International PARK(ing) Day: Transforming Parking Spaces into Public Places
Posted: Aug 17, 2018 3:34 PMUpdated: Aug 17, 2018 3:49 PM
Pensacola’s Downtown Improvement Board is inviting the local community to submit a design to turn a parking space into a mini, temporary “parklet” to celebrate International PARK(ing) Day. The #ParkPensacola event takes place during Gallery Night on Sept. 21 and the deadline to submit applications and parklet concepts is Aug. 30, 2018. International PARK(ing) Day is an annual event that was created in 2005 by art and design studio, Rebar as a way to encourage community members, students and designers to take metered parking spaces and liven up city streets. Motivated by the desire to activate the metered parking space as a site for creative experimentation and cultural expression, PARK(ing) Day offers a fun opportunity for members of the community to create temporary installations, with a mission to encourage people to imagine the positive impacts of green spaces in urban areas. “We are very excited to celebrate International PARK(ing) Day during the upcoming Gallery Night event and challenge our local community to reinterpret our typical parking spots into creative spaces,” remarked DIB Interim Executive Director, Lisa Dees, “Whether you want to create a giant chessboard, install an interactive sculpture or host a croquet tournament, our aim is to have some fun with these spaces and rethink our relationship with parking.” On Gallery Night, guests will be able to enjoy the 10 parklets and cast a vote for their favorite. The DIB will also be creating an eleventh parklet space with a dunk tank where the public can pay to dunk the parking ambassadors. All funds raised at the dunking tank will be donated to Council on Aging of West Florida’s Meals on Wheels program. The call for submissions is FREE open to all and can contain sketches or a brief description of the idea for transforming the parking space into a parklet. The competition is limited to 10 designs and qualifying design teams will be notified once selected. While branding is permitted, parklets are intended for non-commercial use only. Email submissions to: [email protected] #ParkPensacola
The Man Who Helped America Win the Revolution
Posted: Jul 3, 2018 12:24 AMUpdated: Jul 3, 2018 12:27 AM
There’s something new at the intersection of Palafox and Wright Streets—a magnificent, 19 ft. monument that celebrates the heritage of both Pensacola and the United States of America. Created by sculptors Bob Rasmussen and Kathryn R. Vincze, the monument includes a bronze statue of celebrated Spanish General Bernardo de Gálvez astride his horse and facing north toward the site of Fort George, his hat raised in victory.  After waiting for many hurricanes and storms to pass, Spanish General Bernardo de Gálvez sailed into Pensacola Bay in 1781 to drive the British from the Gulf Coast, leading the naval charge into the well-defended Pensacola Bay in a masterpiece of military strategy that would earn him a royal patent adding the words “Yo Solo” (“I alone”) to his coat-of-arms.His forces landed near Bayou Chico and began a steady advance towards the city’s defenses, which included Fort George on Gage Hill (Palafox Street) and its two advance redoubts. After weeks of siege, a Spanish mortar detonated the powder magazine at the Queen’s Redoubt on May 8, devastating the British fortification. Gálvez accepted the surrender of British Governor John Campbell and claimed West Florida for Spain.By taking Pensacola, Gálvez stripped Britain of a key foothold on the Gulf Coast, which in turn benefited the American Colonists in their quest for independence. For this reason, Gálvez has been recognized by Congress as a hero of the Revolutionary War who risked his life for the freedom of the United States people and provided supplies, intelligence, and strong military support to the war effort.SOURCE/PHOTO CREDIT: Pensacola Heritage Foundation
All Aboard the Orange Blossom Special!
