September 2013

Found 22 blog entries for September 2013.

The FSU/Asolo Conservatory for Actor Training eases Sarasota in the cultural direction with Oleanna, a FREE admission two-character play, at 8pm Monday, September 30, 2013. Seating is first come, first served at Asolo Repertory Theatre, 5555 N Tamiami Trail.

Written by David Mamet, this one-night-only production explores the power hierarchy between a university professor and his student. The play stars Allie Henkel and Matthew Olson. Students of the FSU/Asolo Conservatory for Actor Training present, produce, act and direct in this production.

I hope that you attended Celebrate Sarasota Performing Arts Festival last weekend at Sarasota Opera House. Artist Series Concerts of Sarasota organized and presented the two full-length performances. The

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I ran across this photo showing Lido Key toward the end of the 1940s. The vintage postcard illustrates so much that has changed in 60-plus years.

The card features Lido Casino designed by renowned architect Ralph Twitchell in Art Deco style. Ornamentation included cast concrete seahorses, tropical murals and glass blocks. Formally opened in 1940, the building was destroyed and replaced in 1969.

Some joys don't change. We still walk from St Armands Circle to Lido Beach for brilliant sunsets and a chance at spying the green flash just before the sun drowns in the Gulf of Mexico. The little cottages are mostly gone, replaced by condominium complexes along Ben Franklin Drive and mansions along Sarasota Bay, but the park purchased by the city from

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Sarasota Magazine’s Heat Index feature gave full-page treatment to the neon Flamingo Colony Motel sign that used to glow in the dark on Sarasota’s North Trail. The vintage sign lives on in Marty Treu’s book Signs, Streets and Storefronts: A History of Architecture and Graphics along America’s Commercial Corridors.

Learning that Treu, an architect, lived in Sarasota 30 years ago and helped us legislate protection for vintage signs, I started thinking about my favorite signs. It feels good to pull these graphics from the recesses of my mind and take note again.

The Gulf Beach Resort Motel sign gave me my first introduction to Sarasota more than 20 years ago. Converted to a condo motel in the late 1970s, this 1950s-era retreat on Lido beach has added

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Today Green turtles are flourishing on Manasota Key, thanks to the tireless efforts of about 150 volunteers up before sunrise to check for turtle nesting activity. The barrier island that straddles Sarasota and Charlotte counties claims the highest concentration of turtle nests on the Gulf Coast — 69 green turtle nests and 2,644 loggerhead nests.

As recently as a couple of years ago, the numbers looked very different. Then just 19 of the endangered green turtles nested on the beaches from Manasota Key to Anna Maria Island. This year that number jumped to 104, an increase sea turtle experts call remarkable. There's a larger population explosion among turtles in Florida.

Green sea turtles, which are uncommon on local nesting beaches, laid 30 nests

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Here are the August 2013 statistics for the real estate market in Sarasota County. These statistics offer a clear-eyed view of exactly what's happened in the Sarasota County real estate market during the past 12 months. Community stats for a particular ZIP Code appear on the neighborhood pages.

These results have not yet been released to the public by the Sarasota Association of REALTORS®.

Note that these four charts are updated frequently and automatically from Multiple Listing Service (MLS) feeds. For the date of the most recent update, please see the line below each chart.

  • The Market Activity chart tracks inventory trends;
  • The Pricing chart tracks median and average sale price changes;
  • The Days On Market chart tracks length of
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Do you keep one eye trained on the Rosemary District hoping that the eclectic neighborhood will bloom again? This area showed so much promise as a developing arts district before the Great Recession dealt its blows.

And maybe, like me, you’ve wondered about the Alfstad& Productions whose intriguing website promises to create "a quality ‘White Cube’ multi-purpose exhibition space that will become the contemporary art destination of choice."  

Now it looks like Alfstad& Productions and its team, which includes artists and crafts people, at least three of whom are graduates of Ringling College of Art and Design, are poised to breathe new life into this historic and well-located Sarasota neighborhood located just north of downtown.


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The reauthorization last year of the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) made a big change to flood insurance rates by gradually ending federal subsidies for flood insurance. Yes, the differences are significant for some homeowners who received subsidies, yet most people did not receive subsidies in the first place.

Even so, if you are buying or selling real estate whether or not flood subsidies are involved, you must be vigilant about disclosures covering whether or not a property lies in a Flood Zone. Sellers must disclose the details of any applicable flood insurance. Buyers must investigate the availability and cost of insurance.

Older homes in flood zones benefited from subsidies that kept flood insurance rates low, and the owners of these

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Sarasota makes a great place for Boomer retirees, points out USA Today (September 9, 2013). After decades in the suburbs, Baby Boomers are moving to cities where they may safely walk to shopping, dining and events.

I encourage my clients to click on the WalkScore® feature associated with the listings shown on my website to see how friendly a neighborhood is for walkabouts. Many of my clients find that a walkable neighborhood contributes health, environmental, and economic benefits. For example, One Hundred Central in Downtown Sarasota boasts a WalkScore® of 94.

Downtown Sarasota appeals to Boomers seeking small-town ambiance yet big-city amenities. Located at the center of Florida’s cultural coast, the city center boasts excellent restaurants,

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The Indianapolis Prize announced the nomination of Randall Wells, a Sarasota dolphin researcher, for its 2014 prize, considered the world’s top award for animal conservation. Wells is the director of the Sarasota Dolphin Research Program, the world's longest-running study of a wild dolphin population. Since 1970, the program, a collaboration between Mote Marine Laboratory and the Chicago Zoological Society has conducted research on bottlenose dolphins in Sarasota Bay, the home of more than 160 identifiable dolphins spanning at least five generations

The other nominees for the Indianapolis Prize include anthropologist Jane Goodall and ocean conservationist Carl Safina. Six finalists will be selected in the spring, and the winner will be announced

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We in Sarasota like to tell friends that we’re a small town with big city amenities. That includes more than one bakery where you can satisfy a yen for cupcakes.

And, yes, Sarasota has a contestant ready to compete in the Cupcake Wars on the Food Network. Becky Schultes of Heavenly Cupcakes created this video seeking her place in the bake-offs:

A certified CrossFit trainer, Schultes admits that she loves sweets. During the Great Recession when her job search hit a wall, she opted to become a business owner. The 2013 Best of Sarasota Finalist runs popular cupcake shops on Siesta Key and in Gulf Gate.

Small-bite cakes on a stick at The Lollicake Queen, a sweet shop in Southside Village, also take the tiny cake. Or try The Short Giraffe in

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