The season for
Food Dudes Meet the chef of
Savor Bakersfield Southwest Sikh
neighborhood spotlight Find a new pet
at local rescue shelters
Muertos Kitchen & Lounge Local brothers
run with the bulls
reward your sweet side The creamy flavor of french vanilla combined with rich espresso makes for a deliciously sweet experience. The new French Vanilla Latté has arrived at your locally owned and operated Bakersfield McDonald’s. Go ahead. Reward yourself.
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Rich chocolate and the bold flavor of peppermint come together to create a unique coffee experience. The McCafé Peppermint Mocha is back at your locally owned and operated Bakersfield McDonald’s. Go ahead. Indulge a little.
indulge your dark side
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Moun t Kilimanjaro
Contributing writer and local attorney Daniel Rodriguez shares his inspiring and adventurous story of climbing the tallest African mountain with his two sons.
2013 New Car Guide
Check out 48 new vehicles hitting the auto dealerships in 2013! Also, learn what it takes to get your teen a driving permit and license, and what new must-have accessories you need for your set of wheels.
661-617-6101 1500 Haggin Oaks, Suite 100 Bakersfield, CA Dr. David Lewis, M.D. Beckie Duke, R.N. We accept Visa, Mastercard, Discover and CareCredit!
This new feature highlights a southwest Bakersfield neighborhood, home to a strong Sikh community and flourishing small businesses.
For the record: The “Enchanted Forest, We Need a Little Christmas” charity event will be held at 6 p.m. Nov. 30 at Seven Oaks Country Club, 2000 Grand Lakes Ave. The date of the event in the “charity calendar” of the October issue of Bakersfield Life was incorrect. For more information on the event, including which charities will benefit, go to KernEnchantedForest.com.
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Up Front It Manners a Lot Kelly Damian Food Dudes Food and Wine
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Perfect for any Occasion!
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46 Foodie 48 All-Star Athlete 52 On the Road 54 Home & Garden 58 Hometown Hero 60 Entertainment 102 Pastimes 120 History 122 Why I Live Here
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124 Community 130 For a Cause 132 Itâ€™s a Guy Thing 138 Personality 142 Real People 144 Fit and Fresh 146 Trip Planner 148 Business Profile 152 SNAP! 162 Inside Story
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Feedback Staff Shares
Bakersfield’s Premier City Magazine
Why do you look forward to Thanksgiving? “Two words: family and friends. Being one of eight siblings, we all get together in Bakersfield for Thanksgiving. It gets crazy with over 50 brothers, sisters, friends, children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren, but it’s the best day of my year!” — John Wells, senior vice president of revenue and marketing “I look forward to Thanksgiving each year because I get to spend time with family and eat lots of tofurkey and stuffing!” — Breanna Fields, contributing writer “We have this family tradition that before our meal, everyone shares what they are thankful for over the past year. I love hearing those stories. Reminds me of what means most in life.” — Olivia Garcia, editor “I enjoy waking up early to watch the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade, spending time around the dinner table talking with loved ones and planning our strategy for Black Friday shopping.” — Hillary Haenes, specialty publications coordinator “Around our home, Thanksgiving is a time best spent with friends and family, playing games, enjoying spectacular food, taking road trips and above all, just hanging out.” — David Luter, contributing writer “Friends, family, food and football.” — Jorge Barrientos, assistant managing editor
“As an Aggie, it’s always been the A&M versus UT annual Thanksgiving day football game, but this year with all the changes, I guess it’ll have to be mashed potatoes and the Cowboys!” — Jessica Frey, contributing photographer “I look forward to Thanksgiving for pumpkin pie — it isn’t Thanksgiving without the pumpkin pie.” — Sally Ellis, interactive advertising director “Lots of food, a Dallas Cowboys game, and the day off from work and school. Doesn’t get any better than that!” — Mark Nessia, contributing photographer “For me, it’s a fun, four-day weekend of family, friends, food and football. Fantastic!” — Kevin McCloskey, contributing writer “I get to eat as much as I want!” — Michael Lopez, contributing photographer “Thanksgiving is one of my favorite holidays. I love that the focus is on being together and being thankful. I have to admit though, I really look forward to those day-after sandwiches. Turkey, cranberry and stuffing sandwich anyone?” — Kelly Damian, contributing writer “The five F’s, and not necessarily in this order: football, food, faith, family and friends. The Holy Bowl of traditions. Is there anything better?” — Lisa Kimble, contributing writer
November 2012 / Vol. 7 / Issue 2
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. To advertise, contact Lupe Carabajal at firstname.lastname@example.org or 395-7563. Publisher Ginger Moorhouse President/CEO Richard Beene Senior Vice President Revenue and Marketing John Wells Vice President, Administration and Operations Nancy Chaffin Director of Display Advertising Roger Fessler Interactive Advertising Director Sally Ellis Interactive Sales Manager Lisa Whitten Advertising Sales Manager Lupe Carabajal Advertising Traffic Manager Shauna Rockwell Marketing Manager Mira Patel Distribution and Marketing Representative Patrick Wells Editor Olivia Garcia Assistant Managing Editor Jorge Barrientos Specialty Publications Coordinator Hillary Haenes Editorial Assistant Marisol Sorto Art Director Glenn Hammett Photography Felix Adamo, Sally Baker, Alvaro Barrioentos, Henry A. Barrios, Casey Christie, Gregory D. Cook, Ashley dePencier, Michael Fagans, Jessica Frey, John Harte, Lois Henry, Alex Horvath, Tanya X. Leonzo, Shelby Mack, Michael Lopez, Shelby Mack, Greg Nichols, Mark Nessia, Carla Rivas, Jan St Pierre, Brian N. Willhite Contributing writers Katie Avery, Sally Baker, Allie Castro, Gregory D. Cook, Kelly Damian, Breanna Fields, Jason Gutierrez, Lois Henry, Lisa Kimble, Katie Kirschenmann, Stephen Lynch, David Luter, Alyssa Morones, Kevin McCloskey, Jeff Nickell, Mark Nessia, Daniel Rodriguez, Michael Russo, Chris Thornburgh, Michael Wafford, Brian N. Willhite, Litalia Yoakum Interns Emily Claffy, Matilde Ruiz, Tyler Stevens, Myriam Valdez Cover photo from iStockphoto
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Thanksgiving: a family affair
Are you getting married or planning an event? Colleen Bauer of Fairy Godmother, an event planning and coordinating company, is here to answer all your pressing questions. Do you have a $10,000 budget but want a $30,000 affair? Are you trying to determine a theme that is meaningful to both you and your fiancé? Or, are you simply unsure of how to handle a sticky situation, like how to include stepparents? Send an email (100 words or less) to bakersfieldlife@ bakersfield.com before Nov. 15 with the subject line: Dear Fairy Godmother. Questions will be chosen for Fairy Godmother to answer, and we’ll publish this helpful wedding advice in the January 2013 Celebrations issue of Bakersfield Life. So whether you’re a bride, groom, part of a wedding party or family member, email your questions now!
from our late mother Socorro Kimble, local writer and cookbook author. It will have a place of prominence on our holiday table. Hope readers enjoy it as much as our family does.” Adds Tonia: “I do not measure ingredients. I go on taste as mom taught me.” Recipe A few jars of fresh or canned oysters Cut up with two knives (1 pint to start, depending on how many you are serving). Salt to taste. If you use salted butter, don't add as much. 2 cups of bread crumbs A pinch or two of coarse pepper 1/2 cup real butter, melted Mix all together ensuring that the mixture is not dry but wet and place in a buttered dish. Bake in oven at 400 degrees for 30 minutes.
Photo by Tanya X. Leonzo
Dear Fairy Godmother
all has finally made its way to Bakersfield. As a runner, I’m loving every minute of it. This month also brings us Election Day. Please show your patriotic duty and vote Nov. 6. Not only will we decide our leader for the next four years, but there are a number of local seats and state measures that deserve your attention, too. Make your vote count. This issue is all about cars. I love cars, and am fortunate enough to test drive a new one each month. There are some super cool cars, trucks and eco-friendly vehicles to check out inside. And if you haven’t already, please visit BakersfieldLife.com, enter our contests and sign up for our newsletter. The newsletter is a new feature we are adding for our readers to keep you in the loop on stories, photos, events and contests. Lastly, I am sharing this Thanksgiving holiday recipe, courtesy of writer Lisa Kimble and her sister, Tonia Kimble Cody. Lisa writes: “My sister, Tonia, gets the credit for keeping this cherished family Thanksgiving recipe alive, handed down
Olivia Garcia Editor 395-7487 • email@example.com
This month I’m loving ...
For the active or trendy gal, consider the Baby-G Watch, the female version of the tough G-Shock line for men. Check local stores, including Macys.
In what is becoming a Garcia family tradition, the Thanksgiving Pie Run tops my favorite thing to do this month. Hundreds show up for the early morning run (about 6 a.m.) on Thanksgiving Day at Hart Park. Walkers, joggers and runners are welcomed, and it’s free as long as you bring a pie or a dish to share with the rest of us afterward.
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I didn’t think I’d enjoy reading eBooks on a tablet, but I am hooked. Try the new 7-inch Kindle Fire HD, now available. The 8.9-inch and 4G LTE wireless versions will be ready Nov. 20. November 2012
Up Front Word on the Street Compiled by Brian N. Willhite
What’s your favorite memory of your first car? Jim West 1948 Mercury Coupe
Marsha McKinney 1968 AMC Javelin
Gerry Byron 1953 Plymouth
“I only paid $50 for it. But my dad took away the keys when he caught me driving it — I was 16.”
“It was such a cool car to ride in. Very sporty and very fast.”
“It was neat being able to go to the drive-in and give all the neighborhood kids rides to school.”
Jeanie West 1958 Chevrolet Impala
Phil Lehman 1936 Ford pickup
Rick Falk 1949 Ford
“It was such a cool car, and I really liked cruising around in it.”
“Building the car from the ground up and having the freedom of driving around.”
“Cruising North Chester and going to the drivein with my girlfriend.”
Bruce Bryant 1937 Ford Coupe
Stephanie Marquis 1970s Ford Mustang
Sharon Conley 1956 Ford
“Cruising and seeing the beauty of the country driving down Highway 1 and all the people I would meet.”
“Going to the drive-in and hanging out with all my friends.”
“It was my dream car. I thought I had died and gone to heaven.”
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Buying or leasing a vehicle depends on your situation Is it better to buy or lease a car? It’s an often-asked question, and a good one, as it truly depends on your situation and preference. Weigh your decision based on the following questions and answers to find what’s best for you.
damage to the car will cost you. You pay for damage at the end of a lease, so leasing may not be right for you. Likewise, if you customize your car to suit your fun and outgoing personality, leasing may not be a viable option.
Is your car used for business?
Is your life stable?
From a tax standpoint, it is typically more advantageous for a businessperson to lease a car than to purchase. You can deduct substantially more in a lease if your car is subject to the IRS’s “luxury car” limitations. Most cars, unfortunately, fit the “luxury vehicle” definition regardless of cost. The tax benefits take on added importance in many people’s decisions.
If you foresee a new job, kids, divorce or don’t have a clear idea where you’ll be in three years, don’t lease. The money you save on a low down payment and low monthly payments could be wiped out if you terminate the lease early.
How long do you keep cars?
If you keep a car more than five years, you’ll generally save money by purchasing. If you like a new car every few years, leasing may be best. This doesn’t mean it’s the cheapest option, but it may save you the hassle of trading in or selling your car for a loss if you owe more than it’s worth.
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Perhaps the greatest benefit of leasing a car is the lower out-of-pocket costs. Leases require little to no down payment, and monthly lease payments are usually lower since you are only paying for depreciation, not the car’s full value. Conversely, most car purchases require a considerable down payment. Monthly payments are higher; however, you’re building equity. How much do you drive?
The ideal lease customer drives 12,000 to 15,000 miles. Excess mileage may be penalized 12 to 20 cents per mile. If you drive substantially more or less, consider buying. Are you hard on cars?
If you haul kids to and from practice and ball games, the inevitable dings and 14
Buy or lease — in the end there isn’t a right or wrong choice. It really depends on what you need out of your vehicle, your budget and your driving habits. Go through your options and see what makes the most sense for you. A good accountant can guide you through the process and help with negotiations.
— Chris Thornburgh is a CPA and partner at Brown Armstrong Accountancy Corp. Contact her at cthornburgh@ bacpas.com or 324-4971.
Nonprofit fundraiser to provide eye care for needy Advanced Center for Eyecare, a local nonprofit organization, works with local ophthalmologists and optometrists who volunteer their time to provide quality eye care for those in desperate need. The group will be hosting its second annual “Appetite for Sight” event on Thursday, Nov. 15, at Wool Growers Restaurant to raise funds for locals who cannot afford eyecare and medical services. Anyone 18 years old or older are invited to the fundraiser that will feature music, magic, a live auction and more. Social hour will begin at 6 p.m., and dinner will follow at 7 p.m. The event has 160 seats available and as of mid-October sold more than 70, said Advanced Center for Eyecare Director Justin L. Cave. “Last year’s event was a success and we expect this
one to be also,” Cave said. To buy your tickets, call 215-1006. Advanced Center for Eyecare will also be working with the OneSight’s Vision Van, named Eyeleen, which will come to Bakersfield for the first time on Nov. 2. Eyeleen will help provide free eye exams and glasses to 100 children in the Standard School District. For more information, go to acecares.org. — Matilde Ruiz
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Team work 5-year-old Hector Medellin and his sister Danielle, 7, work together to carry a pumpkin across Banducciâ€™s Family Pumpkin Patch.
Muddy waters Story and photo by Gregory D. Cook Competitors pull themselves from the muddy waters of the Tenaru River Crossing, one of a dozen obstacles they had to conquer to complete the 15th annual running of Volkslauf, â€œThe Ultimate Challengeâ€? held on Oct. 13. The race is put on by the Bakersfield Marine Corps League and benefits Toys for Tots, the Ronald McDonald House and several other Kern County charities. Participants first complete either a 5 or 10 kilometer run and then negotiate a series of grueling obstacles that challenge their physical endurance and ability to work as a team. bakersfieldlife.com
Up Front Short Takes
Housing foundation red carpet fundraiser to benefit families, senior citizens The Padre Hotel is rolling out the red carpet Nov. 2 for a Hollywood-style fundraiser that will benefit Kern Country’s lowincome senior citizens and families in need. The Housing & Opportunity Foundation of Kern will host the first “Dreaming Beyond the Stars” on the second floor of the hotel. All of the proceeds will fund direct services for families and senior citizens of Bakersfield and surrounding areas. “I don’t want to spend time raising money if there isn’t a real need,” said Sarah Ketchum, event chairwoman and vicechairwoman of the foundation. “Our main focus for ‘Dreaming Beyond the Stars’ is to raise Sarah Ketchum money to build pantry for senior citizens, offer scholarships to students and provide enough funding for children to attain school supplies.” She added: “We designed this event to be fun.” The event will feature a red carpet experience with paparazzi, appetizers and a tasting room with a collection of wines from Avila. The night will also include a silent auction, a live DJ and a gaming experience courtesy of Delano’s Aviator Casino. “Dreaming Beyond the Stars” begins at 7 p.m. at the hotel, 1702 18th St. The cost is $150 for individual tickets, with sponsorship packages available. For more information, call Norma RojasMora at 204-1386 or visit kernopportunityfoundation.org. — Tyler Stevens
“We designed this event to be fun.”
R&B artists to headline Jasmine Nyree Educational Center fundraiser
The founders of the Jasmine Nyree Educational Center will host a fundraiser for the center on Thanksgiving night featuring R&B group Jagged Edge and Grammy-nominated singer Jon B. The fundraising concert be held at the house of Joey and Christy Porter, advocates for children with special needs and founders of the Jasmine Nyree Educational Center. All proceeds will benefit the privately owned center for children with special needs so it can provide better equipment and advanced technology. Opened in August 2011, the center serves people between the ages of three and 21 with developmental disabilities. NaTesha Johnson, owner of event organizer Upside Productions, has worked with the center on several occasions, but this is the first time for an event featuring a concert. “(The center) is really focusing on bringing awareness to the cause,” Johnson said. “This offers a great opportunity to reach out to a younger generation.” The event is open to the public and selling out quickly. Still available are $75 general admission tickets, which offer a close view of the performance area. For those interested in a more personal
Jon B experience, VIP tickets are available at $150 each. VIP admission allows attendees a chance to meet with the evening’s performers before the concert begins. Doors open at 7 p.m. Nov. 22 and at 6:30 p.m. for VIP ticket holders. The show starts at 8 p.m. Southern-style cooking will be available for purchase for those in attendance. Tickets are available at the Jasmine Nyree Educational Center (6800 District Blvd.), Jasmine Nyree Day Center (801 18th St.), Studio 555 (2215 Brundage Lane), and Upside Productions (1701 Westwind Drive, Suite 204). For more information on the event, call 661-281-5007. — Litalia Yoakum
Senior community to open new center for dementia residents Seniors who are living with dementia will soon have a new center designed to help them cope with the illness while remaining independent. The Grove at Rosewood Senior Living Community is an assisted living facility that provides specialized care for its residents who are dealing with memory disorders. The grand opening of the 18-room suite will take place Nov. 13. Planning for The Grove began in 2009, as a way provide a living space for the growing number of people in Kern County living with Alzheimer’s disease and forms of dementia, an illness that comes in many forms and affects people in various ways, said Ellen Renner, executive director of Rosewood. Before The Grove was built, residents at Rosewood with memory disorders would have to visit another center in Kern County to receive services. “My understanding is every memory care unit in town is pretty much full with a waiting list,” Renner said. The Grove is connected to the Rosewood community and uses doors with a delayed system that allows residents to safely walk around the grounds without fear of becoming lost. Residents of The Grove can participate in various activities, including poetry reading, exercise programs and gardening on the patio of The Grove’s sky room. Family and friends can leave pictures or notes through the eMinder Internet program, which can be viewed anytime. Rosewood uses the “best friend approach” for elder care, Renner said. “We call them ‘best friends’ and not ‘caregivers’ because they really are your best friends,” Renner said. “If you need something, your best friend is always there to help.” Workers are encouraged to learn about the history of the residents, and residents are also encouraged to hang keepsakes along the facility walls to help with memories. For more information on Rosewood Senior Living Community, go to rosewoodretirement.org or call 661-834-0620. — Michael Wafford bakersfieldlife.com
Up Front It’s Named After
By Lisa Kimble
Breckenridge Lodge in 1935.
Californian file photo
At just over 7,500 feet, Breckenridge Mountain — 11 miles southwest of Lake Isabella — isn’t Kern County’s highest summit, but it is a favored vacation getaway for locals and home to a manned fire lookout, the Spotted Owl, a variety of flora and television transmitters of KERO and KBAK.
Situated on the southern boundary of the Kern River Valley and part of the Sequoia National Forest, Breckenridge is just south of the Greenhorn Mountains and on transitional land between the southwestern Sierra Nevada range and the Tehachapi
Mountains. The summit was first named Canon Mountain by a Pacific Railroad survey. It was later renamed Cross Mountain, after the Cross Brothers Lumber Mill. Soon after, at the time of the Civil War, it became known as Breckenridge Mountain after the Breckinridge sawmill on Lucas Creek — which provided much of the lumber used in the development of Bakersfield — and Confederate General John Cabell Breckinridge, who enjoyed support from Southern sympathizers. Despite the misspellings, Breckenridge with an “e” remained. John C. Breckinridge, a lawyer and senator from Kentucky, became the 14th vice president of the United States — and youngest to date — serving with President James Buchanan. The popular Colorado town and ski resort were also named after Breckinridge. In 1912, a “crow’s nest” of a lookout was built on Breckenridge on the top of an 87-foot tree. In 1931, a wooden tower lookout was built nearby but replaced in 1942 with a structure that still stands today, along with the tree. During World War II, the Breckenridge lookout was used by the Aircraft Warning Service to watch for enemy aircraft, and it is now on the National Historic Lookout Register. The manned fire lookout is open to the public during the summer and fall months and offers unparalleled views for as far as the eye can see. It is also a favored day trip for hikers, an easy Class 2 cross-country, three-mile hike to the top.
Local car enthusiasts gather for coffee, friendship Dodge Vipers, Corvettes, Stingrays, Camaros, Porsches and BMWs. These are just a few of the many types of cars you’ll see in the Northwest Promenade parking lot on Rose-
dale Highway during Bakersfield Cars and Coffee — a new-meet-and greet held 7 to 9 a.m. the last Saturday of each month. Car enthusiast Tony Lopez envisioned a gathering that would allow car owners of all sorts to come together, without egos and trash talk. This word-of-mouth event gathered a crowd at its second meeting, which showcased more than 70 vehicles — ranging from European and exotics to classics and muscle cars. Those in attendance are encouraged to grab a fresh cup of coffee from the local shops and chat with car owners. “It is not a sponsored endeavor to
make money or to promote any single business, and there are no vendors or peddlers,” said Lopez. “This is just an attempt to get out as many car enthusiasts as possible and to hopefully get some of those garage gems out into the public.” Updates, photos and information can be found on Facebook by searching “Bakersfield Cars and Coffee.” This page also acts as a bulletin board displaying the latest hot rods for sale. So whether you are a car owner, or aspire to be one, everyone is invited to go out and check out the cars. — By Breanna Fields
Up Front Finding Fame
Courtney McCann By Breanna Fields
t’s not every day that you get to be featured in a music video for one of country music’s legendary artists. But Bakersfield’s Courtney McCann has had the chance of a lifetime to do just that, along with a list of other opportunities presented throughout her career as a model. Recently, McCann played Kenny Chesney’s ex-love interest in his
music video, “Come Over.” The chance to work with Chesney occurred when her casting agency booked the gig after an audition. “Working with Kenny was a blast,” said McCann. “We worked with the same crew (who have done work) for most of his videos, so they are like a tight family of friends, which allows for a fun working environment.” During her junior year at Stockdale High School, McCann flew to New York where she was approached several times by model scouts. After returning home, her mother discovered Extraordinaire Models and Talent, a local talent scout company, and McCann’s plan to start modeling was put into action. The following summer, McCann went to New York City to attend the International Models and Talent convention and was introduced to international agents. The opportunity to travel abroad came in 2003, when McCann traveled to Germany. This trip was just one of many international locations that she visited, others were Paris, Milan, Jamaica, Hawaii, Montreal and Vancouver. In the United States, she has spent time modeling in Seattle, New York, LA and Texas. “After being in Germany, I realized I was not prepared for the harsh realities of the industry. I became homesick and too focused and anxious about my appearance; I basically had no self confidence,” said McCann. The turning point in her career was when she made the decision to put modeling on hold to pursue her education at Bakersfield College.
Photo courtesy of Courtney McCann
In 2006, McCann received a phone call from Voloney White of Extraordinaire Models and Talent, and was invited to do a model showcase in Paris for a month. After her trip for the fall show season, she once again decided to focus on her studies. In January 2007, she transferred to Sonoma State University for a semester until she learned that her father had been diagnosed with a brain tumor. This prompted her return back home where she earned her bachelor’s degree
at Cal State Bakersfield. However, this was not the end of her modeling career as she began commuting back and forth on a daily basis from Bakersfield to LA for castings. Eventually, relocating to LA was an inevitable decision as she now works as a full-time model. As a print, commercial and runway model, she has worked for big companies and designers like Target, Macy’s, Saks Fifth Avenue, Neiman Marcus, St. John, Pucci and Donna Karan. Aside from modeling, McCann is interested in holistic wellness. She has enrolled in an online program called Institute for Integrative Nutrition and enjoys outdoor activities. She likes to read, hike and has recently explored painting. “I enjoy learning new things, especially in the arts,” McCann said. When asked what advice she would offer aspiring models, her answer was simple: “It’s just a job, don’t look at it any other way. Do let it be your identity, and don’t get into it if you are looking for it to validate you.” McCann said she will continue to model and further achieve her dreams. “I think that (the future) will all work out as God has planned. I trust that he will lead the way,” McCann said, “I didn’t think I would be modeling, and here I am.”
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Up Front 25 random things you didn’t know about …
Shannon McQueen Compiled by Hillary Haenes Shannon McQueen (Webster) started racing cars at 6 years old, and she’s still known as a race car driver. Even now at 33, the first thing people who have not seen McQueen in years ask is, “Are you still racing?” Her reply always: “Yes!” During the week she works as a senior audit manager at Daniells Phillips Vaughan & Bock. But on the weekends,
McQueen spends her time readying her car for the track. She was introduced to the sport when her parents encouraged her to race Quarter Midgets, and the rest is history. McQueen has certainly made a name for herself in the racing community. While being a female in what is typically a male-dominated sport has been tough, McQueen said she hopes she’s opening doors for other female drivers.
close relationship with my grandmother Violeta “Vi” McQueen.
People who know me professionally as a certified public accountant are surprised when they find out that I race cars. And people who know me as a race car driver are surprised when they find out that I am a CPA.
I get asked a lot if I am related to Steve McQueen. I tell people he is my long-lost cousin.
At age 6, my dad grounded me for not giving him an honest effort. I learned at a young age that your word is your bond.
When I started racing competitively, I weighed 36 pounds and had to wear suspenders because Mom could not find pants to fit me.
