Friday, April 30, 2010

Spill, Baby . . .

Sarasota Emergency Services has forwarded a bulletin regarding the oil spill in the Gulf (click to make bigger):

More on what's happening here and here.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Lost Dog :: Update: Found Dog

We have good news about Maggie Mae from Kelly:

"Maggy was found walking down Bee Ridge Road last night and a man with kids stopped, opened the door, and she jumped right in. He took her to an all night vet, who then transferred her to Animal Services. Martha was at Animal Services before they opened and Maggy is now safely at home!!!!! Thank you for all of your help and support!! We need to stick together as a community to help each other!"

Lake Sarasota: Lost Dog Alert!! Can I do this here? Name: Maggie Mae, Age: 1 Lives: Mauna Loa near Bee Ridge. Description: Grey & White, Tall & Thin. If anyone has any info please call 586-7137. Has only been gone for about a few hours now. Please help!!

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Real or Fake?

This picture is from the archives of Sunshine Springs and Gardens, the original resort on Lake Sarasota, back when the lake was first built. The resort was a sales device to promote -- what else -- real estate. The question: Is the elephant real?

An early shot of the lake and park - note the canals seemed to flow into the lake:

Mauna Loa Beautification

The task was simple: 55 trees in eight medians along Mauna Loa required 170 bags of mulch:

And fertilizer, organized for each median island by Ray:

Ray got the mulch and fertilizer by utilizing county grant funds. Once again, we owe a debt of thanks to Sarasota County Neighborhood Services, in particular to Debbie Marks, the county liaison who has been there for us from the beginning, four years ago.

The fertilizer and mulch were on-site by 8:30 a.m. yesterday:


A small band of volunteers began distributing the mulch to the median islands, while an even small band began trimming and weeding:

Desiree and Josh

Other bags were distributed to other volunteers at Wake Avenue, where the sign was recently refurbished, and at Hina Park:

Thanks to all who turned out and gave their time and strength.

Update: A "thank you" from Ray, and a few more pics taken by Tina and Desiree:

 I really appreciate each of the volunteers that attended our clean up. What a GREAT group of neighbors! Everyone was eager to do whatever was necessary to get the job done and all of you worked so hard! You all deserve to be congratulated for the superb job you did. Anyone driving past our entrances or on Mauna Loa certainly must notice the difference you have made. Our neighborhood looks better because we joined hands and worked together! Thank you all very much! Ray

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Saturday Clean Up Starts at M.L. and Tarawa

Volunteers to help clean and mulch the Mauna Loa entrance and median are asked to meet  at the intersection of Mauna Loa and Tarawa at 9 a.m. this Saturday, April 17. Bring hat, gloves, shovels, rakes, clippers, etc. Any questions, contact Ray at or at 371-1180.

Friday, April 09, 2010

Time to renew or sign up for LS Business Directory

A reminder from Sandy about the 2010 Business Directory:

Hi, there!

I wanted to remind you guys of the Business Directory deadline.  Please get me your business card size ad and $20 for each ad asap or especially before the deadline on April 17.   You can drop them off at 6610 Jarvis Rd.  There will be a box by the front door if you want to drop it.  You can also mail it.  If you can send me a short email saying you plan to be in the directory or you do not plan to be in the directory so I can get a head count.  Keep in mind we use all the money over the expense of printing the directory to help our neighborhood be a better place to live.
And, please, please come by the Networking/Meet Your Neighbor Event at the Madfish Grill on April 14 from 7-9pm.

Sandy Allen
Lake Sarasota Community Group

Rowing Regatta at Benderson Park

College Athletes from all over Florida came to compete in the Benderson Park Rowing Championships today. When the waterway is expanded later this year, Sarasota will be home to one of only seven world-class rowing sites in the world, backers say.

2010 Hurricane Shelter Map for Sarasota County

Click to get a large image - this is the most up to date list of shelters, denoting facilities, whether pet friendly, etc. - courtesy of Sarasota Emergency Management.

Thursday, April 08, 2010

Highlights of the April 8, 2010 meeting.

Highlights of the April 8, 2010 meeting are below:

- The treasury is now at $342.72 after renewal of the articles of incorporation for the Lake Sarasota Community Group ($61.25), new Yard of the Month signs ($75 - kindly desist from stealing them), and reimbursal to Sandy Allen for printing and misc. expenses of the Yard sale ($102). A $500 charitable contribution at Christmas was the major other expense.

- Three new homes were chosen for Yard of the Month. (By the way, we do not publish names or addresses of those homes because we have not received permission to use them, and do not wish to violate privacy. If you would like your home or name listed, just get in touch or leave a note in the comments thread below.)

- Beautification: Ray and Connie are taking names to volunteer to help mulch and improve the Mauna Loa Entrance and median on Saturday, April 17th, from 9 to noon. If you can lend a hand, please let them know -  their email.

- Ray also noted that there's a "Lakeview Estates" sign on Wake, but there apparently is no longer either a Lakeview Estates, or an identifiable legal owner of the somewhat dilapidated sign.

- Sandy has a social event planned for April 14 at Madfish Grill on Cattlemen from 7 - 9 pm. It will be outside, with free appetizers - a chance to get to know your neighbors. Try to make it.

- Sandy is gathering info about a way for the LSCG to benefit from fliers that could be taken to Appleby's or Sweet Tomatoes that offer discounts to diners. More to come on this.

- We might have a hurricane expert come to next month's meeting (It will be on Thursday, May 13th).

- Developer Richard M. Fischer came to the meeting and presented an informal idea involving 23 acres that lie between Lake Sarasota and I-75. The 100+ unplatted lots could be used as park, environmental land, stormwater, etc., he said.

