Brea Old and New: Tick-Tock, History Isn't So Boring After All™ ~ Charlie the Clock

Mariposa Elementary

  • 2015-2016 PTA Reflections Program creative results!

    4 years ago by

    Helen Newland and Rosemary Kleiser co-chaired the Brea PTA Reflections program. The contest is a national arts competition. Winners were awarded a medal and certificate.

    Some of the award winners of the Reflections PTA contest included (left to right) Devin Hall, photography, Dominique Chen, literature, and Alexander Telly, film.(Courtesy Rosemary Kleiser)

    Some of the award winners of the Reflections PTA contest included (left to right) Devin Hall, photography, Dominique Chen, literature, and Alexander Telly, film.(Courtesy Rosemary Kleiser)

      “The PTA Reflections theme this year is Let Your Imagination Fly,” Helen said. “Wow, did the students from Arovista Elementary, Brea Country Hills Elementary, Brea Junior High, Brea Olinda High School, Laurel Elementary, Mariposa Elementary and William E. Fanning Elementary do just that.”

        Some 171 students entered the judged contest, which includes arts from dance choreography and film production to literature and visual arts.

          “It was a wonderful way students could express their talents and imagination,” Rosemary said. She thanked Brea Woods seniors who were the judges.

            Winners included Lexi Alives, Evelyn Burt, Dominique Chen, Nathan Doh, Devin Hall, Si Woo Kim, Alexander Telly and Nolan Witt.

              Honorable mentions went to Steve Clark, Andrew Gandora, Esmeralda Garcia, Danielle Kim, Novelly Torres and Dominique Zenzola.

                Any news? Give Susan Gaede a jingle at 714-529-8561 or email her at

  • Come see Seussical the Musical starring Brea elementary students

    4 years ago by


      By CC Giang, community publicity volunteer for Seussical production.

        Seussical tickets are up for grabs starting this Sunday, November 8 to the public. Don't miss out, it is a sold out event each year. Come see your fellow classmates and friends perform in this fun and silly production. Fanning coordinates an all inclusive production for all six elementary schools every year to promote Arts and Music for our kids. Come and support us and see if this is something your child might be interested in joining next year. Registration is always FREE!

          What an exciting and great opportunity for our Brea kids!!! To see the show, tickets will go on sale this Sunday at the Brea High School starting at 12:00-6:30. Only $10.00 per ticket with the following show times to choose from:

            November 12, Thursday @6:30

              November 13, Friday @7:00

                November 14, Saturday @2:00

                  November 14, Saturday @7:00

                    November 15, Sunday @2:00

                      November 15, Sunday @6:30

                        Hope to see you there!

  • Mariposa Principal, Howard Bryden, Celebration of Life Memorial

    7 years ago by

    Howard Bryden, 82, passed away March 6. He worked for the Brea Olinda School District for 37 years. He was principal of Mariposa School for 27 years. (courtesy photo Bryden family)

      Brea John Bryden shared his thoughts about his Father’s Celebration Of Life on Facebook, “Thanks for the hugs, kind words, and funny stories. It was a wonderful reunion with beloved Brea teachers, friends, and family. Growing up in Brea rocked.”

        More than 500 people attended the uplifting funeral on March 16 for the former Mariposa School Principal Howard Dunton Bryden, who was 82 years old when he passed. The memorial was filled with love and laughter from all who attended. Former Mariposa teachers Rita Hood, Becky Cotton Martin, and school clerk Sue Nowers put on a skit highlighting Howard’s life and shared special memories with the audience. We were reminded about seeing Howard walk all over town. Also about his love of Mariposa School's May Day celebration, Morning Sing, how he always knew everyone's name, and his patriotism and devotion to the school. In fact, he had such dedication he still wore the Mariposa School sweatshirt well into his 80‘s. His daughter Becky had even called the school recently to see if they had any extras because he wouldn’t take it off long enough for her to wash it.

