The Beaches Museum and History Park held an opening reception for its Mayport Village exhibition Aug. 11, inviting its members and the Beaches community to witness a “river of change.”
Held from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m., the exhibit guided guests through the tumultuous history of the Mayport Village, exploring the impact of the water, the Naval Station and public reception. As part of an ongoing exploration of beach areas from Mayport through Ponte Vedra, the new exhibit shed light on an area with lesser-known history, according to Executive Director Christine Hoffman. The timeliness of the exhibition wasn’t missed by visitors as they looked to the past amid discussion about Mayport’s future, she said.
“It’s a good time to talk about this area, because if you’re going to direct its future, you should know its past,” Hoffman said. “We brought in a committee of people who knew the area as it was and who know it first-hand in order to weave a richer tapestry of its history through the community.”
The exhibit brought together tangible artifacts of Mayport’s history, from vintage post-cards, t-shirts and posters to art and photographs of the famed Torrible, Bruce, King and Old Pablo houses. Hoffman gave special thanks to the committee, consisting of Bob Buren, Brittany Cohill, Claudia Estes, Una Orr, Donna Mickler Wilson and museum archivist Sarah Jackson. The combined efforts of the committee and contributors translated to an interactive experience, one that Hoffman said brought the exhibit to life.
“What we try to do with all the exhibits is take them off the walls,” she said. “We want to bring Mayport to life. I think people will be amazed by the depth of architecture and characters because with the help of this community, we can still tell these legendary stories today.”
Mayport Village: On the River of Change will be exhibited until Nov. 13. A series of events on the topic will be hosted through the months of August, September and October. All events are free to museum members with a $5 suggested donation for non-members. For additional information, call (904) 241 5657 and visit www.beachesmuseum.org