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SRQ DAILY Apr 4, 2024

Thursday Family and Recreation Edition

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Thursday Family and Recreation Edition

"As soon as I saw the painting, I felt that in addition to being beautiful, its sentiments were well aligned with our school philosophy"

- Dan Ceaser, Head of School, Hershorin Schiff Community Day School.

[Baseball]  The Bradenton Marauders Kick Off the 2024 Season
Dylan Campbell, dylan@srqme.com

The Bradenton Marauders of the 10-team Florida State League kick off their season on Friday night against the Clearwater Threshers. The Single-A affiliate of the Pittsburgh Pirates, the Marauders are entering their 14th season at Bradenton’s LECOM Park and will feature a number of different promotional nights throughout the season. On opening weekend alone, several promotions will be in play, including a free t-shirt giveaway on Friday night along with a Friendly City Friday happy hour to promote local businesses before the game. A post-game fireworks show will also take place on Saturday night.

After just missing out on the playoffs last season, the Marauders enter 2024 with a new manager, Jim Horner. Horner, who managed the Pirates’ Florida Complex League team last year (the entry level to the minor leagues and one level below Single-A), is no stranger to teaching and developing young players. Horner spent nine years in the minors as a player in the Seattle Mariners organization and has spent the last four coaching and managing in the Pirates’ minor league system.

This year, the Marauders will feature a number of prominent prospects for the Pirates on their roster. Mitch Jebb, a 2023 2nd round draft pick out of Michigan State University and the Pirates’ 8th ranked prospect according to MLB.com, will start the year out in Bradenton. Last season, the shortstop impressed with a batting average of .297 and 11 stolen bases over 34 games. Lonnie White Jr., an intriguing outfielder who played both football and baseball at Penn State, looks to show off his skills in Bradenton this year. White Jr., a 2021 draft pick, has had trouble staying on the field–injuries have been an issue with the former dual-sport star, but his raw power and speed could be enough to see him advance higher in the Pirates’ farm system this year.

LECOM Park, 1611 9th St W, Bradenton.


Pictured: The Bradenton Marauders post game fireworks show. Photo courtesy of The Bradenton Marauders.

To learn more, visit

[Soccer]  Sarasota Paradise Soccer Team Announces New Players and Dates for 2024 Season

Sarasota Paradise, a USL League 2 team based in Sarasota, will officially kick off its 2024 season with its first training held on May 6, 2024, followed by its first game against Miami AC on May 19 in Miami, Florida. The season’s home opener will take place on June 1 against Swan City. New players to this season’s roster include Cody Read, a defender who played in the Premier League (academy) for Leicester City and at Fairfield University; Will Pierce, a midfielder who plays for Fairfield University; Mikey Burke, a right defensive back who plays for the University of Rochester; Brendan Reilly, a goalkeeper for Florida Gulf Coast University; and Matthew Sawaged, a winger. This year, 50 percent of the team consists of returning players, including Roman Holt, a center-back who plays for San Diego State; Angel Velasquez, a winger who plays for IMG academy; Jaden Berman, a left-back who has played for IMG Academy, George Mason University and UNC Asheville; Kai Tamashiro, a striker who played for IMG Academy and University of North Carolina Chapel Hill; Michael Carboni, a defender who plays for the Clearwater Chargers UPSL team and the Tampa Bay Strikers professional indoor team; Valerio Tatafiore, a midfielder who plays for New College; Oliver Dahlen, a striker; Caleb Powell, a forward who plays for UNC Wilmington; Ryan Sims, a forward who plays for Thomas University; and Victor Vandenbroek, a midfielder who plays for Juniata College. Standout player from the 2023 season Hosei Kijima has been called up to play for MLS team St Louis City SC. He scored in his debut and has made numerous appearances on the first team this season. Additionally, 2023 player Isaiah Easley secured victory in the NCAA National College Cup with Clemson University, capping off a stellar journey that included an unforgettable performance for Sarasota Paradise. For the 2024 season, Sarasota Paradise also welcomed three new coaches, including Mirko Dakovics as head coach; Glodi Konga as assistant coach, who also serves as the head men’s soccer coach at New College in Sarasota; and Mark Macphee as goal keeper coach. The season will run from May 19 through July 13, with home games played at Sarasota High School’s soccer fields. A full game schedule is available online. Sponsorship opportunities are still available. For those interested, contact hello@sarasotaparadise.us.  

