By custom, events such as the coming Bonitafest single out one individual in the community and honor and fete that person for the duration of the event. Bonitafest has such a person in its grand marshal. In this particular case it is a long time South Bay and Bonita resident, Barbara Scott.
I met with Scott the other morning and we spoke of many things, some personal, some community oriented but all that involves her and her many accomplishments. Appropriately enough we met at the Bonita Museum. I say that it was appropriate because without her efforts, and those of her husband Scott the spacious, well ordered exhibit room of the museum— and the rest of the building— would probably be non-existent.
It was not too many years ago that we saw the Scott family join forces with Greg Cox, the county supervisor for our district and raise the necessary funds for the museum, as well as the county library that is adjacent. Since that time and up to the present Barbara has been involved with the mechanics of keeping the museum financially solvent as well as aiding museum staff in offering exhibits and shows that have lent bits of culture to the community.
She is rather excited and is anticipating the coming months in the doings of the museum and the neighboring library.
It seems that the two agree through a Memorandum of Understanding to extend and formalize their current partnership. This, they state, is built on a shared common purpose to educate, inform, inspire and entertain the residents of the community. This will entail the shared use of the two entities, making them equally available to the users of the two.
In support of the increased shared-use goals the library is prepared to meet the annual fiscal commitment as outlined in the revised lease effective in November of this year. In such a manner the burden of meeting obligatory financial deadlines will be eased and become less of a chore.
Although Scott has been in business for practically all of her adult life she still makes family a high priority in her everyday life. Both she and her husband are graduates of San Diego State University. They, in fact, met at the college and were married more than 50 years ago. They have three sons, all married with children and all successful in their fields. The three sons are all Trojans, graduates of the University of Southern California.
Scott is also a member of many local organizations. Among them are Las Primeras, StarLarcs, and was named the year’s Woman of the Year by the Salvation Army. She has, of course, been on the Board of Directors for the Bonita Historical Society and has gone through the chairs in the organization.
As the grand marshal for this year she joins a long list of dignitaries, honored citizens of the South Bay who have, since 1973, shared that mantle of distinction.
The literature tells us that that first individual was a navy commander, Alden Olsen, and his wife. I recall visiting and interviewing the two in their quaint home on Sweetwater Road. I say quaint because it is one of those Spanish-style abodes with two separate sections. The list of past grand marshals reads like a Who’s Who of individuals of the South County, too numerous to mention in this space.
It is my understanding that Grand Marshal Barbara will ride the old Mack fire engine in the parade. She demurred the use of the customary convertible for the fire truck. She and her husband both have been involved with the local fire prevention district for many years. I am sure that there is a sentimental reason for this decision. The Mack has been retired for many years but is kept around as an antique, much like the old fire horses of yore.
As she passes by in the parade the parade announcer will no doubt tell you who she is. Give her a nice salute and a wave. She deserves it.