Things to Do

What to Do in Sarasota This Weekend

Don’t miss Sarasota Opera's last performances of the season, North by Northwest at The Bay and Reclaiming Home at The Ringling Museum.

By Bethany Ritz

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The Sarasota area boasts a wide and intriguing number of arts, cultural, sports and food events throughout the year, from museum exhibits and concerts to plays, ballet and choral performances, craft shows, films and more. Keep up to date on what's happening here, and check in regularly. 

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


Art Center Sarasota

Opening on March 23, with a reception from 6-8 p.m., are three solo shows with work from Jeanne Guertin-Potoff, Rebecca Zweibel and Karen Arango, as well as a juried show focusing on large-scale works. The accompanying artist talk with Jeanne Guertin-Potoff is on Thursday, April 6, from 5:30 to 7 p.m. (941) 365-2032;

Ringling College Galleries

Several exhibits are on view at the campus galleries, including the Therman Statom show Cuento Sobre El Aprendizaje: Stories About Learning, through March 24; the glass show Circles + Spheres featuring work from the Richard and Barbara Basch collection, through March 24; You and I Didn’t Live the Same Nature featuring the work of Ping Ho, Pretty Ram, Chaewook Lim through March 24; and Jay Youngdahl's installation The Mangroves of Masters Bayou, which is available to the public by making an appointment through April 21. (941) 359-7563;

Sarasota Art Museum of Ringling College

Sara Berman's Closet and Richard Benson: The World Is Smarter Than You Are are both on view through May 7; A Beautiful Mess: Weavers and Knotters of the Vanguard is on view through June 25; and Xaviera Simmons' The structure the labor the foundation the escape the pause will continue on view on the grounds outside the museum through early 2023. (941) 309-4300;

The John and Mable Ringling Museum of Art  Editor's Pick

On view now is the featured show of the season: Reclaiming Home: Contemporary Seminole Art, a group exhibition opens, which marks The Ringling’s first presentation of contemporary art by Native American artists with ancestral, historical and present-day connections to Florida. Also on view is Glimpse of the Artist: A Community Celebration in the community gallery, presented by the Sarasota African American Cultural Coalition (SAACC), through April 30. Gods and Lovers: Paintings and Sculptures from India runs through May 28. In the Chao Gallery, through April 2, is The Marvellous Marbling of Matsui Kōsei. June Clark's Harlem Quilt will be in the Contemporary Gallery through March 26, and As long as there is sun, as long as there is light: Selections from the Bring Gift and The Ringling Collection of Modern and Contemporary Art through Jan. 7, 2024. Sunset viewing of the James Turrell Skyspace Joseph's Coat in full color is a separate ticket on Thursday, March 23, at 7:20 p.m. (941) 359-5700;

Marie Selby Botanical Gardens 

Tiffany: The Pursuit of Beauty in Nature is on view at the gardens'  downtown Sarasota campus through June 25. The augmented reality show Seeing the Invisible is on view at the Historic Spanish Point campus. (941) 366-5731;

Amplifying Visions & Artists Talk

The Fabulous Arts Foundation has partnered with Fogartyville for the exhibit Amplifying Visions, which showcases and amplifies the work of LGBTQ+ artists. The show runs through April 18.

SPAACES + Art 4 Change

SPAACES + Art 4 Change's latest exhibit, Metaphors: Finding The Poetic In The Mundane, with art from Anja Palombo, Jeffery Cornwell and Meg Pierce, is described as "sculptures, tapestries, and paintings intimate the smooth curve of a body part, stitching in a garment, or a small view of sky, encouraging the viewer to look deeply and question detail." The show is on view through March 25 with gallery visiting hours on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays, 11 a.m.-3 p.m., at 2087 Princeton St.

One Glad Morning, I'll Fly Away by Rashaun Rucker is showing now at Tenth Street Gallery.

Birding: Obsession of Observation

This group show at Tenth Street Gallery is curated by Erin Parish with a focus on birds to explore "the intertwining of politics and sociology; biology and extinction; personal iconography and metaphor; nests; and the joy of beauty." The gallery, located at 655 10th Street, is open Thursday through Saturday from 1 to 6 p.m. or by appointment. (941) 271-4672;


McCurdy's Comedy Theatre

On the schedule at the downtown club: Al Ernst, March 23-25, and Dean Napolitano, March 29 through April 2. Tickets and info: (941) 925-3869;

Jay Leno

Best known as the host of The Tonight Show, this award-winning comic will perform one show at 7:30 p.m. on March 28 at the Van Wezel. (941) 263-6799;


Sarasota Ballet

Program 6 features a crown jewel of Danish ballet, the romantic La Sylphide, a company premiere, on March 24 and 25 at the Van Wezel. (941)359-0099;


Sarasota Film Festival

This annual festival is celebrating its 25th anniversary this year. See our write-up of some of the films and events in store. Events continue through April 2.

Screen on the Green: Mulan

UTC is hosting Screen on the Green, an open-air film night. This week, Mulan is showing on Friday, March 24, at 7 p.m. Starting at 6 p.m.,, kids can enjoy face painting and a special meet-and-greet with Mulan herself.

Cinema at The Bay: North by Northwest

Cinema at The Bay is a free, outdoor weekly film program on Thursday evenings at The Oval in The Bay Park. This week on Thursday, March 23, bring friends, chairs and blankets to enjoy North by Northwest at 7 p.m.

