Scott Homan, co-owner of Clermont’s Citrus Tower alongside his wife, Heather, was the featured speaker at the April meeting of the South Lake County Historical Society. Scott’s roots go deep in Clermont. His grandmother was the town’s librarian for many years, his father is the previous owner of the Tower and his brother owns a small business in town. So, when he says he loves this area and wants to see the Citrus Tower become an important part of the city’s future, one has to believe him.
In his presentation, Scott shared pictures of the various architectural drawings of proposed plans for the Tower and pictures from the past when the Citrus Tower was the third most popular tourist attraction in Florida. He also showed pictures and shared information about some of the businesses that once occupied the Tower. In fact, when it first opened, it was home to a glassblowing business, a candy factory, a gift shop, a restaurant, and a packing place where tourists could pack their citrus to ship home so it would be waiting for them when they got there. There were even Duck Boat rides on Lake Minneola.
Scott then talked about their immediate plans for the Tower, and shared his dreams for its future, revealing that soon the Tower will be home to Mountaineer Coffee which will feature home-made pop-tarts, an old time feel Tower Arcade, a board game store and play space featuring Happy Trails games and a restaurant. Think about being more than 200 feet up in the Tower and drinking a cup of coffee and watching the sun rise or set. Or how about watching a rocket launch? It could happen because the Tower will now have special times and prices for all that.
The Citrus Tower has a long and proud history in Clermont and Scott is excited to be a part of seeing that continue. Learn more about the Citrus Tower on their Facebook page and learn more about the history of Clermont in general at the Historic Village 490 West Ave. The Village is open every Friday between 1:00 and 3:00 PM or on Saturday or Sunday between 1:00 and 4:00 PM. The Village is a unique partnership between the City of Clermont and the South Lake County Historical Society that is designed to give visitors a look into life in this area between the late 1800’s and the end of World War II. Conveniently located on the shores of Lake Minneola and close to restaurants and the historic downtown shopping district, the Village is the ideal place to spend part of a relaxing spring afternoon. Admission to the Village is always free but a donation of $3.00 per person is requested.
If you are interested in history in general or the history of Lake County in particular, contact the South Lake County Historical Society by going to our website, ClermontVillage.org; by calling our manager, Roxanne Brown, at 352-432-3496 or by attending our membership meetings which are held on the second Monday of every month at 7:00 PM in the Train Depot in the Historic Village. Our next meeting is May 13th.