Culture in the Community introduces Ten-Year Master Plan


City of San Ramon

Ronit Kumar, Sports Editor

The city of San Ramon celebrated their diversity in the Culture in the Community event for the second year in a row. The city council suggested the Ten-Year Master Plan to further improve the well-being of San Ramon.

The Parks and Community Services Department has taken the initiative to reach out to the community for constructive feedback on the enhancement of the city’s facilities, namely their parks and their maintenance. They plan to incorporate the feedback to create a plan for what they aim to accomplish in the next 10 years.

“Right now, we are developing the goals we are trying to ask the community. Throughout the year, we will develop a master plan for what we wish to accomplish in the next 10 years,” City Consultant Stephanie Grigsby said.

The department came up with six themes: innovation and vision, mobility and connectivity, diversity and wellbeing, recreation and community, access to nature, and fiscal sustainability. The visitors at the event took the opportunity to write post-its about what the city has done well so far and what the city should enhance for each theme.

“The opportunity for the master plan is to find out what the community wants from the master plan. It will be a great opportunity from the whole community. We will also have these tables set up at other events,” San Ramon Parks and Community Services Program Manager Brad Morris said.

The general consensus of the visitors was that the art and cultural displays at events should be increased to the same level as the Culture in the Community event. In addition, many people advised the council to improve the community sense of belonging. Lastly, a vast majority of people wanted the city to lay greater emphasis on trails and open space connectivity, as San Ramon is famous for its numerous parks, trails, and displays of nature.

“It’s my expectation that when the Parks and Community Services Department accumulates their recommendations from the community, they will find their main goals,” San Ramon Mayor Bill Clarkson said.

Besides the grand introduction of the ten-year plan, the Culture in the Community event displayed San Ramon’s cultural diversity in many ways. There were cultural booths in nearly every room and even right outside the community center. For example, the Chinese booth, located in the Fountain Room, had a beautiful exhibition of porcelain and traditional Chinese paintings for visitors to explore.

In addition, many visitors spent most of their time sitting in the Fountain Room and watching cultural performances on stage. At one point, the Russian Drama Club performed their typical folk dance followed by a brief explanation of their traditions. Similarly, other ethnic groups also performed their traditional acts. In contrast to the previous year, , the city decided to use the amphitheater stage as well. This reduced the crowding in the Fountain Room, a major complaint from last year’s event.

“This is our second year. This year, we expanded the entertainment. We also have two stages. We could spread out the booths so it’s not as packed like last year,” Morris said. “We also have a sports area where they demonstrate different sports such as cricket.”

Other changes from last year include more food trucks, a greater  variety of sports demonstrations, and a larger area to conduct the event. The cultural booths were more spread apart both inside and outside the community center to reduce the crowding that occurred  last year. In addition, volunteers, including DV students, had a more flexible schedule at the event this year.

“The city community comes together at this event. Also, the volunteers are able to enjoy themselves more this year,” Mayor Clarkson said.

As a result, the Culture in the Community event was a great way for people of all ages to relax  on Sunday and enjoy interacting with other members of the community while taking pride in their diversity. When asked about improvements for next year, San Ramon Vice Mayor Phil O’Loane said, “We want to get more countries to participate. Germany is missing from the list. There are only 28 countries. There are far more immigrants living in San Ramon.”