Thumbs Up to Instructor’s Teacher of the Year Award

Photo courtesy Ericca Dent
Ericca Dent, a 2nd-grade teacher at Joaquin Miller Elementary, was one of 10 educators to be named the 2020-21 Teacher of the Year by Los Angeles County, an honor that has now been given to a Burbank Unified School District teacher for two consecutive years.

Every weekday morning, Joaquin Miller Elementary School teacher Ericca Dent greets her 2nd-graders by name and checks in on their emotional state by asking them to use their thumbs to express how they are feeling.
“Most students are thumbs up, but there are times it’s sideways or thumbs down,” she said.
Dent does the same to let the students know how she’s feeling and certainly had her thumb up on Friday, Oct. 2, after being congratulated by her class for being one of 10 educators named 2020-21 Teacher of the Year by Los Angeles County.
“A number of them congratulated me, and that was really sweet,” Dent said. “It definitely is an amazing feeling. Looking back at so much of the hard work I’ve done and the work with my students and being recognized, I’m honored and humbled for sure. It’s a great feeling.”
The L.A. County Office of Education held a virtual ceremony on Thursday, Oct. 1, to honor the winners. Dent will receive a $1,000 cash gift from the California Credit Union and a $350 gift certificate for school supplies.

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Mask Enforcement Report Pulled From Council Agenda

Photo by Christian Leonard / Burbank Leader
Councilman Jess Talamantes had requested a report regarding a potential fine for people not complying with face covering guidelines. After he asked that it be taken off the council’s Tuesday agenda, some residents expressed frustration.

The Burbank City Council this week didn’t discuss the possibility of fining people who don’t follow face-covering guidelines, as a report on the subject was withdrawn from a meeting’s agenda.
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Church, With City’s Help, Gives Food to 500 Families Today

Photo by Christian Leonard / Burbank Leader
“It’s not about the food,” said volunteer Amy Berger. “It’s about giving people a sense of community, that this is going to be over, but we’re all here to help each other out.”

After weeks of preparation, a local church, in partnership with Burbank’s Department of Parks and Recreation, is giving away food and other supplies to about 500 families today.
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Library and Teens Join Forces to Bring Good News

The Burbank Public Library wants to deliver good news to local residents with its “QuaranTEEN” web series, which premiered on the library’s YouTube page on Tuesday.

We all could use a little more positivity in our lives, and the Burbank Public Library is delivering it, with the help of local teens.
The library launched the first episode of “QuaranTEEN,” a web series that shares its name with a summer program designed to teach media production skills to local youth, on Tuesday. The students’ writing, production, editing and anchoring skills are on full display in the video — featuring an upbeat lifestyle story and a chat with a local club owner-restaurateur — posted on the library’s YouTube page.
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City Official: Local COVID Hospitalizations Fall

Hospitalizations due to COVID-19 are dropping in Burbank and Los Angeles County, a municipal official announced recently, and daily cases in the city also seem to be falling.
The availability of hospital beds in the county system has increased by about 15% in recent weeks, emergency management coordinator Eric Baumgardner told the City Council on Tuesday. He said he believes the increase reflects a decrease in hospitalizations caused by the novel coronavirus.
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Flag Store Was Legendary, Its Late Owner Steadfast

Photo courtesy Alison Bryan
Roz Cannon, longtime president of James E. Perry Co. Flag Headquarters, worked ceaselessly at her desk — even on her 90th birthday.

When longtime customers visited Roz Cannon’s flag store after her death, they came to mourn.
The depth of their sorrow was surprising, according to her daughter Mona — but then again, the 94-year-old woman knew how to develop relationships with people, including her clientele.
Roz Cannon was the president of James E. Perry Co. Flag Headquarters, a flag manufacturing and distributing business in Burbank whose banners have appeared in the film “Independence Day” and the “Pirates of the Caribbean” series, and above many municipal and county buildings.
She was also the daughter of Russian immigrants, grew up burdened with responsibilities at an early age during the Great Depression, and was simultaneously generous and — in the way moms can sometimes be — critical, Mona Cannon explained. But her legacy also was one of kindness and tenderness.
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Awaiting the Day When Starlight Makes Memories Anew

The Starlight Bowl’s audience in 2019.

By David Laurell
Special to the Burbank Leader

I believe memories are our most prized possessions, and while I have many fond ones of past Fourth of July parades, picnics, parties and pyrotechnic performances, nothing will ever beat my flashback to 2003, when I served as guest conductor of the Burbank Philharmonic Orchestra at the Starlight Bowl.
After going through an afternoon session of conducting for dummies taught by Philharmonic music director Steve Kerstein, I had the basics needed to get the musicians through John Philip Sousa’s “The Stars and Stripes Forever.”
That evening, Maestro Kerstein introduced me and turned over the leadership of his orchestra to a guy whose musical talents consist of being able to download what I enjoy listening to.
Moments later, as I signaled the orchestra to commence, I learned something only those who have had the opportunity to stand in front of 80 musicians as they are playing know: Your entire body becomes enveloped in vibrations and you experience the sound of each instrument in its purest form, in that you are behind the theater’s amplification system. Continue reading “Awaiting the Day When Starlight Makes Memories Anew”

Project Hope Offers Relief, Reassurance to Vulnerable Residents

Photo courtesy Burbank Volunteer Program
The Burbank Volunteer Program team helping to coordinate Project Hope, which pairs older adults and volunteers so those at risk can safely stay in their homes, includes recreation coordinator Marcus Munguia, Aimmy Galvan and Lacey Cabrera.

If the people can’t come to the city’s support program, the program will go to the people.
The Burbank Volunteer Program started a group dedicated to supporting older adults and people with mobility challenges a few years ago, long before the coronavirus pandemic took hold and effectively kept anyone at risk for health complications from the disease completely quarantined.
Now that group, Project Hope, has further embodied its name by offering — at no charge — to do essential errands like grocery shopping and prescription refill pickup through a small army of volunteers, who’ve also extended companionship to those who’ve had to self-isolate, especially those who live alone.
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BUSD Spared From Big Budget Cuts for Now

School districts across California scored a big victory on Monday when Gov. Gavin Newsom announced an agreement with the Legislature on a 2020-21 state budget that will avoid the drastic cuts in school funding that initially were proposed in May, allowing the Burbank Unified School District Board of Education to sigh with relief Thursday as it adopted a budget for the next fiscal year.
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