Posted: May 18, 2018 3:11 PMUpdated: May 18, 2018 3:11 PM
This past holiday season, Pensacola Winterfest brought the “Winterfest Express” miniature train to downtown Pensacola as a part of their holiday-themed festivities. Visitors and locals alike immediately fell in love with the mini-train, leading the Winterfest team to explore ways to utilize the train throughout the year. Thus, the idea for Winterfest’s Orange Blossom Special experience was born. The mini-train offers rides at the Pensacola Children’s Museum in downtown Pensacola every Saturday from May 5 to November 10 with rides departing every 30 minutes from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Tickets are $5 each for children and include one free adult ride.  Winterfest has tailored the program to foster memory and observation skills. The program begins with a fun, interactive history of the Orange Blossom Special and railroading in Pensacola, led by an early learning music specialist with the Escambia County. Children will also experience music, sing-alongs and magic tricks followed by a train ride through historic downtown Pensacola.  The original Orange Blossom Special started running on November 21, 1925 and was the brainchild of S. Davis Warfield, who wanted to capitalize on booming development in Florida at the time. Warfield believed Florida was a land of opportunity, and that with fast, luxurious trains he could lure influential business leaders to the Sunshine State. Spurred by the success of Henry Flagler and his rival Florida East Coast Railway in attracting travelers, the Orange Blossom Special became famous in its own right. It was renowned for its speed and luxury.  While Winterfest’s Orange Blossom Special isn’t quite as fast as the original, the train ride is sure to cool you down from the summer’s heat and bring a smile to your little one’s face!  When: Every Saturday from 5/5/18 to 11/10/18. 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.Where: Historic Pensacola Village and Downtown Pensacola, departing from T.T. Wentworth MuseumCost: $5 per child, one adult rides free with one child
Gallery Night is "Taking Art to the Streets" of Downtown Pensacola
Posted: May 16, 2018 3:01 PMUpdated: May 16, 2018 3:18 PM
For one Friday evening each month, one of America's "10 Great Streets" closes to traffic and transforms into an outdoor festival of art, music and food. Gallery Night, a hugely popular event dating back some 25 years, is held in the heart of downtown Pensacola and, for the thousands who head to Palafox Street each month, it's the perfect opportunity to experience downtown Pensacola's thriving art scene and eclectic mix of sights, sounds and flavors. From Garden to Main Streets, Palafox is closed to traffic beginning at 5 pm, giving visitors a chance to explore downtown's unique shops and galleries, eat and drink, and take in the energy of Gallery Night's ever-changing line-up of street performances, live music, curated artists and live demonstrations. There's no charge to attend Gallery Night, and many businesses even offer light refreshments. The "gallery" portion of Gallery Night lasts until 8 pm, when the Gallery Night After-Party begins. Palafox Street remains closed to traffic until midnight.Since late 2016 Gallery Night has been presented by Gallery Night Pensacola, a non-profit organization whose mission is to offer an "engaging cultural event that takes the 'Arts to the Streets' where visitors can connect with the unique culture of Pensacola."  UPCOMING 2018 GALLERY NIGHT DATESMay 18June 15July 20August 17September 21October 19November 16December 21
Celebrate Palafox Market's Anniversary Downtown
Posted: Apr 16, 2018 1:30 PMUpdated: Apr 16, 2018 1:32 PM
Palafox Market began eleven years ago as a loosely-organized seasonal farmers market with a handful of vendors. It is now open every Saturday year-round and has more than 150 vendors showcasing products from cold brew coffee to organic beauty products and anything in between. To celebrate the market — and thank its vendors and thousands of loyal customers — Palafox Market will hold an anniversary celebration on May 5 from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. In addition to the usual market offerings, visitors will enjoy an expanded kids’ area, live music, celebrity chef food tastings featuring fresh vendor ingredients and much more.Set between Wright and Garden Streets along the crepe-myrtle lined Martin Luther King Jr. Plaza, Palafox Market is a hub for visitors and residents, drawing crowds of up to 7,000 to downtown Pensacola on Saturdays rain or shine. The market has an artisanal spirit, with vendors curated to provide an eclectic mix of items: locally grown and produced dairy products, bakery items, chef prepared foods, produce, cheeses, eggs and more—and hand-wrought, hand-designed and hand-made jewelry, paintings, metalworks, soaps and more.Palafox Market’s success is no coincidence. The market is built upon the passions of its eclectic vendors, who range from military veterans to high school anatomy teachers.For some, it’s been an avenue to grow their family businesses. Fifth generation farmer Mark Fortune has been a vendor for five years but his Laurel Hill farm — Big Creek Farms — has been in the Fortune family for over 150 years. Other vendors have been able to make their dream job a reality since joining the Palafox Market community. “We founded our mom-and-pop bee operation in 2007 based on a daydream,” said Cheryl Kittrell of local honey company, Kittrell’s Daydream Apiary. “We began participating in local farmer’s markets in the area when Palafox Market began and there were 18 vendors.” Eleven years later, the honey-makers have a list of award-winning products and a thriving business.Seventeen-year-old Ben Kent of Citrus Coldfusion sells acrylic pour paintings to fund his college education. Crystal Caraballo of Straight Up Cake started selling slices of scratch-made cake at the Palafox Market six months ago and often uses her grandmother’s recipes. “I went from working at a hospital to staying at home with my two girls and baking,” said Caraballo.Many Palafox Market vendors have serious accolades under their belts. LA Gourmet’s barbeque sauces have been featured on Food Network’s “Best Thing I Ever Ate” show. The all-natural handmade soaps crafted by Harmony Creek Farms can be found in Ritz-Carton hotels around the country, and owners Ruta and Ali Qureshi were chosen to make custom soaps as part of a special package for former President Barack Obama’s 2009 inauguration. Career military officer-turned-children’s book writer Sandy Meyer’s books are read in schools throughout the country, and one of his books is currently being considered for an animation. Sandpiper Studio’s noted maritime painter, Gary Partin, has sold his paintings at the market for about five years, but his art can also be found on the cover of fishing magazines, calendars and even in the historical library of late Congressman Robert L. F. Sykes.Celebrate the impact that these vendors and the market have had on downtown Pensacola at Palafox Market's anniversary celebration. You don't want to miss this!Palafox Market Anniversary CelebrationWhen: May 5, 2018, 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.Where: N. Palafox St., between Wright St. and Garden St.Admission: FREE