          His children William, John, Julie, Craig and Rebecca were taught “Do it well, or not all.” They each told how their Dad touched their lives. Dr. Helene Cunningham was a student at Mariposa and is now the principal. She told us about the high standards Howard set. She said his love of the arts would live on.

            Kris Mac Kain said in an e-mail Mr. Bryden was her favorite teacher and she remembered she had to write, "Any superfluous gesticulation from the oral aperture is not needed and certainly not appreciated.” because she talked (too much) when she should have been listening.

              You could hear a pin drop at the services for Howard when a letter about him was read from Ralph’s Grocery part it said, “You could turn a tough day into a better one in an instant. You always remembered our names and those of many of our customers. Everyone knew you. When you walk in the door it would remind us of the sit-com “Cheers.” Everyone would announce “Howard”. It could be heard thoughout the store. Also the honking of cars all over town as you walked around. Certainly many witnessed that! Howard, if the world had more people like you it would be a much better place.

                He served 27 years as principal of Mariposa School, more than any other principal at one school in Brea. In the summers he was a train conductor at Disneyland from 1958 to 1964. Howard’s million dollar smile, and enthusiasm for learning will be greatly missed by all who knew him.

                  Susan Gaede has cast her eye on local news for more than 35 years. Contact her at 714-529-8561 or e-mail

  • City of Brea’s Annual Tree Lighting Ceremony

    7 years ago by

    The City of Brea’s traditional annual Tree Lighting ceremony is slated for Thursday, December 6 at 6:30 p.m. at the Civic & Cultural Center. This event is anticipated by many as it sets the perfect holiday scene for merriment for the entire family, which includes the arrival of Santa Claus and musical performances by the Mariposa Monarchs 2nd Grade Choir, The Singing Pastors and Brea Gaslight Chorus.

    In addition, delicious cookies and hot chocolate will be provided courtesy of the Corner Bakery. And 5x7 photos with Santa by LaNeve Photography will be available for only $5.

    It takes takes a team to put together a spectacular community event: Special thanks to North Hills Church, Memory Garden Memorial Park and Brea Lions Club.

    There is no admission to attend this event. For further information, please call (714) 990-7771 or visit

  • Ann Meyers Drysdale gives pointers to traveling Ladycats Club Team

    7 years ago by

    Pictured is Ann Meyers Drysdale with Mariposa 6th graders before she left to broadcast basketball for the Olympics.

    People:  Jackie and Doug Johnson invited Ann Meyers Drysdale to their home before Annie left to broadcast women's Olympic basketball for NBC. The Johnson's daughter Lindsey, a 6th grader at Mariposa Elementary school plays travel ball for the Ladycats Club team. Her teammates were also invited to meet Ann. Jackie said Ann was so great with the girls, sharing the history of women in college and pro sports and giving them all valuable advice on how to become successful women in college and in life.
    Susan Gaede

  • Unwavering Patriotism: Sally Edmunds, Brea teacher, retires after 28 years volunteering for Mariposa flag program

    7 years ago by

    Sally Edmunds, Brea teacher recently retired. Sally was also a volunteer director for the Mariposa flag program the past 28 years

    Sally Edmunds volunteered to direct the music for the Mariposa flag program 28 years ago. She continued directing the event for the next 28 years chorographing the dances etc. The entire school participates in the yearly patrotic production. Mariposa School received the Valley Forge Freedom Award and the George Washington Medal of Honor for their patriotic program. Sally was honored at the recent Mariposa flag program and presented a necklace with charms representing her life.  She retired a few weeks ago from the school district after teaching at all the elementary schools, junior high, and high school. She will be so missed!   Susan Gaede

  • Dr. Helene Cunningham of Mariposa named 2012 National Distinguished Principal Finalist

    8 years ago by

    Dr. Helene Cunningham (Mariposa School)

