Clearman’s, golly!

Clearman’s Village near San Gabriel was a collection of shops with fake snow on the roof, built around a restaurant, Clearman’s Galley, starting in 1968. The restaurant was housed in a converted 1913 Alaskan mail boat. John Clearman, the developer, also founded the North Woods Inn, another theme restaurant, which looks like a hunting lodge.

Well, the Village is gone, demolished to make way for a Kohl’s, as reported recently on the Foothill Cities blog. I believe the boat will be relocated to one of the North Woods Inn locations.

I bring this up to note that Rancho Cucamonga’s Magic Lamp Inn, the rococo structure on Foothill Boulevard, was another Clearman production. The man liked high-concept restaurants and eye-catching buildings, that’s for sure. The ‘Lamp, which has a Middle Eastern sign and name and an Old World design, was founded in 1955 and is still going strong. No Kohl’s in its future, thankfully.

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Super Tents get more super

One of my Seven Wonders of the Inland Valley, the Super Tents building at the University of La Verne, was the site of a ceremony and open house Tuesday evening to mark the completion of $8 million in renovations. Nice to see one of the Wonders spruced up. (The Montclair Mystery Tower, meanwhile, was being spruced up, then was tagged unmercifully, and now is being spruced up again. We’ll see if it looks better in the end, or worse.)

Friday’s column will have more details on the Super Tents. In the meantime, I’ll tell you that my tour of the facility, led by Jeff Rouss of ULV’s major gifts department, showed that the interior is much improved. The building has far more useable space now than in its previous open layout. And the halls still have that “new tent” smell.

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