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F E A T U R E S November 2013

THE AUTO ISSUE Hitch a ride with Bakersfield Life. • Discover the hottest, coolest cars handpicked for our 2014 Car Guide special section, featuring 42 of the latest vehicles available now through our local dealerships. Page 87. • Take a visual tour and experience the culture of the new Hotrod Lifestyles Home of Side Show Gallery. Page 82. • Also, take a test drive with Bakersfield Life staff (Page 56) and learn about a local body shop staple (Page 18). •  Meet local car aficionados who are pushing the boundaries of what’s possible inside and outside their rides. Page 76.


Get in the Thanksgiving spirit by learning about the Kern Community Foundation’s “Giving Guide” and “Day of Giving” (Page 64), pick up tips on Thanksgiving table decor (Page 118), and build your holiday appetite with our Food Dudes (Page 34) and Taste of Home preview (Page 38).

Did you know there’s a “Bakersfield Park” in Bucheon, South Korea, honoring us for our own Korean War Veterans Memorial in Jastro Park? It’s all because of the Sister Cities Program. Get to know Bakersfield’s six sisters and how the local program bridges cultures throughout the world. Page 68


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November 2013

D E P A R T M E N T S November 2013

13 30 32 34 38

Up Front It Manners a Lot Kelly Damian Food Dudes Food and Wine

122 124 130 134 138

Our Town Community Neighborhood Spotlight Guys Who‌ Personality

44 44 48 54 56 60 62 64 66 114 118 120

Foodie Entertainment Hometown Hero On the Road Why I Live Here All-Star Athlete Talk of the Town For a Cause Pastimes Home and Garden History

104 142 146 150 154 158 160 170

Real People Fit and Fresh Health and Wellness Trip Planner Prime Finds SNAP! Inside Story

38 50 8

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November 2013

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“WHAT’S YOUR FAVORITE THANKSGIVING MEMORY?” “When I asked at the table, ‘Why is it that Thanksgiving dinner is always at 2 p.m?’ It created a huge discussion because it had gone on for years with all of us blissfully unaware of the ridiculous timing. Since then, we have the Thanksgiving dinner at a normal time.” — Eduardo Gamez, intern

“Griswold” in their extended family, making it all the more hysterical to watch.” — Chris Thornburgh, contributing writer “When my sisters and I were little girls, Thanksgivings were spent with relatives in Stockton. We would nap during the drive up on a makeshift bed of blankets atop plywood that our dad had placed in the backseat of our old Mercury. The day after Thanksgiving, with full bellies, our mom took us into San Francisco to kickoff the holiday shopping season at Macy’s. Magical times!” — Lisa Kimble, contributing writer

Bakersfield Life Magazine

The magazine is inserted into The Bakersfield Californian on the last Saturday of every month. To subscribe, please call 392-5777. To advertise, contact Lisa Whitten at 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 Interactive Sales Manager Gunter Copeland Advertising Sales Manager Lisa Whitten Advertising Traffic Manager Shauna Rockwell Marketing Manager Mira Patel

Editor Olivia Garcia Assistant Managing Editor Jorge Barrientos Specialty Publications Coordinator Hillary Haenes Editorial Assistant Estella Aguilar

“Even though it is ridiculous and corny, I like to watch the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade.” — Kelly Damian, contributing writer

“Last Thanksgiving, I came down with a stomach flu and ate just a few crackers and water the entire day. My favorite part? Turkey leftovers the next day never tasted so great.” — Jorge Barrientos, assistant managing editor “Thanksgiving night is shared with many laughs watching Clark Griswold in “Christmas Vacation.” The oneliners in this movie have us rolling. Everyone has a 10

Bakersfield Life™ magazine is published by The Bakersfield Californian.

Distribution and Marketing Representative Patrick Wells

“I was a very picky eater as a child, but the first time I tried my grandmother’s sweet potatoes, I was surprised at how much I enjoyed them. For me, sweet potatoes are the Thanksgiving entree, and the rest are all side dishes.” — Kevin McCloskey, contributing writer “Every Thanksgiving is memorable when you get to spend it with loved ones. It’s even better when the Cowboys win.” — Mark Nessia, contributing photographer and writer

Bakersfield’s Premier City Magazine Nov. 2013 / Vol. 8 / Issue 2

“I love seeing my husband get so into preparing the big Thanksgiving meal. He starts the night before and does everything with no help. (I have offered, for the record!) I also love starting my day at 6 a.m. with the annual Thanksgiving Pie Run with my two older boys.” — Olivia Garcia, editor

November 2013

Art Director Glenn Hammett Photography Felix Adamo, Mike Baird, Sally Baker, Henry A. Barrios, Casey Christie, Deb Dawson, Michael Lopez, April Massirio, Greg Nichols, Mark Nessia, Earl Parsons, Carla Rivas, Jan St Pierre, Brian N. Willhite Contributing writers Sally Baker, Gregory D. Cook, Kelly Damian, Ken Hooper, Lisa Kimble, Katie Kirschenmann, Marissa Lay, Stephen Lynch, Kevin McCloskey, Earl Parsons, Gabriel Ramirez, Chris Thornburgh, Brian Willhite Interns Scott Camp, Michael Wafford, Eduardo Gamez On the cover Photographer April Massirio provides us with a glimpse into the fall and holiday spirit with her cover shot taken at Beladagio Home & Garden Gift Gallery.


Editor Picks Band-Aids I accidentally stepped on broken glass recently, and it was pretty frustrating walking, er, limping around. After some research, I discovered Johnson & Johnson Tough Pads. These hydrocolloid adhesive pads really help speed the process of healing cuts and scrapes. A few days later, I was finally able to run again. They’re available at CVS.

Children and art Parents of children ages 3 to 6, consider the Side By Side program offered at the Bakersfield Museum of Art. The program takes places every second Saturday and fourth Thursday of the month, from 10 to 11 a.m. It allows you and your child to get creative and spend quality time together. Visit for more details.

Thanksgiving Pie Run An annual tradition, the Thanksgiving Pie Run starts at about 6 a.m. on the holiday morning at Hart Park where runners, walkers and joggers head off into the hills to mark the start of Thanksgiving. The cost? Free, as long as you bring an offering in the form of cakes, cookies or some other treat. All the goodies are then shared with all the participants. It’s a great way to meet up with family and friends. My sons and I run this as an annual tradition.


Bakersfield Life Magazine



hanksgiving is a special time for many of us as it allows us to spend quality time with family and friends over an elaborate meal. At the same time, the holiday provides us a time of reflection to appreciate and be thankful for the gifts we have in our lives. These gifts can be in the form of love, friendship, health, family, knowledge, personal success, wealth and much more. But Thanksgiving is also a time to think of ways to give back to others less fortunate. If there is one thing that makes Bakersfield stand out among other cities, it is truly the charitable giving of local individuals, families and businesses. I am reminded of this charity, philanthropy and compassion of others that many of us have through a number of stories in this issue — including one on United Way of Kern County and another on AYSO Region 359’s VIP Program. The Kern Community Foundation is another. “Whether it’s local healthcare, art or education in need of help, the foundation aims to assist local businesses and individuals with donations of their choice,” writes Scott Camp in an article on the foundation’s upcoming events that make it easier for individuals and businesses to help others. Aside from the foundation, you can read about a local senior Kern County Sheriff’s deputy Randall Meyer, who, through his business, Advanced Personal Protection, is organizing a friendly shooting competition to raise money benefiting the Kern County Law Enforcement Foundation and Valley Achievement Center, which assists autistic adults and children. And there’s Oscar Streeter, the renowned radiation oncologist and medical director at San Joaquin Community Hospital’s AIS Cancer

November 2013

Center whose passion for medicine, research and technology will help him to successfully lead medical programs at the center that will improve people’s lives, writes Lisa Kimble. Read her Personality feature on Streeter and be inspired. And yes, Thanksgiving brings out the best of us, but let’s not forget another important detail — Thanksgiving dining. Make sure your Thanksgiving table and home is decorated with the right memorable details. Writer Marissa Lay and Beladagio Home & Garden Gift Gallery’s staff provide us with plenty of details inside.

CARS, CARS, CARS One of the perks of being the editor of Bakersfield Life is the opportunity to review and test drive cars. It’s been great to meet many of the local auto leaders who are very passionate about their brands. Many of these leaders have dedicated many years in their fields, and are very knowledgeable about their brands, but also what customers want, especially with some many advancements in technology. For me, it is hard to pick favorites. Each car has something special to offer its drivers. In this issue, we devote a special advertising section to cars offered by our local dealerships. Inside of the 2014 Car Guide, we provide readers with a glimpse of the top models in town. Get to know the hottest new cars from the following top brands: BMW, Lexus, Hyundai, Dodge, Fiat, Mercedes, Kia, GMC, Cadillac, Chevy, Honda, Jeep, Acura, Chrysler, Toyota, Nissan, Subaru, Buick and Volvo. Let us know what you think.

Olivia Garcia Editor 395-7487 •


WORD ON THE STREET Compiled by Brian N. Willhite

WHAT IS YOUR DREAM CAR? Jeremiah Somermeyer

Lacey Stepter

Gloriann Aninion

“The Aston Martin from ‘Goldfinger.’ When I was growing up, I always wanted to be like Bond and have a cool car like his.”

“A ’63 Shelby because it’s a fast sports car, and I really like the way it looks.”

“A Honda Odyssey because it has eight seats, and a lot of my friends can go places with me.”

Lillian Smith

Enrique Murillo

Susan Woods

“A ’66 convertible Ford Mustang because it was my dream car in the ’60s when I was a teenager, and I have always wanted one.”

“A ’76 Mercury Capri because it was my first car, and I have a lot of good memories with that car. It’s very sentimental to me.”

“A Fiat because I like how it’s small and compact, and it has to be black with leather interior and black rims.”

Zac Elder

Andy Perea

Alma Garcia

“A Bugatti because it’s the fastest and most expensive car in the world.”

“An ’86 El Camino because I used to own one and I really liked it. Also, it’s a great muscle car with a lot of versatility.”

“A Hummer because I like its big, bulky design and the way it drives.”

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When you need a REALLY good lawyer!!

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THE BIG PICTURE Photo by Felix Adamo

MAKING THEIR CASE Stockdale High School volleyball coach Maria Collatz and the Mustang bench question a call in a recent game against Centennial High School.


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November 2013


THE BIG PICTURE Photo by Casey Christie

SIGNS OF FALL The leaves are falling in Beach Park on a nice autumn day in Bakersfield.


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November 2013




t is hard to imagine a time when a new car cost less than $1,500, and a gallon of gas was only 18 cents. But such was life in post-war America, where economic promise and business opportunities abounded, and a southern gentleman and his bride saw a bright future in automotive repair in Bakersfield. Eagleson Body Works Inc. was founded in 1950 with humble beginnings in a shed by Paul and Patricia Eagleson. After more than six decades, the family-owned business has grown to encompass nearly two city blocks downtown, as well as a second location in the northwest. When the business first opened its doors 63 years ago on 25th Street, Paul Eagleson had two employees, a far cry from the more than 40 people employed today in the two operations. Paul Eagleson was a native of Lake Charles, La. Like so many others, the Southern gentleman migrated West to California. He arrived in 1941, met his wife, Patricia, who was from Santa Monica, and they married in 1942 at St. Monica Catholic Church. The couple remained devout lifelong Catholics. Paul worked at Douglas Aircraft Co., building airplanes for

Paul Eagleson, founder of Eagleson Body Works, celebrated 50 years in 2000. He died in 2006. 18

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November 2013



the war effort. In 1943, he joined the U.S. Army, and he discharged two years later. The couple moved to Bakersfield to be near relatives. “My dad saw tremendous business opportunity here,” said Eagleson’s daughter Lynn Eagleson Ward, current company president. “He thought that after the war everyone would be buying and driving cars. He was either going to get into the air conditioning business or this. Of course, he knew all about cars.” Although Patricia stayed home to raise their eight children, she was an equal partner and supportive of every business decision her husband made. Over the years, the Eaglesons acquired neighboring property to expand operations. After Paul’s death in 2006, it was his widow who led the company’s construction of the 27,000-square-foot facility on 25th Street downtown and the establishment of Eagleson's Northwest Collision Center last year. “Mom was the real gambler and responsible for the expansion efforts of the last decade,” Ward said. Like 18 cents a gallon for gas, the days of repairing and welding dented bumpers by hand are part of a bygone era. Today, everything is computerized using state-of-the-art equipment. Patricia Eagleson died in 2012. Today, children and grandchildren of some of the original customers’ families turn to Eagleson, one of the last remaining and largest family-owned automotive repair companies in California. — Lisa Kimble




is the season, and I’m not talking football season, or even the upcoming holiday season. It’s tax planning season. Now through December is primetime to put planning strategies in place to reduce your 2013 tax liability. If you wait until April 15, options are limited. Keep these tips in mind.

MONEY IN YOUR WALLET Tax planning strategies can save you immediate tax dollars, freeing up money for other uses. Proper planning not only lowers current year tax, but also reduces taxes in future years. Tax planning can also be used for other purposes, such as maximizing retireThornburgh ment and education funding or positioning you to qualify for that new home purchase.

NEW TAXES FOR 2013 Several law changes this year, including new taxes and deduction limitations, have added to the significance of planning now. Higher rates on ordinary income, capital gains, and qualified dividends hit individuals with adjusted gross income (AGI) greater than $400,000 ($450,000 for married couples). Adding salt to the wound, new phase-outs for itemized deductions and personal exemptions limit write-offs. A new 3.8 percent Medicare tax applies to net investment income if AGI is above $200,000 for individuals, and $250,000 for married couples, as well as an additional .9 percent to wages and self-employment income with those same thresholds.

SIMPLE STRATEGIES Many strategies can minimize the tax bite, such as contributing to qualified retirement plans, deferring income, investing for tax-exempt income and grouping deductions into 2013. Watch for break points that might put you in a higher tax bracket or limit your deductions. For example, if your income is hovering

above the threshold for the new Medicare tax, consider maximizing retirement contributions to lower taxable income thereby avoiding an additional 3.8 percent tax on all investment income. Don’t ignore capital loss and net operating loss carry-forwards. Now may be the time to harvest capital gains or accelerate business income to utilize carry-forwards. Shifting income and future appreciation from investments to family members by means of gifting may be a tax-planning opportunity. You can gift up to $14,000 to each and any number of recipients with no tax consequences.

EXPIRING TAX-SAVING OPPORTUNITIES Good news: tax-saving opportunities are available for both individuals and small-business owners, but time is of the essence. If you have self-employment income, consider capital expenditures before year end. Absent new legislation, the favorable “Section 179” write-off for qualified business property will be scaled back from $500,000 to $25,000 in 2014. The 50 percent “bonus depreciation” on new purchases also expires this year. Are you older than 70 and a half years old? You can still make a tax-free transfer from an IRA directly to a charity, which counts toward your required minimum distribution. The energy efficiency credit has been extended until Dec. 31. Take advantage of qualified improvements to capture this $500 lifetime tax credit. Restructuring your home mortgage or losing your personal residence to foreclosure? Federal tax relief is available through year end. Limitations apply, and California hath no mercy. There are many more expiring provisions. See your tax adviser for those applicable to you. Planning is important for all taxpayers who want to reduce their tax liability and avoid surprises April 15. As you consider your individual and business tax planning needs, the advice of a professional tax adviser cannot be substituted. — Chris Thornburgh is a CPA and partner at Brown Armstrong Accountancy Corp. Contact her at or 324-4971.








yndicated comedic radio stars Bob and Tom will bring their friends along Nov. 16 to Bakersfield’s Fox Theater as 98.5 The Fox presents “The Bob and Tom Comedy Show.” Comedians include: • David Dyer, a 19-year comedy vet who has worked with Drew Carey and Lewis Black. • Henry Phillips, featured on “Comedy Central Presents” and ABC’s “Jimmy Kimmel Live.” • Bob Zany, of The Bob Zany Show, who was a celebrity judge on “The Gong Show.” • Auggie Smith, a riveting, rapid-style, take-no-prisoners standup comedian, who won the 2010 San Francisco and Seattle comedy competitions. Tickets are $34. More information, call 324-1369 or email — Eduardo Gamez



ant to make sure our local government is being properly managed and taxpayer money is appropriately spent? Join the Kern County Grand Jury. The grand jury, made up of 19 volunteers, is looking for a diverse group of new members. The group investigates, audits or examines county government groups. It also issues subpoenas and may conduct criminal hearings. Applicants must be older than 18, a citizen of Kern County for at least one year, not currently holding a public office, and be able to serve a minimum of 20 hours per week. More information, application: — Michael Wafford


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November 2013


Bob and Tom

uena Vista Museum of Natural History has been home to some of the most unique treasures of Kern County’s heritage since opening its doors in 1995. The recently renovated museum will host its annual “After Dark” gala and auction on Saturday, Nov. 23, that will raise funds to maintain the museum and its programs, including the children’s science summer camp. The evening of food, wine and auctions, amidst 20 million years worth of fossils, will be from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. at the museum, 2018 Chester Ave. Tickets are $40 for members, $50 for non-members, and $500 for a table. RSVP by Nov. 18: A replica of a T-Rex dinosaur is 324-6350. on display at the Buena Vista — Michael Wafford Museum of Natural History



brigade of fine cars and motorcycles will be parked outside Calvary Chapel Bakersfield from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Nov. 2 to show support for our troops. The third annual American Heroes Car Show will again be raising money to help with the needs of returning and active-duty military members. The event will contribute to The Wounded Heroes Fund, Bakersfield Young Marines, and the national Soldier’s Angels, a group that supports active-duty members with everything from care packages to pet care. Registration is $35 per vehicle. More information: John Jackson at 760-7933799 or — Michael Wafford


Bakersfield Life, Metro Galleries December Cover Contest Bakersfield Life Magazine and Metro Galleries are proud to announce a call out for works and give an artist a chance to showcase their work on the December cover of Bakersfield Life. The cover concept must highlight the theme of “Bakersfield and Kern County during the holiday season.” Submissions are free to enter. Guidelines are as follows: • Artwork must represent an interpretation of Bakersfield/Kern County during the holiday season. • Artwork can be no larger that 16-by-20 inches (vertical format), and must be framed or gallery wrapped. • Artwork is submitted to Metro Galleries on 19th Street in downtown Bakersfield on Tuesday, Nov. 12, between 11 a.m. and 5 p.m. • Artwork will be juried by a panel of Bakersfield Life staffers and Metro Galleries’ Don

Martin. The piece selected will best represent Bakersfield/Kern County during the holiday season and used as the cover of Bakersfield Life’s December edition. All artwork will be displayed at Metro Galleries on First Friday, Dec. 6. Ice House Framing will frame the winning entry for display at Metro Galleries. Bakersfield Life Magazine and Metro Galleries will retain all publishing and image rights of artwork for promotion and publication. For more information, please email and, or call 395-7487.

Extra, Extra! Go to for more delicious food photos from the Food Dudes’ visit to Brimstone at The Padre Hotel, contests and much more. Also, visit and “like” us on Facebook

and Twitter for more insider info.

Taste of Home We have several copies of Taste of Home’s “Almost Homemade” recipe book and tickets to Nov. 12 Taste of Home Cooking School at Rabobank Theater, presented by Smart & Final. The first readers who send us their favorite homemade soup or stew recipe to get a book and two tickets, while supplies last.

Ugly Sweater Send us a picture of you and your ugliest holiday sweater for a chance to win tickets to the local favorite community event, CALM HolidayLights. The ugliest of the ugly wins — while supplies last. Send photos to bakersfieldlife by Nov. 12.







have received food, emergency social he first-ever Harvest of Hope — a services and referral assistance with fundraiser benefiting the Catholic government and public proCharities of Bakersfield grams. Nearly half are under 17 — will be held Saturday, years old. Nov. 9, at the Kern County Fair“In the spirit of Christian grounds. faith, Catholic Charities conAttendance is limited to tinues to be the helping hand 350 supporters, and money to those in need,” said Monsiraised will help the needy and gnor Craig Harrison, director disadvantaged in our commuof Catholic Charities Bakersnity. In the past year, more field. than 10,000 families received Msgr. Harrison RSVP: 281-2130 or visit the assistance from Catholic Charagency’s office at 825 Chester Ave. ities, a nonprofit social service agency. — Lisa Kimble This year, more than 35,000 individuals


lay games while helping heal kids? That’s what the Campus Gamers student group at Cal State Bakersfield is doing with its second “Extra Life” event Nov. 9. Sponsored game lovers will take part in a 24-hour gaming marathon from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. on campus to raise money for Lauren Small Children’s Medical Hospital in Texas. An international nonprofit program, Extra Life supports Children’s Miracle Network of hospitals. Last year, the CSUB event raised $4,300, finishing in the top 2.5 percent of all teams in the United States. Registration is free and just $20 in donations is required to participate. For more information, donations or sponsorships: 301-1857, or — Eduardo Gamez


TRAVIS T. TILLIS President of Bakersfield College’s Student Government Association


ravis T. Tillis is the president of the Student Government Association at Bakersfield College, and he has held other notable service positions on campus including president of BC’s African-American Student Union. His major is industrial technology and history, and he aspires to transfer to Fresno Pacific University in Bakersfield to pursue a bachelor’s degree in Christian ministries. He is currently a ministry coordinator at The Vision Plus Church in Bakersfield, and he said he is a dedicated servant to helping others to reach their goals. “If I can help someone see their potential or assist them in getting to the next level, I find an Travis T. Tillis inner joy and peace knowing I contributed to making life a little bit easier for a fellow human,” Tillis said. What I’m currently reading: “The Jesus Quest: The Third Search for the Jew of Nazareth” by Ben Witherington III. In my European history class, we have two books we must do a book review on, and this selection is one of the two. This is one of the most scholarly books regarding Jesus’ life. This is a fascinating look on a journey dis22

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November 2013

covering what Jesus really said and did. Favorite author: Ellen G. White. She has to be the most prolific female author of all time. Some consider her a prophet. Although I am not of the Seventh-day Adventist denomination, which she helped to cultivate, I agree with a lot of her writings. She can write about the same topic, but in so many different ways. It is very intriguing. Favorite book: “Unlimited Power” by Tony Robbins. I can read one page of this book and be inspired for the whole day. Book vs. Tablet: Book because the pages are tangible, and I can bend and fold a book to suit my comfort. Books I’ve read more than once: “How to Win Friends & Influence People” by Dale Carnegie. When the principles are applied, they help you to come across as a person who is inviting and genuinely care about other people. Other materials I like reading: I love history, particularly Greek and Roman history. I am fascinated at the accomplishments of the philosophers in this time, and the way they questioned life and reasoned what things around them and in them really meant. Where I enjoy reading: I enjoy reading in a nice quiet park on a nice breezy day. The book that’s been inspirational in my life: “The Purpose Driven Life” by Rick Warren. A must read for anyone seeking to be a better person or become more Christ like.




njoy savory dishes by Stockdale Country Club’s head chef, while helping bring sight to locals in need. Advanced Center for Eyecare and the Center for the Blind and Visually Impaired will host the third annual “Appetite for Sight” fundraiser Nov. 14 at the Stockdale Country Club, 7001 Stockdale Highway. Chef Erik Copeland will present one-ofa-kind Italian dishes to guests while they lis-

ten to Chuck Wall, retired local college professor and nationally-renowned speaker. Local celebrities Kiyoshi Tomono, of KGET-TV, and Robin Mangarin-Scott, of Dignity Health, will emcee. The event kicks off with a live and silent auction at 6 p.m. with dinner at 7 p.m. Proceeds benefit vision rehabilitation in Kern County. More information, tickets, sponsorships: 322-5234. — Eduardo Gamez

The Wine Event of the year


Saturday November 16, 2013 from 3:00-6:00 PM


The Padre Hotel in Beautiful Downtown Bakersfield



30 of the top West Coast producers From Robert Craig to Vine hill Ranch


why Raising funds for disadvantaged youth & families in the Bakersfield area

all the rest

$150 Grand Tasting with Wine Dinner Packages starting at $700/couple & Sponsorship

opportunities available


ather three of your friends and test your skills in a fast-paced shooting competition Oct. 26 at the California Highway Patrolman’s Club of Kern County (“420 Club”), 3910 Alfred Harrell Highway. “Shoot for a Chance” charity event will benefit the Kern County Law Enforcement Foundation and Valley Achievement Center for children with autism. Registration fee for a four-person team

is $200, and each participant will be served lunch and will receive a complementary “event bag.” Lunch is included. Raffle tickets will be sold for $20 each, or three for $50, for a chance to win firearms, holsters and more. Dress appropriately and have proper equipment on hand to compete More information: Randall Meyer at 340-4618 or — Eduardo Gamez

Tickets & Info available at Imbibe or online at

proceeds to benefit

Bakersfield North Rotary & Benefit Bakersfield Foundation




Bill and Melinda Gates

Anthony Clark, a 1993 graduate of Highland High, is an executive chef for Café Bon Appétit, owned by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.



ourmet chef Anthony Clark has some cooking advice, as blunt as it may be: “Turn the television off and stop watching those stupid food shows,” Clark said. “Find a cookbook.” Here’s why you should listen to him: Clark, a 1993 graduate of Highland High School, has cooked for Michelle Obama, Hillary Clinton, Warren Buffett and three living presidents as executive chef for Café Bon Appétit, owned by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. 24

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November 2013

Clark, now 38, developed a passion for cooking at a young age, helping his parents in the kitchen with whatever he could. “My mom and dad loved cooking and were always doing it,” he said. “I was kind of the guinea pig in the kitchen.” After graduating from Highland High in northeast Bakersfield, he attended the University of Washington where he received his bachelor’s degree in biochemical engineering. Just eight months passed when he became disenchanted with his job at a pharmaceutical company where he specialized in research and development. “I stared at a microscope for eight hours a day, and someone else was getting all of the credit,” he said. So, Clark moved on to culinary school at The Art Institute of Seattle for 18 months. Inspired by a newfound interest in gastronomy and a fluency in spanish, Clark then took his talents to Spain, where he worked for Mugaritz, a two-star restaurant (Michellin is a prestigious international restaurant rating guide, where three stars is the highest rating). There, he began as a “stage” (a French term pronounced “stazhje”), working long hours for little pay under the tutelage of world-renowned chefs. But he came up through the ranks to eventually work alongside the head cook. His hard work continued to pay off and it earned him an invitation in 2005 to cook at the Michellin three-star restaurant, el Bulli. However, his wife got pregnant, and he decided to bring his family back to the United States. It was an opportunity missed, but not the last he would get. Today, he serves as the executive chef at Café Bon Appétit in Seattle. Working there for the past three years, he manages the day-to-day operations of the café and is in charge of catering banquets hosted by the Gates Foundation. Clark’s passion for gourmet cooking is exemplified by the fact that he involves himself in every facet of the farmto-fork process. When he’s not busy in the kitchen, he’s outside foraging local ingredients or at nearby farms handpicking animals. Despite the hard work and the toll the numerous 16hour days has taken on his body, Anthony said “if I had to do it over again, I wouldn’t change a thing.”

