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Olde Englewood village.

Englewood's laid-back downtown is part quaint fishing village and part sultry beach town. A priority for residents and businesses alike is maintaining the village's historic core, centered on West Dearborn Street, with a mission to become the greenest Main Street in Florida. Fall in love with Englewood's unpretentious charms at shops brimming with fashions from resort classic to exotic, antiques both curious and refined, a booming new farmer's market and restaurants with an international vibe.

COUNTRY FARE The year-old Farmer's Market, attracting 4,000-plus shoppers every Thursday from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., is more akin to an upbeat country fair than standard market. Check out 48 vendors and 52 booths featuring hand-crafted delicacies, organic veggies, wild-caught Florida seafood and artisanal baked goods, and keep your eyes peeled for yoga and Irish dance flash mob events. Englewood Farmer's Market, 300 Block, W. Dearborn St., (914) 548-7843.

GLOBAL VIEW Jett Thompson curates an intriguing international melange of new and vintage furniture, accessories and a stunning collection of artful accent pillows, some covered in Uzbekistani ikat textiles and others appliqued (like the one lower left) in patterns of Jett's own design ($153-$265). Jett Thompson Antiques, 447 W. Dearborn St., (941) 460-2777.

BEACH CHIC Wearable works of art, Marie Laforge's tropical drawings are printed on silk pareos and scarves ($32-59) the multi-talented artist and chef at Mango Bistro sells at the restaurant, where locals are buzzing about the lobster roll on grilled pineapple bread ($10.99). Mango Bistro, 301 W. Dearborn St., (941) 681-3500.

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CHANGE YOUR STRIPES with soft, lightweight cotton pink-and-white striped shirts from England that update preppy style with pretty floral facings on collar and cuffs ($67). Shown with cotton knit sweater ($59). Basix on Dearborn, 449 W. Dearborn St., (941) 474-7111.

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HAPPY HUNTING at the Blue Pineapple yields unique discoveries like this antler base side table in matte white finish ($750) styled with antique French bottles, turquoise accessories (from $58) and an eclectic treasure trove of vintage pieces and pedigreed antiques hand-picked by Barbara and Peter Matson during buying trips abroad. Blue Pineapple, 445 W. Dearborn St., (941) 474-1504.

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ELIZABETH BRYANT'S gallery features her own jewelry creations and those of other artisans, like Melissa Erlenbach's copper cuffs adorned with gemstones and beach glass or blue lapis (each $98.95). Bryant Boutique, 200 W. Dearborn St., (941) 475-0785.

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NEW TASTES DOWNTOWN

Vivo Loco Wine & Gourmet toasts Spain's contributions to viticulture with a wine bar and retail shop (with more than 300 bottles. Pick a bottle and for a $10 service fee, drink it with delectable tapas from a menu that changes weekly. 420 W. Dearborn St., (941) 473-8466. Bay City Grill is a new restaurant serving American cuisine such as steaks and seafood and open for three squares a day. 115 W. Dearborn St., Englewood. New French aperitifs (Kir and Kir Royal) and white mango sangria are not all that's shakin' at Mango Bistro, Dearborn Street's go-to weekend night spot. You'll find co-owner Ricardo Ruggiero dancing with guests on Friday and Saturday evenings to the beat of bossa nova, flamenco, rumba and more. 301 W. Dearborn St., (941) 681-3500.

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Title Annotation:DISCOVER OUR DOWNTOWNS
Publication:Sarasota Magazine
Date:Dec 15, 2012
Words:531
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Next Article:Wonderful, waterful City Island: this scenic sliver of land with its iconic collection of amusements and institutions captures Sarasota's soul.

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