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March 2011

Fashion makeover Tips for him from the local experts

Guys and their toys Catching up with

Kevin Harvick Food Dudes hit Fishlips


Man Issue

Bakersfield’s manliest men

Buy A New Castle & Cooke Home With

Closing costs and down payments as low as $300!*

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Gated privacy featuring private pool, spa and parks. Ming Ave. & Gosford Rd. 661-663-3810

Gated privacy, private pool, children’s water park. Stockdale Hwy. & Renfro Rd. 661-387-6427

*Prices, amenities and square footage are subject to change without notice. See sales associate for full details on all offers. Offers may not be combined with any other offer. *Down Payments quoted are based upon buyer qualifying and obtaining School Facility Fee Down Payment Assistance Program (SFF)on homes shown above. Income and qualification limits do apply. All information is subject to change. Financing must be provided through Castle & Cooke Mortgage, LLC to obtain special incentives. All information is subject to change without notice.

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The Man Section: We packed this issue with all things manly, especially this special section with stories like four guys who got a manly fashion makeover and 10 essentials every bachelor pad needs.


The college dorm life

We check in with 13 freshmen from Bakersfield who are attending some of the country’s top schools about their college experience so far.


Best burgers

To feed your hungry-man appetite, we scouted the best burger joints flipping the tastiest patties in town.


3615 Mount Vernon Ave. (661) 871-3556

Manliest man nominations

You nominated your fathers, husbands and sons for Bakersfield’s Manliest Man contest. Although we had many “manly” men worthy of the title, we chose our eight top faves. Find out who they are.


4750 Coffee Road

Kevin Harvick

We caught up with NASCAR Sprint Cup driver Kevin Harvick and learned what his plans are for this year. Find out his goals and the favorite “pit stop” he always hits when he passes through town.

4130 California Ave (661) 325-4717

“Tony’s Pizza really piles it on!” - Californian food critic, Pete Tittl

Bakersfield Life

March 2011

Photo by Michael Lopez

(661) 588-4700

Signature Properties, Signature Service

Mary Christenson in Luxury Homes, Estate Properties and Golf Course Communities

Northeast /Rio Bravo Resort

7bdrms, 6bths, Pool, Guest Rm, Game Rm



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Page 24

$1,595,000 CUSTOM 7,000 SQ. FT., 7 BDRM, 6 BATH trilevel hilltop estate in prime northeast gated golf course community. Well-planned living space! Dramatic Great Room features 20’ high ceilings and magnificent views of foothills--”purple mountains majesty”-- from expansive arched windows! Lower level is 2000 ft. game room/theatre + full apt/guest suite, 2 bths. 6 bdrms + office on main/upper levels. Double granite island gourmet kitchen w/fireplace! Solar system, hardwood floors throughout, huge heated pool, outdoor kitchen. Serenity, space, privacy, perfect for extended family living!

Photo by Felix Adamo

12 Up Front 16 Letters to the Editor 20 It "Manners" A Lot 22 Happenings 24 On the Road 26 Entertainment 28 Real People

Photo by Michael Lopez



See 50 photo visual tours of property listings, and search for homes at:



DRE License #00818891








Photo by Greg Nichols

FAVORITE 2010 California State Governor

Bakersfield Life



E R S’


March 2011



30 Food Dudes 38 Finance 40 On the Red Couch

98 The Last Word

Photo by Lois Henry

Direct Cell

62 It’s a Guy Thing 67 Tech Watch 72 Talk of the Town 74 Community 76 Health and Wellness 78 History 80 Trip Planner 86 Snap!

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Bakersfield’s Premier City Magazine

Bakersfield Life™ magazine is published by The Bakersfield Californian. The magazine is inserted into The Bakersfield Californian on the last Saturday of every month. To subscribe, please call 392-5777. Publisher Ginger Moorhouse President/CEO Richard Beene Senior Vice President Revenue and Marketing John Wells Advertising Director Bryan Fahsbender Editor Olivia Garcia Assistant Editor Stefani Dias Features Associate Hillary Haenes

‘Manly men’ are a plenty in Bako


This issue of Bakersfield Life magazine is a tribute to the local men in our lives. It’s been a wildly fun issue to plan. As part of the theme, our team brainstormed a cover that would capture the essence of a manly man. It should come as no surprise that what came to mind was “The Most Interesting Man in the World,” played by actor Ian Connolly, who is known for his enviable, heroic, witty life as described in Dos Equis beer commercials.

Editorial Assistant Marisol Sorto Art Direction Glenn Hammett Photography Felix Adamo Henry A. Barrios Holly Carlyle Casey Christie Jessica Frey Maria Ahumada-Garaygordobil Lois Henry John Harte Alex Horvath Greg Nichols Tanya X. Leonzo Michael Lopez Jan St. Pierre Carla Rivas Dietmar Quistorf Jose Trevino Davis Turner Contributing writers Jenny Bachman Allie Castro Gene Garaygordobil Lois Henry Lisa Kimble Stephen Lynch Dana Martin Alyssa Morones Jeff Nickell Luz Pena Gabriel Ramirez Advertising Lupe Carabajal 395-7563 Reader Inquiries Bakersfield Life Magazine P.O. Bin 440 Bakersfield, CA 93302-0440 395-7492 On the cover Bakersfield's Most Interesting Man, Gary Branker, at play with Stephanie Kleijne, Kandi Ricci and Lia Chavez. Photo by Holly Carlyle


Bakersfield Life

March 2011

Dos Equis' Most Interesting Man Among some of the famous “most interesting man” accomplishments: “Police often question him, just because they find him interesting.” “He once had an awkward moment, just to see how it felt.” “Bulls flat out refuse to fight him.” We hope you enjoy our spoof cover of the most interesting man. Much credit goes to photographer Holly Carlyle who centered our most interesting man cover around Bakersfield guy Gary Branker with the help of models Stephanie Kleijne, Kandi Ricci and Lia Chavez. And if you want to know more about what makes Gary the most interesting man in Bakersfield, then read about his “accomplishments and adventures” on Page 12. He also shows off his 2011 Porsche in our It's a Guy Thing on Page 62. Inside, we feature a variety of stories that are male-centric. Of course, our female

Photo by Tanya X. Leonzo

March 2011 / Vol. 5 / Issue 6

readers will find them just as enjoyable. Writer Gabriel Ramirez went in search of the perfect burger in town. Check out the cool spots he picked. Our Food Dudes decided to explore Fishlips restaurant and discovered what really makes this downtown venue standout for its food, music and people. Pro racecar driver Kevin Harvick gave us an update on his latest accomplishments, family, goals and his favorite place to hang out when in town. I have since discovered that men admire their watches just as much as women love their shoes. We talked to a couple of experts to share with us some of the hottest watches out now. Wine columnist Paul Ulrich is back, sharing what great manly dishes pair better with vino instead of beer, while travel columnist Lois Henry takes us to Santa Anita Park for a day at the races. Writer Luz Pena shares some details about a special upcoming event for the Junior League of Bakersfield. Good friend and colleague Nancy Chaffin provides insight on Google TV, and writer Dana Martin gives us a mid-school year update on the group of awesome college students we profiled in June. Sounds like all is well in college life. Find out more. Enjoy,

Olivia Garcia Editor 395-7487

If you want your home to be about you, talk to him. Matt Towery President, Towery Homes

You could buy most any other “production” home and end up with a house designed for someone else. Or you could buy a Towery Home created just for you. You’ll find Towery Homes affordably priced in some of the city’s most desirable neighborhoods, and with exceptional incentives, there’s never been a better time to buy your Towery Home.

You ll find beautiful, impeccably-built Towery Homes at: Northwood Ranch (northwest) starting at $189,990 Mountain Gate (northeast) starting at $164,990 Copper Leaf (southwest) starting at $184,990 Westfield (northwest) starting at $189,990

The Local Choice

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Directions and floor plans are available online at


Meet Bakersfield’s “Most Interesting Man”

Gary Branker

• Donny Youngblood once arrested him, just to be in his presence.

• He once ate everything on the menu at Wool Growers, as an appetizer.

• Dewar’s gave its secret recipe to him, and he sold it to free Tibet.

• His kiss tastes like a Dewar’s chew.

Photo by Holly Carlyle

• He once swam the entire Kern River, upstream.

It’s Named After

• The Basque country wanted to name a province after him, but he politely declined. • Traffic signal cameras malfunction when he runs the red light.

• He once did the Mud Run, only hours after spinal surgery. • His blood smells like the steaming red sauce from Luigi's. • He once punched a cowboy, a biker, an oil foreman and a midget all at once. Then he had breakfast at Zingo’s. That’s right. You heard me.

By Lisa Kimble


Two men who loom larger than life in the annals of California and Kern County land development, land barons Henry Miller and Charles Lux counted the area near present-day Panama Lane and Stine in their vast portfolio of agricultural property that made them one of the biggest landowners in the United States during the late 19th century. Although thousands of miles separate the Central American country of Panama and the unincorporated community of Panama, about eight miles southwest of Bakersfield, Miller & Lux also imported immigrants from there to run their farms and ranches here. Long before their arrival, however, American Indians inhabited the area and are believed to be interred in the mass grave near Panama Cemetery, one of Kern’s earliest cemeteries. In 1849, Dolores Montano established a Mexican settlement there. It was originally called Rio Bravo after the Spanish name Rio Brave de San Felipe, or “wild” or “angry river” that was used to refer to the Kern and a branch of it, which ran by the occupation and often inundated the area. Later, the area became known as Panama, reportedly the result of a visit by a sailor who had contracted malaria in the Central American country before coming west. Local mosquitoes are said to have caused the area to be known for its “Panama” disease. The Panama post office opened a mile away on the Miller & Lux Panama Ranch on June 24, 1874, with Frank May as its postmaster. The following year, a new settlement two miles south 12

Bakersfield Life

March 2011

Migrant school at Panama, south of Bakersfield, in the 1930s.

Photo courtesy of the Chris Brewer collection

Panama Lane, School District

at Stine and Panama roads, just west of Pumpkin Center, was established. The newer colony took the name Panama, making the former Panama location known as Old Panama. The original post office was discontinued in 1876.

By the Numbers

St. Patrick’s Day Last year at Sandrini’s

300 Pints of beer sold

120: Shots of Irish whiskey sold

1dressed Number of people 1wornNumber of kilts like a leprechaun

Source: Brian Sandrini, owner of Sandrini’s Italian & Basque Restaurant & Bar

170 Pints of Guinness sold 70 Number of Irish 40 Number car bombs chugged of green beers 30 Number of sold bowls of Irish stew served


UP FRONT Short Takes

Second annual Texas Hold’Em Night When: March 11. 6 p.m. dinner; 7 p.m. tournament Where: 420 Club, 3910 Alfred Harrell Highway Cost: $100 donation (includes buy-in and dinner); $20 for only dinner. Information: Visit or to purchase tickets, call Sofie Zimmermann at 342-1532 or Pauly Wren at 861-7911.

Lookin’ to play some poker, but don’t want to travel to Vegas? Lucky for you, you don’t have to travel far. Join the Kern County Law Enforcement Foundation for a Texas Hold’Em tournament and New York steak dinner to support Kern County’s law enforcement heroes. Last year’s tournament attracted 90 poker players, and the top winner took home a $1,000 cash prize. That’s not counting the wins for the top eight players. For those nonplayers, bring your friends

and have a good time. Created in 1998, the foundation has given more than $300,000 in grants, gifts and scholarships to local law enforcement agencies and causes. If you’re new to the game or need to brush up on your skills, check out the World Series of Poker web site at wsop. com/poker-games/texas-holdem for strategies, rules and professional tips. Or take advice from Kern County’s top law leaders, who will call your bluff and make you cash in your chips.

Greg Williamson, Bakersfield chief of police:

• Don’t play every hand, pick your spots. • Don’t play in a game you can’t afford. • Never play when you’ve had too much to drink. • Don’t bluff just to bluff. • Always pay attention to the cards on the table and the other players’ poker strategy.

Charlie Fivecoat, Shafter chief of police:

• “It's better to make people think you are a bad poker player than to play and remove all doubt.” • “Poker is a zero-sum game because every time I play, my sum is zero.” • “I don’t play poker with the sheriff because he said even my poker face is ugly.”

Donny Youngblood, Kern County sheriff:

call me. I’m in.

• Don’t start crying if you are bluffing. • Strip poker is not the same as poker. • Poker is not played with 55 cards. • If your four aces get beat,

4915 Stockdale Highway • 661-834-3068 Monday - Friday: 10-6 • Saturday: 10-5


Bakersfield Life

March 2011

We are the Martinez family, and this is our take… Two precious little girls, dressed in matching pink-accented ensembles, their parents lovingly holding them, while big sister succeeds in getting a dual set of giggles. It’s the perfect picture of a healthy, happy family – but one Johanna and Michael Martinez weren’t always sure would be in their future. Complications began early on in Johanna’s pregnancy with twin girls, and it soon became clear this would be a high-risk situation. Of course, the couple, along with everyone who loves them, hoped and prayed for a happy ending. However, they would first have to deal with one challenge after another. Every step of the way, they would have the support of their second family at San Joaquin Community Hospital’s Maternity Care Center. “I thought they would be sick of me,” she said. “I was there all the time and they Joaquin. were so nice … To this day, we still go to San S Joaqu uin in. We love it.”

661 661-395-3000 w ww

Bakersfield’s Most Preferred Hospital Bakersfie

UP FRONT Letter to the Editor

Short Takes

Dear Editor,

Just a short comment regarding the November issue of Bakersfield Life. I have been an avid reader of The Californian for many years and have been following the progress that has been made. As a Bakersfield resident and management professional in the field of quality (establishing my qualifications for this comment), it has come to my attention by consistently reading Bakersfield Life, you folks believe in the concept of continuous improvement! The layout, photography, writing and the full-page ads are exceptional and continue to get better with each issue. I loved the Short Takes and always enjoy reading about cars and food! I could probably make a comment about each and every page because, for me, each page offers something to shock the senses ... all the color is awesome! Please keep up the good work and thank you, from a fellow Bakersfieldian.

Kid chef for a day It’s time to put kids in the kitchen. In an effort to fight childhood obesity, Junior League of Bakersfield will provide cooking utensils and culinary tips while teaching youth how to prepare and savor healthier dishes on March 26. The one-day event is part of an international effort by the Association of Junior Leagues International to combat childhood obesity. Junior League of Bakersfield President Terri Collins said the organization is proud to participate in “Kids in the Kitchen” initiative because childhood obesity not only harms the health of the child, but their self-esteem. “It’s fabulous (to have the ‘Kids in the Kitchen’ event) because this is the type of thing we do,” said Collins. “This will give them a leg up on cooking and eating healthy, and we hope they remember that. Kids are real good at remembering things.” International Junior Leagues include U.S., Mexico, Great Britain, Australia and Canada. In 2006, more than 225 leagues participated in the “Kids in the Kitchen” campaign. Locally, 50 children attended the event last year. The 50 kid chefs, included foster children and those who are a part of the Boys & Girls Club. Local farmers donated the food. “Our organization has such diverse personalities in it but we have the heart to advocate and volunteer in the community and make changes,” said Collins. “Also, we hope we inspire others to do the same.” Fun recipes will come from the “Junior Leagues In the Kitchen with Kids: Everyday Recipes & Activities for Healthy Living” cookbook, which includes tasty but nutritious recipes for orangey oatmeal cookies, Ants on a Log (celery sticks filled with peanut butter and topped with raisins) and meatloaf cupcakes with mashed potato and carrot icing. Junior League of Bakersfield was 16

Bakersfield Life

March 2011

— Patrick L. Kelly

P.S. Please pass this along, I know from experience that such an effort is team-oriented.

The Bakersfield Californian publishes Bakersfield Life magazine monthly. If you have any questions or comments regarding our magazine, write to us at Bakersfield Life Magazine, P.O. Bin 440, Bakersfield, CA 93302, or e-mail us at bakersfield We’d love to hear from you.

chartered in 1952, when a group of women decided to continue their dedication to volunteerism but expand beyond school and church projects. Their first fundraiser was the Camellia Ball in 1954. For women interested in joining the local Junior League, informational meetings will be at 6 p.m. on March 9 and April 5. “We would love all women interested in joining League to come and join us,” said Laura Tague, who does marketing and publicity for the local Junior League. “The League is a great way to be involved in the community and meet some great fun women at the same time.” For more information on how to become a member of the Junior League of Bakersfield or to sign up your child for the “Kids in the Kitchen” event, please call the League’s office at 322-1671. — By Luz Pena

To submit material

Letters to the editor: We publish all letters that are signed and deemed appropriate for our readership. Letters must be signed to be considered for a publication. Please type or print your name, as well as an address and a daytime phone number. E-mail should include the writer’s full name and city. We reserve the right to edit letters for clarity and space. Please submit letters to Olivia Garcia, Editor, Bakersfield Life Magazine, P.O. Bin 440, Bakersfield, CA 93302. For e-mail, send letters to the editor to Calendar events: Please submit information in writing to Marisol Sorto, no later than the first of the month, two months prior to the month in which the event will take place. Contact her at bakersfieldlife@ Snapshots: Please submit event information for coverage consideration to Olivia Garcia and Glenn Hammett at least one month prior to the event. Send event name, date, location, time, name of contact person and phone number to bakersfieldlife@

To advertise

Please call Lupe Carabajal, retail advertising sales manager, at 395-7563 or or

Grant Armstrong

Diana Aronson

Penny Boeman

Lois Brehmer

Terrie L. Brown

Marvin Bush

Lea Bush

Lezlie Chaffin

Tammy Gatson

Jeanie Gray

Joyce Hanson

Stacy Harrison

“Integrity isn’t Expensive, It’s Priceless”

Ronda Chaffin

Sang Dang

Louie Gregorio

Gayle Hafenstein

Kathy Keener

Rhonda Lewis

Bob Levesque

Eva Martinez

Leann Newfield

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Jackie Putman

Dottie Patterson

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Kamri Roberson

Debi Roberson

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Amy Short

Sonia Sides

Judy Smith

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UP FRONT Short Takes

Which superhero would you be? Pour a glass for charity “Wines of the World” will be the theme on March 11 when the Henrietta Weill Child Guidance Foundation holds its annual wine tasting at the Guild House. David Dobbs and his staff from Imbibe will pour some exciting selections from the U. S., Spain, Argentina, France, Italy, New Zealand and Portugal from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. The Guild House is located at 18th and F streets in downtown Bakersfield. The wines for this event were chosen with both quality and value in mind. “When thinking of wine, most people only think of California wines,” Dobbs said. “We make great wines in our home state, but the cost of land and labor many times prices the wine out of many people’s pocketbook or it does not deliver much excitement.” There will be a dozen wines to sample, including Chateau Saint Florin, a sauvignon blanc from the Bordeaux region of France, and De Fuego Old Vine Garacha, a Gernache from Spain, which Dobbs said “might be the best buy in the world.” In addition to the pouring of the wines, hors d’oeuvres prepared by the Guild House staff will be served. There will also be a silent auction featuring some great wines from Martin Rey winery and more. The cost is $75 per person, and all funds raised will go to the Henrietta Weill Memorial Child Guidance Clinic, a nonprofit facility that provides mental health and substance abuse services and the resources necessary to promote wellness and recovery for Kern County children, adults and families. Call Toni Ross at 322-1021, ext. 186, to make reservations. 18

Bakersfield Life

March 2011

“The Thing of the Fantastic Four. He was a childhood favorite. The power of the creature was amazing. I loved that he was indestructible.”

