Cultural Arts and History

culturalartshistory2Pompano Beach, founded in 1908, has a rich agricultural and maritime heritage and a culturally diverse population of over 100,000 people. Whether you love art, music, theater, dance, or history, guests who stay at Beach Vacation Rentals’ cottages and condos are in for a treat, because there’s plenty to keep you entertained here and throughout the area.

The City of Pompano Beach hosts a variety of art shows, concert series, musical performances and shows, including a Broadway theater series and one of the nation’s largest annual children’s piano competitions. Click here for the Calendar of Events. These all take place at the city’s amphitheater, civic center and four community centers.

Closest to the beach is the Emma Lou Olson Civic Center, where you can take art classes, yoga, drama workshops, music and dance lessons, and attend ballroom dances. During the summer months, residents and visitors alike bring lawn chairs to the beach to enjoy music and movies under the stars.

With the City of Pompano Beach’s culture, art and music explosion, the city created, a website landing page to provide one arts destination.

The website has icons representing the various arts venues and websites for easy accessibility including tickets and information.

The Ali Cultural Arts Center – The historic Ali building, which was originally built in the 1930’s, has been transformed into a state-of the-art venue that provides diverse cultural, educational, and entertainment experiences. The facility was once a boarding house for famous African American jazz musicians, including Louis Armstrong and Cab Calloway. The Ali includes an outdoor stage and seating for 250. The Ali is located at 353 Hammondville Road/MLK, Jr. Boulevard.

The Amp – The City’s 3,000 seat open-air performing arts theater hosts exceptional artists and events in North Broward’s venue for art, music and culture. The Amp is located at 1801 NE 6th Street.

Bailey Contemporary Arts Center (BaCA) – The Bailey is a historical hotel originally built in 1924. The Bailey building has been restored using many of the original interior and facade treatments to provide eight independent artist studios, gallery space and space for performance education. The Bailey is located at 41 NE 1st Street.

Library and Cultural Arts Center – The new 47,000 square foot Library and Cultural Arts Center is under construction and expected to open at the end of 2016. The facility will include a theater that will come alive with dance, music, art and history. It is located at the southeast corner of Atlantic Boulevard and SW 1st Avenue across from City Hall.

Public Art – In 2012 the City Commission adopted a Public Art Ordinance to enhance the aesthetic and cultural value of the City by including works of art on public properties within the City.

Other Nearby Arts Venues:

For a guide to Arts and Entertainment throughout South Florida, click here.

Just minutes from the beach is the Riverwalk Arts and Entertainment District in downtown Fort Lauderdale, home to cultural attractions, shops, parks and restaurants. The free Sunday Jazz Brunch is an ideal way to relax and enjoy Fort Lauderdale’s scenic Riverwalk. This live, outdoor concert series brings the area’s best local jazz artists to four different stages on the first Sunday of each month from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Along Riverwalk, the brick-lined meandering promenade, discover Broadway shows, opera, ballet and concerts at the Broward Center for the Performing Arts and at nearby Parker Playhouse, plus the hands-on Museum of Discovery and Science with its AutoNation 3D IMAX Theater, major exhibitions at the Museum of Art and Florida Grand Opera. Catch top name talent like Barbra Streisand or Billy Joel at the BB&T Center in Sunrise, and concerts, comedy and sports at the Hard Rock Live in Hollywood.

In Coral Springs, directly West of Pompano Beach, check out the first class performing arts center and museum of art at the Coral Springs Center for the Arts. For a more intimate and elegant theater, try Stage Door Theater.

Historic Sites in Pompano Beach:

Hillsboro Inlet Park offers outstanding views of the historic Hillsboro Lighthouse, considered the brightest lighthouse in the world. Built in 1907, this 142-foot tower offers a museum for maritime enthusiasts and public tours several times a year. 2700 N. Ocean Blvd. (A-1-A).

Historic downtown and GreenMarket Pompano Beach– Located in the city’s historic downtown, at Flagler Avenue and NE First Street, the Market is open for business from November through April every Saturday from 8 a.m. – 1 p.m. It features fresh fruits and vegetables, juices, baked goods, seafood, gourmet teas and coffees and other food items, as well as orchids, plants and health-related products and services. Green Market Saturdays feature art shows, historical walking tours of Pompano Beach historic downtown, antique automobile shows, environmental exhibits and products, and other special themes. Live musical entertainment is presented every Saturday.

To find out what life was like in early Pompano days, visit Founders Park, 316 NE 3rd St. This 1.6 acre park is the home of Pompano Historical Society and features two of the Kester Cottages. One of the cottages houses a collection of artifacts that help tell the story of old Pompano Beach. Also located here is the first Pompano Beach Firehouse. Renovated and dedicated as the Miriam & Dick Hood Historical Society Museum, it houses the City’s first fire truck, a 1926 American LaFrance and its second, a 1948 American LaFrance.

The Sample-McDougald House in Centennial Park reflects what life was like during South Florida’s pioneer days. It was built in 1916 and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. 450 NE 10th Street. 954-292-8040 The Ely Educational Museum (Blanche & Joseph Ely House), named after a local educator and civic pioneer, features a vast collection of items and artifacts relating to the black community in Pompano. 1500 NW 6th Avenue. 954-781-2256 If your interest lies further into the past, visit the Indian Mound Park, off A-1-A and SE 13th Street. Overlooking the Intracoastal Waterway, this Indian burial ground site’s marker describes the historical significance of the site and its buried artifacts. SS Copenhagen State of Florida Underwater Archaeological Preserve is a National historic Register dive site located in 15 feet of water just outside the second reef on the Pompano Ledge. The steamship was launched in 1898 and was wrecked on the reef two years later.

Historic Sites in Nearby Fort Lauderdale:

Bonnet House Museum and Gardens A 35-acre beach estate constructed by Frederic Clay Bartlett, a Chicago painter and art collector, this house and its beautiful grounds has become a historical site that features an extensive collection of furniture, artworks, and exotic tropical foliage and flowers. Old Fort Lauderdale Village and Museum Fort Lauderdale Antique Car Museum Stranahan House This 1913 restored Victorian-style mansion is located on the New River in the heart of downtown Fort Lauderdale. You can go on a guided tour to take a journey back through time when this building has served as a trading post, town hall, post office, and bank.