Sunday, September 27, 2009

OctoberFest shall be MarchFest, or possibly AprilFest

At the organizational meeting for OctoberFest on Saturday, it was determined that there was not enough time to plan the event everyone wanted to have, with lots of ingredients for all comers.

A new date remains to be set, but it will most likely come in March or April, 2010. More on this as plans gel. Contact Sandy if you wish to get involved:

Friday, September 25, 2009

OctoberFest Planning Meeting Saturday at Noon

Anyone wishing to help plan and prepare for OctoberFest '09, the Lake Sarasota Community Gathering we're having on Saturday, Oct. 24, please come out tomorrow, Sept. 26, to the pavilion in Lakeview Park for an organizational chat.

Sandy Allen is coordinating the planning and will be there. We're hoping to have activities for all ages -- games for kids, some informative resources for adults, along with food, music, folks from the county, and maybe some raffles and prizes.

It's a chance to meet your neighbors and learn more about what's happening here. Try to make it tomorrow if you can, at noon, at the pavilion. If you can't but wish to be involved, contact Sandy at

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Citizens Patrol Crime Update for August

From Ted:

Here is the breakdown of the August 2009 Sheriff's Dept. Crime Report for Lake Sarasota.

There were a total of 17 incidents (5 burglaries, 9 thefts, and 4 juvenile disturbances). There were no reported incidents of vandalism.

Most incidents occurred between Aug. 14 and Aug. 29.

  • Time Frame of most activity: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
  • Days of most activity: Sundays (6), Tuesdays (4), Wednesdays, Fridays, and Saturdays (2 each), Mondays and Thursdays (1 each).
Streets with most incidents:
  • Jarvis Rd. (4 (all four in the 7000 block);
  • Java Dr. (3);
  • Mauna Loa, Brentford, and Palau (2 each);
  • other streets with one incident each (Berkshire, Molokai, Fiji, Santo, Parry.

As a guide for scheduling Citizens Patrols, most incidents occurred between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. on Sundays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Fridays, or Saturdays, between the 14th and 29th of the month. Streets most affected were Jarvis Rd., Java Dr., Brentford, Mauna Loa, and Palau

Please contact Ted (941 379-0758) to arrange for Citizens Patrol.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Organic local produce leads off Monday night's CONA meeting

A note from John Krotec of Fruitville 210:

Monday, 14 September marks the first CONA meeting of the season at 7:00 at the Sarasota Garden Club.

Our speaker will be Rob Kluson, Ph.D., who is our Sarasota County Extension Agent. Rob has been working tirelessly and creatively to reinvent and to reinvigorate one of our county's oldest
"industries": Agriculture.

Rob has been working with farmers, restaurants, and grocery stores to develop a market for locally-grown produce (especially organic produce). If you have dined at some of our good restaurants lately, you will have noticed that many of the vegetables on the menus are identified by the local farm or area in which they were grown.

Rob will be able to teach all of us about the many new techniques, opportunities, and markets for our local agricultural products, so make it a point to come to the Sarasota Garden Club at 7:00 pm this coming Monday! Find out about opportunities for local economic development, creating jobs and income for our county, as well as fresher, healthier food for our families!

Wednesday, September 09, 2009

Join the Health Conversation Sept. 14

Attend in person, via cable, or on the net

Mulching in the park

The loud, abrasive sounds emanating from Lakeview Park today came from the mulcher. Parks and Rec used the 120-horsepower device to grind up a lot of dead wood and some invasive bushes:

As a result, more park grounds are accessible and free of dead trees, always a potential fire hazard.

The next step will be treating the highly invasive Potato Vine with a chemical to make it go away.

The contractor on the job was emphatic in saying the chemical is in no way noxious to pets or wildlife.

Tuesday, September 08, 2009

Highlights of Sept. 8th Meeting

A crowded agenda and an unusual group of guests made the Sept. 8th meeting of the Lake Sarasota Community Group a memorable one.

