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 3900 NW. 25th St.

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Things to do in Miramar

    Everglades National Park Everglades National Park Florida
    The Everglades National Park is located in the state of Florida and protects the southern quarter of the original Everglades, which is the biggest subtropical wilderness in America, with about a million people visiting each year. The glades is the third biggest national park in the lower 48 states, behind Death Valley and Yellowstone, and has been made an International Biosphere Reserve, a World Heritage Site and a Wetland of International Importance, just one of the three types of locales in the universe that appears on all three lists. It isn't like the usual parks that have been saved to protect some geographic treasure, but a fragile ecosystem that permeates the entire southern portion of the state. These glades were made by a slow-moving river that starts in Lake Okeechobee, fed by the Kissimmee River and going southwest at .25 miles every day into the Florida Bay. The park preserves the interconnected areas of forest and marshland ecosystems that have been kept by natural forces, with thirty-six species of threatened or protected creatures living in the swamps that include the; American crocodile, West Indian manatee and the Florida panther. Naturally it protects the biggest US wilderness that exists east of the Mississippi River, and has become the most important breeding ground for tropical wading birds in North America; but it also has the biggest mangrove ecosystem in the western hemisphere. There are over 300 species of fresh and saltwater fish living here, 50 species of reptiles, over 350 species of birds, and 40 species of mammals. Every bit of fresh water for the southern parts of the state are recharged in the park, with all of it being stored in the Biscayne aquifer. Humans have managed to live in the Everglades for thousands of years, but it wasn't until 1882, that the region was drained for residential and agricultural uses. Everglades National Park has more than 1,509,000 acres in it that are part of Collier, Dade, Monroe and Broward counties, with the usual elevation being from 0 to 8 feet above sea level.  The Florida Everglades are one of the most diverse destinations in the state, with an overabundance of recreational opportunities, like fishing, camping, boating, bird watching, biking, hiking, and so much more. It is a natural wonderland of creatures, trees, plants, insects, reptiles, birds, gators, hawks, eagles, ospreys, vultures and more. There is just about any type of lodging available that one could want from the basic camp site for tents, to the majestic and outrageously expensive hotels that sit along the Atlantic Ocean around Miramar and Miami. There are more sunny days than you would believe, with occasional monsoon rains that will amaze you with their intensity. It is where one minute you can be sweating bullets in a 100 degree indexed heat, and the next be running for cover from a rain storm that is dumping one, two or three inches of water in an hour's time. And then go back to being a steam oven for the rest of the day, making you glad that the ocean and the gulf are merely an hour or two away. The one thing that most people want to do is run through the glades on an air boat, the flat bottomed boat with what looks like a plane engine and propeller on the back of the boat that takes you zooming across the glades like someone had flung you from their hand and you would be skipping along the waters making circles like the bugs. It is a place of beauty, mystery and opposites. But a place that should be visited in your lifetime, because it won't last forever, the progress that tears at its edges is going to give way soon, because progress won't stop for anything, not even the Everglades.

