Brea Old and New: The go-to source for "All things Brea"!

Teresa Hampson

  • Brea is Born: Excerpt from Brea’s Centennial Children’s Book

    2 months ago by

    Excerpt from Charlie the Rockin’ Clock in Brea History’s Biggest Hits!

      Author, Teresa Hampson

        Chapter 2: Brea is Born

          “Look!” shouted Roman. “There’s two men carrying a huge plank of wood way up at the top of that tall derrick, and there’s no safety ropes holding them on!”

            Beautiful Brea Old & New, focusing on "All Things Brea," changed its logo patterned after (Roughnecks sculpture) in 2012 to bring awareness to the city of Brea's 💯 birthday celebration on February 23, 2017! Artist: Carlos Terres

              “Yes, that’s the way they built derricks in the old days,” Charlie said. “It was very dangerous work. Now, do you see anyone else, maybe up even higher in the hills? Perhaps a group gathered for a celebration?”

                “Oh…oh…I do!” cried Skyler excitedly. “There’s men and women and lots of kids, and everyone’s all dressed up and sitting around a long table eating. And I think I smell barbecue!”

                  “Great spotting!” Charlie encouraged. “Those people are from the Puente Wells oil settlement, which was active all the way back in the 1880s and 90s. They were famous for their parties, where everyone stuffed themselves with tamales and barbecued beef! Now, does anyone here live in Olinda Ranch?”

                    “I do!” volunteered Jarred, as he turned around to zoom in on that area. “Oh…my…gosh …” he stuttered. “Look at all the stuff out there! There’s a gazillion houses and a street with stores and stables, a baseball field and farms stretching way back into the hills. There’s tons of people and oil wells everywhere! And wait…is that a gusher?!”

                      Sure enough, a huge tower of thick, black liquid shot skyward as he spoke and dozens of men started dancing around and shouting.

                        “Absolutely!” confirmed Charlie. “Around the turn of the 20th century, Olinda had some huge oil strikes, and easily was one of the richest oil fields in all California.”

  • Testimonials – Charlie the Rockin’ Clock in Brea History’s Biggest Hits!

    3 months ago by

    Some people say history is boring. 🙁 Brea's landmark clock turned caricature says otherwise. 🙂

      “Oh, history is anything but dull,” Charlie replied, “What’s more, I can prove it to you.” “How’s that?” inquired Skyler. Excerpt from Charlie the Rockin' Clock in Brea History's Biggest Hits! - Author Teresa Hampson.

      Brea Grammar School: The building served as a grammar school until 1956, when it was transitioned to Brea Junior High. Time travelers, Charlie the Clock and his kid crew, drawn by 2006 BOHS grad and recent CSUF grad, Heather Ashlyn Collins.

        "I applaud the efforts of so many people rallying around Charlie the Clock to tell the history and timeless story of the City of Brea. The engaging story is told by Charlie the Clock and through the eyes of local children living in Brea. Charlie the Clock is a wonderful read for children of all ages." - Brad Mason, Ed.D. Superintendent, Brea Unified School District

          "What better way for our young students to experience Brea's past than a children's book! And not just any children's book but one that has a clock as it's historical tour guide. They will remember the journey they are about to take for years. A journey into what made Brea the city it is today." - Don Schweitzer Former Mayor

            "In order to make learning history both exciting and informative, the use of “Charlie the Clock” to travel through time to the various stages of Brea’s history is a creative new idea. It is an approach which will do much to help countless young people understand and appreciate the culture and history of Brea." - Wayne D. Wedin Former Brea City Manager and Councilman

  • Brea: Landmark in a centennial story told by Author Teresa Hampson

    3 months ago by

    Brea Landmarks List - Brea Boulevard North/Central

      Brea Grammar School before transitioning to Brea Junior High. Courtesy of JoAnn Penn Haws

      In the spirit of the "BJH Bobcats" photos courtesy of BOHS incoming junior, Jennifer Choi.

        Brea Junior High, 400 N. Brea Blvd…The front building dates from 1916, but its original second-story auditorium and decorative exterior trim were removed after the 1933 Long Beach Earthquake. It was substantially modernized in 2006, including relocation of the main entrance from west to north. The auditorium, PE and non-modular classroom wings were added in 1949. It served as Brea Grammar School until 1956, when it was transitioned to a junior high with the opening of Arovista.
  • Excerpt from Charlie the Rockin’ Clock in Brea History’s Biggest Hits!

