“All work and no play … ” you know how the saying goes.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, persons between 25 and 54 years old who are employed and have children spend roughly 20 hours a day working, sleeping and running errands, leaving only four hours a day for leisure activities.

With so little time enjoy oneself, quality is key in deciding what to do.

Here are 15 of the many activities to do in town to help keep things fun and interesting.

1. Anyone can cook – Bakersfield is home to many unique and memorable restaurants and while it’s nice to treat yourself every now and then, there’s nothing quite like eating a meal prepared with your own two hands. With cooking classes held at The Kitchen, Chef’s Choice Noodle Bar and Cafe Med, even the most inexperienced cooks can create culinary masterpieces. 

2. Get artsy – Grab a brush and let your creative juices flow! “Paint night” events make for great evenings with friends and loved ones and local places like Brush & Blush, Corks & Strokes, and The Art Cellar make it a family friendly affair with classes for kids and/or adults.

3. Dance like no one’s watching – Grab a partner or fly solo and learn a variety of dance styles like hip-hop, salsa and swing at Studio 9 or ballroom dancing at Debonaire Dancers. 

4. Relax, recharge, rejuvenate – A spa day, complete with full-body massage, keeps the aches and pains away.

5. Root, root, root for the home team – From state champions at the high school level, WAC champions at the Division I collegiate level to professional hockey that’s one step away from the NHL, one thing is clear: Winners reside in Bakersfield and locals have access to the best seats in the house.

6. Get into the swing of things – With nearly a dozen golf courses to choose from, there’s no reason not to grab a set of clubs and play a round or two.

7. Fulfill the need for speed – Gentlemen (and gentlewomen), start your engines! Drivers can fulfill their dreams of racing down the straightaways into the 14-degree banks of the Kern County Raceway during the Rusty Wallace Racing Experience on April 9. Bakersfield Karting Experience is another way for speed demons to put the pedal to the metal with go-karts reaching up to 40 mph.

8. Keep CALM and reach new heights – The Condor Challenge at California Living Museum is Bakersfield’s only ropes challenge course and outdoor climbing tower, consisting of high- and low-rope elements reaching more than 35 feet and a 32-foot climbing wall. Condor Challenge’s trained facilitators tailor the experience to participants of all ages and ability levels.

9. Locally grown family fun – Tractor-drawn wagon rides, a giant bounce pillow and a petting zoo featuring goats, fancy pigeons, sheep, peacocks, ducks, geese, chickens, turkeys and a miniature horse are just some of the attractions found at Murray Family Farms. And that’s not including the abundance of fresh fruit ripe for the picking.

10. Get in the festive spirit – The Bakersfield Jazz Festival, Country & Craft Beer Festival and Garden Fest are a few of the festivals taking place in April and there are plenty more held throughout the year.

11. A room like no other – A test of wits and remaining cool under pressure, escape rooms pit groups in a race against the clock as they solve puzzles and gather clues before time runs out. Do you and your friends have what it takes to beat the clock?

12. Ride the bike path – Metropolitan Bakersfield boasts 203 miles worth of bike paths, lanes and routes, taking riders along the Kern River, through the heart of downtown Bakersfield, across the hills surrounding Hart Park and beyond. So what are you waiting for? Hop on your bike and take a spin around the city!

13. It’s better live – Nothing compares to the experience of a live performance. From country music at Buck Owens’ Crystal Palace, classical music at Rabobank Theater or a stage play at one of Bakersfield’s community theaters, no matter what your preference, there’s a live show for it. 

14. Go to your “hoppy place” – Craft beer is thriving in Bakersfield with three local breweries serving up over 35 original creations. The beer is the star of the show at Dionysus Brewing Co. while Lengthwise Brewing Company and Temblor Brewing Company offer full menus. Temblor also doubles as an entertainment venue, hosting bands and comedians on a regular basis.

15. It’s a bird … it’s a plane … no, wait, it’s a bird – Birding with the Kern Audubon Society is an activity all ages can enjoy. With field trips around Kern County held every month, it’s a fun and educational experience.

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