Thursday, May 31, 2012

Free Hurricane Seminar

The Home Builders Association (HBA) will conduct a 1-hour FREE seminar for homeowners on Hurricane Mitigation at the HBA office at 8131 Lakewood Main St., Ste. 207, on June 5th from 4 to 5 PM.

This is in conjunction with the Florida grant obtained by FHBA.

If you know of a neighbor, friend or relative that would like to participate, please have them contact the office to register as seating is limited.

Russell LeGrande will help me in conducting this class on behalf of the HBA.

If you have any questions, please let me know.

Alan Anderson
Executive Vice President
8131 Lakewood Main Street, Suite 207
Lakewood Ranch, Fl 34202
(941) 907-4133 (941) 907-4134 Fax
www.hbamanatee-sarasota.org



Friday, May 25, 2012

World Cafe, Memorial Day, Mobile Health, more!


Greetings!
Welcome to Sarasota County Community Connections. Please share this with family, friends and neighbors. Contact us if you have questions, ideas for articles, or feedback on the system, atcommunityconnections@scgov.net
Gulf Gate Library update
Gulf Gate LibraryTODAY: Attend an open house meeting about the design, permitting and construction of the new Gulf Gate Library this evening, 5-7 p.m. Ask questions about the status of the project and the estimated completion schedule.
Deadline nears to name the new south county park
County Seal
FRIDAY: Sarasota County has extended the deadline for submitting prospective names for a new south county park to Friday, May 25. The Myakka River / U.S. 41 site is located at 9083 S. Tamiami Trail in Venice. Here are criteria and instructions onhow to submit a name.
 
Memorial Day closings
Most Sarasota County government offices, libraries, recreation centers and transit services will be closed Monday, May 28, to observe the national Memorial Day holiday. Here is a complete list of closings, as well as some exceptions.
Emergency Management Chief speaks at disaster event
Ed McCrane will be the featured presenter at a free disaster orientation from 8:30-10:30 a.m. Tuesday, May 29, at the downtown Administration Center Emergency Operations Center.
May 31, we are the world
Back by popular demand, a World Cafe event will be held Thursday, May 31, from 5:30-8 p.m. at the North Port Library. The World Cafe is a forum for people with diverse points of view to explore ways to work together to build a sense of community.  
PSC seeks input on increase
On March 17, Florida Power & Light filed a petition with the Public Service Commission for a base rate increase. The PSC has issued a bulletin of frequently asked questions about the increase, as well as a list of hearings that you can attend to learn more.
Stormwater pond workshop
WaterHelp update the county's littoral zone standards with  flexible and alternative designs concerning habitat, wildlife and shoreline erosion. Tuesday, May 31, 5:30-7:30 p.m., Twin Lakes Park Green Building Conference Room, 6700 Clark Road, Sarasota.
Mobile health services in May
DoctorThe Health Department's mobile medical unit will provide free and low-cost health services at 13 sites around the county in May. Services include diabetes screening and blood pressure, pregnancy, HIV and tuberculosis tests. Appointments are not needed.
Commission celebrates 2012 Library of the Year award
2012 Library of the Year flickrOn May 22, the Sarasota County Commission officially recognized library staff volunteers and community partners for winning the Florida Library Association 2012 Library of the Year award. Browse our collection of photos from the day.
Snook Haven concession closes temporarily
The Snook Haven Restaurant in Venice will close for the summer while Sarasota County performs maintenance and seeks a new concession vendor. The park and canoe/kayak launch on the Myakka River will remain open. 

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Seasonal Preparedness

The usual advice on hurricane preparedness from Sarasota Patch:

