1. Fall in Love with The Arts This Winter

    “The earth without “art” is just “eh.” – Author Unknown

    As a Southwest Floridian, the arts are at your fingertips.  For entertainment or education purposes, you can take advantage of visiting on or all of the many places around you to experience culture at its finest.  Below we’ll touch on a couple of our favorites.  But for a complete list, visit www.visitsarasota.org.


    Art Center Sarasota

    This exquisite museum showcases hundreds of artists’ work throughout the year. Spend the time to walk through the static exhibits or discover the traveling ones that come throughout the year. Through January, CUBEMUSIC from artist Craig Colorusso will take place, presenting a sound and light experience. If you are interested in classes, workshops and programs are offered to adults and children.

    The Ringling

    You’ll flip for joy with all of the fun things there are to do at this museum. Built by the famous circus impresario John Ringling, Floridians can enjoy his gift year round. Sculptors and paintings from around the world fill the interior and courtyard, with 31 galleries. There are also performances from singers and musicians throughout the year. And you can’t miss the circus museum where you can feel like you’ve run off the circus yourself. Walk the tightrope. Take pictures in the clown car. See instruments used for the greatest of performers throughout the years.

    Sarasota Classic Car Museum

    Recognized as the second oldest continuously operating antique car museum in the Nation, this museum will rev your engine! Some of the cars you can check out include John Lennon’s 1965 Mercedes Benz, Paul McCartney’s Mini Cooper, and the Ringling’s collection of Rolls Royce autos. The place is filled with Bentley’s, Ferraris, and Cadillac’s.

    Performing Arts

    Sarasota Opera

    Escape to the magical world that only the opera can bring you. The upcoming season at the Sarasota Opera is sure to impress you. The Sarasota Opera Winter Festival 2014 runs February 8, 2014 through March 23, 2014.  Kicking off the season, Il Trovatore will tug on your heartstrings as a troubadour searches for love, follows a soldiers lust, and a “mother’s undying thirst for vengeance.”

    Florida Studio Theatre

    This well-known theatre in Sarasota hosts plays and musicals throughout the year. Coming soon, include acts such as  “ Monty Python’s Spamalot,” “For the Ages,” “Daddy Long Legs,” and “Two Point Oh.”

    Sarasota Ballet

    Tip Toe around and sneak some tickets to the Ballet for a special someone in your life.  The Sarasota Ballet is currently performing the well-loved “Nutcracker.” It’s a performance that will make you want to start a yearly tradition.

    Recently Neal Communities held its annual “My Favorite Home Art Contest” at B.D. Gullet Elementary. To read more about the event and see this years’ winners, read the press release!

  2. Have some Fun this Month!

    The Gulf of Mexico is lined with beautiful beaches and has so much to offer Neal Community residents!

    If you are beach-goer, don’t miss the Siesta Key Sand Sculpture Contest. Held on May 4 near the Pavilion, this event is free and open for anyone to compete in. Read more about it.

    Foodies will love the 3rd Annual Food and Wine on the Pine event which features more than 30 wines, independent restaurant owners, and craft beers. Come eat, drink, and be merry!

    Fishermen and women can participate in the 82nd Sarasota Sports Fishing Anglers Club Tarpon Tournament held May 12-June 17. The $100 entry fee will benefit The Suncoast Charities for Children. Cast a line and join in the fun!

    If you are beer enthusiast don’t miss the Venice Brew Bash featuring great bands and well, beer! For only $30 dollars, you will have unlimited beer tasting, but you must be over the age of 21. This will be held from 4 p.m.- 8 p.m. on May 25.

    Don’t forget about Memorial Day! May 26 from 6p.m.- 9p.m. a Tribute to Heroes Memorial Day Parade will take place at Lakewood Ranch. Come for the music, food, drinks, parade, and fun! And certainly come to honor our troops.

    There’s so much to do and so little time. Make the most of your May by attending these events and more.

  3. Fun in February: Upcoming Community Events

    It’s hard to believe February is in full swing!

    Being a Floridian has its many perks, including warm weather in February.  With no such thing as the Winter Blues, why not get out and experience some of the things the Gulf Coast has to offer?

    We’ve put together a list of some events we found taking place in February. For a complete list or additional information, check out the escape to Sarasota website.

    Circus Sarasota- The annual Circus Sarasota will be ongoing in the month of February and will take place under the Big Top at Tuttle Ave and 12th Street. Last year, Sarasota’s own, comic daredevil Bello Nock, made an appearance. Here’s more information.

    Florida State Fair- Step right up! The Florida State Fair has food and fun for all ages. This event takes place on Feb 7th at the fairgrounds in Tampa. Find more information here.

    Greek Festival- It’s all Greek to me.  Feb 14-17 check out the Greek Festival at the St. Barbara Greek Orthodox Church. Admission is $4 and traditional food and festivities, including Greek music and dancing will keep you entertained. Find more information here.

    Exotic Car Fest- For the car enthusiast out there, check out the Sarasota Exotic Car Fest Feb 23. Ferraris, Rolls-Royce, Lamborghini’s and more will be on display for your enjoyment.

    Living in a Neal Community puts you in a prime location to live and enjoy all of the wonderful things the Gulf Coast has to offer.

    Which event are you looking forward to in February?

  4. January is a GREAT month to…

    The holidays are behind us, and people are getting back into the reality of life; however, that doesn’t mean the fun has to stop! There are so many exciting this to do in in January! One of the many benefits of living in the sunshine state is the SUNSHINE! The weather is perfect for taking part in some of these exciting outdoor events!

    So, mark your calendars, grab your family and friends and enjoy all that January has to offer! Here is a sampling of just a few of the many events you can partake in!

    January 12 – 13, 2013: Time to get crafty! The 6th Annual Downtown Venice Craft Festival is here! It is one of the most popular festivals in the area!

    January 17 – 27, 2013: Popcorn, cotton candy and carnival rides await you at the Annual Manatee County Fair which will be taking place at the Manatee County Fairgrounds.

    January 19, 2013: Become a star gazer! Sidewalk Astronomy is hosted by the local “Deep Sky Observers” in the south parking lot of Lakewood Ranch Main Street.

    January 23 – 25, 2013: The Wings of Freedom Tour flies into the Sarasota-Bradenton International Airport.  Come check out all the old planes on display.

    January 25 – February 15, 2013: Lions and tigers and bears, oh my! The Annual Circus Sarasota comes to town!

    January 26, 2013: Ahoy ye mates! Just a short drive from Sarasota to Tampa, the Annual Gasparilla Fest is happening. Watch the pirates as they take over the city!

    January 26 – 27, 2013: The 10th annual St. Armand’s Circle’s Winter Art Festival.

    To see a FULL calendar of January events, click the link below! See you around the town!