Koreshan State Park, located at 3800 Corkscrew Road in Estero FL, has been gaining popularity recently thanks to an increase in programs, events and publicity, according to this Naples Daily News article and Park Services Specialist Mike Heare.
“Our attendance and revenues have been increasing every month,” he said. “For the last 14 months, our attendance has been beyond state averages. It’s really, really gone up.”
The Very Popular Ghost Walk
In fact, the final Ghost Walk of the season sold out weeks in advance, as did the Afternoon Teas.
“There really is an incredible demand,” she said. “It’s just wonderful. Everything we raise stays in the park.”
Great Art in a Great Park
The big event at Koreshan Park this month is “Great Art in a Great Park,” a local art show, which drew more than 900 visitors to the park in its inaugural season last year.
“Sales were good, and people enjoyed it,” Heare said. “It was the best, first-time event we’ve ever had.”
Estero FL Concert Series
Another prominent and relatively new event at Koreshan is the Estero FL Concert Series, presented by the Russian Cultural Center.
Classical musicians Boris Sandler and Bella Gutshtein will pack the historic Art Hall, carrying on the tradition of the Koreshans—who had the first orchestra in Southwest Florida—according to the Daily News article.
Gutshtein will be playing the Koreshans’ original 1885 Steinway piano— along with Sandler on violin and Adam Satinsky on cello on April 19. A limited number of tickets at $34 a pop are still available for that concert, as well as the May 13 concert featuring music by Schubert.
Kayaking tours are $45, including equipment, and launch daily from the Koreshan Park boat ramp. After the 2-hour paddle, guests may walk the bamboo trail or explore the historic buildings.
“We’re excited about this partnership with the park staff and volunteers to bring this opportunity to learn about the local ecosystem and the history of the Koreshans,” said Peg Egan, a Florida Master Naturalist with the College of Life Foundation.
Mary Aleba organizes Sunday Musicals at the Koreshan Art Hall every Sunday afternoon at 1:30 p.m.
Genres include gospel, Big Band, piano music and Oldies. And the Sunday Musicals season will close with the Estero High School Jazz Band on March 30.
Weekly Ranger Programs
Other weekly Ranger Programs, which are included with park admission, include demonstrations of the 80 HP Fairbanks Morse Engine and Large Machine Shop on Saturdays and Dutch oven Bread Making on Sundays. And the Florida Cracker Cowboys demonstrate the art of camp kitchen campfire cooking, while telling stories of yesteryear, on Thursdays at 11:30 a.m.
Vintage Car Show and Antique Engine Show Coming up Soon!
The final big events of the season will be a Vintage Car Show on March 1 and an Antique Engine Show March 15-16.
“We’re a happening place,” said Aleba. “In the high season, we’re here and we’re totally into it.”
Admission is $2 for a walk or bike in and $5 per vehicle with 2-8 occupants.