Upper Hastings Ranch is a neighborhood with a tradition of friendliness reaching back over 100 years. In 1882, Charles Cook Hastings bought 1100 acres of land for just $7 an acre, and established Hastings Ranch. It became know as a place for "easy living" and recreation. His son, Charles Houston Hastings, owned 100 head of English-bred horses. Many gala riding events took place on the ranch. Hastings loved holidays, and always had a large celebration at Christmas-time.
Homes in the Ranch were built in stages, beginning with 800 "Coronet Homes" in 1951-52. Subsequent groups of homes were built along Riviera, Pine Bluff, and Crestview Drives. Later, homes in "upper" Upper Hastings Ranch were developed. Since most of the original owners were purchasing their first homes and beginning to raise their families, a sense of common purpose and "neighborliness" developed.
The Upper Hastings Ranch Homeowners' Association was formed to manage and promote annual events like the famous Christmas Light Up. This is a tradition now, famous throughout the San Gabriel Valley. Activities extend from a pancake breakfast in May, a Day at the Races, Spring Beautification Week, a night at the theater, etc. Activities are promoted through local block captains and a bi-monthly publication called, "The Lariat". Annual dues are $10, and are voluntary. The UHRA supports a scholarship fund for high school and college students who live in the Ranch. Students compete for awards, which are supported from the Lariat dues, the Annual Pancake Breakfast, and other activities.
Hastings Ranch has two major shopping centers, featuring such stores as Sears, Whole Food Markets, Ralph's grocery store, Starbucks, Nordstrom Rack, Best Buy, Petsmart, Dick's Sporting Goods, and many other specialty stores and fine restaurants. Don Benito Elementary School is in the heart of the Ranch, and Field Elementary School is at the southern boundary on Sierra Madre Blvd. Wilson Junior High and Pasadena High School are nearby. There are many churches of all denominations on the perimeters of the neighborhood. There is convenient bus transportation within and around the Ranch. The Pasadena Police Department continually rates Upper Hastings Ranch as having one of the lowest crime rates in their jurisdiction.
As the original Coronet Homes newspaper ad states, "[It is] one of California's most beautiful and delightful residential developments," and it remains so today.
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