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  • BY STEFANI DIAS sdias@bakersfield.com
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Spirits are plentiful in Bakersfield but when you get your hands on something rare, it's worth celebrating. This weekend, KC Steakhouse kicked off a special menu highlighting its supply of Jack Daniel's single barrel whiskey.

  • BY STEFANI DIAS sdias@bakersfield.com
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With warm weather comes thoughts of lounging by the Kern River. While so many spots might end up jammed with the like-minded, a brand-new festival has just the ticket. Democrat Hot Springs River Festival on May 6 will offer guests a full day to frolic, dance and dine with a pristine river vi…

  • By PETE TITTL For The Californian
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Readers sometimes tell me they like to follow the column in order to find new restaurants to explore. Today’s column is a bonus, giving you two places to check out: a humble Mediterranean restaurant and a nomadic wood-fired pizza operation, both worth checking out.

  • BY STEFANI DIAS sdias@bakersfield.com
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The Bakersfield Museum of Art is offering a Golden State opportunity for its Visual Arts Festival. Now through May 4, all California artists are eligible to submit works for the annual juried small works exhibition, which opens May 18. 

  • BY STEFANI DIAS sdias@bakersfield.com
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First and foremost, the Jewish Food Festival is about community. Of course, Sunday's gathering at Congregation B'nai Jacob downtown will live up to its name — with a new cookbook, kosher lunch, baked goods shop, food vendors and more — but its heart extends past our stomachs.

  • The Bakersfield Californian
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Does your passion for scratch-made food and handcrafted cocktails extend beyond enjoying them? Then Eureka! might have a position for you. The restaurant is hosting a hiring fair Thursday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. with open interviews for energetic potential managers at all levels.

  • The Bakersfield Californian
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While some expect to enjoy some tequila next week for Cinco de Mayo, the organizers of Aces & Agave aim to tempt them to imbibe a bit sooner.

  • BY KELLY ARDIS kardis@bakersfield.com
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For many, spring means warmer weather, blooming flowers and, for the unlucky, allergies. For cat rescuers, it means kitten season, which isn't as adorable as it sounds. It's the time of year when more kittens are born, overwhelming shelters that usually have to turn the babies away. Luckily …

  • The Bakersfield Californian
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Like most things, they just don't make cars like they used to. Proof of that will be this weekend at the Kern County Fairgrounds, which is hosting what is reported to be the city's largest vintage car show, the 41st Annual Western Street Rod Nationals.

  • BY KELLY ARDIS kardis@bakersfield.com
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The Kern County Museum is back. Not that it ever went anywhere, exactly, but for nine months that Chester Avenue institution was officially Kern Pioneer Village, a decision made in July by then-executive director Zoot Velasco.

  • The Bakersfield Californian
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A local educator ended up in the national spotlight recently. Spencer Peregoy, superintendent at St. John’s Lutheran School in Bakersfield, was named the recipient of the Lux Christi (Light of Christ) Award to recognize him as an outstanding educator in the nation.

  • BY KELLY ARDIS kardis@bakersfield.com
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In Zoot Velasco's short time at the Kern County Museum, he certainly made his mark as CEO. But now that he's gone, the foundation that runs the museum is reflecting on which of his flashy marks should stay and which should be erased.

  • BY STEFANI DIAS sdias@bakersfield.com
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Starbucks will offer its unicorn frappuccino only until Sunday (and maybe not even until then with supplies running low), but 'Grammers need not fear. Two Bakersfield restaurants have foodie shutterbugs covered for your colorful photo-worthy beverages. Bakersfield Pizza Co. & Bar and Cam…

  • By PETE TITTL For The Californian
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Seldom has a new restaurant opened in Bakersfield that has so quickly won devoted customers, at least customers devoted enough to tell me all about it before I even have a chance to set foot in the door.

  • By JENNIFER SELF jself@bakersfield.com
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When you get up in years, it tends to be the people who don't come to your birthday party you think about most. That's how it is with Fuzzy Owen, the Bakersfield Sound pioneer and longtime manager of Merle Haggard, one of many old comrades who have died in recent years.

