An 85-foot eucalyptus tree that fell during storm activity Saturday morning caused severe damage to a historical San Francisco clubhouse landmark in Sigmund Stern Grove, the San Francisco Recreation and Park Department said.
Rangers said they responded to an alarm at the Trocadero Clubhouse at 5:30 a.m. After the eucalyptus tree dropped down. Park officials said they found the structure’s roof and eave partially crushed.
The inside of the clubhouse also got flooded with water and was damaged from sprinkler water.
“This is soul crushing. The Trocadero and Stern Grove are San Francisco treasures. It will take political leadership, resources and community resolve to put the Trocadero back together again.”Phil Ginsburg, San Francisco Recreation and Park General Manager
First recognized as a city landmark last April, the Trocadero was a roadhouse built in 1892 that offered dancing and gambling at roulette tables. The clubhouse was once operated by sugar magnate Adolph Spreckles, and also served as a hideout for notorious political grafter Abe Ruef in 1907 as he faced trial.
“This is soul crushing,” said San Francisco Recreation and Park General Manager Phil Ginsburg in a news release. “The Trocadero and Stern Grove are San Francisco treasures. It will take political leadership, resources and community resolve to put the Trocadero back together again.”
The building was red tagged because of the structural and water damage by the Department of Building Inspection.
Park officials said all of Stern Grove has been closed to the public since late last year after winter storms caused numerous trees to fall or become unstable.
The Trocadero, a popular spot for weddings and other events, had been made available for reservations only on the weekends due to construction, but Rec and Park officials will be contacting those with upcoming events to offer them alternate venues or refunds.