“Wonder Woman because she can save the world and look good doing it.”

— Nicholas Stowe

— Alicia Garcia

“Spider-Man. He’s one of the good guys. Fights crime. Has a cool outfit. Always gets the girl.” — Ryan Lara

“The Hulk. He could go from nice to mad and turn green and then back to nice.” — Will Graves “Superman. He comes from another world and has all of this incredible power. And considering how flawed humanity is, he uses this power to protect us when it could be used to enslave, making him honorable and true.” — Philip Bailey

“Batman, because I dig his outfit.” — Ron Ramirez

“As a kid, it was Batman. He inspired me to be honest, and as an adult, he’s inspired me to be into health and fitness.” — Jose Patino

“For me, it’s Robin. He’s the partner everyone needs to get things done. I like teamwork.” — Eduardo Mancera

“Wonder Woman because I think every mom is a Wonder Woman.” — Natalie Bryant “Spiderman. He completely lacks pretention and has no advantages. He’s a high school kid who photographs himself for a living and lives at his aunt’s house, and he still saves the world.” — Josh Nelson

25 random things you didn’t know about ...

Brian “The Bandit” Cobb This Mixed Martial Arts lightweight fighter, who is currently ranked 21 in the world, credits Cal State Bakersfield for his wrestling success. The 30-year-old has a lot to celebrate this year: his seventh year as an assistant wrestling coach at CSUB, his first year of ownership of Sports and Spirits Bar, and his soon-to-be collegiate victory (Cobb is finishing his master’s degree in math). He has a few fights booked, including the Fight for Wrestling event on May 20 at CSUB. And he’s hoping to get back to the UFC and crack the top 20 world lightweight rankings.

1. I left San Diego to move to Bakersfield.

2. I am a wrestling coach at Cal State Bakersfield.

3. I have an identical twin brother.

4. My favorite food is the

No. 10 on wheat from Port of Subs. I could eat it every day and never get tired of it.

5. I am a Sudoku junkie. Any kind of brain teasers leave me in a trance. 6. Math is my

favorite subject, and my goal is to be a high school calculus teacher.

13. I hate to fly. I pray the rosary the

whole time. That much metal isn’t supposed to stay up in the air for that long.

14. I have been to Jamaica and Japan twice, and London, the Bahamas, Puerto Rico, Japan and Mexico.

15. I read the Bible daily. 16. I truly believe that if you show

me someone who is OK with losing, then you are showing me a loser.

17. My wife and I each own a female

pit bull. They must be kept separated at all times because they hate each other. We had to take trips to the veterinary emergency to find this out.

18. I am very ready

7. I am extremely

obsessive compulsive about all of the wrong things in life. I will refold the laundry if my wife did it, but I will never show up to anything on time.

8. My wife and I got mar-

ried twice.

9. I am Catholic and a member of the Knights of Columbus. 10. My favorite teams are the New England Patriots, Oakland A’s, San Jose Sharks and Milwaukee Bucks.

Photo by Tanya X. Leonzo

11. I currently own my third consecutive Toyota truck — I wrecked my last two.

12. I am a pack rat. I still own and wear clothes that I have had since freshman year in high school.

to start having children.

19. I own a bar. 20. I won’t watch scary movies.

21. Home Depot

is my favorite store because I love to build things.

22. I built a room in my house just for training.

23. I have seven tattoos. 24. My dad is my hero. He

taught me that hard work pays off, and self-sacrifice will reward you tenfold in the long run.

25. All the men in my family go on a group camping trip twice a year. All we do is eat too much and drink beer. I love it.



Chivalry still alive


By Lisa Kimble It has been 22 years since I went out on a “date” as a single gal. Back then, my soon-to-be husband’s mobile telephone was the size of an ice chest. If we didn’t know how to get to the restaurant, we’d pull over to the curb and pull out a poster-sized map. I don’t need to watch “Sex and the City” reruns on E! to know that social mores and the rules of dating since then have changed dramatically. Going Dutch and meeting someone online are the new norms, but, thankfully, good old-fashioned chivalry hasn’t gone out of style entirely. Today’s standard “date” may not involve a curfew or chaperones, but if the first impression is to be a lasting one, it shouldn’t be missing some macho basics either. Dear Lisa, You mentioned last month that if “Mr. Right” can’t distance himself from his cell phone on a date, then he is “Mr. Probably Not,” but what other actions are considered rude on a date? Dear Reader, One of the loveliest parts of the stories of people profiled for Bakersfield Life is their courtships. Believe it or not, there was a time when parental permission had to be given before a young man could take a young lady out for ice cream. No longer considered dating protocol, it does serve as a sweet reminder of the importance of the occasion to be better acquainted with someone with whom there might be a romantic interest. So while permission may not have been needed, do have your date park the car and greet you at the front door. If he pulls up and honks, sit tight. If the Lisa Kimble

honking continues, rethink your options. The same goes, too, for holding open the door. Before the feminist movement, this was the norm. Obviously, unless you are on a gurney, you can certainly open your own side door. But there is something chivalrous and gentlemanly about your host doting on you at the outset, not to mention a sign of his respect for you. Behavior on both your parts should also be engaging and interested, whether you are on your first date or the third. One of my favorite reality TV lines comes from Bravo’s Bethenny Frankel: “Check yourself before you wreck yourself.” How very true. Don’t finish a bottle of wine before the waiter has even been over to welcome you and tell you about the specials. Put your cell phone on silent. That first date will surely be your last if you spend the first 15 minutes chatting with the babysitter or a client, or worse yet, babbling to your date about your ex-husband. Dear Lisa, What can you do when the date is a dud? Dear Reader, What you should never do is ditch your date! Unless he or she has assaulted you — in which case that cell phone call to 911 would be perfectly acceptable — ride it out. Keep the conversation light and filled with humor. Talk about how great the water tastes if you have to. But don’t disappear to the restroom for hours, or into the night, never to be seen again. At a pregnant pause after dessert, perhaps a mention of the time and the first of several thank yous will prompt the date to hasten the beginning of the end of your excruciatingly boring experience.

Have a question about social graces or etiquette, agree or disagree? E-mail me at and visit me for more advice.




910 20th St. Downtown

327-5231 Open Tues. - Sun. at 11:15 am


Painting by Charlotte White


Bakersfield Life

February 2011


Summer Academic & Reading Program June 6th – July 15th


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Find more community events at or submit yours via e-mail:

Wed. 2

Fri. 4

Fri. 4

Sat. 5

Sat. 5

First Wednesday, special events and refreshments, 9:30 to 11 a.m., Bakersfield Museum of Art, 1930 R St. $4 nonmembers. 323-7219.

Mardi Gras Gala, benefiting The Bakersfield Art Association, dancing, silent and live auction, costume contest, 6:30 p.m., The Petroleum Club, 5060 California Ave. $80. MardiGrasGala. com.

First Friday, featuring live music, art openings, specialty shops, galleries and boutiques, artists will set up their artwork, 5 to 9 p.m., Downtown Arts District. 6349598.

16th annual Casino Night & Auction, includes dinner, 5:30 p.m., CSUB Icardo Center, $35 pre-sale; $40 at the door. Must be 21 to attend. or 654-3473.

Black History: A Historical Celebration, hosted by African American Network of Kern County; discover black history in Kern County, 2 to 5 p.m., Beale Memorial Library, 701 Truxtun Ave. 323-9442.




Can’t-miss events in March

Thur. 10

Fri. 11

Sat. 12

Early California History Day, costumed docent-led tours, 9 to 11:30 a.m., Kern County Museum. $10; $9 seniors/students 13 to 17; $8 children 6 to 12; $7, children 3 to 5; free for children under 3. 852-5000.

Mariachi Festival, 7:30 p.m., Bakersfield Fox Theater, 2001 H St. $40 to $75. vallitix. com or 322-5200.

St. Patrick’s Day Dance, music by Prisoners of Love, 8 p.m. to midnight, Eagles Hall, 1718 17th St. $10 for you and a guest. 747-1628.

Thur. 17

Thur. 17

Sat. 19

Darryl Worley, 7 p.m., Buck Owens Crystal Palace, 2800 Buck Owens Blvd. $27.50 to $35.50. or call 322-5200.

St. Patrick’s Day Party, with No DUH (No Doubt Tribute Band), doors open at 6 p.m., B. Ryder’s, 7401 White Lane. $7. 397-7304.

Second annual MS Service Day in Bakersfield. If you would like to volunteer or if you or someone you know has MS and has work that needs to be done call 321-9512.


Fri. 25 10th annual Golf Tournament, registration and lunch, 11 a.m., shotgun at 12:30 p.m., Sundale Country Club, 6218 Sundale Ave. Proceeds benefit Kern County Burn Survivors Trust Fund. 888-805-2567.


Thurs. 31


The Pink Floyd Experience, 7:30 p.m., Rabobank Arena, 1001 Truxtun Ave. $25 to $48 plus fee. or 800-745-3000.

Bakersfield Life

March 2011

NISSAN of Bakersfield 2800 Pacheco Rd. • Bakersfield Automall 661-835-8600 •


Nice to meet you, Murano 2011 Nissan Murano offers plenty of the right moves


By Olivia Garcia

Photos by Michael Lopez

I’ve been curious about crossovers from the moment I was expecting my third son. We’ve always been a SUV family, just like plenty of others — that is before many were lured over to the fuel-efficient, smaller crossover. Of course, when we were a family of five, it made sense for us, too. We’d fit perfectly. A fourth son later, however, that’s no longer the case for the Garcias. A king or extended cab truck, SUV or van remains our choices for the time being. Nevertheless, I still can’t help but appreciate what crossovers have to offer for the average American family. My latest test drive, the 2011 Nissan Murano SL, answered many questions I had about crossovers. Actually, Nissan of Bakersfield’s Internet fleet manager Juan Medina showed me a few things that I didn’t know: You can sync five different phones with the Murano. Its Music Box will import all your CDs into the car’s hard drive or you can listen to your iPod, local stations or XM radio. It comes with a V6 engine and a continuous variable transmission that allows for a smoother ride. There’s


Bakersfield Life

The Nissan Murano, which comes with a 9.3 GB Music Box for digital music storage and playback, is a crossover that appeals to the whole family.

March 2011

The Nissan Navigation System features real-time traffic updates and a RearView Monitor to help you see what’s behind you.

It’s all in the details: Featuring an all-wheel drive, the Murano also offers power-up rear sets, heated steering wheel and seats, and a power lift gate to make loading cargo a breeze.

a built-in camera for those backing-out moments. The car will also set off an alert and refuse to lock if keys are left inside. (I don’t know about you, but I have accidentally locked myself out of my car a few times. Thankfully, AAA or my hubby was patient enough to deal with my crisis.) The Murano comes with micro-perforated leather seats, a better choice for summer days for the short- or skirt-wearing drivers or passengers. We all want to avoid the sting of hot leather seats as we get in our cars. Another thing I appreciated about the Murano is the center console compartment that carried the right amount of space to store my Canon Rebel, which was fitted with a wide-angle lens and battery grip. Now I’m no professional photographer ­— I have tons of friends who are — but I love taking photos of my kids and relatives so much that I have become the unofficial family photographer. Or maybe that’s the title I’ve given myself? I do know that I found myself cool with parking in tight spots. If you are a SUV owner, you know what I’m saying. Many of us hate parking in crammed parking locations. I mean, it’s not easy squeezing out of your car when you have less than a couple of inches of space between your door and

the vehicle next to you. Been there, done that. Never fun, especially with impatient little ones. I was running late to my grandma’s 90th birthday lunch at La Colonia Restaurant, one of my favorite all-around spots and not too far from where I grew up in east Bakersfield. The first thing I was dreading was the parking. And just as I expected, there it was — the last remaining open spot — in front of the restaurant between a SUV and the concrete wall divider. I took a chance. Sliding into that spot was a piece of cake. I’ll be honest. There’s no way I would have tried it in my SUV. I would have settled for a spot about two blocks down. That place is pretty busy on the weekend. (Happy birthday, Grandma Sophie, by the way. You are still very beautiful … I love you!) One of my older boys really liked the dual-pane moon roof, and the awesome weather only gave more reasons to let in some sunshine and cool breeze. Throw in some great music, courtesy of Bose speakers, and you’d want to find reason to stay in the car, driving most of the day. As a fan of Bose, I can tell you what a difference a set of those speakers make in your car, and this is standard issued for the Murano!

Five best features of the Nissan Murano:

That’s a tough one because I could name several but if I had my five best picks, it would be the Xtronic CVT (Continuous Variable Transmission); Intelligent Key; backup camera; Bluetooth hands-free system; and the Music Box.

Mileage and price tag:

The fuel mileage is 18 city and 23 highway, on average. The best-case scenario of 22/28 is expected for most drivers, however.

The Nissan Murano is perfect for: Everyday driving, and it’s excellent for the long drives. Every detail was made with you in mind. It’s definitely a midsized crossover with the comfort and convenience of the big SUVs.

The Nissan Murano stands out from its older version because:

The newly styled exterior and a unique aggressive front with a luxuriously updated interior.

Nissan Murano ideal driver:

The Nissan Murano appeals to married couples and buyers who are in their 30s all the way up to those in their prime of 50s and 60s.

Three words that define the Nissan Murano: Luxury, stylish and dynamic.

What you like most about the Nissan Murano:

Personally, I like the performance and the interior and how everything blends together in everyday lifestyle. Source: Juan Medina, Internet fleet manager, Nissan of Bakersfield



Photo by Felix Adamo

Time to feel the excitement this March By Jenny Bachman


Women usually have plenty of fun activities in the spring, but March is definitely geared toward men. From the first week until the last, the month is packed with events that attract men of all types. Men often get stereotyped into sports-loving, adrenaline-craving beings, but if that is the case, these March events are a perfect fit.

March Meet Another exciting testosterone-filled event is the annual March Meet. The dates have been announced for the 53rd running of the nostalgia drag racing’s premier event. The three-day event will take place on March 18 - 20 at Auto Club Famoso Raceway, just outside Bakersfield. This event attracts drag racers and spectators from all around the world. Besides the racing, there is also a hot-rod car show, swap meets and plenty of vendors displaying all sorts of goods. March Meet tickets start at $75, butticket sales and prices, as well as other race information, including downloadable forms for race entries, car show registration and camping are posted at Missing out on this event would be a mistake for not only car aficionados, but all men looking for an adventure-filled weekend. 26

Bakersfield Life

March 2011

Photo by John Harte

CIF Wrestling Pure head-to-head challenge has always been something that men desire. High school wrestling brings out the best of the best with the CIF Wresting Championship taking place at the Rabobank Arena on March 4 and 5. With tickets ranging from $27 to $69, this event is a bargain that is guaranteed to bring excitement. This tournament has been held at the Rabobank Arena for the past six years. All locals root for Bakersfield teams as they watch the boys sweat it out in raw challenges. With Kern County consistently coming out on top in this tournament, it is obvious why this is such an exciting affair to attend.

March Madness Sometimes sitting at home with good snacks and good company is the best way to enjoy sports. Basketball is a sport that involves agility, speed and pure athletic talent; all things men love. The fun and excitement of March Madness makes it one of the best events for sports enthusiast of all kinds. Even if a trip to the NCAA tournament is not in the cards, following the games on television at home or at the local sports bar is just as exciting. With the first game starting March 15, then as the field narrows to the sweet 16, the elite eight and then the final four, these are a good few weeks for basketball fans. Be it upsets or wins, the tournament is guaranteed to bring excitement to all watching.


Mustang Ben Driven to restore automotive treasure, the Shelby Mustang

Ben Wagoner spends a lot of time in his shop, restoring older cars to mint condition.

T By Lisa Kimble

Photos by Casey Christie

There are fewer than 13,000 Shelby Mustangs in existence in the world today. Four of those rare muscle cars are safeguarded at the northwest Bakersfield home of businessman Ben Wagoner who has been restoring the automotive treasure for the past nine years. “I’ve always liked the Mustang. My first car was a Mustang,” Wagoner said. “When I began collecting and repairing the fourspeeds, the Shelby was the Mustang of Mustangs.” The high-performance modified Ford Mustang, built by Shelby American from 1965 to 1970, was the car of Wagoner’s high school dreams, and forty-something males. “They didn’t make a lot of them, and half of those made were probably totaled, which makes them so rare.” Inside his 3,600-square-foot industrial-sized garage, Wagoner, with the help of two other car enthusiasts, has meticulously dismantled, repaired and restored ’67 and ’68 GT 500s, a ’68 GT 500 KR and a 1970 GT 350. In car jargon, those are mighty nice sets of wheels. 28

Bakersfield Life

March 2011

The only part of the process he isn’t involved with is the painting of the cars. “I’ve always enjoyed cars and taking one that looks like a basket-case and putting detail into it to make it concourse-correct,” said the 46-year-old owner of Air Control Services. His passion is part hobbyist, part curator of a collection of Americana — the elite of the muscle car family. Three of his four projects sit outside the garage of his walled and gated compound, gleaming in the sunlight. “These are investment-grade cars,” Wagoner added. He points to his current restoration, a shell of a car parked underneath the covered patio outside the sacristy that is his garage. “You do get a lot of satisfaction taking a car that looks like that and turning it into a gold class car.” For many car collectors, the thrill is in the flip. “I don’t do it for profit,” Wagoner said. Although he’s been offered “substantial” amounts of money to sell his Shelbys, he rehabilitates them so as to add to the value of his collection. It is an experience that at times is both a stress-reliever and a stress-inducer, he said. Nor will he say exactly how much he has spent fine-tuning his cars. “A lot,” he added with a firm nod.

