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Festive Holiday Events This Weekend!

by Nick and Beth Flerlage

Holiday season is here! Get in the festive spirit all weekend long throughout the Suncoast! Fill your calendars with these great community events. Click on the links below for more information!


Holly Days and Mangrove Lights 2017

Dates: Thursday, December 14th & Friday, December 15th

Time: 4:00 pm - 8:00 pm

Location: Historic Spanish Point (337 North Tamiami Trail, Osprey)

Cost: $12 per adult | $10 per senior | $5 per child (ages 5-12) | FREE for members


Cinematic Celebrations: Elf

Date: Friday, December 15th

Time: 5:30 pm - 9:00 pm

Location: Ringling Museum Courtyard (5401 Bay Shore Road, Sarasota)

Cost: $15 per adult | $10 per child (ages 6-17)


Holiday Pops Concert

Dates: Friday, December 15th & Saturday, December 16th

Times: 7:30 pm (Friday) | 3:30 pm or 7:30 pm (Saturday)

Location: Venice Performing Arts Center (One Indian Avenue, Venice)

Cost: $25-$42 per person


9th Annual Gingerbread Festival

Dates: Friday, December 15th - Sunday, December 17th

Times: 10:00 am - 9:00 pm (Friday) | 9:00 am - 9:00 pm (Saturday) | 11:00 am - 6:00 pm (Sunday)

Location: Westfield Sarasota Square Mall (8201 South Tamiami Trail, Sarasota)

Cost: $1 per person


Frosty 5K

Date: December 16th

Time: 8:00 am - 10:00 am

Location: Twin Lakes Park (6700 Clark Road, Sarasota)

Cost: $40 per adult | $30 per child (ages 18 & under)


Marty's Toy Drive

Date: Saturday, December 16th

Time: 9:00 am - 11:00 am

Location: Pirate City (1701 27th Street East, Bradenton)

Cost: FREE with donation


National Wreaths Across America Day

Date: Saturday December 16th

Time: 9:30 am

Location: Sarasota National Cemetery (9810 State Road 72, Sarasota)

Cost: FREE


Winter Arts and Craft Show

Date: Saturday, December 16th

Time: 10:00 am - 3:00 pm

Location: Venice Community Center (326 South Nokomis Avenue, Venice)

Cost: FREE


Storytelling with Santa and the Christmas Fairy

Date: Sunday, December 17th

Time: 11:00 am - 2:30 pm

Location: Powel Crosley Estate (8374 North Tamiami Trail, Sarasota)

Cost: $32 per adult | $17 per child (ages 3-12)


Taste of Chanukah

Date: Sunday, December 17th

Time: 3:00 pm - 6:00 pm

Location: Phillippi Estate Park (5500 South Tamiami Trail, Sarasota)
Cost: $5 per person


Chanukah Klezmer Festival

Date: Sunday, December 17th

Time: 4:30 pm - 6:30 pm

Location: Centennial Park (200 West Venice Avenue, Venice)

Cost: FREE


6th Annual Spectacular Community Christmas Concert

Date: Sunday, December 17th

Time: 6:00 pm

Location: Congregational United Church of Christ (3700 26th Street West, Bradenton)

Cost: FREE


Flerlage Real Estate Group wishes everyone a very happy holiday season in the Suncoast!


Family Fun Community Events This Weekend!

by Nick and Beth Flerlage

As the year winds down to a close, many areas of the country see less community events occurring. That just isn't the case in the Suncoast, though! With beautiful weather year round, residents throughout the Suncoast are able to enjoy incredible family-friendly events all year round! You can never get bored in these fantastic communities with all the happenings taking place. Fill up your agenda this upcoming weekend with these fun events!



13th Annual Festival of the Skeletons

Dates: Friday, November 3rd & Saturday, November 4th

Times: 6:00 pm - 10:00 pm (Friday) & 11:00 am - 4:00 pm (Saturday)

Location: Village of the Arts (1113 12th Street West, Bradenton)

Celebrate Dia de los Muertos (Day of the Dead) with the Village of the Arts. Enjoy delicious Mexican food, live entertainment, skeleton crafts, a memorial fence, and more.



