Monday, August 20, 2007

Mystery solved, Sam's Seafood, and Tomorrowland

I think the aforementioned Mr. Brigandi has solved the mystery of Friday's "photo of the day." He thinks it's the Spangler Blacksmith Shop, which once stood at 211 N. Main, in Santa Ana. See the circa 1900 photo of Spangler's (above) for comparison. (Photo courtesy Calisphere.) The roof is a little different, but otherwise it matches up nicely. The building began life in 1869 as the home of Robert English -- the father-in law of William H. Spurgeon -- and was the first residence built in Santa Ana. Around 1891, it was heavily remuddled to serve as a blacksmith shop. The City's building survey (1972) says the structure was demolished in 1933, but Friday's photo (which shows the 1935 City Hall in the background), throws that 1933 date into question.

I'm not sure how I missed hearing about this in advance, but one of California's last tiki (a.k.a. Polyneisan Pop) restaurants has just re-opened in Sunset Beach. The previously-almost-destined-for-the-bulldozer Sam's Seafood reopened as "Sam's Tiki" on Thursday night. The crowded grand-reopening event was attended by such Poly-Pop luminaries as Bob VanOosting and Leroy Schmaltz of Oceanic Arts.

I hope the food is an improvement over the old Sam's, although the photos on the site look a little frou-frou for my tastes. But I'm still eager to give it a try. (Any of my fellow tiki fans care to go with me?) Mainly, I'm just very, very happy to see that this outstanding themed environment preserved for future generations.

And finally, my Phoenix correspondent, Greg Ottinger, sends me this YouTube link, providing a look back at the "new" Tomorrowland of 1967.

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