Plans to celebrate the centennial of the incorporation of the city of Ceres were reviewed - and blessed - by the Ceres City Council on Monday.
A commemorative coin, shirts, hats and sweatshirt, band performances and a string of events next year are some of the ideas a special committee has brainstormed to help Ceres celebrate. Perhaps the most ambitious of plans is the creation of a Centennial Plaza on Fourth Street. Chad Kennedy of O'Dell Engineering volunteered to draw a design for a feature at the corner of Fourth Street and Magnolia. To build the structure the committee needs to raise approximately $15,000 and is expected to send out a sponsorship opportunity letter.
Ceres was incorporated as a city on Feb. 25, 1918 and a committee (comprised of Chairperson Paul Caruso, Laura Akin, Lee and Sheila Brandt, Angie Smith, Lisa Mantarro Moore, Sharon Caruso, Sheryl Trout, Angela Huerta, Debbie Sewell, Channce Condit and Couper Condit) has been planning a celebration, kicking off in February and celebrating into the summertime with a special focus on participating in the 2018 Street Faire and Concerts in the Park.
The committee will brand the yearlong celebration with the slogan of "Celebrating our Community" and a logo designed by Central Valley High School student Daisy Villafan with "100" incorporated into the design.
City staff won council approval to use the Centennial logo on city letterhead for 2018.
The Committee is recommending celebrating the centennial at a number of events throughout 2018 including the Feb. 26 City Council meeting with dignitaries present, a "Taste of Ceres Gala" on Friday March 23 at the Community Center, during the May 5-6 Street Faire, at the summer Concerts in the Park series and at the Halloween Festival and Christmas Festival in 2018. Details about the celebrations will be added to the "City of Ceres Centennial Celebration" Facebook page as well as links from other city social media.
The committee also developed a mission statement: "... to commemorate and celebrate 100 great years of our City. Through planned events, activities and commemorative products, the goal of our committee is to bring our citizens together to celebrate the birthday of the ever-growing community in which we live, work and play.
"By encouraging City of Ceres residents and businesses to participate in this 100th birthday party, we will foster community partnerships and create civic pride. We are not only honoring the past and where our City has come from, but also focusing on the future and where it is going. It's time to say ‘cheers' to the last 100 years of our City and look forward to our next 100!"
The centennial will mark the 100th anniversary of the incorporation of the city of Ceres although Ceres itself traces its founding back to 1869. The first recorded map of the town of Ceres was filed Feb. 20, 1875. Ceres was incorporated as a city on March 4, 1918 and serving as the first mayor was S.W. Cartwright who served only a month and nine days until the first city election was held on April 8, 1918. Vaughn D. Whitmore beat out Cartwright by a single vote to become Ceres' first elected mayor with 28 votes. Besides Whitmore and Cartwright, elected to the first City Council were C.T. Haynes, J.U. Gartin and C.H. Sikes.