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A Hidden Gem Nestled in the Hills


THE COOK ISLANDS The Captivating Cooks




May 2014

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24 HOME TOUR The Burr Home


FoodLink’s Sixth Annual Kentucky Derby Party


Letter from the Executive Editor

10 Business Cents: Plan to Make Your Money Last In Retirement 12

Word Play


History: The Mansion on Main Street

22 Holiday: Make Time This Father’s Day



46 Preserve: Kaweah Oaks Preserve Turns 30 50 Next Gen: Jennifer Pendergraft


Let’s Get Cooking for Father’s Day

54 Spirits: Craft Beer Hits The Central Valley 58 Happenings

Lasagna Pizza PAGE

34 T R AV E L

The Cook Islands The Captivating Cooks


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ON THE COVER: The three-sided fireplace serves as the focal point in the home, featuring neutral colors of slate used both inside and outside the home. PICTURED: Shaded by large trees, the back patio of the Burr home rests among the orange groves.

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DMI Agency Evolutions Fitness Center, Tulare Tazzaria Coffee & Tea Tulare County Library The Lifestyle Center Visalia Chamber of Commerce Visalia Convention Center COUNTERTOP LOCATIONS

210 Cafe Cafe 225 California Fitness Academy Creekside Day Spa & Wellness Center Courtyard Aesthetics Details Party Rentals Exeter Chamber of Commerce Exeter Golf Course Fast Frame Franey’s Design Center Frank’s Appliance Hobbs-Potts Associates Holiday Inn Kaweah Delta Hospital Pita Kabob Pro-PT Red Carpet Car Wash Smiles by Sullivan Tulare Chamber of Commerce V Medical Spa Valley Financial Group Velvet Sky Visalia Community Bank (Downtown) Visalia Eye Center Visalia Imaging & Open MRI Visalia Marriott Visalia Medical Clinic Wildflower Caf, Exeter Williams, Jordan, Brodersen & Pritchett, Attorneys at Law Windows Plus, Inc.


Visalia Lifestyle Magazine is published monthly and is distributed via direct mail to nearly 13,000 homes in the upper-middle and high-income neighborhoods in Visalia and Exeter. An additional 2,000 copies are distributed at various distribution points around both communities. Views expressed in columns are those of the columnist and not necessarily those of DMI Agency or its advertisers.

Circulation of this issue: 15,000 © 2014 DMI Agency


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LEFT: The large, repurposed oak table in the dining room possesses the natural element that is channeled throughout the home.


Photo by Becca Chavez | Hair and Make-up provided by Velvet Sky

The month of May usually brings out the best of my sandal wear; but so far, this May has been a little strange in terms of weather. Temperatures are high one day, and it’s raining the next. I’m not quite sure if I should keep my umbrella in my car or just take my chances. Earlier this week, I gambled and took my chances wearing a sleeveless dress and sandals, and lost. After a late afternoon meeting where I nearly froze, I ran home and changed into jeans and a comfy sweatshirt before coming back to the office. The staff “hated” on me just a little but it might have been worth it. The good news is we put all feelings about my attire aside and forged ahead with this month’s issue of Lifestyle. We hope you enjoy it. Lifestyle Magazine is a regular supporter of our local baseball team, Visalia Rawhide. I am thrilled we had the chance to sit down this month with General Manager, Jennifer Pendergraft, and chat with her about how she landed in professional baseball. Although there are some others, you don’t see as many female GMs in the male-only sport of baseball. For this month’s Next Gen, please turn to page 50. I’m not sure if there’s another two-minute race that garners as much pre-event coverage and anticipation as the Kentucky Derby. There’s just something about donning a big, floppy hat and screaming like a lunatic for your favorite horse to cross the finish line first that makes this horse race so exciting. This year’s celebration was made even better when California Chrome, a notvery-likely-to-win horse from our own Central Valley outpaced the field of elite Thoroughbreds to take home the crown. Even if we can’t all travel to Kentucky, we can still put on hats, cheer for our horse and support a worthy charity while we’re at it. FoodLink’s Kentucky Derby Party is always a favorite event around here and you can read all about it on page 14. For the most part, we try to shy away from discussing politics in Lifestyle, but as the June 3rd election quickly approaches, I’d like to take a minute and encourage everyone to exercise your right to vote. If you haven’t done so already, take the time to get to know the issues and the candidates so that you can make an informed decision. As citizens of Tulare County, Election Day is the time for us to speak our minds and make decisions that will affect our county for years to come. For now, take the time to check the weather before you leave the house, and make sure to keep an extra umbrella in the car. And maybe a sweatshirt. The staff at Lifestyle is always grateful to our readers and I hope to see you at the polls on June 3rd.

KAREN TELLALIAN, EXECUTIVE EDITOR For more information or to submit a story idea email or call (559) 739-1747 or fax (559) 738-0909.


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Plan to Make Your Money Last In Retirement Text by Donald DeJonge, Financial Advisor, Northwestern Mutual


ome people have a clear idea of how they want to live once they stop working. For many others, however, retirement is a step into the great unknown. The problem is, without a roadmap for turning your savings into a sustainable stream of income, it’s difficult to create the type of lifestyle you want for the future. Planning for retirement is a lifelong process that should begin as soon as you start working and continue throughout your retirement years. But whether you are five years from retiring or 30, the following can help you achieve financial security for when the big day finally comes. Step 1: Practice retirement Like most people, you may spend years fantasizing about the day when you can finally stop working. But what will your retirement look like? For example, if you’d like to move to a warmer climate, try vacationing there several times to get a sense of what it might cost and how it feels not just in the winter, but also in the heat of summer. Similarly, if you plan on watching your grandchildren full time, take a week or two to do a test run. The goal is to try out your plans, determine whether you truly enjoy and can afford them and make any needed adjustments before you commit. Step 2: Match your expenses and income As you think about your lifestyle in retirement, your expenses will fall into two groups: essential expenses (your “needs”) and discretionary expenses (your “wants.”) Within discretionary expenses, you also may have one-time expenditures, such as funding a grandchild’s education or adding a sun porch to your home. Whether you make a spreadsheet on your computer or simply list your expenses on a pad of paper, the goal is to create a retirement budget that captures as many anticipated costs as possible. Next, consider the money you’ll have coming in. Typically, retirees draw from three categories of income in retirement: guaranteed sources of income (such as Social Security, pensions and lifetime income annuities), savings and investments and any employment income. Once you know what you’re likely to have coming in, pair your income and expenses based on their priority, matching your “needs” with your guaranteed income sources first. If the predictable income you expect won’t cover all your essential expenses, you may want to either adjust your plans or consider converting a portion of your savings into a regular stream of income. Conversely, if you have a surplus, you can use the “extra” money to cover any discretionary expenses. Step 3: Decide which account type to tap first One way to maximize the amount of money you may have in retirement is by planning the order in which you spend your different investment accounts. The starting point is to consider whether you plan to use your assets for ongoing expenses in retirement or to pass them along to your heirs or charities. For many, it makes sense to draw from your taxable accounts first in order to keep the assets in your retirement accounts growing tax deferred for as long as possible. Tax-exempt accounts, such


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as Roth IRAs, should be spent last. However, there is no rule-ofthumb when it comes to the order in which you should liquidate your assets. If you plan to pass your assets along to your heirs or charities, you may want to spend tax-deferred assets with the intention of bequeathing taxable assets, which receive morefavorable tax treatment when inherited. The order in which you withdraw your retirement savings is an important decision that becomes even more complex once you reach age 70 ½. That’s when you must begin taking annual required minimum distributions (RMDs) from your IRAs and retirement plans. Because each person’s situation is unique, you should include both your financial professional and tax advisor in these discussions. Step 4: Protect your savings Consider putting enough money into a savings or liquid money market account to cover your withdrawal needs for at least two years. This can help prevent taking money out of your investments when the market and share prices are trending downward. If you haven’t already, consider funding a long-term care plan (LTC) as well. LTC funding can help protect your retirement nest egg from the financial impact of the costs of extended care either at a facility or in your home. Step 5: Fine tune along the way Spending retirement assets can be even more complex than building them. Your retirement savings need to provide reliable income to meet your ongoing expenses for the rest of your life. Reviewing your plan annually and keeping it current is vital to making this happen. Consider just some of the things that can change in a year. Your marital or health status could change; your investment returns and inflation rate could fluctuate; and your employment status and expected retirement date might shift. Each of these can have a profound impact on the amount of money you may have to spend in retirement. That’s why it’s important to work with a financial professional who understands that retirement planning is an ongoing process — someone who knows what it takes to accumulate assets for retirement, mitigate the risks that can affect your retirement years and how to turn your funds into a distribution plan designed to generate sufficient income to meet your lifestyle needs for as long as you need it to. Article prepared by Northwestern Mutual with the cooperation of Donald DeJonge. Donald DeJonge is a Financial Advisor with Northwestern Mutual, the marketing name for The Northwestern Mutual Life Insurance Company (NM), Milwaukee, Wisconsin and its subsidiaries. Donald DeJonge is an agent of NM based in Visalia, CA. To contact Donald DeJonge, please call (559) 625-5782, e-mail at or visit at This information is not intended as legal or tax advice.

