From the Desk of Sarasota
City Manager Tom Barwin
May 24, 2019
Pioneer Park got even more beautiful and environmentally friendly with the recent creation of a butterfly garden designed and planted by Mrs. Lorienne Nickelson's fifth grade class at Bay Haven School of Basics Plus. The effort was part of the Hog Creek Watershed Restoration Project and supported by the City of Sarasota, Sarasota County, the Sarasota County School District, the Central Cocoanut Neighborhood Association, the Broadway Promenade Condominium Association, Kappa Kappa Iota and many neighborhood and school volunteers. Commissioner Willie Shaw helped dedicate the garden earlier this week with project manager Dr. Arthur Lindemanis, science teacher Rolf Hanson a few dozen students, some of whom will maintain and help expand the garden as fifth graders next year. Kudos to all involved!


No scheduled meetings next week

This Week's Items to Know:

Memorial Day -  Mon., May 27   As the nation honors those who gave all, City of Sarasota services and offices may vary on Memorial Day, Monday, May 27. 
Please note Garbage, recycling and yard waste will be picked up as regularly scheduled.
 The following facilities will be closed:
Bobby Jones Golf Club, the City's historic municipal golf course, is open every day of the year and will be open for play on Memorial Day, weather permitting.  
Payne Park Tennis Center will be open 7:30 a.m. to 2 p.m.
And, on Memorial Day, extended summer hours will begin at the Children's Fountain:  open and free to the public 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. weather permitting.  
Holiday hours are posted on  www.SarasotaFL.Gov.
City facilities will reopen and return to regular hours on Tuesday, May 28.    
Memorial Day Parade:  Main St./Osprey Ave. - 10 a.m.   You're invited to join the Sarasota community as we remember those who made the ultimate sacrifice by honoring them with an old fashioned parade at 10 a.m. down Main Street followed by a ceremony at Chaplain J.D. Hamel Park, adjacent to Main St. and U.S. 41., around 11 a.m. 
Once again, the volunteer-based Sarasota County Patriotic Observance Committee worked diligently to organize a morning of
The Memorial Day parade starts at 10 a.m.
at Main St. and Osprey Ave.  
patriotic remembrance, with this year's theme "In Memory of Many, in Honor of All:  Honoring Glenn Miller."   
The keynote speaker will be Dr. Dennis Spragg, author of "Glenn Miller: Declassified", who will talk about the significant influence of Glenn Miller and his band during the World War II era and the mystery surrounding the disappearance of his airplane en route from England to Paris in 1944. Prior to the start of the ceremony, the Sarasota Jazz Band will perform and fill the park with melodies from that time period. 
Many veterans groups and local marching bands will walk the parade route. Interested in being in the parade?  There's still time (no commercial vehicles, please).  Contact Dan Kennedy, Committee Chairman:  941-812-5406.   
A heartfelt thank you to the Patriotic Observance Committee and Chairman Dan Kennedy, who has served on the committee for an impressive 38 years, for organizing the event and continuing Sarasota's long-standing tradition of honoring veterans.  
REMINDER:  Main St./Lemon Ave. Closure - Starts May 28   The Main Street/Lemon Avenue intersection will be closed to all vehicular traffic starting Tuesday, May 28 as the Lemon Avenue Streetscape begins.
While the intersection will be inaccessible to vehicles, the entire area
The Lemon Ave./Main St. intersection will be closed
from May 28 to approximately July 5.

will remain open to pedestrians and all businesses will be accessible throughout the duration of the project.   
The Main/Lemon intersection is expected to be closed for approximately five weeks while the asphalt is removed and replaced with attractive brick pavers and new lighting and landscaping installed.  The area will reopen in time for the big powerboat block party on Friday, July 5.
At the request of the downtown merchants, this improvement project is starting after Mother's Day, when the majority of visitors have departed for the summer.   
For updates throughout the project , please visit 
While in the short term there will be some construction inconveniences, the long term offers an enhanced, walkable downtown with a more defined sense of place for pedestrians.  Thank you in advance for your patience. 
Lido Pool:  Closed May 28 - June 3   A necessary improvement needs to be made at the Lido Pool which will require a temporary closure of the pool, and the Parks and Recreation staff plans to get it done before the heat of summer really kicks in.
The Lido Pool will be temporarily closed for a system improvement May 28 - June 3. 
From Tuesday, May 28 through Monday, June 3, the pool will be closed while the filtration system is replaced.  The facility will reopen to the public on Tuesday the 4th.
For those seeking a lap pool during the temporary closure, we encourage you to visit the Arlington Pool, which is open Monday-Friday 9:30 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Saturday 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.  For more information, please contact the Arlington Pool:  941-954-2110.
Water Quality Summit - June 5    Local, regional and state water experts will gather next month in Sarasota for a Water Quality Summit to discuss the state of water quality and provide an overview of the efforts underway to address the issue. 
Among the many scheduled speakers will be the City's Utilities Director, Bill Riebe, who will take part in a panel discussion on what already has been done to improve water quality.  Other speakers will include Cindy Heil, Red Tide Institute Director at Mote Marine Laboratory; Dr. Mary Lusk, faculty member at the University of Florida Soil and Water Sciences Department; and experts in the fields of stormwater, natural resources, sustainability, and utilities. Local state legislators also will provide updates on where water quality issues stand in Tallahassee.  
The event will be held Wed., June 5 from 1 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. at Riverview High School with several informative sessions, including:
  • "The science behind the water"
  • "What has already been done to improve water quality"
  • "What you can do to improve water quality"
  • "State policy update"   

There's no cost to attend but seating is limited so registration is required.


To learn more please visit the Water Quality Summit webpage or contact the Sarasota County call center:  941-861-5000.


The summit is very timely and will prompt a necessary discussion in our coastal community to help us better understand the state of this very precious resource.  We appreciate the great many people taking the time to organize and participate in this important event.  Hope you're able to attend!   

Blue + You BBQ = June 9    One of the key tenets of community and partnership policing is fostering trust between officers and residents. Our SPD officers work on building relationships in the community every day as they interact with residents, business owners and visitors.
To strengthen and build upon relationships, it's helpful to get to know officers in a setting other than an emergency or a public safety incident.  In the fall, SPD hosts National Night Out and when possible they host a free family movie night. But, there's nothing quite like breaking bread together to get to know someone.    
SPD is hosting a community barbecue at Gillespie Park on Sunday, June 9.  From 1 p.m. to 3:30 p.m., residents are invited to partake in free food, beverages, games, music, face painting for the kids -- and, one-on-one conversation with officers.  
We hope to learn about each other, and build trust and community.  Hope to see you there! 

Van Wezel:  Subscriptions on Sale Now! 

To view the full Van Wezel season, visit 
Friday Fest - Big Night Out 
Fri., June 21 - 5 p.m.
FREE Event 
Friday Fest - Rebel Heart 
Fri., July 19 - 5 p.m.
FREE Event 
Friday Fest - Reverend Barry and the Funk 
Fri., August 16 - 5 p.m.
FREE Event 
Friday Fest - Ari and the Alibis 
Fri., September 20 - 5 p.m.
FREE Event 
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

Enjoy the holiday weekend in our special city.  Weekly Briefs will be on hiatus until June 7.  

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 CityNews@SarasotaFL.Gov 

Tom Barwin
City Manager