    6 months ago by

    Brea’s first children’s book, a centennial celebration, named Charlie the Rockin' Clock in Brea History's Biggest Hits!

      Excerpt from chapter three: ONE HECK of a DECADE

        Author, Teresa Hampson

          Illustration by 2006 BOHS grad and recent CSUF grad, Heather Ashlyn Collins

            The Brea Bowl held on Halloween in 1924 between Brea's baseball hero, Walter Johnson, aka “The Big Train” and his friend baseball player, Babe Ruth, aka “The Sultan of Swing.
            Book characters from left to right: Jesse, Skyler, Jarred, Charlie the Clock, Roman, Madison and Lauren.

              "Stop the clock!” gasped Roman. “What are Walter Johnson and Babe Ruth doing here?”

                "Crazy, isn’t it?” Charlie agreed. “But the answer’s really simple. Walter Johnson grew up in Olinda, where everyone adored baseball and every oil company fielded a team, and his very first pitching experience came during his years there. Major league players often went on tour during the off season in these days, so when Johnson came back to Brea, it was natural for him to bring along some friends for a charity baseball game!”

                  As Charlie spoke, the game got underway, and Ruth, who normally played outfield, stepped in as his team’s pitcher. Most in the crowd started out rooting for Johnson, their hometown son, but Ruth’s batting talent caused quite a few to switch sides. One wonderful inning followed another, and then Ruth again stepped up to the plate.

                    "I can’t believe I’m seeing Babe Ruth play!” shrieked Jesse, a big baseball fan. And just as he said it, an enormous roar rose from the field.

                      “Look at it go!” shouted Skyler, pointing to a ball barreling way out into the field… When that huge home run finally touched down, thrilled officials measured it a 550-foot grand slam – ample reason for naming Ruth the day’s most valuable player.

                        "It looks like Walter Johnson’s team is losing, but nobody seems to mind,” Madison observed a little while later.

                          She was right. The fortunate fans who saw Johnson and Ruth face off that autumn afternoon seldom spoke of (or even seemed to recall) what the final score was, but always considered themselves blessed to be there for Brea’s great day in baseball.

                            "Charlie, that was the BEST afternoon ever!!!!!” Jesse exclaimed as the post-game photo session wrapped up. “You really outdid yourself this time!”

                              “Oh, I have my moments,” Charlie beamed. “But right now – we’ve gotta fly!”

  • A sneak peek at Brea’s very first young people’s history

    8 months ago by

    Charlie the Rockin' Clock in Brea History's Biggest Hits!

      Charlie the Clock and school friends from left: Lauren in star T-shirt, Jesse, Skyler, Jarred, Madison and Roman.  (Illustrated by Heather Ashlyn Collins)

      Charlie the Clock and school friends from left: Lauren in star T-shirt, Jesse, Skyler, Jarred, Madison and Roman. (Illustrated by Heather Ashlyn Collins)

        It's a cute meet on Birch Street....

 six Brea Kids get the surprise of their lives - when Charlie the Clock wakes up and starts talking!

            written by Teresa Hampson & illustrated by Heather Ashlyn Collins

              HAPPY 100TH BIRTHDAY, BREA - FEBRUARY 23!!!🎂

  • Casting Call – An Exciting Historic Centennial Opportunity for Brea Kids!

    10 months ago by

    Photo: Charlie the Clock as drawn by 2006 BOHS grad, Heather Ashlyn Collins, and background image courtesy of Greg Voisan Panoramic Photography.

    Photo: Festive "Charlie the Clock" as drawn by 2006 BOHS grad, Heather Ashlyn Collins, and background image courtesy of Greg Voisan Panoramic Photography.

      BOUSD elementary students, grades 3rd-6th, you can apply to be featured as kid characters in Brea’s 1st children’s book showcasing the city’s iconic Charlie’s Clock aka Charlie the Clock in time travel with friends - - celebrating Brea's centennial year in 2017.

        I have received parental consent for Valeria Zavala, a former student of Laurel Elementary, who made history as the first Brea student, awarded California National History Day Champion in 2015. Five more students are needed: one from Arovista, Country Hills, William E. Fanning, Mariposa and Olinda elementary.

          Orange County Register News: Our Town Brea, December 26, 2016.

          Orange County Register News: Our Town Brea, December 26, 2016.

