|The rains keep on coming|
GOOD MORNING, AND WELCOME TO ANOTHER JIM KNOWS SARASOTA..... while I was away for two weeks you folks on the East Coast have been suffering through record heat, while those of us in SARASOTA, my rant of several weeks ago was heard...several inches heard. BUT, it's good to be back.
UNIVERSITY TOWN CENTER UPDATE:
This rendering, courtesy Max Wave Media and SARASOTA Herald Tribune gives you an idea of the magnitude of the project. The green area is for a yet to be announced 4th anchor store. We are all hoping for NORDSTROM, but nothing official has been announced yet. Justine Griffin of the Herald Tribune reports Cheesecake Factory is one of the many restaurants already committed. Rumors of California Pizza Kitchen and Morton's Steak House joining, but nothing official. We are also waiting confirmation of Apple, but again, just a rumor.
There is some new information regarding University Park Plaza. Ethan Allen Furniture will be joining Panera Bread, Fidelity Investments, Florida Blue Center and other yet to be announced restaurants and retailers making use of the area directly across from UTC, and in newly constructed buildings on the west side of Cattleman Road. No word on construction start or opening.
Across the street in Benderson Plaza, Nordstrom Rack is set to open officially November 7. And in an article by Justine comes news that Ashley Furniture has decided not to occupy the space under construction. No word on a new tenant as construction continues near Nordstrom Rack's future location.
beauty at The Met, to a scrumptious brunch at Michael's on East, and a luncheon at The Bijou. All were exceptional events, but the Bijou luncheon deserves extra space for its creativity and vendors who helped make it memorable. Cakes by Ron, 3520 Fruitville Rd. 941-365-2991, created the masterpiece above.
The linens/napkins were created by Moria Saviola's Affordable Decorating & Design 941-306-5571. Moria's creativity doesn't stop there; she does window treatments, pillows, napkin holders and more.
The flowers were created by Beneva Flowers 941-308-5151. Among their six locations are Sarasota, Longboat Key and Siesta Key. Favors were created by Marianne E on Palm Avenue and candy was purchased at Circle favorite Kilwins. Hostess Joan Castellani was especially grateful to Bijou manager, Karen who assisted with customized menus.
For those of us who live in the University Park corridor there is a Mail Station hidden behind Walgreen's in a strip mall that provides all kinds of services in a friendly and convenient location without the hassle of a regular post office. From actually packing to then shipping, their services also include stamps, fax, envelopes and whatever you would need to make the trip to the post office unnecessary. Their address is 8466 N. Lockwood Ridge Rd. Hours are Mon-Fri 8:00am to 5pm and Saturday to 1pm.
Currently playing and now extended at FLORIDA STUDIO THEATRE is the Steve Martin farce, Underpants. I saw it two weeks ago and found it underwhelming. The acting, as always, was suburb. It was the ridiculous story and unfunny situations I found tedious and boring. It never happens, but I was glad for intermission. You can use your imagination to guess what happened next.
Van Wezel is beginning to announce it's fall/winter schedule. Along with ten hit musicals and several world famous orchestras comes talent like Diana Ross and Itzah Perlman and many more.
For a complete list of performances click here
With summer comes an opportunity to re-visit favorite restaurants without fighting crowds for reservations and tables. This past week I returned to both of these wonderfully casual SARASOTA restaurants, Yummy House and Lucky Pelican. Though both were crowded, it was not too difficult to be seated and served in quick order. The food as always was delicious. In fact, Yummy House has finally gotten its act together with both service and food you would expect from a good restaurant. Lucky Pelican was its old self. I recommend going now or at least in the next few months before both will require a wait......though both are well worth the wait!!!
Playing now in a few select cities, FRUITVALE STATION opens wide next Friday. Everything I've read about this movie makes me want to see it NOW. It is a searing portrait of grief and outrage. A true story about an Oakland man killed during a run-in with police, Fruitvale Station was a major winner at both Cannes and Sundance. Entertainment weekly recently had it as #1 on its Must List. My review will be in two weeks. For those of us who love the movies and eagerly await adult films in the summer; this is the one to see.
Jim's rant this week will not be rain related, though it should be. No, my rant is for all of us who live in SARASOTA and continually complain about heavy traffic both in and out of season. Having just spent several days in Baltimore and Atlanta; what we have is nothing compared to those two cities! Sure it takes longer to get off of Longboat in the winter and I 75 is congested some mornings or afternoons, but that is child's play compared to major cities. Think about that the next time you are stuck in traffic for a FEW minutes..........
Tracy, as usual has cleaned up my original blog to make it look more professional. I could not do this without her. Have a great couple of weeks and I'll see you in AUGUST........JIM