From the Desk of Sarasota
City Manager Tom Barwin
January 26, 2018
The weather was perfect for an afternoon stroll at Payne Park earlier this week. Sections of the clay fitness trail were recently repaired and resurfaced thanks to our Parks and Recreation Department. The half mile loop offers a path for runners and walkers alike to enjoy the beautiful Sarasota sunshine beneath a canopy of trees.


City Career Opportunities
Opportunity, Just Ahead Green Road Sign with Copy Room Over The Dramatic Clouds and Sky.
Accounting & Payroll Systems Supervisor
Box Office Operator
Commission Reporter
Golf Course Attendant
Pension Plans Administrator
    Police Officer, 2nd Class
Rec Attendant (RLTCC) 
  Senior Pension Accountant
Solid Waste Helper - Collections, Part-time
Treatment Plant Operator
Utility Mechanic I - Water Distribution 
   Volunteer/Unpaid Intern     

This Week's Items to Know:

U.S. 41 - FDOT Construction Update   The medians along U.S. 41 between 14th Street and 10th Street are now removed as FDOT crews prepare to shift traffic for the upcoming roundabout construction.
The areas where the medians were located will be temporarily paved next Thursday and Friday in order to shift traffic during the construction.  That lane shift is expected to start on
The first weekend in February, traffic lanes are scheduled
to shift on U.S. 41 between 14th and 10th. 
Saturday, Feb. 4 and Sunday, Feb. 5.
Staging and prep work has been going on in the area for awhile and this will be the first noticeable indication that a significant improvement project is underway.
FDOT is constructing roundabouts at 14th St. and 10th St., which will allow continuous flow of vehicles while enhancing motorist, bicyclist and pedestrian traffic.   
City staff meets weekly with FDOT and contractors on the roundabout project team to review schedules, exchange updates and to ensure City issues are addressed.
You can receive email updates directly from FDOT by registering at   
The Vue - Residents Moving In   As new residents begin to occupy the 161 new units of the Vue condominium building, located on U.S. 41 and Gulfstream Ave, Assistant City Manager John Lege, Deputy City Manager Marlon Brown and I had a chance to tour the very modern new building earlier this week.   Obviously, the view from the Vue is fabulous.    
Assistant City Manager John Lege and I talking with
David Arent, Sr. Project Manager for the Vue. 
Senior Project Manager David Arnet shared with us that residents who are moving in were attracted here not only because of our beaches/weather and active cultural/recreational lifestyle options, but also because we have an increasingly walkable downtown that residents can enjoy and access without having to get in a car and drive.    
In that regard, City staff continues to urge the Florida Department of Transportation to move forward on installing enhanced pedestrian street crossing strategies whenever possible on U.S. 41.  Following years of effort, a new pedestrian crossing with activated pedestrian crossing lights will be installed by FDOT contractors this spring at First Ave./Ritz-Carlton Drive and U.S. 41 this April.  We hope this will be the first in an ongoing effort to calm traffic and make pedestrian connectivity to our Bayfront and Cultural Districts much more pedestrian friendly.     
Sarasota Bay Estuary Program - Sea Level Rise Video   Our friends at the Sarasota Bay Estuary Program have produced an informative video about climate change and the need for us to adapt to preserve one of our most precious natural resources, Sarasota Bay.   
The piece highlights Sarasota Bay's significant impact on the region, extending well beyond being home to an abundance of sea creatures and world renowned sunsets to being a billion dollar economic engine.
With City Commission support, the City is moving forward with a climate adaptation plan that addresses potential vulnerabilities within our infrastructure and adapting thoughtful strategies as capital improvements are made.  To review the City's Climate Adaptation Plan click here.  
We appreciate SBEP taking the time to share this important message.
"Restoring Our Bays:  Preparing Sarasota Bay for Sea Level Rise" 
Fredd Atkins Park Reopens   Fredd Atkins Park in North Sarasota is open once again and looking good following a makeover.  By removing the pavilion and restroom buildings, the park is now
The newly reopened Fredd Atkins Park. 
an open venue and is more inviting for families to visit, which the community expressed they wanted in their neighborhood.
Sitting areas with shade canopies, picnic tables and fresh sod have been installed.  While the park is open, the improvements continue.  Parks & Rec staff will seek more input from the community regarding possible additional amenities.
In the meantime, we encourage residents to enjoy the park between dawn and dusk, which are temporary hours while the lighting is restored to the area.  
One Community, One Book   Sarasota County Libraries will participate again this year in the popular program "One Book, One Community".   
This year's selection is "Sing For Your Life:  A Story of Race, Music and Family" by Daniel Bergner.  Inspired by a true story, this
"Sing For Your Life" is this year's One Community, One Book selection. 
New York Times bestseller details the life of Ryan Speedo Green and his remarkable journey as a young African American man growing up in a tough neighborhood where he landed in juvenile detention, to becoming a star with New York's Metropolitan Opera.
This is the 15th year Sarasota County Libraries has participated in One Book, which encourages everyone in a community to read and discuss the same book.
The 2018 program will kick off with a visit by author Daniel Bergner.  He'll speak and sign books at the Sarasota Opera House on Friday, January 26 at 7 p.m. While it is a free lecture, you're encouraged to register to reserve a space
Vintage & Collectibles Fair   A few times a year, the Municipal Auditorium hosts a community event without a commercial promoter, which means all the proceeds go back into the historic auditorium operations.
The Vintage & Collectibles Fair will be held six times in 2018. 
Starting this weekend, the City Marketplace Vintage & Collectibles Fair will be held six times in 2018 including: 
  • January 27 & 28
  • February 10 & 11
  • March 10 & 11
The fair features antiques, books, artwork, vintage clothing, glassware, jewelry and more -- all under the roof of this Art Deco treasure.  If you like vintage items and a good deal, the Vintage & Collectibles Fair is for you! 
Adult admission is $3 -- and the ticket is good both days.  Children 12 and under are free.  

