Come celebrate Destin heritage: Destin History and Fishing Museum turns 10

Staff Writer
The Destin Log
Destin History and Fishing Museum Executive Director Kathy Marler Blue has a passion for Destin heritage.

Along with the ringing in of the 67th Annual Destin Fishing Rodeo, the Destin History and Fishing Museum will be celebrating its 10th anniversary Oct. 1. Visitors will enjoy free admission to the 5,500 square-foot museum that houses historic artifacts of the early Destin settlers, colorful mounted fish of the Gulf, the evolution of fishing in the area and a brand new room dedicated to the famous fishing rodeo.

“The museum is the history of the early families from the 1830’s, the fishing industry and how it began with net boats to what we use today, and all the little things unique to Destin such as why we have white sand,” said museum Executive Director Kathy Marler Blue.

The Destin History and Fishing Museum has its roots in the early 1980s when a group of community members decided to keep Destin’s history alive for future generations.

“Back in the ‘80s there was a Destin Fishing Museum in what is now McGuire’s,” said Blue. “When that property got a new owner, everybody that had a lease lost their lease so we acquired this building that was the original Destin library.”

Over the past decade the museum has grown and today includes not only what is found within its walls but also the old Destin post office and an original seine boat, the Primrose newly moved onto the property.

“It was just white walls so everything had to be created from scratch,” Blue said of the early days. “With this year and the great efforts of the community and the city of Destin, the Primrose and the old post office being moved, it’s really created a great destination as far as Destin heritage goes.”

This year the museum also boasts a newly expanded exhibit focused on the Destin Fishing Rodeo. The side room is now set up with a television and audio system and can seat up to 50 people for educational videos and lecture series.

“This space now has the potential to commemorate the rodeo, one of the longest running fishing tournaments in the United States, and to continually show our visitors that aspect of Destin’s heritage and its huge economic importance to Destin.

For the anniversary celebration Thursday, the museum has a few fun activities planned for visitors.

“We will have free admission, and everyone that comes in the door will receive a raffle ticket,” said Blue. “We will have door prizes and exclusive 10-year anniversary stickers while supplies last.”

So what better way to kick off the rodeo than with some good Destin history at the museum before heading across the street to witness the first day of the 67th Annual Destin Fishing Rodeo.

“Folks can come in and enjoy the museum and then slip on over to the rodeo,” said Blue.

The Destin History and Fishing Museum located at 108 Stahlman Ave, will celebrate its 10 year anniversary Oct. 1 with free admission to guests from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Visitors will also enjoy a raffle and other fun door prizes at the event.

Wanna Go?