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Champagne and candles

  • By
  • | 5:00 a.m. January 30, 2014
Dick and Cornelia Matson with Aunt Charlotte
Dick and Cornelia Matson with Aunt Charlotte
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Surrounded by friends, family and neighbors, Charlotte Zwick celebrated her 105th birthday Saturday. Zwick’s party was held at her residence, Bahia Oaks Lodge. Zwick made an entrance into the dining room on her new scooter — an early birthday present from family. Her guests danced, sang and swapped

Zwick was born in 1909 in Buffalo, N.Y., and grew up in Cleveland. There she worked in fashion retail at department stores Bonwit Teller and The Halle Brothers. Zwick says her favorite fashion eras were the ’50s and ’60s because the styles were new, exciting and colorful.

Zwick is known for her color-coordinated outfits, love of Ferragamo shoes and scarves and her outgoing personality.

“She puts a smile on everyone’s face,” says her niece-in-law Cornelia Matson.

In the 1920s, Zwick met and married Cleveland lawyer Ben Zwick, and although they didn’t have any children, the Zwicks remained close to their families.

“We had the best time whenever Aunt Charlotte chaperoned,” said her nephew Dick Matson. “She was the ‘cool aunt.’”

When Zwick moved in 1974 to Sarasota after her husband died, she lived with her sister, Leonore Matson, at Sea Places on Longboat Key and at Bay Plaza. When Leonore died in 1996, Zwick continued to live at Bay Plaza, where she served guests her famous homemade macaroons. She lived on her own at Bay Plaza until last spring, when she moved to Bahia Oaks Lodge.

The dark-chocolate-lover looks forward to maintaining her positive outlook on life.

“I think your attitude is the most important thing you own,” she says.

Friends of Zwick wish her a happy birthday:

“I hope for her to be truly happy,” says neighbor and close friend Norma Clark.

“She helps make this place like a family,” says Elizabeth Colbert on Zwick’s kindness.

“I hope I’m as well as she is at that age,” says fellow Bahia Oaks Lodge resident Jeffi Infield.

“She’s a lovely little lady, and now she has new wheels,” says Betty Larkey.

“I hope I can be as nice and graceful as she is,” says Paul Barger.

Contact Harriet Sokmensuer at [email protected]



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