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What’s Happening in California’s Oldest City?

Members Only Naglee Park Centennial Homes Celebration

June 11

Two members of PAC*SJ have houses turning 100 years old. We’ll visit the homes in sequence and toast their preservation. Sign up by sending an email to with the subject line "Centennial Homes" and the number of people interested in the body of the mail. You will receive a reply with details.

Ron Tanner presents, "Renovation or Restoration? Making the Best of Your Old House"

June 28, Tuesday, 7PM  --The Firehouse at History Park San Jose

Preservationist, licensed house inspector, and DIY expert Ron Tanner will offer a slide show that illustrates several projects he and his wife undertook as they restored an 1897 Baltimore brownstone -- condemned property, which was a wrecked former frat. house -- and then restored an early Victorian farm house that hadn't been altered since 1959. Combining humor with history and his extensive knowledge of old houses, Ron will try to answer the question, Should you make your old house even "better" than it was originally? Drive through the gate off PhelanAvenue to enter the park. The event is free, but donations will be accepted to cover the refreshments.

Night in Old Havana

July 14, Thursday, 6:30 to 9PM  -- San Jose Woman's Club, 75 S 11th St, San Jose, California 95112

Make your way through the palm trees to the San Jose Woman's Club –the scene of spicy and sultry Cuba-central, for a Night in Old Havana!

Enjoy a Cuba Libre, Mojito, or Rum Punch, or a Cuban Mocktail and nosh on Havana street food while listening to hot Cuban beats. Guys: Dust off your white fedora and don your guayabera shirt. Gals: 50s tropical cocktail or cuban whites are muy bonita! Yes, there will be a costume contest! Don't forget to snap a selfie in the Hot Havana Photo Booth.

At 8 p.m., John Pastier, Naglee Park resident and former a Seattle design critic and the first architecture critic for the Los Angeles Times will present a slide show of Havana Architecture.

The evening is co-hosted by SJWC and Preservation Action Council * San Jose. Tickets $5 for SJWC and PAC* SJ members, $10 general. Suggested donation of $5 per cocktail to help cover event costs.

Summer Yard Sale 

8/12 8AM to 6PM & 8/13 8AM to Noon  - 260 S. 13th St., San Jose

More delights for the connoisseur and the bargain hunter.

2016 Walking Tours - Tickets and info here

June 25, 10:00 AM -- Hanchett Park

Hanchett Park was one of the first “suburban” developments near San Jose. This walk will look at the wide variety of sizes and styles of homes in a middle class neighborhood at the beginning of the 20th Century.

July 23, 10:00 AM -- East San Jose

Like Hanchett Park, East San Jose began as an unincorporated area, but it was a separate city for a time with its own business district. The walk will begin at Roosevelt Park and end in Little Portugal.

September 10, 10:00 AM -- Little Italy

The preservation of Little Italy was one of the earliest PAC*SJ endeavors. The tour will cover both history and architecture.

PACSJ 25th Silverrrr Anniversary 

On October 22, PAC*SJ celebrated its 25th anniversary with a gala event at the San Jose Woman’s Club.  We honored our special Mateys, Jim and Suzanne Salata, owners of Buccaneer Demolition and Garden City Construction companies, who’ve been make’n significant efforts of all sorts, to be preserve’n San Jose.  

A hearty THANK YE to our stalwart and generous donors. We raise a glass to ye all!

Ellen GarboskeEllen Garboske

Here is the article about her from the Winter 2004 issue of our newsletter, Continuity. Ellen will be missed by all whose lives she touched. We extend our thoughts and sympathies to Ellen's family at this difficult time. Thank you for sharing her with us all these years.

"It's About Time" San Jose Clock Tower Project

PACSJ board member and tireless Clock Tower spokesman was recently interviewed about the subject on Channel KMVT, community TV. View John's interview here.

The movement to restore the Clock Tower of the San Jose Museum of Art to its original height is picking up steam.  The clock and the tower of former San Jose Post Office building were destroyed in the 1906 earthquake.  The restoration, begun in 1908, intended to rebuild the original tower was cut short - A new clock was installed in a shorter tower but the full restoration of the tower's height was not completed.  Check out why the clock and the tower are so special to the history of San Jose, and what you can do to get involved.

Website and on Facebook


For eligible purchases at AmazonSmile, the AmazonSmile Foundation will donate 0.5% of the purchase price to the customer’s selected charitable organization.   PAC-SJ is now an Amazon Associate.  PAC-SJ automatically earns a referral fee of 0.5% (or higher) on all products, including those sold by third-party merchants. 

Here’s how it works:Click this Amazon link. Select your items and complete your purchases as you normally would.

Thanks for your support!

Help save the Century Theater Domes! Sign the Online Petition!!

You may know that the Century Theatres on Winchester are at risk of being demolished as the City explores possibilities to redevelop the site.

Along with our friends at the Retro Dome/Guggenheim Entertainment, we have launched an online petition asking our City leaders to preserve one or all of the Domes and direct the new developer to incorporate the Dome(s) into any proposed development.

Sign the petition now:  Watch for more information as the campaign to Save the Domes moves forward.

Do you want to learn about what development is planned for your Council District?

You can sign up for email notifications on the city web site:

"The City of San Jose is committed to providing the information and opportunities to encourage residents and other interested parties to follow development activity in their community and to actively participate in the land use development process. To this end the City offers an email subscription service where by you can be informed of recently submitted development applications in your community. if you sign up for this service, you will receive an email informing you that the Planning Division has received a development or permit application located within a given geographic area that you select. This service provides notification on most planning permits. If you would like to be noticed via email, choose subscribe and it will take you to the registration process."

Smokey says "You too can prevent Historic Structure Fires!"

OK, Smokey didn't say that.  But PACSJ may need a fire prevention mascot of its own soon.  Help prevent the loss of even more historic structures to fire and vandalism by helping the City enforce its Vacant Building Ordinance.  File an online complaint on the City's website. 

Start here:

On the left side under "Online Services" click on "Submit an Online Blight Complaint." From there fill out the appropriate information. If enough people file complaints maybe the City will pay attention and work harder to protect these historic resources.

San Jose Public Library Foundation presents SCAN JOSE - Grab your smartphone to learn about the history of San Jose!

Explore historical downtown San Jose  - One smartphone = 3 walking tours! SJPL has created three walking tours of downtown San Jose that you can take using your smartphone and your feet! Go to to see images from the California Room Collection while standing at the locations that the photographs were taken. Think of it as a time machine in the palm of your hand!

There are three tours to choose from:
A Walk Around the Plaza - takes you on a loop around Plaza de Cesar Chavez
Tragedies and Calamities - a no holds barred look at some of the tragic events in San Jose history
Old Santa Clara Street - highlights some of the great architecture that has sprung up and come down over the years.

PAC-SJ is looking for a few qualified applicants to be considered for openings on our Board. Help us pursue our mission of preserving the architectural heritage of San Jose and help educate homeowners, developers, and decision-makers about the importance of historic preservation