From the Pilgrims’ first courageous footsteps on America’s shore to Neil Armstrong’s first footsteps on the Moon; from the defiant signatures of the Founding Fathers on the Declaration of Independence to the subsequent generations of soldiers who protected, and continue to protect, that freedom; from the invention of the car to the discovery of the atom and the creation of the Internet; from family traditions to baseball and apple pie — the spirit of America is unique.
And, as photographer Brian Blanco discovered, that spirit is well represented here in Sarasota and Manatee counties. Blanco photographed residents who embody the spirit of courage, ingenuity, tradition, youth and family. His poignant pictures grace the pages of our “Spirit of America” special section.
In addition, the winners of The Observer’s first online photo contest “Spirit of America” are featured in this section, along with a few of our favorite entries. Almost 8,000 votes were cast in the contest.
As you commemerate this Fourth of July, be mindful of all those things that have made America great and celebrate — with spirit, of course.
— The Editor
To view the entire "Spirit of America" special section, please click on the following link.
To view all the entries in the "Spirit of America" Photo Contest, click here.
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15 Irish Celtic 5K, Lakewood Ranch
8:00 am - 10:00 am
15 Palma Sola Botanical Park plants, antiques and crafts sale
8:00 am - 3:00 pm
22 5th Annual Ponies for Pups
22 Lakewood Ranch Community Fund 'Havana Nights' Gala
23 The Bridal EXPO
12:00 pm - 4:00 pm
26 LWRBA March Executive Briefing
7:30 am - 9:00 am
16 USF Sarasota-Manatee HospitaBull Evening
2 2nd annual Glow Run
7:00 pm - 10:00 pm
Daylight Saving Time starts 2 a.m. Sunday, so be sure to set your alarm accordingly.
The Tabernacle Christian School middle school student Lauren Medred, an East County resident, earned top vocal honors, taking first place in vocal solo female category of the Florida League of Christian School’s Festival of the Academics and Arts Feb. 28 and March 1 at Southeastern University in Lakeland.
Manatee County schools dominated a state technology competition with five of six top-three finishes earned by Manatee County schools during the 35th annual Technology Student Association State Competition late February.