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USF Sarasota-Manatee Launches Rowing Team at Bay Preserve02/04/2011 - Marjorie Floyd
OSPREY, FL- Conservation Foundation of the Gulf Coast, Sarasota Crew and USF Sarasota-Manatee, announced today that the first sports team and the only collegiate crew team in Sarasota and Manatee Counties is launching at Bay Preserve at Osprey.
Bay Preserve at Osprey is a 4.34 acre historic property protected in perpetuity by the Conservation Foundation. It is located on Little Sarasota Bay and is home to Sarasota Crew where more than 100 youth rowers train daily. Sarasota Crew Coach Liza Dickson has agreed to train the USF team . Sarasota Crew President John Leeming said, "Bay Preserve is an ideal setting for the new USF rowers because we have everything they need to get started on-site; office space, boat storage, a training courtyard with machines and of course the long distance course in Little Sarasota Bay necessary to train for racing."
The Conservation Foundation of the Gulf Coast purchased Bay Preserve at Osprey in May of 2006 and has invested more than $11 million for land, renovations and improvements to adapt the residential property for public uses like rowing. The Preserve is listed on Sarasota County's Register of Historic Places. "Bay Preserve at Osprey exemplifies the future of conservation and public recreation in Southwest Florida,” explained Joerger, “and is a testament to the power of collaborative partnerships between a private nonprofit organization and community organizations like USF Sarasota-Manatee, Art Center Sarasota, Sarasota Crew, Historic Spanish Point and others.”
A nature trail, wildlife observation platform, canoe and kayak launch, performance pavilion, Florida cracker cottages and a restored 1931 neo-classical waterfront home are additional features on the site. "We are preserving the natural character and integrity of Florida's Gulf Coast," said Joerger, "so future generations can enjoy unspoiled places like Bay Preserve."
"protecting our bays, beaches and barrier islands"
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