Wednesday, December 12, 2012

60th Anniversary Planning Begins

Tuesday night nearly 50 city staffers and members of the public met in the Emergency Operations Center to begin the planning process for the city's 60th anniversary next year.

City CEO Tom Hatch led off with a short description of his goal -  proceeding with aggressiveness and with a big vision for the celebration.


He handed off the proceedings to historian Art Goddard who presented an historical overview of The City using some great old photos and maps.  He outlined the evolution of the area from an American Indian enclave to a hodge-podge collection of agricultural settlements supported by small farms.  He spoke of the impact of the Segerstrom family on the evolution of The City and how the Chamber of Commerce was the de facto governance body in the early days before incorporation.  He talked about the influence of the Lions Club and other service organizations on the culture of the area and how first mayor Charles TeWinkle and his four peers ponied up $20 each to provide the seed money - $100 - for The City treasury.


He then tossed the baton back to Hatch who set the tone for the rest of the evening when he told the assembled group that it is they, not the city staff, that will drive the creativity and be ambassadors for the celebration.  He went around the room and asked each person present to identify themselves and tell the group the name of their favorite Costa Mesa restaurant.  That was an interesting exercise, with surprisingly little redundancy.  Nobody mentioned Skosh Monahan's Pub...


Public Affairs Manager Dan Joyce led the discussion of what kind of sub-committees will be necessary.  The group actively participated in a discussion of these committees and ended up with the following names:
1 - Branding, theme
2 - ARTS
3 - Fund raising and sponsorship
4 - Events
5 - Community Outreach
6 - Youth
7 - Volunteers
8 - Food and Beverage
9 - Kickoff Event
10 - Closing Event
11 - Educational
12 - Historical
13 - Sustainability (Go Green)


The staff will create a discussion board on the City web site on which members of the committee can post their thoughts on the issues discussed last night in preparation for moving forward in January.  There will also be a Facebook presence so residents can follow along with the planning.  It is planned that this group will meet every Thursday in January - there are five (5) of them - and get a running start on the process.  It will meet less frequently beginning in February.  At the next meeting on January 3, 2013 a Chairman and Vice Chairman of the group will be selected and sub-committees will be formed.


The clock is ticking for this group.  It was generally agreed that the Kick-off event would occur late in the spring - perhaps coincident with the actual 60th anniversary on June 29, 2013.  And, the need for lots of volunteers to help facilitate the plans was stressed several times.

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