From the Desk of Sarasota
City Manager Tom Barwin
May 26, 2017
For area boaters, the newly resurfaced and striped parking lot at Centennial Park is a very welcome sight!  Crews hustled this week to get the work done before the high winds and heavy rain arrived.  Now, just in time for the holiday weekend, boaters will have a newly resurfaced parking lot to park their trailers and vehicles -- plus, four newly replaced docks at the boat ramp.  These were needed capital improvements for our boating community.  Also, to kick off the summer boating season, SPD in conjunction with the U.S. Coast Guard and the Florida Fish & Wildlife Commission will host a free boat safety inspection at the 10th Street Boat Ramp on Sat., May 27th 9 a.m. - 1 p.m.  Happy and safe boating!


  • Community Workshop
    Tues., May 30 - 5:30 p.m.
    City Hall - Room 112

  • Board of Adjustment
    Wed., May 31 - 1:30 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
Deputy City Auditor and Clerk
Facility Maintenance Technician
Golf Course Attendant (Part Time)
Landscape Maintenance Tech I (Part Time)
Lifeguard I
Maintenance Mechanic I
Maintenance Mechanic (Part Time)
Maintenance Mechanic I (Part Time)
Maintenance Mechanic II
Part Time Parking Garage Attendant
Pension Plans Administrator
    Police Officer, 2nd Class
Rec Attendant (Children's Fountain)
Rec Attendant (RLTCC)
Utilities Reliability Engineer     

This Week's Items to Know:

Memorial Day - Holiday Schedule   This coming Monday, May 29 is Memorial Day and administrative offices will be closed in observance of the national holiday.  Garbage, recycling and yard waste will be collected as usual.


Memorial Day marks the start of extended summer hours at the Children's Fountain: 10 a.m. - 7 p.m. daily. 

Hours at some City facilities will vary on Monday:

* Bobby Jones Golf Club:  Regular hours:  6:45 a.m. - 5:50 p.m.
* Children's Fountain:  Summer hours start:  10 a.m. - 7 p.m.
* Lido Pool:  Closed each Monday (Regular hours: 10 a.m. - 4:45
  p.m. Tuesday - Sunday)
* Robert L. Taylor Community Complex:  Closed

Memorial Day - Parade   All are invited to attend a good old fashioned Memorial Day parade in downtown -- a time to celebrate and remember the brave individuals who gave all for our country.

10 a.m.Parade starts at Main St. & Osprey Ave.
11 a.m.Ceremony begins at J. D. Hamel Park (Main St. & Gulfstream Ave.)

Next month will mark the 75th anniversary of the Battle of Midway during WW II.  And that turning point in history will be recognized during the parade and ceremony.

Sarasota Military Academy students will carry an American flag along the parade route that flew at the Battle of Midway.  The keynote address will be given by the founder of the International Midway Memorial Foundation, James D'Angelo, a retired local physician.  He has written a book about the Battle of Midway and will discuss its significance in altering the outcome of WW II.  

Thanks to the Sarasota Patriotic Observance Committee for ensuring all who made the ultimate sacrifice are remembered. And, thanks in advance to the many individuals, school marching bands, and civic groups who will walk or ride the parade route and remind us that freedom should never be taken for granted.

Sarasota Young Professionals  - This week, we started a dialogue with the region's young professionals to explore their priority concerns, opportunities to collaborate on issues, and strategies to implement priorities.  Our 90 minute dialogue centered on housing needs of young professionals, the future of our transportation system and how to participate more regularly and effectively in government and public policy making.

With Jeff Kattrein, Jamie Minton, Mimi Cirbusova, Shantel Norman and Hellen Osorio 
Thank you for the discussion!  We look forward to young professionals becoming more engaged in our dynamic community -- including considering serving on advisory boards, where diverse, representative input is sought by the Mayor and City Commission.  For a list of board vacancies click here
LS 87 Update: 2nd Microtunnel Completed   Great news!  The second and final microtunnel for the Lift Station 87 project was successfully completed this week, marking a significant milestone for this major infrastructure project.

Monday night, the boring machine arrived at the receiving shaft at Osprey Ave. & Mound St., finishing the microtunnel.  As scheduled, it took approximately 4 weeks to bore the 560-foot long tunnel under Luke Wood Park.

The boring machine arriving at the receiving shaft marking
the successful completion of the second and final microtunnel.
Successfully boring two microtunnels (one under the Hudson Bayou, the other under Luke Wood Park) was critical for the success of this project.  Congratulations to all involved, especially Engineer of Record McKim & Creed, on-site microtunneling experts Vadnais Trenchless, Utilities Director Mitt Tidwell and Project Manager Tony Centurione!

Meanwhile, restoration of Osprey Ave. continues.  New sidewalks, curbs and gutters will be begin to be installed next week.  The goal is to reopen Osprey to pedestrian traffic in July.

