Welcome to Bakersfield Observed. Our mission is to celebrate life in Kern County by focusing on newsmakers and events and the local characters who make this community such a special place. Send news items to firstname.lastname@example.org.
* ... EARTHQUAKES: This is not what you want to hear after the Ridgecrest earthquake, but
* ... THE CALIFORNIAN: The new owners of The Bakersfield Californian have appointed a general manager and a new top editor. Cliff Chandler, previously head of the sales department, will serve as general manager and Christine Peterson, a longtime veteran of the news staff, will serve as executive editor. Peterson was hired from the Orange County Register more than 20 years ago and has served in various editing positions over the years.
* ... SPOTTED ON FACEBOOK: "I want to die peacefully in my sleep like my grandfather, not screaming in terror like the passengers in his car."
* ... PETA VS. CALM: I think it's safe to say that the People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) picked on the wrong organization when it demanded a criminal investigation into the California Living Museum (CALM) because a skunk and two fisher cats died there. CALM is regularly voted the best family entertainment in Bakersfield, it hosts thousands of young students every year, its Christmas light show is wildly popular and it does an excellent job locally promoting itself as a rehabilitation center for animals native to California. In its news release on the deaths of the animals, PETA could not resist the temptation to insult all of us, referring to CALM as a "roadside zoo," demeaning all of us in the process.
* ... MEMORIAL HOSPITAL: Congratulations to Scarlett Sabin and all the folks who came together to build a new Ronald McDonald house for families of pediatric patients at Memorial Hospital. The ribbon cutting was held Thursday, a huge event attended by a couple hundred people, and the good news: the six bedroom house was paid for by the generosity of our community.
* ... THE PLUNGE: You may be a Bakersfield old timer if you remember The Plunge on Union Avenue. Check out these keepsakes from the place.
* ... MEMORIES: Check out the old Southern Hotel, built before the fires and earthquakes took down so many historic buildings in downtown Bakersfield.