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SRQ DAILY Sep 28, 2023

Thursday Family and Recreation Edition

Thursday Family and Recreation Edition

"It's for everyone who loves Florida and everyone who loves Sarasota,"

- Jenny Medved, Owner, Blue Palm Candle Co.

[Gaming]  The Ringling Rollers

“Everybody on each team has their main roles. At practice, we usually schedule a scrimmage against another college or cue up an online game if we haven’t found one for that evening,” says Nick DeAngelis. “From there we just work on whatever we have to work on, right now that means building better communication skills between our team members. A lot of the time, we’ll record that gameplay and then sit back and find the points where we could’ve improved upon. There’s a lot of strategy involved, which is something that can only really be understood upon rewatching the game that you just played.”

DeAngelis is the head coach of the Ringling Rollers, the Ringling College of Art and Design’s esports program. The program has come a long way since it was started in 2020 by Ringling College’s director of recreation and student wellness E Ramey. What began as an effort to organize a student body that showed a passion for video games has in three years culminated into an incredibly successful and rapidly growing program. In 2021, three club teams in Super Smash Brothers, Overwatch and Valorant were formed to determine which games a team could be most competitive in. DeAngelis was brought in to help steer the program in the right direction and that fall, competition against other schools began in earnest. Flash forward to fall 2022 and the Ringling Rollers were, well, on a roll–the Varsity Super Smash Brothers Ultimate team went 18-0 in the NACE Star League en route to being crowned the Varsity Plus Fall 2022 East Coast Divisional Champs. The JV Super Smash Brothers team followed up their success the next semester by winning the 2023 East 5 Conference.

As this fall’s season is set to go, the Rollers have leveled up once again. The program now has a permanent home in a brand-new 1,200 square foot arena dedicated solely to esports. The Rollers also sport a multitude of teams–they have Varsity and JV teams in Overwatch, Valorant and Super Smash Brothers–not to mention that Varsity members receive scholarships, branded gear and scheduled practices in the arena. “I think that the program has enhanced school pride,” says Ramey. “In the past, all we’ve had were club sports, which are great, but now we have a team that competes against other schools all over the southeast and the country that our student body can really get behind.” 

Pictured: Rollers in there new arena. Image courtesy of Fox 13 News.

To learn more, visit.

[Recognition]  New College Professors' Inflation Research Published in Prominent Economic Journal

New College of Florida economics professors Tarron Khemraj and Sherry Yu have written a research paper published in the Eastern Economic Journal titled “Inflation Dynamics and Quantitative Easing.” The paper addresses one of the most important economic topics in America today, and is a breakthrough for researchers at liberal arts institutions in the field of macroeconomics. Khemraj has taught at New College since 2007. Yu joined New College in 2014. They have forged ahead on macroeconomic research despite the trend of many liberal arts schools abandoning macroeconomics research, discouraged by preferential publication for Fed economists and universities with a “Research 1” designation. “Inflation Dynamics and Quantitative Easing” is publicly available online through the Eastern Economic Journal. 

[Leadership]  District Announces New Principal of Brookside Middle School

Sarasota County Schools is pleased to announce that Dr. Nate Francis has been selected to serve as the next Principal of Brookside Middle School. He succeeds Mr. Ryan Chase, who is now serving as the Principal of Sarasota High School. Dr. Nate Francis holds an Associate’s Degree from Hillsborough Community College, a Bachelor’s Degree in Physical Education (K-12) from the University of South Florida, and a Master’s Degree in Educational Leadership from Nova Southeastern University. He holds a Doctor of Education in Higher Education Leadership as well as a Doctor of Education in Organizational Leadership, both from Nova Southeastern University. Francis holds certifications in Education Leadership, Health, School Principal, and Physical Education K-12. Prior to assuming his new role as the Principal of Brookside Middle School, Francis served as the Principal of Eisenhower Middle School located in Gibsonton, FL. He has also served at Bloomingdale High School in Valrico, FL as the Assistant Principal of Curriculum, the Assistant Principal of Administration, and the Assistant Principal, Student Affairs. Francis also served as a Physical Education Teacher and Coach at Durant High School (Plant City, FL); a Dual Enrollment/Adjunct Instructor at Hillsborough Community College (Plant City, FL); an Adjunct College Instructor at Florida Southwestern College (Punta Gorda, FL); and a Physical Education Teacher and Coach at Farnell Middle School (Tampa, FL). 

