2016 July Sarasota Events Calendar

The July Sarasota Events Calendar has the best of the best fun free (or next to nothing) "happenings" in Sarasota, Florida and around the sun coast.

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Bikini contest downtown Sarasota Racing Fest

July 1, 2016: - DISCONTINUED FOR 2016 - The "Miss Super Boat Grand Prix” Bikini Contest is now the Miss Hooters Swim Suit Pageant. It will take place at 5 p.m. and 9 p.m. on the Lemon Avenue stage during the block party in downtown Sarasota. Winners announced about 11 p.m. In 2015 this became a contest among girls from Hooters only and closed to outside entrants. Perhaps it will change back in 2016. In past years it was open to the general public and past year prizes were: 1st Place $1,000, 2nd Place $500, 3rd Place $250, 4th Place $100. Click here to see photos and read more about the original Miss Super Boat Grand Prix Sexy Bikini Contest in Sarasota. 

July 1, 2016: - DISCONTINUED FOR 2016 due to construction projects this year in the downtown area. More than 20 racing boats will be on display during the block party starting at 6 p.m. The Suncoast Offshore Grand Prix Festival Parade of Boats takes place at 6 p.m. The parade route is along Main Street in downtown Sarasota, begins at U.S. 301 to Gulfstream Avenue and will feature the race teams along with their powerboats that will be featured in the July 6th  Sarasota offshore boat races off Lido Beach. July Sarasota Events on Escape-to-Sarasota.com

July 1, 2016: The Suncoast Offshore Grand Prix Festival Downtown "Boats on Main" Downtown Block Party from 6 p.m. - 11 p.m. There will be live entertainment, food vendors and more than 20 racing boats on display with racing teams on hand, all in downtown Sarasota. Main Street and Lemon  Avenue. Free admission.

July 2, 2016: The Bradenton Marauders will host the Stars and Stripes 5K Home Run. The race will be held at Pirate City at 8 a.m. and end with runners crossing home plate. Participants are encouraged to dress in red, white, and blue for the event. A one mile option is also available. Race participants will receive a commemorative t-shirt and a ticket voucher for one ticket to the 2016 Bradenton Marauders July 2 Independence Day Celebration game at 6:30 p.m. at McKechnie Field. The top male and female runner overall and in each age group (9 & Under, 10-12, 13-15, 16-19 & 5 year age groups 20-24 to 80) will be invited to be recognized in an on-field ceremony at the game that night.  A “Best Dressed” award will also be given to the participant with the most patriotic outfit. All 5K and one-mile participants are invited to the post-race party immediately following the race, and all runners age 21 and up receive one free draft beer sponsored by Leinenkugel Brewing Company. Pre-registration pricing is available until June 28. Adult registration costs $30 and children 12 and younger can register for $20. For the one mile fun run, adult pricing is $25, children 12 and younger are $15. Prices increase by $5 for day-of-race registration. Pirate City, 1701 27th St E, Bradenton, McKechnie Field -1611 9th Street West, Bradenton. Click here for sign up and more info.

sarasota-events-offshore-boat-racingThe Annual Suncoast Offshore Grand Prix Race

July Sarasota Events

July 2, 2016: Take the kids to Selby's Splashin Saturdays during July and have fun with water activities, water slides and games in the cool shade and around the lagoon and waterfall of the Children's Rain Forest Garden. There are also kids' corner activities and musical entertainment. Regular admission: Adults $19, Children 4-11 $6, Members Free, Members’ Guest $5. 10 a.m. - 12 p.m. Selby Gardens, 900 South Palm Ave., Sarasota, FL More info: 941.366.5731 or click here.

Sarasota Offshore Boat Racing Sarasota Florida

July 2, 2016:  It's the Sarasota Offshore Boat Races with Superstock & AquaX Races. Live Race Broadcast & Activities from the Sandcastle Resort at Lido Beach. 10 a.m. - 3 p.m. Powerboat Open Practice, Lido Beach Best Viewing. Noon til 3:00 p.m. Open To The Public.There's also VIP Race Viewing available at The Sandcastle Resort, 1540 Benjamin Franklin Drive  (Ticket Purchase Required, $100 per person) 10 a.m. - 5 p.m. Click here for more about the Annual Suncoast Offshore Grand Prix Race.

