This week in West Orange County history: May 2, 2024

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

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80 years ago

Mr. and Mrs. George Batt of Killarney spent a week cutting gauze for the Red Cross surgical dressing rooms in Winter Garden.

Ladon Jones, manager of the Piggly Wiggly Market since the company opened here, asked for a leave of absence while he entered the U.S. Navy.

Mr. W.K. Stansell, who was in the grocery business in Oakland for many years, sold out to Mr. Waters in Apopka, who moved the stock to his town.

70 years ago

Fifth-graders at Dillard Street School were awarded certificates of proficiency in penmanship by the Zane-Bloser Co.

Holler Motors featured a new 1954 Chevrolet two-door sedan for $1,853.

George Daniels representing the Oakland City Council appeared before the County Commissioners at their meeting in the courthouse to assure the county a deed to a site 150 feet wide and 400 feet deep for a public park and boat landing to Lake Apopka in exchange for a paved highway from new Highway 50 through Oakland down to the old Oakland dock. The county unanimously approved the exchange.

Bob Kerr’s Marine Service featured a new Jacobsen power mower for $99.50, complete with free demonstration.

50 years ago

The Minor League champions, the Indians, enjoyed a cookout at the home of manager Ray Wiggins after being undefeated in first-half play. According to Wiggins, their ball playing was equaled only by their appetites. They were sponsored by Irving’s Super Market.

Installed as officers for Ocoee Elementary School were Sharon Morton, treasurer; Principal Charles Roher, second vice president; Carolyn Alexander, secretary and historian; Judy Henry, first vice president; and Jack and Cheri Hayes, presidents.

40 years ago

Ton Waalewyn, who had many years training and experience in watch and clock repair, bought Pittman’s Jewelry Store in Winter Garden.

The Ocoee Fire Department’s Fire-Matics Team and Explorers were trophy winners at the Fire-Matics Competition in Lake Mary, winning three firsts and a second place. On the team: Wayne Vaughn, Jamie Strosnider, Lisa Riendean, Jack Taylor, Al Hall, George Ledford, Larry Brass, Hoyt Ungaro and Toby Chapman.

Dr. Albert Gleason, chief of staff at West Orange Memorial Hospital, was honored by; the board of trustees for outstanding service, leadership and dedication to the hospital and board.

35 years ago

The West Orange Junior Service League announced its debutantes: Mary Grant, Tabitha Shelton, Michelle Oswalt, Karen Fewell, Julie Graham, Kathleen Overchuck, Andrea Hill, Susan Strickland, Jenna Joiner, Heather McGrath, Dawn Howe, Tracy Harrison, Claire Conry, Andrea Dowd, Bridgette Fay and Bonny Potz.


MAY 6, 1971

Webb’s Fabulous Pharmacies once had eight locations in Central Florida, including one in the Ocoee Shopping Center and the West Orange Shopping Center, in Winter Garden. The May 6, 1971, advertisement in The Winter Garden Times was all about Mother’s Day and the deals one could find for their mother, mother-in-law or mother figure in their life.

Perfumes were popular, including Dorothy Gray White Lilac cologne, spray cologne, foaming milk bath and dusting powder for $3.50; a Madame Rochas gift set with a cologne atomizer and moisture lotion for $6.50; Crepe de Chine cologne for $5; or Genii Desire cologne for $6.50.

Whitman’s candy, Lady Remington shavers, heart- and flower-shaped jewelry, and Princess Gardner Grecian accessories, including a purse, clutch, cigarette case and eyeglass case, also were for sale.

And don’t forget your Kodak film and flash cubes to preserve the special day!


This street sign was erected by the city of Ocoee as part of a worldwide celebration of the founding of the holy city of Jerusalem. It reads:

“Jerusalem Park / The city of Ocoee joins the worldwide celebration of the 300th anniversary of the city of Jerusalem / Central Park is hereby renamed Jerusalem Park for the month of July 1996.

The history of Ocoee is preserved in the archive of the Winter Garden Heritage Foundation, and residents are invited to explore. Call (407) 656-3244 to set up a research appointment.


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