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COVER Inside BOND DEAL CLOSE 14 MONTHS LATER ... HISTORY TALKS Old school journalism. 21st century delivery. THE SARASOTA News LeaderThe Progressive Voice Of Southwest Florida November 16, 2012
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Copyright 2012 Sarasota News Leader All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced or distributed in any form or by any means, or stored in a database or retrieval system, without the prior written permission of the publisher. The Sarasota News Leader is a publication of: New Sheriff Publishing, Inc. Post Ofce Box 5099 Sarasota, FL 34277-5099 Rachel Brown Hackney Editor and Publisher Rachel@SarasotaNewsLeader.com Cooper Levey-Baker Associate Editor Cooper@SarasotaNewsLeader.com Stan Zimmerman City Editor Stan@SarasotaNewsLeader.com Norman Schimmel Contributing Photographer NSchimmel@SarasotaNewsLeader.com David Staats Contributing Writer DStaats@SarasotaNewsLeader.com Fran Palmeri Contributing Writer FPalmeri@SarasotaNewsLeader.com Harriet Cuthbert Contributing Writer HCuthbert@SarasotaNewsLeader.com Elinor Rogosin A&E Writer ERogosin@SarasotaNewsLeader.com Scott Proftt Staff Writer SProftt@SarasotaNewsLeader.com Tyler Whitson Contributing Writer TWhitson @SarasotaNewsLeader.com Vicki Chatley Copy Editor Vicki@SarasotaNewsLeader.com Cleve Posey Production Manager / Graphic Designer Cleve@SarasotaNewsLeader.com Robert S. Hackney General Manager Robert@SarasotaNewsLeader.com Advertising Sales Sales@SarasotaNewsLeader.com Trish Ivey Advertising Account Executive Trish @SarasotaNewsLeader.com Subscription Services Subs@SarasotaNewsLeader.com Press Releases & News Tips News@SarasotaNewsLeader.com MASTHEAD
Some weeks we at the News Leader cannot believe our good fortune in the amount of interesting news popping up around us. This has been one of those weeks. Perhaps the City and County commissions and the School Board are just focused on getting things done before the holiday season begins in earnest. Whatever the reasons, you wont hear us complain except that we wish we had more time. We strive diligently to cover the news we think you will nd most worthy of your attention. However, we also keep looking over agenda items and eyeing scraps of paper on our desks that bear tidbits of information we heard, knowing some readers would be drawn to that news as well. Alas, as my husband is fond of saying, the only person ever to get everything done by Friday was Robinson Crusoe. This week, for your reading pleasure, we invite you not only to take note of Stan Zimmermans usual re sourcefulness in ferreting out news of the city of Sarasota, but also his satirical take on the incident involving a homeless person and a police ofcer in Gillespie Park. Cooper Levey-Baker put on his political reporters cap to cover a legislative issues breakfast involving a broad array of area nonprot groups; then, he pulled out his county reporters credentials to cov er nal County Commission action on a proposed new assisted living facility. Scott Proftt also has done double duty offer ing a report on a program about how integration affected Newtown residents, then turning his at tention to the Sarasota County Public Schools new plans for career and technical education. The best part for us is that we are bringing you stories you likely will not nd anywhere else. Editor and Publisher WELCOME
COVER PHOTOS: Front Norman Schimmel; Sarasota Leisure Robert Hackney BOND DEAL CLOSE HISTORY TALKS NEWS & COMMENTARY BOND DEAL CLOSE 13 Citys auditor and clerk has failed to comply with the city charters bond stipulation since she was appointed to the post two years ago Stan Zimmerman 14 MONTHS LATER 15 County Commission was told in September 2011 that it would see a completed design for the Siesta Public Beach improvements by fall of this year Rachel Brown Hackney HISTORY TALKS 22 Longtime community residents discuss how integration affected Newtown students when school busing was mandated in the late 1960s Scott Proftt SQUEAKING THROUGH 25 With a split vote, the citys Planning Board gives its approval to Walmart for a supercenter on the site of the Ringling Shopping Center Stan Zimmerman CLEAR ON PRIORITIES 28 Community Alliance calls on state lawmakers to stop ghting the feds Cooper Levey-Baker EMPHASIS ON CTE 32 Sarasota County Schools superintendent to propose consolidation of career and technical education in Sarasota County Scott Proftt DOWNTOWN DOS AND DONTS 34 City business groups ghting for free money Stan Zimmerman BUSINESS BUY-IN DESIRED 36 County Commission seeks more industry response before making nal decisions on how to determine criteria for awarding local preference status to vendors Rachel Brown Hackney THE BEST KIND OF DECLINE 40 The countys metal thefts rate is down 92 percent and the overall crime rate is down 18 percent over three years Rachel Brown Hackney TABLE OF CONTENTS
AN $8,200 REHAB TEMPORARY QUARTERS AN $8,200 REHAB 43 Just in time for the holidays, the DID agrees to make sure the lights come back on in Five Points Park Stan Zimmerman TEAMWORK TRIUMPHS 45 County Commission approves plans for contested assisted living facility Cooper Levey-Baker TEMPORARY QUARTERS 47 Gulf Gate Library is moving to Westeld Sarasota Square Mall while a new facility is constructed on the current library site Rachel Brown Hackney LOOKING FOR LIGHT 50 DID members get a rsthand look at the varieties of illumination available for coming downtown enhancements Stan Zimmerman NEWS BRIEFS 52 OPINIONEDITORIAL 57 COMMENTARIES 59 Enter To Win A New iPad e contest concludes when e Sarasota News Leader achieves 1,000 Likes on Facebook, One winner will be selected at random from among sub scribers. Only subscribers are eligible to win the iPad, regardless of having Liked our page on Facebook. Contest is open only to residents of Sarasota County. Selected winners must provide a valid Sarasota County street address to receive the iPad. Contest is void where prohibited by law. 2 Then Like Us On FacebookWhen our Likes on Facebook reach 1,000, we will randomly select one of our subscribers to receive a new iPad. 1 Click to Subscribe
OF TIME AND TRANSFORMATION WE SALUTE YOU SARASOTA LEISURE FIGHTING THEN AND FIGHTING NOW 64 Womens rights pioneers strive to inuence and inspire a new generation Tyler Whitson ASK OTUS 71 Otus offers all the answers you ever wanted to know about turkeys but were afraid to ask Otus Rufous OF TIME AND TRANSFORMATION 75 Sand sculpting competition has become a classic in its own right on Siesta Key Harriet Cuthbert WE SALUTE YOU 86 Thanks offered to all the ghting men and women Staff Reports ARTS BRIEFS 93 RELIGION BRIEFS 102 COMMUNITY CALENDAR 104 SCHIMMEL SIGHTINGS 105 Press Releases & News Tips News@SarasotaNewsLeader.com
I like to take my time. Sure, its a temptation to rush. Each issue of The Sarasota News Leader is brimfull of in-depth coverage of all the news and goings-on in Sarasota County. And it has delightful and informative feature stories. Thanks to its partnership with This Week In Sarasota I always know what the most exciting happenings are each week. Plus, it is simply so beautiful, with photography that takes my breath away. There is so much there, I dont know where to begin. So it is hard to resist the urge to read it all at once. But I know better. Take your time and indulge in all that it has to offer. You have a whole week. SarasotaNewsLeader.com Old school journalism. 21st century delivery. The Progressive Voice of Southwest Florida
BOND DEAL CLOSE Citys auditor and clerk has failed to comply with the city charters bond stipulation since she was appointed to the post two years ago Stan Zimmerman Since she accepted the position of city auditor and clerk in the City of Sarasota two years ago, Pamela Nadalini has not been able to obtain the bond required for the job by the citys charter. The Sarasota News Leader learned this week Nadalini has secured one quote from a bonding company, although two sources say the rates are roughly 20 times the amount paid for the same coverage for the other city ofcials required to have bonds. City Human Resources Director Kurt Hoverter said he is shopping for a lower-cost bond with other venders, and he said he might save a few thou sand dollars over the rst gure he received. ( Full story here ) 14 MONTHS LATER County Commission was told in September 2011 that it would see a completed design for the Siesta Public Beach improvements by fall of this year Rachel Brown Hackney On Sept. 14, 2011, the Sarasota County Commission voted unanimously to ask staff to come back the following month with design and construction options for completing the Siesta Public Beach Park improvements on an accelerated schedule. The goal, Commissioner Joe Barbetta said, was to take advantage of low construction costs and interest rates. It appeared the project could get under way in the summer of 2013, accord ing to the staff presentation, headed up by then-Project Manager Spencer Anderson. The commission also approved the staff goal of completing the design work in the fall of 2012. Staff did not come back to the board with those options in late October. ( Full story here ) TOP STORIES AT A GLANCE
HISTORY TALKS Longtime community residents discuss how integration affected Newtown students when school busing was mandated in the late 1960s Scott Proftt Carolyn Mason was a teenager in Newtown, preparing to enjoy her senior year in high school, when federally man dated school busing came to Sarasota County. My senior year was supposed to be the best year, but it was by far the worst. I remember feeling so alone, she told an audience Tuesday night, Nov. 13, at Crocker Church in Pioneer Park. The vice chairwoman of the Sarasota County Commission, Mason was mod erating a discussion about integrations effects on Newtown one in a se ries of talks being sponsored by the Historical Society of Sarasota County. She shared a table with three other longtime Sarasotans at the front of the church, which dates to 1901. ( Full story here ) SQUEAKING THROUGH With a split vote, the citys Planning Board gives its approval to Walmart for a supercenter on the site of the Ringling Shopping Center Stan Zimmerman The surprise was not that the Walmart store proposed on Charles Ringling Boulevard was approved Wednesday eve ning, Nov. 14. The surprise was that two Sarasota Planning board members found serious reasons to vote against it. By all appearances, this was an open-and-shut case. The growing-ever-emp tier Ringling Shopping Center, at 97,000 square feet, would be replaced by a 98,000-square-foot Walmart Supercenter with a grocery. Every metric zoning, city codes, parking requirements, trafc had a green light from city staff. Even the associations for the two adjacent neighborhoods were not op posed to the project. Those same two neighborhoods Alta Vista and the Gardens of Ringling Park fought Ron Burks high-rise School Avenue project to a standstill several years ago, but this time they were muted. ( Full story here )
CLEAR ON PRIORITIES Community Alliance calls on state lawmakers to stop ghting the feds Cooper Levey-Baker The Community Alliance of Sarasota County presented its 2012 legislative priorities to one incumbent state represen tative and staffers for other Florida lawmakers Tuesday morning, Nov. 13, and one message stood out: Stop ghting Obamacare. (Side note to interested readers: We can call the Affordable Care Act Obamacare now that President Obama himself is cool with it, right? Good. Carry on.) The Alliance, a coalition of nonprot health and human services organiza tions, held its Second Annual Legislative Breakfast to directly communicate its legislative goals to the Sarasota County delegation. Representatives from organizations such as the National Association of Social Workers, First Step of Sarasota and the Early Learning Coalition lined up to lay out their hopes for the Florida Legislatures spring session, which convenes March 5. ( Full story here ) EMPHASIS ON CTE Sarasota County Schools superintendent to propose consolidation of career and technical education in Sarasota County Scott Proftt On Nov. 20, Sarasota County Schools Superintendent Lori White will present to the School Board a plan to consoli date the array of district programs relating to career and technical education under the management of one person, school ofcials have announced. That person Todd Bowden would report directly to White, a district news release says. Bowden is the director of the Sarasota County Technical Institute (SCTI), the Suncoast Polytechnical High School (SPHS) and the Adult and Com munity Education program (ACE) in the district. The CTE, or career and technical programs, are offered at all of the public middle schools and high schools in Sarasota County, according to the CTE website. ( Full story here )
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Since she accepted the position of city auditor and clerk in the City of Sarasota two years ago, Pamela Nadalini has not been able to ob tain the bond required for the job by the citys charter. The Sarasota News Leader learned this week Nadalini has secured one quote from a bond ing company, although two sources say the rates are roughly 20 times the amount paid for the same coverage for the other city ofcials required to have bonds. City Human Resources Director Kurt Hovert er said he is shopping for a lower-cost bond with other venders, and he said he might save a few thousand dollars over the rst gure he received. Bond costs for the city manager and city nance director run in the $500 to $700 range annually for $100,000 of coverage. The -times gure could push the premium for Nadalinis bond to $10,000 or more. On Monday, Nov. 29, the City Commission is expected to touch briey on bond limits in general. Each year the commission must set the level of coverage the members wish City Auditor and Clerk Pam Nadalini and City Commissioner Paul Caragiulo listen to remarks by City Attorney Robert Fournier. Photo by Norman Schimmel CITYS AUDITOR AND CLERK HAS FAILED TO COMPLY WITH THE CITY CHARTERS BOND STIPULATION SINCE SHE WAS APPOINTED TO THE POST TWO YEARS AGO BOND DEAL CLOSE By Stan Zimmerman City Editor
Sarasota News Leader November 16, 2012 Page 14 Witnesses told deputies the suspect then threatened a bystander with the same weapon. Benevento was immediately taken into cus tody, the report notes. She was charged with one count of Ag gravated Battery and one count of Aggravated As sault. Bond was set at $15,000 on each count, according to the Sheriffs Of ces website Her arraignment is set for Dec. 14. The victim was treated at Sarasota Memorial Hospital for non-life-threat ening injuries, the report adds. % for their bonded ofcials. Normally, this is $100,000, but they are allowed to change it. Hoverter said the city commissioners will be aware of the size of Nadalinis premium, but they probably will not revisit the issue once Hoverter and Nadalini decide on a bonding company. A bond application requires a substantial amount of paperwork, far in excess of that for any insurance policy. Unlike insurance, bonds hold employees personally accountable for losses. Nadalini told the News Leader Whats im portant is this gives us an opportunity to move forward. % The Sarasota County Sheriffs Ofce arrested Carmela Angela Benevento, 50, for attacking the manager of a Siesta Key hotel on Nov. 13. Deputies responded just after noon to The Si esta Key Bungalows, located at 8212 Mid night Pass Road, ac cording to a Sheriffs Ofce report. The vic tim, 39-year-old Lisa Chavez-Barrera, said she had told Beneven to that Benevento would have to vacate the property, but the woman became an gry, broke off a land scaping light and stabbed Barrera in the stomach with the pointed end of the stake, the report says. WOMEN ARRESTED AFTER STABBING ON SIESTA KEY facebook.com/SarasotaNewsLeader Carmela Benevento/Contributed
On Sept. 14, 2011, the Sarasota County Com mission voted unanimously to ask staff to come back the following month with design and construction options for completing the Siesta Public Beach Park improvements on an accelerated schedule. The goal, Commissioner Joe Barbetta said, was to take advantage of low construction costs and interest rates. It appeared the project could get under way in the summer of 2013, according to the staff presentation, headed up by then-Project Man ager Spencer Anderson. The commission also approved the staff goal of completing the design work in the fall of 2012. Staff did not come back to the board with those options in late October. PROJECT STATUS Fourteen months later, in the space of eight days, the commissioners have railed twice against rising cost estimates, questioned who has been making the decisions that have led to those cost hikes and demanded staff give them answers quickly. Sweet Sparkman Architects have been working with Kimley-Horn and Associates and Sarasota County staff on designs for the Siesta Public Beach improvements, including new walkways to the beach itself. Photo by Rachel Hackney COUNTY COMMISSION WAS TOLD IN SEPTEMBER 2011 THAT IT WOULD SEE A COMPLETED DESIGN FOR THE SIESTA PUBLIC BEACH IMPROVEMENTS BY FALL OF THIS YEAR 14 MONTHS LATER By Rachel Brown Hackney Editor
Sarasota News Leader November 16, 2012 Page 16 During almost 40 minutes of discussion on Nov. 13, Reid told the board that a 45-minutes staff presentation on the beach project has been scheduled for Dec. 11. Moreover, Reid said, I can do an audit [re garding] who directed who to do what. Id be happy to do that. Alan Maio, representing Kimley-Horn and As sociates, the countys consulting rm on the beach park design work, promised the com missioners, We will work with your staff between now and Dec. 11 to get you some documents that are a little more straightfor ward than the staff memo provided to them this week. During the Sept. 14, 2011 commission meet ing, Anderson explained that the estimated cost of the project was just under $17 million. During an open house-style meeting on the project, held the evening of Nov. 13 at St. Mi chael the Archangel Church on Siesta Key, a member of the countys communications staff told The Sarasota News Leader the gure is at $21.5 million. However, during the board meeting hours ear lier, Maio told the commissioners that what they had authorized was a gure below $17 million. The memo they received that morning from Carolyn Brown, general manager of the Parks During the Nov. 13 open house at St. Michael the Archangel Church, Kim French looks at a proposal for the main parking lot at Siesta Public Beach. Photo by Rachel Hackney
