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2011 Rewind: Favorite local event?

Since we’ve opened our presents, played with our Christmas toys and are now waiting patiently for New Year’s Eve, we at The Beehive figured this would be a great week to look back at our favorite things from 2011.

We’re starting our week of 2011 Rewind posts by talking about local events. What was your favorite Fresno happening of the year. It could be something you just attended or helped put together or something you just heard was really awesome if you never leave the house.

Check out our picks and leave your own in the comments.

MIKE OZ: No surprise here for anybody who knows me, but my favorite event was the Taco Truck Throwdown that happened at Chukchansi Park. I love tacos, obviously, and that’s part of it. But I’m also happy to see an event that finally celebrates the taco culture in Fresno.

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DONALD: Can you imagine Fresno without the Rogue Festival? For 10 days a year, I’m confronted with the same feeling as when I arrive in New York: too many fascinating performances I want to see and not enough time. I love the strategy of planning out one of my Rogue days, program in hand, as I try to balance an itinerary between shows with buzz and ones I know nothing about. In 2011, my favorite performance in the former category was the Fresno Dance Collective (NOCO for short) under the direction of Amy Querin. In the latter category, I was glad to stumble into Canadian performance artist Jeff Culbert’s weird and esoteric “Archy and Mehitabel.” Who knows what the next installment of the Rogue will bring?

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HEATHER: Music and mimosas: It doesn’t take much to make me happy. The Soulflower Group has found the perfect recipe for a delightful Sunday morning in its Soulful Sundays, a quarterly-or-so event that takes place on the lovely patio of Veni Vidi Vici in the Tower District. Guests are treated to brunch, unlimited mimosas and the song stylings of a featured artist. September’s event focused on the music of Michael Jackson, and it was a near-perfect event. Good food, good company, good music — it didn’t get much better than Soulful Sunday in 2011.

KATHY: Two local biking events were my highlights. The California Classic Weekend offered the rate opportunity to ride on Highway 168. What a blast! The other event, the Tour de Fresno, is a great event that’s well organized and provides a great way to ride through the Valley with hundreds of other cyclists. This year’s event started and ended in Courthouse Park, which created a nice setting to relax. Plus, what’s not to like about a beer garden in the park after a long ride?

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Responses to "2011 Rewind: Favorite local event?"

Ray Arthur says:

I have to go with the fourth annual F.U.S.E. Fest. This homegrown music festival took a big leap this year going from one night to two, adding venues and talent. Results were a greater variety of local bands and a bigger economic impact for downtown. Disclaimer in that I was on the FUSE Committee and am on the mothership’s (Creative Fresno) Board of Directors, but this event is pure fun and gets better and better every year

bradley says:

On behalf of Devoya Mayo, myself, and the rest of the amazing Souflower Group posse, we thank Heather and the Beehive for the Soulful Sundays shoutout.

We’ll be back this Spring to bring more soul to our favorite day of the week.

Keep in touch with all of our events by liking our Facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/TheSoulflowerGroup

-dj bradley

Stephen says:

I’m going with the Club One beach party where they brought in tons of sand, had bands, that imported super-tall waterslide, etc.

First time ever for such an event, and I hope they continue with block parties like that.

J.Stinnett says:

I have to say,The Big Fresno Fair was my favorite event of the year.Can’t really put my finger on what it was but this years fair was just spectacular.I saw some great free shows.Where besides the fair can you see jugglers,dancers and hillbilly rock and roll bands.The Fair outdid itself this year.

Natali says:

Though I wasn’t able to attend, all of the positivity surrounding Club Ones giant downtown beach party and ability to get people of all groups and ages downtown definitely deserves mention here. Bringing in an entire beach of sand, multiple pools and the world’s largest waterslide? Pretty dang cool.

JJJJ says:

Off Topic: Mike Oz, I would like to see your, and the other beehive writers, opinion on what the upcoming changes to the Bee really means.

Todays small article on the subject makes no mention if the paper is getting fatter or even slimmer.

sherpoland says:

I have to agree. This was the first FUSE Fest I attended and I really enjoyed it. Looking forward to next year.

Sherpoland says:

I enjoyed a few of Fresno’s events this year. I volunteered for the California Classic weekend, and I am looking forward to riding and volunteering this year. I participated in the Tour de Fresno, had a really great ride, and attended my first FUSE Fest, which was totally awesome. Fresno is home to some really great events and I look forward to exploring some new as well as some old in 2012.

Renee N says:

Thanks Donald!! The Rogue Festival really hopes to make this list every year, we are proud to represent Fresno and the performing arts community each year!!

Peter Robertson says:

Favorite musical event of 2011:

Audra McDonald’s Homecoming Concert at Warner’s Theatre with the Fresno Grand Opera Orchestra. Perfectly splendid!

(Sans the Ray Appleton introduction — McDonald’s not a native born Fresnan; she was born in Germany).

Michael says:

Swedefest for me. Yes I’ve been to all of them, but the added publicity this year was great. It’s about time the boys over at Dumbdrum got some national recognition for what they’ve done.

Heather says:

Agreed on Swede Fest. It continues to get better.

Valerie says:

I’d have to go with Mike and say the Taco Truck Throwdown. It was also dollar beer night with Thirsty Thursdays. All around win win :)

Mike Oz says:

Sorry it took me a while to get back to you. I was actually off for a few days, despite what these posts might have your believe.

On the Bee changes: The size of the paper is largely determined by how many ads people people buy. I, and others who write for The Beehive, have almost nothing to do with the pagination of the printed paper.

Like almost anybody, changes like these mostly resonate based on what your experiences are with the paper. That’s true, even for us.

The changes, to me, that are more important are Spotlight going from a tabloid to a broadsheet and moving where it’s arranged in the Sunday paper. It’s going to be easier to find, but I do kinda like the tabloid format. I think my weekly “Concert Watch” column night get better display.

For some readers, these things won’t matter. They’re still going to complain about the editorials — which have nothing to do with these changes.

I’ve found that most any time things are changed in the newspaper — and this is probably true with other products as well — people just use it as a launching pad to complain about what they want to complain about, whether it has something to do with the matter at hand or not.