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ROAD SWAP Final agreement involving swap of Siesta roads and River Road may be finalized in April
BIG PASS Circuit Court judge rules for Siesta Key Association
LODGING The Best Western Plus, gateway to Siesta Key
Happy 105th Birthday to this amazing woman
As the son of a military man, bluesman R.J. Howson grew up all over the world
St. Michael the Archangel undertakes sizable capital campaign By Debbie Flessner Publishers Note: The parish is seeking help from all residents, businesses and visitors as it takes on this monumental endeavor. No monetary donation is too small with all funds raised staying with the parish for the building project. The problem began innocently enough in June of 2018. There was a clogged toilet in the Parish Hall restroom during a Vacation Bible School session at St. Michael the Archangel Catholic Church. By the time the issue was discovered several days later, contaminated water had done extensive damage to the interior of the 44-year-old building. Almost immediately, the church decided to get a professional evaluation to see what it would take to repair the destruction. The news was not good. “We sought the expertise of several engineers and architects, who then discovered that the building has foundational, structural and mechanical issues,” said Father Michael Cannon, St. Michael pastor. “We also found out that both the Parish Center and the Parish offices are now below FEMA flood plain levels.” According to FEMA regulations, when the rehabilitation cost of an existing structure that has sustained substantial damage is estimated to cost more than 50 percent of the value of the building, it’s required that the existing structure be elevated to be compliant with current FEMA code. In the case of the Parish Hall at St. Michael, the building’s foundation would have to be raised more than two feet before any renovations could even begin. Plus, during the inspections, it was found that there were multiple problematic issues with the building. “We discovered that there were further problems, like mold from the flooding and termite damage in the attic,” said Jim Holt, St. Michael parishioner and head of the Building Committee. “It was determined that we would need to build a new Parish Center, because we just didn’t think that putting any more money into the existing one would be prudent.” The proposed project will prove to be an ambitious undertaking. The
Architect Greg Hall, of Hall Architects, artist rendering including the new building, as well as the central courtyard and a reworking of the parking lot layout, to allow for more spaces
yet-to-be-named Capital Campaign will run up until 2021, with the goal of funding a 10,000+ square-foot construction project. Included will be not only the new Parish Center, but also a daily chapel, a commercial kitchen and new parish offices. With the enhanced construction, St. Michael is hoping to better meet the needs of its parishioners and visitors of all ages, by providing them with multiple warm, inviting places where they can gather, pray and socialize.
Continued on page 29
Baseball Comes to Sarasota and Siesta Key When a 19-year-old multi-millionaire Spring visitor to Siesta Key progresses a few years later to negotiate a $300 million contract, it can only be a major league baseball (MLB) player cashing in on the incredibly lucrative opportunities enjoyed by today’s professional athletes. In fact, the player is Manny Machado who stayed and socialized at Coquille on the midKey during 2012 after he signed a bonus contract out of high school with the Baltimore Orioles for $5.25 million. Many residents came to know him well as a shy, polite teenager with a bright future. Watching this young, elite athlete’s career develop since then has been fascinating. Contrasting the wealth of today’s MLB player with past MLB stars was not so lucrative during the 20th century. The last 19-year-old superstar rookie to come here for spring training was Ted Williams. He arrived penniless 80 years ago this month when the Boston Red Sox invited him for a try-out. In fact, Ted had to borrow $200 for the train trip from San Diego. When he made the team in 1939, his salary was $4500, and his final year’s salary was only $60,000 for the 1960 season. Often considered the “greatest hitter who ever lived,” Ted was paid a total of $1.1 million, i.e., 20% of Manny’s signing bonus, during his entire 19-year career, which was interrupted twice with military duties as a fighter pilot. Yet he seemed satisfied with those earnings and always enjoyed hitting baseballs as well as sport fishing in Florida. Continued on page 30
By Philip M. Farrell, MD, PhD
Payne Park and Sarasota Mobile Home Park in the 1950s. Located in heart of downtown Sarasota, this simple baseball stadium served fans for seven decades. Note the large number of mobile homes south of the park. Courtesy of Sarasota County Historical Resources from the James M. Johnson Collection with thanks to Larry Kelleher.
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Every Wednesday in March, a free community presentation about our beaches and marine habitat will be held at Siesta Beach Main Pavilion from 9:3010:30 a.m. For more information, call Sarasota County at 941-861-5000.
Condo Council March membership meeting PERSONAL TRAINING
The Siesta Key Condo Council will hold a membership meeting on March 12, 3 pm at the Siesta Key Chapel, 4615 Gleason Ave.
Jennifer Clarke & Dario Ferrer Owners
7388 S. Tamiami Trail, Sarasota, FL 34231 (located in the Coral Cove Mall across from Wilde Honda, minutes from Siesta Key)
Attend the meeting and learn about RED TIDE and how the Condominium Associations and owners can help fight this destructive environmental issue. The guest speakers are Tom Freiwald and Lenny Landau from the Longboat Key Revitalization Task Force.
Bollards installed at the end of Avenida Messina During the Feb. 7 SKA meeting, Assistant County Engineer Larry Mau also answered questions about a change in the situation at Beach Access 2, at the western end of Avenida Messina. Continued on page 13
Happiness is… Spring The majority of the country is fed up with Winter and waiting in anticipation for the coming Spring thaw. We even had our own taste of jacket weather in January and February here when temperatures dipped into the forties, so we can relate. Kind of. Either way, let’s bring on March and all things green and growing! Green is everywhere in the month of March, and Abel’s Ice Cream is ready to celebrate with two festive favorites: Pistachio (the ultimate pistachio ice cream loaded with roasted pistachios) and Mint Chip Ice Cream (Refreshing mint ice cream with large, rich chocolate chips.) “We love Spring,” said Jerry Williams, owner of Abel’s. “More opportunities to hit the golf course and the beach. Plus we get to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day all month long with our Mint Chip shake. Definitely a perennial favorite this time of year.” It’s also time to spring forward – a blessing and a curse. We all love having the extra hour of light in the evening but boy it takes a toll, doesn’t it? The mornings can really be challenging. But even though we lose an hour of sleep and spend a week in a daze trying to adjust, Abel’s has just the remedy – their amazing pick-me-up flavor, Stellar Coffee (This is a must have! Rich Coffee Club ice cream with delicious fudge and mini dark chocolate coffee cups.)
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1250 Stickney Point Rd. (941) 349-3600 Jerry and Jill Williams, owners of Abel’s Ice Cream
“Stellar Coffee is a best-seller all year round, but we do see a spike the first few weeks after the time change,” Jerry said. A coincidence? Probably not. Of course, no one needs an extra reason to enjoy the great flavors at Abel’s Ice Cream. Stop by anytime to enjoy these or any of their wonderful treats at 1886 Stickney Point Road, Sarasota in the South Bridge Plaza. Open Sunday through Thursday from Noon-9:30 pm, and Friday and Saturday from Noon-10 pm. Learn more online at our website, www.abelsicecream.com or connect with us on Facebook and Instagram.
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Casey Key couple wins approval to repair collapsed section of Rachel Brown Hackney retaining wall and deck By SarasotaNewsLeader.com It was only the fifth time in Sarasota County history that staff had brought to the County Commission a petition for a Coastal Setback Class II Emergency Variance, Environmental Permitting Manager Howard Berna told the commissioners on Jan. 29. After hearing from staff and one of the petitioners, plus supporters of the latter’s plans, two of the commissioners almost spoke in unison as they tried to make a motion to approve the request. “We’re going to fight over you now,” Commissioner Nancy Detert told Joey and Tracie Langston of 2016 Casey Key Road, after Commissioner Alan Maio let her make the motion. Maio seconded it, and it passed unanimously. As Berna explained to the board, the Langstons were requesting the variance so they could repair the damaged part of a concrete retaining wall and a paver deck on the Gulf side of their property on Casey Key Road. They also planned to connect the wall to the new section of concrete deck slab, using reinforced steel rebars. Berna reminded the commissioners that a Class II Emergency Variance “is intended to be a rapid response to structures that are at great risk caused by recent storm events.” The granting of such a variance makes it possible for a property owner to take “temporary storm protection measures,” Berna added. Last year, he continued, the commissioners granted such a variance to another set of Casey Key Road property owners so they could stabilize a cabana on the shoreline, as it was at risk of collapsing. Unlike that recent case, he said, “This would not require a regular variance at a later date, because this is replacing what was there.” Showing the board an aerial image, Berna explained that the Langstons’ property is midway between the Blackburn Point Road Bridge and the Albee Road Bridge. The Langstons’ house, on the bay side of Casey Key Road, was constructed in 2010, Berna noted. On the west side of the road, the couple has a cabana, the concrete paver deck, a wooden deck and the retaining wall,
which dates from the 1970s. Additionally, a dune walkover structure was constructed in 2005 through a process that staff was able to handle on an administrative basis, Berna said. The retaining wall is only about 83 feet long, he continued, while the Langstons’ shoreline encompasses approximately 200 feet. The rest of the shoreline is natural, Berna added. In 2018, the Florida Department of Environmental Protection included that section of Casey Key’s beach in its list of critically eroded beaches in the state, Berna pointed out. Showing the board a series of slides, Berna explained that the retaining wall first began to separate from the concrete slab of the deck. A staff memo in the board’s agenda packet noted that in March 2018, “a strong cold front caused more than 10 ft. of dune erosion at this location.” On July 25, 2018, the Langstons applied for the Class II Emergency Variance, the memo said. Then, after Hurricane Michael passed through the Gulf last September, Berna told the commissioners, about 48 feet of the northern portion of the concrete retaining wall and a portion of the concrete deck collapsed. That segment of the retaining wall needs to be rebuilt, he said, and then another section 6 to 7 feet long would be constructed to connect the retaining wall to the deck. About half of the 7.5-foot panels will be buried below the grade, he added. The new segment of the deck will be a 6-inch slab, he continued, with pavers placed on top. Further details of the project The wall is approximately 45.3 feet seaward of the county’s Gulf Beach Setback Line (GBSL), Berna noted. As county staff members have explained in past public hearings, the GBSL is the figurative “line in the sand” beyond which new construction generally is prohibited, so native vegetation can keep the shoreline as stable as possible during storms, protecting construction landward of the GBSL. The Langstons’ retaining wall is only about 32 feet landward of the Mean High Water Line, Berna continued, which means
it likely will be subjected to “further impacts and undermining … if recent erosion trends continue along this shoreline.” The Mean High Water Line is approximately 79 feet seaward of the edge of Casey Key Road, he added. On one other note, Berna provided the board members a chart showing sea-turtle nesting data from 2009 through 2018 on the shore at 2016 Casey Key Road. The number of nests ranged from a low of two in 2009 and 2011, up to a high of 21 in 2016. Last year, six nests were recorded. Berna characterized that as “a fair amount of activity,” telling the commissioners he considered the information “rather important to share with you.” Finally, Berna explained, before granting a Class II Emergency Variance, the board
needs to determine that the proposed action will minimize impacts to the coastal systems. “Should erosion trends continue in this area,” he said, tidal action could result in the scouring of the toe of the retaining wall. That, in turn, could result in adverse impacts on sea turtles and lateral pedestrian access along the beach, he added, as well as possible disruption of the natural movement of sand from north to south on the shoreline. Speaking for himself and his wife, Joey Langston told the commissioners, “Despite the fact that nature has not smiled on us, we are anxious to get this damage repaired. We seek not to add. We seek simply to repair and restore what was there previously.” “We have a significant investment on Casey Key Road,” Langston added. “We love it there.”
Final agreement involving swap of Siesta roads and River Road Rachel Brown Hackney may be finalized in April By SarasotaNewsLeader.com A new timeline has emerged as Sarasota County staff and representatives of the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) work to finalize a swap involving River Road and roads on Siesta Key. On Feb. 5, County Engineer Spencer Anderson notified Assistant County Administrator Mark Cunningham via email that the final draft of a Road Transfer Agreement (RTA) could be completed in April, for County Commission review. Staff received a copy of FDOT’s draft revisions for the agreement on Feb. 1, Anderson added. Those were under staff review, he wrote, “and will be processed for Board consideration.” Among its facets, that Road Transfer Agreement is expected to define terms for FDOT to make improvements to the 90-degree curve on State Road 758 at the Higel Avenue/Siesta Drive intersection on Siesta Key, Anderson pointed out. Last year, during a presentation about tentative terms of the road swap, Anderson explained to the County Commission that staff was hopeful that FDOT would consent to adjusting that sharp curve. Numerous serious accidents have taken place at the site over the years, as a neighborhood organization on north Siesta Key — Make Siesta Drive Safer — has illustrated after reviewing public records. In exchange for the state taking over River Road, the county will assume authority over Stickney Point Road and State Road 758 west of U.S. 41, except for the two drawbridges. The affected segments of State Road 758 are part of Siesta Drive, part of South Osprey Avenue, Bay Road, Higel Avenue and the part of Midnight Pass Road north of the Stickney Point Road intersection on Siesta Key.
For decades, county leaders were able to achieve only limited progress in their efforts to improve River Road, which is the primary hurricane evacuation route for South County and part of Charlotte County. Construction of thousands of new homes in the coming years in Venice and North Port — plus construction of a new Spring Training facility in the West Villages for the Atlanta Braves — underscored the urgency for county leaders, they said, to find a way to gain state support for the major projects needed on River Road. In September 2017, then-County Administrator Tom Harmer announced that discussions about a potential road swap had begun. If River Road were under control of the state, he explained, FDOT representatives said they would be able to speed up the timetable for the improvements. In January, County Administrator Jonathan Lewis explained that FDOT project adjustments involving River Road — which were announced in December 2018 — had necessitated revisions of details that already had been worked out for the road swap. County staff originally had hoped to complete the swap before the end of 2018, but those changes delayed the process, Lewis said.
In his email, Anderson noted FDOT’s decision to accelerate funding for the construction of the improvements to River Road — including its widening — from West Villages Parkway to Interstate 75 to 2021, instead of 2024. As of Feb. 4, Anderson continued, FDOT had indicated that it would provide an initial draft of the RTA to the county no later than Feb. 28. If that is received as expected, Anderson continued, staff will review the proposed agreement with the Office of the County Attorney, “negotiate any necessary changes with FDOT and process a final RTA for Board consideration in April 2019.”
Discussion about road swap at SKA meeting On Feb. 7, the assistant Sarasota County traffic engineer reaffirmed to Siesta Key Association (SKA) members that the county’s swap of Siesta roads for River Road, involving the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT), is expected to be completed soon. Larry Mau joined Nicole Rissler, director of the county’s Parks, Recreation and Natural Resources Department (PRNR), in discussing traffic and parking issues on the island in the context of a planned Feb. 27 County Commission workshop. For those among the approximately 65 audience members unfamiliar with River Road, Mau explained that it is a “two-lane road that carries very high volumes of traffic.” Yet another stress on that route, he noted, will be its use to reach the new Atlanta Braves Spring Training complex, which is under construction in the West Villages. The Braves will play the final game of their 2019 Spring Training season there in March. Additionally, county commissioners in recent years have noted the thousands of new homes under construction in the vicinity of River Road, as well as the road’s designation as a hurricane evacuation route for South County and Charlotte County residents. Yet, the county has not had the financial wherewithal to widen River Road and make the other long-sought improvements to it, Mau pointed out. “It is pushing more than $70 million to widen that road,” he said. Therefore, he continued, “We made a deal with DOT.” The county will assume authority over all of State Road 758 west of U.S. 41, and Stickney Point Road, Mau told the audience, and the state will take over River Road. The deal will not include the Siesta Drive and Stickney Point Road drawbridges, County Administrator Jonathan Lewis has explained; FDOT will continue to maintain control of them.
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By Rachel Brown Hackney SarasotaNewsLeader.com
During the Feb. 7 discussion, SKA President Gene Kusekoski pointed out that on the stretch of State Road 758 — Midnight Pass Road — from the Stickney Point Road intersection to the Beach Road intersection, bicyclists and pedestrians must contend with the fact that the condominium complex properties “come in and out; the shoulder disappears and reappears.” In a May 23, 2018 email to Commissioner Alan Maio — who represents Siesta Key as part of District 4 — Kusekoski explained, “The shoulder on that segment, where bikes normal ride, varies in width from a barely acceptable 2-3 feet to essentially the width of the white line marking the roadway boundary. No part of this meets the standards to be designated as an official bike lane, but some parts do allow for safe cycling. Unfortunately, many parts do not. “To make matters worse,” Kusekoski continued, “the transition between the asphalt roadway and cement sidewalk has height differences ranging from essentially flat to a 3-4 inch drop in either direction.
This has caused many bikers to take a spill in this area. FDOT efforts to try to mitigate the problem by adding asphalt ‘ramps’ between the shoulder and the sidewalk have actually made the problem worse by adding yet another transition to the narrow shoulder.” During the Feb. 7 SKA meeting, Kusekoski told Mau that he had seen surveyors working on parts of the stretch of road he had addressed in that email, and he knows that the resurfacing of Midnight Pass Road is planned from the Stickney Point Road intersection to Shadow Law Drive in the 2022 fiscal year. “Is anyone considering trying to provide more uniformity with the shoulders and the sidewalk, he asked?” County staff has requested that FDOT undertake some improvements on parts of State Road 758 before the swap is completed, Mau replied. “The right of way is very tight out there,” he added. “It is extremely expensive to acquire right of way. There’s not a whole lot we can do, but we certainly will do what we can …” A woman in the audience who apparently
was unfamiliar with the proposed road swap asked whether that would include the stretch of Midnight Pass Road south from the Stickney Point Road intersection. Mau told her that that already is under county authority. It is listed as County Road 789. Another member of the audience asked whether the county would have control over the traffic signals at the intersection of Stickney Point Road and Midnight Pass Road after the swap has been completed. “Those have to be the worst signals,” the man added. Drivers unfamiliar with Siesta do not realize that they can turn right on the red arrow, the man continued, so they do not, “and traffic backs up to U.S. 41.” “We will have control of that,” Mau replied, “so, yes, we’ll be glad to look at the situation.” In recent years, FDOT has imposed a variety of limitations on traffic flow at the intersection. Because of concerns that arose in early 2014 about the safety of pedestrians trying to cross at Stickney Point Road/ Midnight Pass Road, FDOT erected a “No Turn on Red” sign for traffic planning to head north from Stickney Point Road onto Midnight Pass Road. Complaints immediately began to multiply. As a result, FDOT staff installed a “blankout” sign to prevent right turns onto Midnight Pass Road whenever a pedestrian pushed the button to use the crosswalk. Otherwise drivers would be able to turn right on red. Then, in late 2015, FDOT began work on another new project at the intersection — this one also designed to improve pedestrian safety. The crosswalks were reconfigured. However, after island business owners and residents protested the initial design, traffic was allowed to use an “acceleration lane” to turn right from Stickney Point Road onto northbound Midnight Pass Road.
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Circuit Court judge rules that Reopen Beach Road can intervene in lawsuit related to two Sarasota County Charter Rachel Brown Hackney amendments By SarasotaNewsLeader.com A 12th Judicial Circuit Court judge has ruled that the Siesta Key nonprofit Reopen Beach Road may intervene in a case focused on two Sarasota County Charter amendments. Circuit Judge Maria Ruhl issued her order on Feb. 13, court records show. Siesta Key property owners who have challenged the legality of the Charter amendments and the Office of the County Attorney had agreed that Reopen Beach Road should be a party to the case. Siesta Key resident Michael Cosentino — who established the Reopen Beach Road in June 2016 — wrote the Charter amendments, both of which are related to a May 2016 County Commission vacation of part of North Beach Road. The amendments won voter approval on the Nov. 6, 2018 General Election ballot. Attorney Ryan Reese of Moore, Bowman & Rix in Tampa, acting on behalf of plaintiff William H. Caflisch, and Assistant County Attorney David M. Pearce signed a stipulation filed with the Circuit Court on Feb. 6, saying that it was appropriate for Reopen Beach Road “to intervene in this matter …” They were joined in the stipulation by attorney Fred E. Moore of the Bradenton firm Blalock Walters, acting on behalf of Reopen Beach Road. On Jan. 16, Reopen Beach Road had filed a motion, seeking to intervene in the case that Siesta property owners William and Sheila Caflisch initiated on Oct. 9, 2018. The Caflisches had sought to have the Sarasota County Charter amendments removed from the November 2018 ballot, but the court did not rule on the matter prior to the election. As a result, on Jan. 3, Caflisch attorney Reese filed a Motion for Judgment on the Pleadings, saying that the documents filed in the case “demonstrate no genuine dispute of material fact exists between the Caflisches and Sarasota County.” Adding that the amendments “offend existing state law, in violation of Florida Statute 125.01,” he wrote that the court should declare them “void ab initio,” meaning that the amendments were not valid from the time they were proposed. Statute 125.01 requires county law to be consistent with state law.
A Jan. 30 hearing on that motion for judgment was cancelled. In a filing in a related case, Assistant County Attorney Pearce wrote, “The constitutionality of the charter amendments is a real issue and not an academic one.” In that document, Pearce pointed out that the county had challenged the Charter amendments “because they are inconsistent with general law and vague. … They interfere with the express authority granted to the County Commission to sell and convey property, vacate roads, and make budgetary decisions, as envisioned by sections of the Florida Statutes. The County has also alleged the charter amendments are vague because they outline no standard of conduct,” Pearce added. That document was filed with the court on Nov. 7, 2018, the day after voters approved the amendments. Reopen Beach Road arguments In a supplemental memorandum of law filed with the Circuit Court on Jan. 28, Reopen Beach Road pointed out that it “was the sponsor and driving force” behind Charter Amendments 3.9 and 3.10. The former says the county must rescind the vacation of the 373-foot-long segment of North Beach Road that was approved on May 11, 2016, and then the county must re-acquire the right of way. The amendment also indicates the county should repair the road and keep it open to vehicular traffic. Amendment 3.10 prohibits Sarasota County from vacating or selling any segment of road or right away abutting any area that could be considered to have a “waterfront vista.” In June 2016, Cosentino filed suit against the county, arguing that the County Commission had violated the county’s Comprehensive Plan in vacating the portion of North Beach Road. Although Circuit Court Judge Frederick Mercurio dismissed all the counts against Sarasota County, Cosentino has appealed the final dismissal to the Second District Court of Appeal in Lakeland. Continued on page 38
Letter to the Editor KEEP BEACH ROAD PUBLIC- IT’S THE LAW! What good is it to have the # 1 beach in America if you can’t get to it? “We call it the wall of development,” says Scott Shine, founder of Open Beaches, a Florida group that lobbies the state legislature for greater public access to our beaches. “If you have exclusive use of the beach, you choke off all the economic development behind it,” he continued. The effects of red tide on our economy, while devastating, pale in comparison to the threat of privatization. Red tide comes and goes; privatization is permanent. The purpose of this article is to educate the reader’s regarding the efforts of Reopen Beach Road, a local nonprofit founded to protect your right to public beach access, and to force the County to enforce the laws designed to protect those rights. We appreciate the publisher giving us this opportunity. Not surprisingly, this is about money, lots of money. These folks own lots both landward and seaward of Beach Road. If Beach Road stays public, these folks can tear down and legally rebuild two units each based on RMF-1 zoning of 6 units/acre, or 7250 sf/unit. If Beach Road becomes their private property, they can do a unity-of-title to combine their landward and seaward lots, which based upon zoning triples the allowable development. Twelve extra units at, say, $5 million each gives them lots of reasons to want to turn their road front houses into beach front condos- at our collective expense. What about the law? Great question. One law says the County “shall not” give away our road. Another precludes the transference of development rights from their unbuildable beach lots. Yet another says roads can’t be used to calculate development density. Etc. Etc. The judge said it’s none of my business - not that I’m wrong, mind you, it’s just none of my business. That case is on appeal, where we anticipate better results. What else can be done? We exercised our right to make our own law by gathering nearly 30,000 petitions to get two measures on last November’s ballot. One overturns the County’s giveaway and keeps Beach Road public. The other prevents the County from giving away or selling any of our Parks, Preserves, Beach or Water accesses countywide. The first passed with 68%, the second with 73%. So we’re done, right? Not so fast, my friends. The County and the folks they have been colluding with have sued to have the election results thrown out. They claim the ballot was ‘vague and misleading’ because, among other things, we failed to define ‘preserves.’ Hmmm. And apparently we aren’t allowed to tell the County what to do. Former Commissioner Jon Thaxton belly laughed at that one, and said, “That’s exactly what the charter was designed to do!” So here we are, 2 ½ years into trying to prove the world is round. Onward and forward we march, undeterred by the forces against us and fortified by the knowledge that our cause is just. We understand our duty to protect this town we love for ours and generations yet to come. Those wishing to help please visit reopenbeachroad.org; checks can be sent directly to our counsel, Lee R Rohe, PA, Lawyers Trust Acct, ℅ RBR, 617 Avenida De Mayo, Sarasota, Fl., 34242. Or call me at home, 941-346-2584, I will return your call. Michael Cosentino, President/Founder of Reopen Beach Road
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Circuit Court judge rules for Siesta Key Association For the Siesta Key Association (SKA), the third time — as the saying goes — was the charm. After ruling twice in recent months against the nonprofit, Twelfth Judicial Circuit Court Judge Andrea McHugh issued an order on Feb. 12, ruling that the City of Sarasota must comply with a section of its own environmental regulations before it can dredge Big Sarasota Pass. McHugh gave the City of Sarasota 20 days to “show cause” why she should not compel the city “to make an official determination that the Project is consistent with the City Comprehensive Plan and all other applicable local, regional, state, and federal plans and regulations.” She was referencing language in Action Strategy 1.1 of the city’s Environmental Protection and Coastal Islands Plan. McHugh added that the city also would have to make the case that it would not need to provide notice of the project “to all affected persons … in a manner sufficient to trigger the right of those persons to challenge the decision under Chapter 163 of the Florida Statutes.” During a Dec. 20, 2018 hearing on the amended complaint the SKA filed in its Circuit Court case in October 2018, its attorney, Kent Safriet of Hopping Green & Sams in Tallahassee, argued to McHugh that the city did not want to take steps the SKA has sought because that would start the figurative clock ticking on the 30-day timeline afforded the SKA under Chapter 163 guidelines. “They want to stymie us on that,” Safriet said of city leaders. Chapter 163.3194(1)(a) says that after a comprehensive plan has been adopted in compliance with the Florida Statutes, all development undertaken by governmental agencies in regard to land covered by the plan “shall be consistent” with the plan. During a telephone interview, SKA Vice President Catherine Luckner said she was speechless when she received the news about
Mike T. or Kevin Thompson (5-9 PM)
Judge Andrea McHugh the ruling. “I’m really thankful the judge understood what the SKA has been trying to achieve,” which is the city’s complying with its legal obligation, she added. In response to a question, City Attorney Robert Fournier wrote in a Feb. 12 email, “We will likely file a motion to request an additional ten days to have 30 days to respond, which I hope the court would consider favorably.” The city and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) plan to remove up to 1.3 million cubic yards of sand from Big Pass — which never has been dredged — to renourish a 1.6-mile stretch of South Lido Key Beach. That is the first step in a 50-year USACE plan to stabilize the Lido shoreline, which the Florida Department of Environmental Protection has deemed “critically eroded” in recent years. An emergency beach renourishment project on Lido has been underway since December 2018. Since the original USACE project manager unveiled the Lido Beach renourishment
Dami Caines or John Patti (5-8:30 PM)
RPM (5-9 PM)
proposal to county residents in September 2013, Siesta Key leaders have pointed to the protection the pass’ ebb shoal provides Siesta during storms. They also contend that dredging would result in navigational problems in the waterway and disrupt wildlife. Refining an argument In October 2018, and again, after the Dec. 20, 2018 hearing in the SKA case, McHugh dismissed the SKA’s complaints, saying she saw no foundation for directing the city to communicate with the county about the planned action in Big Pass. She pointed out that the Florida Department of Environmental Protection issued a permit to the city and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers last summer to allow them to proceed with the initiative. During the December 2018 hearing, McHugh also told SKA attorney Safriet that she had seen no evidence that the SKA ever had asked the city to seek county approval for the Big Pass project. In the mandamus cases with which she had experience, she added, she had found that a request had been made of a local government to comply with a law, and the local government had refused to do so. She noted public records requests as examples. In an alternative Petition for Writ of
Bri Rivera (5-9 PM)
Vince Berardi (5-9 PM)
By Rachel Brown Hackney SarasotaNewsLeader.com
Mandamus the SKA and its co-plaintiff, Siesta Key resident David Patton, filed on Jan. 25, they pointed to a meeting between City of Sarasota senior staff and SKA representatives in May 2017. “Petitioners made an express and distinct demand to the City,” including that it “obtain a permit for the Project” from the county’s Water and Navigation Control Authority (WNCA) or the county administrator, the SKA’s second amended complaint said. “Petitioners demanded the same actions by providing to then City Mayor Willie Charles Shaw a copy of the SKA’s original Verified Complaint filed in Circuit Court in March 2017,” the second amended complaint added. Under the guidelines of the law, the new complaint added, the SKA also sent a copy of the original complaint to the city through the U.S. Mail on Jan. 19, 2017. (By law, the SKA and Patton had to give the city 30 days of notice before filing their lawsuit.) Addressing SKA members during their regular meeting on Feb. 7, SKA Vice President Luckner said of the May 2017 meeting with senior city staff, “We met live, in action … at our request.” Former City and County Commissioner Nora Patterson, a Siesta resident, accompanied the SKA representatives, Luckner added, “to help mediate the situation, which was very gracious of her.” City Manager Tom Barwin and City Engineer Alexandrea DavisShaw were among the city leaders present, Luckner added. “We went over all kinds of details,” she continued on Feb. 7, and the city representatives “seemed very favorably disposed to the SKA’s request.” Nonetheless, Luckner said, “They never responded, at all.”
