Baseball season is upon us, but you don't need to go to a Major League game to enjoy excitement and fun. Our real estate agents know that a hard-fought Minor League game can be a joy to behold. As you explore Bradenton homes for sale or go across the way to Sarasota homes for sale, you'll have the best Minor League Baseball action right in your own backyard.
Bradenton is home to the Bradenton Marauders, the Minor League Baseball affiliate of the Pittsburgh Pirates. They play from historic LECOM Park, originally known as McKechnie Field, which has witnessed some of the greatest baseball games ever played in the Southeast.
A wonderful thing about Minor League Baseball is that you can enjoy it both before and after wrapping up the Major League season. There's always a welcoming community vibe, especially when LECOM Park is operated by the volunteer Bradenton Boosters during spring training.
Let's take a closer look and learn all about the team and venue.
About the Bradenton Marauders
Part of the Florida State League, the Bradenton Marauders are the Single-A affiliate of the Pittsburgh Pirates. Like the field in which they now play, the Marauders have a longer history than one might think: They're directly descended from the Tampa Tarpons, which started in 1957.
In April of 2010, the Marauders played their first game in front of nearly 2,400 spectators at what was then called McKechnie Field, named after Bradenton resident and Hall of Fame inductee Bill McKechnie. In a promising start for the team, they defeated the Fort Myers Miracle with a score of 18-3.
In their first season, the Marauders led the league in runs, batting average, and on-base percentage.
The 2011 season is when the Marauders really established the vibrant local fanbase that they still have to this day. They attracted more than 56,000 fans after 40 home games, a complete turnaround, and a record-breaking performance in the world of Minor League Baseball.
They made an even bigger mark starting in 2015, their first-ever championship season, where they capped off one of the most memorable streaks of the decade to defeat the Tampa Yankees by three games to one. It was their first Florida State League title and truly put them on the map.
A Truly Historic Bradenton Landmark
LECOM Park was renamed in 2017 but is perhaps best known as McKechnie Field, where it has been closely associated with the Pittsburgh Pirates since 1925. Opening in 1923 as City Field, it has been called "Florida's Fenway Park." It's the oldest stadium in the U.S. and is still used for spring training.
It also stands shoulder to shoulder with world-famous Wrigley Field and Fenway Park as the third-oldest stadium still used by a Major League Team. Its layout, nostalgic appearance, and standard amenities have made it a stomping ground for the most enthusiastic baseball purists.
One of the most unique aspects of this family-friendly park is the role of the nonprofit Bradenton Boosters. The Boosters have worked hard for nearly a century to support and improve the venue – many of its upgrades and updates over time can be traced back to fundraising campaigns by these volunteers.
Throughout the spring training season, you'll find the Bradenton Boosters serving as ushers, security personnel, merchants, and press box attendants. It's one more way LECOM Park is a unique local institution.
Be sure to check out their home game schedule so you can experience this baseball diamond in person!
Contact us to learn more about Bradenton and Sarasota.
Lauded by U.S. News & World Report as the #1 place in Florida to visit, Sarasota truly stands out. Whether you're looking for Sarasota homes for sale or at neighboring Bradenton homes for sale, you'll have the chance to enjoy all the amenities this sun-soaked community offers. Our real estate agents are excited to show you more.
Replete with natural wonders and fascinating Florida history, Sarasota excels in more ways than one. As you explore, you'll encounter striking architecture, some of the best restaurants on the East Coast, and more than a few examples of the things that make Florida unique.
With sister city Bradenton adjoining it – just 25 minutes away from downtown – residents of either one can boast they are right in the midst of two of Florida's most desirable cities. Miles of quality beach and Florida vacation getaways like Longboat Key and Holmes Beach await.
Let's take a closer look at some of the unusual attractions in Sarasota:
Inspired to turn your visit to Sarasota into a move? Contact us to find out more or get started.
Science fiction movies are fun, but they can't beat the excitement and wonder of exploring real-life stories. Our real estate agents love learning about our world at the Bishop Museum of Science and Nature, just minutes from Bradenton homes for sale.
About the Bishop
Opened in 1947, the Bishop Museum of Science and Nature is the largest natural history museum on the Gold Coast. Baby Snoots, a West Indian manatee affectionately known as Snooty, arrived in 1949 and became the museum's signature attraction.
Thanks to the museum's popularity, it moved into its current larger home in 1966. In time, exhibits grew to include the Parker Manatee Rehabilitation Habitat along with a replica of Barcarrota's Plaza, a 16th-century Spanish town.
In 2001, an electrical fire destroyed the planetarium and seriously damaged the museum's educational wing and administrative areas. Happily, in September 2002, the museum reopened bigger and better than ever. Throughout the years, renovations and additions have continued, maintaining the museum's status as a must-see destination.
The Bishop Planetarium
After being leveled by the 2001 fire, the Bishop Planetarium reopened in June 2005 as the top astronomy facility on the Gold Coast, not far from Sarasota homes for sale. The state-of-the-art projection system includes cutting-edge software that's 1.5 times brighter than the previous system, with four times the contrast.
Shows like "Passport to the Universe," narrated by Tom Hanks, take viewers on a virtual trip through the cosmos. Get a fascinating look at what lies beyond our own solar system and watch phenomenons like black holes. In addition, the planetarium can recreate a dark sky natural environment, allowing for the display of live on-air events as they happen.
Mosaic Backyard Universe
As part of the goal to make science fun and accessible for all, the museum created its latest addition, the Mosaic Backyard Universe. A one-time parking lot has been transformed into a backyard where kids can learn in a familiar setting. Features include a Tree House Platform, Cardboard Rocket, fossil-filled Dig Pit, Science Shed, and freshwater pond that's home to a number of turtles.
Parker Manatee Rehabilitation Habitat
Sadly, Snooty passed away in 2017 at the age of 69. But his legacy lives on in the Parker Manatee Rehabilitation Habitat, a 60,000-gallon pool where sick and injured manatees can prepare for their return to the wild. The habitat is designed to resemble a cypress spring so they can once again become accustomed to the food and environment they'll encounter. Above- and below-water viewing areas give visitors a chance to watch the manatees regain their strength and abilities.
Other Exhibits of Interest
Information and Hours
The Bishop Museum of Science and Nature is located at 201 10th St. W., Bradenton, FL 34205. Hours are 10 a.m. - 5 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday and noon - 5 p.m. Sunday. Tickets start at $23.95 for adults, $17.95 for ages 12-17, $14.95 for ages 5-11, and $8.95 for ages 2-4.
Life in Bradenton and Sarasota goes beyond fun in the sun. If you're selling or buying a home, contact us at Wagner Realty for cheerful and experienced assistance.
If you live in Sarasota, FL, you're lucky to experience the area's amazing weather, abundant recreational opportunities, and countless family-friendly destinations. You'll also find numerous special events that cater to nearly every interest, whether you're a baseball fan or are searching for the perfect antique.
Our real estate agents suggest checking out the following events coming to Sarasota in 2022:
Contact us if you'd like to see Sarasota homes for sale or Bradenton homes for sale. Established in 1939, we've earned a reputation for providing professional, personal service. We live and work in the community and would love to help you with your real estate transactions.
Florida is known as the Sunshine State, but our real estate agents can also offer some fun suggestions for when it's a little bit colder out!
"Cold" is relative, of course – when you're looking at Bradenton homes for sale or Sarasota homes for sale, you can expect daytime temperatures in the mid-70s, even in winter. In the middle of December, evening temperatures rarely go below 55. Most Floridians look forward to a few weeks of brisk breezes!
This means that, although you probably won't want to hit the beach, there are still plenty of things you can do around the area.
Let's take a closer look at some of your options:
At Wagner Realty, we know Florida is great in any season! Contact us to discover more about Sarasota and Manatee Counties.
Fall in Florida brings many exciting activities. While people up north are hunkering down for the winter, here, we're enjoying slightly cooler weather and gearing up for the busy season. From now until the summer returns, there's no shortage of things to do.
This time of year, when they're not busy helping clients find their dream homes, our real estate agents enjoy visiting local craft shows on the weekends. Whether you're an art enthusiast or just looking for something fun to do, we recommend paying a visit to these upcoming events.
Now is the perfect time to find your dream home in Florida, and the agents at Wagner Realty are here to help! Contact us today to learn more and get started with your homebuying journey.
Walking through an art gallery is a lovely way to connect with your feelings and expand your understanding of the world. So often, artists create images that evoke emotions that words can't express.
