Villagers Holly Sinkewicz, left, and Lyn Dickey enjoy Saturday’s ‘Red Hat Hoot’ at Lake Sumter Landing Market Square.
The “Cupid Shuffle” came to life early Saturday afternoon as a small group of Red Hatters from throughout the area showed off their dance moves at Lake Sumter Landing Market Square.
The group had gathered for a ‘Red Hat Hoot,’ an occasional get-together for the women from different chapters to socialize and enjoy time together. Saturday’s event included that and more, as the members did a little dancing and then headed out for some shopping and promised discounts from Lake Sumter Landing merchants.
“We’re having a good time,” said Carol Monzo, queen of the Dunnellon Divas, who made the trip to The Villages from Spruce Creek Preserve in Dunnellon. “It’s a little warm, but we’re having a good time.”
Saturday’s temperatures in the 90s, no doubt, kept some Red Hatters in their air conditioned homes. But the group that showed up quickly hit the dance floor and followed the lead of line dance instructor Lydia Leduc, a fellow Red Hatter and Village of Rio Grande resident.
“People all like to line dance,” said Lyn Dickey, a Village of Virginia Trace resident who serves on the Red Hat Queen’s Council. “It gets them up and gets them working out. That’s a good thing,” added the retired Broward County sheriff’s captain.
Villager Lydia Leduc, left, leads her fellow Red Hatters through some line dance routines Saturday at Lake Sumter Landing.
Monzo agreed, adding that Saturday was all about line dancing for her and two members of her chapter – Barbara Bene and Elizabeth Sasfair – who made the 40-mile trip with her to Lake Sumter Landing.
“I love it,” she said. “We’re having a dinner party tonight – all line dancing. I picked up a couple of new ones, so this is my warm-up. I’ll take a couple of aspirins and I’ll be good to go!”
Monzo said her chapter, which includes 10 members, formed this past January and makes it a point to take trips and do fun things together.
“We went to Weeki Wachee yesterday,” she said. “We saw the mermaids show, then went to the wildlife show. We went for the boat trip and then we all took a little dink in the 74-degree water. It was something that none of us had ever done before.”
Villager Bonnie MacCarroll, queen of the Red Hat Queen’s Council, struts her stuff during a line dance routine.
Members of the Dunnellon Divas, from left, Elizabeth Sasfair, Barbara Bene and Queen Carol Monzo.
As for Saturday’s event, Monzo said it was an opportunity for members of her chapter to get to know other Red Hatters from the Central Florida area.
“This is just a great way for us as sisters to meet on an informal basis,” she said.
Bonnie MacCarroll, who lives in the Village of Bridgeport at Lake Miona and serves as queen of the Red Hat Queen’s Council, agreed, adding that she always has a good time when she’s out with good friends.
“For all the years you work, you just want to have fun,” she said. “We don’t have to prove anything anymore. That’s the whole idea behind this.”
Jean Harlan, of the Village of Caroline, shows her moves during the ‘Cupid Shuffle’ line dance.
Vendors Stephanie Ings and Mary Jane Derochea, Red Hatters from Port Charlotte, offer merchandise for sale during Saturday’s gathering at Lake Sumter Landing.
As for what she’d say to women who are considering becoming a member of the Red Hat Society, MacCarroll said the answer really is quite simple.
“Do it. You don’t have a lot of responsibility,” the longtime time nurse said. “You just go and have fun. We plan all the parties and hopefully everybody gets to go.
“I was never able to do this before with working as I did, 14-hour days and stuff. It was just too hard.”
Red Hatters enjoy line dancing before shopping together Saturday at Lake Sumter Landing.
Members of several different Red Hat chapters attend Saturday’s line dancing event at Lake Sumter Landing Market Square.