Ben Wagoner sits behind the wheel of this fully restored 1968 Shelby GT 500 KR.

These days, his money and manpower are dedicated to concourse judging. “The car has to be like it was when it rolled out of the factory. The restoration has to be followed down to the correct numbered and colored bolts and screws, and the proper silicone must be used to seal fiberglass to the metal. Now you are going against cars like yours, but with correct date-coded parts,” adding that he once flew a judge in from back East for help and advice. And Wagoner has the hardware inside his home to show for all the tender loving care he’s given the American classic. Trophies,

plaques and other Shelby memorabilia are displayed in his office. One of his cars took silver at the Sears Point Shelby competition in Northern California and a “Best of Show” at a Pismo Beach event a few years ago. Because of their rarity, the cars are driven little, if at all. They are transported to major Shelby events across the country in an enclosed trailer. “We enjoy doing it, and I have a wonderful wife who lets me do what I need to do but also lets me know when I need to be doing other things,” he laughed. “It is a lot of fun taking something that looks like a disgrace and making it look nice.”

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The Food Dudes — from left: David Luter, Chris Hanson, Kevin McCloskey and Bill Trivitt — on stage at Fishlips.

Great food, music and drinks! Food Dudes discover hidden gem Photos by Greg Nichols

Chris Hanson Fishlips. Don't call it a bar, ’cause it ain’t. Don’t call it a concert hall ’cause it ain’t that, either. Heck, don't even call it a restaurant because it certainly ain’t that. What is Fishlips? It is all of those things; a kick-a** bar that has great concerts and even better food! As co-owners of Fishlips, Shawna Haddad Byers and Andrew Wilkins have musical and food chops! (Plus, they are just plain fun 30

Bakersfield Life

March 2011

to talk to!) The two of them have dialed into the pulse of the downtown scene by providing an inviting and intimate atmosphere where all are welcome to eat, drink and listen, provided you are at least 21 years old (no exceptions). A few steps inside, and you can’t help but notice the giant hand-painted murals of guitar greats by local artist Craig Fraser and the wall of vinyl records around the pool table. Couple that with the unique menu item names, and you’ll surely be talking music and fun late into the night! Shawna and Andrew have their hearts in the right place when it comes to community and service. At each concert, a signed guitar of the artist is raffled off to a lucky winner. Where do the thousands of dollars generated (more than $80,000 at last count) from these events go? The U.S. troops stationed around the world! They also host “Scott Stock” with local radio personality Scott Cox to raise money for Operation Independence. Just plain awesome. I am not going to lie to you: this was my first visit to Fishlips, which originally opened in 2000 at the old Padre Hotel. Boy, was I missing out. And what's more, I misunderstood what their purpose in business life is ... a great place for making and keeping friends

through the “great unifiers” of music, drinks and food!

Bill Trivitt It was my first time at Fishlips as well, but it definitely won’t be my last. This spot is a killer blend of music, spirits, food and friends. They have a long track record of doing things right, and the appetizer list just proves the point. We started off with a nice cold draft and a Managua Nicaragua Mojito for Dave, and then we dove right into the appetizers. The Beastie Boys beer-battered mushrooms are by far the best fried mushrooms in town. They are always made with fresh mushrooms and browned to perfection. Next, we tried Cheech & Chong deepfried pot stickers. Once again, Fishlips hit it out of the park. The pot stickers were served with a sweet Thai sauce with just the right kick. The final appetizer was the best of the three. The Tom Petty ahi yellowfin tuna, pepper-crusted and pan seared. The “Tom Petty” isn’t found under the Start Me Up appetizers, but down in the Delicious section of the menu, which is perfect because it is delicious. As an appetizer or entree, this is definitely a Food Dude recommendation.

David Luter I entered Fishlips as a newbie. Unknowing and sheltered as I was, this Food Dude just never made it down here. Armed with an outstanding menu, Shawna and Andrew have a simple desire to make what they call “wonderful farm food.” They get this done

with a few simple rules. Make food from scratch, create it with fresh ingredients and keep it at a price that everyone can afford. While getting ready for this assignment, I asked several friends what to try. “Everything” was the typical response. When we arrived we told Shawna we’re game for whatever she brings our way. As the appetizers were thoroughly destroyed (they really are that good), our dinners started showing up. First up was the Red Hot Chili Peppers burger, a half-pound patty with crushed red chilies, melted pepper jack cheese piled with crisp jalapenos. Oh yeah, and the bun was covered with a spread of chipotle mayo. I’ve had some really good burgers in my life and this ranks right there as one of the best. Spicy, but with enough heat that just tickles the back of your throat, jalapenos that crunch when you bite into them, this burger was superb. And that mayo! I’m not a huge fan of mayo but if they bottled that up, I’d buy it. Next up was the Mick Jagger fish and chips. The Icelandic cod is firm and always fresh, but what really makes this dish stand out is the batter. Made with Newcastle beer, it’s outstanding, and best of all it doesn’t peel off of the cod. While I wondered what was next, I looked around and realized nobody was talking. Chris was killing the fries, Bill couldn’t get enough of those mushrooms Continued on page 32

Stevie Ray Vaughan steak “styx”

Red Hot Chili Peppers burger

Cheech & Chong potstickers

Mento Burrito


The Food Dudes with Fishlips owners Andrew Wilkins and Shawna Haddad Byers.

Continued from page 31

and Kevin kept eyeing the vinyl records by the pool table. Soon enough, we got a plate of Stevie Ray Vaughan tri-tip steak “styx.” Grilled to perfection with bell peppers, onions and mushrooms, these little beauties didn’t last long. They came with a sweet chili marinade that could easily be used with everything on the menu. For our final selection, we all agreed on the Mento Burrito, named after one of Bakersfield’s stand-out local bands. This chile verde burrito is simple and perfect after a long day, or a long night of rockin.’

Kevin McCloskey One thing about being a Food Dude that you may have picked up

Pearl Bailey bread pudding 32

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March 2011

on in our articles, we never leave hungry, and our evening at Fishlips was no exception. They have the kind of menu where everything looks great, and you find yourself making deals with your tablemates to try more than just one meal. When time for dessert rolled around we kept it simple and headed straight for the Pearl Bailey amaretto bread pudding. Whether you’re a fan of bread pudding or not, you need to give this cultured Pearl a try. Moist without being mushy, this fresh treat contains the perfect amount of amaretto for flavor without being overpowering, and the healthy portion is big enough to share or to take some home for a late-night snack. As for liquid refreshments, Fishlips has great variety of draft and bottled beer, music-inspired mojitos and cocktails and a selection of wines. If you like your libations tall and stemmed, they have a martini club with quite a playlist to work your way through, such as the Pink Floyd (melon), Muddy Waters (chocolate) and the Dirty Boogie (dirty). When it comes to concerts and shows at Fishlips, I do have one advantage over my fellow Food Dudes in that I’ve been to several, each one as entertaining as the last. Whether you’re there to see a local band like Velorio or 1916, a retro-revival such as Lee Rocker or Junior Brown, or a big act that you can’t believe is playing in a Bakersfield club, like Merle Haggard, you will not be disappointed. Describing the space as intimate doesn’t do it justice. The separation between performer and audience is practically nonexistent, and seeing a show there feels more like attending a studio session without all the repeated cuts. So check out their web site ( for upcoming events, grab some tickets, some friends, and be sure to show up early enough for dinner. And don’t forget to tell them the Food Dudes sent you.


In search of the perfect burger Bakersfield Life shares some of its favorite burger joints in town Compiled by Gabriel Ramirez


Bakersfield Life

Photos by Michael Lopez

March 2011

34th Street Deli and Coffee Shop Jeff Kisor, regional manager

What’s the secret to a great burger? Fresh ingredients and passion. Grease or no grease? Grease is the word. Best topping? Pastrami — piled high. What’s your most popular burger? Ortega bacon cheeseburger. What’s on it? Ortega peppers, spices and fresh, thick bacon. How big is your burger? It is an eight-ounce patty. I prefer my burger to be: big and fresh.

Goose Loonies Demetri Katsantonis, manager

What’s the secret to a great burger? Using a family recipe and using wholesome ingredients that are natural and fresh. Grease or no grease? Our burgers are flame-broiled. Best topping? Avocado and applewoodsmoked bacon. What’s your most popular burger? Loonie’s burger. What’s on it? Lettuce, tomato, onion, cheddar cheese, applewood-smoked bacon, avocado and thousand island dressing on a Kaiser roll. How big is your burger? It is a halfpound burger. I prefer my burger to be: flamebroiled with the best beef and topped with the freshest toppings.

Red Robin Nancy Perez, general manager

What’s your most popular burger? Royal Red Robin burger.

What’s the secret to a great burger? Fresh ingredients.

What’s on it? Bacon, cheese and a fried egg along with a beef patty.

Grease or no grease? Flame-broiled, no grease.

How big is your burger? It is six ounces.

Best topping? Guacamole and barbecue sauce.

I prefer my burger to be: well done. Continued on page 36


John’s Burgers Hugo Peña, manager

What’s the secret to a great burger? You have to make everything fresh from scratch. Grease or no grease? No grease, our burgers are charbroiled. Best topping? Avocado and bacon. What’s your most popular burger? Colossal Burger. What’s on it? Ground beef and pastrami with thousand island sauce, lettuce, onions, tomatoes and pickles. How big is your burger? It’s a quarter pound patty of beef; it’s a big burger. I prefer my burger to be: fresh.

Continued from page 35

Happy Jack’s Frances Rosales, co-owner

What’s the secret to a great burger? Keep it simple and use fresh and good ingredients. Grease or no grease? No grease. Best topping? Ortega chiles. What’s your most popular burger? Ortega cheeseburger. What’s on it? Sesame seed bun, sweet pickles, red onion, tomato, third-pound ground sirloin, original recipe hamburger sauce, lettuce, Ortega chiles and cheese. How big is your burger? It is a third-pound burger. I prefer my burger to be: grilled and not runny. 36

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March 2011

Juicy Burger Justin Smith, vice president

What’s the secret to a great burger? Freshness and quality ingredients. We get our meat delivered every day from Harris Ranch and our butcher here at the restaurant grinds it and seasons it. It is not frozen. Grease or no grease? No grease. We grill our burgers. Best topping? Fried egg. What’s your most popular burger? There is no set burger, it all depends on what the customer wants. We do have certain ingredients that many people tend to use. What's on it? The ingredients that most people put on their burgers are grilled onions, lettuce, tomato and thousand island sauce or chipotle mayo. How big is your burger? The single patty is a quarterpound. I prefer my burger to be: juicy.

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Life insurance provides muchneeded relief

W By Alyssa Morones

Whether you are a young, growing family, caring for your parents or seeing your oldest off to college, selecting the right life insurance can seem like a puzzle if you have not done the research. Bakersfield Life magazine recently spoke to Dawn Woltz of Dawn E. Woltz Insurance Services, who provided some tips about considering life insurance. Here’s what she had to say: Your child is off to college, is it a good time to invest in life insurance? When parents send their children to college, that is quite an investment. Taking even a modest policy out for $50,000 on that child, with parents as beneficiaries, is the best and most affordable way to protect that investment. The parents always have the option to transfer ownership and billing to that child, allowing them to either leave the parents as beneficiaries or other individual(s) of choice. Why should recently married people include life insurance as part of their immediate checklist? Usually with marriage comes a home and children. The least expensive way to provide protection for each other, so that if one dies, the other becomes beneficiary, is to purchase a joint 30-


Bakersfield Life

March 2011

Year level term life insurance policy. The premium remains the same throughout the 30-year term and the benefit stays the same and pays to the surviving spouse. Over that 30-year term, most homes are paid off and children put through school. The ideal time to take out this kind of policy is right away. Would life insurance be ideal if you are caring for an elderly parent? If the son or daughter has been designated to take care of their parent’s affairs at death, being a beneficiary of a life insurance policy will allow the financial means to handle everything from burial to the process of liquidating property and assets. It is important that this elderly person give their son or daughter the Power of Attorney over all their legal issues and property. It is important that this type of policy be set up before the insured becomes too old, where the cost becomes too high or they become too old to even buy the insurance. What type of life insurance is best? Most of the questions above are best handled by term insurance. It is important that you do not buy decreasing death benefit or increasing premium policies. These two factors can render the policy useless in a very short time.

How should they go about finding the right life insurance plan? It is best to calculate your debt to include what it would take to pay off the house, cars, credit cards, and finish putting children through school, plus providing some remainder amount for that spouse to attempt to keep the household and family in as good as condition as possible without you. The question, “Where will they be without me?” has a pretty hefty price tag. What is the ideal age to begin thinking about investing in life insurance? Start out insurance as young as you can. The critical rule is to buy when you are young and healthy. You will lose the youth for sure, and you may lose the health down the road. So buy when you are at your best and youngest. That will lock in the premium plus eliminate any future worries when time goes by and you are either too old, too sick or have other health issues (like weight) that can prevent you from buying the coverage. The most wonderful thing about Life Insurance is that it can be bought as a gift. Grandparents buy policies for their grandchildren, making the parents beneficiaries. It is so inexpensive and the best gift of all. Sadly, there are too many people holding car washes to bury their children or have lost their savings along with that loved one. There is also partnership insurance, which leaves a business partner as beneficiary so they can afford to hire someone to replace that partner plus keep the business going until they do.

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Four fierce female crime-fighters

Mari Anglin

Police officer, CSUB Police Department Photos by Henry A. Barrios

Jessica Amos

Police officer, Bakersfield Police Department

What drew you to law enforcement? Anglin: I hadn’t ever even considered law enforcement as a career possibility until my second year as a CSUB student. I took a few criminal justice classes, completed an internship with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms, and then did a few ride-alongs with local law enforcement agencies. After getting a little exposure to what police work entailed, I made up my mind that this was the job for me. Ortiz: I became interested in law enforcement for the excitement in which this job offers. Of course, this entails assisting others in need and in the apprehension of criminals. I also enjoy working outdoors and meeting people from all walks of life. Montellano: The Charlie’s Angels, of course! As a kid, I was certain I was the next Farrah Fawcett. Amos: I always knew I wanted to get into some type of public service (fire, paramedic, police) and as I grew older, I found myself more and more interested in pursuing a career in law enforcement.


Bakersfield Life

March 2011

How long have you been in law enforcement? Anglin: Nine years.

Deanna Ortiz

Ortiz: I worked in crime reports as an office technician for approximately two and half years prior to becoming a deputy sheriff. I have been a deputy sheriff for four and half years.

Deputy sheriff, Kern County Sheriff's Department

Jamie Montellano Detective, Bakersfield Police Department

Montellano: I have been in law enforcement for over 15 years. Wow time flies! Amos: A little over three years.

What are some of the assignments that you have held? Anglin: Currently, I am a patrol officer for the CSUB Police Department. Prior to that, I was a sergeant for the Arvin Police Department, which included assignments in both administration and patrol. Ortiz: After graduating the academy, I was assigned to justice court. After field training, I have patrolled in Ridgecrest, city of McFarland and Rosamond. I currently patrol in Rosamond and have been given the opportunity of holding the position of a school resource officer in Rosamond. Montellano: I have worked as a patrol officer, a training officer and a detective. I’ve worked in narcotics, domestic violence, child abuse and sexual assault. Amos: I was originally assigned to patrol where I predominately worked beat 21, which is everything south of east Truxtun, north of Brundage, east of Union Avenue and west of Mt. Vernon. I was then selected to be a part of our directed policing unit. Continued on page 42


Continued from page 41

What’s the most rewarding part of your job? Anglin: I enjoy the relationships that are formed with the members of the community I serve, as well as the camaraderie with my fellow officers. Ortiz: First and foremost, being able to go home safely at the end of our shift. Another satisfying part of our job is making a difference, facing challenges and finding creative solutions, while working in partnership with the community to improve the quality of life within the community. One example of this is the Get to School Safe Project. We patrol the school zones and bus stops to ensure the safety of all children. Montellano: This will sound clichÊ, but the most rewarding part of my job is helping people who need you in their darkest hour. It becomes even more rewarding when someone thanks you. Amos: Taking criminals to jail.

What's the most challenging part of your job? Anglin: In a campus setting, the most challenging part is that we sometimes have to take enforcement action against people we work with or see every day. We have to maintain a balance between being a co-worker or a fellow student and also being an authority figure when it comes to enforcing laws. Ortiz: I think the most challenging part of my job is balancing family with my career. Being a single parent has proven to be dif-

Mari Anglin 42

Bakersfield Life

Deanna Ortiz March 2011

ficult in any career choice; but the everyday stress this job entails compounds the stress at home. I have been able to find that happymedium through family support.

Montellano: The hardest part of the job for me is juggling work and family. This is a demanding job that often requires being called from home and working overtime. I struggle with the sacrifice my family has to make because of it. Amos: I have a difficult time with the crimes against children. It is upsetting at times and you have to keep your professionalism.

What has been a memorable moment you have had on duty? Anglin: Unfortunately, because of the nature of law enforcement work, not all memories we have are good. But one of my earliest positive memories involved a domestic violence case. The victim was forcibly kidnapped in front of her children and taken out to a remote location. We were able to locate her. A few months later, I received a letter from her thanking me for the help I gave her that day and telling me about how her life had been changed in a positive manner since that day. That was the first time I was thanked for doing a job that I truly love to do. Ortiz: We see many things daily that one should not have to see or go through. I wish I did not have to witness or remember those moments, but it is part of the job. However, I enjoy the moments when children get excited to see us and are in awe of our position. I truly believe that I make a difference when I stop a child from being victimized. Montellano: The most memorable moment on duty was when I had to shoot a man who stabbed my partner. Amos: The one thing that I think I will remember the most, even after I retire, is the camaraderie we have as a department.

