Schedule of events

FRIDAY:

8:30 a.m.: Mission Re-Dedication Ceremony features speeches from community members and student performances.

6 to 7 p.m.: Screening of the Emmy award-winning film, "Mendez vs. Westminster - For all the Children/Para Todos Los Ninos."

Sandra Robbie's documentary film tells of racial segregation in California schools, and the landmark court case that integrated them.

SATURDAY:

6 to 7 p.m.: "The Mission School Story"

Local historian Tom Atchley will lecture on the history of Mission School, from its pioneer roots in the old Asistencia, through five separate buildings, to the current revitalization of the 1937 building.

SUNDAY:

2 to 5 p.m.: Free grand re-opening celebration and 8th annual Loma Linda History Fair.

Event highlights include staff and student reunions, bell-ringing, guided tours by the architects, a Native American village, historical Mission School Displays and more.

Source: Loma Linda Parks and Historical Society

REDLANDS - Mission Elementary will be re-dedicated this weekend with three days of events to celebrate the occasion.

On Friday local dignitaries from local and state levels will gather at 8:30 a.m. for a formal re-dedication ceremony hosted by the Redlands Unified School Districts.

Student performances and speeches from community members - including Dr. Gary Thomas, San Bernardino County superintendent of schools, and local historian Tom Atchley, who will talk briefly about the history of Mission - are event highlights.

The ceremony will conclude with a ceremonial ringing of the Mission School Bell, which is the original school bell from when it was founded in the 1800s.

In the evening, the school will hold a screening of the Emmy-award winning film, "Mendez vs. Westminster - For all the Children/Para Todos Los Ninos" at 6 p.m.

On Saturday, Atchley will give a lecture on the history of Mission School from his book, "Mission School: A History," at 6 p.m. sponsored by the Loma Linda Parks and Historical Society.

On Sunday, the 8th annual Loma Linda Fair and Grand Re-Opening Celebration of Mission will take place from 2 to 5 p.m. and will feature staff and student reunions, bell-ringing, guided tours, displays, vintage autos and tractors.

All events will take place on the school's campus at 10568 California St.

Build in 1853, Mission School played a key role in the state's civil rights movement when the school opened its doors to students of any color in 1942, five years before racial integration became California law, said event organizers.

The school was closed for two decades - in the 1990s and 2000s - before the Redlands Unified School District and the city of Loma Linda took up a revitalization effort to restore the school.

Construction was in two phases, with the first completed prior to the 2011-12 school year.

"While we opened Mission last year with half the student population, the second phase - which is the main older building everyone sees from California Street - still needed another year for completion. So the re-dedication is being held this year because now the revitalization is complete and all the buildings and the grounds are the way it was planned to be," said Tim Hoch, Mission's principal. "We needed to make sure everything was done and the school was ready to present to the community.

"It's a fabulous looking building, campus."

Hoch said he is excited to see the campus buzzing this weekend.

"The community gets to see the culmination of the vision and the perseverance that our superintendent and the school board put into remaking this school a reality because it has such a long history," Hoch said. "We're a little biased, but we think it's the best resource the city of Loma Linda and the Redlands school district has to enjoy...., we think it's the prettiest gateway to Loma Linda."

Atchley, also a former Redlands High School teacher, said it was an honor to be considered to speak and share its history with the community.

Most recently he held a slide-show presentation on Mission to the Redlands Contemporary Club. His speech on Saturday will be similar and based on his book, which was published through the San Bernardino County Museum.

Books will be on sale at the event.

Atchley said he is hoping for a big turnout for his presentation, especially those who are current Mission students.

"What I know about their school is the coolest thing," he said.

For more information, contact the school at 909-307-2480.


Reach Kristina via email, call her at 909-793-3221, or on Twitter @TheFactsKris