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The Sun

Annual Sun City Center Golf Cart Parade is on the way

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Published:   |   Updated: November 13, 2013 at 04:04 PM

SUN CITY CENTER – Calling all golf cart owners: The annual Sun City Center Golf Cart Parade is fast approaching.

And this year’s theme – Sights and Sounds of the Season – provides parade entrants with the opportunity to decorate their carts pretty much any way they choose.

“It’s wide open this year. People can do whatever they want as long as it has something to do with the holidays,” said Dave Birkett, chairman of the golf cart parade committee. “It’ll definitely add to the variety of cart decorations.”

The fun begins at 10 a.m. on Dec. 7 at the Community Association parking lot on North Pebble Beach Boulevard. Led by this year’s grand marshal Charlie Belcher of Fox TV Channel 13, the procession will head north on Pebble Beach to LaJolla Avenue, and then traverse El Rancho Boulevard, Ojai Avenue and finally Cherry Hills Boulevard to end at the bandstand area, where prizes will be awarded.

Minto Communities donated $6,000 in prize money this year. The three first-place winners in individual, business and group categories – which includes clubs, organizations, homeowners and condominium associations – will win $800 each and be eligible for the $500 Best in Show award.

There will also be second-place awards of $300 and third-place awards of $200 in each of the three categories. Fourth-, fifth- and sixth-place winners will get $200 apiece in the individual category only, which includes the majority of parade entrants, Birkett said.

Part of Minto’s donation is $1,000 for a raffle that includes all carts completing the route. Tickets will be issued to participants as they start the parade and collected as they drive across the finish line. All will go into a drawing to determine who gets the grand. Prizes will be awarded immediately in the form of cash cards.

All carts must be decorated to participate in the parade. A simple bow on the grille will not do. Sun City Center, Kings Point, Sun Towers and Freedom Plaza residents and all area businesses are encouraged to participate.

Registration forms can be obtained at the Community Association Office, Atrium kiosk or either of the Kings Point clubhouses. They can also be found online at www.suncitycenter.org. Simply click on Sun City Center, scroll down to Golf Cart Parade Registration and print. Deadline for submitting registrations to the Community Association office is Tuesday, Dec. 3.

Minto is sponsoring Winterfest again this year to coincide with the parade. The event will include food vendors, a pet show, photo booths, masseuses, live music and arts and crafts. It will take place from 11 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. in the courtyard on the Central Campus.

“Last year the sheriff’s office estimated between 2,500 to 3,000 people turned out to watch the parade and many ended up at Winterfest,” Birkett said. “Both are fun events for the entire community. We encourage everyone to come out and have a good time.”

lkindle@tampatrib.com

(813) 731-8138

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