Thursday, November 05, 2009

Santa Ana, Fullerton, Irvine, natural history, more

This circa 1920s postcard shows a spot identified as "The Sphinx, Balboa Beach." Does anyone know more about this, or its exact location?
.
Despite public protest, the City of Santa Ana will tear down over a dozen historic homes between the Civic Center and the train station as part of its proposed "Station District" redevelopment project. It sure wouldn't be hard to pick several dozen buildings near the train station that should be bulldozed,... but these aren't the them. Some of these homes predate the County itself. Luckily, at least a couple of them are scheduled to be saved, but I hate to think what kinds of threats the preservationists had to make to get that concession.
.
A fire broke out in the historic Williams Building at 112 E. Commonwealth Ave. in downtown Fullerton this morning, causing a lot of damage. See the Register's website for more information.
.
Disneyland Nomenclature has a new article about the development of the term "Cast Members" to describe Disneyland employees. Niche interest stuff, to be sure, but I think at least a few of my readers are in that niche.
.
Dr. Jutta Burger of the Irvine Ranch Conservancy will address the California Native Plant Society on the subject of "Preserving the natural treasures of the historic Irvine Ranch" on Nov. 19, 7-9pm, at the historic Duck Club, on Riparian Way in Irvine, CA. She will describe the habitats, their regional importance, the vision and approach to managing them, and current projects. Highlights will include observations from recent grassland and sensitive species surveys, choice photos from wildlife camera operations, and plans for removal of invasive plants and restoration of certain areas.
.
Speaking of natural history, these past couple weeks have been sad ones for those fighting to save Orange County's natural treasures. Joel Pasco, noted veterinarian, wildlife rehabilitator, and co-founder of the Wetlands & Wildlife Care Center in Huntington Beach passed away on Oct. 24. (He was also the husband of Jean Pasco of the O.C. Archives.) And today I learned that environmental activist Dr. Jan Vandersloot, Director of the Ocean Outfall Group and the Bolsa Chica Land Trust (and my dermatologist during my pimply teenage years,) died yesterday. The State Coastal Commission adjourned in his memory.
.
Both gentleman made great strides to ensure that our great-grandchildren will be able to appreciate the natural wonders that drew everyone to Southern California in the first place. The world needs more people like them.

7 comments:

LCC said...

Hard to express how much Jan van der Sloot will be missed. He had an encyclopedic memory about the history of policy on environmental issues. It was invaluable, and 2 weeks I asked him if he'd written it down 'in case something ever happened to him', because it was a knowledge base that would be difficult to replace. He just smiled.

He gained the respect of everyone he knew, because he knew the basis of the law, and had a genuine appreciation for nature and its complex glories

His family deserves respect, because they shared Jan with all of us, through so many meetings and time at the computer, to let us know about one more meeting /situation where input was required.

CoxPilot said...

I grew up in Balboa and I do not recall ANY rock formations at all. However; could this be the caves at Corona Del Mar? And, could Corona have been part of Balboa in those days? I don't remember any reference to the "Sphinx" in those days either.

Tris Mast said...

Yikes. Looks like Dorothy dropped her house on the Sphinx:
http://www.sharonintheoc.com/Repository/1/1/4/7/2/0/114720/a5f579c1-60b4-4267-9575-7b755a9f6ce1.jpg

Chris Jepsen said...

Tris: Is that really the same rock formation? How'd you find that?

Tris Mast said...

I read CoxPilot's comment and it sounded right to me, having seen those rocks so many times while at the beach in Corona Del Mar. So I did a quick online search and ...voila! Looks like they match up to me.

outsidetheberm said...

That certainly looks like a very close match. Factor in years of erosion and that could well be the same place. Nice work, Tris.

CoxPilot said...

Tris: Great find. Thanks for confirming that I'm not quite as old as I thought I was. The old gray cells are not dead yet.