In the Loop: April delivers on promise of spring

By DONNA MCCROHAN ROSENTHAL

April delivers on the promise of spring with fishing, food, unique seasonal train rides and more. Experience as many as your wanderlust commands, drawing your cues from this roundup of tips for short hops to nearby destinations and longer trips in California.

To the southeast in Hemet, “Ramona” returns Saturdays and Sundays, April 22, 23, 29, 30, May 6 and 7, 1:30-6:30 p.m. The timeless story of tragic love at historic crossroads has earned the distinctions of “California’s Official Outdoor Play” and “longest continuously running outdoor drama in the United States” (ramonabowl.com; 800-645-4465).

Not far from Hemet at the Orange Empire Railway Museum in Perris on Saturday and Sunday, April 8 and 9, climb aboard for a Day Out With Thomas Friendship Tour. On Saturday, April 15, the Easter Bunny will hop through trains, greeting each child with a special treat and posing for a photo. Children can decorate Easter baskets and then follow a treasure map to find Easter eggs and other goodies. The whole family can explore the museum and enjoy rides on vintage trolleys (www.oerm.org; 951-943-3020).

Toward the coast in Fillmore on Sunday, April 16, Fillmore & Western Railway’s Easter Lunch Train departs at noon for a scenic ride through the Heritage Valley, lunch, and a visit by the Easter Bunny (www.fwry-blog.com; 805-524-2546).

Closer to home this weekend, the 28th Annual Lake Isabella Fishing Derby takes place 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. April 8-10 (www.kernrivervalley.com; 1-866-KRV-4FUN). On Saturday, April 8, Tehachapi holds an Easter Egg Hunt in Meadowbrook Park from 9:30 to 10:30 a.m. (http:// tehachapi.com/calendar/wc201704s.html) and the Kern Pioneer Village offers Living History Day from 1 to 3 p.m. (www.kernpioneer.org; 661-437-3330). At the CSUB Amphitheatre, the Mac & Cheese Fest brings new twists to old favorites on Saturday, April 22 (www.themacand

cheesefest.com) and the 31st Annual Bakersfield Jazz Festival does likewise with 13 bands on two stages and food from some of Bakersfield’s best eateries on Friday and Saturday, April 28 and 29 (www.bakersfieldjazzfest.com; 661-654-2511).

In Death Valley’s Amargosa Opera House, sit back and soar with “Seasons of Love,” an opera concert, on Friday, April 21 at 7 p.m. (tickets:760-382-4441; contact: 760-977-7747).

Story First Published: 2017-04-07