1979 06-07 Gorda sold Kidco 2772

Meet The Kidco Children Who Purchased The Town Of Gorda

By David Middlecamp
The Tribune (San Luis Obispo, Calif.)

WWR Article Summary (tl;dr) At one time, the tiny town of Gorda was owned by children. Their company, called Kidco, bought Gorda after Warner Bros. paid them $500,000 for their life story and made the film “Kidco” about them.

The Tribune (San Luis Obispo, Calif.)

Torrents of rain have pounded iconic Highway 1, causing mudslides and bending the Pfeiffer Canyon Bridge like putty.

Residents along the scenic coast have been cut off by the damage, though not for the first time.

At one time, the tiny town of Gorda was owned by children. Their company, called Kidco, bought Gorda after Warner Bros. paid them $500,000 for their life story and made the film “Kidco” about them.

But economic disaster struck when a section of Highway 1 was erased by a massive mudslide in 1983. Tourism slowed to a crawl for 15 months, when the highway ended in a pair of isolated culs-de-sac. Lawrence Anderson, who had sold Gorda to Kidco, repossessed the town by 1984 and put it up for sale again.

An Associated Press story from September of that year said, “There are only four communities along California’s Big Sur coastline, and this one’s for sale.”

It was Gorda, clinging to the mountainside with a general store, jade shop, restaurant, seven homes and a service station known for selling the most expensive gas in the United States. The foreclosed town sold in 1993 to Sherwin and Mary Miller.

Who was Kidco? Steven Churm explains in a story for the June 6, 1979 Telegram-Tribune:

Little Gorda goes to the kids
Bill Gomez wasn’t impressed Tuesday by the army of journalists who invaded this tiny seaside hamlet 70 miles north of San Luis Obispo.

He talked of the change their arsenal of cameras, microphones, pads and pencils would bring to the once-peaceful town tucked in the lap of the towering Santa Lucia Mountains.

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