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The day we call Memorial Day was previously known as Decoration Day and had its roots around the time of the Civil War. Various places such as Waterloo, New York and Columbus, Georgia lay claim to originating the tradition of honoring war dead on a special day. Memorial Day is Vince Flynn’s political thriller about a potential terrorist attack as the country is preparing to unveil a Veteran’s memorial on the holiday. His counterterrorism agent, Mitch Rapp, has to uncover terrorists who are plotting to bring a nuclear weapon into the U.S. Memorial Day (Rookie Read-About Holidays) by Jacqueline S. Cotton explains the holiday to children ages six and up. Photographs illustrate the words that are used in the text. The Read-About series includes books about holidays from Chanukah to Valentine’s Day. Did you know there is a Diwali festival? It is known as one of the most popular Hindu festivals in India. This year it falls on October 23. Out on Kindle last month is 21 American Craft Projects: Patriotic Crafts for Memorial Day, Veterans Day and 4th of July Crafts for Kids. The book features creations such as a Bandana Rag Wreath, Stars and Stripes Cookie Bites and Firecracker Foodie Frills. Five Days at Memorial by Sheri Fink is not about the holiday but is an unflinching look at the New Orleans hospital that went without rescuers in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. Fink puts readers into the rooms filled with dilemmas about how to handle critical crises. The moral, ethical and legal challenges of the desperate staff are explored in heart-wrenching detail. Valley Writers Steven Church has been researching a book about Parkfield on the San Andreas Fault in Monterey County. Read his March 5th article on the town known as the Earthquake Capital of the World at in the nonfiction section. “Living through the Tremors” gives a glimpse at the people who live with the constant reminder that the earth is not as stable as it may appear elsewhere. Not quite the valley, but North Fork’s Myoan Grace Schireson is the author of Zen Women: Beyond the Tea Ladies, Iron Maidens, and Macho Masters. The book explores the teachings and history of women Zen masters from the time of Buddha to the present. Schireson is the abbess of the Empty Nest Zendo in North Fork and the Modesto Valley Heartland Zen Group. First Lines What novel begins with the lines: “If you really want to hear about it, the first thing you’ll probably want to know is where I was born, and what my lousy childhood was like…” (answer below*)


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Writer’s Conferences The Manhattanville Colleges’ 31st Annual Summer Writers’ Week will be held on June 23 – 27. Participants spend an intensive week working with established writers in fiction, poetry, creative non-fiction and children’s/young adult writing. Faculty includes Ed Park, Kashmira Sheth, Claudia Rankine and Sharifa Rhodes-Pitts. Book doctor Esther Cohen will meet daily with students for one-on-one consultation. Registration deadline is May 31. Non-credit registration is $725. Details at: The 7th Annual Book Passage Children’s Writers & Illustrators Conference will be held in Corte Madera on June 12 – 15. The conference will cover all aspects of writing for children from developing ideas to finding a publisher. Participants will work with writers, illustrators, editors and publishers. Faculty includes Jon Agee, Andrea Alban, Laura Atkins, T.A. Barron and at least 15 others. Registration is $475. Optional 30-minute private sessions are $95 each. Details at: Writing Contests Deadlines for Glimmer Train’s Very Short Fiction Contest occur four times per year – in January, April, July and October. The next deadline is July 31. The contest is open to all writers for stories that have not been printed anywhere. The maximum length is 3,000 words. Entry fee is $15. First place wins $1,500. Details at The Literal Lattè Short Story Contest deadline is June 30. Unpublished stories with a maximum of 2,000 words are eligible. Fee is $10 for a set of three stories. Prize is $500. Also coming up on July 15 are the Poetry Awards. Fee of $10 for up to six poems, maximum words 2,000. Prizes are $1,000, $300 and $200. Entrees for both contests must be mailed so leave time for delivery. Details at Online Classes Writer’s Digest Tutorials have been offering topics such as, “Writing Great Books for Young Adults” and “How to Build an Author Platform that Attracts Agents’ Attention.” Excerpts from the tutorials are on the website at www.tutorials.writersdigest. com. The Last Word “For to be free is not merely to cast off one’s chains, but to live in a way that respects and enhances the freedom of others.” – Nelson Mandela (1918-2013) *Answer: The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger (1951)



KENTUCKY DERBY PARTY Text by Jordan Venema | Photos by Bergreen Photography


ith California Chrome’s win at Churchill Downs, the American Thoroughbred became the first California-bred horse to win the Kentucky Derby since 1962. With the victory, California Chrome finally brought back to California a piece of Kentucky hardware, but you could also say the fast-hoofed galloper had already been beat to the finish line. Six years ago, FoodLink for Tulare County brought its own piece of Kentucky to our little corner of California with the annual Kentucky Derby Party. The local event might not have the history of Churchill Downs, but the party is proving its pedigree with its very own traditions. The sixth annual FoodLink Kentucky Derby Party brought back it usual staple attractions: a high-end, dress-up party at Visalia’s Country Club, a live Bluegrass band, silent and live auctions, catered foods, multiple viewing stations to watch the races and a thousand “Derby Bucks” to each guest to bet on the horses and for the winners - to use toward the live auction. But of course the biggest attraction is the traditional bow tie and hat competitions. “The hat contest has become a big deal, and the bow tie contest


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PICTURED: Theresa Mason and Cat Mackey are sporting fancy hats while enjoying the Kentucky Derby Party.

can get a little heated,” laughs Hollis Fernandez, the chairwoman of the Kentucky Derby Committee. It’s an informal competition of the most formal kind, where guests judge by applause the best overall clothing ensemble centered around a hat and bow tie. Sometimes the “ensemble” can overshadow the bow tie, as was the case for one contestant who donned a horse mask for the competition. While only a handful of men and women vied for the best ensemble, every guest came to the event dressed to the nines. From color-coordinated shoes and bow ties to hats with plumed feathers and frills, every corner of the Visalia Country Club, both inside and out, was full of guests dressed in a confetti of spring colors, the best of their Sunday best. While not all guests officially competed, it was clear each guest put time, effort and creativity into their outfits. “I know people were starting last year for this year’s outfit,” says Hollis. “That’s part of the fun of the event, and also a sign of its success as a fundraiser - the atmosphere of anticipation. There are also pre-parties for our party,” laughs Hollis, “and you know you’ve made it when there are pre-parties for your party.”


But not only guests began planning in advance for the Kentucky Derby party. Hollis and the Kentucky Derby Committee spent nearly the entire year in preparation for this year’s party, and soon after they’ll start again. “We’ll probably take a couple weeks off and then start planning for next year,” she says. And the effort shows. Each year the event grows a little more, and raises more money for FoodLink. As of a few days prior to the party, FoodLink already had sold 400 tickets, about a hundred more than the previous year. “We’re looking at bringing in roughly $70,000 this year,” says Hollis, compared to last year’s rough gross of $40,000. FoodLink attributes the success to new sponsors, like its first title sponsor, Giant Chevrolet Cadillac, who contributed volunteers and funds for the party, but Hollis also stresses the strength of her “amazing” committee, a group of volunteers who even purchase their own tickets. For Hollis, the cause makes it an easy sacrifice. “It’s important to give back to our own community and make sure we take care of the people here first.” Hollis refers to the thousands of Tulare County residents in our own backyard who go hungry everyday. It’s a silent epidemic that goes unseen; Tulare County possesses one of the highest hunger rates in the country, where more than 20 percent of its residents deal with hunger every day. “I think people really are kind of floored by the statistic because we tend to live in our own world,” explains Sandy Beals, the executive director of FoodLink. “If we never see poverty, we don’t think it’s there.” The charitable nonprofit has been providing healthy foods to

local pantries, nonprofits and charities like the Visalia Rescue Mission, the Bethlehem Center, Crossroads Church and “places like that,” says Beals. “More than 100,000 people in Tulare Country get their food from us,” she explains, “and there’s no way we could do it without this kind of thing going on.” Beals is talking about fundraisers like the Kentucky Derby Party, which is by far the biggest fundraising event for the nonprofit. “The work we do exists only with community involvement, and getting involved with the Kentucky Derby party is a part of that.” Nobody denies that the Kentucky Derby Party is a high-end event and, as far as Hollis is concerned, nobody is going to tell party-goers to “donate now, donate now, donate now.” But even if party-goers get caught up in the excitement of the races or become awed by the pageantry and colors of the outfits, with the purchase of a forty-dollar ticket, they’re not just getting access to a great party; they’re putting food on the table for hungry families. Feeding people: a simple but winning formula used by FoodLink since 1978. Now there’s real pedigree, and the kind of track record that always makes for a safe bet.

