From the Desk of Sarasota
City Manager Tom Barwin
December 22, 2017
Shoppers took to a decoration-lined St. Armands Circle for some last-minute holiday shopping. Located just feet away from Lido Beach, St. Armands Circle is home to more than 100 merchants. It's a unique destination, offering our residents and tourists a chance to shop, dine and relax while enjoying Sarasota's beautiful weather!  Click here for a full directory of shops on St. Armands Circle. 


  • City Commission
    Tues., January 2, 2018 - 2:30 p.m. & 6 p.m.
    City Hall - Commission Chambers


City Career Opportunities
Opportunity, Just Ahead Green Road Sign with Copy Room Over The Dramatic Clouds and Sky.
Accounting & Payroll Systems Supervisor
Chief Transportation Planner
Financial Accountant
Golf Course Attendant
Janitorial/Maintenance - Van Wezel  
Manager Maintenance Service
Operations Manager, Business Improvement District
Parking Garage Attendant
Parking Revenue Collections Specialist
Parks Service Worker - Part-time
    Police Officer, 2nd Class
Rec Attendant (RLTCC)
Refuse Equipment Operator - Temporary Full-Time
  Senior Pension Accountant
Senior Planner
Solid Waste Helper - Collections, Part-time
Solid Waste Helper - Yard Waste 
   Volunteer/Unpaid Intern     

This Week's Items to Know:

Holiday Schedule    As we head into the Christmas weekend, we'd like to remind everyone regular business hours at City facilities will vary over the next week and garbage, recycling and yard waste collection will be impacted for Christmas Day and New Year's Day. 

City administrative offices will be closed Christmas Day, Monday, December 25, and the day after Christmas, Tuesday, December 26, as well as New Year's Day, January 1, 2018.  
Christmas Day (Mon., 12/25): NO garbage, recycling & yard waste collection.  Collection will be one day later.  Monday pick up will be on Tuesday (12/26) .  Tuesday pick up will be on Wednesday (12/27) .   

New Year's Day (Mon., 1/1):   NO garbage, recycling & yard waste collection.  Collection will be one day later.  Monday pick up will be on Tuesday (1/2).   Tuesday pick up will be on Wednesday (1/3) .  
All rec facilities will be closed Christmas Day, the day after Christmas, and New Year's Day-- except for Lido Pool, which will be open the day after Christmas (12/26) from 10 a.m. - 4:45 p.m., and Bobby Jones Golf Club, which is open every day of the year.     
Bobby Jones - On Christmas Day, our historic municipal golf course Bobby Jones will have limited hours with 18 holes of regular play available until 9 a.m. and 9 holes until 11 a.m.  Also, Bobby Jones will host the 10th Annual Reindeer Games  starting at 8:45 a.m.   
The day after Christmas and New Year's Day, Bobby Jones will be open regular hours:  6:30 a.m. - 5:30 p.m.
There will also be plenty of opportunities to ring in the New Year in downtown Sarasota. The annual New Year's Eve celebration will be held on Sunday, December 31, including a carnival around Selby Five Points Park, starting at 1 p.m. and the annual Pineapple Drop at the intersection of Main St. and Lemon Ave at midnight. 

This free event attracts more than 20,000 people to downtown Sarasota each year. Parking will be available at the State St. and Palm Ave. garages for $5. 

A fireworks show will also begin at midnight at Marina Jack. These events are Sarasota traditions and great ways to welcome the New Year! 
For a complete list of facility closures and hours, visit
From safeguarding the community to monitoring the City's drinking water supply to keeping our municipal golf course open for a bit of recreation, City employees fill many roles to ensure the City is operational 365/24/7.   We appreciate their dedication working during the holidays and send warm wishes and a heartfelt thanks to all.
Christmas Tree Disposal     For those who put up a real (natural) tree this year, trees will be picked up curbside during regular yard waste collection.
Please make sure all lights, decorations and tree stands are removed before placing it at the curb. No need to bag the tree or put it in a container.    
All Christmas trees will be collected and recycled with the City's other regular yard waste.   

Van Wezel - Holiday Season   Executive Director Mary Bensel and her extraordinary staff are wrapping up another truly great holiday season at the Van Wezel!   
98 Degrees was a scream -- literally -- with over 1,000 giddy,
98 Degrees did not disappoint with their  electric holiday show.

screaming women in their 20's, 30's, and 40's.  (There was so much excitement, Mary tells us she felt like she was transported back to a Beatles concert!)  Also included in the festive holiday lineup:  The Nutcracker, LeAnn Rimes, Cirque Dreams Holidaze, Dave Koz, Irish Tenors, Straight No Chaser, and Celtic Thunder.   
The holiday shows will conclude with 'A Christmas Carol' (Dec. 22) and the upcoming   'Moscow Ballet Great Russian Nutcracker' (Dec. 29) and New Year's treat   'Salute to Vienna' (Jan. 3).  
Earlier this week, 1,400 families and children enjoyed 'A Charlie Brown Christmas Live On Stage' as part of the Boar's Head Family Series -- an enjoyable cultural arts experience for those of all ages. 
The show included live music, Charlie Brown, Lucy, Linus -- and of course, Snoopy!   
Children meeting Santa and Mrs. Claus before
'A Charlie Brown Christmas Live on Stage'

Before the show, St. Nick himself made a special appearance and Mattison's Bayside 'Lunch with Santa' featured s'mores prepared right before everyone's eyes in the Grand Foyer.  Wonderful, memory making time!  After the performance, children had the chance to visit with the cast members and ask questions, enjoy treats from Boar's Head, and dig into a tempting cake from Argosy University.
Family Night at the Van Wezel is an education program designed to encourage families to take in the cultural arts.  Parents who purchase a full price ticket can get a free ticket for an accompanying child based on availability.  The next Family Night is Fri., January 26 at 7 p.m. for "Masters of Illusion".       
We appreciate all who have included the Van Wezel in their holiday plans. And thank you to the entire Van Wezel for helping to make the holidays even more special through the cultural arts. 

