Wednesday, March 22, 2023

The diminutive French Bulldog is now top dog in America, weather caster Alissa Carlson has a scary fall and we celebrate all of our citizens photographers with some awesome pictures of our green valley

 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. The views expressed here are strictly my own and do not represent any other company or publication.

 * ... ALISSA CARLSON: By now almost everyone has seen the scary tape of TV weather anchor Alissa Carlson fainting at her desk. Carlson is a former KGET employee who had a long and favorable run in

Bakersfield and recently left to work at KCAL in Los Angeles. Last week, while live, Carlson's eyes rolled up in her head and she fainted. Carlson assures us everything is fine, but the video was difficult to watch.

 * ... NATURE'S WORK: The intense rain storms that have blanketed California have made for some spectacular moments for citizen photographers. The first was taken by Brandon Taggart in Kernville, the second by Pam Taylor out near Taft and the third and fourth by Jojo Paredes Butingan. Finally, John  Kelley treats us to some wildflowers he captured off Highway 46 with the last two pictures.

 * ... FRENCH BULLDOG:  For years the regal and lovable Labrador Retriever has held the top spot in the hearts of America's dog lovers. But now there is a new top dog in town, the diminutive French Bulldog. The new most popular dog was crowned this year when the American Kennel Club reported that the French  Bulldog and moved into top spot among dog lovers. The French Bulldog has been steadily climbing the AKC’s rankings over the last decades, hitting No. 14 in 2012. In 2021, the breed held the No. 2 spot, behind the popular labs but ahead of Golden Retrievers.

 * ... TULARE LAKE: In the aftermath of the string of rainstorms there is a lot of discussion about the old Tulare Lake bed, which was home to wildlife and native Americans years before the west was settled and the water damned and claimed by agriculture. Thanks to my friend Sylvia Cattani I am attached this explanation of the old lake, and how the record precipitation may be bringing it back.
 "A lot of the younger generation have no idea that the area west of Corcoran was once Tulare Lake, the largest fresh water lake west of the Great Lakes. It would be filled by the Kern, Kaweah and Tule rivers. The last 2 times it flooded enough to see Tulare Lake was 1983 and 1997. Going further back, The Tachi tribe, or Tachi Yokuts, once thrived with a population of 70,000 living on the banks of Tulare Lake, prior to the American and Spanish colonist settling. In 1849 the lake was 570 square miles and 690 square miles in 1879. There was a huge market for fish from the lake that would ship through Hanford to the Bay Area. Settlers started settling and started diverting the water for Ag and Municipal uses. The lake was nearly dry by 1900. In 1938, heavy rains flooded the San Joaquin Valley causing the levee to break near Corcoran and flood 28,000 acres of farm land. With this incident and a repeat flood in 1955, it prompted the construction of the Terminus Dam on the Kaweah River forming Lake Kaweah, and Success Dam on the Tule River forming Lake Success.  A lot of the water was diverted for multiple reasons including a large amount being diverted to the Los Angeles area. Bottom line, so much water was diverted that Tulare Lake, the once bustling eco system with elk, deer, antelope, marine life and countless other resources, disappeared over time. Who knows, we may get a peak at Tulare Lake again."

 * ... MEMORIES: Who remembers the Union Avenue plunge? Enjoy this old photo thanks to the Kern County History Fans Facebook page.

 * ... OILFIELDS: And finally we have this undated aerial view of the Sunset oilfield around 1910, courtesy of the Kern County of Old.