[Sports Event]  The Pickleball Club to Host Professional Pickleball Players James Ignatowich and Anna Bright

The Pickleball Club, a firm founded in 2019 that develops and operates private, membership-based high-amenity indoor pickleball facilities throughout Florida, recently announced it will host professional pickleball players and power couple James Ignatowich and Anna Bright in April for a clinic, pro exhibition and Q-and-A session at its Lakewood Ranch club. Ignatowich is a 23-year-old player with a background in tennis. After playing collegiate tennis for two years at Vanderbilt University, he developed an interest in pickleball. In 2023, Ignatowich won two gold medals in the Indoor National Championship on the PPA Tour and earlier this year, he became the first professional pickleball player to claim the No. 1 spot on ESPN SportsCenter's Top 10. Bright is a 24-year-old player residing in South Florida. In college, she played on UC Berkeley women’s varsity tennis team and reached a career-high ranking of No. 13 in the country. She is now a Gold Card touring pro with the PPA. Prior to joining the PPA, Bright played on the MLP Team Ranchers, APP circuits and was an account manager at DUPR. Ignatowich and Bright are both ranked No. 2 on the PPA Tour in mixed doubles. On Wednesday, April 17, registered players for the event will play with Bright for 90 minutes; learning forehand dinks, dinking patterns, resets, lobs and third shot drops. Players will then work with Ignatowich to focus on two-handed backhand dinks, speedups, one-handed flicks, counters and blocks, and drives. Following the clinics, a pro exhibition will take place with Ignatowich, Bright, Dominique Lemperle, director of programming and instruction at The Pickleball Club and Forest Dennis, head professional at The Pickleball Club at Lakewood Ranch. To conclude the day, a Q-and-A session will be held, where participants of the clinic will have the opportunity to ask the pickleball professionals questions of their own, as well as enjoy dinner served in the Players’ Lounge. The clinic, pro exhibition and Q-and-A session event will be open to members and non-members with a skill rating of 4.0+. Registration is now open for members of The Pickleball Club, with registration opening for non-members beginning Monday, April 1. The fee is $500 for members and $750 for non-members. For more information or to register, contact 941-271-4444 or lwrinfo@thepickleballclub.com. 

[Family Event]  Hands-On Family Events in Palmetto Historical Park and Agricultural Museum

On Saturday, April 20th, you can spend a full day enjoying free hands-on family fun at the Palmetto Historical Park and Manatee County Agricultural Museum at 515 10th Ave. West, Palmetto. Each site will be holding a Suncoast Remake Learning Event, as part of the 15-day Remake Learning Festival held in four area counties, including Manatee.From 11 AM to 1 PM, visit “Crafts from the Past,” and create fun art projects related to the history of each building in Palmetto Historical Park. The many projects offered include making ice cream, pioneer dolls, journals, and more. While on-site, families will receive a chance at winning a family gift basket and visit a fun selfie station. Art and history can be enjoyed together! From Noon to 2 PM, join the Agricultural Museum and Soar in 4 Manatee as they host “Moo-velous Dairy Cows” at the Ag Museum. Participants will learn all about cows through learning games, making crafts, participating in a milk tasting, and more. The Florida Ag Experience will be on site with a cuddle calf and a milking demonstration.  Here families will have another chance at winning a different family gift basket and take some udderly wonderful selfie photos. Come learn about everyone’s favorite farm animal! Along with the free events, have lunch on the grounds with the North Manatee Kiwanis Club. They will be selling hotdogs, drinks, and snacks. Lunch will be available from 11:00 AM to 1:30 PM. It can be a full day of fun and food for you and your family along with lots of take-home goodies! For more information, call 941-721-2034. 

