What we're about

Welcome to DISCOVER GREATER SARASOTA!  Join our group if you have a curiosity to discover, explore and learn about our region’s attractions, including its history, development and evolution. Our goal is to provide opportunities for group tours, presentations, walks and bike rides at unique venues that make up part of Sarasota’s past and present, and offer insights to its future.  Our venues include but are not limited to:
· nature walks, guided by docents, park rangers or other local experts, that explore the wildlife, plant life, natural features and ecosystems of our area;
· historical outings or walks through special neighborhoods and communities;
· leisurely bike rides that scout interesting localities in and around the Suncoast region;
· public institutions, such as libraries and schools, governmental services or non-profit organizations with a mission to serve the Suncoast region;
· cultural centers, such as performing arts centers, museums, churches and other similar attractions;
· business enterprises, from service industry (including food and beverage) to manufacturing, that reveal their history, growth and development as well as impact to the community;
· and other activities of educational interest.

Although DGS is a not-for-profit organization, the Meetup® organization charges the organizers, substantial fees annually to maintain our group’s website.  To cover these costs, we may from time to time ask for donations from our members. We also provide each attending member a printed name badge with a protective sleeve and magnetic clasp for a nominal cost of $5. DGS badges are required to be worn at all events except bike rides. (Important Note: These magnetic badges should not be worn near any pacemaker.)  
In addition, while we try to offer free events, many attractions may charge an admission fee. Admission fees and instructions on whether to pay in advance or pay upon arrival will be noted in the event description.

· When you RSVP for an Event, you are making a commitment to attend.  Please be respectful of the organizers and the venue staff who have planned for your attendance.  If you find you cannot attend, change your status to NO or Not Going before the start of the Event.  THREE (3) No Shows will result in membership cancellation.
· Many of our Events and venues can only accommodate a limited number of participants.  Therefore, the organizer may choose to accept Members Only as RSVPs (i.e., no Plus Ones) in an effort to increase member participation. Under no circumstances will joint memberships (i.e., two people using one Member ID) be honored.  If an Event does allow guests, it is your sole responsibility to inform them of our policies and other terms and conditions and obtain their consent.
· Be aware of your capabilities before signing up for any Event that includes a walk or bike ride.  Some walks may be long, covering several miles, and may cover terrain including hot pavement, sandy beaches, gravel paths, hills and other challenges. Bike rides assume you are familiar with and agree to observe the proper rules for biking, both on trails and on roads. Always BRING WATER to stay hydrated and match your physical condition to appropriate events. You are also hereby advised to always WEAR A HELMET while riding a bicycle.
· Events are not appropriate for pets, so please do not bring them. 
· We wish to promote social interaction among our member attendees, but this is not a dating site. Please be respectful of each other’s personal choices and personal boundaries and always be considerate of other members. Any type of harassment or public intoxication will not be tolerated. If at any time, a member behaves incompatibly with the safety, comfort and/or convenience of other members, we have the exclusive right and discretion to expel a member from an Event and/or DGS at any time.

