Thank you to all of our volunteers, sponsors, vendors, and parade entries who made the 2015 Colony Days a great event!
Our board meetings are open to the public! Come share your ideas, enthusiasm, or brute strength!
We meet every first Friday of the month at noon.
NEXT MEETING: June 3, noon, location TBA
Colony Days 2016
October 15, 2016
Our planning process has already started, and we are getting excited for the 43rd annual Colony Days Parade!
Last year we saw the biggest production ever, with the addition of the Heilmann Dog Park Dogtoberfest, we had Sunken Gardens jamming. Adding Dogtoberfest to the parade, festival in the park, Tent City and Tent City After Dark, and the Colony Band Festival held in the afternoon at Atascadero High School made for a day stacked with hometown community fun.
Our parade was not as large as it has been in the past, but we plan on announcing some exciting news soon regarding our parade!
What we did have was a very great crowd along El Camino from Traffic Way, past Sunken Gardens, down to Morro Road. We thank you all for attending!
One of the important pieces of our celebration each year is our sponsor. Without them, we would not be able to hold this fantastic community event. That is the core of the Colony Days — community.
Now in our 43rd year, we have relied on volunteers to run our 501(c)3, and a long list of business owners, community supporters, local residents, and others have stepped up to run committees of our Colony Days board. The list is too long to mention names, but one of our standing members has been there since the beginning — Maggie Vandergon.
Maggie spearheaded the first Colony Days parade, and has led the Colony Days committee since its inaugural march in 1974, and still commands the ear of all who takes our table for planning.
We agree with what Lon Allan wrote about Maggie in his column with the Tribune, “Atascadero owes this dynamic woman a great big thank-you for her role in the observance of our colorful history.”
Last year, our board was joined by a few solid new members who invigorated our efforts to put on a great celebration, and the community responded in kind. We look forward to making that even better this year, so join our mailing list and stay tuned for exciting news!
We have volunteer opportunities available with flexible requirements for those who want to get involved! We would also like to coordinate efforts with local nonprofits to share the love of our community.
From there to here.
The Journey of 1,000 miles begins with a single step. The Colony Days parade celebration took its first steps down El Camino Real in 1974, and thus began a long-standing tradition that continues to evolve in celebration of Atascadero’s history and culture.
- Colony Days is one of the longest-running committees in Atascadero history.
- The first celebration, in 1973, Colony Days did not include a parade.
- The first formal celebration of the city’s founding was held in 1963, on the 50th anniversary of the birth of Atascadero — in which the Heilmanns brought hundreds of sheep from their ranch across the Salinas River and were herded north through town to open the 50th anniversary parade. Will and Mabel Grace Lewis, niece and nephew of E. G. And Mrs. Lewis were honored guests in the parade..
- Maggie Vandergon spearheaded the celebration efforts, and has been a guiding light during the 2015 planning and execution process.
- Colony Days is always held on the third Saturday in October — mark your calendars.
- The first king and queen of Colony Days were Dave Cowan and Ida Moore.
- Dave Cowan is credited for the name “Colony Days.”
- As robust as Colony Days has become in more than 40 years, it is not a City-run or City-financed event — but true to the 2015 theme “Volunteers on Parade,” has been run by a small, committed group of volunteers, and still is to this day.