[Arts & Entertainment]  Shrek The Musical Rescheduled for September at the Van Wezel

Due to scheduling and routing logistics, the national tour of SHREK – The Musical will be pausing for two weeks between April 15 - April 29. Regrettably, our original performance dates scheduled during this time are affected by this. However, we have fortunately been able to secure the following new dates. SHREK will now be coming to the Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall on September 24-25, 2024. Current ticket holders have been contacted via with information regarding their tickets for the rescheduled dates. Patrons who are unable to attend the rescheduled performance or who have questions regarding their tickets can contact the Van Wezel Box Office Monday through Friday between 10 a.m. and 6 p.m. and Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at 941-263-6799. 

[Summer Activities]  Registration Open Now for Summer Art Camp at Art Center Sarasota

Registration is open now! Art Center Sarasota is once again encouraging young children and teens to set their inner artists free at its summertime art camps. The nine weekly sessions run June 3 to August 2. The programs target two different age groups: Creative Kids serves children, ages 6 to 9; Emerging Artists is for aspiring artists, ages 10 to 14. The camps are Mondays through Fridays, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Before- and after-care is offered. Fees are $275 per week for Art Center Sarasota members with a family membership; $350 per week for non-members. Scholarships are available to those eligible. Art supplies are included; participants will also receive a free art camp t-shirt. Art Center Sarasota is also looking for teens, 15 and over, to volunteer as teaching and after-care assistants. Volunteer hours count towards high school and Bright Futures and National Honor Society requirements. For more information about Art Center Sarasota’s summer art camp, scholarship eligibility and teen volunteer programs, visit www.artsarasota.org; or call 941-365-2032; or email youtheducation@artsarasota.org. 

[Sports Event]  Exciting Additions to Elizabeth Moore Sarasota Open

The Elizabeth Moore Sarasota Open announced three wild card players for the ATP Tour Challenger men’s professional tournament. Tennis players from all around the world will compete in singles and doubles play at Payne Park Tennis Center from April 7-14. Yibing Wu, a former world #1 junior and Bradenton resident. He's ranked as high as 54 in the world which is the 2nd highest ranking of any Chinese player. Wu is also the first Chinese player to win an ATP event when he won Dallas last year with wins over Taylor Fritz and John Isner. Tennys Sandgren, had a career high world ranking of 41. Sandgren reached the Finals of the Sarasota Open in 2019 where he lost to Tommy Paul. Toby Kodat, a 21 year old Bradenton resident and a former Roland Garros junior finalist, losing to current top 10 player Holger Rune. Kodat and fellow Bradenton pro, Martin Damm, are the youngest doubles team in history to win a match at the U.S. Open. Qualifying matches begins Sunday April 7 with 24 players competing for the last 6 spots in the main draw. The finals for doubles is on Saturday, April 13, with singles on Sunday, April 14. For schedule and additional information, visit www.sarasotaopen.com. 

[Arts & Entertainment]  Hamlet's Eatery Presents Music B-I-N-G-O, April 19

Music Bingo is happening Friday, April 19th from 6-8pm at Hamlet’s Eatery with a total twist! Talented local musician, Sabrina McClenithan, will be hosting. She will be playing some of the songs LIVE! Come for dinner, stay and enjoy the tunes and win prizes! Music Bingo is similar to regular Bingo but instead of calling out numbers, music is played and you find the song title on your card. There will be four rounds and no charge to play. You can play one round or all four. Dinner is available featuring traditional and vegan options. There is Prosecco on tap and a great selection of craft beers and wine.

Hamlet’s Eatery is located in the courtyard of The Bazaar on Apricot & Lime at 821 Apricot Ave in Sarasota. For more information call 941-445-1938 or visit www.HamletsEatery.com. 