TOP LEFT: Paul McDonald, Steve Langley, and emcee Tony Casares are strutting their stuff for the bowtie contest. TOP RIGHT: Ladies and gentlemen gather around a table in Kentucky Derby attire at the annual event. BOTTOM: Guest mingle before the start of the Kentucky Derby at the Visalia Country Club.


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Text by Terry L. Ommen



n 1909, the Parkside Tract was approved by the City of Visalia. The subdivision was the brainchild of three local entrepreneurs anxious to satisfy the needs of a growing community by adding more home sites to the town’s inventory. Residential lots were laid out along Main and Center streets extending west from Conyer. As Parkside took shape, little did the new residents know that in just a few years a huge house would be built nearby by Benjamin B. Dudley, one of the Parkside developers. The impressive Dudley mansion was as beautiful then as it is now. Benjamin Bristol Dudley was born in 1879 to Moses and Sarah, a pioneering Tulare County couple with a large cattle ranch in Elderwood. Ben was the youngest of four children. John was the oldest, then Edmond, then came Frances, the only girl in the family. After their parents passed on, the ranch was divided between the four children.

Benjamin and Edmond seemed to get along well, so it wasn’t surprising that in the early 1900s Ben, now in his early 20s, and his brother Edmond were living in Visalia doing business as Golden West Realty Company. Ben was credited with founding the company and was also president. In addition to real estate, the brothers operated a livestock business out of their office at 111 S. Church Street. The two were good businessmen and made money, but they were generous. One day in 1908, Benjamin was talking to Lutheran Pastor William O. Grunow and asked whether he had found a building site for his new church. The clergyman said he had not, so Benjamin offered to give the church a lot on the northeast corner of Court and Sequoia streets, free and clear. The Lutherans built their first church there because of Dudley’s generosity. Although he was an active businessman, Benjamin had other interests also. Civic pastimes like helping to organize a huge 4th PICTURED: Current picture of the Dudley house.


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H HISTORY of July celebration caught his eye. So when he was asked by Visalia event officials to be the reader of the Declaration of Independence at the festivities, he agreed. Politics interested him as well and he served on the Republican Party County Central Committee representing Visalia’s Ward 6. By 1909, Dudley, along with C. A. Turner and J. D. Martin, had developed the Parkside Tract. New roads were cut like Dudley, Turner and Martin streets, reflecting the naming rights given to developers. In order to assure the quality of the new subdivision, the three men required that houses built there be substantial and valued at a minimum of $800. The Dudley brothers seemed to thrive in the real estate business, but other ventures, like oil, caught their attention as well. In 1910, they were dabbling in oil stocks, including one issued by the G. R. Oil Company of Visalia. In July, 1910 they discovered the Lost Hills oil field near the Kern/Kings County line, although some claim the discovery was accidental as they were actually drilling for water on cattle range land. Regardless of their intention, the brothers became oil men and for years to come, drilling for oil and investing in oil and gas would be an important part of their business lives. In fact, oil became such an important part of their lives that they even applied for and received a U.S. patent for a “collapsing oil drill.” No oil enterprise seemed off limits to the two entrepreneurs. In 1917, Benjamin Dudley and Helen Brown were married in San Francisco. His bride was from a prominent and influential Visalia family whose roots went back to the beginning of the town. Her father, Samuel Carr Brown, was present when Visalia began and he served as Visalia Mayor, Tulare County District Attorney and was a big landowner. Ben built a large and beautiful home on the northwest corner of Giddings and Main streets as a wedding gift for his new wife,

according to family historian Sally Baker Dudley. Alvin J. Stern, an Oakland architect, designed the home. The imposing mission revival style structure with about 8,000 square feet, stood out from the surrounding houses in the Parkside Tract. Not only did the size of the home make it a dominant building in the neighborhood, the interior had unique and wonderful features. Exotic wood from around the world was incorporated as paneling, wainscoting and flooring. Stained glass and marble came from Italy. One stained glass window in the dining room depicted a scene at the Dudley oil fields. Fireplaces were built throughout the house to make it a showcase. Benjamin and Helen lived in the beautiful home until 1949 when they sold it to Dr. Irving Schor and Dr. Deborah Pineles. After about a decade, the physician couple sold it to the Methodists whose church was located across Main Street. The congregation named their new building Wesley Hall after John Wesley, the Methodist church founder. From 1958 to 1991, Wesley Hall was a fellowship and meeting place for the church. Then in September 1991, Frank Cavale bought and restored the beautiful old home and it became his company office, a business now called Financial Credit Network. Benjamin Dudley died in 1951 while a patient in the Visalia Municipal Hospital. Helen passed away in Visalia in 1973 at the age of 93. Both are buried in the Visalia Cemetery. For nearly one hundred years, the Dudley house has been a dominate feature of Visalia. After all these years, the stately building has never looked better than it does now thanks to the vision and commitment of Frank Cavale. Because of him, the building stands as a tribute to Benjamin Bristol Dudley, real estate developer, businessman and oil magnate. Benjamin’s lavish gift to his bride has turned out to be a conspicuous and wonderful gift to the community. LEFT: Benjamin Dudley circa 1910. Photo provided by Sally Baker Dudley. RIGHT: The Dudley house circa 1920’s. INSET: Stock certificate owned by Benjamin Dudley in 1923.


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make time this

FATHER’S DAY Text by Dara Fisk-Ekanger


ou have to admit, your dad probably doesn’t need another tie, coffee mug or box of chocolate candies. And if he were totally honest, he probably doesn’t even want them; well, except for the chocolate. But the most valuable gift we can give to someone is our time. This Father’s Day, take a step out of the (candy) box and create a memory for your dad that will last a lot longer than the chocolate. Take a Class Together My brother and dad took a welding course together at College of the Sequoias and built a spray rig that was used for years on our farm. There are plenty of local opportunities to take a one-day intensive class (like golf or white water rafting). Or, spread it out with a non-credit class at COS in tennis, foreign language, film or one of the other myriad options. Symphony or Theater Buy season tickets for yourself and Dad to the Tulare County Symphony or check out the upcoming events at the Fox Theatre or The Enchanted Playhouse. And if your dad has never stepped foot inside any theater that didn’t have the word “movie” before it, all the better. He may just realize he’s been missing out on something.

Take a Trip A day trip to Sequoia National Park is always worthwhile; what better way to spend Father’s Day than there with dad? Pack a picnic lunch and head on up. If you’re feeling especially adventurous, check into camping rates or consider getting your siblings involved in renting a cabin for a weekend. Year-round vacation rentals can be found at or Get Some New Technology If your father has friends or family that live far away, he might 22

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enjoy being able to “see” them and talk via Skype, It’s a free service that doesn’t take long to install, but some people are intimidated by the technology. If that’s your dad, see what it would take to get someone to his house to surprise him by setting up a Skype account. Just make sure his computer has a webcam (or get him one) and verify there’s at least one person he can talk to. FYI, the Skype via Facebook doesn’t work nearly as well as the real deal. Interview Dad Set up some time to interview your dad about his early life. What did he do for fun as a kid? Who were his best friends? What did he dream of being when he grew up? What were his grandparents like? Video record the interview. Create a presentation with the interview, pictures from his past and maybe interviews with his wife, friends or children. Present it to him on Father’s Day. If you don’t have the equipment to do all that yourself, you can hire it done. Write to Him Yes, you could pick up the phone and call him, and you should. But take it a step further. Take 30 minutes to sit down and type (or write) a special note to your dad. Recall an important event from your childhood or a piece of advice he gave that you actually listened to. Tell him what he means to you today, the impact he has on your life and how glad you are for the effort he made to try to be a good dad (even if he wasn’t always perfect). Focus on the positive. You never know the impact that time can have on a person. Don’t let this Father’s Day slip by without making the most of it for your dad.

ph: 559.734.7035 | fax: 559.734-2890 215 E. Caldwell Ave., Ste. B, Visalia, CA 93277 |





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DEN GEM nestled in the hills


Text by Jordan Venema | Photos by Taylor Johnson

PICTURED: Barry Burr mastered the clean lines and minimalist feel throughout his home while incorporating bold features and accents.

