Re-thinking the Panama-California Exposition

Balboa Park Facades
The Panama-California Exposition was held in San Diego in 1915 to celebrate the opening of the Panama Canal, which unfurled astounding vistas for San Diego as it was the first port for ships sailing north-west through the canal. It put San Diego on the map as a major naval base and a center of Spanish-Colonial architecture, which was the highlight of the exposition. Thereafter, the architectural style caught the fancy of Hollywood stars and moguls who build Spanish-Colonial villas across southern California. Today, a misty day turned sunny as I strolled around the sites of the exposition, which tell tales that no historical records can. Marveling at the heavily-textured buildings, I could sense the pride and fulfilment of the San Diegans who hosted the exposition a hundred years ago with the hope to offer a more vibrant and richer San Diego to future generations. The baroque ornamentation on the buildings is caught and held in my mind, an inspiration to pursue new hopes and dreams.


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