Mike Reed/Pages From The Past
100 Years Ago
— “It is reported that there is a move on foot to call an election to vote for the rection of a badly needed schoolhouse. The present building is old and too small for its purpose. Money spent in repairing the old building is money thrown away.”
— A fire started by the burning of brush on the J.K. Wilson ranch near Novato, burned all day yesterday over an area of 1,500 acres, causing a loss of approximately $6,000. The blaze started at 9 o’clock in the morning and was not controlled until last night. Five Hundred people fought the flames with wet sacks and back-firing. The fire spread from the J.K. Wilson place, thence to the C.F. Fisher, J. Lemos, Stutt, Lambert, Powers, Rebizzo, Pharsing ranches before it was controlled.
The forest fire in Indian valley, which was reported under control late last night, was revived by a hurricane at 4 o’clock this morning and spread rapidly, destroying 2,000 acres of pasture and timber land and several; hundred acres of haystacks. Two hundred men answered today’s call for additional volunteers and, with the 400 already engaged in battling the flames, fought the fiery tide all through the day.
75 Years Ago
— Bob was an official photographer with the army of occupation in Europe and did much of the photo and lab work at the German war trials. He has a rolling laboratory on a steel trailer to be used in connection with his work here. He attended San Rafael High Marin Junior College and Nevada State College.
— Walter Koelsch, a former Novato boy and Carl Pinnow announced this week that they would open a radio sales and repair shop in the building left vacant by Jack Ashbaugh, who has accepted a position in Sonoma. The new shop will open on July 10. The boys ask your support in their new business venture and hope that you will visit them in their new shop.
— Novato Veterans will hold their second meeting Monday, July 8, at 8:30 p.m. in the Community House to further discuss the organization of a new Veteran group. Veterans from all services including Merchant Marine are asked to come and express their views as to the type of organization they desire. Lee White who was elected temporary chairman at the first meeting will preside.
— Manuel Levin, of San Francisco owner and manager of the new theater at Novato, has announced the opening of the place for Saturday. (July 13) Marin’s first post-war theatre will have a continuous show from 2 p.m. till midnight Saturday. The opening film will be “Doll Face,” starring Vivian Blaine, Dennis O’Keefe, Perry Como and Carmen Miranda, a 20th century Fox picture. The other picture will be Abilene Town. The new theatre is attracting much attention and is the last word in comfort and convenience. The town’s new theatre was crowded at its opening performance Saturday. Long lines of cars filled Grant Avenue and side streets. The theatre drew comments on its facilities, beautiful lighting, etc. The fragrance of many congratulatory floral pieces sent by business firms and friends added to the beauties of the scene.
50 Years Ago
Members of the Black Point Improvement Club Friday night voted to oppose the location of the Renaissance Pleasure Faire at Black Point. The split vote was taken at a potluck dinner of the group honoring their new slate of officers. Hosting the affair at their Black Point home were the past president Al Rivasplata and his wife, Edith, who was treasurer.
Following the dinner, President Al Rivasplata called the meeting to order. First on the agenda was Mrs. Phyllis Patterson of Los Angeles who was present to boost Marin County’s fifth annual Renaissance Pleasure Faire and Ha’ Penny Market. She and her husband, Ron, who are directors of the faire, are anxious to establish it here near Black Point on the old Sartori Farm, which is presently owned by John Kenney and Sons.
For the past 4 years the Faire has been held in Santa Venetia. This merry re-creation of Medieval and Renaissance harvest faires would be held each weekend in September and one in October. “We hope eventually to purchase land in Lucas Valley and make our permanent Bay Area base there,” Mrs. Patterson told the club. “Already we have been operating successfully in Los Angeles for the past eight years.” After a lengthy period of questions and answers, the club voted to turn down Mrs. Patterson’s proposal for the faire.
— Some 30 members of the San Marin Club were on hand at the city planning commission Monday night to back up the new owners, Benjamin Morris, in his plea for a use permit for a public bar and restaurant at the club.
— Scheduled to open, the Pizza Hut across from the Community House on Machin Avenue will seat 90 customers in 1800 square feet of dining space. The red brick exterior restaurant in Novato Square is number 716 in the chain and will be managed by Steve Soesbe, who also will manage the San Anselmo unit opening shortly. He’s a San Rafael resident and previously managed Pizza Huts in Topeka, Kansas, and Des Moines, Iowa.
25 Years Ago
The infamous Nave Patrola marched its way into the hearts of an estimated 15,000 spectators and to the top prize in Novato’s Hometown Fourth of July Parade. The Patrola, which plans to disband after its march in Novato, followed by an appearance in Penngrove last weekend, delighted flag-waving spectators with its sometimes choreographed, sometimes impromtu, antics. For its efforts, the Patrola was selected Best Overall Entry. But, while the Nave Patrola may have been the best, it certainly wasn’t the only crowd pleaser. Sidney’s Gourmet Eatery’s spectacular cake of states, honoring all 50 states was selected Most Unique Entry and repeated as Best Float.
— Bulldozers move dirt at Vintage Oaks as part of Costco’s expansion plans, which call for a 3,000-squarefoot addition to house the store’s tire displays and sales center. The additional structure will be attached to the main building and is expected to be completed in the next few months.
— The City Council breathed a collective (and public) sigh of relief Tuesday night as the city attorney read a final judicial ruling on the Black Point development case which was noticeably absent of words like “fraud,” “collusion,” and “mistake.” Attorney Jeff Walter told the council before reading Marin Superior Court Judge Lynn Duryee’s final ruling that it “does not reflect some of the unfortunate, and in my view unfounded, comments.” It also did not include any mention of possible Brown Act violations committed by the council, which met in closed session with Black Point developers to settle a $16 million lawsuit The council later approved the 53-home, 18-hole golf course development project, which touched off another lawsuit by concerned residents and several county-wide environmental organizations.