IT’S JELLY BELLY TIME!
After distributing more than 6,000 packets of Jelly Belly candy in 2014 through about a dozen outlets in both Temecula and Murrieta, the Friends of Ronald Reagan SP will to do it again this year, marking the commencement of Jelly Belly Week. But this year they will distribute more than 7,000 packets!
“We appreciate the fact,” notes Ed Dominguez, “that the Jelly Belly Candy Company in Fairfield, CA donates the Jelly Belly candies, which were President Ronald Reagan’s favorite.”
The all-volunteer non-profit group utilizes the occasion of the anniversary of Reagan’s birthday, February 6th, to honor the Can-Do Spirit. The Ronald Reagan Sports Park is an example of what can be achieved through a Can-Do initiative. In the late seventies, people who lived in the Temecula Valley rolled up their sleeves and built our first sports park, doing so without any government contribution.
This year, junior and senior high school volunteers stapled the Can-Do story onto each of those 7,000 (plus) packages, getting them ready for distribution. “That’s a bit of a Can-Do story in itself,” Dominguez points out. Omega Print assisted in the production of the informative attachments.
Another crew will deliver the Jelly Belly candy to various locations including: libraries, senior centers, City Hall, Chamber of Commerce, The Promenade, and locally elected officials. Stapled to each packet is not only the story of the Ronald Reagan Sports Park, but an invitation to the Tenth Annual Can-Do Celebration on March 7th.
To stress the importance of individual initiative, the organization sponsors Jelly Belly Week, February 1st to 7th and conducts an essay contest on the subject for third and fourth graders within the Temecula Valley Unified School District. The organization also honors a Temecula or Murrieta High School Senior who tells a personal Can-Do story at the Can-Do Day Celebration. In addition, the all volunteer board works to raise money to build a monument commemorating the achievement of those first volunteers.
“It is particularly relevant,” he observed, “during these dire economic times, to encourage individual initiative, for which Reagan recognized and praised our community’s original volunteers.”
This year, the candy packets will be distributed in Temecula, Murrieta and Menifee, while supplies last. Locations are listed on the Friends of Ronald Reagan SP website, www.RonaldReaganSportsPark.com.
Jelly Belly Week draws attention to several important points:
1. It highlights the special connection between President Reagan, who once owned land here, the Temecula Valley, and those volunteers who built the original sports park, now named after the late President.
2. It calls attention to the organization’s on-going effort to raise funds to build a monument in honor of those volunteers, a President who practiced it and the Can-Do spirit they demonstrated.
3. It allows us the opportunity to invite everyone to the Tenth Annual Can-Do Day Celebration. This year it will be held on Saturday, March 7th, starting 3 p.m., at the Community Recreation Center at the Ronald Reagan Sports Park. We look to honor outstanding members of the community who exemplify that spirit. The event is free and open to the public.
Temecula locations are: Temecula Valley Museum, Temecula Public Library, Temecula City Hall, Temecula Community Recreation Center, Temecula Chamber of Commerce, & Mary Phillips Senior Center.