Jokers Duo or Frankie Lomardi (5-9 PM)
Desi Adam (4-8 PM)
SUNDAY, MARCH 17 DESI ADAM
Spring ahead with a new youthful glow! As more women learn of the benefits from a microcurrent facial, more are opting for this safe alternative to skincare rather than the more invasive and aggressive treatments on the market today. No longer a treatment reserved just for women, men too, are seeking out and benefitting from these services as well. The effects of microcurrent are accumulative and studies have confirmed that there are significant side benefits including muscle re-education. Not only does it improve aged and slackened skin, fine lines and wrinkles are diminished, and it supports skin correction by encouraging the repair process. Living in the sunshine state, this becomes especially helpful for those with skin damage from the sun since damaged skin requires a gradual and progressive restoration program for long-term optimum health. Keep in mind, results are also dependent upon lifestyle, age, health, and condition of the skin tissue. Connie Lewis, LMT Aesthetician, former proprietor and Spa Director at Massage Experience, Siesta Key is continuing to offer microcurrent (anti-aging) facials at her new studio located inside of SPALYPSO. Sounds good, but how does it work? Microcurrent is naturally generated in the body to produce the energy required for muscle movement and nerve impulses. As we age, the body loses that natural electric current resulting in crepey, loose skin along with a host of other signs of aging. Using the microcurrent machine during a facial provides a gentle and 100% non-invasive treatment that works in synergy with your body’s natural energy system. The microcurrent mimics your body’s own natural pulses and frequencies and zeros in on those frequencies associated with the skin to target the production of collagen, elastin, and fibrous tissues. It sends safe, painless impulses to the muscles in your face to relax muscles that are overly tightened, and strengthens those that are underworked with very low levels of electrical current. By stimulating the production of collagen and elastin the results are a natural-looking lift. During the microcurrent facial, probes are used to physically move the muscle into the desired position to perform what is known as muscle re-education – the process of lengthening or shortening muscles. In essence, it retrains the facial muscles and rebuilds them closer to their original shape. It’s a very luxurious, pampering, results-driven facial which lifts, tones and tightens the muscles of your face. Research on microcurrent technology A study by the University of Washington proved that microcurrent increases your skin’s elastin fibers by 45%, collagen by 10% and the number of blood vessels by 35%. It can increase ATP, your body’s building block, by 500% resulting in softening wrinkles and toning facial muscles. Interestingly, this technology stems from a medical treatment to treat Bell’s Palsy. Many of the patients found it worked so well, they asked to have the unaffected side of their face treated as well. Can you use it in conjunction with facial injections? If you’ve received facial injections, facial sculpting or microcurrent facials are for you too! It will help maintain your lift in between your injections. Since this process is accumulative, more treatments bring more noticeable and longer lasting results. Most people see their desired results within 7 -12 treatments. The combined use of Pevonia Botanica’s ultimate anti-aging products during this facial treatment enhances the treatment even more by assisting in product penetration. Lewis recently closed her former location Massage Experience, Siesta Key and is now practicing in the Gulf Gate Estates area just over the Stickney Point Bridge. She is currently offering her signature treatment that combines a facial and a massage simultaneously. And, of course, her massage offerings include deeply relaxing intuitive massage therapy and her ever-popular hot stone massage. “My personal philosophy when working with a client for the first time or the 101st time is to see with my hands. To help me intuitively know when and how much to use the wands when sculpting during a microcurrent facial,” says Lewis. “Or how much pressure and on what areas to work during a massage session. After so many years of practice, I have a sixth sense that guides me through the service to let my hands tell me what to do. Energetically and physically allowing to give my clients the perfect session.” Connie Lewis, BS LMT Aesthetician, established Massage Experience, Siesta Key (1996-2018) and is now providing all of her services at Spalypso located in the Pine Park Office Centre, 7037 S. Tamiami Trail. Just minutes from the Stickney Point Bridge leading to and from Siesta Key. You can book an appointment online at SpaexperienceSiestaKey.com or by calling 941-350-7495. (MA17596 / MM33422). (Advertorial)
More background offered about installation of South Midnight Pass crosswalk lighting system By Rachel Brown Hackney SarasotaNewsLeader.com
Last spring, a group of residents at the Bay Tree Club on the southern end of Siesta Key achieved success after about two-and-a-half years of persistent effort on a project: Sarasota County staff installed a crosswalk between their buildings on the bay side and on the Gulf of Mexico. Libby Sloan and Margi Ryder had explained in detail that they were concerned about older and handicapped neighbors who had experienced near misses with speeding vehicles. In fact, when I visited with the two women and other residents on April 9, 2018, Betsy Lynch, who has lived in Bay Tree Club almost two decades, demonstrated the slow crossing of the road she has to make because she uses a type of cane. With this reporter watching and taking photos, Lynch was at the midpoint of Midnight Pass Road when a white SUV, approaching from the north, flew past her without ever slowing down. On June 11, 2018, a county crew finally began work on a crosswalk. Sloan and Ryder were ecstatic. However, as seasonal residents began returning to the Key this year, a new problem arose, drivers were speeding through the crosswalk as if it did not exist, in spite of the signage warning of a $166 fine if a vehicle did not stop for a person in the crosswalk. Ryder brought up the concerns during the Jan. 10 Siesta Key Association (SKA) meeting. As Sgt. Paul Cernansky, leader of the Sheriff’s Office substation on the Key, was taking questions from audience members, Ryder reminded him that she had exchanged emails with him and spoken with him on the phone the previous week about the crosswalk situation. “We don’t have the flashing lights,” she pointed out, referring to the system that the county has installed at some crosswalks. After a pedestrian presses a button, lights flash, alerting drivers that a person is preparing to use the crosswalk. “Is there something else we can do?” Ryder asked Cernansky. “We’ve found that four out of five cars aren’t stopping.” She was with her granddaughter one recent day, she pointed out, and as they were in the crosswalk, “a car just went flying right by us.” Ryder added that she feels many drivers traveling on the south end of the island do not expect to see a crosswalk. The crosswalk at Bay Tree Club, she noted, is one of only two; the other is near the Turtle Beach Campground entrance, a slight distance south of Bay Tree Club. “I’d keep calling the county,” Cernansky told her, including the Transportation Operations Division, he added, and her county commissioner. (Commissioner Alan Maio represents Siesta Key, which is part of District 4.) Traffic Engineering and Operations would be the office to handle any enhancement of the crosswalk, Cernansky continued, whereas the Sheriff’s Office can only provide enforcement. “We spent several hours down there since we last spoke,” he told Ryder. A deputy observed the crosswalk for about two hours “in one sitting,” Cernansky said, and then other officers — both in cars and on ATVs — stayed at the site on other occasions, for periods ranging between 15 and 30 minutes. “We’ve had all hands on deck.”
On Jan. 21, in the aftermath of their latest advocacy, the Bay Tree Club residents reported a big surprise: County staff had arrived to install a flashing light system at their crosswalk. Libby Sloan reported in an email. “We have no idea where the request initiated,” she wrote, though she noted that Ryder had asked Cernansky questions at the SKA meeting on Jan. 10. “We are very pleased!!” SNL contacted Cernansky, conveying the news. “I’m glad they’re happy,” he said of the Bay Tree Club residents. Then asked if he could provide any insights into how the lights came to be installed. During a telephone interview, Cernansky explained that the Sheriff’s Office has an internal forum through which officers can convey concerns and alerts about specific situations that demand extra attention. He used that forum, he continued, to write about the crosswalk problems, especially so every Sheriff’s Department officer working on Siesta would be aware of the situation. He added that senior administrative staff at the Sheriff’s Office “get alerted to certain emails” regarding problems on Siesta Key. “Anything that happens on Siesta Key is a big deal,” Cernansky pointed out. Although he had no specific knowledge of what transpired in this case, he said, he indicated that it was likely that senior staff had conveyed the concerns to county staff. Later, Robert Fakhri, manager of the county’s Traffic Engineering and Operations Division wrote in an email, “County administration asked engineering staff to review conditions at that intersection. Traffic engineering reviewed it and determined blinkers at that location might be helpful. The blinkers were installed on 1/22/19. What helped the speedy installation is that the equipment was already in storage. Otherwise it would of taken several weeks to order and install the equipment.” Several Bay Tree Club residents emailed thank-you notes to Commissioner Maio and Fakhri. Among the correspondents were Sloan and Ryder, who wrote on behalf of the Bay Tree Club Board of Directors. Then, about a week later, a fuller explanation about the lighting system’s origin appeared. During the Jan. 10 SKA meeting, Catherine Luckner pointed out, Assistant County Administrator Brad Johnson was present for a program about the county’s handling of illegal short-term home rentals. Johnson apparently was paying close attention when Ryder brought up the Bay Tree Club crosswalk problems. Shortly after that meeting, Johnson sent the following email to the SKA board. “I attended your recent SKA meeting last Thursday with Matt Osterhoudt director of the county’s Planning and Development Services Department and took note of several complaints related to the visibility and safety of the new crosswalk on the southern section of Midnight Pass. As a result I have asked the Director of Public Works to evaluate the crosswalk to see if there is anything else that can be done to increase the safety for pedestrians using it.” Johnson added, “I will let you know what is determined. In the meantime if you have any questions please let me know.”
Island Visitor Publishing, LLC
All Roads Lead To…
Big G’s Oyster Happy Hour from 3-6 Every day 1/2 Priced House Oysters
5204 Ocean Blvd., in the Siesta Key Village Still open despite construction having no connection to her current Due to the huge construction business. project that has been underway at She comes from a family of circus the Key Corners strip mall, many performers and has traveled around folks may have missed a wonderful the world performing with the little gelateria located behind the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey orange mesh, the many beams, and Circus. The family even has their equipment obstructing its view. You own “Star of Fame” at St. Armands may not realize it, but they are, in Circle - The Theron Cycling Troupe. Still a performer at heart, she fact, open. And, you definitely want continues to entertain by retelling to place them on your list to try. Made In Rome Organic Gelato stories of her former days all the uses all organic ingredients and offers while churning out a fresh batch sugar-free, gluten-free, and vegan of her all-natural, organic gelato. options. You’ll be hard-pressed to Many customers welcome the warm find another gelateria in all of Florida conversation and exciting adventures A new flavor is created every were only organic ingredients are she so enthusiastically shares. 15 minutes to ensure the freshest used. Made In Rome Organic Gelato flavors is where you’ll find a wonderful What customers are saying Customers continue to rave about selection of this Italian treat. By using more milk than cream, no egg yolks, along the big flavors coming out of this small shop… with a slow-churn process, your taste buds will be This is by far the best gelato I’ve had! Such a friendly doing a happy dance with the intense flavors and silky staff! The woman who took my order was very sweet and textures this low calorie option provides. gave me a little background about the business. She made There are plenty of flavors to choose from and the me feel so welcome. I usually visit Siesta Key a few times staff at Made In Rome Organic Gelato generously a year and I will make sure that I stop here every time! ~ provide samples of their house-made gelato, where T.S., Jan. 29, 2019. a new flavor is produced every 15 minutes, and as Fantastic and very authentic gelato. They have tons of their name implies, all ingredients used are organic. flavors and let you choose two even if you choose the small No hydrogenated fats or colorants, or preservatives cup. The gelato is creamy and icy, just like in Italy. Service is friendly and fast. It’s a little hard to see the store from are ever used. the street due to construction but it’s really there! ~ C.A., Vegans rejoice Feb. 6, 2019 Yes vegans, you can make this one of your go-to The best gelatos in Sarasota! You will need to go every places because Made In Rome Organic Gelato is day to try them all. The largest selection I’ve ever seen. vegan friendly offering a selection of gelato, cones, The lady’s customer service is impeccable. Please excuse shakes, and even a vegan affogato al caffe. the construction, it’s worth the hassle. ~ D.H. Feb. 5, 2019 Whether you choose vegan-friendly or not, the Completion of the renovation is expected to be affogato al caffe; a double shot of espresso topped completed soon. In the meantime, Diane and Massimo with a scoop of gelato…any flavor, continues to be a asks that you excuse the temporary construction customer favorite. Says owner, Diane Theron-Cuna, clutter outside their shop and invite you to stop in “People go crazy for this!” and take a taste test for yourself. Owners Diane Theron-Cuna and husband, Massimo Made In Rome Organic Gelato is located at 5204 enjoy showing off the method used to construct their Ocean Blvd., in the Siesta Key Village. Their hours gelato. They invite you to watch the process as they are 11:00 a.m. to 11:00 p.m. daily. (941) 960-5344, create a batch of their sinfully delicious gelato. www.madeinromegelato.com (Advertorial) Theron-Cuna’s former career is fascinating,
Siesta Key Oyster Bar, or “SKOB” as the locals call it, is the hangout with the laid-back, beachy atmosphere that will get you right into the Island Spirit. One of the things that set SKOB apart from the other restaurants in Siesta Key Village is that we have some of the best food on the Key.
Live Music Every Day and Night
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Your Go-To Store on the Island Morton’s Siesta Market is your one-stop shop for easy island living. We offer a large selection of staple groceries, beer and wine, as well as fresh produce, meats and seafood. In keeping with our Morton’s tradition, we also carry a delicious array of prepared foods, perfect for take-out, picnics, parties and more.
Please stop in and say hello! 205 Canal Road, Siesta Key • 941-349-1474 • MortonsMarket.com
Visit our new Siesta Village Liquors just next door!
The Best Western Plus Siesta Key Gateway As workers at the Best Western Plus, on the corner of U.S. 41 and Stickney Point Road, put the finishing touches on some of their most recent renovations, owners Maria and Ed Bankemper are looking forward to showing off the result of years of construction. Before their family bought the well-located property in 2007, Maria was operating Cruise Connection, a bus-to-cruise ship company founded by Maria’s parents back in 1987. After they sold the company in 1999, she stayed on and ran it for another seven years for the new owners. Eventually, they decided it was time to leave and move on to something new. “We had started looking at hotels to buy well before we left the company,” Maria said. “This property was a Holiday Inn Express at that time and was in disrepair and needed a lot of work. After we bought it, we invested a whole lot of money just to get it running again.” Of the 120 guest rooms, more than 30 of them were inhabitable at the time and didn’t even have air conditioning. Most of the case goods (beds, dressers, credenzas) were also unusable. The property had originally opened as a Days Inn in back in 1990, and the restaurant space out front, which is now a Gecko’s, was the Daybreak, Days Inn’s signature eatery. Later, the owners switched over to the Holiday Inn brand, renting out the restaurant space, and then afterwards, it became the Holiday Inn Express. When the Bankempers took it over, they were first tasked with trying to come up with a branding solution. In the condition it was in, the property was not really attractive to any of the major hotel franchise companies, but in researching options, Maria and Ed figured out that once they completed most of their renovations, Best Western Plus would be a good fit. Maria said that the company would require them to keep up a level of standards but would also give them the autonomy they needed to bring some local flair to the property. “Because of where we are located, we decided to go with a coastal theme,” she said. We wanted to make it feel different than you would normally feel walking into a hotel like this.” The property is within biking or walking distance to the beach, so Maria says she wanted guests to know that they were near the beautiful Gulf of Mexico. The couple painted the exterior blue and renovated the guest rooms to include art from local tropical artist Shawn McLoughlin. The headboards of the beds are even adorned with a cloth print of one of his paintings featuring sea oats. In the lobby is a comfortable breakfast bar and by the large pool is a firepit and the Sand Dollar Pool Bar. Around the pool area is where there is a firepit and live entertainment four days a week, which the public is welcome to come and enjoy. Maria said that Mark Smith, project architect, and Beyond Design Contracting also incorporated some interesting design aspects in the exterior work. “The concrete in the entire front has been ripped out and pavers installed, and the building has been completely repainted,” she said. “But the outside railings were also mitigated with blue panels. Putting those panels in there just sort of brought it all together.” Guests will also appreciate the new state-of-the-art wireless internet and hot water systems that the Bankempers have installed, as well as the bicycles kept on site to use for a fiveminute ride to the beach, and free shuttle service to Siesta Key, if preferred. As a lifelong resident of Sarasota and longtime business owner, Maria said one of the most important things to her family is giving back to their community. That’s why they are
By Debbie Flessner
heavily involved with the Siesta Key Chamber of Commerce (Maria has served on the board for eight years) and the Siesta Key Crystal Classic Sandsculpting Festival, of which Maria has been the director for the past seven years. The Best Western Plus serves as point for the festival, hosting the competitors for the duration. In the future, the family may add some other properties to their hotel portfolio, but for now, Maria said she’s just happy with the way this one is shaping up. “We’d like to expand our back area, and maybe put in an even larger resort-style pool,” she said. “But we’re just very fortunate to have a huge property here, and to be able to bring something here that is unique.” Locally owned and operated by the family partnership M&M Lodgings LLC, the Best Western Plus is located at 6600 South Tamiami Trail, in Sarasota, just east of the Stickney Point Bridge. For more information, visit the website at www.bestwesternsiestakey.com or call 941-924-4900.
You must be a registered Best Western Plus guest to use the pool, but everyone is welcome to sit by the firepit and enjoy the bar and live music
Katrina Swaney, Food and Beverage Director, happily serves up drinks by the pool at the Best Western Plus
Island Visitor Publishing, LLC
Siesta Key Wine Bar - a New Location to Celebrate! When the Gamble family purchased Siesta Key Tropical Wines in August, their vision was to change the business model to create a warm and friendly Wine Bar where both locals and visitors to Siesta Key felt like they found their “Wine Bar.” In just six short months, with the help of a total renovation and transformation into a comfortable setting with a coastal vibe, Siesta Key Wine Bar has become not only a place for friends and family to gather, but also a special venue for small groups and celebrations. On any given Friday or Saturday, there is usually a small gathering of friends to celebrate a special birthday, a bachelorette party enjoying a wine tasting, or a happy couple celebrating a romantic anniversary. The Wine Bar has also hosted many larger birthday parties and a few private events for nonprofit groups and other businesses. The quiet, non-bar like atmosphere is perfect for other events and gatherings, such as book club meetings, after hours business functions, girls night out, mom’s groups and any other type of activity that typically would be held in a coffee shop. Exclusive private events, such as wedding rehearsals, retirement parties and other corporate meetings and celebrations may be scheduled as well. Customized packages can be created for groups for up to 40-45 people. Food may be brought in by customers or may be catered to suit the occasion. Many locals are surprised to learn that the new business offers much more than sweet tropical wines as the previous owners served for the last 10 years. While those same wines are still available, the inventory of dry, traditional wines has improved dramatically. The Gambles participate in wine tastings on a regular basis to bring in new and exciting dry wines and have built the offerings to over 120 different options by the bottle. Wine tasting is a popular choice for small groups and you can choose from approximately 35-40 different types of wine, both sweet or dry, for less than $10 for a flight of three. Wine by the glass or by the bottle are also options. For more information on scheduling your next celebration or event, contact Darlene Gamble at 941.323.3212 or DrinkWine@SiestaKeyWineBar. com. Advertorial
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The Siesta Key Chamber Welcomes New Membership Director Nancy-jo Manney The Siesta Key Chamber proudly announces Nancy-jo Manney as the new Membership Director. She and her husband Dave are originally from the BaltimoreWashington metro area. With 20 years of professional chamber experience, she has worn many hats, including serving as the President of the Greater Springfield, Virginia, Chamber of Commerce. She has a well-rounded background in membership, volunteer management, events, and community involvement. She is a graduate of Western Maryland College and spent ten years in the hospitality industry before her
time in the chamber industry. She was a member of the Virginia Association of Chamber of Commerce Executives and the Northern Virginia Coalition of Chambers of Commerce. Nancy-jo believes in the power of volunteering in her community and has done so as a member of Springfield Days Festival board and planning committee, organizing Springfield’s annual Bridge Walk and serving as vice-president of the Transportation Association of Greater Springfield. Please join us as we extend her a warm, Siesta Key welcome! Ann Frescura Executive Director, Siesta Key Chamber
Siesta Key Chamber Announces 2018 Award Recipients and 2019 Board of Directors The Siesta Key Chamber of Commerce held its Annual Awards Dinner, Thursday January 31, 2019 at Marina Jack, in Sarasota, Florida. Award recipients were recognized and celebrated for their outstanding business achievement, volunteerism, and community engagement. Congratulations to the following: Debbie Harvey (Sharon Cunningham Visitors Center Volunteer of the Year); Dawn Bear and Kyna Smith, Siesta Beach Report (Volunteers of the Year); Diane de Spirlet, Observer Media Group (Shining Star); The Law Offices of Eric C. Fleming, P.A. (Small Business of the Year); Siesta Key Oyster Bar, Beth and Keith Cipielewski, Stephanie Brown (Large Business of the Year); Lauren Tominelli, SCAT, Siesta Breeze Trolley (Community Partner); and Mason Tush, III, CB’s Saltwater Outfitters (Business Person of the Year)! Board of Director Service Awards were given to the following: Wendall Jacobsen, 2018 Board Chair; Mark Smith, 2018 Immediate Past Chair; Nikki Logan
Curran 2016-2018; and Debbie Szczesny 2013-2018. The Chamber also elected the 2019 Board of Directors and Officers: Eric Fleming, Board Chair; Wendall Jacobsen, Immediate Past Chair; Mason Tush, Chair-Elect; Maria Bankemper, Treasurer; Stephanie Brown, Secretary; Steve Cavanaugh, Kara AlticeMontes, Joye Argo, Kathy Elliott, Mike Gatz, Gabe Hartmann, Helene Hyland, Josh Ladwig, Al Maio, and Mark Smith. The Chamber would like to thank our silent auction donors: Café Gabbiano, CB’s Saltwater Outfitters, Cruisin’ Tikis, Daiquiri Deck, Dutch Valley, First Watch, Foxy Lady, Gecko’s, GEM Travel Consultants, Inc. Grasshopper Restaurant, Mattison’s, Shawn McLoughlin, Siesta Healing, Siesta Key Oyster Bar, Sleep Inn and Main Stay Suites, Sunshine and Sand Hidden Treasures, The Inn on Siesta Key, and The Ringling. Also, thank you to Signarama for designing the new photo backdrop and G. Fried Flooring for donating the red carpet.
Debbie Harvey (Sharon Cunningham Visitors Center Volunteer of the Year)
Dawn Bear and Kyna Smith, Siesta Beach Report (Volunteers of the Year)
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Island Visitor Publishing, LLC
The Shops of
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Island Chatter Continued from page 2
“We’ve recently installed bollards at the end of Avenida Messina to try to keep people from driving on the beach,” Mau explained. “Last year, we had a number of occasions when youthful drivers were on the beach,” he continued, including incidents during sea turtle nesting season, which runs from May 1 through Oct. 31. “And that’s just totally unacceptable.” County workers also relocated the handicapped parking space at Access 2, Mau noted. “We do have a lot of ‘No Parking’ signs in that location,” he added. “We will be enhancing those.” Mau also pointed out — as county communications staff previously had explained that Emergency Services Department staff members had to assess the situation at Access 2 before the handicapped space was moved. They wanted to be certain that emergency vehicles would have sufficient turning radius. However, even with the bollards in place, Mau explained, county government staff has no enforcement authority, if someone tries to drive onto the beach. A Sheriff’s Office deputy, he said, “has to go out there … and issue citations.” “The county has the authority to end access at a road unless there is due reason for it to be open,” Mau continued. In response to one audience member’s question, Mau added, “If you own a piece of property there, we will be glad to provide access for you.” “Thus far,” Mau continued, “Mike Cosentino — who owns the parcel at 10 Beach Road — is the only person who has requested such access.” “There is a chained gate to the right,” Mau added, which leads to county property to the north. County Parks, Recreation and Natural Resources staff keeps a key to that gate, he said, so anyone who needs access to the beach north of Access 2 through that gate can contact staff.