July 2 ,2016: Enjoy Marauder's Baseball along with Fireworks after the game at McKechnie Field in Bradenton. Gates open at 4:30 p.m. as the Marauders take on the Charlotte Stone Crabs with game time at 6:30 p.m. and a post-game fireworks show. Pre-game events include live music with the Gator Creek Band, free shirt giveaway to the first 1,500 fans, face painter, balloon artist, Kids Zone. Tickets: $6 - $8 and $10. 1611 9th Street West, Bradenton. July Sarasota Events on Escape-to-Sarasota

Sarasota Offshore Boat Racing Florida

July 2 - 3, 2016: - DISCONTINUED FOR 2016 - It's Powerboats by the Bay at Centennial Park on 10th Street & Rt. 41 near downtown Sarasota. This event is part of the Suncoast Offshore Grand Prix Boat Festival. The event runs from 10 a.m. - 7 p.m. on Saturday and 10 a.m. - 5 p.m. on Sunday. You can see the powerboats up close. Admission is free and there will be food, vendors and live entertainment. 10th Street and Rt. 41.

There are numerous recurring, fun things to do in Sarasota throughout the year. Click here for my list of recurring Events in Sarasota!

July Sarasota Events

July 3, 2016: It's the Sarasota Offshore Boat Races with Powerboat, AquaX, and Superstock Races with best viewing off of Lido Beach with Live Race Broadcast & Activities from the Sandcastle Resort at Lido Beach. Racing from 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. All Open to the public. There's also VIP Race Viewing available at The Sandcastle Resort, 1540 Benjamin Franklin Drive (Ticket Purchase Required, $100 per person) 9 a.m. - 4 p.m.  Click here for more about the Annual Suncoast Offshore Grand Prix Race.

July 3, 2016: Anna Maria Island: The Beach House Fireworks Spectacular for 2016 has been cancelled due to the nesting birds situation found there; black skimmers and lesser terns, rare species of migrating shore birds known to be nesting on north end of the Beach House property. The Beach House, 200 Gulf Drive N, Bradenton BeachJuly Sarasota Events on Escape-to-Sarasota.com

July 4, 2016: The 10th Annual Firecracker 5K Run will take place at at the Morgan Family Community Center located at 6207 West Price Blvd, North Port. The race will begin at 7:30 a.m. The course is flat, fast, and well marked with two water stations along the way in the 3.1 mile stretch. Early bird pre-registration fee is $20 before 6/1/16, $25 after 6/1/16. Packet Pick-up and Race Day Registration is at the Morgan Family Community Center from 6:15 a.m. to 7:15 a.m.  Registration and more information here.

July 4, 2016:  It's the 3rd annual Myakka River Kayak Festival and 4th of July Jam Blast featuring live music and craft beers. Live musical entertainment will take place throughout  the day kicking off  with Steve Arvey  from 11:00 a.m. - noon.  From 12:30 p.m. - 4:00 p.m. it's Treble Hook’s Florida Folk and Medicine Show with a unique and powerful Americana/Bluegrass sound. Kayak and canoe rentals will be available starting at  8 a.m. or you can bring your own. No cover charge for entrance. The festival will  benefit Friends of Sarasota County Parks. Free admission. 8 a.m. - 4 p.m. Snook Haven, 5000 E. Venice Ave, Venice. July Sarasota Events on Escape-to-Sarasota.com

Sarasota Water view dining

July Sarasota Events

July 4, 2016: It's being billed as A Patriotic Spectacular and will feature Gloria Musicae with a patriotic concert full of choral fireworks celebrating America. General admission: $25 in advance, $30 at the door, students with student ID $15 at the door day of the concert. 4:30 p.m. First United Methodist Church, 104 S. Pineapple Ave., Sarasota.

Sarasota Fourth of July

July 4, 2017: Have a Grand Old Time and Celebrate America’s Independence Day, The Fourth of July! The Sarasota Suncoast puts on as festive an occasion as anywhere else. During the long holiday weekend there are events and fireworks displays up and down the coast, from beach to shining beach! All fireworks displays start around dusk, of course, and all can be viewed by land as well as some by sea. (Please note: schedules may change and weather conditions may force cancellation of events.) Here's my list of free events and fireworks displays around the Sarasota Suncoast!

