Saturday, February 23, 2013

Murals of Lake Placid Florida

We spent a few days near Lake Placid, FL at the 4H Camp Cloverleaf.  It has 50 amp service and water with a dump station on the grounds.  Very convenient.

During one of our exploring day trips, we drove 5 miles down the road to Lake Placid to walk the town and check out the murals.

It was fantastic!  The town has 44 authorized murals on the side of building through the small town.  It really was unique and beautiful!  And a great way to spend a couple of hours walking around.

We started at the "Mural Art Gallery" at the Lake Placid Chamber of Commerce / Welcome Center.

After watching the 10 minute video we looked around the gallery.
Before leaving, we purchased our $3 mural guide and started our walkabout to find the murals.  There are 44 'authorized' murals and a few rogue ones on buildings and offices and such.

Here are a few:
#4 - Decades of Green Dragon Basketball, #5 Honoring Early Physicians, #19 Eddie Mae Henderson and #34 Train Depot. 
The train depot also serves as town museum that is worth seeing.

Remember the Dewey Decimal System back when you had to learn how to use the library? Dr. Melvil Dewey was from Lake Placid NY and he convinced the Florida State legislature to change the name of the town from Lake Stearns FL to Lake Placid FL.
 Lake Placid is the Caladium Capital of the World where 95% of the worlds caladiums grow.  Around turn of the century, Walter Coachman and W.T. Sessions were instrumental in creating jobs in the area with the turpentine industry.  The last mural shows the Lake Placid Drugstore that was popular in the 1950's.

#32 displays one of the larger murals in town:  Our Citrus Heritage.  Central Florida has had the citrus industry up and running since 1845.  Today Highland County has over 10 million trees and roughly 14% of the fruit throughout Florida.

One of my favorite was the two clown murals on the American Clown Museum walls.  In 1991 the clown school opened up in a local hospital and it has grown ever since.  Today, over 2,000 clowns have graduated from the school.

Other murals in town include ones depicting boxing, paying tribute to Annie Hill a nurse mid-wife, the Boy Scouts and one noting the Tropical State Bank Robbery in September 1931.

As if murals weren't enough, the town has many unique "Artistic Trash Containers.  Also a few "Birds Around Town" and some clowns in unsuspecting places.

A number of murals depict wildlife including black bears, Florida panthers, supposed elephants from long ago, turkeys, Sandhill cranes and red wolves.

The biggest mural in town in on the wall of the Winn Dixie on Highway 27.  It is really quite something.
It commemorates the Cracker Trail Cattle Drive.  Often cattle were driven across state to a deep water port (Tampa) where they were shipped to Cuba.  The name "cracker" comes from the cracking of whips of the cowboys while keeping the herds in line.

If you get a chance to see the murals of Lake Placid - it is well worth it.

Thanks for joining us today on the Roadrunner Chronicles!  Until next time...


  1. We've never been there and it sounds worth the trip. Thanks for the tour.

  2. Thanks, It will be on my must see list when we go to Sebring next month. Thanks.
    Great tour and pictures.

  3. How fabulous to see all of those murals...I especially loved the wildlife ones....Thanks for the tour..We went right through Lake Placid area on 27 and never stopped...duh.

  4. Very cool. Have added this to our list of places to see.

  5. We went through Pine Bluff Ark and they too have murals on many of the down town buildings. We were surprised on how much there was to see there.

    1. Neat - we will have to stop there next time we are nearby.

  6. I love this type of walking tour. Thanks for sharing. We are going to head to Florida next winter. On my bucket list for Florida.

  7. I've got to get me up there! I love towns that have a focus on murals. We did the mural hunt in Seward, Alaska ... I'm adding this one to the list for a future visit.

  8. I would have never known....thanks for the tour. Will for sure add it to our "to see" list if we are ever in the area. I have always loved caladiums.