New local lore added to Destin museum

Tina Harbuck
Folks can sit in a fighting chair at the Destin History and Fishing Museum and listen to Destin Fishing Rodeo weighmaster Bruce Cheves tell some of his fish tales. [TINA HARBUCK/THE LOG]

History is made every day.

And the Destin History and Fishing Museum tries to stay on top of it and make sure “local lore” is recorded and displayed to share with those who visit.

One of the recent exhibits added to the museum is a multi-media station where you can listen to long-time Destin Fishing Rodeo weighmaster Bruce Cheves spin his tales.

Tim Morinelli has recorded videos of Cheves talking about various things such as shark, the beginnings of the Rodeo and even a little bit about himself.

“Bruce is a character ... I’m just tickled to death we got these,” said Kathy Marler-Blue, executive director of the museum.

Each tale is about 3-4 minutes.

There have been 12 recordings completed, but only four are currently running on a loop on the multi-media station at the museum.

Marler-Blue said it’s taking a little bit longer to pull it all together because as Cheves talks about a certain fish or event, Morinelli is trying to find photos or video to go along with it.

Nevertheless, she said, “People love to listen to Bruce stories ... that’s so cool.”

In addition to the Bruce Cheves station, the museum has recently added a lionfish exhibit that explains what they are and how they affect the local ecosystem.

Plus there is a display that explains “shocking facts” about marine debris.

Coming early next year to the museum will be the Kelly Family exhibit.

Currently there is a display with a few photos of the Kelly family in early Destin, but the new exhibit will incorporate much more and will be divided into three sections in one big cabinet.

Marler-Blue explained that the first section will be about their role in the early turpentine industry.

The second section will be dedicated to the Kelly fishing fleet. In this section there will be a small TV where early boats and fishing photos will rotate.

The third section will be devoted to the philanthropy side of Mattie Kelly and her family and their contributions to the community.

“We’re real excited,” Marler-Blue said. “We’re just waiting on the cabinet to be built.”

Wogan's Custom Cabinets & Refacing should be staring on the cabinet the first of the year, she said.