A very good trend with crime When Sgt. Paul Cernansky, leader of the Sheriff’s Office Siesta Key substation, appeared before SKA members for his report on Feb. 7, he said, “Two is the number this month.” Cernansky noted, “We had two auto thefts, two residential burglaries, two vehicle burglaries, two petty thefts” and one robbery, which was an incident involving two parties who know each other. Continued on page 23
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Sgt. Cernansky bombarded with traffic questions During a recent SKA meeting, Sgt. Paul Cernansky of the Sheriff’s Office faced a barrage of questions about a number of issues related to traffic. First, SKA Director Erin Kreis told Cernansky that she and her husband manage a vacation rental property on the Key. The previous Sunday, she said, she saw a deputy on an ATV come onto the grounds and drive around. She was curious about the incident, she added. He was the officer she saw, Cernansky replied. “Do you do that on all the properties,” she asked. Yes, he told her. Officers check on properties on a varied schedule, he added, indicating that they do not want people who might be contemplating crimes to get accustomed to seeing law enforcement officers on a regular schedule. “I’m trying to be out and about at all different times,” Cernansky said. SKA member Marcia Wallace then told Cernansky that she had observed an increase in the number of golf carts in use on the island. “Are
they legal?” she asked. “Yes, they are legal,” he responded, but only in certain areas. As slowspeed vehicles, he pointed out, golf carts legally should be operated only on roads with posted slow speeds. He was not certain of the cutoff point, he said, adding that he would check on it. Questions about golf carts on island roads have arisen for years. During a May 2013 County Commission meeting, Paula Wiggins, manager of the county’s Transportation Planning Division, explained that golf carts may be allowed on a road with a speed limit of 35 mph or less if they are “street legal,” meaning they are equipped with headlights and other safety features. Moreover, Cernansky told the SKA members, if a golf cart is registered, so it can be driven legally on roads, the drivers of those golf carts have to have drivers’ licenses. Wallace pointed out that she sees “a lot of kids” at the wheel of golf carts on Siesta. The Sheriff’s Office addresses those situations, Cernansky said, just as it would if an underage
person were driving a regular vehicle. Wallace then noted that she even has seen people in golf carts on the Key using bike lanes to pass vehicles on the roads. Another person asked Cernansky about how to deal with gridlock on the island. “Is there anyone to call when you’re at a standstill?” the woman asked. Then she explained that, one recent day, she was trying to turn north onto Midnight Pass Road at the Beach Road intersection when she encountered a traffic backup. Vehicles apparently had stopped,
By Rachel Brown Hackney
SarasotaNewsLeader.com several drivers tried to turn into the we can’t.” entrance to St. Boniface Episcopal SKA Director Kreis also asked Church, where they could make whether bicyclists are supposed to a donation to park and then go to travel in the same direction as motor vehicles. “We see an awful lot going Siesta Public Beach. She characterized the situation the opposite way.” as having “a green light to go “Bicyclists have to go in the direction of traffic,” Cernansky told nowhere.” “If it’s a traffic control situation,” her. “It’s a never-ending battle for Cernansky responded, “we’ll law enforcement officers.” address it on a case-by-case basis.” Kreis then asked whether the He suggested that in such a situation, island bicycle rental shops should she call the non-emergency number have an obligation to provide each for the Sheriff’s Office, which is 316- customer a copy of the law. That would be a regulatory 1201. “ S o m e t i m e s w e c a n d o issue, Cernansky said, not a law something,” he added. “Sometimes enforcement issue.
Sheriff’s Report January 21 - February 18, 2019
There were 16 crimes reported on the Key between 1/21 - 2/18/19
1/24/19 Possession of Marijuana Public Beach A woman was charged with possession after being caught with seven homemade marijuana joints. She explained that she self-medicates due to an injury. 1/24/19 Theft 400 Block Island Circle A man reported his tag was stolen off of his truck. He said he was working in the area between 8-11 a.m. When he went to leave, he noticed it was gone. There were no suspects. 1/27/19 Stolen Vehicle Burglary Residence 1000 Block S. View Drive A woman reported she and her husband went to bed and had the garage door closed. They woke up the next morning and noticed the garage door was down but the side door was open. The door was a wooden screen type and the lock and hook mechanism was now broken off. They had no surveillance footage and were not aware of a specific timeframe. The husband thought he might have heard footsteps in the house sometime during the night but was unsure as he was partially asleep. The car was equipped with OnStar and the woman was in touch with them about the possible location of the vehicle. She said the vehicle was unlocked and the keys were kept in the cupholder. As the scene was being processed the woman approached the officer and explained that she was on the phone with her son who had come in the middle of the night, knowing that the car would be unlocked, and took the car. The officer spoke to the son who stated he was in contact with his mom about returning the vehicle. She advised that he had permission in the past to use the vehicle but was unaware of his involvement in this matter. She signed a waiver of prosecution. 1/27/19 Theft 6300 block Midnight Pass Rd. The manager of a bike rental store reported a men’s bike was stolen sometime between the timeframe of January 27 - February 1. The bike was
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a grey Trek 22 ½ inch men’s valued at $300. 1/27/19 Battery 5200 Block Ocean Blvd. A man explained he was punched by another man after attempting to assist security personnel as they tried to remove the suspect from the establishment. The suspect had been involved in another incident at the bar. As he was being escorted out, he turned around and attempted to attack the security personnel at which point the victim stepped in between them. A fight ensued and as the men fell to the ground, the victim was punched in the face by the suspect. The suspect who was clearly intoxicated, first claimed he was defending himself, but after changing his story several times admitted that he might have been the aggressor. The victim stated he did not wish to press charges and signed a waiver of prosecution. The suspect is not allowed to return to the property. 2/7/19 Petit Theft Public Beach A man reported his wallet was stolen from the beach. He had placed his wallet in his pants pocket and left them on the beach while he and his fiancé had gone swimming. When they came out of the water they noticed the wallet was gone. There were no witnesses. The wallet contained both of their drivers’ licenses, a debit card and $5 cash.
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Gulf Gate Food + Beer a local hang out, a family gathering spot, a football mancave, a fun day spot, a late night grub sesh, a craft beer pub, a quick & cheap lunch break… it’s a lot of things to the local Siesta Key & Gulf Gate neighborhoods. Owners Mike and Casey opened the doors of Gulf Gate Food + Beer in late August and haven’t looked back since! In a short period of time they’ve become a staple in the Gulf Gate bar & restaurant scene and built a loyal local following. “We’ve become the place that our guests like to show off to their friends and family visiting from out of town. We’ve really been lucky to have such a loyal following in such a short amount of time,” says Mike. What’s for lunch? You’ll be glad you asked! At Gulf Gate Food + Beer they feature one of the cheapest lunch specials in town. They call it the “$6.99 Cheap Lunch” and they have a couple options for you to choose from. First is a cheeseburger with all the trimmings and an order of fresh cut fries that they cut in house and shake in a secret blend of spices. Also offered is a chicken philly that features a house roasted and pulled chicken, a garlic bread hoagie, and a house made white American whiz served with an order of fresh cut fries. If you’re looking for something different, they also have their chicken burrito bowl which has a tomatillo roasted chicken, fresh pico de gallo, pinto beans, monterey jack cheese & sour cream served over a bed of sticky rice. Looking for a late-night snack? Gulf Gate Food + Beer’s kitchen is open late every single night of the week. Sunday – Thursday the kitchen is open until 1 a.m. Friday and Saturday they are cooking food until 2 a.m. So whether you get out of work late or you’re out for a night on the town or maybe just like eating late.. they’ve got you covered. The full menu is available until close. Where else will you get a “poke tuna bowl” or some “Mexican street corn” late at night in Sarasota? The most common thing people dining in the restaurant notice is the menu. “People keep telling me this is the most interesting, creative, and diverse menu they’ve seen in a long time. I think we just set out to create a menu that was different from other sports bars. We wanted to have items that are made from scratch and are made with integrity. Food Network and the internet have changed food and restaurants because people know so much more about food now. Just putting a cheeseburger on the menu isn’t enough. “It needs to be the best darn cheeseburger and it better have options!” says Casey. Everything on the menu is ala carte to encourage sharing and different combinations. Their menu has a myriad of great shareable options from the “tin can nachos” to the “brussels with bacon” to the “holy guacamole burger” to the “monte’s cristo pb+j”… mix and match however you want, the choice is yours! Gulf Gate Food + Beer 6528 Superior Avenue, Sarasota Fl, 34231. www.eatfooddrinkbeer.com (gulfgatefoodandbeer on Instagram) Advertorial
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A new facility for Fire Station 13, the Breeze’s route and illegal short-term rentals among top topics during county staff presentation Rachel Brown Hackney to Condominium Council By SarasotaNewsLeader.com A new two-story building for Fire Station No. 13, a means of tracking the movements of the Siesta Key Breeze open-air trolley and illegal short-term rentals were just a sampling of the topics senior Sarasota County staff members covered during the Feb. 19 meeting of the Siesta Key Condominium Council. In 2018, when Sarasota County Fire Chief Michael Regnier appeared before the Condominium Council members, he took questions about the fact that the department had to evacuate its personnel and equipment from the Siesta station before Hurricane Irma was expected to strike the area in September 2017. Having a new structure in place will not eliminate the need for such evacuations, just because Siesta is one of the areas in the county most vulnerable to storm surge, Regnier said on Feb. 19. However, if the County Commission ultimately approves a redesigned facility for Station No. 13, he added, “we will have a place to come back to” if a storm does inflict significant damage on the Key. The existing building, he said, dates to 1973-74. Regnier explained that staff has been working with an architect on a design similar to that of the new two-story fire station at the intersection of Bee Ridge Road and Murdock Avenue. The façade of the Siesta Key structure “will probably be very different,” he added, so it will blend into the beach community atmosphere. (Station No. 13 is next to Siesta Public Beach on Beach Road.) Staff will have “a lot of interaction” with the public, he pointed out, before decisions about the appearance of the facility are finalized. In response to a questions, Ashley Lusby, media relations officer for the county’s Emergency Services Department, explained in an email that a discussion about a new building for Fire Station No. 13 would be on the County Commission’s March 13 agenda. “At that time,” she continued, “the board will consider an architect and construction manager for the project.” The groundbreaking is “tentatively scheduled for the end of this year,” she added; the new station would be
built in the same location.. Transit and Code Enforcement questions A second county speaker at the meeting, Rob Lewis, serves as both the interim director of Sarasota County Area Transit (SCAT) and director of governmental relations. In discussing SCAT, Lewis pointed to the popularity of the Siesta Key Breeze, the free trolley service that circulates between Turtle Beach and Siesta Village. Ridership on the Breeze from Dec. 22, 2018 through Jan. 31 was 77,812, he noted. In its first year of operation — from March 2017 to March 2018 — the Breeze transported its 250,000th rider, Lewis said. Condominium Council President Frank Jurenka reminded Lewis that when the Breeze was launched, SCAT staff indicated that a mobile app would be available at some point to enable passengers to track the trolley’s route over the island. That way, they would not have to waste time waiting for it. “That would be especially beneficial,” Jurenka added. A new firm won the contract last summer to operate the Breeze for the county, Lewis explained, and that company has equipment on the vehicles it operates that will enable riders to follow the trolley online on a real-time basis. SCAT staff expects the launch of the tracking system “sometime in the next month,” Lewis added. “It’s not a mobile app” that a person downloads from the Apple store, for example, Lewis pointed out. Instead, a person will be able to visit a specific SCAT website on a smartphone, an iPad or a laptop computer to check on the trolley’s location. The internet address is https://scattrack.scgov.net/ bustime.jsp. Lewis promised to let Jurenka know when the app goes live for the Breeze, so the Condominium Council can alert its members. All county buses have GPS devices, Lewis noted, so riders can track them, as well.
Siesta resident Michael Shay also asked Lewis about the potential for extending the trolley’s route to the northern part of the island. “The constraint is finding an adequate place to turn around,” Lewis replied. With the current route, he continued, the trolley comes up Canal Road, behind Siesta Village, and then stops at Morton’s Siesta Market before heading southbound on Ocean Boulevard. “It has the ability to turn around at Turtle Beach.” Staff has been exploring options on the northern part of the Key, Lewis added. “What about the streets up here?” Shay asked, referring to Gleason Avenue, where Siesta Key Chapel is located. (The meeting was taking place in a room at the church.) For that matter, Shay continued, what about having the trolley turn around on Siesta Chapel’s property? “We have to limit our turnarounds … to public roads,” Lewis responded. However, he added, “I don’t want to rule anything out.” During the meeting, Shay also took the opportunity to ask County Administrator Lewis about ongoing problems with Code Enforcement on the island, especially in regard to illegal rentals of homes in single-family neighborhoods. The County Commission is looking at a stiffer fine, Lewis explained, but, under the guidelines of Florida law, “You have to be able to establish a violation and due process,” and anyone who violates the county code has to be given the opportunity to “cure” the situation. Even if county Code Enforcement staff establishes that a violation continues occurring, Lewis said, the staff member has to present the case to a Special Magistrate. It is up to that court official, Lewis added, to decide how to proceed, and the decision may be to give the offender 30 more days to clear up the problem. “We’re still trying to figure out what the legal options are,” he said. Ultimately, Lewis continued, the County Commission may agree to implement new procedures, and some of them “may have to be tested in court, I think.”
Another fatal accident reported in Siesta Drive/Higel Avenue curve on Rachel Brown Hackney north Siesta Key By SarasotaNewsLeader.com Officers with the Sarasota Police Department are continuing their investigation into a fatal motorcycle accident that occurred in the early morning hours of Feb. 16 at the intersection of Siesta Drive and Higel Avenue, Genevieve Judge, the department’s public information officer, reported. The intersection was closed from approximately midnight until 5 a.m., Judge added. It was the fourth fatal accident in the same 2-mile stretch of Siesta Drive in two years, the chair of a neighborhood activist group pointed out to The Sarasota News Leader. Members of Make Siesta Drive Safer (MSDS), a committee of the Bay Island Siesta Association, have been urging City and County of Sarasota leaders and representatives of the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) since 2017 to take steps to — as their name makes clear — make Siesta Drive safer.
Just after midnight on Feb. 16, a motorcyclist was traveling northbound on Higel Avenue when the person apparently lost control of the vehicle, Judge explained in a press release. The driver then was struck by another vehicle that was traveling southbound, she added. The motorcyclist died at the scene as a result of the injuries sustained in the incident, Judge wrote. The next of kin of the motorcyclist had not been notified, Judge noted in her Feb. 16 news release; therefore, she was unable to release the victim’s name. She still was unable to release that information prior to the publication deadline for this issue of Siesta Sand. It was unknown at that point, Judge noted, whether speed, drugs or alcohol contributed to the accident. In a statement it released on Feb. 16, the MSDS committee wrote that it “is saddened to learn of yet another fatal accident at the curve of Siesta Drive and Higel Avenue …”
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Based on information the members had received, the statement added that the driver of the motorcycle was struck by a van that was traveling south on the road. “Our group is even more concerned for the fact that, even after we have carefully documented the high number of accidents at this location, and informed FDOT, only minor modifications have been made by FDOT,” the statement added. Those changes, it continued, have not proven “sufficient to get drivers to slow down enough to navigate the curve safely.” After taking FDOT representatives on a site visit in the summer of 2017, members of the Bay Island Siesta Association and Make Siesta Drive Safer won agreement from FDOT to reduce the speed limit in the vicinity of the Higel/Siesta Drive curve and to enhance the warning signs for drivers on both the northbound and southbound approaches. Continued on page 29
Receiving history from a reader By Bob Stein
Island Visitor Publishing, LLC
Seafood lovers, it’s good and fresh
Siesta Sand recently received a letter accompanied by a full edition of the Siesta Key Pelican April 20, 1978 paper. The Sarasota resident is Larry Rider. In his letter, Rider stated “I was rummaging through my late mother’s stuff and discovered the enclosed Siesta Key Pelican. Rider went on to say, “My parents bought a rental house in 1955 upon return from their overseas Army assignment, but didn’t retire and move here until 1971. In 1955, my sister and I thought that the house was so far out in the boondocks… “ Rider believed his mother may have saved the copy because of advertisement from her husband’s real estate office, Rider, Opitz & Seale Realty, Inc. The ad appeared on page 19 of the paper. In the letter Rider went on to say “I believe his old office is now the Siesta Key Oyster Bar.” It was interesting looking at the real estate prices of the day. A 2 bedroom 2 ½ bath 100 foot waterfront home was listed for $54,500. A home on Casey Key with access on both the Gulf and bay with a swimming pool was listed for $79,900. Another ad was listing beach front waterfront lots on Beach Road for $27,900. The featured article on the cover was “Now We Are 7” celebrating the seventh anniversary of the paper. As you can see with the accompanying photo, the cover had 7 pelicans floating in the water. Another article on the cover was the expansion of St. Boniface, “St. Boniface Launches Building Program.” Paging through the paper was the “Sheriff’s Report” listing four crimes. The crimes of the day had three burglaries and one assault of a woman outside her place of employment. Some things never change.
Remembering Deet Jonker By Rachel Brown Hackney SarasotaNewsLeader.com
In late January, we learned of the death of Deet Jonker, who served for many years as a director of the Siesta Key Association (SKA). His obituary, from the PalmsRobarts Funeral Home in Sarasota, says he died on Jan. 15 at the age of 82. He is survived by his wife, Nina “Lynn” Jonker. Catherine Luckner & Deet Jonker, SKA During the SKA’s 2017 annual Annual Meeting March 4 2017 meeting, held on March 4 of that year, the board members honored Jonker for being what Vice President Catherine Luckner called “a super volunteer extraordinaire” for the SKA and other organizations. She presented him an award inscribed with the following: “Our gratitude, forever, Deet Jonker, for your 15 years of service as Membership Chairman. You made it happen.” Joachim “Deet” D. Jonker was born on Sept. 20, 1936, the obituary said. “He was a retired entertainment executive who held various management production positions with the ABC television network for 33 years. During his tenure there, he was actively involved with the production of five Olympic Games as well as many other significant events and shows,” the obituary added. He received an Emmy for individual achievement for producing the 1984 Summer Olympics in Los Angeles, which was held in Sarajevo, Yugoslavia, the SKA directors noted in 2017. From 1991 to 1996, Jonker was the senior vice president of production and executive producer at Radio City Music Hall in New York City, the obituary continued. “He produced the Radio City Christmas Spectacular in New York City; Branson, Missouri; and Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. He was also the Executive Producer of the Great Radio City Spectacular at the Flamingo Hilton in Las Vegas, Nevada.” “Additionally,” the obituary said, Jonker “co-produced four Republican National Conventions for David J. Nash Associates, as well as the 2000 Political Fest presentation in Philadelphia.”
Yelp review: I see why this place is all five stars. Amazing find, tucked away in a nondescript strip mall adds to its local, simple vibe. Best seafood I have had in a long time. Service made it feel like we were part of the family, four happy diners tonight. If you read this post, stop searching and start eating. Seriously do not pass up this little gem. Living in Florida, you expect to find fresh seafood no matter where you dine. If you are a local seafood lover, you probably have a mental list of go-to restaurants which serve the freshest seafood. Fresh Catch Fish Market & Grill needs to be added to it. Fresh Catch’s father/son duo, Bob and Devon Provost have a serious passion for seafood which started way back when the family lived in the Boston area. Their simply prepared, neverfried, never-frozen dishes are paired with a variety of simple sauces that serve to complement, so the freshness of the seafood shines. Your fish/seafood selection goes from the case onto the grill. Prepared grilled or blackened, topped with lemon and butter, Pico de Gallo or tropical salsa. Served with a fresh ear of corn on the cob and baby roasted potatoes. Soups, salads, sandwiches and steam pots round out the menu. If room permits, be sure to order a slice of their homemade key lime pie. Bob’s wife, Debra, makes the key lime pie, using freshly whipped cream. The restaurant also offers a nice selection of beers and wines. Fresh Catch Fish Market & Grill, located at 7119 S. Tamiami Trail, just south of Stickney Point Road in the Buccaneer Plaza, is a casual restaurant/market with indoor and outdoor seating for close to 30. Here’s what more patrons are saying about the restaurant on line: Tried this place last night on a whim and it did not disappoint! Everything from the staff, to the menu, to the meal itself was perfection. It’s a small place and luckily we’d come in between dinner rushes and got a table right away. Within 10 mins the place was full again. The wait staff was smiling and helpful. We shared stone crab soup to start with a couple of ice cold beers, tons of crab in the soup and excellent flavor. For our meals we got blackened tripletail and snow crab claws. Each came with a side of roasted potatoes. I can’t say enough about how fresh and delicious the entire meal was. We will be back! WOW! WOW! WOW! This place is a hidden gem! Fish was fresh today and you could taste the difference. Very clean kitchen. They cooked the fish to perfection and the presentation was 5 stars like you would expect at a fancy resort; those extra added steps. This place is the real deal. Only thing that made me upset was that I never knew it was here before. Sooooood GOOD! This is must try! I was so glad to find this cute restaurant and fish market. To get a high-quality fish you need a fish market and this fits the bill. I wanted a takeout fish plate and I got the blackened pompano with potatoes and corn. I made a salad at home and had a beautiful meal. The corn was not overlooked. It also has a big counter so the next time I will order some oysters and try another dish. It’s much bigger than I thought. I am going to become a regular. See more reviews online at Yelp and Trip Advisor. Special orders and reservations accepted. Fresh Catch Fish Market and Grill is open from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m., Monday through Saturday. 941-413-7133, freshcatchfishmarketandgrill.com (Advertorial)
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Seafood pop-up restaurant to open on Siesta Key Staff report The term pop-up restaurant is a very common concept in larger cities like NYC and popular among celebrity chefs. Here you’ll see Halloween stores open up in an abandoned warehouse or storefront from September through October using this same idea. Scott Dolan, owner of Big Water Fish Market is taking this model and implementing a pop-up seafood shack. It is scheduled to open March 1st and close sometime after Easter. Says Dolan, “We want to offer our island guests a stress-free stay without the hassle of having to travel off-island.” It will provide a place for Big Water Fish Market overflow and another shellfish option. The menu will change daily says Dolan. “The menu will mostly consist of shellfish and raw bar options. This is not a sushi place but seafood steam pots, appetizers, stone crabs and a raw bar that will highlight a specialty tuna tartare and raw oysters.” Dolan warns us not to expect much fish on the menu as the pop-up will specialize in shellfish with a daily menu change. No website, no social media, no takeout. If you are familiar with Dolan’s cooking style you know that the daily menu will be creative, fresh and delicious. Expect to see a lot of octopus, ceviche, poke, tartare in the raw bar, seafood towers, steam-pots, and creative daily dinner specials such as Jambalaya, Gumbo, surf and turf, Lobster tails and whatever the combo of Scott and Jack Hodges come up with while preparing for the evening’s menu. The room can be saved and a specialized menu created for parties of 20 or more. Interested? Call Scott or Jack at 941-554-8101 during the hours of 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday. This room located at 6639 Midnight Pass Road, is next to the BIG WATER FISH MARKET and will open at 5 p.m. Monday through Saturday. Closed on Sundays and Closed St. Patrick’s day weekend as Scott and some of his staff will be attending an international seafood expo in Boston that weekend.
SCOTTY’S SHELLFISH SHACK – Menu changes daily RAW BAR • TUNA TARTARE – Sashimi grade tuna served in a soft-shell tortilla taco with soy sauce and wasabi…$12 • RAW OYSTERS – Local fresh Gulf Coast oysters served with cocktail sauce, horseradish, mignonette sauce and lemon…$12 for ½ dozen APPETIZERS • OYSTERS BOURDAIN – Steamed oysters with homemade pesto, bacon bits and melted Havarti cheese… $15 for ½ dozen • “DRUNKEN” PEEL-N-EAT SHRIMP – Florida pink shrimp steamed in wine, garlic, butter, Old Bay and parsley… $12 for ½ pound or $22 for a full pound • SEAFOOD TOWER…. 6 shrimp, 4 Jumbo Scallops, 4 oysters $30 STEAMPOTS • SCOTTY’S SHELLFISH STEAMPOT’s New England Lobster Pot, Florida Stone Crab Pot, Alaskan Crab Legs and shrimp Pot, Scott’s Deluxe……All Steam pots $35 ENTRÉE SPECIAL • Entrée changes daily. See special board
County residents save about $7 million a year on cost of flood insurance, thanks to county participation in federal Rachel Brown Hackney program By SarasotaNewsLeader.com Thanks to Sarasota County’s voluntary participation in an initiative offered through the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP), Sarasota County property owners save $7 million a year on the cost of flood insurance. That was the good news goods Charles Walter, senior manager of the county’s Stormwater Division, pointed out to the County Commission on Jan. 29. The same day, the board voted unanimously to adopt a resolution approving the county’s revised Floodplain Management Plan and Program for Public Information. The last update of the plan was in 2015, Walter noted. Property owners probably would pay twice as much per year if the county did not participate in the NFIP’s Community Rating System (CRS) Program, Commissioner Nancy Detert said in making the motion. “It’s an easy and good thing for us to do this.” Walter told the board members that CRS Program activities cost the county about $500,000 a year. Therefore, he said, the $7 million in savings on 38,402 flood insurance policies countywide is “a significant return on investment for the board.” The county joined the NFIP in 1972, he noted. Then, in 1992, the county applied for and won approval to join the voluntary Community Rating System Program, which gives participants credits for their implementation of flood protection activities “that exceed the minimum standards of the NFIP,” a Jan. 29 staff memo explained. For example, Walter noted, the county gets points for its requirement that the finished ground floor of any new construction in a floodplain has to be elevated sufficiently to reduce the risk of damage. The county also gets points for keeping track of the work of its Building Department staff in overseeing such construction, he added. The focus is on reducing damage to insurable properties, he explained. “It’s really the property that was originally permitted under air” on which staff puts its attention, he said. “The CRS is done for everything that’s in basically a special flood hazard area, and we have quite a few of those in our community,” Walter said. The flood insurance savings property owners realize are based on the community’s rating, he continued. “We’re rated a 5,” he added, “which is very good for the community. We’re one of the lowest rated counties in the state.” As a result, Walter pointed out, property owners get a discount of about 25% on their flood insurance premiums. The CRS Program includes mapping of floodprone areas and public education and outreach, he continued. Additionally, he explained, “We try and maintain our existing floodplain areas.” Through the utilization of regional facilities such as the Celery Fields
stormwater project, he added, “We want to try to keep our floodwaters in the floodplains.” A slide Walter showed the board said, “Floods are the #1 natural disaster in the United States.” The slide also noted, “Every home is at risk from some form of flooding. This can result from heavy rain or storm surges.” The revised Floodplain Management Plan the commission approved on Jan. 29 says in its introduction that the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) “estimates that homes in high-risk areas have at least a 25% chance of flooding during a 30year period. The National Weather Service estimates direct flood damages to property between 1985 and 2014 averaged approximately $7.96 billion per year (adjusted to 2014 dollars for inflation).” Sarasota County has “more than 420 miles of rivers, streams, and canals,” the introduction continues. “In addition, there are 43 named lakes covering 2,091 acres, and over 70 square miles of estuaries and bays that support diverse habitats for plants and animals.” The primary change in the revised Floodplain Management Plan before the commission for consideration on Jan. 29, Walter said, related to information sharing. County staff had been working on a multijurisdictional program to educate members of the public about how to protect themselves and their property. The Cities of Venice and North Port, he noted, “are doing a lot of information sharing …” County staff itself undertakes outreach “on a very regular basis,” he pointed out, holding programs at libraries and community centers, for example. Commissioner Michael Moran told Walter that he was on the board of the Southwest Florida Water Management District (SWFWMD) in 2015, when the previous revision of the Floodplain Management Plan won commission approval. Moran then asked whether staff is making sure it will meet SWFWMD deadlines for submission of materials. “There’s a fair amount of collaboration with SWFWMD,” Walter replied. “It’s not formally with the plan itself. But they do fund our drainage studies, and that is a big element of our programs.” After Detert made her motion to adopt the new plan, Commissioner Alan Maio alluded to complaints county staff and the board members hear from the public about the Building Department’s strict implementation of requirements for construction in flood zones. People are inclined to want to enclose the ground levels of elevated homes, Maio said, even though FEMA requires those areas to remain in a state that will allow storm surge to flow through without impediment. The Building Department makes no exceptions, Maio added. “This is how we preserve the insurance for everybody.” “Thank you for bringing that up,” Walter told him. “That is always a real challenge … on a case-by-case basis.”
