Wednesday, June 06, 2007


The Scaroni’s – The Dairy and Family – BEFORE it was the Red, White and Blue Nudie Beach – when it was hard working and Fun people.
Photos of Scaroni House Courtesy of Al and Norma Wilson. TOP PHOTO 'LA NOSTRA COSTA ARCHIVES': 'BEACH PARTY AT THE SCARONI BEACH' [C.1956]. (From Left to Right: Shirley Wilson(?), Florence Bianco,Unknown, Esther Frizza,Jerrill ('The Old Professor' Kerrick, Alan Cornick (deceased), Jim (FA)Ceragioli, Christine Roen and Jerry Mungai at the extreme right hand edge. )


Katie, Bill, Johnny and Arnold were the neatest and most unique people. None of them every married. Who remembers?! I know that Dee Murray (Dolores Viviani) does and I am sure many many others. Here are some 0f the things I remember:

They loved company and accommodated so many – in summer I remember Ted Templeton (and some friends) spending time at the Dairy and helping bring down the hay in big wagons (with horses) from the north side of the Old Hwy l. Also Bill and John would stop cars and the cement trucks on the Hwy in the morning and afternoon in order to cross their cows from the north side to the south by their house and where the milking barn was. (The Borges - Arvelas Dairy was the next one
Going to Santa Cruz – when Vera and Della Borges Dad was not feeling well – we girls stopped the cars and crossed the cows from one side to the other – then their brother Frank would milk the cows – this was the old Annand property by the Dal Porto Ranch)

Bill was rather quiet and very nice and kind of the head of the family. I remember him going to Holy Cross Church for Easter and Christmas.

John the youngest (most of us called him Johnny), was short and was full of pep and a real jokster – but had a good heart. Took his family matters very seriously, though he was always joking around.

Katie had been a school teacher but I do not remember where she taught. When her parents passed she took over caring for her brother Arnold who was blind and the rest of the family. She cooked, washed, etc for all the brothers.

Arnold (I believe) was the oldest and a real sweetheart. He was an inspiration and had a way of not making you feel sorry for him because he was blind.

He was so talented – he did some wood carvings, chopped and stacked firewood and many other things. His job with the dairy was to go to the milking barn and pick up two buckets full of milk (that were always placed in a certain place by the door); then walk l50 feet and up about 20 stairs to the “cheese house” and dump the buckets in a trough that then pasteurized the milk. He kept doing this until the milking was done – quite a job! It seems he never even spilled a drop of milk.

Arnold knew his way by feeling around and always going the same exact way. From the house to the barn there was a white picket fence with a gate always open. No one ever parked in front of the gate because that was his path. One day one of the neighbors accidentally parked at the gate and Arnold walked straight into into the car . (The neighbor felt really bad about this.)

One Sunday my mother (Diana Dinelli) and I walked to the Scaronis. No one was home except Arnold. With Arnold, we started to walk around the front yard – talking and looking at the flowers (this was an unfamiliar part of the yard for Arnold). Arnold felt the fence and plants and then cautiously found the clothesline and walked holding onto the line until it stopped – there was still a little ways to go around the house to where he was familiar so he called me over and said, "Let's see how tall you’ve gotten". He kind of held onto me until we walked to the house again and onto familiar territory. He never asked for help and I did not even notice he was using me as a guidance.

In the summer , Katie would pick me up once or twice a week and I would help clean her house. She would then fix lunch. After lunch we did the the dishes and then we would walk down to the beach (no nudies then). At times Katie would do something special with me tagging along. After putting on her straw hat, we would take a drive to Santa Cruz to get meat out of the meat lockers (where Lenz Art store is now) or drive up to Scotts Valley to visit the Don Santos family or the English family that ran a dairy where Nob Hill is now (at the time it was all pasture and cows – their House was where Walgreens now is located).

The Scaronis were a wonderful family. -As Ivano (The Gran Blaggatore) said, Katie
always counted heads coming and going to her beach. She wanted to make sure everyone was safe. I miss you Katie. I miss all of you. Thanks for giving us such wonderful memories. ****Norma (Dinelli) Wilson

Wish to comment on this article??? Click on ‘comments’ below -- which will take you to the “Comments” page. Then write your comments in space provided. When done, check off ‘Other’ or ‘Anonymous’ ( NOT 'google/blogger -- and IGNORE ‘Goggle Password Section’). If you check off ‘Other’ write your name in space provided and then click on ‘Publish’. (Note: ‘Other’ must be checked off BEFORE you write your name. ‘Anonymous’ writer: Leave name space blank --just click on Publish.) Ivn0


Gran Blaggatore said...

