Punta Gorda, FL — Museum-goers will have to wait a little while before visiting the Florida Adventure Museum and its exhibits.
Lori Tomlinson, executive director of the Florida Adventure Museum said for “some time now,” water has been seeping into the building located at 260 W. Retta Esplanade in Punta Gorda, causing environmental factors associated with damp conditions to become a nuisance to staff and visitors.
“We have a lot of fungal growth,” Tomlinson said. “Mold and mildew have become a problem and we have had to shut the building down until a plan is formulated and accepted by the city because they own the building.”
A plan will be discussed by the middle or end of next week as to a course of action for the building, she said.
“We don’t know exactly what will have to be done,” she continued. “Whether it will involve tearing out the carpet and ceiling tiles or what they will have to do to get the this out of the air; we just don’t know yet. We will have to wait on the report for recommendations.”
However, the staff has acquired office space to perform day-to-day office functions at 210 Wood St. in Punta Gorda.
“Beginning on Monday, the main number — 639-3777 — will roll over to our temporary location,” she said. “We will not have any exhibits scheduled until we clean up our existing building.”
The good news for the museum is that no artifacts or exhibits were damaged as a result of the water damage.
“We were extremely fortunate that we didn’t lose any artifacts,” she said.
The Florida Adventure Museum began as a youth museum in 1969 depicting culture and history and is a private, nonprofit organization, operated by the Museum Society, Inc. under its board of directors. The museum staff is assisted by a volunteer pool of more than 250 households, including teen volunteers.
The museum’s mission is “to create an environment in which visitors of all ages may explore and appreciate the history, culture, and natural surroundings of Charlotte County and its interrelationship with Florida and the United States.” The main exhibit changes every 10 to 12 weeks, offering a variety of experiences for Florida residents and tourists alike. The Museum also features a permanent Local History Exhibit and the Florida Military Heritage Exhibit.
In addition, Florida Adventure Museum sponsors a wide range of educational and outreach programs and special events, including speaking engagements at area clubs and schools, booths at area events and festivals, off-site exhibits about Florida, “free” days at the museum, summer programs for children and families, and our annual Florida Frontier Days festival.
“We will announce our reopening through the media and, of course, our message board on the side of the building,” she said.