2016 P.A.S.C.C. Board of Directors:
President - Mary Jane Silva Warren
1st V.P. - Yvonne Siragusa
2nd V.P. - Joe G. Silva
Treasurer/Cake Booth - Lenora Souza
Recording Secretary/Website/Scholarship - ?
Financial Secretary/Newsletter/C.F. - Barbara Shramek
Board Chair - Tamy Varley Bengel
The Portuguese-American Social & Civic Club (P.A.S.C.C.) is the oldest organization of its kind in San Diego. Our first formal meeting was held on December 15, 1940 gathering under the motto “Strength in Unity”. Our founder and soon-to-be first President Mr. Lawrence Oliver (aka. Lourenço Oliveira) called a special meeting of about 125 people to the U.P.S.E.S. Hall.
His opening speech, made in Portuguese, noted that Portuguese Americans “were a hard-working and honorable people”, but that communication between us was limited, as a people and a community, mostly to the Festa do Espírito Santo. He proposed a new club, “da união nasce a força” (a union born of strength) where “we could get together regularly, renew our friendships, keep the Portuguese culture alive, and do some things for the good of the community as a whole”. His words were met with rousing approval, and the P.A.S.C.C. of San Diego was born.
Our "new" club, hoping to help keep our Portuguese traditions alive, also hoped to break new ground; offering a meeting place where both men and women could interact in social and civic events in a manner previously unknown. This more modern approach is evident in the fact that of the 40 Presidents the P.A.S.C.C. has had in 75 years, 22 have been women (beginning with Mrs. Edna Madruga in 1943; a feat the U.P.S.E.S. Hall didn’t match for 43 years). Meeting monthly (until 2016) at over 900 Social dinners, over time the P.A.S.C.C. has participated in a wide variety of events; immeasurably varied menus and entertainments running the gamut from traditional chamarrita dances (our first meeting) to opera singers, comedy skits, musicians and singers of every type, an "Our Lady of Fatima" candlelit procession and Rosary (each May?), as well as our annual Christmas Dinner, complete with Santa. The only real limit is our imagination and a budget. The imagination aspects are always well-stocked, as illustrated by the wide variety of entertainment: Speakers, Polynesian picnics, Bingo luncheons, Brazilian Capoeira, Sangria, Portuguese pizzas, famous Fish Fry’s, BBQ's, bubble machines, mofungo (!), exotic birds, belly dancers, and simple (legal) card games with a tasty, tall adult beverage; they've all found a place at our Socials, and more are sure to come. We are pleased to be our U.P.S.E.S. Hall's oldest renting tenant: A tasteful, "old school" club proud of our immigrant ancestry, sprinkled with retired tuna fishermen and cannery workers; we are a plain salt-of-the-earth group, not especially big (currently with 127 members) and we won't ask for donations as tax deductions or promise the moon. What we want most of all is to simply invite your participation, to socialize and work together, to "unite in progress".
Outside of Socials, the P.A.S.C.C. quietly donates to assorted charities, and maintains a Sunshine Committee who dutifully send
out Get Well and Sympathy cards to members and their families in times of mourning or health concerns.
Nowadays, the P.A.S.C.C. offers a bi-annual club newsletter, and acknowledges member's birthdays, as well as Raffles (started by Dorothy Silva) of items donated by, and for, our members. We also have a long history of support and participation in events outside our club; such as our Cake Booth in the Festa do Espírito Santo bazaar, the Cabrillo Festival Inc. re-enactments, nearly 50 years of former fundraisers for the Portuguese American Dancers, and since 2000 our annual Joseph S. Varley $1,000 Scholarship award.
We'd love to have you as a member. - Bem-vindo!
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Portuguese American Social & Civic Club
July-thru-Dec - Pending to August
for important Cabrillo Festival details.