Sarasota News Leader November 16, 2012 Page 17 A Sweet Sparkman Architects design shows how a new wedding pavilion could look at Siesta Public Beach. Photo by Rachel Hackney
Sarasota News Leader November 16, 2012 Page 18 and Recreation Department, and county Chief Engineer James K. Harriott Jr. says two sce narios have been devised for the improve ments: One would cost up to $26,693,000, in cluding engineering and design work as well as staff time; the second would cost as much as $20,937,000. There are additional things that different fo cus groups and stakeholder groups have asked for, Maio told the commissioners, though he added that Kimley-Horn consultants are not at a lot of those meetings. That was why the gures had escalated, Maio added. Harriott recently had told him, Maio con tinued, that Parks and Recreation staff had asked for more fea tures in the plan, for example. Its just the laundry list of things that people are going to ask for. Still, Maio said, when he heard Harriott tell the board last week that the upper range of the project estimate was $27 million, Quite frankly, I came out of my chair Barbetta pointed to copies of Public Works Department staff letters, dated Sept. 26 and Oct. 2, that said the project team had been asked to keep the work at the 60 percent de sign level. The Sept. 26 letter from Project Manager Cur tis Smith to Michael L. Sturm of Kimley-Horn says that directive was Based on manage ment direction The Oct. 2 letter, also from Smith to Sturm, says Kimley-Horn has authority to continue with certain specic tasks and activities, in cluding preparation and submittal of permit applications to the Florida Department of En vironmental Protection, the Southwest Flor ida Water Management District and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, which would be needed for the project. However, the letter states that it is not an au thorization to proceed with 90% design plans under/or construction documents. That Oct. 2 letter adds, Given the importance of this project to the community, its high visibility and great po tential, it is essential that both the public and the County Com mission have the op portunity to observe and discuss the sta tus of the project at critical junctures. During the next few weeks, staff will continue to develop and share information concerning the status of, and options for, the projects nal design. Among the staff members copied on the letter were Harriott and Brown. During an interview with The Sarasota News Leader at the open house on Nov. 13, Harriott said, The letters are right. Without knowing what options the commis sioners would like to pursue out of the vari ous alternatives that have been proposed, he said, it was not possible to proceed to the 90 percent design level. I think when youre in this situation, communication could always have been better. James K. Harriott Jr. Chief Engineer Sarasota County
Sarasota News Leader November 16, 2012 Page 19 He likened the process of choosing those op tions to remodeling a house. For example, a couple might ask for plans including marble countertops, he said, only to be taken aback by the estimated cost. Still, Harriott said, if they decided they really prefer the marble, they might proceed with that option and nd a way to pay for it. Thats what were going through right now with the beach improvements plan, he added. Many ideas had been put forth about what the improvements should entail, he pointed out. The goal, he said, is to gure out the ones that make sense. Additionally, Harriott said, while the commis sion might decide to forgo certain options at this point, it might want the leeway to include them later, as more funding became available. Those points had to be taken into consider ation in the design, he said. Asked whether he felt a lack of communica tion between staff and the commissioners was a key factor in the frustrations that had been aired over the past eight days, he said, I think when youre in this situation, communication could always have been better. OPTIONS During the commissions discussion with Maio on Nov. 13, Commissioner Nora Patterson pointed to a couple of proposed cost-saving measures that she said she found troubling. One called for using lighting in the new park ing lots that met the minimum standards of A slide in a PowerPoint presentation presented to the County Commission on Sept. 14, 2011 shows projected costs for the beach park improvements. Image courtesy Sarasota County
Sarasota News Leader November 16, 2012 Page 20 the county code, instead of being sea tur tle-friendly in keeping with the other lighting planned throughout the park. Well, if this were [a] private [development], we probably would require turtle-friendly lights, she added. Second, she said, the notation regarding code-minimum trees and plantings is not go ing to y. Those arent great for something that is really intended to enhance a beach thats pretty spectacular anyway. She had predicted earlier that if the coun ty put in less mature plants as proposed to save money, 70 percent to 80 percent of them would die and end up having to be replaced. Maio noted the 15-foot-wide esplanade, which has been designed to extend the length of the park, has been proposed to be constructed of concrete with some paver details at inter secting points. Those paver enhancements, he said, are not gold-plated, for goodness sakes. Barbetta noted a line item for enhancements to Beach Road in the more expensive scenar io, at a cost of $799,000. Thats not in the orig inal proposal, he said. In September 2011, Barbetta added, the commission approved a plan. Id like to get it designed to 100 percent and put out for pric ing, because were just guessing at these num bers. A PowerPoint presentation slide from the Sept. 14, 2011 County Commission meeting lays out pro posed next steps for the beach improvements project. Image courtesy Sarasota County
Sarasota News Leader November 16, 2012 Page 21 OPEN HOUSE COMMENTS Among the 60 people who had signed in at the open house by 6 p.m. Nov. 13, Siesta resident Rodger Skidmore told the News Leader he would prefer more parking spaces to planting [trees] to die in the main lot, as [that] does not make sense. As for proposed changes to the historic pa vilion, he pointed out that it seemed to have weathered ooding just ne, and he was op posed to plans for a large new concession in conjunction with the redesigned structure. He was at the beach for an hour earlier that day with his own survey, he said. Among his findings: Even though the restrooms have been cited often as among the features most needing enhancements, Skidmore said 80 per cent of the people with whom he talked had noted the facilities were pretty clean. One common comment, though, was that tiled oors would be preferable, he added. While he was walking from one end of the park to another, Skidmore said, he did have an interesting encounter with a woman tour ist. People were coming to meet her out there, he said, and she wanted to know how to nd the numbers for the individual paths to the beach itself. Skidmore said he discovered that of the 16 paths, only ve or six were numbered, and one of those had two different numbers on it. The county could do lots of things very reasonably, he said that would be helpful to the public. Between her discussions with residents, Pat terson told the News Leader I think the beach and the area deserve some beautica tion. While she and Barbetta did not agree on all the details, she said, My goal is the same as his, I think: Until the project is put out for bids, no one is going to know what the nal price will be. % Take Your Time You Have All Week Enjoy The News Leader Anytime Day or Night Someone you know needs Planned Parenthood Lifesaving cancer screenings Parent & teen education Annual GYN exams Birth controlPlanned Parenthood Of Southwest And Central FloridaSarasota 941-953-4060MyPlannedParenthood.org
Carolyn Mason was a teenager in Newtown, preparing to enjoy her senior year in high school, when federally mandated school bus ing came to Sarasota County. My senior year was supposed to be the best year, but it was by far the worst. I remember feeling so alone, she told an audience Tues day night, Nov. 13, at Crocker Church in Pio neer Park. The vice chairwoman of the Sarasota County Commission, Mason was moderating a discus sion about integrations effects on Newtown one in a series of talks being sponsored by the Historical Society of Sarasota County. She shared a table with three other longtime Sarasotans at the front of the church, which dates to 1901. Dorothye Smith taught school in Newtown and had done so for 17 years when, in 1967, she was sent to teach in Venice, a long com mute made worse by the fact that she was not allowed to eat in any of the restaurants in that city if she had to work late, such as for a PTA meeting. Crocker Church stands in Pioneer Park on 12th Street in the northern part of Sarasota. Photo by Scott Proftt LONGTIME COMMUNITY RESIDENTS DISCUSS HOW INTEGRATION AFFECTED NEWTOWN STUDENTS WHEN SCHOOL BUSING WAS MANDATED IN THE LATE 1960S HISTORY TALKS By Scott Proftt Staff Writer
Smith went on to become the rst black Teacher of the Year in the county and the rst black principal in the county (South side Elementary for 12 years) before re tiring; her last post was at a school in Venice. Dr. Edward James, a longtime commu nity activist, said of the forced busing, We didnt ask to come; we were forced to come [to other schools]. James is a recent recipient of the NAACPs Presidents Award. He has hosted and produced Black Almanac on ABC7 for 38 years. Lou Ann Palmer, longtime city commis sioner, mayor and teacher, added, The black kids were scared, and so were the white kids. While all four speakers said it in differ ent ways, with different emphasis, they seemed to agree that the busing program was not handled well. When the mandate came down, a bound ary line was established, and Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Way was the boundary line, Mason said. Those students living north of the boundary were assigned to Riverview High School; those students living south of the line were assigned to Sarasota High School. Kids who had bonded and formed lifelong relationships were separated. I am still upset by the way it was done, she added. Both black and white students should have been pre pared. While on paper this achieved the balance the government was seeking, it was traumatic in that black and white students were just thrown together. The sign for Pioneer Park marks the spot for two of the communitys historic buildings. Photo by Scott Proftt
Sarasota News Leader November 16, 2012 Page 24 As a teacher, Smith said she felt nobody communicated well with the black stu dents abou t where they would be attend ing school and what they were going to en counter. She pointed out, You dont send soldiers off to battle without the proper ammunition. Mason asked each speaker if he or she felt racial balance was achieved in the community through busing. I dont think it was achieved then and I dont think it is achieved now, said James. We were named the most segregated city in America about six or seven years ago, Palmer noted. I dont think so, Smith said. We need to expose students to each other and let them get to know each other have an op portunity to socialize like little children do and they will work their problems out. It all makes a difference when we get to know each other. She added, And teach our children to love, respect and honor, regardless of race, color or creed. THE NEXT TALK IN THE SERIES The next Conversation at the Crocker will be held on Tuesday, Dec. 11, at 7 p.m. The church is located at 1260 12th St. in Sarasota. For more information, go to www.HSOSC.com % (From left) The panelists for the discussion on integrations effects on Newtown were Dr. Edward James, Sarasota County Commissioner Carolyn Mason, Former Sarasota Mayor Lou Ann Palm er, History Society of Sarasota County President Howard Rosenthal and Dorothye Smith. Photo by Scott Proftt Kids who had bonded and formed lifelong relationships were separated. I am still upset by the way it was done. Both black and white students should have been prepared. Carolyn Mason Commissioner Sarasota County
The surprise was not that the Walmart store proposed on Charles Ringling Boulevard was approved Wednesday evening, Nov. 14. The surprise was that two Sarasota Planning board members found seri ous reasons to vote against it. By all appearances, this was an open-andshut case. The grow ing-ever-emptier Ring ling Shopping Center, at 97,000 square feet, would be replaced by a 98,000-square-foot Walmart Supercenter with a grocery. Every metric zoning, city codes, parking require ments, trafc had a green light from city staff. Even the associations for the two adjacent neighborhoods were not opposed to the project. Those same two neighborhoods Alta Vista and the Gar dens of Ringling Park fought Ron Burks high-rise School Ave nue project to a stand Sarasota Planning Board member Jennifer Ahearn-Koch noted during the boards Nov. 14 discus sion that the existing shopping center on Ringling is an assembly of small shops. A Publix store anchored the center. Photo by Norman Schimmel WITH A SPLIT VOTE, THE CITYS PLANNING BOARD GIVES ITS APPROVAL TO WALMART FOR A SUPERCENTER ON THE SITE OF THE RINGLING SHOPPING CENTER SQUEAKING THROUGH By Stan Zimmerman City Editor Anything you can do to make it better for the neighborhood, it would be appreciated. Its excruciatingly important. Jennifer Ahearn-Koch Member Sarasota Planning Board
Sarasota News Leader November 16, 2012 Page 26 still several years ago, but this time they were muted. I think the project would be a great thing, said Alta Vista President Candy Spaulding of the new Ringling Shopping Center plan. It could be a little more urban, look a little bet ter. I dont want to see this project killed. We have a ghost town at this site, said Myron Nichol, president of the Gardens of Ringling Park. Something within reason is better than nothing. An early rendition of Walmarts plans for the new store at Ringling Boulevard and Lime Avenue does not include a dry retention pond that will be located in the southeast corner. Image courtesy City of Sarasota Planning Department
Sarasota News Leader November 16, 2012 Page 27 CUT-THROUGH PEDESTRIANS One refrain heard over and over during public testimony was the lack of planning for pedes trian trafc to the south of the building, to enable neighbors to access Payne Park easily. The site plan calls for that area to be the site of a loading zone and truck turn-around. Adding in dog-walkers, baby strollers and semi-trac tor trailers struck Walmart representatives and the Sarasota Police Department as a bad mix. The ofcial plans call for neighbors to walk out to Ringling and turn left, head to School Avenue and then go south to the park, cover ing three sides of a long triangle. People are going to cross through the back. Its a reality of human nature, said Planning Board member Jennifer Ahearn-Koch. Any thing you can do to make it better for the neighborhood, it would be appreciated, she told the Walmart representatives present. Its excruciatingly important. Current plans call for 24-hour-a-day operation of the store, a point that concerned the neigh bors, too. Worry about light pollution plaguing nearby homes was mentioned, as was the po tential for sound pollution. Facing all the criticism, Walmart representa tives came back with two points. First, they said they have not ignored the neighbors, and they do not plan on ignoring the neighbors once the store is open. Second, their plan checks off every box, meets every require ment and is ready to go. Your expert planner says this is allowed, said Walmart representative Jim Porter. THE VOTE Whether Walmart has been nice to the neigh bors is not the issue, said Planning Board member Susan Chapman. The City Commis sion did not opt to put this [area] into down town zoning, so this requires small-scale de velopment. There is nothing about this plan that is small-scale. I will not support it. Member Vlad Svekis boiled down the plan to an irreducible minimum: Three hundred fty jobs versus a derelict shopping center. It was clear where his vote lay. The bottom line is, we need Walmart in this community, said Planning Board Chairman Mort Siegel. I think youll be very pleased with what theyll do in this community. Ahearn-Koch noted the existing shopping cen ter was an assembly of small businesses, while Walmart is what she described as a depart ment store. She said that is not allowed in the current zoning for the site, and she would not support the petition for the facility. Member Chris Gallagher made the motion to nd the petition consistent with city rules, saying it should be approved. Svekis seconded the motion, and the vote was 3-2, with AhearnKoch and Chapman in the minority. After close and contentious votes over landuse issues, it is common to nd people on the losing side in the parking lot, talking strategy. Not this time, though. It was more of an OK, lets see how it works out attitude. The store is scheduled to open in early 2014. The existing building and parking lot will be razed before construction begins next year. %