Favorite Deli! BAKERSFIELD’S




ovember is the time for family, football, feasting and frenzies — shopping frenzies, that is. Here are some national holiday shopping figures to keep in mind as you’re out and about spending away.

5 Number of days in November that have the highest amount of retail shopping online and in-store for the holiday season. $423 Average consumer spending on Black Friday, per person. 54 Percentage of consumers who finished holiday shopping sometime between Black Friday and the actual day of gift giving. 23 Percentage of consumers who started shopping before Black Friday. 12 Percentage of consumers who wait to shop until Black Friday or Cyber Monday. 15 Percentage of consumers who waited after Cyber Monday to begin shopping. 40 Percentage of consumers who believed free shipping was most important. 80 Percentage of major retailers who send out a holiday season email. 34 Percentage of consumers who used smartphones or tablets to research products.

50 Number of toys listed on the Toys ‘R’ Us “Holiday Hot Toy List” last year. 20 Down payment percentage for toys listed on the “Holiday Hot Toy List.”

7.7 million Visits to on Black Friday, the most of any online retailer.

46 Percentage of female consumers who started holiday shopping before November.

31 Percentage of male consumers who started holiday shopping before November. $18 billion The amount of revenue lost each year due to “shopping cart abandonment,” which is deciding last minute against buying something. 2015 The year that 50 percent of all holiday shopping is expected to be completely done online.

Source(s):, RichRelevance (2012), (2012)

1231 18th Street (18th and L Streets)


10:30am - 2:15pm Closed Sundays

Phone: (661) 323-2500

9160 Rosedale Highway (Target Shopping Ctr.)


11:00am - 8:00pm Daily

Phone: (661) 587-1600

9500 Ming Avenue (Just West of The Marketplace)


7:00am - 3:00pm Closed Sundays

Phone: (661) 665-9990

765 West Herndon Avenue


(Corner of Herndon and Willow - Target Shopping Ctr.) 11:00am - 8:00pm

Phone: (559) 323-0330

See our full menu and order online at

Thank you, Kern County for your continued support!

Find more community events at or submit yours via email:


HAPPENINGS: Can’t-miss events in November Fri. 1 Dia de Los Muertos with Mento Buru, DJ Mikey, 9 p.m., Sandrini’s, 1918 Eye St. $5. 322-8900. FLICS International Cinema Society presents “Sister,” 7:30 p.m., Bakersfield Fox Theater, 2001 H St. $5. or call 428-0354. Guild House First Friday, enjoy music, 5:30 to 7:30 p.m., Guild House, 1905 18th St. $10, includes light appetizers, dessert, one glass of wine. 325-5478. Mike Epps, 7 p.m., Rabobank Arena, 1001 Truxtun Ave. $44 to $51 plus fee. or 800-745-3000. Second annual Dreaming Beyond the Stars, a red carpet event to support the Housing and Opportunity Foundation of Kern; 7 to 11 p.m., The Padre Hotel, 1702 18th St. $100. Visit or 335-0528.

Sat. 2 CSUB Jazz Coffeehouse, 7:30 p.m., CSUB, Music Building, Room 127, 9001 Stockdale Highway. $10; $5 students and seniors. Email Dia De Los Muertos: In Remembrance of Loved Ones, family altar, food, face painting, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., blessing of the altar at 1:30

p.m., Hillcrest Memorial Park & Mortuary, 9101 Kern Canyon Road. Free. 858-337-1222. Dodgeball Tournament, costume contest, prizes, 8 a.m. to 2 p.m., Boys & Girls Club, 801 Niles St. $200 for six-player team. 325-3730. Friends of the Gleaners Harvest Celebration, dinner, live music, silent and oral auctions, dancing, prizes, 6 p.m., Golden Empire Gleaners Warehouse, 1326 30th St. $125. Visit Get Fit Kern County 5K/1K Fun Run, health expo and activities for children, run begins at Medical Office Building, 8800 Ming Ave., registration 7:30 a.m., run begins 9 a.m. Registration $30; free for 1K. Proceeds benefit Community Action Partnership of Kern Food Bank. Visit or 3342088. PBR: Pro Division vs. PBR Professional Bull Riders, 7:30 p.m., Rabobank Arena, 1001 Truxtun Ave. $15 to $60 plus fee. or 800-745-3000.

Sun. 3 Golden Dragon Acrobats presented by Bakersfield Community Concert Association, 3 p.m., Rabobank Theater, 1001 Truxtun Ave. $80 for seven concerts. or 205-8522 or 589-2478.

Wed. 6 15th annual Kettle Kickoff Luncheon with Miles Muzio, silent auction, noon to 1:15 p.m., Petroleum Club of Bakersfield, 5060 California Ave. $25. Visit or 836-8487.

Golden Dragon Acrobats

Sat. 9

Mon. 11

Bakersfield Symphony Orchestra presents “Five Masters of Orchestral Brilliance,” 7:30 p.m., Rabobank Theater, 1001 Truxtun Ave. $20 to $45; all students are $10. or 3237928. Festival of Magic featuring 15 magicians, close up magic 6 p.m., main show 7 p.m., Marriott Hotel at the Convention Center, 801 Truxtun Ave. Tickets at Marriott Hotel, $20 by Nov. 8; $30 at the door; $50 for family four pack. Visit or 4968160. Run 2 Sing 5K Walk-Run, presented by BHS Choir Boosters Association; 7 a.m., Yokuts Park, 4200 Empire Drive. Open to all ages. Pre-registration guarantees a long-sleeve T-shirt. $27. Visit Second annual Zombie Apocalypse 5K Fun Run, 8 a.m., CALM, 10500 Alfred Harrell Highway. $35 adults; $25 children 13 and under. Pre-registration online only. Registration deadline is Nov. 6. Proceeds benefit The Jeremy Staat Foundation. Search on Facebook, email or call 872-1604.

Moscow Ballet’s Great Russian Nutcracker, 7:30 p.m., Fox Theater, 2001 H St. $27.50-$175 plus fee. or 322-5200. 94th Veterans Day Parade, 10 a.m., at 21st and L Streets. 3249453. Annual Veterans Day Breakfast, 6:30 a.m., American Legion Post 26 Hall, 2020 H Street. $5 donation; free for military veterans. 324-9453.

Sun. 10

Zac Brown 26

Bakersfield Life Magazine

November 2013

Bakersfield Condors vs. Stockton Thunder, 4 p.m., Rabobank Arena, 1001 Truxtun Ave. $8 to $25. Tickets: Rabobank box office, or 3247825.

Wed. 13 Zac Brown Band, 7 p.m., Rabobank Arena, 1001 Truxtun Ave. $37.50-$67.50 plus fee. or 800-745-3000.

Sat. 16 Band of Heathens, 7 p.m., Buck Owens Crystal Palace, 2800 Buck Owens Blvd. $10. or 322-5200.

Mon. 18 CSUB Men’s Basketball, vs. Nevada, 7 p.m., Rabobank Arena, 1001 Truxtun Ave. $5-$20. or 654-BLUE.

Sat. 23 Sixth annual Turkey Trot, 1K, 5K, 10K, 8 a.m., Yokuts Park, 4200 Empire Drive. $25 registration adults by Nov. 20 ($30 day of event); $20 for 17 years and under by Nov. 20 ($25 day of event). Visit or 322-9199.



Celebrating 19 Years of Caring! Darlyn Baker, RN - Owner



early every little girl wants a pony, right? Lindsey Prentice is no different. At age 9, she started volunteering at M.A.R.E. Riding Center, which sparked her passion to one day own a horse. “I had just switched disciplines (dressage to jumping) and had begun riding at a new stable, when Tobbi, a thoroughbred gelding, came up for sale,” Prentice said. “I asked my father if he would consider helping me purchase him.” Her trainer at the time said that the horse had another offer, and if she didn’t decide soon, Tobbi would be sold. That was the day before Christmas Eve, and Prentice’s dad said he thought it wasn’t the right time to purchase the horse. “Come Christmas Day, I was feeling down about the missed opportunity. That is, until I opened my last gift. It was a card from my father that simply said, ‘Tobbi.’” Today, 23-year-old Tobbi continues to compete in shows, jumping with his owner. Though he suffered the loss of his left eye several years ago, his age has not slowed him down, she said. “I thought that it would be the end of our career. However, as long as Tobbi feels confident in me and my decisions, he still jumps his heart out,” said Prentice, 29. “He’s the best partner I could ask for in the ring.” When she’s away from the stables, Prentice is working as the safety coordinator at Bolthouse Farms and spending time with her husband and their three dogs — a small mix, Tarja, and two black Labs, Dixie and Dyna, a puppy that her husband is training as his new hunting partner.

I named my pet Tobbi because … When I purchased him, that was his name; however, I changed his show name to his registered name after I researched his bloodlines based off of the tattoo on his upper lip. Tobbi is bred from the undefeated Triple Crown winner Seattle Slew. Tobbi’s registered name is Select Slew. What makes my pet happy: Dirt and a good scratch. That horse loves to roll and scratch his belly on the grass. Even my trainer laughs when she sees him doing it. Tobbi would let you brush him until your arms fell off. My pet in five words: Tenacious, hilarious, feisty, courageous and loved. Favorite game: Jumping. The horse loves to jump and be rambunctious when turned out. Favorite food: Carrots (good thing mama works for a carrot company). Talents: At his age, it is amazing how active he is, and he can scratch his ear with his hind leg (he’s not a small horse). Antics: Screaming like he’s never been fed before, and rolling and running in sprinklers. Favorite moment: The first moment is when I found out Tobbi was my Christmas gift. The second is when we went to Pebble Beach for a big show. It was my first big show with him, and we won reserve champion in our division. I was so proud of us as a team. — Hillary Haenes — Do you know a devoted pet owner who deserves to be highlighted in Bakersfield Life? Email us at with the subject line: My Pet.

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LOIS HENRY Compiled by Bakersfield Life Magazine


f you receive a call from Lois Henry, you’re likely connected somehow with bad news, and you better be ready to answer some tough questions. Then again, you might just be a part of animal rescue efforts. Henry has a soft spot for animals, but a hard nose for hard news, giving Bakersfield a behind-the-scenes glimpse of local controversy and dysfunction. Raised in Fresno, Henry landed at The Bakersfield Californian in 1990, covering our city, county, state government, social services and oil as a reporter. In 1997, she became metro editor, followed by assistant managing editor in 1999. In 2007, she began writing a column in the newspaper twice a week. Though her biography on states, “the less you know about this person, the better,” we asked for more, and she gave it.

1 I don’t like clowns. I don’t fear them. I dislike them, which is different.

2 For three weeks out of every year, my older sister and I are the same age. We’re what you call “Irish twins.” 3 I have no allergies and have never broken

any bones. Toes don’t count. 4 Writing is a loathsome task that I spend most of my time avoiding by doing research. 5 I’ve eaten a rattlesnake. Tastes like calamari. 6 When I was a kid, I wanted to be an archeologist. Still do. 7 I climbed Mount Whitney twice. 8 During one Mount Whitney trip, I barfed in front of a troop of Boy Scouts. My hiking partners abandoned me while the scout leader used the incident to explain altitude sickness to the totally grossed-out pack. 9 I was once aboard an airplane owned by a Saudi prince. 10 In my Netflix queue, you will find documentaries about the origin of paper and the life of famed architect Frank Lloyd Wright, alongside animated movies, such as “The Incredibles,” and “Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs.” And no, I don’t have kids. 11 I flew supersonic in an FA-18 fighter jet. 12 I love growing tomatoes. 13 I’ve spent time at the SHU (secure housing unit) at Tehachapi prison. 14 No, I won’t tell you why. 15 My great-great grandpa was in Custer’s army. He was on a supply run during the battle of “Little Big Horn.” 16 I’m not superstitious.

Lois Henry, a columnist for The Bakersfield Californian, has a hard nose for hard news but a soft spot for animals. 28

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November 2013

17 I will never, ever, ever buy red playing cards. Blue only.

18 I know a place in Kern County where diamonds are grown.

19 Being in a pen full of chickens wigs me out. And yes, I’ve been in a pen full of chickens. That’s not a hypothetical. 20 When I was younger, I was able to rope fence posts at a full gallop. (I mean, I was on a horse going at full gallop. The fence posts were standing still.) 21 Every Christmas, I bake dozens and dozens of buttermilk/sugar cookies from a recipe handed down from my great-great grandma Rosebock. They are delicious, and everyone loves them. 22 I’ve had drinks in the only saloon on Stewart Island, which is also the last bar before you hit the Antarctic. 23 The first politician I ever interviewed was current Gov. Jerry Brown. He was the Democratic state party chief back then and had a big smudge of dirt on the left side of his nose, which I suppose some people might find appropriate for a politician. 24 I know how to open a bottle of beer on the gates of the Prague Castle. 25 I once joined a radical political group in college just to see if the FBI would start a file on me. They didn’t. But they probably should have.




ou may still be carving pumpkins, but a month from now, you will be carving the Thanksgiving turkey. And if all goes well, no blood will have been shed among the natives. But getting to the end of the obstacle course that is Thanksgiving Day is no easy feat. Family and friends will descend like the coming of the locusts. We will greet one another with voices pitched so high that animals in neighboring counties will hear us, like an old 78 RPM record on a carb high. And as sure as there will be pumpkin pie on the dessert buffet, someone will say something that may offend somebody else, and the people we couldn’t wait to see may be hurling verbal Molotov-cocktails at each other before the night is over. For some reason, this holiday, more so than any other, tends to bring out the best and the worst in people. Maybe it is the absence of gifts and colored eggs, or the presence of too many adult beverages mixed with heaping amounts of Lisa Kimble utopia-like expectations. If you are hosting friends and relatives, remember that you set the tone. Don’t fret over what is overcooked. Frankly, it is the coming together with the people we love that matters most. Besides the people you are geneticallyobligated to invite, consider including a friend, neighbor or coworker who is orphaned for the holiday. The presence of outsiders tends to make others attempt to be on their best behavior. You may be fused at the hip with your cellphone, but unless you are on call, leave it in the car. In the past, my wonderful sister-in-law has hosted our clan (the size of a football team) — 2 percent her side, 98 percent ours. I am always grateful for her hospitality, and plumbing. Wise woman that she is, she insists that the youngsters place their electronic toys in a basket upon

arrival, forcing them to interact the old fashioned way, like the pilgrims did, in real time, face to face. Genius! And remember, those children like to be included in some way. They needn’t be assigned the job of carving the bird, but enlist their help doing something fun, like making place cards or saying grace or what they are thankful for. At some point after dessert, send them off to play before their disinterest morphs into wining and complaining. If someone else is putting on the spread, be a good guest and bring something with you besides just your appetite — a nice bottle of wine, a pie, a side dish, anything. Unless disposable dishware is used, there will probably be stacks of plates and glasses, more than anyone will care to wash alone. So at the very least, before you leave, offer to wash or dry a plate or two. Avoid wading into the conversation mind fields of religion and politics. Thanksgiving has its own built-in awkwardness, depending on the family dynamics, but don’t be a turkey by ribbing someone, rubbing them the wrong way or stepping on toes. The gathering doesn’t have to devolve into an episode of ”Family Feud.” Carve out time to engage in meaningful conversations with the people whom you haven’t seen in some time, offer to help, and feast on the blessings of family, friends, health and prosperity, which really “Manners a lot!” — Agree, disagree? Send your questions, comments or topics you’d like to read about to me at or visit

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November 2013

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Our home was built in 1984 and we have lived here since 1993. Over the years, as our three children grew and our needs changed, we made quite a few changes to the home, but nothing as extensive as a complete kitchen remodel. Last Spring we decided it was time to tackle a kitchen update and we knew we wanted a company who could design a cheery, functional, and modern kitchen, while also providing quality craftsmanship.We had seen Stockdale Kitchen and Bath ads in Bakersfield Life Magazine and heard positive remarks from other customers, so we decided to give Rick Sorci a call.We met with Rick and immediately liked his professional, friendly, and confident personality. He really listened to our ideas and worked at changing things in the kitchen that were not working for us. He designed the kitchen with us, section by section, using his wonderful software that let

us see the design in 3-D. He helped us choose the cabinets, appliances, granite, tile, lighting, and hardware using his unique artistic eye while getting input from us.We truly felt that he had a vision for the finished product. His wonderful sense of humor kept us uplifted and helped to make what can be a stressful time more bearable. His whole team, especially Tina in the office and Jeff, our onsight construction manager, was outstanding! They helped solve any problem that came up and kept us calmer through the whole process and now a month after the work has been completed we are so happy with our kitchen. We would recommend Rick Sorci and Stockdale Kitchen and Bath without hesitation to anyone considering a remodel.

Doug and Martha M.




hy?”It is a word that echoes through my head at some point during most of my cardiovascular pursuits. Why run when nobody is chasing? Why swim in such a landlocked place? Why ride a bike when cars are so readily available? Like all open-ended questions, there are many answers to this simple inquiry. The first reason being that in a moment of impulse, I signed up for a triathlon. Then, to further the folly, I told people about it. So, now, to preserve my foolish pride, I have a training schedule that I downloaded from the internet. Each day, I complete a workout and check off a box. And so, the first answer to the question, “why?” is “to avoid humiliation.” Then there is the power of vanity. I have a Kelly Damian set number of jeans. It is a nice feeling to fit comfortably inside of them. If I could stay within the borders of my pants without exercising, then I might not shuffle along the side of the road with such regularity. To those who would doubt the power of vanity, I refer you to the cosmetics industry, which grossed $55 billion in 2012, according to But anyone who engages in regular endurance endeavors can tell you there is something else that gets us out there, something even bigger than vanity or pride. I came to realize what that motivation was after a series of Socratic-esque discussions with my youngest daughter. My youngest has been trying to defy gravity for several years now. Two Christmases ago, she requested suction cup



shoes so that she could walk on the ceiling. When those didn’t materialize, she lobbied for a jet pack for her fourth birthday. Giving up on me, she turned back to Santa and asked for a jet pack from the big guy. No dice. In between holidays, she has spent quite a lot of time grilling me about why birds can fly but humans can’t. I have done my best to explain hollow bones, aerodynamic body structures and feathers. In one of our conversations a few weeks ago, she finally summed up her assessment of the situation here on the ground. “It’s hard to be a human being,” she said. It’s a real drag to be tethered to the surface of the planet. We depend on gravity for our day-to-day existence, but oh, how we long to escape it. Who has not envied those buoyant astronauts and their floating droplets of Tang? Who has not wished to be a bird or superhero? We humans have been trying to worm our way into the avian club for the past several thousand years. The Renaissance had Leonardo da Vinci’s flying machines. The 19th century had the Wright brothers. Along with our sky divers, hang gliders, base jumpers, bungee jumpers and rollercoaster riders, we have Felix Baumgartner stepping out of Stratos. We want to fly, but we never will. It is one of the more disappointing features of the human condition. Which brings me to the reason for all the running shoes, goggles and helmets in my life. I run, bike and swim because these activities are the closest I can get to flying in my mild-mannered existence. Although I am no elite athlete in all but the most miserable workouts, there comes a moment where everything clicks. My muscles are warmed up and cooperative, my lungs and heart have found their rhythm, and the little tyrant in my brain has stopped pushing the panic button. With the wind on my face, a little bit of speed, or in the silent weightlessness of the pool, I get a taste of what da Vinci himself was chasing way back in 1485 — flight. — To read more, visit, or follow Kelly on Twitter @kellydamian2.

Bakersfield Racquet Club

Mon, Wed, Thurs 5:30pm • Sat 8:30 am

Riverlakes Community Center Tues, Thur 9 am For more info:

589-8950 or 32

Bakersfield Life Magazine

November 2013


BRIMSTONE AT THE PADRE HOTEL Food Dudes enjoy exciting new menu — courtesy of new director, chef — on farewell visit

Dessert sampler


Bakersfield Life Magazine

November 2013

Brimstone at The Padre

On their final visit, the 2013 Food Dudes — from left, Vin Dang, Derek Abbott, Rick Kreiser, David Leon and Rick Hudgens —  dine at Brimstone at The Padre Hotel.

Location: 1702 18th St. Phone: 427-4900 Website: Kitchen Hours: Open seven days a week for breakfast, lunch and dinner. 6 a.m. to 11 p.m. Bar Hours: 11:30 a.m. to midnight Sunday through Thursday; 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 a.m. Friday and Saturday. Hungry for more? Check out additional food photos on

Photos by Greg Nichols

too soft or crispy) made them tasty and quite memorable.


Rick H. and Vin on the whole grilled artichoke: This appetizer possessed an unbelievable flavor. The artichoke is cooked the day before and then cools overnight, so the buttery flavors stay within the artichoke. When ordered, it’s thrown on the grill along with some great seasoning and a side of spicy tomato aioli sauce. If you love artichoke, this is a must.

he theme of the story of The Padre Hotel is one of transformation. From the original opening of the hotel in 1928, and then again in 1954 by Milton “Spartacus” Miller, to its recent renewal, The Padre’s energizing influence on Bakersfield can’t be overstated. Only a few years after its last opening, the management of The Padre Hotel is continuing that theme with the recent hiring of Food and Beverage Director Bobby Williams and Executive Chef Andrew Paparella, who are bringing fresh excitement to the menus and operations of their restaurants. The Food Dudes were treated to just that at Brimstone at The Padre. The Brimstone staff was attentive and helpful in explaining the menu. We tried nearly everything on the menu, samplersizes, of course, and even a few off-menu delicacies that, we were told, are slated for addition to the Brimstone Bites menu, courtesy of the new and creative management team. This team has a plan: You can get bar food just about anywhere, but, by upscaling the options, the hope is to make The Padre the place in Bakersfield for casualfine dining mixed with the classic pub feel. If you liked Brimstone at The Padre before, you’ll be very pleasantly surprised with the new evolution taking place.

Vin on the calamari, shrimp and clam strips: We were presented with individual sized portions of the calamari

Continued on page 36

APPETIZERS Rick H. on the steamed Manila clams: These clams were fresh and flavorful. The tomato aioli sauce with spiced tomato fennel, white wine and herb butter made the starter light, not too chewy, and not overly strong as clams can sometimes taste. Rick H. and David on the garlic truffle fries: Delectable and prepared with truffle aioli, garlic and parmesan cheese. The blend of ingredients and texture of the fries (not

Meat and cheese board


Vin on the meat and cheese board: The meats consisted of prosciutto — thinly sliced dry cured ham and dry cured pork sausages. The rest of the bites included small tangy pickles, a side of spinach salad, grapes, sliced apples, great Brie and parmesan cheese. It comes with toasted bread, so that you can enjoy any combinations of cheese, meats and condiments.


Grilled artichoke

Continued from page 35 served with three sauces — ginger aioli, harissa cocktail sauce and spicy sweet chili. They used a tempura style of breading, which is lighter, making it the perfect combination of breading and calamari. It also comes along with fried shrimp and clam strips for variety.

Rick H. and Vin on the wagyu beef gnocchi: Chef Andrew was super accommodating and allowed us to order from the Belvedere Room menu, and said that guests at Brimstone are welcomed to order from it. He cooked us a wagyu beef gnocchi with cream corn — his top recommendation from Belvedere. The wagyu beef was tender, light and a bit salty in an effective way. It worked to complement the gnocchi, a semi-soft potato dumpling. The added touch was the cream corn, made from fresh, creamy and sweet niblets.

DESSERT Rick H. on the dense fudge brownie: Of the four desserts we sampled from the neatly decorated platter, the

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November 2013

Brimhall Square Brimhall Rd & Calloway Dr 241-9329

one that had the greatest impact on my taste buds was the dense fudge brownie. Rich, dark chocolate with a medium consistency melts in your mouth and balances the cheesecake exceedingly well. David on the lemon cheesecake: Being that this was our last night together, we indulged a bit and ordered every dessert on the menu. The lemon cheesecake surprised me. I am not a big lemon fan, but this had good flavor and a nice texture.

A NOTE FROM THE FOOD DUDES: At the end of “Ocean’s Eleven,” there is a scene where the crew meets at the fountain outside of the Bellagio in Las Vegas. They were brought together based on their individual skills to do a job that only they could accomplish. After successfully completing the job, they met at this fountain where no words were needed. One by one, they all slipped away into the night. That was what it felt like after our last Food Dudes outing of 2013. With our mission now complete, we exited The Padre with satisfied taste buds and memories of an unforgettable year together. We would like to thank the local restaurant owners and staff for their hospitality and for sharing their delicious food with us. It’s fitting that Brimstone at The Padre was our last

Steamed clams stop on our gastronomic tour of Kern County that we’ve undertaken this year. Like The Padre, we have experienced a transformation of sorts, coming out as better men because of the good friendships we’ve made with each other and the shared growth that comes with breaking bread together.


Bakersfield’s Taste of Home Cooking School returns to the Rabobank Theater.

Kristi Larson


Bakersfield Life Magazine



November 2013

Kristi Larson, host of this year’s Taste of Home Cooking School, chats about recipes, cooking tips, kitchen gadgets and more Compiled by Kevin McCloskey


t’s the return of Bakersfield’s Taste of Home Cooking School Nov. 12 at Rabobank Theater, as well as the return of presenter and culinary specialist Kristi Larson. This Othello, Wash. native, who currently makes her home outside of Salt Lake City, packed up her minivan full of culinary equipment and headed west to show us her favorite recipes and cooking tips. An eight-year veteran of the Taste of Home Cooking School, Larson took a few minutes to answer some questions about the cooking school, the upcoming event and her work with Taste of Home Magazine, the No. 1 cooking magazine in the world that features recipes from subscribers, tested in kitchens and published. And best of all, she arrives just in time for the home-cookingest holiday of the year, Thanksgiving.



Taste of Home Cooking School When: 6 p.m. (shopping bazaar at 3:30 p.m.) Where: Rabobank Theater, 1001 Truxtun Ave. Presented by: Smart & Final. Sponsors include Bakersfield Heart Hospital, Eagle Mountain Casino, Urner’s and The Bakersfield Californian.

Tickets for this year’s Taste of Home Cooking School are $15 and $35 (VIP) and include a digital subscription to one of three Taste of Homes magazines.