My favorite food is Italian. I could eat ravioli every day, but my hips probably would not think too kindly of it.
My favorite stuffed animal as a kid was my “E.T.” doll.
When I first started racing, I told my dad that I did not want to race because the car I had could not win. I have been competitive since then.
My husband is my best friend, the one who encourages me and supports me in everything I do. He is also the first one to tell me when I do something dumb. He is honest
People are surprised when they learn that I drive real race cars, while my husband races remote control cars, or “toy cars” as he calls them.
I enjoy working on race cars. I am very hands-on with our maintenance program. Races are won and lost in the shop. It is all about being prepared.
People have a misconception of how much time and effort racing takes. My dad and I spend 25 to 40 hours per week preparing the car to go to the track.
I am the first female driver to win a feature race with the Western States Division of the United States Auto Club.
I knew when I was 15 years old that I wanted to be a CPA.
I am the first and only female driver in the 70-plus year history of the Bay Cities Racing Association to win a championship.
I have never been outside of the United States but would love to go to Australia and New Zealand.
I love ketchup — I eat it on everything. My mom used to say that she should have bought stock in it and would have been rich.
My mom, Carol, was my best friend. Rest in peace, Mom. I love you more today than you will ever know.
My dad used to race drag boats. I enjoy watching his racing videos. The videos are set to 1980s music and I think that is my favorite part.
I am partially blind in one eye due to a racing accident in 2010.
I work with a great group of amazingly talented people at Daniells Phillips Vaughan & Bock.
I cannot sing or hold a tune to save my life. However, I find myself singing along to the radio in the car.
I am most comfortable at a racetrack.
I am big on being on time. If you show up right at the time you are supposed to be somewhere, you are late.
I have two favorite music artists in my CD player: Pink and Maroon 5.
My paternal grandfather died the day before I was born. So consequently, I have always had a very
Californian file photo
Photo by Robert Haugh
‘Tejon Ranch: Preserving the Legacy of a California Treasure’ by Delphine Hirasuna
Francisco Garces explored its land, famed Indian fighter Kit Carson and notorious bandit Joaquin Murieta roamed the area and Gen. Edward Fitzgerald Beale owned it. Later on, his son, Truxtun, sold it to Los Angeles Times publisher Harry Chandler. In recent years, 90 percent of its land has been set aside for environmental conservation. It is Tejon Ranch. At 270,000 acres and strategically located between Southern California and the Central Valley, it is the “largest contiguous expanse of private property in California.” The recently released book “Tejon Ranch: Preserving the Legacy of a California Treasure” is a handsome, hardbound coffee table book written by San Francisco corporate communications
consultant Delphine Hirasuna. Much of the book’s 83 pages are devoted to full-color plates of the land as it is today, as well as photographs taken in 1888 by early Western photographer Carleton Watkins. Produced in part as a marketing piece for Tejon Ranch, locals will enjoy the informative historical sketch and the sweeping photography. This attractive edition makes an ideal gift and is a fine addition to one’s local history collection. — Michael Russo, co-owner of Russo’s Books at The Marketplace
Tejon Ranch: Preserving the Legacy of a California Treasure” by Delphine Hirasuna is available for $39.95 at Russo’s Books at The Marketplace, 9000 Ming Ave.
Facebook Website contest winners
What is your favorite thing about the month of November? “My favorite thing about the month of November would be family gatherings the week of Thanksgiving. I come from a large family where being able to come together has always been difficult throughout the year … Most of all, the smile on my grandmother’s face when surrounded by all her children, grandchildren, great-grandhildren and friends has always been the most cherishing moment of Thanksgiving, as she makes an effort to spend quality time with every single person within the household.” — Kelly Ann Ganir, winner of $100 gift certificate to dine at Eagle Mountain Casino “November is definitely my most favorite month. There’s just something about November that I can’t wait for every year. I was born in November, so maybe that’s why, but I wouldn’t say that’s the specific reason … Just seeing people smiling and giving to one another and not expecting anything in return. November is also my favorite month because of Thanksgiving — the delicious food, being able to see my family together and watching the football games. It’s what I look forward to every November. It brings my family even closer than before. I love nothing more than just seeing my family together, catching up, sharing stories and laughing.” — Josephina DeAvila, sophomore at East Bakersfield High School
Beyond the mashed potatoes What’s your favorite Thanksgiving dish? Does your family have unique side dishes that are a tradition in your family? Jason Sperber My dad does two stuffings (Well, they’re really dressings as they’re baked in baking dishes, not in the turkey.). One with apples and sausage, and one with cornbread and smoked oysters.
dish with green onion and cream cheese that is so yummy! We’ve added red pepper at Christmas and that’s great, too. Jolie Brouttier The day after’s cranberry sauce and white turkey sandwich on Challah bread. I just drooled a little thinking about it!
Cody Martin Green bean casserole! Kendall Heisey Cranberry salad — Cool Whip, marshmallow, cranberries and pineapple — so sweet, but a must every year. Becca Juarez Driggs Oyster stuffing!
Lauren Goodsi Pastel de papas and dulce de batata (my mom is Argentinian) are some of my favorite dishes. It’s a nice break from tradition, especially when you go to several Thanksgiving dinners. Rhonda Ledbetter-Glenn Pumpkin pie!
Susan Salvucci Baked corn soufflé and a Swedish traditional marshmallow crème pie in graham cracker crust. Elizabeth Laguna-Rocha Chopped up whole turkey, smothered in red chili tomato sauce with diced potatoes. Deliciously hot! Guinevere Phd We do a mashed potato
Letters to the Editor Dear Editor, I wanted to make sure you knew how excited and thankful we all are about the wonderful story you published in Bakersfield Life (“Spreading the word,” September 2012). We received great feedback from the Sixell community, as well as people we haven’t heard from in a long time. The day the article hit the streets, (we) were walking around town and we just so happened to be wearing some of the Sixell shirts. A handful of people stopped us and asked about Sixell because they had read your article that day. Anyway, thanks for making us all feel cooler than we ever have before! This was such a great boost for Sixell and we can’t thank you enough. Since then, we’ve gotten our bracelet displays in Action Sports and Esteem (a Pismo Beach surf shop), which is very exciting. Of course we’re not stopping here, but we couldn’t have done it without (Bakersfield Life), so thanks times a million! — Kyle Kuhlmann and Sixell Team Dear Editor, I just read your article in Bakersfield Life (“Breaking bread, not good manners,” November 2011). My wife and I go out every Friday for dinner at the Denny’s on Rosedale Highway. If I notice a family that has “well-behaved” kids, I have the waiter or waitress take a single scoop of ice cream to the kids and ad-
Letter to the editor
The Bakersfield Californian publishes Bakersfield Life magazine monthly. If you have any questions or comments regarding our magazine, write to us at Bakersfield Life, P.O. Bin 440, Bakersfield, CA 93302, or email us at bakersfieldlife@bakersfield. com. We’d love to hear from you.
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vise the parents, “This is for a well-behaved child who made my dinner very enjoyable.” I’ve noticed that if dad is present, he brings the kids over to thank me. I can’t say the same for the mothers. — V. H. Kretsinger
Dear Editor, The Christian Women’s Connection of the Central California District wishes to say thank you to the Kern County Board of Trade, Bakersfield Life Magazine, Bakersfield Visitors Center, Tehachapi Lifestyle Magazine, The Fence Post, Rankin Ranch and Trek Imaging for their contributions to our Women’s Convention held on Sept. 8. The items that you provided were received warmly by the ladies, and provided a great showcase for our “hometown” of Kern County. Your donation of magazines, newspapers, office supplies and information about our area were greatly appreciated. I noticed that even the local ladies were enjoying the beautiful Bakersfield Life, Tehachapi Lifestyle and their bonus magazine featuring beautiful Rankin Ranch, The Fence Post, and the Kern County Family Magazine. Many of them had not read them before. Thank you once again for making my task of providing this information so easy. — Diana Peaker, Olive Branch Community Church
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Up Front My Mobile Life
Photo by Felix Adamo
Terry Roberts Calendar This is one of two apps that I utilize for both work and personal reasons. I am required to attend several meetings and events throughout the month and without this app, I would not be nearly as organized or punctual as I am today. This app makes my life easier.
Compiled by Hillary Haenes To stay organized, California Highway Patrol Lt. Cmdr. Terry Roberts of the Buttonwillow office frequently uses the calendar and notes apps on his iPhone to keep track of meetings and special occasions, like birthdays. “Without the calendar app, specifically the ‘alerts’ function, I would not be nearly as organized and punctual as I am today,” Roberts said. “I also carry an iPad with me to the meetings I attend and utilize the notes app, which syncs with my iPhone.” Roberts, 49, also goes on Facebook to help stay updated on the lives of his daughter, granddaughter and sonin-law who live in Texas. See what other apps he likes to use.
Notes This is especially helpful with work because my iPad and iPhone sync with one another. I use the notes app on my iPad to take notes at the different meetings I attend, but also to write speeches or outlines for training purposes. The fact that the notes app syncs with my iPhone allows me to always have the much-needed information with me. Additionally, because I meet new people and have regular contact with a lot of people on a regular basis, I have begun writing their names and as much information about them as I can that will help me to remember them on a later date. It must be a “getting old thing.” Dallas Cowboys I firmly believe all true Americans ought to have the Dallas Cowboys app on their phone, so they can keep up with America’s team!
WPT Hold ‘Em Showdown I enjoy playing real Texas Hold ‘em with a handful of buddies. But between actual games, I like to practice with pretend money, which seems to be a little easier to part with. I am pretty sure this particular app is addicting. ESPN ScoreCenter As a die-hard Cowboys fan, I need to stay up with the scores and win/loss ratios of the Cowboy’s 31 enemy teams. So if I don’t catch the scores on Sunday, I can look them up during the week.
Blue Letter Bible I know it is a bit lazy, but rather than follow along in church or bible study with my Bible, I sometimes use my iPhone because it is so much faster and easier to find scriptures with the BLB app than when the pastor gets on a roll from scripture to scripture. And, more importantly, this app helps me when I have questions that nobody else can possibly answer. Dictionary A large portion of my job entails a great deal of paperwork. Either I am writing documents or reviewing documents for accuracy and content. Sometimes the different computer programs we have do not have a spell check option or an even more helpful synonym option. The dictionary app is very user-friendly and always with me. AroundMe When I travel out of town either for work or personal reasons, the AroundMe app helps to find gas stations, restaurants, stores, etc. that are nearby. This is helpful while working out of town or on a lunch break to quickly get there and back.
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Colt Ford, 7 p.m., Buck Owens’ Crystal Palace, $26 to $34 plus fee. vallitix.com or 322-5200.
Dia de Los Muertos Expo 2012, with live music, folkloric dancers, poetry, art, display of the altars, 4 p.m., Golden State Mall. Free. 345-5842.
Bakersfield Symphony Orchestra, presents “Pleasing Your Eyes & Ears,” 8 p.m., Rabobank Theater. $34 to $50; full-time students half price. bakersfieldsymphony.org or 323-7928.
Golden Empire Gleaners annual Harvest Celebration, food, dancing, live and silent auctions, 6 to 11 p.m., Golden Empire Gleaners. $75. goldenempiregleaners.com or 324-2767.
30th annual Bakersfield Police Memorial Run, 2K, 5K and 10K races, registration 4 p.m., opening ceremonies at 6 p.m., The Park at Riverwalk. $25 advance by Oct. 31; $30 after. bakersfieldpd.us or 326-3685.
Massenkoff Russian Folk Festival, presented by Bakersfield Community Concert Association, 3 p.m., Rabobank Theater. $80 for seven remaining concerts. bakersfieldcca.org, 2058522 or 589-2478.
“Surviving the Holidays,” hosted by Mercy Hospice with guest presenter Dr. H. Norman Wright. 6 to 7 p.m., 1600 D St. Free. 632-5050.
Eric Church, 7 p.m., Rabobank Arena. $35.50 to $45.50 plus fee. ticketmaster.com or 800-745-3000.
“Disney on Ice: 100 Years of Magic,” 7 p.m. Thursday and Friday; 11:30 a.m., 3:30 and 7:30 p.m. Saturday; 1 and 5 p.m. Sunday, Rabobank Arena. $10 to $48 plus fee. ticketmaster.com or 800-745-3000.
Rick Estrin & the Nightcats, “No Stinkin’ Service Charge Blues Series,” with opening act, Suzanne Thomas and the Blues Church, 7 p.m., Club Odyssey inside the DoubleTree Hotel. $25 to $30. 831-3100.
Second annual Appetite for Sight Fundraiser, presented by Advanced Center for Eyecare; social hour 6 p.m.; dinner 7 p.m., Wool Growers Basque Restaurant. $100. 215-1006.
32nd Festival of Trees, lunch, fashion show, 9:30 a.m., Rabobank Arena. $50. 325-7889
Joan Sebastian, 8 p.m., Rabobank Arena. $40 to $125 plus fee. ticketmaster.com or 800-745-3000.
“Night B4 Thanksgiving Jam,” with Mento Buru, DJ Mikey, 8 p.m., Muertos Kitchen & Lounge, 1514 Wall St. Alley. $7. 324-2557.
Night Before Thanksgiving Blowout!, with music by Members Only, 9 p.m., Sandrini’s. 322-8900.
Cirque Dreams Holidaze, 8 p.m., Rabobank Theater. $27.50 to $55 plus fee. ticketmaster.com or 800-745-3000.
Hoffman Hospice 17th annual Light Up A Life, tree lighting ceremony, 6:30 p.m., The Marketplace, near the fountain. Make a minimum donation of $10 in the name of a loved one. 410-1010.
“Season of Light,” doors open at 7 p.m., begins at 7:30 p.m., Bakersfield College, Planetarium. $6.50; $4.50 students/seniors. Tickets will not be sold at the door. 395-4326.
“Enchanted Forest: We Need a Little Christmas,” benefiting Kern County Firefighters. 6 p.m., Seven Oaks Country Club. $120 per person, $1,000 for table of 10; $140 after Nov. 16. 204-7799.
Happenings: Can’t-miss events in November
By the Numbers
Bakersfield transportation and roadways Compiled by Emily Claffy
Miles of paved roadways in the city of Bakersfield.
3,300 Miles of paved roadways in
20 Years of average life for a newly constructed road.
Photo by Casey Christie
$500,000 Average cost of a new mile for a two-lane road.
Cost of the Hageman Road-Santa Fe Way-Allen Road interchange project.
Value of the Kern County road system.
73 New transportation projects
passed by the Kern Council of Governments’ Board of Directors to take place in the next three to four years, ranging from road maintenance to solar arrays and new buses.
10 Additional enhancement projects
passed by the Kern Council of Governments board through the Transportation Enhancement Program, which finances pedestrian and non-motorized improvements including sidewalks, landscaping and bicycle lanes.
2 Regional projects completed from
2011 to 2012 — the widening of segment one of State Route 33 to Brown Material Road and segment two of Kern County Line to Kecks Road.
300 Approximate number of resi-
dents throughout the region who have helped prioritize long-term transportation and energy related strategies through a series of Kern Council of Governments’ public workshops in supporting “Directions to 2050,” a regional transportation plan and sustainable communities strategy.
Percent increase in membership of the Kern Council of Governments rideshare program for the 2011-12 year.
37 New bridges opened in Kern County since 2009.
Number of bridges owned by the California Department of Transportation in Kern County.
Number of bridges owned by the County of Kern.
Number of bridges owned by the City of Bakersfield in Kern County
32 Number of bridges owned by other entities in Kern County.
8 million Approximate num-
ber of ridership on Golden Empire Transit buses from 2011-12 fiscal year.
Sources: Craig Pope, Kern County Roads Department; The 2011-2012 Kern Council of Governments annual report; the 2012 Kern County Infrastructure Report Card from the American Society of Civil Engineers.
It Manners a Lot
Drivers: Watch your demeanor behind the wheel
By Lisa Kimble
hat is it with drivers these days? From motorists oblivious to blaring emergency lights and sirens, to others grooming themselves behind the wheel, the discourteous driver has triggered a pileup of enragement. No wonder numerous studies blame inconsiderate drivers for most incidents of road rage. It’s easy to single out the newly-licensed, inexperienced driver for driving offenses, but more and more adults with many years of driving experience are the biggest offenders, putting the brakes on roadway civility. The following types of drivers inch close to breaking the law, and ultimately flirt with disaster.
The multitasker Sure, you may be able to text a co-worker, shave, inhale a breakfast burrito, read the front page of the paper and put on a tie while driving, but why would you do all that? What’s next? Yoga? Scramble some eggs, or knit a blanket? This is the big train wreck everyone is watching, in slow motion. These drivers are too busy doing other things to focus solely on the business at hand — driving safely. There’s an old adage about character, and how its real measure is how we behave when no one is looking. Guess what distracted drivers? You may behave behind the wheel as if no one can see, but everyone is looking and wondering when something as simple as applying mascara will harm others.
Road blockers Don’t block intersections. Period. Despite signs posted in some locations, the motor blockade has become pervasive, especially downtown. “People don’t take a moment to think about if they should wait behind the limit line,” said Robert Rodriguez, California Highway Patrol spokesman.
The reason for this lies at the heart of nearly every thoughtless act you see these days — time, whether there’s not enough of it, or the fear of losing it. “Everybody is in a hurry, and as a result you have a lot of discourteous drivers,” Rodriguez said. Yes, time is precious, but that doesn’t give drivers a license to endanger others in the next lane. Unless you are driving an emergency vehicle, don’t come to a stop in the intersection, or pass motorists on the right shoulder. If the driver ahead of you can see the whites of your eyes in their rearview mirror, you are too close. Leave the tailgating for the football stadium. If you are traveling at 50 mph, for example, leave five car lengths between you and the one ahead.
The siren impaired Law enforcement officers say indifference that motorists have for emergency vehicles is becoming a big problem. “A lot of people don’t know how to respond (to emergency vehicles), so they panic, then find themselves in the intersection and think, ‘Now what do I do?’” Rodriguez said. If an ambulance or fire truck approaches from behind with sirens blaring, take a deep breath, look over to your right, and if it is clear, move it! If you are the first vehicle stopped at the crosswalk, don’t blow through the red light. Wait until the next green light. “Emergency vehicles will get around you,” Rodriguez said. “We want you to move safely, and we’d rather pass on the left.”
The yellow light runner It used to be as elementary as signaling — stop for red, go on green and use caution for a yellow lights. Today, running a yellow light seems to be the rule, rather than the exception. “If you are coming up to an intersection, and the light has been green for awhile, anticipate that light to change and reduce your speed,” Rodriguez said. You can’t even measure the time you think you may be saving by gunning it. Trying to beat a red light is about as safe as trying to cross the 405 Freeway at rush-hour on foot. Don’t bother. It’s not worth the risk.
The lead-footer Pedestrians in cross walks have the right of way. You may not feel like stopping in the middle of the block, but it’s the law. If someone has entered the cross walk at an intersection, hit the brakes. They have the right of way. Agree, disagree? Send your questions, comments or topics you’d like to read about to me at itmannersalot@ bakersfield.com or visit itmannersalot.blogspot.com
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Me, Dotty the ‘jalopy,’ and self-reliance
y first car was a 1976 Datsun hatchback. It was primer brown and ugly as sin. But she was mine, and I loved her – I named her Dotty.
You know how Ironman has that bionic suit that is an extension of himself? It is specifically made for him and no other. Well, Dotty was just like that for me. The car had so many quirks and issues that I was the only one who could operate her. Dotty’s radio did not work. No matter. I put a boom box in the front seat, and it chewed through D batteries weekly as I listened to mix tapes while I drove. Of course Dotty did not have air conditioning or heat, but neither were necessary because I lived by the beach. When I wanted to back up, it was necessary to put the car in first gear and move forward a few inches. Then, and only then, would Dotty consider moving backward. The windshield wipers operated by knob. If I pulled the knob, the wipers came on; push the knob, the wipers went off. One day I drove Dotty to San Diego during a light Southern California rainfall. I pushed and pulled my way along Interstate 5 until I pulled and ended up with the wiper knob in my hand. The wipers stayed on for the rest of the drive, and I rolled through sunny San Diego with my windshield wipers popping across the glass at full speed. To fix the perpetually running wipers, I found the fuse box and removed the little glass tube that powered them. After that, any time I needed to use the wipers I had to scramble to remember where I kept the glass tube. Dotty had a slow leak. I learned how to check my own oil, and carried around extra oil to top off whenever she needed it. I also kept a stash of wire hangers in the car to tie the
muffler. Dotty had a tendency to drop her muffler as I drove. One second I would be happily driving along, the next second I would hear a sickening scraping sound. The muffler dragged along the ground, sparking as it went. When I drove Dotty, I taught elementary school in Wilmington, a rough harbor town with a high crime rate. One day I accidentally left the keys in the door of my car. I didn’t realize they were missing until I went out to my car after work, and there they were, dangling in the door. In all likelihood, a car thief walked past my car, took a look at it and said, “Nope.” After a dutiful year of service, Dotty finally suffered a cracked head. I decided it was time to spring for a new car — I got a Saturn. The salesman tried to upgrade me to an automatic with power windows and leather interior, but I could care less. The fact that the car started and came with functioning windshield wipers was enough of an upgrade. Dotty gave me mobility and a sense of freedom. But in the process of nursing that jalopy down the road, I also got the gift of self-reliance. To read more, visit kellydamian. com or follow Kelly on twitter @kellydamian2
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Muertos Kitchen & Lounge A ‘lively’ downtown eatery and lounge with a hip owner
Photos by Greg Nichols Editor’s note: This is the final restaurant visit for this
group of Food Dudes. Check back in January for more adventures from the new group of Food Dudes.
uertos Kitchen & Lounge is one of the newest eateries in downtown Bakersfield’s burgeoning restaurant scene. Opened by Shawna Haddad Byers — former co-owner of Fishlips — the name comes from the Dia de los Muertos celebration, honoring those no longer with us (celebrate this year’s Dia de los Muertos here, Nov. 1 to 2). Shawna thought it would be a wonderful way to honor her late grandmother, Sittie, with whom she was very close. Muertos is in the historic Wall Street alley. In the late 1800s, it was a firehouse and the back patio was a stable for the horses that pulled fire wagons. Through the years, the
From left, Gary Frazier, Matt Munoz, Muertos owner Shawna Haddad Byers, Ray Pruitt and Don Martin inside Muertos Kitchen and Lounge.
space has housed the iconic Sud’s Tavern, Paco’s Tacos and more recently, Azul. As you walk into Muertos, you immediately notice the high ceilings, brick walls, hardwood floors and a beautiful concrete topped bar. This place has been designed to make dining here a real experience. The kitchen is open to the bar area, and it’s quite entertaining to sit at the bar with a drink and watch the chef and kitchen crew work their magic. The idea behind Muertos is to provide a simple and fresh menu with a fun, laidback atmosphere where people can enjoy conversation over tasty food and drinks. And Shawna has certainly accomplished just that. Dudes’ note: Many of the items we tried were not on their menu. That’s the neat thing about this restaurant and lounge — there are different appetizers and entrees served daily, so make sure to ask what the specials are before you order. The owner and kitchen staff will work with you to make the meal you want.
Halibut salsa and chips
Dudes on the amazing appetizers
Dudes on the entrees
Ray: Shawna Haddad Byers, took care of us from
Ray: Shawna decided to make several dishes, bring the get-go. She spoiled us with several appetizers includthem out and let each one of us try the creations. It was a ing popcorn pork, shrimp and cheese-stuffed portobello great idea because we all got to taste a bite of everything. mushrooms, halibut salsa, chicken and okra, carne asada We started with the citrus marinated swordfish sandwich tacos and pork Hawaiian tacos. Each served on a baguette. We dipped were amazing, but I have to focus on the sandwich in a butter, lemonMuertos Kitchen the popcorn pork, which was similar lime marinade. The sandwich was & Lounge to large chunks of chicharrones. I perfect and would make for a great Location: 1415 Wall St. (Across could have wrapped them up in a meal for lunchtime. We also tried from Guthrie’s Alley Cat) tortilla with some homemade salsa the sirloin with asparagus. The Phone: 324-2557 and called it a meal. The pork was sirloin was cooked mediumlightly seared, moist and we dipped rare and juicy and the Hours: 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Tuesday through Thursday; 11 a.m. to 10 it in a chipotle mayo sauce. Yum! quality of the steak was p.m. Friday; 4 to 10 p.m. Saturevident. Next came Gary: I thought the shrimp and day; Closed Sunday and Monday the Fernando burger, cheese-stuffed portobello was the Facebook: Search “Muertos which was invented by perfect appetizer because it was just Kitchen and Lounge” the chef, and served enough to wake up the taste buds, Email: muertoskitchenandwith pepper jack cheese, but not fill you up. The halibut salsa firstname.lastname@example.org crushed red peppers, is a nice twist on ceviche that now chipotle mayo and garhas me thinking of other seafood I Video nished with jalapenos. The might try “ceviche style.” Don: Muertos has a very eclechamburger was seasoned Hungry for more? Check out the with a spicy seasoning that tic menu. You must start with the video of the Food Dude’s visit to Muertos Kitchen & Lounge on gave it a zing. It was served halibut salsa and chips. The salsa bakersfieldLife.com with fries, lightly seasoned is fresh and tasty, and the chips are and fried to perfection. I’m full steaming hot and made-to-order. again just thinking about it. One of Muertos’ specialties are the tacos, and my favorite is the Don: Bakersfield is a burger machaca — filled with eggs, peppers, onions and cheese. town, and I think right now, Muertos has the best burger These tacos are a delight. in town. My choice is the Hudson, named after Shawna’s Matt: I’m a big pork fan, and popcorn pork was a son. This is a hand-formed burger topped with cheese, hit from the get-go. Hearty chunks of pork, lightly fried, bacon and a fried egg. It’s simply delicious and served with a delicious chipotle mayo dipping sauce blended to with french fries that are perfectly golden brown and crisp. complement the pork flavoring — a great appetizer to be The dinner menu changes nightly, and Muertos is great enjoyed alone or with a group. The arrival of the Muertos about posting pictures on its Facebook page almost every halibut salsa was a perfect follow-up. I like ceviche and I afternoon. have my local favorites, but here we have some new twists. Matt: Every reputable restaurant has their signature The halibut flavoring is less fishy, but easier to scoop with burger, and the Fernando burger is no exception. The burgthe fresh, made-to-order tortilla chips. The flavors are well- er is succulent and made of good quality beef, and it was Continued on page 40 balanced and the presentation is eye-catching.
