100 years from Chilis to Argos

DUFFY HAWLEY ROUTH, Argo class of 1972, dances along Golden Fleece Avenue during Saturday’s 100-year anniversary event for Garden Grove High School (Orange County Tribune photos by Jim Tortolano).

A century ago one of the most enduring institutions in Garden Grove was born: a brand new high school. On Saturday a celebration and salute was held on Stanford Avenue to commemorate 100 years of Garden Grove High.

HUNDREDS attended the commemoration of 100 years at GGHS.

Several hundred alums, family members and others gathered to catch up with old friends, view memorabilia stretching over 10 decades, eat picnic-style food, listen to classic rock music, play carnival-style games and more. For sale was an array of Argonaut shirts, hats and such, and even some “Chili Pepper” garments, reflecting the school’s original team nickname.

The event concluded with the playing and singing of the school’s “Alma Mater” song.

What was originally Garden Grove Union High School was established in 1921 and moved to its present campus in 1923. It has survived the Great Depression, the 1933 Long Beach Earthquake, the relocation of its Japanese student body during World War 2, and sending hundreds of its boys and men off to fight – and in some cases, die – during that conflict.

It was there for the great influx of families following that war and taught the kids of the baby boom and adapted to a wide range of challenges, including other wars, cultural, demographic and ethnic changes, the Great Recession and the coronavirus pandemic.

It’s the “parent” school of six other high schools in what is now the Garden Grove Unified School District, one of the largest in Orange County.

The event was organized by the Garden Grove High School Alumni Association, which also holds an annual alumni event each June on the campus.


2 replies »

  1. Thanks for covering this, Jim! It was such fun, and we’ve never welcomed back so many alumni. Happy smiles were everywhere.

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