Florida - Fast Facts & Trivia

  • The Sunshine Skyway Bridge is a concrete cable-stayed bridge. The bridge opened in 1987 and crosses the clouds at 190 feet above the water. Its light yellow suspension ropes spread from the two middle columns. The structure gives drivers clear views of the water during the 4.1-mile drive across Tampa Bay.

  • Almost 80 percent of states that receive sweet Atlantic white shrimp are harvested in Amelia Island waters. Two million pounds of shrimp are brought to Fernandina every year.

  • A marsh like the Fakahatchee beach in the Everglades works in three main ways. First, its vegetation serves as a filter to purify the water as it goes slowly south. Second, it is an important habitat for wildlife and plants. After all, it actually prevents flooding by slowing the flow of water after heavy rains.

  • In DeFuniak Springs is one of the two naturally round lakes in the world.

  • The Morikami Museum and the Delray Beach Japanese Gardens are the only museum in the United States dedicated to Japan's vibrant culture.

  • Fort Lauderdale is known as the Venice of America, as the city has 185 miles of local waterways.

  • Fort Meade is the oldest settlement in Polk County. It dates back to 1849, when a settlement was built around the cavalry fort of the United States during the Seminole Indian Wars.

  • The Fred Bear Museum in Gainesville pays homage to the achievements of Fred Bear, a promoter of wildlife management and founder of the Bear Archery Company.

  • The Hawthorne Trail is part of Florida's Rails to Trails program and attracts many outdoor enthusiasts for hiking, biking or horse riding through its 17-mile track.

  • North of Haines City is the Baseball City Stadium, the spring-training home of the Kansas City Royals. Haines City is known as the heart of Florida.

  • The name of the city Hypoluxo comes from the term "Seminole".

  • Islamorada is referred to as the sport fishing capital of the world.

  • Key Largo is known as the diving capital of the world.

  • Marathon is home to Crane Point Hammock, a 63.5-acre tract of land that is one of the key historical and archaeological sites of the Keys. The area contains evidence of pre-Columbian and prehistoric Bahamian artifacts and was once the site of an entire Indian village.

  • Fort Zachary Taylor was built in Key West between 1845 and 1866. Controlled by the Union during the Civil War, the fort was the home base for a successful blockade of Confederate ships, which according to some historians has shortened the conflict by a full year. The fort was also active during the Spanish-American War, the First World War and the Second World War.

  • The first stepped road that was built in Florida was the Old Kings Road in 1763. It was named after King George of England.

  • During the Gulf War in 1991, the busiest military port in the country was Jacksonville. From this location, the military moved more supplies and people than any other port in the country.

  • When completed in 1989, the Dame Point Bridge became the longest cable-stayed bridge in the United States, the longest concrete span of its kind in the Western Hemisphere and the third longest cable-stayed bridge in the world.

  • The world's longest river sailboat race is the annual mug race. The event runs 42 miles from Palatka to Jacksonville along the St. Johns River.

  • The historic site Olustee Battlefield commemorates the biggest battle that took place during the American Civil War in Florida.

  • Venice is known as the shark tooth capital of the world. Collecting prehistoric shark teeth has been a popular pastime for visitors and residents of the Venice area for years

  • The Florida Museum of Hispanic and Latin American Art at Coral Gables is the first and only museum in the United States dedicated to the preservation, dissemination and promotion of Hispanic and Latin American art.

  • The Pinellas Trail, a 47-mile hiking / biking trail connecting St. Petersburg with Central and North Pinellas County, is the longest urban linear walkway in the eastern United States.

  • Titusville, known as Space City, USA, is located on the west bank of the Indian River directly across from the John F. Kennedy Space Center.

  • Florida is the only state that has two rivers of the same name. There is a Withlacoochee in North Central Florida (Madison County) and a Withlacoochee in Central Florida. They have nothing in common except the name.

  • Greater Miami is the only metropolitan area in the United States whose borders span two national parks. You can hike through the pristine Everglades National Park or drive through glass-bottomed boats through the Biscayne National Park.

  • Saint Augustine is the oldest European settlement in North America.

  • The name Punta Gorda, which means "fat point" when translated from Spanish. The name was given to the city because much of the land looms in Punta Gorda at Charlotte Harbor. The harbor itself is a bit unique as the Peace River meets the ocean.

  • Orlando attracts more visitors than any other amusement park in the United States.

  • New England Congregationalists, who wanted to bring their liberal arts education to the state, founded Rollins College, the oldest college in Florida, in Winter Park in 1885.

  • Cape Canaveral is America's launch site for space flights.

  • Florida is not the southernmost state in the United States. Hawaii is further south.

  • A museum in Sanibel owns 2 million shells and claims to be the only museum in the world dedicated exclusively to molluscs.

  • The Benwood on the French reef in the Florida Keys is considered one of the most dived shipwrecks in the world.

  • Safety Harbor is home to the historic Espiritu Santo Springs. This name comes from the Spanish explorer Hernando de Soto. He was looking for the legendary fountain of youth. The natural springs have attracted worldwide attention for their healing powers.

  • Niceville hosts the famous Boggy Bayou Mullet Festival, which takes place on the third weekend of October.

  • The city of the United States with the highest lightning rate per capita is Clearwater.

  • Gatorade was named after the Gators of the University of Florida, where the drink was first developed.

  • The young aviator Tony Jannus wrote history on January 1, 1914, when he flew the world's first scheduled airline from St. Petersburg's marina to Tampa.

  • Dr. John Gorrie of Apalachicola invented 1851 mechanical cooling.

  • In 1944, Miami Beach's pharmacist Benjamin Green invented the first sunscreen. He developed this development by cooking cocoa butter in a granite coffee pot on his wife's stove.

  • Neil Smith and his brother from Montverde developed the first Snapper lawn mower.

  • Key West has the highest average temperature in the United States.

  • The Saint John's River is one of the few rivers that flow north instead of south.

  • The largest lake in Florida is Lake Okeechobee.

  • May 20, 1970 Florida legislators passed and sent a bill to the governor, who accepted the moonstone as the official state jewel. Ironically, the moonstone is not found naturally in Florida ... nor was it found on the moon.

  • In 1987, the legislature of Florida designated the American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis) as the official state reptile. For a long time an unofficial symbol of the state, the alligator originally symbolized Florida's vast untamed wilderness and swamps.

  • Miami has installed the first ATM especially for rollerbladers.

  • Ybor City was once the cigar capital of the world with nearly 12,000 tabaqueros (cigar makers) in 200 factories. Ybor City produced an estimated 700 million cigars a year at the height of the industry.

  • Plant City, the winter strawberry capital of the world, holds the Guinness record for the largest strawberry shortcake in the world. The 827-square-meter, 6,000-pound cake was made on February 19, 1999 in McCall Park.

Florida Fast Facts & Trivia . Florida Fast Facts & Trivia