Friday, February 09, 2007

I Hope San Gabriel Keeps the Dinosaurs

Patricia Jiayi Ho of the Pasadena Star-News (and a bunch of sister papers) reports on plans to renovate a park that I remember vividly from my childhood.

The endangered concrete species in Vincent Lugo Park's sandy lagoon will likely soon have protected status.

City officials said they plan to conserve La Laguna de San Gabriel, known colloquially as Dinosaur Park for its statues of imaginary sea creatures, after a local group made the case the play area is a cultural and historic landmark.
I lived close to two parks, one just two blocks away, but this place, which was further away, always stuck out in my mind.
The Laguna was built in the mid-1960s by Latino folk artist Benjamin Dominguez. His handmade creations dot playgrounds in Garden Grove and Whittier Narrows, as well as in Texas and Nevada.

Laguna supporters have said that while playground items made of steel and concrete are not conventional art forms, they represent the unique vision and endeavors an immigrant man made in tribute to his adopted homeland.

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