Island Visitor Publishing, LLC
Ilana Marks - Creator Of Mind The Gap
By Robert Frederickson
By Diana Colson
From DMV Buzz to Saved by the Fuzz… Golly Gee, Protect the Bees! State Rep. Melony Bell, R-Fort Meade has proposed a new Florida specialty license plate highlighting the importance of bees in keeping Florida’s agriculture buzzing along. In recent years beekeepers have reported a pattern of unexplained bee colony die-offs, leading to concerns in some quarters for the nation’s food supply if the causes are not identified and remedied. No small thing, this. I do see a specialty plate highlighting bees and all they do for us as being worthy of the DMV’s blessing. So count me as a yes on the ‘bee’ plate. I might even pry open the wallet and spring for one. And here’s a suggestion for the ‘tag’ line to run beneath the colorful graphic of a busy bee hard at work in some verdant Florida field: “To Bee, or not to Bee...” Or perhaps the slightly less apocalyptic... “Bee Aware!” Your Money’s No Good Here... Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, home of the Tampa Bay Rays, has announced it will become a ‘cash-free’ zone starting this season. The reason? Cash, it seems, is just too slow... Kinda like the pace of the game itself? Maybe that’s part of the appeal, no? Harvard Astronomer Finds Religion? A recent interview with Harvard astronomer Avi Loeb, appearing in the New Yorker magazine, was interesting on two fronts. First there was the question posed by the piece’s headline: “Have Aliens Found Us?” Astronomers like Loeb have been perplexed by the origins of an object that passed through our solar system in October 2017. The object, dubbed ‘Oumaumau,’ the Hawaiian word for messenger, didn’t exhibit the usual characteristics of objects observed traversing our galactic neck of the woods. Most baffling was the object’s ‘peculiar’ acceleration, which led to speculation that it “may be a fully operational probe sent intentionally to Earth’s vicinity by an alien civilization.” Now that quote wasn’t from Whitley Strieber or some screenwriter for The X-Files; rather it came from the chair of Harvard University’s astronomy department, the aforementioned Loeb, in a paper written with the assistance of Harvard post-doctoral fellow Schmuel Bialy. That’s fascinating enough, and for those of you similarly interested, you might want to track down the full interview on the New Yorker’s web site. But the second thing that intrigued me about the piece came toward the end in an exchange between the interviewer, Isaac Chotiner, and the altogether serious man of science, Loeb. Chotiner asked him this: “Have your religious beliefs, or beliefs about God, changed in any way in the time you have been studying astronomy? Loeb seemed taken aback. “I’m not religious,” he replied. “Why do you make that assumption?” Chotiner: “I didn’t, I was wondering if your thoughts had changed one way or another.” To which Loeb gave this bifurcated response: “I am not religious. I am struck by the order we find in the universe, by the regularity, by the existence of laws of nature. That is something I am always in awe of, how the laws of nature we find here on Earth seem to apply all the way out to the edge of the universe. That is quite remarkable. The universe could have been chaotic and very disorganized. But it obeys a set of laws much better than people obey a set of laws here. My work as a scientist is purely based on evidence and rational thinking. That’s all.” Not religious? Could have fooled me. Loeb recognizes fidelity and faithfulness everywhere he looks...except in his own heart. Continued on page 43
The journey of Ilana Marks is remarkable. Born in South Africa, she trained as a stage actress in London, and became a writer, an international lecturer, and a TV and radio host. She has written, produced, and directed theatrical productions, and has lived in Sarasota for over ten years. During this time, she has been hard at work creating a feature film. Titled Mind the Gap, it is a psychological comedy exploring the nature of reality versus perception. The worldwide premiere screening will take place at 7:00 pm on March 21, 2019, at Sarasota’s Parkway 8 Theater, and the event promises to be exciting! The concept for the film came to Ilana in a dream. Back in Boston, her early morning radio show often dealt with dreams, and she was especially aware of the creative power of the dream world. Says Ilana: “Dreams are a source of inspiration for me. I get incredible information that is almost other-worldly. A lot of inventors say they got their inventions from the dream state. Ancient Greeks had dream temples. This kind of information is available to all of us. Books, music, and art find their inspiration in dreams.” The screenplay took her years to complete. She first wrote it as a stage play, because that was the field in which she had trained. However, because the story appeared in a dream, Ilana had difficulty putting the concepts into words, so she set it aside for a while. Finally, after a few years, the way to express the film’s revelatory ending came to her after a week of silence at a silent retreat. A synopsis of the tale goes like this: Adi, a 38-year-old off-Broadway actress, is on the verge of success when her playboy husband walks out on her. As a single mother with little income or support, her relationship with her young daughter becomes strained and her life begins to unravel. While working in London, Adi has a mindbending experience which sparks off her journey into the gap. She begins to peel away the façade of personal dramas, finding answers and reclaiming her life as she moves into a new reality. The audience follows her down the rabbit hole, encountering hilarious characters along the way. The tale is a mix of psychology, quantum physics, and spirituality. It is a story of profound selftransformation with a heavy splash of humor. Ilana explains: “The title is an indication of the layered nature of the film. In the subways of London, there are signs reading MIND THE GAP, meaning to be aware of the space between
train and platform. Space brings clarity: the space between words, the pauses in music, the empty spaces in painting - all are essential to creative expression. These silences are necessary for things to make sense. On yet another level, the gap has meaning in the world of physics.” In Boston Ilana interviewed dozens of authors, musicians, celebrities, politicians, and has moderated debates at a national level. Her previous talk shows on radio and television dealt with issues like domestic violence, alcoholism, politics, and the like. Although she amassed a big following in the Boston area, in Sarasota she has concentrated only on writing and creating Mind The Gap. She fearlessly jumped into the world of filmmaking, working with wonderful talented people along the way. “Every step of this film has been stimulating. The film’s message is such a valuable gift to me, that it’s a gift I want to share with the world. We’re an indie film, but if dialogue is interesting and it’s a good story, you don’t need millions of dollars to tell a great story. It is simple but very very profound.” Ilana not only wrote Mind The Gap, she also directed it and founded The Umbrella Project LLC which is producing the feature. It is a good-sized production for an Independent film. They filmed in London, NYC, and Orlando. Says Ilana, “Pretty much everybody who worked on the film wanted to be part of the project. They felt inspired. It was amazing to find people who were as excited by it as I was.” The film will be unveiled at its Sarasota premiere on Thursday, March 21 at 7 pm, at the Parkway 8 Cinema. Ilana Marks and several cast & crew will be present for the screening, which will be followed by a live Q & A. It will be an unforgettable evening! Tickets and information can be found at: www. MindTheGapFilm.com and on Facebook & Instagram. Tickets will only be available online until the cinema sells out.
On little Sarasota Bay CASUAL WATERFRONT DINING
8875 Midnight Pass Rd. • Siesta Key • 941-346-2207 Serving Lunch & Dinner From 11:30 AM
3-5 PM H APPY HOUR HAPPY HOUR 3-5 PM
• Discounted Well Drinks
DAILY • Bar Appetizers $2.99 -$3.99
• Discounted Well Drinks • Bar Appetizers
10.99 • 10AM-3PM
Incl. complimentary Bloody Mary or Mimosa
EArly Bird dinnEr SPEciAlS 10.99 - $14.99 from 3-6:00 PM
Completemenu menu at at turtlerestaurant.com turtlerestaurant.com Complete
Outside Dining Offered Bay Front
Snapshots of Island Visitors
Photos by Jaye Clements - Sarasota Photography 2
1. Erin & Dylan from WI 2. Nyaday & Kurtis from MI 3. Molly & Katie from Chicago, IL 4. Riley, Laura, Misty, Dave, Skyler & Micah from NY 5. Mel, Abbey, Jaston, Anya, Jennifer & Teresa from NY 6. Eric, Alli age 10, Mandy & Ian age 10 from OH 7. Lauren & Dylan from NJ 8. Hailee age 11, J.D., Myles age 6, Talon age 9 & Chelsi from PA 9. Breezy & Renna age 5 Â˝ months 10. Saskia & Serena age 7 from Boca Grande, FL 11. Amber, Jakub & Luka age 17 months from Canada 12. Noah age 6 & Lily age 8 from Sarasota
LIVE MUSIC PAGE 26
VILLAGE MAP pgs 22 - 23
ACCOMMODATIONS PAGE 42
CRESCENT BEACH MAP pg 28
Island Visitor Publishing, LLC
GULF GATE SHOPS pg 24 - 25
Siesta Key Drum Circle Every Sunday is a perfect time to come to the Key to reconnect with Mother Nature and to enjoy some wonderful entertainment. I’m talking about the Siesta Key Drum Circle that takes place each Sunday starting about an hour before sunset and lasting until about 10 p.m. The gathering meets up just south of the main pavilion - just follow your ears and watch for the swelling crowd. Please note the following rules of etiquette that need to be observed at the Drum Circle so that all can enjoy the experience: the inside of the drum circle is for participants only, not for people
standing around. Feel free to enter the circle, take a picture and dance, but always keep moving. Never play someone’s drum without getting clearance from the owner. Always ask before borrowing other people’s property, especially hula hoops. Flash photography and bright video lights are distracting, so photograph during daylight or use a night vision camera. And finally, please do not drink alcohol or smoke inside the circle and respect our beach by placing all trash in the appropriate receptacles. Photo Courtesy of Linda Skel Pupke.
Don’t Waste Your Island Time Crossing Bridges! We are conveniently located just a few steps from Crescent Beach and minutes away from anywhere on the Key.
• Full Service Grocery • Party Trays • Boar’s Head Meat & Cheese • Domestic & Micro Beers • Fabulous Deli Sandwiches Made to Order! • Largest Wine Selection on Siesta Key • Farm Fresh Produce • Beach Supplies • Butcher Shop • Take Out Meals
We Deliver to Siesta Key!
941-312-0472 fax: 941-312-9588
1211 Old Stickney Point Rd., Siesta Key, FL 34242 (corner of Stickney Pt. and Midnight Pass Rd.)
Happy 105th Birthday to the Amazing Jayne Blair Yes, that’s right! Long time Sarasota resident, Jayne Blair, born in 1913, turned 105 years young on December 11th, 2018. We wanted to follow up with Jayne since doing an article on her a few years back and she was once again more than pleased to grant us an interview. This time around we are hoping to learn where she keeps her very own secret Fountain of Youth. The following are some generalities she lives by and of course certain habits she has developed over the years. Some of these might surprise you and some are ones we all hope to incorporate in our daily routine so we might live healthier and happier, no matter how long we hope to live. Jayne has always been active and remains occupied with some of her favorites even today. She was an accomplished swimmer, ice and roller skater, even studying ballet and piano from an early age. Charity work has always been important to Jayne because she said, “it was easy too do good work when you were helping people.” She still swims on occasion, has taken up Mahjong and continues her love of languages by studying Spanish. Surprisingly enough technology doesn’t scare Jayne, she actually embraces it. She was pleased to report that in fact she can operate an IPhone, IPad and write and answer emails. Jayne makes a point of saying, “you just have to adjust to new things.” She works hard to keep an open mind and “always be ready to try anything.” Staying busy seems to be Jayne’s mantra and her dog, Dilly,
By Rene Brooks
helps her do just that. She discourages recommend, but it obviously seems to her. Appearances do matter to Jayn herself from sitting too long and pushes mother taught her at an early age th herself to “just get up and walk!” Traveling too has always been an enjoyable you “take the trash can out, dress up hobby of Jayne’s, the Egyptian pyramids her In closing, it’s paramount to stress important “mind set” is to Jayne. It’s h most memorable. She comments though on life and its valuable lessons she liv that, “going 1st Class is the best way to bring her real joy. Here are just a few, “ travel because it gives you more of what down then get yourself up, always loo you want to experience.” Jayne feels she has been blessed with and not behind (don’t dwell on m “good genes” on both sides. Her maternal always try and find something you l and paternal aunts lived to 95 and 96 years everyone,” and “do what you can, the of age respectively. There are still some you can, and you won’t be disappoin She reminds us to look on the br daily habits she follows strictly, for example because a “happy person lives longer not deviating from her daily schedule. She life has dealt Jayne some real challe eats three meals a day without varying her Jayne Blair some obstacles over the years she c routine regardless of whether she is hungry happy, positive outlook by remindin or not. The meals are always balanced with just how grateful she is for all that protein, veggies, carbs and fruit, but never the same protein 2 days in a row. She’s careful with her sweets, mostly the special people in her life. She’s very for but does enjoy a glass of wine, “and maybe a half glass more,” have loving caregivers who treat her just like family versa. now and again. Her sleep schedule is however not as regular. She averages Her closing advice is something for us all to live b six hours a night, but not all at once, reading books of interest kind and gentle” and like Jayne, have a smile and frien when she wakes. Water has never been her “go to” beverage for everyone you meet. Here’s to you Jayne Blair, th and I find that contradictory to what most health columnists you’ve taught us, and to many more birthdays to co
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ACCOMMODATIONS Siesta Key Beach Resort & Spa.......... Map-A #38A ART GALLERY / STUDIO The Gallery on Siesta Key............. Map-D #11 ATM / BANKS Martin Funding................................. Map-E #1 PNC ATM.........................................Map-C #61 Sun Trust Bank & ATM.................... Map-E #4 BARS & NIGHTCLUBS Blaśe Café....................................... Map-A #38 Daiquiri Deck Raw Bar........... Map-B #42-43 Gilligan’s.........................................Map-B #33 My Village Pub......................... Map-C #53/54 Siesta Key Oyster Bar....................Map-B #45 The Beach Club............................... Map-D #22 The Cottage......................................Map-C #58 The Hub-Baja Grill......................... Map-D #59
Map B #42
COFFEE SHOPS LeLu’s Coffee Lounge...................Map-B #31 The Local Bean............................... Map-D #62 DRUGSTORE Davidson Drugs............................ Map-D #65 FASHION & ACCESSORIES Beach Bazaar’s & Swin Shack..... Map-C #28 Blvd. Beachwear.............................. Map-B #30 Comfort Shoes-Birki & More..... Map-D #64 Everything But Water.................... Map-D #12 Foxy Lady Fashions....................... Map-A #40 Gidget’s Coastal Provisions.........Map-B #44 Island Boutique............................... Map-B #50 Island Style.......................................Map-C #53 Marley Vibes..................................... Map-D #9 Sea Shanty........................................Map-C #24 Siesta T’s........................................... Map-B #30 Swell Things.................................... Map-D #66 The Sandal Factory......................... Map-B #46 GAS STATION Circle K Store..................................... Map-E #6 GIFTS & SOUVENIRS Beach Bazaar.................................. Map-C #28 Gilligan’s Gift Store........................ Map-B #32 Island Trader....................................Map-C #51 Sea Pleasures & Treasures.............Map-C #29 Siesta Key Outfitters..................... Map-D #11 Siesta Kids........................................ Map-B #36
THE LOCAL BEAN • Internet Café • Coffee Shop • Tea Room 5138 Ocean Blvd., Siesta Key Village
WHAT BETTER WAY TO START YOUR DAY IN PARADISE?
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Organic and Fair Trade Coffees & Teas Cold Pressed Coffee Organic Smoothies Light Lunch (Salads & Sandwiches) Breakfast Sandwiches, Bagels & Lox Local Pastries Free Snacks
HEALTH & FITNESS Indep. Lifestyle Solutions ............ Map-D #10 Siesta Healing................................... Map-D #9 Siesta Key Fitness..........................Map-B #73 ICE CREAM/TREATS Big Olaf Creamery..........................Map-C #52 Ciao Gelato.......................................Map-C #50 Curly Cream Ice Cream................... Map-D #9 Local Chill Ice Cream.................... Map-D #60 Made in Rome Gelato.....................Map-C #53 Meany’s Mini Donuts.....................Map-C #24 SubZero Ice Cream/Yogurt.......... Map-D #16 Sunni Bunni Frozen Yogurt...........Map-C #53 INTERNET / WiFi SERVICES Davidson Drugs............................ Map-D #65 LeLu’s Coffee Lounge...................Map-B #31 The Local Bean............................... Map-D #62 JEWELRY Created Gems..................................Map-C #51 Mount -N- Repair Jewelers............. Map-D #9
o work for ne and her hat even if p!” s just how her outlook ves by that “If you fall ok forward mistakes), like about e best way nted.” right side r!” Though enges and credits her ng herself t she has, rtunate to y and visa
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Island Visitor Publishing, LLC
Continued from page 13
Discounting the latter situation, he added, the total was “nine Part I crimes for the whole island for January. That’s fantastic.” The “Part I” reference was to the FBI’s Uniform Crime Reporting system. Part I crimes are those considered more serious. “How we define ourselves is by the prevention of crime,” Cernansky explained. “We don’t want crime to occur.” He added that he hoped island residents had noticed “a lot more visibility” of Sheriff’s Office personnel on the Key in an effort to prevent crime.
Code Enforcement officer works to collect evidence During the Jan. 10 SKA meeting, as county staff members took questions about illegal short-term rentals, one audience member asked about the type of documentation necessary to prove a residence in a singlefamily district was being rented more often than once every 30 days, as provided for in the County Code. Emails exchanged between the homeowner or property manager and the renter are helpful, Susan Stahley, the Key’s Code Enforcement officer, responded. She also will go to houses where neighbors suspect illegal activity, she said, and try to talk to renters. “They’re very social,” she continued of the visitors. “They’ll tell me
everything I want to know.” Sometimes, Stahley added, a person will give her a copy of the lease agreement. Still, as she and Matt Osterhoudt, director of the county’s Planning and Development Services Department, pointed out, a Code Enforcement officer has to have sufficient evidence to convince a Special Magistrate of a violation before the magistrate will impose a fine.
Ramirez and Waechter settle litigation Regular readers will recall that Siesta resident Lourdes Ramirez filed a civil complaint several years ago against another island resident, Robert Waechter. Her action focused on Waechter’s admission that he made campaign contributions in her name to Democratic candidates in the 2012 election. Ramirez, a Republican, went to the Sheriff’s Office in 2012 after receiving a thank-you note from one candidate; she suspected her identity had been stolen. Waechter ultimately pleaded guilty in December 2013 to a misdemeanor charge of using a prepaid credit card to make the contributions in Ramirez’s name. After Ramirez lost a bid in the 2014 Republican Primary for the District 4 seat on the County Commission, she filed the civil complaint. She alleged that Waechter’s actions had damaged her reputation and were a major factor in the election results.
Last fall, a 12th Judicial Circuit Court judge dismissed her case and denied Ramirez’s motion for a rehearing. Additionally, Waechter’s attorney, Morgan Bentley of Bentley & Bruning in Sarasota, had filed for attorney fees and costs in the Circuit Court case, which were put at close to $40,000. Ramirez decided to appeal the dismissal of her case to the Second District Court of Appeal in Lakeland. First, though, Ramirez and Waechter agreed to “have the entire case mediated before any more proceedings are had,” as their joint motion put it on Nov. 6, 2018. The mediation conference was conducted on Dec. 14, 2018 in Sarasota, a subsequent court document shows. On Dec. 14, 2018, A. Woodson Isom Jr. of Tampa, the mediator, filed a Mediation Disposition Report. With three possible outcomes of the mediation provided for on the form, he marked the following: “The case was completely settled.” On Dec. 26, 2018, a voluntary dismissal of the appeal court case was filed, resolving the case. When asked if Ramirez had any comment, Ramirez replied in a Jan. 31 email that all the details about what was discussed during the mediation — including the settlement — had to remain confidential. She was surprised, she added when she learned that, but her attorney — Jose A. Gutierrez of the Cosio Law Group in Coral Gables — explained to her the applicable state law. Continued on page 25
• SEGWAY RENTALS • PADDLEBOARDS • SCOOTER CARS • GOLF CARTS • BIKES • SCOOTERS • BEACH GEAR Map B #34 5255 Ocean Blvd • Siesta Key Village www.robinhoodrentals.net
LIQUOR STORES / FINE WINES Gabbiano’s Wine Club................. Map-D #70 Gilligan’s.........................................Map-B #33 Siesta Key Wine Bar........................Map-C #61 Siesta Village Liquors.................. Map-C #26 The Beach Club............................... Map-D #22
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MAILING - SHIPPING US Post Office................................. Map-D #65 MARKETS/FOOD STORES Circle K Store..................................... Map-E #6 Morton’s Siesta Market................ Map-C #25 MASSAGE Hands of Light Massage................ Map-B #35 Massage Therapy........................... Map-D #62 The Spa at Calle Minorga............... Map-E #74 MEDICAL - DENTAL Sarasota Medical Center................ Map-D #63 Siesta Dental..................................... Map-B #49 Siesta Key Physical Therapy......... Map-D #20 Siesta Village Dentistry................. Map-D #63 MISCELLANEOUS Chamber of Commerce................. Map-D #67 Positive RePercussion...................... Map-D #9 Roberti Enterprises........................ Map-A #39 Tarot Card Reading & Gifts........... Map-B #50 PROFESSIONAL SERVICES Edward Jones Investments........... Map-D #68 Smith Architects.................................Map-E 74 REAL ESTATE / RENTAL SERVICES Coldwell Banker Realty................. Map-D #20 Keller Williams Real Estate........... Map-D #11 Key Realty.........................................Map-E #5 Michael Saunders Realty..............Map-E #72 ReMax Alliance Group...................Map-C #29 Tropical Sands Accommadations.... Map-D #67 RentSiestaKey.com........................... Map-D #9 Robasota Rentals & Real Estate.... Map-A #39 Siesta Key Rental Prop.................. Map-D #10
48 47 46
RESTAURANTS / CAFÉS Another Broken Egg..............Map-C #54 & 55 Big Water Fish Market, N............ Map-D #15 Blasé Café....................................... Map-A #38 Bonjour French Cafe.......................Map-C #47 Café Gabbiano............................... Map-D #71 Daiquiri Deck Raw Bar........... Map-B #42-43 Flavio’s Brick Oven & Bar.............. Map-B #29 Flavio’s Italiano Ristorante............ Map-B #30 Gilligan’s Island Bar & Grill.......Map-B #33 Island House Bar & Grill............... Map-D #69 LeLu’s Coffee Bar...........................Map-B #31 Lobster Pot...................................... Map-C #23 Old Salty Dog Rest. & Pub............... Map-E #2 PI Pizza & Craft Beer..................... Map-A#37 Ripfire Pizza..................................... Map-B #47 Siesta Key Oyster Bar....................Map-B #45 Solorzano Bros. Pizzeria.............. Map-D #15 Subway Sandwiches....................... Map-B #30 Summer House................................Map-C #57 Sun Garden Café............................ Map-D #19 The Cottage......................................Map-C #58 The Hub - Baja Grill........................Map-C #59 The Star Thai Sushi............... Map-D #17 & 18 Village Café.................................... Map-D #14 SPAS - HAIR & BEAUTY LaPlaya Spa......................................Map-C #50 Sassy Hair Salon............................ Map-A #40 Siesta Key Nails & Spa.................. Map-D #9 SPORTS INTEREST/RENTALS CaliFlorida........................................Map-C #29 Robin Hood Rentals......................Map-B #34
Barber Scott Reich
Formerly of the Village Barber
Gulf Gate Barbershop Making Gulf Gate look good since the ‘60’s Bringing over 70 years of life lessons and local knowledge to your haircut (trust us, we know alllll about what you did last summer). It’s not just a haircut, it’s life. We know all about it. Let’s laugh, have a beer, and talk nonsense….that’s free. Haircut? That’s gonna cost you…$15, if we like you, $25 if you’re a P.I.T.A. “Best Local Barbers” 20 years in the running Kyle and Scott “to the second power”
6575 Gateway Ave., Sarasota, FL 34231 941-809-9028 Walk-ins Welcome
DISCOVER GULF GATE’S SHOPPING VILLAGE
Piccolo Italian Market & Deli (G-47) carries a full line of imported cheeses, fresh baked bread daily, homemade sausages, fresh mozzarella, and numerous hard to get items. They now carry Khorasan Wheat which is an ancient and organic grain. Their deli is complete with huge hot and cold sandwiches, salads, fresh homemade lasagna and baked ziti. And, you cannot leave without trying their cannoli filled with their own homemade cannoli cream or the tiramisu or Sfogliatelle from Brooklyn. Here is where you will find great Italian specialty gourmet items without the gourmet price. Tony’s Chicago Beef Company (S-16) is owned and operated by true Chicagoans. Dedicated to deliver Chicago’s best food - Chicago style Hot Dogs wit’ the works... Dragged through the garden on poppy seed buns with fresh cut fries, Italian Beef Sandwiches anyway you like, dipped or dry, sweet or hot. All served in true Authentic Chicago Style. Sarasota Brewing Co. (G-4) Sarasota’s first micro brew pub always has something new to offer. From over 20 seasonal beers that rotate throughout the year, the Brewing Company always has at least five unique brews online as well as several favorites from around the world. Established in 1989, their menu has been a winner in the Reader’s Choice Awards of the Sarasota Herald Tribune featuring their mouth watering burgers, Chicago style Pizzas, and Chicago beef sandwiches. With dozens of televisions, it’s a great place to catch a game with friends and family. 1
West End Pub (G-49) Where else can you watch your favorite game with a great selection of beers, wines, and liquors served by a friendly staff AND where you’re allowed to bring your own restaurant or deli food? Right here. The Shop SRQ (G-2) Local owners, Erick and Dawn use a back-to-basics approach to grooming with precise attention to detail. Their commitment to excellence has provided them with many loyal customers. Their old school barber traditions, clean contemporary shop, coupled with their southern hospitality and humor are what separates them from the rest. They welcome the opportunity to earn your trust. Hours: Tues. - Fri. 8:30am - 6pm, Sat., 8:30am - 3pm. (Nov. 1st - May 30th) and Sat., 8:30am - 1pm (Jun. 1st - Oct. 31st). Closed on Sundays and Mondays. 6625 Gateway Ave, 941-626-4894. At the original Word of Mouth Restaurant (G-31), every seemingly insignificant detail receives special attention from the warm, inviting decor to each specially crafted variety of freshly baked muffins to the signature menu items. This small diner is where the locals come to eat breakfast and lunch. Each staff member works hard to make sure you receive the best service and quality food so you’ll want to return often. Take a look at their mouth-watering menu at www.originalwordofmouth. com. Hours: Mon-Sun.: 8AM-2PM. 6604 Gateway Ave., Sarasota, 34231, 941-925-2400. Pride of the South (S-34) has been awarded Top Barbeque in Sarasota for 2016 by Trip Advisor and Yelp. 2
© Island Visitor Publishing, LLC 2018
Ba Am nk o eri f ca
Bed Bath & Beyond
This section helps highlight what you’ll find within this walkable Gulf Gate shopping Village.
