Phillippi Farmhouse Market - 8th Season!
Sponsor: Friends of Sarasota County Parks (FOSCP)
It's back! Enjoy local fruits, vegetables, herbs and plants for sale as well as local foods and artisan crafts. Experience live music and free parking. Plenty of volunteers ready to assist you. Pets on a leash are always welcome at the market. 
During market hours, enjoy FREE, narrated historical tours of the Edson
Keith Mansion starting at 10 a.m. The tour includes the history of the early beginnings of the Sarasota Community.  
Wednesdays through April 26, 2017
9 a.m. - 2 p.m.
5500 South Tamiami Trail, Sarasota
All welcome! 
For more information on the Phillippi Farmhouse Market 
or how to become a vendor: 
Call 941-275-9397 or email
Englewood Farmer's Market
on Historic Dearborn Street 
Sponsors: Friends of Sarasota County Parks (FOSCP) and The Englewood Community Redevelopment Area (CRA) 
Thursdays, 9 a.m. - 2 p.m. 
Historic Dearborn Street, 
All welcome! 
For more information call
April Fool's Walk - "The Games Nature Can Play" 

Join a Sarasota County Environmental Specialist at Nokomis's Pocono Trail Preserve, for a special April Fool's hike to learn about the special tricks and shenanigans Mother Nature has up her sleeve. Mimicry, bright colors warning of potential danger and toxins and irritants are just a few of the protective and deceptive tactics plants and animals use to survive and thrive. Enjoy the beautiful live oak and cabbage palm hammocks along the way as we learn about these intriguing aspects of the natural world around us. 
Monday, April 3,  9 - 11 a.m.    
189 Pocono Trail East, Nokomis
Space limited to 15.
Guide: Sarasota County Environmental Specialist
Register here for this event. 
Pooches at the Preserve 

Leash up your pooch and join Red Bug Slough Preserve's staff for a fun and informative dog-friendly nature walk through the preserve. 
Enjoy the shaded trails with your four-legged companion; learn about dog etiquette, dog safety in natural areas, owner responsibilities and so much more "pooch-tacular" information. For better manageability, participants are limited to two dogs per person. Please be sure to bring pet waste bags and dog treats (optional) and remember, all dogs must be on leash at all times during the walk. 
Tuesday, April 4,  9 - 11 a.m.   
5200 Beneva Road, Sarasota
Space limited to 20.
Guide: Sarasota County Environmental Specialist
Register here for this event. 
Demonstration Garden Tour at Shamrock Park
Join the master gardener volunteers as they provide free demonstration garden tours and advice on Florida gardening. 
Meet at the central Demonstration Garden near the Nature Center.

Thursday, April 6,  9 - 10 a.m.
Demonstration Garden area
3900 Shamrock Dr., Venice
No registration needed. 
All welcome! 
Explore Celery Fields 

Why is it called "Celery Fields"? Why is Celery Fields so popular? And just what is that mountain made of? Learn the answers to these questions and more as you join a Sarasota County Parks Naturalist on 
a guided walk through the Celery Fields. Participants should be prepared to walk approximately two-miles along mostly unpaved and often uneven rocky or grassy surfaces, some of which will be uphill. 
Thursday, April 6,  9 - 11 a.m.    
6893 Palmer Blvd, Sarasota
Space limited to 20.
Guide: Sarasota County Parks Naturalist
Register here for this event. 
Fitness in the Park: Fit as a Fiddle for 50-plus
Looking for an opportunity to get a little fresh air, meet new people and get healthier and stronger? Join us for a walk to improve health, balance and overall fitness. Enjoy the exercise stations (especially for walkers 50-plus) along the trail. This is a gentle workout and not for advanced fitness buffs. The goal: to strengthen muscles, help minimize the risk of falls, instill a sense of well-being and quality of life through exercise and companionship. Wear comfortable athletic shoes and sun protection and/or hat and bring water. Be prepared to walk 1 - 2 miles on paved and relatively even unpaved trails.