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here is really only one word to describe the view from the deck of Barry Burr’s home: glorious. A colored patchwork of citrus spreads out and up the hills that range east of Lindsay, and beyond the rounded hilltops rise snowcapped peaks. “The beauty of [the view],” says Barry, “is that it is always changing.” Cattle move across the hillside, and the colors shift with the seasons. Even the economy plays a role. Where an old crop fails a new one is planted to take its place and the landscape changes ever so slightly. Barry speaks about the hills with the kind of familiarity that can only be formed in one’s youth. As a child, he and his cousins explored the hills; they knew them by name. “We hopped the fences, and we would hike up these hills; it was absolutely stunning, especially when the wildflowers were out.” Barry pauses on his deck to appreciate the view. “I think people in this area don’t know what beauty they are missing,” he says, “they will go to the South of France, but really you don’t need to go far.” And since Barry has traveled as far as India and South America, he can attest to the beauty of the area where his family settled. He points to a cluster of homes a few miles from his own, “that’s where my father grew

up.” Barry’s family first glimpsed Lindsay during an odd pursuit. His great grandfather, the sheriff of Los Angeles County, sent his two sons to capture an escaped convict. “It’s a strange story,” admits Barry, “and I don’t know if [my grandfather] ever caught the convict, but in the process they found [Lindsay].” Barry’s family has been in Lindsay ever since, and in 1966, his parents built their home on top of a small hill. Barry describes the house as “one of those classic 60s homes with shag carpeting and wood paneling.” After his mother’s death, Barry bought the house with a mind to renovate. “My big plan for retirement was to optimize the view,” he says. “If you lived here, why wouldn’t you want to incorporate the view?” Barry achieved what he calls an interior and exterior association by following two basic principles: simplifying the interior to invite the exterior. The addition of window space will always amplify a view, but in order to incorporate a view, the interior design must complement and not compete with it. For Barry, that meant “keeping everything really natural” by using organic and neutral elements throughout the home. He covered the old wood paneling with white plaster, and extended the kitchen’s floor-to-ceiling

PICTURED: The master bathroom is adorned with sea-grass wallpaper and woven baskets to bring natural elements into the room.


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windows to expand the view. He replaced loose red brick with sand-colored slate, removed the carpet and stained the wood floors underneath. During the remodel, Barry relied on photos from magazines to help the builders visualize his ideas. “The architect gives you the basic structure, the bones,” but otherwise Barry chose the design and materials. “You really have to use images to show [the contractors] what you want,” he explains. “Thank God for Google images.” One such source was the Kinosian home from the April 2011 issue of Lifestyle Magazine. Barry was inspired by the Kinosian home to use stacked slate throughout the house and most noticeably with the three-sided fireplace. The soft and neutral colors of the slate allow the fireplace, which unifies the living room and kitchen, to remain a focal point without dominating the conjoined space. 28

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Barry took a minimalist as well as natural approach to the interior decor. A large repurposed oak table is the kitchen’s only movable furniture, and some art hangs on the walls - the simple lines of Eastern print and the basic shapes and colors of a Rothko painting. Woven baskets sit on the hearth and few potted plants are found in the living room, but most counter space is left as such: open space. The goal was “to keep things very natural,” explains Barry, in order to draw attention to the home’s basic foundation, especially the view. “With this house, I found that I had to be cautious. I wanted to keep it very, very simple because the basic foundation, your natural materials - well, if you have nice materials, you don’t have to add much on.” The simplicity of the design and the expanse of windows throughout the house make the relatively small space feel larger,


LEFT: The expansive windows shed natural light into the living room, accented with a variety of cultural inspired pieces. RIGHT: Just outside the living room doors sits an outdoor patio set; the perfect setting for enjoying the view from the back porch of the Burr home.

more open than its 2,800 square feet. Nowhere in the home is this openness, the interior and exterior association, achieved more than in the master bedroom. Upon entering the small white-walled bedroom, it appears there is no eastern wall: a floor-to-ceiling window meets the contours of the bedroom’s gambrel ceiling. “It’s just glorious,” says Barry, “like being enveloped in the outdoors.” Sliding glass doors in the master bedroom, kitchen and living room also seamlessly connect the home with its wraparound deck. Separated by more windows than walls, the deck seems like a natural extension of the living room, or the living room of the deck, depending on the perspective. Barry was hesitant to extend the former eight-foot deck, but at the recommendation of the contractors, they brought the covered deck two feet beyond its posts. Composite wood and slate meet on the surface of the deck,

and custom floating steps, which are suspended by a single steel spine, descend to the patio and pool below. Barry attributes the craftsmanship of both the architects T.A.E. Architecture, Inc. of Tulare and contractor Witschi Construction with bringing his ideas into reality. “They are not only really good craftsmen, but they bring great ideas to the process,” says Barry. “They really zeroed in on my taste.” Prior to the remodel, Barry had already replaced a banister with a large glass pane. Noticing the detail, the architect suggested they use a similar glass pane for the bar in the kitchen; similarly, he noticed Barry’s plans to use frosted glass panes in the doors, and ultimately suggested that Barry use frosted glass panes in the kitchen cabinets as well. A consistency throughout the house is created by other subtle details that are easy to overlook, like the persistent use of slate. The sand-colored L I F E S T Y L E | M AY 2 014


H HOME TOUR slate, which is actually one of the most predominant colors of the home, is found not only in the fireplace but also stacked throughout the exterior and interior of the home, as a continuous stretch on either side of the front door and on the patio’s outer wall directly opposite the fireplace. Barry considers his style a fusion and pastiche, and there certainly is not one predominant theme or attempt to display any one kind of ornament. But there is a subtle Eastern influence in the home that is achieved almost indirectly. The frosted glass doors, set in a bedroom with white plaster walls and a single stretch of seagrass wallpaper, become reminiscent of Japanese Shoji, a traditional sliding door made of paper plastered over wooden frames. Even the seagrass wallpaper somehow hints at woven Japanese Tatami mats. Not one of these singular elements is directly Eastern by design, but collectively they create an impression that is somehow unavoidably Japanese. Like traditional Japanese architecture, Barry’s design is bold but unassuming, soft and yet strong. The simplicity of the room reminds that less can be more, especially when it complements its environment, a view of an ever-changing landscape. While the renovation certainly has added more to the home - a wider deck, a better view - the remodel also seems to have improved the house by a kind of deduction. “Very simple lines, a very simple existence,” describes Barry, referring to the effect of the home’s renovation. But while simpler lines can be designed and built, a simpler existence reflects a lifestyle more than it does an architectural improvement. By his own admission, it is not always easy to achieve that simpler existence, either architecturally or


L I F E S T Y L E | M AY 2 0 1 4

LEFT: Barry Burr incorporates personal touches from his travels throughout his home. BOTTOM: Matching the master bathroom, sea-grass wallpaper decorates the walls in the master bedroom and features a floor to ceiling window perfect for the morning sunrise.


in life. “I have a tendency to overdo stuff, pushing more and more into it,” says Barry. But letting go of the desire to overdo things was part of the process of transforming his parent’s home into his own. “I don’t have that degree of needing to hang on to things. I’ve really made [this house] my own.” The view, however, is anybody and nobody’s to own. Barry knows the landscape is both 32

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essential to and paradoxically set apart from his design. A home can optimize a view, but it can never really capture it; because unlike our attempts to permanently construct and remodel, the landscape tirelessly changes. There’s a lesson in the landscape, then, and also a reminder: slow down, simplify and appreciate the beauty as it comes and goes.


PICTURED: The Burr home features a wraparound porch and spacious outdoor areas that showcase 180 degree views. L I F E S T Y L E | M AY 2 014





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his month, you’ll get the best of both worlds in one dish. This recipe is one that you’ll want to hang on to for years. The chefs at The Planing Mill couldn’t decide which Italian classic they liked more - pizza or lasagna - so they combined both into one delicious creation. Take a look inside to see how to replicate this unique twist on the classics and you’ll also find a few side dishes to make your Father’s Day picnic table pop.

