Historic Groups Participating

Oldtimer? Pioneer? Maybe Old Coot?

Gather up your old photos and newspaper clippings to share with other OldTimers at the reserved, middle-of-the-event, shaded and close-to-food-and-drink reserved area at History Day in the Park tomorrow Sat March 25! 10-5, com when you wish, stay as long as you like. FREE… $5 suggested donation for parking… donations to the future Interpretive History Center of 6000 Years on the Creek deeply appreciated!

Lots of cool “pioneers” coming: see some of them over on Facebook and here too.

Dast I say

Historic Groups Participating, Participants

Have you ever seen a clown… become a clown?

History Day in the Park is so honored that ChuckO the Clown has donated his most-requested appearance… how a clown makes himself up… to the cause of raising funds to create the Interpretive History Center of 6000 Years of Life on Phillippi Creek in the historic Keith Farmhouse.

Find out all ChuckO does to bring joy to this world!

On Saturday March 25 2023, ChuckO will show us just how a clown becomes this most iconic and beloved of circus performers. Be sure to come early, grab some lunch at the food trucks, and watch Chuck become ChuckO the Clown at 1:30!

Historic Groups Participating

Restore, don’t bulldoze.

Our speakers in the Mansion during History Day in the Park have a theme. It’s one I call Restore, don’t bulldoze. Renovating, repurposing, and fighting to save the flavor of Sarasota are the topics these experts will address. Each talk will be about 45 minutes and will include a question-and-answer opportunity. When you enter the Mansion, turn left into the Edson Keith Dining Room.

Here’s our lineup for the day:

11am – Kelly Caldwell of Caldwell Trust Company: The Way It’s Meant To Be/ Mansion
[Lunch Break]
1pm – Ronald Kashden and Lorrie Muldowney, Past, Present, and Future of the Van Wezel / Mansion
2pm – Tony Souza, Ins & Outs of Historic Preservation/ Mansion
3pm – Brian Leaver on restoring a 1874 Sarasota house/ Mansion
4pm– Erin DiFazio, Preservation’s Power Tool/ Mansion

At 11am, setting the tone for our series, Kelly Caldwell will talk about Caldwell Trust’s journey taking a beloved local building and proving that it can be repurposed for the 21st century. Caldwell Trust is also a sponsor of History Day in the Park and celebrating its 30th anniversary serving the area, so you know they are earnest about preserving local history.

Learn about Caldwell Trust.

At 1pm, a most-pressing discussion on the Past, Present, and Future of the Van Wezel by Ronald Kashden and Lorrie Muldowney. Ron Kashden is uniquely qualified to talk about the theater business: the former auditor of New York’s Shubert Theatre Group, which operates most of the Broadway theaters. Ron served as CFO of a private equity investment group, and he has three decades of experience in fund accounting, business valuation, and economic modelling. He moved to Sarasota in 2012, and owns a historic home in downtown Sarasota. And Lorrie has been a preservationist in our area for many years, serving multiple offices including as General Manager of the Sarasota County Department of Historical Resources and is currently a leader at the Sarasota Alliance for Historic Preservation.

Click for a quick quiz on the Purple People Seater.

At 2pm, Tony Souza will talk about the Ins & Outs of Historic Preservation. He’s been a passionate lover of preservation, so much so that his hobby, painting, sometimes focuses on the beauties of interior decotr, historically speaking. These beauties were spotted at the Members Show at Art Center Sarasota recently. The Art Center itself is an example of historic preservation that serves us today.

At 3pm, Brian Leaver, a local businessman, will take you on a journey he and his wife Katherine took, restoring a 1874 Sarasota house. You will be amazed at how they did it all while honoring the original look of this home.

Thinking of restoring a home or commercial building? At 4pm, Erin DiFazio will address an exciting new program that the Sarasota Alliance has begun. Easements can be Preservation’s Power Tool, says Erin, and she invites you to learn more on the SAHP website and looks forward to answering your questions on the process.

Explore easements on the SAHP site.
Historic Groups Participating, The Park

Who Knew?

Who knew March is officially Florida Archaeology Month?

I’ll bet several of our historic groups who’ll be here on Saturday March 25, from 10 to 5, knew… and maybe they’ll bring artifacts and tell us even more amazing things about not only locally, but simple day-trips away! Be sure to visit the Time Sifters Archaeology Society and Reflections of Manatee folks if ancient stuff is fascinating to you and your family.