[New Store]  Find Florida-Themed, Non-Toxic Candles at Blue Palm Candle Co.'s New Brick and Mortar Location
Emma Dannenfelser, emma@srqme.com

Like many of us throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, Jenny Medved was looking for a way to relax and reduce stress during a time when unwinding was categorically difficult. She turned to burning candles around her home, however she quickly realized that she was allergic to the soy-based wax that many mass-produced candles are composed of. Hoping to find candles that offered the same relaxing aura and aroma, yet without sacrificing her sinuses, Medved began crafting candles herself in her home, carefully testing which waxes and oils performed well while not negatively affecting her health.

“I started making them and then my husband said ‘you need to start selling these because they are awesome’. My friends loved them and from there it just got bigger and bigger,” Medved says. With that momentum, Medved created her candle company, Blue Palm Candle Co. in 2021. The company’s name had lived in Medved’s mind for many years, since her days as an art student dreaming of opening her own studio. “I had hung onto that name for a long time, so to me it was just a given that was what I was going to call it.”

Medved’s candles are made of coconut wax, one of the cleanest waxes available, and the wicks are fully cotton and lead free, making for a completely safe, clean, smokeless and low-soot burn. The candles are themed around Florida, with best-selling scents like Florida Citrus, Beach Day and Reef. “It's for everyone who loves Florida and everyone who loves Sarasota,” Medved says. There are even hyper-local scents named after beloved spots around town like Siesta Key, Lido Key and Longboat Key.

Before opening her brand-new brick and mortar store last weekend, Medved was selling her candles at the Sarasota Farmers Market every Saturday, offering both pickup options for online order at the market and a specialty Farmers Market scent-composed of lavender, cucumber and sage, only offered at the booth. The new store is located within Florida Studio Theatre’s space and the historical, quaint nature of the building immediately drew Medved in. Because of this, the store’s hours will follow that of the theater, opening from 4-8pm Tuesday through Friday and closing on Saturdays, to allow Medved to continue frequenting the Farmers Market.

An Atlanta native, Medved has lived in Sarasota for the past 23 years, initially moving to the area as a Ringling student. Today, she continues to pursue her passion for painting along with her passion for creating safe and top-tier quality candles. Shop goers may see her using her easel in the store or her pieces displayed on the walls, which adds another layer to the charm of Blue Palm Candle Co .

Blue Palm Candle Co., 1247 1st St., Unit East, Sarasota, 941-841-0071, bluepalmcandles.com. 

Pictured: Blue Palm Candle Co.'s new brick and mortar location opened last week. Photo courtesy of Jenny Medved.

To learn more, visit.

[Event]  Fall Halloween Blvd Bike Ride and BBQ Bash

Join us for a thrilling evening of spooky fun at the Halloween BLVD Bike Ride & Free BBQ Bash! This event promises a fantastic lineup of music, games, food trucks, costumes, and scary tales about Rosemary District and more. Feel free to arrive early for either a thrilling Halloween bike ride or to simply enjoy the BBQ fun! BLVD Bike Rides Halloween Edition (5:15 PM)Ride Leader: Jeff Vredenburg, Sustainability Program Educator for the City of Sarasota. Fall BBQ Bash at Rosemary Park (6:00 PM). Pedal alongside us as we celebrate the spirit of Halloween in style and embark on a haunted journey through the heart of the Rosemary District, followed by a free community BBQ at DreamLarge HQ with pumpkin painting! All are welcome! Don't have a bike? No problem at all! The City of Sarasota's VEO Program will provide electric scooters for those in need. Please note that the number of scooters is limited, so be sure to contact Asya Stuart at asya@dreamlarge.org to reserve your scooter in advance. 

[Visit Sarasota County]  Discover Natural Sarasota - Ted Sperling Park at South Lido Beach

Ted Sperling Park at South Lido Beach (Ted Sperling Nature Park)

Just row with it at this park where it’s so peaceful that you can actually hear the calmness of mangrove-filled water passages. Famous for kayaking, it’s the perfect place to meet up with some incredible wildlife including manatees, osprey, herons, dolphins and stingrays. Ted Sperling Park is also the launching point for kayak tours to mangrove tunnels and Sarasota Bay. Guided tours are available.  

190 Taft Dr., Lido Key.

Check out more on this feature!

[Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall]  Tickets for Van Wezel Season On Sale Now!

The Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall is set to dazzle audiences with its blockbuster 2023-2024 season, promising a captivating mix of sensational Sarasota premieres and beloved returning acts. Kicking off on September 30 with The Rocky Horror Picture Show, this season is hailed as the grandest yet. Broadway enthusiasts can revel in smash-hits like Hadestown and Ain’t Too Proud – The Life and Times of the Temptations, while comedy aficionados can look forward to Terry Fator’s uproarious performance. The season also boasts diverse musical acts, illusionists, and classical performances, making it a thrilling cultural extravaganza for all. Tickets on sale now. 

Click here for more info.

[Living Lakewood]  See and Be Seen
Dylan Campbell, dylan@srqme.com

SEE AND BE SEEN | Sights and Sounds at Waterside Place offers FREE monthly performances, September 2o23. 

Read Here!

[SOON]  MUSEUM: Lorna Bieber, Natural World at The Ringling , May 20 – October 15, Museum hours

The Ringling presents a solo exhibition of works by Lorna Bieber in May that includes two new pieces making their debut in the Keith D. and Linda L. Monda Gallery for Contemporary Art. Her artwork first and foremost encourages us to indulge in the pleasures of looking and discovering anew the details of the visual world. Her artistic practice is grounded in appropriating, recycling, and manipulating imagery. The work reminds us of the image world that inundates our daily existence. Our experience of reality is mediated through a barrage of photographic digital images that supplants our connection to the natural world. Yet, Bieber is less interested in a critique of this condition than she is in offering her work as an antidote, a way to inspire viewers and reconnect with our shared sense of wonder. Included with museum admission. The Ringling Museum, 5401 Bay Shore Rd., Sarasota, ringling.org.

[SOON]  GRAB BAG: Geckos Grill and Pubs Trivia , July 1 – June 1, 7:30 pm

Geckos Grill & Pub’s Award-winning Trivia-Think While You Drink! If you love Trivia, join the fun at Geckos all year round. All Trivia starts at 7:30pm. We will have prizes, giveaways and specials plus the Geckos made-to-order fare, signature cocktails and hospitality you love. Monday trivia will be held at the Clark Road location in Palmer Crossing and on Tuesdays at the SR 64 location in Braden River Plaza. The SR 64 location will be taking a break from Trivia in October, but will start back up in April. On Wednesdays, trivia will take place at the Hillview Street location in Southside Village. www.GeckosGrill.com.

[SOON]  MUSIC: Wellen Park Summer Music Series , July 19 – September 30, Various times

Wellen Park invites the community to come out and enjoy music from local bands and artists during the Summer Music Series every Wednesday through Sunday in Downtown Wellen. Now through September, Wellen Park is hosting different musicians throughout the week. Every week, Wind Down Wednesdays, Thursday Tunes and Saturday Sounds will feature music under the Heritage Tree from 5 to 9 p.m. Friday Night Live, the first Friday of the month, will feature a band on the Solis Hall stage overlooking the Great Lawn from 5 to 9 p.m. Friday Groove, the second, third and fourth Friday of the month, will feature music under the Heritage Tree from 5 to 9 p.m. On Unplugged Sunday, every Sunday, there will be music under the Heritage Tree from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. and 2 to 6 p.m. The series is open to the public. Guests are encouraged to bring lawn chairs for seating on the Great Lawn and around the Heritage Tree. For more information, visit wellenpark.com/events/summer-music-series.

[SOON]  HEALTH: New Balance University 5k , September 30, 7am

Celebrate National Family Health & Fitness Day on Saturday, September 30, at 7am with
New Balance University, located at 315 N. Cattlemen Rd., Sarasota. Whether you run, walk or jog, you’re invited to our free fun run or walk. Fun for the Whole Family! Join us in a whatever you want to make it 5K-ish marked course run or walk. There will be a digital clock, the ability to demo New Balance shoes, bathrooms, water and raffle prizes. Strollers and dogs welcome. Open to all ages & ability levels-runners and walkers. RSVP at stores.newbalance.com/Universitypark.

