge. She holds several leadership roles, including department chair, professional learning community leader and History Day coordinator. Dr. Jaso is a long-standing presenter at the National Council for the Social Studies Annual Conference and the Florida Council for the Social Studies Conference. She has a Bachelor of Science Degree from Florida State University, as well as a Doctor of Education from Argosy University. Five finalists were chosen for 2023 Teacher of the Year from nearly 185,000 public school teachers throughout the state. After each school district selects its teacher of the year, a selection committee representing teachers, principals, parents and the business community reviews each district application on the basis of outstanding ability to teach and communicate knowledge of the subject taught, professional development, philosophy of teaching, and outstanding school and community service. The winner will serve for one year as the Christa McAuliffe Ambassador for Education.


[SOON]  MUSIC: UnidosNow Presents "NocheUnidos" , May 20 – May 21, Varies.

UnidosNow presents the acclaimed Mexican folkloric group Mariachi Cobre and the Venice Symphony, on Friday, May 20, 7:30 p.m., at the Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall, 777 N. Tamiami Trail, Sarasota, and on Saturday, May 21, 2:30 p.m., at the Venice Performing Arts Center, 1 Indian Ave., Venice. Michelle Merrill, the former associate conductor of the Detroit Symphony Orchestra, will conduct both performances. The concerts commemorate UnidosNow's 10th anniversary, which has been delayed for two years due to the pandemic. Proceeds will raise valuable funds to empower UnidosNow's education, integration, and civic engagement initiatives. Tickets for the event, which range from $30 to $120, are now on sale at www.unidosnow.org/nocheunidos.

[SOON]  GRAB BAG: Sixth Annual Adopt-A-Palooza , May 21, 11am-4pm

The 6th Annual Adopt-A-Palooza will be held, Saturday, May 21st at the Bradenton Area Convention Center, 1 Haben Boulevard in Palmetto. Hours are 11 a.m. – 4 p.m. Admission and parking are FREE.

Returning this year, after a two-year postponement due to the pandemic, Adopt-A-Palooza is the largest one-day adoption and expo-style event in Manatee County and will feature over 100 adoptable puppies, dogs, cats and kittens from Manatee County Animal Services (MCAS), local shelters and animal rescues - all under one roof.

For pets from MCAS, all adoption fees will be waived in lieu of a donation made to the Friends of Manatee County Animal Services (FoMCAS). Manatee County residents are required to license their new pet for an additional $20 tag fee. All pets will be spayed or neutered, vaccinated and micro-chipped.

The family-friendly event will include over 25 retail vendors selling a variety of pet products. New this year, offered by Manatee County Animal Services, is a free pet vaccine and microchip clinic. Pet owners with dogs and cats in need of vaccinations and/or microchips can bring their pet to the event to receive them at no charge. This free clinic is offered from 11:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m. on a first-come, first-served basis.

The event also includes information tables with special pricing on services such as spay and neuter, chipping, veterinarian services and more. Raffles and silent auction items will be available.

[SOON]  THEATER: Florida Studio Theatre: The Legend of Georgia McBride , April 6 – May 22, Varies.

He's young, he's broke, his landlord's knocking at the door, and he's just found out his wife is going to have a baby. To make matters even more desperate, Casey is struggling with his gig as an Elvis impersonator in a run-down, small-town Florida bar. When the bar owner brings in a B-level drag show to replace his act, Casey finds that he has a whole lot to learn about show business - and himself. The Legend of Georgia McBride by Matthew Lopez will play beginning March 30, 2022 through May 22, 2022 in FST's Gompertz Theatre.

[SOON]  FILM: Summer Movies at Sarasota Opera House , May 22 – September 23, Varies.

Sarasota Opera is pleased to announce the lineup for the 2022 summer movie series: HD at the Opera House and Classic Movies at the Opera House. HD at the Opera House featuring filmed performances of opera and ballet from around the world will open on Sunday, May 22nd at 1:30 p.m. with Giuseppe Verdi’s Rigoletto from the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden in London, with tickets at $22, and $20 for Sarasota Opera subscribers. The Classic Movies at the Opera House series will open with In the Heat of the Night on Friday, July 8th at 7:30 p.m. with tickets at $12. (Tickets will go on sale starting Monday, May 2nd.)

