Bella Vida by Letty

Jackass Crossing in Florida

Life is an adventure.
Yeehaw Junction Jackass Crossing Dessert Inn Florida
Yeehaw Junction Jackass Crossing Dessert Inn Florida

If you follow me on social media you know how much I zigzag across the state of Florida. One place I’ve passed several times is Yeehaw Junction. You’ve seen the myriad of signs announcing discount theme park tickets littering the highway. I never paid much attention to the place until we had a little extra time to explore and discovered it was actually one of the oldest towns in Florida. A hundred years ago these old roads were used by cowboys moving cattle and truckers hauling logs making this intersection the perfect place for a trading post. It was originally named Jackass Crossing in honor of the donkeys ridden by ranchers until one day someone decided that wasn’t a proper name and changed it to Yeehaw, the sound made by a donkey.

Yeehaw Junction Jackass Crossing Dessert Inn Florida
Yeehaw Junction Jackass Crossing Dessert Inn Florida

Today it’s a small town with a population barely over 200 people. The day we drove through most of the establishments were closed or in an abandoned state. The only thing to see there is the Desert Inn and Restaurant which has made it to the The National Register of Historic Places. That means it is on the official list of the Nation’s historic places worthy of preservation.

To tell you the truth we were not brave enough to eat there even though the sign announced ‘the best Cuban sandwiches’.  We got out of the car and the place looked empty.  No one was around except a farmer selling watermelons from his truck across the street.  So I snapped some pics then hit the road again.

Here’s what the plaque says:

The Desert Inn was founded as a trading post in the late 1880s. The present building dates before 1925 and served as a supply and recreational center for cattle drovers, lumber men and tourists during the era when much of Osceola County was still undeveloped wilderness. Cowmen working the free ranging cattle on the palmetto prairie and lumber men cutting timber in the nearby pine lands came to the Desert Inn to eat, drink, and dance at this “oasis” where they could enjoy some relief from their arduous labors. Local patrons of the trading post and restaurant included African Americans and Seminoles, who had separate dining facilities in the era of segregation. The construction of roads in the 1930s brought tourists to the area, and a set of overnight cabins were erected behind the original building. Today the Desert Inn continues to be a popular destination for tourists and local residents. It was listed in the National Register of Historic Places in 1994.

Yeehaw Junction Jackass Crossing Dessert Inn Florida
I made this lovely Postcard for you.


Have you driven through Florida’s Jackass Crossing?


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