            Overseeing the project based on my concept, the author of the book is Teresa Hampson, known for her history book, Brea: Celebrating 75 years, and 2006 BOHS grad and recent CSUF grad, Heather Ashlyn Collins, who drew Charlie the Clock caricature, is the book's Illustrator.

              I’m looking for kids who excel at academics and are interested in Brea history!

                The deadline has been set for Friday, January 6, 2017.

                  If you are interested, I'll need your child's name, name of school, grade level, and academic interests.

                    No doubt, it's going to be a very hard decision. Parents will be notified either way. More to come on Charlie the Clock group photo book op and sub-project opportunities for BOUSD kids, grades 3rd - 6th.

                      Please send your information via private message on Brea Old and New Facebook/Instagram or It's a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity!

                        I look forward to hearing from you!

                          Thank you!

  • Brea’s First Children’s Book: Whimsy Centennial History Lesson

    1 year ago by

    I’m bursting with excitement as I write this update about Brea’s timely project, the city’s 1st children’s book featuring historic icon Charlie’s Clock aka "Charlie the Clock" in time travel – celebrating 100 years in Brea!

      Charlie the Clock as drawn by Illustrator, Heather Ashlyn Collins, 2006 BOHS grad and recent CSUF grad.

      "Charlie the Clock" as drawn by Illustrator, Heather Ashlyn Collins, 2006 BOHS grad and recent CSUF grad.

        Not only will this whimsy book serve as a learning tool in getting children interested in history, but also it will inspire the young at heart!

          Team "Charlie the Clock" is an independent project consisting of three book team members, community collaboration for book sub-projects, along with a whole lot of support from educators, and people in the the City of Brea and beyond! Thank you all!

            There will be community book characters such as many BOUSD grade school children! How cute is that!

              The book team members:

                Teresa Hampson author of Brea: Celebrating 75 Years is the author.

                  Heather Ashlyn Collins, 2006 BOHS and recent CSUF grad, who drew Charlie the Clock caricature, is the illustrator

                    And I am serving as the creative director and production manager.

                      When completed, we hope you will enjoy it and treasure it for years to come, as its takes a village and patience in producing a noteworthy wonderful project.

                        Team "Charlie the Clock" magical details to come soon!

  • 2013 year-end review with Brea’s “Newsy Suzie”

    4 years ago by


    Our Susan Gaede, a.k.a. “Newsy Suzie,” is a longtime Brea resident and newspaper columnist covering Brea and La Habra for more than three decades.

      Here's a wrap up of column highlights throughout the year:

        - Biggiest and most interesting scoops:1998 Brea Olinda High School grad Aaron Sittig helped in the design of Facebook. He created special features including the ability to tag photos and the "like" button.

          Aaron Sittig, Brea Olinda High School grad, helped in the design of Facebook. He created special features including the ability to tag photos and the "like" button. (courtesy Brea High School)

            - Ann Herbert was the first women to join Brea Lions Club in over 91 years.

            Ann Herbert was the first woman to join the Brea Lions Club in over 91 years. (courtesy Susan Gaede)

              "BREA" was an answer in the New York Times crossword "City next to Fullerton was the clue".

                -2000 Brea grad Shae Winker (Shae Casamento) and husband, Ray, had triplets e.g. Evan, Ava, and Ryden on September 16, and former councilman Steve Vargas and wife, Lisa, are the proud grandparents of the trio.

                  Raycen and Mikayl Winker hold their triplet siblings (left to right) Evan, Ava and Ryden. (Courtesy Two Little Feathers Photography)

                    -Whitney McMurtrie was on Wheel of Fortune and won $3,800.

                      Sachiko White, Brea Olinda High School graduate, currently serves as a Disneyland Ambassador.

                        -Buffalo Wild Wings shot their national campaign commercial in Brea. The theme was for the NCAA playoffs...and brought over 200 people to the downtown from Hollywood...dozens of crew trucks, etc., etc.

                          -1997 BOHS alum Reymundo Perez is the art supervisor for the 3 “Avatar” movies. He has been working with James Cameron for 8 years.

                            -Home Goods drew the most response of any column item, Lots and lots of calls asking when it was going to open.

                              Biz news: Lots of new restaurants opened this year: Lazy Dog, Bruno’s , Burrissimo, Nothing Bundt Cakes, and Grafcio’s are among them.

                                -School board trustee Joe Rollino opened his fourth Subway in Brea and it is open all night. He owns 14 others throughout Orange County.

