Ringling College of Art and Design received a $335,463 check from the Cary Jay Morrison Trust toward the college’s efforts to restore the historic Sarasota High School building into the new Sarasota Museum of Art. The trust also delivered a $310,000 check in October 2013 toward the same goal. As Sarasota’s first art museum devoted to modern and contemporary art, SMOA will interweave exhibitions, educational programs and community outreach initiatives to engage a diverse audience and serve as a stimulating hub for creative discovery. The former Sarasota High School building is being transformed into nearly 60,000 square feet of exhibition space, a 110-seat, multipurpose auditorium, a sculpture court, an indoor/outdoor café, meeting spaces, and classrooms and studios providing education programs for adults and children.
Realize Bradenton received a $28,262 grant from the William G. and Marie Selby Foundation to purchase a new van to transport event equipment and supplies. The organization also received a $2,800 grant from the Manatee Community Foundation to wrap the van in a colorful design created by Realize Bradenton to showcase Bradenton’s cultural, recreational and culinary offerings.
The annual Forks and Corks food and wine festival raised more than $15,000 for All Faiths Food Bank. Guests at the sold-out three-day festival bid on the wine at an auction and all proceeds from the winning bids were donated to the Food Bank. The event is put on by the Sarasota-Manatee Originals, a group of more than 50 locally owned, independent restaurants that share a passion for culinary excellence, collaboration, and this region. More information can be found at DineOriginal.com.
The new Carrabba’s Italian Grill at 1751 S. Tamiami Trail in Venice made a $5,000 donation to the Venice YMCA as part of the restaurant’s grand opening. The funds reflect a portion of opening day sales from Monday, Feb. 2.
Grapevine Communications presented a $1,400 donation to Manatee Children’s Services following the agency’s 2014 Christmas “Santa Lineup” campaign, where staff members dressed up as a naughty or nice Santa Claus and selected a local charity to support. When the results were tallied, the project reached more than 12,000 Facebook users and garnered more than 7,280 photo views and more than 1,720 likes, comments and shares. Art director Lisa Grasso, or “Cupcake Santa,” received the most votes with 180 likes.
More than a dozen students, alumni and faculty members from New College of Florida’s VISTA program volunteered their time to help paint fences, clean and repair playground equipment and plant landscaping for Children First’s early childhood education program at the R.O.S.S. Center in Sarasota as part of a day of service sponsored by the VISTA program to help support economically challenged children and their families living in our community.