In a matter of a month, a page that was created to be about the City of Brentwood has garnered nearly 1,600 “likes” and continues to grow as it catches the eye of both residents and elected officials.
Created on October 26, the Facebook page “I Love Brentwood” highlights current events, historical photos while shearing information about local businesses. It captures the essence of Brentwood’s past and present community. It invites everyone to contribute.
The page contains pictures that date back to the early 1900’s while showcasing the life that once was. Most recently, there are pictures from this weekend’s Holiday Parade in downtown Brentwood.
One might assume a local historian was the person behind this community page, however, that is furthest from reality. The creator actually didn’t even live in California two months ago, let alone in the County.
The creator is Charan Dhaliwal, an 18-year-old who moved to Brentwood in September from India.
Dhaliwal started the page by posting new and historical photos of Brentwood. His brother Rachen, helped him invite people to like the page. Then things took off. People started sharing their own stories and photographs.
“One day I was sitting in my office at Subway and I had an idea,” said Dhaliwal. “I wanted to make a Facebook Page about Brentwood where people can unite, make friends and share their photos and things they actually want to share with people, but never have the chance.”
Brentwood Vice Mayor Joel Bryant recently “liked” the page and is in full support of its intention.
“This page is special,” says Bryant. “It allows those of us whom have lived here awhile, to get a fresh perspective on just how unique and special the heritage is, as well as what we are surrounded by every day in Brentwood.”
City Councilman Gene Clare agrees.
Dhaliwal added that he wanted to start the Facebook page because he loves Brentwood.
“I Love Brentwood is a place where we can still be a part of Brentwood’s small town charm of days gone by,” said Clare.
“The thing I love most about Brentwood is people who live here,” said Dhaliwal. “People here are so friendly and I love them.”
He also loves the weather and Brentwood’s natural surroundings.
“The mountains are beautiful and when it’s windy, light clouds seem to blow everywhere,” said Dhaliwal.
Brentwood’s small-town feel is something Dhaliwal isn’t used to. “Its small-town feel is so friendly, and for me its best,” said Dhaliwal. “I want Brentwood to develop so that everyone in United States as well as the world gets to know to our city.”
Dhaliwal was quick to share that there are stark contrasts between living in Brentwood and his life in India was far different than that here.
His family lived in Punjab, an agricultural state in India. His hometown Ludhiana, is an industrial town filled with large factories and cotton mills. While the population in Brentwood is under 60,000, Ludhiana’s population is over 1.7 million people.
“There was so much crime in my city,” said Dhaliwal.
He explained that there weren’t a lot of jobs available in India, so everyone had too much free time. Currently he is working at Subway managing delivery work while enrolled in school.
“I always wanted to work in India, but there was no chance that I could get a job,” he explained.
Dwhaliwal is thankful that students can find jobs in California.
“It’s so good,” he says. “It makes a person responsible. When young students work they get to know the value of money.”
Dwhaliwal noticed that here people are so busy working that they hardly have time to meet new friends.
The beauty of the page is it’s a page for everyone who “Loves Brentwood”. The page urges residents to share photos, advertise your business or visit the page to find out what’s going on in the city. Resident’s share their own stories as well.
There are first-hand tales of historical fires, including one that happened at the original Liberty High School during Prom.
One resident who was there shared that students continued to dance while the building they were in was burning down. The fire department had to shoo the students out of the smoke-filled, burning building.
Cuauhtemuc Ordaz, who grew up picking fresh fruit and vegetables in Brentwood shared a picture of Brentwood’ harvest, dedicating it to “the men and women who worked and still work harvesting the orchards and fields Brentwood.”
There are pictures of the infamous flood in 1949, children playing in snow that covered Brentwood in 1988 and other priceless memories.
When Dhaliwal’s father told him how much money businesses spend on advertising, Dhaliwal decided to expand the content of the page. He invited businesses to advertise on his page for free. Anyone can share something on his page at no cost.
Dhaliwal’s goal is for everyone in Brentwood to know about his page.
You can visit the I Love Brentwood Facebook page by clicking here.
By Amy Schrader
Email: [email protected]