Jun 20, 2017
In 1776, Spanish Captain Juan Bautista de Anza led 240 people – including friars and soldier-settler families – on a difficult 1,200 mile expedition from what is now Mexico, north through Arizona and California, and ultimately to San Francisco Bay where they founded their military installation, El Presidio de San Francisco. The fort was located less than half a mile from the native Ohlone village of Petlenuc in what is now the Presidio of San Francisco.
Each June, the Presidio commemorates the founding of the Presidio with Pasados del Presidio, a series of events honoring the early people of this area.
All are invited to take part in Pasados del Presidio events, which areheld over the course of two days in and around the Presidio Officers’ Club. The schedule includes fun activities for kids, craft-making, visits from the Ohlone, storytelling, dancing, and pageantry, tours, and music. Here are five ways you can participate in Pasados del Presidio.
Learn about early California history and enjoy something fun with the family at Pasados del Presidio Afternoon Fun for Kids. Make a tortilla, do a little crafting, see archaeology in action, hear a story about California history, make a mini adobe brick, or take a photo with the very popular “Juanito” the Donkey. The free event also includes music and dance from Ballet Folklórico Mexicano. Come to Presidio Officers’ Club on Friday, June 23, Noon to 3 pm. Family friendly food will be available for purchase.
On Saturday, June 24, from 10:30 am to Noon,Anza Expedition descendants come together to mark 241 years since the original group arrived at San Francisco Bay to found the military post known as El Presidio de San Francisco. The descendants will wear colorful costumes and perform a ceremony that includes singing the beautiful Alabado, just as their ancestors did every day of their trek through Alta California. Presented in partnership with Los Californianos and the Presidio Trust, the gathering will be held at Pershing Square, just outside the Presidio Officers’ Club.
As part of Pasados del Presidio, kids can make corn husk dolls inspired by the toys of the Spanish colonist children of El Presidio. Creative Family Fun is offered on Saturday and Sunday, June 24 and 25. Drop in to the Presidio Officers’ Club from 11 am to 4 pm. Registration is not required.
Want to learn all about the last 10,000 years of Presidio history, including the history of native people and early settlers from Spain and Mexico? Enjoy a docent-led tour of the Presidio Officers’ Club, including its Heritage Gallery! The tour is held Saturday, June 24, 1 pm, and is repeated every Saturday. Drop-ins are welcome.
In commemoration of Pasados del Presidio, Los Cenzontles (The Mockingbirds) will perform acoustic traditional music from a variety of Mexican regions, including the song Jarocho of Veracruz, pirekuas of Indigenous Michoacan, boleros, corridos and rancheras, on Saturday, June 24, 2 to 4 pm at the Presidio Officers’ Club.