On Jan. 25, Fire Fest to be held for seventh year at T. Mabry Carlton Jr. Memorial Reserve in Venice

Free educational event set from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., with demonstrations, hayrides and raffles

Photo courtesy Sarasota County

On Saturday, Jan. 25, for the seventh year, Sarasota County’s Fire Fest will be conducted at the T. Mabry Carlton Jr. Memorial Reserve in Venice, county staff has announced.

“The annual event aims to educate and inform the public about the importance of fire to the ecosystem,” a news release explains. Staff members with the Sarasota County Parks, Recreation and Natural Resources Department and the Emergency Services Department will share information about why the county schedules prescribed burns, the benefits of those burns to native habitats and wildlife, “and how the county manages wildfire,” the release notes.

The free event also will feature demonstrations, the release continues. It will be held from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

The T. Mabry Carlton Jr. Memorial Reserve is located at 1800 Mabry Carlton Parkway in Venice.

Among Fire Fest’s other features will be hayrides, local exhibitors, an expanded game area for children, nature walks and refreshments, the release says. Additionally, a free raffle will give attendees chances to win several prizes, including an original print by Clyde Butcher, who is known for his black and white landscape photography, the release points out.

“Sarasota County is committed to environmental stewardship,” the release notes. This event “supports that commitment by demonstrating the value of prescribed burns in protecting public lands and surrounding communities,” the release says.