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Columbia State Historic Park Celebrates Gold Discovery
Attendees in period costume will fill the streets of Columbia later this month, as the region celebrates the birthday of the Gold Rush. California State Park Photo

Visit Columbia State Historic Park on Saturday, March 26 and Sunday, March 27 for a gold discovery birthday celebration. On Saturday, the town of Columbia will celebrate the 166th anniversary beginning at 11 a.m. with a speech in front of the State Park museum, cake and punch for visitors, discovery reenactments, and additional buildings opened by costumed volunteers. Visit with the volunteers and learn about the people who discovered gold and the town that remains.

The traditional date of the birthday celebration changed this year due to the fact that it fell on Easter Sunday. However, amid all the Easter festivities taking place in Columbia that day, there will be reprises of the birthday speech and reenactment.

Gold was said to be discovered in Columbia on March 27, 1850 by a traveling party of men by the name of Hildreth. Supposedly within a month of discovery, more than 4000 people flocked to the area to search for gold. Two years later, the town boasted more than 150 businesses, from laundries to general stores to saloons.


The town is now a California State Park with several concessionaires running shops and stores for the public to experience a real life gold mining town. Free event, free parking, and town open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily. For more information about the birthday celebration, please contact (209) 588-9128 or To learn more about the Easter festivities, visit