DeFuniak Springs, Florida  is known for its historical residential district that’s “clustered around a perfectly round, spring-fed lake, exactly a mile in circumference.”


Interpretive Signs for a Self-Guided Walking Trail

After DeFuniak Springs received a $49,500 grant from the Florida Division of Historical Resources, the city began searching for interpretive signs to create a self-guided walking tour around the lake. They wanted to educate heritage buffs on the area’s historical significance, which includes visits from famous abolitionist Harriet Beecher Stowe, American Red Cross Founder Clara Barton, and Woodrow Wilson’s Vice President Thomas Marshall, among others.

Beginning in 1885, the trail site housed the campus of the Florida Chautauqua Assembly, an annual, multi-week event that attracted up to 4,000 daily visitors in its heyday. In order to commemorate the Assembly site, the city needed illustrative interpretive signs that could accommodate multiple images, graphics and colors. They needed custom design and manufacturing from Arete’s Site Essentials brand.



Interpretive signage made from Dendron high-pressure laminate graphic panels is commonly used as outdoor graphic displays, highlighting nature exhibits or historic landmarks. Seen in zoos, museums, amusement parks and along nature trails, interpretive signs incorporate high-quality graphic panels with mounting systems to create interactive displays.

Dendron™ is backed by a ten-year warranty. Made from recycled content, this durable sign material resists moisture, fading, scratches and graffiti, making it the ideal choice for the outdoor signage on the city’s historic walking trail.


Custom interpretive signs with a historical twist

Custom interpretive signs are a Site Essentials specialty. Our team worked closely with the city to create a customized presentation for the historical grant that highlighted the use of Dendron™ graphic sign panels for the lakefront trail.

During the project, DeFuniak Springs sought out a more classic mounting solution than the standard 4×4 aluminum posts. After discovering that the city had 100-year-old cast iron lamp posts that had been previously removed and slated for disposal, the Site Essentials crew tracked down the lamp posts and carefully selected the best of the bunch.

Sandblasting ensued, followed by priming and painting. The resulting aesthetic was the perfect complement to the historical interpretive signs. Repurposing the massive lamp posts to give them new life was a huge victory and awesome solution for this unique project. By refurbishing what the city already had, they found exactly what they needed, and in time to make the grant’s expiration date.

Site Essentials added finishing touches, including custom-fabricated, round, fluted posts painted to match the sign’s main panels. As a result, the entire project adhered to historical standards that were period-correct, with the unexpected discovery of recyclable antique lamp posts as the icing on the cake.

Watch the video below to see the interpretive signs on the trail.

Decorative street signs and wayfinding signs for your community

Read the DeFuniak Springs’ Press Release about Site Essentials’ historic interpretive signs

signage improves communities

Most Recent Projects
Get In Touch

Have a question?<br>Send us a quick email and we'll get back to you shortly.

Not readable? Change text. captcha txt