It’s Part 2 of my multi-part Thursday blog series on my recent 77-hour / (4-day / 3-night) / 472-mile road-trip spanning Miami-Dade, Broward, Palm Beach, Martin, St. Lucie, Indian River, and Okeechobee Counties (in that order). It was my first extended visit ever along Florida’s Treasure Coast. While there I was always within about 5 miles of the Atlantic Ocean and the adjacent Indian River.
Last Thursday we left off on Bathtub Beach located on the barrier island adjacent to Stuart (South Hutchinson Island). A mile up the road was my next stop – House Of Refuge Museum At Gilbert’s Bar. It’s a Historical Society Of Martin County museum. Admission was free for me as a U.S. Veteran. Normal adult admission is $8 with modest discounts for seniors, children, and AAA and AARP members. This was a fascinating place, and it greatly exceeded my expectations. I was the only customer at the time, so I was treated to a personal one-on-one tour following the short introductory video in the gift shop. Following the tour you get to step inside the last remaining House Of Refuge along Florida’s east coast – and the oldest living structure in Martin County. There’s an upstairs and a downstairs. You can easily spend 60 to 90 minutes here. Be sure to also visit the raw and unspoiled beach adjacent to the museum grounds. It’s not a sunbathing beach. It’s a sightseeing beach.
My next stop was another Historical Society Of Martin County museum – Elliott Museum. Admission was free for me as a U.S. Veteran. Normal adult admission is $14 with modest discounts for seniors, children, and AAA and AARP members.
This was a nice modern two-story museum (entirely indoors) with a focus on antique cars and other forms of transportation. I met a nice 90-year-old man by the name of Lawrence up on the second floor. He was sitting by a display that he made himself over the course of about 20 years. It’s a River Cruiser made from a Grumman Mohawk Drop Tank. He worked at Grumman for many years, and he retired from the company. We enjoyed an extended conversation together about his work, his career, and his ministry. He’s a born-again Christian, and he loves to talk about his Lord & Savior Jesus Christ. He gave me two cards – a business card with Scripture on it, and another larger card with Scripture on both sides of it. We encouraged each other. As it turns out he and his church family drove down to Homestead in the days following Hurricane Andrew in August of 1992 to deliver supplies to a church with no roof and pews that were cut-up to form shelving for all of the incoming supplies. I’m familiar with that church. I shared with him my ministry. I told him that I would incorporate our chance meeting at the museum into one of my future sermons to my church family. Our short time together was the highlight of my visit to the Elliott Museum.
I’ll present Part 3 for you next Thursday, and we’ll arrive at my destination for the next 3 nights – Vero Beach.
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