Fridays, April  7, 14, 21, 28 
8:30 - 9:30 a.m.
4000 Honore Ave., Sarasota
Space unlimited 
Guide: Sarasota County Staff
No registrations are needed
Join the Lemon Bay F.I.S.H. Project
Calling all F.I.S.H. - Folks Interested in Submerged Habitats! 
Get a little wet, have a little fun and learn a lot! 
Join American Littoral Society Biologist, Chuck Idelberger, on a search for marine life in Lemon Bay. Using hand and seine nets, you will search shallow waters and seagrass beds, observing, collecting, and discussing the natural history of some of the many interesting fishes and other animals that inhabit the bay.
Saturday, April 8, 9:30 - 11:30 a.m.    
570 Bay Park Blvd., Englewood
Space is unlimited.
Guide: Chuck Idelberger, American
Littoral Society Biologist
For registration, please call Chuck Idelberger directly at 941-488-8998.
Birding Diversity at T. Mabry Carlton, Jr. Memorial Reserve
Calling all birding enthusiasts! Be tantalized and wowed by the vast array of bird species and nature found at the beautiful T. Mabry Carlton, Jr. Memorial Reserve (Carlton Reserve). Join Sarasota County volunteer guide Charlie Sample as he leads you on a birding nature journey.  Don't miss this opportunity to help document the multitude of bird species on the Carlton Reserve. You won't be disappointed! 
Saturday, April 8
7:15 a.m. - 12:15 p.m. 
1800 Mabry Carlton Parkway, Venice
Space limited to 12
Guide: Sarasota County Volunteer 
Charlie Sample
Register here for this event. 
Ethnobotany of SW Florida Walk and Talk 

Join a Sarasota County Environmental Specialist at Curry Creek Preserve to learn about past and present uses of our native plants. Participants will learn how some of the region's common native plants have been used for food, herbal remedies and for shelter, with a focus on native Floridians and early settlers.   
Tuesday, April 11, 9 - 11 a.m.  
East entrance
1500 Pinebrook Rd., Venice
Space limited to 20
Guide: Sarasota County Environmental
Register here for this event. 
A Walk Around the Lake at Scherer Thaxton Preserve 
Join Sarasota County volunteer guides, amateur botanists and Florida Native Plant Society members, Denny Girard and Al Squires as they lead you on a walk around the lake at Scherer Thaxton Preserve. While you hike, you may encounter birds of prey; like a bald eagle or swallow-tailed kite soaring overhead and blooming native plants. 
Wednesday, April 12,  9 - 11 a.m.
13125 Honore Avenue, Nokomis
Space limited to 20
Guide: Volunteers Denny Girard and Al Squires
Register here for this event. 
'Gators in the Neighborhood' 
Even folks born and raised in Florida may not be aware of the American alligator's quirky details and life history. This fascinating reptile hasn't changed much since prehistoric times, and we still share our waterways and ponds with them. Join Sarasota County Park Staff at Shamrock Park's classroom to learn more about where they live, how they lay eggs, protect their young and scout for territories. Safety guidelines for families, pets and kids - including coloring books - provided! 
Wednesday, April 12,  7- 8 p.m.
3900 Shamrock Dr., Venice
Space limited to classroom capacity
Guide: Sarasota County Park Naturalist
Register here for this event. 
Youth Fishing Derby at Red Bug Slough Preserve 

Red Bug Slough Preserve is home to a number of species of freshwater fish, including largemouth bass, bluegill and channel catfish. This catch and release event is being co-sponsored by the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission who will provide rods, reels bait and tackle for up to 50 young anglers (Ages: 5 - 15 years old). Adults are requested to bring their own fishing gear and bait if they'd like to participate. Free light snacks and drinks will be available to all in attendance. Prizes will be awarded in several categories during the event. 
Friday, April 14,  9 - 12 p.m.   
5200 Beneva Road, Sarasota
Park on the preserve grounds located
inside the Ashton Road entrance off 
of Lockwood Ridge Rd.
Registration is  limited to 50 children.
Guides: Florida Fish and Wildlife & Sarasota County Environmental Specialist
Register here for this event. 