Date: Saturday, November 4th

Time: 9:00 am - 2:00 pm

Location: Manatee Public Beach (4000 Gulf Drive, Holmes Beach)

Help support Keep Manatee Beautiful and honor America Recycles Day during this great fun-raiser! The annual SandBlast is a day long sand sculpting competition. Enjoy family fun activities and marvel at the spectacular creations.


Wild About Nature Fall Family Festival

Date: Saturday, November 4th

Time: 11:00 am - 3:00 pm

Location: Bay Preserve (400 Palmetto Avenue, Osprey)

Come to this great annual event filled with outdoor fun. There is something for the whole family with kayaking, tree climbing, boat rides, games, arts and crafts, live music, workshops, face painting, food trucks, and so much more.


Taste of Manatee

Date: Saturday, November 4th

Time: 11:00 am - 8:00 pm

Location: Downtown Bradenton (Riverwalk)

Spend a day on the riverfront as you enjoy food from some of the area’s finest restaurants and incredible live entertainment.


Beer, Boats and Bacon Fest

Date: Saturday, November 4th

Time: 2:00 pm - 6:00 pm

Location: 5851 Nathan Benderson Circle, Sarasota

Satisfy your cravings with delicious bacon bites from local restaurants and samples of 60+ craft beers while enjoying live music, family activities, and more.


30th Annual Downtown Venice Art Festival

Dates: Saturday, November 4th & Sunday, November 5th

Time: 10:00 am - 5:00 pm (daily)

Location: Downtown Venice (West Venice Avenue)

Marvel at the incredible work of 150+ artists and find some unique pieces to decorate your Suncoast home.


Sarasota Medieval Fair

Dates: Saturday, November 4th & Sunday, November 5th

Time: 10:00 am - 5:30 pm (daily)

Location: Sarasota County Fairgrounds (3000 Ringling Boulevard, Sarasota)

Travel back in time and enjoy medieval rides and games, live entertainment, jousting, artisan marketplace, food and libations, and so much more.


Frightful Fun in the Suncoast this Halloween!

by Nick and Beth Flerlage

Eeeek! Halloween is finally here! Find incredible Halloween festivities throughout the Suncoast! With haunted houses, trick or treating, live music, activities and games, costume contests, and so much more, everyone in your family is sure to have a frightfully great time this Halloween!


BOO Fest

Date: Friday, October 27th

Time: 6:00 pm - 9:00 pm

Location: Lakewood Ranch Main Street

Cost: FREE!

"Frightful Fables" Haunted House

Date: Friday, October 27th

Time: 7:00 pm - 11:00 pm

Location: Lakeside Pavilion at SCF Venice (8000 South Tamiami Trail, Venice)

Cost: $3 per person


The Blood Jam Music Festival

Dates: Friday, October 27th & Saturday, October 28th

Time: 7:00 pm - 2:00 am (daily)

Location: Central City Lounge (1945 17th Street, Sarasota)

Cost: $15+ per person | Purchase tickets HERE!


Boo Run 5K

Date: Saturday, October 28th

Time: 8:30 am (Race starts)

Location: Lakewood Ranch Main Street

Cost: $35 per adult, $10 per child (ages 12 & under) | Register HERE!


Pet Costume Parade

Date: Saturday, October 28th

Time: 9:30 am - 11:30 am

Location: Downtown Sarasota (Lemon Avenue & First Street)

Cost: FREE to spectators, $8 per participant | Register HERE!  


Main Street Live! Halloween Party

Date: Saturday, October 28th

Time: 5:00 pm - 12:00 am

Location: Old Main Street, Bradenton

Cost: FREE!


Ghost Tours

Date: Saturday, October 28th

Time: 7:00 pm - 11:00 pm

Location: Historic Spanish Point (337 North Tamiami Trail, Osprey)

Cost: $15 per adult, $5 per child (Members); $20 per adult, $15 per child (Non-members) | Purchase tickets HERE!



Date: Sunday, October 29th

Time: 10:00 am - 2:00 pm

Location: Shelby Gardens (900 South Palm Avenue, Sarasota)

Cost: FREE for Members; $20 per adult, $10 per child (Non-Members)


Children's Halloween Bash

Date: Sunday, October 29th

Time: 1:00 pm - 3:00 pm

Location: The Italian American Club of Venice (1375 Ringling Drive South, Venice)

Cost: FREE!


