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Historic Preservation Weekend

Rancho to Ranch House, 200 Years of Architecture & Design in San Diego

By Alana Coons

La Casa de Estudillo adobe, c. 1827

Bond residence, 1960. Richard Neutra, Architect

Mark your calendar now for May 18-20 as there is a big change coming to the SOHO events calendar. We have made the decision to combine three of our annual events, People In Preservation Awards, Craftsman & Spanish Revival Weekend & Modernism Weekend into one major event and expanded the overall scale of the weekend to more appropriately represent SOHO's scope of work.

Our goal is to produce an event that all preservationists, from traditionalists to mid century modernists, homeowners, architects and designers, builders and building owners, city staff, community planning groups, and city leaders in general can attend and find something to enrich and inspire them.

We have titled it "Rancho to Ranch House, 200 Years of Architecture & Design in San Diego." Our county includes an amazing range of historic resources with its architectural roots reaching across a spectrum of building styles from early 19th century adobes to mid-20th century homes.

This will be the largest single event for historic preservation enthusiasts and historic homeowners in Southern California. We have chosen May because it is National Preservation Month. This is an ideal time to celebrate San Diego's architectural and cultural history. A truly remarkable schedule of lectures and panel discussions has been developed and I am very happy to announce that our keynote speaker is Donovan Rypkema, a superstar in the historic preservation world whose words have inspired countless numbers of people to get involved in historic preservation. This is one lecture you can't afford to miss.

Tours and lectures will be focused on what today's homeowners are interested in: historic preservation, restoration, renovation, how to's and the sustainability of our quality of life. There will be several panel discussions on Saturday geared both to the historic homeowner and those in the business of working on historic buildings. Topics will include "Do's and Don'ts of Restoration," and "All you need to know before you work on your Kitchen and Bathroom," which will inform you on the right way to tackle these most maligned of all rooms in the historic house; this panel of experts will teach you how to do it right and get everything you want in the process! And an ever-growing topic of interest, "Preserving the Recent Past," will be presented. You will learn just what it means, how to get involved and learn about the many styles that this genre of architecture has to offer.

We are doing our best to represent as many architectural styles as we can in two days. An exciting and I am predicting sold out new feature will be the Friday and Saturday mini - architectural tours. Three examples of a particular style will be showcased in a 4-hour window and limited to 200 guests for each tour. Among the selections you can choose from will be a Craftsman/bungalow tour of North Park homes and a mid century modern tour. There will also be bus and walking tours including a Bungalow Courts tour, a Victorian homes tour and Irving Gill, Richard Requa and Cliff May tours. There is more being planned, and what we cannot do this year we will add to the 2008 event. San Diego has so much to see and celebrate! The great challenge for the Events and Education committee along with two of its subcommittees, CSR and Modernism was to streamline the event; full of ideas we started out with 4 days and 23 lectures alone! Then we focused in on the basics and what we thought you our members and the general public would want and need to know most and would want to see and hear about most. I will take this moment to just say, what dynamite and dedicated committees SOHO has and to thank them for their service.

The vendor Show & Sale this year will include more antique dealers and new artisans and with an added feature of a services and resources element attached to it so that you can find the professionals and craftsmen, resources and products to do the work on your home. You will find expert advice and numerous sources of information. For both the historic homeowner looking for historically accurate products and services, and for those with new homes that want to add the character and details of an older home, this will be the single most useful resource in your search.

Along with the show, lectures, historic home tour, walking and bus tours, there will be an ephemera exhibition highlighting our region's architecture spanning 200 years and a vintage trailer show will include tours of their interiors, making it a vintage home tour on wheels. We first did this three years ago at our inaugural Modernism Weekend and it was one of the most popular aspects of that show. An opening night catered reception is your opportunity to get an early bird preview of the Show & Sale. Saturday is a full program of tours, lectures and exhibitions culminating in the evening's People In Preservation Awards; for eighteen years this event has recognized individuals and agencies who have made significant contributions to the field of historic, cultural and landscape preservation. This important event will be the social event of the weekend. This is all capped off with the historic home tour on Sunday featuring seven homes of all styles.

Information for volunteers, vendors, advertisers, and sponsors is currently on line. Details and registration information will follow in early January. If you want to get involved there is still time; we need a lot of volunteers to make this work.

A lot of thought went into creating this single event rather than several events throughout the year. I thought you, as a member, would want to know some of these details.

With any fundraising event you have to look at the Financial Benefits. While all of our events are designed to meet SOHO's educational goals along with our financial needs, large events like the weekends absolutely must be financially feasible. They cost a lot to produce and so in combining these three events we are able to save many costs including venue space, security, deliveries, exhibition set-up, and rental displays. Consider the cost-effectiveness of shared promotional advertising, printing etc. With one event we only need one event program, tickets and promotional materials along with postage cost and with promotional needs comes the expense of graphic design and technical support costs, all these now shared by one event!

There are many other benefits we believe will be served other then financial. We know it has been difficult for many of you who like to show your support by volunteering and with several annual events, it's not easy. These weekend events take a very large workforce and by combining our biggest events this enables volunteers to mark their calendars every year for one weekend knowing this is where and when we will need your help most and structuring our need of volunteer help primarily to one big event we hope will promote volunteerism.

Undoubtedly one of the greatest savings of all will be staff resource. Although a combined event has greater complexity, and the first year will be strenuous, ultimately it will be of great benefit in this area, and will allow staff to focus even more on other organizational activities such as obtaining grants, generating publications, and to take other steps to further SOHO's educational goals.

Attendance is key to the success of this event, so remember to mark the dates now! May 18-20, 2007.

2006 - Volume 37, Issue 4


VIEW digital online version

Creating Community Preservation Groups

Stick with the Classics

Rancho to Ranch House

First Do No Harm

Welcome '06-'07 SOHO Board

Borrego Springs Modern II

Much Like Their Buildings

Membership Changes for Dues & Levels

Juan María Osuna Adobe

The H. Lee House

Spending the Holidays with SOHO

Whaley House Museum's October Season is a Resounding Success

Annual Meeting & Elections

Adobe U - Provides Much Needed Repairs to Casa de Estudillo

Interrobang Lecture Series 2007

Whaley House to Celebrate 150th in 2007

Whaley House Docents are VIPs!

Strength in Numbers

Lost San Diego

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