Hawthorne Elementary raises funds for Philippines

Following the news of the devastation and loss of life caused by Typhoon Haiyan in Philippines, Hawthorne students and their families went into action.

The school collected $371.55. A check was made out to the American Red Cross earmarked for the Philippine Disaster Fund.

The tragedy became an opportunity for students to learn how to respond in a positive way by helping others in a time of need, school officials said.

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Ontario Rotary club to honor students of the month

The Ontario Rotary Club will be honoring the Students of the Month at the Club’s weekly lunch meeting on Thursday, noon at the Ontario Double Tree Hotel.

The eighth grade students selected by the educators at the nine middle schools of the Ontario-Montclair School District are: Giovanni Moscosa from DeAnza Middle School, Gennifer A. Barajas-Medina from Oaks Middle School, Jaqueline Herrera from Serrano Middle School, Estefania Garcia from Vernon Middle School, Cassandra Cruz-Ramos from Vina Danks Middle School, Mallory McGuire from Wiltsey Middle School, Adilene Torres from Central Language Academy, Camryn Torri Schott from Vineyard STEM Magnet School and Charles Bui from Edison GATE Academy.

Sarah Niemann, principal at Vernon Middle School will also be in attendance.

Rotary Club meetings are open to guest. Lunch is $20.

For additional information please call Don Driftmier at 951-206-5731.

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Divas Half marathon coming to Ontario

The Divas Half Marathon and 5K – dubbed “the most fun and glam women’s running series in the nation” – is coming to Ontario on Sunday.

More than 3,200 women (and their “Diva-lovers” of the male persuasion) have registered for run which will begin at the Ontario Convention Center and head out to the Ontario Mills Mall before returning back to the convention center.

The half marathon and 5k event is expected to generate an economic impact of about $3 million to the region in direct and indirect spending, including hotel stays, dining, shopping and support services, Diva organizers said.

The event includes a two-day health and fitness boutique, a Diva Lounge, Post Race Party and more.

Ali Vincent, host of “Live Big with Ali Vincent” and first female winner of “The Biggest Loser,” is expected to be in attendance.
Runners in the half marathon will start at the Ontario Convention Center and head up into the Divas entertainment section with stations every half mile toward Ontario Mills then back to the convention center, where feather boas, tiaras and champagne will make crossing the finish line a festive affair.

For information, visit bit.ly/188B4xj

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Private college relocates to Ontario

San Joaquin Valley College (SJVC) has moved its career education and training campus to Ontario. The private Jr. College was previously located in Rancho Cucamonga, about 3.2 miles away.

The move was made to be able to better serve its students and help increase community awareness of the educational options it provides to the community, according to statement from the San Joaquin Valley College.

College officials said it took 15 semi-trucks, more than a hundred packers, movers, installation technicians, IT and Facility department personnel, a few campus employees to move into Ontario in three days, avoiding any disruption of class schedules for almost 550 students.

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Could things be turning around for airlines?

Recent stories in the Wall Street Journal and the Daily Beast indicate airlines are starting to add capacity and routes.

The Daily Beast article found that airlines:

  • will add 1.3 percent more flights between October and December.
  • 321 new airplane routes compared to 2012.
  • 121 flight routes in the U.S. more than doubled the amount of seats available for passengers according to data.

I know what you’re thinking. So what does this mean for LA/Ontario International Airport? So far it doesn’t sound like there has been an impact.

Jess Romo, general manager of ONT, last week spoke about Los Angeles World Airports’ efforts to increase marketing plans. Romo is also in the midst of setting up meeting with carriers about adding service to ONT.

(I’ll have more about that meeting on the blog later this week.)

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Ontario store collecting donations for Kids Come First

A local discount store is collecting donations for Kids Come First’s Community Health Center.

The Ontario dd’s DISCOUNTS is accepting donations through Sept. 2 so that the non profit can purchase new books. All donations collected will be used by Kids Come First: Community Health Center to purchase deeply discounted books from First Book.

dd’s DISCOUNTS, 606 W. Holt Blvd. in Ontario,

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Ontario breaks ground for downtown park

Downtown residents will be pleased to know Ontario Town Square Park is slated to open in the fall of 2014.

