During the first week of December almost 130 years ago, a group of settlers from the new town of Trabue, Fla., met in a Billiards Parlor near what is now the corner of Olympia and Taylor and voted to incorporate their town into a municipality and rename it Punta Gorda.

To celebrate those early founders and those who followed in making Punta Gorda a better and better community ever since that week in 1887, Punta Gorda’s Founders’ Day Week will be celebrated this year and going forward on the first week in December leading up to December 7, the official date of the City’s incorporation. This year’s celebration will take place December 1 through the 7.

Founders’ Day Week will incorporate both Christmas holiday and history related events, several of which are recurring annual festivities that will be now also be part of Founders’ Day Week. A full calendar of fun and educational events and programs will be offered throughout the City, most either complimentary or benefitting local charities.

Local organizations have teamed together and either included already planned events in the week’s festivities, like the Garden Club’s Holly Days Home Tours, or developed new events for the historic celebration.
Other Organizations interested in adding either a planned or new event to the celebration, please contact Gene Murtha, President, Punta Gorda History Center at (941) 258-2080.

A list of planned events include: 

Kicking off Punta Gorda’s Christmas Season, an annual celebration of those who founded and developed our historic city, incorporated on December 7, 1887.

Events of the week include so far:

Tuesday, December 1
History/Sunset Cruise at 5 p.m. with Elisa and Captain Ralph Allen on the Kingfisher.

Wednesday, December 2
Charlotte County Historical Center’s self-guided Tours of Indian Spring Cemetery with Ghosts of Punta Gorda Past. Docents share stories of pioneer triumphs and tragedies (Many of Punta Gorda’s Founding Citizens were buried here.) 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Historic Tours of Charlotte County’s Old Court House on Taylor and Olympia with the Honorable Paul Stamoulis providing stories, legends and bits of history. 1 p.m. to 4 p.m.

Ladies Only High Tea to benefit the Blanchard House at Gulf Breeze Clubhouse. 4 to 6 p.m. Contact: Libby Schaefer (941) 639-8217

Thursday, December 3
Tours of Punta Gorda’s Historic City Hall starting at 4 p.m. Learn some of the fascinating stories and secrets of this historic seat of government.

Punta Gorda’s Relay for Life “Luminaria Walk” on Marion Avenue. Making your season bright with a luminaria night. Starts at dusk.

Punta Gorda Historical Society’s “Angels in the History Park” at the Punta Gorda History Park 5-9 p.m. Men and Women from Punta Gorda Past who were during their lifetimes Punta Gorda’s “Angels” will be represented as angels throughout the illuminated park among historic houses adorned for Christmas with luminaries and decorations (many historic).

Friday, December 4
Punta Gorda Garden Club’s Annual Historic District Holly Days Home Tours “Sparkling Christmas Memories” 11-4 p.m. Historic homes and gardens decorated for Christmas.

Old-Fashioned Holiday Celebration at the Downtown Tree Christmas Carol Singing, Santa and Snow and more

Punta Gorda Historical Society’s “Angels in the Park” at the Punta Gorda History Park 5-9 p.m.

Saturday, December 5
Christmas at Farmers Market at Historic Hector Square

Charlotte County Chamber’s 37th Annual Christmas Parade through Punta Gorda “The Twelve Days of Christmas” starts at noon.

Punta Gorda Garden Club’s Annual Historic District Holly Days Home Tours “Sparkling Christmas Memories” 11-4 p.m.

Punta Gorda Kiwanis’ Christmas Card Lane, the annual display of giant holiday cards, opens on the Harbor in front of the event center.

Punta Gorda History Center’s Founders’ Day Southern Supper at Hurricane Charley’s - An Authentic old-time Punta Gorda Southern Supper includes inducting the first members of Punta Gorda Founders’ Hall of Fame.

Punta Gorda Historical Society’s “Angels in the Park” at the Punta Gorda History Park 5-9 p.m.

Sunday, December 6
GFWC Punta Gorda Woman's Club will celebrate it's 90th Anniversary with a vintage luncheon featuring "A Conversation between Mrs. Lincoln and Mrs. Kennedy" Guests are encouraged to wear vintage clothing or hats and gloves

Punta Gorda Historical Society’s “Angels in the Park” at the Punta Gorda History Park 5-9 p.m.

Monday, December 7
Final Trabue Chess Tournament – Punta Gorda Kiwanis Club event. Contact: Mike Haymans 941 661-5622

 

Contact: 
Press Contact: Theresa Murtha 941-916-3540