• The Florida panther's steely gaze - NPS/RALPH ARWOOD

    Big Cypress

    National Preserve Florida

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  • Annual 60-Day ORV Closure for Wheeled Vehicles

    Beginning at 12:01 am Monday, June 2, the annual 60-day recreational ORV closure for all units of the Preserve that allow for wheeled ORV access will begin. The closure will be lifted on Friday, August 1. More »

  • Campground Closure

    All campgrounds but Midway and the loop in the Bear Island Campground are closed through August 29. More »

  • Interstate 75 Mile Marker 63 Closure

    Beginning summer of 2013, the rest area and backcountry access at Mile Marker 63 will be closed due to construction. More »

2013 Swamp Heritage Festival

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Mark you calendars! Join us on December 7, 2013, from 10:00 to 4:00 pm, at the Big Cypress Swamp Welcome Center as we celebrate the history and culture of South Florida for the third annual Swamp Heritage Festival. Learn about the history of this rugged, yet beautiful environment through park rangers, volunteers, local experts and residents that will share their love of the swamp through programs, activities, and thought-provoking presentations.

This FREE family-friendly event shines a spotlight upon the inhabitants of early South Florida, whose rugged strength and pioneering spirit contributed to the shaping of today's unique and diverse culture. Through living history demonstrations, informative presentations, and exhibits everyone can learn what daily life was like in such a remote, and at times, inhospitable place. These unique chapters in American history add to the rich and colorful tableau that comprises our shared past and present.

Click here to view a printable schedule of presentations, and here to view a list of all presenters, exhibitors and supporters.

What to expect

* Fascinating Exhibits
* Live Performances

* Powerful Demonstrations and Story Telling at the Campfire Corner
* Thought-provoking Presentations
* Palate-pleasing local food by Camellia Street Grill

If you would like to participate in this event as an exhibitor, or demonstrate your craft, please contact Jill Wilson at 239-695-4758, or click here to learn more about how you can get involved!

PLEASE NOTE: There is limited seating and shade available at the Swamp Heritage Festival, so please feel free to bring your own chair or blanket to sit on and plenty of sunscreen and a hat to wear for protection from the sun.

 
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This festival has been made possible through the generous support of the South Florida National Parks Trust and the Florida National Parks Association
 

This festival provides a venue for individuals and groups with a deep connection to the Big Cypress Swamp an opportunity to share stories of the past and hopes for the future related to this special place. The views and opinions of participants are not necessarily those of the National Park Service.

 

Did You Know?

Bear in a tree.

Many do not expect to see bears in Florida. Actually, we have a healthy population within the state. Big Cypress is one of their ideal habitats in Southwest Florida. If camping in the area, be sure to keep your camp "bear proof."