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 Nathan Benderson Park


5851 Nathan Benderson Circle, SarasotaIMG_1142.JPG


Nathan Benderson Park is a unique recreational venue which provides the public access to several lakes for non-motorized boating, fishing, bird-watching and related activities.

Before the county purchased the property, the site had been an active shell excavation pit for road construction fill. Cooper Creek enters the east side of the large lake and exits at the northwest corner. The North Cattlemen Road extension will provide additional access to the park and its amenities.

One of a handful of sites in North America identified as having all of the natural attributes that make up a premiere rowing facility, Nathan Benderson Park began hosting organized regatta competitions in 2009. 
The Sarasota County Commission demonstrated its support for further development of the park into a state-of-the-art rowing facility with a financial commitment tied to Sarasota county’s Tourist Development Tax (TDT).

 Park Development

Benderson Development and Sarasota County have partnered together to plan for future park improvements and have held several community workshops to solicit ideas for recreational opportunities at the park.
A detailed master plan was approved by the county commission in July 2010. The park will balance community recreation needs and provide a venue for large specialty events.
The world class recreational venue will also provide for community rowing (youth, adults and seniors), adaptive rowing (disabled veterans, youth/adults with mental and physical disabilities), corporate events, training and practice for junior and collegiate crews, local, regional, national and international regattas. On Jan., 25, 2011, Sarasota County entered into an agreement with Benderson Development to implement Phase 1 and 2 of the Nathan Benderson Park Nature Aquatic Center (NBNAC). 
Benderson’s first task under their contract was to develop a preliminary design plan (PDP) for implementing design and construction of the project. The PDP is an evolution of the Park Concept Plan approved by the county in July of 2010. Benderson worked diligently with local community and international stakeholders to ensure the PDP includes all elements to make the park a FISA (the international governing body of the sport of rowing) certifiable rowing and sporting venue as well as a world class community park.  
The county’s financial commitment to the project is $19.5 million of Tourist Development Funds for completion of Phases I and II of NBNAC. On Oct. 25, 2011, county staff discussed the scope of work with the County Commission, they approved the PDP and provided authorization for the Developer to proceed with the next contract task of providing 30 percent design plans and a Guaranteed Maximum Price for completing Phases I and II of NBANC. 


 Park Information


Nathan Benderson Park is a gated park, daylight use only, with hours as follows:

• April-October 6 a.m. - 8 p.m.
• November - March 6 a.m. - 6 p.m.


 Want to know more?

For questions or additional information regarding Nathan Benderson Park, call the Sarasota County Contact Center at 941-861-5000 or email
image of entrance sign


  • Boat Ramp
  • Picnic Shelter
  • Restroom
  • Fishing Pier
  • Walking Trail
  • Bike Path

 Additional Information

Benderson Park Construction Plan 012511.pdfBenderson Park Construction Plan 012511
Benderson Park Presentation 071410.pdfBenderson Park Presentation 071410
County Commission Approved Concept Plan.pdfCounty Commission Approved Concept Plan
Preliminary Design Plan 102511.pdfPreliminary Design Plan 102511

Suncoast Aquatic Nature Center Associates Operating Agreement Fact Sheet

Presentation regarding the SANCA Agreement for Operation of Nathan Benderson Park from the March 19, 2014 Board of County Commission meeting.


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