[Donation]  Local Artist Donates Work to Community Day School

When Hershorin Schiff Community Day School Head of School Dan Ceaser attended a recent Members Art Show at Art Center Sarasota, he came across an award-winning mixed-media piece that immediately caught his attention. The piece, "For Humanity," shows two ultra-Orthodox Jews and an IDF soldier praying at the Western Wall. Local painter and illustrator Mayer Kersun created the piece, explaining, "The attack [on Israel by Hamas] on October 7, 2023 inspired me to make a statement about humanity. Looking at the picture, you will see two ultra-Orthodox Jews and an IDF soldier at the Western Wall. They probably see the world differently. But when it comes to Israel and anti-Semitism, they are united." Ceaser requested that Kersun allow the school to have the artwork on “indefinite loan” but, when the artist came by to drop off the painting, his tour of the school so impressed him that, the next day, he donated the piece outright.
“As soon as I saw the painting, I felt that – in addition to being beautiful – its sentiments were well aligned with our school philosophy,” said Ceaser. “Mayer used the tragic events of October 7th to create something that captures feelings of hope, unity and our shared humanity – despite peoples’ differences. I am grateful to him for allowing us to have this piece to display in the years to come.” When he was old enough to hold a pencil, Kersun was drawing the cartoons from the comics page. Since World War II was going on, he would draw fighter airplanes that he would see in the newspaper. His urge to draw was there but the time to pursue the artistic world did not come until he retired from his business. That was when he started taking continuing education classes from local schools and from the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts in Philadelphia. It has been a big part of his life for the past 20-plus years. “I was so impressed with the school – the wonderful things I saw and what its mission is,” Kersun said. “Hopefully, by having my artwork there and by discussing it, it will be meaningful to the students and some good will come of it.” 

Pictured: Local artist Mayer Kersun (center, holding artwork) and CDS Head of School Dan Ceaser (back left) with students Willow Dotson, Maia Forman and Charlie Armstrong. Provided photo/Community Day School.

[Arts & Entertainment]  Arts Alive! Manatee County's Celebration of the Arts Honoring Community and Arts Education Leaders

 The Manatee Arts Education Council (MAEC) in partnership with the Manatee Education Foundation and the School District of Manatee County, is excited to present the 5th Annual Arts Alive, featuring student performances and high school student artwork. Plus, recognition of outstanding arts education leaders in our community and schools. Arts Alive will be held on Friday, April 5, 2024, at State College of Florida in the Performing Arts Recital Hall, located in Building 11A, 5840 26th Street West in Bradenton. Guests will enjoy hors d’ oeuvres, live entertainment, and a silent artwork auction from 5:30 p.m. until 6:30 p.m. The awards and performances will start at 6:30 p.m. and last through 8 p.m. The Master of Ceremonies is Summer Smith, News Anchor from WWSB ABC 7. Featured performances include the following: Manatee High School Fiddlers, Elementary Music Students, State College of Florida Chamber Choir, a Lakewood Ranch High School Pianist, Braden River High School Clarinet Quartet, and the Manatee School for the Arts Turning Pointe Ballet Company. Presenting sponsor for Arts Alive is NDC Construction and Reception sponsors are Ringling College of Art + Design, Willis Smith, The Early Learning Coalition, Bradenton Area Arts & Culture, Long & Associates, and the Manatee Education Foundation. Art Gallery Sponsors include Williamson Design Associates, Pittsburgh Pirates, AJAX, Tandem Construction, and Creative Contractors. Corporate Sponsors include AD Morgan, B&I Construction, Manatee Memorial Hospital, and Suncoast Credit Union. Patron Sponsors include Engineering Matrix, ME&S, Sweet Sparkman, and Hepner Architects. Media sponsors include NEXTGEN Magazine, METV, and WWSB ABC 7. 

[Showcase]  Raymond James Financial to Hold Junior Achievement's 2nd Annual 3DE Student Business Showcase and Pitch Competition

Junior Achievement of Tampa Bay and Raymond James will bring together high school students from JA's four launch 3DE schools (St. Pete, Dunedin, Chamberlain and Hillsborough) to compete in its 2nd annual Innovators Showcase event on April 3, 2024, at Raymond James headquarters. This showcase is to highlight the students’ self-started business ideas to leaders in the Tampa Bay business and education community. As part of the 3DE curriculum, these 11th grade students have passionately worked on a yearlong project centered around entrepreneurship, which consisted of developing a tangible business, product or service. At the Innovators Showcase, which will mark the culmination of these projects, the top selected teams will have the invaluable opportunity to present their ambitious business ideas to members of the community in grand fashion. 3DE launched locally in 2020, and is quickly expanding, with the goal of transforming public school education through its private/public partnership. The model provides relevant and experiential learning for high school students, so they will become a better prepared future workforce. The Innovators Showcase offers students firsthand exposure to top business leaders to help further their career aspirations. 

