Founded in 1998

Volume 17, Number 41               September 22, 2015

Open House
(Free Ice Cream!)

Everybody in town will want to come to Community Hall on Friday, October 9, to enjoy a program featuring special presentations by the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office plus remarkable entertainment by “The Piano Man” Tommy Johnson. There will be exhibitions by many of the all-volunteer health projects of the Men’s Club.  The Campaign Against Human Trafficking and Seniors vs. Crime will have representatives there.

    The program starts at 1:00 PM. 

The Proposed 2016 Budget
You should attend this briefing at 9:00 AM on Thursday

Once again this year, CA Treasurer Neil Rothfeld will present a draft of the Community Association budget in the Florida Room on Thursday, September 24 starting at 9:00 AM.  That meeting is open to all CA Members (remember to wear your CA card).

   The annual budget for the following year is proposed by a Budget Committee. The Budget Committee this year is comprised of the CA Treasurer, the Community Manager, three residents; Ed Barnes (Chairman), Bob Deutel and Gene Morris. Their proposal will be submitted for review to the CA Board at its next regular meeting on October 14, 9 AM in the Rollins Theater.  With Board approval of the total budget, the proposed annual membership dues for 2016 can be determined.

   The final vote on the 2016 dues will be by CA Members in early December.  

Dunkin Donuts

A reader tells me that she heard from one of the managers at the new Dunkin Donuts on Cypress Village Blvd (near Home Depot and Beef O’Brady’s) that they will open this coming Saturday, September 26.  (Thanks Uta!)

A Month From Now

The CA has announced that the parking lot around the Arts & Crafts Building will be closed on Monday, November 2 and they expect it will remain closed that full week.  There will be no driving to the parking lot outside the club rooms for the Sew ‘n Sews, Lapidary, China Painters, Stained Glass, Bunka Arts, Needlepoint, and Shellcrafters.  The Information Center will also be cut off for several days that week.

   There is no parking permitted on Cherry Hills Drive, so affected club members will need to park cars in the lot in front of the CA office or next to the Atrium Building.  Golf Carts can be parked on the grassy areas along Cherry Hills Drive.

And, in Closing,

  • There were 44 resale homes sold in Sun City Center last month and that brings the total to 318 this year. Just looking back, there were 48 sold in July and 46 in June.  Those are all relatively big numbers compared with past years.
  • Our actual resident count at the end of August in Sun City Center was 10,850. When you add in the estimated 9000+ residents of Kings Point, it appears that we have over 20,000 people residing in the area originally bought by Del Webb in 1961.
  • If there is any change needed for your listing as it is shown in the 2015 Membership Directory that you have not reported, CA members should send an email to Judy Hill at the CA Office; .  Kings Point residents should notify the COA Office.  You should do this before Friday, October 2.  Work on the 2016 Directory will be underway the following Monday.
  • A small group and I will be updating the material on pages 1-29 of the Directory so if you see a need for changes shown in the 2015 book you now have, tell me at
  • Architectural and engineering Plans for the new café at the Atrium Building have been completed and solicitations for bid by contractors have been sent out.  The CA hopes to have responses for consideration by the end of October.
  • The Hope Fund is sponsoring an Arts and Crafts Fair on Saturday, October 3rd from 10am to 2pm at The United Community Church in Sun City Center.  Free admission to see the floral crafts, watercolor and oil paintings, jewelry, scarves, pottery, cards, sculpture, embroidery and other needle crafts, pet products, wood craft, shell craft, potato pockets, and much more!
  • And WOW!  What a delight last Saturday to see the price of a gallon of regular gasoline at a station on 674 selling for under $2.00.
  • It would be a dreadful mistake for me to tell you how to manage your money, but the circle of people I rely on in town have all reacted the same way about a letter many of us received offering insurance against broken external water pipes on your property. “The occasion for pipes between the meter and their entrance to the home (where you have responsibility) to go bad is extremely rare” said one., “particularly because we don't have hard freezes.  And pipes here tend to be PVC, not iron, so they don't rust out.” 