Luckily, Anna Maria Island has some lovely art galleries where talented, local artists showcase their pieces. Plan a trip to one (or more) of these galleries.
Whether you're a lifelong artist or someone just learning to appreciate the beauty in art, these Anna Maria Island art galleries are well worth exploring. If you're new to the island and looking for a place to live, contact us. Our real estate agents can help guide you in your home search and help you find the right property for your art collection.
Florida may be known as the Sunshine State, but this time of year, we also get our fair share of rain. If dark skies are threatening your beach plans, don't worry! There are tons of fun, family-friendly things to do in the Sarasota area. In fact, our real estate agents often take their families to these spots on their days off.
Contact us today to discuss your goals and get started. Your dream home is out there waiting for you, so don't delay!
Lakewood Ranch is definitely the place to be this summer. There are so many enjoyable activities that are open to the public, from yoga classes to soccer games. If you're looking at Lakewood Ranch homes for sale, we recommend checking out some of these nearby summer activities.
Lakewood Ranch is such an active, welcoming community. You can fill your schedule with these activities and truly get involved. If you're looking for a home in the area, our real estate agents can help. Contact us to learn more about the real estate market or things to do in Lakewood Ranch.
Let's play pickleball! This paddleball sport that's sweeping the nation is a mix between tennis, badminton, and table tennis. Played either one-on-one or two-on-two, pickleball is great for players of all ages and skill levels. Our REALTORS® love playing pickleball, and we know you will too! Grab a few friends and learn to play this exciting sport at one of these courts.
Would you like to live close to these wonderful pickleball courts so you can pay every day? Contact us and we'll show you the best homes available in the Sarasota and Manatee area.
If you're new to Florida, you might be surprised to learn that yes, we do get the occasional frost here in Sarasota and Manatee Counties in the late winter and early spring. This is just one of the things you need to know as you embark on gardening in your new home, acquired either from Bradenton homes for sale or Sarasota homes for sale. Fortunately, frost is rare and not much of an impediment to producing fabulous flowers, fruits, and vegetables in Florida.
While we suggest Floridians start planting long before National Plant a Flower Day, which is March 12, this national celebration, which promotes looking forward to spring by encouraging flower planting, is a great reason to jump right in.
And the good news is, after mid-February, the chances of a frost damaging seedlings or other plants are very low. So feel free to head to your local garden center and acquire some fabulous flowers to celebrate March 12 with a burst of color in your yard.
But before you start, a little planning is in order. What can you plant in our region of Florida? So many things, from tropicals to perennials, lush annuals, flowering shrubs, and glorious flowering trees. The key is making sure whatever you choose can tolerate our heat and humidity.
What to Plant
The flowering plant palette for Florida is extensive. Among the most common flowering plants, you'll note are these.
Would you like to wake up every day and feel like you're on vacation? Then a move to Sarasota may be just what you need. Our real estate agents love welcoming new residents to Sarasota. Even those who have lived in Florida their entire lives are wowed at the beautiful beaches, spectacular shopping, and laid-back lifestyle of this Gulf Coast city. There are dozens of reasons you should move to Sarasota in 2021; here are five of our favorites.
Would you like to call this Southwest Florida gem home? As one of the top-rated places to retire in the United States, now is the perfect time to put down roots in the Sunshine State for the long-term. Contact us today to see our latest listings for Sarasota homes for sale.
Decorating your entryway can be an easy, fun way to shift into the fall season without exerting too much effort. It's a smaller space so that you can create an effect with just a few accents. Maybe you're expecting company, but you're too busy to decorate the whole house, or you're expecting potential buyers to visit since you've listed your home among Sarasota homes for sale or Bradenton homes for sale. Why not just focus on the entryway, and say it all with a great first impression?
We're sure you'll love these tips for fall entryways that will dazzle your company.
Anna Maria Island, FL – When you think of Fig Newtons you probably don't associate them with the development of properties on Anna Maria Island – but they hold a chapter in the history of this quaint vacation island. Long before it became a mecca for vacationers from around the world, Anna Maria Island was home to the Caloosan and Timucan Native American tribes. Later, Spanish explorers visited the island, and Tampa mayor, Madison Post, settled there as well. But the island wasn't developed for permanent residence until the late 1800's – that's when Fig Newtons came into play.
Ohio native Charles Roser was working for a bakery in Philadelphia. Charles developed a fig cookie recipe that became quite popular around town, but it was a challenge to get the fig mixture into the cookie, so he also invented and patented a machine that inserted the fig paste into the cookie, making later mass production possible. Roser's cookie creation was in such demand, both the recipe and the machine were purchased by the Kennedy Biscuit Company (which later became Nabisco). The Boston-based company had a tradition of naming cookies after local towns and named the cookie "Newton" after the nearby town in Massachusetts. In 1891 the company began mass production of Fig Newtons. Between the sale of the recipe and the sale of the patent, Charles Roser became a wealthy man overnight. With his new-found wealth, Roser and his wife moved to St. Petersburg, FL. An entrepreneur at heart, Roser immediately looked for another business venture and soon formed the Anna Maria Beach Development Company in partnership with George 'Wil' Wilhelm Bean.
Wil Bean's father, George Emerson Bean, homesteaded the northern 160 acres of Anna Maria Island in 1892, establishing himself as the island's first permanent resident. Wil inherited his father's Anna Maria Island homestead in 1898 and the area was ripe for development. Roser and Bean created street maps, established sidewalks, and sold home lots. There was no bridge from the mainland, so Roser built a 678-foot pier to provide the ferries a landing spot, and the rest is history. Before long, Anna Maria Island was one of the finest resorts on the west coast of Florida, with pristine beaches, a bathing pavilion, and a water system – which was critical to the success of the island's development. The island soon had 60 homes, a hotel, church, school post office and stores. Today Anna Maria Island is still a place where "old" Florida charm remains the norm. On Anna Maria Island you'll find friendly people, a leisurely pace and flip flops – but you won't find high rises and fast food restaurants.
If you'd like to take a step back in time, visit Anna Maria Island. To find a vacation rental, go to www.wagnerrealtyrentals.com. To discover more island history, stop by the Anna Maria Historical Society located at 402 Pine Avenue on the north end of Anna Maria Island. The museum is open on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Please note that the museum will be closed during September for floor replacement Occupancy is limited to five visitors at a time. Visitors must wear masks for the safety and health of other visitors and docents. To visit the museum online go to https://www.amihs.org.
Although current events may have canceled your global travel plans, there's still plenty of time to have an amazing vacation close to home. Our REALTORS® invite you to plan a staycation at one of our Florida rental properties. Situated near or directly on the sandy shores of the Gulf Coast, these rental properties allow you to soak up the sun and maximize your time to relax, unwind, and enjoy the simple pleasures that the Sunshine State has to offer.
Who says you can't staycation forever? We have a portfolio of gorgeous Longboat Key homes for sale on the water and many stunning Bradenton Beach homes for sale within a short stroll to the shore. Contact us today to book one of our amazing rental homes and discover what life is like along the Gulf Coast.
One of the many advantages of living in Florida is our abundance of sunny weather and warm temperatures. During the summer months though, the heat and humidity can leave you feeling a bit drained. Fortunately, there are ways you can beat the heat.
From practical tips to fun and cooling activities your kids will love, our real estate agents suggest the following 7 ways to cool off this summer.
Would finding a new place in Florida be the highlight of your summer? Contact us today to find out about Sarasota homes for sale and Bradenton homes for sale and tour ones that catch your eye. Whether you're looking for a starter home, a larger home, or are ready to downsize, we can help you find a house in southwest Florida that will soon become your dream home.
Do you think that staying home has to equal boredom? Think outside the box...literally. The four walls of your house don't have to limit your entertainment options. Our real estate agents have discovered some fascinating ways to stay busy while staying indoors near Sarasota homes for sale.
Isolation or not, Wagner Realty is here for you. Contact us with all your real estate questions.
Staying connected in a time of social distancing is no easy task. Yet, with all the new challenges our world is facing, we continue to find ways of maintaining our ties to one another. We think staying connected with loved ones is more important than ever, and our real estate agents are thrilled to share some of the apps we've been using to stay in touch.
Contact us today to learn more about how we can all stay connected while social distancing. At Wagner Realty, we still believe in the importance of human connection, and we're here to help you keep in touch while you're finding your dream home.
Don't squander the extra time. Carpe diem!
