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SRQ DAILY Jun 23, 2022

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"My role model is my mother. Seeing her accomplish so much and the hard work and dedication she puts into everything shows me that I can do it too."

- Taylor S., Senior at Southeast High School.

[Politics]  Gregory Faces Challenge From Dameus in District 72
Jacob Ogles, jacob.ogles@srqme.com

Roberts Dameus used to work for the government of Haiti. Now, he wants to represent his new home community in the Florida Legislature. The Democrat qualified last week to challenger Rep. Tommy Gregory, R-Sarasota, for a seat in the Florida House representing the newly reconfigured state House District 72.

As for Gregory, he said he will continue to run with a focus of improving transportation infrastructure in the region while promoting conservative government policies on the statewide level.

Dameus aid his issue was not with any particular actions by the incumbent. Rather, he wants to represent the needs of a community he feels lacks a voice in Tallahassee.

“I see a lot of problems and believe I can help,” he said.

Dameus has been active for years in the Stand Up For Haiti organization since moving to Manatee County in 2015. When he lived in Haiti, he served as a secretary for the Global Initiative for Health and Development in the country. Today, he operates a handyman compact based in the Parrish area, providing among other things air conditioning and installation services. 

Gregory, who before his election did missionary work in the Dominican Republican, said he holds an interest in the plight facing the Haitian people now. He looks forward to meeting Dameus in upcoming debates.

He said his focus in Tallahassee remains on improving roadways, particularly east-west corridors, in the greater Bradenton-Sarasota-Lakewood Ranch region.

“I’m supporting and defending our constitutional rights and doing what I can to make sure Florida remains free and prosperous,” Gregory said. “At home, I am focused on transportation infrastructure, road building, and doing whatever we can to keep up and make sure our roadways remain safe and so people can get to work, school and other activities, the beach and anywhere they want to go.”

Asked his greatest accomplishments in his first two terms, Gregory leans heavily on appropriations projects like improvements to State Road 70 and Moccasin Wallow Road and Fruitville Road, as well as Clark Road improvements to the south of his district.  

[Recognition Given]  Outstanding Youth Leadership in Our Community: Taylor S.

Our community is filled with many incredible young people doing such amazing things. This summer, we are featuring some of these young people in our Thursday Family & Education edition. Each of the students we are highlighting has been chosen as one of this year’s SRQ Magazine’s top youth leaders based on their values, determination and outstanding achievements in different aspects of their lives in and out of school.

A college bound senior at Southeast High School, Taylor is an Ambassador in Girl Scouts (which is the highest level) and is working on her Gold Award with them as a community service project. She isCo-Captain of the Nolettes dance and auxiliary dance team.

We asked Taylor to tell us about her role model.

"My role model is my mother," she said. "Seeing her accomplish so much and the hard work and dedication she puts into everything shows me that I can do it too! My goal is to graduate college with a bachelors degree and to be successful in whatever I do." 

Pictured: Taylor S., a senior at Southeast High School. Photo by Wyatt Kostygan.

[Children's Book Review]  The Legend of the Spirit Serpent, by Adaiah Sanford, Illustrated by Ken Daley
Dylan.Campbell. Dylan@srqme.com

How do we decide which stories we pass on to the next generation? In our modern world, how do we ensure that the stories of our past are not forgotten as we progress into the future?

The Legend of the Spirit Serpent - a modern retelling of a traditional Kalinago legend from the Carribean island of Dominica - ensures that this piece of the Kalingo’s past will stay with us. The story focuses on an eight-year old girl named Natari, an only child who lives with her mother and father in the village of Snake Cou, on the island of Dominica. The village is protected from the dangers of the outside world - hurricanes, famine, and invaders - by the presence of the benevolent Spirit Serpent, who lives in a cave above the village. Natari has been told many stories about the Spirit Serpent by father, one of the tribe’s chiefs, and desperately wants to visit its cave. Her father sternly warns her not to, however, as only the leaders of the tribe can visit the serpent and make it out alive.

Natari’s desire to see the Spirit Serpent only grows stronger - as has her confidence in her own abilities. Trained by her father from a young age, Natari has already proved herself strong and capable - once, while her father was away on a fishing expedition, she saved the village from starvation by hunting for food. With this in mind, she sneaks out one night to visit the Spirit Serpent.

Natari is terrified upon entering the cave - the massive Spirit Serpent coils itself around her, hissing menacingly. After Natari asks it to spare her life and become her friend, however, the Spirit Serpent transforms into a young boy. The boy proclaims that much like Natari, he’s never had a human friend before. The pair spend the night outside of the cave, walking across the still water, before the Spirit Serpent shows her a vision - three massive ships on the horizon, a warning of Christopher Columbus’s impending arrival. The pair agree to keep it a secret between the two of them and Natari wakes in her bed the next morning.

