Concerts in the park and local festivals frequently liven up the local culture while plays, concerts, art museums, environmental learning centers, botanical gardens and historical societies are plentiful in and around the area.
Sebastian is well known for the rare antiquities that have washed upon its shores. The shipwreck from the 1715 Spanish Plate Fleet left many treasures along Sebastian’s coast. You can view some of those treasures and learn about our treasure history at the following treasure museums:
-Mel Fisher’s Treasure Museum- On July 24, 1715, a fleet of eleven Spanish Galleons and one French ship set sail from Havana Spain. All of the Spanish vessels perished in a storm off the east coast of Florida, near present day Sebastian. Seven hundred lives and over 14,000,000 pesos worth of treasure went down. Another ship, the Atocha, met a similar fate in 1622. On July 20th, 1985, following a 16 year search, a salvage team led by Mel Fisher recovered the mother lode of the Atocha, from it’s nearly 370 year exile on the ocean floor, establishing the greatest discover in treasure salvaging history, both in archaeological and commercial terms. During the search for the Atocha, Fisher and his crew also discovered and raised treasure from the sister ship of the Atocha, The Santa Margarita and an English merchant slave ship, the Henrietta Marie, as well as the 1715 Plate Fleet near Sebastian. When you enter Mel Fisher’s Treasure Museum you will join the millions who have witnessed the most spectacular collection of Spanish artifacts and treasure ever assembled. Feel the weight of a solid gold bar recovered from the ocean depths. A visit to Mel Fisher’s Treasure Museum affords you the distinct opportunity to own a piece of history, unique gold escudos or silver reales in fine jewelry settings, museum quality reproductions as well as other nautical gifts from our Gift Shop. We welcome you to discover the fun, romance, and adventure of Mel Fisher’s Treasures. For more info., call 772-589-0435 or visit www.melfisher.com.
-McLarty Treasure Museum- The McLarty Treasure Museum is located at the south boundary of the Sebastian Inlet State Park. Situated on a survivors' camp of the wrecked 1715 Spanish Plate Fleet, the museum features artifacts, displays, and an observation deck that overlooks the ocean. An Arts and Entertainment television production, "The Queen's Jewels and the 1715 Fleet" tells how the ill-fated fleet was returning to Spain when a hurricane struck them off the Florida coast. Still today, salvagers work to recover gold, silver, and the "Queen's jewels"; that were lost to the sea and its sandy shores. For more info., call 772-589-2147 or visit http://www.floridastateparks.org/sebastianinlet/
The Sebastian Area Historical Society Museum- The museum has exhibits on the Ais Indians, Pelican Island, Clothing, Family Life, Quilts, Fishing, Agriculture, Military, Transportation, Early Shops and Trades, book shop and research facilities. The museum is located at the Old School at 1235 Main Street in Sebastian. Stop in or call 772-581-1380.
Sebastian Fishing Museum- Located at Sebastian Inlet State Park, (on the south side) the Sebastian Fishing Museum tells the history of the area's fishing industry. The lives and history of the people who lived in Sebastian were interwoven with fishing and the Indian River Lagoon. The museum commemorates three of Sebastian's early families that operated fish houses: Sembler, Smith, and Judah. Inside you will find a replica of an original fish house and dock. A homemade fishing boat, nets, fishing gear, and photos of fishing in the lagoon are also on display. For more information, visit http://www.floridastateparks.org/sebastianinlet
Fisherman’s Landing- See a real working waterfront, showcasing the unique heritage of the Sebastian area with exhibitions, demonstrations, educational venues, and civic events that are all designed to educate the public about the economic, cultural and historical heritage of Florida’s traditional working waterfronts, including the marketing of the seafood and aquaculture industries. Visitors will have an opportunity to learn more about commercial fishing with special features including a seafood market, an eatery overlooking the waterfront & fishing operation, historical renditions of earlier times on the waterfront, a smokehouse where fresh fish will be smoked, a touch pond for young and old alike to see, touch, and learn about aquatic life on the lagoon and much more. You’ll be sure to leave with more than just a taste of our commercial fishing history!
The Indian River Citrus Museum at the Heritage Center tells the story and preserves the artifacts, photos, and memorabilia of the pioneers who established the most distinguished citrus fruit in the world. For more information, call 772-770-2263 or visit www.veroheritage.net.
Riverside Theatre is one of the premiere professional regional theatres in the United States and is the only professional producing theatre on the Treasure Coast. They are also the Treasure Coast’s best stage for Live Stand-up Comedy. Riverside Theatre, Inc. is committed to providing a total theatre arts experience that entertains, challenges, and educates both adults and children. They produce quality works from Broadway, Off-Broadway, and Regional Theatres with an emphasis on high production values.
Vero Beach Theatre Guild has been Vero Beach’s premier community theater for 56 years, bringing affordable live theater to the Treasure Coast since 1958. We have been raising the curtain on San Juan Avenue since 1985, and present five main-stage productions, as well as a summer production, each year.
Indian River County has a rich and varied cultural presence that appeals to all ages and interest. View a full list of our Arts & Culture members. You may also contact the Cultural Council of Indian River County at 772-770-4857 or visit www.cultural-council.org to learn more about the cultural opportunities in our area.