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News Story
Updated: 12/31/2017 11:30:07AM

What a year it was ... and what a year it will be

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FROM VENICE MUSEUM AND ARCHIVES
Gunther Gebel-Williams, considered the "Greatest Animal Trainer of all Time," rides into the center ring on a tiger which is atop an elephant. Gebel- WIlliams was famous for working with animals that did not necessarily associate with each other in the wild. The arrival of The Greatest Show on Earth to winter quarters in Venice (1960-1993) contributed to the city's greatest growth as the name Venice appeared on circus train cars all over America.There will be a Gebel-Williams exhibit in the Venice Circus Museum.

PHOTO COURTESY OF CITY OF VENICE
Venice Museum and Archives at the Historic Triangle Inn, 351 S. Nassau St., is open Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

SUN FILE PHOTO
These massive sets of jaws were available for sale at last year’s Shark’s Tooth Festival.

PHOTO PROVIDED BY VENICE THEATRE

Dainty ballerinas, comedians, tap dancers and other talented folks make up the cast of a typical mainstage show by the Silver Foxes of Venice Theatre. The groups' 25th anniversary show was March 20-April 2 on the theater's main stage.

PHOTO PROVIDED BY COLLINGS FOUNDATION

This P-51 Mustang comes to Venice annually in February courtesy of the Collings Foundation. The single-pilot version of this aircraft was used for training fighter pilots at the former Venice Army Airbase during 1945.

PHOTO PROVIDED BY VENICE ARCHIVES AND MUSEUM
The first three hotels in Venice are shown in this circa 1927 photo. At left, on West Venice Avenue, site of the present post office, was the Park View. It was demolished to make room for the present post office. A parking lot remains between that site and the present Bank of America, which is now where there once was a Venice Movie Theater and a different bank. At upper right, the Hotel Venice (now the Summit) and the Hotel San Marco, which is now known as the Venice Center Mall, were built on Nassau Street and West Tampa Avenue. Those two hotels were used by the Kentucky Military Institute from 1932-1970.

PHOTO PROVIDED BY VENICE MAINSTREET
Thousands of visitors and residents attended the 30th annual art festival Nov. 4 and 5, 2017 in downtown Venice.

PHOTO BY JOSEPH JOHN ORCHULLI

Rabbi Sholom Schmerling looks on as Howard Katzenberg afixes a Mezuzah to the right side of the entrance door at the new Katzenberg Education Center, the first building on the grounds of the Chabad of Venice and North Port. The dedication took place Sunday, Sept. 3.

PHOTO PROVIDED
Chuck Sidlow, the youngest Boss Cloen in the history of the old Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus, was a circus star during the years the show wintered in Venice. He is one of the 2018 honorees to be inducted into the St. Armand's Circus Ring of Fame on Jan, 13, 2018.

SUN PHOTO BY KIM COOL

The Circus train car as it looked on Oct. 20 this year. Window spaces have been reopened and will receive new glasss and frames. The car has been cleaned up considerably and was given a few coats of primer paint. The interior is nearly ready to have museum partitions, utilities and wall coverings installed in preparation for the installation of displays that are still in the design stage.

PHOTO PROVIDED BY VENICE MUSEUM & ARCHIVES

The Manhattan Produce Exchange survived well into the 1930s to service Venice farms.

PHOTO PROVIDED

Don Moore is shown with Zewlda, his 12th Greyhound. He recently acquired his 13th Greyhound because "you can't have a home without a Greyhound."

PHOTO PROVIDED BY NEA
2017 NEA Jazz Master Dick Hyman was honored at the 2017 NEA Jazz Masters Tribute Concert on April 3, at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington D.C.

PHOTO COURTESY OF VENICE THEATRE
Loveland students John Liska and Jaclyn Resh sing “A Whole New World” near a graffiti wall, designed after a photo in O'Brien's book. They portrayed a homeless couple who both found jobs up on the strip.

PHOTO BY ANNA ZIMMERMANN
Venice MainStreet sponsors a series of Friday night concerts at the Venice Gazebo throughout the year.

SUN FILE PHOTO
Lynn Moseley tosses a salad at a fundraising party for one of the many organizations she supports in the Venice area.

PHOTO PROVIDED
Novelist David Hagberg, left, returns does a seminar on novel writing at the annual Venice Book Fair & Writers Festival in March.

By KIM COOL

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The 90th anniversary of the city of Venice got under way in the fall at the Venice Museum & Archives, which has a wonderful exhibit about the city’s history.

In conjunction with the anniversary, we featured stories in Our Town by local historian Larry Humes, who wrote about the Armada Road Multi-Family Historic District, about the area on Miami Avenue that is today known as Burgundy Square and most recently about the early farm area.

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