The Florida Theatre

23 06 2016

For May Art Walk (every 1st Wednesday in downtown Jacksonville, FL), I met up with a couple friends… as always, always stuff to see during art walk, like this community painting (we contributed to the reverse side):

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Or this cute/weird bird:

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(Sorry for the photo qual – only had my phone.) Eventually, we stumbled on The Florida Theatre. Now, everyone from Jax knows about the Theatre; it’s been around since the 20s and is pretty famous. But honestly I hadn’t been there since a field trip when I was much younger. It’s a shame because it is SO pretty! Turns out during Art Walk they do free tours, so naturally we took advantage!

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Just the entryway alone is pretty. You could get wine or whatever drink (below) and take it with you on the tour, but I needed both my hands free (one for phone pics, one to hold onto railings so my clumsy self doesn’t fall down stairs.)

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You go up some stairs and then into the main area  – my favorite!

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It reminds me of Epcot’s Mexico. 🙂 The plaster décor is all original.

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These doors are NOT original, which is impressive because in person they really look authentic. Anyway, then you get to go into the theater itself:

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…You get to climb right onto the stage and see all this behind-the-scenes stuff! I didn’t get any good shots from the stage looking onto the audience because it is just so massive, it wouldn’t even properly fit into the panorama.

After this, we walked through this little door to the left to go “backstage.”

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Love these mirrors! I will say, the bulk of backstage is surprisingly unglamorous. It surprised me anyway. Very plain, narrow stairs, that kind of thing. I mean, even Elvis performed there! I thought there’d be some fancy chairs or something. But these mirrors were cool, and the lights put off SO much heat!

Then we went upstairs…

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I thought it was really amazing that even these garlands are original:

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I mean, from the 20s! We went on the second level of the theater and got to walk all the way up. Finally, a good pic of the view!

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I can’t get over these amazing lights!

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iPhone pictures definitely don’t do it justice. Or show how enormous they are. We heard about how some of the seats still have the original upholstery and learned about the “ghost” seats off to the side.

Last we walked in a room used by their patrons that used to be a nursery.

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The bunny in the corner there is from the original paint of the nursery.

It’s a really great tour – our guide was a wealth of info, and we loved seeing behind the scenes. Highly recommend stopping by if you go to Art Walk!

A lovely night in downtown:

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