The cynical view about Leap Year is that it's an awkward attempt to manage the calendar so we don't have Christmas in July.
I'd like to look at it this way: We've been given an extra day to make everything better. So - what will you do to take advantage of this extra time?
Here are 16 ways to carpe diem:
Say thank you. Take a page from Jack Welch and Mark Zuckerberg and write a thank-you note. Or just say it.
Read a magazine you would never ordinarily even look at. Get a new perspective on politics, fashion, home décor or wellness.
Throw out 16 things. Things that don't work. Things you never use. They're just weighing you down. Time to say good-bye!
Start a big goal. I want to write another book this year. If I don't begin by March 1 (yes, that's tomorrow), it probably won't happen. Time to get going.
Contact an old friend. You don't need to give a reason for reaching out. All you need is to make the effort.
Take a drive with an important family member. Use car time to talk about something--or just connect.
Play a board game with someone you like. Electronic games don't count. Sit down, roll the dice and experience human contact.
Map out the rest of your year. Big events are probably already accounted for. Now decide on major milestones and plot them on the calendar.
Cook something new or challenging. I attempted honey-oat cereal bars over the weekend. They tasted great, but didn't hold together (more like cereal crumbles). But at least I tried.
Clean your desk. I know: You did that in December and the mess is already back. Give it another try.
Take a break. Do nothing for 15 minutes. Experience empty time with no electronics or chores. Weird, right?
Book three lunches or dinners with people you like. These need to be agenda-free encounters; it's just about getting together.
Do one thing to improve your health. It doesn't matter what: Just take the first step.
Plan a real vacation--one where you don't check email or do any work at all. This will require setting expectations so your boss and coworkers know you're serious.
Build, craft or grow something. Experience the joy (and challenge) of using your hands to bring something to life.
Above all, don't take yourself too seriously.
And remember: They call it Leap Year for a reason. It's your chance to fly high!
SOURCE: Alison DavisFounder and CEO, Davis & Company
It's always hard to say goodbye to your favorite pets at the beginning of a busy day or trip out of town, but if you live around Manatee and Sarasota, then you can rest easy knowing that there are plenty of dog daycare facilities to choose from. Here are a few you might like to check out.
The Lucky Puppy – 8003 US Hwy. 301, N Suite 105, Parrish, FL 34219
Close to Parrish homes for sale, The Lucky Puppy, offers your puppy a free socialization program every Monday to make new friends. The team at the Lucky Puppy provides a mix of one-on-one interaction with your pet, and group pet activities to promote socialization.
Doggy Resort SRQ – 3424 17th St., Sarasota, FL 34325
With grooming, training, daycare, boarding, and even a bakery, Doggy Resort SRQ has everything you need to keep your pup happy near Bird Key homes for sale. The Doggy Resort features indoor/outdoor playgrounds, a shaded pool, indoor climate control, and optional extras that include expert dog training.
Camp Bow Wow – 2101 17th St., Sarasota, FL 34234
Camp Bow Wow allows pet owners to monitor their pups anytime with live webcams. Close to Sarasota homes for sale, Camp Bow Wow is a nationally known chain with a comprehensive program that includes extensive socialization with both pets and people, along with regular exercise.
PetSuites – 5205 53rd Ave. E., Bradenton, FL 34203
Near Anna Maria homes for sale, PetSuites offers a "first-day free" program at their full-service facility. They even feature a puppy pre-school. Customize your pet's experience with a wide variety of packages, including day play for energetic pups, day boarding for pets that prefer relaxation, and a day spa.
Bayside Pet Resort at Lakewood Ranch – 15117 Garnet Trl., Lakewood Ranch, FL 34211
If you're looking for a luxurious doggy daycare to pamper your pup close to Lakewood Ranch homes for sale, then the Bayside Pet Spa is the place to be. Dogs at Bayside Pet Spa get their own private space, along with the option to socialize with other pets. This facility also goes above and beyond with services that include professional grooming and dog training.
Fox Creek Pet Ranch – 5557 Lorraine Rd., Bradenton, FL 34211
If you have cats or other small pets in need of daycare then Fox Creek Pet Ranch, located near Parrish homes for sale, is a perfect option. Fox Creek Pet Ranch provides care for a wide variety of pets in a facility that is advertised as safe, clean, loving, and healthy.
If you're searching for a community where both you and your favorite pets feel right at home, then our team is here to help. Contact us to buy and sell homes throughout Manatee and Sarasota.
Before you know it, the days for holiday shopping will dwindle. If you're still looking for a few last-minute gifts, our REALTORS® suggest shopping local. Here are just a few of the many wonderful and unique stores around Bradenton and Sarasota.
Thanksgiving is upon us, offering an opportunity for reflection and gratitude. Everyone has their own favorites to be thankful for, but we thought it might be nice to start the holiday week off by sharing some of our favorites.
If you're you looking for a home close to a relaxing beach or a condo in the heart of a bustling art, culture, and dining scene, contact us today, and we'll help you find a home that you'll be thankful for every day of the year.
Even though there's no snow in sight, the many holiday craft fairs returning to town are making it feel a lot like Christmas. Our REALTORS® are excited to complete our shopping lists by visiting a handful of the spectacular holiday craft fairs in Manatee and Sarasota Counties. If you're looking for one-of-a-kind gifts for that special someone, head to one of these festive fairs.
Are you looking for a place to keep all of your new crafts and décor? Contact us today, and we'll help you find a great home in Sarasota or Manatee County.
Did you know that the Sarasota and Manatee area is home to some of Florida's most unique museums? Whether you're interested in art, history, culture, classic cars, or whimsy, there's a local museum waiting to be explored. In addition to being great places to visit, museums add character to neighborhoods while preserving local history. Our REALTORS® have all the details on the best museums to visit in the Sarasota and Manatee area.
Still searching for a home close to the art, history, and fascinating museums? Contact us to buy and sell homes throughout Sarasota and Manatee Counties.
Autumn is one of the most beautiful times of the year along the Gulf Coast. You can be sure everyone will be taking full advantage of the cooler weather by getting out and active! Our REALTORS® are here with the return of these family-friendly fall festivals around Manatee and Sarasota Counties.
Looking for a great home in Manatee or Sarasota Counties to settle in for the fall? Contact us today, and we'll help you with your search!
Choosing the right charter means the difference between an incredible experience you'll never forget, and a day that's just so-so. To help make sure you enjoy every minute of your trip, we've created the following list of our favorite local fishing and sailing charters.
Are you thinking about buying a home in the Sarasota area? Wagner Realty can help! Contact us today to discuss your goals and get started.
There's no shortage of fun outdoor activities to do in Sarasota and Manatee Counties. If you want to get out of the house and connect with nature, grab your binoculars and your camera and head out to some of the area's best birdwatching spots.
Whether you're new to the birdwatching scene of you're already a member of the Sarasota Audubon Society, you might be surprised by the array of interesting species you'll find nearby. Our REALTORS® recommend taking a drive to the following locations where you're sure to find some new feathered friends.
From outdoor adventures to shopping and nightlife, Our REALTORS® are "in the know" about all things there are to love about living in Sarasota-Manatee County communities. If you would like to learn more about the area and take a look at some of the gorgeous homes for sale, we can help! Contact us at Wagner Realty to get started.
If you're touring Anna Maria Island homes for sale, then you're considering buying a home where the rest of the world dreams of vacationing. With its many quaint shops, award-winning restaurants, and beautiful beaches, there's never a shortage of things to do here.
Our REALTORS® recommend taking a short break from house hunting to get a taste of what island life is like. Spending the day on a fishing or sailing charter is a great way to do just that. Here are a few of our favorite charter services to help you get started.
When you work with us, you don't have to fish around for a good deal. Our REALTORS® know the area inside and out and will help you find the home you've been dreaming of. Contact Wagner Realty and learn how much easier home buying can be with us by your side.
When's the last time you spent the weekend enjoying the sun and exploring the fun found around Sarasota and Bradenton? Our REALTORS® encourage you to get out and get involved in the many fantastic weekend events that fill our coast with rich arts and culture. Celebrate our gorgeous weather and vibrant communities by attending one of these five great spring festivals happening in Manatee and Sarasota Counties.
Contact Wagner Realty today to learn more about other spectacular springtime festivals happening around Sarasota and Manatee Counties.
If you're in the mood for a tasty treat but are still trying to stick to your New Year's resolutions, a healthy frozen yogurt is a perfect solution. In honor of National Frozen Yogurt Day on February 6, our real estate agents decided to pay a visit to some of our favorite frozen dessert shops.