Raspberry beer ﬂoat
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cooked precisely as we were told — with lots of love. Our quarter-split pieces were distributed evenly, and the bun was good to support the flavorful meatiness of the burger and all its good juices. After one bite, I had a serious “hamburgasm,” with the kick of jalapenos that hit me. I’m not the biggest fan of too much heat on my comfort foods, as it usually makes the experience uncomfortable. But here, the heat level was about a three as opposed to a “10.” It’s phenomenal on all levels and large enough to share with a companion.
Dudes on the specialty, non-menu item Gary: The Hawaiian pork tacos were so good and uniquely flavored that we split the last taco into four sections, so that we all could get one more delicious bite. Tacos with marinated pork is nothing new, but add a tangy fruit and serrano chili salsa with chunks of mango, strawberry, pineapple and kiwi — now you have a taco to write about! Muertos offers an extensive selection, from burgers and tacos, to Lebanese chicken and okra stew (which was a lot like gumbo). And each dish has its own unique twist on Mexican, Italian, Lebanese and Caribbean cuisine. When I asked Shawna how she came up with so many entrees, she said that she uses the input and suggestions from her customers to create many of Muertos’ selections. So if you’re eating something tasty at Muertos and think, “This would be great in a tortilla,” just tell Shawna, and it may
become a Muertos specialty.
Dudes on dangerously delicious dessert Gary: Muertos has the distinction of having the most unique dessert item I have tasted as a Food Dude: the raspberry beer float. They put two large scoops of chocolate ice cream in a tall class and pour Lindemans Framboise Belgian Raspberry Lambic over it. This fruity Belgian liquor is like a sparkling raspberry wine cooler, though the Framboise Lambic is technically a beer. If you like chocolate and raspberries, then you will love this special concoction. Don: My favorite is the wedding cake, which comes from local favorite — Smith’s Bakery. It’s covered in sweet frosting and the Muertos crew fluffs it up with fresh berries. A perfect end to a great dining experience.
(661) 589-9900 Celebrating our 1 Year Anniversary!
Dudes’ final farewell
Thank you to our customers for your continued business!
Matt: According to Shawna, one of the benefits of dining
at her establishment is that “customers can design their own food, and if we have time and ingredients, we will make you what you want.” That’s a pretty ambitious statement, but after our visit and the welcoming hospitality, you just may find me sitting at the bar at quittin’ time taking them up on that offer. This year’s Food Dudes experience has been amazing. Kern County has some of the best restaurants in California, and I suggest everyone take their taste buds on an adventure.
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Food and Wine
Renowned chef Jon Ashton of Dash Magazine
Photo courtesy of Parade Magazine
Talks Thanksgiving menus and memories
Dash Magazine’s contributing editor Jon Ashton will be in town for Savor Bakersfield on Nov. 13.
By David Luter
ovember can be a stressful time of year, with planning Thanksgiving and getting ready for the upcoming holidays. But nationally renowned chef and Dash Magazine’s contributing editor Jon Ashton reminds us of the importance of enjoying this special time with family and friends. He also shares some culinary secrets and provides a few recipes to try this Thanksgiving. Ashton will be in town Nov. 13 for the Dash Around the Table Tour, hosted by The Bakersfield Californian at Savor Bakersfield. Don’t miss an evening of boutique shopping, food and beverage sampling from local restaurants and a live two-hour cooking class showcasing the chef’s amazing talents, not only as a cook, but also as an entertainer. “It will be smashing to share our simple, fast and delicious recipes with everyone,” said Ashton. “If you love food and you love to laugh, then this is a show I promise you
won’t want to miss.” To learn more about the chef or for recipes and tips, visit jonashton.com.
A conversation with Chef Jon Ashton When did your love of the culinary arts begin? When I was 8 years young, Granny Ashton took me into the kitchen and taught me how to make bread. By the time I was 14, I knew cooking was my greatest passion and wanted to figure out a way to make it my profession. What is your favorite food during the holidays? Today, my favorite holiday food is Brussels sprouts. However, as a wee lad, I could not stand the smell of them, let alone the taste. Once I went into the professional kitchen, I gained an appreciation for their unique character. My favorite way to cook Brussels sprouts is to saute them and add a couple sprigs of fresh thyme and a splash of chicken stock. What is your best family or food-related Thanksgiving memory? Being from England, Thanksgiv-
ing is an adopted holiday for me. It is my favorite holiday, as it involves food and family around the dinner table versus material gifts. What wines do you pair with your dishes at Thanksgiving? Wine pairings differ depending on what I’m cooking. You can’t go wrong with either pinot noir or chardonnay. Pinot noir won’t overwhelm the taste of the meal. If you prefer white, a chardonnay can be versatile. With so many chardonnay options, choose a bottle within your price range and enjoy! Do you suggest bringing kids into the kitchen to help with the cooking? Little Victoria Mei, my sweet 6-year-old daughter, has been helping me in the kitchen since she was 2 years old. We laugh and smile and play lots of fun music while we chop, slice and dice. Lucky for me, she will pass on “Dora the Explorer” to spend time cooking with Daddy. What does she help out with in the kitchen? Little Mei has helped out with many fun tasks including peeling shrimp, rolling out pie dough and pulling the leaves from fresh herbs. It can be chaotic in the kitchen during the holidays, what advice can you give to those preparing the Savor Bakersfield meal? If your gravy is lumpy, pass it through a sieve, or give it When: Nov. 13; shopping baa whizzing with an immersion zaar and sampling from 3:30 blender. to 6 p.m.; live cooking show from 6 to 8 p.m. When you decide on Where: Rabobank Theater, the Thanksgiving menu, 1001 Truxtun Ave. what factors do you take into account? How do you Cost: $16 achieve balance? Creating Information: Tickets can be an easy flow in the kitchen is purchased Rabobank Box Office, ticketmaster.com or by always my key objective. I want phone 800-745-3000. Also to try to spend as much time visit savorbakersfield.com. as I can with my company, so I always try to plan a menu that I can execute easily. What is your ideal Thanksgiving menu? Have some nibbles out for guests to munch on while you’re finalizing the extra touches in the kitchen. I like to start with a soup such as my butternut squash, add in a main course and end with a scrumptious dessert. Do you have any advice on how to time the meal prep in the kitchen so that everything is ready at the same time? Let your oven be your best friend. Have the majority of everything ready before your guests arrive and keep dishes warm at 225 degrees Fahrenheit before you sit down for your soup or appetizer. What is your comfort food during the holidays? I cannot help but think how a bowl of chili brings comfort to my belly when there is a nip in the air and frost on the windows. You can also shred some leftover Thanksgiving turkey into your chili for a next day treat.
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How do you handle the Thanksgiving leftovers? Have fun! Think of taking your leftovers to various countries. For instance, add some chipotle chilies to the cranberry sauce, which makes for a delicious side or spread. Don’t forget, you can potion and freeze leftovers. What is the most essential item in your kitchen? I can’t imagine life in the kitchen without my knives. A chef’s knife is as important to him as a magic wand to a magician. On the recipes you provided, what do they mean to you? A recipe is a part of your heart. When I create them, I think about families sitting around the table making memories and sharing joy. Recipe on page 44
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Continued from page 43
It's really considered a “dressing” as it is cooked outside the bird. However, I always tell friends it’s a stufﬁng. Ingredients 4 tablespoons butter 2 yellow onions, diced 1 Granny smith apple, peeled, cored and diced 1/2 cup dried apricots, chopped 1/2 cup dried cranberries 1/2 cup chicken stock or water 4 sage leaves, finely chopped. 1 pound ground pork sausage or turkey 1 large egg 1 cup dried breadcrumbs Directions Heat oven to 325 degrees F. Heat a large frying pan to medium-high heat, melt the butter and add the onions, apple and cook for 5 minutes. Add the apricots and cranberries, pour in stock and cook until stock is absorbed. Cool and mix with remaining ingredients and season with salt and pepper. Place mixture into pound loaf pan. Bake with turkey for 30 to 40 minutes or until your temperature probe reads 155 degrees.
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Once your stuffing has cooled slightly, crumble it using two forks into your serving dish. Serves 8
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Chef Ashton’s Favorite Fruity Stuffing
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Jan Lemucchi She’s an Italian who loves to eat, but she enjoys entertaining guests in her home even more
For Jeff and Jan Lemucchi, it is usually a team effort in the kitchen.
By Hillary Haenes
Photos by Jessica Frey
an Lemucchi, director of communications and marketing at United Way of Kern County, likes trying out new recipes for family and friends. And she also likes spending quality time cooking with her husband, Jeff, news director and anchor on KERN
Radio. “We share duties,” said Jan Lemucchi, 56. “Whoever is in charge of a particular meal or whatever is being prepared, we’re there helping, prepping or making a side dish to the main dish that the other spouse is preparing.” However, Jan explained that Jeff is the gourmet cook and loves having the food presented on each plate, whereas she likes serving food family-style in big bowls or on platters. Jan Lemucchi shared some kitchen advice with Bakersfield Life, including what inspires her to create a new dish, and her favorite food discovery this year. 46
Cooking advice My first experience in the kitchen: While growing up, my cooking job in my family was to make the salad every night, so I’ve been contributing to a meal since I was about 10. One ingredient that I love to use in my recipes: Garlic … I’m Italian! Everything goes better with: Wine, preferably red. My disastrous kitchen story: I usually try out new recipes on guests. I guess I’m a confident cook. I was going to impress my cousin and her husband with lobster thermidor, but after they arrived, I came down with the flu. I had everything prepped, only the lobster needed to be cooked and mixed in with everything. But the sight of food made things worse for me. So I had to have my cousin — who isn’t the best cook — finish the meal for me. She’d never cooked lobster before and was squeamish with the live lobster, which made more of
Jan adds lentils to her lentil beef stew.
Jan prefers cast iron pots and pans.
a funny situation than disastrous. But they ended up having a great meal. I could only sit and watch them enjoy it. I always mess up: Chopping onions the professional way. How I find inspiration to create a new dish: Lately, Pinterest. In the past, I found inspiration from my son, who became a professional chef and then became a winemaker. What more inspiration can you get than that? If I could spend a day with a famous chef, it would be: Julia Child — because she inspired housewives to try new things besides the everyday casserole. She taught women of the 1960s, to go for the beef bourguignon or pate de canard en croute (stuffed baked duck). Advice I would ask her: It’s not advice I’d ask, I would just love to know how Julia went about planning her dinner parties. I love how she ended each of her TV segments with a beautifully set table displaying the prepared food and wine. I’d just love to sit and talk with her about her cuisine experi-
ences. Maybe I’d ask her how she came about picking up all those great kitchen tools.
Tools of the trade Favorite piece of cooking equipment: My Jura coffee maker. It’s Swiss-made, and I fell in love with this coffee maker the first time I went to Europe and used one. I had to have one. A cup of coffee is the first thing I go for in the morning. Must-have kitchen tools: My wooden spoons and cast-iron pans. Go-to cookbooks: “Better Homes and Gardens New Cookbook,” circa, old. Ingredient that I dislike: Cucumbers. I buy this in bulk: Sugar — only because I feed the Continued on page 48 bakersfieldlife.com
Continued from page 47
hummingbirds in our backyard. Cooking show: Food Network’s “Chopped.” Dream kitchen appliance: Not just one appliance, but a new kitchen makeover.
Globe-trotting Favorite neighborhood restaurant and my order: For Mexican food, it would have to be Ruben’s
Mexican and Seafood Restaurant’s carnitas, and T.L. Maxwell’s ahi tuna — the best ever! Best food memory: On our last night in Venice, Jeff and I found this restaurant where I ordered a whole lobster — I can’t explain how it was prepared, but I enjoyed every morsel. We had just eaten a huge seafood appetizer platter and Jeff couldn’t finish his main dinner, but watched me eat every piece of that lobster. I can put it away when I’m enjoying my food! Favorite deli: It has to be Luigi’s. Favorite bakery: El Sol on Baker —they have the best croissants. Most expensive meal: Who knows? I don’t pay! Weirdest food I like: Nothing is weird to me. I’ll try it once. I was going to try pigeon-stuffed ravioli while in Luca on that same trip to Italy, but went for something else.
A few of my favorite things Favorite meal to make: I like cooking all meals. I do enjoy cooking holiday meals. My family has traditional antipasto dishes that we make depending on the holiday, leg of lamb, stuffed turkey, Grand Marnier carrots, green salad, a pasta dish, mashed potatoes, gravy,
Jan’s hearty lentil beef stew, perfect for a fall supper.
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green vegetable, homemade pies… Always in the fridge: Whole milk, real butter and cream. Favorite dessert: Homemade: apricot pie. In a restaurant: creme brulee. I’m addicted to: I’m not a sweet eater, but I am addicted to Lindt dark chocolate with chili. Favorite Thanksgiving dish: Mashed potatoes with gravy. Comfort food: Hamburger, crispy french fries and a chocolatechip and banana shake. Splurge at the grocery store: Meats and fish, or a nice bottle of wine. Favorite food discovery of 2012: I’m falling in love with Indian foods.
This or that Fruits or veggies: Both equally, except cucumbers. Coffee or tea: Black coffee. Red or white wine: Merlot. Beef or chicken: Filet mignon, rare. Soup or salad: Caesar salad. Breakfast, lunch or dinner: Dinner, maybe something I’ve never tried before that is rich, flavorful or intriguing.
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Bhavik Patel By Stephen Lynch
Bhavik Patel facts • Born Oct. 24, 1990 in Bakersfield • Parents are Shobhana and Bobby Patel; has one sister, Roma Patel.
Bhavik Patel after making a putt on the 11th hole at the Bakersfield Country Club during the 21st SCGA Four-Ball Championship last year.
Photo by Henry A. Barrios
havik Patel has already accomplished a great deal during his young career, becoming one of the top men’s golfers in the history of Kern County. He accomplished that feat as an amateur. Now, the 22-year-old has bigger aspirations. He’s attempting to earn a spot on the prestigious PGA Tour. “It’s been a goal for a while,” Patel said. “When I started playing all my junior golf, I knew at that point that my ultimate dream was to play on the PGA Tour one day.” Patel, who played for Bakersfield High and Fresno State, is currently seeking a PGA card, which would allow him to play on the organization’s tour. He’s doing that via the PGA Q-School, a four-tier process where only the top 20 percent of competitors move on to the next stage. The top 25 percent of finishers during the six-round final stage are awarded a PGA card for a year. Patel placed ninth during a September pre-qualification for Q-School, leaving him just three more hurdles to clear before reaching his goal of playing against the best golfers in the world. “I went in with a good mindset, and I’m pretty confident,” Patel said. “If I can just play my game and limit the mistakes, I think I’ll be fine.” Patel said he believes that even if he fails to garner a PGA card this time around, he eventually will. “I think if I can keep improving like I have been, keep getting better, then one day I’ll be out there,” he said. Patel has plenty of reasons to be confident in his golf abilities. This summer he won the Southern California Golf Association Amateur Championship. Last year he was named California State Amateur Champion. And two years before that, Patel reached the semifinals of the U.S. Amateur at Southern Hills Country Club in Tulsa, Okla. “I love just going out there competing with some of the best players in the country and getting better,” Patel said. “My main thing for a few years now is to just keep improving. If I keep improving, then my game will speak for itself.” Patel, who still calls Bakersfield home, believes his mental strength is the best part of his golf game. “When I was I younger, if I had a bad hole or a bad round, I would get so down on myself that it would affect me, not just the next hole, but the next day,” Patel said. “But I think in the last couple of years I really got my mental game pretty strong to where if have a bad hole or a bad day, I can come back from that and play even better.”
• Four-time MVP of the boys’ golf team at Bakersfield High School • His 68 stroke average during his junior year at BHS is the alltime best in Kern County. • Finished in second place at the 2006 SCGA Amateur Championship. • Three-time (2006-2008) Bakersfield Californian All-Area Boys Golf Player of the Year. • Holds low round course records at Seven Oaks Country Club (62) and River Lakes (63). • Won Kern County Amateur Tournament in 2008. • Played on California Junior Tour from 2003 to 2007. • Selected as Fresno State's “outstanding freshman” in 2009 and team MVP in 2010. • First-team All-WAC selection as sophomore and junior. • Twice during his career with the Fresno State, was named WAC Player of the Week. • Ranked third in the nation in birdies as a junior at Fresno State. • Lowest round of his college career was a 63 during the second round of the 2012 Alister MacKenzie Invitational. Finished the event tied for seventh place, and as a result, was subsequently chosen Bulldog “student-athlete of the week” for Oct. 24 to 30, 2012. • Competed in the 2010 and 2011 U.S. Amateur tournaments. • Favorite athlete is Tiger Woods.
On the Road
The road to perfection New appeal, major improvements push Lexus ES350 up a notch
Bakersfield Life editor Olivia Garcia chats with Jay Tamsi, local business community leader, about the snazzy features of the Lexus ES350.
By Olivia Garcia
Photos by Michael Lopez
ntelligent, sexy, professional, classy. Those were some of the words Bakersfield Life photographer Michael Lopez used to describe the 2013 Lexus ES350 in planning to photograph it. Michael researched the car online in preparation for the photo shoot and found himself highly impressed with its look, inside and out. Driving it, I couldn’t agree more. There’s a certain appeal that draws you into the Lexus ES350, which comes with three drive mode options: normal, eco and sport. Lezley Pumphrey, marketing manager for Motor City Auto Center, was excited to share news that a recent Lexus gathering at the center drew a turnout of about 200 people — all eager to check out the latest ES350. The vehicle, she said, has undergone a series of significant improvements over previous year’s model. Besides, who wouldn’t want to step in this car? Hop into the Lexus ES350, and it will turn heads. Trust me. Several people took double takes as I drove it
The Lexus ES350 is also offered as a hybrid model.
It’s all in the details: 2013 Lexus ES350’s five best features:
The ES350 drives smooth and is quiet as a mouse.
through town. My teenage son, Mateo, was sold the moment he and his buddies Mikey and Jermaine stepped into the car as I picked them up from a flag football game. And he is a picky kid, much like his mama. “Wow” was the one phrase I heard a few times from the boys. I have to admit, I have always admired the Lexus brand. Maybe because it reminds me of one of my dear girlfriends who loaded major mileage on hers by traveling throughout California and Arizona for work and with her family. Her car was built tough — ready to handle the long drives and never broke down — and still looked sleek and classy wherever she went. The Lexus ES350 drives smooth and is quiet as a mouse — that is, unless I am listening to my Spotify or Pandora streamed off my iPhone through the 15-speaker, 835-watt Mark Levinson Premium Surround Audio System. The Lexus comes with the Enform App Suite, which allows you to connect your favorite mobile apps using compatible smartphones. Facebook Places, Pandora, MovieTickets.com and Bing also come with the app suite. It comes with 10 airbags, a blind-spot monitoring system with rear cross traffic alert, an 268-horsepower V6 engine. A hybrid version is also available — the first time ever, which speaks to Lexus’ progress given that motorist are becoming more selective in choosing a car that is environmentally and economically beneficial. And you don’t have to worry about feeling crammed. Driving the Lexus ES350 around town, I felt I had plenty of space around me. Plus, the leather seats are to die for. The night drives were my favorite as the Lexus powerfully illuminated the road. “Wouldn’t you want this car?” my husband Julio asked me. Yes, I would. It’s on my bucket list.
• Progressive new design. The Lexus ES350 has been completely redesigned for 2013. It has been joined by the ES300h hybrid model. • Performance. The 2013 Lexus ES 350 represents a new generation. It’s roomy, quiet, comfortable and assembled with care. The V6 engine is smooth and offers a quiet, soft ride at highway speeds. • Luxury. Inside, the quality of the materials and the overall level of opulence is impressive for this class of car. For buyers seeking a true luxury sedan experience, the ES350 won’t disappoint. The 2013’s longer wheelbase drastically increases interior roominess and accommodates five-passengers, and is classleading in total legroom. • Hybrid Technology. For the first time, the Lexus ES is available with Lexus Hybrid Drive (300h model) and delivers an EPAestimated fuel economy rating of 40 mpg in the city. • Safety. Every 2013 Lexus ES350 comes standard with classleading 10 airbags as standard equipment, including driver and front passenger knee, front and seat-mounted air bags, as well as rear seat-mounted side airbags and front and rear side curtain airbags.
City and highway mileage? Price tag? The 2013 Lexus ES starts at $36,100 and is equipped with a 3.5-liter V6 and receives an EPA estimate rating of 31 mpg Highway and 24 mpg combined. The 2013 Lexus ES 300h Hybrid starts at $38,850 and is equipped with 2.5-liter Atkinson Cycle + Electric Motor and receives an EPA estimate rating of 40 mpg highway and 39 mpg combined. In fact, at 40 mpg city, this car is the definition of green or a huge gas saver. The hybrid cost $2,750 more for than the gas engine model and within three years of owner-
ship (plus being eco-friendly), you will more than make up the added cost. With its everyday amenities and luxurious ride, the 2013 Lexus ES is perfect for the fuel conscious, thrill-seeking mid-size luxury car buyer.
What makes the 2013 Lexus ES350 stand out from others: There are many features that make this vehicles stand out above the rest. Its impressive and efficient power of this luxury sedan's 3.5-liter, V6 engine. You can impose your will on curves, putting its lightweight design, more rigid chassis and new, more dynamic suspension system to good use. You can also sit back and let the engine’s new low-friction materials and more efficient transmission help you make the most of every drop of fuel. Or, to help the ES provide the ultimate in both respects, Drive Mode Select lets you opt for ECO, Normal or SPORT modes, modifying its performance characteristics to fit your mood.
Three words that define the 2013 Lexus ES350: Style, luxury and performance.
What do you like the most about the 2013 Lexus ES It is available in two all-new models and leaves one indelible impression. It’s an important vehicle for us plus it has an allnew style and for the first-time ever its available in a Hybrid. It is truly the first mainstream hybrid vehicle that doesn’t compromise size for fuel economy. Great luxury and great fuel economy. In fact, at 40 mpg city, this car is the definition of green or a huge gas saver! The hybrid cost $2,750 more for than the gas engine model and, within three years of ownership (plus being eco-friendly), you will more than make up the added cost. Source: Lezley Pumphrey, marketing manager
Home & Garden
Outdoor fire pits and fireplaces Turn your backyard, patio into an outdoor living space
By Gregory D. Cook Photos courtesy of California Outdoor Concepts
ith Bakersfieldâ€™s relatively mild winters, there is no reason why we canâ€™t enjoy our backyards and patios year-round. And there is nothing quite like a cozy fire to bring people together, whether you are entertaining friends or just enjoying a relaxing night under the stars.
Fire pits can help set the ambiance of any outdoor living area. 54
A fire pit can help create a casual, fireside area for relaxing with family and friends.
Today, there are plenty of options to consider when adding an outdoor fireplace or fire pit to your backyard. We spoke with local contractors who specialize in helping you choose an outdoor living space you’ll enjoy for years to come.
Planning is key It’s important to keep in mind that your backyard or patio is still part of your living space. That’s something people lose sight of, said Valerie Garewal, merchandise coordinator for Outdoor Galore. “You really want to think of it like you are making your outdoor area another room of your house,” she said. “We’ve got great weather coming in, so you can sit out there with your fire pit and extend your outdoor time.” As Thomas Hastin of Home & Leisure points out, having a plan is key to create an outdoor living space you will actually use. “Putting in a fireplace or a fire pit should be part of a master plan for your backyard,” he said. “Set it up so that you love spending time there. That’s important, because if you don’t love it, you’ll never use it.”
Another point to consider: Well-planned outdoor living areas can be included as floor space when determining a home’s value.