Eloise Werlin Park - New Sod   Tucked under the mainland side of the John Ringling Bridge, Eloise Werlin Park is looking greener following a quick makeover!  New sod was installed and is now in place by the playground area.  And, just in time...with the rain arriving to help it take root.

Doc Werlin, who adopted the park in 2015, sponsored the improvements which were installed by the Ritz-Carlton's landscape crew with help from the City's Parks and Rec Department.  This is a special public-private partnership which we greatly appreciate.  And, we see the community's appreciation every day as more and more people --especially families -- gravitate to this urban oasis on Sarasota Bay.

Thank you, Doc!
With Doc Werlin and the Ritz-Carlton landscape crew
that installed the new sod at Eloise Werlin Park.


Gillespie Park Composting - Earlier this week, I had the opportunity to inspect firsthand the compost pilot program underway in the Gillespie Park Neighborhood.  What an exciting program with great potential!

As individuals from the neighborhood come together to learn about composting, they're strengthening ties within their neighborhood -- all while diverting a significant amount of food waste from the landfill.  20 households are participating and approximately 700 pounds of fruit and veggie scraps (and other compostable material) has been collected over the past three months -- very impressive!

A big thank you to Tracie Troxler with Sunshine Community Compost and the Spaceship Earth team for structuring the program and providing the education.  The City is providing support and space for the compost earth bins in Gillespie Park.

At at time when we're continually looking for ways to strengthen neighborhoods and be more sustainable, it's very encouraging to see the success of this community driven program.  Our Sustainability Manager, Stevie Freeman-Montes, is monitoring the program and will be on the look out for possible ways to broaden the reach and participation.  Stay tuned! 

Inspecting the compost earth bins with Tracie Troxler, Thomas Franklin,
Adrienne Lerfald, Julie Feeley, and Linda Holland. 
Blue + U = Movie Night: June 10    Kids, families, and movie buffs, consider kicking off the summer with a fun family-friendly free movie night!   The fun, animated film, "Sing", will be presented Sat., June 10 at 8:30 p.m. at the Robert L. Taylor Community Complex.

The movie will be shown outdoors on the artificial turf field, so there
"Sing" will be shown outdoors at the
Robert L. Taylor Community Complex June 10. 
will be plenty of room for blankets and chairs.  Gates open at 7:30 p.m. and the movie starts an hour later at 8:30 p.m.  Complimentary snacks and drinks will be available.

Special thanks to Comfortable Care Dental for sponsoring this community event in partnership with Sarasota City Soccer Club, SPD and the Robert L. Taylor Community Complex.  Hope to see you there! 

Employee of the Quarter:  Miguel Gomez   Congratulations to Miguel Gomez!  Miguel is a Utility Mechanic in the Facilities Division and he's the City's Employee of the Quarter.

Miguel is responsible for overnight maintenance and his diligence with recycling and sustainability was recognized this week.  As part of his duties, he recently developed a roll-cart system to efficiently separate solid waste, paper and plastics/aluminum. 

Our Sustainability Manager, Stevie Freeman-Montes, recently shadowed Miguel to observe the City's internal recycling process and was so impressed with his effective, streamlined process, she nominated him for the award.  Thanks to Miguel's efforts, a substantial amount of waste has been prevented from entering the landfill, saving money, and conserving natural resources.

After 27 years with the City, Miguel is retiring next month -- and going out on top!  Congratulations and best wishes to Miguel!

With Miguel Gomez during a surprise announcement honoring him as
Employee of the Quarter.


Van Wezel:  Shows on Sale Now! 

The following is a list of shows through Nov. 2017.  To view the entire Van Wezel season visit 

Idina Menzel
Sat., May 27 - 8 p.m.
Catch Idina Menzel on Sat., May 27 at the Van Wezel.


Friday Fest:  Doug Deming & The Jewel Tones
Fri., June 16 - 5 p.m.
FREE Concert

Diana Ross
Fri., June 23 - 8 p.m.

Friday Fest: Kettle of Fish
Fri., July 21 - 5 p.m.
FREE Concert

Friday Fest:  Jah Movement Reggae Band
Fri., August 25 - 5 p.m.
FREE Concert

Friday Fest:  Reverend Barry & the Funktastic Soul
Fri., September 15 - 5 p.m.
FREE Concert

Doo Wop Spectacular 
Sat., November 4 - 7:30 p.m.

Straight No Chaser
Thurs., November 16 - 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

REMINDER:  Extended summer hours for the Children's Fountain go into effect on Memorial Day -- open daily 10 a.m. - 7 p.m. weather permitting.  As you can see in this week's "Sarasota Scene" submission from resident photographer Norm Schimmel, the Children's Fountain is a popular venue for families with incredible views of Sarasota's natural beauty.

Have a safe holiday weekend!
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Tom Barwin
City Manager