With “Carmageddon II” – the closure of 405-freeway, taking place on the same day, the RNC Centennial committee has a daylong slate of free activities planned for the entire family. Highlights of the Festival include a wide variety of live music, and an Artist Pavilion curated by 11:11 A Creative Collective giving attendees the opportunity to enjoy local artists, crafts, hands-on arts and crafts stations for all ages as well as live art.
At 4:00 PM an official ceremony will take place on the main stage honoring Council District 3 Councilman Dennis P. Zine who will be on hand with local officials Congressman Howard Berman, Congressman Brad Sherman, State Senator Fran Pavley, Assemblyman Bob Blumenfiled, City Controller Wendy Gruel, and Los Angeles County Supervisor Zev Yarovslavsky to name a few.
"To celebrate Reseda's Centennial is a great honor as it truly comes along only once in a Councilman's lifetime and I hold the community near and dear to my heart,” said Councilman Dennis P. Zine. “The community-wide celebration planned for September 29th at Reseda Park promises to be an event worthy of such a monumental occasion and no constituent in Los Angeles should miss this great celebration,”
Two stages with live entertainment throughout the day will feature Sligo Rags, We the People, Charangoa, Jazz Bliss Brazil, Don Preach, Murphy’s Flaw, Cap Angels, Sherry Hursey, Get-Lit Players, AD, CSUN Jazz A Band, CME Community Choir and Perk-U-Later. The LISTEN youth group led by Neftali Santiago will perform original songs written for Reseda and the Cleveland High School Marching Band will kick off the ceremony honoring Councilman Zine. Rides, bouncers, kids entertainment, magic shows and other fun activities for kids will be available throughout the day as well as food booths and local vendors. In addition, the Festival will feature a car show showcasing 100 years of cars sponsored by Down To Earth So. Cal’s lowest car club. At 7:00 pm the community is invited to join the West Valley Los Angeles Police Department and Captain Egan for a family movie night at the park. The featured movie being screened at the end of the festival is The Pirates! Band of Misfits.
This monumental celebration could not have happened without our top sponsors, including: Councilman Dennis P. Zine, City of Los Angeles Parks & Recreations, Los Angeles Police Department Valley Division, Jewish Home for the Ageing, 11:11 A Creative Collective, Alliance of Women Filmmakers, One West Bank, Los Angeles County Supervisor Zev Yarovslavsky, ONEgeneration, Tarzana-Woodland Hills Chambers of Commerce, H & M Appliances, Sakaida & Sons, Kedpalsma and Total Control Insurance & Travel to name a few.
The celebration of the 100th year anniversary of the sleepy little neighborhood in the heart of the san Fernando Valley seemed like a good reason to throw a party when the RNC voted to do so in late 2011. When the RNC embarked on the ambitious notion of organizing an all day community event, it soon became crystal clear that the importance of this event was much more than just an anniversary celebration. For many, it is much more personal. It is a symbol for the economically struggling community that regardless of the demise of the Community Redevelopment Agency (CRA), which was shut down by the state of California in early 2012, Reseda still has a reason to celebrate and can come together as a united strong community, and do so proudly.
With only about seven months to plan, the all-volunteer force Centennial Committee that was formed out of the RNC met twice monthly to create a festival. Eventually local event planner Adee Drory of Event Pros LA (http://www.eventpros-
"We envision the Festival as an annual cultural event that will engage the community," said Cary Iaccino, Chairman of the RNC. "The arts has always been an important foundation for revitalization efforts throughout L.A.’s history and this Festival is the RNC’s largest effort to date that will not only benefit Reseda but will have a ripple effect throughout the San Fernando Valley,” he concluded.
The CRA had a hand in many of those revitalization efforts – from downtown to NoHo, Venice to Hollywood. Artists traditionally lead the charge in making a depressed area vibrant and alive again with people who bring cash to pump into the local economy. The Reseda Theatre was supposed to be the CRA’s flagship for redevelopment in Reseda but the long vacant building with its iconic “Reseda” sign is a sore reminder of the loss the community feels from the shut down of the CRA. “We would love to see the Theatre be repurposed into a multi-cultural venue that would attract people from all over the valley,” said RNC Board and Centennial Committee Member Kimberly Maxwell, “but until that can happen, we are focusing on this Festival as a small box solution to the need for a coherent Community Cultural Plan that will not will reinvigorate Reseda.”
As for master plans, L.A.’s Department of Neighborhood Empowerment, which oversees the 95 Neighborhood Councils (NC) around the city, is running elections this year for all NC seats city-wide. “We purposefully set the RNC elections to be at the Festival on September 29,” said Iaccino. “Combining the NC elections with the Festival will ensure a higher level of participation from the community than usual.” With thousands of people expected at the event, getting out the vote shouldn’t be too hard but they will have to compete with the great line up of bands and art that will be on display in Reseda Park that day.
This Festival is a big challenge for the RNC, admits Iaccino. “Fund raising in this economy has been difficult but the amazing group we have working on this project keep it moving forward. It will be a great event.” And that’s just the way Iaccino wants it. “I just like to see things happen, to get things done,” he said. “I don’t like complacency. I like to see action. Putting together an event and being involved in the community definitely makes for a lot of action!”
To see the band schedule and more details on the Festival, go to http://www.reseda100.com.