In 1913, Cabot Yerxa re-discovered Desert Hot Springs' eponymous springs while digging for water on his 160 acres of homesteaded land. In 1941, the pioneer decided to build a Hopi-inspired pueblo on this land using materials he reclaimed or found in the desert. The result is now known as Cabot's Pueblo Museum, and it encompasses 5,000 square feet.
The building, which rises four stories above the desert and utilizes the Venturi Effect for air conditioning, is constructed out of adobe-style sun-dried brick that Cabot made himself in his courtyard. Cabot also used materials from cabins abandoned in the 1930s. Visitors can wander through his pueblo's 35 rooms, peer out of the 150 windows, and stage elaborate Scooby-Doo chases through the 65 doors.
Baseball in San Bernardino dates back to 1899. More than a century's worth of history includes such team names as the Kittens and the Pioneers. It also includes a drought from 1950–1987, during which the city lacked enough dirt to build a baseball field. That drought ended when the San Bernardino Spirit began play as part of the California League. In 1996, the Spirit became the Stampede, and in 2003, the Stampede became the 66ers, a name chosen in honor of the historic U.S. Route 66 that is famous for its hitchhiking umpires. Over the years, the 66ers organization has spent time as the Class A-Advanced affiliate of the Mariners, Dodgers, and most recently, the Angels. The team has brought honor to each of its MLB partners, as it has won five California League championships since 1995.
From the colorful rides to an on-site candy store, Lollipop Park lets visitors of all ages escape into a whimsical wonderland. Go-karts let drivers hone their turns on a winding track, while a carousel taps into the imagination of kids and adults, perfectly encapsulating both the gallop of horse and the aimlessness of one's 20s. Other family-friendly activities include a mini-golf course, a hall of fun mirrors, and train rides along the sparkling waters of Lake Arrowhead.
Tombstone Paintball Park offers outdoor enthusiasts an exciting opportunity to reduce stress and enjoy nature while flinging paint at foes with all-day access to the park ($45, gun and mask included), all-day air ($10), and 100 paint-filled spheroids ($7) that can be customized to leave a splatter pattern that looks exactly like your first name. Twenty acres of terrain gives ample room for a variety of different playing fields with various themes. Storm the Civil War field, which features log revetments and multicolored courage badges, or defend the Siegfried Line—a large network of unmapped trenches, sandbags, and conduits that keep the enemy constantly dizzy, lost, or both.
For more than 30 years, winemaker Mike Tingley has strolled between trellises on the hills of the Temecula Valley wine country. He scans the nuanced grapes of each season, waiting for just the right moment to pick them and produce varietals such as cabernet sauvignon, sauvignon blanc, cabernet franc, tempranillo, and viognier.
At Danza del Sol Winery, Tingley works with owner and wine enthusiast Robert Olson to produce wines that have distinct identities. For example, their 2010 sangiovese mingles scents of red cherries with leather, and the 2010 cabernet franc mixes deeper aromas of black cherry with hints of cranberry and pleather. Their Mediterranean-influenced bottles regularly receive awards in the Southern California Wine Country Wine Competition, and they are available for tasting or purchase at the Spanish-mission-style clubhouse, which overlooks the blushing harvest.
Along the northern edge of Big Bear Lake sits Fawnskin Harbor, a tranquil respite from the hustle and bustle of daily life. Captain John's Fawn Harbor & Marina calls this serene alcove home, housing boats and doling out rental watercraft. From the harbor's docks and moorings, visitors launch pontoons, speedboats, canoes, and kayaks toward Grout Bay, a bald-eagle nesting site that also teems with great blue herons, osprey, and beavers. The wildlife sanctuary can also be infiltrated via standup paddleboard, a Hawaii-born craft that delivers a challenging core workout. Tours on an electric boat cruise the boulder- and tree-ringed bay area while passengers explore the lake, learn local history, and glimpse the lake's namesake surreptitiously brushing his coat.