ENTERPRISE HERITAGE CENTER

In early 2004, the Volusia County School Board donated the historic Enterprise Elementary School building (c. 1936) to The Enterprise Preservation Society.

To escape demolition, the 3,000 sq. foot building, originally used foreducating grades 7-10 and then as a community food pantry, had to be moved from the school campus.

In June of 2007, the building was moved about 1/8 of a mile across Main Street, where it begins its new life as The Enterprise Heritage Center and Town Hall. The interior of the building is in surprisingly good shape, retaining many of its original features, especially on the second floor.

After renovation, the building will be open to the public, as a permanent display space for the extensive collection of historic letters, documents, photos, artifacts and other material owned by The Enterprise Preservation Society. These important and valuable items relate to the history of Enterprise and surrounding communities such as Stone Island and Garfield. In addition, the Heritage Center will feature a 1930's-era classroom; exhibits on Enterprise history and area ecology, a gallery for works by local artists, community meeting space, archives and library space as well as office space for the Society.

"It is rare for a preservation society to have a building, such as the Enterprise Elementary School Building, to be donated toward such a culturally important cause," said Sally Landis Bohon, then President of the West Volusia Historical Society.

An article with photo of The Heritage Center was featured in the Summer 2004 issue of The Florida Preservationist Magazine.

In November 2004, the Enterprise Heritage Center booth and exhibit was honored with a first place award at the Volusia County Fair.

The 1.5 acre site was purchased and donated by Roy and Sandra Walters of Stone Island, and the value of the purchase was used as matching funds for a grant from Volusia ECHO in 2005 for $80,000 which paid for the bulk of the building move.

In 2008 EPS was awarded a second ECHO grant for $140,000 to pay for much of the site work and building foundations.  The matching funds for this grant consisted of a $25,000 gift from Progress Energy, $50,000 from years of EPS fundraising and in-kind donations of goods and services from Performance Construction (Dustin Johns), Construction Specialties (Don Vandemark) and Economy Electric among others.  Progress Energy has completed its gallery sponsorship by pledging another $25,000 over the next five years.

After many revisions and almost two years, our final renovation design drawings have been approved and permitted by Volusia County.  If all goes well, we’ll be able to open the doors of the Heritage Center by the end of 2012.  In the interim, between securing the building and getting the permit, an Intrepid group of volunteers led by Roy Walters has been painstakingly removing years of built-up dirt, paint and unknown substances, and re-staining and varnishing all of the original wood work. 

For more information or if you would like to volunteer to help, please contact Carol Aymar, EPS Membership Chair: Phone 407-701-4377 or email aymarc@live.com.

 If you would like to make a donation to the Heritage Center project, please make your check payable to Enterprise Preservation Society and mark for "EHC project." Mail to EPS, PO Box 4015, Enterprise, Florida 32725.

*Enterprise Preservation Society is a 501c.3 non-profit organization.