Arte Américas is a nonprofit cultural emporium of Latin-Americana that integrates more than 10,000 square feet of eclectic artwork, theater classes, live music, book readings, poetry slams, and many workshops. This season's summer concerts in the Plaza give you a chance to gyrate your hips to the sizzling cumbia of La Sonora Explosion Dinamitera (August 6); groove to the songs of Santana as delivered by Zebop (September 3); or anachronistically Charleston to 40-Watt Hype's fusion of hip-hop, Latin, soul, and R&B (September 10). And come Mother's Day, your membership puts you y tu mama tambien on the VIP list for the perpetually sold-out Rebozo Festival, which recognizes the achievements of Hispanic women in categories other than Being Salma Hayek. The laid-back atmosphere of Arte Américas is reflective of the vibrant Hispanic and Latino influences found throughout the museum as you stroll around, absorb the creative energy, and daydream about siestas where you're dreaming about siestas.
Hundreds of reenactors from several western states descend on Kearney Park for a living-history lesson that commemorates the 150th anniversary of the civil war. Wander through a civilian town and military encampments housing battle-weary soldiers as live music from the period drifts through the air and artisans craft non-anachronistic wares. Time-traveling visitors may stumble upon Abraham Lincoln for a chat about emancipation or about how he plans to decorate his beard for Halloween as a collection of stagecoaches gleams in the sun nearby.
For more than a eight 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.
Festive lights transform Fresno Chaffee Zoo into a winter wonderland during Zoo Lights, a holiday celebration with sparkling displays and live music performances. Patrons can stroll the illuminated grounds and drink in the breathtaking exhibits while gargling "The Little Drummer Boy" with free hot cocoa. Each evening, local groups take the stage and showcase homegrown talents. After munching a cookie, visitors can create a holiday craft or snap their own photos with Santa. For $2 each, guests can don a pair of Holospex glasses, which sport holographic lenses that create a kaleidoscopic pattern around every bright light and tiger-striped candy cane.
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.
A Double Gold Medal award winner for its 2007 Lucas Vineyard zinfandel at the 2010 Finger Lakes International Wine Competition, Ramos Torres Winery produces several Central Valley–grown wines under the direction of Oscar Ramos, who holds a degree in enology and a minor in enosophy (the study of wine's thoughts). An in-store wine tasting will let you and a beverage buddy tiptoe your taste buds through a selection of five Ramos Torres varietals and fermented concoctions, which may include the 2008 Vino Tinto, a careful blend of cabernet sauvignon, petit sirah, petit verdot, and alicante bouchet. The 2009 Conversations blends apricot aromas, muscat blanc, and the citrus sensations of orange muscat—tailor-made for sipping atop a bucking bronco. Tasters are then challenged to select between a bottle of the Vino Tinto and a bottle of Conversations.