By Councilmember Bill Miranda
Thirty years is a big deal. Santa Clarita officially became a city on December 15, 1987. Just think of all that has happened in the past three decades. The Westfield Valencia Town Center mall opened (1992), the 6.7-magnitude Northridge earthquake hit (1994) and Santa Clarita experienced a snow day (January 2011); not to mention the countless achievements by Santa Clarita residents in art, film, space exploration, the Olympics and more. Through it all, the City of Santa Clarita’s commitment to providing residents with a high quality of life, valuable programs and top-notch customer service has not wavered.
In celebration of three decades of cityhood, we are providing plenty of ways for the community to get in on the celebration. Meet Sammy Clarita the chestnut-colored stuffed animal horse. Sammy made his first appearance on April 5, 2017, just in time for the 24th annual Santa Clarita Cowboy Festival. Sneaky Sammy made his way around William S. Hart Park and made the festival extra fun for the little detectives who found him. Since then, he’s been popping up around town, celebrating all the events and amenities that make our City the special place it is. For those who have been searching high and low for the playful pony, but have not yet gotten their Sammy selfie, don’t worry. Sammy Clarita still has several local events that he can’t resist, a few of which may require he invest in a winter coat. Remember, the only place to find out where Sammy will be hiding next is to follow the City of Santa Clarita on Instagram.
Besides the Sammy Clarita scavenger hunt, “30 Things for 30 Years” will kick off soon. Creativity is required for this competition. Students are encouraged to come up with a tribute to the City’s 30th birthday through doing, collecting or making something in groups of 30. This contest is open to all elementary school classes and schools.
Another way residents can memorialize this special year is by signing the City’s birthday card, which has been stationed at events around town. Make sure you add your signature and birthday wishes to the card. I have enjoyed reading all the comments people have written at events like the Earth Arbor Day Festival, Amgen Tour of California, the Cowboy Festival and the Thursdays@Newhall events.
How else can residents join in the year-long birthday celebration? They can enjoy our 34 parks, 9,000 acres of open space and annual events, like one of my very favorites, Concerts in the Park. Each Saturday through August 26, Concerts in the Park at Central Park will kick off at 7 p.m. Tributes to bands like Santana, Tom Petty and the Beatles are scheduled to take the stage this month so be sure to mark your calendars and arrive at the park early to claim a patch of grass. Concert information can be found at santa-clarita.com/Concerts. A new way to avoid the hassle of the crowds is to take advantage of the Bike Valet service, provided by the Santa Clarita Valley Bicycle Coalition. Ride your bike to Concerts in the Park and Bike Valet will take care of the rest. Just be sure to follow the maps at BikeSantaClarita.com to find the valet station.
The City’s 30th anniversary can also be celebrated by helping take care of our environment by doing things like volunteering for the annual River Rally Cleanup. To date, River Rally volunteers have removed 422,000 pounds of trash from the river. With such success, we hope that this year’s results will surpass previous ones. The 23rd annual River Rally is taking place on September 23. Registration is now open at SantaClaritaVolunteers.com.
There are so many ways for residents to get involved in the City’s 30th birthday celebration. Be sure to check out santa-clarita.com/30Years for fun facts about the City of Santa Clarita and more information on how you can join the party.
Bill Miranda is a member of the Santa Clarita City Council and can be reached at [email protected].