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Trivia Challenge

(This section is currently being updated.)
1.    There are a number of mountain peaks that overlook the Verdugo campus. The most distinctive one is commonly known as Camelsback. What was the original name for this peak? (Hint: It was also the name of a popular television series a while back.)     [ANSWER]

2.    Verdugo Hills High School was opened in 1937 after numerous requests for a high school in the area were turned down by the school board which cited a lack of students in the area. Prior to Verdugo opening, where did high school students go to school?      [ANSWER]

3.    There was still quite a bit of undeveloped land available in the Sunland-Tujunga area by the time construction of VHHS was approved. Why was the school built in the location that it was?      [ANSWER]

4.    "Verdugo Hills" was not the name that the Board of Education chose for the new Sunland-Tujunga high school. What was the school originally to have been called?      [ANSWER]

5.    Verdugo Hills High School serves students from Tujunga, Sunland, Shadow Hills, Lake View Terrace, La Tuna Canyon and a small portion of Sun Valley. What were the original names of each of these communities?      [ANSWER]

6.    Although VHHS is located on Plainview Avenue, that was not always the name of the street. What was the original name of Plainview Avenue?      [ANSWER]

7.    Just south of Glenn Hall is a half-circle patio and grass area that some Verdugoites also refer to as the "Rose Garden." What was the original plan for that site?      [ANSWER]

8.    Suffel Hall is the newest building on campus and is located at the northeast corner of the campus. What was on that site prior to this building?      [ANSWER]

9.    What year did the first class graduate from Verdugo Hills High School?      [ANSWER]

10.    In Big Tujunga Canyon, there is an area known as Grizzly Flats. It lies just on the other side of Mt. Lukens. How did Grizzly Flats get its name?      [ANSWER]

11.    When it was first opened, how many classrooms did Verdugo Hills High School have?      [ANSWER]

12.    Mt. Lukens Continuation High School is located on the southwest corner of the Verdugo Hills H.S. campus and is named for another of the major peaks overlooking the schools. What was the original name of Mt. Lukens?      [ANSWER]

13.    One of the more colorful local area residents was Big Chief White Eagle, an Oglala Sioux. He had starred in the movie classics The Covered Wagon (1923) and The Iron Horse (1924) and, for a time, had lived with his wife in a tent near the corner of Foothill Boulevard and Marcus Street in Tujunga. Big Chief White Eagle was born in 1826 and died in 1937 at the age of 111 years. His death created a minor crisis for the community. What was it?      [ANSWER]

14.    Currently, Verdugo Hills High School has a student population of around 2100. How many students were enrolled at the school when it opened in 1937?      [ANSWER]

15.    Suffel Hall is named in memory of Ms. Lucia Suffel, an art teacher at Verdugo during the 1970's. Ms. Suffel was instrumental in bringing a new and innovative class to the school. What was that course?      [ANSWER]

16.    The first classrooms at Verdugo Hills High School were temporary bungalows. Why was that?      [ANSWER]

17.    The Tujunga Valley area was settled by people who turned the land into successful agricultural enterprises growing primarily olives and citrus, although other crops were also represented. Flowers also did particularly well in the mild Mediterranean climate. However, in 1936, one resident created quite a stir with a particular planting. What was it?      [ANSWER]

18.    The community of Sunland was originally called Monte Vista and was a favorite recreational area for the famous and well-heeled. How did Sunland get its name?      [ANSWER]

19.    In 1934, an order was issued banning all gatherings of children in the Tujunga Valley for an indefinite period. What was the reason?      [ANSWER]

20.    The area served by Verdugo Hills H.S. encompasses most of what was once considered Rancho Tejunga, a Mexican land grant made to brothers Pedro and Francisco Lopez in 1840. Don Pedro was the major-domo of the ex-Mission San Fernando. What is Don Francisco best known for?      [ANSWER]

21.    Dick and Tom Smothers — better known to most people as the Smothers Brothers comedy team — attended Verdugo Hills High School in the early 50's (see Celebrity Watch!). According to former classmates, both were very nice, very capable students who also sang in the choir, among other things. Through their achievements in the entertainment world, the brothers have left an indelible legacy for others, especially at Verdugo and in the community. However, Dick Smothers, in particular, left a unique mark on the community. What was it?      [ANSWER]

22.    Much of the early construction at Verdugo Hills High School was done by a group of men from the WPA. What do the letters WPA stand for?      [ANSWER]

23.    "Sister Elsie" had a local mountain peak, a well, and a street named after her. Who was she?      [ANSWER]

24.    Where is Sister Elsie's Well located?      [ANSWER]

25.    Where is the Tree of the Seven Astronauts located?      [ANSWER]

26.    High school students from the La Tuna Canyon area attend Verdugo Hills High. What does the name "La Tuna" mean? (Hint: La Tuna is NOT the Spanish name for a fish commonly caught for food!)      [ANSWER]

Special thanks to the Little Landers Historical Society, to Sarah Lombard and her book Rancho Tujunga: A History of Sunland/Tujunga, California, and to Dr. Gary Turner and Charles Noyes of VHHS for providing the impetus for this section as well as much of the information upon which these trivia questions are based.

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