Unleash Your Creativity With Martin County's Outdoor Art and Culture Offerings
STUART, Fla. (November 12, 2020) – It's no secret that the legacy of “Old Florida” is alive and well in Martin County. Here, arts and culture are woven seamlessly into our community's identity. Dance, music, theatre, visual arts, and historical preservation are all an integral part of the quintessential Martin County experience. From our ever-changing calendar of pop-up events and open-air festivals to the colorful permanent outdoor exhibits sprinkled throughout the county, there's always something to see or do for arts and culture connoisseurs. Even better, each of the activities and attractions below feature fresh air and wide-open spaces, so you can fully appreciate the arts while maintaining social distance guidelines. So, the next time you're looking to embrace your artistic side and inspire your creativity, let Martin County be your muse.
Follow Martin County's Art in Public Places Tour
Martin County is best known for our pristine, uncrowded beaches, but we also have a creative side marked by gorgeous artwork, dazzling sculptures, and impressive mural pieces. In 1997, Martin County established a public art program that included ongoing funding for new artworks for public appreciation. In 2017, the Martin County Board of County Commissioners appointed the Community Redevelopment Agency Board members as the Public Art Advisory Committee (PAAC). As of September 2018, sixteen sculptures, mobiles, stained glass windows, murals, mosaics, benches and photographs are on display, with many of which are located outdoors. To see some of the pieces with your own eyes, you can follow the Art in Public Places stops that are scattered throughout our vibrant communities. Some of the highlights along the way include the Sea Life Murals of Sailfish Splash Waterpark in Stuart; the Poet Sculpture on the Hoke Library lawn in Jensen Beach; and the outdoor Manatee Gateway installation at the Manatee Pocket Bridge in Port Salerno.
Try to Find All of the Hobe Sound Murals
Hobe Sound is more than just a beautiful, laid-back beach town. It's a tight-knit community full of creativity and local culture. There is no better proof of Hobe Sound's artistic flair than the stunning murals found strategically commissioned throughout the city. The goal of the Hobe Sound Murals Project is to beautify specific locations, enhance civic pride, encourage positive networking, and plant seeds for future cultural accomplishments. Since 2009, this “paint-the-town” initiative, (spearheaded by professional artist Nadia Utto) has provided creative opportunities for over 40 skilled regional artisans along with approximately 100 individual residents and visitors. New additions are regularly added to the ever-growing collection, but there are currently more than 25 murals. Visitors can stop by the Chamber of Commerce for a Mural Tour Map and spend the day on a self-guided tour walking, biking or driving around town trying to spot each of these lovely landmarks. Consider it a real-life scavenger hunt throughout the vibrant Hobe Sound community. For the directionally challenged, there's also an option for participants to join a guided tour.
Stop by the House of Refuge
The historic House of Refuge is the oldest structure in Martin County, and remains the only building still standing out of the 10 original houses of refuge that once dotted Florida's treacherous eastern coast (which were built to serve as safe havens for shipwrecked travelers). Managed by the Historical Society of Martin County, it's now home to a museum has been restored to showcase historical lifesaving equipment and the Keeper's living quarters as they were in 1904, full of authentic artifacts and colorful tales from a bygone era. Stop by to witness one of the region's most storied structures while soaking in unobstructed waterfront vistas.
Explore the Fish House Art Center & Galleries
The Fish House Art Center & Gallery is located on the waterfront of Manatee Pocket in the Village of Port Salerno, just five miles south of downtown Stuart. The Fish House Gallery is two stories with 3,000 sq. ft. of American Fine Art and Fine Crafts. The center is home to five resident artists' studios that include a ceramicist, two fine art painters, a fiber artist who creates hand dyed wearable art, a weaving studio, and a lampwork beaded jewelry artist. The resident artists work in their studios year-round. The public is welcome to stroll around the waterfront district and watch them create their masterpieces from afar. Visitors can also arrange for private classes with some of the featured artists and support their craft by purchasing original works. It's a wonderful way to support local talents while exploring a beautiful corner of Martin County.
Attend the Jensen Beach Fine Art & Craft Show
The award-winning Jensen Beach Fine Art & Craft Show is a beloved annual tradition that takes place in charming downtown Jensen Beach. As one of the most authentic fine art shows in the region, it attracts locals and visitors alike year after year. Approximately 125 artists are selected to participate in this unique show, and all the original pieces are available for purchase. Works on display range from colorful paintings and striking photography to ornate wood sculptures and one-of-a-kind handicrafts. Organized by the Jensen Beach Chamber of Commerce, the iconic event officially kicks off the local art show season. The next event will take place on Saturday, January 9, 2021 and Sunday, January 10, 2021 from 10 AM to 5 PM. For more information, visit the Jensen Beach Chamber of Commerce website.
Don't Miss ArtsFest
Presented by the Arts Foundation for Martin County, ArtsFest is a truly one-of-a-kind event that engages all of the senses. Treasure Coast residents are sincere and sophisticated lovers of the arts. And when we say “arts” we mean everything in the visual arts, performing arts and culinary arts. Residents, as well as visitors, have helped elevate the culture of our entire area, and the organizers of this legacy events have responded accordingly. Located in downtown Stuart, ArtsFest is one of the longest running arts events in the area (at 33 years and counting). ArtsFest will continue in 2021 and bring a virtual component to the weekend of festivities. Follow the Arts Foundation for Martin County to stay in the loop with upcoming developments.
Rock Out at Rock'n Riverwalk
The Downtown Business Association of Stuart invites you to join us on the waterfront for Rock'n Riverwalk, a free, open-air concert on the Riverwalk Stage every Sunday from 1:00 PM to 4:00 PM. The Rockin' Riverwalk Music Series takes place in a beautiful outdoor setting along the St. Lucie River. Fans can come to listen to great live performances by car and boat and enjoy the show from either the decked amphitheater or from the river in their boat. The Riverwalk Stage is located along the St. Lucie River boardwalk at the end of St. Lucie Ave in Historic Downtown Stuart. Enjoy live music spanning every genre; an eclectic array of vendors; and the beautiful waterfront views. For easy parking, ride the free Sailfish Shuttle from Osceola, Sailfish, or Kiwanis Park. *The Rock'n Riverwalk Music Series is currently on hold due to COVID-19, but follow them on Facebook to tune into virtual performances.
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Tourism Public Relations and Community Liaison
Office: (772) 320-3157 | Mobile: (772) 361-2276
Encompassing the communities of Port Salerno, Stuart, Palm City, Jensen Beach, Indiantown, Jupiter Island, Hobe Sound, Sewell's Point, Rio, Ocean Breeze and Hutchinson Island, this hidden gem is a place for unwinding and reconnecting. The Martin County Office of Tourism and Marketing is the official tourism marketing arm of Martin County, Florida, whose goal is to provide information to those interested in Martin County and to spread the word about this one-of-a-kind destination.
This notification can be reproduced in an alternative format upon request by contacting the County ADA Coordinator (772-221-1396), the County Administration Office (772-288-5940) or Florida Relay 711.