The official business included:

Treasurer's Report: LSCG has $1,337.19 in the bank.

Citizen's Patrol: Ted is always seeking volunteers. Reach him at He advises neighbors to keep an eye out for any unusual activity at houses they know to be empty, and to never have their garage door openers visible in their cars.
Saved by the dead battery

One couple present told of how their daughter's car was nearly stolen - thieves jimmied open the door, pulled out the ignition, and would have been on their way, only the battery was dead.

Lakeview Park and Canals: The Sarasota Sky Pilots and some Lake Sarasota residents did another clean-up, pulling lots of debris out of the canals.

The lake itself has risen since water began pumping through the canals, thanks to rainfall. Many who use the park have remarked on how much clearer and cleaner the canal waterways look thanks to the pump circulating the water and the clean-ups. The county has indicated it is looking into additional aeration of the canal waters, as well as some further measures to reduce algae and mosquitos. (More as this develops.)

Abandoned House: A dilapidated, abandoned house is considered by nearby residents to be a fire hazard, a haven for pests (Sandy actually saw a hawk snag a large rat from the yard), and a danger to children thanks to the gaping hole in the front, and the potentially hazardous, junk-filled interior. The county was contacted, and has set in motion certain procedures, sending letters to the owners. One neighbor who wanted to mow the lawn said she was warned not to by a county official, who told her she could be opening herself to being sued. Similarly, people who wished to board up the front of the building -- to keep kids and pests out -- have been told they could be exposing themselves to legal liability. So the house sits, pending "procedures":

In contrast to the slow pace of county procedures vis a vis the eyesore, a few hundred feet away from it, a BMX track built and used by some boys was razed by the county despite community interest in it, as reported here. About a dozen of the BMXers and a dad or two came to last night's meeting, under the impression they had been invited by County Natural Resources Manager Demetra McBride, with whom they expected to hold a "community conversation."

BMXers giving thumbs up

The boys expressed an interest in having this conversation. However, whether through some mishap or miscommunication, McBride was not at the meeting, to the surprise of the boys who had the impression they'd been invited to it by her.

The boys say they'd like to work with the county to find another site, and to speak with any homeowners who might have concerns. The site served as jumping practice for the boys, some of whom train and race at the BMX track at 17th St. and Tuttle. One boy is second in the state in BMX racing, and a Lake Sarasota girl has been a national champion. (More about BMX bicycle racing here and here).

Members of the Lake Sarasota Community Group indicated they are willing to help with site search, community contacts, or as liason with the county. More to come.

Yard of the Month: No yards were selected this month, as all three "Yard of the Month" signs have been stolen. The Group voted to purchase three replacement signs.

Upcoming Events: Sandy is working on lining up speakers for future meetings. More immediately there are plans afoot for an "OctoberFest" in Lakeview Park on Oct. 24, a Saturday.

The event will be a community identity building day -- a chance to meet neighbors and get to know the community. Tentative plans call for free food, maybe a Bud truck, games, raffles, bands, arts and crafts booths, possibly a climbing wall, bungee jumping, representatives from the county, free ice cream, and who knows, perhaps a BMX demo!

Sandy will be holding a planning meeting soon. Let her know if you are interested in taking on a task. She can be reached at

A typical BMX event

Thursday, September 03, 2009

September Meeting Tuesday Sept. 8 at 7 pm

The September general meeting will take place at Sarasota Baptist, Room 100, on Hand Road, from 7 pm to 8:30 pm.

Among the items that are being considered for the agenda:

1. Update on abandoned House on Jarvis

2. Flat ex BMX track on Jarvis - other sites possible?

3. Grant Money proposals

4. Upcoming planned meeting events

5. Planned Social events.

6. Lakeview Park update

Regular matters: Treasury, Cits Patrol, Yard of Month.

Anyone with ideas about how to spend the remaining grant money please come. We need to decide, and we have sufficient money to do at least one good project.