The historic Roosevelt Bowl at Perris Hill Park in San Bernardino is (surrounded by stately oaks, which provide shade for the open-air seating.
The historic Roosevelt Bowl at Perris Hill Park in San Bernardino is (surrounded by stately oaks, which provide shade for the open-air seating. Credit: takano.house.gov

S. E. Williams |

On Monday, January 23rd at 10:30 am, Congressman Pete Aguilar will announce $1.4 million in funding from the recently approved Federal budget to restore, renovate, and upgrade the historic Roosevelt Bowl at Perris Hill Park in San Bernardino. The Roosevelt Bowl is located at 925 E Highland Ave, San Bernardino. 

Joining Congressman Aguilar will be San Bernardino Mayor Helen Tran, city officials, and members of local arts organizations and community groups. The event will include an announcement, presentation, and walking tour. 

Nestled against the hill, the 1,800-seat outdoor Roosevelt Bowl amphitheater was built and dedicated in 1934 as part of the Federal Work Progress Administration (W.P.A.). The Bowl is surrounded by stately oaks, which provide shade for the open-air seating. The retaining wall, a mosaic of stonework, reflects the architecture of the period as well as the labor-intensive style of the depression era W.P.A. For many years, the Roosevelt Bowl was a featured gathering place in San Bernardino for musical, artistic, and cultural performances, civic events, and graduations.

For many years, the Roosevelt Bowl was a featured gathering place in San Bernardino for musical, artistic, and cultural performances, civic events, and graduations. (takano.house.gov).

As a result of the City’s bankruptcy, funding in recent years was prioritized on essential core services and spending was cut on maintenance at facilities such as the Roosevelt Bowl. 

In 2022, the San Bernardino Mayor and city council committed $600,000 to begin the renovation of the historic Bowl. The $1.4 million in federal funds will enable the city to complete the restoration. 

Summer Concerts

Improvements will include the installation of fencing, renovation to the building (including the roof), external concession stand and bathroom (upgrading the facility to be compliant with the American with Disabilities Act), concrete and electrical work, restoration of the walkway access trail, upgrades to lighting and sound systems, renovations to the dressing rooms, and restoration of landscaping and irrigation. 

While the renovations are expected to take approximately one year to complete, San Bernardino plans on bringing back a summer concert series at the Bowl in June.

S.E. Williams

Stephanie Williams is executive editor of the IE Voice and Black Voice News. A longtime champion for civil rights and social justice in all its forms, she is also an advocate for government transparency and committed to ferreting out and exposing government corruption. Over the years Stephanie has reported for other publications in the inland region and Los Angeles and received awards from the California News Publishers Association for her investigative reporting and Ethnic Media Services for her weekly column, Keeping it Real. She also served as a Health Journalism Fellow with the USC Annenberg Center for Health Journalism. Contact Stephanie with tips, comments. or concerns at myopinion@ievoice.com.