Wood or gas? Outdoor fire pits and fireplaces come primarily in two main types: wood-burning and gas. Both types offer some advantages and drawbacks. Traditional wood-burning fireplaces and pits offer a different ambiance, with flames that crackle, pop and dance as they consume the wood. And no two fires are ever the same. But the laws regarding wood-burning fires in the valley can limit when they can be used. “The no-burn law does apply to fire pits, too,” said Sue England of LS England Designs. “But there are some fireplace inserts now that are carbon neutral, and you can burn wood in those even on no-burn days.” Gas — either propane from a tank, or natural gas from the home’s system — is a popular choice because of the convenience and ease of maintenance. “It’s clean-burning, you’ve got no ash and nothing goes up into the air,” Outdoor Galore’s Garewal said. “And … you can run them any time.”
Continued on page 56 bakersfieldlife.com
Continued from page 55
Pit or place? After you’ve made your decision, the next step is choosing how to present it. An outdoor fireplace generally serves as an anchor point, and many people will put couches and other seating around it, creating a relaxed, casual atmosphere. Fire pits are typically freestanding, and allow people to gather around them. A traditional fireplace is generally inset into a wall section, and will effectively heat a larger area than most gas fire pits. But fire pits can offer versatility in form and function. “Whether you want it round or square, short or tall, we can build it for you,” Hastin said. “The sky is really the limit as to what you can put in. There are some really neat units out there.”
Making it you own Fire pits can be found in a variety of shapes and sizes.
One of the advantages to purchasing a higher-end fire pit is the level of customization available. Many companies offer the ability to mix and match pedestals, tabletops and burners to create a unit that fits your indi-
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vidual taste and needs without having to custom build the unit from the ground up. Whether you are looking for a small, decorative accent, or a large built-in that can double for a bar or table, there is likely a fire pit that will fit your bill. In addition to ceramic logs, you can choose lava stones or even cracked glass or beads. Glass centers, for example, make fires dance more, Garewal said. “The flames will come up in different places, where with a log it just comes up around the log,” he said. When you don’t want a fire, accessories are available to turn your fire pit into a table, for example. Some companies offer inserts that will turn the pit into a cooler for those hot Bakersfield summers.
The bottom line A quality fire pit or outdoor fireplace can help set the ambiance of any outdoor living space. But the first step is to consult an expert. “We can help you turn your yard into what you want it be,” said England. Added Hastin: “You want to have something that will be a beautiful part of your backyard, that you will still be happy with 15 years from now.”
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Lt. Cmdr. Jason Paul Brand United States Coast Guard Compiled By Emily Claffy
Assignment: Counter drug, alien and migrant interdiction and living marine resource officer; United States Coast Guard, Eighth District. Stationed: Eighth District headquarters in New Orleans, La. I have been in the military for: 17 years Why I decided to join: I found out about the military service academies when my friend from Arvin Congregational Church, Isaac Phillips, applied and was accepted to the United States Naval Academy. When I found out that I could continue to play football and serve my country, and that it was free, it seemed too good to pass up. I did not know anything about the U.S. Coast Guard when I signed up. Why I continue to serve: I have loved every job that I have had in the U.S. Coast Guard. My wife, Barbie, and twin daughters, Kacey and Blakeley, continue to support me in serving our country. Valuable advice I have learned while in the military: People should look at what they are doing and be sure to contribute something to make your family and country better in any way possible. What I like most about my job: My favorite job in the Coast Guard was being in charge of an eight-person law enforcement deployable team. We conducted tactical boardings for counter narcotics missions on Colombian vessels, seizing more than 70 tons of cocaine. We also conducted tactical 58
Photo courtesy of Jason Paul Brand
boardings on Iraqi vessels in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom, seizing many vessels that attempted to sell cargo to support Saddam Hussein. I have been deployed to: U.S. Coast Guard Academy in Conn.; Key West, Fla.; San Diego; South Korea; Bahrain; Jacksonville, Fla.; University of Rhode Island; and New Orleans, La. What I learned during deployment: I have learned how lucky we are to be in America. What I miss most about Bakersfield: I miss my parents John and Kathy, my brother David, and my friends the most. I miss everything about the small town life in Arvin, high school football, and coach Chuck Chamberlein. I also miss the Buck Owen's Crystal Palace. My favorite activity to do while I’m home is: Eat Marcos Osuna’s
carne asada tacos! I stay connected with friends and family by: I see my family a couple times a year and I stay connected with my friends through my wife, Barbie. My greatest military accomplishment so far: Graduating from the Coast Guard Academy. This year, I will continue to work on: A second master’s degree through the U.S. Naval War College. When I return home, the first thing I will do is: Give my mom a hug and help my dad with yard work. — Know a Kern County resident who has or is currently serving in the military? Email us at bakersfieldlife@ bakersfield.com with the message subject line: Hometown Hero. Please include an email, phone number and/or Facebook link to reach the nominee.
Fox Theater’s ‘FLICS’ By Tyler Stevens
hil Neufeld’s passion for showing international cinema has been reflecting off Bakersfield’s silver screens for more than 30 years. With FLICS, Neufeld has brought a “film festival” atmosphere to the community of Bakersfield and the historic Fox Theater. Since it was established, FLICS has raised about $70,000 through ticket sales with the funds proudly donated to the Fox Theater Foundation, Walter Stiern Library at Cal State Bakersfield, the Kern County Library Book Trust and other nonprofit groups in town. Bakersfield’s International Cinema Society, which puts on FLICS, has been operating for more than 30 years. “We started our journey with very little money,” Neufeld said. “But with the help and support of family and friends, we were able to make our dreams come true.” Before making his way to the Fox Theater, Neufeld showcased many films throughout the greater Bakersfield area. His selected foreign films have been projected on the screens of the Harvey Auditorium, Bakersfield Community Theater, Cal State Bakersfield and Bakersfield College. “Our policy is to show films that aren’t shown in commercial theaters,” Neufeld said. “We are not interested in showing Americanized films.” 60
A healthy line forms outside the Fox Theater on the opening night of FLICS 2012-13 season.
After years of success at smaller theaters in Bakersfield, Neufeld received a call from the Fox Theater with an invite to show films there. “We weren’t prepared to go there,” Neufeld said. “But they really wanted us, FLICS president Phil so we made our Neufeld introduces a film move.” under the purple stage The rest, as lights of the Fox Theater. they say, is history. Some of Neufeld’s past screenings at the Fox Theater include “Exit Through the Gift Shop,” an independent film based on renowned street artists, and “The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo,” a Swedish film based on an international best-selling book, which brought in more than 1,100 moviegoers to the Fox. This year, Neufeld will showcase a variety of new films Photo by John Harte
Local movie series showcases another season of international, indie films
Photo by Michael Fagans
“In Darkness” aimed to entertain and inspire the audience. They include: • “In Darkness,” a film from Poland about a Polish sewer worker who risks his own life to save a group of Jews in the Naziridden town of Lvov. This film portrays the extraordinary story of life in a Nazi community, and what the men, women and children there faced every day. Remaining FLICS • “Sound of Noise,” a Swedish film that 2012-13 season portrays a group of musiNov. 9: “In Darkness” cians who terrorize their Nov. 30: “Sound of Noise” city through guerillaDec. 14: “Boy” style performances. This Jan. 11: “Le Havre” film won the “Young Jan. 25: “The Other F Word” Critics Award” for best Feb. 8: “Sidewalls” feature at Cannes Film Festival in 2010. Feb. 22: “Shun Li and the Poet” All FLICS showMarch 8: “Marwencol” ings start at 7:30 p.m. March 22: “Aftershock” on select Fridays at the April 5: “Polisse” Fox Theater, 2001 H St. April 19: “Marley” Admission is $5. May 3: “The Skin I Live In” For more on FLICS, May 10: “Nobody Else But You” including film information, go to flics.org, or call FLICS at 428-0354. bakersfieldlife.com
Altares de Familia Bakersfield Museum of Art celebrates Day of the Dead By Jason Gutierrez Photos courtesy of The Bakersﬁeld Museum of Art
n the quiet solace of candlelight and family ties, you too, will undoubtedly be drawn to the emotional pull that is the core of Altares de Familia. Traditionally celebrated in Mexico and Latin American countries, Dia de los Muertos, or Day of the Dead, is neither a celebration of death nor the mourning of the deceased. Rather, it is recognition of life and of the imprint the deceased has left on the lives of their loved ones. The Bakersfield Museum of Art’s annual Altares de Familia community-wide celebration takes place each year on Dia de los Muertos. Together, with collection of community partners, the museum brings an exclusive cultural, artistic and educational experience to the residents of Kern County. It will be open to the public from 5 to 9 p.m., Nov. 2 in the museum’s gardens. Dozens of local families have gathered each year at the museum’s sculpture garden to pay homage to friends and family members who have passed. Last year’s event attracted more than 2,500 spectators and participants combines. Admission is $1. Adjacent to the museum, Central Park at Mill Creek will be host to cultural dancing, live music, face painting and artistic activities for the family. Food vendors will also be on site. Eva Patino and daughter Felisa have been strong supporters of the event through participation and planning. Eva, a retired Spanish 62
Altares de Familia celebrates the life and memories of those who have passed.
teacher, and Felisa, a high school Spanish teacher, said Altares de Familia is important for our community. “It is very important to remember the lives of our loved ones that have passed,” Eva said. “In remembering how their lives affected us, what their mark was in this life, what they liked to do — we bring them to life in our memory. We keep their memories
alive because true death comes when we are forgotten.” The Bakersfield Museum of Art will be open for visitors, who can enjoy the “Paul Strand: Mexican Portfolio” exhibit. Strand is one of the towering figures of American 20th century photography. One of his most culturally significant works is the Mexican Portfolio, consisting
Altares de Familia invites the community to build family altars in the gardens as part of the traditional Dia de los Muertos celebration. Donna Rodriguez builds an altar in memory of her loved one. of 20 images depicting the landscapes, people, architecture and religious objects he encountered in Mexico in the early 1930s. For more information on Altares de Familia and the museum, go to bmoa.org/altares-de-familia.
Photo courtesy of Daniel Rodriguez
Daniel Rodriguez stands with sons Marcos, left, and Tomas at the summit of Mount Kilimanjaro in Africa.
Father makes inspired trek up mountain with sons By Daniel Rodriguez
hen my dad was 59 years old, he and I went on a camping and kayaking trip to Canada. We paddled up to seven hours a day between islands in the Inlet Sound, between the Canadian mainland and Victoria Island. We saw bears swimming in the ocean and bald eagles soaring in the wind, caught salmon with only a string and a hook; and best of all, we kayaked among killer whales. They were so close and massive that we could reach out and touch them. At the end of our trip, our guides told me that my dad was the oldest person who had ever finished one of the physically demanding trips. My dad talked about our trip for the rest of his life, until he passed away about 20 years later at the age of 79. To this day, I can still see my dad sitting in front of me in our two-man kayak, bobbing in the ocean. I yearned to share a similar experience with my two sons. I promised myself that I would take such a trip before I turned 59, the same age as my dad when we took our trip. The stars finally aligned in August. At 58, I took my two sons — Marcos, 25, and Tomas, 24 — to Africa. We de-
cided we would take a stab at climbing the tallest mountain in Africa: Mount Kilimanjaro, which stands at 19,340 feet. Though you don’t need technical climbing skills to scale this mountain, the sheer height makes it a daunting task. With such height comes altitude sickness. It’s not enough to be in good physical condition — I run marathons and work out nearly every day — the altitude can do you in. Besides being affected by nausea, diarrhea and vomiting, you have to contend with fluid building in your brain and lungs. Headaches and flu-like symptoms are indicators of sickness. To avoid those things, you must do the following three things: Climb the mountain slowly to allow your body to make more red blood cells to carry oxygen, walk with very deliberate steps and take deep breaths with every step. We started with 10 people in our group from all walks of life and various parts of the country. We were all in good physical condition, but we lost the first person before we even started, and the second person the following day. Only five of the 10 people who originally signed up for the trip made it to the top of the mountain. The first day was hot Continued on page 66 bakersfieldlife.com
Photo courtesy of Daniel Rodriguez
The Rodriguezes reach the second base camp at 12,000 feet on their climb up Mount Kilimanjaro.
and sweltering as we trekked through the jungle. But all that suddenly changed when we reached the first base camp — the night turned to freezing. We all slept in zero-degree rated sleeping bags, along with a liner and at least a few layers of clothes. On the last night, we started our ascent to the summit at 11 p.m., hoping to reach the summit at sunrise. The cold bit through my five layers of clothing. My insulated water tube froze after an hour. Our headlamps could only pierce through the pitch darkness a few feet in front of us. We all took deep breaths trying to draw in the few molecules of oxygen floating about in the thin air. We were warned about the possibility of hallucinating. By 3 a.m., one of my sons said he started seeing people vanish before his very eyes. But, at 6:45 a.m., just as the sun was starting to peak over the horizon, we reached the summit. I looked up to the sky and said, “Dad, we made it! We couldn’t have made it without your help!” Above the sunrise, I saw my dad smiling down upon us. I heard him say, “Bien hecho, mijos,” (Well done, my sons)!
Marcos Rodriguez, left, and Tomas Rodriguez stand at a base camp on Mount Kilimanjaro at 15,000 feet.
All-New 2012 CR-V
4500 Wible Road
4500 Wible Road
Entrance to the Bakersfield Auto Mall
Entrance to the Bakersfield Auto Mall
Photo courtesy of Daniel Rodriguez
Continued from page 65
NEW CAR GUIDE
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2013 New Car Guide
Luxury vehicles BMW 6 Series 4-door MSRP: starting at $76,00 The 2013 BMW 6-Series, specifically the 640i Gran Coupe, offers a 3.0-liter TwinPower Turbo inline six-cylinder, 24-valve 315-horespower engine, and an eight-speed sport automatic transmission with driving dynamics control. Safety and security features include adaptive LED headlights, full color head-up display, lane departure warning, night vision and BMW Assist with Bluetooth wireless technology. For comfort and convenience, buyers will find an onboard navigation system with traffic alerts, BMW Ultimate Service, climate zone ventilation and voice command.
Audi A8 MSRP: Startinmg at $72,200 MPG: 17 city, 28 highway The 2013 Audi A8 comes with many great standard features including leather interior, 19-inch alloys, Quattro all-wheel drive, xenon headlights, heated front seats, navigation, rearview camera, BOSE surround-sound stereo and four-zone automatic climate control. Although the 2013 model is lower in price compared to last yearâ€™s model, performance was not sacrificed. The vehicle offers a 3.0-liter engine, 333 horsepower and is a V6. The long-wheelbase tips scales at 4,353 pounds but does not compromise its speed, reaching 60 mph in 5.3 seconds.
Chrysler 300 MSRP: Starting at $29,845 MPG: 19 city, 31 highway The 2013 Chrysler 300 comes with a 3.6-liter, V6 24-valve VVT engine, an eight-speed automatic transmission with e-shifter, a 19.1-gallon fuel tank, dual rear exhaust with bright tips and an engine oil cooler. Seating features include leather trim, power eight-way driver seat, power four-way driver lumbar adjust, and a rear 60-40 folding seat. Other available features include electrohydraulic power steering, leather-wrapped steering wheel, steering wheel mounted audio controls, speed control, illuminated cup holders, remote fuel door release, air conditioning with dual zone auto temperature control, speed sensitive power locks, and much more.
Honda Accord MSRP: Starting at $21,680 MPG: 27 city, 36 highway The new Honda Accord has many great features that will keep you safe on the road while maintaining fuel efficiency and funto-drive performance. It offers the sport and touring model. The sport model features 18inch wheels, paddle shifters, and a 2.4-liter direct-injected VTEC engine for performance seeking drivers. The luxurious touring model features a powerful V-6 engine with LED headlights and Adaptive Cruise Control. The 2013 Accords safety features include the Honda LaneWatch blind-spot display and the rear-view camera for backup safety.
Infiniti M37 Sport Sedan MSRP: Starting at $48,200 MPG: 18 city, 26 highway This high performance sedan offers several options to accommodate your driving needs. Choose between the 330-horsepower V6 engine, the direct response V6 hybrid engine or the 420-horsepower engine with V8 power. This vehicle offers heated, leather-appointed seats, Japanese Ash wood trim, six-speaker audio system with noise control, and intelligent key with an illuminated push button ignition. Other features include power sliding tinted glass moon roof, temperature control system, and HomeLink Universal Transceiver.
Volvo S60 MSRP: Starting at $31,750 MPG: 20 city, 29 highway The 2013 Volvo S60 base model Sedan comes standard with many features such as 17-inch wheels, an eight-way power driver seat with memory functions and adjustable lumbar, and a leather-wrapped tilt-andtelescoping steering wheel. Audio options include satellite and HD radio with auxiliary and USB interfaces. Bluetooth is also a standard feature. Premier options include keyless ignition and entry, a 12-speaker audio sound system and front and rear parking sensors. For 2013, advances have been made to give the 2.5-liter engine more of an edge, as well as making all-wheel drive a standard option. bakersfieldlife.com 71
2013 New Car Guide
Luxury vehicles Mercedes E Class MSRP: Starting at $51,000 MPG: 20 city, 30 highway The 2013 Mercedes-Benz E-Class luxury and sport models standard features include a powerful V6 engine, automatic transmission and extensive safety highlights like side curtain airbags and stability and traction control, as well as front and rear safety systems. Entertainment standard features include a DVD player and monitor, iPod-MP3 input, memory card slot and Bluetooth. Some options available include all-wheel drive and navigation system. The new models will see an updated Mbrace Telematics System, as well as an optional Bang & Olufsen audio system for sedans and wagons. The E-Class will also see two new models including the E400 Hybrid and E350 Coupe 4Matic.
Toyota Avalon MSRP: Yet to be released MPG: Yet to be released The 2013 Toyota Avalon is a whole new car, front to back, inside and out. Its sleek, modern profile is more luxurious on the inside, with ambient lighting, a high-tech dashboard with IntelliTouch capacitive controls, and available heated and ventilated front seats and heated rear seats all trimmed in leather. It offers tighter suspension, available paddle shifters and drive modes. And for the first time ever, the 2013 Avalon is available in a Hybrid version, with 40 mpg. Other standard features includes power tilt and slide moon roof, information display, wood grain-style interior, two 12-volt outlets and the Star Safety System.
Toyota Camry MSRP: Yet to be released MPG: Yet to be released You are no doubt already familiar with Americaâ€™s best-selling car, the Toyota Camry. In fact, 90 percent of all Camrys sold in the last 15 years are still on the road today. For the 2013 Camry, features include projector-beam halogen headlamps, 16-inch steel wheels, solar energy-absorbing glass, audio system with display, auxiliary jack, USB port and Entune and Smart Key systems. Other interior features include leather-trimmed heated front seats, four-spoke steering wheel with Bluetooth, and a 12-volt auxiliary power outlet. The Star Safety System comes standards, as does 10 airbags and energy-absorbing collapsible steering column, among other safety features.
2013 New Car Guide
S U V/ C r o ss ov e r s Toyota Land Cruiser MSRP: Starting at $78,255 MPG: 13 city, 18 highway The 2013 Toyota Land Cruiser offers a rare blend of luxury and capability. In the six decades since its debut, the Land Cruiser has developed a loyal following unmatched by any other SUV in the world. Features include projector-beam high intensity discharge headlights, LED accent lighting, 18-inch, five-spoke alloy wheels, rain sensing wipers, privacy glass, roof rack and much more. Interior features include leather-trimmed heated steering wheel, wood-grain-style trim and ventilated front seats, navigation with Entune and JBL Synthesis, Bluetooth wireless technology, entertainment system, eight-passenger seating, smart key system on all doors, and dozens of other highlights. It comes equipped with Star Safety System and 10 airbags.
Cadillac Escalade Platinum MSRP: Starting at $ 63,170 The 2013 Cadillac Escalade is the one of the most acclaimed luxury SUVs that continues to set the standard. With commanding power in the form of a 6.2-liter, 403-horsepower V8 engine, the Escalade goes from zero to 60 mph in 6.8 seconds. The Escalade Platinum is the ultimate expression of Escalade luxury and refinement with glove-soft aniline leather covering, 14-way power-adjustable heated and cooled front seats, heated and cooled cup holders, leather-wrapped instrument panels, and upper door trim. With the 2013 Escalade, technology and performance have never been more dramatically aligned.
Chevrolet Tahoe MSRP: Starting at $39,080 MPG: 15 city, 21 highway The Chevrolet Tahoe is a full-sized SUV that is both capable and uncompromising. With seating for up to nine people, 108.9 cubic feet of cargo space, available rear seat DVD player, and a Vortec 5.3-liter V8 engine that delivers 320 horsepower and 8,500 pounds of towing capacity, the new 2013 Tahoe has it all â€” comfort, technology and power. The Tahoe also comes equipped with some of the latest in safety technology. With its allsteel safety cage, StabiliTrak electronic stability control, four-wheel anti-lock brakes, six airbags, and six months of OnStar Automatic Crash Response, the 2013 Tahoe comes prepared to keep you safe before, during and after a collision.
2013 Chevrolet Volt The Volt at a glance: Âˇ Electric drive with extended range (gas) 38 miles gas free Âˇ Up to 380 total miles on a full charge and full tank Âˇ Up to $7,500 tax credit Âˇ 2012 Top Safety pick from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety Âˇ EPA Estimated Highway mileage of 98 MPGe
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2013 New Car Guide
S U V/ C r o ss ov e r s Hyundai Santa Fe MSRP: Starting at $24,450 MPG: 22 city, 33 highway The 2013 Santa Fe’s all-new design features five-passenger and the lengthier sevenpassenger models. The base 2.4-liter, fourcylinder engine offers 190 horsepower, while the 3.3-liter V6 gets 290 horsepower on the larger model. Santa Fe's exterior redesign has been dubbed “Storm Edge” by Hyundai to express the more aerodynamic, fluid design that includes a standard rear spoiler and shark fin antenna. Blue Link telematics, Bluetooth and XM Satellite Radio will also come standard, as well as 17-inch alloy wheels, with optional 19-inch wheels. Proximity entry and push-button start are options. New standard interior features include stain resistant cloth seating, illuminated vanity mirrors, a 40-20-40 split fold down seat design, and a panoramic sunroof.
Subaru Outback MSRP: at $23,495 MPG: 21 city, 28 highway The 2013 utility crossover Subaru Outback has great standard features that include an Underfloor rear cargo-area storage, folddown rear seats, and Bluetooth hands-free connectivity. Other features include Vehicle Dynamics Control and a Symmetrical AllWheel Drive system. Upgrades to the 2013 model include an increase in torque and horsepower —170 pounds-foot torque and 174 pounds-foot horsepower. The Subaru Outback also has new safety features like the driver and passenger side head restraint whiplash protection system, and is prewired for phones with Bluetooth and USB connections, which is standard.
Infiniti QX56 MSRP: Starting at $60,000 MPG: 14 city, 20 highway This full-size SUV has the power and the space for those family trips and regular commutes. With the option available in rearwheel drive and four-wheel drive, this vehicle features a 5.6-liter V8 engine that generates up to 400 horsepower. Inside features include navigation with maps and music capability, a Bose 13-speaker audio system, USB connection, satellite radio, and temperature control. Outside, the QX56 flaunts 20-inch, seven-spoke aluminum alloy wheels, moon roof, xenon headlights and much more.
Infiniti JX35 SUV MSRP: Starting at $40,650 MPG: 18 city, 23 highway The 2013 Infiniti JX35 offers many features to enhance performance, as well as new tech features that will cater to your every need inside. The JX35 features a 265-hp 3.5-liter V6 engine equipped with Infiniti Drive Mode Selector with standard, sport, snow or Eco modes. The vehicle offers a rear view monitor, power sliding moon roof, and tri-zone automatic temperature control system. Other features include 7-inch color vehicle information display, intelligent key and push button ignition, USB port for iPod, and bi-functional xenon headlights.
Honda CRV MSRP: $22,695 MPG: 23 city, 31 highway The 2012 Honda CR-V features a fourcylinder engine that produces about 185 horsepower. This powerful, yet efficient engine offers a smooth ride with several new suspension and drivetrain features that decrease road noise and vibration. The versatile interior features heated front seats, a moon roof and a rear cargo area. Bluetooth HandsFreeLink and rearview camera comes standard. Also available is the Satellite-Linked Navigation System with voice recognition. The i-MID system displays streamed music, text messages and customizable wallpaper.
Jeep Grand Cherokee MSRP: Starting at $27,495 MPG: 17 city, 23 highway The 2013 Jeep Grand Cherokee standard V6 received â€œbest-in-class driving range,â€? according to Jeep, covering 500 miles on a single tank of gas. Buyers have the option to upgrade to the 5.7-liter, V8 Hemi engine, capable of pulling up to 7,400 pounds, or the high performance SRT8, 6.4-liter Hemi V8 engine, which is capable of accelerating to 60 miles per hour in under five seconds in wet and dry conditions. With more than 45 different safety and security features, drivers will receive active front head restraints, seat-mounted side airbags for added pelvis and thorax protection, and Active Stability Control with Roll Mitigation Programming that monitors wheel spin and prevents sliding, plowing and rollover. bakersfieldlife.com 77
2013 New Car Guide
S U V/ C r o ss ov e r s Jeep Wrangler 4-door MSRP: $22,045 MPG: 17 city, 21 highway With 283 horsepower, Pentastar V6 engine, the 2013 Jeep Wrangler is standard with a manual 6-speed transmission or can be upgraded to 5-speed automatic. The frame of the vehicle has hydroformed steel tubing with ladder chassis that works to combine strength, rigidity and flexibility for off road adventures. Mounted underneath the Wrangler, in the front and rear, are solid Dana axles. The Sunrider soft top comes standard on the Wrangler, with the option of upgrading to a three-piece freedom hard top cover. Another upgradeable option includes the Uconnect BlueTooth Wireless system, which not only allows the driver to send and receive calls, but also wirelessly streams audio from phones with Pandora and iTunes.
