The Marine Corps Recruit Depot San Diego announced it will host an event Wednesday to celebrate its centennial anniversary as an established landmark in downtown San Diego.

The public is invited to attend a virtual concert hosted by the depot at 3:00 p.m. on December 1. Songs that defined musical generations from across the last 100 years will be performed by the Marine Band San Diego.

The Marines first made their presence known in San Diego when they were assigned to support the Panama-California Exposition at Balboa Park from 1915-1917, according to MCRD.

During these two years, the Marines gained the respect and admiration of the local citizenry through regular public events, including concerts and viewings of training exercises.

Using their newly-earned acclaim, the Marines proposed the establishment of a permanent base in San Diego, and two years later on March 19, 1919, the groundbreaking for the depot occurred.

The architect Bertram Goodhue, renowned at the time for designing the buildings at Balboa Park, was commissioned to design the iconic yellow buildings that surround the parade deck.

Recruit training, however, was not the original purpose of the depot when it opened in 1921. From its inception through World War II, the Marine Corps installation in San Diego was primarily concerned with supporting Marine Corps expeditionary operations, according to MCRD.

As the Marine Corps began to expand during WWII and other training areas were constructed in the local area, the primary activity of the depot shifted to recruit training and in 1948 the installation was officially designated with its current name: Marine Corps Recruit Depot San Diego.

For more information on the history of the depot, go to www.mcrdsd.marines.mil.

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