This week in West Orange County history: April 18, 2024

These are the people and events that made headlines in West Orange County's past.

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80 years ago

Maj. Richard F. Ezzard was promoted to the rank of lieutenant colonel at Rapid City, South Dakota, where he was director of flying training.

Selective Service Board Three, Winter Garden, called 60 white men, many of them fathers, to leave for Camp Blanding for their pre-induction physical examinations. This call takes men from Winter Garden, Apopka, Orlo Vista, Windermere, Ocoee, Gotha, Plymouth and Oakland.

A wartime rehabilitation program to nurse sick and ailing trucks back to health was launched by the Office of Defense Transportation.

“This country will have some wild automobile driving when tires and gasoline are available after the war, and we must be prepared to clamp on immediate controls or traffic fatalities and injuries will rival those of the war,” said Walter L. Hays, chairman of the safety and health division of the Florida State Chamber of Commerce.

70 years ago

Piggy Wiggly food store carried round or sirloin steak for 69 cents a pound, Ballard or Pillsbury biscuits for 21 cents per can and 10 pounds of U.S. No. 1 Main white potatoes for 25 cents.

Mr. and Mrs. B.R. Briley and Jane Briley spent a day in Jacksonville.

The women of the Calvary Baptist Church of Winter Garden met in the home of the Rev. Reynold Lemp and organized an auxiliary.

The City Commission held a special meeting to purchase a pump for the Dillard Street well.

The Oakland Junior Garden Club held its own Spring Flower Show in the auditorium of the Tildenville School.

50 years ago

Mary Weinberg accomplished the feat of hitting a hole-in-one on the 106-yard, par-3, 17th hole of Bay Hill. Using a 6 iron, she sunk her drive while playing a foursome with Barbara Economon, Wanda Scales and Mackie Pendergrass.

TG&Y Family Center in the Tri-City Shopping Center in Winter Garden advertised many tools and items in preparation for spring and summer. A Black & Decker electric lawn mower cost $99.99, a wheelbarrow was priced at $9.88, and barbecue grills were available for $4.88.

20 years ago

The town of Oakland had cause for celebration when it held its annual Stroll in the Park in the new Town Center. During the evening event, officials held dedication ceremonies for the new Town Center, C.M. “Pete” Tucker Square and Grover Tubb Fountain. Family members and descendants of Tucker and Tubb were present for the unveiling of the dedication plaques.


APRIL 28, 1966

Harold’s Fine Jewelers advertised in The Winter Garden Times its annual anniversary sale with bargains galore. Deals included a gentleman’s 17-jewel self-winding calendar dial watch and ladies’ elegant 17-jewel bracelet watch, each for $29.99; an eight-diamond bridal pair of rings, in 14 karat in white or yellow gold, totaling one carat for $269.99; sterling silver charms priced from 99 cents to $1.49; and birthstone and pearl rings at one-third off regular price.

The jewelry store was located in the Ocoee Shopping Center.


First-graders are seen playing in the Ocoee Elementary School playground.  The photo from The West Orange Times is dated April 11 with no accompanying year. Can anyone help the Winter Garden Heritage Foundation identify the year and the students?

The WGHF collects and preserves thousands of photographs in its archive. Call (407) 656-3244 to make a research appointment and learn about your family and local history.



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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