From the Desk of Sarasota
City Manager Tom Barwin
October 7, 2016

Photo of the Week
Selby Five Points Park is temporarily fenced off from use as the newly installed grass takes root.  As you can see, it's looking quite lush and nice!  Depending upon the weather and how the grass grows, we hope to reopen the park in mid-October. Additional landscaping is also planned to complement the new turf.  In the meantime, the area around the park, including the walkways and benches, remain open.  Five Points Park is a focal point of downtown, and under the leadership of Jerry Fogle, our new Parks and Rec Director, we will strive to ensure the park is in good condition.

  • St. Armands BID
    Tues., October 11 - 8:30 a.m.
    City Hall - Room 109
  • Downtown Improvement District
    Tues., October 11 - 9 a.m.
    City Hall Annex - SRQ Media Studio
  • Parking Advisory Cmte
    Tues., October 11 - 4 p.m.
    City Hall Annex - SRQ Media Studio
  • Planning Board
    Wed., October 12 - 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.  

Administrative Specialist I
Application Developer
Building Inspector
Crew Leader I
Customer Service Representative
Department Budget Coordinator
Engineering Technician III (NDS)
Engineering Technician III (Utilities)
Facility Maintenance Tech
Golf Course Attendant
Inventory Technician (SPD)
Landscape Maintenance Tech I
Maintenance Mechanic II
    Police Officer, 2nd Class
Rec Attendant
Refuse Equipment Operator
Senior Budget Analyst
Senior Pension Analyst
System Integrator
Utilities Mechanic I (Lift Stations)
Utilities Mechanic I (Water Distribution)
Utilities Mechanic I (Water Treatment Plant)


This Week's Items to Know:
Lift Station 87 Project - Update   Due to heavy rains, crews were unable to complete the horizontal directional drill to pull a new water pipe under the Hudson Bayou.  With more rain and possible wind gusts expected in conjunction with
The horizontal directional drill is expected to resume next week.   
Hurricane Matthew, crews will wait until the storm safely passes before pulling the pipe again. After talking at length with the contractor and project manager about the plan moving forward, we're optimistic work will resume early next week and the next pull back will be successful. 

In the meantime, the construction area has been secured for the storm, with debris removed and sandbags placed in strategic areas to protect property.        

Happiest Seaside Town - Voting 'Paused'   Due to Hurricane Matthew, Coastal Living temporarily suspended voting for its Happiest Seaside Town contest.  Sarasota recently was selected by the magazine as one of the Top 10 Happiest Seaside Towns in America -- and online voting has been underway to determine which town will take top honors.  When voting resumes, you can do so at: -- and votes can be cast every 15 minutes! 

We're collaborating with Visit Sarasota County (VSC) to spread the word --- while making it fun.  For those on Instagram, VSC will host an Instagram photo walk on Wed., October 12th at 4:30 p.m.  Interested participants will meet at the Visitor Center on Main Street, then stroll to the Opera House for a behind the scenes tour.  Certainly, lots of terrific photo opps await!  The evening will be capped off with happy hour hosted by Aloft.  The photo group is limited to 20 people.  (Those with Instagram public profiles will be given preference.)  To register, email Eddie Kirsch:

Other community festivities are in the works!  In the meantime, enjoy a fun message from Mayor Willie "Happy" Shaw about the contest:
Bobby Jones Golf Club - Men's Better Ball Championship   Registration is now open for the 45th Annual Men's Better Ball City Championship.  Bobby Jones Golf Club will host this popular event on Sat., Bobby Jones Logo October 29 & Sun., October 30.  The tournament is open to all males and is limited to the first 100 entries. 

The entry fee is $190 per team and includes two rounds of golf (cart included), tee gift, non-alcoholic on-course beverage each day and lunch when you finish your final round.  The tournament will be played on the British Course with play starting each morning at 8 a.m.

For more information click here.  Deadline to register is Mon., October 24.  

Also, the deadline to register for the Women's Better Ball Open is this coming Mon., October 10.  The tournament returned last year as a result of enthusiastic players requesting it.  We hope there's continued interest this year!  Details and a registration form can be found here.  

 Age-Friendly Parks Seminar   As we develop our new Parks and Recreation Department, staff members are embracing their new roles, expanding their knowledge base in many areas.  Director Jerry Fogle and Recreation Facilities Supervisor Mark Hamilton recently attended a training session on "Age-Friendly Park Features". 

Parks personnel throughout Sarasota County gathered to learn how to create an age-friendly blueprint for parks and outdoor spaces.  The session was especially helpful for our team members as we work toward beginning the master planning process for parks and rec. One key takeaway from the seminar was the importance of park design and considering all phases of our lives when selecting amenities. 

Thanks to the Patterson Foundation's Age-Friendly Sarasota initiative for hosting the seminar and giving the community good food for thought as we maintain and create recreational spaces throughout our special city.
City of Sarasota employees participated in an age-friendly parks seminar.  

