The Rawhide continue to stampede through the 2012 season while carrying on a tradition of baseball in Visalia that stretches back more than 100 years. As a Class A affiliate of the Arizona Diamondbacks, the Rawhide have helped nurture 175 players from their humble beginnings as buried sunflower seeds into fully grown big leaguers, including current stars Justin Upton and Evan Longoria. Through 44 games this season, shortstop Chris Owings and first baseman Jonathan Griffin have pummeled opposing pitchers, combining for 17 home runs and 50 RBIs while claiming real estate among the California League’s leading sluggers.
At Metro BMX's weekly bicycle-motocross practice sessions, seasoned BMX vets and neophytes alike hone their racing chops on a well-maintained dirt motocross track. Racers bring their own BMX bikes (without pegs) to the course for two hours of open ride practice, during which BMX'ers can train for future races, fine-tune their skills, and conquer one of the newest Olympic sports. Riders as young as 3 (with a parental waiver) and as old as 60 frequent Metro BMX, allowing for high-octane family bonding and cross-generational understanding without awkward rides through the park on a bicycle built for nine. Metro BMX encourages riders to bring along their own helmets, though loaner helmets are available at the track.
Featured in Bakersfield Life for its summertime thrills, River's End and its certified and experienced rafteraunteurs lead thrill-seeking water wanderers on fun, exciting, and safe adventures down Kern River. During the two-hour Blaster trip, rapids-romantics begin their journey at the mouth of the Kern Canyon and encounter Class-II (moderate) and Class-III (moderately difficult) rapids, suitable for voyagers of all skill levels. River’s End’s energetic adventure guides will navigate and talk about the river’s wildlife and propensity to gurgle ‘70s lite-rock as rafters head down to Lake Ming on a 3.5-mile jaunt. The tour departs four times daily and is suitable for groups, families, and gung-ho whippersnappers aged 6 and up.
The male and female firearm experts of American Home Defense shape their shooting and self-defense classes around legal regulations with an emphasis on personal safety. In private shooting lessons, students learn to handle three of the most common handguns and home-defense classes equip participants with the know-how to protect their families from intruders or a neighbor's moat monster.
McDermont Field House wears a lot of hats. It's a fitness center that houses more than 50 cardio machines. It's an indoor soccer field that hosts open play and league games and a skate park that lures skateboarders with ramps and rail slides.
Elsewhere, its Eagle Mountain rock-climbing wall challenges visitors to scale more than 50 feet. But it's not a traditional wall. Instead of colorful foot and handholds, the indoor wall looks much like a real mountainside: the grey, cragged peak is unmarked, and climbers must figure out their own ways to the top. The field house also brings the ocean to the San Joaquin Valley with a FlowRider wave simulator that buoys surfers and body boarders.
During your month-long trial membership at Anytime Fitness ($100), you can re-bloom your wilted health with the state-of-the-art facility's diverse range of cardio and strength equipment. Exploit muscles for non-financial gain with free weights, tone legs on the treadmills, undergo a demanding tour de fitness-center via exercise bikes, or just catch up on reruns of Homeboys from Outer Space on the flat-screen TVs located near the treadmills, ellipticals, and Lifecycle machines. If the flawed workout plan you concocted yourself results only in frighteningly muscular ring fingers, one of Anytime's motivating trainers can prescribe a regimen designed to help you meet your fitness goals during your three personal-training sessions included in your trial membership ($150). Complete the sculpting of your flesh-statue with an Apollo finish with one month of unlimited tanning ($40), and then purify yourself of sweat and fried-cheese memories in Anytime's private showers.
Paula Brown has been practicing and teaching yoga since 1999, ever since she discovered that yoga went beyond mere exercise. As a registered Yoga Alliance instructor, she draws on techniques developed 2,500 years ago in India. Each posture cultivates flexibility and strength while calming the mind and fostering health. Paula's style is based on the teachings of B.K.S. Iyengar, a yoga master who recently celebrated his 90th birthday. Iyengar's method is unique in that he emphasizes proper alignment, timing, and sequencing while moving between postures.
All of Paula's 14 instructors offer daily classes and private sessions inside the more than 9,000-square-foot Yoga Space studio, built in an old bank and furnished with eco-friendly paint, all-natural air, and an abundance of light. In addition to three yoga rooms, the studio includes a healing center that offers massages and more, an outside patio, and a tea bar. When students finish their classes, they can browse through the studio's store, which is stocked with yoga mats and clothes made with organic cotton and recycled karma.