Monthly Rain Barrel Workshop and Sales


Learn how the use of rain barrels can conserve water, save money by reducing the use of potable water in landscapes (lower utility bills), and reduce stormwater runoff by storing and diverting runoff from impervious surfaces (roofs). Practical tips on the construction and installation will be provided. Rain barrels will be for sale for $37 each, includes tax and spigot assembly. Cash or check accepted.


Saturday, April 15, 10 - 11 a.m.
6700 Clark Road, Sarasota
Contact: David Pouso, Sarasota County Environmental Specialist, 941-861-5000


To register for this free class go to Eventbrite.

Family Bike Adventures at the Beautiful
Carlton Reserve

Got bikes? It's perfect weather to grab the whole family to join Sarasota County and Carlton Reserve volunteer guides David Reynolds and Gary Vasbinder for an off-road wilderness bicycle ride through the beautiful T. Mabry Carlton, Jr. Memorial Reserve (Carlton Reserve). Ride time will be approximately 1 to 2 hours. Expect to see lots of wildlife! 

Sunday, April 16, 10 - 11 a.m.  
1800 Mabry Carlton Parkway, Venice
Space limited to 12
Guide: Sarasota County and Carlton Reserve volunteer guides David Reynolds and Gary Vasbinder.

Contact David Reynolds at 9
41-412-5575 or Gary Vasbinder at 
941-893-7729 directly to register 
and for meeting location.
What's that?! Plant and Animal ID Hike at Pocono Trail Preserve 

Join Sarasota County Environmental Specialist and super sleuth, Jeff Weber at Nokomis's Pocono Trail Preserve,who will identify both native and non-native plants and resident wildlife inhabiting our preserves. No matter what the season, there is always something beautiful in bloom or the potential to see interesting wildlife. Explore a variety of natural habitats of the preserve (once the site of the famed Pollyanna Inn in 1922), catching glimpses of eastern red cedars, cabbage palms, Boston ferns and views of Dona Bay. 
Tuesday, April 18, 9 -11 a.m.   
189 Pocono Trail East, Nokomis
Space limited to 15.
Guide: Sarasota County Environmental Specialist
Register here for this event. 
Spring Wildflower Trek at Culverhouse Nature Park 
Join Sarasota County Parks Naturalist, Ray Vinson on a hunt for wildflowers at Culverhouse Nature Park. The trek will take you through pasture and depression marshes which come alive with color in the springtime.
Culverhouse Nature Park is an 82-acre park located in the residential community of Palmer Ranch. This peaceful nature park provides recreational opportunities such as access to the Legacy Trail, a community garden, picnic areas and open space to enjoy nature. 
Wednesday, April 19, 10 - 12 p.m.  
7301 McIntosh Road, Sarasota
Space limited to 20.
Guides: Sarasota County Environmental Specialist
Register here for this event. 
Walk and Talk: Turpentine Industry 
Explore Urfer Family Park, Sarasota's first Gold Leed Certified Park 
 with a Sarasota County's Park Naturalist. During the walk and talk, they will teach you about the turpentine industry that operated in the area, the history of cattle in Florida, the pioneer families that shaped our community and a tour of the historic Dr. C.B. Wilson house. 

