Community

Lonna Dunson, left, executive director of BCR "A Place to Grow," and parent Sadie Fudil take a look at the refurbished gym and music room. (Photo by Joyce Rudolph / May 29, 2012)

Apartnership between a community leadership group and BCR “a place to grow” has resulted in a spiffy renovation of BCR's music and exercise room.

Thirteen participants in the Burbank Neighborhood Leadership Program raised funds to complete the makeover, which included patching holes in the walls, adding a chair rail and painting the walls. Members also updated the soundproof covers and purchased exercise equipment, yoga balls, a sound system, exercise mats, a flat-screen TV and Wii system that will lead BRC clients in exercise inside when it is too hot to exercise outdoors during the summer.

BCR is a private, nonprofit 501(c)(3) corporation that began in 1963 and provides day activities and extended day care programs for children and adults with developmental disabilities.

Four groups use the room on a rotating basis every day, said Lonna Dunson, BCR executive director. They exercise, listen to music played on the piano and rehearse for their annual holiday program in the room.

“The leadership class did so much more than we ever dreamed of,” Dunson said. “They were resourceful in knowing who to contact to get things done, were efficient, and are just nice people to work with.”

Maria Diliberto, program supervisor at BCR, thought the change was “fabulous,” she said.

“I think that the clients always deserve the best,” she said. “And the more they are able to do here, the more self-confidence they have going out into the community.”

The leadership program is part of the Connect with Your Community Initiative and Burbank's Park, Recreation and Community Services Department. Participants meet once a week for educational workshops starting in January. They must complete one community project during their semester, said Viviana Ardila, community resources coordinator with the city of Burbank and supervisor of the leadership class. They graduate in June.

The group raised $2,300 with two events, said project chair Elle Fernandez. They had a coffee and doughnut sale and a Picnic Around the World in which members cooked a special dish that represented the country they were from originally. They sold tickets to family and friends. They also raised more than $1,600 in in-kind donations of labor and materials.

For more information on the Burbank Neighborhood Leadership Program, call Viviana Ardila at (818) 238-5322. To contact BCR, call (818) 843-4907.



Pavelka scholarships presented

The Burbank Police Officers' Foundation board of directors presented the Matthew Pavelka Scholarship Awards on May 15 to Dena N. Hillo of Bellarmine-Jefferson High School, Valery I. Vasquez of Burbank High School, Teadora Taddeo of John Burroughs High School, Kevin R. Mark of Providence High School, and Paige E. Slor of the Burbank Police Officers' Assn.

The $500 scholarship award will be payable upon proof of completion of quarter/semester at a public or private recognized junior college, accredited college or university that offers academic or vocational courses leading to a secondary degree.


Cleaners collects for troops

Owners of Flair Cleaners in Burbank commemorated Armed Forces Day and Memorial Day with the second annual Flair Care Packages drive, held in conjunction with the USO Greater Los Angeles Area. Items brought to the cleaners, such as snacks, hygiene supplies and music CDs were given to military personnel stationed here and abroad. In return, customers who donated received a certificate for 50% off their next cleaning bill.

The business also cleaned up to five shirts, blouses or pants for active duty military and veterans at no charge over Memorial Day weekend. These programs are in addition to Flair's year-round military discount and complimentary flag cleaning.

“Our family has a long-standing commitment of supporting our military that started with free flag cleaning and substantial discounts for servicemen and women more than 50 years ago and continues to this day,” said owner Gary Futterman.


Muir receives top choir honors

John Muir Middle School's Vocal Music Assn.'s “Guys & Dolls” received a Superior trophy at the Music in the Parks competition at Universal Studios Hollywood on May 12. This is the highest that can be awarded in any category. They also went on to receive the Overall Trophy for Choirs at Universal Studios Hollywood.

Founded in 1980 by Dr. James R. Wells, the Educational Programs Network hosts more than 220,000 music students each year at festivals like this one held in the United States and Canada.


Road Kings ready to crackle

Get ready to see and hear the blast when the Burbank Road Kings Car Club celebrates its 60th anniversary with a cracklefest, where drag racers make a beautiful but loud noise firing up their nostalgic drag-racing top-fuel cars, at the 23rd annual Picnic in the Park and Charity Car Show from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. June 10 at Johnny Carson Park, 400 Bob Hope Drive.

Special guests attending are drag racing legends Tommy Ivo and Don Prudhomme and NHRA Funny Car winner Jack Beckman.

Proceeds go to charities such as high school auto shop scholarships, Boys & Girls Club and the Burbank Police and Fire Museum.

Spectators and car entries are free, with donations appreciated. Breakfast is served from 7 to 10:30 a.m. with lunch beginning at 10:30 a.m. For information, call (818) 842-KING.

JOYCE RUDOLPH can be contacted at rudolphjoyce10@gmail.com.