Blog / News

Coastal Waters are Clear off of Everglades City & Chokoloskee

There are daily reports about “green algae” and red tide off of parts of the southwest coast of Florida…and that is true in Fort Myers and a bit further south…but the coast is totally clear in the gulf waters off of Everglades City and Chokoloskee Island.

Mayor Howie Grimm told us that the fishing has been excellent, and there are no signs of either problem reported by tour guides leaving Everglades City and Chokoloskee.  Fishing has reportedly been excellent for both inshore and offshore fishing expeditions, and visitors are enjoying the parks and other activities the area is known for.

 

FREE Movie Night! August 17th, 5:30 pm

Museum of the Everglades will continue our Mid-Month Summer Movie Nights on Friday, August 17th with JUST CAUSE – a mystery thriller starring Sean Connery, Ed Harris and Lawrence Fishburne. Portions of the movie were shot in and around Everglades City. “Buried deep in the Everglades is a secret that can save an innocent man or let a killer kill again.” The movie will start promptly at 6 pm, but please be seated by 5:30 to get situated!
Do you have a memory to share about the shooting of this film? Behind the scenes photos? A funny story? Help us tell the story of this film’s connection to the community and expand our local movie exhibit. Call Museum of the Everglades at 239-695-0008.

Annual Independence Day Celebration in Everglades City-Donations Needed!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Everglades City will host their annual Independence Day celebration on June 30th!  The day is packed with activities for the entire family; including a parade (with decorated golf carts and more!), art in the glades, fun activities for the kids at McLeod Park…and the fireworks after sunset!

The event is funded by donations and we are asking our supporters who can donate, to please do so.  Any amount at all will help!

Download the form here and mail it to us as soon as you can.   Every little bit helps!  Please tell your friends!  Everyone is invited to attend.

New History Book About Area Reissued

Smallwood History Book Now Available by Local Author Marya Repko!

If you didn’t get a copy of the little history book about the Smallwood Store on Chokoloskee Island, or want another one, it has just been re-issued and is again being sold for only $5.00 at the famous Museum in Chokoloskee.

A Brief History of the Smallwood Store in Chokoloskee, Florida, was written by local author Marya Repko and tells the colorful tale of a pioneering family whose heritage can still be seen as a “glimpse into the past” at the Smallwood Store & Museum.

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Wildfires Doused With Needed Rain

According to an Update Provided by the National Park Service Incident Management Team:
Avian Complex Wildfires in Collier County Update
82,461 acres affected, 5% contained, 321 personnel, 3 helicopters and 17 engines
Buzzard Fire: 62,404 acres, 8% contained
Flamingo Fire: 11,689 acres, 5% contained
Curlew Fire: 8,366 acres, 15% contained
Vulture Fire: 1 acre, 100% contained
Caracara Fire: 1 acre, 100% contained

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Stone Crab Season Nearing End

Hurry!  May 15th is the last official day of Stone Crab season.  That means you will have to wait until mid-October to see them again in these parts.

The timing is perfect for Mother’s Day.  Treat mom to a nice salad and a side of freshly cracked crabs with mustard sauce.  No matter what the occasion, they are delish…so get them while you still can at any of our area markets.

Perfect Day to Celebrate the Anniversary of the Trail and Museum of the Everglades

The celebration on Saturday, April 28th, was the perfect day.  The weather cooperated!  The crowd was energetic and the fanfare was better than expected.  On a day where you can enjoy a Dixieland Band, meet descendants of Barron Gift Collier, see historical re-enactments, not much else can be squeezed in…or can it?

For such a tiny little town, Everglades City sure knows how to put on a party!  The Rod and Gun Club hosted the tea, locals and folks from near and far came to see, and the purpose of the Trail was never so evident.  The southwest coast of Florida is far too beautiful to ignore and Barron Collier knew this over 90 years ago when he took on the project that would change the face of Florida forever.  Thanks to the Friends of the Museum of the Everglades (www.evergladesmuseum.org) for organizing the event!    Below Collier descendants Barry, Dana, Maria & Terry out side of Everglades City Hall during the festivities.

 

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90th Anniversary of the Tamiami Trail Celebration

In 1928 the road that connects Tampa to Miami was completed connecting settlers to the southwest Florida coast.

