Tag Archives: san bernardino arts and culture

Celebrating local art and community at the 3rd Annual SBTC Sidewalk Chalk Art Contest

Over 100 community members, artists, and transit-riders gathered at the San Bernardino Transit Center on Saturday, October 20, 2018 for a visual experience that took spectators “around the world” at the 3rd Annual SBTC Sidewalk Chalk Art Contest.

Twenty-three artists showcased their talents at the transit center this year, adorning the concrete sidewalks with chalk works of art reflecting the theme – A Trip Around the World.

“Since last year’s contest, the San Bernardino Transit Center has welcomed Metrolink and a Riverside Transit Agency connection to improve connectivity for San Bernardino area residents,” said Omnitrans Marketing Manager Nicole Ramos. “These partnerships with neighboring transit agencies open up the possibilities for travel destinations and experiences beyond the San Bernardino County region, and we wanted to integrate the transit center’s growth as a transportation hub in this year’s celebration.”

Contestants competed individually, and in teams of two or three, while kids enjoyed a free painting class by The Art Barn of Cherry Valley. HOT 103.9’s DJ Jeff Pope kept the crowd entertained with an interactive prize wheel, unique raffles, and the latest hits, of course!

After two hours of arduous handwork, three judges from the local arts community – including the City of San Bernardino Fine Arts Commission and San Bernardino County Arts Connection – came together to deliberate and choose the top three winners, which was no easy task.

3rd Place Winners

3rd Place: Rachael B. and Ashley J., winners of $100. The duo’s art featured an exquisitely-drawn hot air balloon revolving around a bird’s-eye view of the world. The “envelope” exterior of the balloon included several international flags.

2nd Place Winner

2nd Place: Vivian L., winner of $150. Vivian’s creation featured a vibrant, colorful drawing of the Earth as the focal point, with excellent chalk handwriting and a decorative paper plane in flight accentuating her design.

1st Place: Isaac R., winner of the grand prize of $300. A two-time contest winner (Isaac previously took home the top prize at the inaugural event in 2016), Isaac’s impressive masterpiece featured four skillfully contoured and blended profiles of cultural icons around the world including: A Renaissance sculpture, a Japanese samurai, the Day of the Dead “Calavera Catrina”, and Buddha.

“We love showcasing the talents of local artists and seeing the transit center serve as a community gathering place along with being a busy regional transportation hub,” said Omnitrans spokesperson Wendy Williams.

View more photos of the event on Flickr. Keep an eye out for information on next year’s event – we’d love to see your art grace the competition!

Classical musicians play the San Bernardino Transit Center

Every day, an average of 5,000 passengers come through the San Bernardino Transit Center as they travel to work, home, health care appointments, and other destinations throughout the region. On Wednesday, February 22nd, however, customers were in for a special treat as the transit and classical music worlds collided for a special afternoon.

San Bernardino Symphony Orchestra principal cellist Ana Maria Maldonado and violinist Laura Rosky-Santori brought a taste of the arts and local culture to the transit center for two hours as they performed for riders, staff, and passers-by as part of the Fine Arts Lunch program.

“This was made possible through a two-year grant from the James Irvine Foundation,” says Anne L. Viricel, executive director of the San Bernardino Symphony Orchestra. “The grant seeks to test whether public perception of San Bernardino may improve through its fine arts community.”

Through the following months, musicians will conduct intimate public performances such as this at least three times each month in well-traveled areas around the city. 

Ana, who began playing the cello in the sixth grade, has been a performer in San Bernardino since 1980 after relocating to Southern California to attend graduate school at USC. She decided to make this home and now teaches at cello lessons and music theory classes at different universities including Cal State San Bernardino and Chaffey College.

“The symphony here has really fine players and Southern California is a really good place for classical musicians. We’re so glad we got this grant, so that we could get out and perform for the community,” says Ana.

Mary, an Omnitrans rider, was pleasantly surprised to arrive at the transit center to the live performance. “I’m a classical music devotee, so this is a real treat,” she enthused.

For Santiago, another Omnitrans passenger, the soothing sounds of the cello and violin took him back to a pleasant moment in his childhood. “It brings back memories of my uncle who used to play music for me and my family when I was six or seven years old,” he said. “This is beautiful.”

A sizeable crowd gathered over the two-hour period, with transit regulars and local community members stopping by during their lunch hour to enjoy the talents of our local artists. Omnitrans had a promotional booth with information and giveaways, much to the attendees’ delight.

“Omnitrans is always happy to partner with wonderful organizations like the San Bernardino Symphony to bring positive experiences to our community. Our goal has always been for the SBTC to be a true community space, so this event was a great fit,” explains Omnitrans Marketing Manager Nicole Ramos.