Rialto Community & Learning Center celebrates grand opening, mural depicts city’s outstanding contributors

Photo Vonzelle Saunderlin: Rialto Mayor Deborah Robertson, third from left, celebrated the grand opening of the new community center with supporters and Josiah Bruny, left, of Music Changing Lives, who kicked off their Peace on Route 66 Tour by drawing the first of several planned murals throughout the I.E. that promote peace and diversity.
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City of Rialto Mayor Deborah Robertson and the community celebrated the grand opening of the Rialto Community and Learning Center on Saturday, August 1 with a ribbon cutting and mural painting. Of the 4,250 square-foot space leased by Robertson to serve as her campaign headquarters for the next four months, she will only be using 250 square-feet, leaving the rest of the space for the community to use for free.

“We’re in a time of a pandemic where it’s tough and causing a lot of us to be scared… we have to figure how to go about being involved and engaged,” Robertson said during the grand opening. “But we’re always very creative, innovative people, and we have to figure a way where we can continue to stay in contact.”

The center, located at 150 W. Baseline, will serve as a place where the community can interact and engage safely.

Photo MJ Duncan: Community members left a colorful array of positive messages.

During the grand opening celebration Music Changing Lives, a nonprofit geared toward youth access to music, academic assistance and community outreach founded by Josiah Bruny, helped kick off the Peace on Route 66 – an endeavor created by WIN (Women’s Inspirational Network) and Scene 360 Business, that aims to address racial diversity through peaceful means. 

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Photo Vonzelle Saunderlin: The mural depicts 11 unsung heroes who have made significant contributions to the Rialto community – Deborah Robertson, Grace Vargas, Joe Baca, Sr., Jerry Eaves, John Longville, Wilmer Amina Carter, William Ratibu Jacocks, Bobby and IZ Avila, Josiah Bruny and Che Wright.

The mural depicts 11 members of the community, who have made substantial contributions to the local area.

“Those being depicted in the mural are unsung heroes that have made their mark on Rialto and the surrounding community,” said Selam Petros from Scene 360 Business.

Depicted in the mural are: Rialto Mayor Deborah Robertson, former Mayor Grace Vargas, Congressman and past City Councilman Joe Baca, Sr., college basketball Coach Jerry Eaves, State Assemblyman and former Rialto Mayor John Longville, former Rialto Board of Education Member and State Assemblywoman Wilmer Amina Carter, community activist and founder of the Inland Area Kwanzaa Group William Ratibu Jacocks, Grammy Award-winning music artists Bobby and IZ Avila, community activist and MCL founder Josiah Bruny, and entrepreneur Che Wright.

“The Peace on Route 66 Tour hopes to promote understanding and peace among the many diverse members of our communities in Southern California by opening up conversations about complex issues,” Bruny mentioned.

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