Winter Wonderland Festivities   Congratulations to Parks & Rec Director Jerry Fogle and his dedicated team for hosting the most successful Winter Wonderland extravaganza to date!
Hundreds of families descended upon the Robert L. Taylor
Making holiday cookies at the Winter Wonderland party. 
Community Complex last week, where children met with Santa and shared their wish lists, made holiday cookies and played games.  Thanks to the generosity of the Sarasota community. Dozens of new toys for children of all ages were given away as raffle prizes, including fidget spinners, bicycles, stuffed animals, action figures, basketballs, mini stereo speakers and much more.
We appreciate staff at RLTCC going above and beyond to make this a special family-friendly event and a joyous time for all. 

FDOT - U.S. 41 Update   The demolition of the median on U.S. 41 between 10 St. and 14th St. is now underway with crews removing the vegetation as they prepare to turn the median into a temporary southbound lane.
An 8-inch potable water line serving residents is located within the
Vegetation is being removed from the medians.   
median and the State of Florida's contractor is taking extra precautions -- hand digging -- to ensure it is not disrupted.  City staff has been in close conversations with the contractor about this matter -- and the project as a whole -- and we appreciate their attention and vigilance.  The work is being done at night to minimize the traffic impact.    
Also to lower the impact on motorists, the traffic shift will not occur until after the busy holiday season. Crews expect to pave and re-stripe southbound U.S. 41 the second week in January, at which time the temporary lane shift will begin.              
We're keeping close tabs on this improvement project, which will increase traffic flow on U.S. 41 by adding roundabouts at 10th St. and 14th St. and increase pedestrian mobility and safety with wider sidewalks and enhanced lighting. We'll continue to keep you posted with updates. 

Van Wezel:  Shows on Sale Now! 

Van Wezel seats

The following is a list of shows through Jan. 2018.  To view the entire Van Wezel season visit      
A Christmas Carol 
Fri., December 22 - 7 p.m.
Moscow Ballet Great Russian Nutcracker 
Fri., December 29 - 3 p.m. & 7 p.m.
Salute To Vienna New Year's Concert 
Wed., January 3, 2018 - 7 p.m.
Ron White 
Ron White will be at the Van Wezel on Jan. 4.

Thurs., January 4, 2018 - 8 p.m.
Peter Cetera 
Fri., January 5, 2018 - 8 p.m.
A Gentleman's Guide to Love & Murder 
Sat., January 6, 2018 - 8 p.m.
Sun., January 7, 2018 - 3 p.m. 
A Night with Janis Joplin 
Mon., January 8, 2018 - 8 p.m.
Steve Soloman - Cannoli - Latkes 
Tues., January 9, 2018 - 8 p.m.
Ramsey Lewis & John Pizzarelli 
Wed., January 10, 2018 - 8 p.m.
Catch the Legendary 5th Dimension on Jan. 15th at the Van Wezel.   

Sarasota Concert Association 
Thurs., January 11, 2018 - 7:30 p.m.
Tango Fire 
Fri., January 12, 2018 - 8 p.m.
Legendary 5th Dimension 
Mon., January 15, 2018 - 8 p.m. 
Renee Fleming 
Tues., January 16, 2018 - 8 p.m.
Chita Rivera & Tommy Tune 
Wed., January 17, 2018 - 8 p.m.
The Drifters, The Platters, & Cornell Gunter's Coasters 
Thurs., January 18, 2018 - 8 p.m.
Musical Thrones:  A Parody of Ice & Fire 
Sun., January 21, 2018 - 7 p.m.
Ringling College Library Association Town Hall
John Brennan
Mon., January 22, 2018 - 10:30 a.m. & 7:30 p.m.
Tapestry - A Tribute to Carole King 
Tues., January 23, 2018 - 8 p.m.
Jackson Browne with Greg Leisz 
Wed., January 24, 2018 - 7:30 p.m.
Creedence Clearwater Revisited
will perform Jan. 27.

Paul Anka 
Thurs., January 25 , 2018- 8 p.m. 
Masters Of Illusion 
Fri., January 26, 2018 - 7 p.m.
Creedence Clearwater Revisited 
Sat., January 27, 2018 - 8 p.m.
Michael Feinstein 
Sun., January 28, 2018 - 7 p.m.
Sarasota Concert Association 
Mon., January 29, 2018 - 7:30 p.m.
Tues., January 30, 2018 - 8 p.m.
Wed., January 31, 2018 - 8 p.m. 

To purchase tickets over the phone call 941-953-3368 or stop by the Box Office at 777 N.Tamiami Trail. 

For a complete schedule of events, visit

Weekly Briefs will be on holiday until Friday, Jauary 5, 2018.  As the year winds down, I'd like to extend warm wishes for a joyous holiday from the Barwin family.  Looking forward to an exciting and productive New Year in our special city.  Happy Holidays!    
Thanks for reading this week's edition.  If you'd like to receive Weekly Briefs directly to your inbox, click 'Join Our Mailing List ' below or send us an email at

Tom Barwin
City Manager