Snowbirds will see this new addition to the Trinity Baptist Church nearing completion on West Del Webb Blvd.  It will provide much needed space for choir rehearsals, bible studies, and additional rooms for meetings and classes.

/John Bowker

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News of Greater Sun City Center by email
Founded in 1998

Volume 17, Number 40               September 15, 2015

Become a Leader

Each year there are at least three openings on the 9-member Community Association Board of Directors. Voting for nominees by all residents of Sun City Center (with current CA membership) will be held the first week of December.

   If you read this newsletter, the other local newspapers and listen to the news programs on the local FM radio station from time to time, is, you should have a pretty good idea of what is going on in town.  You should at least consider running for a position on the CA Board. 

   Any current CA member can become a nominee by going to the CA Office at 1009 North Pebble Beach Blvd, filling out the application form (takes 3-5 minutes) and submitting it to the receptionist by 3 p.m. on Wednesday, October 7. 

2016 Budget

Set aside an hour Thursday, September 24, to attend the review of the planned CA budget for next year.   The meeting will be held in the Florida Room starting at 9 a.m.  CA Members will have opportunities to ask questions about the details during the meeting.

   Once the budget is set and approved by the CA Board, the decision can then be reached about annual membership dues needed to balance that budget for 2016.  This year that amount is $270 per person (a decrease of $5 from 2014!) so it is important to get the budget right. CA Members will vote a yes/no about the dues on December 2.

Is your Club Growing?
(Deadline for registering for Hi, Neighbor! is this Friday!)

Each year during the first week of November, there is an open house program in Community Hall called “Hi, Neighbor!” for all the CA Clubs.  Any club looking to publicize itself and/or to recruit new members will want a table on November 5 from 6:30 – 8:30 p.m. Clubs can display their wares (no sales at this event), and give their members a chance to meet newcomers to Sun City Center along with residents who may be looking for a new activity here.

   If your club has not yet submitted a registration for a display table, please note that the deadline is this week Friday .. September 18!  If you need help, visit Claudia Hinson in the CA Office at 1009 North Pebble Beach Blvd before the end of this week (they close at 3 p.m. on Friday!). 

Bathrooms in Rollins Theater

 Among the notable improvements to this facility are the new open bathrooms for the Theater patrons.  They are wheelchair accessible and well labeled for MEN and WOMEN at the front of the audience area in the room.

  Golf Cart Registration

“A most satisfactory three days” was the quote from Deputy Sheriff Jeff Merry on Saturday this past weekend.  The registration program was organized by the Security Patrol with the support of the county Sheriff’s Office and nearly 1,000 carts were registered or re-registered with a new numbered sticker last Thursday, Friday and Saturday at the Redeemer Lutheran Church parking lot.
   All information will be stored by the Security Patrol and the Sheriff’s Office to assist in identifying lost or stolen golf carts.
   Another registration will be held in late January or early February.

Memory Screenings

Free memory screenings are being offered to seniors by the SouthShore Coalition for Mental Health and Aging starting in October.  Screenings take about a half hour and will be held on the:

  • Third Thursday of each month beginning October 15 at Sun Towers Retirement Community, 101 Trinity Lakes Drive, Sun City Center and
  • Third Tuesday of each month beginning October 20th at The United Methodist Church, 1210 Del Webb Blvd W, Sun City Center.

Volunteers will conduct the memory screenings, provide education about risk factors and explain screening results. To learn more about the memory screenings or to schedule an appointment, call 813-419-4902.
   Interested in participating as a volunteer screener? Attend an overview at the Sun City Center Chamber of Commerce, 1651 Sun City Center Plaza at 1:00 pm on Thursday October 1.

County Highway/Byway meeting

If you have done any driving around town this past week you must have seen the signs announcing a meeting of “GO Hillsborough” in the Regional Library on 19th Avenue.  CA Vice President Sam Sudman saw them too, and has now arranged for a meeting of that county group to be held in our own Community Hall, 1910 South Pebble Beach Blvd on Wednesday evening, September 30 from 5-7 p.m.
   I expect the topics of most interest to Sun City Center residents will be golf cart paths and perhaps road widening ideas for our nearby peripheral streets, but there is no such limitation in the official announcement.    
   The results of all the GO Hillsborough meetings will be a vote within the next year to increase the county sales tax by a half or full percentage point to assure that we have the necessary infrastructure here to maintain our lifestyle and possible growth.