Assumption of Risk: We hope your experience with our Events will be safe, pleasurable and fun.  That being said, accidents can happen anywhere, and can involve risks and hazards that are greater than usual.  Therefore, you acknowledge that you voluntarily participate in our Events and you knowingly and freely agree to assume all the risks and hazards to which you may be exposed, foreseen or unforeseen, whether inherent or not in each Event. These risks can include, but are not limited to, property loss or damage, getting personally lost, trapped or separated from the group, personal injury, illnesses, reputational damage, harassment, discrimination, failure to accommodate you, emotional and/or mental distress, any other inconveniences and even death (collectively referred to hereafter as “Injuries and Damages”) from exposure to or participation in our activities. You are also aware that Injuries and Damages can occur by natural causes, equipment failure or activities of other persons, animals, insects, plants, our surroundings, group members, event leaders, organizers and assistants or third parties, either as a result of negligence or because of other reasons. You further understand and agree that on any Event, it is not the responsibility of the organizers, leaders, volunteers and members of the group to provide rescue or medical facilities or related services necessary to deal with the Injuries and Damages to which you may be exposed. You therefore agree to assume all risks, which may or may not be known or reasonably foreseeable and without limitation and you appreciate that you may have to exercise extra care for your own person and for others around you in the face of such hazards.
General Waiver and Release:  In consideration for the opportunity to participate in our Events, to the fullest extent allowed by law, you agree on behalf of yourself, your family members, your spouse, your heirs and/or assigns (collectively referred to throughout this release and waiver agreement as “you”) to WAIVE, DISCHARGE CLAIMS, AND RELEASE FROM LIABILITY the organizers, leaders, volunteers and members of the group from any and all liability on account of, or in any way resulting from Injuries and Damages, even if caused by negligence, in any way connected with our Events. You further agree to HOLD HARMLESS the organizers, leaders, volunteers and members of our group from any claims, damages, injuries or losses arising out of or related to any activity associated with your participation in any Event, whether caused by their own negligence while a participant on the Event or not. You agree and intend that this assumption of risk and release is binding upon your heirs, executors, administrators and assigns, and includes any minors or pets.
Conflict Resolution:  If a dispute arises that cannot be worked out directly among the parties, you agree to submit your dispute to the Meetup® Community Center provided by the Meetup® Platform and abide by their arbitration procedures.
Entire Agreement:  By joining our Meetup® group, you are deemed to have read our description, our policies and the general release and waiver agreement in its entirety and freely and voluntarily assume all risks of such Injuries and Damages and notwithstanding such risks, agree to participate in the Events you attend under the terms and conditions written herein.
If you have any questions about an Event, please post them to the Event on the Meetup®  website and we will respond. We look forward to seeing you soon!

Upcoming events (2)

Downtown SRQ Public Art Walk

J.D. Hamel Park

There are more than 80 pieces of public art spread throughout the City of Sarasota, most of them downtown. We'll visit many of them on this 2-mile walk. We begin with a short discussion of the history of public art, both in the world, the U.S. and Sarasota. At each stop, I'll show you a photo of the artist (when available), give you a short bio. and provide any info re: the artwork or the artist's philosophy when this information is available. Then, you get to be the art critic and express your opinion of the piece. No experience necessary.

For more info about public art in Sarasota, visit sarasotafl.gov/our-city/public-art/about-us.

DIRECTIONS: The address for the park is Bayfront Park, but that's U.S. 41. The entrance is on Gulfstream Ave. If you're coming from the north on 41, you should probably go down to Ringling Blvd., turn left, left again on Palm Ave., then left again on Main to Gulfstream and turn left.

If you're coming from the south, I'd suggest turning right on S. Orange Ave. and head towards downtown until you get to Main St., left on Main to Gulfstream Ave., then left again. There's back in parking on one side of the street and parallel on the other side of Gulfstream.

Or, trust your GPS. If you're not familiar with the area, I suggest that you drive downtown a day or two before the event.

There should be plenty of parking as we'll be early enough to avoid the church and breakfast crowd.

Birding at Celery Fields

Celery Fields

Please consider a $5 - $10 donation to the Sarasota Audubon Society when joining me and Sarasota Audubon Society Director, Helen King, plus other Audubon Society volunteers at the picnic tables by the Nature Center at Celery Fields for a morning of birding. We will divide into two groups: one that starts at the gazebo in the butterfly garden where many specialized bird feeders attract over 15 species of birds; the other that walks about 1/4 mile across the road to the Palmer Rd Gazebo where telescopes are available for viewing birds at far distances. bout half-way through the event, the two groups will switch. Please bring binoculars, cameras, water, bird books and wear sunscreen/ sunhat. Binoculars can be available for those that do not have them. Please wear your DGS badge and arrive 10 minutes early to check in with me. First time members will receive their DGS badge at the event for which a $5 donation to DGS is appreciated.
Those who wish to stay longer can walk along the path by the road and turn right to get to the Raymond Rd Gazebo for another bird viewing spot, approximately 1/2 mile.

Past events (321)

Tour Reflections of Manatee

Reflections of Manatee