The future 1.7-acre park will feature an open area amphitheater, a palm court seating area, clock tower – the centerpiece of the project, a children’s playground and a rose garden. It is bounded by C Street to the north, Lemon Avenue to the east, B Street to the south and Euclid Avenue to the west.

The $6 million town square project was expected to begin in the fall of 2012, but council members rejected all the bids it had received from construction companies last year Continue reading

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New life for Granada Theater?

Granada Theater, the city’s 87-year-old defunct movie theater, has a new manager

Granada Theater, built in 1926, was designed by Lewis Smith.

Granada Theater, built in 1926, was designed by Lewis Smith.

at the helm, Diana E. Holte-Cosato. The longtime Inland Valley resident is passionate about restoring the 22,000-square-foot building, which includes 22 offices.

I met with her on Friday to get a glimpse of her vision with this story.

She is not the first to lead efforts to restore the theater (you may recall my 2009 article featuring David Perez and his hopes for the site) and she faces a similar challenge — money. Holte-Cosato will have to raise $3 million to $5 million to get the job done.

The 1926 theater went into foreclosure in 2009 when church that bought the Granada was unable to pay the $2.2 million mortgage. Last reported, the Tarzana-based investment firm, Overland Financial, that had financed the church’s loan owns the Ontario movie theater.

Holte-Cosato is not exactly sure about the current financial standing of the building. She only got involved in the theater two months ago which is when she started operating her company, Route 66 Academy of the Arts, out of theater.

Granada Theater manager would is hoping to attract a tenant to the vacant space.

Granada Theater manager would is hoping to attract a tenant to the vacant space.

Her plans are to bring in a tenant for the empty corner space (show in the left) which she says could be a perfect fit for a coffee shop.

She admits that to in order keep her vision her business also needs to succeed. She currently operates her academy out of a 280-square-foot room on the southwest corner of the theater building with the hopes of expanding it into other office spaces upstairs. She said a growing part of her clients are Spanish speakers.

Here is a photo gallery from my 2009 visit. Some really cool pics from the place. I

Elevator at the Granada Theater

Elevator at the Granada Theater

snapped this quick photo, which I shared on my Instagram account, from the original elevator inside the building.

For more information about the theater or Route 66 Academy of the Arts, call 909-456-9087 or visit 110 W. C Street in Ontario.


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CCAA Museum of Art to host grand opening on Sept. 15

(Thomas R. Cordova/Staff Photographer) Wayne Leavitt replaces old light bulbs at CCAA new location in Ontario June 21, 2013

(Thomas R. Cordova/Staff Photographer) Wayne Leavitt replaces old light bulbs at CCAA new location in Ontario June 21, 2013

Mark your calendars: In case you may have forgotten, the CCAA Museum of Art will host a grand opening for its new Ontario location on Sept. 15, from 2 p.m. – 4 p.m.

I’ve written a couple of stories this year detailing the museum’s decision to relocate back to Ontario after being in Rancho Cucamonga for 12 years.

Museum members held a “Dusty Shoes tour” in June to give the public a chance to see the museum’s progress since moving into its new home downtown back in January. According to museum officials the event drew almost 200 people. Here’s a photo gallery from the CCAA from that day. Continue reading

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Ontario duo perform the National Anthem for thousands

Ashley and Alyssa Farrell, members of the Girl Scouts of Greater Los Angeles Color, have been busy this summer performing the National Anthem in front of thousands.

The Ontario girls, however, are not singing they are signing the anthem.

They have been signing the anthem since February. Since then they have performed at a Los Angeles Galaxy game as well as the Sparks.

Most recently, Ashley and Alyssa participated in the 426th Civil Affairs (Airborne) and O.A.T.H. (Outstanding Americans Thanking Heroes) Welcome Home Heroes event on SJuly 21, 2013. At the event they performed the National Anthem in American Sign Language to more than 200 American Soldiers who have just returned home from Afghanistan, said their mother, Monica.

On Saturday, the duo will be in performing at the Annual DiverCities event hosted by Congresswomen Judy Chu.

Following that, Ashley and Alyssa  Farrell will be at the Muscle Beach Championships and the induction of Lou Ferrigno into the Muscle Beach Hall of Fame on Sept. 2.

This past June they were at Dodger Stadium performing alongside Frankie J. Below is a video of that performance.

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