The first Pioneer Day took place on Oct. 12,
It would also become a day set aside to say “thank you” to all of the people who support the businesses and professional community in the area throughout the year. Most businesses, with the exception of the saloons and taverns, even “closed shop” so that the owners and their employees could participate in the activities as well. There were to be no charges for any of the events, no commercial concessions and lunch would be provided at no cost.
Today the tradition continues. Every year, on the second Saturday of October, Pioneer Day kicks off with an epic parade and concludes with a free “bean feed” in the downtown City Park, which consists of the Lion’s Club famous bean stew (cooked over flames for hours in whale oil barrels) and a dinner roll. Besides the parade and the lunch, throughout the day you can watch Gymkhana at the fairground where children compete on horseback in a series of challenging events. Check out the fascinating collection of local heritage portraits printed from glass negatives at the Carnegie Library in the center of the square, throw some horseshoes or perhaps even participate in the Whiskerino contest hosted by the Central Coast Barbary Girls; Madame Foxy Finley, Calamity Crispin, Ravishing Rebecca, Cantinas Christy, Sweet Charity and Fancy Flory.
Besides the events listed in these pages, there are a few other traditions to keep an eye out for. For one, there are people buying and selling “Smooth Puss” badges and others getting thrown in the “hoosegow’ for not wearing one. Then there are the
The entire day is free to the public and entirely funded by business owners and dedicated citizens of our area who continue to say…
“Leave Your Pocketbook at Home!” and come, celebrate in friendship!
The Pioneer Day Parade starts promptly at 10 a.m., Saturday, Oct. 14 in downtown Paso Robles. The parade route starts at 16th and Spring Street and ends surrounding the Paso Robles City Park.
MEET THE QUEEN: Ellen Mae Hansen Schroeder
Born in Paso Robles on July 25, 1933, Schroeder has lived in the Shandon area, mostly in Shandon Heights, her entire life; always involved and loving her community. “I grew up in Shandon and attended all 12 years of school here. Wonderful times! In those days, you knew everyone. I graduated with the Shandon High School class of 1951. There were nine in our class. There are six still living plus one who moved to San Luis Obispo when we were freshmen. Most live in the North County and we stay in touch.”
“I have a lot of people in Shandon ask when I’d be chosen to be Queen. I said, “maybe never.” I don’t know. When I got the call, I was pretty surprised! My husband Milton had several uncles who were Marshals in the parade. His parents Ada Rebecca (Heaton) and John David Schroeder attended the first Pioneer Day parade in 1931 with all the kids – Milton Lee, Floyd, Elvira, Alice, Aileen, Mildred,
Schroeder’s ancestors began arriving in the Shandon area in 1885. Her maternal
Schroeder’s paternal grandfather, Morten Peter Hansen was born in Stege, Moen, Denmark in 1863. In 1881, he traveled alone to the United States from Denmark when he was 18 years old. His plans were to go to the Dakotas, but he met Hans Hansen who convinced him to come to San Luis Obispo County after living in Cedar Falls, Iowa for four years. He lived and worked in Morro Bay and San Luis Obispo for a while before moving to Creston and Shandon in 1886 where he homesteaded land, built a cabin, improved the farm and built roads.
Schroeder’s paternal grandmother, Elizabeth May Boring Hansen came from Mill Creek, Pennsylvania to visit an aunt. She met Morten and married him on December 30, 1897. Morton P. Hansen did quite well for himself; owning several properties and became known as the “unofficial” Mayor. Elizabeth and Morten had six children; all born in Shandon. Their second child, Edgar Morten Hansen, was Schroeder’s father.
Her parents Nona Vivian Shaw and Edgar Morten Hansen were both born and raised in the Paso Robles and Shandon areas. Edgar farmed the original family homestead. They were married on September 5,
Schroeder married Milton Lee Schroeder on April 26,
Schroeder said, “We lost Milton on January 30, 2016. We’d been married for more than 63 years. I have a wonderful extended family of children, grandchildren and
Escorting Schroeder to the Pioneer Day festivities and riding the Queen’s carriage are her attendants; daughter Connie Schroeder Duncan and granddaughter Lisa Duncan Smith. Lisa’s parents Pete and Connie Duncan attended Shandon schools, both graduating in the early 70s.
