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Updated: 06/04/2014 08:00:01AM

Fun in the sun at our beautiful beaches

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SUN PHOTO BY DEBBIE FLESSNER
Venice Beach is nice and wide and is the most popular of the beaches in town.

PHOTO PROVIDED BY BILL DUNSON

A beach stroller stoops to pick up shells against a backdrop of big surf. The surf accompanied strong winds and cooler weather on Englewood area beaches brought by recent cold fronts.

Photo provided

Siesta Beach.

SUN PHOTO BY BETSY WILLIAMNS, photobw17@gmail.com
Owen White, 12, and his sister, Rileigh, 10, enjoy the surf at Englewood Beach.

SUN PHOTO BY BETSY WILLIAMS, photobw17@gmail.com
Eight-year-old Lena Westerbeck was enjoying the rumbling waters off the shoreline at Englewood Beach with her oversized pink tube Friday.

SUN PHOTO BY BETSY WILLIAMS, photobw17@gmail.com
Bonnie and Dave Lowe, visiting from Ohio, were shelling the shoreline at Englewood Beach using a scoop, while enjoying the waves and sunshine from their beach chairs.

SUN PHOTO BY CHRISTY FEINBERG, cfeinberg@sun-herald.com

Jason Nelson, 5, of Punta Gorda, pours buckets of water into holes at the Port Charlotte Beach Park on Friday. Jason took advantage of the sunny skies, which may not be as prevalent this weekend. Today may be the better beach and boating day, as the National Weather Service predicts a 50 percent chance of showers and storms Sunday, with possibly gusty winds as well. There is a 30 percent chance for showers today.

PHOTO COURTESY OF FRAN PALMERI


Frequent contributor Fran Palmeri recently submitted this photo of beachgoers, including a bunch of seagulls, at Nokomis Beach.

PHOTOS PROVIDED BY NANCI THEORET


Annie swimming at Brohard Dog Beach. Annie and Leo are Nanci's dogs.

SUN PHOTO BY ED SCOTT, escott@sun-herald.com
Four men played volleyball Monday morning on Venice Beach. Shown are Rich Deister and Scott Lauer of Indiana (foreground) and Bill Britt of Sarasota (behind net).

Family walking on beach

SUN PHOTO BY KIM COOL

Blake Parsons, owner of SaliFlorida Surf & Sakte Shop on Siest Key, demonstrates the basic J stroke used to propel a paddle board.

SUN PHOTO BY JUSTIN FENNELL
Venice High sophomore Danika Yoder bumps the ball to partner Carly Scarborough in the 14-and-under division during Saturday's Dig the Beach volleyball tournament on Siesta Key Beach in Sarasota. In the women's open bracket, Venice High graduate Kristen Batt and partner Brooke Sweat captured the championship after battling back through the loser's bracket.

By DEBBIE FLESSNER

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If you live in Sarasota, Charlotte or Lee counties, you must be familiar with the term “staycation.” That’s because with the quality and quantity of beaches located here, why would you go anywhere else?

People travel to our beaches from all over the world, with good reason. Just a few months ago, TripAdvisor announced their annual Travelers’ Choice Awards for Best Beaches 2014. Sarasota County’s own Siesta Key Public Beach and Lido Beach were in the top 25 beaches on the United States list. Siesta Beach earned top honors in Florida and third in the United States, behind two beaches in Hawaii.  Lido Beach was number 22 on the list. 

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