It rained most of the previous night and the day of, however, the sun peaked out just in time for the Cannery Row Monument Dedication that was held one week ago today, on Wednesday, February 26th. On hand to celebrate this event were the family, friends, clients and employees of the four entrepreneurs that steadfastly dedicated themselves to the revival of the area. Speaker’s included Ted Balestreri, Monterey native and Secretary Leon Panetta, Monterey Mayor Chuck Della Sala, Former Monterey Mayor Dan Albert with the blessing by the Most Reverend Bishop Garcia. Thank you to all who worked to make this monument happen and those who attended its dedication.
The Cannery Row monument pays tribute to the many notorious and famous characters that were vital to the evolution of Cannery Row. Atop the rocklike monument sits John Steinbeck, surrounded by eight other bronze figures – characters reminiscent of when Cannery Row was the bustling sardine canning district that exposed him to the lives of people who filled him with literary inspiration.
Also sculpted on the monument is Ed Ricketts, Steinbeck’s good friend and a famous marine biologist who studied the sea life and tide pools of Monterey Bay. The monument also includes figures suggestive of a Chinese fisherman and cannery workers, and of the colorful Dora Flood, who made everybody happy and was equally famous for helping the poor during the Great Depression.
The four “boys” huddled together on the rock were modeled after the four entrepreneurs who embraced the remnants of the canning district and dedicated themselves to its rebirth. Ted Balestreri, George Zarounian, Harry Davidian and Bert Cutino shared a vision for Cannery Row and a deep affection for its inhabitants. The boys in association with the Coniglio, Crispo, Drummond and Meyers families brought tourism and hospitality to Monterey’s Cannery Row, helping to preserve it for all time.
Ted Balestreri, founding and general managing partner of the Cannery Row Company, was the first to envision a monument. Mr. Balestreri worked closely with Carmel artist and acclaimed sculptor, Steven Whyte, created the nine bronze figures.
Visit Steinbeck Plaza and see for yourself. Tag the location and post to Facebook!