Four young turks of architecture think so. Come and hear what they have to say and what the built future of Sarasota could look like.
No matter how you feel about modern architecture, you’ll want to be in the audience on the evening of Tuesday, February 10, at 7 p.m. when Sarasota Herald-Tribune real estate editor and architecture lecturer Harold Bubil leads a conversation with four ambitious and highly talented young architects who discuss how future of Sarasota will look if they have any influence. And they do, since they’re all working on important projects in town. Joining Bubil on stage at the Crocker Memorial Church are: Tatiana White, Chris Leader, Leonardo Lunardi and Damien Blumetti. A power point presentation narrated by Harold Bubil will place the modern movement in context with Sarasota’s past styles of residential, commercial and municipal architecture.
If you’re a newcomer to town, seasonal visitor or tax paying full-time resident, you’re bound to learn a lot about buildings and homes you see everyday around town. But, you’ll also see what could be down the road for Sarasota in terms of the homes we live in and the buildings we shop in, bank in and places where we receive medical care. Are we clinging to Mediterranean revival and cottage styles or committing to leading-edge modern design based on principles of the Sarasota School of Architecture that reigned in post-war years through the 1960s? Find out and then express your own views.
Now in its third year and presented by the Historical Society of Sarasota County (HSOSC), Conversations at The Crocker is a series of interactive monthly discussions that highlight aspects of Sarasota’s history and looks at past events and people who have influenced today’s Sarasota. All Conversations take place at the historic Crocker Memorial Church in Pioneer Park, 1260 12th Street, Sarasota. Community welcome. 7 p.m. Free to HSOSC members and students; $10, guests.
The futuristic rendering appears here.
Pullman car historian and restorer of John Ringling’s private railroad car, the Wisconsin car in Sarasota talks about rail travel of the Gilded Age and how John and Mable Ringling traveled in luxury aboard a fabulous custom car.
Ride the rails into the past with Pullman Railroad car expert and the restorer of the famed Wisconsin custom railroad car with David W. Duncan when he leads a Conversation at The Crocker, on Tuesday, January 13, starting at 7 p.m. at the Crocker Memorial Church, 1260 12th Street (Pioneer Park), Sarasota.
David W. Duncan is a Pullman Railroad car historian and he has been the consultant on the Wisconsin for The Ringling Museum. His hands-on work and expertise have been instrumental in the restoration process of this historic railroad car. Duncan will be joined on stage by Ron McCarty, Curator of Ca’d’Zan at The Ringling Museum.
A Pullman Car was a standard of luxury in the early part of the 20th century and John Ringling wanted one. Having established a relationship with the Pullman firm by buying second-hand cars for use by the circus, Ringling commissioned Pullman to build a private car for his personal use in 1904. The name Wisconsin was chosen to honor the state that was home to the Ringling brothers and their circus.
On March 16, 1905, Ringling took delivery of the Wisconsin from Pullman’s Calumet Shop. He used the car as a place to stylishly entertain and impress friends, family, business associates and politicians. And the car enabled him to conduct circus business as he traveled across the country. Ringling’s first trip aboard the car was to Baraboo, Wisconsin, the family’s hometown. Later that year, John Ringling and Mable Burton were married in Hoboken, New Jersey.
“It is rare for a private railroad car to be restored with such care, attention to detail and respect to the historic fabric,” says Ron McCarty about Duncan’s work on the Wisconsin. “Now at the museum, visitors to Sarasota can glimpse a means of transportation that only a few ever experienced. This restored jewel of the Gilded Age tells the story of a bygone era and the community can learn all about it at the Conversation at The Crocker on the evening of January 13.” All aboard !
Organized and presented by the Historical Society of Sarasota County and sponsored by SARASOTA Magazine, this public conversation (accompanied by rare photos) is free to Historical Society members and students. Guests, $10. Proceeds help maintain the two historic properties at Pioneer Park, The Bidwell-Wood House (1882, Sarasota’s oldest private residence) and the Crocker Memorial Church (1901).
Anyone intrigued by the recent and turbulent history of Sarasota will want to be in the audience at the Crocker Memorial Church on Tuesday, April 8, 2014 when historian Jeff LaHurd and real estate/architecture expert Harold Bubil engage one another in a lively conversation about Ken Thompson, Sarasota’s longest-serving city manager and the man responsible for moving Sarasota into the modern era.
This non-elected public servant had an unorthodox style achieving progress and it will all be revealed at this Conversation at The Crocker which starts at 7 p.m. The event is free to members of the Historical Society and $10 for guests.
