Cabazon, CA is an interesting little town. It's not a city, and only has one little store, a Post Office, and the Am/PM Gas Station at the Main Street exit. That's on the South Side of the Freeway....the side where locals think of Cabazon as Cabazon. For years Cabazon was just a small little town off the I-10 Freeway between Banning and Palm Springs. It was best known for the big Dinosaur on the North Side of the Freeway. That Dinosaur was made famous in a few movies, including a Pee Wee Herman one. That was Cabazon to most people.
This is a recent picture of what many of the Vacant Lots look like. They haven't been developed yet, but they will. This is on the South Side of the Freeway.
The Morongo Indian Reservation is typically thought of on the N. side of the I-10, although it is also on the S. side, and in the Mountains. The Reservation is like a checkerboard......and in some areas you have one mile of Reservation, and one mile not. This is because the Railroad was given every other mile way back when the Reservation was formed.
Anyway the Reservation like so many of them, was pretty poor. A lot of trailers and HUD Homes dotted the Reservation, oh and of course my favorite was the Smoke Trailer that sat on a little road just inside the boundary where we could go buy cheap smokes. Yep, that's the REZ I remember. But it's not like that today.
Today, there is the 27 story Morongo Casino, Resort and Spa. Today Morongo owns Hadleys Fruit Orchards, a huge Gas Station, Restaurants, new state of the art bowling alley,etc. and have plans to build more. Just in the past couple months the freeway was closed at the Cabazon exits of Seminole Drive because of the massive work of making a roundabout to handle all the traffic to the area, especially when the Outlets have Major Sales, or Morongo has a Special event. Traffic was a nightmare. Cabazon of old is growing.
I just heard that they are also going to make a round-about on the south side of the freeway. Why I asked? "Because the area isn't going to stay the same." That's what I heard. So the old Route 99, that was replaced by the I-10 Freeway (called The Dime) is now undergoing another big transformation. And all of this because of the Morongo Casino Resort and Spa..which has now become one of the biggest employers in the area.
***So it looks like Cabazon is indeed sitting in the shadows of the Morongo Indian Reservation ***
By: Kathy McGraw- CELLing Realty....all photos are copyrighted