For more than 28 years, the Fresno Home Show's organizers have canvassed the Central Valley to collect and concentrate the knowledge of scores of building, décor, gardening, and landscaping professionals. Homeowners can bring blueprints for home projects and consult with vendors or chat with experts.
The instructors at Skydive Hollister conduct their highest jumps at 18,000 feet—the greatest height from which one can dive without supplemental oxygen. Even at this altitude, they have to pump oxygen into the plane’s cockpit before a jump. Once outside, the 120 mile-per-hour free falls last little more than one minute. They help students navigate this rapid descent on tandem dives, during which they strap into the same harness as their student and coach them in proper body position, steering, and parachute release over the sound of roaring wind. At 5,000 feet, instructors deploy the parachute and instruct their partner in parachute control and landing techniques as the blue waters of Monterey Bay and the hills of San Francisco unfold below.
Instructors also train students seeking skydiving licenses through two programs. In the Accelerated Free-Fall program, they teach skydiving principles and technical basics in a four- to six-hour ground school before strapping students into their own parachutes for seven jumps. The Instructor-Assisted Free-Fall program precedes this solo training with two tandem skydives, during which instructors teach their protégés the basics of free-fall turns, altitude awareness, and filling in for the lead goose flying in V-formation.
Saunas. Spas. A caf? and lounge. There are plenty of places to relax within?Sierra Athletic Club, but its members have a hard time sitting still. Also inside the club, certified personal trainers guide clients through high-intensity workouts in the 3,000-square-foot Power Plant. Work out mavens congregate for cross training classes, incorporating the likes of kettlebells, TRX straps, bands, wall balls, plyo boxes, rowing machines, and other equipment designed to keep workouts fresh and engaging. Individual athletes or teams can also come together for sport-specific training exercises led by trainers who specialize in everything from sport/position-specific training, rehabilitation, weight loss and senior fitness.
?On the other side of the athletic club, clients have access to two weight rooms, cardio machines, and areas?for?athletic competition. Nine tennis courts stand outside next to a?swimming?pool, where members can practice laps or train for a run on the underwater chess circuit. Indoors, rubber balls?bounce around seven?racquetball courts and a full basketball court makes the perfect place for a pickup game. Sierra Athletic Club keeps its workouts flexible. Members can exercise on their own, or enroll in more?structured programs. The training staff leads swimming lessons and energetic group fitness classes, such as Zumba, cycling, yoga, and seven different styles of martial arts.
Wielding his signature harmonica, delta-blues artist James Cotton has become a legend in blues circles, having started in the Muddy Waters Blues Band and since performed with B.B. King, Johnny Winter, Santana, Led Zeppelin, and other renowned artists. Watch the mouth-harp-playing phenomenon soulfully jam to classic blues tunes, such as “Don’t Start Me Talking” and “Sweet Sixteen,” as well as material from his newest record, Giant. Local blues-rockers Deja Blues will open, playing tunes that pay tribute to every style of American blues, from Mississippi Delta to Chicago shuffle to robot blues-rock, which focuses on the loneliness of 0s and 1s.
Moravia Wine's Howard Hammond is the patriarch of the family vineyards. For Howard, farming is a family tradition that stretches back to the late 19th century, when his Danish ancestor, Hans Jacob Jeppesen, arrived in America aboard a Norwegian vessel named "Moravia." Today, Howard, his wife Barbara, and a new generation of Hammonds carry on that tradition at the family's vineyards, a 400-acre estate in West Fresno. There, they produce Moravia wine inside a World War II-era farm and equipment barn. The barn's interior has undergone major changes to accommodate the production process and frequent tasting events. But its exterior still uses the original brickwork, maintaining the building's character.
Though guests to Island Waterpark might meet humans on their way to the water, they might also encounter Pelican Pete—a giant blue pelican in a floral-print shirt and bermuda shorts. He and an athletic lifeguard staff oversee guests as they wander among fountains and roaring water in attractions designed for everyone from toddlers to adults. Bright-blue tube slides spiral down into splash pools, a giant bucket tips gallons of water onto passersby, and a three-story open slide sends riders on a straight shot into a landing zone that pads their descent with a foot of water and a coral reef packaged in bubble wrap. Aquatic revelers can also float down a 500-foot lazy river and children can frolic under arching fountains and waterfalls in a designated play area.