July 5, 2017: Sarasota County is looking for volunteers for the 2017 Liberty Litter Cleanup. Volunteers will help clean up six of the July 4th venues that are utilized the most during the festivities. Cleanup efforts will take place from 7 a.m. - 9 a.m. at Siesta Key, Lido Beach, South Lido Beach, Nokomis Beach, North Jetty Beach and Blind Pass Beach.  All volunteers should report to the Site Captain at their cleaning location. To volunteer call 941-861-5000. Registration will open in early-mid May 2017.​

July 5 - 6, 2016: The Kids Summer Beach Runs are 1-mile beach runs held every Tuesday (through Aug. 9) at Siesta Beach on Siesta Key near the pavilion, and every Wednesday (through Aug. 10) at Brohard Beach (1600 Harbor Drive) next to the Venice Fishing Pier, Venice. Registration at each location begins at 5:30 p.m. and the beach run starts promptly at 6:30 p.m. There's a one-time $1 registration fee. The runs are a popular summer event combining exercise and fun. More at 941-861-5000. July Sarasota Events on Escape-to-Sarasota

July Sarasota Events

July 7, 2017: Lakewood Ranch presents Music on Main the first Friday of each month from 6 p.m.- 9 p.m.! Live music, beer, wine and food available. Bring your chairs, but leave coolers at home. Dogs are welcome, but must be kept on a short leash. Overflow parking is available at the Lakewood Ranch Medical Center. Lakewood Ranch is off University Parkway east of I-75.

July 8 - 9, 2017: Can you dig it? The Dig The Beach - Siesta Key Volley Ball Classic bounces back in for another weekend of fun. With competition starting at 8:30 a.m. you're sure to see some great volleyball action. Siesta Key public beach volleyball courts. Free spectator admission. July Sarasota Events on Escape-to-Sarasota

July 8 - 10, 2016:  Sign up for or check out the 3rd Annual Sarasota Lionfish Derby sponsored by and based at Mote Marine Laboratory.  Captain's meeting is July 8, lionfish hunting derby is July 9 offshore from Collier to Escambia Counties. Weigh-in is July 10 at Mote Marie Laboratory and the public is invited, as well, to sample free lionfish tastings prepared by local chefs starting at noon. Derbies are a way to help divers harvest lionfish, provide public education and opportunities to taste the delicious lionfish for free.  Mote Marine Laboratory & Aquarium, 1600 Ken Thompson Parkway, Sarasota. Click here for more info.

July 9, 2016: Take the kids to Selby's Splashin Saturdays during July and have fun with water activities, water slides and games in the cool shade and around the lagoon and waterfall of the Children's Rain Forest Garden. There are also kids' corner activities and musical entertainment. Regular admission: Adults $19, Children 4-11 $6, Members Free, Members’ Guest $5. 10 a.m. - 12 p.m. Selby Gardens, 900 South Palm Ave., Sarasota, FL More info: 941.366.5731 or click here.

July Sarasota Events

July 9, 2016: Once again it's ReptiDay! It's the Sarasota Reptile and Exotic Animal Show. The event features vendors offering reptile pets, supplies and other related merchandise plus live animal seminars, raffles for prizes and more. 10 a.m - 5 p.m. (VIP early entry 9:30 a.m.).  General admission: $10 (Adult), $5 (Ages 5-12), ages 4 and under are free. VIP Early admission:  $12 (Adult), $5 (Ages 5-12), ages 4 and under are free and may be purchased at the door 9:30 a.m. - 10 a.m. Sarasota County Fairgrounds, Potter Building, 3000 Ringling Blvd., Sarasota.

July 10 - 11, 2016: It's time for try-out Auditions for Spirit Voices from Old Manatee, Season VI. Spirit Voices from Old Manatee is an original artistic production  The outdoor drama takes place in the month of October at Manatee Village Historical Park and the 1850 Manatee Burying Grounds in Bradenton, Florida. Costumed thespians personify those interred through graveside dialogue based on narratives from archives, descendants, diaries, military logs, books and legend. Souls highlighted in these cemetery vignettes are early pioneers of the Village of Manatee, veteran soldiers from the Seminole and Civil Wars, community leaders, victims of yellow fever, and other persons of interest buried within these hallowed grounds. Auditions are open to the public. No pre-casting. July 10 from 5:30 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. or July 11 from 5:30 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. MANATEE VILLAGE HISTORICAL PARK (Wiggins Store Conference Room), 1404 Manatee Avenue East (State Road 64), Bradenton, FL. For more information contact: manatee.village@manateeclerk.com or call: (941) 741-4076. July Sarasota Events on Escape-to-Sarasota

July 12 - 13, 2016: The Kids Summer Beach Runs are 1-mile beach runs held every Tuesday (through Aug. 9) at Siesta Beach on Siesta Key near the pavilion, and every Wednesday (through Aug. 10) at Brohard Beach (1600 Harbor Drive) next to the Venice Fishing Pier, Venice. Registration at each location begins at 5:30 p.m. and the beach run starts promptly at 6:30 p.m. There's a one-time $1 registration fee. The runs are a popular summer event combining exercise and fun. More at 941-861-5000. July Sarasota Events on Escape-to-Sarasota

July 13, 2016: Enjoy a special Main Street Live with music plus food and drink vendors along Old Main Street. Free admission but you must be 21 to drink alcohol or to get into bars. 2:30 p.m. - midnight. Old Main Street, downtown Bradenton.