And if we’re lucky, our country archaeologist will be leading tours of Phillippi Estate Park’s very own archaeology site during our day. (YES! People lived on this very ground on which you’ll walk 6000 years ago!) He hasn’t given us times yet, but stop by in the Mansion at the county’s History Center display and they’ll let you know!

Here’s the website for the official Florida Archaeology Month if you want to get started right now.

Historic Groups Participating, Supporters

Come chat with local treasure Jeff LaHurd

We’re looking forward to greeting Jeff LaHurd on Saturday March 25, 2023. He loves to talk history, so bring your questions… or your books for him to autograph!

Jeff LaHurd is a historical resource behind a dashing moustache.

He’s written more books than I can count, but here’s just some of them:

Jeff’s most recent book, The North Tamiami Trail: A Drive Through Sarasota History, was commissioned by the Sarasota Alliance for Historic Preservation to highlight the rich history of this stretch of the Tamiami Trail and help familiarize readers with its evolution as the premier gateway to Sarasota. This 66-page narrative is rich in historical pictures and stories that memorialize many of the Trail’s landmarks and businesses. Also included, a map of the points of interest to facilitate self tours by readers. It will be avaiable for purchase at the SAHP exhibit during History Day in the Park.

Historic Groups Participating, Participants, Supporters

Bill Schustik, America’s Troubadour

It’s gonna be a great performance, and we can’t thank Bill enough for supporting our fundraising effort by volunteering to perform during History Day in the Park. We’re looking forward to enjoying VGO and Bill as singing, strumming, story tellers. From 2pm on, at the Farmhouse Porch, on Saturday March 25 2023. Free in the open air, but I’m guessing there will be the honored tradition of a hat to throw some money in!

“Bill Schustik travels the highways and byways of the United States entertaining audiences, accompanying himself on guitar and banjo, harmonica, concertina, and dulcimer. With his rich baritone voice and unique storytelling ability, he unabashedly carries his audiences on an enchanted musical journey of America’s history and folklore, spinning facts and trivia as vast and varied as our heritage.” — Friends of the Sarasota County Libraries.

A short snippet of Bill, filmed at the Bidwell-Wood House at the Historical Society of Sarasota County by The Observer newspapers.
Historic Groups Participating, Participants

Everywhere you turn, entertainment! And cookies.

Our schedule of events, and what each participant will be offering, is getting very exciting for History Day in the Park.

1910’s, 1920’s, 1930’s music to hum along to!

We’re hosting Sailor Circus and the high-schoolers’ feats of derring-do, the Sarasota Concert Band playing period songs for your enjoyment, speakers on topics as varied as Sarasota history and a win-win restoration of an amazing downtown landmark, and more folks donating their time and talents to our fundraising event.

And rumor has it that Sarasota Alliance for Historic Preservation is baking up some cookies for you, complete with the 1910 recipe to take home!

Historic Groups Participating, Participants

Our First Participant!

We’re delighted to announce that our first historic group, the Sarasota Alliance for Historic Preservation, has reserved a spot to participate in History Day in the Park. This group is truly a moving force in our local history, and we can’t wait to see what they have planned to engage, entertain, and educate us on Saturday March 25 2023!

Here’s who they are:

The Sarasota Alliance for Historic Preservation, Inc., a non-profit, publicly-supported 501(c)(3) organization whose mission is to “Preserve and Enhance our Historic Places.”  SAHP was incorporated in 1985 in an effort to save architect Dwight Baum’s El Vernona Hotel located near the intersection of US 41 and Gulfstream Avenue.  The hotel, built in 1925 by renowned developer Owen Burns had come to be known as the John Ringling Towers. Our highly publicized effort to save the towers during the late 1990s raised the community’s consciousness and the ire of those interested in saving the historical integrity of Sarasota, Florida.

The Alliance is comprised of more than 500 residents, visitors, artists, architects, engineers, historians, builders, archaeologists, Realtors, planners, designers, and writers working together to preserve and encourage others to preserve – not only the remaining significant landmarks – but also the contributing structures that define Sarasota County.

Visit their website at https://preservesrq.org/