At a glance: A boatful of memories

By From page B1 | March 14, 2012



The first concrete ship built in the United States, the SS Faith, was launched on March 14, 1918 in Redwood City. It was constructed by the San Francisco Shipbuilding Company and cost $750,000. The lack of steel-making plants and shipyards on the West Coast prompted the use of concrete. The ship traveled to Honolulu, Balboa, Callao, Valparaíso and New York and in 1921, the SS Faith ended as a breakwater in Cuba. Another one of the concrete ships was the SS Palo Alto. Built in 1919 as an oil tanker it ended up as “The Cement Boat” at Seacliff State Beach in Aptos. The Seacliff Amusement Company of Nevada bought the ship and towed it to Aptos where it was grounded in the bay and connected to the shore by a pier. It was fitted with an arcade, dining room, dance hall and a swimming pool. The Great Depression sunk the hopes of the Seacliff Amusement Company and then a storm broke the ship at its midsection. All the fancy stuff was removed and the Palo Alto became a fishing pier and a bit of a curiosity for beach goers. The relentless waves have made the ship unsafe and now it just sits as a reminder of the past.

Safe graduation celebration

To help make good memories the Ponderosa Sober Grad Night Committee is having a Dine Out at Papa Gianni’s on Wednesday, March 14. Stop by, 3450 Palmer Drive in Cameron Park, for some authentic Italian cuisine between 11 a.m. and 8 p.m. and a portion of the purchase will go to supporting the Ponderosa High School Sober Grad Night. For reservations call 530-672-2333. To learn more about the Sober Grad Night cause visit

Clean up at the mixer

The El Dorado Hills Chamber of Commerce monthly mixer is from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. on Wednesday, March 14, at Suds Car Wash and Detail Center in El Dorado Hills Town Center. There will be appetizers, drinks, prizes and plenty of time to meet business owners. For more chamber information call 916-933-1335.

Businesses and movies

The El Dorado County Chamber of Commerce is having its Business Showcase and I Love Film mixer on Friday, March 16, from 4 to 8 p.m. to honor businesses. The showcase and mixer is at the El Dorado County Fairgrounds, 100 Placerville Drive in Placerville. The event will have food and wine tastings and vendors selling products and prizes. Film industry professionals will be at the mixer to meet fans. For more information call the chamber office at 530-621-5885 or go online at

Fun run and walk

The Spirit of Benny 5K Fun Run and Walk is Saturday, March 17, on the El Dorado bike trail.This special event will raise money for Partners In Care. Runners and walkers should be at Louisiana Schnell School, 2871 Schnell School Road in Placerville, by 8 a.m. to pick up registration packets and race bibs. Runners will start at 8:30 a.m. and walkers will start at 8:45 a.m. For more information or to register visit or call Partners In Care at 530-344-0295. For more information visit or

Celebrate St. Pat’s

Lava Cap Winery, 2221 Fruitridge Road in Placerville, is celebrating St. Patty’s Day with a complimentary food pairing with the award-winning handcrafted wines. The tasting room is open from 11a.m. to 5 p.m. For more details call 530-621-0175.

Pretty photos

Photographer Shelly Thorene is one of the featured artists at Gold Country Artists Gallery, 379 Main St. in Placerville, for Third Saturday Artwalk. Her work can also be seen on the pages of the Mountain Democrat that reflect her creative eye and unique vision. Stop by on March 17, between 6 to 9 p.m. to meet the artists and hear music by Caroll Tuttle and friends. For more information call 530-642-2944 or visit

Contact Mimi Escabar at 530-344-5070 or [email protected] Follow @MEscabarMtDemo on Twitter.

Mimi Escabar

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