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Centennial celebration lost in review of 2011

I read the Burbank Leader’s final publication of the year and was disappointed and dismayed that there was not a single mention of Burbank’s Centennial Year (“Smart meters, golf courses and bears, oh my!” Dec. 31).

While smart meters, the golf course and underaged kids drinking were important stories, how could the significance of the city’s centennial and the yearlong celebration get lost in a review of the past year?

So many individuals and businesses stepped up, even as the city struggled financially, to ensure that a Centennial Celebration worthy of this community would take place. Generous financial donations made the celebration possible but, even more importantly, ensured that all the events were free and accessible to anyone who wanted to attend.

It is estimated that the “Party of the Century” alone attracted more than 35,000 participants to downtown Burbank to celebrate 100 years of incorporation. This is roughly one half of the city’s population, and the celebration took place without a single incident.


From where I stand, that is newsworthy and speaks volumes about the values and civic pride that are alive and well in this community.

Thanks to the commitment and leadership of Burbank’s elected officials, city staff and numerous community volunteers, more than 100 events were planned and successfully staged, allowing residents to celebrate Burbank’s once-in-a-lifetime centennial. This was a huge achievement and certainly deserves coverage as a significant and newsworthy story for 2011.

Perhaps future efforts by the Burbank Leader to look back and reflect on what was important or significant to “our community” should involve members of “our” community. The Leader clearly missed the major story for Burbank’s year in review by failing to recognize the significance of the Centennial Celebration and all that it represented to this community.

Mary Alvord