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Looking Back: City launches recreation program, 150 new homes coming 

Looking Back Paso Robles

This look back at Paso Robles history comes from local newspapers in the Paso Robles Area Historical Society collection. News for this column is selected with the assistance of the society’s Vice President Nancy Tweedie and Research Director Jan Cannon.

Excerpts from Paso Robles Journal of March 19, 1941:

City council accepts WPA. recreation plan, leader will be sent here

First steps toward organized recreation in Paso Robles were taken Monday night when the city council voted $300 to purchase materials and supplies for the first year’s program and accepted the offer of the WPA to provide trained recreation leadership.

The trustees asked the Paso Robles schools to co-sponsor the work and allow the use of school facilities for playground and meeting places.

Under the agreement the WPA will pay the salaries of all workers and the city will only be obligated for equipment.

Two requests from the chamber of commerce were presented, one of them connected with the recreation situation. The first asked the council to purchase the old baseball part at a price of $5000 to provide additional playground in the city.

The hope was expressed in some circles that baseball teams from the various army units could use the field and provide interesting entertainment for baseball fans in the city.

Looking back to 1941

Click here to read the full front page.

The other request was to urge passage of a zoning ordinance which the council has already gotten underway.

Plans for the erection of a bandstand in the City Park were discussed and it is proposed to erect a structure that will accommodate an organization of from 60 to 75 musicians.

It is believed that army bands will be available this summer for many concerts.

Plans are also reported going forward for the erection of additional comfort stations and the enlargement of existing rest rooms.

The contract with W.I. Reid for collection of garbage was renewed for another year.

License to operate taxicabs within the city were issued to C.T. Azbell and Elizabeth Rassmussen. Both paid $100 license fee and deposited bonds with the city.

U.S. will build 150 homes in Paso Robles to house civilian personnel

Plans for building a 150 unit housing project in Paso Robles was disclosed this week when C.L. Berry, site agent of the public building administration, called for bids to supply the U.S. government with 30 acres of land in or near Paso Robles. Speed is essential, said Berry, and Thursday is the last day for bids.

The proposal is to erect small, low-rent homes of four to five rooms, of frame construction, but fully modern, with ample garden and lawn space attached to each. These houses will be rented to civilian workers at Camp Roberts and the air field.

This project must not be confused with the one at San Miguel, Berry said. The San Miguel houses are for non-commissioned officers and their families.

Citing his experience elsewhere in the state, Berry declared that he had recommended a site at another defense center on Monday of this week and on Wednesday received word the surveyors were already enroute to the property to begin operation. He predicted the same rapid action in Paso Robles where he said the need is acute.

Read previous Looking Back articles

Thank you to sponsors of Looking Back

Paso Robles Pioneer Museum – Come take a real look back into local Paso Robles history. Open Thursday through Sunday from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. 2010 Riverside Ave., Paso Robles, CA 93446, (805) 239-4556.

Estrella Warbird Museum is an aviation museum dedicated to the restoration and preservation of military aircraft, vehicles, and memorabilia. Woodland Auto Display is also open. Hours: Thursday through Sunday: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.. 4251 Dry Creek Road, Paso Robles, CA 93446,, (805) 227-0440.

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About the author: Reporter Jackie Iddings

Jackie Iddings is a contributing reporter and photographer for the Paso Robles Daily News.