Sarasota MOD Weekend Celebrates “Sarasota in the Sixties”

Sept. 19, 2019 – Event tickets are on sale for the 2019 SarasotaMOD Weekend, a mid-century modern architecture festival celebrating the legacy of the “Sarasota School,” presented by the Sarasota Architectural Foundation. The event will take place November 8-10.

The theme of the sixth annual festival this year is “Sarasota in the Sixties,” and will focus on the next generation of Sarasota School architects — Carl AbbottJoe FarrellFrank Folsom SmithTim Seibert and Jack West — and their designs after the first wave in the 1950s.

“Sarasota MOD Weekend is about celebrating our city’s unique mid-century contribution to modernist architecture,” said Christopher S. Wilson, PhD, Chairman of the Board, Sarasota Architectural Foundation (SAF). “This year’s event is all about how, in the 1960s, the architects of the Sarasota School built upon the foundational work of the 1950s, and introduced its ground-breaking principles to the wider public through commercial and civic structures.”

The SarasotaMOD Weekend opening party will take place from 5:30-7:30 p.m. at the recently opened Sarasota Modern Hotel, located at 1290 Boulevard of the Arts, Sarasota.

“The hotel was designed as a tribute to the Sarasota School of Architecture,” said owner and developer Jason Cincotta. “Our team spent time studying homes and commercial buildings built during that period for inspiration, including the Umbrella House on Lido Key and the Cocoon House on Siesta Key. The idea was to take elements and themes from that era and apply them to a contemporary hotel.”

On Saturday, November 9, architect Frank Folsom Smith will present the event’s keynote lecture, “Work of the 1960s,” during a breakfast session at Holley Hall, located in the Beatrice Friedman Symphony Center at 709 N. Tamiami Trail. A panel discussion, “Sarasota Architecture in the Sixties,” will be moderated by Christopher Domin and feature panelists Carl Abbott (architect), Joe Farrell (architect), and Lorrie Muldowney (historian).  Attendees will also hear a presentation by John McCarthy, local historian and Executive Director of Historic Spanish Point, and view the 1965 promotional film David of Sarasota.

On Saturday and Sunday, there will be self-guided tours of the Lido Shores neighborhood, a midcentury modern gem,  as well as Siesta Key trolley tours, Downtown trolley tours, and a trolley tour of Southgate, which in the 1960s was developed from citrus groves into the suburban-like single-family housing neighborhood it is known as today.

Throughout the weekend, an exhibition opening “Frank Folsom Smith: Work of the 1960s” will be displayed at Sarasota’s Art Center, 707 N. Tamiami Trail, while new items will be on sale from pop-up shops at SarasotaMOD Weekend sites.

“By attending Sarasota MOD Weekend, participants get to experience vintage mid-century properties that were designed with the Florida climate in mind. These structures are not museum pieces that are frozen in time — they are lived in, worked in, shopped in, and can teach us a lot about how to shape our future environment: economy of means, efficient usage of space, and a concern for the effects of humankind on the environment,” says Wilson.

For a detailed schedule and to purchase tickets, visit

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