After doing plenty of due diligence, they've created a list of their favorites to share with you. Each location has unique qualities, so you may want to do your own research and try them all!
Whether you're looking for a bustling city-vibe or laid-back island life, there's a neighborhood in the Sarasota area that's perfect for you. We have the inside scoop on all the best homes for sale and are standing by to help you find the perfect one. Contact Wagner Realty today get started on the search for your dream home.
Living in the Sunshine State gives you plenty of opportunities to spend time outdoors and enjoy an active lifestyle. If feeling healthier is one of your 2019 goals, you'll be glad to know that small changes can make a big difference.
Occasionally replacing a heavy meal with a fruit or a veggie-packed smoothie is a great way to improve your diet while pleasing your palate. In honor of National Green Juice Day on January 26, our real estate agents have gathered a list of their favorite spots in the Sarasota area to grab a tasty green smoothie on the go.
Vegans and those who are dairy-free can enjoy their smoothies with coconut milk soft serve instead of yogurt. Try a classic fruit smoothie, opt for a healthy organic green DetoxBunni, or indulge in a DirtiBunni made with Oreos, M&Ms and chocolate sauce. Stopping at SunniBunni means that everyone is sure to go home happy.
When you're ready to take the next step towards making Sarasota your permanent home, we can help! Contact Wagner Realty to learn why working with our real estate agents puts you in the best position to find your dream home and make it a reality.
The city of Bradenton has more to offer than beautiful houses, friendly neighbors, and plenty of sunshine. It's also home to some of the area's best bakeries. When our real estate agents are in the mood for a tasty treat, they love making a stop at one of their favorite sweet spots.
The decadent delights you'll find in these shops are totally worth taking a break from your New Year's resolutions, if only for a day. We've created a list of our favorite Bradenton bakeries, so you can see for yourself what all the buzz is about.
Outstanding bakeries and cafes are just one of the things that make Bradenton a great place to live and work. Contact us at Wagner Realty today and let us show you even more reasons to make "The Friendly City" your new home.
New Year's Eve is right around the corner, and the Sarasota area is a great place to celebrate. Whether you prefer a family-friendly event or an epic street party, we've got you covered. Our real estate agents have gathered a list of the very best ways to ring in the New Year in and around the city of Sarasota.
Are you ready to plan an evening you'll never forget? Let's start exploring your options!
Do your 2019 goals include finding a new home in the Sarasota area? There are plenty of gorgeous homes for sale, and our real estate agents are happy to help you find the perfect one. Don't put your dreams on hold, contact Wagner Realty today to get started!
Whether you're a kid or a kid at heart, Christmas wouldn't be the same without a glimpse of Jolly Old Saint Nick. Luckily, Santa loves soaking up the sun in Sarasota before he gets too busy preparing for his big night.
Our real estate agents have the inside scoop on his favorite spots to hang out while he's here, and we're ready to let you in on the secret. Here are six of the best places to see Santa in and around Sarasota.
If your holiday wish this year involves buying or selling a home in Sarasota, we can help! Contact Wagner Realty today to discuss your real estate goals.
Family-friendly Thanksgiving Day runs, also known as Turkey Trots, first began way back in 1896. Since then, the tradition has grown hugely popular across the United States, offering families and friends a fun way to burn some extra calories before indulging in the day's festivities.
While most of the country will wake up to cold, blustery weather on Thanksgiving morning, Sarasota area residents and visitors will enjoy mild temperatures that are perfect for an early morning run. This year why not start a new family tradition that will allow you to gobble guilt-free all day long? This list of the area's most popular Turkey Trot races will help you get started.
First Inaugural Florida Turkey Trot: Nathan Benderson Park, Nathan Benderson Circle, Sarasota
Our real estate agents love visiting beautiful Nathan Benderson Park and are excited for the First Inaugural Florida Turkey Trot 5k. This centrally-located first-class venue is perfect for families coming from Sarasota, Bradenton, and Lakewood Ranch.
The event will feature a chipped-timed 5k run/walk with a final "floating mile" over the lake and bracketed "Turkey Dashes" for the kids. Stick around after the race for sweet treats and beverages, and don't forget to bring along your canned-food donations for the All Faiths Food Bank.
All participants will receive a commemorative shirt and finisher medal. Proceeds from the event benefit The Suncoast Aquatic Nature Center Associates, Inc. (SANCA).
ALSO Youth 9th Annual Turkey Trot 5K: Hyatt Regency Sarasota, 1000 Boulevard of the Arts, Sarasota
Participants in the ALSO Youth 9th Annual Turkey Trot 5K will enjoy beautiful views of some of the best Sarasota homes for sale as they race over the iconic Ringling Bridge. This chip-timed race offers awards for the top finishers in each group, a finisher's medal for participants under age 15, and a long-sleeve tech shirt for all pre-registered participants.
After you're done, be sure to check out the post-race party and celebrate while enjoying music, snacks, non-alcoholic beverages, and a variety of beers.
Tidewell Hospice Turkey Trot 5k: Lakewood Ranch Main Street, Lakewood Ranch
Are you too busy to make it to a race on Thanksgiving day? You're in luck! The Tidewell Hospice Turkey Trot 5k is held on Sunday, November 17th. This chip-timed 5k run/walk is both stroller and pet-friendly, making it an excellent family-friendly option.
Children will love participating in the "Turkey-Dashes," and the 5k course features turkey-themed volunteers, plenty of water stations, and music to help you hustle along. Registration includes a commemorative moisture-wicking shirt.
You're sure to have fun at the after-party featuring food from local area restaurants. On your way home from the event, don't forget to take the scenic route so you can get a look at the many beautiful Lakewood Ranch homes for sale.
Bradenton Turkey Trot "Give to Run" 5k: GT Bray Park, Bradenton
The 22nd Annual Bradenton Turkey Trot puts a unique spin on their event by skipping the registration fee. Instead, participants are encouraged to support The Food Bank of Manatee and Turing Points with monetary donations and/or canned goods.
Participants have the option to purchase Turkey-Trot themed t-shirts, and the overall male and female winners will each receive a delicious pie for their Thanksgiving celebrations. This event is hugely popular and always has a large turnout. If you've been checking out Bradenton homes for sale this is a great way to meet some of your potential new neighbors.
After experiencing the strong sense of community in the Sarasota area, we're confident you'll be more excited than ever to make this area your new home. Contact Wagner Realty to learn how we can help make your dream a reality.
If you love coffee, you know the only way to start your day is with a rich, warm boost of your favorite caffeinated drink. As you shop for Sarasota homes for sale, you'll soon discover we have plenty of great coffee shops waiting to welcome you to your new city.
To get you headed in the right direction, our real estate agents tracked down some of Sarasota's favorite coffee shops. You'll have to let us know which one serves your coffee the way you like it.
There's so much to love about living in Sarasota, and there's no better way to start your day in the city than with a fresh cup of coffee. Contact Wagner Realty when you're ready to learn more about buying or selling your home in our seaside community.
Ask any of our real estate agents, and they'll tell you that Sarasota locals know how to celebrate Halloween. If you're lucky enough to be in the area this month checking out Sarasota homes for sale, you'll want to visit some of the area's hottest Halloween events. Here are a few of our favorites:
Autumn is an excellent time to relocate to the Sunshine State! Whether you're a local planning to sell your home or a buyer searching for the perfect new residence, our qualified agents make it easy. Contact Wagner Realty today to discuss your needs and learn how we can help.
You don't have to whisk off to a far-away resort to enjoy a relaxing day at a top-notch spa. No matter where you live, you're likely to find some excellent day spas nearby.
The city of Bradenton, on the West coast of Florida, is home to stunning beaches, excellent dining and entertainment options, and plenty of opportunities to pamper yourself. Whether you're a local looking for a luxurious way to spend your day off or a potential new resident ready to take a break after exploring the many gorgeous Bradenton homes for sale, you'll want to check out one or more of the best spas in Bradenton.
If you're ready to make this corner of paradise your permanent home, our real estate agents can help. The city of Bradenton is home to many different residential neighborhoods, each with a unique vibe. Contact Wagner Realty today to start exploring your options.
After a busy week of work, what could be better than happy hour at one of Sarasota's many great restaurants, lounges, or nightlife spots? Our real estate agents know Sarasota, and we've got the details on ten of the best places in the city to enjoy happy hour.
