Boca Raton Happenings

Boca Raton of Old

Mizner Park Boca raton

Growing up in South Florida and Boca Raton in the early 80’s was quite different then today. It seemed like if you went West of Dixie Highway you would get lost. For many of you who grew up here in moved here just recently there is a great facebook group called Old Boca 2 which shows the Boca of old. You can really appreciate seeing the photos of Boca back even before my time there. Many are dating back to the early 70’s and my has it changed . It was always a desirable place to visit or live but it has changed.  It is interesting to see what it used to look like as well as the old establishments that once dominated the area.

Boca Raton businesses

Old fitness buffs will remember the Key Gym just off 20th St where everyone had their own key, not a fab or card but an actual key so you could train anytime of day. It wasn’t a health club by any means but a pure gym. No aerobics classes here. They did have the men and woman on separate floors.  Occasionally one of the hard core woman would wander up to the men’s floor upstairs. I remember going to one of the first Mr. Palm Coast body building contests.

Then came the Fountain of Health of US 1 where they had the full club amenities, indoor pool, aerobics classes for woman and a abundance of equipment. Boca was starting to change and grow. Next I remember The Olympiad,  all the way out past 95 on Military Trail. The Northern type club was moving in. This club had  racquetball courts, gym , pool and even a bar/restaurant on site.

Boca Raton Malls

Old timers remember Boca Mall where Mizner Park is now located. This was before Town Center which featured stores like Burdines and Jordan Marsh.  Boca Mall can best be remembered for the Dive Bar as the last holdout before they could build Mizner Park. Mizner Park built around the Dive Bar until they finally sold their lease rights and closed. Dennys was on the corner where the outdoor stage is. Mizner was suppose to be one of the first mixed use projects with condos upstairs with roof top pool  and a mix of cultural and business on the ground floors. The Boca raton Art Museum, The Cartoon Museum were just  a few places which eventually all failed and turned into a retail mall.

Mizner Park Homes

Mizner Park was the beginning of developing Downtown Boca. The Golden Triangle behind Mizner Park which was once just a typical old Boca Raton neighborhood was going to turn into the hot neighborhood in Boca. Walk to Mizner Park and downtown Boca. Close to the beach. The old style ranch style homes from the late 50’s were going to be torn down and mini mansions put up. This $100,000 neighborhood would soon turn into a million dollar neighborhood.

The move to Northern Palm Beach County soon became evident during the building boom of 2000 where once  very few people lived and it was still a little quiet town was about to explode. MacArthur which owned all the land in Northen Palm Beach County was selling off thousands of acres of land for development. The real estate boom perpetuated this move to Jupiter and Palm Beach Gardens. Homes in Jupiter would soon be the rage as the once small town would soon become the hottest town in Palm Beach County to live.