Thanks Norma for such a great article. I can remember walking up to that house with Jim Ceragioli.
Katie would meet us at the door and Jim would ask; "Hi Katie. We were thinking of having a beach party at your beach. Would that be OK." Katie then would smile and answer, "Sure Jimmy. Make sure that everyone is safe". GB

christine Weiss Daugherty said...

This is great! I actually think this beach party was in the summer of 1955 before we all went off to college. Thanks for including it. Chris

LNC: You could be right Chris. Do you have any idea who the guy is that is lying on the sand?? Bruce Hansen? Don Binsacca?? ivn0

florence (Bianco) Bell said...

Hi All,
It's amazing that someone recognized the back of my head. I wanted to fill in the "unknown". That is Carol Lehmkuhl, who was my roommate for a while at San Jose State and Bruce Hansen's cousin. We have lost contact and I wonder if, Bruce,could put me in touch with her?
Best to all,

Jan (Hunter) said...

Could that be Bruce Hansen with the elbow in his face?


LNC: Well, Jan we seem to be keeping it in the family. See Florence's comment, above.

Carolina Cariola said...

Dear Gran Blaggatore: There seems to be some confusion here regarding to whom those legs in question belong to. I wish it made it known to everyone of your 'blaggatori' that those were not my legs. I was much to young then and would not have been at this gathering, although my 'bello' did ask me once or twice. Carrie

jim 'F/A' Ceragioli said...

From: Jim Ceragioli
To: ivan comelli
Sent: Tuesday, June 19, 2007 12:37

Did you see the info I added re Scaroni Famiglia? I have never added to a Bloggo and so did not know what was needed.
Jim Ceragioli (aka FA)

LNC: No Jim (FA) I did not. Apparently your comments failed to publish. It appears that others are having problems with the 'comments' section, thus I have posted a 'tutorial' at the end of each article. The main thing is to ignore "Google/Blogger" (thats me)
and check off 'other' before typing your name in space provided.
Anonymous writers need only click on 'Anonymous' and then 'Publish your Comment'. In either case NO PASSWORD IS NECESSARY.

If all fails you can send comments to me and I will publish for you.

Keep trying "F/A". I appreciate your efforts. BTW: Its 'Blagga' not 'Bloggo'. GB (Gran Blaggatore)

jerry mungai said...

Ivan, was watching Lou Dobbs one nite last week about illegal immigration; and they had a segment on a Joe Scaroni who had a large lettuce farm in Salinas. He apparently shifted 20% of his lettuce production to Mexico where he had a better chance of finding workers. Do you know how he figures into the Scaronis of the Coast?


LNC: Jerry: Don't know his relationship to the Scaroni's up the Coast. Perhaps other 'Blaggatori' might have some info. GB

LaNorma said...

Caro Ivano:

In answer to the Joe Scaroni lettuce farmer in Salinas – I don’t know At all if there is any connection. I do know that Katie Scaroni (and Brothers) had a cousin named Gemma in Salinas but don’t know her last name or any other details. Sorry I can’t help on this one at all.
Ciao per ora - LaNorma

GB: Thanks LaNorma. I checked an old Monterey-Salinas telphone book. There were four Scaroni's listed: Frank, Mark, Paul and William. No Joe Scaroni. In all probability they are in some way related to the Scaroni's who lived and worked "su per la costa". ivn0

andycar said...


Ivano Franco Comelli said...

Thanks andycarr for your comment on the Scaroni's. It still amazes me today that so many people still remember these fine people. It also amazes me that two Scaroni Families were not related. When I was a boy growing up "su per la costa" I always regarded the Scaronis as being of the same family. ivno

john pearce said...

