Photo courtesy of Visit Florida
Dr. Von D. Mizell-Eula Johnson State Park

Swimming, fishing, boating and relaxing in Broward County was not always a day at the beach. Dr. Von D. Mizell-Eula Johnson State Park, today a popular destination for all to escape the distractions of city life, was once Broward County’s designated “colored beach.”
That dubious distinction was put out to sea, thanks to Dr. Mizell and Johnson, who organized “wade-in” demonstrations leading to the desegregation of local beaches in the 1950s and 1960s. The combined efforts of the Broward County civil rights leaders were also instrumental in improving road access to the site — just south of Fort Lauderdale, nestled in between the Atlantic Ocean and the Intracoastal Waterway in Dania Beach — and its eventual state park designation.

Dr. Mizell was the second black physician in Fort Lauderdale. He also helped establish Provident Hospital for black residents as well as South Florida’s first NAACP chapter, of which Johnson, a prominent businesswoman, served as president.

Broward College recognizes the courageous efforts of Dr. Mizell and Eula Johnson and enthusiastically heralds the contributions and achievements of other African-Americans as well throughout February, Black History Month. Among the programs and celebrations scheduled at Broward College during Black History Month is an art exhibit, which runs through February in Bailey Hall. The exhibit features an opening reception, Friday, Feb. 8, 6-9 p.m.  To see photos from last year’s exhibition click here

The opening of Black History Month on North Campus features an interactive drum circle, “The Story of the Drums throughout Black History,” Thursday, Feb. 7, 12:30-1:30 p.m., in Building 46.

For more Black History Month events on the Broward College campuses, go