Interesting Facts About Florida

Florida is a state located in the southeastern region of the United States, bordering Alabama to the northwest and Georgia to the northeast. Much of the land mass of the state is a large peninsula with the Gulf of Mexico to the west and the Atlantic Ocean to the east. Most of Florida has a humid subtropical climate; southern Florida has a tropical climate. Florida was named by Juan Ponce de León, who landed on the peninsula on April 2, 1513, during Pascua Florida (Spanish for “Flowery Easter,” referring to the Easter season). Florida is the fourth most populous state in the U.S.

  • The United States city with the highest rate of lightning strikes per capita is Clearwater.
  • Key West has the highest average temperature in the United States.
  • Gatorade was named for the University of Florida Gators where the drink was first developed.
  • The crocodile is classified as an endangered species and there are only 400 to 500 remaining in Florida.
  • The Saint John’s River is one of the few rivers that flows north instead of south.
  • The largest lake in Florida is Lake Okeechobee.
  • Young aviator Tony Jannus made history on January 1, 1914 when he flew the world’s first scheduled passenger service airline flight from St. Petersburg’s downtown yacht basin to Tampa.
  • The Florida Panther is the official state animal. The species is endangered, with only about 50 left in the wild.
  • Niceville is home to the famous Boggy Bayou Mullet Festival celebrated the third weekend in October.
  • Dr. John Gorrie of Apalachicola invented mechanical refrigeration in 1851.
  • Gatorade was named for the University of Florida Gators where the drink was first developed.
  • The state of Florida is bigger than England!
  • Miami Beach pharmacist Benjamin Green invented the first suntan cream in 1944. He accomplished this development by cooking cocoa butter in a granite coffee pot on his wife’s stove.
  • Neil Smith and his brother of Montverde developed the first Snapper riding lawn mower.