Want to Subscribe?
(It's Free)
Send your request to:

News of Greater Sun City Center by email
Founded in 1998
Volume 16, Number 29               July 21, 2014

Funny Weather Here Too

      Kelly Emerson took this picture last week of the walkway from the Needlecraft club room looking past the shuffleboard courts toward North Pebble Beach Blvd.  There was over 5 inches of water all over this part of the Central Campus, he said.  “I’ve been here 18 years and never have seen so much water dropped on us in an hour as happened last week.”   They were planning to drain the indoor lap pool that day for maintenance, but there was no place to dump all the pool water!

Still, This is a Good Place to Live

      Hillsborough County is no slouch when it comes to promoting the things it does well.  In a press release a few days ago they said “County residents and businesses can rest assured that they are well protected by Hillsborough County Fire Rescue.  A new study yielded a “class 3” rating for Sun City Center (scale of 1-10 with 1 being the best). Improved ratings that could also save residents money on their property insurance, depending on how their insurer calculates rates.   

       They went on with “The communities of Hillsborough County have the highest overall recycling rate in the state. Hillsborough County had a recycling rate of 73 percent with a high renewable energy credit from waste-to-energy production.”

But You Have to Watch Out

     We have reports that a company is knocking on doors in Sun City Center offering to replace their house roof for free.  True, a few homes suffered some damage a couple of weeks ago in a very local hail storm, but you could do a favor for a neighbor who does not have a computer by warning them that the “free roof” offer is a scam and is being investigated by the Seniors Vs Crime organization in town (call 634-8666 for details).  If your neighbor has signed anything for such repairs, have them get in touch with Seniors vs Crime.

     To find a reliable repair company?  Go to and click on the blue “Directory Listing”.   (Thanks, Harold!)

John Bowker

News of Greater Sun City Center by email
Founded in 1998
Volume 16, Number 28               July 9, 2014

Hospital Expansion Announced
Will grow from 112 beds to 138
      The SUN Newspaper this morning and tomorrow’s SCC Observer both have details of a planned expansion of our South Bay Hospital to start this year.  All expansion will happen on new 3rd or 4th floors and all patient care rooms will be renovated; the new rooms will all be private.  Snowbirds should wait a few days, and then go to: and
SCC Plaza Facelift
Changes already underway 

     It is too early to show you any pictures, but there have been two derricks in place this week with workmen active on the roofing areas from the Dollar General store over to ACE Hardware. All the large electric store signs are down from the front of the stores until the new façade is built and installed. More as things develop.    

New Community Theater

     Many of you have written to me about the upcoming referendum regarding a proposed community theater. I have attempted to correct comments based on wrong information and to caution readers who have jumped to conclusions.  At today’s CA Board meeting it was announced that this will be a central topic at the October 22nd Membership Meeting in Community Hall, and we were assured there will be at least one informal “Coffee and Conversation” get together on this matter prior to the referendum on December 2 and 3.

Consumer Affairs Register

     President Keegan mentioned at this morning’s CA Board Meeting that the Consumer Affairs committee is still very much needed as an information gathering source regarding home construction maintenance issues.  The committee will not be responsible for taking issues back to the vendors; that is now a responsibility of the county.  The Community Affairs Register is still available to residents at the reception desk in the CA Office, 1009 N. Pebble Beach Blvd weekdays, 8 am to 3 pm.

And, in Closing,

  • The indoor lap pool in the Atrium Bldg will be closed for several days in the next week or two to repair a leak.  For scheduling starting next week, 633-3500.
  • Transfer Fees for the resale of 36 Sun City Center homes were received in June.
  • The Sun City Center resident count on June 30 was 10,588.
  • Have you noticed the expanding menu selections at the new Coffee Kiosk in the Atrium Building?  I enjoyed a muffin there with my coffee yesterday.