The Community Alliance of Sarasota County presented its 2012 legislative priorities to one incumbent state representative and staffers for other Florida lawmakers Tuesday morn ing, Nov. 13, and one message stood out: Stop ghting Obamacare. (Side note to interested readers: We can call the Affordable Care Act Obamacare now that President Obama himself is cool with it, right? Good. Carry on.) The Alliance, a coalition of nonprot health and human services organizations, held its Second Annual Legislative Breakfast to di rectly communicate its legislative goals to the Sarasota County delegation. Representa tives from organizations such as the Nation al Association of Social Workers, First Step of Sarasota and the Early Learning Coalition lined up to lay out their hopes for the Florida Legislatures spring session, which convenes March 5. We urge the Florida Legislature and our gov ernor to stop rejecting federal funding and/ or to not allow the pursuit of federal funds through competitive grants, said Florida Center President and CEO Kathryn Shea, the chairwoman of the Alliances Legislative Ad vocacy Committee, winning wide applause from the 120 or so attendees. Millions and (From left) Sherry Reynolds of the Sarasota County Schools, state Rep. Doug Holder of Sarasota and Kathryn Shea, Florida Center president and CEO, were among the participants at the Legislative Breakfast Nov. 13. Photo by Cooper Levey-Baker COMMUNITY ALLIANCE CALLS ON STATE LAWMAKERS TO STOP FIGHTING THE FEDS CLEAR ON PRIORITIES By Cooper Levey-Baker Associate Editor
Sarasota News Leader November 16, 2012 Page 29 millions of our taxpayer dollars ... have now gone to other states for critical services that we need here. We simply cannot continue to do this. Over the past two years, the Legislature, dom inated by a GOP supermajority, has rejected tens of millions of federal healthcare funds be cause of ideological opposition to the law that allocated the money: Obamacare. Lawmakers and Gov. Rick Scott have also declined to set up a public healthcare exchange and have so far refused to expand Medicaid to cover Flo ridians who are at 133 percent of the federal poverty level or below both important com ponents of the federal law. But now that Obama has won a second term, and the survival of his signature legislation is assured, are Florida policy-makers perhaps weakening their absolutist stance? Scott, whose career in politics began with a blister ing campaign against Obamacare, told the As sociated Press this week that he is willing to negotiate implementation of the law, a marked change from past public comments. State Rep. Doug Holder, R-Sarasota, was the only state lawmaker who attended Tuesdays breakfast. Outgoing state Sen. Mike Bennett was on hand to receive an award for his ser vice (he called Shea a wonderful lobbyist, joking, She will at wear your ass out.), while staffers for state Sen. Nancy Detert and Reps. Greg Steube and Ray Pilon also attend ed. No one representing state Reps. Jim Boyd or Darryl Rouson showed up. Holder tells The Sarasota New Leader he thinks the Legislature will perform a more comprehensive review of Obamacare, to see how it might implement specic programs, a shift from the capitals past absolute rejec tion. That review will probably result in perhaps cherry-picking some of the ideas that are in the healthcare act that will be benecial to Floridians, Holder says, and perhaps some of those ideas will be implemented. Ruth Brandwein, representing the local chap ter of the National Association of Social Work ers, specically called on the Legislature to follow through on the Medicaid expansion. She argued the move would save money in the long run by providing preventive care to uninsured patients who today rely on hospital emergency rooms. If they had regular coverage, she said, their chronic diseases such as asthma, heart con ditions, diabetes would be controlled. They wouldnt need hospital care. As she pointed out, taxpayers already foot the bill for hospital patients who cannot pay our system is already socialized. We are all paying, she said, either through our taxes or through our private insurance. The blue book of Alliance recommendations handed out Tuesday cites a study showing that the cost of Medicaid Expansion would be more than offset by savings from reductions in uncompensated hospital care as well as the nancial input of billions of Federal dollars pumped into the health care economy. This does not include the savings in lower absentee rates and lost hours of work and productivity due to untreated chronic illnesses. Holder says it is way too early to know how certain policy recommendations will shake
Sarasota News Leader November 16, 2012 Page 30 out he does not even know which com mittees he will be assigned to (something he hopes to learn any day now). But with the state budget looking relatively stable, the pic ture is certainly a little bit more favorable towards programs, he says. There is a better opportunity this year than there has been the past six years to receive some state funding, Holder says. Given the mic Tuesday, Holder who is entering his nal term in the state House praised the Alliance for organizing its goals into a clear plan of action: This is what makes our job much easier, and our job is certainly to serve you and the people you serve. He said that after a year of very contentious campaigns, lawmakers now will have to nd common ground. Campaign season is very, very different than consensus-building time, he said, which is exactly what were in right now. % I am so incredibly pleased, with my beautiful smile and my comfortable and natural bite. Barbara LeeFor a complimentary consultation call 941.923.5406 | Christine Koval, D.M.D. | www.askdrkoval.com Enter To Win A New iPad e contest concludes when e Sarasota News Leader achieves 1,000 Likes on Facebook, One winner will be selected at random from among subscribers. Only subscribers are eligible to win the iPad, regardless of having Liked our page on Facebook. Contest is open only to residents of Sarasota County. Selected winners must provide a valid Sarasota County street address to receive the iPad. Contest is void where prohibited by law. 2 Then Like Us On Facebook When our Likes on Facebook reach 1,000, we will randomly select one of our subscribers to receive a new iPad. 1 Click here to Subscribe
ENHANCE YOUR SMILE. ENHANCE YOUR LIFE.A smile is the first thing I notice about someone. However, that was the part of me I wanted to hide from everyone, including myself. In 2007, my family dentist of 30 years told me he could help. He then crowned all of my teeth. They looked better, but they immediately started to crack, one by one. He kept promising me he could correct them by re-making them. He was frustrated, but I was devastated. I then realized that I never received a stable, comfortable position to chew. My bite was totally off. After four consultations with different dentists and lots of research, I chose Dr. Christine Koval for her warmth, reassurance, confidence, and experience in correcting bites and making teeth beautiful! Dr. Kovals team is very caring and professional, and her skill level is second to none. I am so incredibly pleased, not only with my beautiful smile but also with my comfortable and natural bite. I feel so thankful and blessed for this second chance on my smile!For a complimentary consultation call 941.923.5406 To view our extensive smile gallery, visit askdrkoval.com Christine Koval, D.M.D. Restorative, Cosmetic & Laser Dentistry General Dentistry 2477 Stickney Point Road, Suite 216A Sarasota, FL 941.923.5406 www.askdrkoval.comAwarded 20 Gold Medals for Smile Makeovers by the Florida Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry. Barbara Lee
On Nov. 20, Sarasota County Schools Superin tendent Lori White will present to the School Board a plan to consolidate the array of dis trict programs relating to career and technical education under the management of one per son, school ofcials have announced. That person Todd Bowden would report directly to White, a district news release says. Bowden is the director of the Sarasota County Technical Institute (SCTI), the Suncoast Poly technical High School (SPHS) and the Adult and Community Education program (ACE) in the district. The CTE, or career and technical programs, are offered at all of the public middle schools and high schools in Sarasota County, accord ing to the CTE website. Bowden taught math and business technolo gy at the middle school and high school levels before beginning his career as an administra tor, the district news release says. He served as a high school assistant principal from 20002004 and was principal of an adult technical center and an adult high school in Hillsbor ough County from 2004-2007. He holds a masters degree and a doctorate in educational leadership from the University of Construction continues at the Sarasota County Technical Institute campus at the intersection of Bene va and Proctor roads in Sarasota. The renovation project is one of three principal capital initiatives in the district, with rebuilds of Booker and Venice high schools also under way. Photo by Scott Proftt SARASOTA COUNTY SCHOOLS SUPERINTENDENT TO PROPOSE CONSOLIDATION OF CAREER AND TECHNICAL EDUCATION IN SARASOTA COUNTY EMPHASIS ON CTE By Scott Proftt Staff Writer
Sarasota News Leader November 16, 2012 Page 33 South Florida. Additionally, according to the news release, Bowden is an adjunct instruc tor in the University of South Florida Manatee Department of Educational Leadership and Policy Development. Bowden was appointed director of SCTI in 2007. The Sarasota News Leader contacted Bowden via email and asked whether he plans any changes to the programs, if the School Board concurs, as expected, with Whites recommen dation. I do not anticipate any immediate changes to the curricula offerings but I do expect that CTE programs will be coordinated more ef ciently, Bowden wrote. This could result in changes to what we teach and how we teach it. He continued, This is an administrative con solidation of SCTI, SPHS, ACE and CTE into one organization under one administrator. Because SCTI and SPHS have worked closely with the district CTE department for years, he continued, This is an opportunity to take that relationship to a new level. The news release quoted White as saying, Dr. Bowden has the perfect combination of instructional leadership experience, business acumen and passion for career education that we need to take our CTE programs to the next level. Although White will discuss the plan with the School Board next week, the news release says Bowdens appointment is scheduled to be on the boards Dec. 4 agenda. % Suncoast Polytechnical High School, adjacent to the Sarasota County Technical Institute, is a mag net school for students interested in careers in science and technology. The school consistently has won plaudits since its opening several years ago. Photo by Scott Proftt
An off-the-agenda food ght broke out Tues day morning, Nov. 13, as two downtown mer chants associations squared off for rights to $20,000 in marketing money. Downtown property owners tax themselves two extra mills per year to fund the Down town Improvement District. One of the DIDs functions is to market downtown, and last year it gave $20,000 to the Downtown Sara sota Alliance (DSA) for advertising in news papers and magazines. However, the DID decided, during budget de liberations, not to including marketing in this years spending plan; it told the DSA to look elsewhere for such funding. On Nov. 5, the DSA almost secured the mon ey from the Sarasota City Commission, while the commission was acting as the Community Redevelopment Agency. DSA President John Harshman pleaded for government money to advertise the down town district. Its been very effective for the rst year, he told the mayor and city commis sioners. Even Bradenton funds their down town marketing. Downtown restaurateur and Commissioner Paul Caragiulo made a motion to give Harsh man and the DSA the $20,000, and Mayor Su zanne Atwell seconded it. This is amazing for this kind of money, she said. Downtown Sarasota business groups are set for a discussion later this month on marketing that part of the city. Photo by Norm Schimmel CITY BUSINESS GROUPS FIGHTING FOR FREE MONEY DOWNTOWN DOS AND DONTS By Stan Zimmerman City Editor
Sarasota News Leader November 16, 2012 Page 35 I think the DID should be funding this, said Commissioner Terry Turner. We created it for this. Harshman watched his best-laid plans col lapse when Caragiulos motion failed 2-3 with Commissioners Turner, Willie Shaw and Shan non Snyder voting against it. Turner then made a motion to refer the ques tion to the DID, and that passed unanimously. GETTING HEARD Undeterred, the DSA tried to get a place on the Nov. 13 DID agenda, but it was told the agenda was full and it would have to wait. With advertising deadlines looming, DSA Mar keting Coordinator Sharon Kaplan decided to crash the meeting. However, despite several solicitations from DID Chairman Ernie Ritz to speak, she re mained quiet until the meeting was about to adjourn. She then went down to the front of the room, but City Planner Steve Stancel, who is the city liaison with the DID, called for a point of order. This expenditure is not on the agenda, he said. With that, DID Member Tom Mannausa made a motion to put a marketing budget on the agenda for the next meeting, set for Nov. 27. There is no line item now, he reminded the group. DID member Dr. Mark Kauffman fur ther reminded the group the DSA covers a far larger geographic area than the one for which the DID is responsible. At that point, Ron Soto with the new Saraso ta Downtown Merchants Association remind ed the DID members, We pay an extra two mills [in property taxes] so people from Burns Court and Towles Court can advertise their businesses. Soto and Kaplan were invited to return to the next meeting with marketing proposals to share with the DID. Additionally, Mannausa suggested the DID members do some thinking before then about their organizations role in marketing. DOWNTOWN AMBASSADORS In other business, Clean & Safe Committee Chairman Michael Rafoni, who was a bo na-de speaker listed on the DID agenda, pro posed the DID study a proposal to establish an ambassador service for downtown. It would consist of a group of identiable people who would meet and greet visitors, answer their questions, make recommendations and sug gestions and offer directions. He introduced Blair McBride, who is an executive with a company that offers such a service. We do this in Cocoanut Grove and Holly wood, FL, and even downtown Minneapolis. We work with improvement districts to pro vide a quick response to visitors needs, said McBride. Some of the ambassadors would work an early shift, cleaning up the downtown (por tering, Rafoni called it). The weekday shift would begin its ambassadorial duties around 11 a.m. to counteract any negatives, to be a friendly face for downtown, McBride said, adding that the service would use about six people and operate on a $250,000 annual bud get. I see a huge upside to doing this, said DID member Pat Westerhouse. This rings our chimes, said Goodwills Tom Pfaff, chairman of the Sarasota Ministerial Alliance. A clean and safe downtown. The DID agreed to keep the idea alive for future consideration. %
The Sarasota County commissioners took six unanimous votes Nov. 13 on guidelines for the countys revised Procurement Code to deter mine how vendors can earn local preference status in seeking bid awards. Then uncertainty about how to proceed on the issue of subcon tractors led them ultimately to put those votes on hold while they awaited more comments from area building and professional groups. The rst sticking point on the subcontractor matter was Procurement Ofcial Ted Coy mans recommendation that a county employ ee be responsible for making sure that any general contractor given local preference consideration in a winning bid on the basis of plans to use local subcontractors followed through on those plans after beginning work. The idea of hiring people and training and stafng to police this is kind of not something Im happy to get into, Commissioner Nora Patterson said, unless we nd it necessary. Commissioner Joe Barbetta reiterated a point he has made in the past: Without teeth in the revised code to ensure local subcontractors are used as vendors stipulate in contracts with the county, problems are going to arise. And Sarasota County Procurement Ofcial Ted Coyman addresses the County Commission. File photo COUNTY COMMISSION SEEKS MORE INDUSTRY RESPONSE BEFORE MAKING FINAL DECISIONS ON HOW TO DETERMINE CRITERIA FOR AWARDING LOCAL PREFERENCE STATUS TO VENDORS BUSINESS BUY-IN DESIRED By Rachel Brown Hackney Editor
