8 Tips for Hosting Holiday Guests

Whether you’re hosting a few guests for the entire weekend or having the whole family over for dinner on the big day, there’s a lot of preparation to be done! From setting up the guest room to preparing a delicious feast, there are several ways you can make your job as “host with the most” easier. Here are eight holiday hosting hips to get you through the season. 1. Cook ahead of time. Food preparation is key during the holidays, especially when you have a house filled with guests. Desserts, snacks, and easy meals will be extremely convenient to have on hand.  2. Stock your pantry. Stock up on foods that guests can snack on, such as cereal, chips, crackers, granola, nuts, and bread. If you want to go the extra mile, set snacks out in the kitchen with bowls, silverware, and napkins. This way, your guests can easily help themselves without having to inquire where everything is. 3. Write a welcome...
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7 Easy Ways to Make Your Space Smell Like the Holidays

7 Easy Ways to Make Your Space Smell Like the Holidays

What scents come to mind during the holidays? Hot apple cider, pine trees, and pumpkin pie are just a few examples. Cinnamon, vanilla, and peppermint are also popular. These wonderful smells evoke holiday memories, sweet nostalgia, and cozy goodness. So, how do you fill your coastal Sarasota home with these delicious, festive scents? Here are seven tips.  1. Use fresh greenery.Arrangements filled with winter foliage are perfect as holiday decor. Real greenery sprinkled with sage, rosemary, or pine will pack a real punch in your dining room. This will also work great if you live on a boat. 2. Light a candle. The easiest way to set the mood in your home is to light a scented candle. However, be careful not to overdo it with several different candles and different scents. Choose a favorite scent, and keep it consistent throughout your home.  3. Simmer a pot of water.Boil a pot of water with orange and apple peels, cranberries, nutmeg, cloves, and cinnamon....
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Fun Things to Do in Sarasota & Bradenton: Nov 8-10

Fun Things to Do in Sarasota & Bradenton: Nov 8-10

Here’s a quick list of fun events happening in Sarasota and Bradenton this weekend!  Free Admission to The Bishop Veterans and Active Duty MilitaryVeterans and active duty military will receive free admission to The Bishop Museum of Science and Nature for the entire month of November. To receive free admission, mention your service when you arrive at the admissions desk and offer photo I.D. 941-746-4131; bishopscience.org Sarasota Boat ExpoHeld at Robarts Arena Friday through Sunday, this expo will host a dozen new boat dealers offering their latest models. Hands-on seminars led by expert anglers will also be available. 3000 Ringling Blvd., Sarasota; $5; sarasotaboatexpo.com Suncoast Food & Wine FestThis charity fundraiser will bring thousands to Premier Sports Academy to sample over one hundred wines from around the world. Plenty of food will be offered, too! 1-4pm on Saturday. 5895 Post Blvd., Lakewood Ranch; $85-$175; suncoastfoodandwinefest.com Flight to the North Pole Car & Motorcycle ShowIn an effort to raise money for a charity that serves terminally and chronically ill children,...
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Sarasota’s Top 6 Winter Adventures

Sarasota’s Top 6 Winter Adventures

Are you planning your winter getaway to Sarasota? The Gulf Coast is full of year-round fun for all! Keep reading for Sarasota’s top 5 winter adventures.  Poinsettia Parade  Dec. 7  Take in the holiday festivities at North Port, where they hold their annual Poinsettia Parade. Featuring vendors, live performances, a tree-lighting ceremony and much more, you don’t want to miss this annual event! This year marks North Port’s 60th Anniversary, so there will be special events all evening long.  Lido Beach Holiday of the Arts Dec. 7-8  If you’re looking for the ideal artistic hideout, then head over to Lido Beach! Lido Beach Holiday of the Arts is full of local artists’ handiwork, taking place in a gorgeous setting. Find your perfect souvenir while browsing Florida’s stunning art culture at this unique festival! Sarasota Christmas Glow Run 5k Dec. 7 Are you looking for a way to keep your energy up throughout the holidays? Enjoy a festive, fun run with the entire family this year! Including a holiday-themed course,...
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5 Ways to Explore Sarasota This Winter

5 Ways to Explore Sarasota This Winter

Are you planning your winter getaway to Sarasota? The Gulf Coast is full of year-round fun for all! Keep reading for Sarasota’s top 5 winter adventures.  Englewood Pioneer Days Festival Oct. 12 – Nov 3 This historic festival will be one for the books! Englewood Pioneer Days takes place in Florida’s secret slice of paradise, Englewood. This festival is a celebration of Englewood’s history and has endless events full of fun for the whole family. Featuring car shows, historic tours, boat races, food trucks, and much more! Sarasota Country Music Festival Nov. 1-3 Are you a lover of country and southern comfort? Sarasota Country Music Festival is the place for you! Featuring a variety of genres, including Bluegrass, Cajun, Zydeco, and Blues, this festival is truly a unique experience. Peruse the various creative booths available while enjoying some delicious BBQ at this authentic Southern event! Sarasota Medieval Fair Nov. 9-Dec. 1  Sarasota Medieval Fair promises a day full of entertainment for all. View the armored knights wielding their lances...
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Explore Sarasota’s Eat Local Week

