This is an activity related museum; mostly for children to have things to play with and work with. It is called "hands on" and the new wave at museums to get youth to participate. It is not my style to do so, so this really wasn't very good for us. It has an exhibit on giant bugs and also machines that you can operate, and an exhibit on the bees and how they are dying. One stand out was a few paintings of Italian baroque style.
It is open Monday-SAturday 10-5, and Sunday 1-5PM. Admission for adults is a steep $10; and my opinion not worth that amount
Many stately old Antebellum mansions line the streets in downtown Tallahassee. Pictured here is the Knott House, which is a Florida Heritage Landmark.
The house was built in 1843 as a wedding gift for Catherine Gamble, wife of attorney Thomas Hagner. During the Civil War the house was used as temporary Union Headquarters. On May 20, 1865, the Emancipation Proclamation was read from the front steps proclaiming freedom for all slaves in the Florida Panhandle.
The house was acquired by William Knott, former Florida State Treasurer and his wife, Luella in 1928. Luella was a huge temperance advocate and due to her efforts, the sale of alcohol was banned in Tallahassee for 50 years.
In case the previous paragraph has you worried, Tallahassee is no longer dry and you can now buy alcohol in town. I checked that out at a Tallahassee Publix supermarket.
oakland cemetery is located in the french town area of downtown tallahassee. the oakland cemetery is the second oldest cemetery in tallahassee. in the 19 th and early 20 the century this was tallahassee's main african-american cemetery. oakland cemetery has an interesting collection of funerary art.
the old city cemetery is located in downtown tallahassee on park ave between monroe street and the FSU campus. established in 1829 it is the oldest cemetery in tallahassee. the old city cemetery is the final resting place of a number of florida governors, prominate tallahassee citizens, and confederate and union civil war dead. the old city cemetery has an excellent collection of funerary art.
bellevue was the tallahassee home of princess murat. catherine willis was a great-grandneice of george washington and the widow of achille murat, the prince of naples and a nephew of napoleon bonaparte. during the second french empire she was recognized as a princess by napoleaon III. she lived in this house from 1854 until her death in 1867. the house was moved from jackson bluff road near downtown to it's present location in 1967.
the tallahassee natural history museum is located southwest of downtown near the intersection of capital circle (SR 263) and w. orange ave (CR 371). this very interesting museum focuses on the history and wildlife of the tallahassee area. for those traveling with children the star attraction is a replica old florida farm and petting zoo. the museum has an interesting collection of old schools, houses, and churches from the big bend area of florida. the museum also has a nature trail with a zoo of indigenous florida animals. the tallahassee natural history museum is nice place to visit in the tallahassee area.
located near I-10 in tallahassee is the beautiful maclay gardens state park. alfred maclay built a home and gardens on this site in 1923. the gardens have collections of azaleas, camellias, and dogwoods that are in bloom late march and early april each year. the park also offers swimming, fishing, and canoeing. a beautiful garden to visit especially in the spring when the azaleas are in bloom.
This is a wonderful State Park within the boundries of Tallahassee. Miles of hiking and biking trails. These multi-use trails are hilly and not the usual flat trails in most of the state. Watch for horses and bikers. There is also a great garden area surrounding the original home ot the Maclay family. The house and surrounding land were donated to the state by this family. There are two admission charges to the park. One is to enter just the trail area and lakes and the other is for the gardens and to visit the home which is now a museum. You have a choice to do one or both.
This park was established in 1931 to provide a wintering habitat for migratory birds. There are 41 known species of birds living here during the winter months. There are also several animals that also live here year round. We were lucky enough to see several birds and a variety of animals including wild hogs while spending a couple days exploring this park. One day we rode our bikes out the 7 mile paved road to the end at Apalachee Bay and the St Marks Lighthouse. Be sure to bring binoculars and camera with a telephoto lens. There are several trails that can be walked to get a closer view of the wildlife. There is a fee of $5.00 to enter this park. Well worth the time and price if you enjoy nature.
The Museum and animal park is in the center of Tallahassee in a wooded park. There is a raised wooden walkway that allows you to see the animals that either still live in Florida or used to live there. It is a long walk and takes a few hours just to see all the animals and birds. I thought the enclosures were a bit too small for animals but then I like animals and like seeing them in large open spaces. There is also a farm modeled after those that existed back in the 1700's and 1800's. People dress as they did back in those years and put on a show replicating tools used then for farming. Educational programs are scheduled frequently, mainly for the benefit of children.