Sarasota News Leader November 16, 2012 Page 37 Ive gotten the calls, he said, about general contractors reneging on promises. Wed have to have some kind of enforcement to say [violations have occurred] and all pay ments to the general [contractor] cease if lo cal subcontractors are not used as the vendor indicated in the contract, he added. The county needs effective contract admin istration, Coyman told the commissioners. I want to believe that if [use of local subcon tractors is] in the contract that the admin istrator responsible will make that happen. During an Oct. 19 forum with more than 50 attendees representing area vendors, Coyman added, the consensus was that companies were comfortable with the proposal for local preference be ing accorded to out side rms as long as the bulk of the reve nue stays in the area with subcontractors. At that point in the discussion, Chairwoman Christine Robinson asked Coyman whether he had notied all the vendors who had participated in a county sur vey, as well as those who attended the forum, that the Procurement Code matter was going to be on the boards Nov. 13 agenda. I dont believe so, he replied, though he add ed the date was announced during the forum. Robinson then pointed out that Mary Dough erty-Slapp, executive director of the Gulf Coast Builders Exchange, had just walked into the Commission Chambers at the Ad ministration Center in downtown Sarasota, where the board was meeting. She indicated that Dougherty-Slapp had hurried over after learning the discussion was taking place. Robinson told Coyman she would prefer to continue the discussion when representatives of area building rms and vendors could be present. Barbetta agreed: I dont want to nalize any thing until we get [their] buy-in. When County Administrator Randall Reid proposed Coyman and his staff consult with representatives of the major area vendors, al though not necessarily all 1,200 to whom the survey had been sent, before bringing the mat ter back to the board, Vice Chairwoman Car olyn Mason concurred. I dont want to do something that would shut out the local sub contractors, Mason added. If the board was going to hold off on a decision on that part of the local preference guidelines, Patterson said, then Coyman and his staff also should let the vendors know about the boards votes that af ternoon. Robinson agreed, but she asked for a motion on that point, so the decision would be a mat ter of public record. Patterson made the motion that the tentative votes of the board on all the local preference issues covered earlier on Nov. 13, plus the requirement on employment of subcontrac tors, be reviewed by industry and professional I dont want to do something that would shut out the local subcontractors. Carolyn Mason Vice Chairwoman Sarasota County
Sarasota News Leader November 16, 2012 Page 38 groups, with their comments reported to the commission at a later meeting. She told Coyman to make certain the vendors knew none of the earlier decisions were cast in stone. We really want their opinions back. The motion passed unanimously. Robinson suggested Coyman and his staff at least send an email to all the participants to let them know when the date and time were set for the next discussion. THE PROCESS At the outset of his Nov. 13 presentation, Coy man reminded the commissioners he had ap peared before them on Sept. 26 to talk about proposals to improve the Procurement Code. At that time, he said, the board had directed staff to research local vendor preference by asking representatives of the countys busi ness community for their comments and by talking with ofcials in other counties to learn what practices they followed. A slide shown to the County Commission on Nov. 13 ranks methods of determining how to confer local preference for vendors, with the High category showing the answers most common in a sur vey of vendors and discussions with ofcials in other counties. Image courtesy Sarasota County
Sarasota News Leader November 16, 2012 Page 39 On Oct. 9, Coyman said, the local preference survey was emailed to the 1,200 vendors. His ofce received 110 responses, he said. Additionally, his staff had talked by phone with procurement ofcials in eight other coun ties, including Polk, Brevard, Marion, Collier and Alachua. Following Coymans review, the commission ers began moving through the recommenda tions and approving measures for conferring local preference status. For example, they agreed to allow Sarasota County rms to get an extra 10 points for their proposals in bid rankings calculated by procurement ofcials. The commissioners also voted to exclude DeSoto from the list of adjoining counties in which rms are allowed to be considered for local preference. After Coyman noted that DeSoto had elimi nated Sarasota County in its list of adjoining counties for local preference purposes, Rob inson said she thought the Sarasota board had removed DeSoto from its local preference list a long time ago. Barbetta said he also recalled making that de cision. Nonetheless, Coyman said DeSoto still was listed among the local preference counties, along with Manatee and Charlotte counties. Additionally, the commissioners voted unan imously to require a rm to have had a phys ical presence in Sarasota, Manatee or Char lotte counties for at least one year to qualify for local preference. They further voted to approve allowing a rm to provide a copy of its business tax receipt as proof of residency. ONE MORE STICKING POINT As the nal part of his presentation on Nov. 13, Coyman noted that he and his staff wanted direction regarding Procurement Code revi sions involving purchases that should be ex empt from the competitive bid process. Dues and memberships in trade or professional or ganizations were one of 21 items on the pro posed list. I have a problem with a lot of these exemp tions, Barbetta said, citing lobbying services as one example. Based on our history, weve got to walk care fully, he added, referring to the 2011 scandal in the Procurement Department that led to Coymans discussions with the board about improving the code. We can certainly bring these back with ex amples and detailed explanations on each, Coyman told the commissioners. Perhaps a oneor two-sentence explanation, Patterson suggested. That would work, Mason agreed. At the end of the discussion, Patterson told Coyman, I just kind of want to apologize, be cause it seems like were giving you a hard time. She added that many of the commissioners lacked sufcient knowledge about the pro posed exemptions to feel comfortable pro ceeding on them. I welcome the comments, Coyman said. No hard time at all. %
Through a combination of crime analysis and passage of new Sarasota County ordinanc es, the countys crime rate is down 18 per cent over four years and the theft of metals is down 92 percent over three years, Sheriff Tom Knight told the County Commission on Nov. 14. Regarding the overall crime rate, he pointed out, Were way ahead of the statewide aver age. He presented the commissioners a graph showing the following decreases: robbery re ports are down 16 percent; burglary, 24 per cent; larceny cases, 26 percent; and motor ve hicle thefts, 41 percent. Using a methodology called intelligence-led policing, Knight said, he has been able to maintain a smaller workforce in comparison to the state average but with demonstrable results in ghting crime. Statewide, Knight said, the average for sher iffs ofces is 1.7 deputies per 1,000 people. For his ofce, he pointed out, the gure is 1.3 deputies per 1,000 people. Knight noted he also has been able to return to the county $4 million in savings from his department over his past four years in ofce, A Sarasota County Sheriffs Ofce chart shows the drop in crime rates from August 2008 to August 2012. Graphic illustration courtesy of the Sheriffs Ofce THE COUNTYS METAL THEFTS RATE IS DOWN 92 PERCENT AND THE OVERALL CRIME RATE IS DOWN 18 PERCENT OVER THREE YEARS THE BEST KIND OF DECLINE By Rachel Brown Hackney Editor
Sarasota News Leader November 16, 2012 Page 41 whereas when he won his rst term in 2008, he was afraid he did not have sufcient per sonnel to ght crime. We use a lot of analysts now civilians to control and direct where our resources are going, Knight said. Jerry Ratcliffe, a professor in the Department of Criminal Justice at Temple University in Philadelphia had done research to show that 6 percent of the population commits 60 per cent of the crime, Knight added. Ratcliffe had helped him and his staff make the changes necessary to focus on how best to address that factor in Sarasota County, Knight said. Working also with the State Attorneys Ofce, Knight said, his department and about eight analysts had determined that approximately 70 prolic offenders in Sarasota County were responsible for most of the crime. Those indi viduals are referred to as blue dots, he added. The list was compiled on the basis of such fac tors as age, records of prior violence, records of pawnshop transactions, history of narcotics charges and past incarcerations. When Commissioner Joe Barbetta asked about the effect of lower crime rates on the jail population, Knight said the current inmate count is 933, with more than 80 percent await ing trial. The jail is still over capacity, Knight said, but we seem pretty stable. Thanks to the Offender Work Program and other initiatives in the county, people who are not a threat can be released until their cases are heard, he pointed out. If anything could be done to speed up the hearing of cases in the 12th Judicial Circuit Court, Knight said, that would help more than anything else to reduce the jail population. Metal thefts in Sarasota County have dropped 92 percent since the County Commission approved an ordinance last year regarding second-hand sales of metals. Graph courtesy of the Sheriffs Ofce
Sarasota News Leader November 16, 2012 Page 42 Weve been certied for a while for more judges by the state, Chairwoman Christine Robinson said, and we havent been able to get them. State ofcials have cited scal restraints since the onset of the Recession as the primary cause. OPERATION RESULTS Regarding metal thefts, Knight pointed out that since the County Commission approved an ordinance last year to assist law enforce ment ofcers in arresting individuals trying to sell stolen goods to second-hand dealers, most of the known repeat offenders had dis appeared from the county. Likewise, he said, thefts of copper had de clined considerably. He reminded the com missioners of one case in which the county had reported about 17 miles of copper cable stolen, with a value of about $500,000. That occurred before the ordinance went into ef fect. Another effort, Operation Diamondback, had targeted criminals taking stolen goods to pawnshops, Knight pointed out. Again, thanks to a new county ordinance, Sheriffs Ofce deputies have been working to educate pawn shop owners about what they should be on the lookout for and how to keep the records mandated by the ordinance, to assist in the recovery of stolen goods. The countys pain clinic ordinance also has been a big help, Knight said, pointing out that deaths from overdoses on Oxycodone and similar drugs are down signicantly. With illegal prescriptions for those medica tions harder to obtain, he added, his ofcers are seeing some heroin use in the county. But its a product we can deal with much easier because its totally illegal, he pointed out. Working with the Department of Juvenile Jus tice, Knight said, his ofce has been keeping a better check on juvenile offenders, especially in regard to their adhering to curfews. Operation Bueller, a truancy program that be gan with the opening of the current school year, has deputies checking on students who miss a lot of classroom days, Knight said. Maj. Kevin Kenney told the commissioners that within the rst 30 days after that program went into effect, more than 80 students had missed at least a third of the time they should have been in school. We feel its important that those kids are in school, Kenney said. Its something we are focusing on diligently this year. Its been very well received at the schools, Knight added. Yet another operation focused on prolic of fenders in north Sarasota County, Knight ex plained. The Sheriffs Ofce worked with the Sarasota Police Department on that initiative last year, he noted. In one month alone, Knight said, 108 people were arrested. Knight and Kenney both praised the commis sion for the help it had provided the Sheriffs Ofce. Its not all us, Kenney said, adding that the commissioners deserved most of the credit. Those ordinances have played a huge part in our [crime] reductions. %
You may have noticed some changes in the fancy color-shifting lights in downtowns Five Points Park as in they are not working. Blame growth. The lights were wrapped around the limbs of the trees, and the limbs kept on growing. Snap, pop. And lovely squirrels and rats just could not stay away from that ozone scent of electricity just millimeters below their inci sors. Snap, pop. One of the light strings is not repairable, so it will be replaced at a cost of $700. In all, those fancy color-shifting lights need $8,203 in repairs not covered by warranty. However, city ofcials would like to see the lights back on ASAP. We need this park up and running for the hol idays, said Downtown Improvement District Chairman Ernie Ritz on Nov. 13. Weve got a Christmas parade on Dec. 1 and a tree lighting on the 23rd [of November]. Matt Gregg with Synergy Lighting Supply of Bradenton said it might take a little longer than expected to remedy the situation be cause gasp this is a busy season for his company. As a result of multiple problems, Five Points Park has lost its night-light scheme. Photo by Norman Schimmel JUST IN TIME FOR THE HOLIDAYS, THE DID AGREES TO MAKE SURE THE LIGHTS COME BACK ON IN FIVE POINTS PARK AN $8,200 REHAB By Stan Zimmerman City Editor
Sarasota News Leader November 16, 2012 Page 44 I have other priorities as well, said Gregg. Its going to be a week before we have any body on site. This is going to happen next year and the year after and the year after, said Ritz. But maybe not. The DID group was also asked if its members would approve a $400-permonth maintenance program to keep the wires draped loosely around the fast-growing limbs, and maybe reach some agreement with the rats and squirrels. The DID members agreed to the whole affair maintenance, repairs and replacement. % City of Sarasota trash collection schedules will be modified next week because of the Thanksgiving holiday, the city has announced. No waste will be collected on Thanksgiving Day, Thursday, Nov. 22, a city news release says. The schedule for collection will be as follows: Thursday garbage, recycling and yard waste collection will occur one day later, on Friday, Nov. 23. Regularly scheduled Friday garbage, recycling and yard waste collection will occur on Saturday, Nov. 24. City of Sarasota administrative ofces will be closed Thursday and Friday in observance of CITY OF SARASOTA ANNOUNCES THANKSGIVING SCHEDULE Thanksgiving. All ofces will reopen on Mon day, Nov. 26, the news release says. The Robert L. Taylor Community Complex located at 1845 34th St., will be closed Thanks giving Day only. Bobby Jones Golf Club will hold its fourth annual Turkey Shoot on Thanksgiving Day starting at 8:45 a.m. The rate for 18 holes, with a riding cart plus a hot breakfast at Bobbys Clubhouse restaurant, will be $28.50, the re lease says. For more information about the Turkey Shoot, contact the golf shop at 954-4163. Lido Pool at 400 Benjamin Franklin Drive, will be open Thanksgiving Day from 10 a.m. to 4:45 p.m. % Enter To Win A New iPad e contest concludes when e Sarasota News Leader achieves 1,000 Likes on Facebook, One winner will be selected at random from among sub scribers. Only subscribers are eligible to win the iPad, regardless of having Liked our page on Facebook. Contest is open only to residents of Sarasota County. Selected winners must provide a valid Sarasota County street address to receive the iPad. Contest is void where prohibited by law. 2 Then Like Us On Facebook When our Likes on Facebook reach 1,000, we will randomly select one of our subscribers to receive a new iPad. 1 Click to Subscribe
The Sarasota County Commission on Wednes day, Nov. 14, unanimously approved a rezone petition for a new assisted-living facility to be built on the corner of Proctor Road and Hon ore Avenue. The commission rst heard debate over the facility on Sept. 25, when residents of the bordering Center Gate neighborhood sharply criticized the proposal. Jack McGarry, whose home sits along the northern line of the prop erty in question, called the facility inappro priate. After two hours of tense testimony, the com missioners moved to ask the developers to regroup with the neighborhood to modify the plan which turned out to be a wise move. The team behind the facility presented a re vamped outline of the project Wednesday, with what the neighbors felt was a trouble some driveway and parking lot shifted to the southwest, away from homes. Robert Medred, who has led the effort to have the property rezoned for the facility, praised the Center Gate residents for their willingness to compromise and said meetings held after the September hearing were very construc tive, very cordial. He complimented McGarry for his open-mindedness. Commissioners Joe Barbetta (left) and Jon Thaxton deliberate on a matter before the board. File photo COUNTY COMMISSION APPROVES PLANS FOR CONTESTED ASSISTED LIVING FACILITY TEAMWORK TRIUMPHS By Cooper Levey-Baker Associate Editor
Sarasota News Leader November 16, 2012 Page 46 McGarry also spoke, giving the revamped plan his blessing and thanking each of the com missioners for kicking the project back and allowing for more modications. This has been a real learning experience, he said, and I sure hope I dont have to go through this again. They have really bent over backwards to listen to our concerns. In the waning hours of his nal meeting as a sitting commissioner, Jon Thaxton made the motion to approve the project. This is a great land-use petition to go out on, he said. It just shows what can happen when people put their heads together and put them selves in anothers shoes and be receptive to ideas and change. % The County Commission has approved a modied site plan for a new assisted living facility at Proctor Road and Honore Avenue. Image courtesy Sarasota County
With the demolition of Gulf Gate Library planned for January, the Sarasota County Commission this week approved a contract with Westeld Sarasota Square Mall for the librarys operations to relocate there while a new facility is built. The lease calls for the county to pay $5,441.58 per month, plus $80 a month for water/sewer and re detection services, starting Dec. 15 and ending Jan. 31, 2015. A Nov. 13 memo to the County Commission from Sarabeth Kalajian, general manager of the countys libraries, points out that the ten ancy agreement is for a period of to 25 months for the 20,092 square feet of retail space in the mall, located at 8201 S. Tamiami Trail. The space will accommodate core library services as well as the Friends of the Library bookstore, Kalajians memo adds. I think its an excellent choice, Deanie Erb, president of the Friends of the Library for Gulf Gate, told The Sarasota News Leader on Nov. 15. Its in a good location, Erb added, with plen ty of parking a factor county staff had tak Gulf Gate Library opened on Curtiss Avenue in Sarasota on Dec. 5, 1983. Photo courtesy Sarasota County GULF GATE LIBRARY IS MOVING TO WESTFIELD SARASOTA SQUARE MALL WHILE A NEW FACILITY IS CONSTRUCTED ON THE CURRENT LIBRARY SITE TEMPORARY QUARTERS By Rachel Brown Hackney Editor
