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Calusa Day draws crowd to Historical Museum & Village

By Staff | Mar 1, 2013

The Historical Museum & Village made some of its Calusa artifacts available for handling by interested visitors.

Calusa Day at the Sanibel Historical Museum & Village drew approximately 150 visitors last Friday as part of the state of Florida’s celebration “Florida 500.”

The event commemorates the Spanish landing on Florida shores in 1513. Juan Ponce de Leon landed in the general area of Sanibel and made contact with the indigenous people, the Calusa.

Guests at the village were guided through portions of the museum’s collection of Calusa artifacts by docents Bonnie Frankel and Susan Schmidt and the movie “The Domain of the Calusa” was available for viewing throughout the day.

Morning events featured artist Luc Century who unveiled his new Calusa Ornament, available only at the Historical Village, and featuring an etching on glass of the famous Calusa Dolphin. Century also signed ornament boxes and spoke on the influence of the Calusa culture on his art.

In the afternoon, Calusa enthusiast Karen Nelson, a board member of the Southwest Florida Archeological Society, spoke in the Old Schoolhouse to a full house, exhibiting displays of Calusa art and shell mounds as she recounted the doomed culture’s stories and customs. Nelson provided a reading list and list of sites of interest to visit.

Karen Nelson discusses the Calusa in the Historical Village’s old schoolhouse.

The list is posted on the museum’s website www.sanibelmuseum.org.

Learn more at the Sanibel Historical Museum & Village, 950 Dunlop Road, which is open 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Wednesday through Saturday. Full guided tours are offered at 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. each day.

The Sanibel Historical Museum and Village is located at 950 Dunlop Road (next to BIG ARTS).

Admission is $5 for adults (18 and over). Members and children are free. For more information call 472-4648 during museum hours.