United Way Day of Caring - Employee Volunteerism    We take great pride that many of our employees are active with the United Way, further strengthening our community.  For the third consecutive year, City employees rolled up their sleeves this week and volunteered for the
City employee Judy Dubreuil and MHCC Program Director Michael Ross planting a new flower garden. 
United Way Day of Caring.  This year, we helped landscape Mental Health Community Centers, Inc. on Tuttle Avenue.

About a dozen City employees, representing a cross-section of departments, including Human Resources, Public Works, SPD, Finance and Central Records, planted a flower garden, spread mulch, and picked up yard debris at the facility.  MHCC provides day programming for individuals with mental illness and we're pleased to help provide a new garden and spruced up grounds for them to enjoy.

For the past two years, the City of Sarasota has been recognized by United Way Suncoast as one of the 50 Most Generous Workplaces in the region.

Congratulations to everyone who planted plants and moved mulch on the Day of Caring!  Your efforts are greatly appreciated. 

And, thanks to Deputy City Manager Marlon Brown for his active role as a Board Member with United Way Sarasota.

More photos are posted on the City of Sarasota Facebook page

Front Row:  City employees Nick Dazio, Susan Dodd, Stacie Mason, Stevie Freeman-Montes, and MHCC volunteer Anthony McFadden.  Back Row:  MHCC Executive Director Jeff Standring, City employees:  Todd Kucharski, Judy Dubreuil, Cheryl Garrett, Kate Meeks-Hall, and MHCC Program Director Michael Ross.   
National Night Out - Tues., October 11    Reminder: The annual National Night Out community event will be held next Tuesday, October 11 at North Water Tower Park from 5 p.m. - 8 p.m.  Many
National Night Out helps build strong partnerships between residents and officers.

Sarasota Police Officers will be there to open conversations with residents and share our partnership policing philosophy. 

A variety of SPD vehicles will be on display, McGruff the Crime Dog will be on hand, children will have the chance to run through a mini SWAT challenge, and there will be plenty of entertainment, giveaways and food. 

Thanks to the Bayou Oaks Neighborhood Association for partnering with SPD to host this fun community event. Hope to see you there!  

Upcoming Events 

Downtown SRQ Home Show 
Municipal Auditorium
Sat. & Sun., Oct. 8 & 9 
10 a.m. - 5 p.m.

A Taste of St. Armands 
St. Armands Circle Park 
Sat., October 8 
5:30 p.m. - 8:30 p.m.

National Night Out 
North Water Tower Park
Tues., October 11
5 p.m. - 8 p.m.

New Beginnings II 
Robert L. Taylor Community Complex
Wed., October 12
6 p.m. - 8 p.m.

Van Wezel:  Shows on Sale Now! 

The following is the current show schedule through 2016. For more information visit    

Celtic Thunder
Sat., Oct. 15 - 8 p.m.

Doo Wop Spectacular
Sat., October 22 - 7:30 p.m.

Mary Chapin Carpenter
Fri., October 28 - 8 p.m.

ZZ Top
Mon., October 31 - 8 p.m.
Dave Koz will perform at the
Van Wezel on Nov. 25.


Capitol Steps
Tues., November 1 - 8 p.m.

Mannheim Steamroller
Fri., November 18 - 8 p.m.

Decades Rewind
Sat., November 19 - 8 p.m.

Dave Koz Christmas Tour 2016
Fri., November 25 - 8 p.m.

Tosh Saves the World
Sat., November 26 - 7 p.m. & 9:30 p.m.

Melissa Etheridge's Holiday Trio
Sun., November 27 - 7 p.m.

Jim Brickman
Tues., November 29 - 7:30 p.m.
Fame The Musical
Wed., December 7 - 7 p.m.

Oak Ridge Boys' Christmas
Sat., December 10 - 8 p.m.
The Oak Ridge Boys will be at the Van Wezel Dec. 10.


Beach Boys 'Christmas'
Mon., December 12 - 7:30 p.m.

Garrison Keillor
Tues., December 13 - 8 p.m.

The Sarasota Ballet - George Balanchine's Jewels
Fri., December 16 - 7:30 p.m.
Sat., December 17 - 2 p.m. & 7:30 p.m.
Tickets - Sarasota Ballet Website

A Christmas Carol
Wed., December 21 - 8 p.m.
Rogers + Hammerstein's Cinderella
Tues., December 27 - 7 p.m.
Wed., December 28 - 7 p.m.

Moscow Ballet's Great Russian Nutcracker
Thurs., December 29 - 3 p.m. & 7 p.m.

42nd Street
Fri., December 30 - 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

Significant community events will be held on back-to-back evenings next week:  National Night Out on Tuesday, then New Beginnings II on Wednesday.  We encourage you to come out and participate in both to help build a strong, community focused city.

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