MEET THE GRAND MARSHAL: Daryl Stinchfield
Daryl was born on July 8,
MEET BELLE RILEY RAE COELHO AND HER ATTENDANTS:
Riley Rae Coelho
Riley’s maternal great, great grandfather Otto Wyss immigrated to the United States from
Riley’s paternal great, great grandfather, James Wesley Dodd, came by wagon train from Kentucky to California; settling in Pleyto-Hesperia. His son Ed married Polly Johanna Wyss in 1912; settling in the Adelaida on the Wyss-Dodd ranch where Riley’s grandparents Skip and Nancy still live.
Riley’s grandparents are Stanley and Leslie Coelho, Darlene and Johnny Lawrence and Raymond (Skip) and Nancy White Dodd.
Riley is a senior at Paso High and plans to attend Moorpark College to study Exotic Animal Training and Management.
Julia’s ancestors came to California from France in the 1860s
Julia is a senior at Templeton High with plans to attend a university and play a college sport.
Mollie is a sixth generation Von Dollen. Her great, great grandfather Max Von Dollen settled in the Keyes Canyon area in 1886. His parents Johann Von Dollen and Caroline Martensen immigrated to the United States from Germany to California when he was 6 years old. In 1906 Max Van Dollen began farming 800 acres in Hog Canyon. Mollie’s
Her grandparents are Robert and Jennifer Gustafson McKee and Harry and Nancy Thomas
Mollie is a senior at Paso High and plans to go to college to pursue a career as a Physical Therapist.
Mattie’s great, great grandfather Louis Lauridsen came to the Estrella area in 1898. He married Maren Jensen who was from his hometown in Denmark. Their son,
Mattie’s grandmother Carrol’s heritage began with the Cavanaugh family in the 1880’s near Santa Margarita then on the Estrella Plains. Carrol still lives on the Lauridsen Ranch.
Mattie is a senior at Templeton High and plans to attend college to major in biology and chemistry then join the Peace Corps before attending medical school.
The Willow Creek area is where Alex’s
Alex attends Paso Robles Independent High School and plans to attend Cuesta College to study early childhood development.
Victoria is the seventh generation of the Edgar and Root pioneer family on her paternal side. In 1883, her great, great, great, great grandparents, John and Hannah Edgar purchased a farm in Estrella. Victoria’s great, great, great grandmother Florence married George Root in 1889 and purchased railroad land to farm and ranch. Her
Her grandparents are Glen and Sandra Taft Smeltzer.Victoria’s grandfather Glen was a teacher at Paso Robles High School for 38
Victoria attends Paso Robles High School, plans to attend Cuesta then travel to Germany to study brewing and return to Paso to start her very own micro-brewery.
Jadyn’s ancestor George Davis was married to Elecia Sumner by John Sutter at Sutter’s Fort in 1843. Davis served with Captain John Fremont in the Bear Flag Rebellion and the Mexican-American war. Jadyn’s great, great grandfather Claude Azbell was born in San Miguel in 1882 and in 1929, he was named the first Paso Robles Police Chief.
Her great, great grandfather Oscar
Jadyn is a senior at Paso High and plans to attend a university to study math and science.
Payton’s pioneer family goes back six generations on the Tucker side
Payton’s grandparents are Gary and Kathy Tucker, Nita and Jim La Loggia and Michael and Linda Atkins Hamers.
Payton is a senior at Templeton High and plans to attend college and pursue a career in the medical field.
Katie has a large family tree with relatives spread over Bryson/Hesperia, Bradley, Indian Valley, the Estrella Plains, Shandon, Dry Creek and Union District. Katie and her family still live on the Smith Ranch (the old Lynch Ranch) keeping the tradition of farming and cattle ranching. Her earliest ancestors, John “Ham” Parks Hamilton Smith and Dora Thomas Ray Smith homesteaded in 1874 in the Bald Mountain area. Her grandparents Archie and Edith McCornack tended the Lynch Ranch that was established in 1859. The family still uses the JTL brand today.
Katie’s great great grandmother is Byby Root. Her grandparents are Harold Robertson and Linda Smith; Mary Wolf Scantlin and the late Russell Root.
Katie is a senior at Templeton High and plans to attend Cuesta and Cal Poly. She also looks forward to competing in College Rodeo.