The Prospect Hill Yellow Jackets Athletic Club: Origin

During the 1930’s, the Mexican-American lower middle class began formally to sponsor events such as dances, banquets, and fiestas. While many of these events were primarily social, they helped provide a sense of identity and unity for the emerging middle class while differentiating itself from the neighborhood’s working class. In turn, members of this emerging middle-class established organizations and clubs that eventually sponsored athletic leagues and sport activities in the West Side of San Antonio (R. A. Garcia 92).


Fernando Arellano public recognition. San Antonio Express-News April 3, 1977.

One such organization was The Prospect Hill Yellow Jackets (PHY) Athletic Club, which was established on January 20th, 1932.  On this day, Fernando “Nando” Arellano Sr. called a meeting with three of his friends to discuss how they could start a sports club. Previously, there were no opportunities or facilities provided for the community to participate in recreational sports. After the meeting and eventually gaining a strong following, the end result was the Prospect Hill Yellow Jackets athletic club, which grew to be one of the most successful athletic programs in the city of San Antonio. In 1936, Fernando Arellano founded the PHY Little League and served as its president for three years. The name “yellow jackets” was selected because a church had donated yellow jerseys for the team (Salazar, Veronica. San Antonio Express-News, 3 April. 1977, pp. 2-J).

Due to World War II however, youth sports activities halted for four years. After the war, veterans who used the GI Bill to pursue college educations and secure federal jobs such as at Kelly Air Force Base, were too old to continue playing. Therefore, these members rallied together to build the PHY athletic club. As a result, an administration group formed, which included a president, two vice presidents, a secretary, and a treasurer, to serve as leaders (“Yellow Jackets Plan Big Year for No. 30.” San Antonio Light, 29 Dec. 1963, pp. 4-C). This group’s time, effort, loyalty, and passion helped the PHY athletic club grow and achieve its goals through its motto “youth development through sports.”

The Prospect Hill Yellow Jackets Athletic Club: Origin