    Ah-Tah-thi-ki Museum
    Ah-Tah-Thi-Ki Museum Hollywood, FloridaThis ferry goes across Lake Champlain taking cars and passengers to three Located in Hollywood, Florida, the Seminole Tribe of Florida offers the Ah-Tah-Thi-Ki museum that shows how the tribe's ancestors lived in the swamps and glades, at the Big Cypress Seminole Indian Reservation. There are four major galleries that depict the many parts of the Seminole life and traditions, with many artifacts being displayed that are part of the museum's permanent collections. There is a mile long raised boardwalk that encourages you to wander through the cypress swamp, with more than 67 varieties of indigenous Everglades fauna and flora; as well as a living village, like the types of Indian villages that thrived here long ago, before the invasion of the white man. In the village, you will watch tribal elders making beaded necklaces, carving wood and creating sweet grass baskets. Permanent displays include the Green Corn Ceremony, an annual sacred religious ceremony that is still celebrated today, and a marvelous diorama of the Catfish dance can be viewed, which includes fifteen life size figures dressed in the traditional colorful period costumes of the period, performing the unusual catfish dance that copies the movements of a feeding catfish, and unusual since parts of it are done while dancing backwards. Another is the stickball game, as well as the legends theater that shows how the children were told about their history, legends and stories, from the female elders or mothers, which was always an exciting time, since it meant staying up late to hear and learn the many tales. In the camp exhibit shows how a meal was created, and information about the chickees, which was their names for houses, and shows how a family sits down to eat, with the male eating first, then the children and finally the mother. The cooking fire display is another, as women surround the fire to prepare their meals, with the grandmother teaches the younger women about the various dishes, while the mother does the majority of the cooking and other chores. Polin down the river is one of the most unusual displays, which depicts a family dressed in their finest and bringing all their trading items. The canoe is a dug out, with some being up to thirty feet long. The father moves the canoe from a flat platform that is located on the stern with a push pole, and has a place for the sailing mast that would be used when it is clear of the smaller rivers and streams. Then you have the all that glitters display that shows how coins were flattened by pounding and heating to make it pliable to put holes in it to hand from a cord so that it would become a necklace. From the Land is about the process of getting married and is very interesting, as is the next, autumn morning. There is plenty to do and more to learn at the reservation and museum that still contains many relics that how some the interesting traditions of the Indians from the past.

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    Bonnet HouseBonnet House Ft. Lauderdale, Florida
    The Bonnet House, or the Bartlett Estate, is the historic house that is found in Fort Lauderdale, Florida that was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1984. It had originally been purchased by Hugh Taylor Birch in 1895, but then given to his daughter as a wedding gift in 1919, along with her husband artist Frederic Clay Bartlett. Bartlett would build a large plantation type of house on the land, and then winter there with his wife and son from a previous marriage, Frederic Jr., until Helen passed on in 1925. He would then marry Evelyn Fortune Lilly, the ex-wife of Eli Lilly, well-known industrialist; and they would continue to use the estate as a winter residence until he passed on in 1953, and then Evelyn, who passed on in 1997. Evelyn had given the property to the Florida Trust for Historic Preservation in 1983, which has continued to offer the house as a historic house museum. Bartlett's sister, Marie Bartlett Heard started the Heard Museum in Phoenix with her husband, Dwight D. Heard. The estate would become the finish line for the seventh season of the Amazing Race show that is such a hit on CBS, and in May of 2008, the National Trust for Historic Preservation put it on their listings of the nation's most endangered places. When Birch arrived in the region in 1895, the area had already seen 4000 years of Florida's history, with a shell midden being discovered among the digs that was left behind by the Tequesta people from 2000 BC. Other archaeological digs have uncovered various evidence that the ground had been one of the first sites of Spanish contact with the new world. Bartlett would use the estate to work on his art, while Helen could spend her time with poetry and music composition. She would die of breast cancer in 1925, so that Frederic was seldom here, because of the constant reminder of Helen, until he married Evelyn, and they both rejuvenated the estate and house. The estate has become a prolific place for artists, offering many types of new classes in various art venues, like watercolors, pastels, acrylics, drawing, birding classes, orchid classes, calligraphy, lectures, music, temporary exhibitions and more, making it one of the most artistic venues in the region, if not the state.