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Caprese Skewers INGREDIENTS

6 cherry tomatoes, halved Fresh mozzarella, formed into small balls 4 T pesto 4 T balsamic reduction DIRECTIONS

Put one half cherry tomato on toothpick, add mozzarella ball, then the other half of cherry tomato face down. Finish with fresh pesto. Served with drizzled balsamic reduction.


2 lbs lasagna noodles 1 ½ lbs Italian sausage 1 ½ lbs black olives, sliced 1 ½ lbs mushrooms, sliced 1 ½ lbs pepperoni 16 oz ricotta cheese Mozzarella, shredded Parmesan, shredded Marinara sauce (right) Bechamel sauce (right)

Marinara Sauce INGREDIENTS

1 onion, sliced 1 garlic, whole Fresh basil, whole 1 jar of canned tomatoes ½ C onions, caramelized DIRECTIONS


Prepare the bechamel sauce and marinara ahead of time. Bring water to a boil and add a pinch of salt. Follow instructions on cooking noodles to al dente. Then place in a colander and cool under running water. Lightly sauce bottom of cooking pan with marinara, add a layer of noodles, slightly overlapping them. Add a light layer of marinara, a layer of shredded mozzarella and a layer of sausage, pepperoni, olives and mushrooms. Then add shredded Parmesan and dollops of ricotta. Lightly drizzle bechamel sauce across. Repeat process two more times with a total of three layers of meat and vegetables. For the top layer, lightly sauce with marinara and bechamel and then add cheeses. Cover with aluminum foil and bake for one hour. Remove foil and continue baking until cheese is golden brown. Let stand for at least 10 minutes before serving. 36

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Mix ingredients with food processor. Simmer for 30 minutes. Cool and store properly. Bechamel Sauce INGREDIENTS

4 C milk 5 T butter 4 T flour Salt and pepper to taste DIRECTIONS

Melt butter and whisk in the flour. Slowly add milk until fully incorporated. Simmer on lowmedium heat until thick, about 7-15 minutes.

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Arugula Salad with Apples, Candied Walnuts, Craisins and Gorgonzola DIRECTIONS

Thinly slice 1-2 apples into ice water with 2 T of lemon juice. Put arugula in a bowl and dress with vinaigrette. Add walnuts, craisins, Gorgonzola and toss. Garnish with apples. Candied Walnuts




½ lbs walnuts 1 C sugar 3 T milk 1 T cinnamon

½ C grape seed oil ½ C apple cider vinegar ¼ T salt and pepper 2 ½ T stone ground mustard 3 T honey


Place walnuts on baking sheet and bake at 350°F for 8-10 minutes. Place sugar in a saucepan with milk and cinnamon. Bring to a soft ball stage (235-240°F). Toss with walnuts, spread on parchment and cool.


Whisk all ingredients together and dress salad.

El Cubano Sandwich

Caribbean Slaw

(Makes 1 Sandwich)



1 ciabatta roll, toasted Pulled pork, braised Ham Bacon 2 T Dijon mustard Mozzarella cheese Caribbean Slaw “Planing Mill” chipotle cream cheese spread DIRECTIONS

Sauté pulled pork, ham, bacon and mustard together until warm. Toast bread and spread Planing Mill chipotle cream cheese on roll. Add meat mixture and top with fresh mozzarella. Place in broiler or toasted oven until cheese is melted. Top with Caribbean slaw and enjoy. 38

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½ romain heart ½ small tomato ¼ roasted red pepper 1 T cumin 1 T lemon juice Salt and pepper to taste DIRECTIONS

Dice all ingredients together to make slaw. Mix in cumin, lemon juice and salt and pepper to taste.


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Text by Cheryl L. Dieter


aptain Cook was a fool. In 1773, he “discovered” the Hervey Islands (now called The Cook Islands) and then he got right back on his ship; leaving this piece of paradise behind. Of course, there are some who would call him prudent. The Maori who inhabited the islands were fierce fighters who practiced cannibalism; but after spending a week on Rarotonga, I believe Cook was a whimp and should have taken his chances. There is something to be said about paradise even if it extracts an enormous price. The Cook Islands are a group of 15 small islands in the South Pacific Ocean that encompass a total of over 97 square miles but whose Exclusive Economic Zone extends over 690,000 square miles of ocean. Each island is a small gem, each having their own special characteristics. The islands themselves are divided into two groups: those of the north and those of the south. Rarotonga, the largest of the islands, is part of the southern isles and is the place we called home for a week. The great thing about the 10-hour direct overnight flight from LAX to Avarua is that you arrive bright and early in the morning and from there it is just a matter of unpacking your snorkeling gear and heading for the sandy-white almost deserted beaches. Crystal clear turquoise waters await as do marine life of all kinds. Our first half-hour we saw giant clams, colorful parrot fish, bright indigo blue starfish, huge brain corals, turtles and an elusive moray eel slithering out of a crevice in its rock. The lagoon itself is as

smooth as glass, which makes these waters the best snorkeling we have ever experienced. We opted to stay in a private house for this vacation. Just a short jaunt from the water, Tuaine’s House was simply furnished but clean. With three bedrooms, a big lanai and our own banana trees in the yard, it met our expectations and pleased our budget. Tuaine even arranged transportation to and from the airport for us. Of course, there are numerous hotels and spas on the island. I ventured into Rumours Spa and indulged in a Brown Sugar and Organic Lemon Scrub followed by one of the most tranquil massages I have ever experienced. I toured the lovely Luxury Villas on the property and I can say unequivocally that this place is where I want to live after I win the next Powerball. Later that evening we headed down the beach and stumbled upon the Vaima Polynesian and Restaurant. Luck was with us as we were herded to a table strategically placed on the sand, not 10 feet from the water. One soon finds after landing on the island that mangos, paw-paws and papayas are in abundance, which means mango daiquiris are the drink of choice and Vaima’s sure knows how to make them; creamy with generous shots and chocked full of fruit. And being that the Cook Islands are associated with New Zealand, you can also get an incredible orange glazed lamb at a reasonable price. But what will forever remind me of that magical night was Vaima’s salt and pepper PICTURED: A gazebo with lounge chairs on a deserted beach in the Cook Islands.


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T TRAVEL squid with hot and sour dipping sauce. It was pure perfection on a plate. After filling our guts to the brim as well as our minds with images of the perfect sunset, we made our way back to the house. With flashlights in hand, we were soon accosted by hundreds of see-through ghost crabs who scuttled along the sand. With the sound of the waves breaking on the coral reef offshore, we were lulled to sleep. The next day we were up by eight while warm winds rocked us in our hammocks. By nine we were back in the water. This time we were armed with food for the fish and within seconds we were surrounded. How hundreds of fish all know within one second you have food I will never know but huge bright yellow angels, neon pink something-or-others and a big blue Napoleon Wrasse appeared, nibbled at our toes and ate out of our hands. By noon we were water logged and decided to regain the use of our land legs. The transportation options on the island are plentiful. There is the bus that runs either clockwise or counterclockwise but at $7 for a round trip fare, it is a bit pricey. Bikes can be rented for about $10 a day, while scooters can be had for little more and cars will run you about $50 per day. You must have a Cook Island Drivers License to rent a scooter or to drive a rental car. Licenses

Photo by Cheryl L. Dieter

are easy to obtain and after 10 minutes we walked out of the Police Station in Avarua licenses in hand. Of course rental car agencies can issue a temporary license for $2 but why do that when you can have one of the most sought-after souvenirs available? As a stamp enthusiast I just had to drop by the post office and do a little “shopping.” The Cook Islands are known for their colorful stamps and I walked out with some intricately colored designs. The paper money is also a collectors item with its beautiful island girls riding the backs of fierce sharks who share the bill with a very well endowed fertility god that make men blush. From there we wandered in and out of quaint little shops; the best being those selling the black pearls that the area is famous for. But why spend an afternoon in paradise shopping when you can be lounging on the beach? We headed home for the day and more fun in the sun. The next day we made it a point to drive around the island stopping at various beaches along the way. A real find was the Fruits of Rarotonga; a burger joint known for the best burgers and smoothies on the island. As we ate, we watched the Captain Tama’s Lagoon Cruise glass bottoms float by. Although we never sailed with them we did learn from their guests that they

Photo by Cheryl L. Dieter

took them to some great snorkeling places further out by the reef. Taking a left, south of Muri Beach, we ended up at the Koteka Winery. After obeying the sign and “beeping twice for Koteka,” the wine maker appeared. He greeted us like we were long lost friends and took us into his house where we saw all types of fruit wines fermenting. As we were once wine makers, we were intrigued by Koteka’s way of doing things as well as his laid back personality. We tried some paw-paw wine, red banana and coconut, all of which were interesting and some of which could start a fire if you exhaled just right. One charming thing about Koteka is his total and all encompassing belief in the importance of recycling. He implored us to return the bottle so he could use it again if we drank its contents before we left the island. June-November is the seasonal migration of the Humpback Whale and it’s a spectacular time to visit the Cooks. The mothers give birth to their calves from JuneAugust and then they rest until November when they begin their migration back to the Arctic Ocean. Of course, pricey whale watching cruises are available for up-close viewing but one of the great things about Rarotonga is that you can often spot them frolicking off the west end of the

Photo by Cheryl L. Dieter PICTURED: Three sets of breathtaking views one will see while vacationing on the Cook Islands; visitors paddle boarding in turquoise waters, green scenery during a hike and an orange sunset at the end of the day.