John Bowker

News of Greater Sun City Center by email
Founded in 1998
Volume 16, Number 27              July 1, 2014 

Last Call about July 4th

     The most interesting part of our July 4th evening program will be to see how people react to the fireworks display on the TVs in Community Hall, 1910 South Pebble Beach Blvd. It is a gutsy idea; I hope that it goes well.
     Remember:  There will be no chairs or tables set up, so bring your own seating .. pillows and cushions.  And yes, there will be free ice cream served in cups and you can bring your own food and drink .. but please be careful not to leave a mess.  
     Front Porch Pickers entertainment starts at 7 p.m. and the fireworks will start at 8.
     Breakfast that morning will be in that same big room at Community Hall starting at 7 a.m. (to noon) so bring your morning appetite and $5.00.
     All the CA buildings and facilities will be open on Friday the 4th except the main office and the library. The hours for children (3-17 yrs) in the outdoor pool on Friday the 4th are extended from 3 p.m. to dusk. 

Gambling on CA Property

      A question has arisen regarding any form of gambling by clubs on Community Association property.  Florida Statues prohibit gambling in Community Association facilities such as ours.
     The exceptions under Florida law and the IRS Rules are for Bingo, 50-50 drawings, and raffles.  Those are allowed only with the permission of the CA Board of Directors.

SCC Shopping Plaza Facelift

     One of my readers wrote in:  For two years I have been meeting with Shopping Plaza managers and communicating with the owners in Washington.  I even sent them two petitions each signed by 30 owners, asking them to at least paint the plaza.
     Finally I got a report from the owners that they will be painting the plaza in July.  They will also remove the stones from the pillars to modernize the appearance.  The canopies will be changed from pink to green.  (Thanks, Dave!)

Here’s a Fun Opportunity

     Hillsborough county is now hiring School Crossing Guards.  Applicants must be in good physical condition, have no criminal history and be able to provide for the safety of children on a crosswalk.
     You will wear your own white shirt, black pants and black shoes. They will provide a hat, stop sign, traffic vest and a whistle.
      2 shifts per day; 7:10 - 8:25 a.m. and 2:00 - 2:45 p.m.  $10.74 per hour, 10 hours per week, 20 hours per paycheck.
      Call Community Service Officer Danny Fassett at (813) 247-8195 for details.

How Does Your Water Taste?

      If you are considering a water treatment system to solve an unusual odor or taste, first contact our Water Quality Hotline, 813-264-3835, to determine the possible cause. If you have concerns or complaints about a sales pitch, call Hillsborough County Consumer Protection at 813-903-3430.
     Keep in mind that if you respond to a company’s offer to test your water, the person who comes to your home is there to sell you something.
    The website at  shows the local water condition.


     We have been reading about the new dangers of mosquitoes this year. A reader writes:  I was at a deck party awhile back, and the bugs were having a ball biting everyone. A man at the party sprayed the lawn and deck floor with Listerine, and the little demons disappeared. Later I filled a 4-ounce spray bottle and used it around my seat whenever I saw mosquitoes. And voila! That worked as well. It worked at a picnic where we sprayed the area around the food table, the children's swing area, and the standing water nearby. During the summer, I don't leave home without it now, but don’t spray it on finished wood (like floors or decks).   (Thanks, Jean)

 Editor’s Note:  It may be that other over-the-counter products will work -- let me hear from you. 

 And, in Closing,
  • There is a local tree service and landscaping scam in town.  Their representative presents a quote for landscaping services, makes up a story as to why the home owner needs to pay BEFORE he does any work -- then he and his associate go to the bank, cash the check and are not seen again.  Lesson:  You should not pay anyone for work in advance no matter what reason they give you.
  • I love to leaf through old newspapers and documents people find in their homes that have slipped down behind a cabinet for a decade or two.  Here’s one that just turned up today showing the resident daily greens fee for 18 holes was $3.00.  When?  1960s.
  • When you get a chance you might want to visit my website.  It has eight categories of information including some back editions of eNEWS, details about handling large trash items, most local websites for our clubs, an update to the current Membership Directory, a listing of all areas of responsibility for our CA Board Directors, and contacts you should make if your identity is compromised.  Just go to and click on your choice at the top of the opening screen.
  • In my last edition I mentioned a new assisted living facility being built next to the Interstate just beyond Bob Evans restaurant (behind the Minto sales center).  A reader advises that it will be a Memory Care Community called Inspired Living at Sun City Center by Validus Senior Living.  That company has three other memory care assisted living communities in the region including one in BradentonSarasota and St. Petersburg (Thanks Linda R.)

