Wednesday, September 27, 2006

Jamboree Road

1953 Boy Scout JamboreeJamboree Road is one of the major thoroughfares in Orange County, running from just west of Irvine Lake, all the way south to Pacific Coast Highway.

But it used to be just a gravel road running from the Irvine Ranch Boy Scout Troop 36 Clubhouse, near Irvine Boulevard and Myford Road, down to Newport Beach, about 8 miles of road. It was created in 1953, in preparation for the third National Boy Scout Jamboree held July 17-23, 1953.

The Jamboree was the first ever held west of Mississippi River. It was a big event for Orange County, perhaps one of the key events putting Orange County on the map.

The site of the Jamboree is located where today's Newport Center and Eastbluff communities in Newport Beach now stand.

At the height of the festivities, the Jamboree was a city unto itself. People called it, "Jamboree Town". Peggy Goetz, wrote an article about the Jamboree which appeared in the Irvine World News...
It had a fire company, a bank, a theater, a hospital, a telephone office, a U.S. Post Office, stores and even a zoo. People called it "Tent City" and "Jamboree Town." It had about 50,000 residents living in more than 25,000 tents.
If you know what the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally is to the town of Sturgis, South Dakota, the Boy Scout Jamboree had the same significance in Orange County just over 50 years ago. Today, just the name of Jamboree Road is the only living reminder of that event.

Read more about the logistics that went into building and preparing for the 3rd National Boy Scout Jamboree in Peggy's article.

Do you remember the Boy Scout Jamboree? Click on "Post a Comment" below, and share them with us.

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