     Barnacle State Historic Site
    Barnacle State Historic Site Biscayne Bay, Florida
    The Barnacle State Historic Site is home to the oldest house in Dad County, Florida that is still on its original foundation and sits on Biscayne Bay, the home of Ralph Middleton Munroe, one of Coconut Grove's most cherished founders. The house sits on the last five acres parcel of the original 40 acre home site and includes one of the finest preserved historic sites in the state. Ralph came to Florida in 1877 on vacation from New York and enjoyed it so much that he came back, but with his wife and sister-in-law, who both suffered from tuberculosis and needed a complete change of climate or they would become incurable. In 1881, when they learned of the terrible disease, Ralph made plans to bring them here, but the sickness took them within a short time, and after burying them and returning to New York, he learned that his infant daughter had died as well. In 1882, he came back to Florida and helped an old friend open a hotel on Biscayne Bay that was called Bay View Villa. In time it would be renamed Peacock Inn and had a profitable and enduring history in the region. In 1886, Ralph bought 40 acres of bayfront property and had his boathouse constructed in 1887, living in the upper story until he could construct his main house in 1891. It would be a one story structure that had been raised above the ground with wood pilings, with a large center room that was octagonal in shape and he called it Barnacle. In 1908, it would be added onto after having been a bungalow for many years. To increase the size of the house, the entire structure was lifted and a new first floor put in. Surviving the hurricane of 1926 it would continue to be a marvelous site along the bayfront and it even survived Andrew in 1992 with a little damage. Ralph had always enjoyed designing yachts and during his lifetime he had done 56 designs. Yachting in those days was a major means of transportation and had evolved into a popular sport, and many of the region's pioneers had Ralph design yachts for them. In 1887, a number of the residents who owned yachts started the Biscayne Bay Yacht Club and elected Ralph as their commodore, which he continued to do for the next 22 years. Micco, the last Munroe boat that existed was dashed to bits in the hurricane Andrew, after surviving for 101 years. A copy of his 28 foot modified sharpie, called the Egret is now moored offshore.

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Miramar Enterprise Rental Car - 2150 S. State Rd. 7
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- 18245 Pines Blvd.
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 12399 Pembroke Rd. #2
 

Local Restaurants in Miramar

    Mazza Mediterranean Cuisine
    Vegetable mazzas; falafel is fava & garbanzo beans mixed with herbs & exotic spices fried, served with tahini sauce; hummus is blend of chick peas, tahini sesame pasta, fresh lemon juice & garlic; baba ghanuj is classic dip of grilled eggplant, tahini, fresh lemon juice & garlic; spanakopita is traditional Greek philo dough stuffed with spinach & feta cheese; drunken halloumi is Cypriot halloumi cheese lightly sautéed in ouzo & olive oil, served with tomatoes, & special toom garlic sauce; labneh is creamy farmers cheese dip with condensed yogurt & drizzled with olive oil; chilled yogurt & cucumber is refreshing blend of house made yogurt, cucumber, garlic & mint; Mediterranean antipasto is sampling of veggie grape leaves, labneh, grilled veggies & mixed greens with feta & mixed olives; veggie grape leaves is savory mix of rice, tomatoes, parsley & mint wrapped in grape leaves; mazza sampler is hummus, baba ghanuj, falafel & grape leave. Seafood, Meat & Chicken mazzas; kibbeh is mixture of lean lamb, beef & cracked wheat stuffed with onions, pinenuts then fried; baked kibbeh; kibbeh nayeh is top round meat blended with crusted wheat & specialty spices; stuffed grape leaves is savory mix of rice, ground lamb, beef, tomatoes, parsley & mint wrapped in grape leaves; Med wings is grilled chicken wings marinated overnight in garlic, sea salt & olive oil; shrimp saganaki is shrimp marinated in exotic Med juices, lightly sautéed & served with broiled feta cheese; byblos shrimp is brushed with exotic marinade & broiled; Med sliders is three kafta patties made with ground beef & lamb & seasoned with parsley, onion, herbs & spices; calamari is lightly fried & served on bed of sautéed tomato, feta cheese with garlic dipping sauce.