July Sarasota Events

July 14, 2017: Check out Friday Night Free Music with the Nat Langston Group in the Gazebo in Centennial Park in downtown Venice. Bring your lawn chair or blanket. 7 p.m. Free admission. Downtown Venice. July Sarasota Events on Escape-to-Sarasota.com

July 14 - 16, 2016: Time to LOL! It's the 8th Annual Sarasota Improv Festival when laughter takes over the entire Florida Studio Theatre campus! The Sarasota Improv Festival brings together the most creative and inventive improv groups from all across the country and the world to take risks, get raw, and get real on stage in a variety of improv formats. Our own Florida homegrown troupes will appear and the festival will also feature workshops taught by the professional improvisers attending the festival. Various ticket prices:3 day passes are $69, 2 day passes are $59, Friday or Saturday passes are $49, and Thursday passes are $20. Florida Studio Theatre, 1241 North Palm Avenue, Sarasota. For tickets call 941-366-9000, or click here to get tickets and more info.

July 16, 2016: Take the kids to the last Selby's Splashin Saturday and have fun with water activities, water slides and games in the cool shade and around the lagoon and waterfall of the Children's Rain Forest Garden. There are also kids' corner activities and musical entertainment. Regular admission: Adults $19, Children 4-11 $6, Members Free, Members’ Guest $5. 10 a.m. - 12 p.m. Selby Gardens, 900 South Palm Ave., Sarasota, FL More info: 941.366.5731 or click here.

July 16 - 17, 2016: Find all kinds of old goodies at the Vintage & Collectibles Fair. Everything from Antiques & Books to Vintage Clothing, Artwork, Jewelry and more. Featuring more than 40 exhibitors along with concessions available. Adult tickets: $3, good for all weekend, 12 & under are free. Saturday 10 a.m. - 5 p.m., Sunday 10 a.m. - 4 p.m. Sarasota Municipal Auditorium, 801 N. Tamiami Trail, Sarasota.

July Sarasota Events

July 17, 2016: Find fun and more at the Boots vs Badges Competition Finale for Suncoast Blood Bank takes place with a blood donation competition. It's the Sarasota Police vs the Sarasota Fire Dept to see who can get more donations. Donate blood and get a $10 Gas Card, Gift Bag, Donor Store Points, Snacks & Drinks! In addition there's a safety expo going on featuring fire trucks, SWAT Hummer, Sheriff’s & Police Cars, Kid's Obstacle Course and more. In the the parking lot of Sarasota Square Mall between Sears and Ruby Tuesday.

July 19 - 20, 2016: The Kids Summer Beach Runs are 1-mile beach runs held every Tuesday (through Aug. 9) at Siesta Beach on Siesta Key near the pavilion, and every Wednesday (through Aug. 10) at Brohard Beach (1600 Harbor Drive) next to the Venice Fishing Pier, Venice. Registration at each location begins at 5:30 p.m. and the beach run starts promptly at 6:30 p.m. There's a one-time $1 registration fee. The runs are a popular summer event combining exercise and fun. More at 941-861-5000. July Sarasota Events on Escape-to-Sarasota

July 21 - 22, 2017: Historic downtown Venice brings back Christmas in July. While basically a sales promotion they will have Santa and Mrs. Claus on hand and participating stores will offer entry forms for a competition to win gift baskets donated by various member merchants. There will also be big sales and prizes to win with over 50 downtown stores and sponsors participating and some stores open late until 7 p.m. 10 a.m. - 5 p.m. Free Christmas Trolley rides throughout downtown. Historic Downtown Venice.

July 22 - 23, 2017: It's the 7th Annual Mystic Faire featuring everything metaphysical. Billed as the largest psychic fair in southwest Florida it will feature over 75 exhibitors and more than 25 psychics. Hear free lecturers and see psychics, healers and vendors of many kinds. Admission: $7 for one day or $10 for both days. 12 & under are free. Saturday 11 a.m. - 6:30 p.m. Sunday: 11 a.m. - 5 p.m. Sarasota Municipal Auditorium, 801 N. Tamiami Trail. July Sarasota Events on Escape-to-Sarasota

July Sarasota Events

July 23, 2016: Check out some summer fun during Family Fun Day with arts & crafts, face painting, food and drinks, music and more! Free. 10 a.m. - 1 p.m. Venice Art Center, 390 Nokomis Ave South, Venice, FL

July 23, 2016: Come celebrate and take part in Snooty’s 68th Birthday Bash and Wildlife Festival from 10 a.m. - 2 p.m. Snooty is the World's Oldest manatee on record. There will be wildlife awareness information plus children's games and art activities; free cookies and drinks for the children, a display of Snooty's birthday cards submitted for the card contest and more. Snooty was born on July 21, 1948 at the old Miami Aquarium and Tackle Company. Admission to the birthday party in the Spanish Plaza is free. You'll also find all day reduced admission prices to the Museum, Aquarium and Planetarium in honor of Snooty! 201 W 10th Street, Bradenton. Happy 68th Birthday to Snooty, from my July Sarasota Events Calendar! (941) 746-4131. Click here for more info.