Sarasota News Leader November 16, 2012 Page 48 en into consideration, she noted, in choosing the mall. Gulf Gate Library annually is one of the coun tys busiest libraries, statistics have shown. In 2010, county staff reported it had the highest circulation of all the systems libraries. It will take an estimated four to six weeks to remove all the materials from the current lo cation to the mall space and to develop the infrastructure necessary to resume opera tions, according to a Nov. 13 memo to the County Commission from John S. Herrli, the countys land acquisition manager. In explaining why staff was recommending the mall location, Herrlis memo notes, Staff investigated available rental space within ap proximately two miles of the present Gulf Gate Library for temporary quarters. The site had to have a minimum of 8,000 square feet, 75 parking spaces and telecommunications and other technology infrastructure either ex isting or easily provided, the memo adds. The Westeld Sarasota Square Mall offered the county a cost per square foot that was $7 less than other sites staff investigated, Herrli noted. The county can terminate the lease agreement as early as Feb. 1, 2014 by providing Westeld written notice 60 days prior to the selected date, Herrlis memo adds. The Sarasota County Commission in late June approved a conceptual design for the exterior of the new library, completed by a design consulting team with Harvard Jolly Inc. Image courtesy Saraso ta County
Sarasota News Leader November 16, 2012 Page 49 The space is located in the southwest part of the mall, just north of the JCPenney store. Herrli noted the space is also large enough to allow the library to con tinue to offer some youth and adult programs. Other sites investigated would require portions of the collection to be placed in storage and their size would allow limited programming op portunities. Kalajians memo points out that the relocation was necessary because a new two-story library will be constructed on the site of the existing facility, at 7112 Curtiss Ave. The groundbreaking is set for February 2013, with completion expect ed in May 2014, accord ing to Herrlis memo. In June, the commission approved the conceptual design for the facility and the hiring of the Willis A. Smith as construction manager. % A Sarasota County diagram shows the temporary location chosen for Gulf Gate Library in Westeld Sarasota Square Mall. Image courtesy Sarasota County
Members of the Sarasota Downtown Improve ment District went out after dark on Tuesday, Nov. 13, to look at a variety of street lamps. The field trip started at City Hall on First Street, meandered down Main Street and end ed up on Gulfstream Avenue. The tour guide was Matt Gregg. His company, Synergy Lighting Supply, had installed six dif ferent combinations of bulbs and globes for the district members to survey. The rst example stands outside City Halls south entrance, on the right side. It features an Avana light-emitting diode (LED) inside a prismatic globe that focuses the light down on the sidewalk. From there the group went to 1464 Main St. (the Jackie Z clothing shop) to look at an ex isting halogen bulb with a new globe. The tour wrapped up at the dead-end parking lot at Gulfstream, where four more lights were in use. At the dead end on the side closest to U.S. 41 were two LED lights. As you face U.S. 41, the one on the right features a prismatic globe with a bulb by Beacon. The one on the left features an older style of globe with an LED made by Light Emitting Designs. All the globes The Downtown Improvement District is preparing to embark on a rehabilitation of Main Street from Gulfstream Avenue to Five Points. Photo by Norman Schimmel DID MEMBERS GET A FIRSTHAND LOOK AT THE VARIETIES OF ILLUMINATION AVAILABLE FOR COMING DOWNTOWN ENHANCEMENTS LOOKING FOR LIGHT By Stan Zimmerman City Editor
Sarasota News Leader November 16, 2012 Page 51 are acrylic plastic. The standard globes cost about $90; the prismatics run about $350. A fth light is located between the end of the cul-de-sac and Ringling Boulevard, outside the southwest door to the Church of the Redeem er on South Palm Avenue. It features a clear acrylic globe with an LED bulb from Beacon. It was obvious this was the design least fa vored by the district members. The sixth and nal light was on the north side of Ringling Boulevard adjacent to the Gulfstream cul-de-sac. It features a Sun Valley LED with a clear globe. While much more expensive, the prismatic globe seemed the model most favored by the district members. Although LED lights are 10 to 20 times more expensive than metal halide or halogen bulbs, they last at least 10 times longer and consume a small fraction of the energy. In the rst segment of its Main Street reha bilitation from Gulfstream to Five Points, the DID plans to replace 19 streetlights, and it is budgeting about $800 per pole. % Matt Gregg (back to camera) explains some of the differences among the lights and globes on the Downtown Improvement Districts eld trip to look at different designs for street lighting. Photo by Stan Zimmerman
NEWS BRIEFS The rst iceberg ever seen in Sarasota Bay will be unveiled as part of the activities, thanks to the creativity of New College sculpting pro fessor Richard Herzog, the release points out. Additionally, the award-winning Ski-A-Rees Water Ski Show Team will perform at 4 p.m. Event guests also can gain free admission to the Mote Aquarium, which will be open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Admission requires getting a stamp at the festival. Among the other festival highlights will be live music on the main stage, with ve local bands on the schedule; a Creative Arts Tent presenting a dozen local wildlife photogra phers and artists selling art items; the winning submissions to the I Love Sarasota Bay Pho to Contest with three age divisions; vintage boat displays; local food trucks; a beer and The inaugural Sarasota Bay Water Festival is set for this Saturday, Nov. 17, at Ken Thomp son Park in Sarasota. More than 70 organizations from the public and private sectors will be involved as spon sors and exhibitors, according to a news re lease. The free festival will run from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Its purpose is to celebrate the impor tance of Sarasota Bay to the regions environ ment and economy, the news release says. The Sarasota Bay Estuary Program (SBEP) is the host sponsor, while Triple 3 Marketing is managing the event with volunteer support from residents of Sarasota and Manatee coun ties, the release adds. SBEP is one of Americas 28 national estuary programs. Water taxis from Freedom Boat Club will transport people from Marina Jack in downtown Saraso ta to the Sarasota Sailing Squadron next to Ken Thompson Park for the Sarasota Bay Estuary Pro grams Water Festival. Contributed photo SARASOTA BAY WATER FESTIVAL SET FOR NOV. 17
Sarasota News Leader November 16, 2012 Page 53 In a press release issued early in the morning of Nov. 15, City Commissioner Terry Turner announced he will not run for re-election as an at-large commissioner. He cites family and business obligations as his reasons. The release says, Our city needs strong, qual ied candidates! It is my hope that with an early announcement of my intent not to run, Mayor Suznne Atwell and Commissioner Terry Turner discuss a matter during a recent City Com mission meeting. Photo by Norman Schimmel TURNER DECIDES NOT TO SEEK RE-ELECTION wine garden; and exhibits promoting boating, shing, kayaking, paddle board sports, scuba, birding and more. For details, visit sarasota baywaterfestival.com Festival organizers encourage visitors to car pool and use alternative transportation. A free water taxi will run between Marina Jack in downtown Sarasota and the Sarasota Sailing Squadron. It will depart every 30 to 40 minutes starting at 9 a.m., the release notes. Other transportation options include hourly stops by Sarasota County Area Transit and the Longboat Key Trolley, a free bike valet and a free kayak valet. Local guitarist Ben Hammond will be the guitar-playing MC for the free regional festi val. Contributed photo there will be time to encourage qualied can didates to enter the race who might not have wanted to challenge a sitting commissioner. Turners withdrawal leaves Mayor Suzanne Atwell, Kevin Lumpkin, Pete Theisen, Linda Holland and Richard Dorfman challenging for the two at-large seats on the board. Stan Zimmerman
Sarasota News Leader November 16, 2012 Page 54 Mayor Suzanne Atwell wields the ceremonial scissors outside the City Commission Chambers on Nov. 13. (From left) are Sherry Svekis, chairwoman of the Historic Preservation Board; Ernie Ritz, chairman of the Downtown Improvement District; Atwell; Jeff LaHurd, manager of the Sarasota County History Center; Clifford Smith, senior city planner; and City Manager Tom Barwin. Photos by Stan Zimmerman A display of historic photographs from Sara sotas municipal history was ofcially un veiled Tuesday evening, Nov. 13, at City Hall. A variety of local notables and history buffs at tended the ribbon cutting for Walk Through Time The photographs adorn the walls of the City Commission Chambers. Stan Zimmerman WALK THROUGH TIME INAUGURATED AT CITY HALL
Sarasota News Leader November 16, 2012 Page 55 p hy is by RHS art teacher Jan Davis and her husband, retired professional photographer Mike Davis. Ringling College of Art and De sign also contributed to the show through its staffs mentoring of RHS students and the pro duction of a time-lapse segment. This achievement is a one-of-a-kind instruc tional opportunity to impact thousands of stu dents now and for many years to come, said Riverview Principal Linda Nook in the news release. Jason Mocherman added in the release, The Riverview High School Planetarium, AquaDome and Stars to Starfish are great examples of what can come from partner ships between schools and the community they serve. We have created a uniquely innovative program because everyone shared a vision and worked hard to make it a reality. But this is just a beginning. The visions are turn ing into dreams and the dreams have no bounds. Riverview High is lo cated at 1 Ram Way off Proctor Road in Sara sota. Riverview High School will debut a locally produced planetarium show, Stars to Starsh during a free event from 7 to 9 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 17, in the schools planetarium, the Sara sota County Schools district has announced. The showings will be part of An Evening Un der the Sea The planetarium program will run every 30 minutes, while participants also will have the opportunity to view the stars through telescopes provided by the Deep Sky Observ ers; tour the AquaDome greenhouse, which is the showcase of the schools Aquascience Program; and see a display of the schools recently donated re search vessel. Stars to Starsh took more than a year to complete, according to a district news re lease. It was produced by Riverview High science teacher and planetarium director Jason Mocherman and created in partnership with Full Dome FX, the release adds. The narrator is ABC7 an chor and RHS gradu ate Scott Dennis. Retired RHS science teacher Mike Mocher man, Jasons father, wrote the script. The underwater pho tography and videogra A poster has been created for the Stars to Starsh planetarium program at Riverview High School. Contributed artwork RIVERVIEW HIGH TO PREMIERE STARS TO STARFISH PLANETARIUM SHOW
Sarasota News Leader November 16, 2012 Page 56 The focus with children is on preventive ser vices (such as sealants, cleanings and uoride treatment), llings and other treatment, the release notes. Dental services are provided through state and county funding sources, as well as through grants from local foundations and other enti ties, the release adds. We appreciate the Sarasota County Dental Associations generous contribution as we work together to protect, promote and im prove the oral health of children in our com munity, said Dr. Chander Malik, the Sarasota County Health Departments dental program director, in the news release. % The Sarasota County Health Departments Dental Health Program recently received a $2,500 donation from the Sarasota County Dental Association to help continue its mis sion of treating the underserved in the com munity, the county has announced. As a major provider of dental services to those with Medicaid, the dental program pro vides treatment to an average of 80 to 100 clients daily at two clinics, one in Sarasota and one in North Port, a county news release says. The majority of the clients are children, the release adds. The dental program provided more than 18,000 dental visits last year. PUBLIC DENTAL CLINIC RECEIVES $2,500 Manuel R. Chepote, LUTCF Chepote Insurance Inc. Al ls tate Agent 1300 Main Street Sarasota, Florida (941) 366-0100 Serving Sarasota & Manatee Counties Auto Home Life Renters Motorcycles Flood Business Annuities Financial Services agents.allstate.com/manuel-r-chepote-sarasota-.html Click to watch the latest TV ad Click for driving directions
OPINION Is there nothing that Gov. Rick Scott will not do to humiliate the people of Florida? Even before he was elected governor, he was op posed to the Affordable Care Act. After his election, he justied his hostility toward the acts requirements on the grounds that it would be struck down by the U.S. Supreme Court as unconstitutional. Then, in a landmark decision, the Supreme Court upheld almost everything contained in the act (striking down only the penalty against states that did not voluntarily agree to expand their Medicaid programs). Guess what? Scott thumbed his nose at the highest court in the land as he continued to ignore the law. His reasoning? That Barack Obama would be defeated by Mitt Romney in FLORIDAS MORTIFICATION the presidential election, and the law would be repealed. Then, on Nov. 6, voters gave President Obama a 3 million vote margin of victory (and a 61 percent majority in Electoral College votes). Even John Boehner, the speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives, began to refer to the Affordable Care Act as the law of the land. Guess what (again)? Scott thumbed his nose at almost everyone in the legitimate political rmament by declaring that he still would not do anything to implement any part of what he termed Obamacare, including the expansion of Medicaid in Florida and the establishment of federally mandated insurance exchanges to allow citizens to purchase competitively priced insurance.
Sarasota News Leader November 16, 2012 Page 58 His reasoning? Who cares? He long ago aban doned any pretense at rationality with his shameless posturing. And, in so doing, he has further embarrassed the state that, according to every poll, regrets electing him governor in the rst place. Fortunately, the blow back from his latest misstep, including leg islative leaders in his own party distancing themselves from him as they discussed how the state should pro ceed with implement ing the ACA, has compelled him to backtrack on his earlier, pugnacious obstinacy. Earlier this week, in an interview with the As sociated Press, he stated that he wants ... to negotiate with the federal government on im plementation. Seriously? Negotiate? Thats as ludicrous as Lord Cornwallis stating that he was ready to negotiate with George Washington following his walloping at York town. Or the city of Atlanta stating its inten tion to negotiate with Gen. Sherman after he had reduced the city to ashes. From the outset of the debate on healthcare reform, Scott has hitched his gurative wagon not to a lame horse, but to a dead one and all Floridians are paying the price. The state already has lost hundreds of millions of dollars earmarked for early implementation of the ACA, funds gleefully pocketed by oth er states thrilled by Scotts recalcitrance. And Scotts stubborn resistance to the expansion of Medicaid will cost the state another $28 bil lion over the next several years, while Florida retains its reputation as the stingiest state in the country with its Medicaid program. Rick Scott has been, for almost his entire tenure in office, the most unpopular gov ernor in Florida his tory. (Indeed, he has been one of the most unpopular governors in recent U.S. history.) After using $75 million of his own money to leverage the Tea Party de mentia of 2010 to secure his election, winning with fewer than 62,000 votes and the support of barely more than 23 percent of registered Florida voters, he had not even the semblance of a mandate to undertake his reckless and oppressive governance. His churlish foot-dragging has put Florida so far behind in the race to comply with the ACA that it likely will never catch up. Unless grant ed an extension by the federal government, Florida will miss most, if not all, of the dead lines rapidly approaching. It did not have to be this way. But Scotts wellearned reputation as a feckless dilettante has been the primary cause of our hopeless com pliance shortfall. One can only hope that, in 2014, outraged vot ers will rise up to right their earlier wrong and that Scotts painful, inept turn as governor will be put to a merciful end. % From the outset of the debate on healthcare reform, Scott has hitched his gurative wagon not to a lame horse, but to a dead one and all Floridians are paying the price.
