By KC Vafiadis
What a special gift Peter Sprague has given to the residents of Del Mar on Christmas Eve for over 40 years. That’s when it all started. My mom and dad had purchased the Stratford Square building on the corner of Camino Del Mar and 15th St. My mom, Carol Watkins, and her friend Marge Throneson opened a bakery called the Sugar Plum on the corner where the Americana café is now.
It was Christmas Eve, the shop was still open and business was booming, however, guests had a difficult time getting into the store because there was a young man on the corner playing a guitar. He was good and the crowd got bigger and bigger, making it hard for customers to get into the shop.
That was Peter Sprague, now a world-famous jazz guitarist and he has continued to perform every Christmas Eve for the Del Mar residents’ enjoyment for the past 40 years.
This year it was even more special to my dad, Jim Watkins, who developed the L’Auberge and donated the prime corner as a semi-public park for the village. It was always his vision for this to be a gathering place for the community and his dream was realized when he saw the park packed with small children and their parents, enjoying the marvelous music of Peter Sprague and his entourage. So, thank you Peter Sprague. Your gift of music is enjoyed and appreciated by all.