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Local Fun

24 Dec 2019
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Wes Winter started his new job as the executive director of the Mizell Senior Center last March—but before he officially began, he got a taste of what he was getting himself into at the 2019 Stars Among Us gala. “It was my first exposure to Mizell. It was my introduction to the community. My eyes were spinning in opposite directions at that point,” Winter said with a laugh. “I really didn’t know much about what was going on … so I’m really looking at this year as my first year.” This year’s gala will take place on Saturday, Feb. 1, at the Palm Springs Air Museum. We recently spoke with Winter about his first year on the job, Mizell’s future—and, of course, what people can expect at this year’s Stars Among Us. It’s fascinating that your first exposure to Mizell was at Stars Among Us last year. What impressions did…
02 Dec 2019
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On Dec. 7, the folks with Coachella Valley Sexual Assault Services will transform the Pacific Hangar of the Palm Springs Air Museum into a “winter wonderland.” The goals: Raise money for the organization’s vital services—and have one heck of a good time while doing so. CVSAS’ Inaugural Winter Wonderland Gala will feature hosted drinks from Tito’s Vodka—drinks with other spirits will be available for purchase—and food from the chef at the Arrive Hotel. Entertainment will include music by Lisa and the Gents. “Our goal is to keep all our services free of charge,” said Winette Brenner, the program director at CVSAS. “We usually do mini-fundraisers and stuff. … We do free events; we just had our Anti Human-Trafficking Conference, and we’ve made that free, because we want to educate the public. But at some point, we had to do something to have a bigger fundraiser, so we can continue to…
21 Nov 2019
For the 27th year in a row, the unique WildLights holiday extravaganza at The Living Desert Zoo and Gardens in Palm Desert will be one of Santa’s favorite stops in the Coachella Valley—so much so that plans call for him to visit the animal and environment conservatory on 16 separate nights from Nov. 26 through Dec. 28. A visit with Santa is just one of the varied experiences being offered at the 2019 edition of the zoo’s key annual fundraising event. A sparking tunnel of lights synchronized to holiday tunes, life-sized desert-animal lanterns, and more than 1 million lights await visitors. “There are a variety of activities that happen during WildLights on a nightly basis,” said Erin Scott, the senior manager for brand, marketing and public relations for The Living Desert. “Guests can visit with Santa. They can also just wander through the light displays around the zoo. New this…
04 Nov 2019
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Look … up in the sky! It’s a bird … it’s a plane … it’s a hot-air balloon—and you could be in it! The Sixth Annual Cathedral City Hot Air Balloon and Food Truck Festival will take place Friday through Sunday, Nov. 22-24—and each year, event producer Fantasy Balloon Flights offers balloon rides for people who want to fly high in the sky. The festival offers plenty of food and family-friendly entertainment for those who want to stay on terra firma, too. Cindy and Steve Wilkinson have owned and operated Fantasy Balloon Flights since 1981. “We moved out to the desert about 40 years ago from L.A.,” Cindy Wilkinson said. “Steve had a good job with a delivery company out here, so we felt safe in the move—but what we didn’t know is they lay off a large percentage of employees after every Christmas. He was one of the ones…

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