    In great company with extraordinary school leaders throughout the state, Dr. Helene Cunningham 1987 Brea Olinda High School graduate and current Mariposa principal, is The National Distinguished Principal California finalist. Ranked #2 from the Association of California Administrators and the National Association of Elementary School Principals, Helene was one of the youngest principals in California when she began as a principal. Helene represents the best of the best. Brea Superintendent Dr. Skip Roland said "The silver medal is impressive too!" Parent Jeanne Steffanni recognized Dr. Cunningham at their annual Flag Day Ceremony in June, stating, "Dr. C knows her students. She makes it a point to recognize their strengths and make them feel a part of the Mariposa family." Community members, teachers, colleagues, and Mariposa parents wrote letters of recommendation on behalf of Dr. C for this award.  The program recognizes and celebrate principals who set high standards for instruction, student achievement, character, and climate for the students, families, and staffs in their learning communities. Mariposa Elementary School currently has the highest possible state ranking of 10 out of 10 for student achievement, and the school’s API (Academic Performance Index) is 924. Mariposa has received many awards over the past few years including: 2012 California Distinguished School, 2011 California Business for Education Excellence Honor Roll School, and 2008 Project Tomorrow’s Innovation in Education Award for Innovative School Program of the Year.”

    Susan Gaede

  • Celebrating 11 years of History Days in Brea

    8 years ago by

    For the past 11 years third grade students from Brea’s elementary schools celebrate History Days in Brea.  On May 23 and 24, BOUSD students will take a two-day field trip around town to learn about Brea’s history.

    With every significant project implemented, there is a story.  Over a decade ago, Mayor Don Schweitzer's eldest daughter, now in the second year of college, came home from her third grade class and told her dad that her teacher said they were going to learn about Brea’s history.  Don figured the teacher was going to take her students to our little history museum/store located where Guitar Center is now situated. So he contacted his daughter’s teacher and was surprised, when the teacher said she did not know Brea had a museum.  At that point, Don offered to take the children to the museum, the teacher agreed, word traveled, and all the third grade classes wanted to participate.  And so History Days in Brea began!

    Today it is a well organized event.  The two day event will consist of three busses per day taking students on a history tour to locations such as Craig Park and Brea Canyon.  They will also stop for 45 minutes at the Brea Museum, Brea Civic Center, and Olinda Oil Museum and Trail. Brea Olinda High School ASB students and museum staff will meet the children dressed up in historical garb wearing costumes such as oil workers, baseball players, school teachers and aviation workers. The kids enjoy the added effect of role playing while learning the story of Brea’s rich history. Over at the Civic Center, a mock council meeting is held to give the children an understanding of what goes on in a city council meeting.  Right down to needles and thread, everyone does a great job to add to History Days in Brea, as ASB students make the costumes needed for the occasion.

    One teacher’s idea, one person’s action and 11 years later, a wonderfully fun history lesson is given to area students!



  • Kiwanis Club of Brea 27th Annual Student Essay Contest Winners

    8 years ago by

    The Elementary School Kiwanis Club of Brea Essay winners.

    Essay contest: Catherine Houston and Dr Helene Cunningham, Mariposa Principal, co-hosted the Kiwanis Club of Brea 27th Annual Student Essay Contest.  The 2012 Essay Theme was "As President  of The United States, I Would..." and  embodied the characteristics of - Trustworthiness, Respect, Responsibility,  Fairness, Caring and Citizenship.
    The Essay winners were Saigen Torres (Arovista), Clara Kang (Country Hills), Makaila  Slife (Fanning), Nathan Hackman (Laurel), Iliana Rodriguez (Mariposa), Elaine  Lin (Olinda), Camille Wedin (Brea Jr HS) and Matthew Hernandez (BCHS). Each winner received a plaque. The best essay winner, Matthew Hernandez, also  received a $100 award...Congratulations to all!.
    Story by Susan Gaede

    Brea Canyon High/Brea Junior High winners: Mathew Hernanex- Cannon High and Carmille Wedin- Brea Jr. High