November 30, 2017 – (Key West, FL) Key West Naval Air Station centennial to be celebrated at Custom House Museum

Key West Art & Historical Society hosts Naval Air Station Key West’s centennial celebration on Thursday, December 7, from 5:00-8:00pm at the Custom House Museum, with a special exhibit and reception kicked off with opening remarks by Commanding Officer Capt. Bobby Baker promptly at 5:00pm.

The public is invited, with a special call to active and retired military, who are encouraged to wear their uniforms to be photographed in front of Seward Johnson’s sculpture, “Embracing Peace,” a 25-foot tall bronze rendition of the iconic picture of a sailor kissing a nurse at the end of World War II.

“Our armed services are crucial to our country, and in celebrating the centenary of naval aviation in Key West, we have recognized the symbiotic relationship enjoyed by the Navy and Florida Keys community,” says Society Curator Cori Convertito, Ph.D.

The special exhibit focuses on the region’s naval aviation, a natural complement to the museum’s current “The Navy in Key West” exhibit of unique images, artifacts, uniforms, military memorabilia, and interactive displays about Key West’s maritime past.

“A number of our museum visitors actually served in Key West during various periods, including World War II, the Cuban Missile Crisis, and the Cold War,” says Convertito. “Engaging with them and hearing their stories has made this extra special.”

Both the Naval Air Station centennial exhibit and the landmark “The Navy in Key West” exhibit run until the year’s end.

For more information, contact Cori Convertito, Ph.D., at cconvertitofarrar@kwahs.org or 305.295.6616 x112. Your Museums.  Your Community.  It takes an Island.

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Photo, NAS Key West:

Naval Aviator No.2612, Ensign Paul E. Reams stands on US Navy seaplane No.2599 in Key West, c1918-1919. Reams was one of the first naval aviators in Key West, flying several types of aircraft including the Curtiss Model N-9, Aeromarine 39, and Curtiss Model H-16. Key West Art & Historical Society hosts a special exhibit and reception celebrating Naval Air Station Key West’s centennial on Thursday, December 7, from 5:00-8:00pm at the Custom House Museum.

(Image courtesy of NAS Key West).