“Ken Thompson was appointed city manager in 1950 and guided the community for the next 38 years,”
said LaHurd, whose latest book is about Thompson and his influence on the development of Sarasota. “It would be difficult to find anyone in Sarasota’s history who exerted such an influence on this community. Waldo Profit called him the architect of modern Sarasota and Bruce Franklin, president of the ADP Group once remarked when Thompson was city manager, it did not take 10 years to get a project completed.”
LaHurd’s research found Thompson to be a man of integrity and above reproach in all his business dealings. “He was a brilliant Renaissance man who enjoyed flying, sailing, and creating art,” continued LaHurd. “With Ken Thompson, the buck stopped on his desk and he was capable of making far reaching decisions. At a time when segregation was the “law” of the land, Thompson de-segregated the public library and Bobby Jones Golf Course with a telephone call to the manager of each. As an important person in Sarasota’s history I rank Ken Thompson with John Hamilton Gillespie, Owen Burns, Bertha Palmer and John Ringling.” You’ll want to know more, so be in the audience on Tuesday, April 8 at the Crocker Memorial Church. Bring your questions and any memories you have of Ken Thompson to share.
Conversations take place at The Crocker Memorial Church and proceeds help to maintain the Bidwell-Wood House (1882, Sarasota’s oldest private residence) and the Crocker Memorial Church (1901). The Crocker Memorial Church is located at 1260 12th Street in Pioneer Park, Sarasota, one block off North Tamiami Trail at 12th Street. Chairs of Conversations at The Crocker are Lynn Harding and Marsha Fottler. Docent-led tours of the two buildings are available and the gift shop is open before each Conversation event. For more information call 364-9076.
How did diverse religious groups influence the early growth and character of Sarasota?
The congregations that pioneers of the Sarasota area established became civic and social centers in addition to places of worship and their importance increased as the little villages evolved into organized towns, cities and counties. People looked to their churches for spiritual support that also enriched social lives and fostered educational advancement.
Four experts in church history gather on Tuesday, February 11, 2014 at the Crocker Memorial Church (1260 12th Street, Pioneer Park) to engage the audience in a guided conversation about the historically significant churches that had a major impact on the development of Sarasota before 1930.
Speaking to God in Different Voices is part of a series of community dialogues called Conversations at The Crocker. Organized by the Historical Society of Sarasota County and sponsored by SARASOTA Magazine, Conversations at The Crocker events highlight specific aspects of Sarasota’s past and examines pivotal events and people.
Leading this conversation is Kim Sheintal, author of the book Jews of Sarasota-Manatee. Sheintal came to Sarasota in 1971 and has served as president of five local Jewish organizations. She is president of the Jewish Genealogical Society of Southwest Florida and serves on the board at Temple Emanu-El.
“There are upwards of 200 churches just in Sarasota and our collective church heritage is impressive,” said Sheintal. “There is too much information for a single Conversation so we are focusing on churches and synagogues established before 1930. We will cover as much as we can and what we don’t get to will be another Conversation next year. I hope people in the audience will share memories about churches and synagogues in Sarasota because that is the way that history is accumulated and documented. Each time I present a lecture on my book, I learn something from the audience and I’m sure that will be the case with this Conversation.”
Joining Sheintal on the stage will be Ohio native Ted Cover. He moved to Sarasota in 2000. Cover is the Historian/Archivist for St. Martha’s Church and his other avocations include model railroading, history of technology and history of the Sarasota area.
Also on the stage will be Treva Robinson who moved to Sarasota in 1964 and joined First United Methodist a year later. After several volunteer assignments, she joined the staff in 1970 as membership secretary and later church secretary. She retired last year with a vast storehouse of knowledge.
Also contributing to the Conversation will be Dr. Carl Stockton, Professor of History and Academic Dean emeritus, University of Indianapolis. He is active with the National Episcopal Historians and Archivists, the Historical Society of the Episcopal Church and the Ecclesiastical Historical Society. He is a writer and reviewer for historical journals and is President of the Sarasota Association of Campus Ministry.
Conversations take place at The Crocker Memorial Church and proceeds help to maintain the Bidwell-Wood House (1882, Sarasota’s oldest private residence) and the Crocker Memorial Church (1901). This event begins at 7 p.m. Tuesday February 11 and is free to Historical Society members; $10 for guests. Chairs of Conversations at The Crocker are Lynn Harding and Marsha Fottler. At 6pm, join us for docent-led tours of our campus and to shop at the gift shop before each Conversation event. For additional information, contact Linda Garcia, Site Manager, at 364-9076.Historic photo from the Sarasota County Archives.
A lively and informative discussion about the history and development of significant neighborhoods in Sarasota. You’ll learn a lot and get to voice your own opinion on places to live – then and now.
Sarasota officially became a real estate destination in1885 when 60 people from Scotland, who had purchased land in this area from the Edinburgh-based Florida Mortgage and Investment Company, arrived on an uncharacteristically chilly December day at what is now lower Main Street excited to establish neighborhoods and a town. They were soon disappointed with the mud road and wood huts they saw.