For more information click here

[Recognition]  Garden of the Arts Earns Englewood Spirit Award

Garden of the Arts (GOTA) owned by Matt Beebe and Dena Kittelson is the newest recipient of the Englewood Spirit Award. Randy Moore, the publisher of Englewood Healthy Living made the announcement this week. The award recognizes an individual, couple, business, or nonprofit making a sustained and meaningful contribution to the health and vitality of the region.
GOTA includes a retail location at 460 W. Dearborn Street in Englewood and a certified plant nursery in the Englewood Arts District. Matt and Dena hosts monthly garden tours of their food forest demonstration garden. Dena is also an artist influencing the mix of products available at their retail store including select visual art items, vibrant gift cards, glassware, and houseplants. GOTA is the twelfth recipient of the Englewood Spirit Award since 2018. Prior award winners include Kids’ Needs Englewood, Real Bikes Englewood, A. Marie Bronson with Shear Sailing & Salon, Englewood Art Center, A Better Scoop Ice Cream Shoppe, Marie Laforge with Mango Bistro, Englewood Community Care Clinic, Dr. Noël Crosby with Advanced Hearing Solutions, Hooked on SUP, One More Day Foundation, and Englewood Beach Yoga with Lata and Robert Coykendall. 

[Graduation]  Administrative Division Chief Graduates

Sarasota County Sheriff Kurt A. Hoffman joined Florida Sheriffs Association (FSA) leadership to congratulate SCSO Chief Lisa Kiesel on her graduation from the FSA Commanders Academy on Friday. The Commanders Academy is recognized as the premier course of executive study for mid to upper-level criminal justice leaders. The core curriculum of the two-week course is focused on leadership, ethics, discipline, and additional subject matter areas related to leadership in law enforcement. FSA welcomed over 50 presenters and panelists to instruct the deputies and personnel representing 36 Florida sheriffs' offices who graduated from the prestigious Commanders Academy. The academy is an informative and educational experience vital for the next generation of public safety leaders. 

[BOSRQ]  2024 Decals and Donuts

2024 DECALS AND DONUTS |  We are thrilled to recognize and celebrate the winners and honorees at the 3rd Annual Decals & Donuts hosted at SRQ Studios on Wednesday, April 17th from 8-1pm. Please join us for coffee and donuts to grab your window cling decal, magazines, and photo opportunities. 


[SOON]  DANCE: Celtic Throne, The Royal Journey of Irish Dance , June 2, 7:30pm
Irish dancers and musicians from Edmonds Herbert W. Armstrong College and Armstrong Dance will embark on their fifth U.S. tour beginning May 5, visiting 10 states over seven weeks with their show Celtic Throne, The Royal Journey of Irish Dance. Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall will host a one-night performance at 7:30 p.m., June 2. Celtic Throne, The Royal Journey of Irish Dance explores the ancient origins of Irish step dance and celebrates the millennia-long journey of a music-and-dance-loving people as they migrate from the ancient Near East to Ireland, Scotland, England and the United States. Tickets to Celtic Throne, The Royal Journey of Irish Dance begin at $25 and can be purchased at VanWezel.org. For more information, please visit celticthrone.com.
[SOON]  PERFORMANCE: Jimmy Failla , May 11, 8pm
The Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall is excited to welcome Jimmy Failla to Sarasota on Saturday, May 11, 2024 at 8pm. Tickets for the Everybody Calm Down Tour go on sale this Friday, February 23 at 10am EST. Tickets start at $20.70 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 Mattisons at the Van Wezel which is located inside the theatre. Reservations can be made on VanWezel.org or through the box office.
[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 Mattisons at the Van Wezel which is located inside the theatre. Reservations can be made on VanWezel.org or through the box office.

