The Peña Adobe Historical Society in Vacaville needs volunteers to teach park visitors about Vacaville’s local history. The Society was established in 2004, staffed by volunteers, this nonprofit organization is committed to preserving the Peña Adobe and providing educational and cultural events to the community.
An open house informational meeting is scheduled from 11:00 to 2:00 Saturday, February 1, 2020 at the Peña Adobe Park located just off Interstate 80 at Peña Adobe road. The center of attraction at Vacaville’s historic park is the oldest, fully restored structure in Solano County, the Peña Adobe, California historical landmark #534 and the former home of the Peña family. The Peña family together with the Vaca family arrived in Solano County in 1841.
Armando Perez, of Apache descent, is one of Peña Adobe’s volunteers who organize and host the monthly open houses at the Peña Adobe in Lagoon Valley. Perez, who has a long history of volunteering, has been part of the Pena Adobe Historical Society since 2017 when he came out to the park to clear ivy from the small Native American burial ground there and met the Society’s president who was cleaning the small museum. “She talked about the open houses and asked if I wanted to help out and I said sure,” Perez said.
Greg Schwei was taking his grandchildren to one of the Peña Adobe open houses in 2009 when a member of the Peña Adobe Historical Society told Schwei that he looked a lot like famous botanist Willis Jepson, who grew up in Vacaville in the late 1800’s. Greg was asked if he would be willing to play the role of Jepson and talk about native plants around Peña Adobe and since then has been hosting multiple 45-minute nature walks at the historical society’s monthly open houses.
Joining Armando and Greg on the volunteer team is Cecelia Peña, a fifth generation Peña whose father was born at the Adobe. Since 2015, Cecelia has been leading tours of the Peña Adobe. Cecelia shares the rich history of her family who were one of the first families to settle in Vacaville with park visitors and students at local schools.
The Peña Adobe Historical Society recruits and trains new volunteer members each year to share Vacaville’s history through research, guided tours, student bus trips, the City of Vacaville summer program, and other outreach activities. Volunteers are asked to commit to 10 hours a year at the park and abide by the City of Vacaville rules and regulations. If you would like to learn about the history of Vacaville, join us on Saturday, February 1st and become a member of the Peña Adobe Historical Society!