Then it snowed…
… Want to know what happened next? Then be sure to be in the audience at the Crocker Memorial Church (1260 12th Street, Pioneer Park) on Tuesday, January 14 when a small group of gabby researchers talk to one another and to you about the development of significant neighborhoods in Sarasota. The event is part of the series Conversations at The Crocker and is presented by the Historical Society of Sarasota County (HSOSC). The event is free to Historical Society members and $10 for the general public. The fun starts at 7 p.m.
Conversation leader is Bob Plunket, who has been writing about Sarasota’s people and places for over 30 years. His articles currently appear regularly in SARASOTA Magazine and The Observer, plus national publications such as Barron’s. “After owning eight different houses in Sarasota over the years,” he said, “I’m obsessed about all the amazing neighborhoods in Sarasota where you can own, rent, and be foreclosed in. And the history of all of these neighborhoods is entirely fascinating from the street names to the famous people who lived in them. For instance, do you know why there’s an Ocean Boulevard on Siesta Key when the city isn’t near any ocean? Turns out the street was named after Captain Louis Roberts’s wife, whose given name was Ocean Hansen. Roberts was an early developer of Siesta Key and had a hotel on the island that he expanded from his house.”
Joining Bob Plunket will be Dr. Clifford Smith, Senior Planner, Historic Preservation, City of Sarasota. Also on the stage will be Margi Baskerwille Nanny. Along with her former husband Jerry King, they developed Centergate. King was one of the Sarasota’s top real estate developers of the 1960s to 1980s and with his family developed Southgate, and several and several other neighborhoods that will be discussed.
On The Street Where You Live is the fourth event this season in Conversations at The Crocker, a series now in its second successful year. Conversations at The Crocker events are organized and produced by the Historical Society of Sarasota County (HSOSC) with support from SARASOTA Magazine. Conversations at The Crocker events highlight specific aspects of Sarasota’s past and examine pivotal events and people who have influenced Sarasota today.
All Conversations take place at The Crocker Memorial Church and proceeds from this panel discussion series help to maintain the Historical Society’s two heritage properties at Pioneer Park – the Bidwell-Wood House (1882, Sarasota’s oldest private residence) and the Crocker Memorial Church (1901). Docent-led tours of both buildings are available an hour before each of the Conversations at The Crocker events. The Gift shop is also open prior to Conversation events. Chairs of Conversations at The Crocker are Lynn Harding and Marsha Fottler. President of the Historical Society of Sarasota County is Howard Rosenthal. Site Manager is Linda Garcia. For additional information about Conversations at Crocker, contact Linda Garcia at 364-9076
Deborah Walk, Curator of the Ringling Circus Museum, invites three famous circus friends to sit and chat about performing, rehearsing at winter quarters and much more. Hear insider stories about circus luminaries and how they influenced the development of Sarasota and Venice while thrilling audiences all over the world.
Deborah Walk, Tibbals Curator of the Circus Museum and Curator of Historical Resources at the Ringling Museum, takes to the stage at the Crocker Memorial Church on Tuesday, December 10 for a conversation with three famous circus performers who will share insider stories about life under the big top. Joining Walk will be Jackie LeClaire, Karen Bell and Mary Jane Miller for a evening of thrills, chills and circus recollections that will leave you breathless.
This Circus Circus! event, organized and presented by the Historical Society of Sarasota County (HSOSC), takes place on Tuesday, December 10, starting at 7 p.m. at the Crocker Memorial Church, 1260 12th Street (Pioneer Park) in Sarasota. HSOSC members admitted free; guests, $10.
In 1942, Mary Jane Miller’s friends coaxed her to answer an ad in the Herald-Tribune that announced Ringling Bros. & Barnum and Bailey Circus was looking for girls for the season. Against her mother’s wishes, Mary Jane went to the Winter Quarters and tried out. Tuffy Genders, aerial director of the show, was reluctant to audition her because of her young age and lack of experience. But, he asked Mary Jane to climb a flexible metal ladder 40 feet high. He watched her quickly scramble to the top, hang on by one hand and wave to him. She was hired, went on the road and the rest is history. Mary Jane spent 13 seasons with Ringling. She performed nearly every type of circus act – elephants, flying act, iron jaw (hanging by your teeth), even handstands on the top of the Wallenda’s Roman Ladders act. Mary Jane also appeared in the 1952 Cecil B. DeMille movie The Greatest Show On Earth. Her stories are priceless and she’s anxious to share them with Conversation guests on December 10 at the Crocker Memorial Church.
