Photo Walk in Pleasanton, California

Happy Easter to one and all! How has your holiday traditions changed this year? We had scheduled a family vacation on Kauai from April 3 through April 13. I’m sure you can guess what happened to those plans. Today we are hunkered down in our individual homes and making the best of the situation.

Since I’m not able to share any photos from the Kauai trip that didn’t happen I’ll share the results of a photo walk I took downtown a few days ago.

I started at the Pleasanton Library. This was a Thursday afternoon when middle schoolers would normally be sitting on the grass or on the planters after school and waiting for their parents to pick them up. All was quiet this day.

Pleasanton Library

The City of Pleasanton, California, incorporated on June 18, 1894. Although the town was named after Union Army Major General Alfred Pleasonton, a typo is responsible for the current spelling. The 24.2 square mile city was once a stop along the transcontinental railroad. It is home to the Alameda County Fair since 1912, and the Pleasanton Fairground Racetrack built in 1858 is believed to be the oldest 1-mile horse racing track in the United States. I wrote about the fairgrounds in my post 154th Scottish Highland Gathering and Games 2019

We’ve been missing our year-round farmers market that sets up every Saturday on this block. It would be difficult to practice the 6-foot distance along this street with the vendor’s booths lining the street.

Location of Farmers Market

Rebecca of Sunnybrook Farm, starring Mary Pickford (1917); Tom Sawyer, starring Jack Pickford, Robert Gordon, and Clara Horton (1917); Peck’s Bad Boy, starring Jackie Coogan (1921), It Ain’t Hay, starring Bud Abbott and Lou Costello (1943); and many other movies were filmed in Pleasanton.

Peet’s coffee would normally be bustling with customers sipping their coffees outside at the umbrella-shaded tables. This store is closed while others remain open. Most of the restaurants, however, are offering pick and delivery orders.

Popular hangout stands empty

People who have or still do live in the area include: Phoebe Hearst, mother of William Randolph Hearst; John Madden, football coach and sportscaster; Scott Adams, cartoonist, creator of Dilbert; and Ryan Roxie, singer/songwriter and guitarist for Alice Cooper, Casablanca, and Slash’s Snakepit.

It’s difficult to find parking on most afternoons in this bustling downtown area. With the stores closed, drivers have the pick of spots.

Although some of the buildings on Main Street have been torn down to make room for newer construction, there are still plenty that have historical significance. The Pleasanton Gas Station was built in 1933 in the Mission Revival style. The arch on the building behind the station was the entrance to a garage.

Pleasanton Gas Station

The Spanish Colonial building constructed in 1914 was once home for city hall, a public library, and the police station. The Museum on Main moved in after an extensive historical renovation in 1984.

Museum on Main

The Meadowlark Dairy stays open

 

We moved here twenty-five years ago. Although the town has grown a lot since then and traffic is much worse, we have not yet found any other place we would rather live. We’ve found plenty of places we like to visit for extended stays, but not to live year-round.

 

16 thoughts on “Photo Walk in Pleasanton, California

  1. Happy Easter! Virus and social distancing mean having a ZOOM reunion instead of getting together. Everyone making their own Easter dinner using whatever they’ve got. For us, a Thai egg dish and lots of desserts–chocolate torte, pecan pie, and lemon merigue tarts. If you need me, I’ll be in a sugar coma. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Thanks! One lemon tart coming up. Didn’t realize how popular lemon meringue would be.
        Guess the sweet-sour flavor and bright yellow color says “spring” to a lot of people. Much ado for 7 little tarts–separating eggs, zesting and juicing lemons, constant stirring, whipping up meringue, heating up the oven to use it for only 12 minutes. LOL. But they were good. Everything was good. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  2. It’s strange to see our familiar places in their ghost city incarnations! Thanks for the tour, it’s always lovely to know where friends reside — to sort of get a different taste of who they are and what made them.

    Our apartment fronts onto one of the 1 mile major thoroughfares at the extreme south end of the metro area. There are days — and times within those days — when it is hard to tell any difference between now and pre-pandemic. Then again there are other times when it’s deathly quiet. The simplest tests often tell us nothing — this not being a simple situation.

    Wisconsin recently went from a “B” grade for social distancing to a “D” grade. Not what we want to see. People are moving around too much. That said, our suburb has some of the least contagion in the entire county while neighborhoods on the other side of town have been horribly hit. You can imagine the differences in wealth and race without being told — and they are true.

    Thanks for the peak. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, Peter. I find it interesting to learn about how people are coping around the world. There’s something comforting to know our house, city, state, and country are not the only ones on the planet facing this situation. Sorry to hear of your city’s slide back. It only takes one gathering to let the virus loose throughout a community. Stay safe my friend.

      Like

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