The Venice City Council approved three new special events Tuesday and two of them will take place next month.

All three involve vehicles and all three could become annual events.

First up is the Ride of Silence, sponsored by the Sarasota Manatee Bicycle Club. It’s the local version of an international event to remember bicyclists injured or killed in collisions with motorists and to promote bicycling safety.

The 7.8-mile slow-speed ride will follow a route that takes riders through downtown, up to the South Jetty and down to Sharky’s. The ride is estimated to take about an hour and a quarter.

Organizers project about 100-150 participants, according to their submission to the city. About 100 people participated in the ride last year, in Sarasota, but there’s no registration requirement so “we cannot provide a firm number prior to the event,” they wrote.

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On May 19, the Venice Municipal Airport will host the Everglades Region Porsche Club of America’s autocross.

Organizers describe the event as “a competitive driving event in which a car is timed over a course laid out on a paved area (often a large parking lot or landing strip).”

Cars race the clock, not each other. They start one at a time and there’s no passing.

Most of the club’s events take place over a weekend at a site in Fort Myers but it has been “looking for a site to help better support our northern area and provide an opportunity for cross-region event activities with our Suncoast neighbors,” organizers wrote. “We very much look forward to nurturing a lasting relationship with Venice and having the opportunity to patronize its restaurants and hotels during our event weekends.”

Besides being a competitive and social event, the autocross also raises funds to support autism programs.

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The final new event, Habitat for Humanity South Sarasota County’s 3B-Bike, Boat and Beach Relay, is a fundraiser set for July 27.

Teams will participate in four stages covering a 10-mile course starting and ending at Sharky’s.

The relay will begin with a bike ride. One rider will go from the restaurant down to Caspersen Beach and over to the Circus Bridge, where a second rider will take over, proceeding to Venice Avenue.

The next leg is one person going via motorless boat from the Marina Boat Ramp to Higel Marine Park. From there, three runners will relay back to Sharky’s.

The final stage is a team competition that’s still in development but that is expected to involve beach-related activities, according to the organizers.

An awards ceremony and celebration will follow.

More information will be available at when details are finalized.


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