Tropical Acres Reopens Tomorrow
Since 1949, Tropical Acres has stood as a relic of an era in Florida when men wore jackets to dine and the Everglades started just west of the Florida East Coast Railway train tracks. The restaurant was as known for the simple steaks and fried shrimp it served as it was for its neon sign pointing tourists west from Federal Highway.
Michael Greenlaw says that while assessing damage, workers found the original tongue-and-groove walls behind paneling, inspiring his family to restore the restaurant to the way it had looked in the 1940s. The rebuild included plumbing and electrical work in the kitchen as well as new carpet and wall coverings in the dining room. Seventy-five percent of the kitchen equipment was salvaged.
"The city has been great in helping us get back on our feet," says Greenlaw. Between 55 and 60 of the original 65 workers are slated to return.
This 1970s menu is part of an exhibit in the Broward County Library: "Eating in South Florida: 1880s -1980s," on display through the end of the month. Can't make the reopening? Look to this space Wednesday for the update.
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