If you're planning your first open house, you've no doubt completed a long list of fixes and upgrades. You're probably depending on the attraction of the seaside ambiance, lush tropical climate, and other natural highlights that make Bradenton homes so engaging. These features will attract buyers to your open house, but you'll need great staging to keep them interested.
Our real estate agents understand how the idea of staging can seem vague. But it's critical to selling your home. When it's done right, great staging gives potential buyers the room to imagine their family in your space.
Staging is a step-by-step process that assumes you've already done the heavy repairs and fix-ups.
Your home probably contains too much stuff. That happens when you live in one place for a long time and you keep bringing things in but don't take any out. Clutter makes your rooms look small and crowded. That's a problem because buyers want spacious floor plans.
If you can't bear to donate your stuff or throw it away, hide it in a rented storage unit. The biggest offenders?
Buyers want to see themselves in your home. That means you must remove all kid-created art, vacation photos, and vintage pics of sweet Auntie Sally at age 4. You must remove any items that tag your home as... your home.
3. Make Each Room a Blank Canvas
Walls painted in neutral colors are a great way to freshen up a room and start over from scratch. Of course, you should know that today's "neutral" doesn't have to be eggshell or beige. Consider these alternative blank-slate colors.
4. Brighten and Lighten
Home buyers are attracted to bright open spaces. Painting is the first step. Here are a few other things you can do.
5. Rework Your Spaces
If your newly decluttered rooms seem devoid of character, that's not such a bad thing. Transform these nearly-empty rooms into attractive minimalist arrangements.
You have a lot to do when you're preparing to sell your home. Our professionals have the experience to advise you every step of the way. Contact Wagner Realty when you're ready to buy or sell a home or if you simply want information on activities, businesses, and events in Bradenton.
Our REALTORS® are always thrilled when new residents come to Sarasota to look for a home and ask about interesting things to see and do. Inevitably, we direct them to a popular destination with public art that comes with quite a storied past.
One of the most photographed statues in Florida, if not America, is a 26-foot tall statue that calls Sarasota home. It commemorates the famous photo that appeared in LIFE magazine of a young U.S. sailor dipping and kissing a nurse in Times Square on the day World War II ended. The statue, Unconditional Surrender, is part of a series of statues created by American artist Seward Johnson and can today be found in Sarasota's Bayfront Park. This statue pays homage to the "Greatest Generation" and the joyful celebrations at the end of the war, but its placement in the park has a rather interesting history.
Sarasota's Bayfront Park has had the "kissing sailor" statue come and go on three separate occasions. Its story alone makes it worth a visit when you are ready to take a break from seeing Sarasota homes for sale.
In 2005, the statue made its first appearance when a heavy duty styrofoam version was placed in the park on a temporary basis. It was initially met with mixed reviews from locals who either loved it or hated it. After a couple of years, a foundation established by the artist decided to relocate the statue, so it was loaded onto a flatbed trailer and trucked across the country to San Diego. Then in 2009, thanks to the efforts of a local WWII veteran and art patron, a new, painted aluminum version of the statue was purchased and delivered back to Bayfront Park.
Unfortunately, it was placed just a little too close to the busy intersection, and just three years later, a woman driving a Mercedes jumped the curb and hit it, knocking a big hole in the sailor's foot and causing more than $125,000 in damage. So, once again, the statue was loaded on a flatbed, and this time it was trucked to New Jersey where it endured six months of painstaking repairs.
After the statue was repaired, it was returned to Sarasota in December 2012, once again placed in Bayfront Park, but this time, city leaders had it installed further from the road near the shoreline where it currently remains.
Today the statue is one of the most popular stops for tourists who visit Sarasota, and most residents have grown fond of it too. On any given day you can see couples recreating the famous "kissing sailor" pose for their own selfies and photographs.
So when you're looking for a new home in Sarasota, be sure to contact Wagner Realty, and before, during or after visiting homes with one of our agents, make a trip to Bayfront Park to see the famous "kissing sailor" statue. With a story like this, we're fairly certain it will become one of your favorite places to bring your friends and family when they come to visit you in your new Sarasota home.
One of the perks of living near Siesta Beach in Sarasota (apart from enjoying the beach itself) is the weekly drum circle held every Sunday. Here, you will be treated to a beautiful sunset while listening and dancing to drummers in a festive-like atmosphere. Our REALTORS® in Sarasota have all the details of this exciting local phenomenon as well as all other to-do things in the area.
The Siesta Key Drum Circle starts one hour before the sun sets every Sunday and continues into the night. The popular tradition attracts large crowds of onlookers and participants for dancing and drumming on Siesta Beach. Drum circle regulars sporadically perform with fire, swords, or even hula hoops. They are also dressed in beautiful colors and offer flowers to onlookers.
The free fun event is held every Sunday evening at Siesta Beach. It takes place south of the beach's pavilion between the third and fourth lifeguard stands. Since it is a huge event that attracts a large crowd, you cannot miss it once you get to the beach.
You are advised to arrive early to get a parking space and also sit near the front of the circle for a great view. You should also bring your beach chairs or blankets. Several hundred people typically attend the drum circle. Depending on what you came for, you will find an engaging show and a mellow atmosphere.
The Siesta Key Drum Circle is not a commercial event but a local phenomenon that started spontaneously, grew from demand and active participation, and now enjoys a life of its own. It is one of the main reasons why Siesta Key homes are in high demand.
The weekly ritual started in 1996 during the autumn equinox. It evolved from a potlatch ceremony of a Ringling School of the Arts' creativity workshop. The event continued for several years with the support and participation of members of the local churches as well as the Native Descended Nation, which explains its spiritual aspect.
In the beginning, the drumming circle was located at Beach Access 8 and was only supposed to be held during the full moon. However, people liked it so much that it became a weekly affair. When the event moved to the Siesta Public Beach, it seized to be a sacred atmosphere and became a carnival. It also got a change of diversity and pace.
Today, the drum circle has raised whole generations of kids who now bring their children to the family event. The Sunday night tradition is now the number one free event in Sarasota and is listed in most magazines. It is a must-see attraction for your family that has evolved into a local culture passed down generations.
Imagine both finishing your week and starting the next in a fun drum circle carnival that allows you to let loose and dance your stress away. You will find the circle both a spiritual and social event. It generates positive energy and gives people the space they need. Moreover, it is an ideal way to spend quality time with your family because it offers a unique experience, but once the sun sets and it gets dark, you will find the crowd becomes less inhibited.
If you are looking at Siesta Key homes or are interested in moving into the area, contact Wagner Realty today to find your perfect home. Wagner Realty has served Sarasota County since 1939 helping people find their ideal home.
If you're thinking about relocating to a warmer climate, Sarasota, Florida is a wonderful choice. It's the city "where urban amenities meet small-town living." Winters are tropical, with occasional Gulf breezes and rain showers to ease the heat. You'll find a thriving art and culture scene and exciting residential and commercial architecture. If you're making the transition as a Sarasota retiree, you'll find many activities to fill your leisurely days.
Our REALTORS® live, work, and play in the Sarasota area. We believe it's one of the most desirable cities in America. When you're ready to explore local living options, we'll be happy to arrange tours of Sarasota homes for sale. In the meantime, take a look at our Step-by-Step Guide for Relocating to Sarasota.
1. Visit Sarasota
If you haven't made up your mind about your move, visit our fabulous city and you'll know for sure. Sarasota is far more than just palm trees, beaches, and sunshine. You'll enjoy entertainment, dining, and outdoor activities. With the extensive selection of homes, you're certain to find the style, space, and amenities you want.
2. Connect with a REALTOR®
Establish a relationship with a Florida real estate professional who can manage the home-buying process from beginning to end. Your REALTOR® can begin searching for a home that meets your criteria.
3. Organize your move
Consider delegating your moving tasks. Movers can pack, load, move, unload, unpack, and set up at your final destination while you relax and remain stress-free. If you're moving for a transfer or promotion, your employer might reimburse your expenses. Otherwise, they could be tax deductible.
4. Arrange your utilities
You must contact several sources to establish utility services in your new home.
5. Connect your phone
If you're a cell-only family, check to see if your provider has coverage in Sarasota. Companies like Wirefly, Xfinity, and others offer Voice Over Internet Protocol (VOIP) home landline service.
6. Get legal to drive in Florida
Drivers in Florida must have:
7. Find a new doctor
The Sarasota County Medical Society maintains an online Sarasota Physician Directory.
