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Glendale Waits for More Birthday Cards

February 20, 1986|JOHN C. BRAZINGTON | Times Staff Writer

The City of Glendale hopes to receive lots of cards for its 80th birthday. It launched several hundred by balloon at a celebration Sunday, and hopes the finders will send them back.

An estimated 1,000 celebrants listened to a jazz band and speeches, munched on cakes and drank coffee at the Civic Auditorium during a break in a rainy weekend.

The highlight of the party was the release of the balloons, each carrying a postcard with a participant's name. Prizes will be awarded to the sender and receiver of the card found the farthest from Glendale and returned by March 16.

"It's Great to be 80" was the theme of the celebration. Free transportation to the party was provided for hundreds of senior citizens on Glendale's Beeline shuttle buses from three housing projects for seniors and from the Glendale Adult Recreation Center.

Settlement of Glendale began in 1784, when Jose Maria Berdugo--the spelling was later changed to Verdugo--was given a land grant by California's governor for Rancho San Rafael, a 36,000-acre spread.

The area was named Glendale in 1884, and three years later a map was filed with the Los Angeles County recorder. The city was incorporated on Feb. 16, 1906.

About 149,000 people now live within Glendale's 30.5 square miles.

About 20 people who will turn 80 this year received special honors at the party. One of those was Herbert Watson, who said he and his wife, Mildred, sampled all 15 flavors of cakes served.

Another resident, Margaret Kirk, 75, of Glendale, a retired nurse, said she enjoyed speeches by state Sen. Newton R. Russell (R-Glendale) and Los Angeles County Supervisor Mike Antonovich because they helped her get Medicare and Social Security benefits. The officials were at the party to present Mayor Jerold Milner with a plaque and a resolution honoring the city's anniversary.

Before cutting a giant cake, Milner read a letter from President Reagan, who had been invited. The letter read: "Each city and town of our great country is unique, but we are bound together in the love of these United States. We are fortunate to live in a nation of strong and proud communities where everyone has a chance for success and the blessings of liberty and freedom can be enjoyed by all, regardless of background."

The party also marked the first appearance by Miss Glendale, Kanehan Hundal, selected Saturday. Two members of her court, Samantha Kenady and Madelin Carracela, also attended.

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