Monday, May 17, 2010

A Visit to Sarasota

Well, this weekend we traveled to a bead show for Kathy to stock up on beads and semi-precious stones. The prices are great so Sandy (Warren's sister) wanted us to get some for her too. The bead show was in Sarasota so we figured that we would say something about this nice town. It has beautiful beaches, water front hotels and marinas. Also this big statue of a sailor kissing a nurse(Victory) in celebration of the end of World War II. What follows here is an excerpt from Sarasota's history:

In 1885, Sarasota was promoted in Scotland. Many families sailed to America expecting fields of vegetables, housing, and citrus groves. They found only a stump-filled Main Street and most of the colonists left.
Scottish influence remains evident through the annual Sarasota Highland Games and Festival and the Riverview High Kiltie band, which wears authentic kilts and features bagpipers and Highland dancers. Sarasota began attracting wealthy Americans in the 1910's as it does today. John Ringling, of Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey Circus fame, made a mark on the community of Sarasota in various ways. In the 1920s, he and his wife, Mable, built a magnificent Venetian-style estate on Sarasota Bay named Cà d' Zan. Then they built an art museum for their collection of works by Peter Paul Rubens and other 17th-century Italian and Flemish art.  In addition, John used his circus elephants to help build the first bridge from the mainland to St. Armands Key, which he developed as a commercial and residential center. The circus' winter quarters were moved to Sarasota in 1927, thus creating a new identity for Sarasota as a "circus town." Now Sarasota is known as the "Circus Capitol of the World" and is home to many circuses.

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