• HERB BENHAM: Who says salt is bad for your health?

    I had just had some crack cocaine. Or at least the crack cocaine of the restorative arts — floating. Californian reporter Courtenay Edelhart wrote a story a couple weeks ago about Salt7even, a business opened by Dirk and Renee Bentz close to the Fox Theater. You float in a tank filled with a

  • Kern County independent filmmaker Fabian Euresti hosts “#Landscapes With Fabian” at NX Annex on May 30.

    MATT MUNOZ: Indy fest keeps it short and mostly sweet

    Those with a taste for independent films should make plans to attend the “#Landscapes With Fabian” at NX Annex on Saturday. Hosted by local filmmaker Fabian Euresti, 31, the evening will feature a screening of six short films, each produced with budgets as tight as their running time. “I think

  • About 1,000 people attended the inaugural Bakersfield Craft Beer Festival in 2013 with about 500 more turning out last year.

    Craft Beer Festival: A bitter aftertaste

    Saturday’s third annual Bakersfield Craft Beer Festival closed on a bit of a sour note for some who attended the event at Cal State Bakersfield. And it wasn’t the kind of “good” sour you get from a bit of Brettanomyces in your brew. The festival, which heralded the arrival of craft beer on

  • LeAnn Rimes closed out the inaugural Rock & Country Music & Arts Festival on the Country stage at the Kern County Museum May 23.

    Rock & Country fest was great; here's how to make it better

    Even if his words hadn’t been enough to convey the message, there was no mistaking the weary tone: George Martin, less than a week removed from staging his first-ever music festival, is not at all sure there will be another. “Less than 50/50,” he said of the chances that the Bakersfield Rock &

  • Ray Scott headlines Saturday's Guys, Girls & Guitars Country Music Festival. Scott will take the stage at Stramler Park in Bakersfield at 10 p.m.

    Cheap but decent country festival? That's the ticket

    A week after a first-of-its-kind music festival at the Kern County Museum comes a first-of-its kind country music festival right next door. But there are a few differences, said Ada Denton of the two-day Guys, Girls & Guitars Country Music Festival, which kicks off Friday at Stramler Park.

  • Artist Walter Van Broekhuizen, from the Netherlands, shows the scaled design of what will be a full-size metal sculpture inspired by Darwin's "tree of life" for the CSUB campus. “"In his notebook, (Darwin) had '‘I think’' and a small drawing, just like an artist would do,”" van Broekhuizen said. “"That struck me. It was interesting to see an abstract, small drawing show a way of thinking.”"

    New 'tree' takes root at CSUB

    With a trunk and branches made of metal pipes welded together, the newest tree on the campus of CSUB won’t require any water and is unlikely to provide much shade. What it should provide, though, is intellectual stimulation, provoking thought as students go from class to class. Dutch artist

  • Alice Manning brings her show "Stronger than the Wind" to the Spotlight Theatre on Saturday.

    Into the 'Wind' together: A one-woman show at Spotlight

    While some performers worry audience members will leave before the show is over, Alice Manning is curious about how many will stick around after the curtain drops. “I think the most fulfilling thing I get is the audience feedback,” Manning said of “Stronger than the Wind,” her one-woman show

  • Some of the crew of The Empty Space theater board of directors, from left, Claire Rock, Ron Warren, Amy Hall, Kristina Saldana, Perrin Swanson, Ellie Sivesind and Bob Kempf.

    Empty Space hopes season will fill seats

    Setting theater free via social media, The Empty Space recently unveiled its summer/fall 2015 season on Facebook. Currently presenting the musical “Little Shop of Horrors,” which wraps its run with a 7 p.m. show Sunday, the theater’s upcoming shows run the gamut from children to Chekov. SPECIAL

  • The cast of Bakersfield Community Theatre's 2014 production of "Steel Magnolias." From left: Ronda Heath, Spencer Surratt, DeAnn Surratt and Laurie Howlett. The theater is hoping to raise funds and find a new home after a series of break-ins at its South Chester Avenue home.