Where did you first learn to cook? I started around 5 years old, if not a little younger. I remember standing on a chair at the kitchen counter, helping my mom measure ingredients for cookies. My mom and both of my grandmothers taught me the joy of cooking for family. What was your favorite job in the kitchen? Baking has always been my favorite thing to do. There’s just something about the smell of freshly baked cookies that makes me think of home. I have a big sweet tooth and love being able to sample freshly baked goodies. How did you get involved with Taste of Home Magazine? My mom has been a subscriber since the beginning, and I always looked forward to the new issue for recipes to try. My mom and grandma took me to a Taste of Home Cooking School when I was in high school, and I loved it! After I graduated from college, Taste of Home was looking for someone to conduct cooking school shows in the Midwest, and I thought it sounded like a fun job, so I applied. Lucky for me, they hired me in January of 2006. I now do shows in the Western States, and I’ve seen a lot more of our beautiful country than I ever thought I would. What does your job consist of with Taste of Home? I conduct 30 to 40 cooking school shows every year, and


Tickets: $15 for general admission and $35 for VIP, which includes a cookbook set, backstage pass, meet-and-greet and preferred seating. Each ticket holder also gets one of three digital subscriptions to Taste of Home magazines and a goodie bag. or 800-745-3000. More information: Raffle: Ugg Classic Short boots, valued at $170, courtesy of Guarantee Shoe Center.

work closely with our local event partners to make sure they have all of the resources they need to put on a great show. I test recipes for upcoming shows to find the best possible recipes to share. I’m also the field team lead, so I work closely with all of the Taste of Home culinary specialists and make sure they have everything they need. What do you enjoy most about the live events? I love that every community is different, and each show is unique. Anything can happen because it’s a live show. I love being able to interact with the audience and have some fun with them. Do you have any particular memories of your last event here in Bakersfield? I remember that it was a great show, with an enthusiastic, excited crowd, and I’m very much looking forward to returning in November. What is one of your favorite recipes to cook? My grandma Reno’s rolls. I make them for our big holiday meals with extended family, and I made them often throughout college. They’re soft, sweet, buttery and so delicious! And there’s just something about taking the time to make rolls from scratch that seems to make them taste even better. Working with the yeast dough, kneading it, and then shaping

Continued on page 40


Continued from page 39 the rolls is relaxing, and helps me take my mind off of things. What do you enjoy most about teaching? Seeing someone’s eyes light up when they realize that I’m teaching them something they can do, and they get excited about trying it for themselves. With any recipe, I think it’s important to feel proud of what you’ve accomplished, and if I’m able to help someone reach that point, then I’m happy. What is your favorite dish to eat? I love cheesecake! Once I got into my teens, my birthday cake request became cheesecake, so that’s what my mom would make. What would people be surprised to find in your home kitchen, refrigerator or pantry? My refrigerator is full of condiments. I love trying new barbecue sauces, salad dressings and marinades. I also have a lot of dried spices and herbs. Spice blends and flavored peppers and salts are some of my favorites. What is your best tip for people who want to improve their skills in the kitchen? Knife skills are one of the most important things to have when working in the kitchen. It can speed up your prep time, and make things so much easier. We have lots of cooking

instruction videos on, including one on knife skills. What is your best tip for people who want to improve their party-hosting skills? Try to garnish the plate with something that is already in the recipe. Don’t just throw a piece of parsley on there to add color. If your recipe has green onions in it, slice one up and sprinkle it on top. If you’re doing a buffet-style party, try setting things at different heights to make it look better. You can create cake stands by putting a decorative coffee mug under a plate or using a mason jar filled with colorful objects to raise bowls or plates off the table. What is your favorite kitchen gadget or tool? I love my microplane grater for fresh citrus zest, and I use silicone scrapers all of the time because they’re heat resistant. I have some fun new gadgets that I’ll be using at the show in November, and people have seemed pretty excited about them at the shows I’ve done so far. You just got a call from an angel investor who wants to fully fund your dream restaurant. What will it be? I’ve always thought it would be fun to have a little bakery and have space in the back to hold cooking classes for kids and adults. I’d like to serve cupcakes, cookies, muffins and anything else that sounds good that day.


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HOMEMADE AWAY FROM HOME Looking for a homemade dish with an ethnic taste? Try one of these two unique recipes By Bakersfield Life Magazine


n your search for a unique ethnic dining experience, you might be looking out of town, but an adventurous meal might be closer to home. Try one of these homemade ethnic dishes served up by two culinary savvy locals.

Mofongo and Meatballs Bakersfield Ward 1 Councilman Willie Rivera says this dish reminds him of home. He learned this Puerto Rican classic from his father and said the plantains make it especially delicious. “Mofongo is a comfort food for me,” he said. “I’ll make it when the grocery store has plantains in, and I don’t mind making a small mess in the kitchen.”

3 green plantains Vegetable oil 1 pound of hamburger meat (80-20 is great) Fresh chopped garlic Tomato sauce Directions: Take the meat, spice with salt and pepper (I like to use something called Adobo by Goya) and form 1-inch meatballs. Sautee the meatballs and three chopped cloves of garlic until the meatballs are brown all around. Add the meatballs to a saucepan with two cups of tomato sauce, 1/2 cup of water and simmer on low heat. Peel the plantains and cut them into 1-inch slices. Heat enough vegetable oil in a saucepan to fry the plantain slices. Fry them until they are golden brown and drain them on paper towel. Take a tostonera (or a flat surface like a plate) and press each of the plantain slices until they are about three inches wide around. Return the pressed plantain slices to the oil and fry about two more minutes. Remove from the oil and drain on fresh paper towel. Next, you will need a pilon (made of wood is best) to mash the fried plantain slices. For added flavor, you can mash a fresh chopped garlic or fried pork rinds (chicharrónes). Place the mashed plantains in serving bowls, and add the meatballs and sauce. Enjoy!


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November 2013

Willie Rivera with his Mofongo Meatballs



Jay Tamsi, president/CEO of the Kern County Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, learned how to make this national dish of the Philippines from his grandfather, Marcelo Sabado Tamsi. While families make the dish with different types of meats, Tamsi makes his with lean pork. “I think this dish is easy to prepare,” Tamsi said. “My family and nephews love it so much.” Tamsi said he likes the taste, aroma and overall originality of this dish, and usually makes it with his Jay Tamsi nephews, Kobe and Tyler.


Pork Adobo

Jay Tamsi’s Pork Adobo

Ingredients 4 to 5 pounds lean pork, cut into 1-inch cube pieces 6 whole garlic cloves 1/2 cup vinegar 1/4 cup soy sauce Water Pickling spice (put in a small strainer) Salt and pepper to taste Paprika (for the coloring — optional) Directions: Place pork meat in a large heated pot. Season

pork meat with salt and pepper. Mix all ingredients, including pickling spice, in small strainer to be placed in the center of the large pot, and add water about 1-inch above pork meat. Boil everything in large pot. Let it simmer for about one hour. Check if pork meat is tender (to your preference). Drain the water, depending on how much liquid you would like to leave. Set temperature back on high and let it cook to boil (about 10 to 15 minutes). Do not leave unattended; stir pork meat and all ingredients. Add salt to taste. Serve hot over steamed rice and share with family and friends. Feeds 8 to 10 people.

— Gabriel Ramirez contributed to this article.

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The Senecal family is ready to tailgate. From left to right: Bryan Burnett, Addyson Burnett, Dana Burnett, Kaitlin Senecal, Kathi Senecal, Ayden Burnett and Bill Senecal.

THE SENECAL FAMILY For this tremendous tailgating family, it’s all about the three Fs — family, football and food Compiled by Hillary Haenes

Photos by Michael Lopez


he Senecals have been University of Southern California football fans for more than 40 years, and season ticket holders since 2011. “I grew up in Southern California and started playing football in the early ’70s. As a youth, I started following USC,” said Bill Senecal. “I remember watching them play in the Rose Bowl almost every New Year’s Day. Watching such an amazing team got me hooked on football and following USC football.” This loyal friendly bunch also loves to tailgate; in fact, they take it to another level. With themed menus, decor in the team’s colors and strong Trojan spirit, the Senecals aren’t your average supporters. “I always say that I was born with cardinal and gold in my blood! I was raised watching football with my dad and have followed USC for as long as I can remember,” said Kaitlin Senecal. “It’s amazing to be able to attend the home games in


Bakersfield Life Magazine

November 2013

The menu prepared by the Senecal family is complete for USC Trojan football tailgating.

The Senecal family tailgating menu includes bacon-wrapped stuffed chicken and shrimp.

Food, family and USC Trojan football create the perfect trio to the Senecal’s tailgating party.

a stadium that I grew up watching on TV.” To the Senecals, USC tailgating is a chance for the entire family to get together on game day and spend some quality time. Between three families, there are 12 season tickets. A typical home game entails an early morning setup and time to relax, play games and, of course, eat. They look forward to mingling with other ticket holders and open up their tailgate to anyone who wants to grab a plate, including band members and hungry college students. Learn more about this family and take some of their tailgating advice. Editor’snote:The Senecalsansw ered these questionsas a fam ily.

TAILGATING ADVICE Tailgating is important to us because: During the fall, our top priorities are family, football and tailgating. It is an opportunity for us to spend time with family while enjoying good food and a fun atmosphere. It is also a chance to spend a day with your Trojan family and support the student athletes. How often we tailgate: We tailgate for every home game, which is either six or seven games per season. We also “awaygate” for at least one game per season and “homegate” for all other away games. Our specialty: We love to decorate our tailgating area and are always looking for new USC items to enhance our display. We enjoy it when people come by and take pic-

tures of our setup. Nightmare tailgating story: We had an incident where a Crock-Pot of cheese dip spilled in our car, which was a hot mess. We also have a tendency to lose a set of keys, If I could spend a day with a but now we put all famous former USC player, it keys on lanyards, as would be: we have learned it’s Bill Senecal: Pat Haden, because he was a playpretty hard to lose er I watched growing up and I would like to talk keys that are hanging about the history of USC. around your neck. Kathi Senecal: Matt Barkley, because he did the right thing and stayed his last year! He’s the ultiAfter the 2012 Stanmate team player. ford game (at StanKaitlin Senecal: Marcus Allen, because he is a ford), it took about 30 legend, or Clay Matthews III, because he is one of to 45 minutes to find my favorite players, and I am a Packers fan, too! the car because all the Dawn Mugavero: Lendale White, because he is Redwood trees in their my favorite player and was amazing to watch. parking lot look exactBryan Burnett: Charles White, because I wonly the same. der what it was like to play in the glory days. One of our tailgating secrets: Get

there early and beat the crowd! Also, you want to prep as much as you can before and get everything organized. We have a system for grocery shopping, food prep and packing for every tailgate. If you are not organized and prepared, you scramble on the morning of and it can get very stressful.

Continued on page 46


Continued from page 45 How we find inspiration to create new dishes:

We like to get inspiration from Pinterest recipes and try to tweak the recipes to make it our own.

TOOLS OF THE TRADE My favorite piece of cooking equipment for tailgating: You must have a good barbecue as it’s the key

to a good tailgate. Our second favorite is our football Crock-Pot! Must-have tailgating tools: Our wagon, a knife, cutting board and USC platters and serving dishes. Also, music and wine/beer openers. You would be amazed how many people ask to borrow an opener! Go-to cookbooks: Recipes from Ree Drummond (Not only do we love her recipes, but she’s also an USC alumna), “Gooseberry Patch” (It’s have been a favorite for many years, and we love that their recipes are simple), or our family recipe binder. Ingredients that we avoid/dislike: Cumin, ginger, and seafood and shrimp because Kaitlin is allergic. We buy this in bulk: USC tailgating plates and napkins from Costco. They come in packs of 50 plates and 100 napkins ... we bought seven packs. Fight on! Dream tailgating appliances: Samsung TV with satellite dish, three-blender Margaritaville machine and a smoker.

A FEW OF OUR FAVORITES FOR FOOTBALL GAMES USC swag/merchandise: This year, we love our USC red solo cups from the bookstore, and our USC light up ice cubes. We pretty much buy anything and everything that is USC or cardinal and gold. Always in the cooler: Ice for mixed drinks, beer for the guys and champs for mimosas! Wine: Ironstone Vineyards Champagne, Chappellet Wines or Jersey Girl by Jada Vineyard & Winery. Beer: Hangar 24’s Orange Wheat, Alt-Bier Ale or Amarillo Pale Ale and Coors Light for the walk to the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum. Cocktails: Flavored vodkas (peach, cherry and pineapple are a few favorites), sangria or any cocktail that can be USC themed! This year we made cardinal and gold margaritas, and jello shots. Family recipe: We make a seven-layer dip that is always a hit! Snacks: Croissants and muffins for the mornings; veggie trays and chips with dips/hummus. Our tastiest tailgate food: For the first tailgate this season, we had a fajita-themed spread — chicken and shrimp fajitas on the grill. Our splurge at the grocery store: A good bottle of wine for our Friday night food prep!

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Kathi’s Pumpkin Bars

Seven Layer Taco Dip

Servings: 24 bars Ingredients 2 cups all-purpose flour 2 teaspoons baking powder 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon 1 teaspoon baking soda 1/4 teaspoon salt 4 eggs 15-ounce can of pumpkin 1-2/3 cups granulated sugar 1 cup cooking oil 3/4 cup chopped pecans (optional) Cream cheese frosting (see recipe) Cream Cheese Frosting: In a medium bowl, beat together one 3-ounce package of softened cream cheese, 1/4-cup of softened butter and 1 teaspoon vanilla until fluffy. Gradually add 2 cups of sifted powdered sugar, beating till smooth. Directions: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. In a bowl combine flour, baking powder, cinnamon, baking soda and salt; set aside. In a large mixing bowl, beat together eggs, pumpkin, sugar and oil with an electric mixer on medium speed.

Servings: 10 to 12 Ingredients 10-1/2 ounce can of bean dip (We use Fritos) 2-3 avocados, pitted, peeled and mashed 2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice (I add a little fresh lime juice, too) Garlic salt and pepper to taste 1 cup light sour cream 1/4 cup light mayonnaise 1-1/2 ounce package of taco seasoning mix 2 cups tomatoes, chopped 1 cup green onions, chopped 3.8-ounce can sliced black olives, drained 8-ounce package shredded medium or sharp cheddar cheese Corn or flour tortilla chips Directions: Spread bean dip in the bottom of a 13-by-9-inch glass serving dish (we use a decorative round pie plate). Mix mashed avocados with lemon/lime juice, garlic salt and pepper; spread over bean dip layer. Blend together sour cream, mayonnaise and taco seasoning. Spread over avocado layer. Layer with tomatoes, onion, olives and shredded cheese. Chill. Serve with corn or flour tortilla chips.

Kathi’s Pumpkin Bars, top and Seven Layer Taco Dip, bottom. Add the flour mixture; beat till well combined. If desired, stir in chopped pecans. Spread the batter into an ungreased 15by-10-by-1-inch baking pan. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes or till a wooden toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool on a wire rack. Frost with cream cheese frosting. Cut into squares and store in the refrigerator.

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Joey Travolta, left, and Rick Davis are bringing to our city the Outside of the Box Bakersfield Film Festival Nov. 8 through 10.

OUTSIDE THE BOX BAKERSFIELD FILM FESTIVAL Three-day fest to showcase independent filmmakers throughout downtown Bakersfield By Eduardo Gamez


undance. Cannes. Bakersfield? These three may have something in common — they share the common theme of promoting arts and entertainment, and the passion that exudes from creative individuals who make them. And our city is joining them with the inaugural Outside of the Box Bakersfield Film Festival, presented by Tejon Ranch on Nov. 8 through 10 in


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November 2013



downtown Bakersfield. The festival is produced by the Fox Theater Foundation in conjunction with Inclusion Films, a practical film workshop run by Joey Travolta (brother of John) and is designed to showcase independent filmmakers from across our region and internationally. Nearly 30 hours of film and 44 screenings will be featured during the festival, which will be shown at The Fox Theater and its back lot, and The Spotlight Theater. The Padre Hotel will serve as the host hotel for the festival. Categories include films shot by or about people with developmental disabilities, American veterans and their stories of survival and recovery, spiritual-based films serving to inspire love and compassion within us and also mainstream independent films. Showings include feature films and documentaries, shorts (less than 50 minutes), music videos and animations. The festival is the creation of Rick Davis, retired Kern County film commissioner and president of the Fox Foundation. Organizers say they hope to provide an outlet for local visual arts and to make this film festival a recurring event in Bakersfield, one that attracts the highest quality submissions and can hopefully grow into a top-tier regional film festival. Joey Travolta, another key organizer, has a special connec-

Outside the Box Bakersfield Film Festival When: Nov. 8-10 Where: Downtown Bakersfield (Fox Theater, The Spotlight Theater) Tickets: $20 single day, $150 festival pass, $250 pass plus a la carte options available More information:

tion to Bakersfield. “I spend half my year in Bakersfield with a workshop for Inclusion Films,” Travolta said. “The Fox Foundation and Bakersfield are excellent areas to be involved with film.” Those in attendance can interact with filmmakers, attend red carpet events and various receptions. The overall best film will receive a $1,000 cash prize, and the best film in each subcategory will receive $250. Second- and third-place winners in each category will receive a trophy. And Joey Travolta will be presenting the general excellence award. One filmmaker from the disabilities category will be honored with the first-ever Jett Travolta Memorial Award, selected by the Travolta family. The award is named after John Travolta’s autistic son who died after — Joey Travolta suffering a seizure in 2009. Proceeds from the festival will benefit the Fox Theater Foundation, and the foundation will donate up to 25 percent of the proceeds to Inclusion Films to support scholarships for its film students. On Nov. 8, Joe Mantegna, star of the CBS television show “Criminal Minds,” will be a special guest during an industry luncheon. The next day, the festival is also partnering with Honor Flight Kern County to pay tribute to veterans. Other festival partners include The Bakersfield Californian, Rabobank, Downtown Business Association, KGET, Kern County Board of Trade and Vallitix.

The Fox Foundation and Bakersfield are excellent areas to be involved with film.


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Altares de Familia When: 4 to 9 p.m. Nov. 2 Where: Bakersfield Museum of Art, 1930 R. St. What: Decorated family altars, children’s craft area, face painting, food vendors, live entertainment and art exhibits. Admission: $1 per person, children 6 and under free. Information: 323-7219 or


Bakersfield Life Magazine

November 2013

Altares de Familia, slated Nov. 2, will offer cultural performances and more.

ALTARES DE FAMILIA Museum of art’s family-friendly event, honoring the memory of those deceased, resurrects for another year By Matt Munoz

Photos courtesy of Bakersfield Museum of Art


ne of Bakersfield’s most “spirited” events returns Nov. 2 to the Bakersfield Museum of Art. At “Altares de Familia,” a colorful artistic celebration to honor the memory of loved ones who’ve passed away, the community is invited to enjoy a variety of festivities modeled after global Dia de los Muertos, or Day of Dead, festivals. “At its core, this holiday is most similar to Veterans Day or Memorial Day,” said Felisa Patino, World Language Department chairwoman and Spanish teacher at Liberty High School, who has been an event volunteer since its debut four years ago. “It is a day to remember those who have passed, a time to set aside to talk to younger generations about perhaps their late grandfather, aunt or another

Vendors will be selling authentic Dia de los Muertos crafts at the Altares de Familia event on Nov. 2. special person, as one prepares a display or ‘ofrenda’ or ‘altar’ in their home or local museum.” Dia de los Muertos celebratory customs can be traced back to the Aztec Indians of Mexico who believed in an afterlife, where spirits of deceased loved ones would return to the material world as hummingbirds and butterflies. Patino credits her mother, Eva Patino, with introducing

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Continued from page 51 her to many of the holiday’s traditions, as it’s also become quite the family affair passed onto her own children. “My daughters, my parents and I look forward to this time of year, when we plan, make crafts, give presentations and participate in events revolving around Dia de los Muertos,” she said. In Bakersfield, people gather to honor and remember friends and family who have passed, incorporating traditions from past to present, creating altars, special foods Bakersfield Museum of Art education coordiand art to honor nator, Liz Sherwyn, left, and museum curator deceased loved Vikki Cruz at last year’s Altares de Familia. ones. Much of the museum grounds will be decorated with elaborate family altars, all paying respects. “Because Mexico has strong roots in the arts, the holiday is filled with the colorfulness of tin work, textiles, wood carving, basket weaving, clay work, intricate paper cut-outs, can-

Joseph Amaya

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Abdul Jobah









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November 2013

dle makers, paper mache and much more.” Those who may feel the celebration is a little too macabre for their comfort zone, Patino says not to worry. Dia de los Muertos is a family event celebrated globally, especially in Latin countries where themes are always upbeat. “Parents should not be worried about anything frightening young children. The skeleton motif and design will be prominent in the artwork and decorations, but there is nothing scary or meant to be frightening,” Patino said. “On the contrary, all skeleton designs are depicted happy, dancing and colorful.” Patino added that organizing an event of this magnitude also requires a large number of volunteers helping to bring the event to life. While enjoying the evening’s festivities, visitors may also view the museum’s latest fall exhibit featuring acclaimed Latin art master Alfredo Arreguin, whose works include iconic Mexican figures, intricate landscapes and Mexican symbolism. Student art pieces created in honor of the event will be displayed and juried. At Mill Creek Park, adjacent to the museum, attendees can enjoy Mexican food vendors, a children’s crafts area, cultural craft vendors, traditional calavera face painting and live entertainment. This year’s lineup has something for everyone, including traditional Aztec dancing, folkloric dancing and live music and bands.

Colorful altars honoring loved ones who have passed are a part of the Dia de los Muertos tradition.

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CHRISTOPHER D. CADY Lieutenant junior grade, U.S. Navy Compiled by Scott Camp

Photos courtesy of Christopher Cady


ne day, Christopher Cady may be pursuing a submarine in a flight simulator. Another day, he could be taking a low-level nighttime navigation flight with night vision goggles, which also includes practicing finding and landing on mountain zones. Or, he could be involved in search and rescue training. That’s the life of the 25-year-old Stockdale High School graduate — a U.S. Navy helicopter pilot in training. “It takes a lot of work to prepare for different events each day,” said Cady, a lieutenant junior grade who is stationed in San Diego. “But it is fun and always interesting.” What inspired me to serve: Christopher Cady At the time I enlisted, I did not have much perspective on what it meant to serve. I was drawn by the consistent and unique challenges that the service brought. Why I chose the U.S. Navy: I chose the Navy because I wanted to fly, and that was the best opportunity. And, I really enjoyed the Annapolis area where the Naval Academy is located. Also, a former neighbor, Lt. Comm. Harry Scarborough (retired), introduced me to the idea of going to the Naval Academy.

The U.S. Navy lieutenant junior grade and Stockdale High grad is a helicopter pilot in training. Biggest accomplishment: Academically, I finished my master’s degree in aerospace engineering in December 2010. Professionally, after a year and a half of flight school, I received my wings last July. Favorite thing about being in military: Every day at 54

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Christopher Cady, a U.S. Navy lieutenant junior grade, says his parents are his role models. work is different. My daily work schedule changes based on flight schedules and mission requirements, which keeps things interesting. Least favorite thing about the military: The downside to the sporadic work schedule is that I rarely know for sure what I will be doing in any given week or month. This makes it difficult to plan things in advance. What inspired me to fly helicopters: I really enjoy the teamwork and crew environment. We fly with two pilots and aircrew; it is a constant team effort to complete each flight. How long I hope to serve: I still have seven years on my pilot contract, so I have a while to decide. My initial thought is that I would try to fly as long as possible. What I would be doing if I wasn’t in the military: My military career has been set for five years now, so I have not thought about it for a while. But, I would probably be utilizing my engineering degree. In five years, I will … be flying, most likely in the (Sikorsky SH-60 Seahawk), the newer version of my helicopter, the SH-60B. What are your long-term goals: I will try to go to test pilot school. What I do in my spare time: I like to play golf. I also enjoy traveling and exploring new places when I have the time. Role models: My parents. What I miss about Bakersfield: I miss hanging out with friends and family. I guess what I miss most is playing golf with my dad. Advice for aspiring soldiers: Research thoroughly the opportunities available in the military. There are endless options, so find something you enjoy and work to be the best at it.



Bakersfield Life Editor Olivia Garcia rides the Ford Fusion Energi into the sunset.

Plug-in hybrid offers solid blend of smart engineering, fuel efficiency, luxury By Olivia Garcia

Photos by Mark Nessia


hen I first discovered that my test-drive of the month would be a Ford Fusion Energi, a plug-in hybrid, I was expecting a compact car to step into, but boy, was I wrong. For one, there is nothing small about the Ford Fusion Energi. It is a luxury sedan car that can easily fit up to five people. Even tall individuals like my colleague, Jorge Barrientos, can easily sit in the backseat in comfort. In fact, Jorge test drove the model earlier this year and was equally impressed. “The all-new redesigned Ford Fusion Hybrid is said to have the best combination of quality, size and family-friendly features in its class,” said Jorge. “It has excellent fuel economy, strong performance, great reliability and safety scores, roomy interior and stylish exterior.” He’s right about that. When Kyle Galaz, a sales and leasing consultant of Jim Burke Ford, sat me in the car to go over a review of features, I did not realize the car was turned on. In fact, another colleague of mine, Christina Melton, walked passed me in the parking lot and was shocked that the car was running as I drove out of the lot. “Is the car turned on?” she asked. 56

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Charge the Ford Fusion Energi at home using a standard 120-volt or optional 240-volt. The Fusion Energi is so quiet that it can sneak past you. Not only is it big and classy, the Fusion Energi can accommodate different driving experiences. For instance, as a plug-in hybrid, the Fusion Energi will allow you to travel up to 21 miles on pure electric mode. This is perfect for getting to and from work, or going to the grocery store. Galaz says he has a customer who’s been operating his Fusion Energi on electric only for the past four months because he is mainly using it to and from work. Once he’s home, all he needs to do is plug it into a standard 120-volt

Ford Fusion Energi comes with a panel next to the speedometer that shows “efficiency leaves.” In essence, the more eco-friendly you drive, the more the leaves grow.

current to charge. A higher 240-volt can be installed in your home for a faster charge. Nevertheless, Galaz encourages customers to touch base with PG&E, which offers lower rates for charging cars in the late evening. In fact, you can set up your hybrid to charge at a scheduled time. Now if you don’t want to take the electric-only option because you’ll be doing more traveling, then no worries. You can operate using the auto mode, which relies on gas and electricity, and can get you more than 600 miles per tank (excuse me while I cry over how much money I spend each week to fill up my older gas-guzzler SUV tank). The Fusion Energi, which comes with a 2-liter engine with 188 horsepower is packed with luxury options — leather seats, power seats, a Sony sound system, 8-inch touchscreen and a voice-activated system. You can connect via Bluetooth with up to 12 devices. I dig the safety features: adaptive cruise control, blind spot and lane-keeping systems that keep you on the alert. And I especially love the regenerative breaking system that recovers the energy and sends it back to the battery pack for later use. In fact, the Ford Energi comes with a Zen-themed panel next to the speedometer that shows a graphical design of “efficiency leaves.” In essence, the more eco-friendly you drive, the more the leaves grow. I tried my best to be good because I wanted to see the leaves grow. I expect the Fusion Energi will continue to draw consumer interest. According to a Nasdaq article last month, the Ford Motor Co., in general, experienced a growth in car sales this year, a jump from 13 percent over 2012. Part of the credit goes to its Fusion line. “Fusion sales are up 13.4 percent this year. In some cases, Fusions are selling in 20 days, three times faster, than the industry. Ford will sell 300,000 Fusions this year,” according to Nasdaq. Even more, the Ford Fusion Energi ranked in the top 20 in “affordable midsize cars” and “hybrid cars,” according to the U.S. News and World Report. It is apparent that Ford cares about technology and carries interest in hybrids, plug-in hybrids, and all-electrics. According to The Detroit News, Ford Motor Co. is partnering with the University of Michigan to create an $8 million lab to develop “longer-lasting ... efficient battery packs.”

