Fiesta gift to help UWF draw cultural heritage tourism

March 20, 2017

The University of West Florida Historic Trust announced a lighting and projection enhancements to its flagship museum, the T.T. Wentworth, Jr. Florida State Museum, made possible by a $125,000 gift commitment from the Fiesta of Five Flags Foundation.

Through the use of projection and lighting, the museum will become the centerpiece of Pensacola’s vibrant, unique and dynamic downtown. The programmable lighting will highlight the architectural features of the iconic building. Through use of technology, several of the figures who are a part of Pensacola’s history will be brought to life in some of the windows. These enhancements will provide a focal point for cultural heritage tourism in Pensacola.

Robert Overton, executive director of the UWF Historic Trust, said the lighting project is part of the organization’s Interpretive Master Plan. Launched in 2015, the plan details a transformational vision for Historic Pensacola through a series of enhancements to provide balance between resource protection, historical education, visitor and recreational use, and enjoyment of the 8.5 acre, 29-property complex.

“When you look at our total property, we needed to identify a front door,” he said. “The museum is the entry point to Historic Pensacola. The lighting enhancements will highlight the architectural elements of this iconic building and liven up the space at night.”

Lighting enhancements at the museum were unveiled Thursday, March 16 at a private event. Overton said public displays could include colorful lighting for St. Patrick’s Day and the annual Fiesta celebration. Additional enhancements to the museum’s back windows, including an overlook to Museum Plaza and informational panels, are due to be completed by fall.

“Fiesta of Five Flags is one of the organizations that has supported our Interpretive Master Plan with their treasure, which shows their dedication to highlighting the history and heritage of Pensacola,” Overton said. “They’ve been great partners along the way, and the lighting of the museum will be a great addition to downtown and offers a new way of giving back to the community.”

“Fiesta is thrilled to partner with the UWF Historic Trust to bring this lighting project to downtown,” said Adelene Lovelace, executive director of Fiesta of Five Flags. “Fiesta’s mission is to celebrate our heritage, promote tourism and build pride in Pensacola. Through our growing partnership, and the dedication of the UWF Historic Trust, this project will help share the rich history of our wonderful city with everyone.”

For more information about UWF Historic Trust, visit

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