Dress for Less
Five Below 1
G16 G15 G14 G13 G12 G11 G10 G9 G8 G7 G6 G5 G4 G3 G2 G1
S59 S58 S57 S56 S55 S54 S53 S52 S51 S50 S49 S48 S47 S46 S45 S44 S43 S42 S41 S40 S39 S38 S37 S36 S35 S34 S33 S32 S31
G23 G22 G21 G20 G19 G18 G17
S30 S29 S28 S27 S26 S25 S24 S23 S22 S21 S20 S19 S18 S17 S16 S15 S14 S13 S12 S11 S10 S9 S8
S7 S6 S5 S4 S3 S2 S1
Gulf Gulf Gate Gate Drive Drive
Gulf Gulf Gate Gate Drive Drive
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Lo Ho ng rn
Mall Mall Drive Drive
G50 G49 G48 G47 G46 G45 G44 G43 G42 G41 G40 G39 G38 G37 G36 G35 G34 G33 G32 G31 G30 G29 G28 G27 G26 G25
M22 M21 M20 M19 M18 M17 M16 M15 M14 M13 M12 M11 M10 M9 M8
Original Word of Mouth 6604 Gateway Ave. Sarasota, FL 34231
Italian Market & Deli
THE SHOP SRQ 6625 Gateway Ave.
Traditional, Old School Barber Shop 15 Years + Experience
& Vegetarian Sandwiches
941.626.4894 / 941.536.1656
Authentic New York Italian Market & Deli We carry a full line of Imported Cheeses, Boars Head Luncheon Meats, Pasta, Olive Oil, Assorted Imported Olives, Khorasan Wheat (ancient & organic grain), and more. GG-46 G-47 Specialty Italian gourmet items without the gourmet price
Come See Our New Location Store Hours: Mon.-Sat. 10am - 6pm 6518 Gateway Ave.
“We Straight Razor Shave”
Hot or Cold
M5 M4 M3 M2 M1
Sarasota Pavilion is a popular shopping destination for numerous locals and visitors alike. Its prime location is close enough to the island for frequent trips with a nice selection of chain stores set in one convenient location. But what truly lends to the uniqueness of this district is the host of small, locally owned, specialty shops, boutiques, restaurants, and neighborhood bars bordering this pavilion. It makes for a fun and rewarding shopping experience. Over 150 businesses make up this district.
HOURS: Monday - Sunday 8:00AM to 2PM www.originalwordofmouth.com
Continued on the next page
Eat Where The Locals Eat!
It has been awarded for the best Southern Hospitality. Pride of the South has a brisket BLT, hands down, one of the best sandwiches you ever tasted. The smoked chicken wings are unbelievable. Backed up with the pulled pork sandwiches, the smoked bologna, the smoked turkey, the collard greens, fried corn on the cob, fried okra, fried green tomatoes, and one of the best mac ‘n cheese you ever tasted. We do catering with no limit to the size of the group. Come in and follow your nose to 6616 Superior Ave, Sarasota, FL 34231. Call (941)926-0099. See you soon. One Minute Key Shop (GG-51): Left your keys in the car? No worries, the One Minute Key Shop will help you safely unlock and retrieve your keys. They specialize in high security locks, keys, re-keying, master keying, and safes for residential, commercial or automotive. Give them a call at 941-924-8020 or visit their showroom where they have a large display of locks and safes. 2120 Gulf Gate Drive. Solorzano’s Late Night Pizzeria (S-32): At every Solorzano’s, they offer an experience familiar to those who understand the importance of family and dedication. Their recipes and techniques have been perfected through three long generations based on the traditional simplicity of the methods used by their Italian ancestors. Dine inside, outside, pick up, or DELIVERY anywhere on Siesta Key, or in Sarasota until 4:00 a.m. 6670 Superior Ave., 941-924-5800.
• No Appointment Needed •
TONSORIAL ARTISTRY BY ERICK & DAWN
Open Tues.-Fri. 8:30 AM-6 PM Sat. 11/1 - 5/30; 8:30-3 PM Sat. 6/1 - 10/31; 8:30 AM - 1 PM
We Put the South in Your Mouth 6616 Superior Ave. Sarasota
FREE SIDE With the purchase of ANY entreé
Island Chatter Bentley was emailed within moments of sending its note to Ramirez, asking whether he or Waechter would like to have any comment. Bentley, likewise, replied that the settlement is “totally confidential.”
Coupons for food lovers In this month’s edition, coupons are being offered by several advertisers, OfKors Donuts is offering a FREE donut with the on page 18 and The Oaks is offering $5 off a $25 purchase, the ad is located on page 41. Palermo Pizza is offering a discount coupon on page 17, Pride of the South has a coupon on page 24 and Solorzano’s has discount coupons on the back page. Kruck’s Philly Steaks is offering two coupons on page on page 2.
Connelly appointed to Historical Commission As part of their approval of their Jan. 29 Consent Agenda of routine business items, the county commissioners unanimously appointed Nancy D. Connelly, owner of Crescent Beach Grocery, to a four-year term on the county’s Historical Commission, an advisory board. Her term is effective through Jan. 31, 2023, the county website says. A memo to the commission from Sarabeth Kalajian, director of the county’s Libraries and Historical Resources Department, noted that, because of vacancies and one recent resignation, seven of the 16 seats on the Historical Commission needed to be filled. The vacancies have been advertised on the county website, Kalajian added, “soliciting interested citizens for appointment.” The Historical Commission’s role is to advise the County Commission in regard to “the acceptance of grants and donations; the marking of historic sites with County historical markers; the History Center annual budget; and historical material and dates,” its
webpage explains. The council members typically meet once a month, the webpage says. In response to the question on the application asking why she wanted to serve on the Historical Commission, Connelly wrote, “My family settled permanently in Sarasota in the 1920s after wintering in the area for several seasons. I can celebrate generations of my family living in this area for nearly 100 years. I feel very much a part of their historical traditions. I have a keen interest in the history of this area and its transformations over the years. I would enjoy putting my knowledge to practical use.” In the answer to another question on the form, Connelly noted that she reopened Crescent Beach Grocery in 2003; her father, George Connelly, established the business in 1952. “I am also owner of Crescent Beach Shopping Center at the corner of Midnight Pass and Stickney Point Roads,” she pointed out.
Trolley ridership takes a big jump During her presentation at the Feb. 7 Siesta Key Association (SKA) meeting, Nicole Rissler, director of the county’s Parks, Recreation and Natural Resources Department, reminded the approximately 65 audience members of the mass transit options visitors and residents have regarding the Key. Before she left the office that day, she said, she asked Sarasota County Area Transit (SCAT) staff for the latest ridership numbers for the Siesta Key Breeze open-air trolley, which was launched in March 2017. From Dec. 22, 2018 through Jan. 31, Rissler pointed out, the Breeze had more than 70,000 riders. “Certainly, it’s being used.” That news prompted a couple of gasps in the audience. A check with Lisa Potts, SCAT’s communications specialist, to
make certain this reporter had heard the figure correctly. In a Feb. 8 email, Potts replied, “We actually had a little over 73,000 riders between December 2018 and January 31, 2019.” Siesta architect Mark Smith, long-time leader of Siesta business organizations, has said that he believes every two riders on the trolley represent one vehicle not on the island’s roads. As for other mass transit options: Rissler noted during the SKA meeting that SCAT’s Route 11 service circulates from Cattlemen Road through downtown Sarasota over to the Key and to Gulf Gate. Additionally, Route 33 runs through Pinecraft — located primarily in the vicinity of Bahia Vista Street and Beneva Road — and then to Siesta Key on a loop. “We’re trying to promote those routes, as well,” Rissler added.
St. Michael’s Women’s Guild Fashion Show All are welcome to attend St. Michael the Archangel Women’s Guild Fashion Show and Luncheon on Wednesday, March 20 at Laurel Oak Country Club off Bee Ridge Road. Check-in begins at 11:00 and the program begins at Noon. Fashions are provided by P.J’s on Main Street. Price is $50.00 Per Person. Call Carol at 941-349-2016 for reservations.
John Garner Broker Associate
Diane Shane Broker Associate
Working with Sarasota Buyers & Sellers since 1969 • Local Expertise • Proven Track Record • Happy Clients Condos, Villas, Single Family Homes & Investments
We are with you every step of the way! M-5 2621 Mall Dr., Sarasota RobertsRealty@comcast.net www.SarasotaCoast.com
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Office records show. The sale price was $3.4 million, and the closing date was Jan. 4. Information available from the Sarasota County Clerk of Court and County Comptroller’s Office shows that CCSK Land Holdings took out a $2.4 million mortgage on the property, with the date of final payment set as July 4, 2021. Research indicated that Kompothecras long has had an association with the registered agent of CCSK Land Holdings, Vincent Payne, whose office is located on Sawyer Road in Sarasota. On May 1, 1997, Crescent Club Inc. bought the property for $300,000, the Property Appraiser’s Office records note. Crescent Club Inc. transferred the parcel to Crescent Club LLC in June 2013, the records say. The registered agent of Crescent Club LLC is Julia A. Brown, who long was known as the owner of the Crescent Club. In late December 2018, The Sarasota Herald-Tribune reported that Kompothecras plans to maintain the Crescent Club as a bar. He has a home on nearby Crescent Beach that has been featured often on MTV’s Siesta Key series, starring his son, Alex. In fact, Kompothecras himself has made more than a few appearances on the show, whose latest season is underway.
In 2018, the total taxable value of the Crescent Club property — including the building — was $825,800. Most of that is because of the land; its value was put at $625,100. The total area of the property is 25,000 square feet, the Property Appraiser’s Office records show. The building was constructed in 1949, the records note, but the “effective year” of construction is 1995. The Property Appraiser’s Office explains “effective year” as “an appraisal judgment which reflects the condition and utility of a structure.”
Red tide the focus of March Condo Council meeting The Siesta Key Condominium Council (SKCC) announced it would host a special meeting on red tide on March 12. During the January SKCC session, an attendee asked about the nonprofit’s participation in efforts to raise awareness about red tide. “While the SKCC is in no position to finance research,” a Jan. 28 email blast said, the SKCC’s mission statement “would support awareness and governmental pressure to see advances in Red Tide Control.” Continued on page 30
Crescent Club sale Over the holidays, word spread that Dr. Gary Kompothecras — of 1-800-ASK-GARY fame — had bought the Crescent Club on South Midnight Pass Road. Regular readers realize this is not his first purchase in that vicinity, as he owns a storage business and the former Fandango Café site, where he has said he plans a boutique hotel. (Nothing new on that front of late.) The actual new owner of the Crescent Club, which is located at 6519 Midnight Pass Road, is CCSK Land Holdings LLC, the Sarasota County Property Appraiser’s
Continued from the previous page
COMMUNITY FOR HEALTH + WELLNESS
Continued from page 23
DISCOVER GULF GATE’S SHOPPING VILLAGE
Wild Ginger Apothecary has
Island Visitor Publishing, LLC
sustainable, ethically produced, and nontoxic products for beauty, home and nutrition to the health conscious consumers of Sarasota since October of 2014. Their latest offerings is a CBD Boutique area featuring hundreds of hemp and CBD products. Wild Ginger Apothecary also offers classes and workshops for a variety of audiences on topics that cover lifestyle, creativity, health, and more in the Studio + Lounge. Z6557 Superior Ave. 941-312-5630, www. woldgingerapothecary.com Gulf Gate Barber Shop has been an institution in the community for years, owned by Kyle Flannery. The superclean barbershop’s clientele is comprised of primarily men, but the shop services children as well. If you have been a longtime patron of the former Siesta Key Village Barber Shop Scott Reich, you can find him here. The two barbers bring over 70 years of knowledge to your haircut. See their ad in centerspread pages of this edition. 6675 Gateway Ave in Gulf Gate, 941-809-9028.
Island Churches: • Siesta Key Chapel, Presbyterian (USA) 4615 Gleason Ave, Siesta Key, 941-349-1166 www.siestakeychapel.org • St. Michael’s Catholic Church 5394 Midnight Pass Rd, Siesta Key, 941-349-4174 www.stmichaelssiesta.com • St. Boniface Episcopal Church 5615 Midnight Pass Rd, Siesta Key, 941-349-5616 www.bonifacechurch.org Off- Island: •Temple Sinai, a Reform Congregation (The closest Jewish congregation to the Key for visitors) 4631 S. Lockwood Ridge Rd, Sarasota, 941-924-1802 www.templesinai-sarasota.org • St. Andrew United Church of Christ (Protestant) (In the Gulf Gate area, near Beneva and Gulf Gate Drive) 6908 Beneva Road, Sarasota, 941.922.7595 www.uccstandrew.org • The Superior Word - Rev. Charlie Garrett Service starts Sunday mornings at 10am. Bring a friend and share in God’s word. 6512 Superior Avenue, Sarasota, FL 34231 • First Christian Church 7601 Clark Road, Sarasota, FL 34241. 941-922-4434 www.fccsarasota.com
Online arrangements available Sarasota (941) 312-6371 | Manatee (941) 213-9234 SoundChoiceCremation.com
By Charmaine Engelsman-Robins
“on the scope of the Manhattan Project,”... but at the same time always embracing and absorbing more and more feeling and knowledge of music. What resulted was the realization that while music was his love, it could also be his life if he applied himself both as a player/singer/composer on the art side and a keen businessman who controlled his own exposure and destiny on the music business side. Most music lovers are aware of the music business’s tendency to exploit players and creators who are not protected or knowledgeable on the business side of music. Paul Simon even expressed it lyrically when he sang “... the music suffers while the music business thrives...” But this is a new day. Thanks to technology, savvy musicians are no longer at the mercy of “the system” and can get their own exposure, audience, creative control, product sales and reward by maintaining control of their own image and intellectual property. This is enormously satisfying for those both talented and educated enough in both the artistic and business sides of the musical coin to have the freedom of complete control. R.J., coming from an unusual mix of both the music and business worlds, has the satisfaction of performing what he wants with whom he wants where and when he wants on his own terms. He’s protected this existence for himself by owning his own record label and publishing company. He’s further built his brand by always billing himself and his bands as “The R.J. Howson Band,” not some currently-cool fad phrase or movement word or expression. Just the soul of his business: Himself. While he may have walked away from the corporate world, he certainly didn’t waste the valuable lessons learned there. He threw himself into the music world by working on the road with established blues people playing seven to 10 gigs a week, occasionally even 10 to 15... a breakneck pace for anyone. Following this initial energetic burst of determination and enthusiasm, his business sense tapped him on his artistic shoulder to remind him that quality was more important than quantity. It was that commonsense realization that made him pull back and devote himself to play fewer shows of higher quality, allowing him to perform as his best self with his best co-players in a smaller number of shows. At last the balance was established, and it worked.
As the son of a military man, bluesman R.J. Howson grew up all over the world. While that lifestyle affects everyone differently, R.J. found it stimulating and educational, exposing him to a wide variety of people, places and musical styles. The family was always somewhat musical, offering the Howson kids a variety of beginner-level instruments from a young age, allowing them to find the ones that spoke to them by experiencing a wide variety. R.J. also had the good fortune to attend a California school that taught students how to read music and encouraged them to all play at once together, somewhat like the Suzuki method but instead of just violins, it was a melding of all different instruments. The first to really catch R.J’s ear was a somewhat unusual choice: the recorder. “I liked the tone of it,” he explains, “and the single line melody. I found it more appealing than horns ... until I was about 12 and started playing sax; I had decided that I wanted to get into the school band.” Sax was a favorite, but soon after mastering that, R.J. picked up a guitar and thoroughly enjoyed both the emotional and physical sensation of playing a string instrument. It soon topped the favorites list. “It was something about the feeling of finger picking... I don’t use a pick ... and the bending techniques,” R.J. explains. As to any further formal musical education, he feels he “got a PhD in blues by playing on tour with the old bluesmen and at Buddy Guy’s blues club; I’ve even shared a stage with him.” Settling in Chicago (as a result of a job offer) brought him to a complete change of consciousness. Though the job was excellent by most standards, R.J. had discovered music as his true calling, and living in Chicago furthered his love and knowledge of blues. The city itself was a wealth of music exposure and information, and R.J. came to think of music as a healing art. The combination of his musical talent, his spiritual immersion in sound, and his business acumen were all coming together now and R.J. was learning how to balance those aspects to their best advantage. Just as researchers have, of late, questioned if the old “right brain/left brain” designations of thought process might not be a myth, R.J. says he’s always felt that categorizations were “for librarians and marketers.” He had a long history of what might have been regarded as impressive left brain careers ...15 years as a robotics engineer, 10 years working with a human genomes project
CLUB BLASE CAFÉ In the Village 941-349-9822 DAIQUIRI DECK RAW BAR In the Village 941‐349‐8697
MONDAY Amandah Jantzen 6‐10 PM
TUESDAY John Holiday th & Burt Engelsman (5 ) Evan Eastmoore (12 & 19) th Nick LeValley (26 ) 6‐10 PM
WEDNESDAY Savanah Brady (6 & 13 ) th Sandi Grecco (20 ) th Sandy Vogel Trio (27 ) 6‐10 PM
GILLIGANS In the Village 941-346-8122
Rodney Shenk: 6‐10 PM
Lelu’s Coffee Lounge In the Village 941-346-5358
SIESTA KEY OYSTER BAR (SKOB) In the Village 941‐346‐5443
1‐5 PM: th Vince Berardi (4 ) th Capt. Kurt (11 ) th Jordy (18 ) th Michael Mac Duo (25 ) Al Donadi 7‐11 PM
THURSDAY Rob Viola (7, 14 & 21) th Nexx Level (28 ) 6‐10 PM
R.J. recently released a new CD titled Set it Free, available through iTunes, Amazon, and other online outlets or from the artist himself at his live gigs. You can hear some of it, as well as captured live performances, on YouTube listed under (of course) R.J. Howson. Live gigs coming soon in the Sarasota/Siesta Key area include first-Sunday (March 3) afternoon favorite at Siesta Key’s famous Blase Cafe in the Village: classic car show starts at noon and the R.J. Howson Band performs from 2 - 5 p.m. You can go to https://artistecard.com/rjhowson for additional band information.
SATURDAY Lady B & the Buzz (2 & 16)
Callie & The Whole Band 6‐10 PM LIVE MUSIC (3‐7 PM) DJ TJ (10 PM)
RPM LIVE: 6‐10 PM
6‐10 PM Mike Tozier (6 & 20) Deven Starr (13 & 27)
1 PM Mike Tozier (14 & 28) Rob Viola (21st) RPM LIVE ‐ 6‐10 PM DJ Nate – 10 PM
1‐5 PM: Dana & Co. FolkLab 7‐11 PM
2‐6 PM: Whiteleather 8‐Midnight st Big Daddy Boys (1 ) th Last Minute Band (8 ) th Deven Starr Band (15 ) nd Blue Mason (22 ) th Bri Rivera Band (29 )
1‐5 PM: J. Gilton (5 & 19) th David Morris (12 ) th Tim O’Conner (26 ) Open mic night 7‐11 PM
1‐5 PM: Frankie Ray (6 & 20) Deven Starr (13 & 27) Kettle of Fish 7‐11 PM
1 PM : Chris Otto st 6‐10 PM: Kettle of Fish (1 ) Berry & Friends (8,15,29) nd Strange Starr (22 ) DJ KConn – 10 PM
THE COTTAGE In the Village 941-312-9300 THE HUB‐BAJA GRILL In the Village 941-349-6800 BACKROOM SALOON @ CAPT. CURTS 941‐349‐3885 Crescent Beach Shops SNIKI TIKI @ CAPT CURTS Crescent Beach Shops 941‐349‐3885 Turtle Beach Grill Southern end of SK 941‐349‐2280 SAND DOLLAR POOL BAR @ Best Western Plus 6600 S. Tamiami Trl., Sarasota 941‐924‐4900 BOATYARD WATERFRONT BAR & GRILL 941‐921‐6200 1500 Stickney Pt. Rd. CASEY KEY FISH HOUSE 801 Blackburn Pt. Rd, Osprey 941‐966‐1901
Karaoke Mondays 9 PM – Midnight
The Whole Band (10 & 24)
Live Music 6-9 PM
Live Music 1 – 4 PM 4:30 – 7:30 PM 8:30 PM –midnight
Live Music 1-4 PM 4:30 – 7:30 PM 8:30 PM - midnight
Live Music Noon – 3 PM 3:30 – 6:30 PM 7-10 PM
KARAOKE 9 PM – CLOSE
KARAOKE 9 PM – CLOSE
LIVE MUSIC 6‐10 PM
LIVE MUSIC 6‐10 PM
LIVE MUSIC 6‐10 PM
LIVE MUSIC 6‐10 PM
LIVE MUSIC 5‐9 PM
LIVE MUSIC 5‐9 PM
LIVE MUSIC 5‐9 PM
LIVE MUSIC 5‐9 PM
Live Music Noon – 3 PM 3:30 – 6:30 PM 7-10 PM KARAOKE 9 PM – CLOSE
LIVE MUSIC 6‐10 PM
10 AM ‐ 1 PM Vince Colaiocco (3,17,31) Mike Tozier (10 & 24) rd 2‐6 PM: Rob Viola (3 ) th Wild Horsed Duo (10 ) th Danny Fox (17 ) th Chicago Carey (24 ) st Chris Connelly (31 ) 7 ‐11 PM: Hatley Band (3,17 & 31)
Live Music 7-10 PM
Live Music Noon – 3 PM 3:30 – 6:30 PM 7-10 PM
Mike T or Kevin Thompson 5‐9 PM
1‐5 PM: Evan Eastmor (2,16, & 30) Bri Rivera (9 & 23) Mike Tozier 8‐Midnight
Live Music 7-10 PM
Live Music Noon – 3 PM 3:30 – 6:30pm, 7-10pm
Skyway (24 ) DJ Tuesday – 10 PM
Live Music 7-10 PM
Live Music Noon – 3 PM 3:30 – 6:30 PM, 7-10 PM
LIVE MUSIC 6‐10 PM
6 PM: Bird Tribe (10 & 17)
DJ Coz & DJ Xtreme 10 PM
Live Music 6-9 PM
LIVE MUSIC 6‐10 PM
Skyway (2 & 23) Bird Tribe (16 & 30) DJ KConn – 10 PM
1 PM: Frankie Lombardi (10 & 24)
DJ Coz or DJ Kensi 9 PM – 2 AM
Live Music 6-9 PM
6‐10 PM: Ted Stevens (9th)
BREE (3‐7 PM)
8‐11 PM: New Divide (1 ) th Actual Bank Robbers (8 ) th Mixed Signal (15 ) nd Twinkle (22 ) th Sweet Spot (29 ) Live DJ: 11 PM‐2 AM
Live Music 6-9 PM
Good by Eddie (9 ) rd Nexx Level (23 ) Kat Crosby Band th (30 ) 6‐10 PM LIVE MUSIC (3‐7 PM) DJ K Conn (10 PM) PEDRO: 1 PM
SUNDAY 6‐10 PM: Alex Ross rd Mojo Revival (3 ) Lisa Ridings Band (10, 24 & 31) th Good By Eddie(17 )
Eddie James Jazz Band 7‐10 PM
THE BEACH CLUB In the Village 941-349-6311
8 – 11 PM nd 22N (2 ) th Tropical Ave ( 9 ) th rd No Filter (16 ), TL (23 ) th Stereo FM (30 ) DJ Kensi: 11 PM – 2 AM
7‐11 PM Billy Lyon Band (3 & 17) th Nick LeValley (10 ) Live Music (24 & 31)
LIVE MUSIC 3‐6 PM
LIVE MUSIC 3‐6 PM
LIVE MUSIC 3‐6 PM
Dami Caines or John Patti 5‐8:30 PM
RPM 5‐9 PM
Bri Rivera 5‐9 PM
Vince Barardi 5‐9 PM
Jokers Duo or Frankie Lombardi 5‐9 PM
Desi Adams 4‐8 PM
LIVE MUSIC 4‐8 PM
LIVE MUSIC 3‐7 PM
LIVE MUSIC 3‐7 PM
Above information is subject to change. We suggest calling venues for confirmation.
Island Humor Last year I replaced all the windows in my house with those expensive, double-pane, energyefficient kind. Today, I got a call from Home Depot. The man complained that the work to install them had been completed a year ago and I still hadn’t paid for them. HHHHHelloo….just because I’m blonde doesn’t mean that I am automatically stupid. So, I told him just what his fast-talking sales guy had told me last year… that these windows would pay for themselves in a year. Hellooooo, it’s been a year, so they’re paid for, I told him. There was only silence at the other end of the line, so I finally hung up. He never called back. I bet he felt like an idiot! A defendant isn’t happy with how things are going in court, so he gives the judge a hard time. Judge: “Where do you work?” Defendant: “Here and there.” Judge: “What do you do for a living?” Defendant: “This and that.”
Judge: “Take him away.” Defendant: “Wait; when will I get out?” Judge: “Sooner or later.” While on patrol, I arrested a burglar who’d injured himself running from a home. He told me he’d broken in and unhooked the phone before searching for valuables. But he’d panicked when he heard a woman’s voice. I entered the house and heard the same voice: “If you’d like to make a call, please hang up and try your call again.” My husband was driving home from work when he was pulled over for not wearing a seat belt. Two days later—same ticket, same cop. “So,” the officer said, “have you learned anything?” “Yes, I have,” said my husband. “I’ve learned I need to take a different way home from work.” Always borrow money from a pessimist. He won’t expect it back.
To publicize colon cancer screenings, an Idaho doctor suggested that a reminder be included in every tax notice. The idea was nixed. “Recommending a colonoscopy in the same envelope as the tax notice may be considered ironic,” said the county treasurer. “Poor Old fool,” thought the well-dressed gentleman as he watched an old man fish in a puddle outside a pub. So he invited the old man inside for a drink. As they sipped their whiskeys, the gentleman thought he’d humor the old man and asked, “So how many have you caught today?” The old man replied, “You’re the eighth.”
6500 Gateway Ave • 941.554.8905
It was time for my dog’s annual checkup. Following the vet’s instructions, I collected a stool sample and dropped it in a plastic container before we left for his office. When we arrived, I handed the sample to the receptionist, who immediately cracked a smile. The container read “I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter.”
IN GULF GATE...
“There is nothing blasé about Siesta Key’s Blasé Café and Martini Bar...”— Sarasota Foodies The Blasé Cafe & Martini Bar was first brought to life by Cynthia Breslin in 1997. Blasé Cafe has been offering Siesta Key a casual and unique dining experience. Their menu includes a variety of appetizers and entrées, which include seafood, pasta, beef, and poultry. They also offer a full bar, which is a great place to stop and have a drink to meet up with friends or to make new ones. Live music starts at 6 PM. Open every day 4PM - 12AM (941) 349-9822, located at 5263 Ocean Blvd in Siesta Key Village, www.theblasecafe.com.
My doctor took one look at my gut and refused to believe that I work out. So I listed the exercises I do every day: jump to conclusions, climb the walls, drag my heels, push my luck, make mountains out of molehills, bend over backward, run around in circles, put my foot in my mouth, go over the edge, and beat around the bush.