    John the Baker
    Meat & chicken dishes served with pasta or veggies; veal parmigiana, veal & peppers, sausage & peppers, veal cutlet, veal scallopini marsala, veal cacciatore, chicken parmigiana, chicken cutlet, chicken marsala, chicken francaise. Baked dishes; lasagna, baked ravioli with either meat, cheese or spinach, baked ziti, baked ziti with risotto, cannelloni with meat, cheese or spinach, eggplant parmigiana, eggplant parmigiana with pasta, eggplant rollatini, eggplant rollatini with pasta, stuffed cheese rigatoni. Fettucini, spaghetti, ziti, bowties with; meatballs, sausage, meat sauce, marinara sauce, tomato sauce, mushroom sauce, clam sauce white or red, tortellini, ravioli, cheese, meat or spinach, stuffed cheese rigatoni, shrimp marinara, alfredo sauce or pink sauce. 

 

Kibbeh Mazza Mediterranean Cuisine Miramar, Florida

 

Shrimp Saganaki Mazza Mediterranean Cuisine Miramir, Florida

 

 

 





Eggplant Parmigiana John the Baker Miramar, Florida

 

 

 

Hertz Car Rental Miramar

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    Black Archives History & Research Foundation of South Florida, Inc. Black Archives History & Research Foundation of South Florida, Inc. Miami, Florida
    The Black Archives, History and Research Foundation of South Florida collects, preserves and offers the history and culture of the black community in South Florida from 1896 to the present, started in 1977 by Dr. Dorothy Jenkins Fields, a social studies curriculum specialist for the Miami-Dade Public Schools. Presently, the archives have become a very valuable and interesting resource that is continuously being used by scholars, researchers, students, artists, the community and the media. The majority of the photographs, documents and other materials that are preserved here have been donated by numerous local people, as well as organizations and cannot be found anywhere else in the world. The process of surveying, cataloging and making aids and guides to find it all has been a constant on-going job, that is still taking place today and will most likely continue as the new materials are donated or discovered. The archives produce numerous events and programs that include the yearly Charter Day Honor Luncheon that honor members of the area that are celebrating milestones in their lives, as well as post-centennial teas, tours of historic black communities and many other venues. The archives owns three historic sites, already restoring two of them that have been listed on the National Register of Historic Places, which includes the Dorsey House that was constructed in 1920 and is the former home of the city's first black millionaire, and the Lyric theater that was constructed by Geder Walker, a black businessman in 1913.

    Bass Museum of Art
    Bass Museum of Art Miami Beach, Florida
    The Bass Museum of Art is located in Miami Beach, Florida, specializing in art from across the globe that spans the renaissance period to the present, beginning in 1963 by the city from an art collection that was donated by John and Johanna Bass, housed in the historic 1930s Miami Beach Public Library and Art Center. This museum has been considered one of the region's finest museums for ancient art besides the Wolfsonian-FIU museum and the Lowe Art Museum. It creates and showcases borrowed exhibitions from national and international collections to that it will improve and encourage tourism in the region and give a significant cultural destination for the area and Miami Beach. Highlights include the Asian art, 19th century paintings and contemporary artworks. Some of the masters that are represented here include Peter Paul Rubens, Benjamin West, Cornelius van Haarlem, Ferdinand Bol and Armand Guillaumin. It also contains portraiture by English painters George Romney, Thomas Lawrence and John Hoppner, along with oil paintings by Marcelllus Koffermans, Jacob Jordaens, Hans Makart, Sandro Botticelli, Gerard Seghers and Domenico Ghirlandaio. Current exhibitions include Human Rites that looks at rituals through art and art through ritual. All through history, whatever time or group you are looking at, they have certain rituals and rites that permeate their lives and become almost, them, or as in the beginning here, they become part of the ritual. Using artworks like the 15th century devotional polychrome statues of Mary and the magnificent 16th century altarpieces to the works of contemporary artists, we can see the evolution of rituals, regardless of whether they are conscious efforts or subconscious discoveries, people have been involved in rituals and rites since the beginning of time and we probably will forever. Another exhibition is the Egyptian gallery that looks at the artifacts of one of civilizations oldest cultures which include a sarcophagus and mummy. The final entry is the Ellen Harvey collection that will be exhibited in the Henri and Flore Lesieur pavilion until November 7, 2010. Ellen is a New York based artist that went around the city between 1999 and 2001 creating old fashioned landscapes painted in oil on the many graffiti sites, who deliberately did the work to ask the question as to who is "allowed" to create art in our society and what makes graffiti different than other works of art. It is an excellent exhibition and will offer you some provocative ideas about our society and the world of art.

