Dade City is celebrating its 130th birthday with a series of events this week that include everything from a walking tour, to enjoying a free cupcake, to a scavenger hunt — and more.
The week kicked off with events on Monday and Tuesday — which was after The Laker/Lutz News went to press.
But, there are other events set for the rest of the week, beginning with a Walking Wednesday tour, set for June 5 at 9 a.m.
The tour begins at Agnes Lamb Park, 14200 Ninth St., and goes through downtown Dade City, wrapping up at the Greater Dade City Chamber of Commerce, 14112 Eighth St., where refreshments await.
Those taking the tour have a chance to see a city that prides itself on its charm, its history, shops and restaurants, and its picturesque courthouse.
The stop at the chamber of commerce gives tour-takers a chance to visit the place which rallies a couple of hundred volunteers annually to put on the city’s signature event: the Kumquat Festival.
The festival, which pays homage to a tiny fruit, attracts thousands of visitors to Dade City.
Last year, the festival feature more than 400 vendors and sponsors who sold their products and promoted their services. In addition to generous sponsors, more than 200 volunteers stepped up to make it happen.
The chamber also hosts popular monthly business breakfasts and promotes merchant events to encourage a lively downtown.
Another celebration set for this week is called Throwback Thursday, which pits downtown merchants in a competition to see whose storefront window best reflects a theme from the past.
Voters can choose their favorite on June 6 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. The winning business will receive a prize.
On Friday, June 7 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., drop by the Dade City Heritage Museum, at 14206 U.S. 98 Bypass, to enjoy a free cupcake and learn about Dade City’s 130-year history.
The museum itself has an interesting past.
It is housed within the Dade City Atlantic Coast Line Depot, which was built in 1912 and was the first site to be placed on the National Register of Historic Places.
Originally, the depot accommodated freight and passenger traffic.
“Designed in a traditional style for southern railroad depots constructed in the late 19th and early 20th century, this building is utilitarian in layout, yet possesses finely crafted structural and ornamental Folk Victorian style details,” according to documents related to its historic designation. The building’s architectural elements include gable dormers, bay window, wraparound loading platform, and interior finishes, the document says.
Beyond being an architectural gem, the depot played an important role in Dade City’s history.
“Railroad stations served as major community commercial and social centers, linking each of the small towns with the rest of the world. At the turn of the century, therefore, railroads and associated depots play a significant role in the development of Central Florida communities, such as Dade City,” the historic document said.
The week of celebrations concludes with a Scavenger Hunt, set for Saturday, June 8 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
The hunt will involve representatives from the City of Dade City, the city’s merchants, the Dade City Heritage Museum and others for a city-wide scavenger hunt. Take photos of the activities, people and places on the scavenger hunt list to earn points toward a grand prize.
Events set for earlier in the week — after The Laker/Lutz News went to press — included
Monarch Monday, which was a ceremony to officially dedicate Dade City as a Monarch Butterfly City USA.
The city has joined four other Florida municipalities to address the plight of the endangered insects.
Another event, called Touring Tuesday, was held on June 4. It featured a guided tour of City Hall, with a meet-and-greet with Mayor Camille Hernandez and members of the Dade City Commission.
Dade City celebrations
Walking Wednesday: June 5, 9 a.m.: Tour begins at Agnes Lamb Park, 14200 Ninth St., in Dade City. The walk travels through downtown Dade City, ending at the Greater Dade City Chamber of Commerce, 14112 Eighth St., where refreshments will be available.
Throwback Thursday: June 6, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.: The Downtown Dade City merchants will be decorating their storefront windows to reflect the years past and you get to vote on which you like best. The winning business will receive a prize.
First Friday: June 7, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.: The Dade City Heritage Museum, 14206 U.S. 98 Bypass. Celebrate Dade City’s birthday with a free cupcake and learn about 130 years of Dade City history.
Scavenger Hunt Saturday, June 8, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.: Join the City of Dade City, the city’s merchants and the Dade City Heritage Museum for a city-wide scavenger hunt. Take photos of the activities, people and places on the scavenger hunt list to earn points toward a grand prize. Visit the Dade City Heritage Museum’s website or Facebook page for more details.
Published June 05, 2019