[SOON]  FOOD: Lunch in the Gardens , April 17, 11am-1pm
Chaired by leading philanthropists, the Marie Selby Botanical Gardens Lunch in the Gardens series features engaging speakers with interactive elements during a delightful lunch in an unforgettable bayfront setting at our Downtown Sarasota campus. Proceeds support Selby Gardens community education programs, international research, conservation, and beautiful world-class horticulture displays. To learn more and purchase tickets, visit selby.org.
[SOON]  PERFORMANCE: WONDERBALL at The Circus Arts Conservatory , April 13, 7pm

The Circus Arts Conservatory is thrilled about the return of WONDERBALL, a high-energy event that will feature a world-famous electronic dance music star. The proceeds will benefit its youth education programs. WONDERBALL promises to be an epic dance concert experience, headlined by renowned Norwegian DJ and producer Alan Walker. The event will take place on Saturday, April 13, 2024 at 7 p.m. in the Sailor Circus Arena at 2075 Bahia Vista St., Sarasota. The event features a larger stage for a more immersive experience with enhanced LED lasers, lights and video screens, and the vibe for WONDERBALL 2024 is neon and guests are encouraged to dress in dance-ready festival/clubwear. This is an all-ages welcome event; alcohol and bar service will be available to guests ages 21 and up with proper ID. Concessions and including snacks, soda, and water will also be available. For more information or to purchase tickets, visit circusartswonderball.com.

[SOON]  PERFORMANCE: Theresa Caputo Live, The Experience , April 11, 7:30pm

For more than a decade, Theresa Caputo, known worldwide as the Long Island Medium, and star of the new Lifetime Series Raising Spirits, has touched the lives of millions of fans, comforting supporters when they need it most. Now Sarasota fans will get their chance at healing when the acclaimed medium and beloved personality appears live at the Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall on Thursday, April 11 at 7:30pm. Known for her unique ability to communicate with those who have passed on, Theresa Caputo Live: The Experience brings Theresa face-to-face with her fans as Spirit guides her through the audience. A full-stage video display ensures that everyone in the theater has an up-close experience regardless of seat location. Through personal life stories, candid humor, and intimate details about her gift to communicate with those who have passed, the beloved television personality and best-selling author delivers healing messages to her audience, reassuring them with the revelation that their deceased loved ones are still with them, just in a different way. Recognized as one of the most renowned mediums for over 20 years, Theresa Caputo Live: The Experience is an awe-inspiring event you will not want to miss. Learn more about Theresa at www.theresacaputo.com. Tickets start at $64.23 and can be purchased at www.VanWezel.org, by calling the box office at 941-263-6799 or by visiting the box office. 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.

[SOON]  GALLERY: Byzantine Style Icons , April 7 – June 28, Gallery hours: Mon-Thurs. 9-1, and Sundays 11:30-12:30. June will have no Sunday hours.

All Angels Church is delighted to offer an exhibition of Byzantine-style icons by noted iconographer Christine Simoneau Hales. Since the beginning of Christianity, icons have been revered as aids to prayer and contemplation. They are visual reminders of the Saints and Gospel stories that have inspired all Christians throughout the ages. Ms. Hales has studied for many years and now teaches and produces icons for churches and private collectors. She is sought after for her modern, yet traditional icons for churches all over the world. She has won several grants and awards for her painting and is now a local Sarasota iconographer. She will share the icons she has crafted in the ancient Byzantine Tradition using egg tempera paints and gold leaf gilding on wood panels. There will be over twenty original icons on display, and all icons will be available for purchase by contacting the artist/iconographer. To learn more, visit allangelslbk.org/.

[SOON]  GRAB BAG: Fresh Fridays , April 5, 7-10 pm

Fresh Fridays is dancing its way into April and ready to sweep downtown Sarasota with a dance revolution on Main Street, its new location for the new month. The popular downtown community event is throwing a block party boogie on April 5, from 7-10 pm, between Palm Avenue and Pineapple Avenue, for their newest event, Dance Dance Downtown Sarasota. Attendees will enjoy electrifying live music from Society Hill, power up with fresh fuel from local restaurants, and bust a move with a special dance activity for the event. Guests can stay up to date by following Fresh Fridays on their social media channels or by visiting their website at www.downtownsarasotadid.com/fresh-fridays.

