Cortez, Fla. (Jan. 8, 2021) – The Florida Maritime Museum (FMM) will reopen starting January 19. Phase II of the “Re-Imagination” of permanent exhibits is complete unveiling a new look, engaging spaces and exhibits, and a higher level of accessibility with all new exhibits presented in English and Español. Visitation is by appointment only, available Tuesday-Saturday at 9 am and 1:30 pm.
Construction for phase II of the renovation project began in June 2020. A new and welcoming entryway sets the tone for the visit with inviting brand signage engulfed in deep blue walls. The south room sits empty for building maintenance, offering a glimpse into historic preservation and sharing why the Cortez Schoolhouse remains important culturally. Exhibits in the auditorium space have been shifted to offer a fresh perspective on Florida’s maritime history, building a more cohesive story with the changes in phase II of the Re-Imagination.
The “Caught in the Storm: 100 Years of Florida Hurricanes” exhibit is on display in the temporary exhibit room. Celebrating the 100 year anniversary of the 1921 storm that hit the Tampa Bay coast, the exhibit showcases a full timeline of Florida hurricanes throughout the last century. This exhibit can also be experienced online and outdoors on the museum grounds.
A mural in the redesigned gift store highlights the history of the schoolhouse while also offering visitors an opportunity to support the museum by making a purchase. Finally, the new Captain’s Corner in the north room showcases a lighted case highlighting an “underwater” perspective of a Gulf Coast shell collection. A prominent feature of the room is the exposed brick of the original 1912 Cortez Schoolhouse.