8. Find a new dentist
Visit Dentist.com for a directory of Sarasota dentists.
9. Enroll your kids in school
10. Change your address
Complete a USPS.com online address change so your mail will follow you to Sarasota. USPS partners will send digital coupons you can use at your new location.
11. Register to vote
Follow the instruction at the Sarasota County Supervisor of Elections website to complete the voter registration process online or print, complete and mail the application.
Our team of Lakewood Ranch REALTORS® loves a good Christmas party as much as anyone, and we wanted to give you a heads up on some of the fun holiday happenings around Lakewood Ranch this season! You can expect a packed schedule of events on Main Street at Lakewood Ranch this month, including some that you definitely don't want to miss. So gather up your holiday cheer, and join us for Christmas on Main!
No matter the season, there's always something going on at Lakewood Ranch! Contact Wagner Realty today to learn more about life in this vibrant community. Our team is committed to helping you find the perfect Lakewood Ranch homes.
When you think of living in Bradenton, Florida, the first thing that most likely pops into your mind is enjoying our city's sugary sand beaches. However, Bradenton boasts a full slate of local activities and events sure to please locals, visitors and new residents alike starting with our upcoming Bradenton Blues Festival Weekend. One of the best-kept secrets in Bradenton and beyond is the annual Bradenton Blues Festival. The Bradenton Blues Festival main event will be Saturday, December 2.
For music aficionados, the Bradenton Blues Festival is known for amazing sets from hot local and national blues musicians. It's put on every year by the nonprofit Realize Bradenton, solely dedicated to a vibrant and prosperous downtown for the Bradenton community.
In addition to the smooth blues solos, Blues Festival is known far and wide for the best eats. As you enjoy acts on the big stage, you'll also have the opportunity to sample local craft beer and pick your favorite from more than a dozen specialty food vendors.
The fun doesn't end when the last act takes a bow, either – there's still Sunday to look forward to.
The Bradenton Blues Brunch caps off the event from 11 am to 1 pm. on Sunday. You'll find it along with a lively crowd of blues fans at Mattison's City Grille, a hip hangout you just can't miss when you visit the Bradenton Riverwalk.
Mattison's is known for mouth-watering steaks and seafood, a dizzying selection of tasty cocktails, and scrumptious key lime pie that will have you coming back for seconds. It also distinguishes itself with a complete selection of fresh signature sushi rolls.
Tickets for the brunch are available for $50 and attendees will nosh their way through a three-course, seated-and-served brunch headed by renowned chef Paul Mattison. Mimosas, wines and even a Bloody Mary or two will be on hand to be paired with each course.
Plus, you'll get live entertainment from top local blues duo Fowler and Walker. Find out more about the line-up and book your Blues Fest tickets soon – they're going fast!
Our REALTORS® would love the chance to show you Bradenton's most breathtaking homes for sale. See all Bradenton living has to offer – and enjoy Florida's finest blues event at the same time. Contact us to get your home search started.
If you plan to schedule year-end tours of Sarasota homes for sale, be sure to include a few of our local holiday events to get you acquainted with our city. Our REALTORS® have put together this list of just a few of Sarasota's attractions certain to put you in the Christmas spirit.
Dubbed as The Holiday Destination on the Gulf Coast, you can join in the excitement on Friday, December 1 as Holiday Night of Lights on St. Armands Circle kicks off the Christmas season with lights, music and celebration. The festivities will begin at 5:30 PM with special performances followed by a sing-a-long at 6:00 PM. Don't miss Santa's arrival from the North Pole in his magical sleigh just in time for the lighting of St. Armands' spectacular Christmas tree. Santa will be available for photos from 6:30 PM - 8:00 PM.
You can dine, shop the Circle and take advantage of store promotions. St. Armands Circle will host a variety of entertaining activities for your entire family.
The Sarasota Holiday Boat Parade of Lights is a must-see, beachside attraction with 25 boats decked out with colorful decorations, twinkling lights and festive music. This dazzling waterborne parade travels close to the shore, keeping viewers engaged and entertained.
The parade takes place at 6:00 PM on December 9. Boats of all shapes and sizes create an enchanting holiday display as they depart City Island and cruise across Sarasota Bay to Bayfront Park.
This year, the organizers have changed a few things to make the parade even better. They've expanded the parade route and extended the Bayfront Park viewing area to accommodate more spectators. They've also relocated the VIP viewing area to Marina Jack's Fuel Dock.
At Spanish Point, you can explore history through museums, nature trails, boardwalks, and historic buildings. You'll see native butterflies, insects, plant species and a rare mangrove tree shoreline.
Beginning the Friday after Thanksgiving through December 30, the historic site shows off its holiday spirit. The staff decorates the museum, grounds and mangrove trees with miniature white lights. Beginning at 6:00 each evening, you'll experience lighted pathways, music throughout the venue and a unique holiday ambiance.
On Thursdays and Fridays during the holiday season, Spanish Point will remain open until 9:00 PM. They will be closed on December 28.
If you plan to relocate to Sarasota, you'll find exciting things to do year round. Contact Wagner Realty if you're thinking about selling your current home or buying a new one. Our real estate professionals have the knowledge and experience to guide you through the process.
Held every week, the Sarasota Farmers Market takes place right in the heart of Downtown year-round. Read on to find out more, and feel free to get in touch with our REALTORS® to learn more about life in Sarasota, FL.
The Sarasota Farmers Market was established in 1979, offering a selection of local plants, produce, prepared foods and crafts that caught on quickly with the local community. It has only grown in the years since, quickly becoming a beloved mainstay of the Downtown Sarasota area. Today, the market spans more than 5,000 square feet and offers a space for more than 70 vendors to sell their locally grown and crafted goods.
Operated by the nonprofit SFMV, Inc. (Sarasota Farmers Market Vendors), this weekly market promises a colorful variety of locally grown produce. Availability changes with the seasons, so be sure to return again to see what's new! Of course, there's a lot more to the Sarasota Farmers Market than fresh veggies. For example:
Visiting the Sarasota Farmers Market also provides an opportunity to check out some of the local businesses in Saratota's vibrant Downtown district. Grab lunch at Boca Kitchen Bar and Market, find the latest catch at Duval's Fresh Local Seafood, or stop for coffee and fresh baked goods at Coffee Carousel.
The Sarasota Farmers Market takes place every Saturday from 7 am to 1 pm. Unlike many farmers markets that close up shop in winter, the Sarasota Farmers Market continues every week throughout the entire year, offering a selection of goods that changes with the seasons. You'll find it on Lemon Avenue, near its intersection with Main Street. Parking is available on the streets and in public lots nearby.
It's October, and we all know what that means, everywhere you turn ... ghosts and goblins abound. It's no different in Lakewood Ranch. Just minutes from Southwest Florida's beach, shopping, dining, and local events, the Lakewood Ranch Community Activities Corporation is busy preparing for the community's annual themed Halloween event, BOOFEST on Main Street.
The mission of Lakewood Ranch Community Activities Corporation is to nurture a sense of community and friendships through memorable events and social clubs within their community. Some of the LWR's activities are so popular that they have become annual events such as the Eggstravaganaza, Boo Fest, and Holidays Around The Ranch.
Our local REALTORS® know the importance of getting to know your new neighbors when you buy a home in a new community, so we've created this Lakewood Ranch event highlight so you don't miss any of the howling good fun that will be happening at BOOFEST on Main Street.
Kids of all ages love Halloween. The family-friendly community of Lakewood Ranch has plenty of scary good fun planned for its annual October holiday event.
Since Halloween falls on a school night, BOOFEST is scheduled for Friday, October 27--the fun starts at 6 PM.
Children will find plenty of thrills and chills at this all-ages Halloween celebration. It includes its own super Spooktacular Maze, crazy balloon art, and themed performances from local dancers.
Young guests are encouraged to dress in costumes to visit neighbors and friends. Exhibitors and sponsors will fill their bags with all sorts of tasty treats. Naturally, there will be a costume contest with plenty of prizes.
A full haunted house is planned – giving all the young ones many chances to enjoy on one of the most exciting nights of the year. It's the perfect way to get into the Halloween spirit!
BOOFEST is your family's opportunity to pack a whole season of Halloween fun into a single night. Plus, if you just can't get enough of this creepy extravaganza, you still have time for a full evening of trick or treating throughout the weekend.
