Thursday, April 28, 2011

Mad I Tell Ya, Just Mad!

The bar in the tap room at Mad River Brewery. © Travis Turner 2011
The Mad River Brewing Company has a long history, well, at least as far as custom beers go.  Ken Grossman -- the current majority share holder in the Sierra Nevada Brewery in Chico, Calif. -- opened it a long time ago.  He threw it together using a tomato cooker, some dairy equipment and a whole lot o' elbow grease.  At least, that is the legend. Dave Barrett --a brewer at Mad River-- said two ole Ken Grossman photos still hang on the wall. One shows him sporting an old Steelhead shirt.

A lot has changed since Ken sold the whole kit-and-kabootle to the original owners of Mad River.  The tap room is new and is always crowded with those who know an excellent beer when they wash it over an experienced palette.  From Jamaica Sunset IPA, Steelhead double-IPA or the seasonal favorite, Double Dread Red, the beer is hard to beat.  In fact, try a sampler, it makes the choosing easier.  Don't over do it though, some, like the double IPA, pack a punch.

 In short, the award-winning beer does not disappoint when served ice cold and just a day out of the brewery.  Add a great atmosphere, a gorgeous oak bar and friendly staff and its every beer aficionados dreamlike watering hole.  If you ask nicely, they will even take you out back for a tour.  Make em' show you Ken's photos.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Electronic Vibe Fills Arcata Theatre Lounge: VibeSquaD, Ana Sia and more

                                                                       The Arcata Theatre Lounge was transformed into a San Francisco electronica club with VibeSquaD, aka Aaron Holstien, Ana Sia, Lazer Sword and Epcot bringing the bay to local enthusiasts.  

The crowd at the ATL seemed ready to embrace the city life as champagne bottles were passed around. The locals kept it real Humboldt-like by drinking straight from the bottle and the party continued until VibeSquad finished up close to two in the morning. 

Ana Sia pumped out a perfect mix of deep base and electronic twittering that kept the crowd pumped until VibeSquaD started his set just after midnight. Holstein got the crowd in the right mood by starting his mix with an infamously famous Humboldt favorite by Cypress Hill, I Want To Get High.  

The production was brought here by World Famous Productions, a local promotions company that continues to support the dub-step and electronica genre by shipping artists to Arcata and Eureka.  If you missed the show check out Mimosa and company on April 27 at Arcata Theatre.

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Spring Is Here And Has Brought The Farmer's Market With It

All Photos © Travis Turner 2011  

The cloudy gray skies, and the spatter of rain did nothing to hold back throngs of Humboldt County citizens from the Arcata, California Farmer's Market today.  
A lap around the plaza in Arcata could put you in touch with a cornucopia of vegetables, eggs, succulents, kale and plants of all shapes and sizes.

Kids could be seen swinging from the trees, wrestling or dancing to the hypnotic sound of Music of the Andes.

For more information on the Arcata Farmer's market and to find out how to get your produce to market check out the website here.

Time to stretch your winterized muscles and check to see if the bones have thawed, spring is here.  Come down to the Arcata Plaza on Saturday and see what your missing.

Friday, April 22, 2011

SLAMmin Week at HSU

Yelena Kisler sits at her booth at SLAM Fest 2011 handing out water bottles for attendees who visited five different tables in the Humboldt State University quad.  SLAM Fest or The Sustainable Living Art and Music Festival helps educate the HSU campus on sustainable living.  © Travis Turner 2011

SLAM Fest is here! This year's Sustainable Living Music and Arts Festival is underway and ends on April 29, 2011.  Different events will be held around the Humboldt State Campus focusing on "the belief that sustainable living, art, technology and music are inextricably linked together in shaping our culture..."  For more info see the website here.

The event will feature a battle of the bands, yoga classes, recycled arts and class workshop, Meditation, Film screenings and a Democracy Now marathon.  Check out the entire schedule here.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Not Another Greasy Spoon

Don't Let this humble facade fool you, this place is the real deal.  © Travis Turner 2011
When going for breakfast in Humboldt County the choices are endless, from carts to champagne brunch, you can find them all here.  If your looking for something tasty and find yourself in Arcata stop in and try the culinary delights of Golden Harvest.  

The location is perfect if you are taking a hike into the Arcata Community Forest, a lush multipurpose forest, or biking along the Hammond Trail to Clam Beach Vista.  Both adventures will be sure to inspire you and your need for some calories.

Golden Harvest has a different way of showing that the customer is always right.  On their website, here, you can see the entire menu.  Their motto is below.

We serve breakfast and lunch every day.  Almost every dish we serve can be either meat or vegetarian.  We have a menu designed around choice - not just meat or vegetarian, but also which meats, cheeses, and vegetables.  Every person is different with different desires and wants.  Our menu reflects that.

Monday, April 18, 2011

The Arcata Marsh and Wildlife Sanctuary

The sun was shining yesterday and the birds were chirping at the Arcata Marsh and Wildlife Sanctuary in Arcata, California.  The Marsh is one of many destinations worth seeing in Humboldt County.  The marsh attracts over 150,000 visitors a year and is situated near the bay in Arcata.

The Marsh is hosting Godwit Days tomorrow from 6:30 until 8:30 in the morning to round out a week of bird watching madness.  The tour starts from the Arcata Community Center in Arcata.

See the Marsh for yourself any day of the week and make sure to visit the interpretive center.

Find out more about the Arcata Marsh here.
Find out more about Godwit Days here.

Camping on the Mendocino Coast

Camping has always attracted people from all ages.  It is amazing what a fire can do for conversation and the imagination.  © Preston Drake-Hillyard 2011

Camping the Mendocino Coast

Although Humboldt County offers the most pristine beaches and forests in the world, sometimes you just want to go a bit further from home.  Just outside of Humboldt County, past Garberville, you can get on Highway 1, after 22 miles of bends and switchbacks you will find yourself looking out over the majesty of the Mendocino coast.  

Misty spray and fog contrasted with the ever-green world of the coastal redwoods leave you gasping at the beauty of it all.  The towns along the coast are quaint sea-side villages with everything you would need to get your adventure started. 

You can stay at one of the many bed and breakfasts situated along the coast or you can camp at a state park.  Van Damme state beach and campground is a perfect pick for those trying to rough it, but with amenities.  Restrooms are available and Van Damme offers large camping spaces for multiple cars and tents.  The group campsite makes taking a number of people or a family reunion easy.  It can fit 10 or more vehicles, RVs and more.  

Get in your car, get your favorite people together and head south from Humboldt.  One road trip plus beautiful scenery plus camping can only equal an excellent adventure.

Friday, April 15, 2011

When It Rains It Pours

Bayside and Union in Arcata, Calif. on April 15, 2011 © Travis Turner 2011

When It Rains It Pours

Life in Humboldt can be as fickle as its weather.  One moment the sun is shining, the birds are chirping and everything is moving right along, then it pours.

The rain never stays long, at least, not long enough to frazzle Humboldt Counties toughened veterans.  

In life the rain can come beating down on you, but it can also wash away some of the built of dirt and grime.  Make things a bit fresher, prepare you for that next day of sunshine.