Fair Oaks Avenue, Rachel Robinson, widow of legendary Major League Baseball player Jackie Robinson, will be given the Key to the City of Pasadena - a first for an African American associated with the City of Pasadena and Mayor Bill Bogaard - at a historic ceremony hosted by the Robinson Park Master Plan Committee and co-hosts Mayor Bill Bogaard and City Councilman Chris Holden.
The highly anticipated free of charge public event is expected to bring thousands of Pasadena residents to Robinson Park. Beverly White, KNBC-TV Anchor/Reporter, will serve as mistress of ceremony. Also slated to attend are alumni members of the Los Angeles Dodgers and members of the champion WNBA Basketball Team, Los Angeles Sparks.
The Robinson Park Master Plan Committee and The City of Pasadena are proud to announce - during the Jackie Robinson All Star Weekend Celebration - the ground breaking of their $24 million Robinson Park Master Plan. The world class state of the art sports complex is currently named after two of Northwest Pasadena's most famous and visible role models, Jackie Robinson and his brother Matthew "Mack" Robinson. The community is currently in the process of re-naming the park, and two adjacent streets in honor of the brothers.
"The expansion and name change of the Robinson Park is a welcome occasion for the Northwest area. I am elated that the Jackie Robinson All Star Weekend will bring together Rachel Robinson, the City of Pasadena, the Los Angeles Dodgers and Los Angeles Sparks in a celebratory way at this Mother's Day event," said Ishmael Trone, co-chair of Robinson Master Plan Committee and event coordinator. "We trust that this relationship creates a long term benefit for all parties involved," Trone continued.
The Jackie Robinson All Star Weekend festivities, which will laud Jackie Robinson and his brother Matthew, is expected to be attended by national, local and state government officials, professional athletes, celebrity entertainers, sports executives and local community leaders and residents. The events have already attracted national and local media interest.
With the ground breaking of Robinson Park taking place on Saturday, May 9, 2009, Ms. Rachel Robinson's appearance in Pasadena on Mother's Day, May 10, 2009, provides a long awaited opportunity for the community to say "thank you" to the Robinson Family.
The Jackie Robinson Foundation is a public, not-for-profit, national organization founded in 1973 as a vehicle to perpetuate the memory of Jackie Robinson and his heroic achievements. It provides college and graduate school scholarships as well as leadership development opportunities for students of color with strong capabilities but limited financial resources.
The Robinson Park Master Plan Committee originated in January 2000 with the intention of revising the Robinson Park Master Plan. The Plan was developed through a community-driven design process, with many public meetings and workshops. The need for a new recreational center came about due to the size, layout and inadequate functionality of its current interior space.