Sarasota News Leader November 16, 2012 Page 59 COMMENTARY On Tuesday, Oct. 22, 1968, the Nixon-Agnew Campaign train en route to To ledo made a whistle stop in the village of Deshler, OH. The day was chilly by Suncoast standards; the median temperature was only 54 degrees. Among the crowd at the depot was 13-year-old Vicki Cole. She was accompa nied by her father, Deshlers Methodist minis ter, and her mother, who taught third grade. Vicki carried a hand-painted sign that read, Bring Us Together. Its simple plea to unify a nation then divided by the seemingly end less war in Vietnam, dissatisfaction with the Great Societys direction and cost, regional opposition to the Civil Rights Movement and voting rights legislation, the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and the many urban riots that followed in its wake and the assassi nation of Robert F. Kennedy found resonance with many Americans. It briey became a Re publican campaign slogan. Nixon won the 1968 election but failed to unite the country. It is still divided. Today, no party has a clear mandate: Democrats keep the White House for another four years and retain control of the Senate; Republicans have control of the House. Not much has changed since Nov. 5, the day before Election Day. As mentioned, national divisions run deep. In this still tense atmosphere, politicians in the White House and Executive Branch and on both sides of the aisles in the House and Sen ate would do well to remember Vickis words. As a practical beginning to this process, both political parties should not hesitate to seek compromise and nd common ground on the following ve issues: Pass a Long-term Federal Budget The bud get assigns spending limits and priorities to federal government programs. Without a clear understanding of, and agreement on, those spending limits and priorities, the government must to resort to decit spending by raising the debt ceiling and selling Treasury bills and bonds. Those sales will be more expensive for the government as the result of recent down grades of U.S. creditworthiness. Some rating agencies have said downgrades could contin ue if, as expected, debt levels rise. The debt ceiling has been raised nine times over the past decade. If debt nancing is not approved by Congress, the government will have to shut down. These are irresponsible alternatives. The last federal budget was passed in 2009 as an omnibus spending bill. The two are not the same. Simply put, running the government without a real budget is like driving your car from Sarasota to Tallahassee with no cash or credit cards, a maxed-out debit card and only VICKI COLE, WHERE ARE YOU NOW THAT WE NEED YOU? By David Staats Contributing Writer
Sarasota News Leader November 16, 2012 Page 60 enough gas in the tank to get you as far as Gainesville. Reform the tax code When she became speaker of the House in 2009, Nancy Pelosi named reform of the patently unfair Alterna tive Minimum Tax affecting millions of mid dle-income taxpayers as one of her top prior ities. Of course, it never happened. Slogans often substitute for policy. Both parties ur gently need to address the tax issue with open minds, especially as we are set to tumble off the Fiscal Cliff on Jan. 1. Undertake entitlements reform If we as a nation are to provide benets to eligible citi zens and non-citizens (such as Social Security, Medicare/Medicaid, Obamacare, non-funded federal mandates that fall on state govern ments, etc.), then adequate reserves to cover those costs must be funded and maintained. Further, these reserves cannot be treated as pools of available cash from which the gov ernment can borrow at will. Remember candidate Al Gores promise made during the 2000 presidential campaign to create a Social Security lockbox? Nothing happened there either during subsequent administrations. If the government promises to deliver a ben et, it is reasonable to expect that the gov ernment will have the money on hand to pay it. Otherwise, the recipient of the promised benet gets nothing if the money designated to pay that benet is spent elsewhere or the cash simply runs out. It is like buying on the installment plan without hope of ever recover ing your investment if things go wrong. In 2013, out the $3.73 trillion to be spent by the f ederal government, 62 percent will be spent on entitlements. Reduce federal debt Related to budget, tax and entitlements reforms, it should be noted that in September, the federal debt reached $16 trillion (about 70 percent of gross domes tic product, or GDP), an increase of $6 trillion since the end of 2008. The Congressional Bud get Ofce projects that if taxation and spend ing policies that the nation has become accus tomed to continue, the federal debt will jump to 90 percent of GDP by 2022. If so, much of these added costs will be driven by increased demand by aging Baby Boomers for more and better subsidized health care. In human terms, and according to the U.S. Census Bureau, the true median American family in 2011 earned $50,054. With a com parable debt obligation of 70 percent (taxes, mortgage or rent, car payments, credit card payments, health costs, etc.) the family would have just $15,016.20 a year to spend on grocer ies, utilities, gasoline, clothing, etc. Unlike the federal government, the family cannot legally print cash to make up the shortfall. Prevent Iran from acquiring a nuclear weapon Should Iran develop the capability to produce nuclear weapons, a capability it is actively pursuing, Iran will use those weapons to wipe Israel off the map. In addition to the above ve, the president and Congress have other important issues to resolve in short order. It is hoped that Vickis appeal will bring them and the public together to break the gridlock, set aside the acrimony and get on with the very serious business of ensuring good national governance. %
Sarasota News Leader November 16, 2012 Page 61 COMMENTARY Hey sergeant, I forgot to ll up my car before coming on shift, can I ? No you cant, Worthheimer. Just sit down. OK, everybody, listen up. This is the regular Wednesday brief on the homeless. City Com mission asked us to do something because Madame Mayor didnt feel safe downtown. Weve been all over it. For weeks now, its been getting hard to nd any homeless down town. Sarge, I found one sleeping inside a dump ster two nights ago. Thats how hard theyre hiding. Yeah, yeah, good work, Deln. Keep your eyes open. Now Ofcer Snodgassed has the tip of the week. Randy. Thisll be my last time up, boys. Internal Af fairs rousted me for some bogus thing about lying to lawyers and fraudulent claims for dis ability. So Im taking my pension and moving on. But before I do, I got the best trick yet. Damn, Randy, were gonna miss you. Your sneaky tricks are the best. Well, thanks, Worthheimer. Listen up: This onell drive em crazy. You know those pic nic shelters we have in parks across the city? Well, some of em have lights and some of em have power receptacles. Snodgasse d paused. You catch some street trash plug gin into that receptacle with a boom box or cell phone charger or anything, and POW, its theft! Stealin city power. Easy $500 bond, so this guys going overnight to the jail. And this is the best part you get to put the de vice into evidence, so hell play hell getting it back anytime soon. Maybe never! Oh, sweet! said Deln. The guys cut off. No friends; no family; no nobody. The ultimate Get lost, chump. And now that we have those infrared viewers thanks to Homeland Security, we can stake these places out, said the sergeant. Guys not gonna get too far from his phone, ya know. So how many of these public receptacles are out there, Sarge? asked Deln. We got maps from Public Works for you. Here, pass em down. Say, Sarge, what are we gonna do when that guy Stephen King shows up again with his Chevy Volt? Dont he plug into public power? Yeah, said Wortheimer. Maybe we should roust him, too? Back off, dummies. He aint no homeless. Hes drivin a $50,000 car, livin on Casey Key. You see him, you say, Sir. No business of yours where he gets his power. See you guys, said Snodgassed. Good hunt ing! % IMAGINE AN AFTERNOON BRIEFING AT THE SARASOTA PD By Stan Zimmerman City Editor
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Featuring Sarasota Leisure Inside FIGHTING THEN AND FIGHTING NOW ASK OTUS: TURKEY TIME
When Sarasota resident Sonia Pressman Fuen tes awoke on Nov. 7, she was ecstatic at the news from the night before. The renowned womens rights activist, author, lawyer and accomplished feminist pioneer who helped found the National Organization for Women (NOW) in 1966 and the rst female attorney in the Ofce of the General Counsel at the Equal Employment Opportu nity Commission found the 2012 election had proven to be an historic one for women and womens equality activists. The 113th Congress will include an unprece dented number of women, breaking records for both the Senate and the House of Repre sentatives. The Senate will boast 20 female members, while the House will welcome at least 81. Additionally, New Hampshire will be the rst state ever with an all-female congressional delegation and governor. Womens issues such as equal pay, reproduc tive rights, preventative healthcare and med ical privacy rights had been brought to the forefront of the political debate. By defeating numerous candidates with extreme views on abortion and rape, such as U.S. Rep. Todd Akin, R-Mo., and Indiana State Treasurer Rich Sonia Pressman Fuentes is the author of the memoir, Eat First You Dont Know What Theyll Give You, The Adventures of an Immigrant Family and Their Feminist Daughter, along with many essays and articles about womens rights issues and other topics featured in publications through out the world. Photos by Tyler Whitson and Arielle Scherr WOMENS RIGHTS PIONEERS STRIVE TO INFLUENCE AND INSPIRE A NEW GENERATION FIGHTING THEN AND FIGHTING NOW By Tyler Whitson Contributing Writer
Sarasota News Leader November 16, 2012 Page 65 ard Mourdock, the majority of voters across the United States demonstrated they do not want legislators to limit womens rights to make decisions about their bodies. In Florida, voters rejected proposed consti tutional Amendment 6, which would have banned the use of public funds to pay for abortions or health insurance that covers abortions within the state although this is already federal policy and it would have re moved the procedure from the privacy protec tions guaranteed in the Florida Constitution. I feel as I did when the U.S. Supreme Court issued Brown v. Board of Education Fuen tes wrote to her friends and supporters the morning after the election, referring to the landmark 1954 decision that declared it un constitutional for states to impose laws man dating separate public schools for black and white students. The mood was a bit different a few hours ear lier, though, when The Sarasota News Leader sat down with Fuentes before the polls closed to discuss the present days most important womens issues and how they relate to strides made in the past. Although there was an air of uncertainty about the election outcomes, it was clear to Fuentes that, regardless of who would be leading the country and what ballot amendments would be enforced in the near future, very much still would need to be done before equality for women could be viewed as a reality. It seems to many, in fact, that womens rights have been facing visceral attacks from con servative candidates and groups over at least the past two years. There have been attempts, for example, to defund Planned Parenthood, to require women seeking abortions to un dergo invasive transvaginal ultrasound proce dures and through the Sanctity of Human (From left) The Countdown to Election 2012 ofcial panelists included Dr. Bonnie Greenball Sil vestri, Dr. Scott Perry, Sonia Pressman Fuentes and Dr. Frank Alcock. They later were joined by attorney Adam Tebrugge, who at the time was running to represent District 71 in the Florida House of Representatives. Tebrugge took Alcocks place after Alcock had to leave for another engagement.
Sarasota News Leader November 16, 2012 Page 66 Life Act to reclassify the fertilized egg as a living person by establishing that life begins at conception, which would make it possible for states to criminalize abortion and in vitro fertilization. Many activists have interpreted these endeavors and their varied levels of suc cess as part of a concerted effort to roll back womens rights. The actions often are referred to in the news media as a war on women. Asked her thoughts on that viewpoint, Fuen tes replied sharply. Youd have to be deaf, dumb and blind not to know that theres a war on women by the Republican Party. I think it has made feminists angry, doing all they can to see that Barack Obama is re-elected. A FEMINIST ICON Not quite three weeks before the election, a personal friend of Fuentes and another femi nist pioneer came to St. Petersburg to address some of the same issues Fuentes discussed with the News Leader Author and journalist Gloria Steinem spoke on Oct. 20 during a pro-choice rally organized by the I Am Choice campaign in opposition to Floridas proposed constitutional Amend ment 6. The many attendees were enthusiastic and vocal in their support, cheering loudly when Steinem proclaimed a sentiment they shared. The crowd comprised women and men of di verse ages and races. Steinem voiced her concerns about ultra so cial c onservatives efforts to use the Republi can Party as a vehicle to enact legislation that already has impacted or would infringe on the rights of women. It is so dangerous to have one of our two great parties controlled by extremists ... because, when we naturally are not 100 percent hap py with one group, we just vote for the other one without understanding that we are voting against ourselves, she said. The great cen trist Republican Party needs to come back, she added, reminding audience members of a few of the more progressive, pro-equality views that Republican presidents of the past have expressed. Of the many issues Steinem discussed at the rally, comparable pay for women was at the forefront. It happens that equal pay for wom en of all races is the greatest economic stim ulus that this country could ever have, she said to enthusiastic applause. I have never ever seen, even in the Eisenhower era, any body who refused to say they were for equal pay! Even if they didnt do anything about it, they at least said they were for equal pay, she continued, referring to former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romneys evasive responses to ques tions about his stance on equal pay for wom en and the Lilly Ledbetter Act of 2009, which helps women who have lost wages as a result of pay discrimination in the past to legally re cuperate their losses. Steinem also focused considerable attention on attempts by conservatives to enact legisla tion to reclassify the fertilized egg as a person and the major consequences this would have for women. It would effectively nationalize womens bodies throughout our childbearing years and give the government the right to legally search our wombs to see if we were pregnant or not, she said. If you think thats impossible, think about the transvaginal probe that is legalized rape!
Sarasota News Leader November 16, 2012 Page 67 Steinem received a fervent ovation when she summed up her overall views on personhood with a pithy statement targeting two issues: Neither the corporation nor the fertilized egg is a person, she declared. NO LETTING UP Fuentes also was publicly vocal in her con cerns about womens issues during the 2012 election. Soon after returning from Cornell University in Ithaca, NY, where she was invit ed to speak about the womens rights move ment and the problems that remain, she took off to the Half Shell Oyster House on Main Street in Sarasota to participate in a Count down to Election 2012 panel discussion for college students about the election, voting rights and issues of equality. The event was or ganized and moderated by Bonnie Greenball Silvestri, senior fellow for arts, culture and civic engagement at the University of South Florida Sarasota-Manatee. Fuentes explained to the audience both the victories and the shortcomings of the past four years in terms of womens rights, clear ing up misconceptions. In an interview following the panels discus sions, Fuentes went into deeper detail about those issues. She prefaced her remarks with the point that, although she considers herself to be a lifelong liberal Democrat, a supporter Many at the I Am Choice rally were volunteers and interns helping to raise funds for local and national campaigns.
Sarasota News Leader November 16, 2012 Page 68 of President Obama and an outspoken crit ic of the Republican Partys current policies regarding womens issues describing the difference between the views of the 2012 elec tions presidential candidates as a chasm she refuses to let partisanship anesthetize her passion for womens equality. As a feminist activist since 1963, I have also been disappointed in [President] Barack Obama, in his wife, Michelle, and in [Vice President] Joe Biden and his wife, Jill, Fuen tes said. One of the greatest disappointments she has had in the president and those close to him has been their failure to advocate for the Equal Rights Amendment (ERA) to the U.S. Constitution. Originally written and intro duced in Congress in 1923, it would guarantee equal rights for women. Since Alice Paul drafted the Equal Rights Amendment, women have been ghting to get it ratied, Fuentes continued. She expressed frustration that although the Democratic Party has included it in its nation al platform, none of the individuals she men tioned earlier has said the rst word about the ERA since Obama was inaugurated. Another critical issue Fuentes pointed to is the lack of federal legislation that would guar Before meeting with fans following her speech, Gloria Steinem posed for a photo with Planned Par enthood volunteers who helped organize the I Am Choice rally.
Sarasota News Leader November 16, 2012 Page 69 Gloria Steinem was happy to set aside time to meet with excited fans, sign books and pose for pho tos outside the location of the I Am Choice rally.