Jamie Montellano

Jessica Amos

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Man 44

Bakersfield Life

March 2011

From left: Curtis Harms, Gilbert Tinoco, Javier Cruz and Felix Guerra.

Photo by Tanya X. Leonzo


Photo by Tanya X. Leonzo

Robert Huston Bray


Bakersfield is blessed with plenty of manly men, and we’ve got letters to prove it. We asked our readers to nominate someone who fits the idea of a “manly man,� receiving more than two dozen letters in response. Those nominations introduced us to the loving husband or father, the spiritual leader, hard-charging soldiers, firefighters, diesel mechanics, hunters and more. It was tough narrowing down the list, so we decided to share our favorites along with excerpts of other amazing nominations. Continued on page 46


Continued from page 45

The miracle

Robert Huston Bray I would like to tell you about my husband of 15 years, Robert Huston Bray. He was the passenger in a car wreck. The car flipped, Robert was ejected from the passenger seat, and the car landed on him and then skipped off of him. He gained consciousness and heard his friend screaming from the car. He tried to help him but had a compound fracture in his leg. Awakening at KMC, he overheard doctors telling his mother to sign donor papers, he was not going to make it. He made it, with a ruptured spleen, crushed pelvis, two broken legs, a punctured lung and broken arm. When he was told he would never walk again, he refused to believe it, began lifting weights and taught himself to walk again. He since has helped others every day and is a stay-at-home dad for our son, Carter. He is my rock. — Tanya Bray

The marathoner Javier Cruz doesn’t look like Charles Atlas. For that matter, he doesn’t look like the elite athlete that he really is. One might even call him skinny! But inside his small frame beats the heart of a lion, a champion: Javier runs marathons — 26.3 miles of sweating, hurting and pushing for another step! He has ran 38 marathons, like the Boston, the Los Angeles and the San Francisco marathons several times. Not bad for a 48-year-old postal worker whose pelvis was crushed when he was 6 and told that he would never walk again, much less run marathons. Thanks to extensive therapy, leg braces like Forest Gump's, and an indomitable spirit, he triumphed. Javier recently rescued a young woman attacked by another woman as he drove past in his mail truck. He leaped from his truck and pulled the attacker off of the young woman, then took her inside a nearby office to clean off her wounds. The older woman was eventually arrested. Javier is married to Lisa, and has a 14-year-old daughter, Jacey, and 2½-year-old son, Gabriel. He gets up at 4:45 each morning and does a few hundred push-ups and crunches before walking five miles delivering the mail, then runs eight or 10 or more miles after work. He has broken three hours for a marathon, the “holy grail” for runners. Out of thousands of runners, he is placing fifth or better in his class. His motto is “Older, Stronger, Faster.” And he is! — Hank Webb 46

Bakersfield Life

March 2011

Javier Cruz

Photo by Tanya X. Leonzo

Javier Cruz

The knight in shining armor Felix Guerra

When I think of the word “manly,” I think of Felix Guerra. He’s a man who can repair anything, and the list is endless. It started when he fixed my garbage disposal. It probably wasn't much for him, but, to me, it meant a lot. The repairs continue, including a closet (it had collapsed and he repaired it and made it look better), balding tire (he changed it when it looked bald just to ensure my safety), the shower head and roof (although a temporary fix, he did it while it was raining).

When you think of manly, you think of a man who will come to your rescue, like a knight in shining armor. I was out of town for my job, an hour away, and I locked my car keys in the car. He drove all the way over there and fished those keys out and saved the day. Recently, my car died during rush hour on Coffee Road and Camino Media. I called him. He arrived, pushed my car off the main street and brought me home. When you think of manly, you think of a man who will do for others unselfishly. This is who Felix is. He gives his time to sing for the elderly at the local nursing homes and rode for the Toys For Tots Bike Run this year. One more thing, he owns a Harley. No explanation needed. With his beard, mustache and leather ... you'll know he's a manly man! — Camila Padron

The faithful soldier Justin Cassiday

It’s difficult to think of any guy as a “man” when he’s just 21 years old.

Photo courtesy of Aimee Shaw

Photo by Tanya X. Leonzo

Felix Guerra

Justin Cassiday

And it’s even more difficult for a mother to see her son as anything but “her baby.” Yet a man is exactly what this mama’s 21-year-old son has become. Two months after graduating from high school, my son shipped off to the U.S. Army’s Military Police School. Like many men of his generation, he voluntarily joined the military during a time of “war.” He knew that it was likely he would be deployed to hostile areas in inhospitable living conditions. And that’s exactly what occurred. Justin celebrated his 21st birthday in Afghanistan, where he has been since April 2010. He celebrated Christmas and Thanksgiving there, too. Over the phone, like any mom would recognize, I have heard in his voice the courage and commitment that only the strongest of men could possess. — Aimee Shaw Continued on page 48


Photo by Tanya X. Leonzo

Curtis Harms

The hard-working father Curtis Harms

I would like to nominate my father, Curtis Harms, as the manliest man. He is a heavy-equipment diesel mechanic for Caltrans. His hobbies include getting dirty on the weekends while working on the ranch, riding horses, welding, fixing equipment or anything that needs to be fixed. He wears a full beard and loves his boots and jeans. He drives an old, dirty one-ton diesel truck and enjoys the History channel. — Tamarra Harms

The skilled engineer George Sturges Jr.

My husband, George Sturges Jr., is definitely the most manliest man in Bakersfield. It started when he was 10 years old, and his motorcycle broke down. His father gave him the manual to the motorcycle and told him to fix it himself. That created a man who can build and/or fix anything. 48

Bakersfield Life

March 2011

Photo courtesy of Boni Sturges

George Sturges Jr.

George started work as a diesel mechanic and now is a leader in the oil industry. He is a pilot who builds airplanes, a race car driver who builds his cars and a boat captain who repairs huge twin Cat engines, and he still rides, races and builds motorcycles. This manly man’s favorite vacations include taking all the kids to Famoso Raceway where they can build and race cars all weekend, volunteering on an aircraft carrier to cook steaks for American soldiers, or going to the dunes to ride four-wheelers and sand rails. In these places, George is the guy walking around helping everyone else repair their “toys.” George is a dad who helps you clean dirty horse stalls, rescues you when the car breaks down, helps you move even in the rain, coaches your basketball team, and takes the time to meet you for breakfast or a movie. He is now a grandpa, and this 6-foot-7 “Papa” will crouch at his granddaughter’s tiny table for a tea party or a coloring session. George sets the bar for a husband. He brings me a Starbucks iced tea every morning to the envy of all my co-workers, and he volunteers once a week in my kindergarten classroom. — Boni Sturges

The fire captain Gilbert Tinoco

Captain Gilbert Tinoco of the Kern County Fire Department is a proud man of great character. He exemplifies leadership and fortitude and is humbled by the privilege to serve Kern County. Captain Tinoco is a well-respected man who others look to as they train to become effective firefighters. He’s seen so many trainees/probies come and go, many rising through the ranks.

Photo by Tanya X. Leonzo

Gilbert Tinoco

Gilbert is known around the firehouse as “Tool Time” because there isn’t a purposeful tool he doesn’t have with him. While off duty, he studies other calls in other locations to ensure that he’s knowledgeable and prepared for any arising situations or emergencies. He researches effective firefighting techniques and the latest information to share with his crew and battalion so they can all work together as a one-minded team. At home, he’s equally committed and loved. — Deborah Ramirez-Tinoco

The man of strength Bradley Vaughn

A manly man is strong, physically and mentally, preserves and conquers in trying times, and knows who he is through and through. Yet, the manliest man surpasses them all. So you ask who is Bakersfield’s manliest man? Bradley Vaughn is the answer to this conundrum. Bradley has displayed his strength in many ways. He has participated in the Volkslauf, vigorous backpacking trips, Bataan Memorial Death March and rigorous Army physical training. His mental strength has shone as a first lieutenant in the Army. Deployed to Iraq, he has displayed a mental strength few possess through his strategic planning. His deep-rooted knowledge of who

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heroism in the Battle of the Bulge of World War II. He had been in the local Lions Club for about 40 years, earning every award there is and holding every local office of that group. He organized a gift program for troops in Iraq. A manly man with great integrity and humility. — Kenneth M. Cannon

Al Shaw My husband, at 24 years old with no children of his own, married me, a 26-yearold woman with three children and no ability to have more. I was later diagnosed with stage IIIC inflammatory breast cancer. He has stood by my side … and has packed my wounds, stripped and emptied my surgical drains, stood vigil at the side of my hospital bed and wiped vomit off my face. Even with a radically different body than the one I had when we married, he still tells me I am beautiful and sexy. — Aimee Shaw

Photo courtesy of Cortney Vaughn

Richard Dickey Williams aka Deacon Williams

Bradley Vaughn

Continued from page 49

Kent Brewer

he is allows him to confidently express his love. Despite distance and work demands, he makes sure his wife knows she is cherished and loved. He’s a manly man who may be overseas, but whose heart and roots are found in Bakersfield, making him Bakersfield’s manliest man. — Cortney Vaughn

Excerpts from other nominations: Joe Hamilton Joe Hamilton has served 10 years as a police officer for LAPD and received the Medal of Valor. However, his experiences and profession has helped him to see what’s really important in life, and it’s the identity you have as husband and father. ... (He talks to) our children on issues, such as integrity, being sensitive to others’ needs, doing service, respect and being a good Christian. ... He is there for our sons, and they know it. He strives to be their hero and mine. — Linda Hamilton

Walter Truax (Editor’s Note: Walter recently passed away. He is remembered as a true manly man and war hero.) Walter Jean Truax was recently presented the Silver Star for his 50

Bakersfield Life

Richard Dickey Williams has never met anyone he didn't like or liked him. He believes in God and his principles. This man has given substantial contributions to many local and national charities such as homeless shelters, children’s hospitals, juvenile detention centers and many more organizations. He is a retired police sergeant who definitely knows how to protect and serve. He is a man who believes in equality and justice for all and stands up for those who are oppressed, a modern day Robin Hood. — Michelle Roche

March 2011

Kent loves to hunt and fish. He has selftaught himself to do taxidermy, house building, art, computer building, computer monitor repairs, locksmith, furniture refinishing and archery. Yet, most of all I consider him a true man of God and the spiritual leader of our family. — Evelina Brewer

Dennis Cales Dennis Cales was a manly man. A carpet layer, he could pull a piece of carpet off of his truck, fold it over his shoulder and walk up a flight of stairs. He was braver than most people could ever be. Dennis got cancer in 2007. He had all the treatments, radiation, chemo, feeding tube and tracheotomy and the pain was terrible. Yet, he never once complained or said, “Why me.” He passed away on March 16, 2010, the manliest and bravest person I will ever know. — Debbie Cales

Bill Cooper In the high water year of 1983, Bill Cooper kayaked from Bakersfield to San Francisco Bay. He spent his career as a Kern County firefighter, retiring as captain, and was co-founder, with Rich O’Neil, of the Kern River Parkway Foundation, for which Continued on page 52



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Othel Pearson

he has donated hours, too many to count. Most days, Bill can be found at the Panorama Vista Preserve working on the preserve revegetation project and maintaining the projects irrigation system. — Janada and Phil Shepard

My father, Othel Pearson, is the manliest man I know. His strong hands have lived a lifetime. He buried his wife of 67 years this past year and he misses her dearly. He is an inspiration to all who have known him. — Laurie Rodriguez

Carl William Frank Carl William Frank always makes time for his family no matter how busy life gets. He takes our son to day care every day, makes him breakfast, and is always teaching our son something new. If you’re looking for a Bakersfield native who works, lives and bleeds all the goodness of Bakersfield, along with being a great role model for all men, Carl Frank is your man. He works at Bud's Brake & Wheel Parts off of 19th Street. Head down and meet this one-of-a-kind guy! — Anna Frank

Bill Needham Someone once told me that I would never find the perfect man. Well, I have proved that person wrong. I met Bill Needham in 2002, and soon discovered that he is the perfect man: • He is a bus driver for challenged children and he has great affection for them, as he is caring and understanding. • He is so funny and witty. • He is respectful and well-respected. • He always holds my hand and has never failed to give me his love unconditionally. • He has made me a better person. — Janet Needham

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Roark Randolph My Roark Randolph drove to work two hours each way so that he could be home each night. I was married to him for 27 years and I don’t remember him ever saying an unkind word to me. He told me he loved me every day and prayed for us every morning. He also plugged in my hot rollers and called to wake me up. Unfortunately, he will not read this tribute. He passed away Dec. 9, 2009, right after he had purchased my anniversary gift and helped our son with his homework. — Emily Randolph

Chris Solomon A strong man of integrity, Chris Solomon strives to do right by God and his family. Whether compassionately rendering aide as a Hall paramedic or playfully guiding as youth leader, he is also willing to lend a hand to those who summon his fix-it skills. Residing in a houseful of females, femininity often reigns. However, he was never too macho not to play “Pretty, Pretty Princess” with our young daughters or help them now create outfits for formal. — Karen Solomon

Mike Shoemaker Mike Shoemaker defines what a great man is: hard-working, honest and a dependable father who has raised three children on his own. He will go out of his way to offer help and repeatedly give people the benefit of the doubt because his compassion is deep. He would never admit these things himself because he is ever so humble. — Nina Manny

Buck Whitaker

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Bakersfield Life

March 2011

He came from the hills of Kentucky in 1965, bound for the war in Vietnam. We met before he left and married soon after his return. I was a California girl. He was all about Kentucky. We stayed in California. He gave up hunting and fishing for changing diapers and working long hours. We are 41 years from the hills of Kentucky. I have lived in California all of my life. I gave up nothing. Sacrifice is a word I learned from Buck Whitaker of Kentucky and living in Bakersfield. I am blessed to be his wife. — Peggy Whitaker

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long way home Taking the

Last year’s high school seniors share impressions of their first semester away at college

By Dana Martin Here it is. Our annual appointment with last year’s high school grads, all who’d garnered prestigious access into the nation’s top colleges. We always look forward to learning about their first college experiences, seeing if there were any surprises and ensuring that college is everything they’d hoped it would be. We also like to know if they’ve missed their hometown. Among the seniors we profiled from 2010, none of them attended college in Bakersfield. All of them flew the coop, some for colleges as far away as Massachusetts and Pennsylvania, Georgia and Chicago. Therefore, many of them could not return for weekends or holidays. Certainly, we expected to hear gut-wrenching stories of homesickness. Maybe even a little regret. Wrong. Unanimously, these flourishing freshmen are just fine. There have been a few storms along the way (figuratively and literally), but you won’t find any complaining among this group. To the contrary, this is a thriving collection of independent individuals, determined to soak in every experience and meet any challenge associated with living on their own. We were able to gather nearly all of last year’s group, many who took breaks from final exams to answer our questions and even snap photos of themselves on campus. Some may return to Bakersfield after they earn their degree; others won’t. In either case, they have four years to think about it, and that’s a long way home.

Joanne Bae at the beach near the UC San Diego campus. 54

Bakersfield Life

March 2011

Joanne Bae UC San Diego High school: Liberty

Is the “college life” what you expected? Before, I envisioned college as a more intense version of high school. But actually, the two are almost opposites! High school is an odd balance, in which you are told that your future rests completely in your hands, yet many people are still telling you what to do. College, however, is all about you and your decisions. What was the most surprising (or difficult) aspect of living away from home? Transportation. I was so marooned without a car; I might as well have been living on the moon. Do you get homesick? If so, what do you do to fix that? My family and I do texting, phone calls, letters, emails and, recently, video chat sessions. So, not surprisingly, not too often! How often do you come home? Does your family treat you the same or differently? This past quarter was very busy, so I actually didn’t come home to Bakersfield for 12 weeks straight! But when I did finally return, I found I slipped right back into my family unit. The only change is when my mom tries to get me to wake up by 7 a.m., and I tell her that’s when I go to bed! What are you most looking forward to about coming home? You’re going to make some incredible friends in college. But there’s something very precious about people who have known you your whole life. I fully realized that when I got to college.

Melissa Hamilton Stanford High school: Stockdale

Do you get homesick? If so, what do you do to fix that? I really don’t. However, I am very lucky. My sister also goes to Stanford, so we have lunch together every Tuesday, somewhere on campus. We’ll see how it goes winter quarter though; she’s studying abroad in Florence and I won’t have her around! It’s never anything a quick phone call home can’t fix.

Melissa Hamilton What are you looking forward to the most about coming home? My huge bed and my own shower ... definitely. What was the most surprising (or difficult) aspect of living away from home? The most difficult aspect is having to make my own schedule, and actually planning time to do things like sleeping that I never used to have to think about. It is really hard getting enough sleep. To party or not to party? It is always a great idea to go out with people from the dorm or class, no matter if you go to somewhere on the row to dance, a sporting event or into Palo Alto. College is definitely not all about studying, and it’s so important to find a balance between a great social life. What is the best part of Stanford? I would have to say the best part about Stanford is the people who go here. Everyone is completely incredible — they’re well-rounded, beautiful people who love to work hard and play harder. I have so many interesting people in my dorm: the number one tennis recruit in the nation, a world Taekwondo champion, a boy who wrote a bestselling novel at the age of 14, someone who has broken 150+ world fishing records, world-class pianists, interns for nationally known websites ... the list goes on and on. Not to mention, that every single person is friendly and loves everyone and Stanford just as much as I do. We all love it here, and it makes the experience so wonderful.

Brandon West

Brandon West Notre Dame High School: Garces

Do you get homesick? If so, what do you do to fix that? Yes, almost all the time. But, thankfully the guys and I have three different rooms where we hold Super Smash tournaments, so that kind of helps me forget about it for an hour or two. How many “all-nighters” have you pulled for course work-related studies? Only one all-nighter so far, and that was actually not school-related. Actually, nearly every person in my dorm was up all night with people in their room playing the new Call of Duty. What are you most looking forward to about coming home? Seeing my brother, because I know he misses me a lot even though he’s too afraid to admit it. What was the most surprising (or difficult) aspect of living away from home? The most difficult thing is trying to get some alone time. Everywhere, including my room, is almost always full of people either doing homework or playing games, and it gets difficult because there are times when I just want to lay down and relax. To party or not to party? Honestly, I find partying stupid because I don’t drink. Continued on page 56


corps of cadets at West Point and 14 just in my class alone. So we often found ourselves in a circle in the mailroom, handing each other the mail to the correct Kim. The upperclassmen found this funny and hazed us. I can only imagine how hard all the Smith’s had it! Any final words? Go Army, Beat Navy!