Ford Fusion Energi features a Sony sound system, 8inch touchscreen and a voice-activated system. You can connect via Bluetooth with up to 12 devices.

It’s all in the details City and highway mileage. Price tag: 44 city, 41 highway and 43 mpg combined only using gas motor, 100 mpg when fully charged and the ability to drive up to 21 miles on pure electric mode. Starts at $39,495 before applicable federal and state incentives. $40,100 base price

Best features of the Ford Fusion Energi: Ability to drive on all electric mode up to 85 mph; world-class features in an eco-friendly vehicle; electric-car like features with no “range anxiety;” ability to charge vehicle at home using a standard 120-volt or optional 240-volt; and 620 miles driving per tank when driving with economy in mind. The Ford Fusion Energi is perfect for families, commuters, really anyone who wants a very roomy sedan that gets incredible fuel economy, and still has tons of incredible features.

How the Ford Fusion Energi stands out from others: The fact that Ford didn’t remove features to get better fuel economy and it didn’t make the car smaller to get better fuel economy, Ford stepped up to the plate and brought in the best people to not only give you all the best features and the most comfort, but they also give you the best fuel economy!

Target customer: Eco-friendly and tech-savvy people. Families looking to save money on gas.

Three words that define the Ford Fusion Energi: World class, amazing, complete!

What I like the most about the Ford Fusion Energi: It has the ability to use electric-mode driving. Most people in Bakersfield are making short trips to school, stores and work, and this vehicle allows you to use zero gas on those quick trips. Source: Kyle Galaz, Jim Burke Ford



Bakersfield Life Assistant Managing Editor Jorge Barrientos and wife Carla with the newly redesigned Hyundai Santa Fe.

SANTA FE SENSATION Proof in the product: Hyundai’s newly redesigned Santa Fe SUV is bigger and better than ever By Jorge Barrientos

Photos by Michael Lopez


y wife just turned 30 years old, and I’ll hit the big 30 in November. We don’t have kids, but we’ve been discussing more and more they’re in our future. That conversation kicked up a notch as we drove around in the 2013 Hyundai Sante Fe — a newly redesigned SUV that’s begging to be filled with loved ones. The deceptively roomie Santa Fe is bigger and better than ever, coming in five-, six- and seven-passenger models. Already, U.S. News Rankings & Reviews has voted the Sante Fe among the best in “affordable midsize SUVs” and “affordable SUVs with three rows” categories for its impressive combination of ownership costs and positive reviews in its class. Bakersfield Hyundai staff aren’t shy to make sure you 58

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know how the Sante Fe matches up to its competitors. The SUV is less expensive than its comparable competitors, even though you get more features, room and luxury in the Santa Fe, they say. And “America’s Best Warranty,” as it’s called, simply can’t be beat — 10 year, 100,000 miles. “We’re proud of our product,” said Patrick Beck, general manager for Bakersfield Hyundai. “We’re a premium brand, but less expensive. It’s a world-class product.” Plus, the residual values are higher on Hyundai than competitors. “This means the market knows that over time, the Santa Fe is worth more,” Beck said. The dealership has sold plenty. Bakersfield Hyundai ranked in the top 2 percent is sales and serve in the state, with a reputation for superior customer service by its 66 employees, Beck said. “Here, it’s all about people and ownership experience,” he said. It also helps that the dealership something like the Santa Fe, which flaunts the latest in technology, comfort and other perks, and model choices to suit your needs. It comes in four trim levels: Santa Fe Sport and Sport 2.0T, and Santa Fe GLS

Tech features in the Hyundai Santa Fe include push-button start, Bluetooth, and a six-speaker audio system (upgrade to a 12-speaker Infinity sound system with Blue Link in-car telematics). The 2014 Santa Fe is available in four trim levels.

It’s all in the details Mileage: 21 city, 29 mpg highway (test drive model 18 city, 25 mpg highway

Price tag: Starting at $28,600 (test drive model — 2013 Santa Fe LTD FWD — starting at $33,350)

What makes the Santa Fe stand out from others? The ability to suit various customer personalities, needs and desires with unmatched style and sophistication.

5 best features

The newly redesigned Hyundai Santa Fe is bigger and better than ever. This one is a six-seater.

• Sleek exterior and interior • Safety with style • Complete control of vehicle from the steering wheel • Comfort of SUV roominess without breaking the bank at the gas pump • And always, American’s best warranty

Target customer: Any customer who seeks six to seven passenger seating capacity without compromising value, features and dependability.

The Santa Fe is perfect for… Individuals or families that want or need a vehicle that embodies the greatest aspects of the modern SUV

and Limited. Sport models seat five, a four-cylinder engine and front- or allwheel drive. The others can seat up to seven and comes standard with a V6 engine and front-wheel drive, with all-wheel drive available. They also feature the following: • Technology: Tech features include push-button start, Bluetooth, a six-speaker audio system with upgrade to a 12-speaker Infinity sound system. It also comes Blue Link in-car telematics, Hillstart Assist Control, Downhill Brake Control, and various driving modes. • Comfort: The interior feels like a big-budget production that’s refined, smooth and spacious. WardsAuto put the Santa Fe on this year’s “Ward’s 10 Best Interiors” list out of 46 vehicles, calling it “wellcrafted, tastefully appointed and affordable, despite a decidedly upscale look and feel.” In fact, this new Santa Fe is 8.5 inches longer, with a 3.9-inch longer wheelbase. Other comfort perks include heated steering wheel, seven airbags and reclining passenger seats. • Features galore: Also available in the Santa Fe are panorama roof, power lift gate, sun shades, rear temperature controls, 24-hour assistance, and it can haul up to 5,000 pounds. The overall reviews of the Santa Fe have been stellar. Los Angeles Times, for example, said “the third generation of the Santa Fe ...

Three words that define the Santa Fe: • Sleek • Aggressive • Distinct.

What do you like most about the Santa Fe? Universal functionality of its features for comfort and luxury, while also a supreme fit for active families and individuals. And you can get one at Bakersfield Hyundai. Source: Patrick Beck, general manager, Bakersfield Hyundai

demonstrates how far the company has come,” with Hyundai doubling U.S. sales from 2001 to 2012 while the industry as a whole dropped by 15 percent. In all, Santa Fe proves to be one of the better all-around mid-tolarge crossover utility vehicles, destined to unseat the class-leading crossovers with quality, power, comfort and style. As for having kids, the wife and I still aren’t sure one way or the other, but I can say that if the kids come, the Santa Fe would be the perfect choice for a nice family tour.



KAMEN NEDELTCHEV Local dentist, native of Bulgaria, moved to town 10 years ago with no regrets Compiled by Bakersfield Life Magazine


years. “And I have never regretted my decision,” Nedeltchev said. Kamen and his wife Tzvetanka are both dentists with Mercy Plaza Dental Group, and they’ve enjoyed their careers for 34 years, he said. They have two grown sons, Ivan, 33, and Alexi, 30. Learn more about him and his life in Bakersfield. My neighborhood: I live in northwest Bakersfield near Liberty High School, and I enjoy it tremendously. I have great neighbors, it’s quiet and resort-like. It is the best place I have ever lived. What surprises me most about Bakersfield compared to other places I have lived: Bakersfield has the peace of a small town and all benefits of the big town. How I relax in Bakersfield: My wife and I like walking in The Park At River Walk and see a movie every once in a while. Where you will usually find me eating lunch or dinner: We like cooking at home a lot. Our office is less than two miles away, and we have the luxury of having lunch at home almost every day. When we go out, we love Basque food, but we also enjoy Buck Owens’ Crystal Palace and Café Med. The restaurants in the local area, such as BJ’s Restaurant and Brewhouse and California Pizza Kitchen, are quite new and have a great atmosphere as well. What I enjoy most about living here: People are kind and relaxed, and they make me feel at home. Bakersfield is famous for: Oil fields, agriculture, farming, but also Buck Owens’ Crystal Palace, Father Francisco Garces statue and Bakersfield Symphony Orchestra. Favorite community event: Cioppino 60

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July 2013

Dr. Kamen Nedeltchev with his wife and business partner, Tzvetanka Feed by my Bakersfield West Rotary Club. My favorite Saturday activity: Events at the Rabobank Arena and the movies. If I want to get out of town, I go to… Central Coast, Paso Robles, Pine Mountain, Los Angeles and Las Vegas.


r. Kamen Nedeltchev, originally from Sofia, Bulgaria, moved from Europe to the United States for his dental business. He has been in Bakersfield 10

— Do you know someone who is from another city, state or country and now calls Bakersfield home, and is proud of it? Please let us know. Email us a name and contact information to with the message subject line: Why I Live Here.

Who knew dependability could be this sexy. Introducing the all-new Hyundai Sonata at Bakersfield Hyundai. Once you pick your jaw off the floor, come in for a test drive.




The Hyundai Sonata received the lowest number of problems per 100 vehicles among midsize cars in the proprietary J.D. Power and Associates 2013 Vehicle Dependability StudySM. Study based on responses from 37,917 original owners of 2010 model-year vehicles after three years of ownership about problems experienced in the past 12 months. Proprietary study results are based on experiences and perceptions of consumers surveyed September-December 2012. Your experiences may vary. Visit Hyundai

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JARED NORRIS Centennial High grad, University of Utah sophomore linebacker is making a difference on defense, enjoying the snow

By Stephen Lynch

Photos courtesy of University of Utah Athletics


ared Norris came into the 2013 college football season wanting to be an impact player for the University of Utah. Based on his performance so far, the former Centennial High standout is achieving his goal. Norris, a tough, physical middle linebacker, has become one of the stalwarts of the Utah Utes defense, racking up a team-leading 37 tackles through Utah’s first five games. The 6-foot 1-inch, 230-pound sophomore has performed his best against Utah’s toughest opponents. He had 12 tackles, including 2.5 for a loss, against nationally ranked UCLA. One week earlier, Norris registered nine tackles, one for a loss, when the Utes played in-state rival, BYU. “My biggest thing is just to try and make a difference,” Norris said. “Make plays when they come to me.” Norris has always seemed to have a knack for making plays. He averaged a team-leading nine tackles per game as a senior at Centennial High. At the conclusion of his final prep season, Norris was named The Bakersfield Californian’s “All-Area Defensive Player of the Year.” He was also allconference and all-state as a senior. But even before Norris began his senior campaign for the Golden Hawks, he had already caught the attention of college football recruiters. With several scholarship offers on the table from big-time football schools, Norris verbally committed to University of Utah during his junior year. 62

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Jared Norris tries to stop UCLA running back Paul Perkins in Utah’s near-upset in Salt Lake.

It’s a decision he’s glad he made, he said. “I kind of just fell in love with the program,” Norris said. “I really liked both of the coaches. The coaches made me feel like family ... Regardless of playing or not playing, it would be at a place where I felt at home and comfortable.” Norris, who graduated from Centennial in 2011 along with his friend and current USC quarterback Cody Kessler, red-shirted his first year at Utah. Despite now being PAC-12 rivals, Norris and Kessler remain close. “Every Saturday, we end up talking just about the game, and what happened with him and what happened with me,” Norris said. “He was my quarterback in high school, and that guy is one of my best friends in life. He’s like my brother, so it’s definitely going to be a fun game when we get to travel down to (Los Angeles) and play those guys.” Last year, Norris played in seven games and had just two tackles. However, this season, Norris’ on-field production has improved dramatically. “The speed: it’s a different level,” Norris said of playing college football. “It’s like going from junior high to high school. The game gets a little bit faster. But being a sophomore ... I’m starting to pick up things a little bit quicker. I read offenses a little bit better.” Norris’ development has manifested itself in more than just the increased number of tackles that he’s made. As a middle linebacker, it’s his responsibility to be the defensive leader, a role that he takes to heart.

Jared Norris

Norris has emerged as a leader on the Utah defense. “I believe I have pretty good understanding of the defense and the scheme our defensive coordinator wants us to run,” Norris said. “So I try and be more of a coach on the field and help guys get lined up where they need to ... In doing that, we’re going to be more of a challenge as a defense and make stops.” Norris, an economics major, has traded in his skateboard for a snowboard since moving to Utah for school. “I like it a lot,” Norris said of his new home. “I really enjoy it actually, the snow and everything. In Bakersfield,

Born July 19, 1993. Parents David Norris (a Kern County Sheriff’s deputy) and Michelle Barge (an attorney), three brothers and one sister. Earned three letters for football and one for baseball while at Centennial High. Starter for three years at linebacker for the Golden Hawks. Helped lead Centennial to the Central Section Division I championship game as a junior. Won Bakersfield Jockey Club’s “Outstanding Athlete Award” in 2010. Avid skateboarder. He once attended Camp Woodward, a professional skateboarding camp.

Enjoys boogie boarding, snowboarding, riding quads and playing video games.

we never really experience snow. There’s a lot of fun things to do out here. And I’ve enjoyed the roommates and all my teammates and friends I’ve made out here too.”

















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SEASON OF GIVING Kern Community Foundation aims to help local tradition of community altruism with ‘Giving Guide,’ ‘Day of Giving’ By Scott Camp


t’s no secret that Bakersfield is a community of much generosity and altruism. Our town has continued to expand and improve thanks to the philanthropy of many of our citizens. And for the past 15 years, much of that giving has been facilitated by the local nonprofit, the Kern Community Foundation. Whether it’s local health care, art or education in need of help, the foundation aims to assist local businesses and individuals with donations of their choice. Two upcoming events aim to continue this tradition and make it even easier to lend a helping hand.

‘A BETTER PLACE’ Since 1999, the Kern Community Foundation has advised more than 100 funds, some allocating as much as $16 million worth of assets to those in need. Donors have the choice of choosing among a donor advised, field of interest, designated, unrestricted or scholarship funds. These funds have helped organizations purchase everything from basic supplies to completely new infrastructure. Some of the organization’s most notable funds include the Aera Energy Fund, Lightspeed Systems Foundation, Jack and Mary Lou Thomson Endowment Fund, and many others. Jeff Pickering, president and CEO of the foundation, said the organization’s mission is simple. “We are in business to serve as a resource to help local donors and corporations plan and carry out their charitable giving,” he said, “and to generate capital that provides philanthropic solutions to help make Kern County a better place to live, to work and to visit.” That mission continues to be fulfilled. Last year, for example, Marvin and Nadene Steinart donated a piece of commercial real estate that generated more than $1 million for the foundation, Pickering said. “In recent years, the foundation has 64

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become known as the most knowledgeable philanthropic resource in Kern County,” Pickering said. “This is due, in part, to its efforts to bring 21st century philanthropic tools to the local marketplace. The foundation’s nonprofit search is an online database that helps donors find, learn about and give directly to more than 100 local charities. Data and information from this resource helps donors to get better results from their charitable giving.”

GIVING GUIDE On Nov. 24, the weekend before Thanksgiving, the foundation will be distributing the Giving Guide, the first-ever local resource to help donors find, learn about and give to effective charitable organizations in Kern County. The publication, distributed via The Bakersfield Californian, will reach 30,000 households. It will feature information on charities listed on the foundation’s nonprofit search site, inspirational stories of

local donors, and more opportunities to give through establishment of a fund at the foundation. But first, a “premiere event” to launch the publication will be held Nov. 20 at Metro Galleries. More information:

DAY OF GIVING No doubt, the holidays bring about the season of giving. And on Dec. 3, the Kern Community Foundation will be encouraging all to take part in the annual “Giving Day,” started by Bakersfield Mayor Harvey Hall and the Kern County Board of Supervisors. The day will serve as the foundation’s way to encourage donors to consider the opportunity to give to local charities this year, Pickering said. “There is seldom a better or more rewarding — Jeff Pickering investment than a gift to

There is seldom a better or more rewarding investment than a gift to an effective charity serving the community.

Jeff Pickering an effective charity serving the community,” he said. One easy way to give back, for example, is to purchase a “giving card” for friends, colleagues or family. Much like a retail gift card, a giving card can be redeemed to benefit any public charity in the United States.



Guests mingle around the food and wine booths during the 2010 event. This year, Bakersfield Uncorked will be held Nov. 23.

‘BAKERSFIELD UNCORKED’ Junior League of Bakersfield’s annual wine-centric fundraiser benefits foster care-focused ‘Girls Achievement Program’ By Michael Wafford

Photos by Casey Christie


ince 2009, the Girls Achievement Program has helped prepare local teenage girls in foster care for life outside of the foster system. The girls, ages 15 to 18, take part in life skill seminars, mentorship programs and hands-on learning activities focused on women’s health, financial planning and obtaining education and employment. The program is supported by the Junior League of Bakersfield, and it’s making a difference locally, said Lydia Rowles, president of the Junior League of Bakersfield. “While the success of the program can be hard to quantify via typical data, we have definitely seen success,” she said. “Our successes have names and stories and challenges to overcome that most of us will never know.” 66

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Junior League of Bakersfield operates out of an historic building on 19th Street.

PREPARING GIRLS The Junior League of Bakersfield was founded in 1952, with a mission is to promote voluntarism, develop the potential of women and improve the community. The nonprofit accomplishes these goals through fundraising campaigns, to make donations to groups like the Society for Disabled Children and the Counseling Center at Cal State Bak-

Bakersfield Uncorked When: Nov. 23, 6 to 9 p.m. Where: Kern County Fairgrounds, 1142 S. P St. Admission: $75. Tickets can be purchased at H. Walkers Clothing Co., Uniquely Chic Florist & Boutique, or online at More information on event, or Girls Achievement Program: 3221671 or

ersfield But the Junior League’s support of the Girls Achievement Program is among its most active. In the program, the girls are able to volunteer at local nonprofits, like the Ronald McDonald House and Bakersfield Homeless Center. They also get a chance to express themselves through art, writing, yoga and dance. And Junior League hosts networking events, and college and career nights for the girls. By getting the girls involved throughout the community, providing them with mentors, and getting them involved in workshops, they develop life skills they need, while learning in a safe space, Rowles said. Other local programs that help the girls with life after foster care, include Kern County Network for Children and Kern County Department of Human Services.

BAKERSFIELD UNCORKED To continue the Girls Achievement Program and other programs, the Junior League hosts fundraisers. And none is bigger than the annual Bakersfield Uncorked, formerly known as Wine Fest. It returns to Bakersfield at 6 p.m. Nov. 23 at the Kern County Fairgrounds. This year, the event will be focused on wine pairings, with wine from 10 wineries and food from local restaurants, including Café Med, Frugatti’s, Bell Tower Club, Steak & Grape and Chef’s Choice Noodle Bar. While dining on fine food and sampling a variety of wine, attendees will also enjoy live music, a photo booth, auctions and drawings, said event coordinator Laura Porter. “We have a ton of fun every year,” Porter said.


Josh Shin, center, leads a group of local dancers to “Gangnam Style” at The Marketplace last year to welcome delegates and performers from Bakersfield’s sister city of Bucheon, South Korea.



‘Sister Cities’


cultures with

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November 2013

program bridges communities across the globe


By Jennifer Burger


n 1965, John Hefner was an 18-year-old student at Bakersfield College when he became one of the first two students to represent Bakersfield in Wakayama, Japan. Four years earlier, the two cities had become “sister cities,” a program that was gain-

ing popularity across the country after President Dwight D. Eisenhower, in 1956, encouraged community leaders to connect with others across the world to help “build the road to peace” during the post-World War II era. That’s when the Sister City program was born. Continued on page 70

Getting involved Bakersfield Sister City Project • Web: • Questions: Susan Stone at



John Hefner, president of the Bakersfield Sister City Project speaks at the opening of Sister City Gardens in 2012.

Today, 600 cities in the United States are partnered with more than 2,000 communities across the globe, according to Sister Cities International, the nonprofit umbrella organization whose motto is “Connect globally. Thrive locally.” Playing the role of matchmaker in the early days of the program, the State Department paired Bakersfield with Wakayama. The two cities hit it off. Nearly 50 years later, hundreds, if not thousands, of residents from Bakersfield and Wakayama — from students to civic leaders — have crossed the Pacific Ocean to visit each other on cultural exchanges. Hefner, now retired, took 100 of his own students to Wakayama in 1987 as principal of Fruitvale Junior High School. Now he continues to travel there as the president of the Bakersfield Sister City Project. “It is a wonderful bridge for our youth,” he said. “It has totally influenced our perceptions of different cultures. You can read a book about a place, but you can’t truly understand it unless you’ve been there.” Wakayama is now one of six sister cities to Bakersfield, as the city has added to its extended family over the years. Hefner has visited all of them.

CITY SISTERHOOD The sister city program for Bakersfield is solely a cultural exchange. It’s not based on business or politics or economics but rather on understanding and learning from each other’s histories, traditions and values. There are many ways in which Bakersfield connects with 70

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Nazar Kooner addresses the gathering at the Sikh temple with Mayor Harvey Hall and sister-city Mayor Bakshi Ram Arora of Amritsar, India.


Continued from page 69

its sisters. The arts play a big role. For example, in 2009, the Bakersfield Youth Symphony traveled to perform in Bucheon, South Korea. In 2012, a troupe of traditional Korean dancers and musicians performed at Harvey Auditorium in Bakersfield. The Kern County Museum has exhibited artwork by young people in Cixi, China, and the Bakersfield Museum of Art displayed artwork by local students as part of a Japanese Matsuri Festival. Civic leadership also plays a big part. Community leaders from Bakersfield travel to sister cities regularly to share and learn ideas about community building. Perhaps the biggest proponent of the Bakersfield Sister City Project in recent years is its board chairman, Mayor Har-

Natsuki Seto, of Wakayama, Japan, checks out a pluot from Murray Family Farms during a recent visit.



vey Hall. Under his leadership, Bakersfield has added three sister cities with strong civic ties: Queretaro, Mexico; Bucheon, South Korea; and Amritsar, India. Hall, the owner of Hall Ambulance, has donated ambulances to Queretaro’s fire department and partnered with the Bakersfield Fire Department to send staff to train firefighters in emergency medical services. Hall also took his commitment to a litter-free city to Amritsar, where he helped clean the streets. “They gave me a rake and a broom, and I helped clean up. They wanted me to show that a mayor can be involved, and this is how you do it,” said Hall, who holds monthly freeway ramp cleanups in Bakersfield, for example. Coincidentally, the same year, Bakersfield’s sister city relationship became official with Bucheon, South Korea (in 2006), Bakersfield celebrated the completion of the Korean War Veterans Memorial in Jastro Park, honoring the 59 Kern County residents who died during the Korean War. Civic leaders from Bucheon were so struck by the memorial in Bakersfield that they constructed a replica in their own city and built a park around it, naming it Bakersfield Park. Now Bakersfield is building its own park in recognition of its sister cities. In August 2012, phase one of Sister City Gardens at Mill Creek Park downtown was completed. The first phase features a fountain, pavilion and plantings commemorating Wakayama, Cixi and Bucheon. Soon, phase two will be completed with homage to Queretaro and Amritsar.

THE ESTRANGED SISTER What’s missing from Sister City Gardens is Minsk, the capital of Belarus in Russia. Bakersfield’s relationship with its second sister city, added in 1995, is currently inactive. “I’ve been to all the sister cities but Minsk,” Hall said. “We have tried to communicate with them, but we don’t get any response. One year, I went out to Cal State (Bakersfield) to speak to foreign exchange students and a couple of them were from Minsk. They told me Minsk has a tough political structure and a

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Mayor Harvey Hall, back row, and the Bakersfield sister city delegation visit the Golden Temple in Amritsar, India in 2007.

Continued from page 71 lot of unrest.” Other sister cities have stressors as well, which is why the sister city program is so beneficial for fostering world peace, said Dr. Stanley E. Clark, a past president of the Bakersfield Sister City Project and a professor of political science at CSUB.

“There is not one of these cities where there is no significant foreign policy-related issue,” Clark said. “So if the whole point is to produce peace through understanding, it is relevant to all, from the drug wars of Mexico to the fact that Amritsar is near the border with Pakistan, and Bucheon is near the border with North Korea. So you don’t have to look far to see that our understanding of our sister cities is an important factor with situations fraught with potential conflict.” The board members of the Bakersfield Sister City Project agree that the key to keeping relationships strong with its sibling communities is through volunteers who can tap local organizations to take the lead. For example, the Kern County Hispanic Chamber of Commerce is heavily involved in the partnership with Queretaro and Bakersfield’s Sikh community keeps strong ties with Amritsar, which is the holy city for the Sikh religion in the Indian state of Punjab. While there has been some interest in adding sister cities in Italy, the Philippines, Ireland and Israel, there needs to be a dedicated group of volunteers for the Bakersfield Sister City Project to move forward, Hefner said.

THROUGH YOUNG EYES Another way Bakersfield connects with its sister cities is by involving local families in the Sister City Youth Exchange program, either to host young people from other countries or

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Bakersfield Life Magazine

November 2013

to send their children abroad. The idea is to understand each other’s cultures firsthand by experiencing family life. Every summer, Bakersfield students from grades seven to 12 go to Wakayama or Bucheon to stay with host families. In turn, Bakersfield families host youth from Wakayama for a week. The visitors get to experience home life and cultural activities. Some of the families in Bakersfield take the students to Dewar’s, museums, the mall, the beach, the movies, or host backyard barbecues and swim parties. In Japan, families take the visitors to restaurants, outdoor malls called “arcades,” their children’s schools, parks and local landmarks. Aimee Knaak and Kelsie Sanchez, both 16, have each been to Japan, as well as hosted Japanese students with their families. They both get a kick out of the differences between the two cultures. The most noticeable difference is the size of everything, they said. Here, Japanese visitors say everything is so big — the houses, the cars, the cheeseburgers. It’s just the opposite in Japan, where one small machine washes and dries the clothes. “My (host) family’s car was so small that my luggage didn’t fit and we had to take two trips,” Sanchez recalled from her visit to Japan. Language can also lead to amusement. Aimee Knaak had just returned from her trip to Japan when it was the Japanese students’ turn to stay with her family. As they were driving, her mom asked the girls if they wanted to get some tacos.

