Upcoming Events & Announcements

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Events & Announcements


Monthly Meetings

1st Thursday of every month at Living Lord Lutheran Church (11107 Palmbrush Trail, Lakewood Ranch 34202). Dinner and childcare with Music Therapy session provided at no cost to BUDS families.

Upcoming meetings:

May 5, 2016 at 6:00 p.m. -  .Cheryl Albright from Soul To Soul Yoga will be presenting on Yoga for the Special Child (R) and services Soul To Soul Yoga provides. Additionally, we will have some special guests in attendance!

June 2, 2016 at 6:00 p.m. -  Lenice Haber, MSW, from Jewish Family & Children's Services will give a presentation on the services JFCS provides to ALL families, as well as provide information on their Alzheimer's Support and Education Network.


Buddy Walk Committee Needs Volunteers!

First Buddy Walk committee meeting of 2016 - May 3, 2016 at 6:00 p.m.

No experience required! We need volunteers who are able to commit to attending one meeting per month from May through October, and who can help with various pre-Buddy Walk and day of the Walk tasks. Together, we can do anything! If interested, please email:  info@manasotabuds.org


Little Buddies Support and Playgroup

We're bringing it back! This is a playgroup for young children with Down syndrome, ages birth to 4 years old. We'll be providing an opportunity for peer to peer playtime in conjunction with parent supported play and music appreciation classes. Additionally, we'll be using this time to support our fellow new BUDS parents in any way we can. 

The Little Buddies group will meet every other Thursday from 10:00 - 11:00 a.m. at the Living Lord Lutheran Church (11107 Palmbrush Trail in Lakewood Ranch) in the Sanctuary Hall. Light refreshments will be served.

Upcoming Little Buddies Playgroup Dates:

April 28, 2016   -   May 12, 2016   -   May 26, 2016   -   June 9, 2016  

(No playgroup on June 23, 2016 due to VBS at the church)


Moms' Night Out

That's right, we're doing it! We hope you can join us for a nice, relaxing evening out with other BUDS moms - good conversation and lots of laughter guaranteed!

Thursday, April 28, 2016 at 6:30 p.m. at Riverhouse Reef & Grill, located at 995 Riverside Dr, Palmetto.

BUDS will purchase appetizers and soft drinks for all - you are welcome to purchase your own wine, beer or cocktails and dinner. We will need to reserve a large table and need a good head count, so please RSVP to:  info@manasotabuds.org


D.A.D.S. Night Out

Wednesday, May 11, 2016 from 6:30 - 10:00 p.m.

*Gecko's Grill & Pub, 351 N. Cattlemen Rd., Sarasota, FL 34232 (Fruitville/Cattlemen)

ALL Dads are invited and welcome at this monthly event. (Location varies.) Dadsnightout@manasotabuds.org


Gulf Coast MBA Annual Golf Tournament

May 6, 2016 - The Gulf Coast Mortgage Bankers Association is once again hosting their Annual Golf Tournament to benefit Manasota BUDS! If you're interested in participating in the tournament, please see the entry form for more information.















Summer Camp Scholarships

Manasota BUDS will be offering 2016 summer camp and activities scholarships for individuals with Down syndrome in Manatee and Sarasota counties. Our online scholarship application is now available. In order to be considered for a summer camp scholarship, you MUST complete an online application no later than May 15, 2016 - CLICK HERE FOR THE 2016 SUMMER CAMP SCHOLARSHIP APPLICATION

We've been asked to share summer camp information on the following programs:

Dream Oaks Camp

Tikvah at Camp Ramah Darom: Sleep Away Camp for those with Special Needs

We are glad to share other program information - send information to:  info@manasotabuds.org


BUDS Pathfinder Family Adventure Day

Saturday, April 30, 2016 at 12:30 (Arrival Time) - Dayspring Retreat: 8411 25th St E, Parrish, FL 34219

Manasota BUDS Pathfinder Family Adventure Day is a fun, busy day! From 12:30 p.m. until 5:30 p.m., activities include: 

Canopy Walk
Estuary Explorer
Canoeing in the Cove
Tree Climbing (age 7+ to go up but younger kids can swing from ropes)
Zip Line

Dinner will be served at 5:45, followed by a Hootenanny, night hike, and campfire with S'Mores. 

