To help you plan your 2023 springtime calendar, the lifestyle experts at Michael Saunders compiled a schedule of 2023 events and festivals in the Sarasota, Bradenton and Venice areas from now until the end of April. Experience the small-town feeling and magic that makes the Suncoast so beloved by residents and visitors alike. You’ll discover there is a lot more to this area than just beautiful sunsets!

March 2023 Events

March 1 – 5: Circus Sarasota: 25 Years of Big Top Performances. Bring the whole family for fun and thrills as you are entertained by an international cast of circus artists. Located at Nathan Benderson Park behind the Mall at UTC. Tickets prices and show times vary.

March 3 – 5: Downtown Sarasota Blues Festival. Enjoy good blues music by local and national blues artists, diverse food menu cooked fresh on site, arts, crafts and more! Sat 11 am – 10 pm, Sun 11 am – 6 pm. J.D. Hamel Park, Bayfront Dr, Sarasota. Free admission.

March 4-5 | 10 am – 5 pm: The 22nd Annual Downtown Venice Art Classic. Discover a new piece of amazing art from a large selection of paintings, photographs, sculpture, glass, ceramics, jewelry, and mixed media. West Venice Ave in Downtown Venice. Free admission.

March 6 | 7 pm: Ladies for Liberty – Salute to Veterans Show at the Humane Society of Sarasota County. Go back in time with musical renditions from the 1940s through to the 1960s. Support goes to Military Matches Program that provides free adoptions to veterans and military families. Ticket prices vary.

March 6 | 6 pm – 9 pm: Ringling by the Bay. Enjoy live music and dancing with a great view next to Ca’ d’Zan. Ringling Museum Grounds. Tickets sell out quickly; $20 / $10 for Ringling members.

March 11 | 11:30 am – 4 pm: The Annual Irish Celtic Festival & Lucky Dog Parade. Enjoy traditional Celtic food, craft beer, and entertainment. Don’t miss the dog parade with awards given to the Most Irish and Cutest Dog. Greenbrook Adventure Park, Lakewood Ranch. Free admission.

March 11 | 2 pm – 5 pm: The 14th Annual Toast to Venice wine, beer and food festival. Live music, food selections from local chefs, bourbon, beer and wine tasting, and a silent auction. 1800 Harbor Dr S, Venice. Tickets $60 / $75 at gate.

March 11 – 12 | 10 am – 5 pm: The Lakewood Ranch Winter Fine Art Festival. Stroll through an outdoor gallery of original art created by artists across the nation. Explore paintings, jewelry, photography, glass, ceramics, and sculptures. Main St, Lakewood Ranch. Free admission.

March 11 – 12 | 10 am – 5 pm: The Sarasota Open Air Fine Art Show. Juried fine art show created by award-winning fine artists working in all mediums from around the world. Phillippi Estate Park, Sarasota. Free admission.

March 13 – 18 | 6 pm – 9:15 pm: The Sarasota Jazz Festival. Hear the jazzy sounds of Marcus Miller and more jazz musicians during this 5-day celebration of jazz. Big Top Tent at Benderson Park, Sarasota. Ticket prices vary.

March 17 – 26: The 86th Annual Sarasota County Fair. Enjoy rides, exhibits, live music, cattle shows and more at the Sarasota Fairgrounds. Ticket prices vary by day.


March 18 – 19 | 10 am – 5 pm: The 35th Annual Holmes Beach Spring Fest Fine Arts & Crafts Fest on Anna Maria Island. Check out over 70 fine arts and fine crafts exhibitors. City Hall Field, Holmes Beach. Free admission.

March 18 – 19 | 10 am – 5 pm: Riverwalk Fine Art Festival. Artists from all over the country showcase their art. Riverwalk Pavilion and Rossi Park. Bradenton, FL. Free admission.

March 23 | 7:30 pm: To the Moon and Back” by the Music Program at SCF. The SCF Guitar Ensemble will play standards and original compositions. Studio for the Performing Arts, SCF Bradenton, 5840 17th St W, Bradenton. Tickets $15 / $5 for SCF students and staff.

March 24 – April 2: The Sarasota Film Festival. In its 25th year, the Sarasota Film Festival has showcased the best in cinema along with exciting programs and events and is one of the area’s biggest annual events. Enjoy 10 days of movies, parties, celebrities and special events. Ticket prices vary.

March 25 | 9:30 am – 4 pm: Gardens in Paradise – A Tour of Private Exclusive Gardens. Visit some of the area’s premier gardens by passionate gardeners for ideas, inspiration, and beauty. Sarasota Garden Club, 1131 Boulevard of the Arts, Sarasota. Tickets $35.

