Fernandina Beach Main Street gets state designation

FERNANDINA BEACH, Fla. – Main Street in Fernandina Beach has been designated Florida's Main Street Community of the Month for August 2017, Secretary of State Ken Detzner announced Friday.

Communities are selected based on their participation in the Florida Main Street program. Fernandina Beach was also designated as a Florida Main Street community in 2015, and has already garnered $12,404,834 in public/private rehabilitation funds and $11,071,784 in new private/public construction.

"Fernandina Beach is a vibrant town that is working to build its future on its remarkable past,” Detzner said. “Fernandina Beach downtown has a rich history, and its waterfront location radiates Southern charm, making it an enticing and fun destination for locals and visitors."

Fernandina Beach is located on Amelia Island, known as the Isle of 8 Flags, because it is the only municipality in the United States to have flown the flags of eight different nationalities. First ruled by France, then Spain, Great Britain and Spain again, Fernandina next flew the Patriot flag, the Green Cross of Florida, the Mexican Rebel flag, the flag of the Confederacy and finally, the flag of the United States.

The National Register Historic District spans more than 50 blocks and today features an array of shops, restaurants and beautifully preserved architecture. Visitors can tour the area in a horse-drawn carriage, book a room in one of the many bed and breakfast inns or take a boat ride from the harbor to watch the sunset. The Fernandina Beach Ambassadors welcome visitors at the historic Train Depot, now the Amelia Island Welcome Center, where historic preservation meets 21st century technology.

Travel + Leisure magazine ranked Fernandina Beach 19th on its list of America’s Quirkiest Towns, as well as 3rd on its list of America’s Most Romantic Towns. It was also included on Huffington Post’s Best Beach Towns, along with dozens of other accolades.

Fernandina Beach holds several festivals each year. The Fernandina Shrimp Festival, held the first weekend in May, draws as many as 100,000 tourists. The Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance brings classic automobiles and enthusiasts from around the world. 

The Florida Main Street program is hosting the 2017 Florida Main Street Conference in Fernandina Beach next week. The conference is open to anyone interested in historic downtowns and historic preservation.