Alex Kim

nitely miss my mom’s cooking. To party or not party, that is the question. Haha … no comment. What was the biggest adjustment you had to make? The hardest thing for me to realize once I got to college was that I couldn’t do everything. In high school, I was in several clubs, two sports and ASB. Turns out in college, you don’t have near enough time for everything. I didn’t realize that you could only really choose from one to two big clubs or organizations to be involved in because you just don’t have the time.

Continued from page 55

Alex Kim West Point High school: Stockdale

This is about your first day on campus. How did you feel when you were finally alone in your dorm room? My first day on campus was a day that will stick in my memory forever. It mostly consisted of many upperclassmen, NCOs and officers screaming at me at the top of their lungs, starting the moment I got there. It was a day where I lost all my hair and lost the privilege of my first name. After a whole day of getting yelled at, reporting to my chain of command, and people being in my face, getting to my room in the barracks seemed like a safe haven. I was wrong on every level. As soon as I walked in, I saw one of the Cadres (upperclassmen) standing there, towering over me, and glaring at me. The first words screaming out of his mouth were, “new cadet Kim, drop!” I then had to do push-ups with an 80-pound flight bag on my back. So, I guess my first day wasn’t exciting at all. What are you most looking forward to about coming home? Whenever I come home, I look forward to finally getting to relax, see my family and friends and not getting yelled at! Describe one funny experience you had in college related to living on your own for the first time. When everyone got to check our mailboxes for letters during basic training, all the new cadets with the last name Kim would have our mail get mixed up and delivered to the wrong person all the time! I believe there are at least 50 Kims in the 56

Bakersfield Life

March 2011

Tyler Davisson

Tyler Davisson Cal Poly SLO High school: West

Were you surprised by the work expected in college? Going into college, I thought I was above the rest and that it would be a piece of cake for me to handle my course load. Boy, was I in for a rude awakening. All around campus I would see posters that said in order to keep your grades at a passing rate, you needed to study from 25 to 36 hours a week. I thought, “Pssh, no big deal. I dominated my classes in high school and rarely studied.” Turns out, those posters were right. I failed my first college midterm. I ended up getting a 78 percent in the class. I went into college thinking I could beat the system, and I got a rude awakening to find out that I’m not the top student anymore, and that I was going to have to work to survive my college experience. What are you most looking forward to about coming home? The No. 1 thing that I looked forward to when I came home was the food. I missed home-cooked food so much. The cafeteria food wasn’t bad for a while, but now that I’ve lived off it for several months, I defi-

Jake Howry

Jake Howry University of Chicago High school: Centennial

How often do you come home? Only over breaks. Being in Chicago makes it hard to just jet back home. It’s definitely odd trading off between the two worlds. I got back home and couldn’t remember where the light switches were. What’s your favorite activity to do on campus that you weren’t expecting? In the Harper Reading Room, there are these extremely comfy chairs. You can’t read in them or your body just shuts off, but after a long day, it’s nice to just go and pass out in them for several hours. To party or not to party? All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy. But all Jack and no work makes you flunk out of college. (Was that elliptical enough?) Describe one funny experience you had in college so far.

Well, apparently after it pours rain and you come back from the aquarium soaking wet and have to go to a dinner party at someone’s house, and you’re on the wrong side of campus to go back to your dorm, it’s totally fine to have your friend walk into her house lounge and ask the first guy she sees to lend you his pants. This requires no explanation.

historic town and our dining hall has very healthy food options so French fries (not made out of sweet potatoes) sound amazing. Also, shopping! I’ve lived mall deprived for three months. What’s your favorite activity to do on campus that you weren’t expecting? I really enjoy my work-study job actually. I work in the costume shop for our theatre department. I have learned a lot of sewing tricks, and it’s really fun to see the pieces I make on stage during our plays.

Lauren Howry Washington and Lee High school: Centennial

Is the “college life” what you expected? I don’t know what I expected from “college life.” I don't think it’s the same stereotypes at Washington and Lee that you normally hear. I’ve never eaten Top Ramen. I have wonderful teachers and smaller class sizes than before college. We have a very open curriculum, and because there is a long-standing honor system, you can take finals when and where you would like. If you aren’t a morning person then you sleep in, none of that running around in horror that you’ll fail a class because you over-

Lauren Howry slept (like in the movies). What are you most looking forward to about coming home? I miss the insane banter my family could keep up, and I’m really craving fast food. Lexington, Va., is a very small,

To party or not to party? I don’t party too much. I’ll go out for the larger events: Homecoming and Christmas weekend (the week after you get back from Thanksgiving break is big here). We have a very, very active Greek life on campus, and there are at least three parties a week (like full on themes, games, everything). I, however, spend most of my evenings at Lenfest Theatre for a play rehearsal or at the Law School for Mock Trial practice. Continued on page 58


Katherine Scott

Katherine Scott Smith High school: East

Do you enjoy going to an all women college? I love it! It is great to not have to really think about what I look like in the morning and not feel gender stereotypes in the classroom. That said, I miss hanging out with boys, and taking the bus away from campus and just going to Target helps me to stay sane. The dose of testosterone is an extremely nice feeling every once in a while. How did you feel when you were finally alone in your dorm room? Right after my family left, I felt sad but excited. It felt as if the newest chapter in my life was officially beginning and I could not wait for it to start. Is the “college life” what you expected? It’s basically what I expected, but I miss boys tremendously. I would not change my decision for anything, but I would not mind to see more males. Do you get homesick? If so, what do you do to fix that? Around the middle of the semester, I had some medical problems and that made me crave being at home. I have been doing better now. Part of the reason is because I am healthy again and another reason is because I Skype my family and friends every weekend. Talking to them is one of the highlights of my week. What was the most surprising aspect of living away from home (and with so many females)? It’s like living with a huge group of friends. In fact, in the state of Massachusetts, a house with more than six unrelated females is a brothel. My friends and I find this hilarious. 58

Bakersfield Life

March 2011

Alexandria Trakimas Alexandra Tamplin

Alexandria Trakimas University of Pennsylvania High school: Frontier

How did you feel when you were finally alone in your dorm room? It was definitely exciting, but was slightly terrifying. Living in a new place across the country, with people that you barely know definitely took some getting used to. Were you surprised by the work expected in college? I knew coming into my freshmen year, the courses were going to be significantly harder and more demanding, and that I would have to work much harder than I did in high school just to keep up. That being said, knowing what to expect and actually having to go through the process of studying are too different things. Studying still is tedious, but it has to be done. What’s your favorite activity to do on campus that you weren’t expecting? During the fall, when all the leaves were changing and the weather was nice, one of my favorite things to do was study outdoors. I would go to the college green on Locust Walk — one of the main walkways through campus in the city. Also, there are so many awesome food places on campus and in Center City, and when I can, I’ll try a new one. To party or not to party? I don’t think that there is anything wrong with having fun and blowing off a little steam. School is a lot of work, and I think everyone should be able to relieve some of the stress however they see fit.

Alexandra Tamplin Stanford High school: South

This is about your first day on campus. How did you feel when you were finally alone in your dorm room? Move-in day was kind of interesting. My parents and sisters drove me up and then finally found my dorm. At the end of the day, Stanford has this traditional time for parents to say goodbye. That time was hard and, yes, there were tears. Stanford kept us so busy during orientation week, that by the time I was able to feel anything other than exhaustion, I had already been there four days. It definitely made the transition easier. Do you get homesick? If so, what do you do to fix that? I only really got homesick when it got closer to the time to come home. I talked to my parents frequently, but I did start to miss my animals. How many “all-nighters” have you pulled for coursework related studies? I never pulled an all-nighter for work. There were times when I Skyped with friends until the next morning, hung out with my band mates, or stayed in the lounge until after midnight, but I never have believed in all-nighters and have yet to try one. What was the most surprising (or difficult) aspect of living away from home? The most difficult thing is being sick. I

came down with a case of stomach flu during the quarter and it is difficult having to take yourself to the health clinic to get medicine, having to walk down to the dining hall instead of just to your kitchen or having a roommate doing work as you take a nap.

Jasmin Barrena UC Berkeley High school: Foothill

Is the “college life” what you expected? I expected everyone to be super smart and study all the time. At a school like Berkeley, it met my expectations because many of my suitemates are geniuses and they studied a lot! Also, I expected college life to be fun and exciting, filled with new experiences. That too met my expectations because I have experienced many exciting, fun things I wouldn’t have experienced at home. Do you get homesick? If so, what do you do to fix that? I got homesick only when I talked to my family over the phone, especially my little sister. Oh, and when I was eating because I definitely missed my mom’s home-cooked meals. Jasmin Barrena Whenever this happened, I comforted myself by telling myself I would go visit them soon and that what I was doing was totally worth it. What’s your favorite activity to do on campus that you weren’t expecting? I loved to just stop sometimes and absorb the campus. Like at night, I pass by my bridge and just stare at the Sather Tower and the light of San Francisco. I did not expect to have such an amazing view. To party or not to party? To party. As long as you have your stuff together and not get carried away. It’s like the saying goes, “Play hard and study hard!” Consider the time you’ve spent at college so far, do you feel you made the right choice? How comfortable do you feel in your campus? I absolutely, positively, love Cal! I could have not picked a better school for me! I love the atmosphere, the campus, the resources they have to help their students, the view! It’s the perfect college for me! Continued on page 60


Kristyn Pendley UC Davis High school: Ridgeview

What was the most surprising (or difficult) aspect of living away from home? The most surprising aspect of living on my own is how expensive everything can be. What’s your favorite activity to do on campus that you weren’t expecting? My favorite thing to do on campus is to bike through our arboretum. Our arboretum is basically a river that runs through the campus that is surrounded by trees and grass hills to study or just relax in. Describe one funny experience you had in college related to living on your own for the first time. In my building, there are female bathrooms on the first and third floors and the men’s is on the second floor. I live on the second floor. On the first morning, I went to the third floor to use the restroom. When I walked in, there was a guy washing his

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Bakersfield Life

March 2011

hands, so I walked out to check if I was in the right bathroom. When I walked back in I said, “Hey, do you know this is the girl’s bathroom?” He said, “Oh, yeah I know. My room is on the third, so I don’t want to walk downstairs to the second floor just to use the restroom, so you will see me in here all year.” And he has kept his word. I still see him in there all the time.

Michael Moore Morehouse College High school: Golden Valley

Were you surprised by the work expected in college? People told me that the college workload was going to be treacherous. I expected it to be just as high school’s load was. I came into college instilled with my mom’s “don’t work, don’t eat” ethic, and because of that, I was forced to sharpen my study skills. So, I believe that I was, and still am, prepared for the work that I will face in college. What are you most looking forward to about coming home?

Michael Moore

What I am looking forward to about coming home is visiting my alma mater, Golden Valley High School, and seeing new developments. I also look forward to attending the 2011 graduation ceremony, seeing my niece graduate and hearing the student speakers. But of course, I also can’t wait to see my family. What was the most surprising aspect of living away from home in Georgia? One of the most surprising aspects of living away from home is my gained sense of independence. I have had to buy my own suits, snacks, dorm materials, etc. To party or not to party? I refuse to party. I am not a party guy, I am a study guy.

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Boys and their toys Let’s face it: guys love manly vehicles built for power, speed, adventure and to turn heads at a stoplight. The proud owners of a classy sports car, a motorcycle, an off-road Jeep and a lifted truck didn’t have any trouble chatting about their treasured toys. Photos by Jessica Frey

Gary Branker Consultant to contractors that work in the oil industry


What is the make and model of your vehicle?

Branker: My toy is a 2011 Turbo S Porsche convertible.

Longboy: Ford F-250.


What kind of fun have you had with your toy?

Oldaker: 2011 Harley-Davidson Screaming Eagle Street Glide. I also have a 2001 Harley-Davidson Sportster, 2002 HarleyDavidson Fat Boy and a 2006 Harley-Davidson Street Glide.

Branker: As far as fun with the car, all I can say is that every time I get a chance to drive it, I get a great big grin on my face. (He walks about 40 feet across the courtyard to his home office, so he can’t even use the car to drive to work.)

Hinesley: My Jeep rock crawler is a TJ that has been customized to climb just about anything.

Oldaker: The other ones have been all over Southern California and to Nevada,


Bakersfield Life

March 2011

Don Oldaker Attorney at Noriega & Associates

Arizona and Utah. Last year, the 2006 Street Glide had to outrun a bunch of trucks in Utah in a snowstorm going downhill through a muddy construction zone. We froze, but we lived to tell about it. This one is a blank slate. Its adventures have yet to be written.

Hinesley: To answer what kind of fun we have with our toys may take up every page, but to be brief, we have fun and love being off-road. The Jeep is a fun toy to take camping and hit the trails with the family. Longboy: Pismo drives, mud, cruising and off-roading.

Jim Hinesley, aka Jimmy J

Chester Longboy

Owner of Advanced Plumbing Service and Hinesley Homes


What is your vehicle’s name, if you haven’t yet named it, what would you name it and why? Branker: No name, but if I did name it, it probably would be Red. Oldaker: We decided to call it the iGlide to distinguish it from the Street Glide. Hinesley: I haven't named it yet, but if I had to, my son would probably like Optimus Prime because it morphs from a

President of Longboy Labor Contracting Inc.; president of Kern Marketing Inc.

regular Jeep to a rock crawler that can go just about anywhere.

Longboy: I don’t have a name for her yet, but if I had to name her right now, I’d name her “The Train” cause of the train horn!


What song would you use to advertise your vehicle in a commercial?

Branker: I guess the theme song from “Chariots of Fire” playing on a nice sunny day while driving up Highway 1 with the

top down.

Oldaker: Eric Clapton’s slow version of “After Midnight.” One of my favorite versions of a great song and it pretty much covers them all. Hinesley: I used to always have AC/DC playing in my sand car, but I would get so pumped up that I would break something on the car every time out. I decided it was cheaper to leave the tunes at camp, but if I had to pick, it would definitely be “I Can’t Drive 55!” by Sammy Hagar. Longboy: Lil Wayne — “Right Above It.” Continued on page 64 www.BakersfieldLife.com63


Continued from page 63


sure he has a lifted truck somewhere in his garage.

How do you feel when you drive your vehicle?

What phrase would you use to describe your car?

Branker: It’s a real high to drive and you can only feel great.

Branker: “Designed and built for a lot of speed.”

Oldaker: Pretty much on top of the world. For the most part, cars (unless you’re talking about something really special), don’t liberate your spirit like a motorcycle. Motorcycles respond to everything you do — like thought control. They beg you to give them full attention and reward you by making all the stresses of the everyday world vanish.

Oldaker: Not to repeat a cliche, but it’s kind of true. “If I have to explain — you wouldn’t understand.”

Hinesley: Well, I guess you can say I am an adrenaline junkie. If I’m not driving hard enough to get the wheels off the ground, then it just isn’t fun to me. Maybe that is why I want to climb a mountain now. But it isn't just about being off-road, I enjoy every aspect of it, from tearing the car apart to working on it, driving, crawling, chasing and rebuilding. Longboy: On top of the world, like I stand out in the crowd.


I’m sure you feel like a celebrity behind the wheel, what celebrity do you envision driving your vehicle?

Branker: I think Paul Newman if he were still alive, he would love the car. Oldaker: Nope. Celebrities seem to crash their bikes a lot. I’d say Steve McQueen, but I think he preferred Indians. Jay Leno and Billy Joel would probably appreciate this one. Hinesley: It would have to be the Mears Gang, Roger or Casey. They have supported some of our other off-road adventures and are truly great people. Longboy: Jay Leno because he’s on top of his car game. I’m

Gary Branker 64

Bakersfield Life

Chester Longboy March 2011

Hinesley: My phrase would be more like a warning label: “Warning, too much pressure on the skinny pedal will cause an excessive adrenaline rush!” Longboy: “Go big or go home.”


How have you modified or customized your vehicle?

Branker: I added the custom wheels and custom interior and spent too much money, but I’m happy I did. Oldaker: Screaming Eagle bikes are pretty much complete out of the box, but like most Harleys, it has improved exhaust and intake systems. It’s also had some engine work done. I’ve added passing lamps and the lights have all been converted to LEDs. Hinesley: Modifying and customizing never stops for me. We can always go a little faster or climb something a little higher. The cost involved in doing that is the tricky part though. I can’t imagine the toys I would want if I didn’t have spending limits. Today, I just throw the box away before my wife sees it, install the part, throw some dirt on it and hope for the best. Longboy: Fab work by Shane at American Fab; audio and video by Rudy at Advance Mobile Audio; paint by Paul at D & M Autobody; lift, rims, tires, powder coating, train horn, 51-gallon fuel tank, tire gate, grills by Tyler at Tire Empire. All in all, I say I’ve put in about $35,000.

Jim Hinesley

Don Oldaker

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Bakersfield Life

March 2011

Man T H E


Bachelor pad essentials 10 tips for Men’s fashion makeovers

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Bakersfield Life 2011 The Man Section

Man T H E


Fashion makeovers

for men Four guys trade in boring, ill-fitted clothes for fun, tailored looks By Hillary Haenes


Photos by Jessica Frey

he cold, winter blues are almost behind us and this month, we welcome warmer weather with the arrival of spring. This means it’s time to tuck away comfy sweats, dull dark colors and heavy coats. Whether you’re headed to the office or have a date planned with your significant other, update your wardrobe with a solid colorful shirt underneath a lightweight sports coat with a fitted, tapered pant to look and feel your best this season. If you’re hesitant about freshening up your look with a pop of color or trying a new look altogether, visit stores like Snead’s for Men or H. Walker’s Clothing Co., and they’ll point you in the right direction like they did with a couple of their customers who needed a little guidance in the fashion department.

Bakersfield Life 2011 The Man Section

After There is a time and place for stain, ripped denim and in the evening it’s just wrong, said Tracy Walker Kiser of H. Walker's Clothing Co. The denim you’re seeing has a wonderful drape; it is very comfortable and just looks hot.

Before Walker Kiser said of the before look: Mike Haddad has lost a lot of weight and re-shifted his body physique, causing some of his clothes to just hang on him instead of showing off his hard work.

