The Sarasota Journal

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City commission votes to reopen Lido Beach

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SARASOTA –– Under pressure from St. Armand’s Circle business owners, the Sarasota City Commission last Monday voted to reopen Lido Beach to the public by a 4-1 vote.

City commissioners had steadfastly refused to open the beach even after the county had reopened its beaches including nearby Ted Sperling Park.

Lido Beach has been closed since March 21 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

While still voicing concerns about the potential spreading of the virus, commissioners voted to allow the beach to open to alleviate the plight of the businesses on St. Armand’s Circle.

“The situation is dire out there for them,” Commissioner Hagen Brody said.

Vice Mayor Shelli Freeland Eddie cast the only dissenting vote saying, “I don’t think you can justify making a bad decision because other people have made it.”

With the opening of the beach and other amenities the city continues to urge citizens to follow Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines for safe social distancing in public to help stop the spread of COVID-19. City residents are also strongly urged to wear protective masks when leaving home under the city’s local public health emergency declaration.

The city’s tennis courts, boat ramps, fishing piers, dog parks and outdoor spaces are open to the public.

Arlington Park Aquatic Complex is scheduled to reopen Friday, May 29.

City park facilities and amenities, including playgrounds and basketball courts still remain closed.

Although City buildings are closed to the public, most city operations and services are still available. The public can conduct city business either online via or by phone at 941-263-6000.

Warren Richardson
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