Friday, April 26, 2013

Champion High Schoolers Racing at Benderson this weekend

This weekend brings 1,800 athletes from all over Florida to Sarasota for the FSRA State Championships.

Come out and see what the fun is all about. It's exciting, it's the biggest event of the season, it's free.

April 27-28 at Nathan Benderson Park.

All the info here.



Community Connections

Greetings!

Welcome to Sarasota County Community Connections. Contact us if you have questions, ideas for articles, or feedback on the system, at communityconnections@scgov.net.  
Emergency Services Awards ceremony
TODAY: Citizens and Emergency Services personnel will be honored at an awards ceremony from 2-4 p.m. Thursday, April 25, in the Commission Chamber at the Sarasota County Administration Center.
Try transit and commuter services
TODAY: Sarasota County Area Transit and the Commuter Services program of the Florida Department of Transportation are holding a joint celebration of Try Transit Day and Commuter Services Day. 
Arbor Day takes root April 27 and 30
THIS WEEKEND: Celebrate Arbor Day 2013 with two educational events April 27 and April 30. Both classes will be at UF/IFAS Extension Sarasota County at Twin Lakes Park, 6700 Clark Road, Sarasota. 
Clerk releases first 'IMPACT Report'
The Clerk of the Circuit Court has released Sarasota County's first "IMPACT Report." The report is derived from the county's Comprehensive Annual Financial report and is designed to provide citizens with a basic understanding of how public funds are managed and spent.
Open house at the 'Keith Farmhouse'
From 10 a.m.-2 p.m. May 1, take a self-guided tour of the historically rehabilitated Keith Farmhouse. Free admission and parking, and free live music all day during the regular weekly Wednesday Farmers Market.
Benderson Park project wins award for 'Excellence in Economic Development' and 'Award of Merit'
Sarasota County has been named a "co-winner" of the 2013 American Planning Association's prestigious "Hunter Award" for Excellence in Economic Development. The award is for the design and development of Nathan Benderson Park.
Beginner Boot Camp comes to VCC
Beginner Boot Camp classes will be held 10:30-11:30 a.m. every Tuesday and Thursday beginning May 7 for eight weeks at the Venice Community Center. The first class is free.
County awards construction contracts for Beach Road and Hudson Bayou 
Sarasota County has awarded construction contracts totaling $5.9 million for improvements to Beach Road drainage and Hudson Bayou water quality.
Mock exercise prepares volunteers for hurricane season
Volunteer Community Connections will conduct its annual mock Volunteer Reception Center disaster exercise at Colonial Oaks Park, 5300 Colonial Oaks Blvd., Sarasota, from 6-8 p.m. Wednesday, May 8.

Summer rates for Payne Park tennis
Sarasota County Parks and Recreation has announced a new summer low rate membership at Payne Park Tennis Center. The new summer rate is $150 for a five-month membership and provides players, from beginners to experts, access to some of the best Har-Tru clay tennis courts in the area. The offer is available to both existing and new members.

Monday, April 22, 2013

A futuristic gas station from the past

Long before Racetrac developed its "sit-down" gas station with coffee and wifi, Frank Lloyd Wright had a similar (but not quite identical) idea for a "waiting station" as a cultural center:

Friday, April 19, 2013

Local Real Estate Update

March property sales highest total since August 2005

Property sales in the Sarasota real estate market remained hot in March 2013 and for the first quarter of 2013. The March 2013 sales figure of 887 was the highest total since August 2005, and for the full first quarter, sales were 11.3 percent higher than in 2012.

Members of the Sarasota Association of Realtors® sold 628 single family homes and 259 condominiums in March 2013. That compared to 504 single family homes and 229 condos sold in February 2013, for a 21-percent increase over last month and 6.7 percent higher than March 2012.

The huge number of sales coincided with an impressive increase in the median sales price, especially for single family homes. The figure of $210,000 for single family homes was the highest since August 2008 - nearly five years ago. For condos, the median was $182,000. The condo figure has fluctuated substantially over the past few years, dropping to a low point of $127,000 in July 2010 after soaring to $420,000 at the start of 2007.

Click HERE for the complete press release in PDF format, plus several pages of statistical charts.

See also this from the Herald Tribune.

