Local church continues 103-year-old tradition


Atascadero Community Church celebrates Easter

ATASCADERO — The Atascadero Community Church welcomed congregants and visitors alike Saturday to an Easter celebration, a 103-year-old tradition for the oldest church in the city.

Church member David May said that beginning 103 years ago, congregants would meet at Stadium Park on Easter Sunday — also the church’s first regular meeting place — for a full day of egg hunting, hiking, music and fellowship. As part of the celebration, church members also decorated a large wooden cross salvaged during the demolition of a building from the old Camp Atascadero army base, which predates the founding of the city by several years.

“There was an old oak tree out there and they built a gazebo around it and then they put a concrete slab — which is still out there today — where the choir stood,” May said. “I guess they kind of packed the pump organ back and forth and that’s where they had fellowship and it basically was the whole day.” 

The same traditions continue to this day, although in a different location. This year’s egg hunt and cross decorating traditions took place at the Atascadero Community Church on Rosario Avenue. And once again congregants gathered to decorate the same wooden cross with flowers from their gardens and rosemary from May’s front yard.

May said he’s personally been helping to decorate the cross for the past 20 years.

“If you’re going to be a part of something, I just think it’s really, really cool to know the history,” May said.

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