Halloween Safe Treats for Kids

Date: Tuesday, October 31st

Time: 3:00 pm - 6:00 pm

Location: Ocean Boulevard, Siesta Key

Cost: FREE!


Community Trick or Treat Stroll

Date: Tuesday, October 31st

Time: 6:00 pm - 8:00 pm

Location: Village of the Arts (1113 12th Street West, Bradenton)

Cost: FREE!


Fright Night

Date: Tuesday, October 31st

Time: 6:00 pm - 8:30 pm

Location: St. Armand’s Circle, Sarasota

Cost: FREE!


The Flerlage Real Estate Group wishes everyone a frightfully fun and safe Halloween!  


Events to Check Out This Weekend in the Suncoast!

by Nick and Beth Flerlage


After a short work week, the weekend is going to be here before you know it! Not sure how to spend it? There are numerous community events planned throughout the weekend. Check out our recommendations for ways to spend your upcoming weekend in the beautiful Suncoast!




Literacy Under the Trees

Date: Saturday, September 9th

Time: 10:00 am - 2:00 pm

Location: Oscar Scherer State Park (1843 South Tamiami Trail, Osprey)

Cost: FREE park admission with donation of gently used book or by presenting library card!

Celebrate International Literacy Day at the beautiful Oscar Scherer State Park. This is the perfect weekend event for families. Enjoy story time with local authors, literary activities, book signings, and a book swap for all ages.


A Taste of Downtown


Date: Saturday, September 9th

Time: 1:00 pm

Location: Sarasota Opera House (61 North Pineapple Avenue, Sarasota)

Cost: $65 per person | Purchase tickets HERE!

Come enjoy delicious bites from Sarasota’s best restaurants at the 4th annual Taste of Downtown. Dine on tasty dishes paired with craft beers, fine wines, and specialty cocktails on the stage of the Sarasota Opera House. Participating restaurants include Bijou Cafe, Brick's Smoked Meats, Cafe L'Europe, Clasico Sarasota, Currents at Hyatt Regency Sarasota, Duval's Fresh Local Seafood, El Greco Mediterranean Cafe, H20 Bistro at Hotel Indigo Sarasota, Jack Dusty at The Ritz-Carlton Sarasota, Kahwa Coffee Sarasota, Louies Modern, Mattison's City Grille, The Melting Pot, Michael's On East, Nancy's Bar-B-Q, The Rosemary, Selva Grill, Sift Bakehouse and Five-O Donut Company, Tsunami Sushi, and many more. All proceeds from the event benefit the Sarasota Youth Opera, who will be performing.


Snooty Memorial Open House


Date: Sunday, September 10th

Time: 12:00 pm - 5:00 pm

Location: South Florida Museum (201 10th Street West, Bradenton)

Cost: FREE admission!

Snooty the manatee was a beloved resident of the Suncoast area for 69 years. Come remember his legacy at the South Florida Museum. This day of remembrance and celebration will include a visual tribute to Snooty in the Bishop Planetarium, special hands on memorial projects, and visits to the Manatee Rehabilitation Program.


Fins, Flippers, & Friends!


Date: Sunday, September 10th

Time: 4:00 pm - 7:00 pm

Location: Sarasota Sailing Squadron (1717 Ken Thompson Parkway, Sarasota)

Cost: $75 per person | Purchase tickets HERE!

Support the Sea to Shore Alliance at their 5th annual fundraiser. Enjoy delicious drinks and hors d’oeuvres while listening to live entertainment by Trevor Bystrom and John & Cheryl Moody. Check out the silent auction filled with incredible trips, prizes, and items. Learn more about life in our oceans during the presentations by Dr. James “Buddy” Powell, Executive Director of the Sea to Shore Alliance, and keynote speaker Dr. Randall Wells, Director of the Sarasota Dolphin Research Program. All proceeds from this event help protect the manatees, North Atlantic right whales, sea turtles and their habitats in our communities.



