This week in West Orange County history

These are the faces and events that shaped our area of Central Florida.

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85 years ago

The sophomore class of Ocoee High School has added seven new students to its rolls, bringing the total to 23. President is Sarah McFadden; vice president, Marie Grafton; and secretary, Ruth Grafton.

Madge Peters’ home was the scene of a party with five tables of bridge. Honored guests were Eula Britt Grant, who was visiting from New York; Jane Hall Britt; and Tena Pounds Britt.


75 years ago

“Shorty” Mask announced the opening of his service station at Ninth and East Plant streets specializing in greasing, washing and steam cleaning.

George Merchant, one of Winter Garden’s outstanding businessmen for 25 years, sold his menswear store to O.I. Cox and Tom Cox.


70 years ago

Mrs. Edwin Pounds entertained with a party in honor of her daughter, Linda on her first birthday.


55 years ago

A bridal luncheon was given at the Imperial House in Winter Park in honor of Miss Jeanne Lease, bride-elect of Mr. Alan Hays. Hostesses for the occasion were Mrs. Franklin Cappleman and Mrs. Charles Hawthorne.


50 years ago

Editor’s notebook: Anyone living on Main Street in Windermere can tell you that when the train come through the town it is a shaky experience. More affected than most is the Windermere Art Gallery. According to Lydia Quick, every picture in the gallery ends up crooked. If she’s lucky, she added, they straighten back up when the train returns.


20 years ago

Mikel and Elizabeth Miller, owners of Photograph-X, on Wurst Road in Ocoee, designed and silk-screened a patriotic-themed T-shirt to sell to raise funds for the Red Cross. The Millers wanted to make a difference after the 9/11 terrorist attacks.



Sept. 29, 1977

It was a momentous occasion when Golden Corral announced it was bringing its family steak house to Winter Garden. It was established on East Highway 50 at Ninth Street. The restaurant listed some of its menu favorites in an advertisement in The Winter Garden Times, and this included a specialty steak for $2.49; the Hefty Hamburger for 79 cents; a rib-eye starting at $3.49 and a filet mignon for $3.89.



Rosita and Nina Martinez appear in this photograph. The mother and daughter were Cuban refugees who were sponsored by Winter Garden’s First United Methodist Church. Mrs. Martinez taught Spanish on television’s local Channel 24, and Nina became a doctor.

The Winter Garden Heritage Foundation is gathering and preserving documents, letters, business information and family histories from Hispanic residents. Call (407) 656-3244 if you have something to share.



Amy Quesinberry

Community Editor Amy Quesinberry was born at the old West Orange Memorial Hospital and raised in Winter Garden. Aside from earning her journalism degree from the University of Georgia, she hasn’t strayed too far from her hometown and her three-mile bubble. She grew up reading The Winter Garden Times and knew in the eighth grade she wanted to write for her community newspaper. She has been part of the writing and editing team since 1990.

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This week in history