Charlie Nelson, Rebecca Watts, Peachtree City Mayor Vanessa Fleisch, and Mike Nelson helped kick off a festive year in Peachtree City.

On Thursday, the Peachtree City Rotary Club celebrated the city’s birthday with a special star.

The Rotarians received a special video message from the city’s founder, Joel Cowan. Cowan was out of town, but through the power of video talked about the founding of the city.

He said the city had to come up with a charter, but didn’t know what needed to be included. He said a local attorney found a charter from another city and used that as the basis for the city’s document.

“Back then, everything was regulated, and I learned we could regulate traveling circuses,” Cowan said with a chuckle.

After the video, former Peachtree City librarian Rebecca Watts offered a presentation on some highlights of the city’s early years.

Near the time of the city’s founding, Watts discovered through U.S. Census records that 83 percent of people who lived in the western part of the county were employed in the farming industry.

“It was known as the Wild West,” she said.

Watts said Cowan and longtime banker Floy Farr were the key figures in getting the city up and running and setting the foundation for the modern city.

When the meeting was dismissed, Rotarians sampled from a special birthday cake built for the city’s 60th celebration.