Nissan Pathfinder MSRP: $28,270 MPG: 20 city, 26 highway The all-new 2013 Nissan Pathfinder is best in class for fuel economy, driven by 260 horsepower, 3.5 liter V6 engine, and boosts fuel efficiency by more than 30 percent. It’s also first in class for its spacious front head and legroom. The 2013 Pathfinder is class exclusive for third row recline seating, with the Nissan EZ Flex Seating System equipped with “latch and glide” technology to make getting to the back row easy. Users don’t even have to take out the child’s seat. It seats seven people, and with the highest standard towing rating in its class, you can bring along 5,000 pounds of toys and supplies to enjoy with friends and family.
BMW X5 Diesel MSRP: Starting at $64,200 MPG: 26 highway The 2013 BMW X5 Diesel model features a 3.0-liter, inline six-cylinder engine with TwinPower Turbo technology. The vehicle offers 265 horsepower and 425 foot-pounds of torque. Safety features include adaptive brake lights, park distance control in the front and rear, run-flat tires, and dynamic stability control. Other available features include an onboard navigation system with traffic alerts, an iPod or iPhone USB integrated system, Sirius Satellite Radio, HD Radio, and a rear entertainment system.
BMW of Bakersfield 5400 Gasoline Ally Dr. Bakersfield, CA 93313 661-396-4040 www.BMWofBakersfield.com
2013 New Car Guide
S U V/ C r o ss ov e r s BMW X1 MSRP: Starting at $30,650 MPG: 34 highway The 2013 BMW X1 offers a 2.0-liter, inline four-cylinder engine with 240 horsepower. The eight-speed automatic transmission includes Adaptive Transmission Control, and the ECO PRO mode teaches drivers fuelefficient practices. Seating accommodates five adults plus a load of cargo. The Harman Kardon surround sound system has a 340watt amplifier and includes 11 speakers. A rear-view camera shows what is behind the vehicle in the Control Display and works with Park Distance Control, which displays parking trajectories and turn angles.
Mazda CX5 SkyActiv MSRP: Starting at $20,995 MPG: 26 city, 35 highway (manual transmission) The Mazda CX-5 comes with a Skyactiv-G engine â€” a four-cylinder, 2.0-liter double overhead camshaft (DOHC). This vehicle has 155 horsepower and 150 foot-pounds of torque. The CX-5 offers steering wheel mounted controls that include radio controls, Bluetooth hands-free and cruise control. Other available features include HD radio, and an integrated TomTom navigations system. Safety features include Blind Spot Monitoring system, rearview camera, threepoint seatbelts for all seating positions, clear lens halogen headlights, and advanced front air bags, front side-impact air bags and sideimpact air curtains.
Mitsubishi Outlander Sport MSRP: MSRP: $19,170 MPG: 24 city, 31 highway (manual transmission) The 2013 Outlander Sport has a 2.0-liter MIVEC engine and is available in all-wheel drive. The vehicle is also available in automatic, which runs on a continuously variable transmission. The brake regeneration system uses the vehicles kinetic energy from braking to recharge some systems in the car, making it more eco-friendly. Traction Control Logic system helps keep the driver in control of the vehicle if swerving or swaying is detected. For interior upgrades, the premium sports fabric trimmed seating is available, and designed to facilitate ventilation for the driver.
â€œBest Highway MPG of any SUV including Hybrids. 37 MPG*â€?
Come in and test drive a Mazda today. *Actual MPG will vary with options, driving condition, habits & vehicle conditions. See dealer for details.
3201 Cattle Drive
www.bakersfieldmazda.com Bakersfield Auto Mall
2013 New Car Guide
Compact vehicles Fiat 500 Pop MSRP: $15,500 MPG: 31 city, 41 highway The 2013 Fiat Pop is the base model of Fiat 500â€™s four editions. The car is easily customizable with more than 500 combinations including second skins, stripes, tops, key covers, roof racks, street art, mirror covers, wheels, body side moldings, fender badges, hood spears, front and rear fascia kits, carpet floor mats, shift knobs, seat covers, slush mats and much more. The Pop comes with electronic stability control, reverse-activated rear wiper, Blue&Me hands-free communication, power windows, locks and mirrors. Itâ€™s equipped with Bose Energy Efficient Series system with six standard speakers.
Fiat 500 Cabrio MSRP: $19,500 MPG: 31 city, 41 highway This trendy and fun vehicle not only saves money on gas and maintenance, but is also loaded with safety features. The 2013 Fiat 500 Cabrio is equipped with seven air bags, all metal framing, roadside assistance and a tire compressor kit. Technological features include the Blue&Me hands free and voice recognition system, Beats by Dre sound system and can sync your phone, Ipod, Pandora, Nook or laptop with a 12-volt plug. Other features include a strip down the side doors, chrome mirror caps and bumper plates, 100 percent Italian leather stitched seats, fog lights, heated seats, and a one-year subscription to Sirius Satellite Radio.
Fiat 500 Abarth MSRP: $22,000 MPG: 28 city, 34 highway Quality and comfort are key characteristics of the 2013 Fiat 500 Abarth. Special components include the racing designed seats, boost gauge, performance brake system, tuned suspension, twin intercoolers and more. With its 1.41 turbo charged, multi-air engine that produces 160 base horsepower, and 170 foot-pounds of torque, the 2013 Fiat 500 Abarth demonstrates some aggressive behavior and astonishing performance.
2013 New Car Guide
Compact vehicles Fiat 500 Sport MSRP: $17,500 MPG: 31 city, 41 highway The 2013 Fiat Sport has a 1.4-liter engine that produces 101 horsepower. The fivespeed manual transmission comes standard with the option of upgrading to the sixspeed automatic model. The vehicle comes standard with all-wheel disk brakes, with red calipers and low-profile performance continental tires, 16-inch alloy wheels, Bose premium sounds system, USB and auxiliary plugs, Bluetooth cruise control, and power windows, locks and mirrors. Like the other Fiat models, the Sport is supported by a fouryear, 50,000-mile powertrain warranty.
Volkswagen Beetle MSRP: Starting at $19,795 MPG: 22 city, 31 highway The 2013 Volkswagen Beetle offers a fivecylinder, 2.5-liter engine with 170 horsepower. Exterior features include a tire pressure monitoring system, daytime running lights, halogen headlights, heat-insulated glass and 17-inch Heritage alloy wheels with anti-theft wheel locks. Interior features include the Intelligent Crash Response System, media devise interface, Bluetooth with audio streaming, eight speakers and a multifunction trip computer that displays trip time, length of trip, average speed, fuel consumption, navigation and much more. The 2103 Beetle also includes the anti-lock braking system, electronic stabilization control, and electronic brake-pressure distribution.
Nissan Sentra MSRP: Starting at $15,990 MPG: 27 city, 34 highway Equipped with three different drive modes, the 2013 Nissan Sentra allows drivers to essentially handle three cars in one. Eco mode helps maximize fuel economy. Sport mode can be used for maximum responsiveness and a boost of fun. And for a blend of efficiency and performance, set the drive mode to normal. Nissan’s new-generation Xtronic CVT guarantees that the Sentra is always running in the right gear. The improved transmission provides smooth acceleration, increased fuel efficiency and a seamless shifting experience. The redesigned Sentra is streamlined to let the air flow around its curves for better handling and improved mileage. Its new body proves the Sentra is more than just a pretty frame — it’s a design that works.
Hyundai Elantra MSRP: Starting at $16,815 MPG: 29 city, 40 highway The 2013 Hyundai Elantra has great fueleconomy with its standard 1.8-liter engine and automatic transmission. The spacious interior offers plenty of head room and trunk cargo space. XM Satellite Radio is standard to complement the six-speaker, 172-watt system. Bluetooth, USB connection, air filtration system and dual side airbag technology add the Elantra's safety and convenience features. For 2013, Hyundai has released new hatchback and coupe designs to the Elantra line.
Hyundai Veloster MSRP: Starting at $17,450 MPG: 28 city, 40 highway Hyundai's new Veloster model, now in its second year, is a sporty three-door hatchback (one door on the left, two on the right) with many great standard features like the Gasoline Direct Injection engine technology and six-speed EcoShift transmission for more power-to-weight fuel efficiency. Entertainment features include a standard seven-inch multimedia touch screen and an optional 115V outlet. A Turbo version is available, which adds a 450-watt, eight-speaker sound system to complement the standard features like SiriusXM Radio, iPod-MP3 connection, Blue Link, Bluetooth, USB connection and a memory card slot. The 2013 Turbo model adds more horsepower and an increase in fuel economy from the 2012 model.
Chevrolet Spark MSRP: Starting at $12,245 MPG: 32 city, 38 highway The 2013 Spark is a mini car perfect for navigating narrow city streets while helping to keep you and your passengers safe. Standard safety features include 10 air bags, 4-wheel anti-lock braking, StabiliTrak electronic stability control with traction control, and the support of a sixmonth trial of OnStar, with Automatic Crash Response. The Spark features include air conditioning, auxiliary audio input jacks, and the available connectivity of Chevrolet MyLink, featuring a 7-inch diagonal color touch-screen. Folding rear seats provide up to 31.2 cubic-feet of cargo, and the 15-inch, five-spoke silverpainted aluminum wheels help ensure the Spark is the total package for style and safety.
2013 New Car Guide
Full/Mid-size Vehicles Cadillac ATS MSRP: $33,095 MPG: Up to 30 The new Cadillac ATS is a compact luxury sport sedan thatâ€™s as nimble and exhilarating as it is luxurious and technologically advanced. The Cadillac has three engine options to choose from, including a 3.6-liter powerplant delivering 321 horsepower, limited-slip rear differential and available 6-speed manual transmission. The ATS reveals handcrafted, cut-and-sewn interior. Available leather seats with French stitching are accented by distinct interior themes featuring wood, aluminum or carbon fiber trim. The Bose active noise cancellation system ensures the quietest ride possible. The new ATS also boasts the CUE (Cadillac User Experience) combining vehicle controls, safety, navigation and communication into one intuitive system.
Chevrolet Malibu LTZ MSRP: Starting at $27,830 MPG: 22 city, 34 highway The bold new design of the 2013 Chevrolet Malibu LTZ improves aerodynamics while turning heads. Inside features include heated, leatherappointed front seats, vinyl perimeter accents, and auto-dimming inside rear-view mirror. The connectivity of Chevrolet MyLink offers a variety of information, entertainment and navigation features you can easily control with the tap of your fingers or the sound of your voice. Exterior features include 18-inch machine-spoke aluminum wheels, LED tail lamps, chrome door handles and a front grill with silver inserts. In addition to the 6-speed automatic transmission, the Malibu LTZ offers an available Ecotec 2.5-liter, 4-cylinder engine that delivers 197 horsepower and 191 foot-pounds of torque.
Hyundai Sonata MSRP: Starting at $20,995 MPG: 24 city, 35 highway The 2013 Sonata features a 2.4-liter, fourcylinder engine with six-speed shiftable automatic transmission on most models. Satellite radio, iPod-MP3 and Bluetooth come standard. The 16-inch alloy wheels and allseason tires are complimented with safety features like the driver and passenger side head restraint whiplash protection system, and sensor airbag technology for unoccupied seats. Other great features include the 12V power outlet, USB connection, and steering wheel controls that add to the Sonata's convenience factor. New for 2013 upper-tier models are options for heated seats, parking assist features and Blue Link telematic assistant system services.
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2013 New Car Guide
Full/Mid-size Vehicles Mercedes C Class MSRP: Starting at $35,350 MPG: 22 city, 31 highway The 2013 Mercedes C-Class models feature 17-inch alloy wheels, 12V front and rear power outlets, Bluetooth and front and rear head airbags. A four-cylinder, 1.8-liter engine comes standard. Upgrade options include 18inch spoke alloy wheels, panorama sunroof, Sirius satellite radio, iPod-MP3 interface and keyless entry. A navigation system and DVD player are also available options. The 2013 models will also see an increase in miles-pergallon with the 3.0-liter and 3.5-liter engine models.
Chrysler 200 MSRP: Starting at $18,995 MPG: 30 highway Features like Electronic Stability Control with All-Speed Traction Control, active front head restraints and the Sentry Key theft deterrent system are just a few of the many standard safety features found on every 2013 Chrysler 200. Inside the cabin, buyers will find more features like Uconnect radio with 40-GB hard drives, touch-screen navigation, hands-free calling, streaming audio and Sirius XM Radio with pause, rewind and a free one-year subscription. The Chrysler 200 has a 2.4-liter, double overhead camshaft (DOHC) VVT engine and has a four-speed automatic VLP transmission. Also available is the 3.6-liter, V6 Pentastar engine with 283 horsepower.
Nissan Altima MSRP: $21,500 MPG: 27 city, 38 highway This vehicle has two available engines, the 2.5 liter, four-cylinder, and the 3.5 liter, V6 engine. The 2013 Nissan Altima delivers innovation and technology with upgraded features and style, including the new intelligent key with remote engine start technology. Many of the new upgrades on this vehicle focus on safety, and include features like lane departure and blind spot warning, and moving object detection. The â€œAdvanced Drive-Assist Displayâ€? is an innovative new system designed to help keep you focused on the road. A four-inch LCD screen is centered in the instrument cluster, and displays call interactions, service warnings and much more.
2013 New Car Guide
Full/Mid-size Vehicles Volkswagen Passat MSRP: Starting at $20,845 MPG: 22 city, 32 highway The five cylinder, 2.5-liter engine with 170 horsepower keeps drivers in control with a multi-function steering wheel and connection with Bluetooth hands-free technology. The power operated side mirrors come with integrated turn signals. This vehicle also features a six-speaker sound system with MP3 and WMA compatible in-dash CD player, AM-FM radio, and auxiliary plug for portable audio players. Safety features include six airbags and electronic stability control, antilock braking system, anti-slip regulation, and anti-intrusion side door beams.
BMW 3 Series MSRP: Starting at $36,500 MPG: 34 highway The 3-Series comes with a four-cylinder TwinTurbo engine with 255 pounds-foot of torque. With 1250 rpm, drivers can go from zero to 60 mph in under six seconds. Variable sport steering continuously adjusts the steering ratio and steering force to tailor to specific driving situations. The Speed Limit Information function detects local speed limit signs and displays them on the Instrument Cluster and Head-up Display, or HUD. The Surround View function displays images of approaching traffic and roads by using side-view cameras, front bumper cameras, a top-view camera, and cameras in the exterior mirrors.
Mazda 3 SkyActiv MSRP: Starting at $16,700 MPG: 25 city, 33 highway (manual transmission) 2013 Mazda 3 Skyactiv offers three different engines. The first option is the 4 cylinder, 2.0-liter DOHC engine with 148 horsepower and 135 footpounds of torque. The second is the four-cylinder Skyactiv-G, 2.0-liter double overhead camshaft (DOHC) engine with 155 VVT horsepower and 148 foot-pounds of torque. The third option is the four-cylinder, MZR 2.5-liter DOHC engine with 167 VVT horsepower and 168 foot-pounds of torque. Every Mazda 3 model uses the â€œTriple Hâ€? construction system, which reinforces the floor, sides and roof to ensure a secure structure around the driver and passenger compartments. Perks include Bluetooth, navigation and Bose audio system.
2013 New Car Guide
Sport Vehicles Mitsubishi Lancer GT MSRP: $19,995 (5-speed manual transmission) MPG: 22 city, 31 highway It comes with a 2.4-liter MIVEC engine with 168 horsepower. The vehicle includes magnesium alloy paddle shifts, four-wheel disc antilock brakes, Active Stability Control, and comes with seven air bags standard. According to Mitsubishi, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety awarded the 2013 Lancer its â€œtop safety pick.â€? The Fuse hands-free link safety system hooks up cell phones and other media devices, and streams live music. The vehicle comes with a 10-year, 100,000 mile limited power train warranty and five year unlimited mileage roadside assistance.
Porsche Panamera MSRP: $75,850 MPG: 18 city, 27 highway The base engine is a 3.6-liter V6 with 300-horsepower and 295 pound-feet of torque. Four different engines are available including the twin-turbo, 4.8-liter V8 with 550-horse power and 369 pound-feet of torque. Available features for the Panamera include navigation, Bluetooth, park assist with rearview camera, adaptive cruise control, lane change assist, heated and ventilated seats, four different wood interiors with carbon fiber and brushed aluminum inside, four-zone climate control and much more.
Nissan 370Z MSRP: Starting at $33, 120 MPG: 19 city, 26 highway With a 332-horse power, V6 engine, the 2013 Nissan 370Z offers the touring model with a sports package, as well as the special edition NISMO, 350-horse power with a 6-speed close-ratio manual transmission. This twodoor coupe sport offers the Nissan intelligent push button key, Bluetooth hands-free phone system, navigation system, sport seating and includes rearview monitor, high intensity discharge, bi-functional Xenon headlights. It also offers daytime LED lights and a black painted grille. Heating and cooling seats are available so drivers can enjoy a ride with the top-down in comfort.
THE ALL-NEW 2013 NISSAN PATHFINDER THE ADVANTAGE IS YOURS.
The world has changed. It’s time your SUV did, too. Welcome to the Next Gen SUV, with the capability to help you take on whatever the day brings. You’ve got Intuitive 4-Wheel Drive to help you handle the most challenging conditions. A class-exclusive Around View Monitor to help you grab those challenging parking spaces. How about an innovative 2nd row that tilts and slides forward for easy access even with a child seat installed? And there’s also best-in-class passenger room so everyone gets a great seat. That’s an SUV for the real world. Introducing the all-new 2013 Nissan Pathfinder. The most innovative Pathfinder ever. Nissan. Innovation that excites. ®
THE MOST INNOVATIVE PATHFINDER EVER Efficiency, brought to you by a Next-Generation Xtronic CVT® Transmission. With Pathfinder’s class-exclusive Xtronic CVT,® you have a virtually gearless wonder that can hold the engine at the ideal rpm for the job, giving you a wave of power when you need it for towing, passing and quiet, efficient running when you don’t. Proof? Pathfinder returns a best-in-class 26 MPG highway.
28,270 Starting MSRP**
BEST 20/26 IN CLASS
Nissan of Bakersfield In The Bakersfield Automall • 2800 Pacheco Rd. • 661-835-8600
**All prices are Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price (MSRP). MSRP excludes destination and handling charges, tax, title, license and options. Dealer sets actual price. ***2013 EPA Fuel Economy Estimates. Actual mileage may vary with driving conditions- use for comparison only.
2013 New Car Guide
Infiniti G37 Coupe MSRP: Starting at $39,800 MPG: 19 city, 27 highway This sleek and stylish coupe features a 330 horsepower, 3.7-liter V6 engine that will satisfy your high performance needs. The seven-speed transmission offers smooth shifting, responsive acceleration and greater fuel efficiency. The G37 also features speed sensitive power steering, front and rear stabilizer bars, 18-inch alloy wheels, and zero-lift front aerodynamics. Available features include Bluetooth hands-free system, SiriusXM Satellite Radio with 3-month trial subscription, USB port, and much more. This car provides precision performance power while maintaining a high-class touch.
Trucks Toyota Tundra Platinum MSRP: Starting at $25,355 MPG: 13 city, 18 highway On Oct. 12, a Toyota Tundra helped pull the space shuttle Endeavor, weighing 307,000 pounds on its way home to the California Science Center in Los Angeles. The new 2013 Tundra’s 5.7-liter i-Force V8 engine — with dual independent variable valve timing, sixspeed automatic transmission with sequential shift and 20-inch alloy wheels — allow it to easily tow 10,000 pounds. The interior is resplendent with perforated, leather-trimmed heated and ventilated seats, DVD navigation, backup camera and 12-speaker JBL audio. Safety features include vehicle stability control, traction control, anti-lock brake system, electronic brake-force distribution, brake assist, smart stop technology, and much more.
Chevrolet Silverado LT MSRP: Starting at $22,595 MPG: 15 city, 22 highway (Vortec 5.3-liter V8) Winner of the Vincentric lowest cost of ownership award for full-size pickups, the Silverado is a truck with the power, pulling and payload for both work and play. The available Vortec 6.2-liter V8 power plant, with six-speed automatic transmission, delivers 403 horsepower and a towing capability of 10,700 pounds with the available max trailering pack. The truck is E85 flex-fuel capable. With the MyChevrolet mobile phone app — and connectivity of a six-month trial of OnStar — you can start your vehicle, set the temperature inside your truck, lock and unlock doors, turn on horns and lights, check diagnostics, and contact roadside assistance from almost anywhere. The Chevrolet Wi-Fi from Autonet Mobile provides multiple users full Internet access within a 150-foot radius of the Silverado. 94 Bakersfield Life November 2012
INFINITI OF BAKERSFIELD 5200 Gasoline Alley Drive • 661-617-2020
2013 Mitsubishi Outlander Sport TECHNOLOGY Fuse Hands-Free LinkTM System with USB Port Rockford Fosgate速 Audio System Audio Doors FAST-Key System Available Real-Time Traffic ECO Drive Lamp
4600 Wible Rd Bakersfield Auto Mall
101 Photo by Michael Lopez
How to obtain a driving permit and what to look for when choosing the right driving school
Rose Robins, Drillers Driving School instructor hands student driver Maimuna Nalubeha the keys to the Ford Mustang.
Compiled by David Luter
ith 1.5 million new drivers hitting California’s roads every year, accidents and mishaps are likely to happen. The state tries to mitigate these accidents with new drivers under the age of 18, by having them participate in driver training classes. These classes, once offered in public high schools for free, are now a requirement that people have to take outside of school. Beatrice Hazelton, owner of Drillers Driving School, and Chris Roberts, co-owner of Shafter Driving School, both long-standing Kern County businesses, were asked what is needed by teens and adults to get their road traveling freedom.
How to obtain a driving permit and driver’s license What are the requirements for getting a permit? That depends; the state treats people under the age of 18 differently than those who are older than 18. Minors will need to complete these steps for a permit first: Taking the written test; getting a thumb print and photo taken; providing their
social security number; showing their birth certificate and proof of legal presence; providing their full name; completing the application form DL 44; passing a vision exam; and lastly, completing 30 hours of classroom instruction. People who are 18 and older are required to complete the same applications, provide the same verification for an ID and take the same tests; however, they aren’t required to take any courses. What is needed for a driver’s license after the permit process is complete? After they have completed these steps, they will be ready for a driver’s license. To get that, they need to have completed six hours of driver training with a professional, as well as 50 hours of driving with someone who has a current license and is over the age of 25 (10 of these hours must be nighttime driving). They will also need proof of insurance and a vehicle in good working order. The current price for students under 18 is $279, which includes four classroom sessions (30 hours total) and six hours of behind-the-wheel instruction. 1700 14th St. in Bakersfield; 635-0654; drillersdrivingschool.com Continued on page 98 bakersfieldlife.com
Continued from page 97
Education in driving classes
Things to remember when getting your license
What do students learn in the class? At our school, students learn the rules of the road and more. We try to give them instruction on a variety of driving related subjects with the use of the DMV handbook, question and answer sessions, videos and discussion. Topics include what to do when an accident occurs, defensive driving techniques, how the roads and road signs are designed to work and using or dealing with motorcycles on the road. Students are also encouraged to observe their parents’ driving skills and share what they learn. Enrollment can start as early as 15 ½ years old. After they complete their required 30 hours, they will receive the forms necessary to allow them to take the DMV written exam.