MLB/College Packages FULL BAR
HOME OF SIESTA KEY’S BEST MARTINIS!
When my three-year-old was told to pee in a cup at the doctor’s office, he unexpectedly got nervous. With a shaking voice, he asked, “Do I have to drink it?”
Colonoscopies are important medical procedures that have saved lives. And yet they’re as popular as, well, a colonoscopy. Here are comments purportedly made by patients to physicians during their procedures. “Now I know how a Muppet feels!” “Could you write a note for my wife saying that my head is not up there?” “Any sign of the trapped miners, chief?”
Island Visitor Publishing, LLC
Karaoke Thursday, Friday & Saturday
BARS & NIGHTCLUBS Capt. Curt’s Backroom Saloon................B-3 #7 Crescent Club........................................... C-3 #13 Sniki Tiki....................................................B-3 #8 DELIS / BAKERIES A Taste of Germany................................ C-3#14 Anna’s Deli & Sandwiches.................. C-3 #14 Nutritious You......................................... C-3 #14 The Beach Deli @ Crescent Beach Grocery......B-3 #1 DRUG STORES Davidson Drugs..................................... C-3 #14 FASHION & ACCESSORIES Fin Island Co............................................. A-3 #2 CB’s Saltwater Outfitters........................ A-3 #4 Coconuts Fashion......................................B-3 #1 Coconuts / Island Colors..........................B-3 #8 Green Turtle Swimwear......................... C-3 #14 Key Casual Fashions............................... D-3 #17 Things You Like...................................... C-3 #14
CRESCENT BEACH SHOP INDEX
GIFTS & SOUVENIRS Capt. Curt’s Souvenirs.............................B-3 #8 Green Turtle Shells & Gifts................. C-3 #14 Sunshine Sand Hidden Treasures........ D-3 #17 Silver City Jewelry.................................. C-3 #14 HEALTH & BEAUTY Sanctuary Siesta Key............................... A-5 #12 Siesta Key Salon & Spa........................... D-3 #17 The Key Spa & Salon.............................. A-5 #12 ICE CREAM & TREATS Orange Octopus .......................................B-3 #8 INTERNET / WiFi SERVICES Davidson Drugs..................................... C-3 #14 Mail Pack Center..................................... C-3 #14 LIQUOR STORES Crescent Beach Grocery...........................B-3 #1 Crescent Club............................................B-3 #13 Siesta Spirits............................................. C-3 #17
MAILING & SHIPPING Mail Pack Center..................................... C-3 #14 US Post Office Sub Station..................... C-3 #14 MARKETS 7-11 Store.................................................. C-3 #16 Big Water Fish Market.......................... C-3 #17 Crescent Beach Grocery...........................B-3 #1 MISCELLANEOUS Moving & Storage....................................B-3 #10 Flowers by Fudgie................................... D-3 #17 REAL ESTATE / RENTALS Beckmann Properties.............................. C-2 #15 Homes & Condo Rentals........................ D-3 #17 Re/Max Tropical Sands............................B-3 #1 Siesta 4-Rent............................................ C-3 #14 Waterside Realty..................................... C-3 #17 RESTAURANTS / CAFES A Taste of Germany................................ C-3#14
Boatyard Waterfront Bar & Grill...............A-5 #12 Capt. Curts Crab & Oyster Bar.................B-3 #7 City Pizza Italian Restaurant................. D-3 #17 Clayton’s Siesta Grille...............................B-3 #9 Daiquiri Deck.................................................A-3 #2 Spear Fish Grill..............................................A-4 #5 Toasted Mango Cafe....................................C-3 #17 Miguel’s Restaurant................................ C-3 #17 Munchies.................................................. C-3 #17 WATER SPORTS - FISHING - RENTALS A to Z Beach & Bike Rentals.................. A-5 #12 FIN Island Co. . ........................................ A-3 #2 CB’s Saltwater Outfitters........................ A-3 #4 Parasail Siesta............................................ A-3 #2 Siesta Key Bike & Kayak . ......................B-3 #8 Siesta Key Marina.................................... A-4 #5 Siesta Key Jetski . ...................................... A-3 #2 Siesta Sports Rentals............................. C-3 #14 Waves Boat & Social Club...................... A-5 #12
Big Water Fish Market................................C-3 #17
“Home of the Orange Squeeze!”
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1220 Old Stickney Point Rd., Siesta Key In the Captain Curt’s Plaza Map B-3#8
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6551 Midnight Pass Road Southbridge Mall Siesta Key, FL 34242
GERMAN BAKERY & CAFE German café offering fresh soups and sandwiches on freshly baked breads!
Rum Cakes Breakfast Lunch German Beers and Brats
941-346-1800 • www.ATasteofGermany.net 6575 Midnight Pass Rd., Siesta Key (South of Stickney Pt.)
Map C-3 #14
A Taste of Germany 6575 Midnight Pass Rd.
MAP C-3 #14
Anna’s Deli 6535 Midnight Pass Rd.
MAP C-3 #14
Big Water Fish Market 6641 Midnight Pass Road
Boatyard Waterfront Bar & Grill 1500 Stickney Point Rd.
MAP A-5 #12
CB’s Saltwater Outfitters 1249 Stickney Point Rd.
MAP A-3 #4
Coconuts Fashion MAP 1215 Old Stickney Point Rd. B-3 #1&8
Crescent Beach Grocery 1211 Old Stickney Pt. Rd.
MAP B-3 #1
Siesta 4-Rent 6555 Midnight Pass Rd.
MAP C-3 #14
Toasted Mango Cafe 6621 Midnight Pass Rd.
MAP C-4 #17
MAP C-3 #17
Say I Do, AGAIN 2019
Island Visitor Publishing, LLC
By Trebor Britt
More than 400 romantic couples celebrated a renewal of their wedding vows at sunset on beautiful Siesta Key Beach, recognized numerous times as America’s number one beach. The nondenominational annual event is organized by Sarasota Parks, Recreation & Natural Resources Department. 12th Judicial Circuit Court Judge, Debra Johnes Riva led the ceremony as the sun set over the Gulf of Mexico. Siesta Beach Manager, Cindy Turner related several new features added this year. These included
an incredible themed sand sculpture, created and designed by Sarasota resident and Master Sand Sculptor, Brian Wigelsworth, as well as a violinist and photo opportunities for couples to enjoy, sponsored by local wedding planners. This year’s gift bag contained a heart shaped candle, rose and a framable certificate. Nearly half to 3/4 of the couples have participated in the event before, which speaks loudly about the value and success of one of Sarasota’s most popular events. Sarasota resident and Master Sand Sculptor, Brian Wigelsworth worked meticulously to provide a popular new feature at this year’s event
Over 350 couples anxiously awaiting the start of the 2019 “Say I Do, Again” wedding vow renewal ceremony
Gregory and Christina Danc of Chesapeake City, Maryland warmly embrace before the ceremony. They decided to renew their wedding vows while here for the first time on vacation with their two young sons and will celebrate 15 years of marriage in September.
Enthusiastic, Susan and Richard Banks of Sarasota just moments before the vow renewal ceremony. They were married 52 years ago in Detroit, Michigan.
St. Michael the Archangel
FDOT also re-striped the curve in an effort to provide clearer indications to drivers about where they should be on the road as they navigate through the curve. Among the other new measures FDOT installed, electronic signs light up if a vehicle is traveling faster than the posted 30mph speed on the approach to the curve. The signs flash “25” for the suggested speed limit and a warning to slow down. Make Siesta Drive Safer members have been encouraged by the prospect that Sarasota County will be taking over control of Stickney Point Road and State Road 758 west of U.S. 41. MSDS renewing requests for safety measures In the statement released following the Feb. 16 accident, Make Siesta Drive Safer reported that its representatives met in October 2018 with County Engineer Spencer Anderson. “Our committee was asked to assist in filling in the County staff on our communications with FDOT, which we did with
A couple re-enacts their first kiss under one of several photo stops provided by local wedding planners
Violinist, Laurie Vodnoy-Wright of the Sarasota Chamber Orchestra, providing wonderful music that set the mood for the wedding vow renewal ceremony. She moved here from Chicago after joining the Florida Orchestra. She‘s been playing violin since she was 4 years old.
Continued from cover story
Holt says that one of the planned areas he’s most looking forward to completing is actually outside the proposed building, in a lovely courtyard. “It’s meant to be an outdoor working space, and we’re also talking about a water feature, where we will have people send us water from their favorite bodies of water; whether the Jordan River or their favorite local lake and we’ll add it in,” he said. “No matter what faith tradition they are, visitors can come up here from the beach and reflect on their relationship with God. We want to make it a Siesta Key destination spot to help deepen people’s faith.” Besides the Parish Center building, the larger plan includes also tearing down the Rectory building, which now houses the church’s offices. It was built at the same time as the Parish Center, and was not intended to be office space and also is not compliant with FEMA code. At the recommendation of the Diocese of Venice, Sarasota architect Greg Hall, of Hall Architects, submitted an artist rendering that includes the new building, as well as the central courtyard and a reworking of the parking lot layout, to allow for more spaces. In addition to the Capital Campaign donor opportunities which will soon be announced, there will also be areas where donors will be able to memorialize people who are close to them. In the past, the church has sold brick pavers alongside the Chapel, and Holt said he is working on developing a touch-screen program where parishioners and visitors will be able to quickly locate where specific bricks are, based on names, hometowns and other parameters. Since St. Michael first opened its doors to its founding families back in 1960, it has maintained a steady growth in parishioners, and in the past two years alone, has welcomed more than 300 new members into its fold. During season,
Another fatal accident
First time participants Eric and Joy Stanulis of Sarasota, posing under a beautiful red rose trellis at this year’s, “Say I Do, Again” event on spectacular Siesta Beach. They were married nearly 12 years ago in Connecticut.
that number swells substantially—Holt says that last Easter Sunday weekend, more than 8,000 worshipers attended Mass at the church, and that number didn’t even include the vigil service. Father Michael said that he realizes that the funds the church needs to raise for the upcoming project will be an ambitious undertaking. “To reach this goal, we’re asking every parish family and every visitor family to make a gift—a sacrificial gift, if they can,” he said. “This is a once-in-a-generation opportunity to dramatically enhance and secure the mission of our beloved St. Michaels. We are asking everyone to participate in whatever ways are possible for you. But most importantly, we are asking God’s guidance and direction similar to that given to the pioneers of this community 60 years ago.” All donations can be sent to Saint Michael the Archangel building fund, located at 5394 Midnight Pass Rd, 34242 on Siesta Key. Contact Dianne Holt office Manager for more information, 941349-4174 (ext. 302)
Side of the Parish Hall where the classrooms are located facing Midnight Pass Road
Ladies bathroom where the toilet overflowed
Continued from page 16
a PowerPoint presentation which documented all of our combined efforts since April 2017,” the statement added. While all the facts were not available as of the weekend, MSDS statement continued, “The Feb. 16 accident plays into the common scenario of most crashes here, where the northbound traffic does not understand/appreciate the severity of the curve that is upcoming. Yes, we understand that the County is adverse to using speed bumps, but there is a DEFINITE NEED for something to alert drivers to the danger of this curve,” the statement emphasized. “The Make Siesta Drive Safer Committee is convinced that our specific asks for actions along this corridor remain appropriate … and its members are committed to working with Sarasota County in any way to achieve these goals,” the statement pointed out. “We have reached out several times so far this year in an effort to continue collaboration with the County, but have yet to hear back from them. This recent
tragedy will be our call to action to turn up the volume so they hear us, and allow us to help in eliminating the ongoing parade of fatalities that we are seeing here in our neighborhood,” the statement said. The following are the Make Siesta Drive Safer requests for improvements along the 2-mile segment of Siesta Drive and Higel Avenue, the statement added: • Lower the speed limit along the full length of the corridor to 30 mph. • Address the safety issues in the Siesta Drive/Higel curve. (In an email County Engineer Anderson sent county leaders in early February to update them on the road swap timeline, he pointed out that the Road Transfer Agreement is expected to define terms for FDOT to make improvements to the 90-degree curve at the Higel/Siesta Drive intersection.) • Put in at least two crosswalks (at Shell Road and Hamilton Avenue).
Baseball Comes to Sarasota and Siesta Key The philosophical Ted Williams once said “Baseball is the only field of endeavor where a man can succeed three times out of ten and be considered a good performer.”
Continued from cover story
Baseball came to Sarasota County during a period known as Siesta Key’s Interlude. After real estate development on the Key was booming from 1907 into the Roaring 20s, a quiet phase occurred for more than two decades. As Sarasota County’s dean of history Jeff LaHurd stated “It’s almost as if Siesta Key went to sleep after 1930 and then woke up in the 1950s.” During the Interlude, however, there were some exciting entertainment options at casinos, dredging projects created unique neighborhoods such Palm Island and many important innovations emerged such as the Out-of-Door School. By the 1950s, the biggest game-changer was the advent of air conditioning. It was installed in enough lodging facilities that Sarasota was advertised and celebrated in song as “The Air Conditioned City.”
such as the “Chicago Crowd” that followed Bertha Palmer. Wealthy people were not inclined to mix and mingle with the common folk, nor were they as well known and appreciated as MLB players. Baseball was not just the national pastime, it was an obsession and many Americans became fanatics about MLB— hence they embodied the term “fans.” Except for the World War II years, the nation’s attention for seven months was riveted annually on baseball. The 6-8 weeks that MLB teams devote to spring training became especially important for the entire state of Florida when the popularity of the sport soared, thanks to Babe Ruth, who became the most famous person in the USA. In 1924, the New York Giants owner/manager John McGraw was persuaded by John Ringling to bring his famous baseball team to Sarasota. For Ringling, the publicity enhanced the value of the developing Ringling Isles and Causeway – or so he thought. McGraw, no doubt under the influence of Ringling, went into the real estate business, but generated more lawsuits than money when the bust hit after the Great Miami Hurricane of 1926. Consequently, McGraw took the Giants elsewhere in 1927.
The New York Giants are attracted to Sarasota— star players mix and mingle
Major league baseball continues with many teams
The early arrival of a MLB team for spring training in 1924 was an exciting innovation for the area during the Interlude. MLB players were national celebrities and enjoyed mingling with the local population of residents and tourists. This was very much in contrast to the affluent celebrities,
Despite losing the Giants, the thrill of baseball and the joy of mingling with the MLB celebrities was already deeply rooted in the area. The old Payne Park was an excellent venue for baseball. Just as in the modern era, baseball stars practiced in the mornings, play nine inning games in the
Baseball begins here during the Interlude of sleepy Siesta Key
Where the MLB players stayed - beach cottages on Siesta Key during the 1950s
Island Chatter A group called the Longboat Key Revitalization Task Force, which has been working on ideas about how to mitigate red tide blooms, agreed to present its findings to SKCC officers and members, the email blast added. In programs for a number of Sarasota organizations, the email blast continued, the Longboat group has put its focus on what
Sheet music published in 1949 advertising Sarasota as “The Air Conditioned City”
early to mid-afternoons, and then were free to party. And, during the Interlude, party they did on Siesta Key at the gambling casinos, which were not available up North, and at the many other attractions. The Boston Red Sox, came in 1933, and other than during World War II when spring training was curtailed, they continued to train in Sarasota until 1958. During the Interlude, many of the Red Sox stars like Ted Williams stayed on Siesta Key and enjoyed the cottages on the beach as well as the bars like the Beach Club. The mix and mingle behavior of MLB players has also been evident around Bradenton. The St. Louis Cardinals came there in 1923 and continued for many years until moving to St. Petersburg. In 1969, the Pittsburgh Pirates came and have continued there for 50 years. Other teams like the Chicago White Sox, Cincinnati Reds and Baltimore Orioles have enjoyed making Sarasota their spring training venue. Their rookie and veteran players can be seen visiting Siesta Key after a long day at the beautifully renovated Ed Smith Stadium. And, next year, the Atlanta Braves will move their Spring Training headquarters to North Port, thus bringing three MLB teams to the area— a record for Florida. Clearly, this is an ideal place for spring training and the players’ recreational pursuits. A stroll on Siesta/Crescent Beach shows how many MLB fans are displaying caps and tee shirts of their favorite team. They treasure the opportunity to mix/mingle with a star like Manny Machado. You can read more about this topic and others in An Illustrated History of Siesta Key: The Story of America’s Best Beach, which is sold at both Davidson Drugs stores, Captain Curt’s gift shop, and Crescent Beach Grocery.
The J and K Beach Club around 1950 showing photos of Red Sox stars above the bar
Continued from page 25
governmental bodies can do to improve water quality. The task force has cited the cleanup of Chesapeake Bay “as an example of what a consolidated effort can produce,” the email blast pointed out. Red tide, the email blast emphasized, would be “the only topic of the meeting.”
Help wanted, please, with an invasive pest Residents of a condominium complex on south Siesta Key are asking the public for help with a serious environmental concern. They have many oak trees on their property. For the past six or seven years, an invasive plant called Japanese dodder vine
(cuscuta) “has overtaken some of our oak trees,” they explained in an email. “It is a string-like parasitic vine without leaves which lacks ability to make its own chlorophyll and attaches itself to the trees, winding around all the branches.” “Every year we pull it out by hand,” they continued, “as we are told that herbicides could kill the trees as well.” Arborists they have consulted do not seem to know anything about this exotic pest, they added. “We have seen this vine growing on several oak trees along Midnight Pass Road on the south end of the Key and would like to reach out to others either on the Key or otherwise who have or have had dodder vine to see if they have
found ways of eradicating it,” they wrote. “Up until now, we have just pulled it out, but with its prolific seed production, it always returns very quickly. “If anyone has had experience with dodder, please contact us through directly at 941-3497373.”
Kathleen D Sailing Catamarans Let’s go sailing, KATHLEEN D Sailing Catamarans, serving Siesta Key from 3 locations: Downtown Sarasota, Longboat Key, and Anna Maria Island. If you would like to experience being on the water viewing Dolphin Watches, Sunset Sails, Snorkeling and Shelling call us at 941-870-4349 or go to our web site for detailed information www.kathleend.net USCG Certified for 20 passengers.
Captain Jim Klopfer’s Fishing Report
Notes from the Island Fishmonger OYSTERS MADNESS Like a lot of folks March is my favorite time of the year. The weather is changing into perfect golfing temps, March madness Basketball and St. Paddy’s day are quickly approaching and like clockwork it is shellfish season. On March 17, you will not find me at work as I will be enjoying a morning round of golf followed by a cold Guinness, a dozen raw oysters, while watching a tournament basketball game. To me this is heaven. Of course, this time of the year, the stone crab steals most of the press even though stone crab season opened on October 15th, most Floridians and Snowbirds are enjoying their sweet crab fix for the first time before the season ends in May. While it is true that stone crabs are a must have this time of year and so far the catches have been plentiful don’t overlook the Quahogs, Mollusk and Bivalves. A few uncommon names for the common clams, mussels and oysters that thrive in the colder months as the water temperatures fall. It’s the time of year when we look for seafood delights that are a little heavier than the summer shrimp Gazpacho dish and not quite as comforting as a winter Paella or Jambalaya....no, what we are looking for in the spring is Mussels Marinara, Seafood Gumbo or Linguini with clams but my favorite is the granddaddy of all shellfish the Oyster. Right now, the Oyster profile is that of a very briny, buttery and clean taste with a salty finish. Oysters are most commonly eaten raw, steamed, or grilled. Recent travels to New Orleans and Pensacola, Florida have opened my eyes to a variety of creative and delicious ways to serve Oysters. Most of us are all familiar with the traditional Oyster Rockefeller and the Oyster Casino but some of these oyster bars in the Gulf panhandle have taken the oyster to another level. Smoked oysters with bacon, jalapenos, cheese and bread crumbs was one menu item that left a delightful impression on my taste buds while a broiled oyster with a Buffalo Wing sauce and crumbled blue cheese left me dazed and confused. As a self-proclaimed oyster expert, it is essential that before I eat an oyster, I will actually need to witness the opening of the shell to ensure maximum freshness and taste. The best oyster bars shuck the oyster in front of you and serve your freshly shucked dozen with a cold draft beer. If you haven’t sat at the bar of Monks Oyster Bar and had a dozen of Monkafellers or an Oyster Bourdain at The Big Water Fish Market’s newest Raw bar addition to Siesta Key “Scotty’s Shellfish Shack” you are missing out on two local Oyster recipe favorites. May the world be your oyster....Whatever that means. 10 Oyster Facts You Didn’t Know. Get ready to be a connoisseur, because after you read these oyster facts, you’ll be able to impress your savviest friends and family with your oyster information. You might even change the way you eat oysters and enjoy flavors you never knew were there. 1. Oysters change their gender. One of the most interesting oyster facts is that oysters change their sex during their lives, starting as males and usually ending as females. The shape of oysters varies and depends mainly on how many other oysters crowd about them in the bed as they develop. 2. An oyster can filter 1.3 gallons of water per hour. Oysters filter water in through their gills and consume food, like plankton, in the process. Oysters
Adventure Charters 941-371-1390
can maintain the balance of a marine ecosystem by reducing excess algae and sediment that can lead to hypoxia, or low oxygen levels, causing other marine life to die. The oyster population of Chesapeake Bay used to filter the entire water volume of the bay in just three days. 3. Oysters are shaped by their beds. Once an oyster attaches to a bed (a surface occupied by a group of oysters), it grows and forms around the surface it attaches to as well as the other oysters around it. 4. Pearls don’t only come from oysters. All oysters are capable of producing pearls, but not the shiny, pretty pearls of value. In fact, most pearls are harvested from an inedible type of oyster as well as from freshwater mussels. 5. Humans have been eating and cultivating oysters for thousands of years. Oysters have been eaten by humans since prehistoric times and cultivated at least since the times of the Roman Empire. The Roman Sergius Orata was the first person known to cultivate oysters by building a system that could control water levels. 6. Most American oysters are of the same species. Get your oyster facts straight — oysters harvested from the Gulf of Mexico, Chesapeake Bay and off the coast of Virginia are all the same oyster, Crassotrea virginica. This oyster species is native to the Gulf Coast and the East Coast. However, this does NOT mean they all taste the same. 7. Gulf oysters used to have different names. Other than Gulf oysters, you may have tried Blue Points or Quonset Points. These are all the same species of oyster, but they are named after the specific locations where they are harvested. Once upon a time, Gulf oysters were also named after specific bays, but distributors started to group them all into the same category. This may change again in the future. 8. Oysters get their flavors from their environments. Although most American oysters are the same species, they have different flavors. Because oysters filter so much water, they develop a flavor profile from their environment. Different bodies of water have varying levels of salt and different kinds of nutrients. 9. Like wines, Oysters have a variety of flavor profiles. The flavor of oysters can be categorized mainly by the following flavor characteristics: briny, buttery, sweet, metallic and mild. Experts can break down these flavors even further, picking out flavors like melon, cucumber, mushroom and more. Keep this tidbit of oyster information in mind next time you try an oyster on the half shell. 10. Oysters are rich in vitamins and nutrients. Oysters contain a variety of vitamins and nutrients including zinc, calcium, magnesium, protein, selenium, and vitamin A. They also contain especially high levels of vitamin B12, iron and monounsaturated fat – the “healthy” kind of fat that you also find in olive oil. (Source: https://www.originaloysterhouse.com/oysterfacts.php) Live happy…eat oysters Scott Dolan, Big Water Fish Market 6641 Midnight Pass, Siesta Key, 941-554-8101
Picture of “Oysters Bourdain” at “Scotty’s Shellfish Shack” located at 6639 Midnight Pass Rd. on Siesta Key southside next to the Big Water Fish Market
Island Visitor Publishing, LLC
Bonnie with a big jack crevalle
March is a great month to fish on Siesta Key. It is the first month of spring, both on the calendar and outside. The list of available species is long; snook, redfish, trout, pompano, cobia, king and Spanish mackerel, sheepshead, flounder, snapper, grouper, jack crevelle, and sharks just to name a few. Big Pass will be very productive this month, particularly when the water is clean. Ladyfish are usually thick, with bluefish, mackerel, and pompano mixed in. The sheepshead run will peak this month. Just about any structure near either pass will hold these tasty critters. A live shrimp fished on the bottom should result in a fish dinner pretty easily. Speckled trout will be schooled up over deep grass flats throughout the entire area. Incoming tides are best, but as long as the water is moving the fish will bite. A live shrimp under a noisy cork is a proven trout slayer. Bass Assassin Sea Shad baits on a ¼ ounce jig head will fool many fish, too. Pompano, mackerel, ladyfish, bluefish, jacks, and a stray cobia will also be encountered when fishing over the grass flats. These are large areas, the key to success is to keep moving until fish are located, do not spend too much time in one spot if it is not producing. Snook will move out of their winter retreats on their way out to the Gulf to spawn. The Myakka River will still produce some good fish as they migrate down river. Any structure with a depth change is a likely place to catch a snook. Docks, bridges, and oyster bars are all very productive, especially those with some current. Plugs and scented soft plastic baits are the top choices, along with a large handpicked shrimp. Surf fishing should be good for a variety of species providing the water is clear and not roiled up. Whiting, silver trout, flounder, pompano, Spanish mackerel, and ladyfish will hit both live shrimp and artificial lures. A jig tipped with a small piece of shrimp works well bounced along the bottom. Mackerel and ladyfish will hit flash lures such as silver spoons and plugs. I live shrimp fished on the bottom with just enough weight to get down is a simple but effective technique and will catch anything that swims. Anglers targeting pompano will do well with live or frozen sand fleas. The beach should come alive this month, provided the winds cooperate. Spanish and king mackerel will invade the area, along with cobia, sharks, and false albacore. The inshore reefs off of Lido Key are a great place to start, they hold a lot of fish. Trolling spoons and plugs is a deadly technique and will fill the cooler in short order. For more sport, look for breaking fish on the surface and cast plugs, spoons, or flies out into the frenzy, a vicious strike should occur immediately!