Wednesday April 19,  9:30 - 11 a.m.
4000 Honore Ave., Sarasota
Space unlimited 
Guide: Sarasota County Staff
 Register here for this event.
Crayola Critters! A Little Naturalist Event 
for Preschoolers
Shamrock Park is home to diverse wildlife and habits. Come learn about birds, butterflies and reptiles through Crayola Critters preschool programs. Bring your child (age 3-5 years) to join Master Naturalists and connect with nature in fun, creative ways! Bring a snack to enjoy afterward.
Our April event theme is Birds/Scrub Jays! Check your upcoming newsletters for  May themes.
Friday, April  21,  10 - 11 a.m.
3900 Shamrock Dr., Venice
Advance registration is required.
Please call Shamrock Park Naturalist at 941-404-6336 to reserve a spot.
Walk through the Flatwoods and Scrub with Denny and Al 
Enjoy a leisurely walk on the west side of Manasota Scrub Preserve, exploring regions seldom traveled by regular visitors. Sarasota County volunteer guides, amateur botanists and Florida Native Plant Society members, Denny Girard and Al Squires will share their knowledge of what is thriving within the preserve, while leading you to a delightful wetland area. You just never know what you may discover. 
Wednesday, April 26,  9 - 11 a.m.
2695 Bridge Street, Englewood
Space limited to 20
Guide: Volunteers Denny Girard and Al Squires
Register here for this event. 
Seasons and Serendipity Stroll at Shamrock Park

Florida does have seasons, not just for hurricanes and warm vs. hotter weather. Join Sarasota County Volunteer Master Naturalists and Shamrock Park Staff to stroll the trails, relying on changing seasons to bring us new flowers and birds' nests, insects and animal activity. A little serendipity will find things in unexpected places! 
Friday, April 28,  9 - 11 a.m.
3900 Shamrock Dr., Venice
Space limited to 20.
Guide: Sarasota County Volunteers and
Park Naturalist
Register here for this event. 
Late Spring Wildflower Walk 

Join a Sarasota County Environmental Specialist Preserve on a hike through pine flatwoods, scrubby flatwoods and oak hammocks to see what's blooming at Curry Creek Preserve. A number of spring/early summer wildflowers and many other interesting plants grow along the trails, making for a delightful and educational trek through the preserve. 
Friday, April 28, 9 - 11 a.m.  
East entrance
1500 Pinebrook Rd., Venice
Space limited to 20
Guide: Sarasota County Environmental
Register here for this event. 

For more nature based events for you and your family, please be sure to visit the links on the right column of this newsletter.


Go outside

and play!




Registration Process for Nature Events


Look for 'View Activities' (if you already have an account), or SIGN UP HERE (if you need to open up a

new household account). 


Attached here are directions to help you set up a 'household' account to sign up for a free nature event. 


Please remember the 3 R's.
Reuse, Reduce, and Recycle, when visiting your parks and environmental lands!

Please use appropriate containers for recycles and trash. 

When visiting a preserve or environmental land where there are limited trash receptacles, please remember to 'Pack it in. Pack it out.'  

Leave nothing but your footprints and thank you for caring.


For more information on the three R's for your home and business, visit Sarasota County Solid Waste for useful information. 


About Us
Sarasota County
Parks, Recreation and Natural Resources
1660 Ringling Boulevard
Sarasota, Florida 34236
You are receiving this email based on having previously requested to be included on our e-list for nature events. Please note, we do not share your information or email. Should you want to opt out from receiving this newsletter, just click the "Instant Removal" link at the bottom of the page and your name will be permanently removed from the list. 
Sarasota County prohibits discrimination in all services, programs or activities. View the complete policy at with disabilities, who require assistance or wish to file a complaint, should contact the Sarasota County ADA/Civil Rights Coordinator by mail at 1660 Ringling Blvd., Sarasota, Florida 34236 or by phone at 941-861-5000.



Information & Website

 Park Naturalist:

Debbie Blanco


Next Meeting: 4:30

2nd Tues. resuming in the fall of 2017

Picnic Pavilion

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Sarasota County

Field Guide

to Conservation Lands

(download 64pp. PDF)

 Sarasota County Natural Lands

Friends of the Carlton

is a chapter of  FOSCP   

not for profit corp.

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