A lot can happen in 80 years. The United States, in particular, has braved wars, experienced positive social changes, as well as transformative cultural awakenings, to name a few things. Usually it’s best to just move forward, implement lessons learned, and not allow history to repeat itself. Though the official reopening of the California Tower on New Year’s Day, which had been previously closed to the public for a whopping four-fifths of a century, is a testament to San-Diegan resilience.
Built in the style of Spanish churches, and situated in Balboa Park, the Tower, which was bookended by two expositions (1915, 1935) during its original 20-year run, provided boons to the San Diego economy, none more important than the California Pacific International Exposition following the wake of the Great Depression. It was then during World War II that the Tower saw its last bit of action for a long while when it was used as a naval hospital.
The landmark, which has been spotlighted in films from Citizen Kane to Anchorman, is back to offer its Southern California citizens the chance to experience history by ascending 125 steps, standing 198 feet above ground, and basking in the awe-striking scenery of a skyline that extends 23 miles on a clear day.
Tickets, which start at $6 for children and top out at $25 for adults, are in exceedingly hot demand, so much so that the entire month of January is almost sold out, according to the Los Angeles Times and FOX 5 San Diego.
Make sure to buy tickets in advance at museumofman.org/california-tower, and to arrive 15 minutes early before your tour.
California Tower address:
1350 El Prado, San Diego, CA, 92101
(619) 239-2001, californiatower.org
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