Ben Sanguinetti’s family arrived in Brookside Orchard in 1933 when it was a place of summer cottages. Most of those escaping the city fog were the Italian partners in the Sunset Scavenger Company. The only permanent residents then waere the Ernst family who subdivided the property.
The oval-shaped road had an orchard of apples, pears and figs in the center with one space left open as a playground. In those early years, the only water came from wells; water was only about twenty feet down. Some properties still use their wells today. The Sanguinettis had only small buildings on their two acres: a shed for the well, a shed for sleeping – truly a summer camp. They had well water pumped inside, but for hot water, Ben’s mother would make a fire in the woodstove to get hot water. Ben’s stepdad built the house in 1948. As an adult, Ben was a pioneer in bringing soccer to Portola Valley.