Michael Haddad Age: 51 Occupation: Potato salesman What did your date night look consist of before your makeover? Slacks, Serica shirt, dress shoes and no jacket. What is your new favorite staple piece? A jacket with a puff. What should every man have in his wardrobe? A safe bet would be to let Tracy and staff fill your closet ... you cannot go wrong. What have you learned from your makeover? A nice jacket does go with jeans and doesn’t compromise a great look.

After Walker Kiser said of the after look: If need be, Sands is in one of those professions that has to go to storage sheds sometimes and he would ditch the jacket, roll up the sleeves and lose the shoes for his boots. His new look is perfect for the office, for a lunch meeting or for drinks in the late afternoon with friends.

Todd Sands Age: 40 Occupation and title: Produce salesman What did your office look consist of before your makeover? Jeans and a button-up shirt. What is your new favorite staple piece? My Joe’s Jeans I bought at H. Walker’s. What should every man have in his wardrobe? A nice sport coat.

How do you feel about your new look? Refreshing and detailed.

What have you learned from your makeover? I’m still learning.

Why do you enjoy shopping at H. Walker’s? I have gone to H. Walker’s since my mother sent me to Walker-Abbott 34 years ago to get a suit. Since Tracy has owned the store, I seldom go to Nordstrom, Tommy Bahama or any men’s store. I enjoy the fact that I can stay local and get a great product, and going there is always a pleasant and fun experience.

How do you feel about your new look? I feel more pulled together and more refined.

What have family and friends said about your polished look? Everyone loves the look. What advice would you give men looking to update their wardrobe? Keep it local and go see Tracy, Ravelle and Susanna at H. Walker’s. You will experience what I, and friends have for many years, a quality product backed by service you cannot get from going out-of-town.

Why do you enjoy shopping at H. Walker’s? The customer service is unsurpassed. Tracy, Ravelle and Susanna make my least favorite thing (shopping) much more enjoyable. They have helped me out several times when I was in a pinch and needed something to wear in a hurry. What have family and co-workers said about your polished look? Are you talking about my wife, mom and close friends? Just kidding — nothing but compliments. What advice would you give men looking to update their wardrobe? Go see the ladies at H. Walker’s.

Before Walker Kiser said of the before look: When Todd Sands leaves work, he still needs to look professional in the community and be presentable. Sands’ jeans and plaid shirt are clean and respectable, but a few slight changes make a big difference.

Continued on page 6 Bakersfield Life 2011 The Man Section

Before Mark Price of Snead's for Men said of the before look: Tony Congdon came in wearing jeans and a Bakersfield T-shirt, which is great and perfect for going to his Saturday morning kids' soccer games!

Continued from page 5

Tony Congdon Age: 30 Occupation: Managing director and financial representative for Northwestern Mutual What did your office look consist of before your makeover? Before Snead’s, I mainly shopped at department stores like Nordstrom or Men’s Wearhouse. What is your new favorite staple piece? My blue pinstripe suit by Valenza. What should every man have in his wardrobe? Every man should have at least one custom shirt from Snead’s. If you have long arms and a portly body like I do, then a custom shirt is perfect. I have trouble buying off-the-rack because I either get too short of a sleeve and feel like Chris Farley in “Tommy Boy” or too long and feel like I’m trying to fit into my dad’s shirt. What have you learned from your makeover? People do notice and appreciate fine clothing. How do you feel about your new look? I love the new look and I do think it will add to my business persona. Why do you enjoy shopping at Snead’s for Men? For the customer service. They help you find what suits you best. People have so many shapes and sizes and there is a lot that goes into finding the right suit that fits perfectly. I have always felt that they are making sure I’m 100 percent satisfied with my attire before I leave.

Bakersfield Life 2011 The Man Section

After What have family and co-workers said about your polished look? Well, most still tell me I wear my pants too high for someone my age. However, I like to dress formally and have had many compliments and questions on where I was able to find such nice clothing in town, so I send them over to Snead’s and let them know they will be happy they went. What advice would you give men looking to update their wardrobe? Have some fun with it. People always talk about the Rolex or

Price said of this look: This shows that he takes his business attire seriously, but at the same time, it shows individuality and the ability to think outside the box.

the Breitling, however, properly fitted clothes, real leather shoes and a sharp tie are just as eye-catching. I think everyone appreciates some style and I know that dressing up for an occasion, even just to go out to dinner, can make the evening more fun. Also, I don’t find many men dressing in a suit and tie in Bakersfield, so if you want to stand out and set yourself apart from the rest of the crowd, Snead’s is the place for you! When you go to Snead’s, tell them Tony sent you and they will treat you like a king.

Tips from the owners Here are a few tips for those men who either don’t have to time to worry about what they’re wearing or just don’t have a clue about what’s in style.

Snead’s for Men, owners Mark and Laurie Price • Old shoes + old belt = old man, but don’t think trendy. Know your personal style and work from that. Today’s trends date quickly. Shoes, belts and other accessories can be used to update classic looks — that way, you will be seen as a gentleman with fashion intellect (women love this). • Some staple pieces that every man should own includes: a well-tailored classic black wool suit and nothing over three buttons, with center or side vents; black lace-up shoes and a black belt; white dress shirt; a luxurious silk tie; a proper fitting jean and khakis; a well-tailored blue blazer; black T-shirt with the perfect color that’s Pima cotton; brown loafers and a casual shirt (think party, Vegas, hot date). • Buy the best fitting clothes. They cover your faults and they accent your blessings. People do judge a book by its cover and first impressions do count.


Price said of this look: Barker is the kind of guy who is not afraid to step to the plate and with a good eye for the unusual, he has blended classic with hip for a distinct look.

Sean Barker

• Don’t dress boring. No one likes to think of himself as boring, so don’t be. Add a pop of color and sizzle with a nontraditional shoe or belt. • Try things on before you purchase. Never strive to look like everyone else. • Short = no. Short ties, short-legged trousers and short shorts. No, no and no.

H. Walker’s Clothing Co., owner Tracy Walker Kiser

Age: 30

• Colorful shirts. Solid shirts, think pink and purple, are must-have colors for spring. They are making a big comeback, but they must fit correctly.

Occupation: Commercial insurance broker for Clifford and Bradford What did your date night look consist of before your makeover? Jeans, button-up shirt and a sports coat.

• Embroidered and bold details are still in. The designer collection long-sleeve shirts are still very fashionable, so don’t be afraid to turn over the cuff to show off the detail.

What is your new favorite staple piece? The blue button-up shirt and the Bacco Bucci shoes. What should every man have in his wardrobe? A nice sport coat because you can dress it up or down.

• Denim is important in your wardrobe for day and evening. Make sure it fits your body style correctly and is hemmed at the correct length.

What have you learned from your makeover? Snead’s can help you find your style for any occasion. How do you feel about your new look? I feel like going back to Snead’s for a shopping spree!

• Update your every day sportscoat and you’ve updated your look. It’s such a small investment for as much as you are going to wear it.

Why do you enjoy shopping at Snead’s for Men? The always, friendly customer service, and they have a wide variety of styles to choose from.

• New shoes. If you haven’t bought new shoes in the last two years, then go shoe shopping immediately.

What have family and friends said about your polished look? They thought Snead’s only sold suits and business attire. They have everything! What advice would you give men looking to update their wardrobe? Add a few pairs of some fun and crazy V.K. Nagrani socks from Snead’s!

Before Price said of the before look: Sean Barker came in wearing his Colorado Rockies sweat suit and while we all love our favorite sweats — you can't take your sweetie out for a night on the town dressed like that!

• Tailor your clothes to fit. If you can’t or won’t buy new clothes, then go to a tailor shop and get your clothes fitted correctly for very little investment. Taper the leg of your pants, the body of your shirts and you will feel even better wearing them.

Bakersfield Life 2011 The Man Section

Man T H E


Watches for him

These Citizen Eco Drive watches don’t need a battery and instead rely on solar power or light to keep them ticking. By Gene Garaygordobil Photos by Maria Ahumada Garaygordobil


f you are like me, you are always looking at your wrist when you are worried about the time. It doesn’t matter that we have clocks on our cell phones, our computers, our cars or even our televisions. It is still engrained in our brains to flip our wrist and check the watch, whether we are in the boardroom, the biking trail or at the bar with your buddies. So what kind of watch does the man of 2011 need or better yet, want? Well, it depends on what you like, what you want to spend, and sometimes what your wife or your significant other wants to see on that wrist of yours. So we asked three Bakersfield jewelry ex-

Bakersfield Life 2011 The Man Section

perts what men’s watches they think are right for what type of guy. We got a lot of different watches, but most agreed that they could be worn out on the golf course or eating the main course at a fancy weekend dinner.

Bill Eilers Robson Eilers Jewelers at The Marketplace Watch brand/model/price? Citizen Eco Drive $495 What kind of guys wears this watch? |From the everyday guy to the professional man. Why is it a must have? Because the battery will never die on you. You’ll never look at it and it will be dead because it is solar powered and charged by light. Five features that make the sale: No battery and it is light or solar powered. Automatically changes time zones as you travel across them.

Bill Eilers in his jewelry store at The Marketplace.

Sturdy Stainless Steel Very scratch resistant with a crystal made of sapphire. Better for the office or road trip? Good for both. It is versatile. You don’t have to change your watch when you change your clothes. When it is finally on their wrist, what are the first words out of his mouth? “I love it!”

Darrel Conner Stockdale Jewelers, 5466 California Ave. Watch brand/model/price? “I like to sell the Bulova,” Conner said. Numerous models, prices range from $250 to $850 What kind of guys wears this watch? The line is so diversified that it can be a sports guy or a businessman. Why is it a must have? The Bulova’s fine looks. Women are more concerned with the way the watch looks on the wrist. While the men are more concerned with the great price. Five features that make the sale:

Owner Darrel Conner reflects on why he likes Bulova watches for men.

Continued on page 10

3200 21ST STREET SUITE 500 BAKERSFIELD 661.325.5023 Bakersfield Life 2011 The Man Section

Carl M. Saenger of The American Jewelry Co. speaks of the epitome of men's watches, Rolex.

Continued from page 9 Auto wind Mineral crystals that don’t scratch Bulova quality Variety of styles for every man Tech watches include alarms and stop watches Better for the office or road trip? Doesn’t matter. You can wear it doing yard work, at the office or sports activities such as running, racing and even diving. When it is finally on their wrist, what are the first words out of his mouth? “That looks great!”

Carl M. Saenger

The watch many men work all their lives for: a Rolex

The Amercian Jewelry Co., 3200 21st St., Oak Park Tower

Timeless design.

Watch brand/model/price? Rolex, Day Date II, $29,500

The weight and the way it fits on the wrist.

What kind of guys wears this watch? Generally, it is an individual who succeeded in a business endeavor such as a CEO of a corporation or business owner.

The 18-karat gold says a lot about the person buying it.

Why is it a must have? It is a symbol of elegance and extremely high quality. It is not easily attainable and it is recognized by others as the epitome of what one could own. Five features that make the sale: The uniqueness of Rolex, with a name is backed by overall quality mechanics and accuracy.


Bakersfield Life 2011 The Man Section

Highly sought after and it can be traded in for a newer Rolex. Better for the office or road trip? It depends on what they are driving. But the 18-karat gold is for office wear and dress wear. You could wear it all the time and it can take everyday wear-and-tear. When it is finally on their wrist, what are the first words out of his mouth? When it is usually presented, people say, “It’s great, I love it.” They wear it daily and something about this watch feeds the ego a bit.

Have some wine with that burger

Wine might actually be better than beer with certain foods


By Paul Ulrich

en are notorious for their consumption of beer; it must be linked to the Y chromosome. I feel that wine can be an excellent alternative to beer, and in many cases, a better match for manly foods and tastes. Such foods include pizza, chili, barbequed meats, pork chops and all cuts of beef. In general, wines that are full-bodied fruit-forward and tannic with components of oak, smoke and earth are good choices for dishes that men prefer. Varietals such as syrah, malbec, some Italian reds, zinfandel, petite sirah and cabernet sauvignon fall into this category. Syrah is probably the best all-around choice for manly foods. It has a character that contains pepper, spice, and tannins that can stand up to most hearty, spicy and barbequed dishes. Plus, we live next to an area that is truly world class with respect to the quality of its Syrah and wines blended with the syrah grape. I’m talking about Paso Robles. Recommended producers include Saxum, Linne Calodo, Tablas Creek, Grey Wolf and Tobin James. Almost every producer in this region makes excellent wine in this category, and they are all eager to have you sample their wines in their tasting rooms. Give them a try. The Australians also produce syrah, but they call it shiraz. Personally, I think that they keep their best wines for themselves, and we have some of their lower quality wines imported to the United States. There are exceptions to this, as I recently tasted Mollydooker shiraz at Luigi’s deli. The Aussies have fun with their wine, which is something we should all emulate. Wine enjoyment does not have to be esoteric and reserved for only a select few individuals. Zinfandel is another great choice. I like it when I have pizza, but

it also pairs well with barbequed meats. Zinfandel is another varietal that is widely available and is also reasonably priced. The Biker, a zinfandel produced by Four Vines in Paso Robles, is appropriately named and is a fantastic wine that fits perfectly in this category. It is currently available in local wine shops, but won’t last long on their shelves. Other good choices for zin include those produced by Sextant, Buehler and Rosenblum. Italian red wines are another alternative to think about when choosing something to accompany hearty foods. They even have strong names, such as Barolo, Barbaresco and Brunello to mention a few. They are earthier than California wines and sometimes require some bottle aging. The Italians are famous for their fabulous food, and these wines are natural partners for their food, as well as most red meats. I have previously written about petite sirah. This is a full-bodied wine that goes very well with heavy dishes such as stews, soups and other comfort foods. Look for petite sirah produced by Bogle, Concannon and David Fulton. Another wine that is relatively new to the U.S. is malbec. Most of the malbec consumed here is imported from Argentina. These are wines definitely worth trying with grilled meats. They are usually moderately priced. I recently tried La Posta at Imbibe and recommend this wine. When I think of masculine things, France is not a word that immediately pops into my head. However, I do have to give France credit as the origin for most of the wines we drink today. I mention this because I prefer cabernet sauvignon (a French wine) with any cut of beef, including filet mignon. It is my preference to drink Cabernet produced in the Napa Valley whenever I enjoy a good steak. Chappellet, Groth, Beaulieu and Pine Ridge produce some of my favorites. The 2007 California cabernets are widely available now at great values and they are an outstanding vintage. So guys, let’s broaden our thinking and reach for something new when we prepare your next meal. Ask your wine retailer for their advice and I think you will be pleasantly surprised. Bakersfield Life 2011 The Man Section


Man T H E


10 tips for a

healthier lifestyle for men


By Allison Castro

he Internet is full of health articles giving advice on what you should or should not be doing to live a healthy lifestyle. With the abundance of information, it can be hard to tell what the most essential tips are, and to whom they are most relevant. That’s why two of our local physicians have answered our query and provided what they have found are the most essential pieces of advice that every man should follow.


Don’t smoke. If you smoke, it’s easier said than done. However, there are numerous options available to help you quit. With two types of prescription medications in addition to the nicotine patch and gum, the decision to quit might just be the hardest part about quitting.


Eat what you like, just watch the portions. The diet that is most likely to work for you is one that you can stick to long term. Don’t limit your food options, just cut back on your portions. Also, try not to drink your calories. Many of us drink non-diet beverages that are loaded with more carbohydrates from sugar than you should be consuming at one meal. So, if you’re having a super-sized regular soda along with lunch, it’s almost like eating two meals!


Just keep moving. Exercise and stretch at least 30 minutes a day. Make it a priority. If time is an issue, try to cut back on how much television you watch. That way, you’re creating time for exercise. If you simply can’t turn off your TV set, consider exercis12

Bakersfield Life 2011 The Man Section

ing while you watch. Make your TV time more active, not passive. If you really don’t like to be distracted from your favorite shows, you can record them to watch later and fast-forward through the breaks. The time you save skipping commercials, you can use to exercise. Set short-term, realistic goals and celebrate when you meet them.


Keep it in check. Even if you look like Superman, you still need to make sure to get check ups regularly. You often feel normal even in the early stages of having diabetes and high blood pressure. When it comes to your health, it’s better to catch and take care of problems early than to wait until it’s obvious something is wrong.


Take your medications. If your doctor prescribes you medications, be sure to actually take them as directed. That’s the only way they have a chance to work! If you are experiencing side effects from your medications, contact your doctor to discuss possible alternative medications instead of simply not taking it. — Dr. Benjamin Ha is a family physician and has worked with Kaiser Permanente in Kern County since 2003.


Be on guard for low testosterone. The term “andropause” is used to describe the condition experienced by men that compares to the menopause experience in women. Lowered levels of testosterone can begin as early as age 30 in some men. Besides decreased libido, men may notice less energy, altered sense of wellbeing and problems with focus and concentration. Replacement of testosterone can result in rapid improvement in the above symptoms

with a significant improvement in quality of life. As seen in many men, a calming effect may result, and many also state an improved feeling of self-confidence.


Be aware of occupational hazards. Due to years of exposure to loud noises such as machinery or engines (and perhaps explosives), presbycusis (problems with hearing) can occur at an earlier age as methods of prevention were not as developed as they are now Periodic hearing tests are recommended for all at risk to detect this as early as possible. Other well-recognized and publicized risks include; prolonged exposure to the sun with its subsequent risk of skin cancer, asbestos and mesothelioma, and heavy metals such as lead, mercury and several others.



Depression symptoms vary in men. Inasmuch as it is frequently misconstrued in the elderly, as their symptoms are often mistaken (and even misdiagnosed) for early dementia, the same can be said for depression in men. (Men) may present as more subtle symptoms. Fatigue or problems concentrating may predominate, but the one I look for especially is called psychomotor agitation. This includes things such as being easily agitated, frequently grouchy and often irritated by seemingly minor incidents (by the way not exclusively limited to men). This is a condition that is extremely common and has a very large market for available treatments. — Dr. Gary Morasca is a board-certified family practitioner who recently joined PrimeCare Physicians Medical Group.

Osteoporosis isn’t just for women. Yes, men get this as well! Albeit not nearly as early an age as women, but by age 70 the effects are under way. Despite this, there are yet no approved medications for male osteoporosis … therefore, one is well served with the time honored methods of osteoporosis treatment; exercise, avoidance of tobacco, and adequate thyroid and vitamin D levels (also simple blood tests).