  • BY KELLY ARDIS kardis@bakersfield.com
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The Bakersfield High School water tower has seen a lot: countless football games and rallies, cars speeding along California Avenue and more than a few fearless students who climbed its ladder to leave their mark on the local icon. Now the water tower has a different view, overlooking Kern P…

  • BY STEFANI DIAS sdias@bakersfield.com
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When Meredith Bell moved back to Bakersfield in 2013, her plan was to start a farm that could help educate the community about our vital connection to farming. She couldn't have predicted then that just four years later, those bonds would provide a network of support for her farm following a…

  • The Bakersfield Californian
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There are a number of local activities to celebrate Earth Day, but the Bakersfield College is lobbying to offer the most action-packed option with its annual Garden Fest. In its 12th year, this premier springtime garden event draws thousands to this open house featuring the college's environ…

  • The Bakersfield Californian
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Something to ponder on your run: Would the natural beauty of Tejon Ranch slow you down or inspire you onward? You'll have a rare chance to find out Saturday when the ranch hosts a half marathon and 10K run amid its breathtaking views, vibrant wildflower fields, oak-studded hillsides, steep c…

  • BY STEFANI DIAS sdias@bakersfield.com
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A tale of America's melting pot, immigrants striving to succeed, artists yearning to be accepted and a woman struggling under the yoke society has imposed. Opening Friday at Stars Theatre Restaurant, "Ragtime" is set at the turn of the 20th century but it's as relevant today, taking on race …

  • By CESAREO GARASA For The Californian
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He calls it a one-man show, but he's shorting the other guys: There's Kevin Smith, the director; Kevin Smith, the comic-book aficionado; Kevin Smith, the podcast pioneer; Kevin Smith, the TV series star; and Kevin Smith, the pop-culture king, whose witty and wired assessments of, oh, everyth…

  • By RICK KREISER For The Californian
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Joe Robinson walks a tightrope between the instrumental music that has put him in the spotlight and a unique fusion of vocally based rock, blues, jazz, and R&B that is entirely his own.

  • The Bakersfield Californian
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Former Bakersfield musician Charles Victor Mendonsa wrote to The Californian to share his memories of Roy Lackey, aka Sonny California, a bluesy harmonica player who elevated every band lucky enough to have him. Lackey died April 7 in Las Vegas.

  • BY STEFANI DIAS sdias@bakersfield.com
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Chef's Choice Noodle Bar is in the mood to celebrate, starting with its sixth anniversary this month. It's offering customers a chance to win a slew of raffle prizes, including a custom dinner for four, gift cards, logo items, free Mother's Day dinner buffet, or tickets to Cook Night. Diners…

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The Bakersfield Bounce House Fest is being held at Pioneer Village through Saturday. For $10 kids can use the attractions that include bounce houses, a climbing rock, the huge zorba ball, human foosball and other games. The $10 fee also covers entrance to Pioneer Village. The event will be o…

  • By PETE TITTL For The Californian
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According to the Nation’s Restaurant News, one of the hottest trends in restaurants is the vegetable-centered menu. Not vegetarian, you understand, but “vegetable-centered.” A subtle but powerful difference.

  • BY STEFANI DIAS sdias@bakersfield.com
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It’s got all you want in a food festival: plenty of vendors dishing gourmet samples, free-flowing beer, wine tasting and live music. So why don’t you already have your ticket to the fourth annual Macaroni and Cheese Festival?

  • BY STEFANI DIAS sdias@bakersfield.com
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It was a banner weekend for Stars Theatre Restaurant — and for me, surprisingly for the same reason. As a result of the annual Dancing at the Stars competition, the theater beat its $50,000 goal, grossing an impressive $56,000 between ticket sales, online voting and bar and food sales.

  • The Bakersfield Californian
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The sounds of Spain head to Bakersfield on April 21 with a performance of Duo MusArt Barcelona, sponsored by the Kern chapter of the American Guild of Organists. The duo consists of Raul Prieto Ramirez and wife Maria Teresa Sierra, two young Spanish keyboard artists who teamed in 2007, bring…

  • BY KELLY ARDIS kardis@bakersfield.com
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The quiet library, with people silently reading and looking for books under the threat of an angry "Shh!" from the librarian could not be further from the atmosphere that Ariel Dyer is trying to foster at the Kern County Library's northeast branch.

  • The Bakersfield Californian
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To help send local fifth- and sixth-graders to camp to learn more about our environment, adults will gather at a camp of their own — Wine Camp for KEEP — on April 22.