Things to Do

What to Do in Sarasota: May 27-June 2

The Myakka River Blues Festival returns, a Patriotic Pops concert, Savor Sarasota kicks off and more.

By Kay Kipling May 27, 2021

Tommy Z is among the musicians performing Memorial Day at the Myakka River Blues Festival.

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

Myakka River Blues Festival

May 31

There’s lots of music on tap at this annual event, held rain or shine along the river at Snook Haven in Venice in partnership with the Suncoast Blues Society. The lineup includes Steve Arvey, Rooster & Broccoli, Tommy Z, Dottie Kelly and a finale jam session with all the musicians. From 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.; admission is just $10 and benefits Venice Challenger Baseball League. Ticket sales limited to 600. Call (941) 485-7221 or visit for the latest info and tickets.

The Venice Symphony: Patriotic Pops

May 29

Officially, tickets are sold out for this second annual concert, held at 7:30 p.m. at North Port’s CoolToday Park, but you can check on any availability by calling (941) 413-5000. The symphony’s music director, Troy Quinn, leads the orchestra in the outdoor show featuring classic American music from John Philip Sousa, John Williams and more. Sergeant First Class Randall Wright of the U.S. Army Field Band returns as guest vocalist. Gates open at 5:30 p.m.; rain date is May 30. Learn more at

Sarasota Art Museum of Ringling College: Art and Race Matters: The Career of Robert Colescott

Opening May 29

The first comprehensive retrospective of Colescott’s work goes on view at SAM Saturday and will run through Oct. 31. Colescott was an artist who confronted issues of race, gender, identity and the realities of U.S. life for nearly six decades of his painting career. Also opening this weekend: Charles McGill: In the Rough and Samo Davis: Happiness in ROYGBIV. Learn more at

Savor Sarasota

June 1-14

The 16th annual National Restaurant Week celebration kicks off Tuesday, and it promises dozens of local restaurants offering prix-fixe, multi-course lunch and dinner menus, at $16 and $32 per person, respectively. Check at to learn if your favorite eatery is among them, and to find out how to compete for a $50 gift card.

Passport to the Bazaar

May 28

That’s the Bazaar on Apricot and Lime, of course, which is celebrating its third birthday with live music by Sean Adam Walsh, 25-plus guest vendors and artisans, free wine and free J’Dubs beer, and food available from Hamlet’s Eatery. It all takes place from 4 to 8 p.m. at 821 Apricot Ave; check it out at

NCAA 2021 Rowing National Championships

May 28-30

Watch—and cheer on—some of the top collegiate rowers in the country competing at Nathan Benderson Park this weekend. Ticket sales are limited; go to to see your options.

Madeby Gallery: Family Time Book Show

May 26

Summer’s just around the corner, so keep the kids reading! One way to do that: attend the virtual opening reception of this show (5:30 to 6:30 p.m.) featuring works illustrated and written by Ringling College of Art and Design students and alumni, from picture books for the youngest to novels for adults as well. Books will be available for purchase online through June 18; RSVP at [email protected] to receive the Zoom link. Info: (941) 822-0442.

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