Explore Sarasota’s Eat Local Week

October 17th - November 2nd Eat Local Week is a special event featuring the best of Sarasota’s farm fresh food, complete with tastings, tours, and much more!  The History Behind Eat Local Week Transition Sarasota’s goal is to “create food and economic security by supporting local, sustainable sources.” - which they achieve through many ways, including Eat Local Week. This year marks the 9th annual event, themed “Exploring Food Waste”. They aim to provide a different perspective on eating consciously, and do so in a fresh and delicious way!  Don’t miss these exciting attractions: Ortygia Restaurant  Ortygia Restaurant, famed for ‘Zero Waste’ dinner, makes their return with more delectable treats in store. Make sure to register early for this one-of-a-kind experience! Newtown Farmer’s Market  Newtown Farmer’s Market is a highlight of Eat Local Week, hosting the popular Big Mama’s Collard Greens Fest. Featuring a variety of seasoned professional and local chefs, you don’t want to miss this unique extravaganza! Green Path Veteran’s Farm Green Path Veteran’s Farm returns with their yearly...
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Seashell Season in Sarasota: Part 2

Seashell Season in Sarasota: Part 2

There’s no end of amazing discoveries to be made in Sunny Sarasota! Are you looking for some of the best shelling spots in Sarasota? Keep reading to find your unique vacation souvenir!  Shelling Advice Tidal Deposits It’s no secret that Sarasota’s barrier islands have the best shells! A tip from shell experts: follow the tides. The best time to search for shells is an hour before and after low tide. Separating each island, you will find waterways that hold the best shell hauls! Each incoming tide brings fresh treasures to find.  Beat the crowds The further away from the crowds you get, the better your shelling prospects! It’s much easier to find a prime shell selection away from the busy areas of the beach. Sandbars Are you on the search for the famed sand dollar? Find a sandbar! Sandbars are known for having fresh shell deposits, full of sand dollars. Sand Dollar Island, found between Siesta and Lido Keys, promises fresh, breathtaking treasures every evening! Don’t forget! The...
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Seashell Season in Sarasota: Part 1

Seashell Season in Sarasota: Part 1

Seashell Season in Sarasota: Part 1 There’s no end of amazing discoveries to be made in Sunny Sarasota! Are you looking for some of the best shelling spots in Sarasota? Keep reading to find your unique vacation souvenir!    One of my most treasured memories as a child was diving for sand dollars in Sarasota! Every evening, my siblings and I would run down to the beach and scatter everywhere, searching for the best shell to bring in. The crowning jewel of these shells was the sand dollar. I had many unforgettable memories, diving under the tropical waters for hours, all for the famed sand dollar. I never did find one of my own! My older sister had a knack for it - everytime she dove under, she would come up with another pristine sand dollar. Of all my childhood memories, shell searching in Sarasota was my favorite pastime.    Seashells are some of the oldest inhabitants of the earth, and a prized treasure! While...
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Vacation Savings: Sarasota Big Pass

Vacation Savings: Sarasota Big Pass

Vacation Savings: Sarasota Big Pass Are you preparing for your Sarasota vacation this September and looking for the hottest deals? Consider purchasing a Sarasota Big Pass for the best vacation yet! See below all of the ways you can use your Sarasota Big Pass to explore this season.  What you need to know about the Sarasota Big Pass: The Sarasota Big Pass offers many opportunities for more fun on your vacation this fall! A limited-time deal, this pass has three different categories to explore Sarasota with: Buy One Get One Free! 25% Off $5 Discounts   See the Sarasota Big Pass site here for more information about deals around Sarasota!   Sarasota Big Pass: BIG savings on your vacation! This limited-time discount program is able to be used at participating local Sarasota businesses. Your pass is good  for one discount per person, per transaction - and here’s the best part: you can redeem your deals as many times as you’d like! Found a favorite restaurant or local fun spot? With the...
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Sarasota’s Best Vegan Dining

Sarasota’s Best Vegan Dining

Sarasota’s Best Vegan DiningSarasota has endless adventures in store for all! Were you looking for vegan-friendly places to dine on your vacation? Complete your Sarasota itinerary at some of these fantastic vegan restaurants below!  Lemon Tree KitchenLocated in Downtown Sarasota, you will find Lemon Tree Kitchen, a spot where you can grab a delicious bite no matter your diet. Featuring many different small dishes, such as raw Pad Thai Spring Rolls, Vegan Tartare, and Wood-Grilled Cauliflower Steak, this little slice of heaven will leave you craving more! LilaLila’s motto is all about eating clean! Most of their menu items are vegan or vegetarian. They are so dedicated to their food, they’ve taken precautions to ensure any meals with animal products are made on a different surface than the vegan dishes. Be sure to check out their daily specials! ShoreStop by Shore for unforgettable food in a relaxing atmosphere. You can choose either indoor or outdoor dining for a full tropical experience. While they...
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