Continued on page 74

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Harvey Hall poses at the entrance of an elementary school in Bucheon, South Korea in 2007.


Bakersfield Life Magazine

November 2013


Continued from page 73 “I busted up laughing and the girls looked at her funny,” Aimee said. “Then Aimee says, ‘Mother, ‘tako’ means octopus in Japanese,’” Casey Knaak said. The mix-up became their joke for the rest of the girls’ stay. At first, Julie Sanchez, Kelsie’s mother, was worried that language would present a problem. “They know some English, but not a lot. We were afraid we would not be able to meet their needs and keep them entertained,” Sanchez said. “But it was awesome. In a few short days, we formed such a bond. Then they leave and everyone is crying, and it’s like you’re shipping your own kids away.” Casey Knaak said she feels like she has extra daughters now in Japan. “We tell them, ‘You’re part of our family now,’” she said. And what stronger bond is there than family? “This was Eisenhower’s plan,” said Sue Stone, a past president of the Bakersfield Sister City Project. “The great general who had seen war, he said, ‘We need citizen diplomats who can get to know each other and do more than their governments are doing to bring peace and understanding to people.’ Once you get to know people on a personal level, it’s harder to drop bombs on them.”

Bakersfield’s sister cities around the world Minsk, Belarus

Bucheon, South Korea

Bakersfield, United States

Wakayama, Japan

Santiago de Querétaro, Mexico

Amritsar, India

Cixi City, China




Pronounced: Wah-KAI-yah-mah Sister city since: 1961 Population: 379,000 Known for: The capital of Wakayama Prefecture hosts one of Japan’s three Melody Roads, grooves cut into the road that cause musical vibrations as cars drive over. The city center is also home to Wakayama Castle. Nearby Koyasan is a holy site as the birthplace of Shingon Buddhism. The city and surrounding areas have several hot springs that attract tourists for bathing and even cooking onsenstyle. Local cuisine includes chuka soba (ramen noodles), sushi, and locally grown fruit, including Mandarin oranges, strawberries, grapes, persimmons and ume (Japanese apricot).

Pronounced: Kay-RAY-tah-roh Sister city since: 2005 Population: 800,000 Known for: The capital city of the Mexican state of Querétaro was once the temporary capital of the entire country during the Mexican War of Independence. Many believe the plot for the revolution was born there in 1810; in 1917 the Mexican Constitution was written there. Recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage Site for its blend of pre-Hispanic and colonial architecture, Querétaro is to Mexico like Boston is to the United States. Among the attractions for tourists includes the expansive 18th century aqueduct and the former home of Josefa Ortiz de Dominguez ( “la corregidora” or mayor’s wife) who is hailed as a heroine of the Mexican War.

MINSK, BELARUS Pronounced: Minsk Sister city since: 1995 Population: 2 million Known for: Mostly destroyed during World War II, as Germany and Russia fought over Belarus, the country’s capital city was re-built in Stalin-era architecture. However, an enclave named Traetskae Prodmestse (Trinity Suburb) along the Svislach River recreates the 17th- and 18th-century style Minsk was once known for. There, a monument called Ostrov Slyoz (Island of Tears) stands in memory of those who died in the war between Russia and Afghanistan in 19791989. Belarus regained sovereignty in 1990 when the Soviet Union dissolved. Note: Bakersfield’s relationship with Minsk is currently inactive.

CIXI CITY, CHINA Pronounced: Tz’u-shee Sister city since: 1996 Population: 2 million Known for: Cixi is located in the Yangtze River Delta on the eastern coast of China, not far from Shanghai. It is a major center for manufacturing, including home appliances, auto parts and the largest production base of disposable lighters in the world. Manufacturing has historical significance here, where about 180 ancient Yue Kiln sites still exist, having produced celadon porcelain including vases, dishes, jars and pots dating back to 200-2000 A.D. The kilns are near Shanglin Lake, a mountainous scenic area featuring historical Buddhist sites.

BUCHEON, SOUTH KOREA Pronounced: BOO-chun Sister city since: 2006 Population: 869,000 Known for: Just 16 miles outside of Seoul, the capital of South Korea, Bucheon is a cultural center of the area. It offers universities, libraries, parks (including Bakersfield Park), a stadium, theaters and museums. Bucheon also hosts several festivals each year, including the Puchon International Fantastic Film Festival (PiFAN), the Peach Blossom Festival and the Cherry Blossom Festival. An amusement park named Aiins World recreates famous world buildings in miniature.

AMRITSAR, INDIA Pronounced: Aum-RIT-ser Sister city since: 2011 Population: 1.5 million Known for: Located in the northern region of India in the state of Punjab near the Pakistan border, Amritsar is the holy city for the Sikh religion. The Harmandir Sahib shrine (“Golden Temple”) receives more visitors each year than the Taj Mahal. Other destinations for visitors include watching the changing of the guard at Wagah, a border crossing between India and Pakistan, and paying respects to those memorialized at Jallianwala Bagh, where hundreds of Indians were massacred by British troops in 1919. Sources: Wikipedia, City of Bakersfield,,,,,,,,,



Kent Porter of Krazy Kustomz 76

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November 2013

Porter of Krazy Kustomz stands between a ’70 K5 Blazer and an ’06 Ford F250.


Local car customizers push the boundaries of what is possible in auto alterations

AdmirAtion FOR Altering B Y


or some people, their vehicles are an extension of themselves — an added form of expression and individuality. Perhaps that’s why many opt to modify or personally upgrade their cars and trucks to newer levels, where cost is not an issue. From lifting a truck to get that larger-than-life feeling, towering over others on the road, to souping-up an engine to get that adrenaline rush by putting the pedal to the metal, customizing a vehicle can make your trips from point A to point B that much more exciting. But that feeling is not limited to those behind the wheel — others revel in the building process, turning vehicles into works of art and pushing the boundaries of what is possible. Locally, those who customize vehicles are as unique as the drivers themselves. Meet just a few local alteration stars here.



KrAzy Kool Sure Krazy Kustomz does car service work, oil changes, window tinting, wheels work and more. But where Krazy Kustomz really shines is taking vehicles to new levels — literally. Since 1997, Kustomz’ Kent Porter and his crew have been building and manufacturing suspension lifts for vehicles of all shapes and sizes, from the highest of the high to the lowest of the low. “Suspension is our No. 1 thing that we work the most on,” Porter said. “Bakersfield is a truck town. Handsdown, most of the work we do is on trucks.” No job is too big or too small. Porter has built trucks with 54-inch tires and a 31-inch suspension lift, building every part of the undercarriage from the ground up. That was a $25,000 job. If you can think of it, chances are they can do it, Porter said. Leveling kits are a popular choice among truck owners looking for a more affordable option. Instead of doing a

full suspension, mild-leveling kits are used to lift the vehicle a bit to allow for bigger wheels and tires, without voiding any manufacturer warranties. “You can get a different look without altering the vehicle too much, while remaining under factory specs and factory warranties,” Porter said. For those looking to lower a vehicle down, Krazy Kustomz also does full air ride setups. This usually requires new suspension, which is right up Porter’s alley. Metal fabrication is done on site and isn’t just limited to vehicles. Porter has done numerous metal fabrications, from benches to gates and more. Beyond suspension, Kustomz also does car restorations. Krazy Kustomz doesn’t do interior work, paint work or engine work, but they do everything to get the vehicle running. “We’re basically the guts of it,” Porter said. “The undercarriage is the foundation. Once you get that, then you can start making it look pretty.”

Continued on page 78



Roger Holder with his dirt car.

Continued from page 77

need For speed Racing has been in Roger Holder’s blood since he was young. He was street racing at 15, a year before he even got his license. At 21, he started going to the dragstrip, and in 1999, he started “heads up” racing. “It’s kind of like outlaw drag racing. It’s not a bracket race,” Holder said. “You run what you got, I run what I got, and whoever gets to the other end first, wins.” Holder usually reaches the other end first, tallying four Pacific Street Car Association championships, and two championships with the West Coast Hot Rod Association. Holder has also won three of six races in a field of about 50 cars at the annual Street Car Super Nationals held in Las Vegas. Holder has attempted to walk away from drag racing numerous times, but he keeps getting drawn back into it, he said. He even started dirt racing three years ago to get a break from drag racing.


Bakersfield Life Magazine

November 2013

“I can’t get away from (racing),” he said. “It’s like a drug. It’s either I do this drug, or that drug.” Holder said it’s the suspense of not knowing what’s going to happen next and the adrenaline of trying to make his car go faster each and every pass that keeps him going back to drag racing. The cost of maintaining and upgrading his vehicles, however, is a different story. “I never keep track of the costs because I don’t want to know” Holder said. Holder’s drag car, a 2000 Camaro, currently features a 522-cubic inch motor, twin 88-mm turbos fuel injected on alcohol. It has clocked a 6.94-second quarter mile at 218 mph. It would cost roughly $200,000 to build new. Despite all of his accomplishments behind the wheel, it’s the opportunity to do what he loves that draws Holder. “I’m content with what I do as long as I can keep doing it,” Holder said. “I don’t really set goals as long as I can keep doing what I do and be involved. When I can’t do it anymore, maybe my kid can keep doing it, and I can help him do it.”

Red Harden’s journey into car customizations was really a case of being in the right place at the right time. After running away from an orphanage in Oklahoma, Harden found himself in Los Angeles in front of Joe Balon’s shop as he was firing an employee. Harden, who was 12 at the time but told Balon he was 18, said he needed a job, and if he didn’t like his work at the end of the day, he didn’t have to pay him. Balon not only liked Harden’s work, he eventually took him under his wing and taught him to how to work on cars. Harden worked for Balon for four and a half years before venturing out on his own, partnering with star car customizers Bill Cushenbery and Dean Jeffries, and working on cars for more celebrities, movies and television shows than he can count. “You’re just happy about getting the work,” he said. Harden’s worked on famous vehicles such as KITT from “Knight Rider,” Dragula from “The Munsters,” General Lee from “The Dukes of Hazzard” and the Batcyle from the “Batman” television series starring Adam West.

Continued on page 81


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Red Harden on the Batcycle from the “Batman” television series.

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Bakersfield Life Magazine

November 2013

The car that was used in the television show “The Munsters,” built by Red Harden, was on display recently at the Houchin Blood Bank.




Some of Kent Porter’s handiwork, at right: Ford F250 with 18-inch kit, four-linked with king coilovers. Below: Chevy 2500 with straight axle conversion and 28-inch kit.

The project Harden is most proud of is the “Silhouette,” which he built with Cushenbery. It was the first bubble car ever built. “We didn’t start with anything,” Harden said. “We built that from the ground up. It just blew people’s minds. Everybody thought it was a space rocket.” The Silhouette was stolen from Harden’s shop around 1984 before it was scheduled to make an appearance on “The Tonight Show.” It was never found, so Harden is recreating it. He’s been working on it for about two years and is expecting it to be ready in early 2014. The original was built in six months. Harden opened up Carriage Masters, a collision repair shop on Rosedale Highway, 18 years ago as a way to get out of building custom cars and restorations. “I was kind of sick of it in a way, getting stung by a couple of movie stars,” Harden said. “I was ready for something else.” It was a welcome change, but building custom cars will always be his first love, he said. “You get to meet some pretty interesting people, some of them you wish you wouldn’t have met, but the ones that stick in the back of your head you wouldn’t change

Red Harden with a replica of “Little Bastard.” It was the last project he worked on with Dean Jeffries, completed a week before Jeffries’ death.


Continued from page 79

that for the world because you made a good friend,” Harden said. “And you get to work on some incredible cars. I wouldn’t change that for the world.”




3101 Cattle Drive • Bakersfield Auto Mall • (661) 832-3000



car culture Bakersfield Life photographer documents the new ‘Hotrod Lifestyles Home of Side Show Gallery’

Joe Wallem's 1959 Chopped Chevy Impala is showcased. It won first place in the "Radical Hardtop" category at the 2012 Grand National Roadster Show. 82

Bakersfield Life Magazine

November 2013


By Bakersfield Life Magazine

The local hot rod and custom car scene is, well, hot. And the Hotrod Lifestyles Home of Side Show Gallery attempts to capture it all. The gallery opened in March after owners Joe and Angela Wallem and Kyle “K-Daddy” and Stacey Gann got together with talented local artists and friends to bring together their car collections and art and share their mutual love of the local hot rod culture in one place. “The goal of our gallery is to share the So-Cal hot rod lifestyle in a way that it’s attainable for everyone and support the artists we enjoy so much,” said Angela (Willis) Wallem, one of the gallery’s owners. “We want to make everyone feel like they are part of the scene.” The gallery features custom cars, hot rods, tattoo and lowbrow art, clothes and more. And until Nov. 20, you can catch the Full Octane Art in Motion show. Bakersfield Life photographer Michael Lopez visited the gallery to capture the culture in pictures. More photos on page 84


Prints by artist Gustavo Rimada.

The Sideshow Gallery is marked with a distinctive sign.

“Lil Frank� original by artist Bruce Gossett of Sacramento.

The Hotrod Lifestyles Home of Side Show Gallery opened in March. 84

Bakersfield Life Magazine

November 2013


David Szabo, district manager, Donald Munoz, sales development consultant, and the Kern County team of business specialists

The Kern County banking team is here to help you The Wells Fargo team in the Kern County district shares a wealth of experience. And because they live here and know the community, they can provide you with the financial options that suit your specific needs. Come in today and see how we can help you. Call, click, or stop by and talk to a business banking specialist at any one of our 12 locations in the Kern County area

Š 2013 Wells Fargo Bank, N.A. All rights reserved. Member FDIC. (1109708_09895)





The 2014 Lexus LFA, capable of reaching 202 miles per hour.



Nissan Altima 2.5S MSRP: Starting at $23,680 MPG: 27 city, 28 highway The 2014 Nissan Altima continues to build on the legacy of innovation and driving experience. It provides performance and fuel efficiency with its 2.5-liter, four-cylinder, 182-horsepower engine and its single-belt CVT transmission. It retains the standout features of previous models, while increasing driver and passenger comfort. Its new designed gives drivers a more comfortable feel for long range and city driving. It features smart headlights that react to light and weather conditions, as well as Bluetooth controls, solar glass and 60/40 rear seats. The Altima continues to provide sophisticated driving dynamics and impressive fuel economy.


Versa Note S MSRP: Starting at $14,800 MPG: 31 city, 40 highway The brand new 2014 Nissan Versa Note brings together fuel economy with eye-catching exterior design. The Pure Drive Versa Note delivers fuel efficiency while being gentle to the environment with its 1.6-liter fourcylinder engine. The Note’s distinctive curvaceous hatchback style is for more than just for looks, its design increases aerodynamics and fuel-efficiency. Compact in size, the Versa Note nonetheless features a spacious interior for drivers and passengers, and a large cargo area. This economic and fun-to-drive vehicle is also loaded with the latest in safety features.


Nissan Pathfinder S MSRP: $28,700 MPG: 20 city, 26 highway Completely redesigned for 2014, the Nissan Pathfinder brings together power, utility, a stylish cabin and high-fuel economy for the adventurous family. The Pathfinder combines its 3.5-liter V6 engine with the capability of a modern SUV. Able to tow up to 5,000 pounds, the Pathfinder can seat seven passengers with its thirdrow seating and features climate control for three areas. Its flexible seating and cargo capability make it simple to switch from a week of work to a weekend of camping. The 2014 Pathfinder also features push button ignition, hill start assist, Advanced Drive-Assist display and the childfriendly LATCH restraint system.



Honda CR-V MSRP: Starting at $22,945 MPG: 23 city, 31 highway The 2014 Honda CR-V offers an easy, familyfriendly drive while also giving power and efficiency with its 2.4-liter, 185 horsepower fourcylinder engine. Certified by the California Air Resources Board as an ultra-low emissions vehicle, the CR-V offers Honda Eco Assist and MPG details to help maximize fuel efficiency. It also provides a smooth ride, thanks to a new suspension and drive train designed to reduce vibration. On the interior, the CR-V features an USB audio interface, Bluetooth HandsFreeLink, 60/40 split seats and moon roof. And the i-MID system displays everything from GPS to text messages to music information.


Honda Odyssey MSRP: Starting at $28,825 MPG: 19 city, 28 highway The 2014 Honda Odyssey provides a practical and polished minivan for active families. The Odyssey’s 3.5-liter, 248 horsepower engine is aided by its many safety features, which includes electronic brake distribution, three-row side curtain airbags and lane departure warning. The 2014 Odyssey also gives both driver and passengers comfort and convenience with its many other features. Song by Voice uses voice commands to play music from an iPod or other compatible mp3 player. The Odyssey can also comfortably seat eight or collapse rear rows for needed space. Exclusive to the Touring Elite model is the HondaVAC, a built-in vacuum cleaner and removable waste bin.


Honda Pilot MSRP: Starting at $29,670 MPG: 18 city, 25 highway It’s an ideal transportation solution for families with varied and active lifestyles. Each 2014 Pilot is powered by a 250 horsepower, 3.5-liter V6 engine with handling provided by the four-wheel independent suspension system. The SUV’s Variable Cylinder Management allows the engine to run on three, four or six cylinders depending on the Pilot’s power needs. The Pilot has seating for up to eight passengers and fold flat seats that expand storage to up to 87 cubic feet. The Pilot EX-L and Touring models also offer a power tailgate. The Touring model has rear seat entertainment system as a standard feature and also satellite-linked navigation, blind spot information system, multiangle rearview camera and FM traffic reports.


Bakersfield Life Magazine

November 2013

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Honda Civic MSRP: $17,965 MPG: 28 city, 39 highway The Honda Civic’s 1.8-liter engine features a drive-by-wire throttle system, which allows the engine’s performance to be optimized to the driver’s expectations. And it’s housed inside its sleek exterior with a new look, from redesigned grill to new tail lights, that provides a comfortable, yet functional, ride. Features include access to text messaging, rear view camera, USB audio interface and steering wheel control of entertainment systems. The Honda i-MID (Intelligent Multi-Information Display) system displays customized driver preference. In all, the Civic is refreshed to seal its reputation as one of the leaders of the compact-car class.


Honda Accord Sport MSRP: Starting at $21,955 MPG: 27 City, 36 highway The 2014 Honda Accord Sport continues to improve on the classic Accord design — consistently one of the best sedans year after year — by implementing the latest features and ultimate performance. Starting out at a 2.4-liter, 185 horsepower engine, the Accord advances with a 3.5-liter 278 horsepower option in the EX-L V6 and Touring models. The spoiler and dual exhaust system give the Accord Sport more horsepower and better fuel efficiency. The touring model includes a 24-valve V-tech engine, a multi-angle rearview camera. Other available features include steering wheel-mounted phone and audio controls, push-button start, and Honda LaneWatch.


Fiat 500L MSRP: Starting at $19,195 MPG: 25 city, 33 highway Chic design and European flair give way to a classy car with high-performance standards. The FIAT 500L offers great features and luxury for a bargain. With a 1.4-liter I4 MultiAir Turbo Engine and six-speed transmission, U-Connect Infotainment System with Bluetooth audio, navigation, and back up camera and sensors, Fiat has style and efficiency in one vehicle. The 500L is surprisingly spacious, with a 99.7 cubic feet interior. It’s also perfect for families, with safety and security features, such as Advanced Multistage Front Airbags, Child Seat Anchor System-LATCH Ready, Remote Keyless Entry and unlimited roadside assistance. Comes in 500L Pop, Easy, Trekking or Lounge.


Bakersfield Life Magazine

November 2013


Dodge Ram 1500 MSRP: Starting at $31,395 MPG: Not yet released The 2014 Dodge Ram 1500 showcases evolved strength and pushes even further on its quest to become the most efficient full-size truck. Standard features include UConnect,electronic stability and trailer sway control, hill start assist, and multi air bag systems. Even more, the Ram 1500 series offers options. From a six- to eight-speed automatic transmissions, and 3.6-liter to 5.7-liter engines, with V6 or V8 power, buyers can get exactly what they need for their lifestyles. With a winning combination of strong powertrains, a smooth ride and a well-trimmed cabin, the Ram 1500 is a truck for everyone.

Dodge Ram 2500 Laramie Diesel


MSRP: Starting at $58,540 MPG: Not yet released Spend more time on the road, and less at the pump in this “truck of the year.” The Dodge Ram 2500 Laramie Diesel allows truck buyers to attain more fuel efficiency without sacrificing the rugged work vehicle that has become a staple in many people’s lives. The Ram 2500 Laramie Diesel has made gains in its newest model and boasts a 5.7-liter Cummins V8 turbo diesel engine, six-speed automatic transmission, heavy duty engine cooling, next generation engine controller, cab options, automatic high-beam headlamp control, max towing of 17,740 pounds, and a max payload of 2,910 pounds. It’s perfect for any occasion, any job — and takes care of business.


Chrysler 300 MSRP: Starting at $30,545 MPG: 19 city, 31 highway Drive a car with an American pedigree unlike any other. With a mix of style, power, luxury and value, the new 2014 Chrysler 300 features a 3.6-liter V6, 24-valve engine with 292 horsepower and 8-speed automatic transmission. It boasts elegant luxury with leather, automatic temperature control, 17-inch aluminum wheels, spacious interiors and a sleek, timeless design. Entertaining perks include SiriusXM Radio with six speakers, MP3 decoder and steering wheel mounted audio controls. Safety and security include ASB brakes, overhead and knee airbags, ignition disable, four-wheel disc brakes, traction control and electronic stability. The 300 comes in the S, STR8 Core and STR8.



Jeep Grand Cherokee MSRP: Starting at $28,795 MPG: 17 city, 25 highway Classic Jeep appeal, luxury and practicality all in one — that is the new 2014 Grand Cherokee. This unrivaled vehicle features a 3.6-liter V6, 290-horsepower engine, eight-speed automatic transmission with overdrive, four-wheel antilock brakes, side seat mounted airbags, occupancy sensor, cruise and traction control, and electronic stability in a single SUV. It presents a sleek, yet, rugged design with a comfy cabin, perfect for running errands or camping in the mountains. Its practicality and flexibility appeals to all automobile enthusiasts. Models include the Overland, Summit, SRT, Limited or Laredo.


Jeep Wrangler MSRP: Starting at $22,395 MPG: 17 city, 21 highway Drive a legendary vehicle and no-nonsense American icon recognized for its rule of the trails and open road. The 2014 Jeep Wrangler blends modern edge with classic Jeep charm, offering a 3.6-liter V6 24-calve WT engine, easy access passenger seating and a Black Sunrider Soft Top perfect for all types of weather conditions and fun outdoorsy events. It’s safe and family friendly with Advanced Multistage front airbags, Electronic Roll Mitigation and Stability Control, and rear and front stabilizer bars. Take a weekend getaway with rear compartment covered storage The Wrangler offers four models: Sport, Sport S, Sahara, and Rubicon.


BMW 428i MSRP: Starting at $40,500 MPG: 23 city, 33 highway This new BMW 4 Series standout is a top pick for a luxury sport coupe. The BMW 428i coupe offers convenience and performance, powered by its 240-horsepower two-liter, four-cylinder engine, and it’s ability to generate up to 260 pounds-feet of torque. Its wider body and lower suspension gives the 428i the lowest center of gravity available on a BMW, while still managing to be lighter than its predecessors. And the Eco Pro mode allows drivers to practice more fuel-efficient driving techniques if desired. Other features include automatic climate control, automatic stopstart to save fuel, a full-color heads-up display for crucial driving information, and a Harman Kardon surround sound system.


Bakersfield Life Magazine

November 2013


BMW 328i GT MSRP: Starting at $41,450 MPG: 22 city, 33 highway The BMW 328i GT is a star among the 3 Series lineup. It’s part compact crossover and part wagon, but 100 percent striking. The GT’s 2-liter engine combines a twin-scroll turbocharger with variable valve control, giving the 328i GT its powerful, yet, controlled feel. Electronically controlled engine cooling system helps prevent overheating, while the brake regeneration system makes sure as little energy as possible goes to waste. The xDrive all-wheel drive system gives the 328i GT better handling at all speeds while remaining a top safety pick. The on-board computer gives the driver feedback on car performance and details on maintenance.


BMW X5 MSRP: Starting at $52,800 MPG: Not yet available The 2012 BMW X5 brings together the practicality of a crossover SUV with BMW’s signature flair. The 3-liter twin-turbo inline six-cylinder, 300horsepower engine allows the X5 to accelerate form zero to 60 mph in 6.2 seconds. Besides a luxurious package and comfortable interior, the X5 has loads of features while providing high-speed stability. The rear-wheel drive system includes safety features such as dynamic stability control, brake fade compensation and start-off assistance. In all, the 2013 BMW X5 remains a top choice among luxury crossover SUVs, thanks to its athletic performance and refined interior.


BMW 328d MSRP: Starting at $40,600 MPG: 32 city, 43 highway The 2014 328d is among the most well-rounded and highly desirable entry-level luxury cars, that is equally gentle toward the environment. The 2-liter turbo diesel engine gives the 328d a smooth driving experience. The touch-based iDrive 4.2 system gives the driver complete control of the car’s entertainment system. The xenon adaptive headlight system follows the direction of the wheels. Other features include rear-view camera, BMW concierge call service, Harman Kardon surround sound system and automatic stop-start. It’s a fave in its class for its sporty driving character with excellent handling and fuel-efficiency and high-end cabin with straightforward controls and spacious seating.


Bakersfield Life Magazine

November 2013

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2014 CHEVROLET IMPALA Chevrolet designers and engineers reached far into the future to create the all-new 2014 Impala and shape it firmly in the present. The result is timeless a convergence of imaginative design, impeccable craftmanship, driver-centric innovations and more available comprehensive safety features than ever before.


Hyundai Elantra MSRP: Starting at $16,965 MPG: 38 highway Elantra leads the way compared to its key competition. This stylish sedan delivers on a simple secret: just give people more of what they want, for less. Choose more space, more horsepower, impressive MPG and a better warranty. Choose Elantra at Bakersfield Hyundai.


Hyundai Sonata MSRP: Starting at $21,195 MPG: 35 highway With its substantial good looks and classabove interior space, Sonata is the clear choice. Here's one more point of distinction: Sonata was ranked “most dependable midsize car” in the “2013 U.S. Vehicle Dependability Study” by J.D. Power and Associates. Visit Bakersfield Hyundai and test drive your brand new Sonata today.


