Charlotte County is celebrating 100 years in the making with an event free to the public this summer.
Locals are invited to “Centennial Memories. This is OUR Charlotte!” to share some of their favorite hometown memories.
Charlotte County Community Services is asking participants to gather memorabilia and stories passed down through generations.
CCCS Librarian Supervisor Tracy Herman is coordinating the event.
“When people have the chance to go through their stuff, they may almost wonder why they’ve been saving things for so long,” she said. “I grew up in Charlotte County and I still have some of my old programs from events and football games, photos and items with stories to them. This is the time to share all of that.”
Herman’s family moved to the area in the 1970s. She remembers attending school at the Port Charlotte United Methodist Church while Meadow Park Elementary was still being built.
She remembers when high school-aged students were suddenly split up into Charlotte High and Port Charlotte High School. Long gone were the days of a Tarpon-dominated area.
“Students athletes suddenly became rivals to their friends,” said Tracy.
Tracy hopes memories big or small will be shared.
“Whatever Charlotte County means to you, share it. Anyone and everyone is welcome, whether you’re new to the area or have been here for generations.”
CCCS is hoping to interest potential participants. Booths may be reserved to display photos, scrapbooks, artifacts, newspapers or even Charlotte County inspired artwork.
Attendees will also be able to create shout-outs to be aired at the event.
Performers for the event include Dance with Janis, Studio 8 Dance of Port Charlotte and the Punta Gorda Symphony, with a special visit from The Royal Order of Ponce De Leon Conquistadors of Charlotte County and their ship.
Masks are required by all attendees and the center will follow specific protocols to keep participants safe.
The event will take place on Saturday, May 15, from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Charlotte Harbor Event & Conference Center, located at 75 Taylor St. in Punta Gorda.
Registration ends April 23. Space is limited.
For more information, visit CharlotteCountyFL.gov.