And, in Closing,

  • I am still hearing from readers about email and Internet scams.  There is a simple answer:  do not give ANYone personal information about yourself, your finances, vacation plans, even if they threaten you with legal action. Such scams will be the subject of the October Fraud Awareness meetings held by Deputy Merry; details will be coming in the next eNEWS.
  • We are assured that wi-fi will be available to clubs for their Hi, Neighbor tables on November 5 in Community Hall.

/John Bowker
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News of Greater Sun City Center by email

Founded in 1998

 Volume 17, Number 39               Sunday, September 6, 2015

Closings on Monday

Monday is Labor Day so all the county offices will be closed tomorrow; emergency services and the county regional parks will be open as usual.
     CA offices will be closed including the library and Information Center.  The pools and Fitness Center will operate on their regular weekday schedule.

Homestead Exemption Deadline

The final day to file a 2015 Homestead Exemption application in Hillsborough County is Tuesday, September 8. Any application received after this date will be applied to the 2016 tax roll.
     In order to be eligible for a 2015 Homestead Exemption, applicants must have title of the property and have occupied it by January 1, 2015. Florida law allows up to $50,000 to be deducted from the market value of a primary/permanent residence and provides a “cap” or limitation of 3% on any annual assessment increases on homestead properties in the state.

     Residents can file for Homestead Exemption online by visiting the HCPA website at Paper forms must be postmarked by Sept. 8, or turned in to any of the Hillsborough County Property Appraiser’s offices by 5 p.m. on Sept. 8.

     For more information about Homestead Exemption call (813) 272-6100 Tuesday morning.

Sheriff’s Fraud Forum

The very successful fraud awareness seminars by Deputy Sheriff Jeff Merry will continue in September.  The topic this month is all about credit card and debit card fraud including comments about the new chipped card conversion.  The sessions run about an hour; all four listed here cover the same issues.
     The first forum will be this Tuesday the 8th in the Sandpiper Room at 9 a.m.; Tuesday afternoon the meeting is in the Kings Point Ripple Room at 1 p.m.;  Wednesday, September 16 the program is at the American Momentum Bank at 3 p.m. and the last session on this topic will be held on Thursday the 17th in the Freedom Plaza Auditorium starting at 10 a.m.

Golf Cart Registration

The Sun City Center Security Patrol will be having its annual Golf Cart registrations this week Thursday, Friday, and Saturday from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. each day. 
     It will be held at the Redeemer Lutheran Church, located at 701 Valley Forge Blvd, Sun City Center.  Everyone with a golf cart should get it registered to help you to recover it if it is missing or stolen.

     You may request a golf cart inspection during the registration. For a donation, the "YES" boys will wash your golf cart.

Emergency Squad to Increase

The Emergency Squad will host an Information Program on Volunteering September 9 in the Training Building at 124 South Pebble Beach Blvd at 6 p.m. Interested residents can find out more about the Squad and their available volunteer opportunities.
     The Squad is always looking for Dispatchers, Emergency Medical Responders, Ambulance Drivers and Emergency Medical Technicians. Other volunteer positions the Squad has available include IT specialists, vehicle maintenance volunteers, and cooks.

     Did you know that
the Squad made almost 5000 ambulance runs and 2000 medical wheelchair van runs last year? All of the Squad’s services are free, including blood pressures that are offered daily at the main Ray Watson Drive office from 8 a.m. to 5p.m.

