Spanish galleon at Children's Museum in Jensen Beach opens to public

Kiersten Adams plays in the galley of the 18th century Spanish galleonPhoto Grayson Hoffman

By Kim Hughes - TC Palm

Although the newest exhibit at the Children's Museum of the Treasure Coast — a replica of a Spanish galleon named the "Marti Frances" — has only been open since Monday, so far it's getting a big thumbs-up from kids and parents alike.

The 62-foot ship is a full-size replica of a 1600s Spanish galleon and features two stories and 15 interactive, hands-on exhibits. Named after two of its biggest beneficiaries, Marti Huizenga, wife of businessman H. Wayne Huizenga, and the Frances Langford Foundation, created by the late singer/actress, the ship cost approximately $600,000. Work on the project began in early November.

The upper deck was closed Thursday as installers from Sparks Exhibits in Orlando fine-tuned some of the stations. Still, there was still plenty to do.

John Handlen of Jensen Beach visited the exhibit with his daughter, Haley, 6. Frequent museum visitors, they came to check out the newest offering after Handlen's sister told him it had opened this week.

"It's pretty impressive. I didn't know it was going to be this big," he said.

Haley, a kindergartner at First Baptist Christian School in Stuart, enjoyed the "What's Cooking?" station that allows guests to pretend to cook in the ship's galley.


Spanish galleon Treasure Coast Jensen Beach Children Museum Marti Frances