List of Sarasota Shelters


Sarasota County’s Emergency Management Chief Ed McCrane describes this weather season as being in neutral having going in between a La Nina and El Nino, which will start about October.
When forecasts are given this year, the National Weather Service will talk about hurricanes in terms of category and storm surge to help flood planning.
“The category of the storm is determined by the winds associated with that hurricane,” McCrane said. “The storm tide or storm surge is going to be a totally different matter. You may hear that it’s only a Category 2 hurricane but carrying 20 feet of storm surge. That’s a big indicator of what we use of what evacuation zones we need to evacuate.”
McCrane stressed having a good disaster kit ready along with some other pre-storm preparations. 
“We want them to have enough provisions for at least three days preferably a week,” McCrane said, “but they also have to realize that the federal government is going through an economic slump right now, and we might not see the resources that we have in the previous years.
“The amount of trucks of food and water and ice might not be here as quickly if at all." 
A good storm kit should at least include supplies for three days to a week without power and without the ability to shop for groceries, have copies of important documents, bug repellent, a full tank of gas in the car and cash.
“ATM machines and credit cards may not function during the first couple days of the storm,” McCrane said.
So what happens after the storm ?
• Stay in a protective shelter to avoid hazards until reports are given through media outlets, including Patch, that’s it’s all clear
• City and county teams and utility companies go out after the storm and start work
• Search and rescue teams will be deployed during catastrophic storms
• Siesta, Bird and Lido Key residents and business owners will have to go through a credentialing process before the storm to be allowed back on the barrier islands during the first phase of re-entry.
• Distribution centers for food and water will be announced and opened if grocery stores are closed
Disaster Supply Kit
Here are basic supplies you should have gathered for a Disaster Supply Kit, according to the Hurricane Guide for the Tampa Bay area:
• Two weeks supply of prescription drugs
• Seven days worth of non-perishable foods
• One gallon of water per person, per day (minimum seven days)
• Flashlights and seven sets of batteries for each member of the family
• Portable radio and seven sets of batteries
• First-aid book and kit with bandages, antiseptic, tape, compresses, aspirin and aspirin-free pain reliever, anti-diarrhea medication, antacid and more
• Mosquito repellant and citronella candles
• Fire extinguishers
• Instant tire sealer
• Whistle or air horn or flares or distress flag
• two coolers
• Plastic tarp, screening, tools, nails
• Water purification kit
• Cleaning supplies
• Camera with batteries and film
• Non-electric can opener
• Garbage can or bucket with tight-fitting lid and cat litter to use for emergency toilet
• Plastic trash bags
• Toilet paper, paper towels, baby wipes
• Infant formula, diapers, etc

Evacuation supplies 
• Pillows, blankets, sleeping bags, air mattress
• Extra clothes, hats, shoes, eyeglasses
• Folding or lawn chairs
• Toothbrush, shampoo, soap, deodorant
• Important documents (insurance, medical info, license) and irreplaceable keepsakes
• Grill and matches
• Ice

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Name a Park, Paddle Palooza, Kids Fish, more...


Greetings!
Welcome to Sarasota County Community Connections. Please share this with family, friends and neighbors. Contact us if you have questions, ideas for articles, or feedback on the system, at communityconnections@scgov.net
Paddle Palooza repeats
SATURDAY: The popular boating celebration is back from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturday, May 19, with dragon boat, canoe and kayak races. Learn to paddle board, and enjoy great barbecue and music. It all takes place at Nathan Benderson Park in Sarasota.  
Time for the kids to go fish! 
Fishing
SATURDAY: Children 14 and under are invited to the annual Sarasota CountyParks and Recreation Spring Fishing Tournament. The event will be held from 8-10 a.m. Saturday, May 19, at Nokomis Beach.
Snook Haven concession closes temporarily
The Snook Haven Restaurant in Venice will close for the summer while Sarasota County performs maintenance and seeks a new concession vendor. The park and canoe/kayak launch on the Myakka River will remain open. 
Three more days of amnesty  Books
Until May 19, patrons with overdue items from the Sarasota County Library system may return them without penalty. Items must be returned to a Sarasota County library. Fines will not be waived for items returned in book drops or by mail.
eProcure goes live May 21
Sarasota County's new online procurement system replaces DemandStar with a free, single website for solicitations, policies, procedures and forms. Effective May 21, vendors must register with eProcure to participate in any solicitation opportunities of $3,000 or higher. 
Get news about Gulf Gate
Gulf Gate LibraryAttend an open house-style meeting about the design, permitting and construction of the new Gulf Gate Library.Ask questions about the status of the project and the estimated completion schedule.
FDOT holds open house for Siesta Key Bridge construction
Staff from the Florida Department of Transportation will discuss the upcoming rehabilitation of the north Siesta Key bridge. Tuesday, May 22, 5-7 p.m., at the Siesta Key Chapel, 4615 Gleason Ave. To learn more, visit theFDOT Siesta Key Bridge website.
 