He has spoken to some Commissioners about possibly working out a deal by which the county would pay half the cost of the land (Fischer says he personally owns only 6 of the lots, which are owned by various legacy owners), and Lake Sarasota would pay the other half through a Special Taxing District.

All the info here is not official, just estimates. Fischer said if such a district were sit up, it could levy roughly a $25 tax per year per home in Lake Sarasota. Lake S. in turn could, he said, have a say in the decisions made about the use of and access to the land. The deal might also involve a buffering wall along the highway, reducing noise. Fischer noted that if the state DOT needed to buy some of the land for stormwater, that could reduce each homeowner's annual bill by perhaps $10.

Resident comments: "You put a park in there and I'll never get out of my driveway," said one resident who lives on Friendship. Another person asked whether the annual charge per home would ever be able to be altered, i.e., raised. Fischer said that no, these are special funds used solely to pay off the purchase - once that's done, the district and charges go away. After Fischer left, another resident wondered who would be responsible for the maintenance and cost of same for the new park. Good Question!

Fischer said he'll try to come to the next meeting, May 13th, with maps and perhaps more precise calculations and information.

- Ted said the Sheriff's report for March listed 7 incidents for the neighborhood, 2 on Palau, 2 on Mauna Loa. Curiously, two break-ins reported on Luawanna were not found in the report. Ted urges everyone who knows of or experiences a break-in or tampering to report it to the Sheriff.

Ted also offered this advice regarding external garage door keypads - PLEASE READ:

Here's a thought on our power-assisted garage doors.  The newer door operators have a keypad outside the garage to allow opening and closing from the outside.  A real convenience--but!!  Most of these keypads use a four-digit security code that we assign.  Here's the problem.  After a while the commonly-used numerical keys will show wear or smudge marks indicating use.  A sharp individual with a good feel for numbers and probabilities, and a little time, could note the worn or smudged keys, and with a maximum of 24 tries, open the garage door and have immediate access to garage and house.  What tipped me off was finding the hinged cover of my keypad open, when I know I closed it.  I've deactivated mine by removing the battery.  I use the transmitter from my car now, when I'm working around the property out of sight of my garage door.  Another trick would be to smudge or wear three or four more additional keys.  This greatly increases the number of combinations a potential housebreaker would need to try.  An alternate to marking additional keys would be to change the code every few days.

Next Meeting: May 13, 7 p.m., Sarasota Alliance Church

Thoughts about Community from SCOPE

How one North Port family made a real connection with its neighborhood.

Regatta this weekend: Volunteers Still Needed

Calling on All Area Business Owners/Community-Minded Residents,
We still need enthusiastic Volunteers for the 2010 Florida Intercollegiate Rowing Championship this coming weekend!!!  If you have already volunteered, please disregard this request.  This important community sporting event is being be held at the Nathan Benderson Park (formerly Cooper Creek) in North Sarasota County.  Our needs are as follows:

Friday,April 9th
5 Volunteers needed from 8 Am to NOON
8 Volunteers need from NOON till 4 PM
Saturday, April 10th
4 Volunteers needed from 5:30 AM to 10 AM
12 Volunteers needed from 7 AM until NOON

 Check your personal calendars and respond to this email (or call) if you can help us.  In you are unable to help this time, please forward our request to another person.  It’s important that we hear from you as soon as possible.
  This is an opportunity rarely afforded other communities and is an awesome chance for us to beAmbassadors for Sarasota.

Mary Marryott (456-1669) and John Krotec (400-7333)
Co-chairs for Volunteers, Regatta Organization Committee 

Tuesday, April 06, 2010

Great Hurricane Blowout

From Sarasota Emergency Management:

Good Afternoon; The State Department of Emergency Management is supporting the Federal Alliance for Safe Homes (FLASH) with a program titled The Great Hurricane Blowout. This innovative program will promote a culture of hurricane-based preparedness in our state through fresh outreach methods. The final result of this program will help Floridians accomplish several objectives, including:

Ø  Making a family plan
Ø  Making a disaster-supply kit
Ø  Understanding safe cooking and sanitary practices without county and municipal utility services
Ø  Passing time without electricity or the family’s ability to safely leave its home
Ø  Mitigating the effects of storm damage on residences
Ø  Training with various disaster-related non-profit organizations

You can help the Great Hurricane Blowout move Florida’s families “down the path to preparedness” in multiple ways. You can visit the website at


Saturday, April 03, 2010

Next General Meeting Thursday April 8th

The Lake Sarasota Community Group, a not-for-profit, voluntary organization, holds its April meeting on Thursday, April 8th at Sarasota Alliance Church, 7221 Bee Ridge Rd. Meetings start at 7 p.m. and run until 8:30 p.m.

The agenda will include, among other items:

- Plans for upkeep for front entrance, medians and Hina Park.

- Update on County Grant funds.

- Yard of the Month

- Report on Yard Sale and Business Directory

- Ideas for events, fundraisers.

- Security - Citizens Patrol, recent activity, Sheriff's reports.

- Treasurer's Report.

- Update from Sandy: [Developer] Richard Fischer will be coming to our meeting and will be able to talk about the land between lake sarasota and I75 and the land on mauna loa extension.  There have been some new developments..a possible bond.

Free and low-cost health services

Free and low-cost health services available across the county
The Sarasota County Health Department's Health In Motion Mobile Medical Unit will travel to 15 sites in Sarasota County during April to offer free H1N1 (swine) flu vaccines along with its other regular services.

Click for more