Benign Prostatic Hypertrophy (BPH): Bathroom trips aren’t just for women either. Another disorder for which there is no shortage of drug ads on TV, and not likely to slow down anytime soon with the aging of baby boomers, is BPH. With age the prostate enlarges to the point where urination becomes problematic. As mentioned there is hardly a shortage of medications ready to try and treat this condition, but beware of that omnipresent side effect of impotence with these as well.

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Bakersfield Life 2011 The Man Section


Man T H E


10 essentials for your bachelor pad


By Jenny Bachman

n unkempt dude-like dwelling with minimal furniture, the TV channel glued to “SportsCenter” and a fridge full of beer is what comes to mind when most people envision a bachelor pad. There’s nothing like having your castle all to yourself, right guys? After all, it’s the ultimate life of freedom. But, how should one’s bachelor pad really look and feel? We have the answers, fellow bachelors. And yes, there are certain items essential to making life comfortable for not only the bachelor, but for his guests. According to a few local bachelors, the abode must combine luxury, comfort and of course, top-of-the-line gadgets. Every man’s pad is different based on each unique taste, but here are the 10 basics every pad should have.


Bakersfield Life 2011 The Man Section

1. Clean, nice-smelling home Adam Cook, 26, insurance sales:

“Having a nice-smelling home is essential cause no one likes to live in filth, especially when you are a bachelor. Having company over requires a clean house to entertain. We keep it tidy during the week, but with my busy schedule, it is nice having a maid to get it looking spotless.”

2. Comfortable living room with HD TV Blake Howes, 26, mechanical engineer:

“There’s no way I can go back to watching anything in standard definition, especially sports.”

3. Full entertainment system Matt Roberts, 37, sales:

“Having a home theater system is something that I could not live without. It defines my bachelor pad because it is the ultimate place to relax.”

4. Fully stocked refrigerator Andrew Miles, 30, sales:

“A fully stocked bar is something that I could not live without in my bachelor pad … I have a spare fridge filled with just Coors Light.”

5. Outdoor living room Howes:

“I would like to mount a TV outside, so we can watch the game while swimming or using the hot tub.”

6. Someone to do laundry Howes:

“Getting someone to do my laundry is a pretty high priority too. I always shrink things or get soap stains or gum stuck everywhere.”

7. A maid Miles:

“A maid is something that I could definitely not live without as a bachelor.”

8. Game room Howes:

“We have a whole room dedicated to video games. This is where we go to just relax on the comfy couches and be guys.”

9. Pool table Cook:

“The pool table is one of the best parts of the house because it is like built in entertainment … just invite people over, turn on music and automatically it is a party.”

10. Round bed Howes:

“My round bed was a very expensive joke, but it definitely makes the room.”

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Bakersfield Life 2011 The Man Section


Photos by Tanya X. Leonzo

Nancy Chaffin Vice President, Administration and Operation The Bakersfield Californian

We all know Google. It’s helped us with our buying habits, finding that perfect cocktail. It’s also helped us figure out how to fix that printer configuration setting so we can finally print! But Google is more than a search engine, a map into the unknown digital world. Google has TV. Whoa. We asked Nancy Chaffin, community volunteer, Californian top brass and proud owner of a Google TV, to give us the insight. Here’s what she had to say: My device is Google TV. I am technically challenged, so I have not come close to using all the functions. I am also not a big TV watcher but this has made me watch more and switch back and forth from live TV, to the DVR, to the Internet. I think these kinds of devices are the future and wanted to get more techy. In researching it, I found I can even use my iPhone as a remote — not sure why I thought that was a really a great thing, but I did. It's like an oversized laptop. I sit in my


comfy chair and the control has a full keyboard that allows me to do anything via the Internet that I can do on a computer. It's super easy to set up. I was stunned that I got it right on the first try. I also like that I got rid of a bunch of cords behind my

There are fewer connections for this device with my TV and cable box than I had with just the TV and the cable box. My TV has apps! Google TV comes with pre-loaded apps like Netflix, CNBC, Pandora and a bunch of others. Sometime this year they are supposed to add new options for apps. No need to worry about logging on your computer. With Google TV, I can check my checking account and e-mail as a new movie was downloading. I love to stream photos from photo-sharing sites — perfect for my two beautiful granddaughters. Streaming movies from Netflix is so convenient. Want to watch a National Geographic documentary or catch up on the last 11 years of “Law & Order SVU”? It's there! You can create your own homepage. OK, I confess I am having some trouble with this option, but I will prevail! Google regularly updates, so I get the newest features for free. I get a message and I click OK, or remind me later — takes a few minutes and it's done. www.BakersfieldLife.com67


In the hunt for a championship Bakersfield native Kevin Harvick focused for a title win this year

N By Stephen Lynch

Photo by Davis Turner

NASCAR has taken Kevin Harvick far from his Bakersfield roots and into the national spotlight. But that doesn’t mean the Sprint Cup driver has changed much since winning the 1993 Late Model championship at Mesa Marin Raceway while still a student at North High. A decade into his Cup career, Harvick is still as intense and focused as he was coming up the ranks at the now-defunct track on the east side of town. That innate desire for success plus his obvious talent behind the


Bakersfield Life

March 2011

wheel have helped make Harvick one of the sport’s most accomplished drivers and biggest stars. “I’m a competitive person,” Harvick said, referring to his source of motivation. Harvick, who took over Dale Earnhardt’s seat at Richard Childress Racing following the tragic ending of the 2001 Daytona 500, has almost done it all in the 10 years since that fateful day. Nicknamed “Happy” by his fellow competitors, Harvick has won 14 Sprint Cup points races, including the series two most prestigious events: the Brickyard 400 (2003) and Daytona 500 (2007). Harvick, who earned Raybestos Rookie of the Year honors in 2001, also has victories in the 2007 NASCAR Sprint All-Star Race and the past two Budweiser Shootouts to his credit. However, the one thing missing from the 35-year-old’s resume is a Sprint Cup title. That nearly came last season as he led the series in points for the majority of the year only to eventually finish a scant 41 markers behind five-time champion Jimmie Johnson. Despite the obvious disappointment in coming up short, Harvick was pleased with RCR’s overall performance. All three of the organizations cars made the chase in 2010, following a 2009 season in which none did and Harvick finished 19th in the final standings. “Well, you can look back two years ago and see the nightmare,” Harvick said. “You still remember that, and I still think that’s a lot of what drives the whole company, including myself. 2009 is something that you don’t want to experience all over again. So while we were able to lead the points a lot in 2010, I’ve come to appreci-

ate that and focus on the positive strides we made as a team and a company.” Fueled by the positive momentum of the title run and coming off career-highs in Top 5s (16) and Top 10s (26) in 2010, Harvick has a singular purpose heading into this season. “It’s all about winning a championship at this point, nothing else,” Harvick said. “Nothing else is good enough at this particular point in time. So it’s great to win big races, but in the end, it’s all about taking home the one trophy that we don’t have, and that’s the championship trophy. It’s been a long time for Richard (Childress), and it’s been a long time since we’ve been able to experience that as a company.” Harvick embarks upon the 2011 season with Budweiser as a new primary sponsor on his Chevrolet Impala. But other than that, the off-season has been business as usual for him and the No. 29 team. “We didn’t change anything,” Harvick said. “I tried not to get out of my routines. I work out on the same days, I went and had my physical on the same day I did last year, and we’re doing the same things that we did last year. The only thing I did was change my phone code to 4848, so I will remember who I have to beat.” While Harvick’s main focus this season will be on chasing the Sprint Cup, it won’t be his only concern. Harvick will have to deal with numerous sponsor and fan obligations, plus he and his wife DeLana hold joint-ownership in Kevin Harvick Inc., which fields Nationwide and Craftsman Truck Series racing teams.

Continued on page 70

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Budweiser will be Harvick’s primary sponsor in 2011. Continued from page 69

In 2010, KHI won a combined 10 races. Harvick, a two-time Nationwide champion (2001 & 2006), steered his way to six of them. Being a successful Nationwide/Truck owner hasn’t given Harvick, who signed a contract extension with RCR in May, the itch to start his own Cup team though. At least not yet. “I think we are very creative and aggressive company,” Harvick said. “We are competitive from the top to the bottom and we don’t

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Bakersfield Life

March 2011

accept losing. We do a good job as seizing opportunities when they present themselves, and that would include running a Cup team. It’s not an immediate goal we have, but we’ve laid the foundation should that opportunity present itself.” KHI isn’t the couple’s only venture together. In 2010, they formed the Kevin Harvick Foundation a charity organization that helps several different worthwhile youth-based causes. One branch of the KHF is the Kevin Harvick Athletic Scholarship Fund, which announced in October that it will fund a full academic scholarship to one Cal State Bakersfield student-athlete each year for the next 12 years. Harvick kicked off the scholarship program by handing out the $151,200 donation at a press conference on the Friday before last year’s fall race at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana. The KHF has more than one local group that it supports. Harvick has also raised money for the North High wrestling program. It’s a cause he knows about firsthand. Harvick won a section wrestling title for North during his senior year there. Last year, Harvick came to town and held a golf tournament plus a dinner and auction to garner money for his foundation. He hopes to do something similar this year. “We do have some plans for a fundraising event in Bakersfield this year, but we haven’t got all the details firmed up at this point,” Harvick said. With racing occupying the vast majority of his time, it’s difficult for Harvick now a resident of North Carolina, to make it back to his old stomping grounds. “When I do get to come back to Bakersfield, it’s usually a quick trip,” Harvick said. “Obviously, I like to see my friends and family, and I always stop by El Sombrero when I’m in town.”


Shannon Grove R-Bakersfield 32nd District Assemblywoman


Compiled by Gabriel Ramirez

First things on your list now that you took office? Focus the Legislature on the private-sector jobs here in Kern County — jobs that exist from the land and our resources — the energy, the food, fiber and the technological brilliance coming from our naval and aerospace bases. Get the Legislature to realize they have been hurting the California job market through onerous legislation against business owners. Plus, there is too much government spending and taxes. The Legislature must protect those jobs and job creators from over taxation and burdensome regulations. Most important issue facing the state? Private sector job creation — we must get Californians back to work. This state Legislature must welcome new businesses and encourage the businesses that are here to grow, stay here in California and employ more people. How are you planning to work toward Bakersfield’s and Kern County’s best interest in Sacramento? The best thing I can do for the people of Kern County is to convince the legislature to cut the growth in government that takes dollars away from employers and their employees.

What is your message to supporters? Don’t give up on California! Kern County is the "promise land." We fuel, feed and secure our nation and I am working to get this message across to legislators and statewide media. We, the people, can do what’s right on our own if the legislators won’t listen. I’m all about bringing more jobs to this state and keeping the ones we have — government must go on a diet so that private sector employers and small businesses can invest in our state. We the people, we the small-business owners, we the entrepreneurs and we the working people are the backbone of the greatest economy in the world. We should be valued as such by this Legislature. 72

Bakersfield Life

March 2011

Photo by Alex Horvath

2011 has begun. Do you have a personal goal for this year? If I can’t succeed in getting the state Legislature to support more business and job creation policies, then I’ll go to the ballot box and let the voters tell them in a loud clear voice that we need more jobs.



A token of love A pair of local 7 year olds donate their locks to help others


By Luz Pena

Photos by Jose Treviño

Best friends do everything together. Ally Reyes and Ella Martinez, both 7 years old, are no exception. The second-graders at Juliet Thorner Elementary braved the hair cutting shears hand-in-hand. The best friends cut their hair to be donated to Locks of Love, a national nonprofit group that provides hairpieces to children under age 18, who suffer from hair loss due to a medical illness. “Ally wanted to cut her hair,” said Ella. “I did, too.” The girls waited patiently at Studio Glam Salon for their turn in the styling chair. Ally’s mom Ashley brushed both girls hair into ponytails before hairstylists Lucia Gonzalez Bailey and Theresa Berlanga cut the girls’ lovely tresses. The BFF’s older sisters — Ariana Martinez, Aimee and Amberly Reyes — all previously donated their hair to Locks of Love. Ashley said Ally wanted to donate her hair when her sisters did, but her hair was too fine, not strong or long enough. Donated hair must be at least 10 inches long. “She has been waiting for this day,” said Ashley. “She has been watching and asking if her hair is long enough.” 74

Bakersfield Life

Ally Reyes, left, and BFF Ella Martinez have been combing and growing their hair for the big day to cut it off and donate it to Locks of Love.

March 2011

Ally's dad, John Reyes, tries on the girls’ hairpieces for fun.

Ella is going to miss her hair but Ally not so much. “I’m going to help other children, who don’t have hair,” she said. “I will miss my hair a little, but not the tangles.” Ally was fearless and smiled while Berlanga cut the first strands of hair from her ponytail. Ella was a little uneasy when Gonzalez Bailey began cutting hers, but she looked up at her best friend for support. Ally told her stylist she wanted an A-line cut.

How to donate to Locks of Love You don’t have to be young to want to donate your hair to the nonprofit group, but here are some tips that can help you prepare for it, if you think this is the right thing for you: • Hair tip to tip must be at least 10 inches long. • Curly hair may be pulled straight to measure at least 10 inches. • If your hair is layered, the longest layer must be at least 10 inches long. • Hair must be in a ponytail or braid before it’s cut. • If layered, make multiple ponytails. • Hair must be clean and completely dry before it’s mailed in. • Perm and colored hair is acceptable, but bleached or (chemically) highlighted hair is not. • Dreadlocks are not accepted. • Once cut, place the ponytail or braid inside a plastic bag, and then inside a padded envelope.

“I want my haircut like Ally’s,” she beamed. The final result was a new hair do, plenty of smiles without any tears. The children can receive a card of recognition from the Florida-based nonprofit group but the bigger prize is in something else: “For them, it’s just the satisfaction in knowing they helped a child,” Ashley Reyes said.

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Keeping kids well Expo targets keeping your teens and little ones healthy

T By Luz Peña

The Healthy Bakersfield Kids Expo has your children’s wellbeing at heart. The one-day event on March 26 was developed by The Bakersfield Californian and title sponsor Bakersfield Memorial Hospital with everything to keep your little ones and teens happy and healthy. Gary Frazier, VP of strategy and business development for Memorial Hospital, said the event will provide parents tips and information about services of which many may not be aware. “Parents should come because it has ton of info about general health care for children, tips, advice and info for services in the community they may not even know about,” said Frazier. “Some people assumed they have to leave Bakersfield to get these services but they're right here in their neighborhood.” The event will take place from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Rabobank Theater and Convention Center. Physicians will be on hand to discuss various topics like chronic diseases, diet, nutrition and exercise. Last year, The Californian and Memorial Hospital joined forces to create a health expo. The idea was presented by Kay Flores, a sales manager for The Californian, who wanted to bring informa76

Bakersfield Life

March 2011

Phot by Dietmar Quistorf


Jim Starr at last year’s event.

tion on health and well-being to the community in one place. “In 2009, I presented the idea of having a 2010 Health Expo for our local community and was very excited when we were able to partner with Bakersfield Memorial Hospital for our first annual event in May of 2010.” said Flores. “It was so successful that The Bakersfield Californian and Memorial decided to continue it annually.” At the expo, people can also find out more details about Memorial Hospital’s Children's Medical Center, which was designed for children to receive the hospital care they needed without leaving Kern County. The center is equipped with pediatricians and nurses, who specialize in caring for children in a hospital setting. “(We saw) how people traveled outside Bakersfield (to other children’s hospitals), so that was an indicator that something was missing,” said Frazier. “We had the facility but we needed doctors and nurses, who worked with children in hospitals. We recruited hospitalists.” The expo is also about fun. Since Bakersfield now has a Ronald McDonald House, everyone’s favorite clown Ronald McDonald will be visiting. Plus there will be a inflatable obstacle course. Flores hopes families come out to take advantage of the event. “They’ll have a fun-filled day of entertainment, dancing, activities and prize giveaways throughout the event, while learning

The iDance competition, a favorite with the kids, starts at 2 p.m. how to live healthy and safely” she said. “We are very excited about being able to bring our local businesses together in one convenient location to help promote the health and well being of our community's future, our children.”

