Commons Event Celebrates Incorporation

Colin Jones, Staff Writer

Citizens celebrated their town in the Toast to Moraga event held in the Moraga Commons on September 27. Festivities included live music, speeches by town authorities, and a table-decorating contest. The Toast to Moraga was a celebration of the 40th anniversary of the Town of Moraga’s incorporation.

The event, which ran from roughly 5:30pm to 8:00pm, was set in the field next to the Moraga Commons parking lot. Tables could be reserved for $35 each and were decorated by the party that reserved them.  Ken Chew, Moraga’s mayor, was one of the guests renting a table.

Students were also involved in the event. Two members of the Campolindo video production team, sophomores Jack Moser and Frenel Francisco, were filming parts of the event. “We got hired by this festival to film this event,” said Francisco. “We’re filming the band.” The two students said that they were paid $100 for the job.

The band providing entertainment was also from Campolindo. Seniors Jasper Gill, Yifan Hong, Kourosh Arasteh, and Josh Sherman played jazz standards and remixed versions of modern hits for the duration of the party. “The Parks and Recreation Department gave a shout-out to us [and asked us to play here],” Arasteh said.

Of the few dozen tables set up in the field, many of them were decorated extravagantly with sculptures celebrating 40 years of Moraga. Entries in the contest included a metal sculpture representing Moraga’s ranch days, a tree bearing 40 pears, each one representing one year of Moraga’s life, and homemade glass-blown vases.

“All of our wonderful [volunteer] staff did most of the work,” said Chew, referring to the volunteers that helped design the celebration.

Moraga Recreation and Facilities Director Kimberly Nelson spearheaded the party. “We were asked by the Town Council about a year ago to start thinking about how we were going to celebrate our 40th anniversary of incorporation,” she said. “We wanted it to be very community-oriented. That’s how we came up with the idea of [making an event like] the way people celebrate at home- they share a meal and get together with family.”