Students admiring a painting

Arts and Culture for the Community

Stetson University provides the DeLand community and beyond with access to whimsical performances in theatre, operatic and musical theatre, music performances, student and professional art exhibits, and a museum filled with one of the premier historic mineral collections in the southeast.

Bartram Gardens and Trail

The Bartram Gardens and Trail includes six large, interpretive kiosks that feature literary descriptions and pen-and-ink drawings and paintings of the creatures, fauna and plants that William Bartram encountered while exploring the DeLand area. The community can experience the nature that Bartram encountered when they visit the new Bartram Gardens and Trail at Stetson University’s Sandra Stetson Aquatic Center on Lake Beresford.

The Bartram Gardens & Trail is free and open to the public daily from one hour before sunrise to one hour after sunset unless otherwise noted. Public access may be restricted during special events.

The Stetson Aquatic Center is the recipient of a grant from Volusia County through its ECHO program. The grant assists Stetson in developing the Bartram Gardens, boardwalk, outdoor classroom, public restroom, and canoe/kayak launch. It will also enhance public access and provide a park-like setting to be enjoyed by the community.

Driving Directions

Bartram Gradens and Trail

Volusia ECHO logo

Gillespie museum exhibition

The Gillespie Museum features one of the premier historic mineral collections in the southeast, and seasonally changing exhibits on an array of earth science and natural history topics. With native ecology interpretive and research areas and other multi-use eco-areas across its grounds, and a dedication to inspired environmental programming, the Gillespie has become a center for science education on campus, in the local community and beyond.

Driving Directions

Gillespie Museum

Hand art center form the outside

The Homer and Dolly Hand Art Center is a 5,000-square-foot facility on the campus of Stetson University designed to house and exhibit the University art collection. The art center includes two galleries and a foyer gallery, a state-of-the-art collections vault, a preparation area and a seminar room used for classes and study.

The Hand Art Center presents up to 8 unique art exhibitions each year, with accompanying programming including workshops, lectures, panel talks and receptions.

Thanks to a generous gift by philanthropists Homer and Dolly Hand and the Volusia ECHO grant, the Hand Art Center was built in 2009. Exhibitions at the Hand Art Center include at least two curated showings of the work of Oscar Bluemner, the all-student juried art show, and the final projects of the graduating Seniors from the Creative Arts department. Other exhibitions and art viewings are curated from the University Collection, from other academic museums and occasionally from regional or local artists.

Driving Directions

Hand Art Center

Volusia ECHO logo

Matt's point 3d rendering

Matt's Point is set to become a best-practice demonstration site, pioneering the protection and restoration of our vital freshwater shorelines using native vegetation and natural elements—a trailblazing endeavor in Florida. The Matt’s Point project is anticipated to cost approximately $1,200,000, contingent on obtaining the necessary permits. We are actively collaborating with the Volusia County ECHO program to secure funding for the living shoreline restoration and to create a community space for enjoyment.

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Volusia ECHO logo

Rinker enviromental center from the outside

The RELC was built, in part, by the Volusia County ECHO Program in 2007 with a generous grant of $325,000. This ECHO-supported facility is used as a classroom, lecture hall, and activity space for monthly public events (Science Saturdays and Science Cafes) and for K-12 school and other tour group programming; it also includes a small exhibit and exploration gallery called The Nature Nook which is open to the public during regular museum hours at no cost to visitors.

Driving Directions

Science Saturday

Volusia ECHO logo

concert form the school of music

The Stetson University School of Music is a vibrant community of just over 300 majors and minors and 52 artist-scholar faculty. Established in 1936, the School of Music was Florida's first collegiate music school. Today, it offers professional training in the form of 13 individual degree options in four areas:

  • Music Education
    • Students seeking to teach the youth about the art of music study within this area
  • Music Performance
    • Students who wish to perform study within this area
  • Composition
    • Students who desire to create music study within this area
  • Music Academics
    • Students who wish to connect theory, technology or other academic fields to musical study will study within this area

Vocal and Instrumental Concerts

Concerts are the center of the School of Music at Stetson. The concerts allow students to display their efforts and work cohesively in a group while expressing their knowledge and passion for the performing arts. The School of Music is put on public display through these concerts, instilling the creative and collective goal of the students in their studies. Concerts are held multiple times a semester, constantly upholding the arts and culture that Stetson values.

Opera Theatre

Stetson Opera Theatre is a vital component of the vocal program at the Stetson University School of Music. Through the creative effort and mentorship of the opera director, voice faculty, conductor, coaches and accompanists, we provide a nurturing environment for the aspiring singing actor. In addition to world-class vocal training from some of the finest teachers in the industry, students enrolled in Stetson Opera Theatre receive comprehensive role preparation in the areas of musical coaching, diction, deportment, movement, character development and analysis. Full productions are double-cast and an understudy is assigned to each role, as appropriate, to give as many students an opportunity to perform as possible.

School of Music

second stage theatre inside

Our theatre arts program puts on plays and performances of multiple genres that captivate and entertain a live audience at least twice a school year. With direction from both faculty and select students, as well as student-driven intricate stage designs, actors take the Second Stage Theater by storm to provide a timely escape from reality into the art of theatrical performance.

Driving Directions

Theatre Arts Program

volusia sandhill ecosystem trees and plants outside

This Teaching Landscape is a place to learn about an ancient ecosystem with an unusually diverse understory, a part of Volusia County's natural history, as well as to engage in restoring a small version of this ecosystem and to help in returning a natural community. The landscape serves as a laboratory for faculty and undergraduate research, and the inspiration for sustainable projects — from bee hives to bird counts and as a Florida Wildflower Demonstration Garden, supported by the Florida Wildflower Foundation and Lyonia Chapter, Florida Native Plant Society.

Driving Directions 

Volusia Sandhill Ecosystem