• Make an appointment when going to the DMV. • Complete the application form DL 44 (an original DL 44 form must be submitted). • Have your parent’s or guardian’s signatures on the application form DL 44. • Provide your social security number. • Verify your birth date and legal presence. • Provide your true full name. • Submit the proper form(s) for driver education and/or driver training classes. • Pay the $24 application fee (This fee entitles you to three exams of any type within the 12-month period and pays for both the instruction permit and the driver’s license. If all requirements are not met within the 12-month period, the application becomes void and all steps must be completed again.) • Pass a vision exam. • Pass a traffic laws and sign test. There are 46 questions on the test. A passing score is at least 39 correct answers. You have three chances to pass the test. If you fail, you must wait seven days before taking it again. Source: Drillers Driving School
• Steel Service Center • New & Used Pipe • Livestock Equipment
Serving Kern County for over 50 Years
• Vineyard & Orchard Supplies • Agricultural Fencing
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3530 BUCK OWENS BLVD 661.324.6514 • 800.423.8016 WWW.JIMSSUPPLY .COM 98
What do students learn during behind-thewheel training? We do our best to make the six hours with us as fun and educational as possible. We provide highly trained instructors, and an insured late model dual control vehicle. Some of the techniques covered are the basics of moving and controlling a vehicle, 25 skills required to drive and stay safe and judgment skills required to stay clear of possible trouble on the road. The current special is $259, and also includes four classroom sessions and six hours of driving instruction. 101 S. James Road in Shafter; 7464565; shafterdrivingschool.com
ica23-7817 s s e J Ca0l-6l91-7817 l 661-3 1-80
Safe driving tips to remember â€˘ Keep your eyes constantly moving, actively scan ahead and behind, your eyes should be constantly moving up and down the road and to the sides. â€˘ Always check the rear view mirror. â€˘ Always leave yourself an out. At all times, try to place your vehicle where you are out of danger. â€˘ Check your blind spots. â€˘ Make sure the other drivers see you. â€˘ Use your headlights, especially on freeways, where improper lane changes are one of the most frequent causes of serious accidents, and on two-lane roads, where vehicles going the other direction are frequently passing slower vehicles. â€˘ Rain and fog are also a time for headlights, as well as twilight. â€˘ Twilight is the time of most accidents. Be careful. â€˘ If another driver does not seem to have noticed you, and it looks as if he might hit you, blinking the headlights may help avoid an accident. â€˘ You should be particularly careful at intersections when a driver is approaching from a side road or already stopped at a stop sign and does not seem to be looking right or left for other traffic as you approach. â€˘ Use turn signals. It is far more than a courtesy; it is a key safety technique. â€˘ You should be at average traffic speed when you enter a freeway and be at average speed when you enter the exit ramp. Source: Shafter Driving School
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RECYCLING AND DEMOLITION
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Steel, Autos, Appliances, Aluminums, Coppers, Brass, Stainless, Radiators, Batteries, All CRV Cans, Plastic, Glass, Cardboard, Newspaper and more We offer services for: Demolition Concrete Crushing Scrap Pick Up Dirt Works and more!
We sell: Used Pipe Used Angle Iron Used Misc. Steel
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RECYCLING AND DEMOLITION
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What will we buy from you?
What will we buy from you?
What will we buy from you?
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Alternative Transportation Proﬁle
Golden Empire Transit Address: 1830 Golden State Ave. Phone: 324-9874 Website: getbus.org
GET Bus is celebrating its 40th anniversary next year, what does this mean for the community? In the last 40 years, more than 172 million customers have boarded GET buses. Thanks to GET, people have had reliable transportation to work, school, shopping centers and medical appointments. Our public transit system has been a vital resource for the community and our economy. Although not everyone uses public transit, everyone benefits from it. As we embark on the next 40 years of service, we recognize that public transit can also be an important component to combating air pollution and congestion. We envision a day when Kern County residents use commuter rail to travel to Bakersfield and public transit becomes more common than driving! Tell us about GET’s new system of routes. How have the routes become faster and more efficient? It has been more than 25 years since GET significantly changed its system. In that time, the city has grown and changed considerably. The majority of GET’s customers use its service through the core of Bakersfield. The new routes 21 and 22 will provide buses every 15 minutes and are rapid routes, meaning they stop less frequently providing faster service. Many of the old routes wound through residential streets making trips longer than necessary. The new routes are straight and stay on major arterial roadways, significantly shortening travel time for passengers. In customer surveys conducted for the past 100
Photo courtesy of Golden Empire Transit
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10 years, customers said they wanted faster service and shorter trips; the new system achieves both of these goals. What demographics make up the majority of your customers? Approximately 50 percent of GET’s customers use the service to go to work and/or school. More than 70 percent do not have a vehicle or do not have access to a vehicle. For example, in a twoperson household, one person might drive and the other person might use the bus. Slightly more women than men use public transit in Bakersfield: 20 percent are ages 45 to 64; 37 percent are ages 25 to 44; 21 percent are ages 19 to 24; and 15 percent are ages 16 to18. Why should people ride the GET Bus? What benefits does GET bring to the community? If everyone used public transit just once a week, it would mean a notable reduction in air pollution and traffic congestion. Riding the bus also reduces stress for customers and can be a part of a healthy lifestyle. Instead of dealing with traffic, they can read, check email or relax. Customers can combine bicycling or walking with bus service; ride your bike or walk for part of your trip, then catch the bus for the rest! Public transit is also safer than driving; passengers have two tons of steel between them and other vehicles on the road! And finally, it’s economical. A GET 31-day bus pass is just $36 and includes unlimited rides. With gasoline prices at more than $4 a gallon, riding the bus can help keep more dollars in the bank! — Karen King, chief executive officer
Itâ€™s time to ride with GET! Our new Rapid Routes have been designed to get you where you want to go faster than ever. Itâ€™s never been easier to ride with us!
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Bill Ray owns a private classic car museum.
Bill Ray’s classic cars Local private collector finds joy in showcasing automobiles of yesteryear Story and photos by Brian N. Willhite
lassic automobiles serve as remnants of the fashions, trends and engineering advancements of history. They serve as iconic cultural figures from the past. For one local collector, capturing the essence of these cars and preserving their memories has become a life-long endeavor. Bill Ray’s love for these marvels of machinery began in 1945, when he bought his first car. But it wasn’t until 1960 that he started seriously collecting. He has a collection of 30 classically restored automo-
biles. Six of them, including a 1949 Cadillac and a 1931 Model A Coupe, are still being driven while the other 24 have been retired and are in a private museum he built to preserve and celebrate the history and culture of each vehicle. He felt the classic cars would someday hold a significant historical value. Plus, he said, the cars look good. “I collect them because they’re something of beauty, they’re pretty and they have good lines,” said Bill Ray, owner of Bill Ray Tile. “The cars today all look alike.” Some newer cars made today are nice looking, he said, but not as nice as older ones. “Especially cars in the 1950s, everybody made a pretty car: Ford, Chevrolet — all of them,” he said. The classic cars are displayed in a large showroom floor, lined and slotted with memorabilia complementary to the era of each car. Some of the vehicles have car hop food trays hanging on the doors. “These cars from years ago have their own personality and everybody that comes in here to see them says, ‘Oh, my dad had one just like that, and I used to ride in the back seat,’” Ray said with a laugh. Continued on page 105
Bill Ray's private museum features classic models from Ford, Chevrolet, Cadillac and others.
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Memorabilia from the 1940s and 1950s line the walls near Bill Ray’s classic cars, including cut outs of celebrities such as Marilyn Monroe and Elvis Presley.
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People are often taken back to their youth when they see the cars and share fond memories. “I never thought there would become that type of an interest in (classic cars), but people do like to look at them,” Ray said. Ray has opened up his museum for enthusiastic car clubs to hold events, meetings or just to swap stories with fellow collectors who share an affinity for classic automobiles. The museum is private, available for viewing by appointment only. Ray’s longtime friend Humberto Quiroz was inspired by Ray’s drive for collecting cars and soon became interested in the hobby. He now has three classic cars of his own, including an antique Nash Metropolitan that Ray gave him for his birthday. Quiroz, vice president of Bill Ray Tile, has found that driving the classic cars is particularly fun. “I like the feel of driving down the street with people … waving at you when they see you in these old cars,” Quiroz said. Ray and Quiroz met 26 years ago, when Quiroz began working at Ray’s tile business at 16 years old. Quiroz has helped establish the car museum, and through the years, has become like a son to Ray. As for future additions to the museum floor, Ray said he has retired from collecting cars and is happy where his collection stands. Each car has a special place in his heart. “These cars become like your dogs; it’s hard to sell them, hard to give them away,” he said as he looks over at the cars, smiling. “You just get attached to them.”
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Classic cars Owners share their love for hot rods Story and photos by By Brian N. Willhite
Ralph and Cheryl Renz 1955 Chevrolet Bel Air Hardtop Ralph and Cheryl Renz have made their 1955 Bel Air a prized family possession, one they hope will stay in the family for generations.
“It’s been in our family since 1955,” said Ralph. “My wife’s aunt bought it and the only thing ever done to it was that her father put new seat covers on it.” The all-stock Bel Air was passed down to Cheryl by her father, and she hopes to pass it down to one of her children some day. Through the years, they’ve steered clear of making sporty modifications, respecting the wishes of Cheryl’s father, who didn’t want it to be turned into a hot rod. The car is special, she said, because of the “family history behind it.”
Dan Vaughn 1955 Chevy
Cheryl and Ralph Renz in their 1955 Bel Air.
The Renzs’ Chevrolet Bel Air has been in family since 1955. 106
Dan Vaughn’s wish to someday own a hot rod has become a reality, and he’s now the proud owner of a supercharged 1955 Chevy. His highly modified ride flaunts a supercharged Big Block 540-cubic-inch Chevy engine and is primed for burning rubber on the drag racing strip. Most of this Chevy still contains its original frame, though the back half has been cut and modified to make room for the oversized tires. Vaughn also added a TH-400
Dan Vaughnâ€™s 1955 Chevy is built for speed. Larry Turner added some modern conveniences to his 1951 Chevy Business Coupe.
automatic transmission with a Gear Vendors overdrive transmission, which produces 1,000 horsepower. His favorite part of his car is the supercharged engine, custom-built from a Shafiroff racing engine.
Larry Turner 1951 Chevy Business Coupe Larry Turner loves his 1951 Chevy, and said it was destined to be his. He bought it after seeing the car for sale in the paper about six years ago. The car was kept in original condition but needed to be
retrofitted. He added a 350 engine and some modern conveniences like power steering, power brakes, a stereo system and air conditioning. He also kept the car â€œtrue to classâ€? by not adding a back seat, which is how the Business Coupe was designed. â€œThe back wall folded down, so the business man could
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Larry Turner enjoys the comfortable ride of his Chevy Business Coupe.
Continued from page 107
put things in the trunk all the way through,” Turner said. His favorite part of the car is its comfort, especially for those Sunday afternoon drives. “You get in the seat and the way the car just sits, it’s just real comfortable to drive — not like the new ones,” he said.
Lynn Butterworth 1954 Mercury Monterey For Lynn Butterworth, driving his restored 1954 Mercury Monterey is a dream come true, one he has been dreaming about since he was a teenager.
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Lynn Butterworth’s 1954 Mercury is his dream car. “When I was in high school, this was the kind of car that us kids wanted,” Butterworth said. “So when I found this one, some of the things I did to her were the things we would have done back in the 1950s.” Butterworth has made most of the modifications using stock items and even restored the original engine and threespeed transmission, although he did add some modern safety
Steven Contreras bought his 1948 Chevy Pickup for $75. features including new brakes. It’s a car he’s always wanted and finally has, Butterworth said. “It’s a nostalgia thing for me, and it’s just something that I love.”
Steven Contreras 1948 Chevy Pickup For Steven Contreras and his father, buying and working on this 1948 Chevy Pickup has been a bonding experience they have cherished. They purchased the truck for $75 from a seller in Las Vegas looking to part with a wrecked and dilapidated vehicle. Contreras said the truck was in bad shape, with no front
Contreras said his pickup is like a Transformer.
end and covered in rust. But he felt there was something special about it, and it was waiting to be restored. Contreras modified the car by adding modern features, including suicide doors, tilted front end and bed capabilities, a 350 engine with a turbo 350 automatic transmission and airbags. Contreras and his father also did the interior work and paint job. His favorite feature about the truck is that it comes apart. “It’s kind of like a Transformer,” Contreras said. “When it’s all together, you could never tell it comes apart.”
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Auto accessories The newest must-have gadgets for your vehicle Story and photos by Mark Nessia
Parrot CK3100 Bluetooth.
oday’s cars do so much more than get you from Point A to Point B. Nowadays, cars can also talk and text using with your voice, and serve as a mobile entertainment system. Advance Mobile Security, at 3624 Buck Owens Blvd., gives car owners options of adding these features to any vehicle, new or used. Here are some of owner Rudy Lozano’s top car accessories to trick out your car:
Bluetooth Shows like “Pimp My Ride” may have glorified mobile entertainment systems, but Lozano said safety is at the top when it comes to upgrading a vehicle. Advance Mobile offers seven different models of Bluetooth devices for hands-free communication, with prices starting at $199.
Ten-inch JL Audio W1 subwoofer.
The Parrot CK3100 is one that provides ideal for hands-free communication. But those looking for more bang for their buck should try the Parrot MKi9200, which features a 2.4-inch color display, smartphone-iPod compatible, text to speech functionality, auxiliary and USB ports.
Audio A basic upgrade can include an aftermarket deck, such as the Pioneer DEH-150MP ($69.99), which will improve sound quality. Adding speakers, starting at $80, will take the sound to the next level. But for those looking for a full car audio experience, a deck, speakers and subwoofer is the way to go. The Pioneer DEH-X6500BT ($129.99) plays, charges and controls iPods and iPhones while supporting Bluetooth for hands-free calling. The JL Audio C2 Lineup of coaxial speakers (starting at $179) will have you covered in the mid- and highsound range, while the 10-inch JL Audio W1 ($159) will give you all the booming bass you can handle. For a full boost, power it all up with a five-channel amplifier, starting at $349. Security and remote start Advance Mobile offers car security systems, from Viper and Clifford, starting at $389. The Viper 5104V provides car security and remote start with a range of 2,000 feet. DoubleGuard shock sensor protects your car with light taps (chirp) to heavy jolts (full alarm). Upgrades and add-ons include GPS tracking and SmartStart, which al-
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The Running of the Bulls at Pamplona’s Fiesta de San Fermin proved to be an experience of a lifetime for brothers Brian and Brad Jones.
Bull brothers Local siblings take part in annual Spanish ‘Running of the Bulls’ By Brian N. Willhite
unning of the Bulls is one of those bucket list experiences that many adventurous types may never get to accomplish. But for two Bakersfield brothers, it’s become a checked item on their ever-growing to-do list. Brian Jones, 36, and Brad Jones, 35, made their way to Pamplona, Spain for the annual foot race in July, and to revel in the city’s Fiesta de San Fermin. The nine-day ceremony kicked off in Pamplona’s city square with a spectacular grand opening, officially starting the nonstop celebration at noon July 6. For the brothers, the trip came up a couple of months earlier when they brought up the idea to run with the bulls in a casual conversation with a friend, who immediately laughed it off. That was the spark they needed. Two months later, they were running for their lives from Navajito the bull.
No kids’ birthday party The Jones stood shoulder-to-shoulder at the San Fermin 112
opening ceremony with people from throughout the world. “(There were) tens of thousands of people in the streets, and they were all dressed the same, and waving their flags,” said Brad. “As soon as it opens up, everybody has a Sangria fight throughout the whole city and everybody gets completely soaked.” Before attending, both Brian and Brad were unaware how grand the celebration was going to be. “We didn’t know it was this huge deal with parades and all these parties — it’s a constant celebration,” said Brian. “It made Mardi Gras look like a kids’ birthday party.”
The run The bull runs take place daily at about 8 a.m. through a narrow pathway in the city on wet cobblestone streets for about a half-mile, and ends inside of the bull-fighting arena. The Jones’ tour guide shared with them inside information, including the best spots for a successful run. Ten minutes before the run begins, runners are allowed to walk toward the finish line to get a head start on the bulls. The run is quick — about two minutes — and only those challengers daring enough to keep pace with the bulls hang back by the starting line. On the morning of July 8, the brothers dressed in the ceremonial white pants and shirt, with a red scarf and red belt. They had planned to run together but were quickly separated in the large crowd, leaving each to brave the bulls alone.
Photo by Alvaro Barrientos via AP
Navajito “I was walking and waiting for the first bull, and as soon as I saw one, I started sprinting. And as I got around the corner, he almost got me,” Brad said of one of the bulls named Navajito, which broke ahead from the pack and ravaged through the crowds picking people off and flipping them over his head. “It took out like four guys right in front of me. Then another one came, and there
Photo courtesy of Brad and Brian Jones
Brian (left) and Brad Jones show off their tattoos of the bull Navajito that each of them encountered during their run.
was a big pile-up in front of me,” he said. Brad made it past the pile-up and ran the last 30 yards with the bulls ahead of him. Brian was also about to finish the race without serious injury. He positioned himself atop a small hill in the road so that he could see over the crowd and see the bulls coming. It didn’t quite work out that way, Brian said. Continued on page 114
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Photo courtesy of Brad and Brian Jones
“All of a sudden I see people start to run and I’m thinking, ‘OK, they’re getting close.’ And I distinctly remember the look on this guy’s face and I thought, ‘I can’t see the bull, but I know this guy can,’ because he just had this look of terror on his face and was running as hard as he could not looking back,” Brian said. Along the course, divider rails separate the runners and the bulls from the crowd of people watching. While Brian ran, the crowd split down the center as Navajito began to plow through, forcing Brian up against the wooden railing, scraping his arm. People tried to climb over each other to Brian Jones walks in the parade. get to safety on the
other side of the rail. “I’m caught on the edge of this rail, and I’m thinking that this is not a good place to be because I could just get nailed right here,” he said. Brian ducked under the railing to where a line of police and safety personnel gathered. He noticed a man yelling for help at the bottom of the pile, and Brian and another man reached out to pull the injured man to safety. Afterward, he was able to get back into the race and reach the finish line, making it into the arena just before the last bull arrived.
Souvenir With their trip behind them, the brothers are now driven to see what the other famous parties of the world are like. They’ve placed two more on their list: Brazil’s Carnival and Germany’s Oktoberfest. They got a commemorative tattoo of the brutish Navajito to remind them of what they refer to as “The experience of a lifetime.” “That’s our best souvenir,” Brian said. The Jones are eager to go back and help others who are interestied in running. They even started a Facebook page to promote their tour group and to offer advice. You can find them on Facebook by searching for “Wild Rides Travel Group.”
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Binder Singh is the owner of Nanak Sweets & Spices on Panama Lane.
Bakersfield’s Sikhs Indian-owned businesses, Sikh families are thriving in southwest Bakersfield By Myriam Valdez
inder Singh is hard at work wiping down a presentation glass for the grand opening of his new shop, Nanak Sweets & Spices on the corner of Wible Road and Panama Lane in southwest Bakersfield. The new specialty shop sells traditional Indian treats and staple ingredients that, as Singh hopes, will be a success among the growing Indian communities in the neighborhood. Home to Indian restaurants, specialty stores and vari-
ous shops, Singh is not alone in his business ventures in the Panama-Wible area of southwest Bakersfield. In the past few years, new Indian-owned and operated businesses have found success in the area. The strength of the Indian community is becoming the driving force in the flourishing market. “Ten years ago, that neighborhood was an empty field,” Bakersfield Planning Director Jim Eggert said. Indian-owned businesses may be gravitating to this neighborhood because commercial space is more affordable than the spaces in the Northwest Promenade or The Marketplace, Eggert said, and is considered a prime location to open up shop. A former truck driver, Singh opened Nanak’s after seeing the potential of the neighborhood. “Opening my business near where I live, and the convenience of being near the Indian community were some of the main reasons I brought my business here,” Singh said. Manny Brar, owner of PostNet on Panama Lane, immigrated from Vancouver to start his business in Bakersfield in 2002. “Back then, I was one of few Sikh business owners in this area,” Brar said. “The growth of Sikh-owned businesses
“Ten years ago, that neighborhood was an empty field.”
in this area is huge.” Among the larger Indian communities in Bakersfield, Sikh families share a strong multi-general family structure and bond. With the average head of household in the community being 63 years old, according to 2010 U.S. Census Jim Eggert, Bakersfield Bureau data, it’s not uncomPlanning Director speaking mon for grandparents to live about the ‘Little India’ area with their children’s family. The neighborhood is also home to a new generation. Amanpreet Sarai, a Sikh teenager and senior at Ridgeview High School, is on track to become valedictorian of her class, and recalls growing up in the neighborhood. “When I was younger, there were 11 of us living in a three-bedroom house. I have no idea how we did it, but it was so much fun,” Sarai said. “Each afternoon we would go to the neighborhood park or to the backyard and just run around.” Having many age groups in one household is a boon to
Photo by Mark Nessia
Photo by Casey Christie
The Sikh Temple is a spiritual and social center for the neighborhood.
By the numbers Southwest Bakersfield Indian Community
79: percentage of people who are homeowners (60 percent of residents throughout Bakersfield) • 99: percentage of Indian households that have children (54 percent throughout Bakersfield) • 50: percentage of all Indian households which have incomes of $75,000 or more (30 percent throughout Bakersfield) • Nearly 70: percentage of Indian heads of households who are 60 years old or older • Top three Indian neighborhoods in Kern County: 93313 (567 households) 93311 (387 households) 93307 (183 households) Source: Nielsen Claritas Inc., The Bakersﬁeld Californian Market Research Department (2010)
Continued on page 118 bakersfieldlife.com
Amanpreet Sarai, Ridgeview High School student body president, leaves a student government meeting that she led earlier in the morning.
Photo by Casey Christie
Continued from page 117
aspiring businesses in the southwest that rely heavily on word-of-mouth to advertise business. On a typical weekend, families usually attend Gurdwara, or temple, where they worship and socialize with friends. That’s the case with Kamal Gill, pharmacist and owner of the recently opened Panama Pharmacy & Medical Supply. His business relies heavily on the Sikh communities in the area who visit his pharmacy for medical advice from a trained professional who speaks their language. “Before I opened my business, almost no one else in the area could address the pharmaceutical and medical supply needs of this community,” said Gill, whose pharmacy also delivers prescriptions and medical supplies to patients. “Many older people in the Sikh and Indian communities no longer have their driver’s licenses. Our pharmacy tries to give access to them to address their medical needs safely and conveniently.” Indian businesses rely heavily on families and its community to succeed. During Nagarkirtan, a Sikh parade, Gill and other Indian business owners market massively to the thousands of Sikhs living in the greater Bakersfield area. “Events like these are a huge opportunity to let people know of upcoming events or new businesses like my own,
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Women at the Sikh Temple prepare food that is free of cost to guests.
which can help them in their daily lives,” Gill said. For Binder Singh, he’s hoping the community with strong Indian familial ties will bring business to Nanak Sweets & Spices. If recent successes in this thriving neighborhood is any indicator, it’s likely Nanak’s will do just fine. — Have a particular neighborhood that you want us to feature? Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org with the message subject line: Neighborhood Spotlight. Please include why this neighborhood deserves a spotlight.
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Bakersfield auto dealers
Baker-Adams Motor Co. Good Will Used Cars, 1946.
Local dealerships stand the test of time By Jeff Nickell
Ed Haberfelde (George’s son), left, and Jim Burke
Photo courtesy of Jim Burke Ford
akersfield has been in love with new modes of transportation since the horseless carriage arrived back in the early 1900s. Automobiles are no exception. Several local dealerships have been in business for decades: • Family Motors: 20 years •Haddad Dodge: more than 35 years • Sangera Automotive Group: 40 years • Bill Wright Toyota: 42 years • Motor City Buick GMC: 48 years in current building, but in business since 1940 • Three-Way Chevrolet: 56 years • Barber Honda: more than 57 years • Jim Burke Ford: 100 years in 2013 Many automakers had already hit the scene when the Ford Model T — the most widely produced and available car of the era — ushered in a new method of transportation in the United States. It was during the full height of Model T’s popularity when George Haberfelde opened his dealership in Bakersfield. He purchased a Ford garage from Judge Benjamin Brundage’s widow. The year was 1913, when Henry Ford made his state-
ment to a salesperson who was worried people may not buy the car if it only came in one color: “Any customer can have a car painted any color that he wants so long as it is black.” Haberfelde’s entry into the auto market kicked off the storied history of Haberfelde Ford, and its eventual transition to Jim Burke Ford. Kyle Northway, advertising manager for
Barber Pontiacâ€™s 1962 grand opening at 500 Oak St.
Photo courtesy of Barber Honda
Jim Burke Ford Lincoln Jaguar, said the companyâ€™s corporation name is still Haberfelde Ford, illustrating what George Haberfelde meant to Jim Burke. Jim Burke Ford has not only been a highly successful business but has been heavily involved with the community. George Haberfelde was mayor of Bakersfield from 1923 to 1924. And Jim Burke Foundation has invested heavily in local students. Ford Dimension â€” which teaches business communication skills and emphasizes volunteerism, career development and business ethics â€” is a longstanding program that chooses 10 high school seniors each year. The company also created the Dream Builders high school leadership program in 2003, and Drive One 4UR Class, which gives $500 to classroom teachers for supplies and projects. The Kern County Superintendent of Schools Office endorses the program. Barber Pontiac-Honda is the second oldest local dealership still in business. Founder John Barber was born in Fowler in 1921. He came to Bakersfield with his wife, Maxine, in 1948, at the urging of his brother Leo, who worked at Adams Motors, the local Pontiac dealership. John Barber worked his way up from the parts department to salesman, sales manager and then general manager. In 1955, John and Maxine Barber purchased the business from Mr. Adamsâ€™ widow. From that point, Barber grew the company from one franchise into a multi-franchise company. Throughout the years, he bought and sold several franchises in Bakersfield
including Pontiac, Honda, Isuzu, Oldsmobile, Cadillac, Volvo, Jaguar, Volkswagen, Porsche, Subaru, Saab and Kia. In 1962, he moved his Pontiac dealership from 24th and F streets to 500 Oak St. And in 1977, Barber opened the first Honda dealership in Kern County, at 2911 Brundage Lane. In 1985, Barber Honda was the first to set up shop in the Bakersfield Auto Mall, now the go-to place to buy an automobile locally. To this day, the dealership operates successfully based on the strong foundation built by John Barber.