3 Clubs to Dissolve

On Wednesday this week, the Community Association Board of Directors will vote to dissolve three clubs.  In each case, there has been no communication with the CA Clubs Director and none of these clubs has requested any space for meeting.
     If the president of any of these clubs has information that might affect this action, an immediate call (Tuesday morning) to 633-3500 is in order: 

Men’s Card Club No. 2,
Men’s Card Club No. 99,

Women’s Golf Association – 18 Hole

And, in Closing,

  • Our WaWa is on the books to open in June 2016 at the south-east corner of US-301 and State Road 674.  Construction/clearing could start in about a month! (Thanks, Nancy!)
  • Construction of the new building at South Bay Hospital has been slowed by the realization that pilings originally planned to go 35 feet into the soil must now go more like 70 feet down!  This was the discovery of some test borings that were made just to check on the soil densities at different levels.
  • Several people had trouble reading the last edition of eNEWS because I was using a new editing technique.  If you had trouble, let me know and I will send you a fresh copy in a more conventional format.  You can also see it on my website, by clicking on “eNEWS” at the top of the opening screen and then scrolling down to any of the recent eNEWS editions.

/John Bowker
Write to me at

News of Greater Sun City Center by email
Founded in 1998
Volume 17, Number 37                August 30, 2015

If you are printing this edition, use the attached .pdf version to save paper

Slow News Week
(So Far)

     I am sure our residents up north are seeing much the same news coverage of the tropical storms that we get here – maybe not as continuous as we see here, but there are a couple of things that may not make it into the non-Florida press.
      I spent some time in our local supermarket this morning watching to see if people were cleaning out the bottled water supply .. that wasn’t happening .. and while the approaching storm is on everyone’s mind, I don’t see any hint of deep concern or panic. However, we are expecting a lot of rain in Sun City Center, and we really don’t need it. Some observations:
    • We don’t expect any serious wind for the next few days. We do expect some heavy rain later today, Monday and Tuesday.
  •  We are assured that your home in Sun City Center or in Kings Point is substantial enough to provide adequate protection even in severe storms.
  • You do NOT live in an evacuation zone; the signs on 674 are for folks living in the Ruskin area who may well be in an Evacuation Area.
  • We are at a nearly full moon situation today so the tides are higher than normal; that doesn’t affect Sun City Center but it could cause highway flooding along US-41 so the traffic on 674 may be affected by re-routed vehicles.
  • If it rains hard between now and mid-week, I suggest you not try to use the golf cart path from East Del Webb over to US-301 toward Walmart. There is no way for that path to drain and you should not drive into a puddle without knowing how deep it is or that part of the path may have washed out.
  • If we get a lot of rain, it could affect our electric service.
If you find yourself in trouble because of the storm, Doris Ragland has given me two numbers at our local Samaritan Services to call to speak with a person (not a computer) about your needs and they will help you in any way possible.
    Call 634-9283 or, if there is no answer, call 634-3489.
They can also enlist the help of the local Community Emergency Response Team the other emergency services in town if they are needed to help you.
     My contact at South Bay Hospital asked me to remind folks who must have electricity or special medical care that they should make arrangements through Hillsborough County for their special shelter program. It will take several days to get this set up so it won’t help you this week, but looking ahead, you should call (813) 307-8063 to be considered for registration into that program. Special needs shelters are for persons requiring more skilled medical care than available in a public shelter but who do not require an acute care facility such as a hospital.
(Thank you, Sharon!)
And let me know if there is anything unclear here; reply to me at:

/John Bowker

News of Greater Sun City Center by email
Founded in 1998

 Volume 17, Number 36               August 25, 2015

 Water Turned Off at Your House?’

A reader writes:  “They are working on two new hydrants on our street today.  We received a boil notice only and were told the work would take 8 hours.  They actually shut our water off completely and we are closing in on 12 hours and the men are still working. I would advise people to be prepared with some buckets of water for flushing toilets regardless of what the notice says.”  (Thanks, Cindy!)

     Oh!  In view of all the rain we have had recently, Dave Brown wonders if anybody had any flooding that actually reached the slab level at their home? 

Grab your camera (or iPhone)

If you haven’t entered Sun City Center’s August photo contest yet, there’s still time before the September 7th cutoff.  
   The photo theme this month is “People Who Need People” -- photos of community members volunteering in Sun City Center.  Subjects such as the Community Emergency Response Team, the Computer Club, the Tax Aide people, Emergency Squad, Security Patrol, Samaritans and Information Center, volunteers who prepare food at community breakfasts or who are monitors in clubs instructing members how to do their projects safely and efficiently… and more. 
   The August winner will receive a prize of $100, and any other photos used on the new Sun City Center website now being built will receive $25.   You can submit up to 5 photos each month and possibly earn up to $200 for the effort.  Your photos should be emailed to   (Thanks, Ed!)