Lakewood Ranch is known for its safe and welcoming neighborhoods, so parents can feel confident as their children participate in the local festivities. And, of course, BOOFEST is just one of several yearly events you'll be able to enjoy if you buy one of the homes for sale in Lakewood Ranch.
People throughout Florida and beyond relocate to Lakewood Ranch for all sorts of reasons including great amenities, mild weather, and a wide range of beautiful homes. Once you visit, you might find that you wouldn't want to live anywhere else.
Our REALTORS® can help you find the perfect home for you and your family. Contact us to get started.
Sarasota's neighborhoods are teeming with gorgeous, modern, waterfront homes, but one building still stands out nearly a century after it was first built. One of the most beautiful and historic homes in Sarasota, the Ca' d'Zan, was restored to its former glory at the turn of this century. Today, the bayfront mansion's Venetian-inspired architecture and opulent furnishings are just as impressive as they were in 1926, when the Ringling family moved in and hosted glamorous parties on the water.
Whether you want to step back into the Roaring Twenties, catch a gorgeous sunset, or learn more about Sarasota's history as a circus town, this mansion-turned-museum is a must. Here are some of our favorite things to do at the Ca' d'Zan.
When circus magnate John Ringling started building the Ca' d'Zan ("House of John") in 1926, his family was one of the wealthiest in the world. Instead of pinning their dream homes on Pinterest, they traveled through Europe for inspiration, and the authentic masterpiece is a great example of Venetian and Spanish architecture from the 1800's. The Ringlings spent $1.65 million (more than $20 million today) and imported most of their materials – and design ideas – from Europe, and the manicured grounds and well-preserved mansion may transport you to the middle of Italy with their authentic details. For example, the roof is tiled with a cargo ship's worth of salvaged Spanish antique tiles, and the home itself is modeled after the Doge's Palace in Venice, Italy.
There are plenty of places to watch the sunset in Sarasota, but this mansion offers one of the oldest and most beautiful vantage points. As the sun begins to set over Sarasota every night, bursts of color illuminate the blue bay and cast a golden glow over the Ca' d'Zan's marble walls. Once a month, donors gather on the outdoor terrace for live music and gourmet dinners during this natural spectacle. It's easy to see why Mable Ringling commissioned a custom dock and gondola for the property. In the 1920's, servants would take Mable and her friends for picturesque sunset gondola rides along the shore. Towering Banyan trees, colorful gardens, a six-story tower, and a patio right on the sea wall complete the picturesque outdoor experience.
The mansion was donated to the State of Florida in the late 1930's, but it deteriorated so much in the decades to come that Ethan Hawke and Gwyneth Paltrow filmed Great Expectations there in 1996. By then, the dilapidated mansion was the perfect fit for a reclusive Dickensian widow's dusty, crumbling manor. Fortunately, that's all changed, and the well-restored mansion now looks a lot like it did when the Ringlings first moved in. Renovations began in 2002, and today the mansion is meticulously restored and furnished with much of its original artwork, décor, and furniture. Restored murals by famous artists depict vivid circus and Renaissance scenes customized for the Ringlings themselves. Even clothing in the closets, liquor bottles in the bar, and silver in the butler's pantry are original possessions of the Ringling family.
Our REALTORS® are eager to help families like the Ringlings start a beautiful new chapter in Sarasota, Florida. Whether you want a mansion on the bay or an apartment downtown, we will make sure your search is productive and your deal is fair. Contact Wagner Realty today to find a real estate professional that can help you find your dream home in Sarasota.
When you find yourself in a living in a new city and want to find the best spots to grab a bite to eat, what do you do? That's easy—ask a Local! Luckily, our REALTORS® live and work in Longboat Key are thrilled to share some of our favorite eateries that will have you dining like a native Floridian in no time.
Homes in Longboat Key offer easy access to beautiful Gulf Coast views and miles of beautiful beaches. With all that seaside scenery, it comes as no surprise that Longboat Key serves up some of the best seafood around, but our local restaurants also offer much more! Here are some of our favorites:
When you're ready to begin your search for a home in Longboat Key, contact Wagner Realty. We have the "inside scoop" on the best homes for sale in our area--not to mention the restaurants, shopping, nightlife, and attractions in Longboat Key.
If you've got a growing family, buying a home in Sarasota might be the right choice for you. With about 56,000 residents, Sarasota has long prided itself on its combination of big city amenities and small town living.
Sure, Sarasota is home to some of the best public and private schools in Florida. But, let's face it: Most kids don't get too excited about that. What they really care about is fun, excitement, and adventure.
Sarasota has that in spades – and one of the best examples is Sarasota Jungle Gardens.
Sarasota Jungle Gardens was founded in 1939 and is one of the most popular attractions in the area. It features ten exotic acres of tropical vegetation and trails that will give you plenty of amazing opportunities for your own little family safari.
Of course, no jungle would be complete without plenty of awesome animals!
When you explore Sarasota Jungle Gardens, you'll have the chance to encounter a crew of more than 200 animals. They run the gamut from Florida locals to some of the most breathtaking creatures you'll see anywhere in North America.
Sarasota Jungle Gardens is well known for the complete selection of parrots and macaws plus the legendary Florida flamingo. Visitors are especially fond of the flamingo flock, as they can be spotted roaming freely across much of the grounds.
Of course, you'll also find Florida alligators and their distant Nile cousins, the crocodile, lurking in a brilliant recreation of their native habitat. The different guided tours and shows – including Reptile Encounter, Jungle Bird, and Wildlife Wonder – help ensure that you can see everything in a visit.
Although there are plenty of reptiles, snakes, and small mammals to see, kids of all ages tend to gravitate toward the petting zoo. This interactive experience is suitable for the smaller kids, as they'll meet and hand-feed friendly critters like goats, chickens, and a miniature cow.
Younger kids won't feel left out – although it can get pretty steamy in Sarasota Jungle Gardens, the events are short enough to keep the little ones' attention. If sitting still just isn't happening, there's a full playground and a beloved wooden train for the junior explorers to check out.
Last, but not least, you won't want to forget the cafe and the gift shop. The Flamingo Cafe pays tribute to the Gardens' most iconic residents with favorites like hot dogs, hamburgers, and pizza. Drop in and you'll have the chance to hand-feed the koi fish.
The Flamingo Cafe also takes reservations for large groups and birthday parties.
As kids grow, their interests change. Luckily, Sarasota will never leave them with nothing to do. From parks and playgrounds to the perfect high school hangout spots, this little city packs a lot of living into a quaint community where people feel free to get to know one another.
It's no surprise homes in Sarasota are in demand all year around. If you want to find the right one for you, working with an expert team is essential. Contact Wagner Realty and our REALTORS® in Sarasota will give you the personalized assistance you deserve.
Sarasota certainly isn't short on beautiful scenery, but one hidden gem shines especially bright. Full of colors that rival our sunset skies and scents that evaporate stress, Marie Selby Botanical Gardens is tucked into a lush waterfront spot right next to the Marina. In between beach days on Lido and Siesta Key, you can spend a whole day exploring this downtown treasure, known simply as Selby Gardens or Selby to those with homes in Sarasota. Whether you're planning a romantic date, a fun family outing, or a solo stroll, Selby is the perfect place to do it, and it's open every day except Christmas for your convenience.
Here are some of our favorite ways to make the most of your time at this world-renowned plant conservatory.
Explore the Children's Rainforest Garden
One of Selby's newest and most impressive sections is the Ann Goldstein's Children's Rainforest Garden. This interactive space is designed to simulate the biological richness and cool tranquility of the rainforest, while turning every spot into a hands-on learning opportunity for kids. Your kids will love the 12-foot-tall waterfall that splashes into a tranquil pool, the century-old Banyan tree that offers ample natural shade and seating, and the swinging rope bridges that stretch overhead for bird's eye views of the canopy and garden. You'll love the way Selby integrates biology and ecology lessons into their all-natural play areas, which also include special thatched research huts and an outdoor classroom.
Take an Art, Landscaping, or Yoga Class
Your day in the garden could also be a learning experience – if you enroll in one of Selby's many art, wellness, or horticulture classes. Join Yoga in the Gardens for an early morning stretch session, hone your photography skills on Tripod Tuesday, or pick a watercolor class that matches your experience level. Or if you want to learn how to landscape your Sarasota home, take a gardening class that focuses on orchids, bamboo, succulents, or another Florida-friendly theme. Selby's educational opportunities include one-off classes and season-long series, so you can choose how much time to commit.
