For many years, I have often visited Coconut Grove, Florida, because I have family nearby. This Thanksgiving I discovered that Coconut Grove has a group of fiberglass Peacocks on display around town. Appropriately one is on display in front of St. Stephen’s Episcopal church adjacent to Peacock park, where The Grove began. During the 1860s Mr. and Mrs. Peacock, a British couple from the Bahamas, arrived and built the Peacock Inn on the site of the present Peacock Park, and the town grew around it. Today Peacock Park has a public sports field, picnic tables, and a long wood deck built above the shoreline, which overlooks the fleet of sailboats on the mooring field and beyond to Dinner Key Picnic Islands Park, a group of small keys frequented by boaters and fishermen.
Another Peacock is on display along the curve where Bayshore Drive begins, in front of the Coconut Grove Sailing Club. A colorful Peacock sits on the epicenter of the Grove, the junction of McFarland, Main, and Grand Avenue where the CocoWalk shops are, plus Johnny Rockets retro diner and surrounded by all things Grove, including the Historic Barnacle waterfront mansion and Coconut Grove Playhouse, many unique shops and outdoor restaurants.
At a quarter, the Coconut Grove Circulator trolley is a fantastic bargain that saves a lot of walking around town. Running east on Grand, it turns south on McFarland and follows Bayshore Drive, passing the Dinner Key Marina and City Hall, which in days of Yore was the Pan American World Airways Seaplane base, then gets back on Bayshore, passing another Peacock, quick left on Aviation Avenue, left again on Tigertail heading west to Mary Street, quick left to Grand Avenue, where it turns to the east and passes Cocowalk. A stately Peacock sits at Mary and Grand.
Several more Peacocks are strewn about, so check out http://www.coconutgrovepeacocktour.com
Besides the display Peacocks, there are those of the natural variety. In late 2009 several Peacocks and Peahens were hanging out around Micanopy Avenue near Bayshore Drive, which they would cross onto Kennedy Park and hide among the Mangrove trees along the shore. Apparently they put on a loud lusty mating display, which prompted a doctor living in the area to call Grove officials, which had the cocks banished to a farm beyond the Burbs. More recently the lonely Peahens were loudly wailing, prompting another roundup loudly protested by most residents. Leave our Peacocks alone.