Some of the event highlights

10 a.m. to noon Bakersfield city fire engine on display 1 p.m. Starrland Magical Musical Review stage show 2 p.m. iDance competition

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Submit a photograph and be sure to include your contact information: Name, phone, e-mail. Deadline 5 p.m. Wednesday March 30



Alexis Godey Pioneer of the West By Jeff Nickell, Kern County Museum director Photos courtesy of Kern County Museum


The late local historian Eugene Burmeister indicated in a March 15, 1970, article that Alexis Godey was “regarded as the best scout John Fremont had” and was “without a doubt a towering figure in the ranks of mountain men of the west.” I think these two statements alone make Godey an excellent topic considering the focus of this month’s magazine. According to numerous sources, Alexis Godey was born in St. Louis in either 1815 or 1818 (you will note later in the article that the historic plaque states 1818) to parents of French-Canadian descent. Paperwork prepared for the state historical landmark application, which was eventually approved and installed on October 16, 1960, said that Godey had little or no formal schooling. He moved west becoming a mountain man/fur trapper. He led this life for about 10 years “hunting for the forts and trading with Indians” until July 23, 1843, when he joined Fremont’s expedition. Godey joined the expedition near St. Vrain Fort in Northern Colorado. There are accounts of Godey, just as there are of Fremont or just about any other early pioneer associated with Westward Expansion, that he was a hero or a savage. But, there is no disregarding the impact Godey had on the expedition team, or future expeditions led by Fremont in 1844-1845, 1848 (after Fremont had been court martialed for insubordination; not funded by Congress), and according to Burmeister “on his final expedition in 1853-1854.” But, this is not about Fremont. Alexis Godey fought in the war against Mexico that led to California becoming a state. In fact, Godey was captured after breaking through enemy lines and reaching San Diego “getting assurance of help from Commander Stockton” after the forces of General Kearney had been defeated at San Pasqual. Soon after, he was released once General Beale and Kit Carson made their way to Commander Stockton, and victory was secured with the California Territory being ceded to the United States. Needless to say, Godey, who, at one time was named lieutenant governor of the California Territory, was able and courageous. It was in the 1848 expedition that I think Godey earned 78

Bakersfield Life

March 2011

an even greater degree of heroic status. Fremont decided to begin the trip at a bad time of year reaching Bent’s Fort in Colorado in November of that year. In the application for Godey’s home site to garner State landmark status, it is noted that the expedition team made it to Pueblo on Nov. 21 and took on a guide with the last name of Williams. I only mention him because he believed the Rockies were impassable in the winter — a fact that Fremont did not and would not consider. The following is taken as a direct quote from the application on file at the Kern County Museum: “The party continued westward toward the Rio Grande, and after a short distance up the river, turned northerly into the higher mountains on about the 12th day of December. Five days later, they reached the summit, which they thought to be a pass in the main divide, but this proved to be a mistake. The snow became deeper, the weather colder, and the pack mules numbering more than 100, rapidly died off from starvation and exposure. On the 26th of December a group of four men started on foot for help while the rest moved equipment back down the mountain so far as they could do so.” Once the supplies had been all used up in the camp Fremont along with Godey and a few others left in search of settlements for aid. They Godey landmark came upon the first party If you go to Central Park, you that left for help and one can read California Registered was dead with the others in Landmark 690, which reads: pitiful or “pitiable” shape Last Home of Alexis Godey as the document reads. Near this site stood the last The men left higher on the home of Alexis Godey, famous mountain were continufrontiersman and scout. Born ing to try to get down the in St. Louis, Mo. in 1818, Godey mountain through “heavy acted as guide for General John C. Fremont’s expedition through snow and freezing cold.” the area in 1843-1844, and was The document goes honored for his services at the on to say that Fremont Battle of San Pasqual in 1846. “apparently had little sense Moving here in 1883, Godey died of responsibility for the January 19, 1889. disaster.” In a letter written to his wife of the Dec. 27, Fremont said, “I have invincible repugnance to going back among scenes where I have endured so much suffering and for all the incidents and circumstances of which I feel a strong aversion.” Fremont and Godey parted ways with Godey obtaining “provisions and supplies at the settlement” finally reaching the stranded party on Jan. 28. Ten men and more than 100 mules died, but it is thought that if not for Godey’s heroic actions another fifteen would have perished if not more. Fast-forward to 1873 when Alexis Godey purchased “66 acres along the eastern boundary of Bakersfield” (about Union Avenue). “He deeded right-of-way for the main line of the Southern Pacific Railroad” not long after acquiring the land.” He also deeded a strip of his property to the Kern Island Canal Company and other parcels of his land at various times. In the end, he “retained a favored spot on high ground (remember Bakersfield was often prone to floods) facing 19th Street. He built his home and outbuildings there, as well as planted an orchard. His original property is now partly occupied by Central Park, residences, and businesses.

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The starting gates open with a bang and a line of thoroughbreds explode onto the track recently at Santa Anita race track.

A day at the races Fun, scenic beauty make Santa Anita Park a good bet for a one-day getaway Story and photos by Lois Henry


A whole Saturday stretched before me last month and I just could not take another minute under Bakersfield’s oppressively cold, dank skies. Seriously, our winters are enough to make Eeyore seem cheery. The beach? Skiing? Desert? Hmmm. All good


Bakersfield Life

March 2011

choices but I was looking for something different, So I grabbed one of my best gal pals, some sun screen, a few extra dollars and headed to Santa Anita Park near Pasadena. That's right, horse racing! Hey, if you’re jonesing for a quick Bakersfield break like I was, this is a great entertainment option and, no, you don’t have to break the bank (I'm a big fan of cheap). Santa Anita Park is one of the prettiest horse racing venues around and it’s only about 250 miles round-trip from B-town. That’s about 2 hours each way, just enough time for a good solid gab session. Don’t worry if you’re a wagering novice. The object isn't to score big, anyway. Soak up that wonderful sun, enjoy the gorgeous San Gabriel mountains and marvel at those incredible horses. You’d be surprised at how even

a little $2 bet will get you up on your feet, whooping and hollering for your horse to pour it on as the pack comes thundering down the home stretch. I’ve done both the Turf Club and infield at Santa Anita. They're equally fun, it's just a matter of how much you want to spend. Infield is cheapest, $4 general parking, $5 admission. Turf Club is a bit more, $4 general parking, or $10 valet (plus tip) and $20 entrance. Turf Club is in the grand stands with tableside service for drinks and food. And it has a dress code. I’d say “business casual” at a minimum. The dress code is online if you have questions. Either way, your first stop should be to get the day's program, $2.25, so you can see who's running in which race. I know, you regulars will scoff at that advice, but hey, beginners have to start somewhere. When I went, it was a regular day, no big races, so it was very easy to park and no crowds to hassle with. But you need to check the web site ( because big race days bring BIG, BIG crowds to Santa Anita.

Horses thunder across the finish line but my pick, Free Beer, is nowhere to be found. The day we were there, families were enjoying the sun in the infield, which is a beautiful park with lots of amenities for people who bring their own lunches and lounge chairs. On those slower days, a bar is open in the infield, as well as a food stand. But it's mostly hot dogs, pretzels and snacks.


4713 Stockdale Highway 1 mile west of Hwy. 99 (behind Outback Steakhouse)

Busier days bring more elaborate food trucks plus wine tasting! You can cross over (via a tunnel) to the stands where they also have a sandwich shop. If you're really in the mood for sit down, there's the FrontRunner (fancy) or Club House (more relaxed) restaurants, Continued on page 82

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Continued from page 81

which are also in the grand stands. We had hot dogs and beer in the infield and meandered around checking things out. Like I said, I’m big on cheap. Oh, and we bet a few races as well. Since I don't know anything about horse racing, I pick the name that most appeals to me. The names are the best. There were Big Kiss, Beyond Loaded, Rented Cop, Scantily Clad and so many others. It was a hoot just to read the program. Of course, none of my bets came in that day, which was fine. But I do admit to being somewhat let down by my pick in the fifth — Free Beer. Come on, that was a match made in heaven!

Getting there Check the web site for any special events, times, group deals and more.

The drive • Intertstate 5 to Highway 210 to Arcadia and look for the signs to the horse track. Very simple! • Give yourself at least two hours to get there, maybe two and a half considering traffic.


Bakersfield Life

March 2011

Before the race Free Beer, the No. 8 horse, prances confidently out to the starting gates.

PRODUCTS AROUND TOWN The whimsical Paul Frank collection for dogs has arrived!

Come see our selection of fun dog beds, collars, retractable and nylon leashes. The beds are safe with nonskid bottoms and are eco-tastic too, since the filling is made of recycled plastic bottles! Let your dog lead the way … in fashion, that is! Paul Frank products are the brightest, most fun way to accessorize your pet. Biscuit Boutique & Doggy Spa, 1617 19th St., 321-9602,

Biscuit Boutique

Candy funtastic!

Bring a bit of candy land fun to your next event. Whether it’s party favors, gift baskets or a fun and tasty candy buffet table, there’s no better way to sweeten up your special day than a custom gift order from Lil B's Sweet Tooth at The Marketplace, 9000 Ming Ave., Suite H4, 665-8500.

Lil B’s Sweet Tooth

Come see what’s new Waxing Poetic Jewelry “exclusively special at Fashionista” Located downtown at the Fox Theater Fashionista, 2007 H St. 327-4466


mamaRoo infant seat and bouncer

The mamaRoo infant seat and bouncer is built to bounce and sway like a parent does, up and down and from side-toside. It has adjustable speeds and five different motion choices from car ride to ocean wave. Parents can choose between five different nature sounds or connect to an MP3 player. Come experience the innovation of the mamaRoo infant seat and bouncer, available at JM’s Just for Children, 930 Wible Road in Bakersfield.

JM’s Just for Children

Privo and Indigo by Clarks have arrived

Privo and Indigo by Clarks Co, undoubtedly the one most comfortable shoes made. Making it the perfect go-to shoe in your closet. The new spring collections have arrived, they are utterly amazing! Come in and see what Privo and Indigo has for you today at Guarantee Shoe Center, 2101 Chester Ave., downtown. Where else?

Guarantee Shoe Center 84

Bakersfield Life

March 2011

Customizable Get Started Kit

Eight-piece Collection with Everything you need for a flawless complexion. Just add your choice of bareMineral SPF 15 Foundation — choose from 20 shades. Watch out for the New bareMineral skin care line that will be out in March and only found at Lashes and Mustaches in the Stockdale Tower, 5060 California Ave #100. 836-9775.

Lashes and Mustaches

Spring is on the way

It’s time to get ready for spring, and Divaz Desirez has a great selection of spring fashions. We have a selection of fashions and accessories for Divaz of all ages. So if you’re looking for that perfect outfit for yourself or one for the little Diva come visit Divaz Desirez at 4560 Coffee Road (Coffee and Hageman by BlockBuster in the Vons center) 679-7278.

Divas Desirez Boutique

Handmade English toffee

Antonette and Diane started out making Aunt Mae’s fine handmade English toffee for close family and friends, and once friends tried it they were hooked. The special combination of ingredients and the cooking process results in a rich candy that is mouth-watering, delectable and crunchy. This delicious English toffee, available from October to May, can be found at Luigi’s, Flourishing Art, Olcott’s and Sweet Surrender in Bakersfield. Call 725-5200 or visit for direct orders, other locations and information. Gorgeous gift boxes are available in various sizes.

Aunt Mae’s Sweet Tooth

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Maya Cinemas Talent Show Jan. 8 Held at Maya Cinemas Photos by Jan St. Pierre View these photos and more online at

Sarah McCurtis, Nyoka Jameson and Sean Gallagher

Tiffany Goldsmith, Lori Hight and Cassie Dunlap

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Bakersfield Life

March 2011

Becca Montandon, Nicole Baeza, Brooke Ramirez, Billy Montandon and Deion Spoon

Rabobank at Riverlakes grand opening Jan. 20 Held at Rabobank’s Riverlakes branch Photos by Jan St. Pierre View these photos and more online at

Gail Dawson, Travis Fugitt, Kendall Hamilton, Dan Fugitt and Andy Pederson

Tony DeGroot and Perry Tjaarda

Tonya Dretzka and Sharon Edgar

Dawn Anderson and Marni Bradshaw

Gary Hallstrom, Loren Stroope and Pat Kelly

Marilyn Graulich, Lisa Prudhomme, Paul Callahan and Jim Love

Kirt Campbell and Kristie Navarrette

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Greater Bakersfield Chamber of Commerce Installation Gala Jan. 27 Held at Bakersfield Marriott Convention Center Photos by Carla Rivas View these photos and more online at

Sam and Ghina Itani

Jeff Schultz, Ronetta and Chris Krauter

Ken Beurmann and Debbie Moreno

Beverly Byl, Kathy Miller and Michele Newell

Michelle Watson and Sen. Jean Fuller

Wayne Deats, John Farrer, Bryan Burrow and Rep. Kevin McCarthy

Teri and Steve Knecht, Lorie Stitesa and Rick Kreiser

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Bakersfield Life

March 2011

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Affair Extraordinaire Jan. 30 Held at the Guild House Photos by Greg Nichols View these photos and more online at

Ron and Cheryl Hilzer

Fred and Linda Carlisle

Connie and Joe Selgrath

Milton Younger and Dwight Byrum

Philip Field and Rose Schmoll

Jim and Dee Whitley and Patti and Lynn Blystone

TILE • GRANITE • RE-MODELS • COMMERCIAL Art Street Bakersfield, CA 93312 589-5803 1801 90

Bakersfield Life

March 2011

T. Mark and Juliet Smith and Katie and Tim Werdel

IES Engineering successfully and consistently develops practical and cost effective solutions to meet our clients’ evolving engineering needs. We provide electrical, mechanical, and control systems engineering, along with PLC programming, software solutions and I & E construction for a wide range of applications in the oil and gas, food and beverage, and mining industries. IES Engineering is excited to announce the completion of our newly constructed building, occupied and fullfunctioning since the beginning of 2011. Our newly expanded office space reflects the future of IES as a relentlessly innovative, always cutting edge engineering firm. As always, IES Engineering continues to strive to anticipate changing client needs. With the development of our office space, tremendous care has been taken to elevate and enhance our interactions with clients. Our main conference room is now equipped with two SMARTBoards™ that facilitate real-time white board collaboration with clients in remote locations. Our 3,000 square foot, U.L. panel shop allows for large scale, high volume assembly; tighter integration with design and programming, and space for software simulation and testing. IES is very proud to continue to offer our clients the quality and value they have come to expect.

Announcing IES Engineering’s

Open House Event: Thursday, March 24th from 4-7pm 8800 Crippen Street Bakersfield, CA 93311

IES Engineering will donate $10 per attendee to the American Cancer Society’s Relay for Life. Help us reach our goal of donating over $5000 to further research efforts towards a cure and to help improve the lives of those currently living with this disease.

Kaiser Permanente specialty care opening Feb. 2 Held at Chester Avenue Medical Offices Photos by Casey Christie View these photos and more online at

Cathy Butler and Bob Bell

Jarrod McNaughton, Suzanne Satterfield and Jimmy Phillips

Steve Anderson, Jeff Hudson and Kim Rahberger

Eva Ramirez, Linda Osburn and Susan Reep

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Bakersfield Life

March 2011

Fatima Leal, Kim Aviles, Monique Eubanks, Colleen McGauley and Kristin Weirather

Paul Fuller, Bob Beehler, Brent Soper and Sam Itani


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Kern County Hispanic Chamber of Commerce Dinner Feb. 5 Held at Bakersfield Marriott Photos by Jose Trevino View these photos and more online at Grace and David Vallejo

Enrique Castillo and Jose Trevino

Harley and Cindy Pinson and Edward Herrera



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Participate for Bakersfield Great American Cleanup High School Student Green Art Competition – Kern County’s Largest Green Expo 94

Bakersfield Life

March 2011

Joe Jimenez, Jay Tamsi, Roy Perez and Tim Martinez

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Make-A-Wish Foundation’s Manhattan Nights Jan. 29 Held at The Petroleum Club Photos by Jan St. Pierre View these photos and more online at

Sherry and Louie Gregorio

Scott and Jeanne Tunnicliffe

Hillary Haenes, Jennifer Busby and Heather Abbott

Edith Bianco and Mo and Willa Mojibi

Heather and Derek Abbott, Bob Tazioli and Angene Grigg

Michael and Bethany Zoeller

Tom and Beth Hoffman

Jenee and Jill Busby

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Bakersfield Life

March 2011

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Lori Malkin Owner of Christine’s and LoLo’s and founder and chairwoman of JJ’s Legacy Looking back on last year’s first JJ’s Legacy Golf Tournament: It was really a fantastic day to have friends and family attend the golf tournament, dinner and auction. It was a huge success. We had over 200 golfers, friends, family, doctors and surgeons from OneLegacy in Los Angeles. We had 380 people attend the dinner. Donate Life is a universal cause, and with the fundraiser, we will be able to raise money to help the Bakersfield community.

Photo by Felix Adamo

Why I wanted to give back to the community through JJ’s Legacy: After Jeff’s tragic accident, we were presented with him being an organ and tissue donor and it was the right thing to do. JJ’s Legacy will always honor Jeff, but also countless other Americans who gave life in their passing as donors. I wanted to inspire and give knowledge to our community about organ and tissue donations. Join me and check "yes" at the DMV.

JJ’s Legacy Golf Tournament, Dinner and Auction

When: March 6, dinner and auction; March 7, golf tournament Where: Seven Oaks Country Club, 2000 Grand Lakes Ave. Ticket price: $75 per person for dinner (See web site for details on golf tournament and donations.) Information: Contact Lori Malkin at or visit jjslegacy. org for more details.

Favorite part of my job: Retail is in my blood and I have a huge passion for the customers. I really love working with people, and being able to give them feedback and helping them make their fashion choices. Best piece of advice someone has given me: When you know what you want it will be in your heart. You should always follow your heart and don’t give up. Keep your vision and mission. My first job: My first job was at my parent’s business, The Vogue Dress Shop. I was very young and I stuffed envelopes and sealed them. My dad gave me 10 cents and I went to Vest’s Drugs and bought a hot dog and a root beer — now that was a long time ago.

On my bookshelf, you will find: A wide variety of books ranging in topics from business, inspiration and fashion. Oh, and I love to browse through magazines and catalogs!

My favorite getaway: My favorite place to go is the beach — Carpinteria — with our friends and family.

My favorite place to have lunch on the weekend is: Bakersfield has many great places to have lunch on the weekends: Mexicali, Luigi’s or any of the Basque restaurants. And, you should start your day off at Smith’s with a maple bar!

Something few people know about me: I love to sing and do karaoke, but unfortunately, I cannot carry a tune!

Three things that define Bakersfield to me: One thing that I love about Bakersfield is all of the traditions. On Friday


Bakersfield Life

March 2011

nights at Benji’s, you will find families that have grown up in Bakersfield, or their families and children have lunch at Luigi’s or they may visit Dewar’s after church on Sunday. Another thing that stands out is the generous community that we live in! Also, the longevity of all the family businesses that are passed down from generation to generation. I was born and raised in Bakersfield, and it is and always will be home to me and my family! Most influencing person in my life: My mother, Christine Patterson Surgener. She was a woman of few words, but her words were always full of wisdom.

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FEATURED SPECIAL LEASE: Closed end lease for 2011 CR-V LX Automatic (RE3H3BEW) available from 01/05/2011 through 02/28/2011, to well-qualified lessees approved by Honda Financial Services. Not all lessees will qualify. Higher lease rates apply for lessees with lower credit ratings. MSRP $22475 (includes destination, excludes tax, license, title fees, registration, documentation fees, options, insurance and the like). Actual net capitalized cost $19234.88. Net capitalized cost includes $640 acquisition fee. Dealer contribution may vary and could affect actual lease payment. Total monthly payments $4675.68. Option to purchase at lease end $15507.75. Must take new retail delivery on vehicle from dealer stock by 02/28/2011. Lessee responsible for maintenance, excessive wear/tear and 15¢/mile over 12,000 miles/year for vehicles with MSRP less than $30,000, and 20¢/ mile over 12,000 miles/year for vehicles with MSRP of $30,000 or more. See your Honda dealer for complete details.

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Bakersfield Life Magazine March 2011  

Bakersfield Life Magazine March 2011