[SOON]  GRAB BAG: 2023 Master Gardener Volunteer Plant Sale , October 7, 9am-12pm

Breathe new life into your landscape! Join Master Gardener Volunteers October 7 for the 2023 Master Gardener Volunteer Plant Sale located at the Barbara Davis Educational Gardens, 1303 17th St W, Palmetto, from 9:00am - 12:00pm. The sale will feature Florida natives, pollinator plants, edibles, shrubs, ground covers, and more, all grown by Master Gardener Volunteers. All proceeds from this event go to the operation and maintenance of the Master Gardeners’ Educational Gardens and Greenhouse, and to support Master Gardener educational and outreach programs. Our latest goal is to install an outdoor shade structure in the gardens so we can offer more hands-on learning opportunities during the hot, sunny months! Tickets to the event are free and guests are required to register beforehand on Eventbrite. Only cash or personal checks will be accepted during the sale. To register, visit eventbrite.com/e/spring-plant-sale-tickets

Master Gardner Program

[SOON]  GALA: SRQ Together We Roar 8th Annual Together We Roar Leadership and Awards Luncheon , October 27, 10:30am-1:30pm
SRQ Media will present the 2023 Trailblazer Award to Paulina Porizkova, model and author of No Filter: The Good, the Bad, and the Beautiful, and an advocate for celebrating women of every age. The luncheon celebration will also include a Pop Up Boutique Salon featuring fabulous gifts from Camilyn Beth, PAINT Nail Bar, Saks Fifth Avenue, Discover Sarasota Tours Gift Shop and BookStore1 among others. Blair Bloomston of Game On Nation will present an energizing, interactive motivational leadership session followed by the highly anticipated announcement of the 2023 SRQ Women Who Roar Competition Honorees. To purchase your online tickets to the SRQ Women Who Roar Leadership and Awards Luncheon and for more details on the program, visit https://www.srqmagazine.com/2023/TogetherWeRoar.
[SOON]  FESTIVAL: Sarasota Pride Festival , October 21, 12pm-5pm

Project Pride SRQ, the regions leading LGBTQ+ advocacy organization, is thrilled to announce its highly anticipated Sarasota Pride, scheduled to take place on October 21st, 2023, in the heart of the Rosemary District along Boulevard of the Arts and Florida Ave. Sarasota Pride has been dedicated to celebrating diversity, promoting inclusivity, and supporting the LGBTQ+ community for many years. The annual outdoor festival has become a beloved tradition, bringing together individuals, families, and allies from across Sarasota and beyond for a day of entertainment, education, and unity. This year’s festival promises to be the biggest and most vibrant yet, with an exciting lineup of events and activities that will appeal to attendees of all ages and backgrounds. Highlights of the Sarasota Pride Outdoor Festival include main stage entertainment, a food and beverage village, community resource fair, art and craft vendors and a community pride bike rally. Sarasota Pride will take place from 12:00pm to 5:00pm. Admission is free, and all are welcome to attend. https://www.ppsrq.org.

[SOON]  FILM: Taylor Swift the Eras Tour at at Sarasota Film Society , October 13 – October 22

The cultural phenomenon continues on the big screen! Immerse yourself in this once-in-a lifetime concert film experience with a breathtaking cinematic view of the history-making tour. Taylor Swift Eras attire and friendship bracelets are strongly encouraged! Tickets available for October 13-15 and October 19-22. For more information visit filmsociety.org.

[SOON]  MUSIC: Sarasota Orchestra Presents Star Wars: A New Hope , October 27 – October 28, 7:30pm

Sarasota Orchestra and Star Wars fans alike will be able to experience the scope and grandeur of this beloved film in a live symphonic concert experience on October 27 and 28 at 7:30pm at Van Wezel. Be there as your Orchestra performs the Oscar and GRAMMY winning score live to film as the movie plays in its entirety on the big screen. You’ll feel spaceships thunder in the timpani, thrill to the brass heralding Darth Vader’s fearsome presence, and vibrate to the Force’s awakening with ethereal flute and harp. Concert goers are encouraged to dress up as their favorite Star Wars character for the show. For more information visit sarasotaorchestra.org.

[SOON]  GALLERY: Collaboration and Community: Art in Common Places at Creative Liberties , October 5 – October 28, 5-7pm

Creative Liberties Artist Studios and Galleries presents Collaboration and Community: Art in Common Places, October 5-28, at 927 N. Lime Avenue location. This exhibition is a retrospective of 34 broadsides, both one-sided prints and posters, created by artists and poets collaborating via the local non-profit, Art in Common Places. An opening reception is October 5, 5-7 p.m., and will feature live poetry readings. Jackie Cutrone will read The Rhythm of Structure by the late John Sims, Anne Morrison will read her poem On the Beach and Glenn Schudel will read Process. The founders of AICP, and many of its artist and poet members will be in attendance. Lite bites and refreshments will be available. For more information, visit creativeliberties.net.

