This week in West Orange County history: March 24, 2022

These events and people helped shape today's West Orange County.

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85 years ago

The annual election of the town of Oakland was held, in which the following officers were elected: R.L. Smith, mayor; A.R. Hewitt, B.R. Pettit, Fred L. Cross, E.J. Hancock and Harold Henschen, councilmen; and L.J. Broch, clerk.


80 years ago

Daniel Henderson was elected Lakeview High’s representative at Boys State in Tallahassee. Joe Burch and Fred Bekemeyer were last year’s representatives.


70 years ago

Representatives of area elementary schools held a district spelling bee. From Winter Garden Elementary were Don Shaw, who claimed first place, and Carolyn Jackson; Tildenville, Ellen Dobson and Harriett Kilgore; Ocoee, Glenda Walls and Sylvia Clare Thornton; Windermere, George Reid, who claimed second place, and Hardy Sullivan; and Gotha, Billy Childs. Pronouncer was E.M. Henderson, and judges were Cecil Dees, Gene Cappleman and H.L. Simmons.

“Telephones in Winter Garden had increased from 523 in 1945 to 1,478 at the end of 1951,” stated Otto Wettstein III, president of Florida Telephone Corporation.


50 years ago

Dottie Walker shared her recipe for gelatin Easter eggs in her Dining with Dottie column: Mix 1 package Jello (any color or flavor), 2 cups baker’s coconut, 2/3 cup condensed milk, 1.5 teaspoons sugar and 1 teaspoon almond extract. Shape into several large eggs or many little eggs. Chill until firm. Make glaze by melting 1 6-ounce package chocolate chips with 2 tablespoons water. Cover each egg; decorate with decorator frosting with pastry tube if desired. Let stand until firm.


45 years ago

Kathy Matheison, of Windermere, was chosen to go to Girls State, sponsored by the American Legion. Other candidates were Anne Tope, Kathy Munger and Kathie Fenner. All four were juniors at West Orange High School.


20 years ago

The second expansion of Health Central hospital, in Ocoee, was moving right along. When completed, the project added 100,000 square feet of floor area on six levels to the existing hospital structure. An expanded emergency room, with a new waiting room, and the new east tower that added 42 private rooms, was scheduled for completion later this year.

Team members participating in the West Orange Relay for Life were expected to raise $100 apiece, but cancer survivor Jill Joslyn raised 12 times that amount for the American Cancer Society. She collected money through a bowl-a-thon and a donation box she set up at The Medicine Shoppe, where she was employed. Joslyn was diagnosed with breast cancer that metastasized to her liver.



MARCH 30, 1972

Winter Garden has long been the home of car dealerships, both new and used, including John Lamb Chevrolet, which was located on Highway 50. The dealership advertised in The Winter Garden Times its best deals just in time for the Easter holiday.

Looking for a four-door vehicle? Check out the 1970 Impala hardtop with power steering and power brakes for $2,695 or the 1968 Chevy Biscayne sedan with air-conditioning and a radio for $1,495.

Anyone wanting something sporty could inquire about the 1971 Camaro with its $3,495 sticker price or the 1967 Firebird with a price tag of $1,495.



The Winter Garden Heritage Foundation honors Women’s History Month in highlighting former Orange County Chairman Linda Chapin. Among her myriad accomplishments, Chapin was largely responsible for the development of the West Orange Trail, a Rails-to-Trails project that helped to revitalize the communities situated along the south shore of Lake Apopka. Chapin is seen here receiving a personalized brick from then-president Jackie Brown of the Bloom & Grow Garden Society. It was placed on the Path of Life, a project landscaped by the society that ambles next to the Chapin Station trailhead in Winter Garden.



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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