Bakersfield

https://www.facebook.com/TJforMayor2016/

Kern County marketing firm owner T.J. Esposito brings a unique personal story to his candidacy for Bakersfield mayor.

In his youth, Esposito was a self-described cocaine and methamphetamine addict, was homeless for a time, and was convicted of several crimes, including burglary, assault and domestic violence. Since then Esposito says he has turned his life around, with a successful business and a family.

Vanguard Records

Acclaimed author Gerald Haslam grew up in the blue-collar Kern County community of Oildale in the 1940's, a child of the Dust Bowl migration to California. He went to school with another boy with a similar background, a child named Merle Haggard.

Ezra David Romero / Valley Public Radio

While the CSU Bakersfield Roadrunners are playing Oklahoma today in the NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament, they aren't the only roadrunners in Kern County. FM89's Ezra David Romero visited the California Living Museum zoo, also known as CALM, to learn more about the speedy birds that call Southern California home and lend their name to CSUB's sports teams. CALM's curator of animals Don Richardson tells us a little more about these birds and what the basketball team means for the community.

The Dolores Huerta Foundation

Immigration advocates are starting a new outreach effort in Kern County to enroll undocumented children in Medi-Cal. This is the first year undocumented kids can enroll in the government-sponsored insurance program.

Bakersfield Soloists on Young Artists Spotlight

Mar 2, 2016
Joe Moore / Valley Public Radio

This week we feature three soloists from the Bakersfield Youth Symphony Orchestra, performing live in the Bonner Performing Arts Studio. This week features harpist Dana Peck performing a piece by Handel; Garces High senior Johann Palo performing a piece by Stravinsky for solo clarinet; and Stockdale High freshman pianist Isaac Kim performing works by J.S. Bach, Beethoven and Chopin. 

Joe Moore / Valley Public Radio

 Today on Young Artists Spotlight we feature two piano soloists from Bakersfield's Warren Junior High School, Anjolie Doan and Anna Jian. Both are students of piano instructor Bonnie Bogle Farrer.

nickchapman / Flickr - Creative Commons

Can you imagine Southern California without Hollywood? Or the Bay Area without Silicon Valley?

No? History suggests that the identities of cities and regions are more fragile, and their central industries more perilous, than we care to admit. (Just ask former Detroit autoworkers.)

California High-Speed Rail Authority

The California High Speed Rail Authority has officially released an updated plan that makes big changes to first section of the bullet train.

The plan confirms that the Authority wants to change the first functional section of track to run from Bakersfield to San Jose. The original plan was for the first working segment of track to run from the Central Valley to Burbank outside LA.

The report leaked on Wednesday, but Thursday evening the Rail Authority released an official version of the document confirming the route change.

Change Of Destination Expected For High Speed Rail

Feb 18, 2016
California High Speed Rail Authority

A big change appears to be in the works for California’s high speed rail project. Valley Public Radio’s Jeffrey Hess has more.

The original plan was to connect cities in the Central Valley to Burbank in Southern California with the first functional stretch of track. Now according to multiple media reports, the High-Speed Rail Authority appears ready to run the first trains from Bakersfield to San Jose.

The rail authority is expected to release a report tomorrow detailing the need for the change.

KMC / Kern County

Kern Medical Center has a new name. But that's actually the smallest change the venerable public hospital is set to undertake in the next year. After being run by Kern County for over a century, the hospital - now branded simply as "Kern Medical" - will be spun off later this year to a newly created, independent hospital authority. 

Kern Medical CEO Russell Judd says the new name reflects a new era for the nearly 150 year-old institution. 

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