    Bakersfield Community Theatre regrouping after break-ins

    As with any good theater troupe, the show will go on for Bakersfield Community Theatre. But after a devastating break-in recently, the board is working out where that show will take place. “We’re a gypsy theater again,” said Janice French, publicity and marketing director for BCT. “We’ll perform

  • Masterworks Chorale director Robert Provencio is leading the chorus in a concert of 1960s tunes, which range from musical theater to folk to pop.

    Chorale makes '60s pop at concert

    Bakersfield Master Chorale has billed Saturday’s concert as a nod to the music of the ’60s, but it looks more like a full curtsy or deep bow. “The concert is really quite an eclectic mix,” said music director Robert Provencio in an email. “We’ve chosen music from pop, rock, musical theater,

  • Chubby Checker swept fans off their feet — literally — at the Classic Rock stage. The crowd at the Bakersfield Rock & Country Music & Art Festival on Saturday went crazy for the 73-year-old "Twist" performer.

    The day the music thrived: Bakersfield festival hits the right notes

    The schedule had Chubby Checker on the Legends stage at 8:40, the big finish to the inaugural Bakersfield Rock & Country Music and Art Festival at the Kern County Museum. But when Chubby Checker wants to go on at 3:40 on the Classic Rock stage, Chubby Checker goes on at 3:40 on the Classic Rock

  • Randy Fulce and Chrisy Keplinger dance together to music provided by Bakersfield's Blonde Faith at the Bakersfield rock stage.

    STEVEN MAYER: The festival from a golf cart - the only way to go

    Anyone lucky enough to have a golf cart at the Rock & Country Music & Art Festival in Bakersfield on Saturday recognized one important fact in about 39 seconds: Golf carts are GOLD. I was one of the fortunate few because, and I won’t lie, I cried to organizers days ahead of the event

  • One of several stages went up earlier in the week for Saturaday's Rock & Country Music & Art Festival at the Kern County Museum.

    Organizers place finishing touches on massive music festival

    Anyone brave enough to launch a massive outdoor festival in Bakersfield this time of year already knows the score. One could easily get burned. Literally. After all, temperatures in the high 90s are not uncommon in late May, so event organizers sometimes have to roll the dice and hope for the

  •  California Chrome on a morning run with exercise rider Alberto Delgado before the 2014 Belmont Stakes. The horse fell short of winning the Triple Crown at the race.

    HERB BENHAM: California Chrome still shining brightly

    Steve Coburn's been there and “there” is good but the backside of “there” isn’t bad either. A year ago, Foothill grad Coburn had the hottest horse on the planet. Coburn, along with Perry Martin, own California Chrome, the electrifying thoroughbred that came from nowhere (not that Coalinga is

  • THE DISH: Serve your country, get a deal at a restaurant

    Along with providing a three-day weekend, Memorial Day serves as a time to honor fallen heroes and pay respect to veterans and active military members. And what better way to say thanks for your service than with some free food? Here are a couple of deals to consider. Domino’s is offering a free

  • Herb Benham

    HERB BENHAM: The awful truth - the shirt is awful

    Lauren, my daughter-in-law, dropped off a bag of shirts. New shirts. Never-worn-before shirts. “These were my uncle’s,” she said. “If you like any of them, they’re yours and you can give the rest away.” I meant to ask what happened to her uncle, but I was so excited about the shirts that I didn’t.

  • Anne Santer with her stallion, Dream. Santer is being inducted into the Dressage Foundation's Century Club, an honor eligible to dressage riders whose age, combined with their horse's age, totals 100. Santer and Dream will complete a test Sunday that is required for Century Club membership.

    Stallion and owner: The ride of their lives is Sunday

    Anne Santer has loved horses since she was a little girl. Though she grew up without one to call her own, she often rode her uncle’s horse, offering to clean stalls in exchange for lessons. Many of her neighbors in Fresno had horses, and she’d ride any horse she could, she said. “By the time I was