There is always something fun happening in the communities of the Suncoast. Come make this thriving, active area your home! If you are interested in Buying or Selling your Sarasota area home, give the Flerlage Real Estate Group a call today or visit our website at    






Image Credits: MySuncoast and Sea to Shore Alliance  



New Year's Eve Celebrations in the Suncoast!

by Nick and Beth Flerlage


There is no place better than the Suncoast area to ring in the New Year! Fill your weekend with festive fun at one of the great New Year's Eve events occuring in communities throughout the area. Celebrate the end of 2016 and the beginning of 2017 with your family and friends at one of these celebrations.






2016 Sarasota Pineapple Drop


Date: Saturday, December 31st

Time: 1:00 pm - 1:30 am

Location: Downtown Sarasota

Cost: FREE!

Come to the largest New Year’s celebration in the Suncoast. There will be a midway with family carnival starting at 1:00 pm. Spend the day listening to live music, enjoy delicious food from local vendors and restaurants, and partake in fun activities and games. At midnight, watch the Pineapple Drop at the corner of Main Street and Lemon Avenue.


Starlight and Fire Family New Year's Eve Party


Date: Saturday, December 31st

Time: 6:00 pm - 10:00 pm

Location: Historic Spanish Point (337 North Tamiami Trail, Osprey)

Cost: $8 per adult (member), $4 per child (member under 12), $10 per adult (non-member), $5 per child (non-member under 12)

Your family will love celebrating the New Year in a winter wonderland at the White Cottage. Stay warm in the “snow” with bonfires, roasted marshmallows, and hot chocolate. There will also be crafts and fun activities. Your whole family will dance the evening away to music by Sean Phillips.


New Year’s Eve Fireworks Celebration at Marina Jack  


Date: Saturday, December 31st

Time: 7:00 pm - 2:00 am

Location: Marina Jack (2 Marina Plaza, Sarasota)

Cost: Varies based on Venue

Marina Jack is the place to be on New Year’s Eve. All of the venues have special events and dining packages offered for the evening. Enjoy live music by musicians and bands, such as Off the Cuff, Rock Lee, Kettle of Fish, and The Groovehounds. Of course, there will be delicious food served. For reservations, call (941)365-4232. At the end of the night, stay for an amazing fireworks show at midnight. Can’t make it to Marina Jack? The fireworks show can be viewed for free anywhere from downtown Sarasota!


New Year's Eve "Snow Ball"  


Date: Saturday, December 31st

Time: 7:30 pm - 12:30 am

Location: Italian American Club of Venice (1375 Ringling Drive, Venice)

Cost: $70 per person (member), $80 per person (non-member)

Ring in 2017 at the Italian American Club of Venice at the “Snow Ball”. Dress to impress! It is recommended to wear white! A jacket is required and black tie is optional. The evening will begin with delicious food before the celebrating begins with dancing and live music from The Cruzer. Midnight will be greeted with a champagne toast. For tickets, call Johanna at (941)468-5013.





New Year's Eve Beach Bash


Date: Saturday, December 31st

Time: 8:00 pm - 12:30 am

Location: Sharky’s On The Pier (1600 Harbor Drive South, Venice)

Cost: $10 cover charge

Party on New Year’s Eve at one of the most perfect settings in Venice! Enjoy an evening on Venice’s fishing pier with live entertainment from dance band Chameleon. There will be party favors and a spectacular fireworks display at midnight. Grab a bite to eat before the party by placing a dinner reservation at Sharky’s On The Pier.


New Year’s Eve at Selby Gardens


Date: Saturday, December 31st

Time: 8:00 pm - 1:00 am

Location: Marie Selby Botanical Gardens (900 South Palm Avenue, Sarasota)

Cost: $250 per person

Have a New Year’s Eve that you will never forget! The Walsh Family is hosting a black-tie event at the beautiful Gardens. Your evening will be filled with the spectacular Lights in Bloom display, a delicious four course meal, dancing, and live entertainment. There will be a special performance by the Sarasota Ballet! At the end of the night, enjoy fireworks over Sarasota Bay. Tickets can be purchased HERE.




Wishing you a very happy and prosperous 2017!






Florida is the #1 State to Retire to!

by Nick and Beth Flerlage

Congrats…’ve retired!!! Now it’s time to decide where you want to lay down roots for those days of freedom ahead of you. Finding a community to retire to is a major decision that involves a lot of factors. Affordability, access to amenities, closeness of friends and family members, and weather all come into play when looking for the perfect place to retire. The best states for retirement are those where you can have a high quality of life while maintaining a lower cost of living. Florida was recently named the Top State for Retirees…..and it’s no wonder why!!