[SOON]  GRAB BAG: Fresh Harvest Farmers Market at Wellen Park , June 25 – December 29, 9 am to 1 pm

Visit Fresh Harvest, the newly launched weekly farmers market in Downtown Wellen. Fresh Harvest offers a selection of local goods from nearly 40 local vendors. Fresh Harvest takes place every Sunday in Downtown Wellen from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Attendees can peruse different vendor booths and stock up on a variety of goods. Vendors will offer a wide variety of locally grown and produced food, including herbs, spices, cut flowers, teas, canned and preserved fruits and vegetables, syrups, baked goods, pickled foods, fresh seafood, meats, poultry, eggs, milk and prepared food and beverages. A limited selection of craft vendors also participate in the farmers market. For a listing of participating vendors and more information on Fresh Harvest Farmers Market, visit wellenpark.com/events/fresh-harvest-farmers-market. Downtown Wellen, 19745 Wellen Park Blvd., Venice.

[SOON]  PERFORMANCE: Sights and Sounds at Waterside Place , July 28 – May 31, 6 to 9 p.m.

Head out to Waterside Place for a rocking evening as part of the Lakewood Ranch Sights and Sounds Program. Enjoy a live concert in partnership with Easterseals and EveryoneRocks, featuring artists who are rocking their spectrum. This event is free and open to the public; there is limited seating at the Plaza, but attendees are welcome to bring their own seats. Food and beverages will be available from numerous Waterside Place merchants. For more information on shows, dates, and times, visit lakewoodranch.com/sights-sounds/. Waterside Place, 1560 Lakefront Dr., Sarasota.

[SOON]  MUSEUM: Working Conditions at The Ringling , August 26 – March 3, varied times

Explore labor through The Ringlings Working Conditions photography exhibit, running until March 3, 2024. The Industrial Revolution of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries radically changed the nature of human labor. That era is defined by a global shift from producing goods by hand to manufacturing by machines and technologies that emphasized efficiency. Working Conditions explores the myriad ways in which photographs have communicated ideas about labor since the nineteenth century through examples from The Ringlings photography permanent collection. For more information, visit ringling.org.

[SOON]  SEMINAR: Aquarelle After Hours: Watercolor Workshop with Artist Keith Crowley , September 5 – September 28, 6-8:30pm

Aquarelle After Hours: Watercolor Workshop with Artist Keith Crowley is part of Lifelong Arts at The Ringling. Lifelong Arts is a new hands-on workshop program for older adults, 55 and up, to gain new artistic skills, gather inspiration from The Ringling’s collection, and build a community together. Participants will develop a comprehensive understanding of traditional approaches to layering watercolor, with a focus on the medium’s properties. This series will culminate with a celebration event and exhibition of student work in the Education Building. No prior watercolor experience is necessary; all levels and backgrounds are welcome. All levels and backgrounds are welcome! The program will take place on Tuesdays and Thursdays throughout September, from 6-8:30pm. Enrollment is $550 for non-member and $450 for members. A portion of this workshop’s proceeds supports a workshop series offered to Senior Friendship Center at no cost. For more information, or to register, visit www.my.ringling.org.

[SOON]  MUSIC: Van Wezel Presents The Concert: A Tribute to ABBA , May 4, 8pm

The Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall is excited to welcome The Concert: A Tribute to ABBA to Sarasota on Saturday, May 4, 2024 at 8 p.m. The Concert: A Tribute To ABBA continues to be the top ABBA tribute group in the world, dazzling all who see with their fantastic performance while playing the most iconic hits from ABBA, including “Mamma Mia,” “S.O.S,” “Money, Money, Money,” “The Winner Takes All,” “Waterloo,” “Gimme, Gimme, Gimme,” and “Dancing Queen.” Tickets are $30-$75 and can be purchased at www.VanWezel.org, by calling the box office at 941-263-6799 or by visiting the box office Monday through Friday between 10 a.m. and 6 p.m. and Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Groups of 10 or more should contact 941-263-6726. Pre-show dining is available through Mattison’s at the Van Wezel which is located inside the theatre. Reservations can be made on VanWezel.org or through the box office.

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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