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Photo by Cheryl L. Dieter Photo by Cheryl L. Dieter LEFT: Surfboards lay in the foreground of Te Rua Manga, or “The Needle,” located in the Rarotonga Mountains. RIGHT TOP: A white-shelled crab found on the white beaches.

Photo by Cheryl L. Dieter

island. If you are keen to learn more about local whales and dolphins, there is a small interpretive center called the Cook Islands Whale Education Centre. Nan Hauser, who tags and helps protect the Humpback and other rare species of whale, started the Centre to promote awareness of these magnificent creatures. There, our kids saw skulls of marine life, used microscopes to view all sorts of sea creatures and gaze at cases of rare exquisite shells. For those 10-70 years of age and in reasonably good health, there is a 3-4 hour hike across the island. Running from the north to south coasts via the Needle, the trail passes through some of the area’s most impressive natural scenery. We were advised not to go on the walk in the opposite direction because the chance of taking a wrong turn is much greater. I would take that advice. Of course, when on a Polynesian island 44

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a dinner show really is a must and for that we relied on Highland Paradise Cultural Center. At about $80 per person it is expensive but does provide a night of good entertainment and dinner. Buses brought us to the facility at the top of the mountain where the 180-degree views were stunning. Here we found authentic cultural sites of the Maori along with traditional buildings and re-enactments of traditional ceremonies. Of particular interest are the “guilty rocks.” According to Maungaroa Village tradition, those who committed adultery were required to carry the very large and heavy “guilty rocks” a prescribed distance. If they were dropped then the “guillotine rock” would soon follow. Dinner was plentiful with many opportunities to try local dishes including Eke ta Akari (octopus in curry), Maniota (arrowroot) and Rukau (taro leaves in

RIGHT BOTTOM: A native of the Cook Islands, dressed in traditional ceremony attire.

coconut cream) followed by a show featuring traditional Maori/Polynesian dance. After a week of constant rest and relaxation, we felt more invigorated and refreshed than we ever had in our lives. It was time to move on to a more populated part of the world. And did I tell you that one of the perks about flying Air New Zealand to the Cooks is that they offer a free stopover in New Zealand? So we boarded a 2 a.m. flight and flew the 1,600 miles it took to reach Auckland. After a week of unhurried bliss, we had to readjust our beach bum attitudes as we hit the city streets, but that’s another story for another time, isn’t it mate? For expert advice about the Cook Island and securing accommodations, I recommend Jennie at


For 25 years I have enjoyed working with clients and assisting them in making confident financial decisions. I have found that by listening to the goals and dreams of those I serve and building long term relationships with them, we can develop an ongoing financial plan that allows you to plan for your future, while living your life today.

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Martinusen and Associates A private wealth advisory practice of Ameriprise Financial Services, Inc.

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Text by Aaron Collins, Director of Communications and Community Relations, Sequoia Riverlands Trust


he land under present-day Kaweah Oaks Preserve was nearly leveled in 1982. It’s hard to imagine that happening now, with thousands of school children, hikers and native species annually found among Kaweah Oaks’ broad canopy of old trees, trekked by school field trippers and visitors making year-round use of its well-maintained trails. Many of Kaweah Oaks’ trees are several hundred years old. The forest, countless thousands of years old, is the last remaining riparian native Valley Oak forest of its size and kind in the region. The land’s former owner intended to plant a walnut orchard there. However, the water table was so high in the early ‘80s – just eight feet – that the new owner quickly discovered that she had few farming options, beyond planting field crops. With nuts off the table, as it were, she wasn’t crazy about pursuing a higher maintenance crop venture. In a twist of fate, resourceful Visalia native and community leader Alan George knew a friend and fellow farmer near Delano who served on the Nature Conservancy board of directors. George contacted him and the organization worked a deal in 1983 to purchase Kaweah Oaks’ 324 acres for $1.01 million, or just over


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$3,000 an acre. Local citizens raised $100,000 of the needed purchase funds. Now, thanks to steady community support from its inception, Kaweah Oaks Preserve (KOP) is celebrating its 30th year. The forest has not only been spared; in fact, it will be expanding with a 22acre addition of open ground to be reforested, thanks to a successful $552,000 capital campaign conducted by its present-day owner, the Visalia-based nonprofit Sequoia Riverlands Trust. An issue is a parcel that protruded into the preserve’s core that remained in private agribusiness hands, posing a major problem if a private developer wanted a nice home site among the trees, an outbuilding or noisy ATV track that may shatter the peace of the preserve. But despite the fundraising success, perhaps not all KOP’s news is auspicious. KOP faces new challenges dealt by the climate, the economy, increased visitors and the realities of the region’s philanthropic culture. Despite raising more than $334,000, The Campaign for Kaweah Oaks Preserve must raise just under $20,000 more to meet its goal and build much-needed restrooms and improve signage, especially on Hwy. 198.



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With more than 10,000 visitors per year using KOP for a variety of disparate uses (from wedding photographers, to university researchers, day hikers, yoga classes, etc.) increased visitor numbers have meant the need for sanitary restroom facilities. The annual Kaweah Oaks Earth Day 5K Run organized by Sole 2 Soul Sports turns out hundreds of visitors. “There are very few local trails that are as accessible as the Kaweah Oaks Preserve,” said Sole 2 Soul owner and race organizer Scott Newton. “This event combines a distance that anyone can enjoy and allows many to experience a trail run for the very first time. The great thing is that not only is the venue beautiful, but the event is to raise funds to preserve it for future generations,” Newton said. “It is great that you get to run in a preserve that is like going back in time.” With the water table plummeting throughout the San Joaquin Valley, Kaweah Oaks and its native drought-tolerant species are holding up okay, so far. The land gets more use than ever, and one cannot help but wonder what the forest’s fate might be today, had it remained in private hands. It might still have been the last of its kind, but quite likely it would be a forest felled, a ghost of centuries past offering no further shade, recreation, educational opportunity nor beauty from its increasingly rare animal habitat. With today’s reports of persistent “exceptional drought,” and resulting ag industry uncertainties clouding our era of mostly unrelenting blue skies, it is perhaps reassuring that Kaweah Oaks Preserve stands as persistent and proud – a comforting reminder of what once was. Just like KOP, Central California was once a vast riparian Valley Oak woodland habitat replete with deer and elk, big cats – even grizzly bears formerly found among the abundant flora and fauna in the Kaweah River Delta until the mid-1800s. Fortunately, Kaweah Oaks Preserve still stands to offer echoes of that not-so-distant past. For the sights and sounds of a vanished era and humanity’s primeval habitat, come out and walk or sit among these massive trees and ponder the persistent thrum of the ancients who have dwelt there before you. Celebrate with us KOP’s 30th anniversary, or the forest’s 3,000th – depending on how you count it. For more information on Kaweah Oaks Preserve or Sequoia Riverlands Trust’s Campaign for Kaweah Oaks, please visit


L I F E S T Y L E | M AY 2 0 1 4


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Text by Lisa McEwen Photos by Ken Weisenberger


Leads Rawhide, Fellow Young Professionals


erious yet full of smiles, Jennifer Pendergraft is a woman who has enough energy to simultaneously coordinate more than 70 baseball games and promotions a year for the Visalia Rawhide, and challenge every community volunteer to give even more. Pendergraft, the Rawhide’s general manager, approaches each day with a game-winning mentality. “Mediocre is unacceptable,” she said during an interview inside the business offices of the Class A California League affiliate to the Arizona Diamondbacks. “Once you find your passion, always give 110 percent effort because you never know who’s watching you.” Obviously, Pendergraft has found her passion as the leader of this organization. In fact, sports have been part of her life since she


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was just a child growing up in tiny Amity, Oregon with a younger brother and sister. Pendergraft knows how it feels to lace cleats and walk onto a freshly raked infield, hear the hurtling ball hit the pocket of a mitt and slide into home plate for the winning run in front of a crowd of fans. “When it’s baseball season, I don’t know how to explain it, but I can feel it in my bones,” she said. “I put that same effort and energy in at the office.” Playing softball earned her a scholarship to a Chemeketa Community College in Oregon, where she played shortstop, and another scholarship to Lee University in Cleveland, Tennessee, where she played first base and was known as a power hitter. (And yes, she still jumps at the chance to take a few cuts – and connect – at the stadium).


