City unveils historical marker at Visitor Center

400-VIC-PRESS-CONFERENCECity officials have invited Historic City News readers to attend a brief ceremony on Wednesday, April 24 at 11:30 a.m., for the unveiling of a specially designed historical information marker at the St Augustine St Johns County Visitor Information Center.

The marker is installed at the west side entrance to the Center, facing the Historic Downtown Parking Facility at 10 South Castillo Drive in St Augustine.

The city has been purchasing and installing a series of historical markers that include both words and pictures of significant points of interest in town.

The post-depression era Visitor Center was built using federal funds as a project of the Federal Emergency Relief Administration. It is owned and operated by the City of St Augustine and opened to the public on February 14, 1935.

According to an announcement from Public Affairs director Paul Williamson, a description from the grand opening said the building “featured a main hall with a seating capacity of 500, a 36′ stage with green velvet curtains and lounge rooms furnished with bridge tables and leather padded chairs”.

The marker includes two photographs — one of the building’s architect, Frederick A. Henderich; and the other, of the newly constructed facility.

When first built, the Center was part of a public recreational complex that included grounds surrounding the building, shuffle board, tennis and croquet courts, and areas for baseball and football.

The facility underwent extensive renovations in the fall of 2012; and now, in addition to welcoming visitors to St Augustine, plans to host a variety of historic and cultural exhibits.

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