A new face in East Manatee says hello

September 15, 2013 

A new face in East Manatee says hello

Hello, East Manatee!

Allow me to introduce myself. My name's Jason Bartolone, and I'm the new East Manatee Editor for the Lakewood Ranch Herald/Bradenton Herald. That means you'll be seeing me out and about in Parrish, Lakewood Ranch, Myakka City, the University Park area and the rest of East Manatee County, getting to know this amazing community and sharing your stories in the pages of the Herald and online at Bradenton.com.

This new job is a homecoming of sorts -- I previously worked at the Herald for five years, from 2005 to 2010, first in the sports department as a copy editor and page designer, then as the Page 1A editor. I'm excited to be outside the confines of the newsroom now, along with the rest of the Herald's talented team of journalists, talking with the people who make East Manatee come to life.

I'm also no stranger to this community: My wife and I have been Lakewood Ranch residents for almost 1 1/2 years now.

In fact, years before we bought our home, we got married at Waterlefe Golf & River Club in East Manatee, to the envy of all our friends and relatives who came down from New Jersey. That was when we decided this area would be our home for years to come.

Now, we live here, work here, shop here and are raising our 9-month-old son, Zack, here. You might spot us enjoying the next Music on Main (maybe if it ever cools down just a tad), trying to figure out just what the heck is going on at a match at Sarasota Polo Club, or loading up on some fried foods at this year's Hunsader Farms Pumpkin Festival.

In short, we love living out east, and I'm looking forward to getting to know the rest of my neighbors even better.

In just a few weeks on the job, I've had the opportunity to get a behind-the-scenes tour of the facilities of Lakewood Ranch and of the under-construction University Town Center mall that will have a huge impact on the region in just about a year. My predecessor, longtime East Manatee Editor James A. Jones Jr., was also gracious enough to take a break from his semi-retirement to drive me all over East Manatee and introduce me to all the movers and shakers and everyday people who make this community tick.

Have a story idea or a news tip? You can reach me in the office at 941-745-7011 or by email at jbartolone@bradenton.com. Follow me on Twitter, too,

Jason Bartolone, East Manatee Editor, can be reached at 941-745-7011 or on Twitter@JasonBartolone.

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