Palm Harbor Museum grounds to get a makeover

Renowned French artist Claude Monet, the founder of impressionist painting, attempted to paint nature as he perceived it.  Although art lovers would argue that his exquisite impressionist works deserve great praise, “My garden is my most beautiful masterpiece,” he once said.

Monet certainly understood the beauty and value of lovely landscaping. Organizers and volunteers at the Palm Harbor Museum obviously share those same feelings. Beginning in mid-June, they will be trimming trees, removing some shrubs and non-native palms, and taking delivery of new plants as part of planned landscape improvements.

Volunteers will participate in a planting day June 24 or 25 to reintroduce native shrubs and flowering trees that will evolve, improve, and mature over time, adding Florida nature to the museum’s history.

Native and historic plants, a bird thicket, native Florida butterfly garden, heritage rose garden, and pollinator overlook are planned additions as the museum grounds undergo landscape improvements over the summer and continuing throughout 2022.

This special project, funded by a Pinellas County Municipal Services Taxing Unit grant, will reintroduce Florida native plant species to complement and enhance existing historic specimen plants on the grounds of the museum. Future visitors will view native and historically introduced plants, and informational signage will explain how these native plants were useful to early humans and subsequent settlers to north Pinellas.

Museum volunteers expect the landscape improvements to be immediately useful and also to evolve, improve and mature over time. These features benefit the ability of volunteers to convey stories about local history and to enhance the experience of even the most casual visitor.

Museum volunteers want visitors to “see” and “feel” a sense of place and community pride. The outdoor project is cross-cultural and appealing, no matter the age or background of the visitor. Organizers hope this project also will inspire residents to utilize native plants in their home landscapes. 

In the words of Aristotle, “In all things of nature there is something of the marvelous.”

The community is invited to visit this “pocket park,” located at the corner of Belcher and Curlew roads. The Palm Harbor Museum, located in the historic Hartley House, is open from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m. Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays at no charge, although donations are always welcomed.

If you would like to participate in the planting or care of the living landscape or other volunteer opportunities at the museum, please leave a message at 727-724-3054 or send an email to


Meet Me at the Museum

In June, the Meet Me at the Museum programs will return to live/hybrid presentations both at the museum and simultaneously broadcast on Zoom. Zoom links will be available via Eventbrite and will be sent before the day of the event.


‘Becoming Flo’

On June 15, in honor of Pride Month, author Deb Carson will give her multimedia presentation, “Becoming Flo: A Human Story of Florida History, Identity and Discovery.” Based on her book of the same name, it is the account of Carson’s beloved uncle, born Abraham Isadore Meyrowitz into a Baltimore orthodox Jewish family of Eastern European immigrants. Abraham became Albert White when he ran away from home at 16, joined a traveling circus and eventually became Flo, the woman that had lived within Albert since childhood.

Carson honors Flo’s remarkable life with this presentation and book. That part of Flo’s life was revealed to Carson 40 years after her uncle's death.

Carson’s book will be offered for sale at the museum that evening and she will be signing copies by request. Signed books may be ordered by request during the program for those who are not at the museum. Volunteers will reach out to you afterward regarding your purchase.

You may attend this event on location at the museum, 2043 Curlew Road, or online via Zoom. Please register for either option.

Museum doors open at 6 p.m. on Wednesday, June 15th.  If you register to attend this program online via Zoom, you may log in beginning at 6:15 PM. If you change your mind at the last minute and cannot attend in person, simply use the Zoom code you will receive via your email. If you decide you would like to attend at the museum rather than participate online, email us at and come by the museum on June 15th. Either way, your registration assists us in preparing for our program!

All registrants (whether in person or online) will receive the Zoom code by email prior to the event date. Register early to make sure you get the Zoom code in time. Admission is free. Donations are gratefully accepted to support this program and future educational programs. All can be found on the Eventbrite tickets page. 

The July Meet Me at the Museum program, “Doing Business on Main Street,” will be presented at the museum and on Zoom at 6 p.m. Wednesday, July 20. The program will describe and highlight various businesses which have existed through the years on downtown Palm Harbor’s Main Street.

The August speaker will be Christianne Pearce, meteorologist with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s National Weather Service of Tampa Bay. She will be presenting the program on site at the museum and will tentatively be preparing a power point presentation discussing notable weather events of Tampa Bay and Florida history, changes in weather and meteorology/hurricane prediction, and hurricane preparedness in our region. 

As always, Palm Harbor Museum's monthly Meet Me at the Museum events are free of charge and all are welcome. Donations of any amount are gratefully accepted to support the museum’s ability to present future educational programs. 


Museum membership

Purchase museum membership online via the museum’s website or call 727-724-3054. Discover more at

Museum memberships are encouraged as membership dollars are a key source of funding that allows the museum to continue presenting monthly programs and to inform the community of museum events. 


Volunteers needed

The Palm Harbor Museum is looking for friendly hosts and hostesses to greet visitors, provide brief tours sharing information about our historic buildings and the Palm Harbor region, perform light housekeeping tasks and assist with other projects as needed. Training is provided. Requirements include being able to commit to a weekly 2- to 4-hour shift, during the hours of 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays. Event volunteers are also needed. If you have time to volunteer, contact the museum at


Visiting the museum

The Palm Harbor Museum is open for self-guided tours from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays. Admission is free but donations are gratefully accepted. Masks are encouraged inside the buildings and hand sanitizer is available.  Call 727-724-3054 for more information.

The Palm Harbor Historical Museum is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization dedicated to the preservation, interpretation and presentation of the rich historical heritage of the Palm Harbor area including Crystal Beach, Curlew, East Lake, Ozona and Wall Springs. The museum is located at 2043 Curlew Road (at Belcher Road). Visit the Museum website at or email

Sharon Lamm is the publicity director at the Palm Harbor Museum.