MARCH 2019 TIDE CHART Florida, St. Petersburg, Sarasota, Sarasota Bay
N 27° 20' / W 82° 33' Date
High Tide 1.2
High Tide 1.6
Low Tide -0.4
Low Tide 1.1
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Arts on the Horizon There are 31 days in March But, of course, you knew that - right? But did you know there are 24 operas being performed here in Sarasota this month? Admittedly, except for the most rabid opera buffs, that is a lot of opera. Well, the Sarasota Opera has made things a bit easier for you. They are only putting on five different operas and spreading repeat performances over 24 days. While they did not have reality TV shows back in the 1700s and 1800s, actors were dropped into quite fanciful situations, with really good background music by those centuries’ top composers. The plots are a bit far-fetched Man falls in love with woman, woman wants to kill man, man and woman consummate relationship - Two groups go to war, lots of killing goes on, people wind up happy - Gods don’t want man and woman to fall in love, tree frog helps them, they all wears pretty costumes - anyway, everyone is entertained. The opera on March 1st is Mozart’s The Magic Flute - not to be confused with La Flute Enchantée or Die Zauberflöte. Don’t be confused, they are all the same opera, just sung in different languages. Maybe a little confused, because the one being performed is actually Die Zauberflöte, sung in German - but not really confused because the supertitles (subtitles projected above the stage) are in English. No magic tree frog here, but there is a magic flute. On March 2nd is Verdi’s Nabucco. King Nabucco is the smiter-in-chief of Babylon, - yes, a lot of smiting goes on. He is struck by lightning and goes mad (This is called plot development and keeps things moving). The question is, is he a good mad king or a bad mad king? Only time will tell. On March 3rd Puccini’s Turandot continues its run. Turandot is a Chinese princess who hates men - so you know what happens. A double bill starts on March 9th. The first, Donizetti’s “Rita”, is about a man who comes back from the dead (spoiler alert - this is not about zombies) and complicates the lives of two others. The second, “Susanna’s Secret”, really stinks - in that it is all about the smell of tobacco - and how it complicates the lives of two others. Intrigued? Doubly intrigued? Then go see these two operas that are not often produced. Everything at www.Sarasotaopera.org. Even more jazz than opera There are 48 jazz performances being put on during March’s Sarasota Jazz Festival and, as you know, 48 is double 24 - but who’s counting. What would be the best way to get you in the mood to listen to some good jazz? How about a free concert at Phillippi Estate Park at 4 p.m. on March 3rd? Or how about seeing something that no one has ever seen before a workshop production of Jo Morello’s new play “Lil and Louis” being presented by some of the Westcoast Black Theatre Troupe players at St. Paul Lutheran Church on
By Rodger Skidmore
March 4th, 5th and 10th. The show’s about Lil Harding Armstrong, Louis Armstrong’s second wife, who was a powerhouse in her own right. On the 6th and 7th the film Round Midnight (a fictionalized composite of Lester Young and Bud Powell) will be playing at Burns Court cinema. So far we’ve gone from concert to play to film. There will be seven main stage concerts at the Hyatt Regency hotel on the 6th, 8th and 9th with a host of jazz greats (Houston Person, Randy Brecker, Dick Hyman, Bill Charlap, John Lamb, etc.) playing together. An interesting mix and match of more intimate concerts will also be held at the Hyatt. Twelve different musicians and their groups will be giving two concerts each, spread over two different dates. You will be able to move from concert to concert hearing Blues, Latin, Classic and Contemporary jazz. Sit in on a jazz guitar set by Gene Bertoncini (Jazziz magazine chose one of his CDs as number one of the top 20 acoustic guitar CDs in 2004) - when Gene is finished, move to another stage to hear Tom Carabasi perform on the Latin Stage. When Tom is done, listen in on the soulful singing of Katt Hefner or the bluesy songs of Lauren Mitchell. Just soak in the jazz. Want lots of jazz, but in a night club setting? There are a number of places playing jazz the night of the 7th, with different groups fronted by Al Hixon, Michael Ross at the 5 O’Clock Club, Billy Marcus and others. That night a jazz trolley (five actually) starting at the Van Wezel parking lot, will ferry you around to 12 different clubs so you can take in the sounds. Trollies run all evening, 5:30 till 10:30 p.m. A special treat that Sarasota jazz regulars know about will be performances at the Hyatt by the Bruno Family on Friday the 8th with Joe Bruno on trumpet, his son, Joe, jr. on bass, grandson Nick Bruno on drums and Nick’s mother on piano. Tons of information at Jazzclubsarasosta.org. Separate from the festival, Bill Buchman will be at the Unitarian Universalist
Church at 2 p.m. on the 1st and the Jeff Rupert Quartet will be at the Court Cabaret at Florida Studio Theatre at 6:30 p.m. on the 11th. Best, bester, bestest A few years back (still in the 21st Century so not really a long time ago) the British mystery, The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time, won the Whitbred prizes for Best Novel and for Book of the Year. Made into a play, it won seven Oliviers (British Tonys) in 2013, the most ever won by a play until then (a Harry Potter play won a couple more than that in 2017). The play closed in London later that year, but only because the ceiling of the theatre collapsed (yes, the show brought the house down). It soon re-opened and ran until 2017. The Broadway production picked up most of the “best” awards in 2015, including five Tonys. The main character in The Incident About the Dog is not the dog, but the teenager who finds out about, and investigates, the dog’s mysterious death. That this 15-year-old has an autism spectrum condition means that we are dealing not just with the facts of the case but also with his perception of those facts, and of his parents’ and his school mentor’s perceptions of his perceptions. Sort of like nested Russian dolls. That the actor in the Sarasota production, Alexander Stuart, is also on the autism spectrum brings a bit of reality to his portrayal of young Christopher Boone. This Sarasota production is at Florida Studio Theatre’s Gompertz theater and runs thru March 29th. One of the nice things about buying tickets at Floridastudiotheatre.org or their box office, is that you can also pick up tickets for Cherry Docs, one of the Stage III productions appearing at their Bowne’s Lab venue thru March 17th. All Stage III productions advise “Warning - Adult Content” but, since we live in today’s world, we know about Adult Content. Still, it’s nice to watch a show that puts some of it all together.
We make every effort to ensure the accuracy of this information. However, please be sure to always call ahead to confirm dates, times, location, and other information. WEEKLY BEACH CLASSES: • FREE T’AI CHI CHIH - Siesta Beach, Access #5 - Every Monday, 15 minutes before sunset. Open to all, no experience necessary. Contact Diana Daffner 941-3461024 for information. (Access #5 is in Siesta Village, where Beach Rd. meets Ocean Blvd.) • FREE YOGA - Mon.-Wed.-Fri.-Sat. 9 a.m. Classes held between blue and green lifeguard station. Call 941-320-6693 to register or go to website for more info. www.yogaonsiestabeach.com/about • GROUP FITNESS CLASSES – Join F.I.T. Tribe SRQ every Mon, Wed, & Sat. at 9 a.m. at the main pavilion. For more details, please see facebook page: www.facebook. com/FitTribeSRQ • NIA - Tues. & Thurs., 9 a.m., Siesta Public Beach (yellow lifeguard chair). Contact Kathy Oravec at 941-724-9719 for more info or check website: www.nianow.com/kathy-oravec • SIESTA KEY BEACH HOOP JAMS – Every Tuesday one hour before Sunset on Siesta Key beach we gather for a community Hoop Jam. (Between the red lifeguard stand and the pavilion; around where the Sunday drum circle happens.) Register at: www.outwardspiral.net • YOGA ON TURTLE BEACH – Tuesdays, 8:30-9:30 am. Residents and visitors on the south end of Siesta Key can enjoy All-Levels Yoga through April 9, 2019. For more information about location or registration, please e-mail Julie at: email@example.com WEEKLY DRUM CIRCLE: • Every Sunday about an hour before sunset. South of the main pavilion. You can participate or watch this weekly gathering and dance, hoop, play the drum or other musical instrument, and enjoy the
spectacular Siesta sunset. On The Beach… • MARCH (WEDS) 8-9:30AM / SUNRISE BEACH WALKS: Participants pay a one-time $5 registration fee and receive an event t-shirt with orginal design and sponsor logos and a punch card. Each week, participants check in with Parks and recreation staff between 8-9:30AM and after walking four weeks they are entered into a drawing for prizes. Contact 941-8615000 for details. • MARCH (WEDS) 9:30 - 10:30AM/ BEACH UNIVERISTY: This FREE environmental education series will take place at the main Siesta Key pavilion. The series will cover a new topic each month. Call 941-861-5000 for topic of the week. Around the island… • WEEKLY FARMER’S MARKET IN THE VILLAGE: Every Sunday from 8am – 1pm in Davidson’s Plaza in the Village. 5124 Ocean Blvd. Produce, Plants & Flowers, Music, Art, Organic Skincare, Italian Olive Oil, and Freshly Prepared Foods. Listen to live music while you shop. • KIDS RHYTHM JAM!™ – 11:30AM: Drumming Fun For Everyone!™ . Every Saturday and Tuesday. Everyone gets permission to play and make noise to create rhythm and song! Come & enjoy group drumming with your family and friends. $15/family - Positive RePercussions 5049 Ocean Blvd., Siesta Key Village - (941) 677-3786. Please check out our wide variety of other programs at: www. positiverepercussions.com/calendar • EXPRESS LUNCH & STUDY: Every Wednesday, Noon, at Siesta Key Chapel, 4615 Gleason Avenue (at Ocean Blvd) Stimulating Bible study in a way that allows you to learn in a relaxed environment. Take a break during your day, bring your lunch
and Bible to a class that studies a book of the Bible a little bite at a time. Free and open to the community. (941) 349-1166, siestakeychapel.org • MARCH 3 (SUN) STARTS AT NOON / SIESTA KEY CRUISE-IN SUNDAY: Bring your classic car or bike out for another great car cruise. Food and drinks specials. Live music starting at 2 p.m. featuring RJ Housen and Friends. Event takes place at 3.14 Pi and Blasé Café. • MARCH 16 (SAT) 3-6PM FLY FISHING SCHOOL: CB’s Saltwater Outfitters, 1249 Stickney Point Rd, Sarasota, FL has announced dates for their Orvis-Endorsed fly fishing schools for the upcoming fall through spring timeframe; Mar. 16, and Apr 13, 2019. Located on Siesta Key, the schools will cover fly casting basics, line control, shooting line and the roll cast. Instructors, Capt. Rick Grassett and Capt. Ed Hurst, will also cover leader construction, fly selection and saltwater fly fishing techniques. The course, designed for beginning and intermediate fly casters, will focus on basics but also work with intermediate casters on correcting faults and improving casting skills. Cost for the schools, which will run from 8:30 AM to 2 PM, is $195 per person and includes the use of Orvis fly tackle and lunch. Contact CB’s Saltwater Outfitters at (941) 349-4400 or firstname.lastname@example.org to make reservations. • MARCH 17 (SUN) 9PM -2AM / ST. PADDY’S DAY PUB CRAWL: The annual pub crawl will take place in the Siesta Key Village at participating bars. And Beyond… • PHILLIPI ESTATE PARK: LOCATED AT: 5500 S. Tamiami Trail, Sarasota, FL 34231. The month of March ushers in lots of activities for the community and visitors to enjoy:
Saturday, March 2 – ALS Walk – This is a free walk, sponsored by the ALS Association. Registration begins at Gazebo at 9:00 a.m. with walk along Phillippi’s shoreline trail beginning at 10:00 a.m. Please join us. Sunday, March 3 – JAZZ IN THE PARK – The Jazz Club kicks of the 39th annual Jazz Week with an afternoon of Jazz at the Gazebo. Bring your lawn chair and enjoy FREE music from noon to 4:00 p.m. For more information, please contact the Jazz Club at 941-366-1552 or email admin@ jazzclubsarasota.com Sat March 9 and Sun March 10 – Springfest in the Park, a free Arts & Crafts show in the front field at Phillippi from 10 a.m. until 4:00 p.m. Sunday, March 17 – A Saint Patrick’s Day Sarasota Jeep Meet and Greet in the front field at Phillippi Estate Park. Free from 10 a.m. until 5:00 p.m. Music and food vendors. Sunday, March 24 – BradentonSarasota Rose Society meeting at Edson Keith Mansion from 2:00 – 4:30 p.m. All are welcome to join in the program and discussion of the care of roses. • PALM AVENUE FIRST FRIDAY GALLERY WALK / 6-9PM: Every month local galleries open their doors to the public for the evening, offering a chance to meet with artists and admire their work. See website for location map. www.palmavenue.org/ • TOWLES COURT THIRD FRIDAY ARTWALKS / 5-9PM: Gallery and studio openings on a moonlit evening of fun and beauty - both natural and handcrafted beauty. Free music, events, refreshments. Meet the artists, shop and dine in authentic “ Old Florida” in downtown Sarasota. 1938 Adams Lane Sarasota, Florida 34236. www. towlescourt.com/index.htm
Your Monthly Horoscope ARIES (March 21–April 19): Change is afoot! With romantic Venus in your social sector most of March, single Rams could meet someone just by mingling. But messenger Mercury does that blasted retrograde thing from the 5th to 28th. And in your unconscious zone, it could dish out some doozies with communication and technology, so back everything up. On the 6th, game-changer Uranus enters your financial sector for seven years: Start empire-building now. TAURUS (April 20–May 20): Your career gets a boost with Venus (your ruler) in your public sector until the 26th. Add some creative flourishes and network like crazy. But note: From the 5th to 28th, communicator Mercury is retrograde in your social center. (So if you thought people were flaky before…) The headline news: Game-changer Uranus enters Taurus on the 6th for seven years. What changes are you hoping to make? What steps can you take this month? GEMINI (May 21–June 20): Get new initiatives underway before your ruler, whimsical Mercury, goes retrograde from the 5th to 28th in your professional and public sector. Miscommunications and tech glitches are likely, so get everything in writing, and back up all important data. Single? You could meet someone while traveling, or an elegant stranger might cross your path here. On the 6th, game-changer Uranus enters Taurus, kicking off a seven-year cycle of inner transformation. CANCER (June 21-July 22): Career opportunities abound this month as the magnetic Sun races through your success zone. Calculated risks are supported, but note that trickster Mercury will be retrograde from the 5th to 28th, increasing the likelihood of miscommunication and technological glitches. And once disruptor Uranus moves into Taurus on the 6th (for seven years), rethink your online presence, whether that means getting more serious with your social networking or going on a digital detox. LEO (July 23–August 22): Ch-ch-changes are coming, so if you’ve been asking for a shift, you can drop your prayer beads! Radical disruptor Uranus blasts into Taurus and your house of career and public image (for seven years). This is your once-in-a-lifetime moment to take a gamble on your vision, whether it’s a change at your current situation or going in a whole new direction. Your love life also gets a sweet infusion as Venus sails through that sector until the 26th. VIRGO (August 23-September 22): If you’ve been planning an epic getaway or considering some advanced training (as a student or teacher), opportunities will open up starting on the 6th, when game-changing disruptor Uranus charges into Taurus and your travel, education and adventure zone (for seven years). Think before you speak to your beloved or business partner from the 5th to 28th, when your ruler, communicator Mercury, goes retrograde in your relationship zone. LIBRA (September 23–October 22): Music to a Libra’s ears: Your love life is the headline-news cycle this month! Your ruler, romantic Venus, is sailing through your seductive sector until the 26th, making
By Suzanne Gerber
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you irresistible. At the same time, the Sun is in your partnership realm, making it hard to focus on much else! And on the 6th, game-changing Uranus Shampoo and towel dry.... and you’re done! blazes into Taurus and your intimacy The style is in the cut, not the blow-dry, so you don’t zone for the next seven years, giving you the firepower to bring about any have to fuss with your hair to look good... even fine, changes you desire. limp or curly hair... and my new steam color SCORPIO (October 23–November process + Olaplex creates richer brunettes and 21): Think twice before you overshare spectacular blondes. The colors go deeper with a love interest when communicator Mercury goes retrograde from the 5th to NEW LOCATION! and last longer, yet are far more gentle to the hair. 28th in your zone d’amour. And with By Appointment Only with Ian: iansalon.com game-changing Uranus moving into Taurus and your partnership corner for the next seven years, you could enact the shifts you desire. But wait until after the 28th to do anything irrevocable. Feeling antsy? Decorate your home while Venus is holding court in your domesticity quarters! SAGITTARIUS (November 22–December 21): It’s a frisky, flirty month, and single Sags will be exceptionally popular and lucky in love. Attached? You’ll have a “power-couple surge” at the end of the month. Hold off on any home renos while indecisive Mercury is retrograde in your domestic sector from the 5th to 28th. What you love today you might loathe next month! And when radical Uranus moves into your health and self-care corner on the 6th, make you your priority! CAPRICORN (December 22–January 19): Been fantasizing about your dream home? You can begin to make it a reality this month! The Sun beams through your domestic zone, Venus is in your house of security and possessions, and on the 6th, transformative Uranus marches into your creative corner, ready to knock down walls if necessary. This is a once-in-a-lifetime chance to make Big Changes—but hold off on anything irrevocable while Mercury is retrograde from the 5th to 28th. AQUARIUS (January 20–February 18): With charming Venus in your sign and the Sun in your communication center this month, you’ll have a silvergilded tongue. But it comes with a warning label: Messenger Mercury is retrograde from the 5th to 28th, and signals can get scrambled. Get terms in writing— and be prepared to wait things out. Changes in your home or living situation could come as early as the 6th, but this is a seven-year cycle, so no need rush into anything. PISCES (February 19–March 20): If you’ve been kicking a financial situation down the road, it’s time to take it on directly. With the Sun in your money zone, you’ll have the confidence to take necessary actions. But with mental Mercury retrograde in your sign from the 5th to 28th, things you think are crystal-clear could be misconstrued. Don’t make assumptions, and get things in (legally binding) writing. By next month, your seedlings could be bearing fruit. Suzanne Gerber (www.starsandstoneshealing.com) is a locally based intuitive astrologer, shamanic/energy practitioner and spiritual life coach. She works at Wild Ginger Apothecary in Gulf Gate on Friday afternoons on a drop-in basis and is available for private in-person and phone sessions by appointment. Or book her for your next “psychic party!” www.themariner.com
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ACCOMMODATIONS PAGE 42 HOMES FOR SALE PAGE 41 SIESTA KEY MARKET STATS PAGE 36
The Highs and Lows of Properties Sold on Siesta Key
Provided by Key Solutions Real Estate / www.keysolutionsrealestate.com
Following are properties sold on Siesta Key in the last 60 days, providing a snapshot of home values on the Key for both single family homes and condominiums. HIGHEST PRICED SINGLE FAMILY PROPERTY: 528 VENICE LN. : SOLD FOR: $1,690,000 The epitome of sophisticated island living is just a showing away! This sensational 4 bedroom, 3.5 bath waterfront home was built in 2017 to the highest standards and upgrades. You will first notice the welcoming porch as you enter the home. You will then see this home boasts porcelain tile floors, quartz countertops, solid wood cabinets with pull outs and soft close, Brew Express built in coffee maker, Kitchen Aid Appliances, Moen faucets, electric fireplace, 65 inch flat screen TV with Sonos sound system, designer lighting, custom closets, soaking tub, T.V. in Master Bath, impact doors and windows, plantation shutters, remote control blinds, Maple wood bar with wine and beverage cooler, warming drawer, decorator baths with exquisite tile work, tray ceilings, crown molding and eight inch baseboards throughout, laundry room with custom cabinetry, insta-hot water, the list goes on and on. Step outdoors, back yard boasts a lovely Grand Canal view with an inviting covered porch overlooking the sparkling pool with sun shelf, water fall, fire feature and a built-in outdoor grill. Get the boat ready! A 10,000.00 lb. lift along with a 52 ft. Trex dock complete with water and electric will make boating so easy. Need storage? Go to the three car garage with non-slip “Tartan” floors and you will find a wall full of built in cabinets to accommodate every item you need to store. Location is perfect, easy access on/off Key, one bridge to Bay (about 5 minutes by boat) and walking distance to the sugary sands of Siesta Key Beach and the Village for shopping and dining. The sale of this property came out to $635.37 a square foot. Courtesy of Michael Saunders. LOWEST PRICED SINGLE FAMILY PROPERTY: 165 VISTA HERMOSA CIR. SOLD FOR: $329,000 This Single family detached villa near Siesta beach and Siesta Village was priced to sell. Ripe for remodel w/ carport and over 1400 square foot under roof. Enjoy the island lifestyle just 3 blocks to beach and Siesta Village! On site amenities include heated pool, bath house, picnic areas and shuffleboard. Two week rentals allow for income potential. This can be your home or investment property. Come see this soon.The sale on this unit came out to $296.14 a square foot. Courtesy of Keller Williams.
HIGHEST PRICED CONDO: 67 AVENIDA MESSINA, #B: SOLD FOR: $2,400,000 Soothing sea breezes, swaying tropical palms, miles of white sand and views across the Gulf of Mexico provide the unforgettable backdrop to this luxury Siesta Key end unit townhouse. Be one of the few to enjoy life on Avenida Messina, where only four exclusive residences are poised between the beach and Village. Fresh and modern, the uplifting living areas are brilliantly sequenced just like a full family home and with just as much space– an impressive 3,800 square feet. This includes five bedrooms, five full bathrooms, an elevator and garage space for two cars plus a boat. Natural light illuminates the already gleaming open kitchen, and you’ll love the convenience of premium stainless steel appliances framed by crisp white cabinetry. With island inspired drinks shaken and poured, step out to your private terrace for cocktails, conversation, and incredible sunset views. If you’re not here to enjoy your Siesta Key residence full-time, the estimated seasonal rental income is between $13-15,000 per month. Now is your time to live the Florida island life, right beside one of the world’s most sought-after beaches and just a hop, skip and jump from open-air restaurants, ice cream parlors and great local shops. The sale on this unit came out to $764.44 a square foot. Courtesy of Coldwell Banker.
LOWEST PRICED CONDO: 6717 MIDNIGHT PASS RD, #9: SOLD FOR: $190,000 Amazing price/location on the Key! A quick walk to the beach thru the public access #12 and 13 with many conveniences nearby, as bar, restaurants, shopping. This one bedroom/one bath unit has many updates. recent paint, new Hunter Douglas window treatments throughout and new solid surface flooring. Enjoy the screened in outdoor space when you’re not out on one of the world’s best beaches! There is also a good-sized storage space for all your beach gear. This unit is being offered fully furnished with some rentals in place in the winter season. Ideal for investment and/or personal beach retreat. Best price in Siesta Key. No need to say more! The sale came out to $334.28 a square foot. Courtesy of Realty One Grooup-Skyline.
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Blooming This Month African Tulip Tree (Clerodendrum Thomsoniae) Extravagant in every way the African Tulip Tree (Spathodea campanulata) is known as one of the most beautiful trees in the world. This big, impressive shade tree grows only in non-freezing climates of the USA. This tree is an impressive specimen with gigantic, reddish orange or golden yellow, trumpet shaped flowers & huge glossy leaves. This tree grows best in full sun & is relatively drought tolerant. Plant in welldrained soil. Wonderful addition to your gardens if you have the space for a very tall tree that can grow from 7-25 feet tall.
There are two of these trees in full bloom in the month of February, at the Sarasota Garden Club, located at 1131 Blvd of the Arts. Stop by to enjoy this beautiful tree. Also, SGC is having their annual â€œGardens in Paradise Tourâ€? March 16 from 9am-4pm. For more information, go to www.sarasotagardenclub.org. or call 941-955-0875. Kay Weber, 3rd VP and Chair of Botanical Gardens at Sarasota Garden Club. www.sarasotagardenclub.org
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Current permit parking comes up for renewal November 1, 2019 With the shortage of parking in the Village, Siesta Sand has received numerous questions from visitors and residents about the Mira Mar Neighborhood and how this area was able to receive the special exception for permit parking being so close to the Village. The Mira Mar District on Siesta Key is located west of the Village and is bordered by Avenida Messina to the north, Avenida Navarra to the east and Beach Road to the south. Also included are Avenida Veneccia running east and west, and Columbus Boulevard, from Avenida Navarra to Beach Road (see accompanying map). In May 1994, numerous citizens approached the County to adopt an ordinance prohibiting on-street parking for non-residents in the Mira Mar neighborhood. Several owners of rental unit businesses complained that because they do not have sufficient off street parking for all their rental units, such a prohibition might adversely impact their business. The complaint was launched because so many island residents and visitors from outside the Mira Mar neighborhood used the rights-ofway parking to access this beautiful section of the beach and go to the Village. As a result, a residential permit parking area was established for the Mira-Mar neighborhood, initially adopted by Ordinance No. 95-038, with a one-year sunset date. Ordinance No. 96-046 was subsequently adopted, extending the program, but not including a sunset date. Subsequently, Ordinance No. 97-073 was adopted on September 16, 1997, which continued the program and added a sunset date to July 8, 2004. The sunset date was further extended by Ordinance No. 2004051 to July 8, 2009, and then extended by Ordinance No. 2009-029 to November 1, 2014. Ordinance 2009-029 also repealed Ordinance No. 96-046 and was the first of the ordinances to be codified into the County Code as Section 122-145. Ordinance No. 2011-002 amended Ordinance No. 97-073, adding provisions regarding handicapped parking. The sunset date remained until November 1, 2014. The latest Ordinance No. 2014-058 is in effect until November 1, 2019, to provide enforcement for no public on-street parking, except by permit by temporary rental unit visitors. The owners of the rental units pay $5 per permit every year for each rental unit under a Business Tax License. The current number of rental units with active parking permits averages 130 per year. Any person parking in violation to this ordinance will receive a $25 parking ticket. Other local roads on the west side of Siesta Village have petitioned for No Parking signage and enforcement to ensure emergency service access to these properties, as well as ingress/egress access to and from home sites on these streets. Both the Traffic Advisory Council and the Board of County Commissioners considers these petition requests, along with staff recommendation and MUTCD warrants for eligibility. At this time, there is no funding approved for additional parking in the immediate area of the Siesta Key Village. The County has continued funding for the open air Trolley (Breeze), that has broken records for the number of riders and is free to the public for travel along Siesta Key.
SIESTA KEY VILLAGE
Understanding the Mira Mar Parking District on Siesta Key By Bob Stein
Circuit Court judge rules on Reopen Beach Road Continued from page 6
Cosentino’s attorney in that case — Lee Robert Rohe of Big Pine Key — asked that the Appeal Court delay until March 22 the filing of his initial brief with the court. On Jan. 28, the Appeal Court ordered that the initial brief “shall be served within 30 days of the date of this order.” Cosentino lost an earlier appeal of one of Mercurio’s rulings in favor of the county. The Caflisches were among the three sets of property owners who petitioned for the North Beach Road vacation in 2016, arguing that the segment had been closed to motor vehicles since 1993 because of repeated storm damage. Cosentino has contended the County Commission never should have approved the request because of the road segment’s value as public access to Siesta Beach. He cited a section of the county’s Comprehensive Plan in effect at that time to underscore his argument. Objection to referral of case to a magistrate On Feb. 4, Circuit Judge Ruhl also issued an order that referred the matter to Circuit Court Magistrate Deborah A. Bailey. That order authorized Bailey to conduct any hearings, which could include the “taking of evidence,” and then directed her to file a recommended order to Ruhl, “as soon as practicable.” However, the order pointed out, “A referral to a Magistrate requires the consent of all parties.” On Jan. 31, S. William Moore, another attorney for the Caflisches, had a letter hand-delivered to Ruhl, the court docket shows. Moore wrote that he and Sarasota County had no objection to her referral. However, “Counsel for proposed Intervenor Reopen Beach Road, Inc… has notified us of its objection to the referral.” On Feb. 13, Cosentino’s attorney, Rohe, did file a notice of objection.