 / John Bowker

News of Greater Sun City Center by email
Founded in 1998  
Volume 16, Number 26               June 26, 2014 

If you are printing this out, save paper by using the PDF attachment  

Details of the July 4th Fireworks

     The Fireworks display from Washington DC will be shown on the TVs and large projection screen in Community Hall starting at 8 p.m. -- AND the CA is delighted to announce that the Front Porch Pickers will perform there from 7-8 p.m. before the fireworks show starts…AND do not forget the ice cream cups they will have for everyone.

     Be sure to bring a chair and maybe a blanket and a pillow or two since there is no plan to provide seating for this event.

     Remember too that the day will start with a breakfast in that same room served any time between 7:00 a.m. and noon .. $5.00!  They WILL provide seats and tables for the breakfast!  (Sounds to me like a full day for the Maintenance Staff.)

County Closings on the 4th

  • All libraries, recreation and senior centers will be closed.
  • Regional parks will be open.
  • All disposal facilities, including the Southeast County Landfill and South County transfer stations
  • The animal shelter emergency personnel will remain on call at (813) 744-5660.
  • For emergencies regarding County water and wastewater call (813) 744-5600.
  • No HART Bus Express, Limited Express Routes, or HARTFlex Service.
  • For more information about HART holiday bus service, visit

And, in Closing,

  • Construction of CA buildings along North Pebble Beach Blvd is progressing nicely.  The walls and roofs should be in place by the end of July on the four buildings there.  The last I heard about the reconstruction of the main parking lot off North Course Lane was that it should be ready during October with improved sloping for drainage and new lighting to brighten the place up.
  • If a delivery person comes to your home with a surprise gift that includes a bottle of wine or other alcohol, he will ask for you to sign that you are over 21 and you must pay the $3.50 delivery charge with a credit card so the whole thing can be traced for the alcohol authorities.  He will have a little machine to read your card and he jots down the 3-digit code from the back of your card.  He then leaves and, within minutes can run up several thousand dollars from your credit card or deplete your entire debit card if that’s what you used.
  • The construction in back of the Minto Welcome/Sales Center (between Bob Evans and the Interstate) will be an assisted living facility they confirmed today.  Thanks to several readers who teased me into checking into that!

 /John Bowker

News of Greater Sun City Center by email
Founded in 1998
Volume 16, Number 25               June 20, 2014

The First of Four

This was the scene at the corner of North Pebble Beach Blvd and Cherry Hills Drive yesterday where the new Information and History Center is under construction.  We had been told that construction would start in July, so seeing this progress so early was really good news.  
     Next will come construction at the corner of North Course Lane and North Pebble Beach where the Multipurpose Building, and the Samaritan Services Center will be built.  Work on the library expansion has been delayed by the discovery of some buried cables; the flooring for that new section should be poured shortly.
     Wiring and interior trim along with outside landscaping on all four buildings should finish the job by the end of the year.

July 4th Events
3 reasons to stay in town

1.  Breakfast:  The annual event in Community Hall (1910 South Pebble Beach) starts at 7 a.m. and runs until noon.  $5.  Join everyone in town!

2.  Picnic:  Noon to 3:00pm at the United Methodist Church (1210 Del Webb Blvd West) You must have a ticket (free!) and there are only 500 of them.  Get yours at the church weekdays between 9 a.m. and 2 p.m. HOT DOGS n’ HAMBURGERS,  Baked Beans, Cole Slaw, Chips, Cookies, Watermelon. Come enjoy the Food, Music, Games, and Talent Show Fun! 

