By nearly any objective measure, Lincoln Park Academy is one of the best high schools in St. Lucie County and the state of Florida.
Test scores and advanced courses have often spoken of the resounding success of Lincoln Park Academy since 1923 when it began as a salve by the white school system to parents who wanted something unusually rare for African Americans in Florida at the time — a chance for their children to go beyond the eighth grade.
1923 was a pivotal year for Fort Pierce and we’re happy to celebrate a few centennials.
It was that year that the City of Fort Pierce formed its own police department, hiring a chief and five officers. As Mayor Linda Hudson told Ellen Gillette in Centennial Salute beginning on page 32, “As the force grew over the century in numbers and expertise, the Fort Pierce Police Department aspires to the highest standard of professionalism and excellence. I couldn’t be more proud.’’...
Downtown Fort Pierce, like many other historical neighborhoods, is always in a state of flux. Businesses come in, some succeed while others fall by the wayside.
In recent years, the newcomers have outnumbered the failures, although there have been a few of the latter. Fort Pierce seems to have reached a steady-state period after a period of heady growth. According to reports by local merchants, shoppers are still discovering the charms of downtown and its small, independent stores that offer one-off boutiques, gift stores and eating and drinking establishments not found anywhere else...
Larry Lee Jr. and Alvin Miller grew up in the Lincoln Park area in the 1960s and ’70s. They remember their neighborhood fondly as a place where everyone knew and looked out for each other.
In recent years, however, the northwest area of Fort Pierce has been plagued by gangs, violence and an unraveling of community bonds. Strangers live next to strangers and many residents find it easier to turn a blind eye to the deteriorating conditions around them than to do anything to improve things.
In second grade, Alvin Miller missed more than 90 straight days of school. He simply went AWOL when he realized he was out of his depth. When he was in the classroom, he terrorized students and frustrated his teachers. It took a seventh grade teacher to recognize the good in him. She turned the boy around to excel in school, college...
In 1904, Fort Pierce had 1,000 citizens, a newspaper, hotels, a cattle company, five boarding houses, two boat building companies and doctors, but no police department.
By the 1920s, women could vote. Jazz was gaining popularity. The Ashley Gang still rode in South Florida. Bootleg liquor was big business during Prohibition; coastline towns made ideal landing spots. Florida’s land boom brought an influx of people. The growing community of Fort Pierce needed law and order that didn’t depend on marshals or the county sheriff.
Tucked inside the breezeway of the Colonnades Plaza on South Beach is an old-fashioned ice cream shop that serves hand-crafted ice cream and Italian ice that tastes generations away from the commercial brands more commonly served by retailers. Cream Republic is a step back in time with a beachy chic, farmhouse décor, friendly proprietors and homemade ice cream churned daily on Hutchinson Island.
Sometimes following a dream can lead someone to some mighty strange places. For Bryan Chauncey Mays, whose dream was to become a musician, it led to traveling the world, playing in every state except Hawaii, scuba diving in the Black Sea and spending four months in Alaska.
Mays is a professional trombone player, although he also plays other instruments including tuba, trumpet, guitar, keyboards and percussion instruments. He’s most likely to be seen around town playing trombone with the Fort Pierce Jazz & Blues Society or the For Dancers Only Band, also known as the FDO Band.
The Highwaymen Heritage Trail Festival returns on Saturday, Feb. 18. The free event will feature the original and second generation Highwaymen artists, guided tours, food and craft vendors, kids zone, art contest exhibit and live jazz music at Moore’s Creek Linear Park on the corner of Seventh Street and Avenue D, behind the county building from...
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