A sharp contrast to the neighbor opposition Filmmaker George Lucas faced with his project, Marin residents have been gushing gratitude and delight in reaction to the San Anselmo resident’s recent .
Lucas donated downtown property at 541, 539 and 535 San Anselmo Avenue . The building will be demolished and turned into a park, complete with a fountain and statues of Yoda and Indiana Jones.
San Anselmo Chamber President Connie Rodgers told Patch this week that the community’s response to Lucas’ donation has been “incredibly positive.”
“People have said they are looking forward to it sooner rather than later,” she said.
The project still has many unknowns, including its timeframe, cost or even the exact square-footage of the property, Rodgers said.
Also unknown is exactly what will happen to a large fresco inside the building that used to house the Rossi Brothers Pharmacy. Rodgers said Wednesday that efforts are underway to try to preserve the piece, although it’s not certain if they will go to a Spanish consulate as it has been reported.
Rodgers said she’s working on “getting puzzle pieces” together before community outreach and fundraising beings for the project. This week she has been reaching out to Marin Supervisor Katie Rice and San Anselmo town officials.
Lucas and the chamber are anticipating donations to help build the town center project, Rodgers said.
At the San Anselmo Town Council meeting on June 26, Councilwoman Lori Lopin encouraged her colleagues to stand, strongly, behind the project.
“George Lucas is looking to us as a town to really show support,” Lopin said. “We really need the support of everybody in town to do it. It’s not a matter of him ponying up all the money. He’s not going to do all the work.”
San Anselmo Vice Mayor Kay Coleman told Patch the donation is a “great opportunity” and she’s “grateful to Lucas and the chamber for seizing the opportunity.”
"I can already see people sitting on benches and kids running around in the grass," Coleman said.
Meanwhile, many commenters on Patch sites throughout Marin have been thanking Lucas for his donation.
“Thank you Mr. Lucas, what an incredible gift to our town. I look forward to helping and watching it develop as I know it will be an amazing gathering place for young and old for years to come. This is truly a fabulous opportunity and one that San Anselmo will welcome with open arms,” wrote on the .
Residents of neighboring towns also expressed similar enthusiasm, including , who wrote on the Novato Patch:
“Thank you, Mr Lucas, for being such a good neighbor to all of Marin County. I'm very sorry you had such a hard time with the Grady Ranch project. We would love to have such a project in Novato.”
expressed happiness that Lucas hasn’t turned his back on Marin on the Larkspur-Corte Madera Patch:
“The force is still with Marin County afterall! Thank you, George Lucas, for not holding our inept county government's failures against our small towns! Such a wonderful contribution for San Anselmo and all of Marin! Yoda & Indiana Jones, we love you!”
Others on the had a lighter apporoach to the donation, including as , who wrote “This is a good way to make amends for Jar Jar Binks.”
Fairfax’s Mayor commented that a young friend of hers suggested the park include an “Indiana Jones style adventure area.”
Lucas also recently .
“Way to go, George. We love the way you handle opposition - like the gentleman you are. Thanks from a fellow San Anselmoan!” wrote .
If you are seeking information on where to donate or offering services of any kind, contact Connie Rodgers, President/CEO of the San Anselmo Chamber of Commerce, by mail at P.O. Box 2844, San Anselmo, CA 94979-2844, by phone or email at (415) 454-2510, firstname.lastname@example.org.