By PHYLLIS HODGES
Sixty years ago, on December 30, 1962, Sun City Center celebrated its first year as a community. There were a few hundred residents then and the table-sized cake in the commemorative photo certainly indicates that most of them were expected to attend the party.
Fast forwarding sixty years, SCC History Society Chair Susan Muise and her team organized a community party on December 30, 2022, to celebrate that first anniversary and recreate a nostalgic photo of the “cake cutting” for the archives.
The cake for this occasion was smaller than the one six decades ago but, along with cupcakes, was sufficient for the several hundred who made their way to Community Hall on Pebble Beach South. “Who knows?” said Muise. “Maybe 60 years from now, there will be another party celebrating that first anniversary.” She is very passionate about preserving Sun City Center’s history. “A lot of people move here because of family and friends, so they know about how unique it is, but many don’t and have no idea about how special and unique this community is,” she says.
Over the years, many residents have marveled at the presentations by SCC Historian John Bowker about the progression of Sun City Center through the years. At the December party, he introduced a newly completed video, which he narrates, coverof ing Del Webb’s development of Sun City Center.
The organizers had also put together a display of mementos and artifacts from over the years. The oldest item was a souvenir key chain for participants at the December 30, 1962, gathering.
Muise and her history society team were pleased with the interest in SCC’s history as evidenced by the turnout and feedback about the new video.
The society, a Community Association committee, is open to all its members. The group is dedicated to preserving the community’s history and works continually to maintain an archive of photos and documents. Last year, a commemorative 60-year history book was published and is still available for purchase. Call 813-633-3038 for more information.