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Letter from the Publisher June 2018

Summer is finally here, and it’s the perfect time of year to take advantage of all our vibrant community has to offer during these sunny months ahead! In fact, our June issue of Natural Awakenings is highlighting what makes a “livable” community and how the Sarasota area integrates these elements to bring people together, connect them to nature and promote conscious living for a more sustainable, collective experience. Here’s a peek at how Natural Awakenings is nurturing this idea of livable communities right here in our own backyard! 


To kick-off, our feature article for this month is all about “Hallmarks of a Resident-Friendly Community.” This insightful piece delves into features that make a city feel oriented around the well-being of people and the sustainability of nature. Some of these include walking or biking commuter paths to encourage low-emission travel; organic local farmer’s markets and community gardens to promote a nutritious lifestyle and empower small businesses; affordable housing and secure neighborhoods to keep the area thriving; spiritual centers to inspire mindfulness, fellowship and personal growth; clean air and safe water initiatives to protect both the environment and public health; and natural greenspaces to motivate people to spend more time outside together. All these characteristics lead to a healthy, interconnected pace of living. 


To expand this idea of communal spaces and shared experiences even further, this month’s “Natural Pet” article discusses how animal-friendly locations strengthen that community vibe and help form relationships among pet owners. From local parks and campsites to stores, restaurants and office buildings to residential areas, designating spaces where animal lovers can take their four-legged family members while socializing with their neighbors can build friendships and common ground which brings people together, regardless of their different backgrounds, and benefits the greater community as a whole. 


Finally, a third aspect of livable communities is protecting our natural resources and supporting conservation. Southwest Florida is full of unique biodiversity, and it’s our responsibility to maintain its health by reducing environmental impact. Our “Wildlife Protection” article explores how community education, activism and eco-conscious efforts can increase the quality of life in all facets of our local biosphere. The relationship between people, animals and the earth itself is complex, but we cannot forge a robust community experience when this trifecta is off-balance. So it’s vital that we continue doing our part to keep this environment flourishing. 


As always, these are just a few of the numerous articles featured in this month’s issue. I hope you find it overflowing with inspiration and enrichment for your life. At Natural Awakenings, we love hearing our readers’ opinions on the topics we cover, so tell us how you practice community involvement in your own daily routines. Send your comments and feedback to and let’s keep this conversation going! 

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