March 25 | 12 pm – 5 pm: The 8th Annual My Hometown Fest. The area’s biggest neighborhood block party with food, music, craft beer, spirits, family fun activities and exhibits. Nathan Benderson Park. Tickets $25-$35.

small turtle in hand

April 2023 Events

April 1 | 7 am – 9 am: The 37th Annual Run/Walk for the Turtles sponsored by Mote Marine. This annual beach run is fun for the whole family with a 1-mile fun run for the kids at 7:30 am and then a 5K race at 8 am on Siesta Key Beach. Tickets $40 / kids under 13 $30.

April 1 | 11 am – 3 pm: The Annual Florida Wine Brunch and Charity Auction. Enjoy a champagne reception, 4-course brunch, live music, raffle and live auction of rare wines, jewelry, trips and more. Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall, Sarasota. Tickets $225 per person, seating is limited.

April 1- 2 | 10 am – 5 pm: The Sarasota Open Air Fine Art Show. Explore a variety of artworks from artists across the nation in this quality juried fine art and fine craft show. Mediums include paintings, ceramics, wood, sculpture, glass, fiber, jewelry and more. Phillippi Estate Park, 5500 S Tamiami Trail, Sarasota. Free admission.

April 3 | 6 pm – 9 pm: Ringling by the Bay with live music and dancing on the bayfront. Ringling Museum Grounds, Sarasota. Tickets sell out quickly; $20 / $10 for Ringling members.

April 7 | 6 pm – 9 pm: Music on Main at Lakewood Ranch. Enjoy live music, beer, wine and food. Dogs and chairs allowed, no coolers. Downtown Lakewood Ranch. Free admission.

April 7 -16: The Elizabeth Moore Sarasota Open Tennis Championship Tournament. Held in recently renovated Payne Park, 2010 Adams Ln, Sarasota. Ticket prices vary.

April 12 | 6 pm – 9 pm: Mote SEAsonal Tasting at Nathan Benderson Park. Sample delicious food from UTC restaurants to support Mote Science Education Aquarium. Nathan Benderson Park, Sarasota. Tickets $125.

close up of a cat with a top hat and a dog with a bow tie

April 14 | 11:30 am: 2023 Paws on the Red Carpet. Enjoy seeing adorable adoptable animals on the red carpet with signature cocktails, raffle prizes, music, dancing and more. Proceeds go to the Humane Society of Sarasota (HSSC). Art Ovation Hotel, 1255 N Palm Ave, Sarasota. Ticket prices vary.

April 15 | 5:30 pm – 10 pm: State College of Florida Foundation hosts Oh, What a Night. Enjoy an evening under the stars with this time-honored event. Celebrating 30 years, savor the sounds of the SCF string quartet, jazz band, and orchestra amongst the natural beauty of the SCF campus in Venice. VIP seating with meal and drinks available along with general admission tickets starting at $35.

April 20 – 24: Forks and Corks Food and Wine Festival. Foodies and wine lovers rejoice as this annual event is back with upscale dinners and tasting events. Ringling Museum Courtyard. Event sells out quickly. Ticket prices vary.

April 21 – 23: The Annual Suncoast Boat Show. See hundreds of watercrafts on display while enjoying live music, food, drinks and more. Marina Jack’s, #2 Marina Plaza, Sarasota. Tickets $18 – available for purchase online only.

April 22 | 10 am – 3 pm: Oscar Scherer State Park is hosting its Annual Sarasota Earth Day Festival. Celebrate Earth Day with fun activities for the whole family along with live music, guided hikes, tram tours, food venders and more. Lake Osprey Picnic Area, 1843 S Tamiami Trail, Osprey. Free admission.

April 22 – 22 | After a 3-year hiatus, the Venice Shark’s Tooth Festival is back! Check out shark tooth fossils, food vendors, arts and crafts, live music and children’s activities. Centennial Park, Venice Ave, downtown Venice. Free admission.

Man checking cufflinks on suit

April 28 | 6:30 pm: DeSoto Heritage Festival Ball. One of Manatee County’s most glittery and prestigious events, this elegant black-tie ball is full of pomp and circumstance. Bradenton Area Convention Center, 1 Haben Blvd, Palmetto. Ticket prices vary.

April 29 | 7 pm: The De Soto Heritage Festival Grand Parade has over 150 entries and is one of the largest parades in Florida. Beads, coins and other fun items are handed out to the crowd. Free admission.