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The best things to do in Sarasota, Lakewood Ranch, Longboat for Nov. 30 to Dec. 6

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  • | 10:00 a.m. November 28, 2023
The 27th Annual Sarasota Holiday Parade will be held Dec. 2.
The 27th Annual Sarasota Holiday Parade will be held Dec. 2.
  • Arts + Entertainment
  • Things To Do
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Thursday, Nov. 30

Christine Kim, oboe, and Sang Yoon Kim, clarinet
11 a.m. at Sarasota Yacht Club, 1100 John Ringling Boulevard

Artist Series Concerts presents “woodwind power couple” Sang Yoon Kim, principal clarinet of the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra, and Christine Kim, principal oboe of the Wisconsin Chamber Orchestra, accompanied by Joseph Holt on piano. The program includes trios and sonatas.

Sarasota Contemporary Dance and Westcoast Black Theatre Troupe team up for SCD + WBTT, a program of dance and song, from Nov. 30 through Dec. 3.
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7 p.m. at Cook Theater at FSU Center for Performing Arts, 5555 N. Tamiami Trail

Two of the Cultural Coast’s arts powerhouses — Sarasota Contemporary Dance and Westcoast Black Theatre Troupe — join forces for a memorable collaboration bringing together dance and song. Runs through Dec. 3.

‘The Sound Inside’
7:30 p.m. at Urbanite Theatre, 1487 Second St.

Adam Rapp’s “The Sound Inside” revolves around the private lessons a writing professor gives her student. What do their words become? Directed by Kristin Clippard. Runs through Dec. 3.

‘Take it to the Limit’
7:30 p.m. at FST’s Goldstein Cabaret, 1239 N. Palm Ave.

The prolific team of Rebecca Hopkins, Richard Hopkins and Sarah Durham come together for a new musical revue featuring the artists and songs of the 1970s folk rock era. You're guaranteed to get a peaceful easy feeling. Arrangements by Jim Prosser. Runs through April 7, 2024.

Friday, Dec. 1

Siesta Beach Seafood & Music Festival
Noon to 9 p.m. at Siesta Key Beach Pavilion, 948 Beach Road, Siesta Key

Enjoy seafood cooked fresh on site amid live musical performances and a marketplace of fine arts, crafts and other products. Dishes are prepared using local and sustainable resources from Florida's Gulf coast. Vegetarian offerings are available. Continues 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Saturday and 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday.

The holiday circus spectacular "A Brave New Wonderland" with Nik Wallenda features the Bone Breakers.
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'A Brave New Wonderland' featuring Nik Wallenda
2:30, 4:30, 7 and 9 p.m. under the Big Top at UTC
From $30

Sarasota hometown hero Nik Wallenda and the Circus Arts Conservatory present "A Brave New Wonderland,” an immersive holiday spectacular of circus acts, aerial performances and storytelling. Runs Thursdays through Saturdays through Dec. 31.

UTC Holiday Market
4-9 p.m. in the parking lot at The Mall at University Town Center, 140 University Town Center

Shop local for your friends and family this holiday season. More than 120 local businesses will be open. Enjoy live performances from local dance studios, and food trucks will be on site. Continues 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday.

Music on Main
5:30-9 p.m. at Main Street at Lakewood Ranch

Join the crowd at Main Street at 5:30 p.m. for the tree lighting before Music on Main begins at 6 p.m. Shell and the Crabs will entertain the crowd with the classics and the event benefits the Children First nonprofit. The free concert series and block party features food and beverage vendors, sponsor booths, live music and lots of activities for the kids.

Holiday Night of Lights
5:30-9 p.m. at the St. Armands Circle Park, 1 St. Armands Circle

Kick off the holiday season at St. Armands Circle. A special performance starts at 5:30 p.m., followed by the annual Christmas carol singalong at 6 p.m., which ends with Santa’s arrival. Enjoy the tree-lighting ceremony, pictures with Santa, live music and special store promotions around the Circle until 9 p.m. Donations of new and unwrapped toys will be accepted at a toy drive.

Fresh & Frosty
7-10 p.m. at Selby Five Points Park, 1 Central Ave.

This holiday version of Fresh Fridays features local talent and professional carolers, with seasonal sweets and treats. Take a picture for a holiday card in the snow globe photo booth.

The Sarasota Cuban School of Ballet presents the holiday favorite "The Nutcracker" Dec. 1 at Sarasota Opera House.
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‘The Nutcracker’
7 p.m. at Sarasota Opera House, 61 N. Pineapple Ave.

The Christmas tale set to Tchaikovsky’s score warms the hearts of a new generation with sugarplum fairies, dueling mice and the Waltz of the Flowers. The Sarasota Cuban Ballet School is first out of the gate with its rendition of the holiday favorite.

