Class 1 #138 at the North Park Toyland Parade & Little Italy’s Tree Lighting

Mayor Bob Filner (middle), First Lady Bronwyn Ingram, and San Diego Historic Streetcars board president Christian Chaffee (right) [Photo by Betsy McCue of La Vida Creations Photography]

On Saturday, December 1st we had a full schedule here at San Diego Historic Streetcars, spreading holiday cheer throughout the city with Class 1 Streetcar #138. We started the day on Utah Street in historic North Park with the streetcar wrapped up like a present for the 49th Annual North Park Toyland Parade. At 10:30 am, our invited guests boarded the decorated streetcar on University Avenue. We were joined by many civic and community leaders, our board, and our friends and family.  We’d like to give a special thanks to Mayor Bob Filner and First Lady Bronwyn Ingram, as well as Balboa Park Centennial Celebration Steering Committee chairpersons Ben and Nikki Clay for joining us. And, as always, a big thanks to Betsy McCue at La Vida Creations Photography for documenting the morning. We appreciate you and your serious skills! Last but not least, we’d like to thank Brenda at Victoria House Corp for her huge help in organizing the day’s logistics.

We were thrilled to wave, smile and laugh our way through the parade route. Afterward we hung out for a while and thoroughly enjoyed the ensuing procession of vintage cars, marching bands, dance groups and of course the big guy himself— Santa Claus. No offense to Kris Kringle, but we thought Todd Gloria looked best in red rollin’ down University in that ’63 Ford Falcon. Keep it up, Council President!

It really was a blast… and the proof is in this slideshow below. Betsy got some great shots, so be sure to check it out in full screen.

Following the end of the parade, we wove our way through University Heights, Hillcrest and downtown to our destination in Little Italy so we could join in on the festivities of the annual Tree Lighting Ceremony and Christmas Village from 4 to 8pm. Our streetcar, still wrapped up as a gift from San Diego’s past to San Diego’s future, served as the site for a scavenger hunt as children and adults searched for hidden candy canes on board the streetcar. A big thanks to Chris at the Little Italy Association for hosting us!  You can also see photos from this event in the slideshow below.

Tired but happy, we ended our day and let the streetcar catch some zzz’s. Thanks to all who boarded the Class 1, reminded us that history matters, and helped us get in the holiday spirit.