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Tom Marshall

By Tom Marshall

The San Clemente Historical Society has announced a new award recognizing people and organizations who have led the way in support of San Clemente’s unique history. The first three recipients of the Ole Hanson Preservation Award were presented with their plaques before a public event on Sept. 19. 

Legendary local newspaper reporter Fred Swegles, Picket Fence Media (publishers of the San Clemente Times), and The San Clemente Journal magazine are the initial recipients. The award is the brainchild of new Historical Society board member Katie Potts. 

The journalists were being honored for their continued support of historic preservation efforts by the Historical Society.

“We are grateful for the opportunities they have provided us to get information out to the community about our efforts to keep alive the dream of town founder Ole Hanson for a beautiful Spanish Village by the Sea,” said Larry Culbertson, newly reelected Historical Society president.

Space for this column is given to us by owners Norb and Alyssa Garrett, under the expert guidance of editor Shawn Raymundo. 

SC Journal owner Don Kindred also publishes our feature articles about historic preservation. We also recognize the important role they play in informing our citizens in general. Honest journalism is critical to an informed democracy.

To that point, the Historical Society’s next event on Dec. 9 will be the history of journalism in San Clemente, reaching back to the 1920s and ’30s newspaper, El Heraldo.  

Several other local organizations and individuals are already on our radar for future recognition.

A capacity crowd was on hand for the presentations prior to our annual meeting, an update on the Miramar Theatre project. While the representative from the developers had to cancel at the last minute, Jonathan Lightfoot, the city’s economic development officer, gave an excellent update on the project. 

City councilmembers Chris Duncan and Gene James, former Mayor Wayne Eggleston and former Planning Commissioner Don Brown were also on hand to answer questions. Details of this can be found elsewhere in this issue, but suffice it to say, things are getting back on track following COVID-19 setbacks. 

The original projection was to have the food court and theater open by last Christmas, which was a very optimistic hope. They are now planning to have the food court part done by the latter half of 2022, with the theater finished a short time later.

Watch this space for updates.

Tom Marshall is a member of the San Clemente Historical Society and a retired journalist.

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