RIP/QEPD Rebecca Romero, Chunky Sanchez, Rico Bueno, David Savage, Cruz & AnnaMarie Contreras, Andre Banks, and Francine Denise Jimenez
47th Chicano Park Day, April 22, 2017
Organized by the Chicano Park Steering Committee, Stewards of Chicano Park
Thank you to all the volunteers, performers, speakers, lowriders, vendors, and beautiful gente who came out to enjoy the 47th annual Chicano Park Day in historic Chicano Park, located in the Logan Heights community, south of downtown San Diego under the San Diego-Coronado bridge on April 22, 2017. The theme for the celebration was"Ramón Chunky Sánchez: El Corazón Del Pueblo". This year's program was dedicated to the memory of Rebecca Romero, Rico Bueno, Chunky Sanchez, David Savage, Cruz & AnnaMarie Contreras, Andre Banks and Francine Denise Villalobos (Jimenez).
The free, family event included traditional music and dance including one of the largest groups of Aztec Indigenous dance, coordinated by Danza Azteca Calpulli Mexihca. The day was filled with performances by Ballet Folklórico Nanahuatzin, Ballet Folklórico Yaqui, Ballet Folklórico CalifAztlan, Grupo Folklórico Pasión a México, Mujeres en Resistencia, La Rondalla Amerindia, Mariachi Familiar, Village of K.O.R.E., Ruby Clouds, Posse Café, Santana para Ti, Los Fabulocos, and Ricardo Sanchez & friends. In addition, there wasa lowrider car show coordinated by Amigos Car Club, vendor booths, kids arts workshops, and speakers. We look forward to seeing you all at the 48th annual Chicano Park Day celebration in April 2018.
Established by Chicano activists on April 22, 1970, Chicano Park has received international recognition as a major public art site for its commanding mural paintings of the past and present struggle of Mexican and Chicano history. Chicano Park has been listed on the California Register of Historical Resources since 1997, on the National Register of Historic Places in 2013 and designated a National Historic Landmark in January 2017.
The Chicano Park Steering Committee is on Facebook.
Thanks to all that supported the Chicano Park Day Fundraising Art Show on Saturday, February 25, at the Chicano Art Gallery! Huge thanks to the contributing artists, Sholove and Cesar Castaneda. And thanks to all that supported the Chicano Park Day Pozolada fundraiser on Sunday, March 5, 2017. Mil gracias to Consuelo Manriquez, volunteers, the Cordero Family, and all those who donated prizes, funds and other resources.
The next meeting of the Chicano Park Steering Committee will be Sunday, June 25, 2017, 3pm in the Kiosco.
Chicano Park approved for National Historic Landmark status
U.S. Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell announced the designation of 24 new National Historic Landmarks on January 11, 2017. Chicano Park is among those sites. "On April 20, 1970, community residents occupied Chicano Park in San Diego, California, in an ultimately successful effort to prevent the construction of a California Highway Patrol substation on land where the City of San Diego had promised the neighborhood a community park. Representative of the Chicano Civil Rights Movement, Chicano Park has become a cultural and recreational gathering place for the Chicano community and is the location of the Chicano Park Monumental Murals, an exceptional assemblage of master mural artwork painted on the freeway bridge supports." Read complete press release here.
Tommie Camarillo Day at San Diego City Council, Sept. 20, 2016
Councilman David Alvarez on behalf of the San Diego City Council proclaimed September 20, 2016 to be Tomasa 'Tommie' Camarillo Day
..."WHEREAS, Tommie Camarillo has been a faithful steward and protector, dedicated to her love for a park that serves as a cultural anchor and symbolizes the importance of struggle, sacrifice, and equality; and..." (part of the proclamation)
Chicano Park Recreation Improvements Completed
Ribbon-cutting held on November 5, 2015
Join the San Diego Urban Corps and the Chicano Park Steering Committee on November 5, 3pm to celebrate the improvements/additions including the children's playground, tiny tots area, new handball court, adult outdoor fitness area (and new grass planted adjacent), skate lane, Raul Jacquez metal artwork restored (and fountain tile work),and landscaping alongside the placita.
Read about SD Urban Corps's work in Pablo J. Sáinz article in La Prensa from July 24, 2015.
Chicano Park Herb and Cactus Garden
On November 14 and 15, 2015, community volunteers cleaned and prepped the soil in the cactus garden/sweatlodge area of Chicano Park. Medicinal plants were planted and mulched and new walkways were created. Mil gracias to Georgette Gomez and Xochitl de la Tierra and all the gente who came out to make this beautiful dream a reality. Thanks to Daniela Conde for many of these photos.
Students Document Chicano Park Mural History
In 2012, Dr. Alberto Pulido's students at USD, in consultation with the Chicano Park Steering Committee, worked to update documentation of the murals at Chicano Park. The students worked diligently to re-create/update the Chicano Park mural map and have produced a gorgeous publication. A big thank you to the students!
