The Cambrian

Pinedorado gets wheels rolling, toes tapping this weekend

Cambria Pinedorado parade fun for young and old

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Haul out your marching boots and dancing shoes, wind up your throwing arm, fire up your appetite and get ready to applaud, cheer and have oodles of fun: Cambria’s 69th annual Pinedorado is about to roll into town, as it does every Labor Day weekend.

And roll it will, with hundreds of vehicles being featured in the “Enjoying the Spirit of Cambria” parade and the 11th annual car show, two of the most popular events at the three-day celebration sponsored by the Lions Club of Cambria.

The parade begins at Bridge and Main streets at 9:30 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 2 (an earlier time announced on event fliers was to encourage parade watchers to get in position earlier, because of parking limitations).

Convenient parking — always a concern during the parade, car show and Pinedorado itself — could be tighter than ever this year along the parade route, due to construction that means the Rodeo Grounds area is off limits.

The Cambria Trolley will run from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday (down Main Street and out Moonstone Beach Drive), but remember, the trolley can’t go wherever the parade still is proceeding.

According to former Lions Club president Andy Zinn, vehicles can park in the lot at the former Brambles restaurant (4005 Burton Drive, near the bridge), at the Cambria Dog Park (Main Street near the intersection with Santa Rosa Creek Road) and in various locations along the parade route, although cars won’t be allowed on the street in East Village locations. Main Street closes at 9 a.m. from Santa Rosa Creek Road to Kent Street (near Main Street Grill).

To help alleviate the crunch, carpooling, bicycling and walking to Pinedorado events are recommended.

Vehicles on display for the car show from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 3, will be along Cambria Drive and in the parking lot of the Veterans Memorial Building, 1000 Main St.

Most of the activities and events in the three-day celebration are held within a special area adjacent to the Vets Hall.

If weather at parade time allow, a fly-over by vintage planes from the Estrella Warbird Museum is set for about 11 a.m. Saturday Last year’s planned aerial show was delayed until Sunday because of gloppy overcast/foggy skies.

For details and a Pinedorado schedule, go to


Parade chairman Jeff Neilson estimates that up to 70 percent of the procession’s entries this year will involve some sort of vehicle, including one antique with special meaning for North Coast residents and firefighters.

The 1933 Dodge Bros. motorized pumper truck belongs to the Cambria Firefighters’ Association, according to extensive records compiled by Dexter Upton, volunteer Cambria Fire Department historian and former department employee. He said he believes the firetruck was utilized most recently in a firefighting capacity at a 1969 or 1970 wildland fire on the Fiscalini Ranch, near where the Cambria Community Services District water tank is now.

The unit’s apparatus “can pump 150 gallons of water per minute from its front-mounted equipment,” Upton said.

Upton and Fire Chief William Hollingsworth said in recent interviews that the firetruck has been in most of the Pinedorado parades, often carrying local celebrities and dignitaries. For instance, in the 2008 parade, the pumper was packed with honored retired volunteer and staff firefighters, such as Fire Chief Curt Hatton, Paul Beaver, Reg Perkins, Tom Tierney and Walt Fitzhugh (with wife Judy).

In the Sept. 2 parade, participants in the Cambria FireSafe Focus Group will be riding in the treasured vehicle.

The Dodge Bros. firetruck has provided transportation and ambiance for occasions festive and somber. Upton said it transported a couple on their wedding day and took the casket of late fire chief Bob Cullen from the fire station to his memorial service.

Santa Claus hops aboard the pumper to get to Cambria’s Hospitality Night festivities and the Lions Club’s holiday party for youngsters. The firetruck is also brought out for educational purposes, such as for a Cambria FireSafe Focus Group safety fair last year, and for school tours and visits. And, of course, it’s also taken firefighters to fires, emergencies and “fire muster” competitions.

According to Upton, the 1933 Dodge was “the second piece of motorized fire equipment Cambria had,” having been purchased and manufactured the same year the town’s Hope Volunteer Fire Company and fire department became the Cambria Fire Protection District. (Upton said the department’s first motorized unit was a 1931 Dodge, he said.)