Join us, Saturday, April 28th at the Museum of the Everglades to help us celebrate the 90th Anniversary of the Tamiami Trail’s opening!  Here is the day’s fun-filled schedule:

10:00 am – Walking Tour of Historic Sites

11:00 am – Opening Ceremonies Featuring Barron G. Collier’s original speech read by Barron Collier III, followed by a parade

12:00 pm – The Naples Dixieland Jazz Band

1:00 pm – Marco Island Historical Re-Enactors

2:00 pm – Guest Speaker Jonathan Ullman

3:00 pm – Old-Timer Stories; afternoon tea at Rod & Gun Club (reservations requested; RSVP fme_98@hotmail.com)

Where:  105 Broadway Ave W, Everglades City, FL 34139

For more info, call (239) 695-0008

Historic Everglades City Hall

Everglades City Hall

Everglades City Hall is one of the landmark historic buildings in Collier County.  Formerly the county seat of Collier County, Everglades City is still “a blast from the past” with old Florida charm, amazing ambiance and a unique history.  Visit the City Hall on your next trip to the southwest coast.

Address: 102 Broadway Ave E, Everglades City, FL 34139
Phone: (239) 695-3781

About Everglades City, Florida

Everglades City (formerly known as Everglades) is a city in Collier County, Florida, United States, of which it is the former county seat. As of the 2013 census, the population is 402. It is part of the Naples–Marco Island Metropolitan Statistical Area. The Gulf Coast Visitor Center for Everglades National Park is in Everglades City.

The area around Chokoloskee Bay, including the site of Everglades City, was occupied for thousands of years by Native Americans of the Glades culture, who were absorbed by the Calusa shortly before the arrival of Europeans in the New World, but by the time Florida was transferred from Spain to the United States in 1821, the area was uninhabited. A legend says that Seminoles planted potatoes along what is now the Barron River during the Seminole Wars, in the vicinity of the present Everglades City.

American settlement began after the Civil War, when Union sympathizers who had farmed on Cape Sable to supply Key West during the war moved up the west coast of the peninsula. The first permanent settler was William Smith Allen, who arrived on the banks of Potato Creek (later renamed the Allen River) in 1873. After Allen retired to Key West in 1889, George W. Storter, Jr. became the principal landowner in the area. Storter gained fame for his sugar cane crops. He opened a trading post in 1892, and gained a post office, called “Everglade”, in 1895. Storter also began entertaining northern tourists who came to Everglade by yacht in the winter to hunt and fish. His house eventually grew into the Rod and Gun Club, visited by United States Presidents and other notables.

The first school in Everglade was organized in 1893. The school moved into a new building in 1895, but the building was destroyed by a tornado later in the year. The next school building was washed away by the 1910 hurricane. A Methodist circuit rider began visiting Everglade in 1888, and a Methodist minister became resident the next year, but he left after four years. After that Everglade was occasionally visited by itinerant preachers of various denominations. The Episcopal Church established a mission at Immokalee which eventually moved to Everglade when revitalized in the 1930s by Harriet Bedell.

In 1922 Barron Collier began buying large areas of land in what was then southern Lee County. In 1923 the Florida legislature created Collier County from Lee County, with the county seat at Everglade. The town was incorporated the same year as “Everglades” (adding the “s”). The town consisted of only a dozen families at the time, but some northern sportsmen had established winter homes there.

The Tamiami Trail, which crossed Collier’s domain, passed five miles north of Everglades City. While construction was proceeding on the Trail (it was completed in 1929), Collier pushed construction of what became State Road 29 from Everglades City to Immokalee, providing the town with its first land connection to the rest of the state. In 1928, the Atlantic Coast Line Railroad began service to Everglades City, which became the southernmost point the Coast Line ever reached. Service was provided by an extension of the Coast Line’s Haines City branch from Immokalee to Deep Lake, where it connected to Collier’s Deep Lake Railroad, an earlier railroad that transported agricultural freight.[16] The railroad was removed in 1957.

In 1960 the strong winds and coastal flooding of Hurricane Donna combined to destroy 153 homes in Collier County, as well as inflict major damage on 409 more, and damage an additional 1,049.[18] Everglades was hard hit, and two years later, Florida’s legislature moved the county seat to East Naples, Florida. In 1965, the state legislature changed the town’s name to Everglades City.

ref: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Everglades_City,_Florida