Earth Day is coming up on April 22, and what better way to observe the day than participate in Podley’s Shredding Event. Shredding is good for the environment, and helps guard your identity, too!
Elias J. “Lucky” Baldwin was one of the greatest and most colorful pioneers of California business in the second half of the nineteenth century. He made his mark on the development of Southern California, starting with the Santa Anita Rancho.
Passing through the San Gabriel Valley on a business trip in the 1870s, Elias J. “Lucky” Baldwin was amazed by Santa Anita Rancho’s rich land, rolling contours, and great oaks. He gasped, “By Gad, this is paradise!” and he simply had to have it, even though its price was high and only increased every time he spoke to its owner. Once he purchased the Santa Anita, he planted orchards and vineyards in the lowlands and grazed livestock on the oak-dotted hillsides. On the western edge of his land were the Baldwin Stables with Lucky’s championship racehorses.
During the land boom of the 1880s, Baldwin sold 845 acres of the Santa Anita Rancho to Nathaniel Carter who formed the town of Sierra Madre, and 240 acres to William Monroe who created the town of Monrovia. When Baldwin saw how Carter and Monroe profited by selling plots to easterners arriving on the newly completed railroad, Baldwin decided he would not be left out.
Baldwin set up his own town site with beautiful tree-lined streets, including a double-drive he called Santa Anita Avenue. Lucky named his town Arcadia, or “serene countryside”. When told the prices he was charging for homesites were too high, he argued, “We’re giving the land away. We’re only selling the climate!” Baldwin put his profits into improving his home ranch with driveways, lawns and shade trees. He built a Queen Anne Style cottage by his lake for entertaining.
When he passed away in 1909, Arcadia mourned the death of its founder. The city praised his “great charity for the deserving and helpless, his great eye for the beautiful in nature, his great love for the things that grow, his adoration for our native trees, and his faculty for beautifying the land, all of which during his life, tended to the upbuilding and planting of this little city, in the midst of the most beautiful valley of the State.”
Santa Anita Derby April 7, Stepping Stone to the Kentucky Derby
If you’re excited about watching the Kentucky Derby on May 5, you wouldn’t want to miss your chance to see two of its top contenders slug it out right in our own backyard. Kentucky Derby favorites Justify and Bolt d’Oro will run in the $1 million Santa Anita Derby this Saturday. It’s a race contested by 3-year-olds at a distance of 1/18 miles or 9 furlongs.
Justify is a relatively inexperienced colt. He would need to win first or second on Saturday to become eligible to run in the Kentucky Derby. If he wins the Kentucky Derby, he would make history as the first horse since 1882 to win after not racing as a 2-year-old! “This horse is just imposing. He is big and bad and his stride is fluent. If you’re looking for a horse that is progressing perfectly at the right time to win the Derby, then this is your boy.”- Pete Monaco, The Eighth Pole.
Bolt d’Oro’s name is a tribute to sprinter Usain Bolt. He’s already qualified for the Kentucky Derby and is a favorite to win it. “Justify? I say bring him on.” says Bolt d’Oro’s trainer Mick Ruiz. “Bolt d’Oro…hasn’t had a bad race. He’s all class, shown he’s got the heart and fits well with the top contenders. He will be one of the deserving top choices come Derby day.” – Pete Monaco, The Eighth Pole.
Excitement is building in Arcadia for The Santa Anita Derby. The Derby has produced countless racing legends, and you may just get a chance to see legends in the making this Saturday! Visit santaanita.com for more details.
Whether it’s spelled Wistaria or Wisteria, Sierra Madre’s Wistaria vine will always smell just as sweet! Sierra Madreans are understandably proud of their vine and eager to share it . After all, it is one of the seven horticultural wonders of the world, along with the redwood forest in Sequoia National Park, Brazil’s tropical jungle in the Amazon Valley, and the gardens of Buckingham Palace.
This year’s Sierra Madre Wistaria Festival begins on Saturday, March 17, noon – 9pm with a green event and St. Patrick celebration – how appropriate! On Sunday, March 18, from 9am – 5pm, visitors can enjoy a craft fair, kids activities, an auto show and live music at Memorial Park. Most importantly, they can take a shuttle to view the vine.
Alice Brugman planted the one-gallon, 75-cent wistaria vine in her backyard in the 1890s. The vine grew to two acres at its peak in the 1920s and began taking over the house. A new house was built 200 feet away, and the original house was used as a support for the vine until it was crushed beneath the vine’s weight. Sierra Madre’s 250-ton wistaria vine now measures more than an acre and has over 1½ million lavender and purple blossoms. It holds the Guinness record for largest flowering plant.
Wistaria plants symbolize welcome, and Sierra Madre welcomes everyone to enjoy a wonderful weekend of celebration at their annual Wistaria Festival.
Shuttle tickets are available at the Bottle Shop, Savor the Flavor and Bean Town: $12 adults, $7seniors and children 6-16.
For more information go to: www.sierramadrechamber.com/events