                                  -Campitelli Cookies closed after being in town since the 1980’s.


                                      - Fritz Coleman, Channel 4 weatherman and comedian, performed at the Curtis Theatre in a hilarious one man show. He also did his Channel 4 broadcast from Eagle Hills in Brea and featured some of the decorated holiday homes.

                                        -Mark Kercheville has taught for 40 years at Arovista Elementary School and retired this year. He was in the first Kindergarten class at Arovista in 1956!

                                          -Gil Basbas delivered his last letter July 23 after delivering the mail in Brea for 30 years.

                                            -Elegant Elsie Bergman was given 6 different parties in her honor celebrating her 100th birthday.

                                              -Elizabeth Anderson, 32, ran the Boston Marathon in three hours and 41 minutes. She was in the family reunion area when she heard the explosion.

                                                -19 year Brea Olinda school trustee, author of Brea-Celebrating 75 Years: An Illustrated History, and co-chair of the 8 K race for many years, Teresa Hampson, resigned because she and her husband, Gary, were moving to Santa Rosa.

                                                  -Connie Allred is the second highest in sales nationwide selling Cookie Lee Jewelry, and has won sales awards netting her a Mercedes and 11 vacation trips.

                                                    -Jenna Lambourne was named BOHS homecoming queen.... Rayne Meeks was named Prom Queen and Jake Flowers, Prom King.

                                                      -John McEntee and Corey Leyton chaired and foot the bill for the 1973 Brea Olinda High School Class Reunion. All classes in the '70s were invited to attend.

                                                        BOHS Reunion attendees, from left Cindi Palmer, class of 1976, Kelly Smith Wilcott, class of 1976 and Lori Barber Schiller, class of 1977, have fun with the wax lips that were among the favors at the reunion. (courtesy Susan Gaede)

                                                          -Araz Pourmorad, 2003 BOHS grad is currently the Deputy Executive Director of Operations and Continuity for the White House. He was the Easter bunny for Obama at the traditional White House Egg Roll in 2012.

                                                            -Alyson J. Davidson, 2005 BOHS grad, has returned from two years in the Peace Corps in the Dominican Republic and is now studying medicine at Georgetown University.

                                                              -Kylie and Kendall Jenner debuted their new line of clothes at Pac Sun at the Mall. Dennis Rodman popped in to say “hello” to the girls. Dwight Manley was Rodman’s Sports agent and Rodman stayed at his Brea home.

                                                                -Kendall Rodriguez, was signed to play professional Women’s basketball at GiroLive Panthers in Germany

                                                                  -Sharon Wagner resigned as Chamber Executive director. Sylvia Bianci resigned as exectuive director of the Brea Downtown.

                                                                    -Crystal ball: The crystal ball revealed Dwight Manley and partner Tony Fanticola are the new owners of the Brea Gaslight Center.

                                                                      -Honors: Hands on Mariposa principal Dr. Helene Cunningham, a 2013 National Distingushed Principal for the state of California, was honored at the White House on October 24-25. -BOHS alum Sachiko White, is a Disneyland Ambassador.

                                                                        -The Brea-Olinda High School Guidance Department has earned a national award, making BOHS the most highly decorated and recognized high school guidance department in the United States.

                                                                          -The BOHS choir and cheerleaders won on a national level.

                                                                            First for Brea: The first ever district-wide school play took place November 16-and 17 at the suggestion of Fanning PTA. Approximately 165 students from all Brea elementary schools participated.

                                                                              The Brea Olinda School district put on their first ever district-wide school play Aladdin. Shown (l-r) Carley Noller and Nathan Matthews (courtesy Jon Gaede) Brea 2013 column review

                                                                              -Club news: All of the service clubs outdid themselves. For example Brea Lions Club raised over $50,000 & distributed close to $30,000 to several charities, high schools & youth groups who participated in ticket & ad sales. Brea Rotary raised $65,000 on their Orange County Food and Wine Festival with proceeds going to Choc and local needs.

                                                                                Any news? Give Susan Gaede a jingle at 714-529-8561 or e-mail her at

  • Teresa Hampson makes history in retirement as BOUSD member

    4 years ago by

    Teresa Hampson(second from end) served on the BOHS school board longer than anyone else.


        School board member resigns: After 19 years Teresa Hampson, longest-serving school board member in the Brea Olinda Unified School District Brea Olinda United School District Board resigned on June 15. Teresa Hampson was first elected in 1994, and was returned to office four times. She and her husband Gary recently moved to in Sonoma County to be near their daughters Amy and Beth. Their son Brandon passed away June of 2004 .

