The Visalia View

Top 10 Ways to Celebrate the Holidays in Visalia

Christmas Tree in the SnowWow. The holidays are here! With Thanksgiving next week, so starts the most wonderful time of the year-and the most hectic! Let’s make sure you take some time to truly enjoy this season. I mean Really.Enjoy.It. Here’s how. Give the absolute best gift ever: the gift of time spent together with family and friends. It may not fit under the tree or in a stocking but we guarantee that when the holidays are over it won’t be a gift that is thrown in the back of the closet and forgotten. So, here are the top 3 suggestions that you can do with others to help get you into the holiday spirit. For the rest of the list, click on the link at the end. You are sure to find something that will get you in the holiday spirit!

  1. Run/ Walk in the Annual Turkey Trot on Thanksgiving morning in downtown. This is one of the best ways to kick-off the season. Yes, it’s a challenge to get up early but when you see all the people who have gathered, it will be well worth it. This fun run/walk benefits the Visalia Emergency Aid Council. What a great way to start our national day of Thanksgiving, by sharing with others. Gather family and friends and make this your new annual tradition.
  2. Grab a place on the curb for the Candy Cane Lane Parade. Speaking of tradition, this is the 71st  Annual Parade and is the Monday after Thanksgiving. This year’s theme is “A Storybook Christmas” and is sure to delight all ages. Stay til the end because the big man himself always makes an appearance.
  3. Take the kids (or the young at heart) to the “Santa Paws Holiday Show” at the Visalia Convention Center. Winners of “America’s Got Talent” TV show, these dogs will wow you with tricks and acrobatics. Who doesn’t love a cute puppy in a santa hat??

There a lots more things to do from the Trek to the Nation’s Christmas Tree in Kings Canyon National Park to taking a horse drawn carriage ride in downtown. Just click on the link below to see. We would love to see pics of you and your family and friends out celebrating. So if you post on social media, hashtag VisitVisalia for a chance to be featured.

Happy Holidays!

10 Ways to Celebrate the Holidays in Visalia

 

Election Madness and our Privilege to Vote

Mural at Mooney Grove

Mural at Mooney Grove

Voters came out in record numbers this past Tuesday to cast their vote in arguably the one of the most historic, contentious, and wildest elections in years! We’ve seen all kinds of crazy posted on Facebook and Twitter, printed in our newspapers, and on TV. It got so that we were arguing over everything!

  • Marney the Dog or Hamilton the Pug
  • Snickers or Kit Kat
  • Paper or Plastic
  • Country Music or Alternative Rock (Ok, maybe that’s just at my house)

But now we challenge you to get away from all the election backlash and do something that we all can agree on: take some time this Veteran’s Day (Friday, Nov 11) to honor our Veterans who have fought to defend our land of the free and home of the brave.

Here are some suggestions of things to do:

  • Go to Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks and enjoy the fresh air, beautiful views and of course the giant sequoias. In honor of Veterans Day, everyone gets in fee FREE on Friday.
  • Watch the Visalia Veterans Day Parade: Saturday, Nov 12 at 10am. Starts at Garden St Plaza on Main Street
  • Drive The Caldwell Avenue of Heroes and see over 120 banners hanging along the roadside honoring those from Visalia currently serving in the military (By the Brave Project) Along Caldwell and Akers St.
  • Check out the murals around Visalia that honor our veterans. They are all FREE to look at. Here are the locations of a few: at Mooney Grove Park, at the Visalia Convention Center (Eucalyptus Courtyard), at Main St at Willis
  • Shake the hand of a vet and thank them for their service, treat a vet to a meal, or other acts of kindness

Have a great weekend. And to all our Veterans, thank you for your service.

Get your Taste of Visalia this Month!

PumpkinsFall is here, which means it’s time for the Visalia festivals! Get your taste of Visalia this month with our Taste of Downtown Visalia Festival, Taste the Arts Festival, and Tastemakers Festival. Take the whole family along to check out the Vossler Farms Pumpkin Patch and Corn Maze or head up to the Sequoia National Park for a spooky Halloween at the Crystal Caves. Take advantage of this cooler weather and enjoy all of these upcoming events.