Take more time to name the new south county park
County Seal
Sarasota County has extended the deadline for submitting prospective names for a new south county park to Friday, May 25. The Myakka River / U.S. 41 site is located at 9083 S. Tamiami Trail in Venice. Here are criteria and instructions on how to submit a name.
 
May 31, we are the world
Back by popular demand, a World Cafe event will be held Thursday, May 31, from 5:30-8 p.m. at the North Port Library. The World Cafe is a forum for people with diverse points of view to explore ways to work together to build a sense of community.  
Mobile health services in May
DoctorThe Health Department's mobile medical unit will provide free and low-cost health services at 13 sites around the county in May. Services include diabetes screening and blood pressure, pregnancy, HIV and tuberculosis tests. Appointments are not needed.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

A bit of Lake Sarasota history



Lake Sarasota is at the lowest water level it's been in quite some time. 

(Note: the water pumped into the canals has nothing to do with the depletion -- we just need rain.)




Rougly 56 years ago, when it was Sunshine Springs and Gardens, the lake looked like this:



And here's a view of the canal and resort that was built to attract buyers here in the mid 1950's:




The video moves back and forth between Cypress Gardens and Sunshine Springs and Gardens. About 4:01 minutes in, you see our lake, and at about 4:15, the concrete grandstand that still can be seen at the lake, but here it's bright white, as is the sand that rings the lake:


If you know anyone with more footage or photos or other recollections of the early days of Lake Sarasota, please get in touch with us at LakeSarasota@gmail.com.

Thanks to Winter resident Beany for pointing us to the canal photo and the video.

Monday, May 14, 2012

How To Post on Craigslist

Gizmodo has some advice about how to post effectively on Craigslist - caution - the language pulls few punches:

DO NOT WRITE HEADLINES IN ALL CAPS. Or I will punch you in the soul. Seriously, do you want to annoy people before you've even had a chance to negotiate? Even if you do want to annoy the world, you should still avoid the caps. Capped headlines are the Internet version of compensating for a small penis with a loud motorcycle; everyone knows what's inside is a disappointment.
More here...

Friday, May 11, 2012

Construction contracts awarded for Bee Ridge utilities project


The Sarasota County Commission on Tuesday, May 8, awarded contracts totaling nearly $1.8 million for construction of the Bee Ridge Road Force Main Replacement Project and the Pump Station No. 3 Improvement Project. 

The Bee Ridge force main will be replaced from Bent Tree Boulevard to Iona Road under terms of the $966,709 contract awarded to General Consulting Services Inc. of Port Charlotte. 

The current 18-inch force main along the Bee Ridge corridor has failed three times in six years. An independent laboratory analysis concluded the failures were a result of a manufacturing defect in the pipe. After the last failure in August 2011, the commission authorized staff to expedite the design and construction of this portion of the force main. 

The new, 20-inch force main will be located so it does not interfere with the upcoming widening and road improvements of Bee Ridge Road from Mauna Loa Boulevard to Iona Road.

Construction is expected to begin in May.

Funding for both utilities projects will be from rates. 

For more information, visit www.scgov.net or contact the Sarasota County Call Center at 941-861-5000.



Via http://scgov.net/NewsStories/news20.asp

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Bee Ridge Improvements, Paddle Palooza, more

Greetings!
Welcome to Sarasota County Community Connections. Please share this with family, friends and neighbors. Contact us if you have questions, ideas for articles, or feedback on the system, at communityconnections@scgov.net
Memorial for firefighter  FIreHat
FRIDAY: A memorial service will be held Friday, May 11, for Firefighter and Paramedic Deborah Schuster, who served as a member of the Sarasota County Fire Department for 10 years.
Got overdue books?  Books
Relax. Sarasota County libraries forgives you. From May 14-19, patrons with overdue items may return them without penalty to any Sarasota County library. Items must be returned in person. Fines will not be waived for items returned in book drops or by mail.
County awards contractsCounty Seal
Sarasota County has awarded contracts totaling nearly $1.8 million for construction of the Bee Ridge Road Force Main Replacement Project and  the Pump Station No. 3 Improvement Project off Ashton Road on Ruby Lane.
Cut fire risk from cigarettes
Fire
Carelessly discarded cigarettes both inside and outside the home can cause a fire that spreads fast. Sarasota County Chief Mike Tobias has some safety tips to reduce the risk to your family, home and property.
Time to go fish! 
Fishing
Children 14 and under are invited to the annual Sarasota County Parks and Recreation Spring Fishing Tournament. The event will be held from 8-10 a.m. Saturday, May 19, at Nokomis Beach.
FDOT holds open house for Siesta Key Bridge construction
Staff from the Florida Department of Transportation will be available to discuss the upcoming rehabilitation of the north Siesta Key bridge. It will be held from 5-7 p.m. Tuesday, May 22, at the Siesta Key Chapel, 4615 Gleason Ave. To learn more, visit the FDOT Siesta Key Bridge website.
 
