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Travel BLOG
October 09, 2013

The Santa Cruz Wharf Celebrates a Century!

When you think of the Santa Cruz Wharf, do you think of potatoes? Maybe in a hot steamy bowl of clam chowder. But did you know the purpose of building the first wharf in Santa Cruz, known as Cowell Wharf, was for shipping potatoes to San Francisco for mining camps in the Sierra Nevada during the Gold Rush? Our current municipal wharf came decades later, after four more wharves were built, and subsequently torn down, along the shoreline of Cowell's and Main Beach. Santa Cruz Wharf Celebrates 100 Years Santa Cruz Wharf Grand Opening, December 5, 1914. When it opened on December 5, 1914, the Santa Cruz Wharf functioned as the hub of the northern Monterey Bay fishing industry. Today, the wharf is still a bustling center of attraction. From sun up, when groups of fisherman gather to embark on the day's fishing expedition, to sun down, when visitors flock to their favorite restaurants for a fresh seafood dinner, the wharf blends its working roots with recreational pastimes. Sunrise Santa Cruz Wharf Sunrise... Sunset. On any given day, you can stroll, shop and dine while taking in the sights along the West Coast's longest and highest pier. Wine tasting, sunset gazing and peering down at sea lions is all in a day's fun. This sea lion's ready for her closeup. This sea lion's ready for her closeup. Wine tasting at Vino Prima Wine tasting at Vino Prima And many weekends throughout the year, the wharf is home to events and festivals celebrating everything from Woodies to Polynesian culture. Next year is no exception, as the wharf approaches its 100th birthday. Looking good for nearly 100 years! Looking good for nearly 100 years old! To kick off the yearlong celebration, the Museum of Art and History will be hosting a pop up museum this Saturday, October 12 from 12 to 2 p.m., transforming the Wharf's Main Stage area into a temporary exhibit showcasing historical photographs and objects. On hand to facilitate "The Wharf is in the Heart" will be local historian Geoffrey Dunn, Santa Cruz Mayor Hilary Bryant and members of families who have worked on the wharf for decades. Stagnaro-Family-Santa-Cruz-Wharf The public is also invited to contribute to the "museum" display by bringing personal memorabilia to add to the collection. There are sure to be stories of fishing off the pier, barking with the sea lions and enjoying hot steamy bowls of clam chowder, so don't miss this temporary, but history-packed community exhibit. To 100 years...and many more! To 100 years...and many more! And may we suggest riding to this free event in style by parking downtown and taking the Santa Cruz Trolley?


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  • foreclosures in ny 3 years 111 days ago
    Quality posts is the secret to invite the viewers to go to see the website, that's what this
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  • June Smith 4 years 344 days ago
    Yes, will send by email soon.

  • Thoughtful Thursday | Santa Cruz County CVC 4 years 344 days ago
    [...] These guys are resting up for the big day…this Saturday’s free kickoff celebration of the Santa Cruz Wharf’s 100th birthday! [...]

  • admin 4 years 344 days ago
    June, are there pictures? Perfect story to add to the pop up museum.

  • June Smith 4 years 344 days ago
    You may not know that on Sat. afternoon, Sept 28th, there was a flash mob dance on the Wharf stage! I was with instructor Mitch Lang and 15 other dancers from Santa Cruz Dance Company who were hired to dance while a woman proposed to her girlfriend.

    The girlfriend said Yes, so a great time was had by all!