Timothy W. Bragg Attorney At Law

From our Family to Yours Shutters | Blinds | Verticals | Honeycombs | Woven Woods

I grew up here and i know how much visalians value honesty and integrity. I hold these values as my guiding principles and strive to put them to work for my clients as their partner and advocate. I invite you to sit down with me to discuss your needs today.

Timothy W. Bragg

225 w. oak avenue, visalia

p. 559) 697-3062 | f. 559-302-9306

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With a degree in business administration, Pendergraft’s job search led her to a listing for an administrative assistant with the Visalia Rawhide. Wanting to get in the door of the baseball industry, Pendergraft interviewed with team president Tom Seidler, who explained the imminent re-branding of the thenVisalia Oaks and construction of Rawhide Stadium; which represented a new era for minor league baseball in Visalia, as well as the baseball industry itself. She jumped at the chance and began work within two weeks of graduating in January 2007. Pendergraft has lived up to her reputation as a power hitter not only on the field but also in the office. She has taken the club to new heights in her eight-year career, climbing the organization’s ladder the whole way. Venture to a game and you’ll understand that the energy in the crowd is engineered by Pendergraft and her 12 member staff, which she describes as incredibly efficient. Part of the ballclub’s business plan is offering the stadium for community events year-round, from weddings to festivals. In fact, under Pendergraft’s command, the number of stadium events jumped from three to 50. “Our goal is to have something for everyone to enjoy.” Her tenacity and hard work gained notice by the California League and she was named “Female Executive of the Year” in 2013. The honor capped an award-filled two years for the Rawhide, who were named “California League Organization of the Year” in 2012 and “Visalia Medium Business of the Year” in 2013. Seidler was also “California League Executive of the Year” in 2012. Upon her arrival in Visalia, which she describes as the “biggest city I’ve ever lived in,” Pendergraft jumped head-first into community involvement, a cornerstone of her upbringing, 52

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she said. “My parents are good, kind, giving people. I grew up volunteering with them. I had great coaches and teachers who encouraged volunteering. And as a business person, it’s just what you do. But I guess you could say I’ve taken that to a new level,” she said with a smile. “I have a hard time saying no.” To date, Pendergraft is a member of two local service clubs, the Visalia County Center Rotary and the Visalia Breakfast Lions, of which she has the distinction of being the first-ever female club member. Pendergraft is also a graduate of the Visalia Chamber of Commerce’s Leadership Visalia program and is a volunteer with the Visalia Miracle League and Happy Trails Riding Academy. She is also proud of the Host Family program she created several years ago that houses 100 percent of team players with area families and has other player mentorship programs underway for the young men who come through Visalia on their journey with the baseball industry. Accomplishing so much doesn’t happen in a typical eight-hour day. Which explains why she often gets text messages from friends and colleagues who spot her vehicle late at night that read: “You need to go home now.” “It’s nice to get those messages,” she said, “but in reality, I know I’ve got a few more hours to put in.” As she prepares to turn 30, Pendergraft says her career thus far has been a “surreal” experience. “I know so many people my age who are still trying to find their passion. I happened to come to an organization that fit my passion. I’m not embarrassed or shy to say that I’m really blessed, but I also know that I’ve taken this opportunity to the fullest. I’m always trying to take it to the next level.”


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Sherman & Associates specializes in upscale Visalia residential properties. With over 30 years experience Nola Sherman is “the recommended realtor.” Sold on real experience.


L I F E S T Y L E | M AY 2 014




Text by Bryce McDonald



pend any significant amount of time walking around an event, visiting a local trendy restaurant or taking in your favorite live sporting event, and a picture of change quickly begins to emerge. No, we aren’t referring to some kind of radical social change in human kindness and goodwill, although it may be closely related. But a change in the way that we, as a culture, view, approach and consume America’s favorite adult beverage–beer. According to the Brewer’s Association, the craft beer industry continues its impressive trend, with 18 percent growth (by dollars) in 2013. Not only is this significantly up from prior years, but it doesn’t look to be slowing down any time soon, with a remarkable 413 new breweries opening last year alone. It begs the question, why are we seeing this large consumer shift from the traditional American adjunct lagers that were so near and dear to our hearts to their smaller-scale craft counterparts? Lifestyle recently walked the event grounds of the Visalia Craft Beer Fest, held on April 26 at Mooney Grove Park, to get some answers while tasting some amazing craft beer.


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Michael Cruz, who heads up sales and marketing for Tioga Sequoia Brewing Company, believes that some of the new local breweries such as Tioga-Sequoia, Dust Bowl, Kern River, Riley’s and House of Pendragon are really driving consumer demand in this area. “There have been pubs in this area for years, but it is the breweries exposing people outside their own establishments that have made the most impact for change in the San Joaquin Valley,” Cruz explained. “It is getting harder and harder not to find a local beer on tap at most bars and restaurants these days. People want something they are familiar with and something that they can stand behind. Any great local brewery understands this and caters their beers to fit its surrounding market.” Sure, supply and availability of craft beer is certainly leaps and bounds above what it was even five years ago, but how are local consumers transitioning their palates to appreciate more complex choices? “I think craft beer growth is coming from all types of drinkers,” explained Kenny Hildebrand, founder of Kaweah Brewing


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S SPIRITS Company in Tulare. “People who enjoy big red wines seem to enjoy big barrel aged craft beers, while the macro drinker is bored with the same old thing. They are taking small steps toward real flavor.” “The appeal to craft beer is that it’s always changing,” Hildebrand continues. “There are always new innovations to the craft scene. Unlike wine where the climate, soil and barrel play part in the flavor, craft beer is an artist’s canvas, adding and blending hops and barley.” Mario Gutierrez, a local representative of Sierra Nevada Brewing Company out of Chico, adds that certain styles are playing a key role in transitioning local drinkers. “Right now it’s all about the attractiveness of sessionable, tasty, beers,” Gutierrez claimed. “Something like Lagunitas DayTime, Sierra Nevada’s Old Chico Crystal Wheat or Firestone’s 805. These are easy drinking beers, with subtle elements of the flavors and hops found in more advanced beers such as IPA’s and Double IPA’s. These are essentially big monster beers in mini-monster form, allowing for experimenters/first-timers to try flavorful, but conservatively palatable, beers.” Cruz believes that there are essentially two types of local craft beer consumers - the “intro to craft beer” types, who are learning, evolving and making the most difference because their voice is bigger (due to size of this group); and the “uber beer geeks,” who know what they want, where to get it and are always looking for something new. “Tioga-Sequoia, in its infancy, mainly catered to the first group,” Cruz recalls. “Any brewery trying to survive in this area has to, in order to make the biggest impact. We hit a growth point a few years ago where we could start catering to the second group. Our creative side has been unleashed, and we are now targeting the “uber beer geek” of today with specialties that rival most breweries across the country.” Okay, we get it. Craft beer offers choice, complexity and huge variations in styles, but what can we expect the Tulare County’s craft beer scene to look like years down the line? Gutierrez believes that there is much to look forward to. “The reality is that more and more people are wanting to get into craft beer. When I got into craft beer, it was me in my twenties and a bunch of forty-five plus year old men. These days, twenty-one-year-olds are bypassing the macros and jumping right into craft beer and experimentation. I truly see craft beer continuing to grow during these next five years with this younger influx of beer lovers.” Hildebrand echoes the words of Gutierrez, “Here, locally, the popularity of craft beer is growing every day! I can see a few more micro-breweries emerging from the garages of home brewers in the next five years.” Well, there you have it. It seems safe to say that craft beer culture in the area is here to stay, and to that, we say cheers to the Central Valley. TOP: Kenny Hildebrand, founder of Kaweah Brewing Company. MIDDLE: The Dust Bowl Brewing Company pouring beer for locals at the event. BOTTOM: Mario Gutierrez, local representative of Sierra Nevada Brewing Company.


