Rancho Bernardo’s 50th a rockin’ good time
By Elizabeth Marie Himchak
Rancho Bernardans celebrated their community reaching the half-century mark with a birthday party in Webb Park on Saturday.
The six-hour party drew an estimated 4,000 locals of all ages, said Marty Judge, the celebration’s chairman.
The ‘60s-themed festivities included free activities for children; yo-yo, hula hoop, dance and ‘60s costume contests; a rubber ducky race; craft and art fair; and entertainment by a Beach Boys tribute band and Elvis Presley and Marilyn Monroe impersonators.
“This is an event that is really exciting,” said Mayor Jerry Sanders, who recalled first coming to Rancho Bernardo in 1973 as a patrol officer early in his police career.
Sanders praised Rancho Bernardans, especially giving credit to its community leaders, for being able to overcome adversity including the 2007 wildfire that destroyed 365 RB homes.
“It’s impressive how you have come back … and I admire this community,” Sanders said.
The mayor was among a group of dignitaries who spoke highly of Rancho Bernardo, its residents and presented proclamations honoring its 50th birthday.
But the community’s history dates much farther back, as Rep. Brian Bilbray was quick to point out when recounting the first time the area was mentioned by name in history books in the mid-1800s.
City Councilman Carl DeMaio spoke of how Rancho Bernardo became the national model for planned communities and for overcoming adversity in its wildfire recovery.
“A lot has happened and we have a lot to be proud of,” DeMaio said, who earlier in his remarks said RB is not only the community he represents but the one “I love and am proud to call my own.”
DeMaio called for a moment of silence in order to honor all the men and women who helped form Rancho Bernardo over the 50 years, many of whom he said are among those who through their donations have plaques on the Pathway of Pride that winds through Webb Park where the party was being held.
“The best way to honor their investment is to take their example and lead (RB) into its next 50 years,” he said.
“RB helps its own and this is a really important achievement,” said Supervisor Pam Slater-Price, who has represented RB for 20 years in county government. “RB has so much to offer … and in a crisis everyone comes out (to help).”
- Party on Sept. 22 will celebrate RB’s 50 years
- Sanders endorses DeMaio in mayoral race
- Buy a rubber duck for a chance to win $500
- Scott Lawn wins Rancho Bernardo honorary mayor contest
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