Established in 1884, the city of Bushnell was named after John Bushnell, who is credited with bringing the railroad to Sumter County. The county seat of rural Sumter County, Bushnell is home to Dade Battlefield Historic State Park, which annually hosts the Dade Battlefield Reenactment every January to commemorate the battle that started the Second Seminole War. As a result, Bushnell event venues have a lot of experience catering to groups.
Situated 18 miles northeast of Brooksville, Bushnell is 50 miles north of Orlando, 65 miles from Orlando International Airport, 82 miles from Orlando Sanford International Airport, 60 miles from the Orange County Convention Center and 63 miles from Walt Disney World.
Bushnell has only one hotel suitable for small meetings, the 69-room Microtel Inn and Suites Bushnell, with 1,000 square feet of meeting space. Nearby towns with hotels, less than a 30-minute drive away, include Wildwood, Leesburg, Brooksville and The Villages.
Among the unique special event venues in Bushnell is the Dade Battlefield Historic State Park, which encompasses a recreation hall, picnic area with covered shelters and recreation hall. The park's visitor center has information and displays about the historic war in 1835 as well as a 12-minute video history of the battle, "This Land, These Men." The Major Dade Recreation Hall accommodates 98 people with facilities that include an oven, microwave and refrigerator in the kitchen area. There are 6 picnic shelters.
The Dade Battlefield Historic State Park has events throughout the year open to the public. Other things to do in the area include strolling the streets of Bushnell's historic downtown, fishing and boating in nearby lakes, spouse programs for shopping, dining and golf to The Villages, manatee watching in Crystal River and day trips to Silver Springs Nature Theme Park in Ocala.
Chains restaurants like Beef O'Brady's and Sonny's Real Pit Bar-B-Que are reliable options for groups meeting in or near Bushnell. More dining possibilities are available in Brooksville about a 20-minute drive northeast of Bushnell.