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 600 Terminal Dr. 3rd Floor

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- 3900 NW. 25th St.
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- 8190 Pines Blvd.
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    Lowe Art MuseumGustavo Savin Lowe Art Museum Coral Gables, Florida
    The Lowe Art Museum can be found in another Miami suburb, called Coral Gables, Florida, and it is managed by the University of Miami, after opening in 1950. It houses a splendid collection of art with permanent collections in renaissance, 17th and 19th century European art, Greco-Roman antiquities, baroque, modern art, 19th century American art and others. Its national and international artworks have come here from the Pacific Islands, Africa, Latin America, ancient Americas, Asia and Native America. The museum is fortunate to house a outstanding collection of glassworks that contain works by Christine Federighi, Arneson and Jun Kaneko. Other artists works include Duane Hanson, Lippo Vanni, Frank Stella, Sano di Pietro, Thomas Gainsborough, Francesco Bacchiacca, Claude Monet, Jacob Jordaens, Knox Martin, Jusepe de Ribera, Alfred Sisley and El Greco. The museum started out in three classrooms in 1950, as part of the University of Miami and today continues to be used as a teaching resource, as well as a significant general art museum for the citizens of Miami and its visitors. The initial gift from Emily and Joe Lowe has grown into a magnificent 17,500 piece collection that is now one of the most important in the southeast. With continued support from the community the museum has continued to create a most interesting and regarded collection that started out in the beginning and was augmented by the marvelous collection of Native American art donated by Alfred I. Barton in 1956. It hasn't stopped since. In 1954, the museum was the only state recipient of the Samuel H. Kress Foundation's collection and in 1961, they had to add a 2100 square foot space to house the 41 renaissance and baroque paintings and sculptures that were donated. The ancient American collection was started in 1958 and then gained international recognition when it received the 531 works of the Robert M. Bischoff collection in 1984. The Asian collection has grown during the past twenty years, with excellent Japanese, Chinese and Korean ceramics, sculpture and paintings that were donated by Stephen Junkunc III, a Chicago native and winter resident of the city of Miami.

    HistoryMiami
    HistoryMiami Miami, FloridaHistoryMiami used to be called the Historical Museum of Southern Florida and is the most significant cultural facility in the city of Miami, Florida and is devoted to gathering, organizing, preserving and celebrating the city's historic special crossroads of the Americas. Using education, research, collections, city tours, publications and exhibitions, the museum strives to help the surrounding community learn and understand the city's part in the amazing history of Miami so that they can better shape the future. It sits in a 40,000 square foot structure in downtown with excellent display spaces located on two floors, with the top floor housing the Tropical Dreams: A People's History of South Florida, a permanent collection that spans 12,000 years. In the lobby, there are two changing exhibitions along with the gift shop. The museum houses the archives and research center as well, that contain historic photos and documents that are very important and useful to industry professionals, distant learners and scholars. On the lower levels the classrooms, admin offices and part of the museum's object collection is housed. The collection contains some 13,000 objects and is the official repository of all archaeological material that is discovered in the Miami-Dade County area.

