Name changes for Ahwahnee Hotel and other Yosemite attractions draw outrage

“There was widespread outrage over news that the Ahwahnee Hotel and other Yosemite National Park landmarks soon would be renamed amid a legal dispute between the government and the facilities’ outgoing operator,” as the Los Angeles Times is reporting.

“Residents who live around the park as well as longtime visitors express dismay at the changes, saying they felt the names were part of the public domain.

“On March 1, the famed Ahwahnee — a name affixed to countless trail guides and family memories — will become the Majestic Yosemite Hotel. And Curry Village, a collection of cabins near the center of the park that has carried the same name since the 1800s, will become Half Dome Village, park spokesman Scott Gediman said Thursday.

“The dispute arose after Delaware North — which had operated Yosemite’s hotels, restaurants and outdoor activities — lost a $2-billion bid last year to renew its contract.

“The company said that it had been required to purchase’the assets of the previous concessionaire, including its intellectual property, at a cost of $115 million in today’s dollars’ when it took over operations in 1993, spokeswoman Lisa Cesaro said.

“Now Delaware North wants to be paid more than $50 million for the rights. Cesaro said the company was willing to lend the names for free until its court claim is resolved.

“Terry Arner, owner of Yosemite Tractor in Coarsegold, Calif., said the name scuffle at Yosemite was on “the top 10 hit list” in the gateway towns of the National Park.

The rest of the article is here.

Author: jeffpelline

Jeff Pelline is a veteran editor and award-winning journalist - in print and online. He is publisher of Sierra FoodWineArt magazine and its website Jeff covered business and technology for The San Francisco Chronicle for years, was a founding editor and Editor of CNET News, and was Editor of The Union, a 145-year-old newspaper in Grass Valley. Jeff has a bachelor's degree from UC Berkeley and a master's from Northwestern University. His hobbies include sailing and trout fishing.

7 thoughts on “Name changes for Ahwahnee Hotel and other Yosemite attractions draw outrage”

  1. Same kind of greed mentality that raised the price of the pill to $750 each. He got his just desserts, let’s hope these jerks get theirs. In the meantime, let Thanksgiving continue as always at the hotel formerly known as the Ahwahnee, move over Prince.

  2. Nice! So did my parents.
    “My mom met my dad, Joseph, in 1951. Both native Californians attended UCLA. My parents spent their honeymoon at the Ahwahnee Hotel in Yosemite, arriving from L.A. in wintertime in a new red covertible.
    “Mom said she was delighted when she woke up the next day, and the clerk handed her a clipping of their wedding announcement from the L.A. Times. “Simple charm marked the wedding of Miss Marilyn Jane Mitchell and Joseph Emmett Pelline,” said the article dated January 22, 1954.”

  3. And just FYI, something I did not learn until many years later, it is made of pressed concrete and has not been repainted since the 1920’s. They used that because it had burned down twice before.

  4. My wife and I were conservators to a man who used be the Yosemite firewood guy in the 50’s and 60’s. He told some great stories of Ansel Adams, Mary Curry or (widow Tresidder as he called her), Fire Falls, and much more. My brother worked as bear patrol and we used to back pack in the region growing up. Martin would be ready to go have a direct action against Delaware North if he were still with us.

    This whole story is disgusting.

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