Last Saturday, August 8, the new Arcadia pictorial history book Filipinos in Carson and the South Bay, authored by Carson couple Florante and Roselyn Ibanez, was introduced for the first time to a capacity audience of over 200 at the City of Carson Town Hall meeting entitled "Presentation on the History of Carson and the South Bay".
The lively and entertaining event, presented by the Filipino American Library (FAL), was held at the Carson Community Center . It was hosted by Carson Mayor Jim Dear and Councilwoman Julie Ruiz Raber. Also in attendance was Councilman Elito Santarina, past Councilwoman Lorelie Olaes, as well as various city commissioners. Assemblyman Warren Furutani of the 55th District talked about his Assembly Joint Resolution 65, “Preservation of Filipinos/Filipino American Communities”, which recognizes the history, cultural heritage, and role of Filipinos in the development of California .
Eloisa Borah, a UCLA librarian and Filipino American community historian, introduced the book’s subject matter and noted that a major reason early Filipinos settled in the South Bay area was that in order to get to Los Angeles they mainly arrived by ship at the ports of San Pedro and Long Beach. Talented performance artist Alison De La Cruz performed a spoken word piece on being a Pinay from Carson . Following a local history presentation using photos from their book, the authors joined a group of “activists from the 1970s” to lead the audience in singing “Profits Enslave the World” from a poem written by former United Farm Workers Vice-President Philip Vera Cruz. Before the book signing, everyone was invited to attend the next major book launch of Filipinos in Carson and the South Bay on Saturday, September 12 at 1:00-3:00pm at the Festival of Philippine Arts & Culture in Point Fermin Park, San Pedro. To close the event, Florante and Roselyn urged the audience to continue their own family history discussions and to produce more community resources that preserve our collective memory for future generations.