Past Exhibition events:

July 6th - Family Day 12noon - 2: 00 PM, free (family picture at 1:00 PM)

​                 includes curator Zaragoza and book signing.

July 20 - Walk through the exhibition with curator Barbara Zaragoza, 11am 

July 27 - 11am - 12:30pm Tortilla making with the Kitchenistas and Katie Stokes,
                editor of SD Edible reservations.

                Watch an interview with Chula Vista's Mayor Salas about the Tortilla Wars

August 2 - 5:30pm Film Screening and book signing with professors and authors                            Alberto López Pulido and Rigoberto "Rigo" Reyes.  Follow the history and                            birth of lowrider culture to the present day in South Bay San Diego. The Friday                  night event also includes a display of South Bay cars. Food by A Chicano Soul                    Food-vegan and non vegan. Car Display and mural painting with Anna
more  information

August 10 - 2pm  Saloons,  Brothels and Opium Dens : Life at La Frontera during Prohibition.  You’ll hear about the Border Barons who started the “Vice-Industry” in Tijuana and at the same time donated to churches in the South Bay.
You’ll find out that the famed horses Trigger & Seabiscuit were boarded in the South Bay and raced in Tijuana. You’ll also find out that the 1920s is when our our sewage problem at the border began, the foreshadowing of maquiladoras came to be and much more. There’s fun, laughter and some serious topics explored during this slideshow with original archival photos. A discussion and beer tasting will follow.


4355 Bonita Road, Bonita, CA 91902  *  phone: 619-267-5141  * follow us on Facebook  &  Instagram

The Museum is Open Wednesday - Saturday, 10am - 4pm, or by appointment.

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Members of the Estudillo family with curator Zaragoza.

​​​      Nuestra Frontera: Our South Bay Families at the Border.  This original exhibition presents a fascinating walk through 250 years of San Diego history. The exhibition celebrates the early Californios and ranchos days in the region with the food and music of the 1800's.  History will come to life as actors portraying people in the exhibition delight in the telling of early Alta California stories.

The exhibition is based on more than 50 oral interviews, 2,000 archival photographs, and census and genealogy records by author Barbara Zaragoza. The exhibit documents the multi-ethnic Spanish-speaking families who have lived in the San Diego-Tijuana region for over eight generations.

Visitors to the exhibition will discover families whose ancestors first came as the leather jackets with the Portola Expedition in 1769.  When Mexico declared independence from Spain, many of these men became prominent Californios who owned vast tracts of land known as ranchos, in the South Bay region.  Themes in the exhibition include the coming of the railroads and the Mexican Revolution and how it impacted South Bay families.  More recently, the exhibition details oral histories about the Mexican Repatriation in the 1930's as well as the 1970’s Chicano movement.  The exhibit will contain photographs as well as interactive displays that bring history to life.

The exhibit is curated by Barbara Zaragoza, a freelance writer and local historian who holds a Master’s degree in History from Harvard University.  She has written several books, including "San Ysidro and the Tijuana River Valley" as well as "Fronterizos: A History of the Spanish-speaking People of the South Bay, San Diego."

The Bonita Museum and Cultural Center is operated by The Bonita Historical Society and is dedicated to preserving, for public education and enjoyment, the culture, history, arts, crafts, and aesthetic facets of the region, specifically El Rancho de la Nación in South San Diego County.

Thank you to our museum partners Victor Crosthwaite Contreras 619 777-9830 (historical re-inactments), San Diego History Center and the South Bay Historical Society.

Press:Union Tribune, Dave Hernandez

Video of exhibition: with interviews with Carlos Carriedo and curator Barbara Zaragoza by Ron Estevez


El Bonita Museum and Cultural Center Presenta: Nuestra Frontera: Nuestras Familias de South Bay en la Frontera.
Fechas de exposición: Junio 29 a agosto 24, 2019

La exposición presenta una experiencia fascinante por 250 años de la historia de San Diego, basada en más de 50 entrevistas orales, 2,000 fotografías de archivos, censos y datos genealógicos. La exposición documenta la gente multiétnica y familias que vivieron en la región de South Bay y San Diego-Tijuana.

Los visitantes de la exposición descubrirán familias de ancestros que llegaron al South Bay en el siglo 17 durante la expedición de Portola tanto como familias de la zona quienes ancestros pertenecieron de ranchos enormes de la comarca durante principios del período de los Californios. Los temas de la exposición incluyen la introducción del ferrocarril y la Revolución Mexicana y el impacto a las familias del South Bay. La exposición detalla historias orales de la repatriación Mexicana de 1930 tanto como la pasión en la región durante los años 70 con el Movimiento Chicano en el epicentro. La exposición tendrá fotografías y presentaciones multimedia que muestran una historia viva.

La exposición está curado por Barbara Zaragoza, una escritora independiente e historiadora local con la Maestría en Historia de Harvard. Ha escrito muchos libros que incluyen “ San Ysidro and the Tijuana River Valley” y “ Fronterizos: A History of the Spanish-Speaking People of the South Bay, San Diego.”

El Museo Bonita y Centro Cultural está abierto de miércoles a sábado de 10 a.m. a 4 p.m. La entrada es gratis. Ubicación: 4355 Bonita Rd., Bonita CA. 91902

Por favor visiten nuestro sitio web para pláticas y eventos asociados con la exposición.

​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​Thank You to Nuestra Frontera Sponsors:


Carlos and Jeannie Carriedo

John and Stephanie Garcia 

Enrique Munoz, Esq.

​San Ysidro Health​​


Nicholas and Patricia Aguilar

Dominick Addario, MD

Dr. Ruben Carriedo

The Eisenberg Group. A.C.

Eric Gritz, Esq.
​The Law Offices of Keith J. Stone

Paul A. Martin, DDS.

Lisa McLean, Esq.

 Petrita Oliver 

Jesus and Teresa Rodriguez

Early Pioneers

Brigida O. Garcia
​Rafael and Debora Munoz
​Michael and Jan Pradels
Love and Alvarez Psychology

Steve and Barbara Velazquez


Roy and Nimpa Akana

​Bonita Farmers Market
​Canizalez Associates

​Robert Dresser

Losha Carriedo Nakanelua and Mahoe Nakanelua

​Coldwell Banker West Foundation 

Alan and Frances Cornell

John A. Don, Esq.

David  E. Dugan, Esq.

Susan and Eleonor England

Jerome Hall, MD

Michael E. Jones, Esq.

Hector and Dana Lopez

​The Law offices of Monguia & Monguia

Albert F. Moreno, Esq.

Leslie Branman Smith, Esq.