Brooksville is a reflection of “the Old South.” It grew from two communities: Fort DeSoto and Pierceville. In 1843, Hernando County incorporated what is today known as Pasco, Hernando and Citrus Counties. Visiting Brooksville today brings southern hospitality to fun, adventure, shopping, dining and a myriad of discoveries.
The city of Brooksville is the county seat of Hernando County, Florida. As of the 2010 census, it had a population of 7,719 and an area of 10.9 square miles. The geographic center of the State of Florida is 12 miles north-northwest of Brooksville.
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In 2014, Eric Gallery and Todd Smith came to Brooksville. They had lived in Tampa for years, Eric working in Customer Service Management and Todd in Restaurant Management. Tired of the rat race, they chose to move to Brooksville and open a casual urban eatery. Chop Block Grill was begun… Read More
In 2009, the Live Oak Theatre (LOT) was founded by Randi and Keith Olsen, Vince Vanni, Barbara Manuel, Art and Ellen Sanborn (who head up YWAM Tampa), and a team of mission-minded Christians, to create and produce top-notch family-friendly shows. The founders wanted to provide ‘positive artistic experiences in the… Read More
Military veterans and first responders have long been considered heroes. That honorific has been increased many-fold over the last several years, and rightly so. As our country and world have become more populated, the conflicts and crime rates have reached significant numbers. Our military and law enforcement agencies have had… Read More
On February 29, 2020, twenty-one mermaids “ventured outside the pristine waters of Weeki Wachee to visit Hernando County’s historic city of Brooksville.” according to the Florida Mermaid Trail website. Each mermaid has been captured in a bronze statue and now… Read More
On January 19, 2021, the City Council of the City of Brooksville will live-stream it’s first meeting since upgrading its video equipment. Council Chamber Receives Live streaming Video Upgrade With the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, the City of Brooksville implemented new methods to conduct Council Meetings to ensure public… Read More
Advanced Cancer Treatment Centers is pleased to announce that its radiation oncology staff has moved to its new location at 15211 Cortez Boulevard, Brooksville, Florida 34613 (just east of the Suncoast Parkway on State Road 50). Call 352-345-4565 to schedule an appointment. Advanced Cancer Treatment Centers’ Radiation Oncologists Now Treating… Read More
The Hernando County Building and Zoning Department will implement new interim lobby hours at their office, located at 789 Providence Boulevard in Brooksville, effective January 19, 2021. New interim lobby hours for Building and Zoning department The lobby area will be open to the public Monday through Friday from… Read More
Live Oak Theatre has announced the cast of “The Importance of Being Earnest.” Live Oak Theatre Announces the Cast of “The Importance of Being Earnest” The cast is as follows: John Worthing, J.P. – Spencer Mitten and Ben Staley Algernon Moncrieff – Jacob Ivey and Kaiden Rossiter Lady Bracknell –… Read More
Tickets are now on sale for Live Oak Theatre’s “The Importance of Being Earnest.” This critically acclaimed comedy will be presented at the Carol & Frank Morsani Center for the Arts, 21030 Cortez Boulevard, Brooksville, Florida, on February 5, 6, 7. 12, 13, & 14. All seating is socially distanced… Read More
The City Council of the City of Brooksville has adopted the 2021 Holiday and Meeting Schedules, observing ten national holidays. All Brooksville City offices will be closed based on the 2021 Holiday schedule offered below. These offices will resume normal operation from 8:00 am to 5:00 pm following the… Read More
The St. Anthony the Abbot Knights of Columbus Council 6800 is pleased to announce that it had once again earned the distinction of the Star Council Award. St. Anthony the Abbot Knights of Columbus Council 6800 Earns “Star Council Award” for Second Year in a Row To earn the… Read More
On December 21, 2020, the Brooksville City Council honored local restaurant, Luigi’s Pizza, in celebration of their 50th anniversary. In 1970, Luigi’s was founded by Louis Hallal and Fred Kirshy. Brothers-in-law Louis and Fred moved to Brooksville in 1969 from Pawtucket, Rhode Island, and Brooklyn, New York, with the idea… Read More
On December 21, 2020, Brooksville City Manager, Mark Kutney announced to City Council that the Free Disposable Face Mask Distribution Program is ready for implementation. Free disposable masks will be made eligible to residents within Brooksville City limits beginning January 4, 2021. Residents may obtain one free mask kit per… Read More
Due to inclement weather set to come through on Wednesday, December 16th we have decided to cancel the events scheduled on that date. This includes Christmas Carriage Rides, Christmas Concert on Main Street, Family Christmas Nights, and the… Read More
On December 7, 2020, the Brooksville City Council held a Swearing-in Ceremony to welcome in the newly elected Council members. Brooksville City Council Swears in New Members The event was held at the Jerome Brown Community Center located in Tom Von Park in order to accommodate the large… Read More
Quick Brooksville History
Brooksville was originally known as Melendez and then Benton. Incorporated in 1856, it is a wonderful city featuring a hilly terrain that ranges in elevation from 175 to 274 feet. There is a long history of successful planters, growers, and cattlemen in and around Brooksville.