Cine Selby: Intermission  Editor's Pick

Selby Library is showing the film Intermission (2003), directed by John Crowley, this month on Tuesday, March 28, at 5 p.m.

Food and Drink

Sarasota Farmers Market

The Sarasota Farmers Market in downtown Sarasota will have its usual parade of goods, along with live music, Saturday from 7 a.m.-1 p.m.

Bradenton Public Market

This market runs from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturdays through May with live music, goods, snacks and great food products.


Junior League's Jamboree at Big Cat Habitat 

This Saturday, March 25, from 4:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. the Big Cat Habitat and Gulf Coast Sanctuary is open to the public featuring experiences like feeding bears, feeding goats and lion performances. Ticket purchase includes entrance to Big Cat Habitat, a buffet dinner from Nancy's BBQ, an adult drink ticket, animal feeding (bear or tiger), face painting for kids, an animal show featuring lemurs and big cats, an auction with some one-of-a-kind items and a sensory station with EasterSeals. Proceeds benefit the Junior League of Sarasota’s charitable efforts. Tickets must be purchased in advance at

History Day in the Park

Saturday, March 25, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. is a day of history at Phillipi Estate Park. Vendors, musicians and all kinds of surprises, like a Barbie display, will be on site.

Sarasota County Fair

Southern Express Bluegrass and magic and hypnosis shows by Ron Diamond continue at the fair, which runs through March 26.


Sundays at The Bay: Sheri Nadelman

Sundays at The Bay is a free, outdoor weekly music and performance program offered from 6 to 7 p.m. at The Oval. This week, on Sunday, March 26, is Sheri Nadelman.


This restaurant in Bradenton sidelines as a 200-person music venue with music on weekends and a monthly comedy night. This Thursday, March 23, is an open mic night. Friday, March 24, Southland Road plays along with Bite-Size and St. David is a house. On Saturday, March 25, Last Bias will play along with Default Friends and Soul Transfusion. (941) 201-4950;


Three performances are on the schedule this weekend at Fogartyville: Vanessa Rubin and La Lucha on Friday, March 24, at 8 p.m.; Mike Block and Christylez Bacon with Patricia Ligia on Saturday, March 25, at 8 p.m.; and The World Fusion Orchestra album release concert on Sunday, March 26, at 7 p.m.

 JoAnn Falletta will conduct the Buffalo Philharmonic at the Van Wezel on Monday.

Image: Cheryl Gorski

Sarasota Concert Association

Conducting the Buffalo Philharmonic is Joann Falletta, hailed as “one of the finest conductors of her generation” by The New York Times, in a program also featuring violinist Sandy Cameron with pieces by Kodály, Mendelssohn and Dvořák on March 27 at the Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall. (941)966-6161;

Madame Butterfly

This opera follows the story of a young geisha who falls in love with an American naval officer. Performances are at the Sarasota Opera House through March 24. (941) 328-1300;

Don Giovanni

Mozart’s most famous opera is a comic and tragic masterpiece that centers around the infamous lover Don Juan and the heartbreak he leaves in his wake. Performances are at the Sarasota Opera House through March 25. (941) 328-1300; 

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Sarasota Opera presents one of the greatest of Giuseppe Verdi’s early works, encompassing love, honor and tragedy with passionate choruses and emotional arias. This production features a libretto by Francesco Maria Piave, through March 26 at the Sarasota Opera House. (941) 328-1300; 


This Jules Massenet opera in two acts, featuring a libretto by Jules Claretie, follows a love triangle occurring during the French Revolution with moments of lyrical beauty punctuated by the drama of the "Reign of Terror," through March 25 at the Sarasota Opera House. (941) 328-1300; 


Backwards Forwards Back

This thoughtful one-man drama by Jacqueline Goldfinger explores the effect of virtual reality on the brains and bodies of wounded soldiers suffering from PTSD. It's playing at Urbanite Theatre from March 24 through April 23. (941) 321-1397;


This cult hit musical is a hilarious spoof of the Olivia Newton-John movie. It features a nice Greek muse who finds herself in 1980s Venice, California. It's full of big hair, shoulder pads, leg warmers, ruthless business and music from the Electric Light Orchestra. It plays March 24 through April 16 at Venice Theatre’s Pinkerton Theatre. (941) 488-1115;


Based on the Academy Award-winning film by Paddy Chayefsky, Network examines what happens when we get caught up in the allure and illusion of truth and TV. (Read Kay Kipling's review here.) Playing through March 26 in FST's Gompertz Theatre. 366-9000,

Chicken & Biscuits  Editor's Pick

This comedy by Douglas Lyons and  directed by Bianca LaVerne Jones for the AsoloRep proves that while family may drive us crazy, we’re lucky to have each other. At AsoloRep through April 13. (941) 351-8000;

A Place in the Sun: A Tribute to Stevie Wonder

A Place in the Sun plays through March 26 in Florida Studio Theatre's Goldstein Cabaret.

The Three Musketeers

Asolo Repertory Theatre kicks off its 2023 repertory season with Ken Ludwig’s The Three Musketeers, adapted from the novel by Alexandre Dumas. Playing through March 26.


An inspirational journey through American pop music, Dreamgirls chronicles one fictional Motown group’s rise from obscurity to superstardom. Playing through April 9 at The Donelly Theatre. (941) 366-1505;