Reaching new ‘Heights’

The 2013 Home & Garden Tour presented another successful look into the California Heights Historic District, the loving care many of our homes receive from their owners and the value that preserving our architecture and historic fabric holds for us all. We appreciate our homeowners’ willingness to restore and preserve those qualities that make their homes so special and valuable, and, of course, their generous willingness to share them with hundreds of guests. It’s a lot to ask, and they come through with flying colors every tour.
Nearly 750 tickets were sold, and more than 150 were given away in appreciation to our volunteers, advertisers and supporters. Needless to say, Oct. 20 was a very active day in California Heights!
A first, we hosted over 100 cyclists, offering at least a hint of what a car-free tour might be like. We sold out Sweet Lucie’s Ice Cream and Treats twice, sold out Sweet & Saucy Shop’s pastries and must mention the popularity of the nostalgic ice-cream truck and Helms Bakery wagon they were sold from. Two of our local eateries, Blackbird Café and The Factory, reported record-setting Sunday business, and we had an overflow attendance for John Brinkmann’s presentation on small-home living!
Very special thanks to our primary sponsor, realtor Lewis Ebersole, and guest speaker, John Brinkmann of American Bungalow Magazine. Thanks to Julie and Heather from The Vintage Emporium and It’s A Grind Bixby Knolls for providing our morning coffee and goodies and to Rick Lorentzen for trusting us to sell food from his impeccably restored 1938 Helms Bakery truck. We also thank Keven Vaughan for storing our Cal Heights Model T mascot and Orozco’s Auto Service for its brand-new Sunbrella top! We extend our appreciation to the City of Long Beach for the hassle-free permits and services provided.
And, of course, thanks to all of our participants! Each part you played, whether you volunteered, purchased a ticket, featured a vintage car, advertised or opened your home, is vital to the Home & Garden Tour’s mission: to exemplify both the financial and intrinsic value of preserving this special place and to finance our community projects.
Once we have our receipts and proceeds officially tallied, we’ll know just how well we did, but we are on track for one of our most successful tours to date. It is great news for our volunteer-led community projects and should help to secure the completion of our lamppost restoration program in 2014.
From the bottom of our hearts, thank you. We hope to see you again in 2015.

John Royce
California Heights Neighborhood Association Team

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