22 January 2010

Taste of History Date

On Monday, Matt and I went on a date since we both had the day off for MLK day. Our first stop was for lunch at the Old World Cheese Shop, a magnificent little sandwich place where everything is named after characters from Robin Hood. The food was wonderful and I encourage all Tampa locals to visit!


After lunch, we went to downtown Ybor to visit the Ybor History Museum which was a cute and small little thing and an amazing $4 for admission. We learned a lot about Vicente Ybor who founded the city in order to make cigars.

The museum is now in what used to be the Ferlita Bakery, built and run by Italian Immigrants in the late 1800s.  The photos above show us peeking into two of the original brick ovens.

After we toured the museum, the docent took us next door to a restored "casita."  Two men in our group were reunited after years of separation.  It turns out they were childhood friends who lived in one of the casitas of Ybor while one man's father worked in the Columbia restaurant and the other man's father rolled cigars in one of the factories.  It was incredible watching their excitement and recollection of their childhood and hearing about how they'd hold their own "club" (like the Italian Club or the Centro Asturiano -- buildings home to cultural community events in the city) under their family's casita.

Matt and I enjoyed learning a little bit about the area we live in.  Since we'll most likely be moving to another state at the end of the year, we want to make a habit of visiting history museums around our area so we have something a little deeper to take with us, wherever we go.

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