Sunday, October 21, 2012

Stuart Offers Picturesque Water View and Small-Town Charm

I drove down Route 1 from Vero Beach to Stuart. There are many antiques and second-hand stores along the way.

Daylight was waning, so I didn't stop. Someday I will return and take my time.

I haven't stopped in Stuart since 2003. I've always enjoyed it's small-town charm and small parks on the water.

The lock and chain attests that crime is not completely unknown, however petty.

This mural with tile insets was one of the first things I observed after I parked. Parking is still free, by the way, not like here in downtown and beachside Fort Lauderdale.

Like so many other South Florida town, Stuart has taken care to maximize its old-time appeal.

This building advertises a Stuart claim to fame.

I'm not sure if I completely like it. Before, Stuart was just an old town; now it has uniformly lettered signs with an antique script and Caribbean-colored storefronts that look like a movie set.

Theater with live band music coming from behind the closed doors -- probably a practice session.

Garden entry to attorneys' office evokes memories of New Orleans.

Charming pink cottage advertises rooms available. I believe the back yard is on the water.

I wouldn't mind living in an apartment with a balcony overlooking the small-town doings.

If you look closely, you may see a dancing woman and a parrot on the trompe l'oeil balcony that decorates the facade of the plain exterior wall.

Fake window scenes between real shutter further the illusion.

Built along the river, Stuart has preserved several places where all residents can enjoy the view -- unlike the Palm Beach to Miami metroplex where tall condos and hotels dominate the sands.

Here some folks enjoy cool evening breezes, and it looked like a preacher or other speaker might have been preparing for a presentation.

A final look at Stuart -- this sailfish fountain shining brilliantly as it was backlit by a bright sunset.

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