One of the coolest things to do in Bakersfield when the weather heats up is to go to the movies. Fandango Theatre at Valley Plaza Mall is located at 2000 Wible Road, Bakersfield. Offering 16 movie times and tickets daily, they show current blockbuster films all day long. The matinees are between 11:00 a.m. and 3:15 p.m., and are priced at $5.50 for all patrons. At 5:00 p.m. ticket prices change to $7.50 for adults, $7.00 for seniors and children. For more information go to www.fandango.com or call (661) 833-2230.
You can grab a bite to eat while watching the movie. Candies, hot dogs, sodas, and of course, buckets of hot buttered popcorn are available in many sizes and prices, depending on your appetite.
One of my favorite movies playing this weekend is Iron Man Three, 3D. It is the latest film in the trilogy and is full of adventure and famous stars like Robert Downing Jr., and Gwyneth Paltrow.
Opinions and Comments about the movie were mixed.
“I really liked the first Iron Man the best because it was original and started out fresh,” Cameron Denny, 18, said.
“For me, Iron Man Three is the best one so far,” Jackie Morgan, 28 said. “I think Robert Downey Jr. is so cute, and I love to see him in action,” Morgan said.
Other action packed movies playing this week include: “Star Trek into Darkness,” which comes in 3D, and “The Great Gatsby” also available in 3D, “Pain & Gain,” and “Peeples”. Many of the people that work at the theatre also get to watch the movies that are playing.
“I love my job at Fandango’s because we get good benefits, and nice discounts on our tickets. The people are very friendly and I like to greet them and help them with directions,” Evangelista, 21, said. He has only worked at the theatre for six months but he plans to stay there for a while.
You can also stay cool by walking through the air conditioned stores and restaurants next door to Fandango’s at The Valley Plaza Mall. Famous department stores offer excellent window shopping as you walk a mile or two just strolling the enclosed hallways. It is fun and the miles can add up by walking from one end of the mall to the other once or twice a week. There are no “mall walking fees,” so it might be more economical for people looking for inside walking with the added comfort of central air conditioning, to go to the mall. There is also disabled parking and bathrooms for wheelchair assisted persons. For more information go to: www.valleyplazamall.com or call: (661) 832-2436. Valley Plaza is located at 2701 Ming Avenue, Bakersfield.
For other great malls in your area go to: www.mallseeker.com. This site assists in finding malls and providing a list of stores that are located inside the mall.
Photo provided by: http://localrockstars.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/02/Crooked-Folk-Photo.jpg
Wanda Winkler, a writer for Playing the Field, interviewed Annie Schneider after meeting her at Starbucks to discuss Crooked Folk, her favorite Bakersfield band.
Hotel California’s Tribute to the Eagles is Family Entertainment
With the temperatures in the high 80s at 8 p.m., Bakersfield families enjoyed cooling-off with an outdoor concert at the Bright House Networks Amphitheater. Located at 11200 Stockdale Hwy., the amphitheater is unique. It is a gathering place for families to enjoy outdoor picnics while listening to a concert, sitting on the grass or bringing their own chairs. Adults are allowed to bring wine or beer, provided they check in with authorities and get the proper wristband permit. The amphitheater is located within walking distance of fine restaurants like P.F. Chang’s, California Pizza Kitchen, and Café Med. For more information on events call (661) 852-7777 or go to: www.bakersfieldamphitheatre.us.
The only problem with the concert is that several people thought The Eagles were really going to be playing and not a band named Hotel California. “I’ve never heard of a band named Hotel California,” Hermano Gonzales said as he left the park. “I thought the Eagles were going to be playing,” Gonzales said. He indicated that the name of the band was not as clear as it could’ve been, although it was advertised as, “Hotel California gives tribute to the Eagles.” Most people stayed and enjoyed their evening regardless of the band’s name. “This is not the Eagles–only a salute,” Brian Carrici ,55, said. “I go to all of the shows in Bakersfield. The first show I ever saw was in 1971-72–The James Gang. In fact, Rare Earth will be playing June 8 here at the Amphitheatre and I intend to go to that concert as well,” Carrici said.
Other events coming this summer include:
Martina McBride-June 28
Air Supply-June 29
Summerland Tour-June 30
For more details go to www.ticketmaster.com
or like Bright House Amphitheatre on www.facebook.com/Bright-House-Network-Amphitheatre
PHOTO BY: WANDA WINKLER
March 25 was the seven-year anniversary of the death of Buck Owens. So where is the country western music legend? He is buried in The Buck Owens Family mausoleum in Greenlawn Southwest Cemetery, 2739 Panama Lane, Bakersfield. The mausoleum, also named “Buck’s Place,” is the largest structure in the graveyard except for the Georgian mansion used for the office and mortuary building. He is interred in the mausoleum which also contains his mother and the ashes of his first wife, Bonnie Campbell Owens. Some people go to the graveyard looking for Buck. Others write books about his ghost. “The Ghost of Buck Owens: And Other Tales From the San Joaquin,” by Steve Sorensen was released in 2011.