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Big Truck Day, Arbor Day, Trail Safety and more

April 18, 2013
Greetings!

Welcome to Sarasota County Community Connections. Contact us if you have questions, ideas for articles, or feedback on the system, at communityconnections@scgov.net. 
 
Wow, lots going on this weekend! Check out everything that's taking place Saturday. 
'Big Truck Day'
They rumble, they roar, they roll - and they are big! Sarasota County will host the "17th Annual Big Truck Day" 10 a.m.- 2 p.m. Saturday, April 20, at Twin Lakes Park, 6700 Clark Road, Sarasota.
Trail Safety Day
Join the open house celebration and Trail Safety Day from 10 a.m.-1 p.m., Saturday, April 20, at the new Osprey Junction Trailhead, 939 East Bay St., Osprey. 
Kensington Park community cleanup 
Sarasota County will hold its annual free community cleanup in the Kensington Park area from 8 a.m.-3 p.m. Saturday, April 20. Dumpsters will be provided at three locations for residents.
K-9 Search and Rescue
Sarasota K-9 Search and Rescue will be at Nokomis Community Park from 9 a.m.-3 p.m. Saturday, April 20, with activities for kids of all ages. Watch K-9 demonstrations, join the Blessing of the Dogs, maybe even adopt a pet. To learn more, visit www.k-9sar.net.  
Veterans 'stand down'
The 2013 Veterans Stand Down event will take place from 8 a.m.-1 p.m. Saturday, April 20. Registration and most of the services for veterans will be available at the Sarasota County Health and Human Services (Health Department) building.
Community Connection Day 
A "Community Connection Day" with a focus on families and children will be held in Venice on Saturday, April 20. The free event will take place from 10 a.m.-noon at the Frances T. Bourne Jacaranda Library in Venice. 
Other events and news... 
Get 'Money Smart' April 19-27
Financial professionals in banking, investments and retirement planning will host a series of presentations at Sarasota County libraries during "Money Smart Week @ Your Library." 
Helping faith-based organizations prepare for hurricane season
Sarasota County Emergency is hosting a luncheon to prepare faith-based organizations for the upcoming hurricane season.
County hires Senior Strategist
Sarasota County has hired Tracy Miller as Senior Strategist for the Office of Financial Planning. 
Arbor Day takes root April 27 and 30
Sarasota County and UF/IFAS Extension will celebrate Arbor Day 2013 with two educational events April 27 and April 30. Both classes will be at UF/IFAS Extension Sarasota County at Twin Lakes Park, 6700 Clark Road, Sarasota. 
Open house at the 'Keith Farmhouse'
Celebrate National Historic Preservation Month at the Keith Farmhouse. From 10 a.m.-2 p.m., take a self-guided tour of the historically rehabilitated building. Free admission and parking, and free live music all day during the regular weekly Wednesday Farmers Market.
 
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Thursday, April 11, 2013

Money Smart Week, K-9 Rescue and Much More

April 11, 2013
Greetings!

