Sarasota has had its brush with fame — from mentions on defunct and current comedy shows Seinfeld and 30 Rock to Mote Marine Laboratory sharing the spotlight during the Discovery Channel's "Shark Week."
Famous rock stars, actors and writers have chosen Sarasota as a retirement destination, but a few celebrities actually hail from the Gulf Coast region 'where urban amenities meet small-town living.'
Here are five famous folks who (you may or may not know) got their start here in Sarasota.
+ Stephen Root
Best known as the mumbling, stapler-obsessed co-worker from Office Space, Root was born in Sarasota and would go on to study at the University of Florida. Sarasota sci-fi fans may remember Root as Captain K'Vada in "Star Trek: The Next Generation."
+ Nik Wallenda
Sure he may currently live in Bradenton, but the seventh-generation member of the Flying Wallendas was born in the city to the south. Roughly 13 million people tuned in to watch Wallenda's recent walk across the Little Colorado River Gorge.
+ Paul Reubens
Sadly Reubens, known worldwide for his portrayal of the comedic manchild Pee-wee Herman, would place Sarasota in the news for less-than-savory reasons. But, the class clown who graduated from Sarasota High School has moved past legal issues and is rumored to be working with Director Judd Apatow on a Pee-wee feature film.
+ Carla Gugino
+ Charlie Barnett