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    Miami Art Museum  Miami Art Museum  Miami, Florida
    The Miami Art Museum or MAM is located in downtown Miami, Florida and started in 1996 as the successor to the Center for the Fine Arts, dedicated to contemporary arts. The museum is under plans to be moved to the Park West area at Bicentennial Park, with the Miami Science Museum about 2012. The museum welcomes over 60,000 visitors a year and is served by the Metrorail. Its location has helped it become one of the most diverse and fast-growing areas in the nation, because of the confluence of the North and Latin American cultures that have injected a cultural vibrancy and texture to the region's landscape, with a community of designers, artists, collectors and an enthusiastic art-viewing public, have helped its need to become a world class museum. It is the only major metro area in the nation that doesn't have a significant art museum to serve the community or region, which is why the museum is in the process of moving within a few years into a more modern and spacious structure that will fulfill all the needs and dreams of the community. MAM plans on becoming the cultural anchor and touchstone for a city that is growing in leaps and bounds with a welcome mat as big as the state for the various ethnic and age groups, as well as diverse lifestyles and ideas. The museum received a large number of donations in 2007 to honor their 10th anniversary, and has started down the road to acquiring many significant holdings from the 20th century into the current day. Some of the newest additions include works by Doug Aitken, Carlos Alfonzo, Wilfredo Lam, Jose Bedia, Felix Gonzalez-Torres, Chuck Close, Guillermo Kuitca, Joseph Cornell, Robert Rauschenberg, Ann Hamilton, Lorna Simpson and Marcel Duchamp.

    Miami Seaquarium
    Miami Seaquarium Miami, FloridaThe Miami Seaquarium sits proudly on 38 acres of prime real estate on the island of Virginia Key on Biscayne Bay near downtown Miami, Florida and is the oldest continuously operating oceanarium in the nation. Home to more than just marine mammals. the seaquarium has many sea turtles, sharks, manatees, birds, reptiles and fish with eight shows a day and more than 600,000 visitors being welcomed each year. With a causeway almost near finish, the county proposed giving land next to the Miami Seaquarium to construct a marine lab if they would run it to the University of Miami, in 1945. Unfortunately, the bond issue didn't pass, so the university went ahead and leased the land but didn't get involved in the new aquarium; which eventually was funded by Fred D. Coppock and Captain W. B. Gray. It opened in 1955 and became the second marine life attraction in South Florida that became the biggest in the world. During the period from 1963 to 1967, the park was the location for 88 television shows and two movies that would star Flipper, the dolphin. The daily shows are one of the reasons that the seaquarium has become so successful and are the highlight of many visitors coming here to enjoy and learn more about our aquatic friends. The top deck dolphin show offers visitors the best opportunity to see the amazing feats and antics of the bottlenose dolphins as they perform marvelous leaps and rolls and can be viewed below the waterline. The golden dome sea lion show is a more comical adventure of Salty the sea lion and his funny side-kicks. The Flipper dolphin show showcases the famous dolphins that were used in the many TV episodes of Flipper, their jumping, flipping, spins and most endearing of all, the tailwalks, with all of them set to music and wonderful narration that delights the young and old. This is one place where you can get involved and take part in the exciting show working with the dolphins. The killer whale and dolphin show is another great time as you watch Lolita, the killer whale that just celebrated her 40th birthday, play along with her trainer as they swim the tank and show off their amazing talents. The shark channel presentation is still a favorite and has been since opening the aquarium and offers a lot of information about the various types of sharks and their habits. The tropical reef presentation is another favorite where visitors can watch a huge number of colorful reef fishes as they swim around in a 750,000 gallon saltwater tank, and includes a diver that hand feeds the fish, making this show so interesting and exciting to watch. The manatee show is awesome as these gentle giants move slowly around allowing visitors the opportunity to touch and get as close as possible. These creatures are an important part of the rescue and rehabilitation program at the seaquarium and has been for many years. The seal and sea lion feeder pool is one of the landmarks designed by Buckminster Fuller and has some of the most enjoyable moments of the park as visitors are offered the chance to feed these outstanding creatures of the sea, as well as feeling their sleek bodies as they glide past. In Discovery Bay, you can watch the movements of alligators, sea turtles, fish, Florida birds and others as they move about the mangrove natural forest. The topical wings display offers visitors the time to watch reptiles, tropical birds and other interesting rainforest creatures. There is a new stingray exhibit that highlights cownose and southern stingrays gracefully moving about a 10,000 touch pool that allows you to touch and feed them, which is a most unusual experience that is simply delightful; showing folks how gentle these unique creatures can be. There are Caribbean fish aquariums that showcase the amazing variety of tropical marine life that line the walls of the top deck area. The crocodile flats exhibit is stunning, with 25 Nile crocodiles, that are known to inhabit both fresh and saltwater habitats and can grow to be almost half a ton and 16 feet long, although the biggest was over 20 feet. There is so much to see and do that it will take more than a day to thoroughly enjoy these vibrant shows, but they do have a season pass that will let you come as often as you like and get to know this outstanding sea animals better.