Welcome to Sarasota County Community Connections. Contact us if you have questions, ideas for articles, or feedback on the system, at communityconnections@scgov.net. 
County named 2013 All-America City Award finalist
Sarasota County has been named one of 20 finalists for the All-America City Awards, a nationwide contest established by the National Civic League that recognizes communities demonstrating innovation, civic engagement and cross-sector collaboration. 
Get 'Money Smart' April 19-27
Financial professionals in banking, investments and retirement planning will host a series of presentations during "Money Smart Week @ Your Library," at Sarasota County Libraries. 
Energy Upgrade workshops save money and energy
Free 30-minute Energy Upgrade workshops are open to civic groups, clubs, faith organizations, nonprofit associations and businesses.
'Tour de Parks' maps now online
The 2013 Tour de Parks route maps are now available online  
Connect with K-9 Search and Rescue
Sarasota K-9 Search and Rescue will be at Nokomis Community Park from 9 a.m.-3 p.m. Saturday, April 20, with activities for kids of all ages. Watch K-9 demonstrations, join the Blessing of the Dogs, maybe even adopt a pet. To learn more, visit www.k-9sar.net.   .
County selects Director of Capital Projects
Isaac Brownman has been promoted to the position of Director of Capital Projects for Sarasota County. 
Veterans 'stand down' set for April 20
The 2013 Veterans Stand Down event will take place from 8 a.m.-1 p.m. Saturday, April 20. Registration and most of the services for veterans will be available at the Sarasota County Health and Human Services (Health Department) building.
Community Connection Day focuses on the family 
A "Community Connection Day" with a focus on families and children will be held in Venice on Saturday, April 20. The free event will take place from 10 a.m.-noon at the Frances T. Bourne Jacaranda Library in Venice. 
County hires Contract Administrator
Sarasota County has hired Nancy Paradise as a Contract Administrator in the Office of Financial Planning. The hiring is part of the ongoing effort to examine and improve the county's processes to provide services, and to partner with municipalities, businesses and the community.
County supports Suncoast Grand Prix with additional funding
Sarasota County has approved additional financial support for the Suncoast Super Boat Grand Prix by agreeing to pay the $79,200 sanctioning fee for the event from the county Tourist Development Tax fund.
Helping faith-based organizations prepare for hurricane season
Sarasota County Emergency is hosting a luncheon  to equip faith-based organizations for the upcoming hurricane season.
Design contract for Phase 2 of Myrtle Street improvement project awarded
Sarasota County has awarded a $499,496 contract to Kimley-Horn and Associates Inc. of Sarasota for design of most of the improvements to Myrtle Street from U.S. 41 to U.S. 301 in Sarasota. 
Kensington Park community cleanup 
Sarasota County will hold its annual free community cleanup in the Kensington Park area from 8 a.m.-3 p.m. Saturday, April 20. Dumpsters will be provided at three locations for residents.
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Thursday, April 04, 2013

CONA Meeting Monday April 8

The Sarasota Coalition of Neighborhood Associations (CONA) will hold its regular Monthly meeting on Monday, April 8, 7 pm at the Sarasota Garden Club, 1131 Blvd of the Arts.

The agenda includes a candidate forum with the three remaining candidates for the municipal commissioner at large for the City of Sarasota. 

The Lake Sarasota Community Group recently became a member of CONA.





Community Connections

Greetings!

Welcome to Sarasota County Community Connections. Contact us if you have questions, ideas for articles, or feedback on the system, at communityconnections@scgov.net. 
FIRA Championships come to Nathan Benderson Park this weekend
FRIDAY: The top collegiate rowing teams in the southeast will take to the waters of Nathan Benderson Park on April 5-6 to battle for the Florida Intercollegiate Rowing Association (FIRA) Championship trophy. 
Mowing schedule for April 1-12
The schedule for Sarasota County's roadside mowing and median maintenance program for April 1-12, subject to weather conditions.
CHAT holds community forum
The North Port Community Health Action Team (CHAT) will host the "Coming Together as a Community for Our Children" forum at the North Port City Hall Commission Chambers, 4970 City Hall Blvd., North Port, at 4:30 p.m. on Wednesday, April 10. 
Libraries get new website design
The Sarasota County Library System debuted its redesigned website on March 26. The site includes new contents and features and provides quick and easy access to information.  
Celebrate Community Orchard Project
Sarasota County will host the installation of the Community Orchard Project fence and plots at 9 a.m. Thursday, April 11, at Colonial Oaks Park, 5300 Colonial Oaks Blvd., Sarasota. 
Get 'Money Smart' April 19-27
Financial professionals in banking, investments and retirement planning will host a series of presentations during "Money Smart Week @ Your Library," April 19-27 at Sarasota County Libraries. 
Energy Upgrade workshops save money and energy
Benefit from the county's sustainability expertise with a free 30-minute Energy Upgrade workshop. The home efficiency strategy workshops are open to civic groups, clubs, faith organizations and nonprofit associations, as well as businesses that would like to offer the workshop to their employees. 
'Tour de Parks' maps now online
As part of a new program to give residents and visitors ideas for travel routes on the Legacy Trail to other parks, the 2013 Tour de Parks route maps are now available online  
National Libraries Week is April 14-20
Libraries in the Sarasota County Library System will celebrate National Library Week, April 14-20, and encourage residents and visitors to stop in and experience why libraries are a vital part of the community. 
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