Employee Profile:  Dominic Harris
Amongst our 700 City employees/public servants, many go above and beyond their basic responsibilities to make our community a better place.  Beginning this month, we will start an occasional feature to share their work and the pride we have in their character and efforts.  Our first employee profile highlights Dominic Harris.
Dominic Harris goes by many names--
Dominic Harris has served the
Sarasota Police Department for 7 years. 
"Officer Harris"  and "Uncle Dom" to name a few.  As a 7-year veteran officer with the Sarasota Police  Department, Dominic has worked as a patrolman, a community policeman, special details, and is currently a school resource officer at Booker High School. Working in law enforcement was never part of the plan though. In fact, Harris was working as a plumber when he got the call from SPD offering him a job. 
Outside of his work with the department, Harris heads up a non-profit called Brotherhood of Men, which he founded in 2007. The group focuses on at-risk youth ages 8 to 25 in the Newtown community.  This month, the group completed an exciting, new project, revealing the first of four vacant, City-owned homes to be refurbished and rented or sold back to local residents. Members of BOM did all of the work with the help of volunteer professionals and donated materials. 
The program is something Harris says he wishes he had as a young man. He grew up in Newtown and played sports at Riverview High School. It's that background, he says, that makes it so easy for him to relate to these young people. When asked why he does it all, he said simply, "If you're not helping someone else's life, then what's the point of yours?" Thanks Officer Harris for all that you do!  
To learn more about the Brotherhood of Men Mentor Group and how you can offer technical skills and donations, please visit their website

Van Wezel:  Shows on Sale Now! 

Van Wezel seats

The following is a list of shows through Feb. 2018.  To view the entire Van Wezel season visit      
Masters Of Illusion 
Fri., January 26 - 7 p.m.
Creedence Clearwater Revisited 
Sat., January 27 - 8 p.m. 

Michael Feinstein 
Sun., January 28 - 7 p.m.
Cabaret will be at the Van Wezel on Jan. 30 & 31.


Sarasota Concert Association 
Mon., January 29 - 7:30 p.m.
Tues., January 30 - 8 p.m.
Wed., January 31 - 8 p.m. 
Thurs., Feb. 1 - 8 p.m.
In The Mood 
Mon., Feb. 5 - 8 p.m.
Diana Krall 
Tues., Feb. 6 - 8 p.m. 
Travis Wall's Shaping Sound After The Curtain 
Wed., Feb. 7 - 8 p.m.
Brian Regan Live 
Thurs., Feb. 8 - 7:30 p.m.
Catch Brian Regan Live
on Feb. 8.

Tony Bennett 
Sat., Feb. 10
Ramsey Lewis & John Pizzarelli 
Sun., Feb. 11 - 8 p.m.
Dancing With the Stars: Live! - Light Up the Night 
Tues., Feb. 13 - 8 p.m.

The Beach Boys 
Wed., Feb. 14 - 7:30 p.m.
George Benson 
Thurs., Feb. 15 - 8 p.m.
Barry Manilow 
Fri., Feb. 16 - 8:30 p.m.

Michael McDonald 
Sat., Feb. 17 - 8 p.m. 
Gordon Lightfoot will perform on Feb. 22. 

The Hot Sardines 
Sun., Feb. 18 - 7 p.m.
Stayin' Alive 
Mon., Feb. 19 - 8 p.m.
Gordon Lightfoot 
Thurs., Feb. 22 - 8 p.m.
Moscow Festival Ballet - Romeo & Juliet & Carmen 
Tues., Feb. 27 - 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

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Tom Barwin
City Manager