Today, Senator George Runner announced that Governor Schwarzenegger signed legislation (Senate Bill 944) that will make February 6 Ronald Reagan Day. February 6, 2011 will mark what would have been the 100th birthday of President Reagan. Schwarzenegger also signed a bill that creates a commission which will result in various forms of celebration of Reagan during 2011.
Runner said the special day for Reagan will not create a state holiday or cost taxpayers money. Instead, Reagan Day will be what is called “a day of special significance” such as those celebrating John Muir, California teachers and the California Poppy.
When enacted, SB 944 will formally encourage the celebration of the life and legacy of President Reagan throughout California’s schools. Executive Director of the Ronald Reagan Centennial Celebration, Stewart McLaurin, reports that the Reagan Foundation will be distributing a curriculum to schools to teach children about the American Legacy and Ronald Reagan.
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“It’s important for California school children to study a meaningful and well-known political leader like Reagan, whose earlier accomplishments are a model of personal responsibility and an inspiration to young, developing minds,” Runner said.
“Reagan was a leader who could have very intense philosophical and political differences with opponents, but at the end of the day, he was still a respecter of that individual and did not attack or tear down that individual personally. I believe that we have lost so much civility in our public discourse today and I think that this is an example of a leader who exemplified this type of character that you can disagree…but remember that it is important to always respect that person.” McLaurin explained why he thought it was important for the youth of America who may not have known Reagan as governor or President to learn about him on the day of celebration.
A Ronald Reagan-themed float will be entered in the 2011 Tournament of Roses parade. The weekend of Reagan’s birthday, February 5 and 6, will feature many celebrations including a concert, ribbon cutting for a newly enhanced part of the Ronald Reagan Museum, F18 flight off of the USS Ronald Reagan, and a 21-gun salute.
For more information about the upcoming Ronald Reagan celebrations, visit www.reagancentennial.com.