October 6, 2018


This Happened Here: Hidden History Tour of the Westside

In 2018, San Antonio celebrates its 300th anniversary! As part of the celebration, the Westside Development Corporation (WDC) is partnering with SERVE 300 SA, a citywide community service initiative designed to positively affect the quality of life in our neighborhoods, for the tricentennial festivities.

In this role, the WDC is hosting the SA 300 event This Happened Here: History in Hidden Corners of the Westside Tour next year, and is currently seeking storytellers from the community to share their own rich experience with the history of the Westside.


San Antonio values its history; its citizens wear their pride and passion on their sleeves. SPARK 300 SA reflect the city’s commitment to education at all levels – public, private, charter, and collegiate – and can be found in all parts of our community. It’s little wonder then that History and Education would play a central role in the city’s Tricentennial celebration. We imagine featured exhibits, a commemorative book, interactive learning opportunities, thrilling reenactments of events in their original settings, and many other learning opportunities.

The WDC in partnership with SA 300 is currently seeking selected storytellers for the project who will share their local tales that honor the Westside’s history, culture, people, and places as part of Westside bus tour in addition to having their story published in local media outlets.

Contact Dawn Hanson at dawn@westsidedevcorp.com or call (210) 501-0192 in response to this letter and any questions. Thank you for your interest!

May 5th SA 300 Storytellers

Event Name: This Happened Here: History in Hidden Corners of the Westside Tour
Event Date: May 5
Event Time: 10am – 1pm
Start and End Location: VIA Centro Plaza

Location: Westside Motors LLC
Tour Address: 1506 W. Commerce
Speaker: Jaime Macias
Story Summary: Jaime, first generation American and longtime westside resident, captures the rich history of inclusiveness and community spirit that he witnessed while working as a young boy at his father’s business, Las Brisas Mexican Restaurant.

Location: Childhood Home
Tour Address: Navidad and Nueces
Speaker: Emma Guerrero
Story Summary: Emma paints a picture of the vibrant westside community of the 40s and 50s. Though she grew up with little, her rich spirit led her to dream of making a better life and committing herself to that vision of hope.

Location: Guadalupe Theater
Tour Address: 1301 Guadalupe St
Speaker: Mary D. Goodarzi
Story Summary: Mary reminisces about spending Saturdays with her Father watching matinee showings at the Guadalupe Theater, being treated to double decker ice cream at the pharmacy, and ending the day with tamales from the lady in front of the school.

Location: The Madonna Center
Tour Address: 1906 Castroville Rd
Speaker: Pablo Escamilla
Story Summary: Pablo, the Madonna’s Center Board President, and Sister Bern share the history of the
Madonna Center founded in 1939 by the Sisters of the Divine Providence.

Location: Edgewood H.S.
Tour Address: 607 SW 34th St.
Speaker: Manuel Garza
Story Summary: Manuel, community organizer, shares the story behind the advocacy and demands of high school visionaries that ultimately led to the Edgewood H.S. student walkout on May 16, 1968.

*The fee for this event is not associated with the VIA bus.

past SA 300 Storytellers

Pablo Escamilla
Program & Development Officer of Madonna Center

Ethel Garett
Former long-term resident of the West End neighborhood in the Westside

Joe Aguilar
Born and raised in the Westside and Publisher of the Westside Sol

Jose Esquivel
Lifetime Westside resident, accomplished artist and former CPS Employee

Teresa V. Rodriguez
Former State of Texas social worker and Brackenridge HS Teacher who grew up in the Westside

*The fee for this event is not associated with the VIA bus.