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On the Coast Magazine

Destin Forward 2015 Class Completes Workday

12/10/2014 04:02PM ● Published by Nancy Babin

In partnership with the City of Destin and various other generous donors, the Destin Forward 2015 class spent time on Saturday morning, Dec. 6, chipping and painting away at two of Destin’s most precious artifacts.  Under the advisory of Project Manager, Keith Nelson of the City of Destin, and Matt Ronk of Matt Sailing, LLC, members of Destin Forward spent about four hours clearing away debris and priming and painting Destin’s first Post Office and Siene Boat.  The up close and personal contact with both of these structures, located off Stahlman Drive by the Destin Community Center, brought to the attention to many how desperately these historical monuments needed care.

 

Thanks to the generosity of many donors through materials, tools, volunteer efforts and cash donations, both projects are well underway.  After the restoration of both the Primrose and Old Post Office are complete, the Destin Fishing & History Museum is slated to be their new resting place.  Kathy Marler Blue, Associate Director of the Destin Fishing & History Museum, shared with the group the most recent drawings of the plans for the new exhibit area that will not only make it easier for people to view the structures, but will also provide more protection from the elements than their previous resting spots.

The Primrose, a 36-foot wooden vessel built in 1925, was part of the original fishing fleet in Destin. It was captained by John W. Melvin Sr. and considered one of the life lines for Destin in the early days, providing food for settlers.  Destin’s First Post Office was set up by William T. Marler on Calhoun Avenue in 1934, after being handled out of the parlor of his house starting in 1896.  This handmade building served the community until 1951.

 

Destin Forward, the Destin Area Chamber of Commerce’s leadership and community education program, is designed to provide a hands-on learning experience into the issues facing the Destin community on a day-to-day basis. Destin Forward accepts up to 25 business professionals for each 9-month class. Participants learn from experts in many different fields, including the environment, boat safety, tourism promotion, and government affairs. Class begins in August with a welcome reception and ends in May with a graduation.  For more information about Destin Forward, please contact the Destin Area Chamber of Commerce at 850.837.6241.

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