recent Smithsonian magazine that featured a nice spread on Bakersfield and our Basque restaurants. Written by travel writer Jonathan Gold and called "The Basque Revolution," it singles out places like Wool Growers, Benji's, the Pyrennes Cafe and the Noreiga Hotel, as well as several Basque eateries in Nevada. Said Gold: "I loved the Nevada restaurants. But still, I couldn't wait to get back to Bakersfield, which feels like home." He also visited Dewar's, which he described as "maybe the best unreconstructed ice cream parlor in the country, famous for its banana splits and its peanut butter chews." (photo courtesy of the Smithsonian magazine)
* ... RIP WARREN HAUPT: Our community lost one of its great characters this week with the death of Warren Haupt at the age of 83. Warren and his wife, Catherine, had five boys, all of whom turned out to be productive citizens with families of their own. The Haupts are a large, Catholic family with strong ties to Our Lady of Perpetual Help school and Garces Memorial High School. Warren grew up in Bakersfield, attended Kern County Union High School and later managed Kern Rock Company for 30 years. Services will be held at St. Francis Catholic Church on Friday at 10 a.m. Keep his widow Catherine, and this special family in your thoughts.
* ... MORE MEMORIES: Reader Rod Kearns wrote in response to an earlier post about a Camillia bush that traveled with a family for many years. His note: "I read your blog each day it is in the paper and enjoy it immensely. The note about Camellia memories prompted memories of my own. Our little rose bush's life is ten years short of the camellia's life, but this bush will certainly outlive us. Our family moved from Sanger to Fresno when I was ten years of age. To celebrate our new home I rode my bicycle a couple miles to a nursery and purchased a miniature rose bush. My parents planted the bush in our family garden where it thrived. When my wife and I moved to Bakersfield in late 1970, my parents transplanted the bush for us as a gift for our new home south of Bakersfield College. Seventeen years later we built our current home further east of BC and the rose bush went with us. It has adorned our entry flower bed for twenty-five years. We love the small pink blossoms and the memories are grand. This little rose bush has been with us in three locations for 56 years."
* ... GOH: Four-time Pro Bowl football player Joey Porter and wife Christy are hosting a fund raiser for county supervisor Karen Goh in her bid to win a full term. The Porters will be opening their home on April 27 with food and entertainment. Call (661) 322-2225 if you are interested in tickets. Goh is running against former public defender Leticia Perez for the 5th District seat.
* ... BAKERSFIELDISM: Kurt Seeger says you may be a Bakersfield old-timer "if you remember Uncle Woody and his Toy Circus toy shop on Chester Avenue. He also would perform, with his sidekick, Zippy, at private birthday parties."