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Top 5 Weekend Get-Away Ideas for Fall Travel

dsc_1395-resized-moro-rockFall is the perfect time for a weekend get-away. The kids are back in school, tourists are back to work and many places that were swamped with visitors are now pleasantly quiet. Here are a few suggestions for a long weekend vacay in Visalia (just a few shorts hours from LA and SF)  that will leave you feeling refreshed and renewed.

  1. Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks: with fall foliage and fewer visitors, the Parks are a wonderful, peaceful place to spend a weekend.
  2. Taste The Arts Festival: On October 15, artists will line the streets of downtown Visalia with amazing artwork. Meet the artists, stroll the streets and enjoy art in all forms.
  3. Taste Makers: On the same weekend as Taste the Arts (see what we’re doing here!) the Taste Makers event happens. This is an emerging artist music festival. Listen to music, maybe have a beer or two and enjoy the last of the warm weather.
  4. Pickle Ball Tournament: October 21-23. If you haven’t heard of this sport that is surging in popularity, come out and see what all the excitement is about. Or if you play the game and want a challenge, sign up to participate.
  5. Halloween at the Cave: So we know that #1 on the list is Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Park, but really amp up your trip with a visit to Crystal Cave the last week of October. You will enjoy special tours that are extra spookie!!!

If you want more information on these suggestion or want more ideas on what you can do this Fall, read our Visalia Buzz newsletter or go to our website http://www.visitvisalia.org

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Visalia brings Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks to downtown

Adventure Talks Brief

Are you traveling – or thinking of traveling – to Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks with the family and looking for something both kids and adults will enjoy? How about stopping in the charming city of Visalia for some fun and adventure! Visalia CVB is excited this summer to partner with Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Park, the Sequoia Parks Conservancy and the Visalia Farmers Market to bring the National Parks to downtown Visalia. Called “Visalia Adventure Talks,” these events will feature Living Historians who will talk about great people in the parks’ history, local experts who will provide information on Outdoor Adventures like hiking, back packing, fly fishing, and more. Park Rangers will be on hand to answer questions about the park as well as provide educational information. Visitors driving through the area are encouraged to stop by to listen to talks about park history, ask questions and to get brochures. Want to know about camping in the park? Or great fishing spots? What about tips on back packing? Curious about animal skat? We’ve got all of that covered. Stop by and see us at the south end of the Farmers Market on Church Street every Thursday through August 25, 2016.

Schedule of events:

July 14: Camping in the Parks; Sequoia Shuttle

July 21: Botanist Alice Eastwood; Lady Back Packers

July 28: Buffalo Soldiers in the Parks; Kaweah Fly Fishers

August 4: Susan Thew: Unsung heroine of SNP; Tulare County Astronomical Society

August 11: Animals of the Park; 50+ Hiking Club; Camp Cooking Demo

August 18: Colonel Young; Mountain Bike Demo

August 25: Happy Birthday National Park Service! Birthday Cake and Selfie Spot

Catch ’em here: Pokemon love Visalia

pokemonI now carry an emergency medical kit with me at all time. Not because I have a terrible illness that may strike at any time but because I live in fear that I will stumble upon a Pokemon Go player in dire need of medical aid after slamming into a light pole or falling off a cliff while playing this game that is riveting the nation. Please, people, have fun but be careful!

The good news is that Visalia has no cliffs from which to fall and we are apparently teeming with Pokemon, Pokeballs, gyms, Pokestops, and whatever else Pokemon Go players need. I know this because while at the downtown farmers market last night a young friend showed me all the characters that could be found right around us. Tons of them! (Who knew Pokemon like fresh fruits and veggies!) And with all the parks, monuments, and public spaces available in Visalia, I am certain there are many more.

I am so excited to see young (and not so young) people and their friends walking all around our city. Known for our walkable and quaint downtown, this just proves the point. Even Pokemon know it’s a great spot to hang out. So go down to Main Street, hang out at Taylor’s Hot Dogs, stop by the Fox Theater or Marriott Hotel and go to the Visalia Mall – they’re all great spots to find pokemon! We know you will have fun exploring this great city. By the way, the ER is located at Locust and Mineral King. You know, in case you need it!

