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Then and now, community celebrates B-Bar-H Ranch 90 years later

From its historical roots to its small-town charm. A neighborhood in Desert Hot Springs celebrated 90 years Sunday.

The B-Bar-H Ranch was first introduced in 1927 and quickly became one of the Valley’s most exclusive winter resorts. Today it’s home to about 1,000 people.

“The neighbors are very, very friendly and it’s just a really nice place to live,” said Dave Chivers.

The archway into town, reading B-Bar-H Ranch, still stands tall, just as it did 90 years ago. It’s located along Bubbling Wells Rd. near Desert Hot Springs.

Anna Miller has been living at B-bar-H Ranch for 10 years. She organized a celebration to honor its 90th year.

“B-bar-H Ranch was established by two men. Their last names were Hubbard and Bender, that’s where the B and H came from, in 1927. They established a horse ranch, like a dude ranch, and within 10 years they went public because that’s how popular they were,” Miller said.

The ranch became an exclusive destination for celebrities and artists, like Walt Disney, Bing Crosby and Mary Pickford.

Men and women dressed in western outfits and rode horses during the day. When the sun came down they were wined and dined, dressed in their best evening attire. Later, a swimming pool and tennis court drew more crowds. But in 1950 a new owner closed the ranch to the public and several other owners bought the property later.

“The lots were divided and subdivided and in 2005. A developer came in by the name of Mark Bodon and he put up close to 100 mid century modern style homes and that’s basically what you see today,” Miller said.

“It’s a diverse community. You have people that love to do the ranching but at the same time you have your regular residential that work together. It’s very phenomenal. These guys are really tight-knit down here. I like the comradery,” said Jeff Horton, a Post Commander at the local VFW.

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