Jackie LeClaire has delighted and amazed audiences for almost seven decades. His first salaried position was as a clown in partnership with his father on tour with the Ringling Bros. & Barnum and Bailey Circus. At 18 he became an aerialist for a while before returning to clowning. But, Jackie kept up his trapeze skills and was a double for Cornel Wilde in the film, The Greatest Show on Earth. Jackie LeClaire has traveled the world making people laugh. He was inducted into the International Clown Hall of fame in 1966 and in 2002 he was inducted into the Circus Ring of Fame on St. Armands Circle. Although officially retired, Jackie continues spreading joy through programs such as Laughter Unlimited. In 2010 Jackie LeClaire was chosen by the John and Mable Ringling Museum of Art as Circus Celebrity of the Year.
Karen Bell has been performing around the world as a clown for 28 years, beginning with an eight-year tour with Ringling Bros. Circus. She is a well-respected circus performing clown and a ‘producing’ clown for Ringling, Karen has created material for herself and other clowns who perform in the show. Karen has been a featured lecturer at the World Clown Annual Conference twice, the only female clown to be featured. She moved to Sarasota to work with Circus Sarasota’s outreach program, Laughter Unlimited in 2005. She develops humor-based interventions for senior citizens living in nursing facilities.
Deborah Walk is the Tibbals Curator of the Circus Museum and Curator of Historical Resources; she oversees the exhibition programs at the Circus Museum as well as the archival program. She was head of the team that supervised the construction and installation of the Circus Museum’s Tibbals Learning Center, which opened in 2006. Deborah is a past president of the Society of Florida Archivists and Beta Phi Mu (National Honor Society for Library and Information Science): Gamma Chapter. She is a past member of the State Historical Records Advisory Board and past chair of the Sarasota Historical Commission. She is Secretary for the board of directors of Circus Sarasota, advisory board member at HSOSC and incoming president of the national Circus Historical Society.
Conversations at The Crocker is an annual series of interactive programs focusing on various aspects of Sarasota’s past. Sponsorship of Conversations at The Crocker is provided by SARASOTA Magazine.
For more information about Circus, Circus at Conversations at The Crocker on December 10, call Linda Garcia, Site Manager at HSOSC, at 364-9076 Make plans to join the conversation.
It’s the next best thing to running away to join the circus.Poster from the 1920s promoting the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus. Credit: The Granger Collection, New York
How We Were Forever Changed by World War II
Here’s what we’ll be talking about at our monthly Conversations this coming season:
All Conversations take place at the Crocker Memorial Church, 1260 12th Street (Pioneer Park), Sarasota, FL. All conversations start at 7 p.m. For more information, call Linda Garcia at (941) 364-9076. Members, free; Guests, $10
All Conversations take place at the Crocker Memorial Church, 1260 12th Street (Pioneer Park), Sarasota, FL. All conversations start at 7 p.m. For more information, call Linda Garcia at (941) 364-9076.
Members, free; Guests, $10 (Become a member before the Conversations start and save big!)
A panel of architecture experts discusses residential and commercial design movements over the years that have resulted in Sarasota’s look. Is it good or not?
A panel of architecture experts convenes on Tuesday, March 12 at 7 p.m. at The Crocker Memorial Church, 1260 12th Street to talk about how Sarasota came to look the way it does, in our Conversations at The Crocker event.
Florida Cracker, vernacular Continue reading
Is Sarasota a viable art community today?
Kay Kipling is the Executive Editor at SARASOTA Magazine and has a 30 year history of writing about the visual and performing for many publications. Heidi Connor is a gallery professional, art consultant and freelance curator. Additionally, she worked for many years with the artist John Chamberlain. Kevin Dean is Director of Selby Gallery, Ringling College of Art and Design. He has 27 years experience teaching art history and has been gallery director for 18 years, during which time he has organized more than 200 shows. A working artist, Dean has his work exhibited in museums, college galleries, alternative spaces and currently at Allyn Gallup’s contemporary gallery in Sarasota. Kevin Dean is also the co-author (along with Marcia Corbino and Pat Rignling Buck) of the book A History of Visual Art in Sarasota. William Hartman, owner of the Hartman Gallery in downtown Sarasota, grew up surrounded by artists. “My folks, the artists William and Marty Hartman, met in 1946 while attending Ringling School of Art; my dad on the GI Bill and my mother working as a student for Mr. Kimbrough in the front office. In 1951 my parents opened their art school and gallery in the old Times building on 1st Street and became life long contributors to the Sarasota art scene.”
“Sarasota will always be a beautiful location for artists to live and work,” continued Hartman, “however, as a place to market their work Sarasota has always had shortcomings. But, Ringling School has been a player central to our story, if we were to remove John Ringling from the equation, we might never have acquired the distinction as an art colony.”