A New Year’s Day community hike is just the beginning as Morro Bay prepares to celebrate 50 years of cityhood during an amazing year filled with festive activities, civic-minded projects and many memorable moments.
Morro Bay became a city in July 1964, and to mark the 50th anniversary, the community is coming together to celebrate with a full year of events, all based around the motto “Morro Bay: Landmark & Legacy.”
At 3:30 p.m. on Wednesday, Jan. 1, hikers will gather at Morro Rock for 1st Hike Morro Bay. The first event of Morro Bay’s Landmark & Legacy year, this easy walk along a section of the California Coastal Trail is being held in conjunction with the California State Parks 150th anniversary celebration.
The free, family-friendly walk, led by State Parks docents, will head north along the beach during one of the lowest tides of the year. Hikers can gaze out across the blue Pacific, soak in the sights and sounds of the crashing surf and observe the wide variety of birds and sea creatures that make the Central Coast their winter home.
Commemorative 1st Hike Morro Bay T-shirts will be available for purchase. The shirts will feature the “Morro Bay: Landmark & Legacy” logo, created specifically for the year’s events by Morro Bay graphic designer John O’Brien, as well as the California State Parks 150th anniversary logo.
As part of the year-long celebration, Morro Bay citizens are choosing outstanding members of the community from each of the past five decades to be honored at a “This Is Your Life Morro Bay” celebration on Saturday, Jan. 11, at the Morro Bay Community Center.
Winners will be honored during a special ceremony at the event, which is being presented in partnership with the Morro Bay Chamber of Commerce and catered by two local restaurants: Great American Fish Company and Off the Hook. Other highlights of the evening include presentation of awards for 2013 Citizen of the Year and 2013 Business of the Year, as well as Morro Bay’s annual Living Treasure Award. A special presentation will take attendees on a photographic journey through the history of Morro Bay.
In keeping with the theme of the event, tickets are $50 per person. They will be available at the Chamber of Commerce office. Seating is limited, so tickets should be purchased early to ensure space.
A number of other Landmark & Legacy events are being planned for throughout the 50th anniversary year. Upcoming highlights include the Morro Bay Historical Parade and Community Party, the planting of 50 cypress trees, and completion of an important community legacy project, a statue titled “For Those Who Wait” to be installed at the harbor entrance by Central Coast Women for Fisheries. To learn more about the statue and fundraising for it, go to www.womenforfish.org.
All this is just the beginning of a festive and memorable year for the city of Morro Bay. For the latest information on all 50th anniversary festivities throughout the year, visit www.morrobay50th.com.