Saturday, February 13, 2016
This is a landmark year for The Fountain of Youth. The park turns 50, and that fact has not been overlooked. There is a lot of reminiscing going on here in the desert, in the middle of nowhere. There are folks who have been coming to this spot for 10, 20, 30, or more years. Our short 4 years are a mere drop in the bucket. We’re newcomers, and we understand that. And, during our 4 years here, we have acclimated to the local culture, participated in a few activities, and most importantly we have made some friends.
Park history and park lore intertwine to create a colorful picture of things. We got a pretty good taste of this at the Drama Club presentation this year. In a tribute to this monumental achievement of being in business for the last fifty years, the program was entitled, “ The 50 Years of FOY.” It included old photos from the 60’s, which doesn’t seem to be all that long ago. As we found out via the Drama Club production, this park was envisioned to be a grand resort (probably NOT an RV park) attracting the rich and famous from the Los Angeles (Hollywood) area. Apparently, in the early 70’s, a couple of tropical storms raged through this valley which had the end result of killing that dream. In other words, things didn’t happen as planned. As the evening’s presenter pointed out, “It’s a good thing that things worked out as they did, as most of us wouldn’t be here if that had been the way things happened.” (aka: folks here aren’t exactly the high roller type, and we’re all okay with that.)
This play, of sorts, kicked off the week of celebrations commemorating the dear Fountain of Youth. It will be a busy week as it culminates on the Saturday after the Craft Fair. So, forgive me as I head back to the little sweatshop in the desert, staffed only by myself. I’ve got a few things to finish up.
By the way, if you should wish to read a little more about the Salton Sea, this article from “Wired” pretty much sums it all up.