Finance website WalletHub ranked the 50 states and the District of Columbia based on several key factors to determine which were the best states to call home in retirement. Their rankings are based on 3 areas, including affordability, quality of life, and health care. Within each of these broader categories were metrics that helped determine the overall score. When the results came in, Florida was ranked #1 in the country. With an affordability rank of 2, quality of life rank of 3, and healthcare rank of 15, the state beat out it’s competition to prove that it is the most retirement friendly!

There are so many amazing Communities to choose from in the Suncoast when you are looking for a new place to call home during your retirement. With beautiful sandy beaches and a comfortable winter average low of 54 degrees, the Venice area is an amazing spot for retirees.

Englewood: With over 50% of the population of this town 65 and older, retirees have known that Englewood is a prime community for years. Residents have access to a top notch medical facility, Englewood Community hospital, which is especially in tune with the needs of the local population. The city ranks high for access to recreation and fitness facilities, including golf courses. Englewood has also developed a thriving art scene, perfect for retirees looking for a community rich in culture and entertainment options. Englewood Homes For Sale.

Port Charlotte: Port Charlotte has been recognized as an excellent community for retirees by Forbes magazine. It is recognized for its low cost of living and low serious crime rate. There are plenty of fun activities to partake in during your retirement in Port Charlotte. It is the spring training home for the Tampa Bay Rays, allowing for unique, local access yearly to a Major League Baseball team. Golfers will love this community with its 7 golf courses! Port Charlotte Homes For Sale.

Venice: This city is filled with amenities perfect for retirees. The thriving historic downtown Venice has great dining and shopping options for its residents. Venice Regional Medical Center provides world class medical services. The location on the gulf allows for the opportunity to spend your retirement years in a beautiful waterfront property. There is over 55% of the population aged 65 and older providing for a great community. To top it all off, Venice has a very high walkability score making getting around town incredibly convenient. Venice Homes For Sale.

Osprey: Nestled between Venice and Sarasota, Osprey offers a smaller town feel while allowing access to the larger metropolitan areas in the region. Osprey offers many of its own amenties with access to amazing restaurants, golf courses, and recreational facilities. The natural environment around the city is spectacular and perfect for outdoor enthusiasts. Whether you love spending time on the beach or going fishing, there are plenty of opportunities in this beautiful communityl. Osprey Homes For Sale.


Let us help you retire to the Suncoast by finding your dream home today!!! Give The Nick Flerlage Team a call today or visit our website at

5 Facts of the Spring Home Buying Season.












Five Key Things To Know About The 2015 Spring Home Buying Season:

1. The months of April, May, and June typically account for 40% of all home sales for the year.

Let's review-

* Home prices are going up

* Wages aren’t keeping pace

* The housing supply is tight, driving prices up even faster!

* Lately as many as 40% of homes have sold at or above listing price!!

Some in the real estate industry say that the market has finally normalized after the recession. However, if you are a First-Time Home Buyer or a lower end buyer, this is hardly the case!  Which brings us to #2 on our list:

2. A large Inventory Shortage.

If you work in any facet of the real estate industry this isn't "new news", but what might surprise you is the fact that at the end of April, combining both existing homes for sale AND New Construction home starts, we were still severely below historic inventory levels. We're talking  4.8 months of inventory...and 6 months is considered the low or balanced margin for a stable market. However, NAR is still predicting that 2015 will be the best year of existing home sales and new home construction starts, since 2007, with a projected 5.24 million, or about 6.1% above 2014.  The problem still is getting inventory on the market. This is where the "equity rich" homeowners ( 20% or higher) will come into play. The thought or expectation is that they will use the equity to move-up into a larger home, therefore putting existing homes onto the market, as well as projected $1.14 million in new construction home starts. Combined they should give the added boost to curb inventory concerns.