• 2ND Month Free • Free Move-In Truck • Entire Facility Carpeted • Free Lock & Keys • Big Garage Bay For Loading And Unloading • Climate Controlled 941.315.5222 5260 Tamiami Trail • Sarasota, FL 34231 www.thelockup.com
Sarasota resident, Eddie Ward, brings along his Siesta Sand paper to catch up on island news before going to Buckingham palace
Living the Key Life By Roger Drouin Resort-like, renovated property listed for sale in Sarasota Beach subdivision A home listed for sale on Avenida del Norte is its own tropical oasis, with lush landscaping, wrap-around decks on the second and third floors, and a courtyard pool. The three-story Georgian home is listed for sale for $1,229,000 and has a total of 3,526 square feet of living space in two buildings — a main structure and a separate cottage building adjacent to the pool. The home was completely renovated by the current owners, who purchased it in 2012. “They spared no expense,” says listing agent Bob Ruiz, “including slate-tile flooring throughout, and a gourmet chef’s kitchen with an abundance of stone and wood cabinetry.” The home also features a soaring 20-foot ceiling in the main-level living space and a coral stone fireplace that reaches to the ceiling in the great room. Airy and light, the home has an open feel on the main level, with grey tile flooring and an abundance of windows. In addition, the location is ideal — situated on the north end of the Key, only a short stroll to the Village and a quick boat-ride via canals to the Gulf. The Sarasota Beach subdivision is bounded approximately by Beach Road (including Tenacity Lane), Ocean Blvd, Avenida del Mare, and Avenida de Mayo. There are over 500 parcels in the community and no HOA, says Ruiz, of Key Solutions Real Estate. “The community is a vibrant neighborhood with walkers and bicyclists,” he says. It is one of the most sought after neighborhoods on the Key. The property at 651 Avenida del Norte has a total of four bedrooms and three-and-a-half bathrooms. The main home has 2,736-square feet of air-conditioned living space, and is a three bedroom, two-and-a-half-bath home, according to the Sarasota County Property Appraiser. The detached cottage was constructed in 2013, with one bedroom and one bathroom. The cottage has 790 squarefeet of living space. According to Ruiz, it would make an excellent guest cottage or in-law suite. “Your life will be a never-ending vacation in this stunning 4 bedroom 3.5 bath property with boat dock and 10k lift,” reads the MLS listing for the property. The property’s boat lift is located just across the quiet residential street from the home. A deep-water canal connects within yards
to the Grand Canal, and then a quick boat ride leads to the Intracoastal Waterway and Gulf of Mexico just beyond. The boat dock, according to the Sarasota County Property Appraiser’s website, was constructed in 2013. The thoughtfully designed kitchen contains white cabinets and appliances, 2-inch granite counter-tops with matching back splashes, and a central island fronted by stone with seating for four. The adjacent spacious dining area opens through French doors to the porch and pool just below. Two bedrooms with Jack & Jill bath complete the main level. A stone staircase leads to the spacious third floor master suite with a den/office, a large master closet fitted with built-ins, and an opulent bath with a sleek soaking tub. A pool/media room, one-car garage, and office/storage space on the first floor complete the home. The property’s listing price of $368 a square foot is at the lower range for property with similar locations close to the beach and Village on Siesta Key, Ruiz says. The price range for those homes, Ruiz told Siesta Sand, is $330 to $600 per square foot, with this home it’s at $368 and that’s without the first-floor game room bonus square footage, says Ruiz, the listing agent. Several homes are listed for sale in the Sarasota Beach neighborhood. For sale is a four bedroom, four bath ranch home on Island Circle listed for $1,050,000. The home has 3,146 square feet, and a pool, and the listing works out to $334 per square foot. A five-bedroom, four canal-front home is also listed for $1,565,000, or $446 a square foot. That home has 3,506 square feet. The classic Coastal contemporary home had a major renovation in 2002, with additions and the entire interior including the windows, plumbing and electric reworked and updated. Another home in the subdivision is listed for $1,148,000. The four-bedroom home has an open floor plan, a virtual wall of glass, and a pool overlooking the Grand Canal. The home has a new roof and hurricane shutters. The home has 4 bedrooms, and 4 baths (including a separate In-Law/4th bedroom/ media room with a full bath and a separate entrance). Four homes have sold in the area over the past year, including a 2,506 square-foot canal home that sold for $1,245,000, or $497 a square foot.
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Classifieds / Here’s My Card ACCOMMODATIONS / VACATION RENTALS
• Best Western Plus Siesta Key – AAA -3 Diamond Property, • Baths, Kitchens & More is a full service remodeling company Free shuttle service to and from Siesta Key 941-924-4900, 6600 S. with over 85 years combined experience updating bathrooms, Tamiami Trl., Sarasota kitchens and general remodeling projects. Remodeling projects can become very overwhelming, we will listen to you, understand • Siesta 4 Rent - Vacation Rentals, from studios to 5 bedrooms. your vision, and design to fit your needs and budget. We will help Serving Siesta Key since 1997, 941-349-5500 walk you thru the process from drawing 3D designs, selecting countertops, tile down to the paint color all included BOATING RENTALS / FISHING CHARTERS cabinets, in our service to you. Jim has a great vision of what a space can be, he has been on HGTV, the DIY network, and worked with TV stars Mike Holmes and Chip Wade. Our newest showroom will be located in the Stickney Point/Hwy. 41 area in Sarasota. For a Capt. Jack Wallace free consultation please call 941-893-1717 to get “The look for less” (state lic. CBC# 1262334)
Captain Jacks Yacht Charters
941.320.8700 www.sarasotachartervessel.com Pleasure Cruises only Sunsets/Weddings/Special Occasions Hourly, Daily, Weekly
• CB’s Saltwater Outfitters – CB’s Saltwater Outfitters is an ORVIS Endorsed Outfitter Fishing Charter Service serving Siesta Key as well as Longboat Key, Lido Key, Sarasota, and Venice. Our veteran guides offer exciting Fishing Adventures for anglers of all ages from novice to the expert. See our website: www.CBsOutfitters.com or stop in their store for additional info. 1240 Stickney Point Rd, Siesta Key. (941)349-4400.
Having Fun Fishing in The Sun
• Nutter Construction is your local Siesta Key builder. We have a strong team with over 30 years of combined high end residential construction experience in Sarasota and Lakewood Ranch. We offer custom construction, remodeling services, management and consulting, concierge service, and we are committed to protecting our resources by using construction techniques that are environmentally friendly. Call us at 941-924-1868, visit our showroom at 3534 South Osprey Avenue, or check us out online at www.nutterconstruction.com. LEED AP | FL Licensed Building Contractor CBC060004 | FL Licensed Real Estate Sales Associate BK322256 | Certified Home Inspector HI4630
• Siesta Key Marina Located at 1265 Old Stickney Point Rd, Siesta Key, has been serving Sarasota boaters and fishermen since 1961. A staple in the Sarasota boating community, offering 243 dry storage racks, a full service ship store, onsite boat service, boat rentals, bait, fuel, fishing tackle and more. 941-349-1970
New LookReasonable Prices! Shower & Bathtub Walls
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Shower & Bath Makeovers Free Estimates Call John 941.377.2940
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LIZ MARTIN 3519 N. Lockwood Ridge Rd. • Sarasota, FL 34234
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Serving Manatee and Sarasota Counties
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• Wilson Windows is a State Certified General Contractor specializing in glass porch enclosures and window replacement. They offer only top quality products installed by professionally trained technicians. All projects are engineered and permitted to meet the new state building codes related to impact, water infiltration and high velocity windload calculations. Their services include window repair, new custom screens, glass cut to size, and hard to find window parts inventory at both locations. Fully insured and their work is guaranteed. 941-921-1113, www.wilson-window.com.
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1922 Bay Rd., Sarasota
CHURCH SERVICES • WEDNESDAY CHURCH - Traditional worship every Wednesday at 6 PM. Committed to reaching 55+ Widows, Widowers, Veterans, Singles, and Adults. 7811 Kennedy Ln., Sarasota, FL 34240. Pastor Trebor Britt, 941320-4309. SJG5232@verizon.net
Insured, Bonded and Licensed by The National Home Watch Association.
JEWELRY LANDINGS RESIDENT OWNED AND OPERATED
Call or e-mail email@example.com housewatchsrq.com for quotes and references Serving SaraSota and Surrounding areaS Since 1979
Dolphin Watch • SunSetS • half Day aDventure SailS
Kathleen D Sailing Catamaran
For more details please see our Facebook page www.facebook.com/FitTribeSRQ
R. BRuce Whittinghill, llc (941) 955-1864
Veteran Owned Business
Sailing From Marina Jack, Sarasota
Join Fit Tribe SRQ every Mon, Wed, & Sat at 9am for fun Group Fitness classes at Siesta Key Beach Main Pavillon.
• Hawk’s Nest Construction Inc. is a certified Class A general contractor licensed in all phases of construction. Owner, Mark Hawkins Sr. personally oversees every aspect of your project from start to finish, using only the best and most reliable licensed artisan and craftsmen. His passion is delighting his clients by turning their home-improvement dreams into a beautiful reality. Call 941-6509499 or visit their website: www.hawksnestconstruction.com
Tony Fudoli Sr. CAPTAIN firstname.lastname@example.org
J Morgan O’Donoghue, MD.
1952 Field Road Sarasota, Florida 34231
Board-Certified dermatologist skin CanCer • laser • Botox and Hair/nail disorders
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from your home or business
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• Atlantic Contracting Services, LLC (941-893-1717, florida. atlanticcontractingservices.com) intends to register the fictitious names of “Baths, Kitchens, and More” and provide interior home/ condo/office remodeling services and “Beachtown Contracting” to provide exterior home/condo/office remodeling services, additions, and new construction services to Sarasota County and the surrounding area under that name.
Transportation for everyone on the Sun Coast Friendliest Ride In Town
Olde Fashion Barber Shop
Tapers • Flattops • Fades • Styling • Razor Cuts • Shaves
Southgate Barber Shop
(Across from the Westfield Siesta Key Mall)
MOVING & STORAGE
2081 Siesta Drive, Sarasota, FL 34239
AAA FLAT RATE MOVING AND STORAGE CO.
Monday through Friday 9-6 • Saturday 9-2
SARASOTA’S MOVER OF CHOICE SINCE 1980 AROUND THE CORNER OR AROUND THE WORLD CALL OR EMAIL FOR A FREE MOVING ESTIMATE 941-922-4466 / AAAFLATRATE@AOL.COM
10% OFF Summer Nails
Great service...great prices! Sanitation first! We care about your well-being!
Call for an Appointment
941-952-3301 Hours: 9 AM - 7 PM Mon. - Sat. Closed Sunday
Regular Manicure $15
Try our DELUXE PEDICURE for an awesome experience! YOU DESERVE IT!
Gift Certificates Available - Walk-ins Welcome
7119 S. Tamiami Tr., Sarasota, FL 34231 (Buccaneer Plaza across from Lincoln Dealership)
SPORTS RENTALS / ACCESSORIES • Robin Hood Rentals – for all your Siesta Key rental needs with a wide variety segways, bikes, kayaks, scooters and more, free pickup and delivery anywhere on the key. 5255 Ocean Blvd Siesta Key Village. 941-554-4242 • Siesta Key Bike & Kayak – Located on Siesta Key in Capt Curts Village serving Siesta Key, Lido Beach and Sarasota. We offer bikes, kayak rentals, kayak eco tours, paddleboards and scooters. 1224 Old Sickney Pt Rd. 941-346-0891 • Siesta Sports Rentals – Located on Siesta Key, bike, kayak, kayak tours, scooter, children strollers and car seats. Delivery and pickup available, 6551 Midnight Pass Rd, 941-346-1797
REAL ESTATE AGENTS
HELENE M. HYLAND REALTOR®
(941) 685-2274 Cell (941) 349-4411 Office (800) 237-9403 Toll Free (941) 349-8090 Fax HeleneHyland@comcast.net
5145 Ocean Blvd. Sarasota, FL 34242 Owned and Operated by NRT, LLC
• Making things happen on Siesta Key with Real Estate agents Bob and Sheri Ruiz from Key Solutions Real Estate Group. If you are looking to buy or sell on the Key contact us. Bob Ruiz 941-544-3299 RobertRuizRR@aol.com, Sheri Ruiz 941-400-4186 SheriLasley@aol.com
RESTAURANTS 5 for $9 Lunch Specials Mon. - Fri. 11 am - 2 pm
All entrees served with your choice of fries, baked beans or coleslaw.
6507 S Tamiami Trl, Sarasota
• Cheeseburger • 10 Boneless Wings • Grilled Chicken Salad • Buffalo Chicken Sandwich, (available grilled)
(turkey bacon, buffalo shrimp or buffalo chicken)
Sarasota’s Premier “Chauffeur”
Airport Rides Starting At Only
30 941.735.4732 $
All Ports In Florida
Stress Free • Smooth and Easy Ask for Eddie
Sarasota Senior Serving Other Seniors • I will drive you to or from any Florida airport • I will drive your car to or from anywhere in the US or Canada Please Call 248-225-9819 or email: email@example.com • Jonny’s Original Free Ride – The Original Ride the Key Free service on Siesta to anywhere, everyday from 10 AM – 2 AM. Driver tips only. Call 941-928-9200. • Dollar Limo – holds up to 10 people and is cheaper than a D.U.I or taxi. Call 941-735-4732
RIDE THE KEY FREE
15-20 MINUTE RESPONSE TIME (Based upon traffic)
Siesta Key Beach Siesta Village Turtle Beach
DRIVER TIPS ONLY
Restaurants and Accommodations Operating 10AM to 2AM Daily
TO ADVERTISE CALL 941-349-0194
Place your classified ad here for $6. (15 words) and $.10 for each additional word. Copy must be submitted with payment on or before the 15th of the month prior to publication. For display ads, please call 941-349-0194 for rates.
HOMES FOR SALE • SHORT WALK TO SIESTA BEACH: $429,900. 195 Vista Hermosa Circle, #9-A, Siesta Key, FL. MLS# A4189942 beautifully remodeled, 2 BR, 2 BA villa. Designer tile & carpet throughout. This villa is being sold turnkey furnished (with some exclusions). Dan Miller, Re/Max Tropical Sands. 941-376-7442 • FULL GULF VIEW OF #1 BEACH: $499,900. 797 Beach Rd, #305, Siesta Key, FL. MLS# A4188853. Completely remodeled unit with high end tile floors in main living area, quality custom kitchen cabinets with granite counters. All the lighting has been upgraded throughout this TURNKEY FURNISHED (some artwork excluded) unit. Dan Miller, Re/Max Tropical Sands. 941-376-7442 • PALM ISLAND HOME ON THE GRAND CANAL: $899,000. 322 Island Circle, Siesta Key, FL. MLS# A4199085. Recently renovated with new kitchen, new master BR and master BA. This house boasts a new boat lift on the Grand Canal. Privacy abounds with a lovely tropical view across the canal. Huge bonus area on lower level. Dan Miller, Re/Max Tropical Sands. 941-376-7442 • DEEDED BEACH ACCESS: $899,900. 1122 Horizon View Drive, Siesta Key, FL., MLS# A4420716. This is one of the closest properties to the beach without having the direct beachfront price on a street of multi-million dollar properties. This immaculate pool home features large rooms and volume ceilings. Lovely oak floors and stylish tile will dazzle you. 3 Bedrooms and 3.5 bathrooms along with the lower level bonus area for generational living or guests. Dan Miller, Re/Max Tropical Sands. 941-376-7442 • ACROSS FROM PUBLIC BEACH: $685,000. 1001 Beach Road, Siesta Key, FL., MLS#A4426862. Enjoy views of the beautiful Gulf of Mexico and Siesta Key canals from the 6th floor of your two large terraces as well as the downtown Sarasota lights. Generous square footage for a beach condo and both bedrooms are of generous size. This unit is offered turnkey furnished & tastefully renovated. Dan Miller, Re/Max Tropical Sands. 941-376-7442 • SARA SANDS - Outdoor living at its best-located at the end of a canal with a great water view, dock with lift, Tiki hut, beautiful pool, outdoor fireplace, a huge screened lanai. 3/2 remodeled and furnished ranch home at the north end of Siesta Key. Easy bike to the Village and Beach. RV parking. If you enjoy entertaining, this is the one! MLS# A4415047, $1,199,000. Key Solutions Real Estate Group, Sheri & Bob Ruiz Bob: 941-544-3299 or Sheri: 941-400-4186. • THE POINTE - Penthouse! 1/1 at the southernmost end of Siesta Key. Incredible 270 degree views of the Gulf and Bay. Large lanai. Plentiful storage in the unit and on the first floor. Convenient underbuilding parking. Gated community with boat docks, kayak racks and dock, tennis, pool, spa, sauna, beautiful clubhouse, island gazebo with grilling, and more. MLS# A4401699, $349,999. Key Solutions Real Estate Group, Sheri & Bob Ruiz. Bob: 941-544-3299 or Sheri: 941-400-4186. • THE POINTE - Renovated 2/2 penthouse with magnificent views. North to downtown Sarasota and South to Casey Key. See beautiful Neville Preserve and Little Sarasota Bay to the East and the Gulf of Mexico with Siesta’s amazing sunsets to the West. Penthouse unit. Sold furnished. MLS# A4406101, $545,000. Key Solutions Real Estate Group, Sheri & Bob Ruiz. Bob: 941-544-3299 or Sheri: 941-4004186. • EXCELSIOR - Fabulous 2/2 penthouse end unit with Bay views and private beach access! Totally renovated to include exquisite fixtures and furnishings. Soaring ceilings. Open and split floorplan. Turnkey. Great community with resort-like amenities. MLS# A4410196, $699,000. Key Solutions Real Estate Group, Sheri & Bob Ruiz. Bob: 941-544-3299 or Sheri: 941-400-4186. • DOLPHIN BAY - This is the one! Incredible views of the ICW and Bay. Ideal floor plan - split bedrooms, huge living/dining area, 2 bedrooms each with en-suite bath, kitchen with large sitting area/den/office. Fabulous outdoor living - large screened lanai overlooking the water and 2 patios off the front of the unit. Space for a 3rd bedroom. Walk to Siesta Beach and Village. MLS# A4415040, $699,000. Key Solutions Real Estate Group, Sheri & Bob Ruiz. Bob: 941-544-3299 or Sheri: 941-400-4186. • THE POINTE - Furnished - move right in to this lovely 4th floor 2 bedroom 2 bath unit with incredible 270 degree views. Southern end of Siesta with tree-lined streets for walking and biking. Walk to Turtle Beach and three restaurants. Gated community with every amenity. MLS# A4427052, $565,000. Key Solutions Real Estate Group, Sheri & Bob Ruiz. Bob: 941-544-3299 or Sheri: 941-400-4186. • SARASOTA BEACH - Live your vacation in this stunning 4 bedroom 3.5 bath property with boat dock and 10 lift. Walking distance to Siesta Beach and Village and a quick boat ride to the Gulf. Totally and exquisitely renovated. Wrap-around porches on two levels. Pool in fenced back yard. RV parking. MLS# A4418533, $1,299,000. Key Solutions Real Estate Group, Sheri & Bob Ruiz. Bob: 941-544-3299 or Sheri: 941-400-4186. Continued on page 43
Snapshots of Island Visitors Photos by Jaye Clements - Sarasota Photography
Hudson age 4, Brooke, Aaron, Addilyn age 2, & Ellie 3 months
MARCH 2019 If you would like to be considered for our next Island Girl, contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org (You must be at least 18 years old to participate)
HOMES FOR SALE Continued from page 41
Rachel Amanda was born & raised in Richmond, Virginia. She loves the beach and designs her own swimwear, which can be seen at akfitswimwear.com She has been to Siesta Key several times and absolutely loves it!
Island Visitor Publishing, LLC
Rachel, 25, is from Cincinnati, Ohio. She attends college in Ohio and is majoring in sustainable horticulture. She is currently working doing floral design. Rachel has traveled all around, but this is her first time here. She said Siesta Key Beach is the most beautiful beach she’s ever seen, and will definitely be back!
Emergency (General)................................................................911 Emergency Animal Clinic....................................... 941-929-1818 Fishing & Hunting Licenses................................... 941-362-9888 FPL – Florida Power & Light.................................. 941-917-0708 FPL – Outage Report............................................1-800-468-8243 Marriage License Bureau........................................ 941-362-4066 Poison Info Center................................................1-800-282-3171 Sarasota / Bradenton Intl. Airport........................ 941-359-2770 Sarasota County Area Transit (SCAT).................. 941-316-1234 Siesta Key Chamber of Commerce........................ 941-349-3800 Sheriff / non-emergency........................................ 941- 861-1601 Waste Management................................................. 941-924-1254
Continued from page 19
Wait For it...” When news broke of a Colorado hiker killing a mountain lion with his bare hands after the cat attacked him on a remote trail recently, I wondered aloud to my wife how long it would take before PETA weighed in on the subject. Well, we now know: it took almost a week to formulate this brief statement: “This is a tragic story. It had to be terrifying for the man and the mountain lion, ending in the death of the animal that called that land home.” Tragic story? Only if you live in a Disney movie...or are a member of PETA. I saw it as heroic. Wonder how the press release would have read if the hiker had been the loser here. But what am I thinking? There wouldn’t have been one.
arinerWord Search www.themariner.com Answers to the WORD SEARCH found on page 33
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Cell Phones in Sarasota Elementary Schools? I was surprised by something I read during the course of the recent Sarasota School Board debate over cell phones in county classrooms. It came in an anecdote from board chairwoman Jane Goodwin in which she recounts a recent visit to a fifth grade classroom where she saw students using their phones at their desks. I had no idea kids that young were so equipped, but after a bit of research I found that many kids get their first phones by the age of eight...which made me consider several other trends that I think intersect here: Toys-‘R-Us is out-of Business. Toy makers like American Girl and Mattel are facing hard times. It appears phones and other video devices have supplanted traditional forms of ‘play.’ This can’t be good... More reading and I come across a piece by Nellie Bowles in The New York Times that ran under this
To advertise in print or online contact: Bob or Emy Stein at 941.349.0194 Send editorial and/or photos via email to: email@example.com
• HARBOUR TOWNE YACHT CLUB - Easy walking distance to Siesta Beach with a private deeded boat dock with lift and water views! Two bedroom, two bath with large glassed lanai overlooking marina. One car garage. MLS# A4422616, $569,000.00 Key Solutions Real Estate Group, Sheri & Bob Ruiz Bob: 941-544-3299 or Sheri: 941-400-4186. • SOMERSET COVE - Minutes to Siesta Beach and Village. 2757 luxury square feet. 4 bedrooms, 3 ½ baths with den, bonus space, elevator, 2 car garage , deeded 35’ dock with 20k lift. Gated community with resort pool. MLS # A4425546 $849,000. Key Solutions Real Estate Group, Sheri & Bob Ruiz Bob: 941-544-3299 or Sheri: 941-400-4186. • SIESTA COVE - Stunning enclave just minutes to Siesta Beach & Village. Totally and beautifully renovated 3+2 1/2 with 2 car garage. Amazing outdoor living with multiple balconies, decks and patio. Fenced. Huge lawn for play or pool. MLS #A4426343 $749,000. Key Solutions Real Estate Group, Sheri & Bob Ruiz Bob: 941-544-3299 or Sheri: 941-4004186. • TRULY FABULOUS 2/2 WITH PRIVATE BEACH ACCESS. Completely renovated TOP FLOOR END UNIT with exquisite finishes and furnishings the unit is being sold, turnkey. The open floor plan with SOARING CEILINGS features a huge living room with views of the ICW and Bay. This is truly a must-see. 6285 MIDNIGHT PASS RD, #307, SARASOTA, FL 34242, MLS#A4410196, $725,000, Key Solutions Real Estate, 941- 894-1255. • ENJOY STUNNING SUNRISES AND SUNSETS from this lovely two bedroom, two bath PENTHOUSE condo at the southernmost end of Siesta Key. If you seek incomparable views look no further - wake to awe-inspiring sunrises over Neville Preserve on Little Sarasota Bay and marvel at the spectacular sunsets over the Gulf of Mexico. 9393 MIDNIGHT PASS RD, #P2, SARASOTA, FL 34242, MLS# A4406101, $569,000, Key Solutions Real Estate, 941- 894-1255. • GORGEOUS WATER VIEWS Deeded BOAT SLIP (boat up to 45’ length) come with this TURNKEY FURNISHED 3/3 townhouse that shows like a model home. This rarely available unit features TWO FULL MASTER SUITES, loft/ media area, and oversized guest bedroom the list goes on. 1215 DOCKSIDE PL, #204, SARASOTA, FL 34242, MLS#A4215997, $899,000, Key Solutions Real Estate, 941- 894-1255. • YEAR ROUND SUNSETS! This 10th-floor unit is perfectly positioned to enjoy gorgeous beachfront views! A very spacious, light, bright, clean and cared-for condo with a split floor plan and walk-in closets. The hurricane impact sliding doors (replaced 2018) lead from the living room and bedrooms to the huge screened lanai. Furniture is negotiable. 6300 MIDNIGHT PASS RD, #1009, SARASOTA, FL 34242 MLS# A4425862 , $1,080,000, Key Solutions Real Estate, 941894-1255.
headline: “CONSIDER THE SOURCE: In Silicon Valley, Tech-Connected Parents Shield their kids from smartphones.” Here is the lead paragraph: “The people who are closest to a thing are often the most wary of it. Technologists know how phones really work, and many have decided they don’t want their children anywhere near them.” But do as I say, not as I do? We all know kids learn most fully from what they see the adults around them do, so what kind of an example are tech obsessed parents setting for their offspring? Some upwardly mobile techie parents - perhaps with that in mind - are even opting for ‘pencil and paper’ private schools where traditional forms of education, sans screens, are the rule. The whole question makes me see the Apple logo in a new light. Quote of the Day... “The urge to save humanity is almost always the false face of the urge to rule it.” - H.L. MENKEN “Decisions, Decisions...” “Go to jail or jump in the lake, Go to jail or jump in the lake, Go to jail or jump in the lake,” That’s what it came down to for Richard Garay of Nokomis last month as police attempted to arrest him on outstanding warrants. He chose the lake. Only problem: Garay couldn’t swim. And so the police had to jump in and rescue him. When asked why he chose to jump in the lake he gave the obvious answer: “I didn’t want to go to jail.”
Published by Island Visitor Publishing, LLC Contributing Writers and Photographers will be noted with bylines. Guest commentary not necessarily the opinion of island Visitor Publishing, LLC Reproduction without written permission prohibited. We reserve the right to refuse any advertisement. All business bios are extensions of the display advertisements. Island Visitor Publishing, LLC is not responsible for claims made by advertisers. All ads are subject to the approval of the publisher. It is the responsibility of the party placing any ad for publication in Siesta Sand to meet all applicable legal requirements in connection with the ad such as compliance with town, county and state codes in first obtaining an occupational license for business, permitted home occupation, or residential rental property. DISCLAIMER: Please be aware that when you hire an unlicensed/uninsured person to do work at your home, you accept the liability. Island Visitor Publishing is not responsible for claims made by advertisers.
P.O. BOX 35086, SIESTA KEY, FL 34242 www.siestasand.net
2019 SPRING BREAK HEADQUARTERS BIKINI CONTEST & LIVE CONCERT EVERY SUNDAY IN MARCH
5253 OCEAN BLVD. SIESTA KEY VILLAGE
Gilliganâ€™s Island Bar located in Siesta Key Village becomes Spring Break Headquarters every Sunday afternoon in the month of March with its annual Bikini Contest. Photos, 2018 contestants
Island Visitor's Siesta Sand serves Siesta Key residents and visitors with key information about the area. It is a free monthly newspaper th...
Published on Feb 22, 2019
Island Visitor's Siesta Sand serves Siesta Key residents and visitors with key information about the area. It is a free monthly newspaper th...