Visalia Summer fun in July!

This month has no shortage of fun things to do in the Valley. The FREE summer movie series in the parks and pools continue through July and includes The Hunger Games Mockingjay 2 and Star Wars: The Force Awakens.

There will be a throwback concert at the Fox featuring The Turtles, Three Dog Night Paul Revere & The Raiders and more! Sun July 17th @ 7:30 pm.

Blues, Brews and BBQ offers a FREE night of Blues music on Friday July 8th featuring Glen Delpit and the Subterraneans.

As always the weather is always cooler up in Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks so it’s a perfect time to celebrate the centennial of the National Parks! July 2016 BUZZ

 

 

 

Tips for travel to Sequoia and Kings Canyon

Americans are hitting the road and visiting national parks in record numbers.  Visitation is up 15% at Sequoia National Park and all indicators point to a very busy summer.

These are some tips from the parks to reduce wait time at the entrance stations.  The park will be operating four in-bound lanes to issue entrance permits and provide park information and maps. They have hired additional rangers to greet visitors and provide information about parking and shuttles. The rangers can help with questions about parking, restrooms, and general way finding.

Arrive Early

It helps to arrive earlier in the day as the crunch period is 10am to 3pm daily.  Plan your trip using information available on (www.nps.gov/seki) that will help improve your experience.

Buy Entrance Fee or Pass in Advance

Download the app and buy your entrance fee or annual park pass before arrival. This app by our authorized partner, Viply, lets you buy passes to these parks if you have an iPhone 4S (or newer) or tablet. Watch for the android version of this app coming soon.

Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks are national treasures and we welcome all people to experience their beauty and diversity.  Thank you for your support and assistance in helping promote a safe and enjoyable experience.

Stay cool and have fun in June!

June offers many FREE activities in the area that include ways to stay cool while having fun exploring all our area has to offer. Sequoia and Kings National Parks are FREE to all on Saturday June 18th to celebrate the legacy of the Buffalo Soldiers who were early caretakers of the parks.

Stay cool on the valley floor with FREE outdoor activities including “Dive-in Movies” at Mt.Whitney high school on 900 S Conyer St, Visalia, CA 93277 which includes 2 hours of swimming with an outdoor film following at dusk.

Dates and Movie Schedule:

“Inside Out!” – Saturday June 11

“Jurassic World” – Saturday June 18

“Minions” – Saturday June 25

FREE Movies in the Park are back for the Summer 2016 season. Taking place in Riverway Sports Park at the Special Events Promenade 3611 N Dinuba Blvd, Visalia, CA 93291. Films are shown on a giant, inflatable movie screen at dusk.  7:45 to 10:00 pm

Dates and Movie Schedule:

“Inside Out!” – Friday, June 10th

“Jurassic World” – Friday, June 17th

“Minions” – Friday, June 24th

Don’t miss a chance to sample the wonderful produce from our area at our local farmers markets. Downtown Farmers Market takes place every Thursday at 5pm on the corners of Church and Main St. The Saturday Farmers Market is from 8am to 11:30 am on Mooney and Caldwell in the Sears parking lot.

June BUZZ 2016

The return of the Rawhide and Crystal Cave and much more signal the start of Summer!

Saturday May 14th marks the re-opening of Crystal Cave for the Summer season. Tickets are now available online at www.recreation.gov and are required as tours of this majestic cave will often sell out on weekends and busy days.

The Downtown Expo will take place on Friday May 20th and will feature cooking demonstrations, fashion shows, live music and more from 5pm to 11pm in Downtown Visalia. Tickets are available by calling (559) 732-7737 and $10 and free for children 12 and under.

The Visalia Rawhide, Visalia’s AAA baseball team make a return for the Summer and feature many ongoing promotions for all home games such as Thirsty Thursdays and Firework Fridays. An excellent outing for the entire family.

As always you can sample the best fruits, vegetables, and food from our county at the Visalia Farmers Market takes place on Thursdays at 5pm on Church and Main St in Downtown Visalia and Saturday mornings 8-11:30 am at the Sears parking lot on S Mooney Blvd and W Caldwell Ave.

May 2016 BUZZ