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Pediatric patients ‘Spring into Reading’ with Big Hearts for Little Hearts Guild

LOMA LINDA, CA- Pediatric patients at Loma Linda University Children’s Hospital (LLUCH) were treated to an afternoon of crafts, reading and fairy tale visits at the annual “Spring into Reading” event in the hospital lobby on Monday, May 15.

Hosted by the Big Hearts for Little Hearts Loma Linda Guild, each patient received an age appropriate book to keep and a teddy bear. Young family members were also able to take a book and do crafts. 

As a special treat, author Shereen Rahming read aloud her new children’s book, “Ahni and Her Dancing Secret,” to those in attendance.

Patients who were not able to leave the units were given kits to craft at their bedside, as well as books and a teddy bear.

LLUCH patient Nixxin Castille, 2, from Hemet enjoyed making crafts with her mom, Nastacia Jones, who also helped her pick out a new book.

The Loma Linda Guild is committed to supporting the children hospitalized at LLUCH by developing programs and projects that address the critical needs of these children and their families. They have raised over $1.6 million since its inception in 1999.

Music Changing Lives Showcase was a Night to Remember!

IMG_0194MORENO VALLEY, CA- On Saturday, May 13, Music Changing Lives, (MCL) hosted a spectacular evening of student performances at the 6th annual Changing Lives Showcase.  The Showcase was held at the Moreno Valley Conference Center and featured talented students from Moreno Valley Unified who have worked passionately for 21 weeks on their performance to see ‘Who is the Best at Music and Art.’ 

The Showcase is no ordinary school competition, MCL rolled out the red carpet for its talented performers and  the fate of these young artists were in the hands of  celebrity guest judges from the EDMHipHopRebels group ZupaNova and the popular Pop group Holiday State.

The evening was a night to remember. As nearly 500 guests arrived they walked onto the red carpet, which led them to an art display to view the incredible student paintings, and then they entered the theater to be entertained by fantastic vocal, instrumental, audio production and dance performances. Guests were also treated to delicious food, delectable desserts, exciting raffles and the event was completely free for everyone invited.IMG_0101

Five schools from the Moreno Valley School District, where MCL offers its programs, brought their A-game to compete for the Bruny Awards. Participants competed for the Bruny Award in five categories – Musical Instruments, Vocal Performance, Production, Dance and Visual Arts, while the schools competed for Overall Performance.  Plus one student from each MCL school-site who held the highest GPA and had the best School Attendance was awarded with laptops!

The competition was fierce, but in the end Butterfield Elementary beat Edgemont Elementary and Mountain View Middle triumphed over Palm Middle and Bayside High reigned on top!

First place winner for the Bruny Award in Musical Instruments was Tanya Hernandez from Butterfield Elementary, Bonnie Murillo from Palm Middle and Isaac Ramirez from Bayside High!  In the Vocal category, Travonn Lester from Butterfield, Jehnny Carrion from Mountain View and IMG_0187 (2)D’ashawn Brown from Bayside reigned in first place.

Butterfield Dance Team dominated the elementary Dance category and took home the first place Bruny Award. Kamarie Henderson from Mountain View Middle triumphed over all other dancers and also took home the first place Bruny Award.  The very talented Ariana Gomez from Butterfield and Gabriela Sandoval from Palm both took home first place in Visual Arts.

Every student who participated was honored with a certificate from Senator Richard Roth’s office and Assemblymember Jose Medina for their dedication to make a difference in their community through the arts.  Each student who performed was required to volunteer for a minimum of five hours. Participants were instilled with the message, “Together we can be the change we would like to see in our community.”

Music Changing Lives, (MCL) created the Showcase six years ago for youth in Moreno Valley, and since then they have produced several musicians, artists, fashion designers and more.  The program was designed to ignite passion through performance by using music and art as a motivation for students to stay focused on their education and their future.


The Showcase is sponsored by Moreno Valley Unified School District, San Manuel Band of Mission Indians, Edison International, Wells Fargo Foundation, Niagara Cares Foundation, Kaiser Family Foundation and more. 

For more information about Music Changing Lives, please contact Josiah Bruny at MusicChangingLives@gmail.com or call 951-992-0721.  You can also visit them on the web at www.musicchanginglives.org.

City of Moreno Valley to Host Memorial Day Remembrances

MORENO VALLEY, CA- On Monday, May 29, the City of Moreno Valley will host several Memorial Day events to honor the sacrifices of our military men and women who selflessly laid down their lives defending our freedoms.

The day of somber remembrance begins in the morning with the annual West Coast Thunder Memorial Day Bike Ride/Parade along Sunnymead Blvd. The City of Moreno Valley will hold a Memorial Day Ceremony beginning at 2 p.m at the City’s Veterans Memorial.  

“It is important for the community to come together to honor the sacrifices made by our service men and women, and their families,” said Mayor Yxstian Gutierrez. “As a nation and as a community, we must always remember the high price of freedom – and those who paid that very dear price.”

West Coast Thunder Motorcycle Parade  

After the flag unfurling parade passes Riverside National Cemetery, the West Coast Thunder Bike Run/Parade will exit the 60 Freeway at Frederick St./Pigeon Pass Rd. at 9:30 a.m., then continue eastbound along Sunnymead Boulevard, re-entering California State Route 60 at Heacock St.

Riders will continue to Soboba Casino’s outdoor arena for a musical tribute to those who have given their lives for their country. 

The parade will last approximately an hour. Moreno Valley Police will begin closing the necessary streets at 8 a.m. to assist with the safety of all pedestrians and vehicles during this event. For road closure details, please visit the City of Moreno Valley’s website   

For information about the West Coast Thunder Memorial Day Bike Run, please visit www.westcoastthunder.com.

City of Moreno Valley Memorial Day Ceremony

Mayor Yxstian Gutierrez will preside over the Memorial Day Ceremony at the Veterans Memorial beginning at 2 p.m.

Major General Randall A. Ogden, Commander of the nation’s 4th Air Force, will deliver the keynote address.

Other special guests will include:

Mayor Pro Tem Victoria Baca

Council Member Jeffrey Giba

Council Member David Marquez

Blue Eagles Total Force Honor Guard

Moreno Valley Master Chorale

Valley View High School Vocalist Yensid Anderson

Vista Heights Middle School Student Speaker Morgan Lowry

 Light refreshments will be served and student artwork will be on display following the ceremony.  

Peanut Butter and Jelly Drive

The City of Moreno Valley is collecting donations of jars of peanut butter and jelly in support of a volunteer-led hospitality service for departing and returning war zone soldiers at March Air Reserve Base. Chunky peanut butter and strawberry and grape jelly are always in high demand. 

Please bring your donation of peanut butter and jelly to the Memorial Day ceremony to support our military members.