Hyundai Santa Fe MSRP: Starting at $28,600 MPG: 25 highway Get ready to re-energize the idea of a crossover. Santa Fe offers plenty of performance, features including a powerfully responsive 3.3-liter V6 engine. A standard trailer-prep package is available with a 5,000-pound towing capacity. Other features include an 8-inch touchscreen, leather seating surfaces and 19inch alloy wheels. Put it all together and take your Santa Fe out on the open road. Test drive one at Bakersfield Hyundai today.


Bakersfield Life Magazine

November 2013


Hyundai Veloster MSRP: Starting at $17,600 MPG: 37 highway Three doors, two speeds and one unique look — and that's an understatement. The bold three-door design, LED headlight accents and raking contour lines make Veloster instantly recognizable. The Turbo (starting at $22,100, and 35 mpg highway) includes standard 18-inch alloy wheels, round chrome-tipped dual exhaust, and a special wide-mouthed grill. Test drive yours at Bakersfield Hyundai today.

Mercedes-Benz S-Class S550


MSRP: Starting at $92,900 MPG: 17 city, 25 highway Sleeker, lighter and stronger. The new 2014 Mercedes-Benz S-Class is more toned, without an ounce of bulk, and still has a presence that is unmistakable as the standard-bearer of the Mercedes-Benz brand and premium luxury sedans. This vehicle holds true to its standard of groundbreaking safety with Collision Prevention Assist, adaptive braking technology, aluminum and high-strength steel body structure, anti-theft alarm system, Active Blind Spot Assist, and rain-sensing windshield wipers. It responds to danger, before you’re in it. This vehicle offers  sleek design, world-class craftsmanship and  high-end luxury and performance with a 4.6-liter V8 engine, ECO Start-Stop System, and a showcasing interior.


Subaru XV Crosstrek MSRP: Starting at $21,995 MPG: 25 city, 33 highway The new Subaru XV Crosstrek is built for everyday driving but flaunts all-wheel-drive and excellent ground clearance that is also ideal for some rugged action. This fuel-efficient recipient of the Partial Zero Emissions Vehicle rating is equipped with H-4 Boxer engine, five-speed manual transmission, symmetrical all-wheel drive, a very low center of gravity, and 8.7-inch ground clearance, making for a pure Subaru experience. Safety features for this “top safety pick” includes vehicle dynamics control, and smart braking and advanced protection system. This is a chiseled urban dirt runner, based on the steady Impreza platform, meets satisfaction.


Bakersfield Life Magazine

November 2013


BMW of Bakersfield 5400 Gasoline Alley Drive (661) 396-4040 w w w. b m w o f b a k e r s f i e l d . c o m


Volvo S60 T5 MSRP: Starting at $32,400 MPG: 21 city, 30 highway The 2014 Volvo S60 T5 has been hailed as a “well-balanced and stylish luxury sedan,” according to The newest S60 gets a facelift and features a leaner, lower look, new instruments and added metallic accents that makes sure this Swedishmade Volvo S60 holds its own against its German luxury counterparts. Award-winning safety is a standard feature with all-wheel drive, and traction control, and a turbocharged 2.5-liter, 20-valve engine with 250horsepower in the T5 model that gives this vehicle unmatchable performance. Entertain yourself with its amazing audio system and automatic climate control.

Mercedes-Benz CLA-Class


MSRP: Starting at $29,900 MPG: 26 city, 38 highway The 2014 Mercedes-Benz CLA 250 has been called “affordable and exceptional.” It’s Mercedes-Benz status without the price. The 2-liter inline, four-cylinder engine with 208-horsepower, front-wheel drive, and seven-speed automated manual transmission give this car commendable power and handling and fiery performance. It can go from 0 to 60 mph in 6.7 seconds, proving its highrated performance. The CLA 250 offers various features, including stability and traction control, Collision Prevention Assist, Attention Assist, a driver knee airbag, and extra safety airbags. This car offers luxury, performance and safety for under $30,000 — making it an ultra-competitive entry-level luxury sedan.


Lexus LFA MSRP: $375,000 MPG: 16 highway The Lexus LFA balances incisive simplicity, intriguing elegance and seamless anticipation. The result is an aesthetically stunning, yet, incredibly functional supercar. It is a study in how to manage every particle of air flowing around a vehicle capable of 202 miles per hour. Three different processes of carbon fiber construction are used throughout the LFA’s chassis. Ten individual throttle bodies help provide immediate, linear response from the driver’s accelerator pedal inputs. In conjunction with Yamaha, LFA engineers precisely tuned the V10 power plant to deliver immense power. The driver sits as close to the center as possible, providing extraordinary levels of feel and control. Lexus: relentlessly pursuing perfection.


Bakersfield Life Magazine

September 2013


Buick LaCrosse MSRP: $33,135 MPG: 36 mpg (eAssist) What puts a luxury sedan in a class apart from everyone else? Confidence. It’s the confidence of advanced performance with multiple powertrain options and innovative safety features, such as passenger-sensing and rear-seat airbags. It’s an exterior made for second glances with new LED signature headlamps and tail lamps, new front and rear fascia, deck lid integrated spoiler and chrome accents. It’s equipped with the state-of-the-art next-generation Buick IntelliLink Infotainment System. The 2014 Lacrosse comes in both e-assist 4cylinder and V6 models, with touring suspension optional. Test drive one today and give yourself a shot of confidence.


GMC Sierra Crew Cab MSRP: $33,695 MPG: 23 highway The 2014 GMC Sierra Crew Cab was designed as a modern twist on your favorite classic. Sierra’s available EcoTec3 5.3-liter V8 engine offers the best V8 fuel economy in any fullsize pickup. From innovative cargo-box features and a stronger foundation, to striking new styling, this truck is clearly a respected leader in the truck market. IntelliLink Infotainment System, rear vision camera and intelligent controls, such as trailer sway control and front and park rear assist, set a higher standard to help you stay connected and in control. In the market for a truck with comfort, convenience and power? Look no farther than the GMC Sierra Crew Cab, with professional grade engineering.


Lexus IS350 F Sport MSRP: Starting at $45,230 MPG: 28 highway Some follow the crowd. Others change lanes and leave it behind. This is the all-new 2014 Lexus IS350. A luxury vehicle that is sure to satisfy your need for excitement, the IS350 boasts 306 horsepower, 0 to 60 mph in under 6 seconds, an EPA estimated 28 mpg highway, paddleshift and a six-speed automatic transmission. With aggressive styling inside and out, trackhoned performance and available technology that seamlessly connects to your favorite mobile apps, it’s more than an introduction — it’s a provocation.



KIA Optima SXL MSRP: $35,479 MPG: 22 city, 34 highway The 2014 KIA Optima SXL nails it with an improved design, new premium amenities and technological enhancements. Along with its revamped look, the Optima SXL offers performance as a basic standard with a 2liter, 274-horsepower engine, showcasing 269 pounds-feet of torque, 0 to 60 mph in 6.1 seconds and a top speed of 150 mph. Fuel economy is a priority. This Insurance Institute for Highway Safety top safety pick boasts a five-star safety rating with traction and stability control, electronic brake-force assist, and tirepressure monitoring system. It’s a regular top pick for the midsize sedan, evocative styling, strong engine choices and a long list of features.


KIA Cadenza Premium MSRP: Starting at $35,100 MPG: 19 city, 28 highway Drive a car that questions common design, options and technology through new and unique vision. The KIA Cadenza Premium presents an edge to the common sedan with a cool, sleek presence and performance. It features a 3.3-liter, 24-valve V6 engine with six-speed automatic transmission, Electronic Stability Control, ABS and Driveline Traction Control, multiple airbags, an 18.5 gallon fuel tank, 18-by-7.5-inch alloy wheels, chrome side windows trim and door handles, leather front seats and power door locks. The well-rounded, well-built Cadenza is provocative and luxurious, rivaling other large luxury sedan cars on the market, without the luxury car price.


Toyota Avalon MSRP: $34,299 MPG: 21 city, 31 highway A new vibrant, youthful design, functionality, and top quality features make the 2014 Toyota Avalon a distinctive vehicle in high demand. The Avalon, specifically the XLE Premium, is powered by a 3.5-liter V6 engine with 286horsepower, and modest in fuel consumption. Simply, this vehicle has it all, offering a luxurious interior, made with high-quality material and including modern features like heating and cooling front seats, traction and stability control and airbags in the front, rear, curtains, and front seat knee. The Avalon is hailed for its modern sophistication, comfort and performance, earning the respect as a top choice for a full-size sedan.


Bakersfield Life Magazine

November 2013




3101 Cattle Drive • Bakersfield Auto Mall • (661) 832-3000


Toyota Camry MSRP: Starting at $22,235 MPG: 25 city, 35 highway With its well-rounded nature and longstanding history of dependability, the 2014 Toyota Camry is a solid choice. A 2.5-liter, four-cylinder engine, six-speed automatic transmission, fivepassenger seating and impeccable fuel economy also make the Camry a top contender in the midsize sedan market. The Camry combines sleek style and simplicity with safety and practicality: 16-inch wheels, a refined interior, climate control, keyless entry, 10 airbags and 6.1-inch touchscreen display. Choose from L, LE, SE and XLE. The Camry is efficient and adaptable, perfect for any occasion, including a night out on the town or a cross-country road trip.


Toyota Corolla MSRP: Starting at $16,800 MPG: 28 city, 37 highway The New York Times calls it “bigger, braver and brighter.” With 4-inch gains in wheelbase, the 2014 Toyota Corolla has been redesigned for modern needs. Four models are available: L, LE, LE Eco and S. It boasts better fuel economy and more rearseat room, and features standard LED lowbeam headlights, 60/40 split fold-down rear seat, and spacious interiors, making this a car of comfort and convenience. Performance and safety are key featuring standard 1.8-liter, four-cylinder, 16-valve engine, power-assisted 10.8-inch front disc brakes, Star Safety System, eight airbags, allseason tires and front-wheel drive.


Toyota Tundra MSRP: Starting at $25,920 MPG: 16 city, 20 highway Crowned the “Truck King” by CanadianDriver, the Toyota Tundra reigns supreme among heavy-duty vehicles. It’s work-ready and family tough with a bold presence, safety and security, and various options to choose from. The Tundra comes is the models SR, SR5, Limited, Platinum and 1794, with two-wheel and four-wheel drive, and four-door crew cab, a double cab and a single cab. Engines include 5.7-liter V8, 4.6-liter V8, or 4-liter V6. The Tundra is perfect for heavy-duty jobs or leisure with ultra-low emissions hydraulic power rack-and-pinion. The Tundra provides a new bolder design, improved value and interior, and legendary Toyota quality.


Bakersfield Life Magazine

November 2013


Acura MDX MSRP: $42,290 MPG: 20 city, 28 highway As one of the world’s smartest SUVs, the 2014 Acura MDX is a vehicle made for mankind. The MDX features a 290-horsepower, 3.5-liter V6 engine with six-speed automatic transmission, performance braking, parking sensors, remote engine start and automatic climate control. A sleek exterior and a simplistically chic interior combined with safety and security, such as LATCH compatible child seats and SmartVent airbags, make this a top pick for midsize luxury crossovers. With seven-passenger seating, the MDX offers abundant refinement, luxury and comfort, and is more complete than its successful predecessor.


Acura RLX MSRP: $48,450 MPG: 20 city, 31 highway The 2014 Acura RLX combines performance with technology, taking the luxury sedan to a whole new level. The forward-thinking RLX features a 3.5-liter, V6, 24-valve engine with six-speed transmission, 310-horsepower, jewel-eye headlights, a sleek and sexy exterior and elegant interiors. Safety and security are priorities for the RLX, showcasing three-point belts and head restraints, LATCH compatible child safety seating, and a electronic braking system. Take a drive knowing you and your passengers can experience a luxurious and safe ride. And enjoy in-car technology in a simple, easy-to-understand interface.


Cadillac CTS Sedan MSRP: Not yet released MPG: 18 city, 27 highway World-class interiors and peerless driving dynamics are part of the experience only Cadillac can provide. The 2014 Cadillac CTS Sedan weighs less and is more efficient than previous models, and features a new twin-turbo 3.6-liter, V6 engine. This vehicle has a 420-horsepower, eightspeed automatic transmission, and 430 pounds-feet of torque, and rivals many other luxury sedans on the market. The CTS Sedan has also made gains in efficiency, technology, response time and appeals to a variety of consumers. And it comes with a contemporary new look, a revised interior and more powerful and fuel-efficient engines.


Bakersfield Life Magazine

November 2013

40 Years Serving Kern County

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2 0 1 4 Au d i A 6 S e d a n s t a r t i n g a t $ 4 3 , 1 0 0 The standard features of the Audi A6 2.0T Premium include 2.0L I-4 220hp engine intercooled turbo, 8-speed CVT transmission with overdrive, 4-wheel anti-lock brakes (ABS), side seat mounted airbags, SIDEGUARD curtain 1st and 2nd row overhead airbags, driver and passenger knee airbag, airbag occupancy sensor, automatic air conditioning, 17� aluminum wheels, cruise control, ABS and driveline traction control, and an electronic stability

2 0 1 4 Au d i Q 5 S U V s t a r t i n g A t $ 3 7 , 3 0 0 The standard features of the Audi Q5 2.0T Premium include 2.0L I-4 220hp engine intercooled turbo, 8-speed automatic transmission with overdrive, 4-wheel antilock brakes (ABS), side seat mounted airbags, SIDEGUARD curtain 1st and 2nd row overhead airbags, airbag occupancy sensor, automatic air conditioning, 18� aluminum wheels, cruise control, ABS and driveline traction control, and a quattro all-wheel drive.

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Cadillac XTS MSRP: Starting at $70,020 MPG: 16 city, 24 highway The rebirth of Cadillac has taken place. The new 2014 Cadillac XTS, specifically the XTS V-Sport Twin Turbo, is a major upgrade to the 3.6-liter dual overhead cam V6 that is standard in the XTS in the U.S. market. The Cadillac XTS gets a true edge with an all new cylinder block casting, strengthened connecting rods, all-new direct injection fuel system, and patented, integrated charge air cooler system with low-volume air ducts. The engine delivers 105 pound-feet more in torque over standard V6 models, six-speed automatic transmission, all-wheel drive, and 1900 to 5600 rpm. Spacious, high-tech and luxurious interiors, and elegant exterior, are the icing on the cake.


Chevrolet Corvette Stingray MSRP: Starting at $63,185 MPG: 16 city, 28 highway World-class performance and a seductive design make the 2014 Chevrolet Stingray one of the top-rated sports cars on the market. The Corvette Stingray is rated a 9.3 out of 10 on Kelley Blue Book and comes with a standard 6.2-liter, eight-cylinder 460-horsepower engine, seven-speed manual transmission, an 18.5-gallon tank, and an aluminum structure that is undeniably recognizable to Corvette. Performance and safety are combined with rear-vision camera, traction control, and speedsensitive steering and power. American muscle is back. Choose between a Corvette Stingray Z51 2LT and the Z51 3LT.

Chevrolet Silverado 1500


MSRP: Starting at $38,000 MPG: 16 city, 23 highway This strong contender in the full-size pickup segment is stronger, smarter and more capable. With an EcoTec V8 engine, trailering capacity of 11,500 pounds, electric power steering, and coilover-shock front suspension, the 2014 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 is truly a truck in a class all its own. This re-engineered vehicle presents interiors that are developed entirely for functionality and all-day comfort. Performance and workload make this a truck ideal for tough jobs, or even a family trip out of town. Â The Silverado 1500 comes in two-wheel and four-wheel drive options, as well double-cab or crew-cap designs, with more than 100 in stock locally. Choose the ones that best suits your needs.


Bakersfield Life Magazine

November 2013


Nikolaus Andrews teaches some passers-by how to balance on a slackrack, a rig used to teach participants how to walk on a slackline.

A THIN LINE Growing sport of slacklining is lifting off locally Story and photos by Mark Nessia


ombine the agility and coordination of a gymnast with the physical and mental discipline of a yoga practitioner, add a variety of somersaults and twists from trampolining, balance it on a two-inch wide line, and what you have is slacklining. Starting nearly three decades ago, slacklining’s popularity has grown immensely in the last few years, spreading to numerous college campuses and parks throughout the country, including in Bakersfield. The sport is similar to tightrope walking, but instead of 114

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November 2013

performing on a tight steel cable, slackliners walk on twoinch-wide webbing made of nylon and polyester. The line’s “slack” results in a trampoline-like effect that can launch walkers into the air, allowing them to pull off stunts. It’s a variation of the sport called tricklining. “All the tricks you can do on a trampoline can be done on a line, but it takes more balancing because you only have two inches of line,” said Carlos Lomeli, a member of SoCal Slackline in Bakersfield.

A NEW EXPERIENCE Slacklining, like any sport, can be physically demanding, but it can help improve a person’s coordination and strengthen his or her core. “It’s a great cross-trainer,” said Duane Burkhart, a professional slackliner from Taft sponsored by Gibbon Slacklines. “It’s good for working out core strength, coordination, and injury prevention because it fine-tunes all the vital muscle groups in your body.” The sport has a third form called highlining, which is

Nikolaus Andrews does a "nasty chest" on the trickline during SoCal Slackline's session at The Park at River Walk.

Zachary Andrews, 12, gets some serious air while tricklining at The Park at River Walk.

slacklining taken to heights hundreds of feet above the ground. Unlike traditional slacklining or tricklining, highlining is more about control and keeping calm under pressure. “It’s not about embracing the adrenaline rush,” Josh Hansen said. “It’s more about controlling it. You get that rush, but that rush will cause you to fumble. Instead of letting that rush take over, you keep it under bay.” Burkhart said it’s the mental challenge that gets him highlining. “Every time I step foot on a line, it’s a new experience,” he said. “When you put your body out over a span over 100 feet (of line) and you’re a few hundred feet in the air, it’s very intimidating. Even though you’re confident in your ability to walk the line, the exposure mentally gets to you.” Walking lines are typically closer to the ground, making it a good starting block for newcomers to try out, while tricklines provide a challenge for those looking to take slacklining to the next level. It can become extremely addicting and the progres-

Carlos Lomeli pulls off a "butt backflip," one of his signature moves.

sion rate can be very fast for those who commit the time to it. Lomeli bought his own line about a week after first trying it nine months later, he was invited to the first-ever U.S. World Cup in Spokane, Wash., competing against slackliners from all over the world, including Burkhart, who is ranked No. 15 globally by the World Slackline Federation.

SOCIAL SLACKLINING “The (slackline) community has great camaraderie,” Burkhart said. “Everyone is very receptive to new people. It’s a great community to be a part of.” A big part of that community in Bakersfield is SoCal Slackline, a group that helps introduce people to slacklining. SoCal Slackline sets up lines at parks throughout Bakersfield, but frequents The Park at River Walk due to its heavy foot traffic. “Usually when people walk up, if they stop and look at it, we always invite them to check it out,” Nikolaus

Continued on page 116


Continued from page 115 Andrews said. “That’s how I started. I saw (SoCal Slackline) at Silver Creek Park months ago, tried it, loved it and stuck with it.” SoCal Slackline encourages passers-by to try out the lines, showing them proper techniques on various setups. The group also has roots in surrounding areas like Taft, Lake Isabella and Santa Monica, where it has helped popularize tricklining. But regardless of location, SoCal Slackline’s mission is the same: To grow the sport as much as possible. The group, which is sponsored by Perfect Tension Slacklines, hosts a Facebook page (search SoCalSlacklining) so that visitors can find out where and when the next slackline sessions will be held, as well as keep in touch with group members. Just like the sport’s popularity, SoCal Slackline’s membership has grown as well. According to Austin Lindsey of SoCal Slackline, the group has gone from five members to about 16 regulars in the past year, with ages ranging from 12 to 27. The members have developed strong friendships that go beyond slacklining. “Slacklining brought this group together,” Burkhart said. “They wouldn’t be here if it wasn’t for slacklining.”

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Bakersfield Life Magazine

November 2013

Zachary Andrews does a “truck driver backflip” while tricklining at The Park at River Walk.

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TABLESCAPE TRIM Make your dining table a special focal point this year with these Thanksgiving-focused tips

By Marissa Lay

Photos by April Massirio


specially set table can make any meal a special occasion. And no meal is perhaps more important than Thanksgiving, when the table becomes a focal point. So, how do we transform your space to represent the Thanksgiving day festivities? “Thanksgiving decorating is an opportunity to invite the outdoors in with leaves, gourds providing the colors of nature,” said Melissa Hutton, partner and full-time interior designer at Beladagio Home & Garden Gift Gallery. Hutton and Leigh Anne Hinson, tablescape specialist and buyer for Beladagio, shared some quick tips with Bakersfield Life on how you can dress your table for the meal of the year.

NATURE Leaves, pumpkins, gourds, natural cotton, and nuts aren’t commonly grown inside a home, but Thanksgiving gives us the opportunity to naturally enhance our surroundings. From the living room to the dining room table, the addition of Mother Nature’s treasures can revamp the entire feeling in your home. “Layering colors and textures creates an organic blend that can be paired with beautiful artificial to last through the season,” said Hutton. “Combine nature’s treasures with your own to reflect your family and your personality.”


Bakersfield Life Magazine

November 2013

Thanksgiving decorating is an opportunity to invite the outdoors in, providing the colors of nature, said Melissa Hutton, partner and fulltime interior designer at Beladagio Home & Garden Gift Gallery.

Repetition of your most favored colors throughout your dining room table will help unify the space.

COLOR Don’t be afraid to use non-traditional colors,” said Hinson. “Orange, gold and brown are beautiful, but using shades of purple with white gourds can be striking and unusual.” A fall color scheme includes a balanced blend from bronze and gold to yellow, orange, green, red and purple. “You can’t miss with a combination of any or all of these colors,” she said. “Use those that are most comforting to you.” Repetition of your most favored colors throughout your home will help unify the space.

TABLESCAPES AND CENTERPIECES To many people, Thanksgiving is centered around the table, so getting the tablescape right becomes a necessity. “To create a beautiful Thanksgiving tablescape, use things that mean something to you: Your grandmother’s China or a tray you received for your wedding,” said Hinson. “Then mix in new items for an updated look.” Create focal points by utilizing trays to anchor the theme, Hutton said. “Add candle holders topped with small

Charger plates add a layer of interest and depth to your table.

pumpkins, tuck in fall leaves and you have created a visual masterpiece with little effort,” she said. Build your tablescape by layering and using scale to create a designer appeal. “Using ‘too small’ pieces yields a flat look,” said Hinson. “When in doubt ‘lift’ and go big.” You can use glass cake plates or boxes draped with fabric to lift the centerpiece or focal point. “This will create the elevations necessary for a well-dressed table but make sure not to block your guest’s view of each other,” Hinson said. Add softness to your setting’s hard finishes of plates and silverware by using fabrics, runners, placemats and napkins. “Mixed-matched patterns are really popular today,” Hinson said. “Look for color repeat in the placemat and napkin fabric, and they will blend beautifully.” Whether you are searching for a tablescape to impress guests or make everyone feel at home, make it your own with your special little touches. “Remember to have fun and use what you love!” Hinson said. “The best tablescapes reflect your personality, represent your history and create the backdrop for wonderful memories.”

Thanksgiving table decorating tips • Remember large statement pieces are more dramatic than an assortment of small-scale decorations. • The sky is the limit with regard to color combinations. Just repeat colors to tie them together. • Charger plates add a layer of interest and depth to the table and show off your place settings. • Change up neutral place settings by adding new salad plates for the season. • Glass and crystal add shine to your table. Source: Beladagio Home & Garden Gift Gallery




Canadian soldiers at Vimy Ridge during WORLD WAR I.

THE BRITISH ARE COMING! THE BRITISH ARE HERE? British, Canadian armies open recruiting offices in downtown Bakersfield during World War I By Ken Hooper


here is nothing unusual about a red, white and blue flag flying in front of a downtown Bakersfield business. Except that in 1918, that flag was the Union Jack, and it belonged to the British Army recruiting depot occupying an office on 19th Street in the heart of Bakersfield’s business district. The United States entered World War I in April of 1917 allied with Great Britain, Russia and France. With the pretense of neutrality toward the belligerent powers dropped, the United States looked to fully support its allies. An agreement was reached in 1917 that allowed Great Britain to set up recruiting stations across America to enroll British citizens into their army. 120

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Articles appeared in newspapers in mid-western American newspapers as the campaign to recruit British citizens left the major eastern cities for the heartland. The British were given the deadline of Oct. 18, 1918 to finish their volunteer recruiting. After that date, the British citizens would be subject to the American military draft. In time, the British military opened offices in Stockton, Fresno, and ultimately, Bakersfield. On May 21, 1918, Lt. J.I. Simpson and Sergeant F.D. Dewar of the British Army opened the recruiting office at 1310 19th St. in downtown Bakersfield, currently the location of Costa Del Sol Restaurant. Simpson told the Bakersfield Morning Echo newspaper that the purpose of the office was “to secure as many Britishers as possible before the treaty between the United States and Britain goes into effect.” Men up to the age of 50, later increased to 60 years old, were being accepted into the British and Canadian Armies. To increase interest, the recruiting office displayed a handful of war artifacts, such as “a German officer’s helmet, a French steel helmet, an aerial bomb weighing 112 pounds, and gas masks,” for the people of Bakersfield to view. The British and Canadian armies had enlisted 55 men in Fresno and 30 in Stockton while their office was open in those cities. Their goal was to recruit 50 men from Kern County. In an interview with The Bakersfield Californian on May 27, 1918, Simpson stated they were looking for the same

Kern County Historical Society Programs for 2013-14 (all dates are Saturdays) • Nov. 16: “The History of Archeology in Kern County” by Krista Moreland • Jan. 18: “Basques of Kern County” Part II by Steve Bass • Feb. 15: “Downtown Walking Tour” by Ken Hoper • March 15: “Prohibition in Kern County” by Richard Roux • April 19: “Kern County’s Banning of the Grapes of Wrath” by Marci Lingo • May 17: “The Geology of Kern County” by Jack Pierce For more information on monthly meeting programs, visit

Kern Veterans Oral History Project Become part of history one more time. The Kern Veterans Oral History Project is a coordinated project including the Kern County Historical Society, Bakersfield High School’s CEO Academy students, and KGET-TV Channel 17. The project is supported and advised by numerous veterans groups and organizations in Kern County. If you are veteran of Kern County and want to share your story on your service to our country, we are willing to listen. Regardless of the conflict, branch of service or length of service, any stories that former servicemen and women are willing to share, we can record. Please contact the Kern County Historical Society at

skilled labor that had brought so many British citizens to Kern County. This would include “blacksmiths, bricklayers, carpenters, frame benders, platelayers, drillers, heavy timbermen, motor engineers, motor mechanics, mechanical, engineering and construction draughtsman, piledrivers, and riggers.” Extra pay was to be given soldiers with these sets of skills. Within the first week of the recruiting office opening, James Dale of Taft joined the Canadian Army. While it is unknown how many men were recruited from Kern County into the British and Canadian armies, the Kern Veterans Memorial “Wall of Valor” lists the names of four Kern County men killed fighting with the Canadian Army, and one killed with the British Army. At the dedication ceremony of the memorial on Nov. 11, 2007, the Canadian Air Force sent an army major to pay his respect on behalf of a grateful nation, just as Kern County pays homage to the citizens of other nation’s killed-in-action who had made Kern County their home. Those killed in action during World War I from the Canadian Army included Isaac Bennett, of Taft; Gordon Colquhoun, of Taft; Lionel Davidson, of Bakersfield; and F.J. Howard, of Bakersfield. L.W. Fernald, of Bakersfield, was killed in action as part of the British Army.

