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Posted on: July 9, 2018

Ribbon Cutting to Officially Open the Historic Jail Museum

July 9, 2018 - The Historic Jail Museum will officially open with a ribbon cutting ceremony on Thursday, July 19, 2018 at 4 pm. Join City Council members and special guests to celebrate this wonderful historic resource in Half Moon Bay.

For Immediate Release
July 9, 2018

Contact: Danielle Sanderson
City of Half Moon Bay


Ribbon Cutting to Officially Open the Historic Jail Museum

Half Moon Bay, CA – In partnership with the City, the Half Moon Bay History Association, and the Half Moon Bay Coastside Chamber of Commerce, a special ribbon cutting ceremony will be held on July 19 to officially open the historic jail museum. The community is invited to join this fun event:

Historic Jail Museum Ribbon Cutting
Thursday, July 19, 4 pm
511 Johnston Street, near the corner of Kelly Avenue

City Council members and special guests will participate in the ribbon cutting, and refreshments will be available to attendees. The jail museum had a "soft opening" in June. More than two dozen docents have already completed a six-week training program on the history of the Coastside and Half Moon Bay, enabling them to welcome visitors to the Jail Museum every Saturday and Sunday from 11 am – 5 pm.

The Half Moon Bay Jail was built in the early 20th century by John Higgens, who had bought the property from the estate of Thomas Johnston. It was the practice during that era to build a holding facility for prisoners, and rent it to the County. Later, San Mateo County bought the building and used it as a coastside Sheriff’s substation, with an office and two small cells. This use continued until around 1966 or 1967, after which it was used as a coastside office for County mental health services.  In 1989, San Mateo County turned the building over to the City of Half Moon Bay, and today it is a wonderful historic resource of the City, a window into a different time on the coastside. The jail retains its architectural integrity, and is the oldest remaining public building in Half Moon Bay.

The Half Moon Bay History Association was established in 2007 with the goal of preserving and celebrating the history of the Coastside. The group holds quarterly speaker events on a variety of historic topics, provides an education program to local third-grade classes, and serves as a resource for those with questions about or an interest in the history of this unique region.

Located 28 miles south of San Francisco, the City of Half Moon Bay is a community of about 12,500 people, situated on the peninsula between forested hills and some of the most beautiful coastlines that California has to offer. Its historic downtown is home to numerous shops, art galleries, restaurants, bed and breakfasts, and other businesses, and its celebrated beaches and parks are wonders of nature, accessible to pedestrians, bicyclists, and equestrians. With its many activities and events, beautiful natural scenery, old-town charm, and abundance of retail and commercial services, Half Moon Bay is a regional destination. The City’s website is


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