Driving through California's Central Valley it's easy to speed right on by Bakersfield, the southernmost of the Valley's good-sized cities and the last one you'll pass before you head up the Grapevine toward Los Angeles. But next time, consider this: You're passing through Music History and it just might be worth your while to stop.
MERCED - The Merced National Wildlife Refuge encompasses 10,258 acres of wetlands, native grasslands, vernal pools, and riparian areas. It was established in 1951 under the Lea Act to attract wintering waterfowl away from adjacent farmland where foraging ducks and geese were causing extensive damage to crops.
MEFRCE - The San Luis National Wildlife Refuge encompasses over 26,600 acres of wetlands, riparian forests, native grasslands and vernal pools. A thriving population of tule elk is showcased by one of three auto tour routes. The refuge is host to significant assemblages of birds, mammals, reptiles, amphibians, insects and plants; some of which, such as the tiger salamander and San Joaquin kit fox, are endangered species.
COLUMBIA - Glorious songs, a moving story of love and redemption and a robust, seaside setting have kept Carousel among the most beloved American musicals ever created.
JACKSON – Enjoy some of the greatest hits from the swinging sixties through today when Jackson Rancheria Casino Resort presents The Righteous Brothers' Bill Medley and Paul Revere & the Raiders on Friday, July 13.
MODESTO – The Modesto Junior College Foundation will offer "A Hair Raising Good Time" at this year's Summer Sonata which is slated for Thursday, July 19 at the Gallo Center for the Arts in downtown Modesto.
STOCKTON - Country superstar Alan Jackson takes his tour to the Stockton Arena in Stockton on Friday, July 27.
JACKSON – The all new Jackson Rancheria Casino Resort is celebrating the opening of new restaurants and new gaming areas with a summer series of great concerts including country star Sara Evans on Sunday, July 1.
OAKDALE – There are some museums that dig way back into the history of a given area.
Nurses are doing it. Administrative managers are doing it. Even a former chief of police is doing it. In fact, it's a modern-day phenomenon that's kicking up a storm.
MODESTO - One of the most unique museums in the 209 - the Hillier Air Museum - is located in Hangar 7 at the Modesto Airport.
The Manteca Historical Museum offers plenty of things for visitors to discover.
LODI – The past lives on at the old Calaveras School at Micke Grove Regional Park.
STOCKTON – Whether it's artwork or artifacts, the Haggin museum has a little bit of it all.
Just before Y2K, and even during the early years of the new millennium, Stockton and Modesto were the nearest places to go for a Japanese sushi or sashimi experience if you happened to live in the South San Joaquin County area.
When it comes to sushi, everybody has their favorite place and go-to dish.
Restaurants come and go in the downtown Modesto scene, but Raw Sushi Bistro seems to be making an impression on locals since its establishment on I Street just eight months ago.
Upon entering Sushi Garden II in Turlock, customers are immediately greeted with the smiling faces of diners past. A wall covered in pictures of locals who have enjoyed the cuisine at Sushi Garden II are framed near the entrance, a testament to the good service and quality food that keeps customers coming back.
The first thing that grabs you is the décor.
RIPON – What do you think of when you picture a garden?
Gardening is a popular hobby in the Central Valley where the ideal California climate is conducive to growing. The Greenery Nursery and Garden Shop in Turlock is largely responsible for cultivating many locals' "green thumbs."
MODESTO – For more than 30 years Westurf Nursery has been a mainstay in the Modesto gardening landscape, and with 10 acres of trees, shrubs, roses and more, it's hard to miss.
When was the last time a nursery was called "Super Awesome?"
ISLETON – People get territorial when you talk about steak.
Locals looking to satisfy their cravings for a quality steak dinner won't need to look far as The Fruit Yard Restaurant & Country Market is well versed in providing not only quality beef but quality service.
DELHI – A porterhouse or a rib eye. Sautéed or broiled over an open fire. With French fries or a baked potato. The Elegant Bull in Delhi offers its customers the ultimate dining experience when it comes to steak.
OAKDALE – Nestled deep in the Cowboy Capital of the World, House of Beef ropes in its guests near and far with a tantalizing steak selection.
Nobody does steak better than the El Rancho Inn in Stockton.
Manteca marked the home stretch for Cesar Chavez.