          Teresa has been big influence of the City of Brea. She served on the Cultural Arts Commission, wrote the community’s best selling history book, and the first Blue Ribbon School application and the district’s first successful California Distingushed School application (both Fanning School).

            She was a room parent 24 times. Teresa was also a Girl Scout Leader, and active on the boards of the Brea Historical Society, Brea Family Resource Center, and BOHS Academic Booster Club, and the City’s Sphere of Influence Study.

              One of the biggest volunteer efforts on her part is the Brea 8K Classic Race, serving as Race Director five times, she helped to raise funds for scholarships and programs at Brea Olinda High School. The former high school teacher was instrumental in the passage of the District’s 1999 bond.

                “After all these years, I continue to be amazed at what a remarkable school district this is,” she said between tears. “It’s been a joy to be part of it.” Teresa said at her “Goodbye” party. Brea Superindent Skip Rolland noted, “Thank you, Teresa, for being that wonderful person to the Brea community and to me during my twelve years in this amazing, high performing and caring District. You will be missed, but I look forward to hearing about changes in the Sonoma County political scene within a year. You see, an outstanding volunteer community activist never retires.”

                  Any news? Give me a jingle (714)529-8561 or e-mail

  • Message from BOUSD School Board Member Teresa Hampson – Measure “E”

    5 years ago by

    Dear friends,

      The schools of Brea need YOU!

        Having served this community well for over a century, our district today is suffering due to many years of steadily declining State funding - and the future looks even bleaker. These schools where your children and mine grew and learned together (and where some of you and your parents did too) have lost 16 percent of their funding in the last five years - and always did manage on considerably less than almost all others. (The BOUSD is one of the OC's lowest-funded districts; Orange County also is one of the lowest-funded counties in California, and California ranks 47th in the nation in per-pupil funding.)

          Because of this funding disparity, Brea's great schools (where I've met most of you over the years) always have had to work harder to do more, but there comes a point where will alone won't get it...where so much has been lost that there's just no way to bridge this ever-widening gap. We're precariously close to reaching that point today, and - as a trustee of this district - I just can't find it in my heart to let that happen without trying my hardest to help.

            We starting laying people off here a decade ago, which has made every recent cut harder to bear, as there's just no "non-vital" positions left. Our classes are larger (the wonderfully effective kindergarten through third grade 20-to-1 class size reduction program is long gone; our largest high school class this year stands at 47 students). Our classrooms never are cleaned more often than every three days. Our extensive acreage is maintained by nothing more than a skeleton crew. And you must have seen our "white fleet" of maintenance vehicles driving around town, the oldest trucks dating from the 1960's! All funds from the 1999 general obligation bond were well spent on planned projects, but it always was known that needs would remain beyond this (as we just asked the community for $27 million at that time, even though the known need then was $85 million). New needs also arise as our buildings grow steadily older, especially the oldest of these: Laurel, much of which was built in 1922, Arovista and all the back buildings at BJH, built in 1956, and perhaps surprisingly, Country Hills, because it had to be built all-portable due to a shortage of funds at that time. Portable structures last only about 35 years, and that anniversary fast is approaching there.

              In our classrooms, larger numbers of students per teacher also make learning increasingly difficult. This problem can be alleviated somewhat through enhanced use of technology, which allows students more self-help for managing, storing and correcting work, as well as more direct access to online research. But our technology tools are aging, and no new state money in this area has been available for many years. Our parents (always stalwarts in raising funds for computers and more) also are growing tired of the heavy burden placed on them since all State school site improvement program funds (SIP) were cut some years back. It was this money that helped provide money for art and music, technology and other "enrichment" activities, and PTAs and PTOs increasingly are being asked to help fill this large gap.

                For all these reasons, for the future of this district, and for the health of this community, I'm strongly supporting BOUSD Measure E. I consider this an essential investment in the campuses this community has built and cared for over the years (and which we can't now allow to deteriorate for lack of funds). Measure E is an investment in Brea's future - a way to keep our community strong and ensure it stays a welcoming place for new generations to live and raise their children.

                  Please - if you see this as I do - vote yes on Measure E, strongly consider offering your name as an endorser and let your friends and neighbors know so by posting a sign on your lawn.

                    Teresa Hampson, member, BOUSD School Board