3.  Come one, come all to the “fireworks” display, inside, on the big screen TV at Community Hall 8:00-9:30 p.m.  Bring your lawn/beach chairs or blankets.  We will supply ice cream cups.  No weather or insect worries.

LOST! White 13-year-old German Shepherd, 78 pounds, named “Teka”.  Was last seen running down New Bedford Drive chasing a rabbit.  Call Katya Marlowe at 813-767-1055.

                                                                                 John Bowker

News of Greater Sun City Center by email
Founded in 1998 
Volume 16, Number 24               June 17, 2014

Just as you enter the Atrium Building

    As you come in from the plaza this little nook has been set up by a new resident, Ambreen Esmail.  Starting tomorrow morning at 9 a.m. she will be offering Artisan Coffee, tea, juices and ‘delicious snacks’.  She will be open until noon.
    She will be spending today (Tuesday) stocking the kiosk with goodies now that the county approvals have been received.  There is only seating for 8 people in that small space (all new chairs and tables) but before figuring out any way to serve more people, Ambreen is going to watch just how popular this concept may be.   Meantime, the CA Board, I am assured, is still planning a full fledged café for the Central Campus with details of location and operations still in limbo.

Construction Continues

      The construction crews have poured the concrete floors in the new Information and History Center, and for the two buildings next to the North Course Lane entrance from North Pebble Beach Blvd.  I expect we will see similar progress on the library extension building this week.  The actual building walls should be going up starting in a couple of weeks.
     We had some seriously heavy rains here in the past few days but the properties appear to have drained well, so there should not be any serious delays in their schedule.  They are still saying the parking lot should be back in service by early October and the 4 buildings should be in full use by January.

4th of July Events

     I am starting to collect information about all the local events that will occur right in town on this big day.  Breakfast, Picnic and…a fireworks display.  More in my next edition.

John Bowker

News of Greater Sun City Center by email
Founded in 1998
Volume 16, Number 23              June 11, 2014

If you are printing this out, save paper by using the PDF attachment

 Referendum on New Theater

      One of the items on this morning’s agenda for the monthly CA Board Meeting was to “approve a referendum to be held December 2 and 3 on financing up to $3.5 million for a new theater”.  (They changed the proposed October referendum date I mentioned earlier just prior to today’s meeting).
      That item was approved by the Board by a vote of 8-1 .. but not until it was made clear that the vote today was only to decide if a referendum should be held at all.  Several board members commented that they were not in favor of the proposed financing as they understood it, but decided the CA Members should be given a chance to vote on the matter with the promise that, between now and December, there would be enough membership meetings (“coffee and conversation” informal get-togethers and others) that everyone would understand just what is being proposed before being asked to vote in December.

New Club Policies

       This item on today’s CA Board agenda relates only to National and 501(c) organizations.  It is in 5 parts and was approved today by a board vote of 6-3:


          1.  All current National and 501(c) organizations that presently have CA Club status are grandfathered in as CA Clubs.  They must comply with all club requirements noted in Policy Section V.
          2.  CA Club status will not be granted to National and 501(c) organizations who are not presently CA Affiliated Clubs after July 1, 2014.  Their use of CA Facilities will be governed as described in Policy VI - FACILITIES.
          3.  National and 501(c) organizations who give up CA Affiliated Club status will not be reinstated as CA Affiliated Clubs.
          4.  National and 501(c) organizations who are clubs must, unless their national charter forbids it, provide CA numbers for CA members.
          5.  National and 501(c) organizations who are clubs may follow their charter when electing officers.  The CA requests that at least one officer be a CA member in good standing.

Senator’s Staff Will Visit 

Staff from State Senator Bill Galvano’s legislative office will be visiting Sun City Center to hold constituent hours on Tuesday, July 1.  Staff members will be available to assist local residents with state agency issues from 10 a.m. to noon in Room #3 at Community Hall, 1910 South Pebble Beach Boulevard. 

