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HomeBusiness & CommunityDiscover Vintage Florida with presenter Cathy Salustri

Discover Vintage Florida with presenter Cathy Salustri

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The only city of live mermaids in the world. Parrot jungles. Chimp farms. Welcome to Florida! Academia Hernando takes us on a dynamic tour of Florida’s roadside attractions of yesteryear and of today. The special presentation showcases the history of Florida’s beloved attractions and the men and women who founded them.

Cathy Salustri will present Roadside Attractions: Vintage Florida 10 a.m. Feb. 25 at St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church, 2301 Deltona Blvd., in Spring Hill.

Presenter Cathy Salustri has an MLA in Florida Studies from the University of South Florida St. Petersburg. Her undergraduate degree is a product of St. Petersburg Junior College, the University of Central Florida, and the University of Tampa. Her first book, Backroads of Paradise, was featured in the New York Times and is based on the extensive road trip covered in the talk.

Subtitled “A Journey to Rediscover Old Florida,” the book details “Salustri’s 5,000-mile road trip (that) reveals a patchwork quilt of Florida cultures: startling pockets of history and environmental bliss stitched against the blight of strip malls and franchise restaurants.”

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“I grew up going to roadside attractions like Weeki Wachee and Silver Springs, and these attractions exist in every corner of our state,” said Salustri. “People should expect a walk down memory lane – and learn about some still-alive attractions they’ll want to put on their Florida bucket list.”

She is currently under contract with the University Press of Florida for her second book about Florida, a book that holds a tentative release date of 2023. She earns her living writing and speaking about Florida. She also owns The Gabber Newspaper, a hyperlocal weekly paper in Gulfport, Florida, where she and her husband live – when not on a Florida road trip.

Sharon Printz, board member of Academia Hernando, is proud to present “Roadside Attractions: Vintage Florida.”

“Cathy Salustri is always a popular speaker,” she said. “She shows youthful energy and enthusiasm as she takes us along on these trips.”

Coming soon at Academia Hernando: Dr. Ruth Kelly will present A History of Ireland Before Independence 10 a.m. March 4. The program will culminate with a Mystery Excursion, on March 11.

Drawing its origins more than a decade ago from the popular Mondays in Brooksville program, Academia Hernando is a not-for-profit lifelong learning organization providing quality instruction and learning experiences for adult students throughout Hernando County and beyond. The program is sponsored by The Hernando Sun, Kenjo’s Tree Service and The Residence at Timber Pines. Tickets to individual lectures are $10. For more information, visit www.academiahernando.org or call (352) 515-0300 or (352) 686-4035.

Megan Hussey
Megan Hussey
Megan Hussey is a features journalist and author who is the winner of Florida Press Association honors and a certificate of appreciation from LINCS (Family Support Domestic and Sexual Violence Prevention Task Force) and Sunrise Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault Center for her newspaper coverage of these issues. She graduated cum laude from Ball State University in Muncie, Ind., with a journalism major and English/sociology minor, and previously wrote for publications that include the Pasco editions of The Tampa Tribune and Tampa Bay Times. A native of Indiana, she lives in Florida.
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