The Legend of the Spirit Serpent is a beautifully crafted retelling of this Kalingo legend. It exposes young readers to a part of the world and aspect of history that otherwise would take years of schooling to address. It celebrates the culture that many readers will know nothing of, but can come to appreciate and understand. This achievement is not done through the writing alone - wonderful illustrations using smooth brush strokes and bright, vibrant colors help the story move gracefully from page to page.

Publication Date: Mar 21, 2022 by Reycraft Books, New York ISBN: 1478875178. Ages: 7-12. 

[Concert Series]  Florida Studio Theatre Offers Free Family-Friendly Musical Performances

FST will tour a free, family-friendly musical production to seven locations from June – August. Featuring more than a dozen chart-topping songs from the past eight decades, Off the Charts! is a high-energy revue celebrating the universal language of music. With such hits as “Hound Dog,” “I Want to Hold Your Hand,” “Shake It Off,” and “Can’t Stop The Feeling,” Off the Charts explores music’s ability to make us think, feel, and connect across generations. Free public performances are scheduled at parks and libraries in Sarasota and Manatee Counties throughout the summer—the full schedule can be found below. Audiences are encouraged to register for these free events at floridastudiotheatre.org.­ 

Pictured: Cast of FSTs 2021 Summer touring show, On the Road Again, perform at Phillippi Estate Park. Photo by FST.

To learn more, visit.

[Charitable Event]  Support Veterans and Service Dogs at Inaugural Paws for Purpose Event

The local chapter of the American Advertising Federation, known as AAF Suncoast, invites you and your furry friends to join them at the Sarasota Farmers Market for the inaugural Paws for Purpose charitable event on Saturday, July 2 from 7am-1pm. AAF Suncoast is partnering with My Service Dog’s Place, non-profit that provides refuge for all Veterans, Military Service Members, Law Enforcement Officers, Fire Fighters, Blue Star, Silver Star & Gold Star families, including their service dogs. As a vital program of My Warrior’s Place, an organization working to provide a safe refuge and bring about healing and hope to all Veterans and Military Service Members who have returned from the battlefield, My Service Dog’s Place has a vision to serve as the ultimate resource so that no American Hero would ever need to choose between his or her well-being and their service dog. Kick off July 4th weekend by meeting some of our community’s leading professionals in advertising and media while creating memories that last a lifetime with your four-legged best friend. Photographer Maria Lyle will be offering pet portraits to help raise funds for a new state-of-the-art kennel facility benefitting My Service Dog’s Place, as well as to support the programming of AAF Suncoast. Enjoy patriotic photos of your dog decked out in red, white, and blue and fun summer activities. Your $20 donation will provide three professional photos of one dog, and for $35 you will receive six professional photos for two dogs. If you can’t make the July 2 event, AAF Suncoast is hosting a second Paws for Purpose event at MakSchu Studio on July 23 from 11am-3pm with photographer Yana Parker. A portion of the proceeds will benefit AAF Suncoast and My Service Dog’s Place. 

[Recognition Given]  Lakewood Ranch Receives "Top 100 Planned Communities" Recognition

Ideal-LIVING, a Southern living and real estate magazine, recently named Lakewood Ranch one of “The Top 100 Planned Communities.” The honorees were named in the publication’s summer issue, “Best Places to Live.” Among the top reasons cited for living in a master planned community were the people, a social network, and a sense of community. Others mentioned were walkability, healthy lifestyle, proximity to health care, social clubs, well-maintained homes, and green spaces and landscaping. Philanthropy was also important: readers wanted a “chance to give back” – community organizations that offered an environment to volunteer their resources, be it time, talent, or financial. This is not Lakewood Ranch’s first mention by ideal-Living: last year, The Ranch was also recognized as a Top 100 community. In 2020, it was named to the “Best Health & Fitness Community” category for its wellness-centered master planning, extensive recreational amenities, and health-conscious lifestyle program. In 2019, The Ranch received recognition in the “Best Wellness Community” category. 

[Endorsements]  Governor Ron DeSantis Endorses Sarasota County School Board Candidates Tim Enos and Bridget Ziegler

Governor Ron DeSantis announced Monday the endorsement of Bridget Ziegler and Tim Enos for the Sarasota County School Board. Enos and Ziegler were two of just 10 School Board candidates in Florida who received the Governor’s coveted endorsement as candidates who will fight for the rights of parents and their school children over school bureaucrats, and will fight to protect the innocence of our youngest children. “It’s a great day when our popular Governor Ron DeSantis endorses two of our School Board candidates,” RPOSC Acting Chairman Jack Brill said. “We know the Governor is intent on getting the right School Board candidates on Florida School Boards — people who will stand up to the radical, woke indoctrination of our children and put parents and children ahead of political agendas.” 