I'm amazed at this site . I stumbled on it by accident but you're talking about people I love dearly . I have a story to share about the Scaronis . I only hope there's space enough .
I've known them all my life . My dad was stationed at their ranch starting around 1944 . he was with the coast guard . he and about 5 other men had a shack over looking the ocean . Katie quickly befriended them all by bringing the men hot cocoa and having them over for dinner .
After the war they became as part of our family .
When I was about 8 years old (about 1959) I started spending easter and Christmas vacations with them . How I enjoyed herding the cows , throwing hay and cleaning up around their yard .
eventually I also started staying with them for almost half of the summer . I could go on and on . maybe someday we could all meet for a picnic and share stories .
I can tell you all know Katie,Bill,Jack and Arnold by the way you describe them .
I don't know how the current owners would like it buut I'd sure like to walk the grounds around the house again .
maybe we could all meet there .
anyway , thanks for the chance to share .
Sincerely ,
John Pearce (

Anonymous said...

Hi, It is Esther, the one who has trouble learning how to use a computer. Did any of you know the other Scaroni sister, Virginia? She was the only one that got married. She married Eddie Meehan an electrician, and good friend of our family. You may have seen her walk from their house on Encinal St. to Pacific Ave. wearing yellow high heels . yellow and orange dress, orange hat, and carrying yellow purse. She was a sight to behold. Both she and Eddie were real characters and a lot of fun.

jpearce51 said...

does anyone know if it is ok to visit the grounds ? I wouldn't want to intrude but it would sure be great to take a day trip and maybe just walk to the beach . haven't been there since around 1970 .

LANORMA said...

Message for Esther (don’t have her e-mail address): Yes I remember Virginia very well and Eddie.

We used to see them up the at the Dairy on some Sunday nites when they would come up to visit

Her brothers and sister. She was very colorful – so different from the rest of the family.

About a year ago I met June Arana Melvin – relative of Eddie’s – very nice lady. She said she knew

You and your family well. I gave her a LaNostra Costa book and she wanted ME to sign her book.

Do you know how she is doing? Go by Eddie and Virginia ’s house on Encinal when we go to Costco.

Sure you have noticed that it has gone from faded yellow to bright blue.

Do you know if someone lives there, etc.?

We do have wonderful and colorful memories. Let me know.

Thanks – LaNorma Dinelli Wilson

Anonymous said...

Esther ,
I remeber her and Ed well . every Sunday they came to Katie's ranch to visit . they were
great people . I don't believe Virginia ever got her drivers license so it's no wonder you
saw her walking everywhere .
My mom got in touch with Virginia just a few months before she passed away . she was in
a nursing home and I believe in her nineties .
what fun it is to share this history with you folks . I really enjoy remembering it all .
Let's keep in touch .
Take care ,
John Pearce

sue said...

Hi: My Mom, along with her mother Kate Harriss and sister Joan, would visit the ranch every Sunday during the late 20's and 30's with her aunt and uncle, Steve and Eva Small. They'd come from San Jose in Uncle Steve's big old touring car, over the old SJ Highway. They and their cousins Pete and Frank spent the day playing on the beach then all drove home after a cuppa coffee in Katie's big kitchen. When my dad was courting Mom, he joined along, learning to fish off the rocks like Uncle Steve. (Uncle Steve was in refrigeration, perhaps that's how he knew the Scaroni's?) In the photo of the big group at Scaroni's gate, my Mom & Dad are in the middle; Mom standing and Dad kneeling.(Tom and Sylvia Goodwin)As we kids were born in the 40's we continued to visit the beach after the war was over through the early 60's. Every Sunday, except rainy ones. SO many fond memories of wild barn kitties, the W.C. on the outside of the house, feeding the chickens for Katie, hikes up the canyon, Katie's popsicles, wow...absolute GOLD. Thank you Scaronis from the bottom of my heart!
Sue Goodwin Girard

Ivano Franco Comelli said...

Thanks Sue for your wonderful recollections of the Scaroni's. I forward your comments to "LaNorma"' ivn0 7-16-2012

Jerry Solano said...

Hello everyone! My name is Jerry Solano and my great aunt and uncle: Anna and Nick Langelotti were friends with the Scaroni family. As a little boy, I remember going to the ranch...I remembered the white picket fence at the ranch as shown on a photo in this blog! We have very old photos of the beach parties at the Scaroni Ranch/Beach of my great aunt and uncle doing various things. Their bathing suits look like the ones in the late 1930s.I also remember going "over the hill" to Kate's house in the city for visits...She would also come to our place in San Jose for visits from time to time! You didn't want to miss her visits because it was sure to be a big occasion...When you're Italian, that means plenty of Italian food!