3. Prices are on the Rise!

Inventory constraints and high Buyer Demand have caused prices to start their climb. Historically, prices have risen about 1% per year. Per the latest data given by NAR, single family homes have increased on average 4.1% year over year (accounting for inflation). It's better than the double digit price increases in 2013, but still faster than inflation. Still, in many markets, homes are selling at or above list price. It is also creating many bidding war situations for Home Owners, giving the Sellers a true, Seller's Market. It's important for anyone considering selling their home that A recent survey by the National Association of Realtors indicated that in April, about 40% of homes, on a national basis, sold at or above asking price. Similarly, RealtyTrac recently found that in April 41% of homes sold at or above their estimated market value. Bottom line: Price gains are NOT going to go away, in fact, they are predicted to rise to 6.7% for the year. If you're a Home Seller....SELL NOW!  If you're looking at Buying a Home...Don't wait, prices are only going to go higher. Buy while they are still on the low side and while MORTGAGE RATES are still at near historic lows.

4. Financing eases, but mortgage rates may rise. 

Six months to a year ago it was still very difficult to get financing, but now credit availability is at its highest level since housing took it's downturn- according to the latest information from the Mortgage Bankers Mortgage Credit Availability report. Banks and mortgage companies are not only easing requirements, they are also offering more types of loans to augment sources of financing.  However, Freddie Mac is predicting increases in the interest rates that have remained at historic lows for months! This past work alone, rates rose to the highest yet in 2015 to 3.87% for a conventional 30 year fixed rate loan, and they're only going to go higher.

5. Lower-priced homes are moving fast!

If you are a First Time Home Buyer or a Buyer looking at the lower end home pricing, this market is going to be particularly hard. Homes in the lower price points are going faster than the higher price points.....50% more! Best advice we can give someone shopping in the lower price points is this:

1- Be ready to give a competitive offer for a house you really want to buy. This isn't a time to try negotiating. Know what you want, and be ready to get it.

2- Make sure you have all your paperwork, documents, preapproval in place so that you can move fast to a closing without anything standing in the way. Sellers will look much more favorably on your offer if you don't have any contingencies attached to it and are ready to close quickly.


*SELLERS, just because there are slim pickings in the market right now doesn't mean you are in the driver's seat entirely.  The current buyers are a picky bunch, especially in the post recession time we find ourselves.  So, if you want to capitalize on the current market, you can't forget the little things, you need to thoroughly prepare your home for this market  You need to make your home something worth fighting for; the tips below are simple ways you can make your home stand out from the rest. 

5 Ways to Make Your Venice Room Look Larger!


Whether you are Selling Your Venice FL Home or just want to open the room up, the following tips will make any room look larger on the spot!


Natural light brings dimension and airiness to a room that just cannot be duplicated by electricity. Try to bring it in everywhere possible...and Do NOT let your window coverings hinder the light.


Smaller rooms need one lighter, color scheme in order to look larger. Using dark, and multiple color schemes in a small room breaks the room up and ends up making the room look smaller than it was before. Lighter colors create a larger feel.


 Utilizing built-in cabinets takes valuable floor space and gives it back to you for seating space instead of storage space. Built-in cabinets are a small room's best friend! Same theory with lighting...if you can ditch the table lamps & floor lamps and use wall or ceiling mounted lighting, you're freeing up valuable space in the room for other things.


Believe it or not, one large piece of furniture for a focal point will make your room look larger than trying to arrange several smaller pieces of furniture into a smaller room. Select a larger, beautiful piece as your focal point & decorate sparingly around it.


Breaking up a small room with hard lines or contrasting colors is a "No No". You need to use same color paints and soft lines & dividers to keep your transitions least to the eye. Otherwise it will create a smaller room to the eye's view.

Lastly, always remember the "cantaloupe" rule: When decorating a room, add accent pieces that are bigger than a cantaloupe. This keeps your room from getting cluttered which will always make any room look much smaller.

For more Home Selling Tips you can visit our website or Facebook page. If you are considering selling your Venice Florida home, give us a call. You may also find out what your Venice FL home is worth in today's marketplace with a FREE no obligation, Home Valuation by following this link: VENICE FREE HOME VALUE REPORT.

The Nick Flerlage Team is here to help in any way we can, just give us a call at 941-882-2229.

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Contact Information

Flerlage Team
RE/MAX Alliance Group
1314 B East Venice Ave
Venice FL 34285
Fax: 941-244-5354