Monday, October 29, 2012

A Visit to Plant Park

On my way home from my weekend trip in Tampa, I stopped by the beautiful Plant Park along 401 W. Kennedy Blvd.  The park is adjacent to the historic and picturesque Tampa Bay Hotel (now known as the Henry B. Plant Museum) and the Hillsborough River.

Tampa Bay Hotel,  located inside the campus of the University of Tampa, is a U.S. National Historic Landmark.  It was built in 1888 by railroad magnate, Henry B. Plant.  Although the structure is located amidst tall buildings, it stands out because of its color and beauty.  It has a  Moorish revival architectural theme, built with minarets, cupolas and three domes.  The structure is one of the reminders of the days of opulence during Gilded Age.

Fronting the hotel's doorsteps and the entrance to the Plant Park is the Henry Bradley Park Memorial Fountain built by Mr. Plant's wife after his death in 1899.  In honor of Henry Plant, the fountain is entitled "Transportation" and is the oldest public art in the city of Tampa.

Inside Plant Park, there is a statue in honor of the late President John F. Kennedy .  It can be prominently seen as one enters the grounds leading to the hotel and park.

At the center of Plant Park is a sculpture called "Sticks of Fire".  It is said to represent lightning as the name Tampa is derived from the native American word meaning, "lightning".

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