[SOON]  GALLERY: Women Contemporary Artists Members Spring Exhibition , June 3 – June 24

The Women Contemporary Artists Members Spring Exhibition 2022 will take place at Ringling College of Art & Design Lois and David Stuhlberg Gallery, 1188 MLK Way, from June 3 – 24, 2022. The exhibition is open to active WCA members who may submit two entries only, $30 for one entry and $35 for two entries. Art specs are 2D - 36” x 36” max, mid-sized and smaller works preferred. All media. Diptych and Triptychs allowed, but must fit into size requirements and sold as one painting. 3D work 72” x 20” max. Pedestals are available. If accepted into the show, be prepared to sit for one sitting in the gallery, if needed, from 9-12 or 12-3 on Monday through Friday for the length of the show. You can do this with a friend. Awards are $600 for 1st, $400 for 2nd, $300 for 3rd, and 5 Merit Awards $100 each. Receiving on Tuesday, May 24 between 10 AM and 2 PM and Jurying on Tuesday, May the 24th at 3 PM.

[SOON]  GALLERY: Ringling College Galleries + Exhibitions Opening Receptions June 10th , June 3 – June 24, 5pm-7pm

Ringling College Galleries + Exhibitions invites you to attend two opening receptions for: Petticoat Painters, exhibiting June 3 - June 24 in the Willis A. Smith Construction Inc. Gallery and Women Contemporary Artists, exhibiting June 3 - June 24 in the Lois + David Stulberg Gallery. Join us on June 10th, 5-7 pm for the opening reception in each gallery and meet the artists. Both galleries are on the Ringling College campus and are open M-F 9-3 pm. While you're on campus don't forget to stop by Valetta's exhibition in the Thompson Gallery. Valetta will be exhibiting June 3 - August 12.

[SOON]  SPORTS: 6th Annual Bob Rizi Memorial Golf Classic at The Meadows Country Club , June 24, 7:30am

The 6th Annual Bob Rizi Memorial Golf Classic will take place on Friday, June 24 at The Meadows Country Club course only. Player check-in and breakfast will be from 7:30am to 9am, with a shotgun start at 9am. $800 per foursome, which includes continental breakfast, tee sign, and lunch. The tournament is limited to 36 foursomes on a first come first served basis and two golf carts will be provided to each foursome. For more information and registration, visit suncoastsummerfest.org or call 941-706-3685.

[SOON]  MUSIC: Sarasota Music Festival 2022: Rising Stars Concert 3 , June 24, 2:30pm

The Rising Stars Concert – 3 will take place on Friday, June 24, 2022 at 2:30pm at Holley Hall. Program: Mozart III. Allegretto from Piano Quintet in E-flat Major; Francaix Quatuor II. Andante and III. Allegro molto; Brahms II. Andante, un poco Adagio from Piano Quintet in F Minor; Schubert III. Scherzo from String Quintet in C Major; Brahms II. Scherzo from Horn Trio in E-flat Major; Barber Summer Music; and Schubert IV. Allegro moderato from Piano Trio No. 2 in E-flat Major. 

Holley Hall

[SOON]  MUSIC: Sarasota Music Festival 2022: Mix and Mingle , June 24, 7:30pm

The Mix and Mingle Festival Friday will take place on Friday, June 24, 2022 at 7:30pm at Sarasota Opera House. Festival faculty and fellows share the stage in this program featuring works that intermingle wind and string instruments. Amy Beach’s brilliant Theme and Variations is an early 20th-century Romantic treasure from the first American woman to publish a symphony. Jean Françaix’s superbly crafted music is bracingly witty and always entertaining. His Dixtuor for 10 players brings together the rarely seen combination of wind and string quintets. Beethoven’s Septet was an immediate success at its premiere in 1800 and quickly became one of his most popular works. This luminous piece is scored for a mixed ensemble with a notably challenging violin part, taken on in this performance by faculty violinist Martin Beaver. 

Sarasota Opera House

[SOON]  GALLERY: Art Uptown Gallery: Moxie , June 25 – July 30
The July Gallery for Art Uptown will exhibit "MOXIE by Rita Rust." Rust's watercolor action portraits capture the feeling of joy that can be found even in the darkest times.
[SOON]  MUSIC: Sarasota Music Festival 2022: From America to Italy , June 25, 7:30pm

The From America to Italy Festival Saturday will take place on Saturday, June 25, 2022 at 7:30pm at Sarasota Opera House. The 2022 Sarasota Music Festival culminates with a program full of orchestral flair. The concert opens with Pulitzer Prize-winning composer George Walker’s tribute to his grandmother, a formerly enslaved person. Festival alumna and faculty violinist Francesca Anderegg, whose “virtuosic panache” has been hailed by The New York Times, performs Prokofiev’s Violin Concerto No. 2. The slow movement of the concerto gives rise to one of the composer’s most unforgettable and ravishingly beautiful melodies. The Festival concludes on a joyous note with Felix Mendelssohn’s beloved Symphony No. 4, a high-spirited tribute to Italy’s sunshine and warm breezes.

