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Florida Guide > Other Parks

Winter Park 1

If you want a change from the Parks give Winter Park a visit. To find Winter Park take I/4 north beyond downtown Orlando and take the ' Fairbanks Ave. ' exit ramp. Turn right onto Fairbanks Av. , and continue east until you reach the Park Ave. lights. Turn left into Park Ave. Drive down Park Ave. , past Central Park, until you see the Morse Museum on the left. Park at one of the meter spaces on Park Ave. , on on other side streets. Alternatively, you can take the AMTRAK train from Kissimmee station making its gentle progress through Orlando (Church Street station) to

It was laid out by the side of three lakes: Lake Osceola, Lake Virginia and Lake Maitland, later to be inter-connected by canals. The City of Winter Park itself was set out on a boulevard plan of wide streets with Central Park being at its very heart as this was where the railroad station brought visitors to arrive. That station and railroad (now Amtrak) still brings several trains each day through Winter Park on their way from New York to Miami and it is lovely to hear the wailing whistle and clanging bell as they make their way slowly through the neighborhood.

Park Avenue is the main tree-fringed thoroughfare with Central Park to the left and shops, galleries, boutiques and restaurants to the right. Drive or walk right to the end of Park Ave, where you will find the Morse Museum of American Art on your left. You will find meter parking on both sides of the street at this point and in other nearby streets. You should feed the meter for at least two hours parking to enable you to cover the Museum.

The Morse Museum was the baby of Jeannette McKean in 1942 and named for her grandfather, Chicago industrialist and Winter Park philanthropist Charles Hosmer Morse. The collection were built over many years by Mrs. McKean and her husband, Hugh F. McKean who was the Museum' s director until his death.

The Morse Museum which tends to be known as The Tiffany Museum contains the greatest collection of stained glass and decorative arts by Louis Comfort Tiffany anywhere in the world. It is a wonderland for anyone who appreciate the exquisite designs, beautiful stained glass window panels, exotic table and standard lamps and other items - they are all on display at the Morse Museum. Their centre piece of the exhibit is a re-construction of the beautiful Chapel designed for the World Columbian Exhibition in Chicago in 1893. This full-scale replica contains the glass decorated arches and ceiling, the altar and font and stained glass windows of the original chapel (lost for many years in a New York basement) which have been lovingly brought back to life by this museum! Don' t miss it!

Once you have completed your tour of the Museum step back outside and continue your investigations of Winter Park. . . . . . to be continued.

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Page added on: 7 January 2010
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