Contact: Joe Vargo, Perris Public Information Officer
Phone: 951-956-2120

Perris Boogies Down and Honors City Volunteers

Mayor Daryl Busch introduces the volunteers who make Perris great. The mayor called volunteers “the unsung heroes” of Perris
Mayor Daryl Busch introduces the volunteers who make Perris great. The mayor called volunteers “the unsung heroes” of Perris.

Perris turned the clock back to the 1970s when disco music reigned supreme and dancing under laser lights while dressed in spandex pants was the thing to do on a Friday night.

The occasion was the annual Community Awards ceremony presented to City volunteers and the groups and businesses that provide Perris with a sense of civic pride Mayor Daryl Busch and members of the City Council said is second to none.

The band “Boogie Fever” provided the musical entertainment for the night’s festivities, belting out disco classics like “Stayin’ Alive,” “We Are Family,” “I Will Survive” and “Celebrate.” Dancers took the floor of the Bob Glass Gymnasium under a rotating glass ball and blue and green laser beams.

For many in the crowd, the highlight of the evening came when Busch and the City Council handed out plaques to nearly 20 individuals and groups who helped organize events like the annual Christmas Parade, the Rods-and-Rails Festival, volunteer at the Orange Empire Railway Museum, take part in the Perris Citizens Patrol and the Riverside County Sheriff Mounted Posse.

Shorty and Bob Stark receive their volunteer award
Shorty and Bob Stark receive their volunteer award.

“Last year, volunteers donate more than 2,200 hours of their own time to help out making Perris the outstanding community it is,” Busch said. “It is a privilege to acknowledge and honor them. They go out of their way to serve our City. They are the real unsung heroes of Perris.”

Councilman Al Landers said: “Volunteerism is what makes America America and it’s what makes Perris Perris.”

No one exemplified the spirit of service better than Jose Chavez, who was named Perris Volunteer of the Year. Chavez spent about 50 hours working at the 2009 Rods and Rails Festival, Perris’ annual tribute to hot rods and the City’s railroading past. His duties included registering contestants for the event, providing gift bags and helping with traffic flow the day of the festival and promoting the celebration afterwards. Even as Chavez accepted the honors, he downplayed his contributions to the Rods and Rails success.

“I’m just a small part of the overall effort,” he said. “In Perris, the community spirit is second to none.”

Chavez said he moved to Perris in 1997, attracted by what he viewed as a close-knit up-and-coming community. It’s a decision he’s never regretted. He says the City has plenty to offer—parades, festivals, community events—which are posted in timely fashion on Perris’ website,

The band Disco Fever provided the night’s entertainment
The band Boogie Fever provided the night’s entertainment.

“This City is all about community,” Chavez said. “Perris has pulled together in the right direction. It’s a beautiful area and everybody is friendly. It’s that great attitude that makes the City what it is. You really could not ask for anything better.”

Those sentiments drew a smile from City Councilwoman Rita Rogers.

“This is one of the most important events we hold in the City,” she said. “The people we are honoring tonight give so much of themselves, their time and energy, skills and leadership, to make this City a better place. It’s extremely important they be recognized.”