[SOON]  SCIENCE AND NATURE: Mystery Reef , April 2 – June 30, Various times
Get ready to use your brain coral and start Kraken the case at the new Mystery Reef exhibit Mote Aquarium. Coral reefs, the rainforests of the sea, are in serious danger. Help us find out what is hurting the corals and how we can help. Become a coral detective and uncover clues throughout Mystery Reef while learning about real coral science and restoration at Mote Marine Laboratory. For more information: mote.org/mystery.
[SOON]  THEATER: The White Chip , March 20 – April 12, Various times

The 2024 Stage III Series lineup at Florida Studio Theatre features three daring plays penned by award-winning playwrights. The third play in the series, White Chip, follows the character Steven. Steven is on top of the world: he is married, has good friends, and is steps away from his dream job running one of the hottest theatres in the country. He also happens to be an alcoholic spinning out of control. Follow his life from first sip to first love, critical hit to critical care, all the way to rock bottom, where he carves an unusual path to sobriety. Part of The Recovery Project, The White Chip is a wry and wild theatrical journey to recovery. Learn more and purchase tickets at FloridaStudioTheatre.org.

[SOON]  SCIENCE AND NATURE: Family Saturdays , March 23 – May 25, 10am-12pm
Kids and kids at heart can enjoy fun art and nature activities on Saturday mornings, at Marie Selby Botanical Gardens on March 23, April 27, and May 25. Activities will run from 10 a.m. to noon each day, and participation is included in admission to the Gardens, which is always free for Selby Gardens members. These Family Saturdays celebrate the current exhibition on view, Yayoi Kusama: A Letter to Georgia OKeeffe. Several activity stations with different art-focused projects will be set up in the Ann Goldstein Childrens Rainforest Garden during each monthly event. The goal is to invite kids of all ages to explore the artwork of Yayoi Kusama and Georgia OKeeffe through activities that also connect them to the natural environment. Admission to Selby Gardens Downtown Sarasota campus is $26 for adults, $11 for ages 5 to 17, and free for children 4 and under. Tickets may be purchased online in advance at selby.org. Selby Gardens members always receive complimentary admission as well as discounts for guests. To learn more and purchase tickets, visit selby.org.
[SOON]  GALLERY: Embracing Our Differences , January 24 – April 14, Various times
Embracing Our Differences celebrates its 21st anniversary this year. Visit the exhibit at the downtown Bayfront Park in Sarasota. The winning artworks combine a deep understanding of both medium and message. Awards are given for Best-in-Show Adult, Best-in-Show Student, and Peoples Choice categories, with the last chosen by visitors to the exhibit. Adult winners each receive $2,000, and students receive $2,000 to be split with their school’s art or writing program. The statements accompanying each artwork are also vital and provide insight into our common humanity as well as the differences that make us all unique. For more information, visit www.embracingourdifferences.org.
[SOON]  MUSIC: Jazz Thursdays , January 11 – June 13, 5:30 pm-8 pm

Join us for live jazz at Sarasota Art Museum, hosted by the Jazz Club of Sarasota, featuring Hot Club of SRQ, and extended hours in the galleries, Bistro, and SHOP. Sip on refreshing cocktails and enjoy small bites in the Bistro. Each second Thursday of the month features a different style of jazz, from straight-ahead to free jazz, bebop to swing-programmed in partnership with Jazz Club of Sarasota. Galleries are open until 7 pm on Jazz Thursdays. Learn more and purchase tickets at sarasotaartmuseum.org.

[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]  FOOD: Farmers Market at Lakewood Ranch , September 3 – September 30, 10am-2pm

Experience some of the best food and flavors of the region with more than 100, and still growing, curated vendors. The Farmers Market at Lakewood Ranch has fast become a favorite weekly tradition for people from all over the region seeking farm-fresh produce, delicious prepared foods, and specialty items and gifts. Aside from all the goodies you can shop at the Farmers Market, find your flow in a free yoga class or have the kiddos get creative during weekly-hosted workshops. 1561 Lakefront Dr., Lakewood Ranch.

