Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Summer Itinerary Continued...

Hi neighbors and friends -

Can you believe it's almost the end of July?! I haven't been able to accomplish half of the things I wanted to this summer but I continue to add to the list of spots I want to check out. I may not be able to catch them all but I definitely think these should make it to the summer itinerary. What do you think? Do you have any upcoming events on your summer itinerary you'd like to share? I'd love to hear.

1. 8/19 Redlands Bowl Closing Symphony Concert with fireworks
2. Cooper Regional History Museum - In my search for more fruit label murals around the IE I stumbled upon the museum's main gallery exhibit: "California Citrus Story." Sounds interesting!
3. Art Walks - Here are just a few to choose from:
- Claremont Art Walk: First Friday of the month from 5:30-8:30 pm in the Claremont Village
- Riverside Art Walk: First Thursday of the month from 6-9pm in Downtown Riverside.
- Pomona Art Walk: Second and last Saturday from 6-9 pm.
4. "Robots + Us" exhibit at the Western Center Museum in Hemet.
5. Weekend excursion to Idyllwild - I might have to invite myself over to a friend's place up there and plan another weekend getaway. Lookin' forward to getting away from the city and escaping to the mountains!
6. "Blues for the Zoo" - Tweeted about it a little while back. It's a fundraiser concert at the Big Bear Lake Swim Beach Outdoor Amphitheater on August 6th benefiting the Moonridge Animal Park. Good cause, good music and great atmosphere :)
7. Sausage and Beer Festival - Happening at the Highland Springs Resort in Cherry Valley from August 20-21st from 11-5 pm. Sausage, beer and free admission?! Count me in!

And let's end our list with dessert...

8. CUPCAKES!! - Go on a cupcake bender and hit up some local cupcake shops like Suite 106 Cupcakery and My Delight Cupcakery and Some Crust Bakery.

Whew...this seems like a long list! There's a lot to do in the IE and it's going to be hard to keep up but as long as it's a good time I know it'll be worth it! See you around the IE!

Monday, July 11, 2011

One of a Kind IE: Shields Date Farm

Hello neighbors and friends -

I can't believe it's taken me this long to update the blog. I was in the middle of updating and then my "9-5" started getting slammed then came 4th of July, followed by my birthday and then a week long vacation which was spent getting the rest of my life in order. Excuses, excuses, I know. I hope I haven't put off anyone by not updating sooner but here's the first posting for the "One of a Kind IE" column I mentioned in a previous post. Hoping it's the first of many (consistently posted) column posts.

Back in June (can't believe it's already mid-July), I went on a weekend fun run down to Palm Springs. On the way there I stopped by a destination that surely belongs in the "One of a Kind IE" category: Shields Date Farm. Here are a few fun facts about what makes this destination so unique.

Located in Indio, Shields Date Farm was started by Floyd and Bess Shields in 1924. Mr. Shields not only grew dates but was extremely passionate about educating folks about date culture. He developed a presentation which was modified into a 15-minute film called the "Romance and Sex Life of the Date." I got the chance to view the film in their small theater and I definitely
walked away informed. Not only about the innovations Mr. Shields made to the date business (e.g. he created two new date breeds "Blonde" and "Brunette") but also a little about the history of the Coachella Valley and the migration to the area due to the agricultural boom.

In addition to the theater, Shields Date Farm is a working date farm, cafe, and store filled with all types of date and non-date related goodies. I walked away with some large Medjool dates to snack on during my vacay as well as a date shake to-go. Both were delicious!

Here are a few snapshots from the excursion. If you've been to Shields Date Farm I'd love to hear what you think. And if you have a suggestion for another "One of a Kind IE" post please let me know.

Till next time...

Shields Date Farm
*Working date farm. Can you see the sacks of dates tied at the top of the trees?*

Shields Date Farm
*Shields Date Farm and Cafe*

Shields Date Farm Collage 2

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