Benoist Exhibit

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Benoist Exhibit

St. Petersburg is the birthplace of commercial aviation, so it’s appropriate that we commemorate that history in a suitable way. The Benoist Plaza (it’s pronounced “Ben-wah,” by the way) features a life-sized sculpture of the Benoist Airboat that pilot Tony Jannus flew roundtrip to Tampa on January 1, 1914. His only passenger that day? St. Pete Mayor Abe Pheil, who paid a then-astronomical sum of $400. Fun historical fact: The exhibit is located on the exact same spot as the hangar used for that day’s flight.