Suncoast Basset Hound Club Tampa, FL started with a group of fun-loving basset owners who got together socially. Pat and Ted Ellis encouraged these people to try their hand at showing and suggested offering "fun matches" at MacFarlane Park in Tampa. Usually there were about a dozen bassets at these early events and most of the participants obtained their bassets from Pat and Ted.
By the early 1980's, it became evident that there was a core group who was serious about securing AKC licensure to hold sanctioned events. In addition to Pat and Ted Ellis, Mary and Jerry Manning, Lena and Billy Wray and Pam Schwabe felt they should expand their fun club into something more serious.
Mary Manning contacted the AKC to find out the requirements to become a Specialty Club, and followed up to make sure everything needed was secured. Mary is also the one who designed the club's logo which is still in use.
The AKC initially rejected the name "Suncoast Basset Hound Club" as it was not specific to any geographic location. Since Pat and Ted lived in Clearwater at the time, and the other working members were in the Tampa area, the group decided to add "Tampa, FL" to the official club name.
Several "B" matches were held, then the "A" match, followed by independent specialty shows held at various locations in the Tampa/Clearwater area.
The first president of SBHC was Pat Ellis, followed by Ted Ellis. Then Jerry Manning served as president, followed by Mary Manning-Stolz. Mary Kay Lucas after Mary, then Ellen Ferguson. Currently, Sandra Marquez is the club's president.
After hosting independent specialty shows, SBHC joined the Florida Combined Specialty Clubs and shows were held twice a year in Lakeland, FL and Tampa. Now, Suncoast Basset Hound Club, Tampa, FL holds two specialty shows in Brooksville, FL as part of the January Circuit.
Plans are currently underway to expand the number of shows being held each year.