THIS DATE IN THE BOCA BEACON

December 16, 2022
By Marcy Shortuse

FIVE YEARS AGO

The Pink Pony got that really cool machine that presses pennies into different designs. 

TEN YEARS AGO

Ed Seale passed away, a true Southern gentleman who helped shape Gasparilla Island with his real estate company.

FIFTEEN YEARS AGO

A company that was looking into purchasing the old Mercabo facility wanted to put an upscale resort there. The owner said, it would not “disrupt the allure of the island.” 

TWENTY YEARS AGO

Capt. Marian’s trolley made its grand debut downtown. In regard to The Gasparilla Inn & Club’s 2002 season opening, the Farish family and Inn General Manager Andy Nagle said their goal was to keep the Inn as it has always been, even after the death of Bayard Sharp earlier in the year.

TWENTY-FIVE YEARS AGO

The Gasparilla Island Bridge Authority hired former Air Force Col. Jim Cooper as their executive director. Island schoolteacher and long-time resident Bernice Bylaska passed away at the age of 96.

THIRTY YEARS AGO

We said goodbye to Gene Bowe, who passed away at 69 after serving as an island railroad supervisor, a volunteer firefighter and a volunteer deputy. 

FORTY YEARS AGO

Christmas in Boca Grande included the Little Saints Choir, led by Gena Teachout, at the Community Christmas Tree Lighting, and the Ladies’ Rhythm Band featuring beloved island icon Timmie Smith.