Local Canoe Trip

     You can celebrate the summer solstice with a paddle trip around the island just south of Camp Bayou in the Little Manatee River on Saturday, June 21, at 9 a.m. \
     Three-seat canoes are available for rent for just $25 which includes the guided tour with our volunteer naturalists. Have your own canoe or kayak? You are welcome to join the tour for a donation of $5. Registration required, please call 813-641-8545.
     Camp Bayou is located 3 miles south of SR 674 at the south end of 24th St SE in Ruskin.  Just drive under the Interstate and watch for 24th Street; turn left and drive to the end of that road.

Naturalization Information
Saturday, June 21 at 10:15 a.m.

This free information program at the Ruskin (downtown) Library will provide information outlining the requirements for naturalization and the basic application process. 
     A “mock” naturalization interview, video, and a question and answer period will be included.  The library is located at 26 Dickman Drive SE in downtown Ruskin just off US 41. This will be a presentation of the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services.

 And, in Closing,
  • By my count, there were 123 CA Members in attendance at this morning’s board meeting plus the nine board members and Community Manager.
  • The CA received 41 Transfer Fees from the resale of houses in Sun City Center in May bringing the total in our Capital Fund to $2.2 million.
  • The total resident count of CA Members at the end of May was 10,622.
  • Physical construction of the 4 new buildings on the Central Campus along North Pebble Beach Blvd will take place in July.  They will be ready for occupancy by January.
  • Through the courtesy of the CA Staff, I receive a monthly list of Kings Point and Sun City Center residents who have passed away.  If you would like to see this listing (Snowbirds may find it particularly useful) please reply to this email and type the word “List” on the Subject Line.

/ John Bowker

News of Greater Sun City Center by email
Founded in 1998  
Volume 16, Number 22               June 9,2014 

Important Decisions Due
Wednesday Morning, June 11

     The agenda for the 9 a.m. CA Board Meeting in the Rollins Theater calls for a vote by the CA Board on two important issues. 
First they will deal with an addition to the new policy regarding the balance of resident/non-resident officers in our National and 501(c) organizations.  
Second will be for them to decide about holding a referendum on October 13 and 14, 2014 to finance up to $3.5 million for a new theater.
    There will be a period for audience comment following the formal meeting.  The   meeting is open to all CA Members; bring your CA membership card for admission. 

Aerial Views of the Construction

     The email newsletter of the Community Association contains several aerial photos of the new construction on our Central Campus.  You can request that they add your email address to their mailings at  
     As part of their most recent edition, they tell about the latest aerial photos of the parking lot area next to the Atrium Building and Fitness Center.  You can see them at those receiving their email, they promise more photos as construction continues -- If you are not already on their list, I encourage you to request their mailings.

Free Bus Rides for a Day

     On June 19, you will be allowed free unlimited HARTline bus service if you provide the bus operator with a receipt for your purchase of gasoline dated after May 1, 2014.  They want you to use the bus instead of driving your car.

And, in Closing,

  • My reader Nan called my attention to the clean up around the tennis courts on South Pebble Beach Blvd at Chipper Drive.  The courts are not being rejuvenated, but just making the area look nice is a great improvement to the community.
  • This has nothing to do with Sun City Center, but if you haven’t seen the 2-minute video making the email rounds at Notre Histoire it is worth a look.  The story is that a 15-year old put it together to show the history of the world.  Make sure your sound is on.
  • I was teasing Maintenance Supervisor Kelly Emerson this week about his staff having nothing to do what with all the construction and limited access to the facilities.  He set me straight with an impressive list of projects each of his staff is pursuing .. checking on all the equipment that they have often have limited time to examine; painting sidewalks, benches, improving lighting in some of our buildings .. moving water lines as construction continues and providing guidance on underground utilities to the construction crews.

/John Bowker