Nearly New Shop

 The Nearly New Shop in the Sun City Center Plaza will resume its regular two-day- a-week openings next week Wednesday, September 2. Hours will be from 8:00 AM to Noon on both Wednesdays and Saturdays.
   Donations of saleable items are accepted 8:30 AM to 3:30 PM Monday - Friday.
The Interfaith Council of Sun City Center uses monies from sales of donated items to fund grants and scholarships in South Hillsborough County(Thanks, Jay!)

Bluebirds of Happiness

The Sun City Center Audubon Club is partnering with a Boy Scout to help him get his Eagle Scout designation.  Scout Robert Leonard and his troop have constructed 20 bluebird nest boxes to be installed in Sun City Center.  The Audubon Club is seeking residents to have a bluebird box installed in their back yard bordering on an open field (golf course?) with a tree or shrubs nearby to provide cover for fledglings to hide in. 
     Please call Melanie at 813-625-1271, or e-mail,, and she will come look at your yard.  The Club is asking for a $20.00 donation to cover cost of the bird box and predator guard.

 Sew 'n Sews Activities

 The Sun City Center Sew 'n Sews recently sewed pajama bottoms for A Kid's Place in Brandon. 14 members completed 15 with 20 more in the works. T-shirts will be purchased to match each of the bottoms.  A Kid's Place is a temporary home for children removed from their homes.  The pajama bottoms were all made with fabric that has been donated to the club.  
    At right, Jan Ring challenged the Wednesday Morning Sew 'n Sew Quilters to make something that had already been something else.  It was a real fun way to repurpose and recycle old clothes, etc.   
    Sew 'n Sews is a club made up of sewers and quilters, both novice and experienced.  They come to the club to learn new techniques, sew for enjoyment and charity, and enjoy each other's company.  The club is open to all Sun City Center residents.
     Sew 'n Sews gladly accepts fabric donations that are used for charity projects, as well as for items to sell. For information on membership, contact Linda at 813-390-2377 or email   (Thanks, Nan)

Staying Safe and Whole

      Our monthly sessions with Deputy Jeff Merry have brought home to many of us just how tempting our belongings are to those around us who wish us harm.  It was a few years back when, in the plaza shopping center, an inspection survey found 18 of 54 cars parked there were unlocked!  Worse than that, in 3 of the 18 cars, the keys were still in the ignition. 
     The ‘bad guys’ know we Senior Citizens are careless through our trust of our neighbors and they can’t wait to rob us, so lock your cars. Lock your homes.

 And, in Closing,

 The Community Association has once again arranged with Walgreens to offer Flu Shots, High Dose Flu Shots, Pneumonia, and Booster Pneumonia shots at no charge to Medicare patients from 9 AM to 2 PM on Tuesday, September 8th in the Caper Room in our Atrium Building. Bring all your insurance cards with you.
 /John Bowker
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eNEWS Volume 17, Number 35           August 15, 2015            Page 2

Florida Orchestra
Coffee Concerts at Mahaffey Theater

     Here is your chance to enjoy a series of concerts from October to May using a pre-arranged bus with special pricing and highlights.  A group called the Ambassador Club makes the transportation arrangements and each person, using the club name, makes ticket arrangements directly with Mahaffey at special prices. 
     Each classical program is interspersed with new and familiar pieces; the conductor tells stories about the music and composers that are amusing and most informative, so it is a delightful day usually from 8:30 am to around 2:00 pm.
     Call Carolyn Deming at 633-2241 for all the details of dates, costs, etc.  She has assured me there are a few seats remaining on the bus she gets for the concerts.

Interested in Continuing Education?
Hillsborough Community College may have an answer for you

   Beginning in September, the HCC SouthShore Campus will offer classes that are part of the prestigious Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (OLLI).   
   The local college-level coursework is designed for the adult student; annual membership is $35 with course fees in the $20 to $40 range; class registrations can be handled by telephone.       
   The first OLLI term at HCC SouthShore will open with “Computers and You: An Introduction Using Windows 7, Another course will be “John Ruskin: Nineteenth Century Advocate for a Twenty-First Century Environment” – is set for October 10.
    I have a full statement from HCC I will send you if you will respond to this email with the words “HCC Adult Classes” in the subject line.