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    Miccosukee Indian Village & Airboat RidesMiccosukee Indian Village & Airboat Rides Dade County, Florida
    The Miccosukee Indian Village and Airboat rides is found in Dade County, just south of Miramar, Florida and shows how the Miccosukee lived and existed in the everglades, with many exciting venues, village and museum. You will be guided through the wonderful culture, history and lifestyles of the interesting tribe, with plenty of chances to see them make dolls, carve on wood, basket weave, make beadworks and patchwork. One of the most exciting shows is the famous Indian alligator wrestling show that will stun and amaze you, that might look easy but if you were to watch one of these wild creatures tear apart their food, you would definitely think twice. Their museum is one of the places where you will learn all about their native past, with outstanding stories of their culture and living styles, with many artifacts, a film and beautiful artworks. You can take an airboat ride through the glades, that will fill you with such a sense of wonder and inspiration that you will be surprised, but certainly fulfilled. It is exhilarating and exciting, an adventure that you won't soon forget or want to. One hammock style Indian encampment has been the location of one family for over a century, and the restaurant with delight your taste buds with fry bread, pumpkin bread, catfish and frog legs, cooked like you never have tasted before. Their gift shop has many unusual items that may interest you and end up going home with you, crafted as it has been done for centuries, with gorgeous beadworks and delicate moccasins. It is a day of wonder, excitement and education as you learn more about these Florida neighbors, the original Floridians, that have lived harmoniously with the land and creatures around them for many more centuries than the white man has been here. Take time to learn more and enjoy more about these exciting tribesmen and women today.

    Museum of Art Fort Lauderdale
    Museum of Art Fort Lauderdale, FloridaThe Museum of Art in Fort Lauderdale, Florida began in 1958 as the Fort Lauderdale Art Center, and today sits in a 75,000 square foot modernist structure that was designed by well known architect Edward Larrabee Barnes. The present building was opened in 1986 and had a wing added in 2001 that added another 10,000 square feet, with the main structure containing 21,000 square feet, and a second floor sculpture terrace that added another 2800 square feet. The museum highlights 20th century contemporary artworks, quite different than the other major museums in the region and houses 6200 works that include a magnificent collection of ceramics by Pablo Picasso, the continent's biggest collection of works from the Northern European CoBrA avant-garde movement and a wonderful collection of contemporary Cuban works that were contributed by 125 artists. They also have an excellent collection of South Florida and Caribbean works; and the museum is affiliated with Nova Southeastern University. The museum has to enlarge a wing in 2001 to house the outstanding collection of more than 500 works from the realist painter, William Glackens so the wing was named after him. This 2000 square foot addition houses the biggest collection of his works in the world and includes his oldest work, Philadelphia Landscape from 1893 and the last, White Rose and Other Flowers from 1937. They have a fantastic studio school there that offers classes in oil painting, watercolors, printmaking, art history, sculpture, mixed media and ceramics, that are available to grades 1-12 and adults, as well as other interesting workshops that are associated with art museum philosophy.  The permanent collections are just outstanding and quite beautiful with many areas of artworks that will delight your eye and artistic curiosity. Visit the museum today and enjoy the overwhelming beauty that attracts your eyes and mind, a wonderful museum of art that is sure to make you and your family's day that much better. Let the artist in you surface for this incredible museum that is so close and very much in vogue.

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May 13, 2011