[SOON]  GALA: MLK Scholarship and Awards Gala , May 22, 6pm

The Sarasota MLK Celebration Committee is hosting the MLK Scholarship and Awards Gala at 6 p.m. on Sunday, May 22 inside the Marie Selby Botanical Gardens, located at 1534 Mound Street in Sarasota. Multiple academic scholarships will be awarded to graduating high school seniors who have a dream of obtaining a post-secondary education. Additionally, selfless individuals and organizations will be recognized for their unwavering public service. Tickets are available for purchase online at srqmlkgala.eventbrite.com/. For more information, contact Nicole Brown at 941-281-0520 or srqmlkcelebrationpr@gmail.com.

[SOON]  GRAB BAG: Passport to The Bazaar , May 26, 5-7pm
On Thursday, May 26 you could win a Sarasota Staycation ($1,000 value)! The Bazaar on Apricot & Lime is turning four and they want you to celebrate with them from 5-7pm. While you wander the 40 creators and curators you will enjoy complimentary champagne, live music from Hot Club of SRQ, activities, and other fun surprises. After getting your Bazaar passport stamped, you will be entered to win the grand prize. Includes: a hotel stay at Home 2 Suites; dining from First Watch ($100) and Bavaro’s ($50); passes for Discover Sarasota Tours, Mote Marine, and A.J. Electric Bike Tour; theatre tickets to Westcoast Black Theatre and Players Centre; rum from Siesta Key Rum, and other goodies. No purchase necessary.
[SOON]  GALLERY: Art Uptown Gallery: Different Strokes , April 30 – May 27, Gallery hours.

The newest artists at Art Uptown Gallery will be featured in the May exhibit, "Different Strokes," showcasing their paintings. Diane Boone, intuitive abstract painter, and Gillian St. George, hard-edge abstract painter, are both local, full-time residents of national recognition. Meet the artists on May 6 from 6pm to 9pm at the First Friday public reception at the gallery and Saturday, May 7 from 11am to 5pm, The exhibit opens on Saturday, April 30 and runs through Friday, May 27. Art Uptown Gallery welcomes patrons and friends at 1367 Main Street where the diverse art works of local, award-winning artists are exhibited. Telephone 941-955-5409 or visit www.artuptown.com for hours and further information.

[SOON]  GRAB BAG: Selby Gardens: Seeing the Invisible , September 25 – August 31, 10am-5pm

The most ambitious and expansive exhibition to date of contemporary artworks created with augmented reality (AR) technology will premiere at Marie Selby Botanical Gardens, opening on September 25, 2021 and ongoing through August 31 2022, as one of 12 participating gardens across six countries. Seeing the Invisible features works by more than a dozen international artists such as Ai Weiwei, Refik Anadol, El Anatsui, Isaac Julien CBE, Mohammed Kazem, Sigalit Landau, Sarah Meyohas, Pamela Rosenkranz, and Timur Si-Qin—including several artists’ first work in AR. Visitors will engage with Seeing the Invisible via an app designed for the exhibition downloadable to smartphones and tablets. Forging new links between botanical gardens located in diverse biomes around the globe, the exhibition fosters collaboration between institutions, artists, and audiences, highlighting the power of art to connect people around the world.

[SOON]  GALLERY: Docent-Guided Tour of Arts Advocates Gallery , November 3 – June 1, 11am-11:45am

For the first time since its founding in 1969, Arts Advocates has its own gallery to display works from its collection of Florida artists. Located in the Siesta Mall, 3501 S. Tamiami Trail, Suite 119, in Sarasota, the opening exhibit features works by Sarasota Art Colony artists. Docent-guided tours of the exhibit are open to the public from 11am to 11:45pm on the first Wednesday of each month: November 3, December 1, January 5, February 2, March 2, April 6, May 4, and June 1. Tours are $10 per person, or $5 per person for Arts Advocates members, and can be booked below. Attendance is limited to 10. Group and special tours can be arranged by contacting Stephenie Frasher, docent team leader, at docent@artsadvocates.org.  

[SOON]  FESTIVAL: Ranch Nite Wednesdays , November 10 – May 31, 6-9pm

Your favorite weeknight hangout has arrived at its new home, Waterside Place, the newest town center in Lakewood Ranch. Ranch Nite Wednesdays will take place from 6-9pm, every Wednesday, starting November 10, 2021 and through May, 2022. It will feature New food trucks + dessert truck each week, Weekly live music from local artists, Night market every 2nd Wednesday hosted by Main Street Market LWR, Outdoor bar hosted by Waterside Place tenant Good Liquid Brewing & Scratch Kitchen, and The 2nd largest recreational cornhole league in the nation hosted by MVP Sports & Social.

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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