Trouble Dialing Your Phone?

You will soon learn that the reason some of the local telephone numbers you have dialed for years are not going through is because you didn’t dial the “813” area code ahead of the usual 7 digits.  A reader called this to my attention and, after telling her she was crazy, the same thing happened to me.
   I called Brighthouse to verify this and they confirmed that, soon, all calls will require the 10 digits.  They said they were running out of numbers .. and with that absurd answer our conversation ended.  (Thanks, Patty; sorry I jumped on you.)

And, in Closing,

  • The July 4th Breakfast was another winner for Sun City Center.  We served 1266 meals and “netted” $3,518.00 toward future fireworks.  The 50/50 winners were 1st prize  Ann Fenimore—$241.00; 2nd prize Bob Goetz—$145.00; 3rd prize Mel Fader—$97.00
  • They have reviewed the golf cart registration plans for September 10-12. The times will be 9am-2pm at the Redeemer Lutheran Church parking area. This year they will inspect the vehicle’s brakes, lights, horn, and signals if asked by the cart owner.  Registration is open to everyone in Sun City Center, Kings Point and the Villages of Cypress Creek.  Note that registrations done prior to 2012 are invalid; if yours has 4 or more numbers on the seal, get it done again.

/ John Bowker
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News of Greater Sun City Center by email
Founded in 1998


School Teachers Needed

   Hillsborough County Schools are in dire need of substitute and temporary teachers for schools in Wimauma, Ruskin, Gibsonton, and Riverview.
  Minimum requirement is Associates Degree or 60 hours from accredited colleges.
There will be onboarding sessions in late July and August. Applicants should attend these two sessions; we hope they can be held at the Chamber of Commerce in the SCC Plaza but will confirm that later with anyone who writes in.
   This might be a good opportunity for Sun City Center or Kings Point residents to get involved in something constructive and earn some money.  
   For more information, send an email to the recruiting leader, Dave Walker, at  (Thanks, DF!)  

Golf Cart Path to Bealls

   A reader points out that the construction at South Bay Hospital has changed the golf cart path from Haverford Avenue to Bealls.  Drivers must now make a right turn at the hospital end of Haverford and go around back of the hospital building, past the parking lots serving both Emergency Room entrances, and then on to the driveway extending out to Route 674 (Sun City Center Blvd) where the familiar golf cart path to Bealls can be accessed.
   This is necessary because the entryway from 674 to the hospital is now a one-way street coming in.  I recommend that golfers coming back from Bealls should simply reverse that path instead of driving on the old golf cart path in front of the hospital.  Once construction gets started there I’m sure they will rope that off.(Thanks, Ella!) 
     Just as a side note, the golf cart path now leading to Bealls was installed a decade ago by the county and entirely at the county’s expense.  A lot of people new to town may not have realized that the Bealls location was formerly occupied by Walmart.  The county responded to demands by the residents at that time to provide a way to get to inexpensive medications, drugs and other necessities by means of their only form of transportation, their golf cart.


News of Greater Sun City Center by email
Founded in 1998
Volume 17, Number 19               April 14, 2015

If you are printing this out, please use the .pdf attachment to save paper

Please Greet Deputy Jeff Merry

Hospital Expansion
South Bay to add 26 Rooms

     This is the latest artist’s rendition of changes now planned for our South Bay Hospital.  The expansion will be built over what is now the parking area in front of the existing building (shown as the back part of the building in this drawing).  A new parking lot will be built in the area now occupied by the Sun Hill Medical Center – that is the building just to the east of the hospital.  The existing Sun Hill building will be demolished to make room for that parking lot.
     I expect we will see work starting here in early May and I am told the new facility will be opened in August, 2016.  There will be no interruption in services at the hospital during construction.  When finished, South Bay Hospital will have 138 beds for patients.


John Bowker
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