Four hundred and forty-five years ago, in September 1565, Admiral Don Pedro Menéndez de Avilés stepped ashore at Matanzas Bay and founded St. Augustine, Florida — the oldest, continuously occupied, European city and port in the continental United States.
On Saturday, September 4, 2010, the annual, historical re-enactment of Menéndez’ landing and anniversary commemorations will be held at Mission Nombre de Dios in St. Augustine, Florida.
The “Founding Day” heritage Event will feature:
• The historical re-enactment of Admiral Don Pedro Menéndez de Avilés’ landing in 1565
• A proclamation by the Honorable Nancy Sikes-Kline, Commissioner of the City of St. Augustine
• A historical presentation by Dr. Bonnie G. McEwan, executive director of Mission San Luis in
• A Holy Mass of Thanksgiving, celebrated by Bishop Victor Galeone
• A solemn procession to escort Menéndez’ casket to its new resting place in the new Mission Nombre de Dios Museum
• The dedication and grand opening of the new Mission Nombre de Dios Museum.
Also featured will be:
• The historical portrayal of Admiral Don Pedro Menéndez de Avilés by Mr. Chad Light of La Compañía de Santiago
• The singing of chant and sacred songs by the Cantorae St. Augustine
This anniversary commemoration will begin at 10:00 A.M. Admission is free of charge to the public. Additional activities will take place next door at Fountain of Youth Archaeological Park following the procession and Museum dedication.
This heritage Event is sponsored by Mission Nombre de Dios and La Compañía de Santiago / The Company of St. James. Support and assistance is provided by the St. Johns County Tourist Development Council.
Photograph by Jackie Hirt, courtesy of Florida Living History, Inc.