The purpose of the Society is to promote civic welfare by artistic and cultural advancement of the community and to contribute to the education of the public through the support of historical material and other appropriate activities.
The Solana Beach Civic and Historical Society is actively involved in and financially supports programs in education, civic affairs, local history, beautification, and community gardens. Our monthly general membership meetings cover a wide range of topics from the practical and educational to the purely entertaining. Social events are planned throughout the year. Our Crafts Group meets regularly to create items for the Society’s annual Holiday Boutique. The Boutique, along with sales of books about early Solana Beach written by one of our members, raise money to fund our annual college scholarship awards to graduating high school seniors, as well as to donate to a variety of community projects in Solana Beach.
The Heritage Museum offers a hands-on journey back in time 100 years. Located in La Colonia Park, the Museum guides the visitor from the original community of Lockwood Mesa through it transformation into Solana Beach. Visitors begin in a circa 1900 kitchen and living room and, as they walk through the museum, they see the lifestyle changes that came with the arrival of running water and electricity. A time-line photo exhibit traces the history of Solana Beach as it developed from the arrival of the Indians and the Spanish explorers into the community of today.
The Solana Beach Civic and Historical Society evolved from the well-established Solana Beach Women’s Civic Club, which was formed in 1953. The founding officers included Olive Smith, president; Blanche Kintz, vice president, Thelma Crawford, secretary; and Frances Cornwall, treasurer. The aim of the organization was the beautification of Solana Beach and the solution of problems confronting Solana Beach as a growing town. At that time there was no Interstate freeway, and Highway 101 through Solana Beach was a corridor of billboards and gas stations. The Women’s Civic Club was instrumental in the removal of these billboards and planting of trees and landscaping this corridor. Among their many accomplishments was the renovation of the central plaza and installation of the “Sunburst Fountain.” In March of 1989, the newly formed Solana Beach City Council asked the Women’s Civic Club to become custodians of the City’s history, and the Civic Club’s certificate of incorporation was modified to create the Solana Beach Civic & Historical Society.
What kinds of programs are offered for the community?
The SBC&HS is actively involved in and financially supports programs in education (this includes maintaining a community museum, a “living history” program, and three college scholarships), civic affairs, local history, beautification, and maintaining community gardens. Our monthly general membership meetings cover a wide range of topics from the practical and educational to the purely entertaining. Social events are planned throughout the year.
Our Crafts Group meets regularly to create items for the Society’s annual Holiday Boutique — which in 2020 will become for the first-time a virtual event. Our online store opens November 9 for four days only!
SeaWeeders Garden Club members continue to maintain the Solana Beach Post Office sculpture garden, El Viento park, and the native garden at the Fire Station. Visit seaweedersgardenclub.org for more information.
In 2019, to help celebrate the opening of Solana Beach’s Skatepark, adjacent to our Heritage Museum, the Society sponsored a Challenge for local 6th, 7th and 8th graders — no helmets required. Students were invited to participate in two contests:
- Create artwork for a skateboard deck that conveys the importance of the new skatepark to the community and the athletes who will use it, as well as the importance of its location in La Colonia de Eden Gardens, Solana Beach’s first neighborhood. Or,
- Develop a video documentary on the long history of the skatepark, from idea to the grand opening on Saturday, April 27, 2019.
In the video category, Cleo Krems, a Skyline School 6th grader, took home the $250 first place prize. A team of Earl Warren Middle School 8th graders each earned $100 runners-up prizes — Danika Blease, Tanner Phillips and Robert Schmidling.
In the deck design competition, Camden Cassara, a 7th grader at Earl Warren, was the first place winner. Runners-up were Avery Austin, Lauren Prior and Kathryn Reese, all also 7th graders at Earl Warren, as well as Cristina Milne, in grade 7 at Saint James Academy. Each received $100 prizes.
Contest judges, who assessed more than 50 entries, also awarded $50 special recognition prizes to two more Earl Warren 7th graders: Dylan Flynn, for his clever photo montage deck art that incorporated some of Solana Beach’s iconic curved rooflines, and Eli Shiah, for a catchy skatepark tagline: “Where the ride meets the tide.”
Does the SBC&HS need volunteers?
The SBC&HS always welcomes volunteers! We are seeking nominations for our 2021-22 Board of Directors, hosts for our twice-monthly Heritage Museum tours, and help with our SeaWeeders’ many community garden projects. Interested? Email firstname.lastname@example.org.