Now a revised Chicano Park Murals Documentation Project publication (2015) is available. This revised book includes images of all the restored murals, along with information on the original artists involved in the restoration. At the front of the book is an easy-to-read map of all the murals and their location in the park. The book is available for $25 from Dr. Pulido (firstname.lastname@example.org) or at the monthly CPSC meeting and/or contact the CPSC at email@example.com
A group of USD students, under the guidance of Professor Alberto Pulido, volunteered to be a part of the first Chicano Park-University of San Diego Documentation Project from January to May 2011.
Through the collection of oral histories, students documented the history of Chicano Park, Chicano/a history, and five unique aspects of Chicano/a cultural expression that emerged as a result of the establishment of Chicano Park. The five cultural expressions captured by this year's project are: Chicano Art as seen in the public and political biography of Victor Ochoa; Chicano Music as seen through the life of Ramon 'Chunky' Sanchez; Community Organizing (Chicano Park Steering Committee) as seen through the life of Tommie Camarillo; Danzantes (indigenous dance) as seen in the life of Rosa Olga Navarro; and Chicano Car Culture (low riders) as lived and experienced by Rigo Reyes.
Go to http://www.sandiego.edu/cas/es/students/chicano_park.php to view the presentations & posters.
Congratulations to Chunky Sanchez
NEA National Heritage Fellowships Concert was held on September 27 at Lisner Auditorium, George Washington University and the awards ceremony on September 25! For those of us not in Washington DC this week, the NEA streamed the concert live on its website: www.arts.gov
Chicano Park Mural Restoration Project
The Chicano Park Mural Restoration Project was completed in August 2012. CalTrans announced the completion of the project on August 21, 2012. More news coverage here.
For articles, photos and videos of the restored murals, click here or go to the 'Murals' and 'Press' links at the top of the page.
Thank you to all who joined us on Saturday, August 25, 2012 to celebrate the newly restored/revitalized murals. The festivities began with the blessing of all the newly-restored murals by numerous Danza Azteca groups including Danza Azteca Calpulli Mexihca, Danza Mexi'coyotl, Toltecas en Aztlan, Danza Atlachinole, Danza Coatlicue Chemilitzli and Danza Quetzalhuzlin. In addition, Agua Dulce also performed and artists had their art on display.
Awards: On September 20, 2012, the Chicano Park Steering Committee, along with CalTrans and Ghiradelli received the Rosa Parks Excellence in Diversity award at the Women's Transportation Seminar Annual Awards celebration. On October 11, 2012, the Chicano Park Mural Restoration Project received the "Grand Orchid" award at the 2012 Orchids & Onions Awards Ceremony held at the Museum of Contemporary Art, La Jolla.
Josie Talamantez & the Chicano Park Steering Committee were selected as the recipient of 2013 People in Preservation, Lifetime Achievement Award by the Save Our Heritge Organisation (SOHO). The 31st annual awards ceremony took place on Thursday, May 23, 2013. Shown below: Arturo Casares, Diane Bolivar, Tommie Camarillo, Josie Talamantez and Joe Le Blanc
National Register of Historic Places:
Chicano Park has been listed on the California Register of Historical Resources since 1997. The nomination of Chicano Park and the Chicano Park Monumental Murals for the National Register was approved by the California State Historical Resources Commission at their quarterly meeting on Friday, November 9, 2012. After the nomination was approved by the California State Historical Resources Commission, it was forwarded for consideration on the National Register of Historic Places. Chicano Park was officially listed in the National Register of Historic Places on January 23, 2013. The National Register focuses on buildings and structures, so the uniqueness of Chicano Park would set a different kind of precedent for the National Trust. Mil gracias to Josie Talamantez for her dedicated, diligent work behalf of the Chicano Park Steering Committee in this endeavor.
To read the approved nomination registration form, go to http://www.nps.gov/nr/feature/weekly_features/2013/CA_12001192.pdf
Chicano Park was founded on April 22, 1970 when the community of Barrio Logan and Chicano movement activists joined forces to protest the construction of a Highway Patrol station on the present site of the park. The Highway Patrol office was at the time the final insult to a community that had already been degraded by the demolition of hundreds of homes to make way for Interstate 5, the Coronado Bridge, the placement of toxic industries and junkyards, lack of community facilities, proper schools, jobs, social or medical services.
Protesters led by the Brown Berets, community activists, artists, M.E.Ch.A. and others took over the site and faced police and bulldozers for days while negotiations took place that resulted in the land being given over for a community park. In the following days and months similar actions by the same groups led to the forming of a Chicano Free Clinic, now known as the Logan Heights Family Health Center, and the Centro Cultural de la Raza in Balboa Park.
The struggle for Chicano Park came to symbolize the Chicano Mexicano people's struggle for self-determination and self-empowerment. The murals in the park painted by Chicano artists such as Victor Ochoa, Mario Torero, Yolanda Lopez, José Montoya, Sal Barajas, Juanishi Orosco, Berenice Badillo, Carmen Linares and many others portray the social, political and cultural issues that form the struggle for the liberation of Chicano Mexicanos.
Every year the community of Barrio Logan, the greater community of San Diego and people throughout the Southwest and across the US come together to celebrate the takeover of Chicano Park.
Slideshow from the 2006 Chicano Park Day celebration