Paddle Palooza repeats
The popular boating celebration is back from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturday, May 19, with dragon boat, canoe and kayak races. Learn to paddle board, and enjoy great barbecue and music. It all takes place at Nathan Benderson Park.  
Mobile health services in May
DoctorThe Health Department's mobile medical unit will provide free and low-cost health services at 13 sites around the county in May. Services include diabetes screening and blood pressure, pregnancy, HIV and tuberculosis tests. Appointments are not needed.

Friday, May 04, 2012

Spring Garden Tour, Historic Preservation, more . . .


Greetings!
Welcome to Sarasota County Community Connections. Please share this with family, friends and neighbors. Contact us if you have questions, ideas for articles, or feedback on the system, at communityconnections@scgov.net

See how these gardens grow
Green Yard
SUNDAY: Take a self-guided tour through some of the area's most successful and beautiful Florida-friendly gardens. The Spring Garden Tour runs from 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Sunday, May 6, and starts at the Venice Beach pavilion, 101 The Esplanade, Venice.   

Cut fire risk from cigarettes
Fire
Carelessly discarded cigarettes both inside and outside the home can cause a fire that spreads fast. Sarasota County Chief Mike Tobias has some safety tips to reduce the risk to your family, home and property.

Celebrate National Historic Preservation Month
SATURDAY: Join commissioners and your community at Indian Mound Park in Englewood May 5, to celebrate our cultural heritage. "Discover America's Hidden Gems is the theme of this year's event, sponsored by the National Trust for Historic Preservation.  

Time to go fish! 
Fishing
Children 14 and under are invited to the annual Sarasota County Parks and Recreation Spring Fishing Tournament. The event will be held from 8-10 a.m. Saturday, May 19, at Nokomis Beach.

Mobile health services in May
DoctorThe Health Department's mobile medical unit will provide free and low-cost health services at 13 sites around the county in May. Services include diabetes screening and blood pressure, pregnancy, HIV and tuberculosis tests. Appointments are not needed.

We're the 'Library of the Year'
Selby LibraryWhen it comes to library systems in the state of Florida, the Sarasota County Library System is the best of the best. So says the Florida Library Association, which gave the award for outstanding service, creativity and innovation, and numerous partnerships. 

Gun range undergoes cleanup 
The Knight Trail Park Pistol and Rifle Range is closed for up to three weeks while crews perform a lead remediation on the site. The 12-yard, 25-yard and 50-yard shooting ranges, as well as the trap, skeet and archery ranges, remain open during the cleanup.

AARP partners with libraries 
Tax  HelpAARP Tax-Aide partnered with county libraries to provide free assistance and preparation for about 4,400 tax returns this year.

Come work for us
Sarasota County is hiring. Seewhat positions are available.

County Talk
Video news of note from Sarasota County
 County Talk - Show #1 - Segment #1 - County Commission Report
Actions taken by the Sarasota County Commission

 County Talk- Show #1 - Segment #2 - County Administrator Randall Reid

Sarasota County Administrator Randall Reid's vision.

County Talk - Show #1 - Segment #3
Why Sarasota County was ranked as one of the healthiest places to live.

History Center Marker Minutes
  
Discover the charm of the historic Venice Train Depot.
  
How the turpentine industry shaped Sarasota County.

Economic Report
Sarasota County has released its economic report for April. See how the county is faring in population, gas prices and other economic indicators.

Commission Reports

More headlines    

Speakers Bureau
Request a member of ourSpeakers Bureau to share their expertise with your community, homeowners association or other civic group.
Additional resources