Cooper Levey-Baker has written about food, politics, civic issues, the arts, and music in Southwest Florida for a decade. His work has won an honorable mention from the Julia Child Foundation and a Bronze Award for Best In-Depth Reporting from the Florida Magazine Association, and he was named a finalist for Best Public Service Reporting by the Florida Society of Professional Journalists. His fiction earned him a John Ringling Fund Individual Artist Fellowship from the Arts Council of Sarasota County and his rendition of "Drunk in Love" has left karaoke audiences throughout the region bewildered.

Makeshift Music

Catch a Virtual Concert From the Lead Singer of Have Gun, Will Travel Tonight

COVID-19 has put the kibosh on most concerts in Florida, but the singer in one of the area's best bands is still putting on a show.

03/25/2020 By Cooper Levey-Baker

Coronavirus

Vendors Switch Up Sales Strategies in Wake of Farmers' Market Closures

The COVID-19 pandemic has forced many farmers' markets to shut down during what is usually their busiest season of the year.

03/24/2020 By Cooper Levey-Baker

Coronavirus

Many in the Food and Beverage Industry Are Facing an Uncertain Future

"We'll make it through somehow," says restaurateur Paul Caragiulo. "I mean, what choice do you have?"

03/20/2020 By Cooper Levey-Baker

Comfort food

Five Tasty Takeout Options for When You're Stuck at Home

In uncertain times, Chef Judi is craving food from her favorite restaurants. Here are some of her top takeout destinations.

03/20/2020 By Judi Gallagher

Hunger

Meals on Wheels Services Confront Rising Needs Caused By COVID-19

"We are seeing a huge increase in needs," says Amy Towery, the vice president of development at Meals on Wheels PLUS of Manatee.

03/20/2020 By Cooper Levey-Baker

Party Planning

Florida Winefest Returns for 30th Year Next Month

Over the past three decades, the multi-day wine bash has raised $8.6 million for 87 charities.

03/11/2020 By Cooper Levey-Baker

Plant party

Vegan Food Festival Comes to Bradenton This Weekend

The organizers promise that "eating a plant-based diet doesn’t have to boring or bland."

03/09/2020 By Cooper Levey-Baker

Going pro

Café Evergreen Wants You to Eat Like a Superstar Athlete

With its new Food Is Fuel program, the Nokomis restaurant is offering discounts to students to help them boost their athletic and academic performance.

03/09/2020 By Cooper Levey-Baker

The Ballpark Food Hall of Fame

What to Eat at Ed Smith Stadium, LECOM Park and CoolToday Park

These days, going to a spring training game means indulging in gourmet cuisine.

03/04/2020 By Cooper Levey-Baker

Freshening Up

Zota Beach Resort Restaurant Updates Menus

Viento Kitchen + Bar has added new options to its breakfast, lunch, happy hour and dinner menus, all of them overseen by executive chef Jeremy White.

03/04/2020 By Cooper Levey-Baker

Weekly planner

The Best Dining Events in Sarasota This Week

On the menu: Spice Boys in the Rosemary District, Fruitville Grove's strawberry festival, Parrish Heritage Day, a bestie brunch at Mote and a beer podcast at Calusa.

03/04/2020 By Cooper Levey-Baker

Homage to Catalonia

Michael's on East Food Truck Brings Spanish Cuisine to Selby Gardens

The truck is setting up throughout the gardens' "Salvador Dalí: Gardens of the Mind" exhibit, which concludes in June.

03/02/2020 By Cooper Levey-Baker

The Scoop

Jeni's Splendid Ice Creams Coming to Sarasota This Summer

A Jeni's shop will open near the University Town Center mall later this year.

03/02/2020 By Cooper Levey-Baker

Journey to the End of Florida

A Beginner's Guide to Exploring the Everglades

Four easy-to-access destinations to experience this majestic place of sawgrass and sky.

03/01/2020 By Cooper Levey-Baker

Hot Buzz

Drink of the Month: El Melvin's Spicy Sweet Mezcal Cocktail

This spicy-sweet cocktail sets the bar at the new El Melvin Cocina Mexicana.

02/28/2020 By Cooper Levey-Baker

Restaurant Review

Avlí Mess Hall Takes a Mix-and-Match Approach to Mediterranean Cuisine

The menu is rooted in Greek cuisine but also takes in influences from Turkey, Syria, Portugal and Italy.

02/28/2020 By Cooper Levey-Baker

Wildlife Scavenger Hunt

12 Wild Animals You Might See in the Everglades

Keep your eyes peeled for alligators, crocodiles, otters, deer, birds and more.

02/27/2020 By Cooper Levey-Baker

Swamp Outposts

The Best Places to Stay in the Everglades

There's an option for every kind of traveler.

02/27/2020 By Cooper Levey-Baker

Face Off

Meet the Miccosukee Tribe’s First Female Alligator Wrestler

Looking back on those who doubted that women could wrestle gators, Jessie Cottone just laughs. “We sure as hell can do it,” she says.

02/27/2020 By Cooper Levey-Baker

Rising Tide

How Climate Change Threatens the Everglades

According to experts, improving the flow of freshwater through the Everglades presents the best chance of staving off dramatic effects from climate change.

02/27/2020 By Cooper Levey-Baker