Chris Porfiri, 47, who works at Greenlawn Southwest Cemetery said, “there have been a couple of times when folks will stop into the park and ask where they can find Buck Owens’s grave– so we direct them to the mausoleum.” For more details on finding his grave go to http://www.findagrave.com.
Bakersfield’s most popular entertainer, Owens was born Alvis Edgar Owens, Jr., in Sherman, Texas, to a sharecropping family and moved to Bakersfield when he was 21 years old. He signed a recording contract with Los Angeles music giant Capital Records in 1957, and his career took off from there. He became one of America’s top country western musicians, singers, writers, and entrepreneurs. The Crystal Palace, his legacy museum located at 2800 Buck Owens Blvd., is a unique masterpiece exhibiting exquisite western charm, history, and hometown hospitality. Owens left a sensational mark on this city, including his last No.1 hit song titled, “The Streets of Bakersfield.” For more information go to http://www.buckowens.com.
Dave Lyman, 55, from the Bakersfield Convention and Visitors Bureau said he’s never been asked about Owens’ grave site. However, “large numbers of tour buses stop here on their way to someplace else, like Fresno, Yosemite, or Sequoia National Park. They are not making a pilgrimage to Bakersfield to see the Crystal Palace specifically or to go to Buck Owens’ grave,” Lyman said.
“The bus drivers are only allowed to drive so many hours a day, so they stop in Bakersfield because it is the midway point between several locations. Fortunately, the Crystal Palace is conveniently located and because they serve great meals, it’s a favorite location for the bus drivers and the passengers,” Lyman said.
Buck Owens made his mark in life as a composer, singer, entrepreneur, and publisher, and in death with his majestic burial site. His mausoleum is original and available to the public free of charge at Greenlawn Cemetery. “After all,” Lyman said, “it’s not like you have a Crystal Palace or Buck Owens in every town.”
Some of the best food in Bakersfield is found at “The Blue Elephant, Finest Authentic Thai Cuisine,” located at 8200 Stockdale Hwy, Suite M-1. Their food delights new customers,and old customers alike. You can order online for pick up at http://www.blue-elephant.net or call order to go at (661) 833-8190.
- The aroma of Yellow Curry with Tofu, and Chicken, Garlic Fried Rice fills the air.
Steve and Birdie Del Papa enjoy Chicken Pad Thai and Chicken Basil. A glass of Merlot wine and Mango Sticky Rice for Dessert topped the evening meal.
Another fine Thai Restaurant is The Orchid Thai Restaurant. Located at 5550 California Avenue, #106, Bakersfield, CA 93309. They have been in this new location for just over one year. Their specialties include Lobster Mac N’ Cheese, Roasted Scottish Salmon, and Seafood Inferno. Orders can be placed online at: http://www.orchidfusioncuisine.com.
Chicken Pad Thai is a favorite at most Thai Restaurants. Pad Thai consists of glass noodles, seasoned with delicate herbs and delicious peanut sauce.
Famous for their decadent desserts, Red Velvet Cake is a favorite at The Thai Orchid.
Last but not least is The Thai Kitchen located at 9901 Hageman Rd. Bakersfield, CA 93312
The restaurant is open for Mon-Thu, Sun 11 a.m. – 9 p.m. and Fri-Sat 11 a.m.-10 p.m.
Tours of the Historic Union Cemetery and more information on their events can be found at http://www.UnionCemetery1872.com
A stroll through the emerald golf course grounds of Union Cemetery Saturday morning, April 27, for “The Good, The Bad, and The Judges,” tour was fascinating. It was a special tour of the Pioneers Section where Bakersfield’s founding fathers are buried.The City of Bakersfield is named after Col. Thomas Baker, who was an attorney, a judge, and served as a senator from Fresno and Tulare counties 1861-1862. He loved the land and with Harvey Brown, bought swamp land in 1863 that is now Bakersfield. He is one of ‘The Good,” as well as one of “The Judges”. His profound knowledge and foresight was instrumental in the creation and promotion of Bakersfield and the welfare if it’s residents.
Benjamin Brundage, (1834-1911) was Bakersfield’s first Superior Court Judge. The original Kern County seat of government was in Havilah, but Brundage fought hard to have the seat of government permanently moved to Bakersfield. Brundage Lane is named in his honor.
RALPH M. FARISS, IS ONE OF THE “BAD” (1889-1915).
- Peggy Schrader tells tour group about the infamy of one of Bakersfield’s trouble makers, Ralph M. Ferris (1889-1915). Ralph, a resident of Bakersfield, was hanged in San Quentin in 1915 after he committed a train robbery in which he shot and killed Horace E. Montague, December 1, 1913 near El Monte, CA.