Sarasota News Leader November 16, 2012 Page 70 antee women are paid the same salaries as men for completing equivalent work. [President] Obama keeps trumpeting the fact that the rst bill he signed was the Lilly Led better Act, she said. Im delighted that thats the case, but it only involves a wrinkle in the interpretation of the way Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 is interpreted. It corrected a loophole ... but women still only make 77 cents on every dollar that men make. This af fects not only their current salary and wages, but their pensions. Over a lifetime they lose hundreds of thousands of dollars, she contin ued. At the rate were going, to make it the same, its going to take forever More needs to be done to make equal pay a reality. Among the additional issues Fuentes men tioned though she said there were many others were the lack of a mandate to guar antee paid maternity leave and the failure of the United States to ratify the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimina tion Against Women, which was adopted in 1979 by the United Nations General Assembly as an international bill of rights for women and ratied by every industrialized country in the world except the United States. Asked what people can do to help forward the cause of womens rights, Fuentes offered a number of suggestions. If they are parents, they need to raise their male and female children equally and teach those children that they both have the same opportunities, they both have the same poten tial, she said. For those who are not parents, the most important rst step is to collaborate with other advocates. I always urge people to join organizations that are ghting for what they believe in, she said. It is very hard to do something to change the society alone. You can write, which I do; you can speak, which I do; but you also need to join with like-minded people. Some of the organizations she suggested peo ple join are NOW and UN Women, which has a large chapter in Sarasota, as well as womens chapters of professional groups and unions. Regardless of how one goes about doing it, Fuentes wants to remind people that ghting for womens rights is as important today as it ever has been, although it may not be quite as obvious. The battle is more difcult now, because its dealing in some cases with subtleties and nuances. In the early days, in the 1960s, ev erybody could see the discrimination against women in employment, in getting into colleges and universities, in not being allowed to serve on juries everything, she said. Now, a lot of people think, What are you still carrying on about? Havent you accomplished every thing? There is still much to be accomplished in the ght for equal rights and equality for women, of course, Fuentes explained, so helping oth ers to be vigilant in ghting present-day dis crimination and inequality is of ever-increas ing importance. That is why, even after decades on the front lines, Fuentes and Steinem continue to push forward. Fuentes says she is excited about seeing individuals of all backgrounds do the same. %
ASK OTUS We have a magnicent bird to admire as a symbol of our bounteous Thanksgivings: Me leagris gallopavo the Wild Turkey, as well as its two direct descendents, M. farmraisedo the Domesticated, and M. permafrosto the Frozen Turkey. As most people know, in a 1784 letter to his daughter, Founding Father Benjamin Franklin protested the ofcial recognition of the Amer ican Bald Eagle, and not the Wild Turkey, as the U.S. national bird. Franklin deemed the Bald Eagle ... a Bird of bad moral Character. He does not get his Living honestly. Further, he is a cowardly and lazy thief (for stealing Ospreys sh). By contrast, the Wild Turkey is a respectable original and courageous native of America. Franklin did concede that it could be a little vain and silly at times. OTUS OFFERS ALL THE ANSWERS YOU EVER WANTED TO KNOW ABOUT TURKEYS BUT WERE AFRAID TO ASK This Wild Turkey is a magnicent example of the breed. Photo courtesy of Rick Greenspun
Sarasota News Leader November 2, 2012 Page 72 Sarasota News Leader November 16, 2012 Page 72 The Wild Turkey has good reasons to be vain. The adult male has some 5,500 feathers, whose beautiful rich hues and iridescent tips recall a forest during an autumn sunset vi brant ochre and deep mahogany mingled with silvers and burnished gold. When he is court ing, the turkeys thick lustrous fan feathers, shimmering in the sunlight, are the envy of strutting dancers at the Folies Bergre. His bald head, snood and wattle change color ac cording to his emotions, turning red, white and blue how much more patriotic can one be? A tom (or gobbler), as the adult male is called, can attain running speeds of 25 mph and bursts of ight up to 55 mph. His gobble can be heard a mile away and he is ercely pro tective of his territory. He has a laissez-faire attitude toward his offspring, called poults, and lets the hens raise them. Poults are born precocial and unlike the mamas chick, the Limpkin, are on their own within a few days of birth. John James Audubon admired the Wild Tur key as much as Franklin did. He demonstrat ed his affection and great admiration for this symbol of the epic American wilderness by making it his rst bird subject in Birds of America. Audubon even embossed his letters with a gold and carnelian signet ring depicting a turkey cock and the phrase, America My Country. He was that proud of his naturalized American citizenship and that impressed by this native wild bird. Audubon also enjoyed the rich flavor of a cooked Wild Turkey. Many turkey hunters will cook and eat only the turkey breast, the rest being too tough; however, if the turkey is in jected with wine and allowed to marinate for a day or two, all of its esh becomes an edible treat The Wild Turkeys silly characteristics are of ten inspired by its contact with humans. High ly territorial, standing 4 feet tall and with su perb daytime vision, a Wild Turkey marching into town will fearlessly attack parking me ters and his reection in shop windows or in a cars side mirror, causing people to panic, stampede out of his path and then write let ters to editors of local newspapers and place calls to mayors and local police authorities. After all, he is taller than their children and attacks not only with his beak but with his 1 1/2 inch spurs, which he uses to repel other toms from his harem. According to Wikipedia, the Aztecs associat ed the turkey with their mischievous god Tez catlipoca perhaps because of its perceived humorous behavior. The Aztecs must have experienced something similar to the follow ing story. On Cape Cod, which has a comparatively large population of Wild Turkeys roaming about, a tom began relentlessly pursuing a mail truck and throwing himself against the vehicle. The letter carrier was afraid to leave his truck, and residents stayed in their homes or cars when this rogue turkey was sighted. Speculation was that the turkey was living up to Ben Franklins high opinion of him by at tacking the Bald Eagle symbol on the truck. Even knowing the turkeys daily routine, au thorities were unable to capture him, as he ran and ew faster than they. This wily turkey gained greater notoriety and prestige when Ethel Kennedy, phoning from Florida, told the Cape Cod Times, Its our
Sarasota News Leader November 2, 2012 Page 73 Sarasota News Leader November 16, 2012 Page 73 bird. Hes aggressive and knows how to es cape. She reported the Kennedy grandkids had a swell time chasing after it for three days around her Hyannis Port property during their Thanksgiving sojourn. She also gave a detailed description to claim ownership: Black with a red head. This caused some local residents to advertise: Missing pet squirrel, gray with black whiskers. So much for the silly side of the Wild Turkey ... The Wild Turkey is widespread and endemic to all U.S. states except Alaska. One exception is when former Gov. Sarah Palin who, during a 2008 press conference, pardoned a Thanks giving Domesticated Turkey against the back drop of a turkey slaughterhouse while turkeys were actually in the process of being execut ed. Warning: necessary gore THE OTHER TURKEYS Now to its subspecies, M. farmraisedo : Do mesticated Turkeys are as beautiful as wild ones and can have a varied spectrum of col ors. Mesoamericans of central Mexico domes ticated these birds some 2,000 years ago, using their eggs and meat as a staple protein source and their feathers to decorate garments and headdresses. European explorers and settlers in the early 16th century brought these turkeys to Europe and then reintroduced their newly bred stock back into the Americas when they colonized those lands. Now bred exclusively for weight and human consumption, these turkeys cannot y, but they certainly can hop and are a lively, gre garious lot. Although bronzed-feathered varieties are raised, the great majority of Domesticated Turkeys are bred white to make their pin feathers less visible after their carcasses are plucked and dressed. The Broad Breasted White variety is the most famous breed and the one frequently chosen for the Thanksgiv ing presentation to the First Family. The concept of a National Turkey Pardon Day is a delightful one. Truman is credited with the rst turkey pardon in 1947, but facts do not support this. Ceremonially, the tradition began in 1989 when President George H. W. Bush granted the rst ofcial presidential par don. This light-hearted occasion, usually tak ing place in the Rose Garden, always brings a smile to everyone, regardless of party afl iation. The presentation Thanksgiving turkey is se lected when he is a poult (only a couple of hens have ever been selected), and he is raised to handle the noisy crowds and paparazzi with great aplomb. Unfortunately, he is also raised to be the ne plus ultra model of turkey breed ing; meaning he is huge and grossly obese, and he suffers from heart disease and all its relat ed illnesses. These turkeys do not live much longer than a year after their pardon. But their last months are pleasantly comfortable ones. In the past, pardoned turkeys were sent to Frying Pan Park, VA, (I checked it out and it actually is a park, not a fast-food chain as the name suggests!) and even to our own Flori da Disney World, where they once performed as grand marshals in Disneys Thanksgiving Day Parade. Currently, President Obamas pardoned turkeys are sent to Mount Vernon, George Washingtons home.
Sarasota News Leader November 2, 2012 Page 74 Sarasota News Leader November 16, 2012 Page 74 Although Wild and Domesticated turkeys abound in Sarasota County, I have never had the pleasure of seeing one. It is M. perma frosto the Frozen Turkey subspecies, that rules on Siesta Key. The Frozen Turkey is a headless, tailless, apo dal breed whose pimpled pale esh is covered with an inscribed plastic wrap in lieu of feath ers. Its innards, cryogenically preserved in its cavity, include a long wrinkly neck, a hefty over-sized liver, a tiny heart and gizzard. Take a look at the accompanying photo of a turkey at 7:30 a.m. Thanksgiving Day. It more resembles a prop on a Mission Impossible set than a delectable dinner. But in just a few hours it will be served stuffed, golden-brown and aromatic. How does that happen? Well, from what I have observed, on Thanksgiving Day, more than on other holidays, people ex tend their warm hospitality not only to be loved family and friends but also to those who might have been left all alone that day. And I see families and children, old and now new friends, all laughing while chipping at the ice in the turkey cavity, yelling encouragements to their favorite football team while setting the microwaves defrost function and help ing out in every way while having a grand old time. Many guests even stay long enough to help with the cleanup! The Thanksgiving spirit of sharing is amazing, and it makes me proud to be a Native Ameri can owl but determined to keep my freshly caught vole all to myself. Otus Its wild cousins may not be common on Siesta Key, but the Frozen Turkey is an ordinary sight near the latter part of each November. File photo ABOUT OTUS Otus Rufous, an Eastern Screech-Owl, was born on Sies ta Key and is a full-time resident there. An avid hunter, accomplished vocalist and genuine night owl, Otus is a keen observer of our local wildlife and knows many of natures secrets. Otus will answer your questions about our amazing wildlife, but only if you Ask Otus. So please send your questions and photos to askotus@sarasotanews leader.com. Thank you.
Editors note: Harriet Cuthbert volunteered again this year to assist with the Siesta Key Crystal Classic Master Sand Sculpting Com petition. This is her report on a week at the beach with world-renowned artists. It is four days before the Siesta Key Crystal Classic Master Sand Sculpting Competition begins, and the sand piles are already rising up. Untouched by human hands that will trans form them into masterworks of ne art, these innocuous little hills sit there calmly, await ing their new identities. And we are eagerly awaiting the third annual competition, which is sponsored jointly by Mote Marine Laborato ry and the Siesta Key Chamber of Commerce, with the proceeds going to the very important sea turtle research and conservation programs at Mote. Master sculptors have come from all over the world to compete for a rst prize of $5,000. In the space of four days, they will take their as signed spots, along with their sand allotments, and make magic. Using only sand, water and various tools, they are truly amazing to watch, these artists who craft something out of nothing. Fine Print took second-place honors during the 2012 Crystal Classic. Photo by Peter Acker/courtesy the Crystal Classic SAND SCULPTING COMPETITION HAS BECOME A CLASSIC IN ITS OWN RIGHT ON SIESTA KEY OF TIME AND TRANSFORMATION By Harriet Cuthbert Contributing Writer
Sarasota News Leader November 16, 2012 Page 76 Twelve pairs are competing, from as far away as Singapore. Our own local master sculptor, Brian Wigelsworth, is working with partner Andy Daily to add some fun, non-competitive art for holiday photos. Brian is the one who had the imagination and foresight to put this whole event together. DAY ONE It is Thursday afternoon, Nov. 8, Day One of the Classic. I have ambled over to the beach to get in the mood for a fun-lled long week end of sand sculpting. The sun could not be brighter, without a cloud nearby. Vendors are setting up their wares and selling a few items to the attendees. The rst day is very important to the sculptors but doesnt of fer too much to the visitors. It is a day of orga nizing and planning for the artists building up their wooden walls, or platforms, shovel ing the sand into those protective barriers and thinking about creating their masterworks. I cant wait for Friday. DAY TWO It is Friday morning, the beginning of another beautiful day at the beach an easy 11 out of 10. The artists have gathered at their spots and begun to put their thoughts into form. The vendors are also thrilled to have such won derful weather. Everything from MoJo Jerky and pizza, to beer and wine, to jewelry and car washes, to my favorite kettle corn, is avail able. A huge sand sculpture has been created to recognize the many generous sponsors of the Fossil Fuel picked up the rst-place trophy this year. Photo by Peter Acker/courtesy the Crystal Classic
Sarasota News Leader November 16, 2012 Page 77 event. It is designed to greet all the visitors. The friendly, smiling dolphins are especially welcoming, and the enthusiasm of the crowd is contagious. We see smart phones with built-in cameras clicking away, children watching in amaze ment and artists patiently answering many questions from their admirers. As I stroll around the area and watch the art ists at work, I see the beginnings of a face, some small animals that could be cats, a large disc-like sculpture whose nal form will be anybodys guess and many more shapes in their infancy. Observing the changes in these creations from start to nish is very exciting. The visitors are entranced, especially the rst-timers who insist on posing in front of the sponsors logos in that big structure. Even though the sand sculptures are ephemeral, the photos and memories will be treasured for a very long time. DAY THREE Saturdays continuing perfect weather has denitely brought in the crowds. The bus es from Philippi Estate have begun running, bringing in the visitors who left their vehicles at the park. More families have arrived, with multiple generations of people excited about watching the sand sculptors at work and ea ger to see their creations. Love is a Battleeld won third-place recognition. Photo by Peter Acker/courtesy the Crystal Classic
Sarasota News Leader November 16, 2012 Page 78 The addition of a fantastic band and a great singer also helps to make this event so mem orable. I have started walking around the area and am entranced by a piece that seems to be a head split in half with a full-size baby, smiling peacefully, squeezed between the two halves of the head. I cannot imagine the nal sculp ture or its title. A few feet away is a piece with an old car; in front of it is a gas tank emblazoned with a Texaco star and the number ,000. Moving on, I see a hand surrounding a beau tifully rendered old-fashioned clock, which I have named, The Hand of Time Everyone wants to have his or her picture taken next to the Happy Holidays Snowman wishful thinking, guys, if you want to see the real thing in Southwest Florida. Were on Siesta Key! Some of the sculptures are still a mystery, and it is fun to listen to the visitors trying to guess the themes. Two artists from The Netherlands are creating a very emotional piece, whose title will also not be revealed until Sunday. I notice that today the two-sided disc has be come two sides of a coin the male and the female versions. Quotes from each sex about the other are etched into the sculpture, which the audience is really enjoying. But the most commonly heard remark is, The detail is amazing. Dolphins swim across the top of logos for a number of the sponsors of the 2012 Crystal Classic. Photo by Norman Schimmel
Sarasota News Leader November 16, 2012 Page 79 What is truly amazing to me is how well-or ganized and beautifully run this whole event has been. We are all looking forward to Sun day, with the nished masterworks and the announcement of the prizes. DAY FOUR As I approach the beach parking lot on foot on Sunday afternoon, I am overwhelmed by the number of cars driving around and lining up on Beach Road to, hopefully, secure a space and allow the occupants to see the sculptures The competition has ended and the winners will be announced soon. I can now walk around and see the completed master works. Peter Vogelaar of Canada has created a stun ner. The disc I mentioned earlier has become a magnifying glass, and the man and woman are looking at each other through this Fine Print Andy Daily (left) and Brian Wigelsworth, the founder of the Crystal Classic, work on a snowman made of sand by which visitors could pose for photos to put in their holiday cards. Photo by Nor man Schimmel
Sarasota News Leader November 16, 2012 Page 80 On Nov. 9, details of mans face already were clear in Fine Print. Among that ne print: Blows money on toys; Loves his car; and Procrastinator. Sculptors Peter Vogelaar and Abe Waterman of Canada actively were seeking more comments to add to both the mans and womans faces. Photo by Norman Schimmel
Sarasota News Leader November 16, 2012 Page 81 Fossil Fuel another marvel, by Craig Mutch and Delayne Corbett, begins with a huge snake-like creature wrapping itself around and around until it almost gives birth to an automobile. Alongside the car is the gas tank with the number ,000 on it, marking the number of years mankind has been using fos sil fuels. Many people are staring at this cre ation with wonder. Its concept and execution are incredible. The smiling baby is still smiling and enjoying his spot between the two halves of the one h ead. And the cats have emerged, climbing all over their king. Their faces are uniquely expressive, but the king is not looking pleased at all. I have to say I have been trying hard to be neutral and not pick a favorite, but I truly am overwhelmed by Fine Print The Siesta Key Crystal Classic has now be come a classic in its own right. Congratula tions to all the brilliant sand sculptors. We will see you next year. % Rusty Croft and Chris Guinto of the United States intrigued visitors as their sculpture took its nal form over the days of the event. Photo by Peter van Roekens
Sarasota News Leader November 16, 2012 Page 82 Sculptors Matt Long and Andy Gertler of the United States created Under Pressure. Photo by Peter van Roekens
Sarasota News Leader November 16, 2012 Page 83 Jooheng Tan of Singapore and Benjamin Probanza of Mexico sculpted the baby between the two halves of its parents heads. Photo by Peter van Roekens
Sarasota News Leader November 16, 2012 Page 84 Sculptors Karen Fralich and Sue McGrew work on their eye-grabbing depiction of a cat-covered Vi king. Photo by Norman Schimmel A sea goddess, perhaps, keeps watch over some of the sponsor logos during the event. Co-Chairwom an Maria Bankemper praised all the people and companies that collaborated to make the Classic run smoothly. Photo by Norman Schimmel
Sarasota News Leader November 16, 2012 Page 85 Imagination seemed to know no bounds in the design of the artwork. Photo by Norman Schimmel
The Sarasota County Fire Department and Emergency Services personnel troop down Main Street. Photos by Norman Schimmel THANKS OFFERED TO ALL THE FIGHTING MEN AND WOMEN WE SALUTE YOU Staff Reports Area residents of many ages turned out on Sunday, Nov. 11, to pay tribute to military personnel past and present during the annual Veterans Day Parade on Main Street in downtown Sarasota. Although the Treaty of Versailles that ofcially end ed World War I was not signed until June 28, 1919, the cessation of hostilities between Germany and the Allied nations went into effect at the 11th hour on the 11th day of the 11th month in 1918. That is why Veterans Day is celebrated on Nov. 11, accord ing to the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. %
Sarasota News Leader November 16, 2012 Page 87 One decorated hero wins applause from the crowd lining Main Street.
