There were around 200 happy children enjoying themselves at Rotary’s Centennial Park earlier this month for the annual Mark Bixby Memorial Easter Egg Hunt, which also included a ‘Paul Kennard Book Fair’, with books freebies provided by the Rotary Program of Long Beach Reading by Nine.
Neighborhood children could choose a grade-appropriate book, pencils, sharpeners and erasers, as well as a coloring book and crayons.
Volunteers provided face painting and helped decorate goody bags. The kids loved hanging out with the Easter Bunny and posing for pictures.
The Rotary Club of Long Beach is the oldest service club in the city and is among the 50 largest Rotary Clubs in the world. RCLB, founded in 1917, comprises 250 Long Beach business and community leaders.
Rotary Centennial Park was established in 2005 to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the founding of Rotary International. The late Mark Bixby was the park’s fundraising and development leader. The park, built on a former Red Car right of way, provides a wonderful oasis in a congested area of Long Beach that otherwise has very little green space.
Seen on stage: Rotary President Dennis Smith, Centennial Park Commission Chair Robyn Gordon-Peterson and Commission Tina Barry, Kay Cofield, Desmond D’Sa, Henry Fung, Terry Geiling, Shelley Hanks-Hokari, Dr. Phyllis Hayes-Reams, Lance Kenyon, Brian Russell, Solimar Salas, Jean Bixby Smith and Sarah Soriano. Steve Keesal, Gail Schwandner, Michelle Dobson, Shel-lee Davis, Diane Donaldson, John Graham, Mike Rivard and Lynne Wainfan joined Rotarians to help. Friends of Rotary included Lisa Kennard Brooks, Alofa Collins, Jackson Dobrott, Tedi D’Sa, Sierra Hanks, Hunter Hanks-Hokari, Numi Hanks-Hokari, Karen Kennard, Linda Kennard, Jan Kuykendall, Sarah Kelley, Angelique Ponce, Genevieve Ponce, Aramis Taylor, Rolf Warner, Christy Westphal and Meara Wilson.
Rick Rackers celebrates woman of the year
More than 250 supporters gathered in early April at the Old Ranch Country Club to honor the 66th recipient of the Rick Rackers Auxiliary’s 66th Woman of the Year, Cynthia Terry. The annual event celebrates the women who have made a difference in the lives of children and families in Long Beach.
Rick Rackers president Holly Reinhard greeted the guests, including 17 former Woman of the Year recipients. Event chair Katey Conley introduced the women, who were escorted by members of Rick Rackers to their seats on the stage. Honorees who attended were Jean Bixby Smith, Suzanne Nosworthy, Mary Alice Braly, Karen Clements, Melva Miller, Shirley Wild (the author of this column), Shirlee Bouch, Candice Stacy, Norma Marter, Judy McNulty Black, Susan Bell , Gloria Deukmejian, Mari Hooper, Tammy Newland, Lynne Pillsbury and Kathy Lingle.
After lunch, Conley introduced Cynthia Terry, “a Long Beach resident through and through.” Cynthia graduated from St. Anthony High School, LBCC, CSULB and Pepperdine University, then became a Long Beach Unified School District educator.
During her nearly 40 years with LBUSD, Terry served as a kindergarten teacher in Naples for several years and eventually served as Principal of Naples, Hamilton Middle and Cabrillo Elementary Schools, furthering her commitment to equity in of education.
During her tenure, she inspired and shaped educational leaders who shared her philosophy of serving the whole child. Terry has continued to contribute his time and skills to organizations that share his goal of uplifting children, women, and families in underserved Long Beach communities, such as the Pearl Foundation. She was also instrumental in launching the Creating Smiles Capital campaign, which ultimately led to the successful expansion of the Long Beach Relief League by acquiring a new building.
“It’s one of the most important days of my life,” Terry said. “I am deeply honoured.”
After her spirited acceptance speech, she received a standing ovation and a sparkling tiara.
Rick Rackers also honored RuMba Foundation founders Josephine Molina and Heather Rudy with the National Operation School Board Award for the generous support, both financial and volunteer, of Operation School Bell in Long Beach.
Opération École Bell has dressed 14,000 students since September. Proceeds from the Woman of the Year Luncheon help support the program. Willard Elementary Principal Jennifer Rodarte spoke about the impact of Operation School Bell’s literacy program in the wake of the pandemic.
Seen on stage: The Cynthia Terry family, several of her St. Anthony classmates, and her Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority sisters. Also in attendance were Past Assistance League Presidents Patti Brown, Jane Jackson, Linda Drummond, Vickie Sullos, Kathy Wade, Cindy Summers, Nancy Gee, JoAnn McDonald, Penny Wilds, Val Hayward and 2021-2022 President Shelly Barbre; former presidents of Rick Rackers, Cindy Gillis, Mary Lee Freeman and Blair Carty and Relief League CEO Annette Kashiwabara. Also in attendance were Felton Williams, Virginia Baxter, Chris Steinhauser, Darick Simpson, Patricia Dixson, Gina Maguire, Lynne Misajon, Colleen Conley, Ron Arias, Paul Garman, Maria Harris, Carol Thorton, Jill Baker, Diane Fagan and Daphne Ching-Jackson. .
OLLI field visit
Last week, finally free from COVID-19 restrictions, 36 members and guests of CSULB’s Osher Life Long Learning Institute were thrilled to attend a field trip to the Academy Museum of Motion Pictures in Hollywood.
Barry and Kay Bosscher chair the committee that plans trips for OLLI members four times a year. One of the basic principles of OLLI is lifelong learning. Adventures are therefore planned with Good Times Travel, considering cost, weather – and an eye for fun and education.
“It was a great trip and a lot of fun,” said Barry Bosscher. “(That was) all that was advertised.”
The Academy Museum of Motion Pictures had it all, offering an inside view of the past, present and future of cinema. It presents diverse experiences and perspectives on the arts and sciences of cinema. There were a lot of iconic memorabilia and insider information.
There was time to explore the Original Farmers Market and The Grove for lunch, with ice cream to end the day.
Seen on stage: Organizers Barry and Kay Bosscher, Joan Van Hooten, Jill Rosenberg, Diane Moose, Becky Low, Karin Covey, Naida Tushnet, Mary Holzgang, Mary Meyer, Jeannette and Michael Gavin, Karen and Patrick McDonough, Rosemary Lewallen, Judy Willis, Anne Supple
News of charity social events can be sent to Shirley Wild at firstname.lastname@example.org or by fax at 562-594-9468. Please include a contact phone number. Send high resolution jpeg photos, via email attachment, to email@example.com and include the name of the group and identification of individuals on the left. Call Shirley at 562-594-9468 for more information.