February was a month of big events and final preparations for the Florida Strawberry Festival.
Carl and Dee Dee Grooms brought a heavy dose of humor to the annual Celebrity Chef as they donned aprons and got to cooking to raise money for the United Food Bank of Plant City. The XFL’s Tampa Bay Vipers started to spread their roots in the community and volunteered at the United Food Bank of Plant City.
Strawberry Crest’s girls soccer team made history by winning its first district title after beating Plant City 3-1 in overtime. Eleven athletes from Plant City High School and Strawberry Crest all over the community put pen to paper on National Signing Day. A red carpet was rolled out for attendees of the annual Night to Shine event, which was held at First Baptist Church of Plant City. The event drew hundreds of attendees for the legendary prom night which is thrown each year for those in the community with special needs.
Jim Scott was named the 2020 Citizen of the Year. This was the 61st annual ceremony and Scott — of Jarrett-Scott Ford — received the honor due to years of his civic-minded work ethic, dedication toward giving back and tireless pursuit of making his community a better place. Courtney Paat officially became the 2020 Chairman of the Board of the Greater Plant City Chamber of Commerce on Feb. 6.
Rod Carter, of WFLA News Channel 8, was the master of ceremony for the 17th annual Black Heritage Banquet Gala and the Honorable Lesley “Les” Miller was the keynote speaker. Miller analyzed how far this country has come over the past few decades and shared stories of his own life, inspiring all in attendance. He received a standing ovation for his speech.
Strawberry Crest continued to dominate in the world of sports. Its cheer team won its first UCA national championship at the start of the month. The community gathered once again at Fancy Farms for the annual 4-H u-pick fundraiser, which has been a foundation in Plant City for 13 years.