Sarasota News Leader November 16, 2012 Page 88 Sarasota Police Chief Mikel Hollaway joins Sheriff Tom Knight in the parade. Sarasota County School Board Chairwoman Caroline Zucker (fourth from left, in red) joins the Sailors of Sarasota High School as they march down Main Street.
Sarasota News Leader November 16, 2012 Page 89 What would a Veterans Day parade be without military vehicles?
Sarasota News Leader November 16, 2012 Page 90 Sarasota Mayor Suzanne Atwell joins City Commissioner Willie Shaw for the events on Veterans Day in downtown Sarasota.
Sarasota News Leader November 16, 2012 Page 91 The Sarasota County Sheriffs Ofce offers its salute to the veterans.
Sarasota News Leader November 16, 2012 Page 92 In accord with the celebration, veterans groups join in the parade in downtown Sarasota. (From left) Sarasota County Commissioner Carolyn Mason, Sarasota City Commissioner Shannon Snyder and Supervisor of Elections Kathy Dent enjoy the celebration on Nov. 11.
T he Booker High School Visual and Performing Arts Dance Program will showcase an eclec tic mix of dance styles during its Fall Dance Performance, Thurs day through Saturday, Nov. 15-17, at 7 p.m. The shows will be in the schools VPA The atre at 3201 N. Orange Ave. Dance Department Chairwoman Melissa Lodhi has moved the de partment in a direction that focuses on making con nections between what students learn about the movement of their bod ies and several core academic classes, in cluding English, sci ence and mathemat ics, a Sarasota County Schools news release says. The approach has prompted students to strengthen their crit ical thinking skills as much as they strengthen their bodies as dancers. Booker High School dancers from the Visual and Performing Arts program prepare for their fall per formance. Contributed photo BOOKER HIGH SCHOOL DANCE STUDENTS TO PERFORM NOV. 15-17 ARTS BRIEFS
Sarasota News Leader November 16, 2012 Page 94 The blending of academia with dance perfor mance will be on display in a number of dance pieces, the news release adds. VPA dance instructor Courtney Smith-Inzalaco choreo graphed her piece based on mathematical principles. She says she drew inspiration from the work of mathematician Vi Hart, whose popular blog takes a quirky, pop-culture ap proach to math. Lodhis piece was originally created for Oc tobers diversity event, We Are Sarasota The dance dramatized tension between racial groups in the history of civil rights, the release points out. Ive since developed the piece into a broad er work that takes a more abstract approach to the theme of separation, Lodhi said in the news release. Now it explores societal and political issues as they relate to the experienc es of individuals. The performance also will feature styles of dance ranging from ballet, choreographed by Deborah Vinton, to Afro-Cuban dance, cho reographed by Leymis Bolaos-Wilmott. Tickets are $15 for regular admission; $5 for students (kindergarten through college); and $10 for seniors (ages 55 and up). They may be purchased online at www.vpabooker.com or by calling Judy Piercy at the VPA box ofce: 355-2967. Tickets also will be available at the door. Few musical groups can say that they were pioneers of their genre, but Mannheim Steam roller is without a doubt one of them, says a news release from the Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall. Even the groups name has become synonymous with the Christmas season, the release points out. The Van Wezel will welcome Mannheim Steamroller to its stage on Nov. 16, just before the holiday season begins in earnest. Led by Chip Davis, the groups rst Christ mas album, released in 1984, was a smash hit which hurtled the already Platinum selling group to mega-stardom, the new release says. Twelve albums later, Mannheim Steamroll er has become the quintessential source for a music style which has now become an Amer ican Christmas tradition, the release adds. Mannheim Steamroller also created a 12-hour, nationally syndicated radio program titled, An American Christmas, which features music and narrated stories; it is broadcast by more than 250 radio stations, the release notes. Tickets for the Sarasota show are priced from $30 to $85. For more information, call the box ofce at 953-3368 or visit www.VanWezel.org MANNHEIM STEAMROLLER TO TAKE VAN WEZEL STAGE NOV. 16 Take Your Time You Have All Week Enjoy The News Leader Anytime Day or Night
Sarasota News Leader November 16, 2012 Page 95 Ricardo Rhodes and Danielle Brown perform a scene in There Where She Loves. Photo by Frank Atura SARASOTA BALLET TO PRESENT ASHTON, WHEELDON, TAYLOR Taking the stage of the Sarasota Opera House Nov. 16-17, The Sarasota Ballets second pro gram this season will reect a carefully con structed dance lineup that will intrigue audi ence members of all kinds, the company has announced. Featuring Sir Frederick Ashtons Symphon ic Variations, Christopher Wheeldons There Where She Loves and Paul Taylors Company B, the program offers three unique styles of dance that are centered around one common theme the many emotions within human relationships, the release notes. This eclectic program highlights the classical style of Ashton, the contemporary approach of Wheeldon and the modern movements of Taylor. Director Iain Webb, who diversied The Sarasota Ballets repertoire when he took lead in 2007, has yet to craft a program that features identical styles of dance, the release adds.
Sarasota News Leader November 16, 2012 Page 96 Logan Learned takes one of his mighty leaps in Paul Taylors Company B. Contributed photo Ashton, Wheeldon, Taylor is a program that any dance enthusiast can attend and enjoy, said Webb in the release. There is something for everyone; Ive made sure of it. The performances will be at 8 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 16, and Saturday, Nov. 17, and at 2 p.m. on Nov. 17. The Opera House is located at 61 N. Pineapple Ave. Tickets may be purchased online 24 hours a day, seven days a week with Visa, MasterCard, American Express or Discover. The box ofce may be contacted by calling 359-0099, ext. 101.
Sarasota News Leader November 16, 2012 Page 97 During the Nov. 17 New Music New College program, titled, Then and Now, the JACK Quartet will perform recent works by distin guished New College graduates Taylor Briggs, Alejandro Castao, Jason Rosenberg and Sara Moone, each of whom has gone on to win ma jor prizes and commissions, juxtaposed with some of their notable student compositions, a New College news release notes. This will mark the fourth appearance of the JACK Quartet on the New Music New Col lege series. Musicians Christopher Otto (vi olin), Ari Streisfeld (violin), John Pickford Richards (viola) and Kevin McFarland (cello) have quickly established a reputation for giv ing high-energy performances of todays most demanding works for string quartet, the re lease adds. JACK QUARTET TO PERFORM ON NOV. 17 AT NEW COLLEGE The JACK Quartet is focused on the commis sioning and performance of new works, lead ing its members to work closely with com posers Helmut Lachenmann, Gyrgy Kurtg, Matthias Pintscher, Georg Friedrich Haas, James Dillon, Toshio Hosokawa, Wolfgang Rihm, Elliott Sharp, Beat Furrer, Caleb Bur hans, and Aaron Cassidy, the news release notes. The performance will be at 8 p.m. on Satur day, Nov 17, in the Mildred Sainer Music and Arts Pavilion, 5313 Bay Shore Road. Tickets are $15 for general admission; $5 for non-New College students. The concert is free for members of the New College community For more information, call 487-4888 or visit newmusicnewcollege.org For online reserva tions, visit donate.ncf.edu/events Enter To Win A New iPad e contest concludes when e Sarasota News Leader achieves 1,000 Likes on Facebook, One winner will be selected at random from among subscribers. Only subscribers are eligible to win the iPad, regardless of having Liked our page on Facebook. Contest is open only to residents of Sarasota County. Selected winners must provide a valid Sarasota County street address to receive the iPad. Contest is void where prohibited by law. 2 Then Like Us On Facebook When our Likes on Facebook reach 1,000, we will randomly select one of our subscribers to receive a new iPad. 1 Click here to Subscribe
Sarasota News Leader November 16, 2012 Page 98 executive director of SMO, in a news release. We recommend that people buy their tickets early because we sold out a week after tickets went on sale last year. We predict well sell even faster this year in the rst three days. The Grand Tasting features signature dishes from the areas top chefs, along with a vast array of wines and beers presented by guest vintners and breweries. More than 100 win eries and about 75 individual winemakers are participating this year, says Michael Klauber, chairman of the event, in the news release. Were thrilled with the response from the international and national winemaking industry. This has become a major showcase event for them. Tickets are on sale for the sixth annual Forks & Corks Food & Wine Festival, which will be held Jan. 25-28. Presented by The Saraso ta-Manatee Originals (SMO), the four-day cu linary festival brings together regional chefs and world-renowned vintners and brewmas ters. The anchor event, the Grand Tasting, will be held Jan. 27 in the courtyard of The John and Mable Ringling Museum of Art. Forks & Corks Universitys seminars on food and wine will be held Jan. 26 in Michaels Wine Cellar and Ballroom, and various winemaker events will be featured at area restaurants Jan. 25-26. As Southwest Floridas premier wine and food festival, Forks & Corks is attracting peo ple from around the country, says Kate Atkin, Forks and Corks University is a popular event during the annual food and wine festival. Photo by Peter Acker PLANS ANNOUNCED FOR 6TH ANNUAL FORKS & CORKS
Sarasota News Leader November 16, 2012 Page 99 A four-course gourmet lunch prepared by top Originals member restaurants is included with Forks & Corks University ticket price. Tickets for the Grand Tasting and Forks & Corks University can be purchased online only. For a complete listing of special events and for more information about the sixth annual Forks & Corks food and wine festival, visit www.freshoriginals.com/forksandcorks or call 955-3663. Klauber says this years winemakers will come from France, Italy, Spain, South America, South Africa, New Zealand, California, Oregon and Washington. The Grand Tasting tickets are $85 (plus ser vice charge) for general admission; and $150 (plus service charge) for VIP admission. Tick ets include free admission to the museums art galleries on the day of the event. Forks & Corks University tickets are $125 (plus service charge) for the full-day session; and $75 (plus service charge) for the half-day session. Participants in the 2011 Forks & Corks festival mingle among the statuary at the Ringling Museum complex. Photo by Rod Millington
Sarasota News Leader November 16, 2012 Page 100 Internationally acclaimed sculptor Patrick Dougherty will spend three weeks in January creating one of his unique sculptures on the grounds of the historic Sarasota High School, which is being transformed into the Saraso ta Museum of Art/SMOA, the president of the museum has announced. More than 100 volunteers are needed to assist Dougherty in gathering materials for and con structing his installation, a news release says. Wendy G. Surkis, president of the Sarasota Museum of Art, a division of Ringling Col lege of Art and Design, has announced that Dougherty will be at SMOA Jan. 7-26 to create a site-specic installation as part of SMOAs 2013 ARTmuse program. Surkis explains in the news release that the artist often works with more than 100 volun teers during his installation process to gather and weave the truckloads of sticks and other natural materials that are needed to craft his Patrick Dougherty with his sculpture Ruaille Buaille (Highjinx) in County Offaly, Ireland. Photo by James Fraher VOLUNTEERS SOUGHT FOR SARASOTA MUSEUM OF ART PROJECT
Sarasota News Leader November 16, 2012 Page 101 signature sculptures. Volunteers work in fourhour sessions, the news release points out. SMOA also is seeking volunteers to serve as docents during the program. Those volunteers must be 18 years of age or older. For more information and details on volunteer require ments, send an email to email@example.com. SMOA will offer docent training to inform vol unteers about the artist, his work and his mis sion in Sarasota, the release says. The educa tional aspect to this project is very vital, she adds in the release. We want to offer every one who comes to the site the opportunity to have a deeper understanding and appreciation of Patricks work. Were looking for energetic people who are passionate about art and who enjoy engaging and inspiring others. Surkis points out in the news release that Doughertys designs involve weaving and bind ing sapling branches together to form ow ing patterns and maze-like structures through which visitors can walk. Patricks wonder fully imaginative installations are temporal works made from trees, twigs, vines and oth er natural materials from the area, she adds. Surkis says the public will have many opportu nities to view the artist at work as his creation evolves during the three weeks he is on-site. For more information about the Sarasota Mu seum of Art, visit www.sarasotamuseumofart. org or call Surkis at 309-7662. River Vessels by Patrick Dougherty at the Waco Cultural Arts Center, Waco, TX. Photo by Mark Randolph
Although Chanukah does not begin until Dec. 8, Temple Emanu-El members have already been instrumental in ensuring a happy holiday for American Jewish soldiers serving over seas. In conjunction with the Los Angeles-based military support organization Project M.O.T., Temple Emanu-El recently oversaw the cre ation and donation of handmade and hand The clergy and parish family of the Church of the Redeemer, 222 S. Palm Ave., in downtown Sarasota, invite all members of the community to celebrate Thanksgiving Day with a special choral Mass at 10 a.m. on Thursday, Nov. 22. Temple Emanu-El Sisterhood President Linda Weiss joins Rabbi Brenner Glickman in creating Chanukah cards for American Jewish soldiers serving overseas. Contributed photo TEMPLE EMANU-EL TO BRING CHANUKAH CHEER TO U.S. SOLDIERS RELIGION BRIEFS written Chanukah cards, a news release says. These cards were collected at Temple Ema nu-El, then mailed to Project M.O.T. for inclu sion in its Chanukah care packages for Jewish soldiers. For more information about Temple Ema nu-Els outreach efforts to American Jewish soldiers, call 379-1997. SPECIAL CHORAL MASS SET FOR THANKSGIVING DAY A collection of non-perishable food will be made to help feed the hungry in the commu nity through the Mayors Feed the Hungry pro gram and Caritas.
Sarasota News Leader November 16, 2012 Page 103 For more information, visit www.redeem ersarasota.org or call 955-4263. Joanne Maguire participates in Temple Emanu-Els Chanukah card-making project for American Jewish servicemen and women. Contributed photo
16 NOV Mannheim Steamroller Christmas Nov. 16, 8 p.m., Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall. Admission: $30 to 85; 953-3368 or Van Wezel.org 17 NOV Sarasota Bay Water Festival Nov. 17, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., 1700 Ken Thompson Parkway, Sarasota. Live music, food ven dors, arts contest, childrens activities, water sports and more. Free admission. For in formation: 321-1353 or sarasotabaywaterfestival.com 17 NOV Then and Now: Music of New College Graduates with the JACK String Quartet, Nov. 17, 8 to 9:30 p.m., Mildred Sainer Pavilion, 5313 Bay Shore Road, Sarasota. Admis sion: $15. Information: 487-4888 or donate.ncf.edu/events 17 NOV Sarasota Medieval Fair Nov. 17-18, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., Sarasota Fairgrounds, 3000 Ringling Blvd., Sarasota. Admis sion: adults, $16.95 daily; children, $8.95. Information: sarasotamedievalfair.com 17 NOV Sarasota Silver Stars Play Reading Festival Nov. 17 at 7:30 p.m. and Nov. 18 at 2 p.m., 838 N. Tamiami Trail, Sarasota. Admission: $12. Information: 365-2494 or firstname.lastname@example.org 18 NOV Jeff Parker: reading and book signing Nov. 18, 1 to 2 p.m., Bookstore1Sarasota,1359 Main St., Sarasota. Free admission; pur chase book for signing; 365-7900 or Bookstore1Sarasota.com ComMunity CALendar The best of the upcoming week To get all the details on these and other great ac tivities food, nightlife, music, art, theater, chil drens events, learning opportunities and more go to Sarasotas No. 1 source for local events, hot spots, fun activities and hidden gems:
Each week, Staff Photographer Norman Schimmel searches Sarasota County for iconic shots that underscore why the community is a favorite with residents and tourists alike. SCHIMMEL SIGHTINGS PASSION FOR ART IN A PASTORAL SETTING SCHIMMEL SIGHTINGS