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You’re in charge of many things. Including your future. You know your life and your future are really up to you. And no matter how busy you are day-to-day, you have to build your wealth, plan for your retirement and manage your investments for the future. As your Morgan Stanley Financial Advisor, I can help you keep control of your financial picture. Working together, we can evaluate your current portfolio and your goals, and adjust your investments. Meet with me to learn more. Let’s keep you in charge of tomorrow. Brucinda Myers Chartered Retirement Planning Counselor Vice President Financial Advisor 520 W Main St, Visalia, CA 93291 +1 559 636-5652 © 2013 Morgan Stanley Smith Barney LLC. Member SIPC.

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An escorted tour of breathtaking Niagara Falls and exciting New York City during peak fall foliage season. Is Cooperstown on your bucket list? The Baseball Hall of Fame and Toronto complete this extraordinary Showcase America trip.

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Sept 23 to 28

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625-5139 L I F E S T Y L E | M AY 2 014



NIGHT AT THE RACES Happy Trails Riding Academy will be hosting its 18th annual fundraiser. The night will include dinner by Sue Sa’s Catering, horse racing, prizes and much more! Tickets are $50 per person.

When: May 30, 6p Where: Visalia Convention Center, 303 E. Acequia Ave., Visalia Contact: 688-8685 or


MAY 17




The Slick Rock Student Film Festival is a student competition meant to challenge 6-12th grade students throughout the South San Joaquin Valley to meet industry standards in the technical aspects of film production. It serves to advance academic student achievement by challenging students to connect with local businesses and communities through films that reach or meet industry standards in filmmaking. Awards ceremony begins at 7p.m. with free admission. When: May 17, 9a Where: Visalia Fox Theatre, 300 W. Main St., Visalia Contact: 625-1369 or


This is a spectacular live production featuring music from all 14 Pink Floyd studio albums plus a dazzling new light and laser show. The Discovery show will capture in note-for-note detail all your favorite moments as well as a few lesser-known gems. Brit Floyd’s musical performance will be accompanied by amazing original video and brand new animation. When: Jun. 3, 8p Where: William Saroyan Theatre, 700 M St., Fresno Contact: 445-8200

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JUN 12


Two major country music stars will be performing on the same stage. Sara Evans’ albums were built on strong songwriting and a neo-traditionalist flair, while Dustin Lynch’s albums were influenced by men like Garth Brooks, Alan Jackson and Clint Black. Tickets start at $25. When: Jun. 12, 7p Where: Tachi Palace Hotel & Casino, 17225 Jersey Ave., Lemoore Contact: (866) 472-5223


Presented by Reiko Yoshimoto, the title of the exhibition stems from the method of art, which is employed in the majority of the works on display. Known as chigiri-e, it is a collage process where the images are composed of pieces of colored paper as opposed to paint. When: Through May 30 Where: Arts Visalia, 214 E. Oak Ave., Visalia Contact: 739-0905


Arts Visalia is proud to host the annual Visalia Art League Members Exhibition, featuring artwork in a variety of media by local artists. This educational and philanthropic organization is open to amateur and professional artists, as well as non-artists who are lovers and patrons of art. The opening reception will be held Jun. 6, 6:00-8:00 p.m. Please visit for exhibit hours. When: Jun. 4-Jun. 27 Where: Arts Visalia, 2014 E. Oak Ave., Visalia Contact: 739-0905


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559.636.1500 office 559.936.0475 mobile 103 S. Stevenson, Visalia, CA (Southwest corner of W. Main & Stevenson)

Tropics by design

Interior plantscaping and some simple design elements can make your place of business or home more warm and inviting. Call 559.734.4920 to see what we can do for your interior.

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MAY 17

MAY 23


This annual, cultural appreciation event will start off with a traditional pancake breakfast. The rest of the day will be filled with entertainment, food and fun for everyone. Come out and see what being Swedish is all about! When: May 17, 10a Where: Kingsburg Swedish Village, Kingsburg Contact: 897-1111 or


Beat the summer heat by attending this event where you can purchase soft drinks, brews, delicious BBQ and other summertime favorites. This family-oriented free music event will benefit the Visalia Emergency Aid Council. Music by Brad Wilson. When: May 23, 6-10p Where: Garden Street Plaza, Visalia Contact: 732-7737

JUN 21


Enjoy a wide variety of beers to try out. Each ticket includes a Brewfest shirt and barbecue dinner plate. Tickets are $45. When: Jun. 21, 5-10p Where: Kings County Fairgrounds, 810 S. Tenth Ave., Hanford Contact: 594-3318


Weekly event open to the public featuring free live music, kids’ activities, cooking demonstrations and local, fresh produce available for purchase. The market also accepts EBT and WIC. When: Thursdays, 5-8p; Saturdays, 8-11:30a Where: Thursdays, Downtown Visalia; Saturdays, Sears parking lot Contact: 967-6722 or

Whether your goal is fat loss, strength gain, improved lifestyle or sports performance, CFA will guide you through a fitness program that is structured to not only enhance your functional strength and movement but also enhance the quality of your life.

Are you ready for a game changer? All you have to do is take the first step and get in touch. We are ready to help you change your life and improve your health! Call us today. Owner, Justin Levine California Fitness Academy We Change Lives


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6910 W. Pershing, Visalia, Ca 559.334.8990 |





Month-to-Month Space Available (No lease)

24/7 Security and Access Call for our low rates

Janitorial Service

Propane Sales Dumping Service

For dependable commercial cleaning service ServiceMaster Clean can help. daily, weekly, or monthly janitorial service



559-651-2300 6603 W. Betty Dr., Visalia, CA 93291 Take the Betty Dr. exit in Goshen Southwest corner of Hwy 99 and Betty Dr.

Medical & professional office cleaning

Office system cleaning

Aggregate floor cleaning

Nearly any other cleaning you want

Tile & grout cleaning

Window washing

Carpet cleaning using various processes

ServiceMaster by Hellstern

Ron Hellstern owner 559.738.8927 Serving the Visalia area | Locally owned and operated for over 25 years

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MAY 20




Join the Visalia Sunset Rotary at their annual fundraising event that will help support youth-oriented and nonprofit groups. Tickets are $20 and include an all-you-can-eat buffet, miniature golf, bumper boats, laser tag and game tokens! When: May 20, 5-9p Where: Adventure Park; 5600 W. Cypress Ave., Visalia Contact:


Tulare-Kings Right to Life is holding its annual 4-person shotgun scramble tournament. Play 18 holes of golf at one of Central California’s finest courses and enjoy a light lunch and catered dinner. When: Jun. 9, 10:30a Where: Visalia Country Club, 625 N. Ranch St., Visaila Contact: April Kesterson, 732-5000

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JUN 12


Come enjoy an evening of wine, cheese and jazz as we showcase the art, music and talent featured at the Creative Center. Tickets are $25. When: Jun. 12, 5:30-7:30p Where: The Creative Center, 606 N. Bridge St., Visalia Contact: Paula, 733-4400


First Tuesday Book Club (Jun. 6, 6:30p) Mystery Readers (Jun. 21, 6:30p) Where: Tulare County Library, 200 W. Oak Ave., Visalia Contact: 713-2700 or

Local Built

Local businesses know the value of a local bank. Suncrest is proud to be locally owned and operated, offering a full range of business and personal deposit products and loans.

Porterville Branch 65 West Olive Avenue (559) 306-1300 Visalia Branch 400 West Center Avenue (559) 802-1000

Rated Five-Stars by

DAYCO Construction is a general contracting firm with a truly local perspective. Born and raised in a small town, President and Founder, Gary Day, knows the importance of building confidence and trust in a business relationship. That’s why he chose a local bank, namely Suncrest. “We feel they share our philosophy,” says Gary. “It’s all about paying attention to customers’ needs. Suncrest Bank is a ‘yes bank.’”

Garrett Day, Gary Day and Belinda Day, DAYCO Construction, Inc.

May 2014  

Style, Art, Culture and Events of the South Valley

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