Somehow little old Tallahassee, Florida ended up with a film school that is rated top 5 or so in the entire WORLD. It hosts a number of screenings of the student short films and they're all free. The most widely attended by the public is the MFA Thesis screening (usually in early August). There you will see 5 or so 10-20 minute short films made by the graduating class of masters students. These are often films that go on to major international festivals and competitions including the Emmys and the student Oscars.
Another lesser-known fact is that because the FSU Film School is one of the only major film schools outside of a production center like LA or NY, the students depend a lot on the surrounding community for help. So if you're really looking for something different to do, you can volunteer to help out on set (see the bulletin board in Doak Stadium, building A), or try out for their twice-yearly open-call acting auditions (usually held at the beginning of each semester).
There's usually a decent callendar of events at: http://www.film.fsu.edu
Natural Bridge Battlefield State park is a tiny park tucked away in the woods, but filled with history. It is here that Confederate volunteers from the area fought, and defeated, the Union Army, making Tallahassee the only Confederate captiol east of the Mississippi not captured by the Union during the Civil War. Natural Bridge got it's name because the St. Marks River drops underground here, and flows underground for a quarter of a mile before reemerging. There is a reenactment held here every March (free!). I reccomend getting there early to save yourself a hike down the road.
Karst. That's what you'll find here. Limestone terrain that has been changed by rain and groundwater over the centuries. Leon Sinks offers a leisurly hike through pine forests, and allows visitors to see sinkholes and limestone caves. There are three trails that range from 1/2 mile to slightly over 3 miles. You can see eight wet sinkholes in this park, but even though the water looks **incredibly** tempting in one of them, swimming is not allowed. There are also ten dry sinkholes here. The highlight of the trip was resting by the cave at the end of the Sinkhole Trail. You can only see the entrance, and it's filled with water, but it's much cooler by the cave entrance. Parking fee is about $5, but is well worth it. This is a great place for bird watching!
Florida State University has an excellent fine arts department. Among the crown jewels at FSU is the world-renowned school of music. It has been said that FSU has "the finest school of music south of Julliard".
One huge bonus of having all of these talented students and faculty in Tallahassee is the rich opportunity we all have for world-class musical entertainment...at a bargain price. My wife and I, due to my son's being in the college of music as a music ed major, have become more involved recently as a donor/benefactor. We have been truly amazed and thrilled by the wide variety of venues we've enjoyed, courtesy of the College of Music.
Among the items offered for enjoyment are Mainstage Theatre productions (a combo of the school of theatre, drama and music), FSU Opera, the University Symphony, the University Philharmonia, the FSU Jazz Bands, the Chamber Orchestra, the Wind Orchestra, the Symphonic Band, the University Singers, the Chamber Choir, ..... it just goes on and on. There's something for everybody...actually there are lots of somethings for everybody. And for the most part, you'll be able to enjoy most venues for under $10 a person. Some are even free!
February in Tallahassee brings the annual "7 Days of Opening Nights" festival. 7 Days began as a dream nine years ago, and has grown to be a truly outstanding event. Each year, during about a ten day period (they fib a bit on that seven days business...), a wide variety of entertainment and artistic events are hosted by Florida State University, and in some cases Tallahassee Community College. There are author readings (one year, Stephen King came), concerts (my favorite so far was Bruce Hornsby two years ago), dance troupes, symphony orchestras, art exhibits.
This year's festival features the following:
Feb 12 A special presentation of the FSU Prism concert series, featuring MY son directing
The Florida State University Marching Band. :)
Feb 13 "Healing and the Arts" presentation
Feb 14 The Paul Taylor Dance Company
Feb 16 Opening Exhibition at the FSU Museum of Fine Arts
The Irish Rovers in concert. (we attended this, it was great)
Feb 17 The Marian McPartland Trio
Feb 19 James Bradley, author of "Flags of our Fathers"
Feb 20 Rita Coolidge and the John PIzzarelli Quartet
Feb 21 "Gothic at Midnight"... a tribute to the masters of the macabre
Feb 22 The Five Browns, a group of brothers and sisters who are accomplished pianists
Feb 23 The Manhattan Transfer in concert
Feb 24 The Matinee of the Arts
Rosanne Cash and Kris Kristofferson in concert (we have tickets to this, too)
Feb 25 Film.. "The Trees Have a Mother, stories of the Amazon"
Feb 26 Ladysmith Black Mambazo in concert (backup S African band on Paul Simon's Graceland)
Art opening at the Mary Brogan Museum
Feb 27 Lynn Harrell with the FSU University Symphony