Golden Empire Transit District has been taking the people of Bakersfield where they want to go for the last 4 decades. Today, we continue to celebrate growth and transportation innovation. Providing service with nearly 90 natural gas buses, faster and more convenient routes and new technologies. Help your community, make a difference in your transportation footprint and improve air quality. GET on the GET Bus! For more info visit


Teresa Ford

United Way of Kern County celebrates half a century of local goodwill, ‘super women’

on track. Two years ago, the group’s Women’s Leadership Council formed to raise money and awareness for the community’s most critical issues. Current council co-chairwomen are Teresa Ford and Danielle Davis. As part of the 50-year anniversary, United Way of Kern County is honoring three “super women,” including Ford and Davis, as well as Kay Meek. “I get more back from the United Way than I could ever possibly give,” said Davis. “The opportunity to serve my community has been far greater than anything I have ever given.” Meet these United Way women here.

By Emily Claffy



In 1987, Kay Meek was elected as the first female chairwoman of the governing board for the United Way of Kern County while working as the senior vice president, director of community and government relations, for the California Republic Bank. Meek has spent much of her life giving back to the community. She has worked as the director of funding for the Bakersfield College Foundation and served as the campaign chairwoman for the United Way of Kern County 27 years ago, bringing in more than $1 million to the organization. “Being involved with United Way strengthened my family’s commitment to volunteer with various nonprofits and serve on their boards,” said Meek. “This commitment has been passed along to two generations. It is very rewarding to watch my grandchildren develop through their community service.” Meek remains an ambassador for the organization.


he mission is simple: improve lives in Kern County. For the past 50 years, United Way of Kern County has helped do just that by addressing the fundamental needs of our community through education, income and health. In fact, one in three Kern County residents benefit from programs provided or funded by the group. And 99 percent of money raised by the organization stays in the county. These funds support programs that teach economic selfsufficiency, improve literacy, reduce homelessness and improve people’s health, said Della D. Hodson, president of United Way of Kern County. In all, United Way of Kern County has made it simple for others to get involved, by giving, advocating or volunteering, and bringing people together for the common good of the community. It’s no wonder that this year’s 50th anniversary campaign focuses on community input — listening to more than 1,000 local residents to help identify key issues and concerns. The group also hopes to bring together past donors, supporters and volunteers from the past five decades. Many local women, too, have helped keep United Way’s 122

Danielle Davis


Kay Meek




Bakersfield Life Magazine

November 2013

TERESA FORD In 2007, Teresa Ford set out to meet with current president and CEO, Della Hodson, and former president and CEO,

Miriam Krehbiel. What Ford expected to be a routine workplace campaign meeting turned into a lesson on the United Way and its efforts throughout Kern County. “Their mission, vision and aspirations for our community mirrored my own,” Ford, a Bakersfield Californian advertising account executive, said. Just two years later, in 2009, Ford was elected chairwoman of the governing board, serving a two-year term. “It was humbling to sit at the head of the table with a group of some of the smartest, most generous, thoughtful and concerned members of our community,” Ford said. She is particularly drawn to projects that have a direct impact on children. Some of her favorites include “Raising a Reader” and “Born Learning,” education-focused programs for kids.

DANIELLE DAVIS Davis’ first introduction to United Way came when she attended a planning committee meeting in place of her boss. She became invested from that point forward. “The more involved I was, the more passionate I became about the organization and about being involved,” said Davis, an account management director at Kaiser Permanente. She was elected chairwoman of the governing board during a transitional time for the organization, and she helped the organization adopt an impact model that

50 Years of Philanthropy 1963: United Community Fund of Metro Bakersfield incorporated; fundraising goal set at $100,000 1964: Payroll deduction giving option introduced 1973: Name changed to United Way of Kern County 1982: First million-dollar campaign for United Way of Kern County 1989: 25th anniversary celebration salutes past presidents; first community needs assessment performed. 1991: First annual professional development conference for nonprofits

1997: United Way of Kern County moves from general agency funding to program-specific funding. 1999: First “teddy bear toss” with Bakersfield Condors 2001: United Way of Kern County raises $342,000 for Sept. 11 relief 2007: 2-1-1 service introduced to Kern County with major funding from United Way of Kern County. 2008: 10-year plan to end chronic homelessness released 2009: United Way of Kern County focuses on education, income and health 2013: 50th anniversary

addressed community needs. “It started with community feedback,” said Davis. “When you see something that’s making a significant difference, you want to bring it back and get those kind of results in your own community.”



Dylan Hoffman and buddy LaDonna Carroll run through the player “tunnel,” formed by parents at the end of every AYSO VIP Program game.

V-I-Ps ON THE FIELD Local kids with special needs become soccer stars through AYSO’s VIP Program By Kelly Damian

Photos by Mark Nessia


t’s Saturday morning, and Liberty Park is abuzz with the activity of a day of youth soccer. Chairs are unfolded on the sidelines, coolers dragged to the field, and snack tables are set up. It is a typical morning game for the American Youth Soccer Organization’s VIP Program of Northwest Bakersfield, a league established for kids and parents accustomed to everything but “typical.” AYSO’s Region 359 debuted its VIP Program last year with 15 players. This year, the number has doubled to 30. The program welcomes players who have physical or developmental disabilities that would make play impossible on a standard team. Players on a “Very Important Players” team might have 124

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November 2013

Elizabeth Chavez hugs her dad following her soccer match with AYSO VIP Program, a league for children with special needs and disabilities. autism, cerebral palsy, Down syndrome or other serious health conditions. The 9 a.m. game does not begin with a huddle and a pep talk from the coach. Instead, the action evolves slowly. Arriving players are matched up with buddies wearing camouflage

Maria Wright catches Lucas Cabral after a game of “keep away” during an AYSO VIP Program soccer game at Liberty Park.

T-shirts, many of whom are young soccer players themselves. Instead of battling each other for the ball, each player gets his or her own to kick down the field into the goal. The field’s boundaries are more of a permeable membrane than solid line. And at one point in the morning, a group of six people (three players and three buddies) kicked their balls down the field together, aiming for the same goal, cheering on each other. “This is a godsend for us. He’s always so full of energy,” said Brittany Ryan, mother of Ethan, 4. Ethan is autistic and much of his day at home is organized around the Thomas the Train. Playing soccer gives him something else to focus on, Ryan said. He loves wearing his cleats and shin guards, and when he kicks the ball into the net, he runs, beaming, to his family seated on the sidelines and shouts, “Clap!” They clap, and Ethan smiles and runs away. When 8-year-old Anthony Ingram, who is blind, plays, he doesn’t use his cane. Instead he runs across the field with his buddy. When he has dribbled the ball to the goal, he stops, feels it with his hands, and then winds up for a tremendous kick. “He loves to play soccer,” his mother, Karrie Ingram, said. “He doesn’t realize he’s different. He loves to come out and run through the tunnel and have the snack.” It’s something that Anthony’s sisters have done for years through AYSO. Now that the VIP Program has expanded to Region 359, he plays on the same fields as his sisters. For Aiden Torres, the weekly soccer games are a way for him to release the stress that comes with Asperger’s syndrome. When he’s at home, the 9-year-old feels a constant need to be busy and focus on everything around him. When he plays soccer, it’s easier to concentrate on his one task — getting the ball across the field and into the goal. At the end of the game, he runs up to his mom, Alma Torres,

Continued on page 126


Continued from page 125 sweating, and out of breath. “How many goals did you make?” she asks Aiden. “79 scores,” he answers, smiling. AYSO VIP Program Program Director Shelly Lee began When: Region 359 season ends today, Sign ups available working for VIP as a buddy last year. for the next session. She thought she was just going to help Check Facebook page “AYSO one Saturday a week, but she ended up Region 359” for updates. having a life-changing experience, she Contact: Sarah Rushing at said. Because of her work with the kids 699-0225 or and parents of the VIP soccer program, she has decided to get her teaching creMore information: dential. She feels inspired by the kids she sees every week, she said. “They don’t care what’s in their way,” Lee said. “They just want to have fun.” Each player in the blue VIP uniform has his or her own way of getting across the field, some with quiet intensity, others with reckless abandon. Some are carried to the goals by their buddies, and others leave their buddies sweating and chasing after them. But for every player, when the ball crosses into the goal and rolls into the orange netting, there is the same reaction: a bump up of the head, a smile and a glance across the field to see if their parents are watching.

Anthony Miller races down the field during an AYSO VIP Program soccer game as his buddy Grace Fleming cheers him on.

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Chef Robert and Chef John prepare cuisine for the Toast and Taste the Holidays event.

A HOLIDAY TOAST TO TASTE Bakersfield Christmas Parade fundraiser — featuring corks, cuisine and cooking competition — returns for a second year By Sylvia Cariker

Photos courtesy of Essence Photography


s many nonprofit groups will attest, putting on a “free” event costs a lot of money. The Bakersfield Christmas Parade, held the first Thursday of December, is no different. Parade coordinator Pamela Carlock said that despite the parade committee’s efforts to get services donated, and despite several generous sponsors, the parade can still run more than $19,000 a year, which doesn’t include the production costs to have the parade televised. The parade will air live on KGET-TV Channel 17, and when those costs are factored in, Carlock said, the total adds up to more than $30,000. And so, it all comes down to successful fundraising. Last year, the parade committee held its first Toast and Taste the Holidays, a holiday-themed food and wine tasting, and cooking competition — hosted by Urner’s and featuring 128

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The Toast and Taste the Holidays event features food tasting to benefit the Bakersfield Christmas Parade. the Bakersfield College Culinary Arts Department — to help make up the costs. This year welcomes back the second Toast and Taste the Holidays on Nov. 2, presented by Motor City Lexus and JennAir, and featuring Southern holiday-themed food tasting. Proceeds benefit the 31st Bakersfield Christmas Parade production, held Dec. 5, and also BC’s Culinary Arts Department scholarships. Six student chefs, who are finalists, will be cooking in Urner’s showcase kitchen, and they’ll be judged by three local professional chefs. “We love these events, especially when there’s a charity involved,” said David Perkins, marketing manager for Urner’s.

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A few tweaks and improvements this year will keep guests mingling about the space and taste the offerings. The night’s menu includes Southern glazed smoked pork loin; turkey pot pie with a cranberry-pecan crust; sautéed shrimp Southern style; golden beet salad, tea room waldorf salad and chipotle corn salad. Last year’s dessert bites were a guest favorite. In true “Top Chef” fashion, students will stand by to list the ingredients and explain the preparation process. As a reminder to frazzled holiday hosts, the BC Renegade Room student chefs also cater. The evening will also feature wine pairings, craft beer tasting, a demonstration of culinary edible art design by Chef Deanna Wilson, live jazz music, a holiday fashion show by Sugardaddy’s, door prizes and opportunity drawings.

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KERN CITY One of America’s first adult living communities continues to thrive


he single-family houses, condos and studio apartments of Kern City look as if they’ve been trapped in amber from the day it was erected as one of America’s first adult living communities. Built in 1960, by real estate developer and former New York Yankees coowner Del Webb, Kern City was one of the earliest experiments in housing designed specifically for the elderly, said Phyllis Adams, a board member on the Kern City

From left, Donna McKenna, Phyllis Adams, and Patti Imes celebrated the “Golden Jubilee” 50th anniversary of Kern City in 2011, one of first communities designed for seniors. 130

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Civic Association. Medical advancements in the 20th century led to a 20-year increase in life expectancy, and Webb seized on this opportunity by building housing all throughout the country for the growing population of Americans who were 60 years or older. “When we opened, 50,000 people came to see what adult living was all about,” said Adams, a resident of Kern City since 1976. “Kern City was the first of its kind on the West Coast.”


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Kern City, a formerly unincorporated neighborhood of southwest Bakersfield that stretches from Stockdale Highway to Ming Avenue, between Ashe and New Stine roads, is broken up into 17 sections of condos and studio apartments. STOCKDALE HWY In 2011, Kern City celeN brated its 50-year anniversary. Residents say not Kern much has changed over the City SU West N D ALE AVE years. While there are a few High School renters in the neighborKern CIty hood, a majority of the resiGolf Course MIN GA dents own the property VE 2,000 FT that they live on. KENT KUEHL / BAKERSFIELD LIFE In the middle of the neighborhood, a recreation Kern City center and town hall area • 1,024 single family residence accommodates residents • 80 percent are home owners with a pool and various • 68 percent of the homes have a forms of community-buildmarket value of $100,000 to ing pastimes. $200,000 “We’ve got 12 or 15 dif• 85 percent of the head of houseferent activities that go on hold are 60 or older here all the time, from Source: The Bakersfield Californian Market Research Department, cards, art, sewing, line Californian archives dancing or exercise class,” Adams said. “It’s a place where residents can relax, and the programs are geared toward them.” As an elected member of the Kern City association, a housing board that supervises and regulates the property, Adams helps plan other events that bring the retirement community together. The group provides transportation for concerts and outside events throughout the year and schedules regular speeches and seminars in

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The town hall building of Kern City’s recreation area remains active.



Continued from page 131 the town hall area for everything from psychic readings to information about new health care options under the Affordable Care Act, she said. The neighborhood is also home to Rosewood Retirement Community and the Kern High School District headquarters.

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November 2013

While it has no affiliation with the Kern City association or the neighboring retirement community, Webb built the Kern City Golf Course in 1962. The semi-private 18-hole course, Sundale Country Club hosts the annual Bakersfield City Championship, one of the largest and most prestigious golf events in Kern County. “There is no similarity between holes on this course,” said Al Sandrini, manager at Sundale and owner of Sandrini’s Italian and Basque Restaurant and Bar downtown. “It’s a challenging golf course, and it’s probably one of the best-designed courses in Bakersfield.” The course also hosts tournaments for Petroleum Club of Bakersfield and other oil companies throughout the year, Sandrini said. And many of the residents of Kern City are members of Sundale, which is built around the backyards of the condos and studio apartments. Adams notes that while participation in community events has declined in the 30-plus years she’s lived in Kern City, as some of the residents are forced to continue working into their 60s, it’s still a hospitable community. “It feels a lot safer here because you’re in a group of your own peers,” Adams said. “You have some of the same interests, the same histories that younger people wouldn’t have. It’s just friendly.”

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… CARE FOR YOUR HEALTH Meet two nurse practitioners and a physician assistant who strive to fix what ails you Compiled by Bakersfield Life Magazine


hey’re not doctors, but they’re close. Even so, these three guys care about your health care. November brings us National Nurse Practitioner Week, from Nov. 11 to 17. The California Association for Nurse Practitioners introduced us to two local nurse practitioner and two physician assistants, some of which are dedicated to reaching underserved populations in urban and rural areas locally. Meet them here.

Iain is a family nurse practitioner at Highgrove Medical Center, is married to a family nurse practitioner, and has three children. He was born at Bakersfield Memorial Hospital and only left town to attend Stanford University. What’s your specialty? I’m in family practice because I want to help the whole family, not just one individual. We try to simplify everything in medicine because things can be so complex but it’s almost never simple. Why did you decide to become a physician assistant? I was going to college and working as a rehab assistant for injured patients and got to see firsthand what nurses did. I loved it. I wanted to be more involved in the patients care. What do you enjoy most about your job? Knowing I did everything I could for the person, providing a service at some of the most intimate moments in their lives, and most importantly, I enjoy giving people hope. What do you enjoy least about your job? Politics, limitations and the restrictions on what patients are allowed to have. Oftentimes, you know a patient can benefit from a certain medication, test or procedure, but it’s not a covered benefit, formulary friendly or affordable medicine. What is the biggest challenge? Interfacing electronically when I really need to sit down and listen to my patient. Biggest misconception people have about nurse practitioners: That they’re “just a nurse” and work under the

physician. One thing that makes for a great work day is… giving good news and relief to someone who is praying for just that. If I wasn’t a nurse practitioner, I would be… retired.


Bakersfield Life Magazine

November 2013

Iain Gallego



IVAN LOCQUIAO Ivan is a surgical physician assistant at Bakersfield Heart Hospital. He came to Bakersfield from the Philippines when he was 17 years old, and has lived here since, along with his parents, two brothers and their families, most of whom are also health care professionals. What is your specialty? Cardiothoracic surgery. I have always enjoyed learning about the heart and its physiology, as well as the wide range of illnesses related to the cardiovascular system. Why did you decide to become a physician assistant? I started my career in healthcare as a registered nurse, and I was fortunate enough to work with a few great physician assistants. It was then that I began to understand their role in the health


Ivan Locquiao

care arena and developed an interest in the profession. What do you enjoy most about your job? I’m fairly new to surgery, so I always get the rush of adrenaline every time we operate on patients, and that feels great. Most importantly, being able to see the improvement in a patient’s condition almost instantaneously after surgery is really satisfying. What do you enjoy least about your job? The number of surgeries and patient load is unpredictable. What is the biggest challenge? A lot of people do not understand the role that physician assistants (or mid-level practitioners in general) play in health care. Like physicians, we are trained to diagnose and treat medical illnesses. However, physician assistants always work under physician supervision.

seen by a physician assistants. We know our limits and the nature of our profession requires us to have a supervising physician to consult whenever necessary. One thing that makes for a great work day is… performing well, learning new things, seeing the patients progress, looking at their happy faces as they get ready to go


Biggest misconception people have about physician assistants: That they are getting inferior care when they are

Javier Hernandez

Continued on page 136


Continued from page 135 home, and being home on time. If I wasn’t a physician assistant, I would be… A registered nurse. If I chose a non-health care field, I would be a computer engineer. My advice for a patient admitted to see me:

Always be honest.

JAVIER HERNANDEZ Javier is a family nurse practitioner for Clinica Sierra Vista. He came to the United States at age 13 and has been in Bakersfield since. “I love what I do and the people I work with.” What’s your specialty? I have a passion for working with kids. I wanted to choose a specialty where I could use my past experiences and what I loved working with. Obtaining a degree as a family nurse practitioner was going to give me that flexibility that I wanted. Why did you decide to become a nurse practitioner? I always wanted to work as a medical provider and my

dreams were to become a doctor. I wanted something where I could make my dreams a reality and not take a lot of years of my life, and becoming a family nurse practi-


Bakersfield Life Magazine

November 2013

tioner was that. What do you enjoy most about your job? Being able to put a smile on the face of the patients when they walk out of the rooms. What do you enjoy least about your job? The long hours I have to stay at the clinic. What’s your favorite experience as a nurse practitioner? Giving a patient $20 to buy her blood pressure

medications when she really needed it. What is your biggest challenge? Having to manage complex medical problems that doctors do not have time to see. Biggest misconception people have about nurse practitioners: That nurse practitioners are females, and

that we cannot see patients without the doctor having to be in the room. How has your career impacted your personal life?

Time! This is the biggest factor that has impacted my personal life with my family and girlfriend. If I wasn’t a nurse practitioner, I would be… a construction worker. Almost everyone in my family works in construction. My advice for a patient admitted to see me: Bring all your medications to every visit!


Dr. Oscar E. Streeter Jr. is a renowned radiation oncologist and San Joaquin Community Hospital’s AIS Cancer Center medical director. 138

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The AIS Cancer Center

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San Joaquin Community Hospital’s AIS center’s medical director is leading the future of medical tech

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r. Oscar E. Streeter Jr. has been riding the technology wave of change for nearly 30 years. In 1984, while a resident at Howard University Medical School, he had something others did not, and it helped him land a coveted spot on a research team to Haiti. “I was the only resident at Howard who had my own personal computer,” said Streeter, renowned radiation oncologist and San Joaquin Community Hospital’s AIS Cancer Center medical director. “I thought it was important even back then, and I was intrigued by the promise of technology.” He was, in a way, ahead of his time, and throughout his career, his curiosity about the marriage of technology and medicine has never waned. “How are you going to get information out to people if you don’t use technology?” he asserts. “Technology means information gets spread, and knowledge is power when talking to patients.” He recalls a recent conversation with one. “I was able to pull up on the screen the imaging and their treatment plan. I could actually manipulate the image in their hospital room,” he said. “So instead of me telling you, let me show you.” It is that interactive navigation through the medical maze of cancer treatment that excites and inspires him. “The future is here, and it is now.”

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FAMILY MEDICAL CARE Recruited in September last year to oversee the medical programs at the center, which opened in May, 58-year-old Streeter, with a hearty laugh and generous grin, is an imposing presence. The son of a carpenter, he was born in Roanoke, Va. but grew up in Pasadena. He graduated from University of Southern California, where he co-captained the water polo team. The family tree is filled with health care professionals: He met his wife, Paulette Saddler, an

Continued on page 140


Continued from page 139 internist, while in medical school at Howard; his mother is a nurse, and his stepmother and sister are both pediatricians. Streeter began his practice in 1986 at Kaiser Permanente Hospital in Los Angeles. Four years later, he became chief of services and the residency program director at USC Norris Comprehensive Cancer Center. In 2008, Streeter was appointed professor and chairman of the Radiation Oncology Department at Howard, living bi-coastal between Washington, D.C. and Southern California. Streeter was the co-principal investigator with Dr. Michael Steinberg, now chairman of Radiation Oncology at UCLA, of a $3.5 million grant from the radiation research program of the National Cancer Institute to increase enrollment in clinical trials in under-served areas of Los Angeles. His clinical trial of partial breast irradiation for the earliest stage of breast cancer, ductal carcinoma in situ (also known as DCIS), is nearing completion. The trial includes five years of follow-up involving multiple institutions, including clinical researchers from MD Anderson Cancer Center. The results should be available for publication submission early next month.

‘DO IT RIGHT, DO IT BETTER’ Saddler practices in Southern California, and the couple still maintains a home in San Marino, a house built by his father. However, Streeter considers himself a full-time resident of Bakersfield. Their daughter, Rebecca, 23, is an architecture student at


Bakersfield Life Magazine

November 2013

USC. He has high praise for his peers within the local medical community. “The big secret of Bakersfield is that they have some of the most talented physicians,” he said. “This is a talent-rich county of providers on all levels.” And he is equally impressed with the community’s goodwill. “What amazes me is that less money comes out of black ties in D.C. than the blue jeans and boots here,” he said. “I prefer this.” In July, Streeter was appointed as a clinical professor with UC Davis’ Department of Radiation Oncology. The local cancer center is affiliated with UC Davis Comprehensive Cancer Center. San Joaquin Hospital’s association with Quest Imaging, and the opening of the Quest facility next door in 2014, further expand the pools of research opportunity, he said. “The chance to do research without having to rely on some larger outside entity is exciting,” Streeter said. “If you look at San Joaquin as a whole, it is becoming a regional campus hospital with our burn, bariatric and stroke centers. There are so many highly-skilled specialty programs that are fully staffed.” A fan of noted surgeon and journalist Atul Gawande, Streeter is adopting the philosophy of Gawande’s book, “Better,” which hinges on the tenets of diligence, doing right and ingenuity. “He is a gifted explainer of health care,” Streeter said. “I am sometimes overwhelmed. Each day I get better at using technology, using ingenuity and using diligence to do it right and do it better.” Of the local state-of-the-art center, he says: “This is the real deal!”

Amador Galvez has officiated hundreds of high school and college sporting events in his 40 years on the job. 142

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his year marks the 75th anniversary of the Kern County Officials Association, which started in 1938 by the teachers and administrators in the Kern High School District. For nearly 40 of those years, Amador Galvez has been one of the hundreds of officials, referees and umpires who officiate high school sports in Kern County from August through June each school year. This high school wrestling season will be Amador Galvez’s 39th year of officiating, 10 of which includes junior college and collegiate matches. “I really enjoy the competitive nature and have a passion that the sport of wrestling has to offer,” Galvez said. “The one on one, mano-a-mano, doesn’t get any better.” In 2004, Galvez was honored by Valley Public Television and Union Bank of California as one of five “Central Valley Latinos local heroes” for his generosity and volunteer work on and off the field — in church, local continuation schools, youth camps and community service programs. When he’s not officiating, you can find Galvez enjoying retirement at the gym, Laurelglen Bible Church, Bakersfield Rescue Mission, barbecuing for family and local nonprofits, hunting with his brothers, or coaching his twin grandsons in wrestling.

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How did you get interested in officiating? I wrestled for Joe Seay at South High School and Bruce Pfutzenreuter at Bakersfield College. After graduating from Fresno State in 1974 and starting my career with PG&E, I had a desire of maintaining some connection in the sport of wrestling, and becoming an official was a perfect segue. What’s kept you officiating for 39 years? The adrenalin rush that you sense in officiating a tight, close match coupled with your heart pounding and listening to the screaming fans ... it’s extremely exciting. Also, the support, camaraderie and relationships that you build with other officials is very rewarding and gratifying. In addition, it’s a good feeling surrounding myself around student athletes, former wrestles, coaches, athletic directors and many others who continue to volunteer their time for the sport. Lastly, as co-instructor, I take pride in teaching the rules and interpretation in the classroom including developing our younger officials.

Continued on page 144


Continued from page 143

What’s the most difficult call you’ve made? One of the most difficult calls to make is awarding penalty points for stalling in a tight close barnburner match. I had this situation in a state tournament during a semi-final match that pitted two schools that were in vying for the state championship. I remember mentally tracking the legitimate takedown attempts by each wrestler and preparing myself to award a penalty point. After making the call and awarding a stalling penalty, I felt in my judgment that it was the right decision even though it tied the match up and sent it into overtime. What’s the biggest misconception people have about your job? The rules for high school wrestling are more complex than most people think, including those people who have wrestled at the high school and college level. How do you deal with angry athletes and crowds? My philosophy in addressing a hostile and tense environment is to always remain calm, be professional, stay in control and avoid further escalating the situation.