At this time, the event reservation list is full. This information remains for attending families needing information for the event.


National Down Syndrome Congress Convention - Orlando, FL

Each year, thousands of people from across the globe attend the National Down Syndrome Congress Annual Convention. For most, it’s to hear the latest information from world-renowned experts, but for nearly all, there’s the one-of-a-kind NDSC family reunion feeling that permeates the convention weekend.

This year, the convention will be held at JW Marriott Grand Lakes, Orlando, Florida: July 21-24, 2016!
Starting April 11, 2016, you may register for the convention and book your hotel room by clicking here.

Manasota BUDS will be offering 20 (twenty) family reimbursement scholarships to help ease the financial burden for BUDS families who wish to attend this convention. These scholarships will not exceed $500, and are limited to one per BUDS family. YOU MUST live in either Manatee or Sarasota counties and complete this online scholarship application to be considered for this reimbursement scholarship.

Scholarships are on a FIRST COME, FIRST SERVED BASIS and are not guaranteed until you receive confirmation directly from Manasota BUDS that your application has been approved. Additionally, this reimbursement scholarship may not cover the full cost of the convention registration fee, hotel expenses, food and travel. Any convention expenses paid over the scholarship amount will be the responsibility of the family.  


Martial Arts Classes - (Ongoing)

Manasota BUDS is sponsoring Martial Arts classes for individuals with Down syndrome (age 6 years-old and up) starting February 5th! The classes will be held at Bostocks Martial Arts in Bradenton on Fridays from 6:00 - 6:45 p.m.

Please click here for more information and to register your child.

There is no cost to registered Manasota BUDS families.


Dance Class Sign-Up - (Ongoing)

Manasota BUDS has partnered with Stage Door Studios in Sarasota to provide a dance class for girls and boys with Down syndrome, ages 5 - 12 years old. 

Where:  Stage Door Studios - 4001 Cattlemen Rd, Sarasota, FL 34233
Style: Hip-Hop and Personal Expression
Attire: No specific attire is required.  Dance shoes are optional, tennis shoes are perfect.
If you are attending, please pre-register online by following the following link:
This class is fully paid for by Manasota BUDS in support of our members who love to dance! No prior experience or skills are required.
If you have any further questions feel free to contact Brooke Olivieri at bolivieri@manasotabuds.org
We are testing out this class.  If all is successful we are hoping to expand to another class for older students.  We are also hoping to get a time slot in Fall that works for as many families as possible.


Buddy Walk 2016 - Save the Date!

The Manasota BUDS 15th Annual Buddy Walk will be held on Saturday, October 22, 2016!

We can't wait to celebrate 15 years of Manasota BUDS with BUDS families, friends, supporters and sponsors! Sponsorships for this HUGE event are available. For more information, please contact:  info@manasotabuds.org


Buddy Up Tennis Sarasota

Buddy Up Tennis is a weekly, high-energy 90-minute program focused on adaptive tennis, fitness, and fun for children and adults with Down Syndrome. Visit the Buddy Up Tennis website or email sarasota@buddyuptennis.com for more information on current and upcoming sessions!

Programs & Services

Group Meetings & Events

Connect with other families, learn more about current support systems and get involved! We offer guest speakers and time to network with other families. We also invite you to join in our Buddy Walk to socialize, connect and raise awareness about the BUDS mission.

Meetings are held the 1st Thursday of every month at 6:00 p.m. at Living Lord Lutheran Church, 11107 Palmbrush Trail, Lakewood Ranch, FL 34202. Food and drinks provided.

New & Expectant Parent Kits

Kits include books and inspirational essays, local contact names and phone numbers, and information about Manasota BUDS, NDSS, and NDSC. All materials are compiled and approved by Manasota BUDS parents, with families in mind.

Small Group Activities

Join our youth community!
Little Buddies - age birth to five
BUDS Kids - age 6 to 10
Teen BUDS - age 11 to 18
YADS - Young adults with Down syndrome, age 18+

Manasota BUDS

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