Sarasota Opera House

[SOON]  GRAB BAG: Selby Gardens: Robert Mapplethorpe and Patti Smith: Flowers, Poetry, and Light , February 13 – June 26, Garden hours.

This winter, Marie Selby Botanical Gardens (Selby Gardens) will spotlight the work of Robert Mapplethorpe, one of the most significant photographers of the 20th century, together with the poetry of legendary singer-songwriter and poet Patti Smith in a special exhibition on view throughout the garden’s 15-acre Downtown Sarasota campus. Marking the sixth edition of the Gardens’ annual Jean & Alfred Goldstein Exhibition Series, which explores the work of major artists through the lens of their connection to nature, this immersive exhibition puts a selection of Mapplethorpe’s photographs of orchids, hyacinths, and irises, and excerpts of Smith’s poems and lyrics on flowers and nature, in dialogue with new horticultural installations inspired by the two artists’ work. On view from February 13 through June 26, 2022, Robert Mapplethorpe and Patti Smith: Flowers, Poetry, and Light is curated by Dr. Carol Ockman, Selby Gardens’ Curator-at-Large and the Robert Sterling Clark Professor of Art History Emerita at Williams College. The Gardens will host an Evening with Patti Smith, on Tuesday, February 15, a lecture and performance with Smith that will shed new light on this body of work. 

[SOON]  THEATER: Asolo Repertory Theatre: Hood , June 3 – June 26, Varies.

The world’s sexiest thief. A pair of history’s greatest lovers. The Merry Band that made redistributing wealth cool. Here, finally, is the real story of the disgraced nobleman, forced into the wilderness, who seeks revenge not only for himself but against an unjust system. He rescues the damsel, or perhaps along the way, discovers she doesn’t need any rescuing. Five-time Tony-nominated playwright Douglas Carter Beane–who re-invented Rodgers and Hammerstein’s Cinderella so deliciously–reunites with Lewis Flinn, his Give it Up/Lysistrata Jones collaborator, to bring to life this hilarious and stirring new musical adventure. Contains mature themes. Recommended for age 14+. Hood will take place June 11 - June 26, 2022 with Previews June 3-10, 2022.

[SOON]  PERFORMANCE: Florida Studio Theatre Free Family-Friendly Musical Performances , June 25 – August 26

This Summer Florida Studio Theatre is hitting the road with it's latest free family-friendly musical revue, Off the Charts! touring throughout Sarasota and Manatee Counties. Journey with FST from the jukebox to the iPod as they celebrate the universal language of music. This energetic music revue features family friendly versions of some of pop music's greatest hits from Hound Dog and I Want to Hold Your Hand to Shake it Off. With more than a dozen chart topping songs from the past eight decades, Off the Charts! explores music's ability to make us think, feel, and connect across generations. Bring a chair, some snacks and the family for this outdoor summer concert series. Registration recommended. Audiences are encouraged to register for these free events at floridastudiotheatre.org.­

[SOON]  GRAB BAG: Farmers' Market at Lakewood Ranch , January 2 – December 25, 10am-2pm

The Farmers’ Market at Lakewood Ranch is home to more than 90 curated vendors of the region’s best food and flavors, located at Waterside Place in Lakewood Ranch. It takes place every Sunday from 10am to 2pm at Waterside Place. It’s your weekend destination for organic produce, meat, poultry, seafood, bread, pasta, juices and prepared foods. Stay up to date on vendors and events by visiting TheMarketLWR.com.

[SOON]  PERFORMANCE: Circus Arts Conservatory & The Ringling: Summer Circus Spectacular , June 10 – August 13, Varies.

Circus fans of all ages, from near and far, can beat the heat at reasonable prices while experiencing the best of the circus arts. Some of the circus world’s most exciting acts have signed on for the annual show - a longtime partnership of the Circus Arts Academy and The Ringling - with performances presented over nine weeks this summer. The lineup for the Summer Circus Spectacular includes a wide range of acts, including duo lyra, adagio, hand balancing/contortion, rolla bolla, and more. Show times are 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. Tuesdays through Fridays, and 2 p.m. and 5 p.m. on Saturdays. Tickets are $18/adults, $12/children 12 and under. To complete their circus experience, Summer Circus Spectacular patrons can enjoy access to the Circus Museum on the day they attend a show for just an additional $5 – an incredible value for a full day’s entertainment. Go to Ringling.org or call the Box Office at 941-360-7399.

Historic Asolo Theater at The Ringling, 5401 Bay Shore Rd, Sarasota

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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