Its southern background is reflected in its name, honoring South Carolina Congressman Preston Brooks who is best noted for hitting abolitionist Senator Charles Sumner on the head with his cane.
The downtown area features the iconic Hernando Courthouse, along with great shopping in unique stores featuring everything from antiques, outfits, high-end resales, stationery, flowers and bric-a-brac to formal gowns – and a centennial hardware store. Some streets still show the Augusta bricks laid by hand.
Visiting Brooksville Today
There are several downtown restaurants and coffee shops, along with legal and banking offices, a library and a park. Brooksville is working hard to revive its downtown to attract more visitors and became a Florida Main Street community in 2016.
They hold several events in the downtown area as well as host farmers and artist markets, as well as motorcycle rallies and holiday events.
Local art is displayed in several downtown businesses and buildings, as well as murals painted throughout the downtown area. A walking tour map of the downtown murals may be found here.
The Brooksville City Hall building houses a changing art exhibit in The Uptown Gallery, and all are welcome. There is no charge.
The architecture is interesting in several buildings and a wonderful historic walking tour can be had for the simple act of following the map here. If you would like more information about each building on the historic tour, download the complete guide here.
Visit the May Stringer Museum, located at 600 West Jefferson. Housed in the 1850 Stringer House, a Queen Anne masterpiece with a four-story tower, this historic building is reputed to be haunted.
F. L. Stringer was a State Senator and judge. With thousands of historic artifacts and regular tours, it commemorates the Civil War era and provides a glimpse at the lifestyle and relics of a gone but not forgotten segment of American history. Ghost tours are held on Friday and Saturday nights by reservation.
There are a historic train depot museum and one-room schoolhouse to visit on Russell Street.
Continue east to find another wonderful shopping area, featuring the Hawkins House, Transformed Treasures, The Wired Bird, and the Florida Cracker Trading Company and Tap Room. There is even an old-fashioned Coney Island where it is rumored that Elvis Presley may have eaten many years ago.
Expanding Beyond Brooksville’s City Limits
If you travel north on US 41, you can visit the historic Chinsegut Manor House at the Chinsegut Retreat Center and rediscover the magic that caused its last private owners to name it Chinsegut, meaning, “a place where lost things are found.” Learn their story of courage and civil rights for all.
Then spend the night in one of the unique cabins on the former plantation’s grounds. The cabins are part of a wonderful Retreat Center offering a dining hall, conference room, fire pit and lots of space to get out and make and event extra special.
*Please note that Chinsegut Hill Museum is temporarily closed.
Head back south on U.S. 41 and then travel east on S.R. 50/U.S. 98. Make a right on Spring Lake Highway (541) and follow it to the top of the hill. On the left is Boyett’s Grove Citrus and Timeless Attraction. Here you will find a wonderful zoo where you can feed the animals, a dinosaur cave, aquariums, birds, snakes, alligators and more.
A putt-putt golf course winds through part of this fun-filled tourist trap. There’s even a snack bar, ice cream parlor, and an old fashioned Florida gift shop! It’s one of my favorite places on the Nature Coast.