Walk Among the Butterflies & Ferns
Everything at Selby serves a purpose beyond looking pretty, but the plants and flowers in front of Payne Mansion have a magical role: attracting butterflies. Visit the Butterfly Garden after touring the historic mansion, and meet dozens of colorful guests who drop in every day to enjoy the gorgeous plant life. Then stroll over to the Fern Garden for another blissfully serene experience. Just follow the circular path around the low-lying and towering ferns, which flourish in Sarasota's subtropical climate and show off a wide range of scents, textures, and colors.
Follow the Mangroves for Waterfront Views
Make sure you stay until Selby closes, because the waterfront location makes for perfect evening views of Sarasota Bay, downtown Sarasota, and Bird Key. Three different mangrove species are native to the region's shorelines, and Selby's boardwalk meanders through grand examples of all of them. Enjoy the black, white, and red mangroves as you follow the wooden path along the shoreline, to a spectacular lookout spot right on Sarasota Bay. Selby hosts a Fourth of July party every year to take full advantage of these stunning bayfront views.
When you live in Sarasota, you have year-round access to this lush retreat and its schedule of fun and educational events. Our REALTORS® in Sarasota can help you find the perfect home to landscape in our subtropical beach town. Contact Wagner Realty to get started today.
When the night sky lights up this Fourth of July, where will you be? For families with homes in Sarasota, it's hard to get this answer wrong. Siesta Key's explosive Independence Day celebration has drawn thousands for the past 26 years, but the country's best beach isn't the only place to be on Tuesday, July 4. Our gardens, parks, and restaurants also offer world-class waterfront views and patriotic celebrations this Fourth, so you can choose your view every year.
If you live or plan to buy a house in the Sarasota-Bradenton area, just pick which body of water you want to see sparkle, and settle in for a full day or evening of Fourth of July fun. Here are some of our favorite spots to celebrate:
It's no surprise that Sarasota's most popular fireworks show happens right on its famous white sand beach. The 27th annual Siesta Key Fourth of July Fireworks start at 9:15 PM this year, and the explosives last at least a full half hour, with colors and shapes that rival even the most picturesque Siesta Key sunsets. The Chamber of Commerce's official celebration is always on Siesta Key Public Beach, but if you want to beat the crowds and enjoy unbeatable views, go a little south of the public area, toward Crescent Beach.
A lush, tropical retreat in the middle of downtown Sarasota, the Marie Selby Botanical Gardens are nearly surrounded by Sarasota Bay and the Hudson Bayou. They take advantage of their stellar views of multiple fireworks displays over Sarasota Bay, with an evening party that features live music, a cookout, and cool drinks. The All-American Cookout starts at 6, but free trolleys bound for Selby start leaving the Sarasota Friendship Center at 5 PM.
Would you rather skip the beach and city crowds, and take in some waterfront fireworks at a slower pace? Head north to Bradenton's PIER 22, a literal pier that juts right out onto Manatee River for unbeatable waterfront views. This Fourth of July, the restaurant is hosting a buffet-style barbecue and waterside fireworks display. Come to PIER 22 at 6 PM for the Independence Day buffet, a single seating event that coincides with the explosions over the river.
The fireworks over Sarasota Bay are visible from both sides of the causeway, but the best views are from the edge of the marina, where family-friendly Bayfront Park pokes out into the water. Grab dinner and drinks at Marina Jack or O'Leary's Tiki Bar & Grill, then walk the Marina Jack Trail along the perimeter of this small but beautiful bayfront park. The fireworks over Sarasota Bay will begin at around 9 PM this Fourth of July, so grab a bench or spread a blanket and enjoy the spectacular show.
Looking for a family-friendly distraction before the fireworks begin? Sarasota Jungle Gardens is right on the Bay near Ringling Museum and New College of Florida, and it's an interactive wonderland with flamingos, alligators, and lush landscapes where kids can frolic and adults can relax and take in waterfront views. Kids' admission is half off from Saturday, July 1 through Tuesday, July 4, making it the perfect pre-fireworks destination for Sarasota families.
Are you interested in buying a house in Sarasota? Contact Wagner Realty for more information about our beautiful beach town and its fun, lively neighborhoods. One of our REALTORS® in Sarasota will help you get started on your real estate journey.
Many people looking at Sarasota homes find themselves drawn to the charm of Siesta Key, just a 15-minute drive from downtown Sarasota proper. Siesta Key, a community of just over 6,000 people, is a barrier island with some of the most beautiful sights in Florida.
If you're searching for the right place to truly enjoy the climate and views only Florida can offer, Siesta Key is perfect. Although it attracts many tourists, there are also plenty of "out of the way" places to enjoy a slower pace.
Spanning just 3.5 square miles, Siesta Key is made up of four main districts:
Thanks to its unique geography, living in Siesta Key feels like being away from it all – but you still have access to all the best amenities of Sarasota, Bradenton, and even the Tampa Bay Area. But how can you know if Siesta Key is right for you?
Locals applaud Siesta Key for its laid back community, great shops, and nightlife. Despite its popularity with out-of-town visitors, it is amazingly intimate and local, with a flavor all its own. It also has a strong arts and culture scene, and there is always something to do. Don't miss the historic Ringling Bros. home.
For its permanent residents, Siesta Key attracts families and established professionals working in the growing technology and healthcare scenes in Sarasota or Bradenton. The area is serviced by the world class Sarasota Memorial Hospital. Sarasota County Schools operates more than 30 public schools in the area, with many elementary schools rated among the Sunshine State's best.
Siesta Key is the place to be, no matter whether you're moving to Florida from outside the state or "trading up" from a hectic urban lifestyle. Truly, the best way to appreciate how Siesta Key can transform your life for the better is to see some of the amazing homes for sale.
Sometimes, the most beloved local landmarks are created from the inspiration that comes when a city replaces something old with something new. Back in 1967, a new drawbridge was built to connect Anna Maria Island with the city of Bradenton Beach, FL, replacing the bridge the connected the communities for more than 50 years. Rather than consigning the old bridge to the demolition squad, city officials decided to turn it into a gathering place for the community. Bradenton Beach City Pier opened to the public soon after, and it's been delighting both visitors and locals ever since.
Anna Maria Island features seven miles of sandy beachfront off Manatee County, Florida. The City of Anna Maria is a quaint, walkable Florida village that has become a destination for travelers seeking sun and relaxation and people looking for a place to call home.
With nearby amenities of Bradenton, this island features multiple communities at the mouth of Tampa Bay. Standout features of the area include emerald green water, white sand beaches, cottage-style Anna Maria Island homes, and of course the Historic City Pier.
Anna Maria Island was known to native inhabitants of the America's for many years, but being only accessible by boat, no one wanted to live there. The Timucan and Caloosan American Indian tribes would visit as did the Spanish explorers who gave the island the name we use today. It wasn't until 1892 that the island gained its first official resident in George Emerson Bean, who spurred the development of the area.
Anna Maria Island's first residents were forced to commute to the mainland by boat or ferry, leading them to create the historic Anna Maria City Pier in 1911. A bridge over the water wasn't added until 1921.
Described by Trip Advisor as, "Stunning," this historic pier stretches 678 feet across Gulf Coast waters. The pier has stood the test of time, weathering hurricanes for over 100 years as residents continually rebuild this attraction. Most recent renovations include a planned $1.7 million upgrade project, promising to keep generations visiting for years to come.
And why do people keep coming? Food, fishing, and fun just to name a few.
Rod and Reel Restaurant
The Rod and Reel restaurant offers 360-degree views at its iconic home at the end of the pier. Squeeze yourself into the tiny bar on the lower deck for an icy cold margarita, or find a table upstairs for a more formal meal. As you might guess, the seafood here is fresh!
Fishing at the Anna Maria Pier
A unique twist to the Rod and Reel Restaurant is that the area doubles as a fishing pier too. A common sight you'll see are the dangling fishing lines of fishing enthusiasts, hoping to catch a bite -- before they order a bite. It's a great way to pass the time during the busy summer season (the restaurant may have a line.)
Florida's Gulf Coast is the perfect place to spend your vacation. Wagner Realty has vacation rentals available to share experiences and make memories with family and friends. Play on some of Southern Florida's best golf courses, relax on sandy, white beaches, shop our local shops and boutiques.
No need to be sad when your visit ends because with the help of Anna Maria Island REALTORS® you can become a resident. Contact Wagner Realty to discover the best beachfront properties or the perfect vacation bungalow and enjoy the community of Anna Maria Island.