Winter Park is a small suburban city in Orange County, Florida. Conveniently located just north of Downtown Orlando. It is known for its outdoor spaces, Old World charm, elegant homes, quaint cobble stone and tree lined streets, upscale shopping and dining.
Winter Park is a nature lover’s dream destination place because it is home to more than 70 parks, all home to various events, festivals and celebrations throughout the year – and available to anyone looking for a place to sit in the shade and enjoy a beautiful Central Florida afternoon.
What makes Winter Park an interesting place to live is the history behind the city. It was founded as a resort community by business northerners in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Wealthy northerners would escape the harsh winters to play in the warm Florida sun parks and many lakes found in Winter Park – hence the name “Winter Park”. Its main street called, Park Ave. is home to many upscale boutiques, fine dining, civic buildings, art galleries, a private liberal arts college, Rollins College, museums, a park, a train station, a golf course country club, a historic cemetery, and a lakefront beach and boat launch.
Why so many Peacocks?
In the 1904, Charles Hosmer Morse became the biggest land owner in Winter Park. His patronage continued in the 1920s, when he purchased a 200-acre parcel between lakes Virginia, Berry, and Mizell. In 1945, Morse’s granddaughter Jeannette and her husband Hugh McKean moved to the land, and soon after they added peacocks. Now, the land is a nature preserve that houses an orange grove and over 30 peacocks. The locals consider the peacock to be a pet to the entire community
“Its classic and timeless design honors the city’s commitment to its deep history, strong pride and dedication to the city’s rich culture and heritage.”— Clarissa Howard, director of communication for Winter Park
In 2004, the Winter Park City Commission was on the hunt for a new city seal, and the peacock was chosen.Clarissa Howard, director of communication, said the peacock is a bird of pride, and the seal represents the city because the residents and city staff are proud of their city.
Casa Feliz was saved and restored with a combination of private funds and a state grant. When the property was first threatened, a “friends” group was formed to raise funds. Thanks to endangered eagles nesting right next door to the property, there was time to “battle plan” and fundraise while waiting for the baby eagles to fledge. Read more…