You need to adhere to the rules and enforce penalties that addresses unsportsmanlike conduct or any act that becomes abusive that interferes with the orderly progress of the match. You don’t want to have “rabbit ears,” where you hear everything. But at the same time, you need to be aware of your surroundings. What’s the biggest mistake you’ve ever made as a sports official? Back in the old days, when Joe Seay coached at Cal State Bakersfield, there was a duel against rivalry Cal Poly and Coach Vaughn Hitchcock at the Bakersfield Civic Center. Both coaches were having a “friendly” debate as to utilizing either of two officials — the late Bob Lane or me. Minutes before the match was about to start, they decided on yours truly. Aside from being nervous and trying my hardest not to be perceived as a “hometown” official, I made a very “questionable” call that seemed to excite the home crowd; however, coach Hitchcock and their fans were going ballistic. I still remember the echoing choice words and demonstrative body language from Hitchcock that night. It also involved the very first and only incident for me, where a very caring and concerned police officer suggested that he escort me to my car.

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November 2013

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TURKEY TROTS AND TRAVELING TIPS Healthy traveling tips, November to-do fun, foods to halt inflammation and more By Sally Baker and Katie Kirschenmann

THE CALORIC PITFALLS OF TRAVEL The month of November officially kicks off the holiday season, a time for family, friends and for some of us, lots of travel. Whether by plane, train or automobile, travel can wreak havoc on our health. Cancelled flights, delays and screaming children can push even the most patient and restrained of human beings over the edge and into the arms of an overpriced airport bar. The best way to gain weight is to indulge in convenience food and drink.

A nutritious culinary survival kit for air travel. 146

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Instead, be mindful of how food and beverage choices can color your day of travel. Eating clean and healthy will aid your body, boost your stamina and help you weather moments of stress. Here are three simple tips to help you navigate the food court and eat well throughout your trip. • Avoid airplane food: Pack yourself a culinary survival kit. Choose foods that are easily digestible and won’t spike your blood sugar. The TSA will allow most foods through security as long as they are wrapped and packaged. The liquid rule, however, still applies unless you are travelling with small children. My travel picnic kit is comprised of celery, baby carrots, berries, almonds, a very lightly dressed vegetable salad (dressings and oils are not allowed) and a granola bar. When choosing a granola bar, keep in mind that not all bars are created equal. There are some granola bars out there that are higher in calories than a candy bar. Read the label. The shorter the ingredients list, the better. I prefer less processed bars made from fruits and nuts, like Kind and Lara bars. Packing a yogurt cup is a crapshoot. When traveling with little ones, TSA allows a reprieve from the gel and liquid rules for food. Traveling solo, you may have your yogurt unceremoniously dumped in the trash. • Don’t stress: Travel nightmares happen. Take a deep breath and roll with it. Drink plenty of water and avoid the temptation to over-caffeinate. If you find yourself stuck in an airport for a few hours and nearing your wits end, the best thing to do is keep moving. Don’t hunker down in the bar or fast food court. Avoid stress eating and drinking by stretching your legs and taking a walk. Seek out a moment of peace if at all possible. Call a loved one, listen to music or open a book. Stress while traveling is sometimes unavoidable. Pack a survival kit for your brain, as well as your stomach. Download movies, music and books. If games are your thing, treat yourself to a crossword or Sudoku book. On occasion, the simplest pleasures can make the difference between a good day and bad one. • Find fast food intelligence: It is actually possible to eat well in the airport. All you need is to be armed with the right information. There are tons of great apps that will give you the skinny on fast food calories and ingredients. “Fooducate” and “Fastfood”

are very useful and free applications for your smartphone. Rule of thumb: When you have no other option but fast food, always choose the freshest option. Fruits, veggies and lean protein will serve a body best in the air. Avoid fried foods and carbonated beverages. The combination of cabin pressure and fried food delivers unpleasant results. — Katie Kirschenmann

Bakersfield Police Department Memorial Run: The 31st 5K/10K run will be held on Nov. 2, at the Park at River Walk. It benefits children of officers killed in the line of duty, for their college education. Zombie Apocalypse 5K: Escape and avoid grasping zombies along the trail at California Living Museum on Nov. 9. Race along CALM, the soccer park and along the Kern River. Funds raised will benefit the Jeremy Staat Foundation. Online registration until Nov. 6. More information: Turkey Trot 5K: Benefiting the Bakersfield Homeless Center, the family-friendly trot takes place Nov. 23 at Yokuts Park. Choose from a one-mile, 5K or 10K, or the “lil’ gobbler run” for the kids with Bob the Turkey. More information: 322-9199. Slow Spokes Sunday Ride: Take a 21-mile bike ride



The Bakersfield Police Department Memorial Run

at your own pace from 8 to 10 a.m. Nov. 27. Turn around whenever you like. Meet at Cal State Bakersfield’s bike path parking on Stockdale Highway, west of Coffee Road. More information: More information on runs and events, go to — Sally Baker

Continued on page 148


Continued from page 147 The mighty leek (allium porrum) The leek is the national vegetable of Wales and packs a powerful nutritional punch. Belonging to the allium family, along with onion and garlic, the leek contains a unique combination of flavonoids and Recipe: C sulphury n d i’s leek an potato so containing nutrients. Slice d up Organic ch them thinly and let them icken broth 1 pound re sit for at least five minutes d potatoes (chopped 1 pound le after cutting before cookinto quarte eks (chopp rs) ed) 1 large onio ing to enhance their health n promoting qualities. Just Direction s tomed sau : Simmer in a large, one cup of raw leeks concepan for heavy bot30 minute slightly wit tains large amounts of Vitas. texture. Ad h potato masher, leav Mash down d e : cu ch min K, A, C, B6 and folate p u n o ky f milk, salt freshly cho an and is just 54 calories. sausage (o pped parsley, knob d pepper,

EXERCISE OF THE MONTH: JUMPING ROPE This simple, ancient form of fun exercise is one of the best cardio exercises you can do. Your heart rate will be pushed up immediately and maintaining the rhythm of the jump without stopping will challenge your endurance. Try this program to promote fat-burning qualities and boost endurance for just 30 minutes, three times a week. Using a light-weight jump rope (I use the plastic kind with light handles covered in thin foam), jump rope for one minute, using the single light bounce method. Then walk as fast as you can for 5 minutes. Repeat these two for 30 minutes. These two exercises combine high impact, high cardio, with lower impact endurance work. You will feel energized and stronger after a few weeks, benefitting heart health and total body fitness. — Sally Baker

of ptional, nit rate free if butter, Enjoy with possible). cr is p salad warming, hearty fall , and crusty bread fo supper. ra —

Anti-inflammatory foods Sally Baker In our continuing quest to stay strong, fit and healthy, we occasionally put additional stresses on our body. Whether it’s in training extra miles for a race, or twisting an ankle in a gopher hole, we may find a reddened, swollen painful area. This is the first response of the immune system. One important thing you can do for your body is to eat more anti-inflammatory foods and eliminate the inflammatory ones. Some of the most anti-inflammatory foods include: • Wild salmon: Contains omega-3. Look for wild rather than farmed. If you don’t like fish, take a fish supplement (available now in gummy form). • Extra virgin olive oil: Provides a healthy dose of fats that fight inflammation.


Bakersfield Life Magazine

November 2013

Jumping rope is one of the best cardio exercises you can do.


• Broccoli, Brussels sprouts, kale and cauliflower:

Loaded with antioxidants and are naturally detoxifying. • Ginger: Helps reduce inflammation and controls blood sugar. Try ginger tea or green tea. • Sweet potatoes: Actually heals inflammation in the body. • Garlic: Helps reduce inflammation and fights infection. Inflammatory foods include: • Sugar: It’s everywhere but limit processed foods, deserts and sugary snacks whenever possible. • Trans fat: Increases cholesterol, promotes inflammation and resistance to insulin. • Dairy: Milk may actually trigger inflammation and stomach problems. Try Kefir or Fage Greek yogurt. • Processed meat: May trigger constant inflammation responses. Replace with poultry, fish or lean cuts of red meat. • Refined grains: White rice, white flour, white bread. Replace with whole grains or minimally-processed grains. • Alcohol: May cause irritation and inflammation to many organs. Minimize consumption. — Sally Baker

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The Comprehensive Women’s Health Center opened earlier this year.

HAVEN FOR WOMEN’S HEALTH New expanded one-stop center aims to serve health care needs for local women By Emily Claffy

Photos by April Massirio


t was only natural that the new Comprehensive Women’s Health Center, at Old River Road and Stockdale Highway, took nine months to build. “It was like a pregnancy, so we kept everyone apprised,” said Peg Board, director of operations at the San Dimas Medical Group, Inc. women’s center. The new center provides expanded space and services for women of Bakersfield and Kern County — pregnant or not.

NEW BEGINNING Plans to build a new San Dimas women’s center came after 2005 when a switch from paper to electronic medical 150

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The center's gift shop includes plenty of goodies. records was implemented and impacted the overall operations of the office that was housed in Mercy Southwest. The new center opened earlier this year, in May, and has continued to expand since. “We felt it would be better to build from the ground up,”

This calming lobby welcomes patients to the Comprehensive Women’s Health Center.

10 tips for women to stay healthy 1. Understand risk factors: Risk factors are things that can potentially increase your chances of getting a variety of diseases. Some are out of your immediate control and others are risk factors you can avoid.

Board said. “And when we embarked on that process, we realized that we wanted to expand our services and ensure that we were meeting the healthcare needs of women in Kern County.”


2. Be proactive about heart disease and stroke prevention: Heart disease is the leading cause of death among women in America. Reduce your risk by getting more exercise, eating healthy, consuming less salt, not smoking and controlling alcohol intake.

3. Stay physically active:

The new center has allowed the group to offer more inoffice procedures and avoid patients to a hospital or an outpatient center. And it offers consultant services for high-risk pregnant women who require the expert opinion of a perinatologist. Among services, the center offers Ultrasound services, including 4D Ultrasound; ablation therapy, a procedure for heavy bleeding and an alternative to a hysterectomy; and Essure, a procedure for permanent sterilization done under local anesthesia and hysteroscopy services. Obstetrical patients with morning sickenss can also rehydrate in the office, or receive an IV on the spot, instead of visiting an emergency room. Jackie Moreno, patient and former employee, enjoys the convenience of the new center. “It’s nice to have a number of options to choose from between the doctors and nurse practitioners,” Moreno said,

Regular physical activity can help you reach and sustain a healthy weight. It also improves the function of your heart, lungs and blood vessels and improves muscular fitness. 4. Eat healthy: Try eating a variety of fruits and vegetables, calcium rich foods, fish, whole grains and lean protein. Also, limit saturated and trans fat, salt and added sugars.

5. Track the health of your cervix: Cervical cancer forms when normal cells in the cervix become cancer cells. A leading cause is human papillomavirus (HPV). Regular pap and HPV tests help detect any abnormal cell formations.

6. Maintain your reproductive health: The reproductive system is one of the most fragile systems in the body. It is beneficial to have a regular pelvic exam and to get tested for sexually transmitted infections and hepatitis if pregnant. 7. Be proactive during pregnancy: Be sure to see your doctor regularly, eat healthy, drink lots of water, limit caffeine, increase your folic acid intake, stay active and maintain your oral health. 8. Check your breasts: Breast cancer is the second most common type of cancer in women. Regularly conduct self-examinations and tell your doctor if you notice a change in your breasts.

9. Take advantage of preventative services: Preventative screenings and immunizations help keep you from getting sick and can track any abnormal changes in your body. 10. Deal with stress: Be sure to make time for yourself and relax. Deep breathing, yoga, meditation and massage therapy are practices that can help you wind down. Source: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office on Women’s Health

Continued on page 153


Comprehensive Women’s Health Center San Dimas Medical Group, Inc. Where: 300 Old River Road, Suite 200 Hours: 7:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday; 7:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday; and 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday. More info:, 663-4800

The family can get together in this Ultrasound room.

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Continued from page 151 “especially during pregnancy when you’re going in so often.” The center is not like your typical doctor’s office, Board said. “It is time that Bakersfield has something like this.”

ONE-STOP CENTER The center also features a gift shop and cafe that serves sandwiches and salads from The Garden Spot. Patients at the previous center would have to walk to the hospital cafeteria for a snack. A pharmacy is also expected to open at the center in the coming months, making it a true one-stop shop for women. This year, San Dimas Medical Group celebrated its 40th anniversary, which included an open house of the new center recently.

631 California Ave Bakersfield, CA 93304



Father and daughter play with their two dogs on Morro Strand State Beach.

DOG’S DAY AT THE BEACH Let your dogs roam in the surf, sand at this Central Coast dog-friendly beach By Lois Henry


isclaimer: I have no idea if the strip of beach I’m about to tell you about is a sanctioned “dog beach,” or, if it’s just a known spot where people bring dogs and let them run. That’s my way of saying, if you get a ticket from the dog police, don’t blame me! I’ve made this trip several times, and it’s always a good time, so I thought I’d share. It’s about a two-and-a-half-hour drive, which may 154

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sound like a lot. But on a hot, dry Bakersfield day, when the very thought of walking Fido makes your hair hurt, it suddenly seems a lot closer. Besides, what’s more fun than a day trip to the beach? There’s nothing marking this beach, by the way. I found it kind of by accident after a local told me the general vicinity. So, clearly anyone can find it, as I’m no Magellan. The dog-friendly stretch is basically where Morro Bay houses end and Cayucos houses begin (for directions on finding this beach, see the sidebar). When I went in September, it was another near 100degree day in Bakersfield and only 65 at dog beach. It wasn’t windy that day but most other times I’ve gone, it was pretty breezy, so be prepared. Also, you’ll want to bring a big jug of fresh water and a bowl for your dog(s). It’s a long trip and you really don’t want to deal with the results of them lapping up seawater during your drive home. I had never seen the beach “crowded” with other pooches and their people. But that day, there were a lot


Dogs can bask in the sun at Morro Strand Beach

Dogs can freely try the waves at Morro Strand Beach in Cayucos.


How to find the dog beach

of other folks with the same idea I had. Everyone I met was extremely nice. And since they were all dog people, even my muttly, ball-obsessed, overly friendly, muddy-pawed crew didn’t bother anyone. Most people were local and one lady thought it was just “super” that I had driven my pack of critters over from Bakersfield to play in the waves. (I have no idea how she knew where I was from, other than her keen observation of my “Bakersfield” ball cap!) Since I know nothing about surfing, I don’t know if this is a surfer’s beach as well. In all the times I’ve gone, I’ve only ever seen one fellow on a board in the waves. And the whole time he was out there, his dog waited patiently by his things up on the beach. How great are dogs? I mention this as a caution to anyone considering a trip — you need to be aware of your surroundings. Meaning, don’t throw a ball for your dog right into a wave someone is trying to ride! Oh, and if you’re a person who won’t scoop poop, you are not welcome at this beach. Good Samaritans have even gone to the effort of tying large garbage bags to the fence at the beach entrance so you

It’s called Morro Strand Beach, off Highway 1 and 24th Street in Cayucos. The dog-friendly stretch is basically where Morro Bay houses end and Cayucos houses begin. Toro Creek Road dead-ends into a little parking area where you can access the beach. Or, if you’re going north on Highway 1, Toro Creek Road will be to your right with a left-hand turn lane into the parking area. If you’re headed south, make sure to slow down and watch for the Toro Creek Road sign. There’s usually a collection of cars at the fence, so you should be able to spot it.

Ruff Rules These rules apply to most dog beaches. Follow your individual beach rules. • Pick up after your dog. • Dogs must be under voice control. • Do not leave your dog unattended. • No aggressive dogs. • Dogs must wear ID tags. • Dogs must be up to date on vaccinations. • Some dog beaches don’t allow pets under 4 months old. • Some ban dogs in heat. Source: Los Angeles Times

can toss your poop bags and not have to carry them home in the car. There’s no reason not to clean up after your fourlegged pals. Places like these are gems that are fast becoming extinct

Continued on page 156


Top dog-friendly beaches “Legal” and public off-leash beaches along the California coast are difficult to find. Luckily, has helped track down the best places to get your doggy wet and sandy, including the Morro Strand Beach. • Dog Beach at Ocean Beach in San Diego • Arroyo Burro Beach (Hendry’s Beach) in Santa Barbara

• Fiesta Island Off Leash Dog Park in San Diego • Coronado Dog Beach in Coronado • Rosie’s Dog Beach in Long Beach • Baker Beach in San Francisco • Carmel Beach in Carmel • Morro Strand Beach in Cayucos • Buccaneer Beach Park in Oceanside • Monterey State Beach in Monterey

Continued from page 155 because of sanitation concerns (not to mention aggressive and out-of-control dogs). So, if you go — enjoy! But, please protect it so the rest of us can love it, too.

Lots of Bakersfield residents and their pets visit Morro Strand Beach, one of the top dogfriendly beaches in California.

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4 Fall Fashion It is once again time to shop for your fall wardrobe. Get ready with this cute blush-colored wrap sweater with lace trim and vintage cream lace top, paired with our Laguna Beach Jeans. You will look so chic for fall. 205 E. 18th St.; 369-1609;

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6 Love Me Green Crosses Our Love Me Green Crosses are made locally and out of 100 percent recycled materials. They’re the perfect gifts for everyone. And Soul Purpose is the new name for our store, formerly known as Greenshops. Gifts with purpose, good for the soul. 8200 Stockdale Highway, Suite B-2; 843-6477.

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7 Fleur de Lis Wall Art Handcrafted unique wooden signs with sparkling crystal accents. Perfect decor for all areas of your home. Come get yours at Uniquely Chic Florist and Boutique, 9500 Brimhall Road, Suite 701; 588-7997:

Uniquely Chic 158

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5 4



American Petroleum Institute’s Fall Fun Shoot Oct 4 Held at Five Dogs Photos by Mark Nessia View these photos and more online at

Terra Gaines, Jim Roberts, Lyndy Affeld and Amy Ramos

Priscilla Kelly, Patricia Jones, Chris Jones and Susan Greuter

Dave Howlett and Dan Sliter

Don Taft, Alan White, Ed Rodriguez and Chris Moore

Back: Alisha Chambers, Jimmy Dean and Vickie Farler. Front: Pam Wilson and Yvonne Imel

Jay Busby and Joe Sinopole

Connie Davis, Robin Brassfield-Cooper, Amanda Gardener and Kimberly Turella

Matt Ediger, Bob Woods, Mick Gleason, Bill Dance and Zack Scrivner

Wine, Women and Shoes Oct. 5 Held at the home of Lee and Krystyna Jamieson Photos by April Massirio View these photos and more online at

Doloris Garcia and Christine Stroud

Joyce Glidwell, Carolyn Smith and Krisitie Kovacich

Terry Oxley and Esther Ruiz

Gloria Pino and Aracela Cisneros

Christy Rudnick, Carolun Pomerene, Kaitlin Rudnick and Diana Crockett Dinah Mettler and Andie Froehlich

Jane Drew and Kristen Rubio

Joy Stamp, Tami Calderwood and Danny Stamp

Tom Maxwell, Pritesh Patel and Greg Frank

Joe Alexander Scholarship Foundation’s Elegant Evening of Wine Oct.5 Held at the home of Dr. Mark and Sue Ashley Photos by Greg Nichols View these photos and more online at

Susan and Scott Begin

Ken and Diane White

Mark and Sue Ashley

Nancy and Angelo Haddad

Kym Moore and Hal Blackburn

Carol and Bill Scroggins

Deanne and Nick Lopez and Donna and Scott Anglim 162

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Christina Sapien and Susanne Icardo

Antonio Beccari, Diane and Tim Yaksitch and Phil Icardo

Girl Scouts Inspiring Women Luncheon Oct. 4 Held at Valley Baptist Church Photos by Mark Nessia View these photos and more online at

Front: Lilli Vargas, Jamie Stuck, Janelle Williams, Sandra Aragon and Priyanka Brahmbhatt. Back: Cristine Lehmann, Adriana Rodriguez and Ashley Sullivan.

Margaret Riley, Barbara Love, Patty Bass and Joy Rose

Courtney Bryant, Lynda Halligan and Amity Addrisi.

Front: Sandra Serrano, Joan Dezember, Betty Shaneyfelt Finch, Cindy Pollard and Peggy Darling. Back: Sue Benham, Irma Carlson, Geri Spencer

Melody Roberson, Mary Kay Stolting, Emily Loyd and David Loyd

Front: Katie, Vicky and Tim Werdel and Connie Selgrath. Back: MaryAnne Souder, Dee Whitley, Betty Jones and Carole Parker.

Front: Phil Crosby, Laura Lopez, Rocky and Christina Lacertoso. Back: Jackie Newell, Amanda Young and Michele Leper.


Plank Foundation Golf Tournament Oct. 7 Held at Bakersfield Country Club Photos by Jan St Pierre View these photos and more online at

Marlene Heise

Steve McKinzie, Bill Thomas, Darrell Sparks and Hans Van Noord

Dave and Jan Nicholas and Don and Earlene Barnes

Mike Burger, Bill Lewis and Bob Parker Matthew and Scarlett Sabin

Steve Fowler, Pete Briones and Scott Netzer 164

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Gene Simonson, Corky Graviss, Mark Chandler and Bill Harrelson

Bakersfield Museum of Art Fall Opening Sept. 19 Held at Bakersfield Museum of Art Photos by Carla Rivas View these photos and more online at

Rachel Magnus, Melissa Poole and Ari Cimental

Matthew Slominski, John Sigel and Emily Becerra

Katie Werdel and Haley Hettinger

Cindy and David Stiles

Stephanie, Grant, Jeff, Colin and Olivia Pickering

Mary and Rick Wegis

Brenda and Jerry Horwedel

Keith Kilbourn and Margaret Nuanez

Ryan Marston, Lina Srost

Dottie Johns and Eileen Ettinger


Big Mo’s Softball Classic Sept. 19 Held at Mesa Marin Sports Complex Photos by Casey Christie View these photos and more online at

Erin Kawiecki and Mallory Moreland

Curtis Hevener and Cecil Moreland

Jon Quintero

Dorothy Gayer and Marty Shaw

Front: Michael Ruiz and Omar Urrea. Back: Eric Deval, Bobby Perez, Arnold Aguilar, Alex Aguilar, A.J. Ontiveros and Bernie Pineda.

Scott Goens and Shannon and Colton Kawiecki. 166

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Alysa and Tyler Hevener

Via Arte Oct. 5 Held at The Marketplace Photos by Carla Rivas View these photos and more online at

Elijah, Eyleen and Sebastian Toppila

Tammi, Ryder and Carter Tornstrom

Shirley Burke and Vicky Carter

Sara Kinsey and Abby Vawter

Sandy and Dan Kusper, Taylor, Valerie and Steven Strom

Keith and Julie Horder Sophia and Mike Montano, Jr.

Grace and Sean Harrison

Scott and Ava Whittaker

Becky and Serene Clines


St. Vincent de Paul Homeless Center BBQ Oct. 10 Held at St. Vincent de Paul Homeless Center Photos by Jan St Pierre View these photos and more online at

Sarah Twisselman and Pat Bonas

Diane Dhanens, Monsignor Ron Swett, Paul Dhanens and Marydith Chase

Rosemary and Bob Braase

Tom and Tykie Freaney

Tom and Maria Steele and Jim and Sylvia Treanor

Monsignor Craig Harrison, Gary Icardo and Deborah and Gary Leary 168

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November 2013

Debbie and Scott Cox

Rick and Susie Odom and Christy and Brian Dawson

10th Annual Walk to D’feet ALS Oct. 5 Held atThe Park at River Walk Photos by Jan St Pierre View these photos and more online at

Fahad Molla, Jamie Rhoades and Malani Cox

David Anderson and Kerry and Dennis Beason

Julie Himot, Lorna McWilliams and Giovanna D’Angelo

Stacy Inman and Bryce Gagner

Hirmand Sarafian and Joshua Sison

Jonathan Stinnett and Kayleen Clements

Ron Gagner

Pat and Ruth Gentelia

Maddie Herndon and Pooja Patel

Kevan Hensman and Rachel Robinson



‘TAKE ME OUT TO…’ MESA MARIN SPORTS COMPLEX One of Bakersfield’s newest sports complexes features fantastic fields, latest technology, picturesque views Story and photos by Brian N. Willhite


ne of the newest additions to Bakersfield’s sports complexes — Mesa Marin Sports Complex — is providing locals with more opportunities to enjoy the great outdoors with recreational sports. Off of Highway 178 at the former site of the Mesa Marin Raceway, the 15-acre park features four lighted softball fields, parking and a concession stand with restrooms. The next phase of the project is in the preliminary design phase, said Ken Trone, park superintendent at City of Bakersfield Recreation and Parks Department. “Possible future amenities for the next phases of the project include two additional lighted softball fields, a spray park, skate park, dog park, children’s playground, passive areas and additional restrooms and parking,” he said. The park’s size and picturesque location make it an attractive destination for group sports activities, while maintaining a desirable appeal with adjacent developments. “We have heard nothing but positive things to date, and staff looks forward to offering more and better service in the future.”

MESA MARIN RACEWAY: FACTS • Purchased in 2001 from Frank Collins, who was connected with the Mesa Marin Raceway.

The 15-acre Mesa Marin Sports Complex features four lighted softball fields, parking and a concession stand with restrooms. 170

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• Designed by the same firm that developed the master plan for Cal State Monterey Bay. • Phase one cost: nearly $4.8 million. • Construction began in 2009 and completed June 1, 2011. • Features views of the Southern Sierras, Tehachapi and coastal mountains, and much of the Southern San Joaquin Valley. • Total of 40 acres after all phases are completed. • Spring, summer and fall league games are held Monday through Friday year-round, with an average of two tournaments per month. Each league is capped at 180 teams in 30 divisions (18 men’s, 12 coed). • Hosting baseball is unlikely at Mesa Marin. It’s not allowed in city parks, except for Aera Park in northwest Bakersfield. Concrete softballs at Mesa • Features the latest techMarin Sports Complex were nology in lighting and irridonated to the city by Target. gation systems. Manufacturers can remotely monitor lights and irrigation, gauging soil, temperature, wind and rainfall to determine when water is needed. • The concrete softballs were donated to the city by Target, also used at Aera Park and State Farm Sports Village as soccer balls. • Bleacher seating capacity is approximately 1,000. Additional capacity of 2,500 can be reached with portable support structures. • Features bicycle racks and is within the boundaries of the “Northeast Bakersfield Parks and Trails Plan.” Eventually, all parks will be linked by paved trails, linking to the Kern River Trail. • Most popular concession items: breakfast burritos, nachos, BLTs, deep pit beef sandwiches, Schwan’s Ice Cream and Nathan’s Famous hot dogs.

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4500 Wible Road



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4625 Wible Road %DNHUVðHOG$XWR0DOO

1-661-398-4260 Se Habla Español

Bakersfield Life Magazine November 2013  

Bakersfield Life Magazine, November 2013. The Auto Issue.

Bakersfield Life Magazine November 2013  

Bakersfield Life Magazine, November 2013. The Auto Issue.