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October 16
1853 - Sarah Gifford, community leader and wife of Newhall's first railroad station agent, born in England [story]


Now and Then in the SCV
| Tuesday, Nov 25, 2014

darrylmanzer_blacktieDo you remember the TV show, “Northern Exposure”? Remember how the radio station for the fictitious town of Cicely, Alaska, was located in a downtown storefront? Well, it was announced that our local radio station, KHTS is going to move to downtown (aka Old Town) Newhall. Yes, KHTS, the mighty 1220, is converting the former Newhall Hardware building into the location of the station.

I wonder if there will be a way to see the on-air personalities from the street? That is one thing the movies and television shows seem to do. Small, local radio stations always have a window on Main Street. Seeing that many movies have been made around here, maybe this will be a case of reality imitating art.

The old Newhall Hardware store is missed more each day. You knew when you went in there, if they didn’t have the part or nail of gasket or screw or whatever, it didn’t exist anywhere in the known world. Maybe even the whole universe.

Can’t wait to see it open. Just think: “Good evening, ladies and gentlemen of the Santa Clarita Valley and all the ships at sea. We’re broadcasting from beautiful Old Town Newhall, California, all of the news, music and information you’ll ever want or need.”

KHTS @Newhall Hardware | Photo/artwork by George Cummings

KHTS @Newhall Hardware | Photo/artwork by George Cummings

I miss the sound of the old Teletype machines in the background of those older shows from long ago. You know. You’ve heard of Teletype machines. They were around when Newhall Hardware started in 1947. You could hear the sound of manual typewriters clacking away at the same time. I know many readers remember manual typewriters and carbon paper.

And many of us remember the wonderful odor of papers just printed on the mimeograph machine. The teacher would pass out the paper that had just been run off on that machine. I’ll bet the fluid they used is now a known carcinogen. Causes cancer in lab rats that soak in it for a year.

Here I go again. Back to the subject. KHTS will be in Newhall, and just in time for the Cowboy Festival. Heck, they won’t even have to do a remote location thing. They’ll be in the middle of the action.

I recently read a short piece by a former classmate at Hart High. He didn’t have much good to say about the Cowboy Festival moving from Melody Ranch. Of course, he isn’t on the planning team for it. There are some good plans for the festival already, and it means William S. Hart Park will have a lot more going on.

The SCV Historical Society is jumping in with all kinds of things at Heritage Junction. The buildings at Heritage Junction were around when real cowboys rode the streets of Newhall. As an added benefit, the museum construction should be complete in the Pardee House. I’ve seen the changes, and it is most spectacular. All y’all should love it.

So before anyone puts it down, we have to remember the whole deal started as the Cowboy Poetry and Music Festival, and it was going to be in the Hart High auditorium. When the 1994 quake hit, the folks at Melody Ranch welcomed it with open arms. Now, Melody Ranch is booked for a long-term HBO project. It is their business. They’re an active film studio.

So it is coming to downtown Newhall and Hart Park and Heritage Junction and … this is going to work.

luscioussoulIt seems things are moving all around the SCV. The City Council is set to approve about $3 million for a Senior Center in Canyon Country. The council approved a land purchase last month. As for the original Senior Center, I still think of it as the Lutheran Church. Back then, the pastor was Rev. Lund. His daughter, Carol, was another member of the illustrious Hart High Class of 1968. At one time, she was the only girl in Stage Band. She played piano. She and her husband now live in the far north. Wonder if she misses our Newhall winters. The new Senior Center isn’t a “move” but an addition. That is too cool. Now we’ll have two.

Another “move” involves the little shop, Luscious Soul. It was next to the Newhall Refinery restaurant. Luscious Soul has moved into the “yellow Victorian” shopping center near the Egg Plantation, while Newhall Refinery has now added a large dining room in Luscious Soul’s old space. It will be a quiet and intimate place that can seat up to 30 guests. An like many restaurants in the British Isles, there will be a place to sit and wait for a table when the dining room is not at full capacity. Of course, in those establishments in Great Britain, you can order a drink – and order your food, too. When the food is ready, you’re taken to your table to eat. I like that. Maybe owner Simon Mee is on to something.

There are a couple of other moves we’d all love to see. The first is to see Cemex pack up and head out into the desert near Victorville. I hope that for once, the Congress can forget political party lines and get the job done.

The other move we would all love to see is when Waste Connections shuts down its Chiquita Canyon Landfill and caps off that toxic mess it has created. Hopefully it can be stopped before it turns into another edition of Love Canal and Bermite, all rolled into one huge mess.

Soon we will be left only with the billboard blight. Remind me, where is that better deal?

Have a nice day, folks.

 

 

 

Darryl Manzer grew up in the Pico Canyon oil town of Mentryville in the 1960s and attended Hart High School. After a career in the U.S. Navy he returned to live in the Santa Clarita Valley. He can be reached at dmanzer@scvhistory.com. His older commentaries are archived at DManzer.com; his newer commentaries can be accessed [here]. Watch his walking tour of Mentryville [here].

 

 

Comment On This Story
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10 Comments

  1. Lyle Kaser Lyle Kaser says:

    RIP Newhall Hardware

  2. It also reminds me of Grosse Point Blank – another film with a store front radio station!

  3. Kelly says:

    No billboard blight aka no digital billboards on open space.

  4. Evelyne Vandersande says:

    and now, downtown Newhall is even going to have an hotel ! Many changes indeed.

  5. Evelyne Vandersande says:

    and now, downtown Newhall is even going to have an hotel ! Many changes indeed.

  6. Evelyne Vandersande says:

    and now, downtown Newhall is even going to have an hotel ! Many changes indeed.

  7. Evelyne Vandersande says:

    and now, downtown Newhall is even going to have an hotel ! Many changes indeed.

  8. Evelyne Vandersande says:

    and now, downtown Newhall is even going to have an hotel ! Many changes indeed.

  9. Tommy Rini Tommy Rini says:

    there was a storefront radio station canyon country back in the day this is not new to the scv

  10. Tommy Rini Tommy Rini says:

    there was a storefront radio station canyon country back in the day this is not new to the scv

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