Bakersfieldâ€™s Past Meets the Future
BAKERSFIELD GOT WHAT IT WANTED IN 1874. A GOOD LAWYER. The Civil War was history. Benjamin B Brundage had done his share by serving as a private in the Ohio state militia. In the autumn of 1865, this ambitious young lawyer headed west and soon opened a llaw office in the gold rush town of Havilah, then the county seat. It didnâ€™t take long for th Br Brundage to show his legal skills and his reputation grew. In short time, the citizens of rep Bakersfield Bake called upon Brundage to lobby for the passage of a bill that would move m the county seat to Kern Countyâ€™s largest city. Mr. Brundage stood before the stoic state legislature and passonately made his case...and won. This was just the beginning. He continued to be a force in law and politics, including serving a term as the countyâ€™s first
Superior Court judge. By the time of his death in 1911, Bakersfield had completely transformed into a modern metropolitan city. He rests today in Union Cemetery lot 62-15.
SECURE YOUR PLACE IN HISTORY You and your family can forever have a place in the story of Bakersfield by owning memorial property at Historic Union Cemetery. Call us today at (661) 324-9648 to arrange a personal sales tour at this truly remarkable 140-year-old memorial park.
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Why I Live Here
Compiled by Hillary Haenes
pool at Whispering Meadows and enjoying the sun and good weather.
Age: 23 Hometown: East Setauket, N.Y. (a town on Long Island)
What surprised me most about Bakersfield: How big it actually is. There are a lot of different areas and places to go.
How long have you lived in Bakersfield? Spent the better part of the last two and a half years here.
I celebrate after a game by: Normally, we go to The Padre after games if we don’t have a game the next day.
Three words that describe Bakersfield: Friendly, hot (temperature-wise) and CondorsTown!
What I think Bakersfield is famous for: Country music — definitely very popular out here.
When I’m not on the road with my team, my favorite weekend activity is: Watching football on the weekends if we have a Sunday off. Typically, I like to watch the games at Hooters.
Favorite community event: We went to the new children’s wing last year at Memorial Hospital, and it was nice to visit and spend some time with the kids.
Where you may find me eating lunch/dinner: I usually like to eat at Mexicali. Their enchiladas are very good. We also do a lot of team meals at Goose Loonies and I enjoy eating there. I relax in Bakersfield by: Hanging out by the 122
Favorite memory of Bakersfield: Just being able to play in front of our great fans at Rabobank Arena. It’s a great atmosphere and fun to be a part of it. What I like most about living here: Everyone’s definitely more friendly compared to people back in New York. I like the laid back nature out here.
Photo by Casey Christie
Defenseman, professional hockey player for the Bakersfield Condors
Two of the kittens that The Cat People, a local feline rescue, adoption and outreach organization, is hoping to place in “forever homes.”
Saving Bakersfield pets County, nonprofit groups work to save abandoned, neglected, abused animals By Katie Avery
Photos by Gregory D. Cook
akersfield loves its pets. But there is a problem here: Thousands of animals are abandoned, abused and lost in Kern County. As of June, 15,637 animals were taken in from the streets, according to Kern County Animal Control. Most of them were abandoned, neglected or abused. In that same time, 9,185 of those animals were euthanized. Dogs and cats are overbreeding and overpopulating, and the county can no longer support them all. But there are programs in place to help animal lovers bring in new furry friends. The following government and nonprofit shelters take in
stray, abandoned and rescued pets. In accordance with the law, all pets that go through these shelters are examined, vaccinated, spayed or neutered, and healthy before they are adopted.
Bakersfield Animal Shelter 201 S. Mount Vernon Ave.; 321-3000; www.co.kern.ca.us/acd The Bakersfield Animal Shelter will not turn away any animal and houses more than 100 cats and 400 dogs, said Maggie Kalar, marketing and promotions associate at the shelter. Working in conjunction with Kern County Animal Control, the shelter is usually the first place dogs and cats are taken once they are picked up from the streets. The shelter encourages adoptions with various themed parties along with lower adoption fees. The shelter also participates in the 100K Challenge, where it competes with other shelters in the state to adopt out the most animals. “These guys will make great pets; they just need to be given a chance,” said Kalar. Considering how many pets have to be euthanized, Kalar said, “We’d like to be the solution” to avoid euthanasia. The shelter also works with various veterinarians to offer spay and neuter discount vouchers.
Alpha Canine Sanctuary P.O. Box 5517 Bakersfield, CA 93388; 391-8212; alphacanine.org
Jack Russell Junction is the temporary home of many of the smaller breeds housed at Alpha Canine Sanctuary, just north of Bakersfield.
Alpha Canine Sanctuary is a no-kill haven for dogs managed by owner Marilyn Stewart for the past 17 years. The sanctuary provides a lifetime home for 100 dogs taken in from throughout the area. “It’s a drop in the bucket,” Stewart said, “But it’s a very important drop.” Dog owner Spencer Schluter had to give up one of his dogs, Frieda, when his baby was born, he said. Instead of leaving Frieda at a shelter where she may have been euthanized, he took her to Alpha Canine where he visits her often, and volunteers to help other dogs. Potential adoptive parents are encouraged to visit the sanctuary and interact with the dogs, and also bring pets to see how they all get along. Stewart has a story for each dog in her care, she said. She is proud of what she calls a “retirement center” for the older dogs, which are not likely to get adopted. A goal of hers is to make the sanctuary a retirement center for dogs to live out the rest of their lives if they are never adopted.
The Cat People 1930 18th St. and Petco at 8220 Rosedale Highway; thecatpeople.org; email@example.com The Cat People, as the name implies, is a cat exclusive adoption agency. The Cat People have spay and neuter programs that will foot the bill for owners who can’t afford those services. The Cat People also hosts a cat food charity to help families in need. “Our goal is to find loving, permanent homes for all of our rescues,” said owner Barbara Hays. The team started at Hart Park where people were
Sequoia, a husky mix, is one of the thousands of dogs and cats that are abandoned each month in Kern County.
dumping cats, and feral colonies were forming. They sheltered the cats in foster homes, treated them and put them up for adoption. Since the team does not have its own facility, The Cat People can only rescue as many cats as it has room for in the foster homes. They are always looking for more cat lovers to be foster parents, Hays said. The Cat People has put in place a fundraising plan to build a cat sanctuary to bring in even more abandoned cats. Team members hope to see that dream come true within three years. Continued on page 126 bakersfieldlife.com
Continued from page 125
Marley’s Mutts 972-3852; marleysmutts.com; zach@marleys mutts.com Marley’s Mutts is a Tehachapi-based adoption center for dogs, where they live together in a pack environment, play and socialize. It’s named after Marley, the first dog rescued by owner Zach Skow. Their family has grown. Dogs of every breed and age are taken into Skow’s home, or nearby foster homes and are made ready for adoption. “The only way we can do this is with community involvement,” Skow said. His neighbors help out by fostering dogs, volunteering, driving them to the vet, washing, walking and feeding them. Marley’s Mutts is also a treatment and rehabilitation center. One of the rescues, Kenny the English Bulldog, had a cleft palate that caused health issues. Instead of
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being euthanized, he will be flown to Cornell University for surgery, paid for with donations to the group. Dogs that have aggression issues due to abuse are rehabilitated and trained. Two puppies that barely survived injuries from a fire went through Marley’s Mutts and were adopted as rehabilitation dogs for the Grossman Burn Center. Marley’s Mutts has adopted out more than 600 dogs since 2009, and according to Skow, has formed a close relationship with Kern County Animal Control, receiving many rescues from there.
Working together Stewart, Kalar and Skow — along with many others — said they are optimistic about new Animal Control Director Jen Woodard, who started in early October. Woodard said she has many goals in place to fix Kern County’s unwanted pet problems. And the people of Kern County, Woodard said, are very much “willing to embrace change.” She is hoping to decrease the kill rate by 10 percent in the first year, bring on more trained volunteers, establish a new and better-functioning facility and coordinate better adoption transport programs. Woodard also said she hopes to work closely with the public, relating the importance of spaying and neutering pets.
How does your garden grow? Keep Bakersfield Beautiful makes gardens accessible to everyone By Alyssa Morones
Photos by Gregory D. Cook
he beauty generated by a garden does not come without work, but it is a beauty that extends beyond the aesthetic sense of the word. Keep Bakersfield Beautiful is working to live up to its name with its recently implemented Community Garden Project, aimed to make gardens accessible locally and to help community members and schools with their gardens. These gardens would not thrive without the hard work and long hours of individuals within the community. The three gardens featured here highlight that.
Community garden, Fourth and Eye streets
The community garden on Fourth and Eye streets, spearheaded by Keep Bakersfield Beautiful with the help of a grant from Home Depot, has breathed a little more life into the surrounding neighborhood. What were once three litter-filled vacant lots is now a distinguishable, fenced-in plot of land. “There are so many different positive side effects to a community garden,” said Jessica Felix, community relations specialist for Keep Bakersfield Beautiful. “It helps with community-building and creating a sense of pride. It helps with safety, and deters illegal dumping.” These effects are noticeable to the team working on the garden. Already, less litter is appearing in and around the lot. 128
A Southwestern ﬂame skimmer takes a short break on a piece of vegetation in Cesar Chavez Elementary School’s student garden. “The energy around here is definitely shifting,” said Amber Beeson, local artist and founder of The Giving Tree garden growing project. “This area hasn’t looked this good in the last seven years and by next year, it will be a real garden.” The garden is comprised of 20 8-by-14 foot beds in which community members can grow their own flowers or produce. It functions as a test pilot for the Keep Bakersfield Beautiful Community Garden Project.
“We’re working to make setting up a community garden as easy as possible,” Felix said. “We want to make sure that creating community gardens is an accessible endeavor for all community members.”
William Penn Elementary garden
In a small area on the side of the school that was once filled with trash lies a growing garden, which Beeson continues to help grow. When Beeson dropped her children off
The student garden at CesarChavez Elementary School includes an area filled with ﬂowering plants that attracts butterﬂies, hummingbirds and songbirds.
for their first day at William Penn Elementary School, she asked the principal if she could implement a garden project for the school. The principal said, “Yes,” but getting started was a challenge, she said. “But now we’re seeing progress,” she said. “It takes a village, but it also takes time. Now we have support pouring in from the school district. I see the school rapidly transforming.” There are enough beds for all grade levels to have their own plot. “The goal is to demonstrate different varieties of plants and produce that you can grow in a limited space,” Beeson said. “So even kids who live in apartments can have their own little garden.”
Cesar Chavez Elementary School Garden
The school garden at Cesar Chavez Elementary School is one that has flourished. After school, students in the science magnet program get to learn and work in the garden, where they are introduced to horticulture, conservation and recycling lessons. While the garden grows in a small space on the campus, it includes butterfly and bird habitats as well as multiple themed gardens: a sensory garden, a recycled art garden, an Asian garden and a vegetable patch. The garden is open for the entire school year, said Tricia Trevino-Woods, environmental horticulture teacher with the science magnet program. Teachers can
Joshua Ramirez helps separate leaves of aloe vera plants and prepare them for replanting in one of the garden’s greenhouses. use the garden to help with lessons in class or during lunch. Kids not in the magnet program can also take part in the garden or be a part of the horticulture club, she said. “There’s a definite advantage to having an accessible garden in the school,” Trevino-Woods said. “It’s a great way for kids to discover and explore science. There’s a definite excitement among students to watch things grow.” bakersfieldlife.com
For a Cause
Holiday Poinsettia Sale, ‘Fight for Air’ walk
American Lung Association fundraisers fight against lung diseases, air pollution
By Breanna Fields
he holiday season has arrived, which means it’s time to get in the spirit and break out the festive decor. There’s no better way to usher in the season than to add color to your home with a beautiful poinsettia centerpiece. You can buy one today and give back at the same time. The American Lung Association is hosting its annual Holiday Poinsettia Sale through Nov. 26. Proceeds from the sales provide assistance for local children and adults who suffer from lung diseases. Sheila Archibald, the association’s development manager, shared details of the poinsettia sale with Bakersfield Life and also information on the upcoming Fight for Air Walk, scheduled to take place April 13, at Yokuts Parks. 130
How long has the American Lung Association participated in the poinsettia sale? This is the 17th annual Holiday Poinsettia Sale, and this event continues to grow each year. Last year we sold 4,700 plants and grossed $65,000. Where can the poinsettias be purchased? Businesses, churches and schools wishing to buy poinsettias will have to find a volunteer (called a site coordinator) within the organization to place orders. These site coordinators typically sell to their employees, families and friends, clients, etc. Poinsettias may also be purchased directly from the American Lung Association by calling 282-3301. Is this a local or nationwide fundraising event? This is a local event started by the American Lung Association in Bakersfield. In the past two years, we have
been working to expand this event throughout the Central Valley. How will the money from poinsettia sales be used? Funds raised from both the poinsettia sale and Fight for Air Walk go to help children suffering from asthma, those battling chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and other serious lung diseases, and help protect families from the harmful effects of air pollution and secondhand smoke. What color options and sizes are available for poinsettias? Four-inch plants cost $6; 6-inch plants are $10; and 8-inch plants are $20. They come in: • Traditional red: Large red flowers are the signature design of this holiday favorite. • Classic white: The elegant, white poinsettia is a lovely variation from traditional red. • Winter rose red: A beautiful “double bloom” poinsettia. How can people expect to receive their plants? Plants will be delivered to the sale sites during the first week of December. Individual orders can be picked up at the American Lung Association, at 2025 Westwind Drive, Suite C.
How much has been raised so far from the Fight for Air Walk? This is a 5K walk, and we encourage everyFighting for Air one to participate with • Californians breathe the worst air in the their families, friends nation. More than 90 percent of us are living in areas with unhealthy air. and co-workers. Our goal is to raise $100,000 • Youth smoking has increased for the first time in a decade — 90 percent of smokers to fight for clean air and began smoking before the age of 18. healthy lungs. We have • Asthma and allergies are the leading causes raised approximately for school absences and account for 130 mil$15,000 to date. lion missed school days each year. • Lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer
How can volunteers death in the United States for men and women — more than breast, colorectal, prostate get involved with and pancreatic cancers combined. Fight for Air Walk, Source: American Lung Association or the Holiday Poinsettia Sale? For the poinsettia sale, we are looking for site coordinators and delivery volunteers. For the 2013 Fight for Air Walk, we are in need of walk captains and volunteers to help with event activities. To get involved, please contact Sheila Archibald, development manager, at 282-3301 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Itâ€™s a Guy Thing
Auto dealership executives
M Compiled by Hillary Haenes
Photos by Jessica Frey
eet four executives who work hard to manage successful local car dealerships. Find out how they got their career start in the auto business, what they enjoy most about their job and what cars are parked in their personal garage.
Joe Hay 33, vice president and auto mall general manager at Jim Burke Ford Lincoln Jaguar
Q: How did you get started in the auto business? Jim Burke was my grandfather, and I grew up around the car business. After college, I went to work for the Ford Motor Companyâ€™s sales and marketing offices in Texas. The retail dealership world was where I always wanted to be though, and in 2005, I took advantage of an opportunity to move back to Bakersfield and join the management team at Jim Burke Ford.
Q: Why should Kern County resi-
dents buy locally? This is a great question. Jim Burke is one of the largest Ford dealerships on the West Coast, and our pricing and selection is often better than anything you might find in Los Angeles. Moreover, your sales tax dollars remain right here
in Kern County. But beyond that, it is the relationships we build with our customers. If you have a problem, the owner of the business is here every day and you can walk right into their office. Jim Burke Ford has always been a generous community supporter, and buying here allows our company to give to local education and health care initiatives.
changes in the last 10 years, especially the last five. The recession has made us smaller, smarter, more nimble and also in some ways, more conservative. And Ford has changed at the same time. It avoided a government bailout and has become a great car company again, with undisputed leadership in fuel economy, technology and vehicle quality.
Q: How has the auto industry
Q: What do you drive?
changed? We have been through some dramatic
I switch back and forth between a supercharged Jaguar XF and a Ford F150.
John R. Pitre
John R. Pitre 53, head coach and general manager of Motor City Auto Center
Q: How did you get started in the auto business? I was recruited out of UCLA by Toyota and I started out on the manufacturing side. But my dad had an interest in motorcycles and sports cars that he passed to me, and my grandfather was involved in a heavy-duty commercial truck business in Los Angeles. I put myself through college by restoring and selling mostly German cars. I think the auto business has been a part of me since I was born.
Q: Why should Kern County resi-
dents buy locally? Kern County and the City of Bakersfield realize a significant contribution of tax revenue comes from the automotive industry. Purchasing a vehicle from outside of Kern County puts those tax dollars into that community, not ours. For the future and for our entire community’s benefit, we need to inform and educate local residents of the importance to support local businesses. All government, fire, safety, education and parks departments feel the direct implications of purchasing locally in their budgets. Also the automotive industry is second only to the oil industry for currently
providing jobs to Kern County. That’s why it is so important to tell your friends, relatives, significant other, neighbors and church members to consider that when making their automotive decisions. Twenty percent of all tax revenue comes from automotive sales in Kern County. All local automotive dealers, including Motor City, also support hundreds of local nonprofits within our community, so it has a great reciprocal effect.
Q: What do you enjoy most about
your job? The diversity it offers every day. New challenges and opportunities make this the most exciting industry in the world. From the technical side, all the way to marketing and advertising, it’s a challenging environment. It’s quick to reward success but will also penalize failure. Being competitive is a big part of a being successful in our industry. Our success is a combination of our ownership, our management team and our business model all pulling together to serve our customers. That’s why we are the largest volume Buick/GMC dealer in California and No. 3 in the U.S.!
Q: What do you drive? I like to drive our pre-owned vehicles. This is so I can inspect the vehicles we buy and take in on trade and then put on our lot. I own a 1960 MG A.
Mo Hosseini 55, director of operations for a group of 10 new auto franchises in eight locations; board member for Bakersfield New Car Dealer Association.
Q: How did you get started in the auto business? It was about nine years ago when I met Mr. Chuck Haddad as a patient at Bakersfield Memorial Hospital, where I was employed as a director of sub-acute and Continued on page 134 133
Continued from page 133
rehabilitation. Soon after, I was recruited by him and his partners. I have an unusual educational background â€” business administration/operations management, nursing undergraduate, and a masterâ€™s degree in administration.
Q: Whatâ€™s it like working as an executive at a car
dealership? Never-ending challenges â€” I never have a dull moment. A key to success is to always gather smart people around you. It also involves a comprehensive knowledge of running a business with more than 450 employees. My bossâ€™ job is to keep up with the sales and my job is everything else.
Q: How has the auto industry changed since you
first started your career? I have been in the industry for nine years, and during this time, I have seen a good economy, and of course, a very bad one. The industry may be smaller with fewer employees, but it is more efficient. Automobiles of the future will be fuelefficient, there will be more hybrid and zero emission cars, and possibly more small diesel engines. I donâ€™t believe these changes will come over night.
Q: What do you drive?
I am currently driving a BMW. I also have a Jeep that my son and I play with.
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REPLACEMENT WINDOWS Patrick Beck 47, general manager at Bakersfield Hyundai
Q: How did you get started in the auto business? I needed a temporary tuition loan of $900, and I knew a car dealer. I asked, he said yes, and told me Iâ€™d be paying it back to him by working in car sales over the summer. I went to work and ran into some success, but he made me finish school before I could pursue the rest of my career.
Q: How has the auto industry
changed since you first started your career? Customer satisfaction is no longer something we just talk about. There is an enormous amount of measurements and surveys available to our customers, and there are scores of reputation sites where customers hold us accountable. I am proud of our team, that drives our scores to the very top, so much so, that our Hyundai dealership in Bakersfield is nationally recognized. We work hard on that goal every day. There is a constant evolution in our business regarding how we communicate with our customers and prospects. The Internet changed things, and today, with the growth of smartphone technology, we are investing in mobile solutions to help people buy our products and service their cars. When I started, no one had ever dreamed of these things.
Q: What do you enjoy most about your job? My enjoyment comes from teaching my team how to improve daily. I enjoy teaching them skills they will use in their entire lives, like responsibility. I enjoy teaching people who consistently having a fantastic attitude will solve any issue more quickly and more easily than any other solution.
Q: What do you drive? I drive a 2012 Genesis sedan. Driving something other than what I sell is not something I would ever consider. I am proud of my product, and I want to show it off.
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It’s a Guy Thing
Dennis Arriola Master technician at Porsche of Bakersfield
By Kevin McCloskey
Q: How did you begin your career with Porsche? I was always into cars as a kid. From model cars, to bikes, motorcycles and through auto shop in high school, I was always taking things apart to see how they worked and reassembling them. Columbus Porsche Audi Subaru hired me as a trainee, right out of high school and convinced me to become a certified technician for Porsche. I’ve been with the Bakersfield Porsche dealership, now owned by Family Motors, ever since.
Q: What does it take to become a Gold level certi-
fied Porsche technician? Technicians begin by becoming Automotive Service Excellence certified, followed by training at Porsche Cars of North America (PCNA) with nine additional certifications tests. These nine tests have to be retaken and passed every four years, along with one week or more of in-class training at PCNA every year to keep up with the new models and technology, and monthly online tests to maintain Gold level certification.
Q: What’s your favorite part about the job? The challenge and satisfaction that comes from fixing a 136
Photo by Jessica Frey
akersfield native Dennis Arriola began his career as a Gold level Porsche master technician four days after graduating from Foothill High School in 1979. What he thought was going to be a summer job before college quickly turned into a full-time position followed by training and education at Porsche Cars of North America and Gold certification by 1983. Of 867 Porsche techs in the United States, only 196 of them are Gold certified. It is a tough club to get into and Bakersfield is lucky to have someone of Arriola’s expertise and experience. When he’s not under the hood or test driving a high-performance German vehicle, this husband and father of three can be found coaching his daughter’s fast-pitch softball team, The Bakersfield Babes.
problem for the customer is very rewarding. And at the dealership, when new models come in, I’m the first one who gets to test drive them and check out all the new features.
Q: What are some of the most common, prevent-
able problems for Porsche owners? Dead batteries and tires. The batteries die because the owners don’t drive them enough, as most Porsche owners don’t use them as their everyday vehicle. And Porsches are designed for soft, high-speed tires that don’t last as long as the average tire. This misconception can lead to overuse and blowouts.
Q: Does the dealership still get business from
Porsche’s single greatest product placement deal in “Risky Business?” It just came up yesterday, in fact. Porsche stopped making the 928 (model from the movie) in 1994, but people still talk about that model. It was built in 1978, and I saw one my first day on the job. It looked like a car from the future, definitely ahead of its time. And the movie line still holds true today: “Porsche. There is no substitute.”
Louis Gill Working to serve people in need By Allie Castro
Louis Gill, executive director of the Bakersfield Homeless Center and the Alliance Against Family Violence and Sexual Assault.
Photo by Michael Lopez
ouis Gill may not have followed in his family’s business, but he’s still a bona fide family man. And although he is not a Bakersfield native, this is where he plans to stay. While growing up on his family’s cattle farm in Springville, Calif., Gill made an important discovery about himself. “I found out I like people more than I like cattle. Nothing against livestock, but I found that I wanted to work with people, to serve people,” said Gill with a laugh. This was the realization that eventually led to his current position as executive director of the Bakersfield Homeless Center and the Alliance Against Family Violence and Sexual Assault. When he graduated from high school, Gill moved to Mexico City and he spent a year as a foreign exchange student living with a host family, reveling in the Latin culture and learning the native language. After living in such a big city, returning to Springville — population 1,000 — was not going to be easy. So Gill took his newfound interests to the Bay Area where he earned his bachelor’s degree in Spanish followed by his master’s in nonprofit administration at the University of San Francisco. More importantly, though, San Francisco was where he met his wife, Kate. After the couple had their three children — son Nolan and twin daughters Kiera and Bridget — he and Kate realized they wanted to be closer to family, so they headed south to Porterville. But after four years of a long commute to work, they finally settled in Bakersfield, where Gill took his current role at the Bakersfield Homeless Center. Now in his 13th year as executive director, both organizations have under-
gone some major changes during his tenure. When he first started, the homeless center was “focused on a stereotypical homeless person, which is a single, chemically dependent male who is mentally ill and has a shopping cart,” he said. “We’ve completely gone from ‘three hots and a cot’ to wanting to give people help with the root causes of homelessness. …” This turnaround was a result of the collaboration between the center and the Bakersfield Rescue Mission. The two organizations found a way to complement each other, with the rescue mission focusing on the single homeless men, and the homeless center focusing on families and single parents. The center now has 174 beds, and makes sure each person has the opportunity to get clean, receive new clothes, eat a hot meal and send their kids to school. The center also works with the parents to figure out what brought them there and how the center can help get the family stabilized, get the parents earning an income and makes sure the family is back in stable housing. The Alliance Against Family Violence and Sexual Assault has also made strides under Gill’s direction. When he first took over, the Alliance was run separately from the center. However, Gill said the organizations realized
they could share the same administration to help manage expenses, as well as develop an outstanding team with longevity. Since the merger occurred in 2006, the Alliance has dramatically expanded its clinical services to aid those who come to the organization in a crisis. “They [counselors] sit with people that have been through horrible experiences and help them heal, so that their past doesn’t define their future,” Gill said. The tremendous growth in both organizations can be attributed to Gill and his staff’s determination to think differLouis Gill ently and ensure that those who need help get exactly what they need. “We’re talking about people’s lives. Absolutely no human being is a throwaway. Every human being deserves respect and compassion,” he said.
