Things to Do

What to Do in Sarasota Nov. 5-Nov. 11

A Renaissance festival, several new art exhibitions, a nature fest and more.

By Kay Kipling November 5, 2020

Editor’s note: In-person events are subject to change. Please check before venturing out.

Suncoast Renaissance Festival

Nov. 7-8, 14-15, 21-22 and 27-29

Get ready for the bustling mix of jugglers, birds of prey, mermaids, poets, fairies, sword fights, jousting and medieval music that makes up this fest at the Sarasota Fairgrounds. There’s a full schedule of events each day, from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., along with plentiful vendors of goods of all sorts, of course—including food and drink. For ticket info, visit

Bard in the Yard: West Side Story

Nov. 8

Outdoor movies are certainly popular right now, and The Ringling’s Benfer Courtyard outside the Historic Asolo Theater makes a good setting, weather permitting. Coming up in a series of film adaptations of Shakespeare is this 1961 musical version of Romeo and Juliet starring Natalie Wood, Richard Beymer, Rita Moreno and George Chakiris, at 6:30 p.m. For tickets, call 360-7399 or visit

Mindful Triathlon

Nov. 9-14

Stressed out and needing a moment or more of Zen? This second annual triathlon features a virtual 5K followed by physically distanced yoga and guided meditation, all to benefit The Brain Health Initiative. First, register here; then, Nov. 12 and 13, pick up your registration packet at a location you will receive. Complete your virtual 5K on your own, and then, join others Nov. 14 at Bob Gardner Park in Lakewood Ranch. Complete info:

Sarasota Art Museum: Carl Abbott: Architecture for Nature

Nov. 8-April 25

The longtime Sarasota architect’s work is honored with an exhibition showcasing more than a dozen of his projects, with special attention to how he has for decades emphasized a site-based perspective on living in harmony with our environment. There will be talks scheduled, too; visit for details.

War Paint: Profiles of Courage

Nov. 6-Dec. 11

Ringling College of Art and Design students, faculty and local artists have created portrait profiles of veterans for this exhibit at the college’s Project Space 340 (PS340) at 340 Central Ave., downtown Sarasota. Organized by the Galleries of Ringling Collage and combat vet and former combat photographer Matthew Troyer, the exhibition tells stories from World War II, Korea, Vietnam, Iraq and Afghanistan. Admission is free.

Wild About Nature Festival

Nov. 8-16

Conservation Foundation of the Gulf Coast presents a virtual experience bringing together local environmental and youth-serving organizations to connect kids to the wonders of the natural world. Pick up a Field Guide to Fun activity book at Bay Preserve, 400 Palmetto Ave. in Osprey, from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Nov. 7, after signing up at, and then follow along each day with activities like nature challenges, craft projects, scavenger hunts, trail guides and more. You can also enter a drawing for the grand prize giveaway. Visit the foundation's Facebook page to RSVP for the virtual event.

People of the Book

Nov. 7, 8 and 9

The Jewish Federation of Sarasota-Manatee continues its series, viz Zoom, as you have the chance to celebrate National Comedy Day (7 p.m. Saturday) with comedian David Glickman, free, here; honor 21 Jewish leaders of the community (at 3 p.m. Nov. 8, here ) and commemorate Kristallnacht (at 7 p.m. Nov. 9), a reminder to stand up against anti-Semitism and bigotry, here.

Spread Love at Ligon Fine Art

Nov. 6

As part of a First Friday Artwalk downtown, Ligon Fine Art on Lemon Avenue welcomes Sarasota native drummer/painter Brandon Thrift, displaying with other Florida artists, along with musician Nino Pinelli, from 6 to 8 p.m. Thrift set out on a 12,000-mile journey back in June to “Spread Love” by painting original pieces using the phrase and placing them in outdoors in American cities to challenge all to “Spread Love” during these trying times.

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