Newport Historical Society screens film on 1953 Boy Scout Jamboree that put spotlight on Orange County – Orange County Register
It was called the largest gathering of youth in history. The 1953 Boy Scout Jamboree drew 50,000 Scouts from 22 nations to Orange County from July 17-23, 1953. They pitched their tents, waded in the ocean and applauded Bob Hope, Debby Reynolds and other entertainers. They put on their own productions. Jamboree Road was named for the event, and where they camped they now shop – at Fashion Island. Photo courtesy of First American Title Insurance Co.
On July 19, 1953, The Register published The Boy Scout Jamboree Souvenir Edition of Orange County. The faded pages are a snapshot in time. Local merchants welcomed the scouts in their advertisements. JEBB HARRIS ORANGE COUNTY REGISTER –
Vice President Richard Nixon addresses the 1953 Boy Scout Jamboree in Irvine.
On July 19, 1953, The Register published The Boy Scout Jamboree Souvenir Edition of Orange County. This is the cover. The faded pages are a snapshot in time.
The large amphitheatre that accommodated thousands of Boy Scouts at the 1953 Boy Scout Jamboree at Irvine Ranch.
Boy Scouts have fun with a blanket toss at the 1953 Boy Scout Jamboree that took place at Irvine Ranch.
The Irvine Historical Society has a copy of the 1953 Boy Scout Jamboree film.
The national 1953 Boy Scout Jamboree was held on Irvine Ranch in what’s now part of the City of Newport Beach. This archway depicting Neptune, designed my nationally famous (and local resident) Virgil Partch (a.k.a. “VIP”), graced the entrance to the Newport Harbor troop’s encampment.
In July 1953, over 51,000 Boy Scouts and Scout leaders from across the country and as far as Mexico and Japan descended on what is now Newport Center and Fashion Island to form friendships and enhance their camping skills in the first Boy Scout Jamboree on the West Coast.
Hollywood celebrities Jimmy Stewart, Bob Hope, Danny Kaye and Will Rogers attended for “Hollywood’s Salute to Scouts” and Vice President Richard Nixon gave a speech and attended a pancake breakfast with his former Scout troop. President Dwight D. Eisenhower even made a visit.
The seven-day gathering was documented, made into a one-hour film and screened around the country — including at Newport Harbor High School. But it was not widely viewed and faded into obscurity over the years.
But on Wednesday night, July 19, after some film detective work by Eric Longabardi, a former TV journalist who grew up in Newport Beach, the Newport Beach Historical Society will screen the Jamboree film as part…