The Santa Monica Pier’s history is an unknown story to most. Guest and visitors alike walk these piers (yes, 2 piers side-by-side) and know little of its past except for the well-known “End of the Trail” of the famous Route 66.
The origin of this famous West Coast experience, that now sees over 10 million visitors a year, did not start off like you see it today. The flashing lights of the amusement park, the Pacific Wheel skyline, souvenir shops, arcade fun, midway games, restaurants, and Pier performers are all creations of the Santa Monica Pier’s evolution.
Watch and listen as the Deputy Executive Director of the Santa Monica Pier and Pier Historian, Jim Harris, talk through the years of the Santa Monica Pier on this episode of Throwback Thursdays: Santa Monica Pier by the Santa Monica History Museum with Board Chairman, Rob Schwenker.
How much do you really know about the Santa Monica Pier? This one-on-one history session has it all – transformation, suspense, disaster, relief and drama! Sit back, grab some popcorn, and teleport to Santa Monica in the early years…
Santa Monica Pier History Museum – Throwback Thursdays: Santa Monica Pier
Check out our description breakdown with timestamps below so you can easily scroll forward to a specific topic or rewatch portions of the video!
|1:20||Jim Harris introduction|
|3:25||Santa Monica Pier – Jay Fiondella|
|4:35||Pier Opening 9/9/09|
|7:15||“Best fishing in the Bay”|
|8:55||Amusement Park and Yachts…?|
|11:25||The Carousel, A National Landmark!|
|13:15||Santa Monica Pleasure Pier|
|14:15||La Monica Ballroom|
|15:35||Yacht Harbor in 1931|
|20:00||Captain Olaf Olsen & Popeye|
|23:50||The World’s Greatest Casino on the sea|
|26:55||Santa Monica Lifeguards|
|28:37||The Greatest Water Men|
|31:35||Santa Monica “Pier” Arch Sign|
|33:40||The Paddle Boarding Experience|
|41:35||The Merry Go-Round since 1947|
|44:55||The King of Western Swing|
|47:20||Save the Santa Monica Pier|
|56:15||The BIG storm of ’83|
|1:02:35||The rebuild, Pacific Park, and Twilight|
|1:05:40||Pier economy changes with Pier Events|
|1:08:14||“The Soul of the Pier”|
|1:09:00||Q&A with Jim Harris|