Focus Group leader Shirley Bianchi said that, because the group “is such an integral part of Cambria, as is the parade,” and more than 90 percent of the people who participate in the group live on the North Coast, she feels it’s important for those volunteers to “support and be seen at local events, such as the Pinedorado parade.”

Car show

Car show chairman Nate Fearonce said he expects there’ll be at least 150 entries on display in the Veterans Memorial Building parking lot and along Cambria Drive and Main Street. If there’s space, “people will still be signing up the day of the show.”

Observers can attend for free.

Fearonce said in an Aug. 22 email interview that live entertainment will be provided by the band Rumble, and Mojo’s Village Bean shop will sell dessert sandwiches made with Doc Burnstein’s “Motor Oil” blend of deep, dark chocolate ice cream with fudge and Kahlua coffee-flavored liqueur.

He said the most unusual entry at that time was a 1901 Oldsmobile Pie Wagon from Morro Bay. He said the entry coming the greatest distance will be a 2016 Mercedes AMG from Golden Hills, Arizona.

A car show breakfast will be served from 7 to 10 a.m. in the American Legion No. 432 post, in back of and below the Veterans Memorial Building.


Pinedorado Follies concerts in the Veterans Memorial Building at 7 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, Sept. 2 and 3, will feature Kiki Ebsen, an internationally acclaimed solo and backup singer, songwriter, keyboardist, arranger and show producer. She’ll appear with her drummer brother Dustin Ebsen and guitarist Steve Postell.

They’ll perform a variety of music, including many of Kiki Ebsen’s own compositions and some songs from her seventh CD, “Cool Songs, Volume 2: The Music of Joni Mitchell.”

Performances by accomplished local pianist Kate Hepworth will be the warm-up act for the concerts.

According to publicist Dawn Lee Wakefield, Kiki Ebsen has five musical projects going now, including her “Joni Mitchell Project” band, which has appeared in various Southern California venues.

The two Ebsens coproduced a multimedia tribute show to their father, “To Dad With Love: A Tribute to Buddy Ebsen,” the noted dancer and star of “Beverly Hillbillies,” “Barnaby Jones” and the “Davey Crockett” movie and miniseries (with Fess Parker).

Kiki Ebsen also has performed around the world, supporting such musical notables as Chicago, Tracy Chapman, Boz Scaggs, Michael McDonald and Christopher Cross.

For more about Kiki Ebsen, go to

The Follies concerts start at 7 the Veterans Memorial Building. Tickets ($30, general admission and $60 for front-row, table seats) are available at the Cambria Chamber of Commerce.

Hometown Monday

Pinedorado’s third day shifts to a relaxed mode for local enthusiasts, who enjoy a more laid-back atmosphere for socializing, enjoying the music of former Cambria resident Julie Beaver and the Bad Dogs, the buck-a-ticket raffle drawings (top prize this year is $1,500 in cash!) and chowing down on their favorite barbecue meals. Motions Academy of Dance will perform at 11 a.m. in the Veterans Memorial Building.

Also at Pinedorado:

▪  Local musician/singer Marcus DiMaggio will entertain from 3 to 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday.

▪  The top sirloin and chicken barbecue, hot dogs and hand-made burgers, fresh corn on the cob, Linn’s pie, local beer, wine and other beverages draw in many Pinedorado attendees year after year.

▪  Afternoon bingo at the Joslyn Recreation Center, 950 Main St.

▪  Games for kids of all ages, plus a bounce house and the classical kiddie rides with old-fashioned mini cars and train.

▪  Garden Club plant sale.

Busy weekend

Other weekend events in Cambria include:

▪  The wacky, zany Prefix 927 Art Show, Cambria Center for the Arts, 1350 Main St., free admission. Opening reception, 5:30 to 7 p.m. Friday, Sept. 1.

▪  The American Field Service 26th annual 5K Fun Run, with signups at 7 a.m. and race start at 7:45 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 2 at Coast Union High School, 2950 Santa Rosa Creek Road.

▪  Joslyn Recreation Center offers a waffle breakfast Saturday from 7 to 10 a.m.

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