“We’ve completely gone from ‘three hots and a cot’ to wanting to give people help with the root causes of homelessness.”
Continued on page 140
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Continued from page 139
For Gill, looking at the problem differently means waking up every day around 4:30 a.m. to check emails and the news. On good days he heads to the gym, then helps get his kids ready for school, and is in the office by 8:30 a.m. The consummate giver, Gill praises his staff highly, and credits their extreme compassion for the center’s growth and success. When he’s not in the office, you can find Gill with his family, who are all diehard San Francisco Giants fans and members of St. Francis Parish. His ideal evening: Being at home with his family and laughing around the dinner table. To say he’s found his professional calling isn’t quite
enough; what Gill does goes far beyond the typical eighthour job. When asked where he sees himself in the next 10 years, without missing a beat, he said, “I’m going to be right behind this desk. I get up in the morning and say, ‘Yes sir, I’m willing, here we go.’”
How to help For those who want to volunteer or make a donation, especially with the holidays approaching, Gill said the center is always in need of food donations. Visit bakhc.org or www. kernalliance.org to find out how to help.
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FOR ADVERTISING INFO ABOUT REALTORS' SHOWCASE CONTACT TAMARRA HARMS (661) 395-7278 OR THARMS@BAKERSFIELD.COM bakersfieldlife.com
Photo by Mark Nessia
Golden Empire Transit Bus Driver Joanne McNally
By Breanna Fields
hether sheâ€™s driving a local GET Bus or transporting co-workers of the U.S. Air Force reserves, Joanne McNally is a community figure well-respected for her services in transportation and reserve duty. Driving GET buses for six years, McNally knows familiar faces of regular customers and welcomes them on board for a comfortable and safe journey to their destination. What is your most memorable moment working as a bus driver? I was very excited to get hired to drive a bus. I was learning something new, and it was an accomplishment when I completed all the training, passed the road test and got my commercial license. What do you enjoy about being a bus driver? I feel like I am part of a team that cares about their employees, and we get to serve the community. 142
How does driving a bus differ from driving a car? You have a lot more responsibility because you are carrying a lot more people. It is bigger, and it takes longer to stop. You have to be more observant and safety conscious. It is actually easier in some ways to drive the bus because I am up above traffic and the front (of the bus) is straight down. Have you ever driven school buses? No, but I did drive a bus transporting my fellow workers to and from work when my reserve unit was deployed. My job in the reserves is actually aircraft maintenance, but because I had a commercial license, I was tasked with that extra duty. Do you have a funny on-the-job story that youâ€™d like to share? Just after I started driving, I had a customer who apparently wanted off the bus at a stop, but did not pull the cord. When I didnâ€™t stop, he came up to the front of the bus and growled at me. I pulled over! As a bus driver, do you get to know some of the regular passengers? Yes, I meet a wide range of people.
Your hearing is I enjoy greeting my regular customers every day. What stops do you typically make around town? Downtown and Southwest Transit Centers. I have driven all of the routes in GET’s system. What do you do if a bus breaks down? Pull over safely and make sure the passengers are out of harm’s way. Then I call dispatch and report the problem. They call maintenance, then maintenance calls me and we try to troubleshoot the problem. If that’s not possible, they bring out another bus. Have you observed any changes on the road since you have been driving buses? Some aggressive drivers cut in front of buses not realizing they can’t stop like a car. For example, in front of Valley Plaza, cars will come from behind the bus, go around the bus, cut in front, then slow down and turn into the mall. The bus driver has to reduce speed abruptly when this happens while trying not to jostle the passengers on the bus. There is real potential for an accident when people do this. Safe driving should be everyone’s first priority. People also get upset when a bus pulls away from the curb into traffic in front of them, but our job is to transport passengers so we have to merge into traffic frequently. What are your interests outside your career as a bus driver? I actually have another career in the U.S. Air Force reserves. Outside both my jobs, I like to spend time with my family and children. We like to visit the beach frequently.
at WALL’S. At Wall’s Hearing Aid Center, we’re committed to our customers and dedicated to ensuring your satisfaction. Come to us and you’ll get the personal attention, superior service and advanced, customized solutions you need to keep you hearing your best. Just like all our customers have, since 1946.
Call to schedule your FREE screening and hearing evaluation today!
Kenneth V. Wall
Board Certified in Hearing Instrument Sciences
The Original Hearing Aid Center of Bakersfield
4800 Easton Drive, Suite 108 Bakersfield, CA 93309
(661) 368-9865 © 2012 Starkey. All Rights Reserved. 5/12 09801-12 S9351
Fit and Fresh
Stay healthy with November runs, races and recipes By Sally Baker and Katie Kirschenmann In the previous edition of Bakersfield Life, I detailed the planting and growing of loofah seeds. Since then, I’ve watered, watched and waited as they grew and matured into a beautiful vine with big yellow flowers and large pieces of fruit. I waited until the fruit was hard, brown and dried out. I then cut the loofah from the vine and trimmed the top one-inch of fruit. The seeds can then be shaken out for the next season. In a large bucket of water, I soaked the fruit for about 10 minutes. The skin can then be peeled back, revealing sponge-like fibers. After spraying it with a strong jet of water, I set it out to dry in our Bakersfield sunshine. Once dried, I trimmed any excess fibers. My harvested loofahs are now ready to use in the shower with a little shower gel. It’s a great Christmas gift.
Photo by Sally Baker
Three-bean turkey chili
Healthy eating This turkey three-bean chili with wheat berries and quinoa recipe is super simple and nourishing served with a green leaf salad and crusty whole grain bread:
Harvested, peeled loofas, ready to use.
Photo by Sally Baker
Three-b ean turk ey
Bakersfield Police Memorial Run This event — which offers a 2K, 5K and 10K race — will be held at 8 p.m. Nov. 3, at The Park at Riverwalk. This race is nicely organized and well-attended by local runners. Come and support BPD and enjoy an evening of fun and fitness. For more information, call 326-3981, or email firstname.lastname@example.org. 144
Ingredie nts: 1 teaspoo 1 cup coo n olive oil k 1 pound g fresh cho ed quinoa; round turk pped pars e y ley. 1 onion; 2 cups wate r 1 can crus D ir e ctions (28 ounc hed tomatoes Heat oil in es) 1 can kidn pot over a a large, heavy ounces) ey beans (16 Add turke medium heat. y meat. Sti and brown the 1 can blac r in the on k b e a n s (16 continue ion and ounces) c tender. Ad ooking until 1 can pinto d th then stir in e water, ounces) beans (16 beans an tomatoes, d 3 cloves c with the c garlic. Season rushed ga rlic 2 tablesp paprika, o hili powder, o re der; 1/2 te ons chili powa nd peppe gano, cumin aspoon p rs. aprika 1 teaspoo Turn the h n e oregano fresh chopped cover and at to low, s 1/2 teasp 4 0 minute immer for o s. Gently cayenne on ground a stir gain, befo pepper wheat be re adding 1/2 teasp rries and oon grou quinoa, folding in nd cumin g a good ha ently. Throw in 1/2 teasp n d ful of fres o chopped hly black pep on ground p per; for anoth arsley. Simmer er ﬁve min 1 cup coo until thes utes ked whea e berries t ents have last ingredib e en warme through. d Enjoy!
Thanksgiving Pie Run Thanksgiving Day would not be complete without starting it in Hart Park with several hundred runners. A long line of headlights will guide you to Section 7 in Hart Park at about 5:45 a.m. Leave your pie, cookies, juice or muffins on a long table, and prepare for your run with other runners, walkers and bikers. A wonderful spirit of friendship seems to accompany this event. Year after year we meet to run, chat and eat with old and new friends from our community before heading home to assemble our turkeys, and be thankful with our families.
Photo by Felix Adamo
Hart Park Cyclocross
Cyclocross is an exciting, family-friendly sport for riders of all skill levels.
Once again, Hart Park will be the venue for exciting cyclocross action Nov. 17 and 18, which promises another great weekend of entertainment with bike races for all, from novice to elite, and also for kids and juniors. The event is familyfriendly with food and festivities both days. For more information, pick up the flier from Action Sports, call 330-3630, or email email@example.com.
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Ventura Pier, originally built in 1872, at 1,958 feet, is thought to be the longest in California.
By Lois Henry
n all my little adventures to the coast, I’ve spent hardly any time at all in Ventura. After a recent stay there at the Four Points Sheraton Inn by the Ventura Harbor, I have no idea why that is. I mean, what’s not to love about Ventura? The weather is fantastic, it has a charming downtown, great beaches and, heck, it even has agriculture so we Bakerspatch folks will feel right at home. And the “to do” list is a mile long. You can hang at the beach, hit a great bar, paddle board, kayak or take an excursion to the Channel Islands. I found the Sheraton was perfectly situated for any and all of those activities. For a larger, resort-type hotel, it’s also competitively priced from about $120 to $150 a night (suites are more at $350 a night). It’s also pet friendly. I saw lots of people with their
Visitors to the marina area will have plenty on ‘to do’ list
dogs. It’s an extra $75 deposit, but isn’t Fido worth it? And, if you’re not in to all the “to doing,” the Sheraton has a nice bar and restaurant with an incredible patio overlooking the marina. Or you can hide out at the shady pool area. Either way, you pretty much don’t have to move a muscle if you don’t feel like it. There are also tennis courts, a hot tub and spa right there at the hotel, giving you plenty of options. And, a little known fact: The hotel was designed by the Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation in the 1980s, which gives the lobby, bar and restaurant areas a unique look and feel. Speaking of the restaurant, Alexander’s, I highly recommend the clam chowder, which was very creamy and had lots of actual clams, and also the portabella mushroom Florentine — I love it when the spinach is fresh and flavorful rather than overloaded with cream or butter. Of course, I had more than that, but those two items alone, plus the yummy bread, are a meal in themselves. But here’s something you’ll want to check ahead of
If you go Four Points by Sheraton Ventura Harbor Resort 1050 Schooner Drive, Ventura, CA 93001 805-658-1212 starwoodhotels.com/fourpoints/ventura Island Packers Want to take a cruise around the harbor, or out to the Channel Islands? Island Packers’ office is right across the marina from the hotel Islandpackers.com Water taxi, tours, boat rentals Venturaboatrentals.com
The view from the Sheraton looks back at the city of Ventura.
Boats line up in the marina in front of Ventura Harbor Village. bakersfieldlife.com
Photo by Lois Henry Photo by Lois Henry
time. The Sheraton is well-known for hosting big events, such as weddings, which means sometimes the restaurant is occupied by private parties. You can still be served, but in the bar area. If you really want the restaurant experience instead, be sure and ask the front desk what the schedule is when you’re booking your room. Even though Alexander’s was occupied with a wedding during my trip, it didn’t stop me from enjoying a great dinner. I also really appreciated that the hotel had bikes for rent right from the front desk. They are beach cruiser style bikes — no gears, back pedal to brake, and nice wide seat. They’re great for a Sunday morning ride. They also had one of those carriage bikes for families. If you follow the marked “bike route” from the hotel, you’ll wind through some beautiful neighborhoods with hardly any traffic and end up at the Marina Park on the other side of the harbor. You can bike all through the park eventually ending at Soter Point where an iconic mermaid statue overlooks the ocean. After pedaling back to the hotel (it’s maybe two miles round trip and no hills), you can either have the renowned Sunday brunch at Alexander’s or head over the Ventura Harbor Village and check out the restaurants there. I headed to the harbor village, where I perused a number of galleries and shops before grabbing a quick bite of quiche on the patio at Le Petit Café and Bakery. That’s also where I found you can catch one of the Channel Island tours, rent a boat, kayak or “surf bike,” and even book a harbor dinner cruise. Somehow that “to do” list never seemed to get shorter.
A man-made creek ﬂows through the grounds at Four Points by Sheraton Ventura Harbor.
Photo by Lois Henry
Visitors take in the view at Soter Point in the Marina Park.
Photo by Lois Henry
Ventura events Ventura-usa.com/calendar-of-events
DreamMaker Bath & Kitchen Everett and Patty Gray, owners Address: 5880 District Blvd., Suite 19 Phone: 837-1117 Website: dreammakerbakersfield.com
Who is DreamMaker Bath & Kitchen and what makes your business stand out among similar remodeling companies? DreamMaker Bath & Kitchen is owned and operated by Everett and Patty Gray. Everett has been in the construction business since 1973, and licensed in California since 1983. Together with our inhouse experienced team of professionals, we have more than 150 years of combined experience to service the remodeling needs of Kern County. Our team also expands beyond our walls to trade partners that we have had relationships with, some for close to 30 years, making our team extremely cohesive. What are the two most important things that your customers look for? Trust is No. 1 when beginning any home improvement project. DreamMaker’s written Code of Values is the very foundation of our company. It guides us every day in the way we treat our customers and operate our business. Giving our clients value, both tangibly and intangibly, is very important to us. During the process, we go to great lengths to make sure our clients are well taken care of. DreamMaker is an accredited business, and Patty serves as an executive board member of the Bakersfield Business Bureau. Ethics is very important to our business. Creative design would be No. 2. Our clients want us to hear and envision what their needs are and develop their dream, not ours. This requires multiple visits with our clients, not a quick sale approach. It 148
From left: Salesman/designer Mel Fox, owners Patty and Everett Gray.
Photo by Michael Lopez
SPECIAL ADVERTISING SECTION
also requires looking for cost-effective means and utilizing the talent of several team members who are gifted in different areas of design. Remodeling is an investment that our customers will live with for years to come, so it has to be right, not rushed. Once the contract is signed, who’s in charge? Good question. An “All Under One Roof ” concept means exactly that. We design, provide the product and manage the production. Our Production Manager Tommy Moody, has more than 25 years of construction and management experience, applying and developing systems that operate our projects with expertise and efficiency. What does your customer profile look like? We have been honored to work with many great families through the years. They look for a company that will enhance their lifestyle with the right remodeling solution. Our clients want to be proud of their investment and identify themselves with an award-winning business. The ease of completion and extra attention to detail during the construction process is very important to them. What problems do you solve for your clients? DreamMaker assumes all responsibility for a client’s home. We turn non-functional space into functional space that is better organized. We create a safer environment in some cases with universally designed bathrooms. We save our clients money in the long run by producing a quality project that will eliminate maintenance and give them peace of mind for years to come. DreamMaker professionals bring up the value of our client’s home while making it a more sellable product if they choose to move. We definitely consider ourselves the “Solution Engineers” of the kitchen and bath remodeling industry for Kern County.
ALL UNDER ONE ROOF EXPERIENCED, CREATIVE, COMMITTED TO EXCELLENCE
Production Manager Years of Experience: 20 Strengths: Project Management, Demo, Finish Carpentry, Cabinets, Framing, Electrical, Plumbing
Harold Workman Michelle Sweaney Office Manager Strengths: Organization, Accounting, Purchasing
Journeyman Carpenter - “Mr. Magic” Years of Experience: 42 Strengths: Project Management, Finish Carpentry, Cabinets, Framing, Electrical, Plumbing, Drywall, Painting
Sales/Designer Years of Experience: 39 Strengths: Design, Residential Remodeling, Finish Carpentry, Framing
Owner/Sales/Designer Years of Experience: 38 Strengths: Creative/Visionary, Design, Residential Remodeling, Carpentry, Framing, Concrete
Gabe Romo Patty Gray
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Prime Finds 1. Treats for every day
We have 16 different flavors offered daily out of 40 different flavors and 45 different toppings, including fresh fruit. We also carry no sugar added flavors each day. Check out our Facebook page, Tutti Frutti Bakersfield, for daily flavor updates. 8300 Stockdale Highway, 396-8000
Tutti Frutti on Stockdale
2. Sweet and spicy
Pepper Delight is a fabulous line of sweet and spicy pepper jams and jellies lovingly created by Bakersfield culinary artist Terri Sprotti, available at the F Street Farmers Market most Saturday mornings. Contact pepperdelight@ gmail.com, Pepper Delight on Facebook or 292-9486.
3. Mouth-watering toffee
Fine handmade English toffee made by Aunt Mae’s Sweet Tooth. Available at Luigi's, Sweet Surrender Bakery, Cafe Med, Flourishing Art and Sullivan Petroleum stores. Call 725-5200 or visit AuntMaesSweetTooth.com
Aunt Mae’s Sweet Tooth
4. Pistachio brittle This sweet brittle is made with whole roasted
salted pistachios, a little bit of chili powder, topped with sea salt. It’s one of the many products handmade by Sweet Sherree’s Sweets. Visit sweetsherree.com or Sweet Sherree’s Sweets on Facebook. Call 834-3160 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
Sweet Sherree Sweets
5. Give thanks
Gather friends and family and head to Creation Craze to create a one of a kind masterpiece. We have plates, platters, mugs and more. All inclusive pricing, never a sitting or paint fee! 9680 Hageman Road, Suite D across from Baja Fresh. 588-7107.
Creation Craze Studio
7. 6. Hand-made holidays!
Serving bowls and platters of every size and shape are sure to make your Thanksgiving celebration even more special. Let amazing artists help you personalize yours. 9000 Ming Ave., 664-7366, bakersfield.colormemine.com
Color Me Mine at The Marketplace
7. Thanksgiving, Nov. 22nd
Dazzle your guests this year with Thanksgiving arrangements and centerpieces. Chic home decor with all sorts of styles and colors to customize your specific needs. Bakersfield's brand name for flowers. Call 588-7997 or visit us at uniquelychicflorist. com. 9500 Brimhall Road, Suite 701.
Uniquely Chic Florist
8. Breast cancer awareness Biscuit Boutique & Doggy Spa has many collars and shirts for breast cancer awareness. 1617 19th St., 321-9602.
Biscuits Boutique & Doggy Spa
9. Kitchen for the holidays
Get ready for the holidays: custom cabinets, fireplace mantels, entertainment centers, cabinet restoration and refacing. Just call us for a free estimate. Munoz Cabinetry, where craftsmanship is our trademark, 836-8747 or munozcabinets.com
10. Black and gold
Gorgeous gold sequined sweater with gold leggings. Accessorize with gold and black scarf, a statement black stone necklace and black ring. Whole outfit can be bought at Ilitchi Boutique 205 E 18th St. near Union Avenue, 396-1609, like us on Facebook.
Ilitichi Boutiques bakersfieldlife.com
Taft College Foundation Casino Night Sept. 29 Held at Jam Events Center Photos by Jan St Pierre View these photos and more online at bakersfieldlife.com
Tom and Heidi Tully, Donnette Haddad and Jimmy Montoya
Shelley Klein and Kathy Evarts
Kari Mitchell and LJ Rodon
Teresa and Jimmy Leal
Margie and Dan Corriea and Cristina Moore
Gary Bunk and Sheri Horn-Bunk
Matt and Melanie Brassfield
Bob and Robin Cooper
(855) 393-2840 www.motorcitywest.com
Women Inspiring Girls Luncheon
Judi McCarthy, Cathy Ferguson and Geri Spencer
Pamela Mann, Joy Tolladay and Nancy Chaffin
Toni Gore, Irma Carson and Brenda Harrison
Carole Houston, Ernest Floyd and Caren Floyd
Brenetta Sadakov, Dominique Chamberlain and Tina McCallister-Boothe
Oct. 5 Held at Valley Baptist Church Photos by Casey Christie View these photos and more online at bakersfieldlife.com
Melody Roberson and Tinelle Meriweather
Lisa Dearmore, Iris Doyle and Debbie Rodriguez
Joe Alexander Scholarship Foundation Elegant Evening of Wine Sept. 29 Held at the home of Dr. Mark and Sue Ashley Photos by Greg Nichols View these photos and more online at bakersfieldlife.com
Phil and Susanne Icardo, Jeanie and Don Kuhns
Sylvia Wilson, C.J. Wilson and Tonya Hildebrand
Susan and Scott Begin
Scott and Melinda Kirshenmann
Robert and Marie Huckaby and Stephanie and Mitch Garland
Fred and Sandy Garone, Johnna and Tom Antongiovanni
Paul and Nancy Anspach, Chad Garone, Hallie and Jack Thomson 154
Honor Flight Benefit Dinner Sept. 20 Held at Petroleum Club of Bakersfield Photos by Greg Nichols View these photos and more online at bakersfieldlife.com Vernon Varner and Kevin Burton
Mike and Linda Holt, Tim Dobbs and Maripat Ermigarat
Sheryl Taylor, Jim and Penny Martinez and Dick Taylor
Nick Alvarez, Edward Gaede and Teresa Alvarez
Dolores and C.M. (Bob) Martin
Ali Douglas, Ryan Slayton, Farhad Bashirtash, Wesley Leon-Barrientos and Michael Reede
Laura Valenzuela, FNP
Personal care in a family-friendly atmosphere Se habla Espa単ol
3941 San Dimas Street, Bldg 101 Tina Larson, Karen Norton, Stanley Schwarzt and Kelly Colson
(661) 327-3821 www.johnowensmd.com
Mendiburu Magic Foundation Pyrenees Fiesta Oct. 13 Held at Bakersfield Firefighter Hall Photos by Carla Rivas View these photos and more online at bakersfieldlife.com
Robert DelTour, Jolie and Beauty Roberson
MaryAnn and Rey Soto
Adrienne and Doug Myers
Valerie Mendiburu and Michelle Burton
Tom Bell, Brian Bock and Joel Bock
Brian and Heidi Branquinho, Candice and Jamie Banducci
Twelve stories above the rest. Now accepting reservations for holiday parties and receptions that demand the highest grandeur.
Ariana Mesa, Monica Guerrero, Adrieanna Jaime, Audra Torres and Dana Garcia 156
Wine, Women & Shoes Oct. 6 Held at Westchester Carter Estate Photos by Jan St Pierre View these photos and more online at bakersfieldlife.com Haley Dilbeck and Christie Blankenship
Katrina Hoffman and Lorraine Leon
Kim Carter and Kimberly Plunkett
Michele Newell and Jennifer Giffin
Susan Buck, Linda Etienne, Sharon McBride, Charlotte Vaughan, Kathy Conner and Catherine Gay
Sally Ellis and Nancy Chaffin
Diana Lopez, Lorene Del Toro, Dr. Del Toro-Diaz and Rebeca Barron
Push your body. Find your beat.
19th & N Street, Downtown Bakersfield www.emporiumwesternstore.com
661-589-8950 jazzercise.com â€˘ 800-FIT-IS-IT bakersfieldlife.com
Links for Life Walk Oct. 1 Held at Kern County Department of Public Health Photos by Jan St Pierre View these photos and more online at bakersfieldlife.com Beatrice Castro and Teresa Macias
Kim Salas, Matt Constantine and Jamie Rodriguez
Cecilia Reza, Jessica Garner and Jamia Smith
Melissa McCormick, Melanie Briggs, Norma Van Sant, Yasmin El Gamal and Pam McMasters
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Boys & Girls Club of Kern County Artfest Sept. 22 Held at Moorea Banquet Centre Photos by Carla Rivas View these photos and more online at bakersfieldlife.com Ric and Megan Gretona
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Kern County Elections Division Action-packed Election Day in Bakersfield • Kern County has 321,108 active registered voters. • About 244,000 ballots are expected to be processed here this November.
Election workers • The Elections office has more than 30 employees and about 1,500 poll workers who will work on Election Day. • Volunteers are paid a stipend. Site supervisors and supervisor inspectors receive $150, inspectors receive $120 and clerks receive $110.
Behind the scenes • The night before to the elec-
Photo by Shelby Mack
tion, the Elections Office is staffed until 8 p.m. • Election Day begins for office employees at 6 a.m. and some remain until the final reAbout 1,500 poll workers port is verified with Secretary will work on Election Day. of State staff — usually about 3 a.m. the following morning. “Coffee isn’t really big around here, but we could definitely fund a post election celebration by turning in all of our empty energy drink cans,” said Karen Rhea, chief county clerk at the Kern County Election Division.
• Vote-by-mail ballots must be verified and counted. • Manual tallies and equipment diagnostics are conducted to verify accuracy of tabulation equipment. Election Day • Damaged ballots essentials are duplicated and added to the tally. • The polls open at 7 • Provisional ballots a.m. on Nov. 6., and are investigated to close at 8 p.m. determine voter • Vote by mail ballots eligibility. must be received at • “All the activities must be completed the polls or in the before results are office by 8 p.m. on certified and final,” Election Day. Rhea said. “Depending on the election, it can be quite an effort to meet that timeline.”
Vote-by-mail • In 1994, legislation was passed to allow California voters to choose to vote-by-mail for any reason, either on a per election or permanent basis. Prior to that, vote by mail was only permissible for the ill or disabled. • At the time the law passed, Kern County had 1,212 permanent vote-by-mail voters. Currently, Kern County has 151,980 permanent vote-by-mail voters. Source: Karen Rhea, Chief County Clerk, Kern County Election Division
A Kern County election worker files vote-by-mail ballots. There are currently 151,980 permanent vote-by-mail voters in the county. 162
Photo by Casey Christie
Compiled by Tyler Stevens
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Published on Oct 27, 2012