14th Annual Smithsonian Magazine's Museum Day
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Saturday, September 22, 2018

All Three Carrabelle Museums

14th Annual Smithsonian Magazine's Museum Day


Free Admission on September 22, 2018

10 am - 5 pm

Back by popular demand all three of Carrabelle’s wonderful museums will open their doors free of charge on Saturday September 22, 2018 as part of Smithsonian Magazine’s 14th annual Museum Day. This national celebration honors museums that follow the example of the Smithsonian with free admission. In salute to this day,  Camp Gordon Johnston WW II Museum, Carrabelle History Museum, and Crooked River Lighthouse Museum will also have extended hours from 10:00 am to 5:00 pm and special activities and exhibits including WWII military vehicles, a newly expanded Native Peoples exhibit and 103-foot tower climbs.

Museum Day represents a nationwide commitment to access, equity and inclusion. Over 250,000 people participated in last year’s event, and Museum Day 2018 is expected to attract more museum goers than ever before. Smithsonian recognizes the extraordinary power of museums to provide visitors with insight and inspiration.


Camp Gordon Johnston WW II Museum

A new location and a new museum facility highlight this year’s Museum Day. Camp Gordon Johnston WWII Museum is now located at Carrabelle Beach, where military troops practiced beach assaults for D-Day and other campaigns. In conjunction with Smithsonian Day, Camp Gordon Johnston Museum will also be holding a ribbon cutting at 10:00 am in celebration of the new museum building. The museum will also be showing an exciting short film of the actual 1943 beach assault training that has only recently been discovered. WWII and antique military vehicles will be on display and military veterans will be on hand.

Camp Gordon Johnston WWII Museum honors the military men and women as well as civilian personnel who trained and worked in Carrabelle and Franklin County during 1942 through 1946.  The 4,000 sq. ft Camp Gordon Johnston Museum houses numerous displays of military artifacts, photos and memorabilia of many types. Camp Gordon Johnston Museum's new facility is across from Carrabelle Beach Park at 1873 Highway 98 West, Carrabelle, FL.

Carrabelle History Museum

Ray Andersen, a local professional artist, will be at the museum from 10:00 am-12:00 pm working on a beautiful, historical mural of Carrabelle's working waterfront circa 1880-1920. This large painting in progress depicts a time when lumber, seafood, turpentine and people all met at the waterfront. Visitors will can meet and talk with Ray about the mural and watch as he brings Carrabelle’s history back to life. In addition, the museum has a recently expanded exhibit showcasing local history of Native Peoples including a remarkable newly acquired Native American pottery artifact. Also in keeping with this year’s Smithsonian theme of “Women Making History”, the Carrabelle History Museum will be featuring some notable women of Carrabelle. The museum will be highlighting women like Tillie Miller, Laura Wiggins, Cheryl Sanders, and many more who have served Carrabelle with honor.

The Carrabelle History Museum also features artifacts and exhibits on the Steamship “Tarpon”, the original “World’s Smallest Police Station”, Carrabelle industry and culture (seafood, logging, and gas stations), and Carrabelle families from the pioneer days to the present. The Carrabelle History Museum is located at 106 Avenue B, SE, Carrabelle, FL.

Crooked River Lighthouse

During this special event, FREE lighthouse tower climbs will be available to all children (must be 44 inches to climb). Lighthouse tower climbs are available from 1:00-4:00 pm. Visitors can tackle all 103 feet and 138 inside steps and be rewarded by magnificent views of the St. George Sound and Tate's Hell State Forest. Kids can make their own model of the Crooked River Lighthouse with card stock. Also the brand new plans for the pirate ship playground, “Carrabella II” will be on display.

Additionally staff and volunteers will be offering a wonderful lantern-making workshop at the Keeper’s House from 1:00-4:30 pm. Materials, instruction and hands-on help will be provided to make some unique, colorful lanterns for just a $5 donation. At the end, attendees will get to take their own finished lantern home with them.

The history and the science of the Crooked River Lighthouse are displayed through interesting exhibits, including a historical setting of the early 1900’s, examples of beacons, the methods of constructing a skeletal tower lighthouse, plus the original Keeper’s House clocks, a barometer, a glass fire grenade, and more. Also on the grounds, a nice park picnic area features picnic tables, picnic shelters and a small playground. Crooked River Lighthouse is located at 1975 Hwy 98 West, Carrabelle, FL.

For more information about Museum Day, including a list of participating museums and cultural institutions, please visit Funding provided in part by the Franklin County Tourist Development Council.

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