Celebrate Women’s History in Pasadena

Pasadena City Hall lit in honor of Women's Suffrage March Centennial

How to Celebrate Women’s History in Pasadena

Celebrating Women's History in Pasadena

February 28, 2023 | Posted in Things To Do

Women’s History Month began in California with Women’s History Week in the late 1970s. To celebrate, experience the legacy of Pasadena’s women, who have played pivotal roles in shaping the city’s culture.

Celebrate Octavia Butler

There are many ways to celebrate the incredible Octavia Butler, who was born and raised in Pasadena. Butler attended Washington Junior High School, which was later called Washington STEAM Multilingual Academy, was just recently renamed the Octavia E. Butler Magnet. They named their library after the famous alumna in 2020 with a mural in her honor. Head to The Huntington Library to visit the collection of Octavia Butler’s archives and take a 2.5 mile walking loop to Experience Butler’s Pasadena on Foot. While there, visit Nikki High in her newly opened bookstore highlighting female authors and BIPOC writers at Octavia’s Bookshelf.

The Norton Simon Museum’s Sculpture Garden

The renowned Norton Simon Museum on Pasadena’s famed Colorado Boulevard has a sculpture garden with lush pond. Located on land that was first inhabited by the Tongva tribe, the land was transformed by the Carr family’s matriarch, Jeanne, into a lush and verdant estate that she named “Carmelita.” Later, it became the site of the Pasadena Art Museum and finally the Norton Simon Museum. During a remodel with Frank Gehry in the 1990s, Norton’s widow Jennifer Jones Simon asked landscape designer Nancy Goslee Power to create a garden “just like Monet’s Giverny.” Enjoy other works by women artists, such as Louise Moillon’s still life paintings from the 17th century while visiting.

The Pasadena Hotel & Pool

The Pasadena Hotel & Pool is a historic hotel built in 1926 by local businesswoman Constance G. Lewis Perry. Located on the Rose Parade route, the hotel reopened in 2022 with updated interiors and branding to blend the Spanish influences of Southern California with the building’s 1920s ethos. The hotel has a rooftop pool and a lobby area furnished with found items from flea markets such as the Rose Bowl Flea Market.

The Rose Bowl Stadium

1999 FIFA Women’s World Cup Final at the Rose Bowl Stadium broke attendance and television records for women’s sports and the US Women’s Soccer Team’s winning kick was featured on the cover of Sports Illustrated, becoming one of the defining images of women’s athletics in the United States. Get a tour of the historic stadium on the last Friday of every month to see the locker rooms, the field, press box, and more.

Pasadena’s Women’s History Walking Tour

Join Pasadena native and historian Julia Long for a special edition of Exploring Pasadena’s walking tours to honor Women’s History Month. The special tours explores the legacy left behind by the women who shaped Pasadena. The Women of Orange Grove tour will be on March 4 and the Women of Downtown Pasadena will be on March 12.

Celebrate Women’s History at the USC Pacific Asia Museum on March 12

On March 12, the USC PAM offers free Second Sundays with special Women’s History Month activities. The afternoon will highlight Asian and Asian Artists and include a Mixed Media Self Portrait Workshop with artist Ching Ching Chen. In the Crossroads Gallery, guests will hear stories of impactful female artists.

See A Comedienne at Ice House Comedy Club

The long-awaited reopening of the legendary Ice House Comedy Club is here! Enjoy a line-up of spectacular comediennes taking the stage this March, including Sharon Mahoney, Aiko Tanaka, Jade Catta-Preta, Jiaoying Summers, Nikole Denise, Tacara Williams, and Maria Bamford.

Support Women-Owned Businesses

Enjoy the experiences from Pasadena’s women-owned businesses. Monopole by WineRX is owned by a wine-educated Latina physician and offers phenomenal wine tasting experiences. Savor the wide selection of specialty cheeses at Agnes Restaurant & Cheesery, curated by cheesemonger Vanessa Kalb. See the list of women-owned businesses.