Leon Worden




The ties that bind: Preserving Santa Clarita's heart and soul

Leon Worden · March 28, 1997

For some it is the simple and miraculous gift of procreation. For others, the invention of a new piece of machinery that somehow changes the course of history. For still more, the writing of an epic tome to be pulled from a dusty bookshelf 100 years from now and deciphered afresh.

It is in the intractable nature of the human beast to want to leave something behind, to be remembered. Legacies don't come cheap or easy. They take time and tenacity, and the thousands of people who give a little bit of themselves every day of every week of every year to make this community a better place know it.

What kind of legacies are we leaving for our children? Once we are dust, will anyone remember that we were ever here?

As we bridge the psychological gap to the 21st Century, it seems as good a time as any to take stock of what we are doing to prepare for the Santa Clarita of tomorrow.

Elsewhere in this edition you will read that our schools are among the best in California, that ours is one of the safest cities in America, and that we are strategically poised to take advantage of the emerging markets of the Pacific Rim. These are good things. But there is more.

Santa Clarita is more than a place, it is a state of mind. It is home. It is and perhaps always will be a small town, no matter how many people live here. At its heart, Santa Clarita is Old Newhall.

Where once were cowboys, today are condominiums. And yet, we aspire to a simpler time, when deals were closed with a handshake and the odors from the onion fields wafted through the hills and valleys we now call Valencia.

It wasn't all that long ago that the Newhall-Saugus area was that place, a place that spanned the vast reaches of our valley from present-day Canyon Country to Magic Mountain and beyond. With the kind of grit and determination that thrives in the soul of this city, Santa Clarita can be that place again.

Whether you've lived here five years or fifty makes no difference. No one alive today remembers the founding of our town. It is a part of our collective subconscious, the root of our identity, the tie that binds us as a community of friends and neighbors. It is a story worthy of passing along to our children.

For it is us.

Leon Worden is a Santa Clarita resident. His regular commentary appears on Wednesdays.


©1997 LEON WORDEN — ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
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