‘A Christmas Carol’
7:30 p.m. at Venice Theatre's Raymond Center, 140 Tampa Ave. W., Venice

Venice Theatre presents the musical based on Charles Dickens’ classic tale of Scrooge, Bob Cratchit and Tiny Tim and how nocturnal visits by ghosts transform a miserly misanthrope into a kind-hearted philanthropist. Runs through Dec. 20.

Saturday, Dec. 2

Lakewood Ranch Holiday of the Arts
10 a.m. to 5 p.m. at Main Street at Lakewood Ranch

Browse fine arts and crafts from artists from across the country. Pieces include paintings, jewelry, candles, ceramics and woodworking. Continues Sunday.

Wintergreen Weekend
11 a.m. and 1 p.m. at Historic Spanish Point, Osprey

Ring Sarasota, the area’s premier handbell ensemble, performs Christmas carols and hymns at Selby Gardens’ Historic Spanish Point.

Sarasota Holiday Parade
7 p.m. on Sarasota's Main Street

Known as Sarasota's premier holiday celebration, the annual holiday parade draws numerous participants from within Sarasota's community. The parade will go down Main Street from U.S. 301 to Gulfstream Avenue. The theme of this year's parade is Holidays Around The World.

Violinist Randall Goosby performs with the Sarasota Orchestra for its Masterworks program "The Scottish" Dec. 2-3.
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Masterworks: The Scottish 
7:30 p.m. at Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall, 777 N. Tamiami Trail
From $39

The Sarasota Orchestra kicks off the program with John Corigliano’s playful “Stomp." Violinist Randall Goosby joins Johannes Debus and the orchestra on Mozart’s Violin Concerto No. 3. Mendelssohn’s Symphony No. 3 finishes the show, evoking the beauty of the Scottish countryside and providing the theme for the program. A second performance is 2:30 p.m. Sunday. 

Sunday, Dec. 3

‘Bowls of Hope’
11 a.m. at Ed Smith Stadium, 2700 12th St.

At this annual fundraiser for All Faiths Food Bank, guests fill handcrafted bowls donated by local artists with a choice of soup from 40 local restaurants. Bread, desserts and other goodies are also on the menu.

‘By Request’
3 p.m. at Northminster Presbyterian Church, 3131 61st St.

Due to the enduring popularity of the Suncoast Concert Band, now in its 91st season, and the affordability of its tickets, it is highly recommended to call 907-4123 to reserve your seat. This program includes some of the band’s personal favorites, including “That Old Hound Dog Rag,” “Pirates of the Caribbean,” “Jurassic Park,” “Saints’ Hallelujah” and more. 

Trad Music Jam Series
1:30 p.m. at Fogartyville, 525 Kumquat Court

Fogartyville inaugurates its Trad Music Jam, a free series that takes place on First Sundays through May. The three-hour session begins with a Slow Jam to get participants warmed up, followed by more advanced playing. All acoustic instruments are welcome. 

Monday, Dec. 4

Sweet Caroline Tour: A Neil Diamond Christmas
7:30 p.m. at Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall, 777 N. Tamiami Trail

Good times never seemed so good as they will during this holiday performance by Jay White, considered by many to be the world’s leading Neil Diamond tribute artist.

Tuesday, Dec. 5

Florida Stories with Carl Hiaasen
7 p.m. at Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall, 777 N. Tamiami Hall

Long before “Florida Man” became a social media meme, Carl Hiaasen was making the antics of Sunshine State residents both famous and infamous with newspaper columns, books and talks. As any reader of his novels knows, Hiassen is a tireless crusader against those who pave over Florida's marshes and line its beaches with condos. He comes to Sarasota as part of a serious Eco-summit, but there’s bound to be a lot of laughter during Hiaasen’s Van Wezel appearance.

Holiday Gems: The Chamber Orchestra of Sarasota
7:30 p.m. at First Presbyterian Church, 2050 Oak St.

The Chamber Orchestra of Sarasota opens its 2023-24 season with its annual holiday program conducted by music director Robert Vodnoy. “Holiday Gems” will include music by Debussy, Vivaldi, Mahler and Tchaikovsky, plus holiday favorites. Featured soloists include harpist Giuseppina Ciarla and mandolinist Rafael Ramirez. The group is one of the few professional chamber orchestras in Florida.

Wednesday, Dec. 6

Hannukah Celebration
5:30-7 p.m. at Gulf Gate Library Meeting Room AB, 7112 Curtiss Ave.

Join Ms. Laura from Temple Sinai for a celebration of Hanukkah featuring stories, songs, activities and crafts and snacks for all to enjoy. Groups require at least one child under 18 and one adult over 18. Registration required.


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