July 23, 2016: Check out Christmas in July on Anna Maria Island with the Privateers and Santa at the Drift Inn on Bridge Street! Santa will have his sleigh there to give out presents to the kids. Also, there will be a pot luck dinner inside the Drift Inn for a $5 donation. Free admission. 6 p.m. - 10 p.m. Drift Inn on Bridge Street, Bradenton Beach, Anna Maria Island. July Sarasota Events on Escape-to-Sarasota

July 23, 2016: Sarasota County Parks, Recreation and Natural Resources kicks-off the popular 2016 Sizzlin' Summer Concert Series with the cool rhythm and blues and classic rock of 'Bandana.'   Cash bar and food concessions will be available. Blankets, lawn chairs and beverages are welcome at the outdoor concerts, but glass is prohibited. 7 p.m. Free. Venice Community Center, 326 S. Nokomis Ave., Venice.

July Sarasota Events

July 26 - 27, 2016: The Kids Summer Beach Runs are 1-mile beach runs held every Tuesday (through Aug. 9) at Siesta Beach on Siesta Key near the pavilion, and every Wednesday (through Aug. 10) at Brohard Beach (1600 Harbor Drive) next to the Venice Fishing Pier, Venice. Registration at each location begins at 5:30 p.m. and the beach run starts promptly at 6:30 p.m. There's a one-time $1 registration fee. The runs are a popular summer event combining exercise and fun. More at 941-861-5000.  July Sarasota Events on Escape-to-Sarasota

July 28, 2017: Check out Friday Night Free Music in the Gazebo in Centennial Park in downtown Venice featuring Jason Haram. Bring your lawn chair or blanket. 7 p.m. - 9 p.m. Free admission. Downtown Venice. July Sarasota Events on Escape-to-Sarasota

July  28 - 30 2017: It's the Tampa Bay Comic Con, a huge event for fans and aficionados of everything comic books! The weekend will be filled with celebrity guests and appearances. Friday: noon - 12 a.m., Sat: 8 a.m. - 12 a.m., Sun: 9 a.m. - 5 p.m. Weekend pass: $60, Single day: $30 for Friday, $40 for Saturday only and $30 for Sunday only. Tampa Convention Center, 333 S. Franklin St., Tampa. Click here for more info.

July 29, 2016: Enjoy an evening on the bayfront and some free live music at the 15th annual summer music fest series known as "Friday Fest" at the Van Wezel with live music by Jah Movement playing  top 40 Funk, Soul, R&B and Calypso Dance music. Bring your lawn chair or blanket, food and drink vendors available, outside food and drink is prohibited. This free concert series takes place rain or shine, it moves indoors in case of inclement weather. 5 p.m. - 9 p.m. Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall,  777 N Tamiami Trail, Sarasota, FL . July Sarasota Events on Escape-to-Sarasota

July Sarasota Events

July 29 - 30, 2016: Enjoy the Summer Circus Spectacular's last two days with incredible family entertainment presented by the Circus Arts Conservatory and The Ringling. Tickets are $12 and $15. Historic Asolo Theater on the grounds of the John and Mable Ringling Museum, 5401 Bay Shore Rd, Sarasota. Click here for tickets and more info.

July 30, 2017: Get in some shopping at the Coquina Beach Market on Anna Maria Island. Find everything from local artists, arts & crafts and fresh produce to plants, clothes, collectibles and more. Final market of the year until its return in November. 10 a.m. - 4 p.m. Free. Coquina Beach gulf-side, Bradenton Beach, Anna Maria Island.

July 31, 2016: It's time to celebrate! Sharky’s on the Pier has been voted the #3 Top Florida Beach Bar. The celebration will feature live music, free drink samples, food and drink specials. Tickets are $5 and proceeds will be donated to Venice Area Beautification Inc. and Mote Marine Laboratory. 5 p.m. to sunset. Sharky’s on the Pier, 1600 Harbor Drive South, Venice.





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