Entertainment

Neal Preserve
Experience nature combined with functional exercises at Neal Preserve this week.

Clubs

Needles and hooks

The Island Branch Library Knit and Crochet Club meets at 5701 Marina Drive, Holmes Beach, on Thursday, Dec. 7 from 2-4 p.m. Enjoy working on a project in the company of others. For more information, call 941-778-6341.

Family Fun

Forty Carrots

The Island Branch Library, 5701 Marina Drive, Holmes Beach, hosts Forty Carrots, a parenting program based in Sarasota, on Friday, Dec. 8 at 10 a.m. This is a program where kids from mobile babies to 5 years of age and their parents experience new activities, join in circle time fun, spend time with other families and get valuable parenting information.

The program is free and tickets are available at the library desk. Space is limited to 12 families. For more information, call the library at 941-778-6341.

Paper folding at library

Judy Pruitt presents her origami class at the Island Branch Library, 5701 Marina Drive, Holmes Beach, on Saturday, Dec. 9 from 10 a.m. to noon. Learn this ancient Japanese art of paper folding. The class is free. For more information, call the library at 941-778-6341.

Gingerbread dreams at story time

Trudy Bell, children’s specialist at the Island Branch Library, 5701 Marina Drive, Holmes Beach, will talk about “Gingerbread Friends” during preschool story time on Tuesday, Dec. 12, from 10-11 a.m. There will be music and crafts, and parents can join in. For more information, call the library at 941-778-6341.

Games

Mahjong is fun

The ancient Chinese game of mahjong, a popular pursuit for those wanting to compete and have fun, is at the Island Branch Library at 5701 Marina Drive, Holmes Beach, on Friday, Dec. 8 from 11 a.m. to noon. For more information, call the library at 941-778-6341.

Health

Alzheimer’s caregivers meet

Sue Fox, a representative of the Sarasota Chapter of the Alzheimer’s Association, will host a program for caregivers of people with memory problems, including Alzheimer’s disease, on Friday, Dec. 8 at 2 p.m. at the Island Branch Library, 5701 Marina Drive, Holmes Beach. The program is free. Call 941-778-6341 for more information.

Give blood at the library

The One Blood Bus will be at the Island Branch library parking lot, 5701 Marina Drive, Holmes Beach, on Wednesday, Dec. 6. For more information, call the library at 941-778-6341.

Markets

Shop by the shore

The Beach Market, located along the multi-purpose trail in Coquina Beach, is open every Sunday in December from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and every Wednesday starting Dec. 20.

Local artists, crafters and jewelers will be there with their offerings. Two vendors sell fresh produce, and an Island resident will be selling hydroponic and organic plants and much more. The AMI String Band will provide live music. Lunch is sold at the nearby beach concession stand.

The market is located next to the trolley turnaround, and there is ample parking. Manatee County does not allow dogs anywhere in Coquina Park. The market is stroller, walker and wheelchair accessible. For more information, call 941-518-4431.

Nature

Green Explorers lead butterfly event

Colorful butterflies are coming to the area and the Manatee County Parks and Natural Resources Department is sponsoring a butterfly walk through Robinson Preserve, 1704 99th St. N.W., Bradenton, from 10 a.m. to noon on Thursday, Dec. 7. Green Explorers is a low structure, highly social and experienced-based activity.

This program is recommended for age 6- to 12-year-olds, but all ages are welcome. Reservations are required by emailing [email protected] or calling 941-742-5757, ext.4.

Sierra Club to meet

The Manatee-Sarasota Sierra Club will hold a strategy meeting at the Manatee County Central Library, 1301 Barcarrota Blvd., Bradenton on Monday, Dec. 11, from 1:30-3:30 p.m. Build sound environmental policy in Manatee County. Find out more about the Solar Co-op and the Ready for 100 Campaign. Contact Sandra Ripberger at 941-794-3878, or email [email protected] for more information.

Explore the flora at Riverview Pointe

The Manatee County Parks and Natural Resources Department and IFAS Extension Program/Florida Master Gardeners program is sponsoring a Master Gardener walk through Riverview Pointe Preserve, 8250 DeSoto Memorial Hwy., Bradenton on Saturday, Dec. 9 at 11 a.m. Learn more about Florida’s native plants and inhabitants of a coastal habitat. The hike begins in the parking area of DeSoto National Memorial and continues into Riverview Pointe Preserve.

This program is suitable for all ages. Call the Master Gardener Office for reservations at 941-722-4524.

Personal Development

Seniors to visit art gallery

Senior Adventures, a group that provides activities for seniors, will visit the Manatee Art Center Gallery, a pottery sale and enjoy lunch downtown on Friday, Dec. 8. The Center van will leave Annie Silver Community Center, 103 23rd St. N., Bradenton Beach at 10 a.m. There will be a $5 van fee and a donation to the art center. Call Kaye Bell at 941-538-0945 for a reservation.

Chill out to a sunset

Lose some stress and become one with nature at a sunset Tai Chi class at Robinson Preserve, 1704 99th St. N.W., Bradenton, from 5-6 p.m. on Tuesday, Dec. 12. This free gentle movement modality is a great way to shake off the stressful work week. Improve your balance, loosen your joints, and improve flexibility as you relax and breathe.

This class is suitable for beginners as well as longtime practitioners. It will include an exploration of several different styles of Tai Chi and Qigong. The program will be led by Dr. Brian Nell, a fifth-degree blackbelt in kung fu and certified Tai Chi instructor.

The program is sponsored by Cypress Pillar Healing Arts, and it is suitable for ages 13 and up. Reservations are required by calling 941-742-5757, ext. 6.

Fitness comes to Neal Preserve

One day a month, The Manatee County Parks and Natural Resources Department takes fitness to the preserve and you can experience nature combined with functional exercises in a 60-minute class. This month the program comes to Neal Preserve, 12301 Manatee Ave. W., Bradenton on Wednesday, Dec. 13, from 1-2 p.m. This program helps gym members experience our wonderful Florida weather and add some dynamics to their workout. No registration is required. Participants must be at least 12 years old. For more information, contact Preston Higdon at 941-742-5923, ext. 6086.