For those who seek true inspiration and put personal thought into holiday shopping, there are lots of options from our slice of paradise that make great gifts for the special people on your list and most are only available locally. We’ve gathered a unique list of gift ideas that reflect the spirit, culture and heritage of the Treasure Coast.
Sea Turtle Gifts
Florida beaches host 90% of sea turtle nesting in the continental U.S. and the contiguous beaches of Brevard, Indian River, St. Lucie, Martin and Palm Beach counties are the most important loggerhead nursery areas in the Western Hemisphere. It isn’t any wonder why Treasure Coast residents have a special relationship with these ancient and environmentally significant ocean voyagers. Sea turtles inspire a huge assortment of wonderful gifts guaranteed to please any nature lover and fit any budget. Wall art, sculptures, carvings, jewelry, and home décor are just a handful of readily available items abundant throughout the area’s local retailers, museums, farm markets, and street fairs.
Indian River Citrus
Did you know that Indian River Citrus is considered some of the best in the world? The thin 200 mile stretch of land on the Indian River Lagoon from just south of Flagler Beach to West Palm produces citrus that is so special that it has its own designation protected by the Federal Trade Commission. Citrus gifts bring Florida sunshine to anyone on your list, no matter their local weather. Most sellers in the area ship everything from crates of sweet honeybell oranges, tangerines, and grapefruit to gourmet fruit baskets and hand-crafted citrus treats. 1715 Spanish Fleet Artifacts Nothing says “Treasure Coast” like real treasure! Named for the Spanish Treasure Fleet lost in a 1715 hurricane right off our shores, the region’s shipwrecks have and continue to produce a wealth of artifacts and coins. Numerous area dealers and museums offer a variety of authentic gold and silver coins from the fleet often crafted pendants, bracelets, and earrings, and several even offer re-creations if the real deal isn’t in your budget. Other 1715 Fleet inspired giving can include books and nautical artifacts.
The legendary artistry of the Florida Highwaymen is a cornerstone of Florida culture. From the mid 1950’s to the 1980’s a group of 26 African American artists taught by Alfred “Bean” Backus, created a body of work of more than 200,000 paintings reflecting authentic Florida landscape. Deemed unacceptable at the time by galleries, the artists sold the paintings door-to-door and from the trunks of their cars. Today many of the original works sell for as much as tens of thousands but there are still many more available at lower price points as well as gift items and books featuring the works of A.E Backus and the original painters.
Map artistry is growing in popularity and dare we say that our slice of Florida’s east coast produces some of the most interesting maps? For anyone with an affinity for the Treasure Coast, the opportunity to adorn their home with a beautiful hand-made map will surely be appreciated. Maps of the area’s shipwrecks are always a hit but there are also a growing number of local artists who create stunning artwork featuring the physical features of the seaside towns of Fort Pierce, Vero Beach, and Sebastian including renderings of the barrier island and the Indian River Lagoon.
May We Recommend….
Here are a few local retailers and museums where you can find many of the items in this gift guide. Enjoy your holiday shopping! Leigh Jewelers, West Bay Trading Company, The Backus Museum, Vero Beach Museum of Art, All Thru the House, Indian River Citrus Museum, Countryside Citrus, Castle Antiques, Grant Antiques Mall, Fort Pierce Farmers Market.