Civic Center

The Civic Center started out as Redwood Hall during the time of Little Landers. The utopian agricultural community wanted a grassy park area, which still exists today between this building and the San Ysidro Public Library.

Redwood Hall is where all the gatherings took place of the Little Landers community. When the colony was washed away by the 1916 flood, the building became the Civic Center and was built in 1927 with donations by border baron Frank Beyer. His wife, Blanche Beyer, was a member of the San Ysidro Women’s Club a group who held meetings here. They have existed since 1915 and are still going strong today!

By the 1940s and 1950s the Civic Center was used for all sorts of community events, including New Year Parties.

In the 1960s the Civic Center and the park became an important location for Latinos. Farm worker activist Ceasar Chavez came to here to give talks. Bobby Kennedy also came to San Ysidro only days before his assassination to campaign for President. He specifically wanted to garner support from Latinos and San Ysidro by that time was a predominantly Hispanic community.

San Ysidro Civic Center NewYears Eve

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2 Responses to “Civic Center”

  1. charlie velazquezFebruary 1, 2014 at 12:35 am #

    So many memories,growing up just one block away.Boy Scout meetings, the summer fun club,SAT movies,dances,parties,wedding receptions etc. Etc. Completely multi-function FUN place. Will never forget all the great times and all the wonderful friendships. My ” MAYBERRY TOWN”. SAN YSIDRO NATIVE, CHARLIE VELAZQUEZ.

  2. Carol Koehler CimaFebruary 15, 2014 at 8:39 pm #

    What an interesting site! I remember our visits to San Ysidro when I was a little girl. I grew up in Imperial Beach and was of the 1957 Class of Mar Vista. I was about 7 or 8 when my Mom went to a sewing class at the Community center. The ladies in the class later had a fashion show at Southwest Jr. High sharing and modeling what they had made. I think this class was sponsored by the Sweetwater School Dist. Anyway, one time at the Community Center another little girl whose mother was also attending the classes and I were snooping around in the building because we were getting bored. We found in the kitchen area, 3 slot machines! The old “one armed bandits”. They worked and we had fun. When our mothers found us we were scolded and told to not touch those “awful things”. I always wondered how those happened to be there. I remember the big picture of George Washington that was were you saw it when you entered the Community Center. Felt he was watching us. I also remember a stop to buy meat and I think one of the stores was Dick’s. There also was a candy and ice cream store? The pharmacy too? Good memories! I remember later going to mass at Mt Carmel with Catholic friends and of course to a couple Quinceanos party’s. I seem to remember a lot of the young people chose the church in Tiajuana for their weddings. Oh look, I spelled it Tiajuana. When did that change? Aunt Juana to Tijuana.

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