Memorial Plaza to be Built at Central Park in Honor of Gracie Muehlberger and Dominic Blackwell


Image Courtesy of The City

The City plans on constructing a Memorial Plaza at Central Park, seen here.

Linsey Towles, The Scroll, Co-Editor and Chief

On January 12, the Santa Clarita City Council unanimously approved the design of a memorial plaza at Central Park to memorialize Gracie Muehlberger and Dominic Blackwell during their City Council meeting.  

The approved design includes two 11-foot obelisks, with murals on each of the four sides made from colorful mosaic tiles. Each individual obelisk is dedicated to Gracie and Dominic, with personalized murals depicting who they were and their personalities.  

Obelisk with mosaic tiles depicting the life and personalities on Gracie and Dominic (Image Courtesy of the City)

In addition to the obelisks, the design plan includes seating areas that allow for observation and reflection of the memorials. 

“With the significant role Central Park played in the evacuation and healing process, the City has received numerous requests by residents to memorialize the event and its victims at the park,” read the statement from the agenda packet of the City Council meeting. “The families have expressed interest in Central Park being dedicated in memory of the victims, Gracie Muehlberger and Dominic Blackwell, and to create a memorial at the entrance of Central Park.”

The design and proposition of the plaza began back in August when Councilwoman Marsha McLean was appointed to work closely with City staff and the Muehlberger and Blackwell families in creating a memorial space. Also in August, the City Council approved the engraving of Gracie and Dominic’s names on the entrance sign at Central Park in a 9-3 vote. 

The expected total cost for the construction of the memorial plaza is estimated to be around $96,000, including costs for grading, electrical, irrigation, landscape and hardscape. The City’s approval allows for $40,000 of the project to come from the City’s budget. Various local and private businesses have offered pro bono work or contributions to assist in the plaza’s construction, alongside work expected to be done by City staff.  

“Memorializing and doing something for the victims is the most important thing, building a memorial, giving a place for people to mourn, all of these things are healing for the community, as we see in the case of the Youth Grove or the Veteran’s Memorial Wall,” Gracies’ father Bryan Muehlberger told KHTS Hometown Station at the time. “It remembers and honors the lives of those who have been lost or have given their lives for us.”