[SOON]  GRAB BAG: Bradenton Market Returns , October 7 – May 25, 9am-2pm

Realize Bradenton is happy to announce the return of the Bradenton Market to its weekly schedule. This beloved community gathering will be held Saturdays through May 25, 2024 from 9:00 am - 2:00 pm on Old Main Street in Bradenton. Founded in 1979, the Market has expanded to include more than 90 local vendors. In addition to the weekly shopping and music, the Market hosts special event days throughout the season. Halloween at the Market will be held on Saturday, October 28. This family-friendly event includes trick or treating with vendors, face painting with Manatee School for the Arts Academic Team from 9:30 am - 12:30 pm, and a dance performance by Slick Motion Studios at 10:00 am. For more information, visit RealizeBradenton.com.

[SOON]  GALLERY: Clyde Butcher: Nature Through the Lens , November 11 – August 31, N/a

Clyde Butcher: Nature Through the Lens will be on view through August 31, 2024 at the Historic Spanish Point campus. Selby Gardens is excited to present the extraordinary imagery of photographer and conservationist Clyde Butcher throughout the grounds of the Historic Spanish Point campus. Large-scale prints on aluminum of Butcher’s beautiful photographs of plants, animals, and habitats of Florida will be exhibited amid the natural landscape of the 30-acre waterfront preserve, enabling the public to engage with the artist’s work like never before. In the tradition of earlier landscape photographers like Ansel Adams, Butcher captures the beauty and majesty of America’s natural treasures in dramatic black and white. The unique environments of Florida have been subjects of particular interest to Butcher since the 1980s, when he was first introduced to the magic and mystery of sites such as Big Cypress National Preserve and Everglades National Park. Nature Through the Lens will include Butcher’s photographs of regional locales such as Myakka River State Park and Casey Key. This exhibition is presented in partnership with the Clyde Butcher Gallery & Studio in Venice, Florida. For more information, visit selby.org.

[SOON]  MUSEUM: Shinique Smith, Parade , January 4 – January 5, Various times

Enjoy the extraordinary opportunity to experience the work of contemporary artist Shinique Smith in conversation with the collection of European art at The Ringling. Unfolding across six galleries of the Museum of Art, the exhibition creates a series of unique stories that together form an abstract narrative of the parade as a metaphor for life. Well known for her monumental sculptures created from an array of materials, including luxurious textiles, personal clothing, dyed fabrics, ribbon, and wood, and for her abstract paintings of calligraphy and collage, Smiths work in this exhibition speaks to various facets of the European artistic tradition, such as classical drapery and religious iconography, while foregrounding notions of Black femininity and the history of the circus. Learn more at ringling.org.

[SOON]  FOOD: A Taste of Art , February 1 – January 31, 5:30-8pm
Longtime friends Chef Charles Amherst of Chaz 51 Steakhouse in Venice and Barbara Gerdeman, co-founder of Creative Liberties Artist Studios in Sarasota, have joined forces to create a series of interactive live art dinner showcases called A Taste of Art. The first of these events takes place Thursday, February 1, 5:30-8 p.m., at Chaz 51 Steakhouse, 549 US 41 Bypass N, Venice. The events will continue on Tuesday, Thursday and Friday evenings. Guests who visit Chaz 51 on these evenings will be able to witness the creation of captivating works of art in real-time. To make a reservation, call Chaz 51 Steakhouse at 941-484-6200. To find out which artists are scheduled for February, check out the calendar at CreativeLiberties.net.
[SOON]  GALLERY: Yayoi Kusama: A Letter to Georgia O Keeffe at Marie Selby Botanical Gardens , February 11 – June 30, n/a

Marie Selby Botanical Gardens will present Yayoi Kusama: A Letter to Georgia O Keeffe as the eighth iteration of its annual Jean and Alfred Goldstein Exhibition, which examines the work of major artists through the lens of their connection to nature. The exhibition, which will be on view from February 11 through June 30, 2024, at Selby Gardens Downtown Sarasota campus, will explore the unexpected yet profoundly impactful mentoring relationship that developed between iconic artists Yayoi Kusama and Georgia O Keeffe. The theme of the upcoming Goldstein Exhibition is the latest announcement of programming planned for Selby Gardens 50th anniversary season. For more information, visit selby.org.

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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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