An Open Fulton Street Allows Fresno To Move On

I didn’t want this. The Fulton Mall open to traffic.

I wanted the mall to be cleaned up. I wanted the art refurbished. I wanted the fountains to be working. But I didn’t want cars. That wasn’t possible.

It became “street or the same”. The same was a bad option. Same was an ignored Fulton Mall with little to no working fountains, forgotten art and too many people not comfortable with parking in garages and lots where they can’t see their car.

So I then begrudgingly became a supporter of traffic returning to Fulton. Better a shiny new sidewalk with working fountains and freshly polished art, than overgrown trees and neglect with no end in sight.

Saturday is the big thing-a-ma-jig to celebrate Fulton Street opening. For me, it will be more of a wake for Fulton Mall. But, it will be one of those fun wakes. The kind where you have a couple drinks and celebrate the life the person lived. Just, in this case, the person is a concrete open-air mall.

At Least Fresno and Downtown Can Move On To Other Things

We have debated what to do with the Fulton Mall for over a decade on Flowing With Famous. It’s going to be weird no longer needing to talk about it. Sure we still need to watch how the shops and restaurants will do now that there’s traffic. But we all get to move on now.

What is next? What should Fresno tackle now? Chinatown maybe? It will (fingers crossed) get a Hi-Speed Rail Station. That could be the push Chinatown needs to start getting some much-needed attention and renovation. It’s my pick anyway. Leave a comment on what you think the next project Fresno needs to tackle.

In the meantime, we have a wake to attend. I’ll see you out there. I hear they’ll have beer and it’s a safe bet it will be tough to get a parking spot.

Shameless Harrison Ford Tangent Ahead!

BTW, the Draggin’ the Main theme gives me yet another chance to use one of my favorite clips from American Graffiti, a movie about life growing up in the Central Valley in the 50’s (Modesto to be exact), so it’s relevant to Fulton Street, mmka?

A movie with, none other than Mr. Harrison Ford. Please tell me Bob Falfa dragged Fulton once:

*Pic was stolen from here.

Only Super Rad Skate Tricks Are Allowed On Fulton Street Mall Now

The Fulton Mall is gone. I know. It’s tough to hear. But it’s true. It’s gone.

I already miss the debating.”What are we going to do with the Fulton Mall!?” “Maybe if a Starbucks opens that will save it!” “A Starbucks? Fuck you. All local businesses, asshole!” “They just need to get the fountains working!” “No. They need to have more signage for parking and educate North Fresno about…”

All that is over.

Traffic has returned to Fulton Mall Street… wait, I can’t even include “mall” anymore. Traffic has returned to Fulton Street, for the first time and whateverhowmany years. Even though the Grand Opening is not until next month, you can already drive down parts of Fulton Street. Rev up them Clovis dually trucks and have at it.

Speaking of having at it, skaters are already having a go at the functioning again fountains on Fulton Street.

https://twitter.com/MarekTheBee/status/911687432793288704

Nice move, bro. So, fun, right? WRONG! The skateboards are fucking up the new cement! At least that’s what I’m told.

There was a big battle on a local Facebook group this past weekend. The battle involved a person not real pleased with the skateboarders and BMX bikers already using Fulton as a skate park. And the skaters/bikers getting a bit saucy in their response to the “Get off my damn lawn, you lousy kids!” attacks.

Should Skaters Be Allowed On Fulton Street?

This is actually a damn good debate, both sides have a good point.

PROS FOR SKATERS ON FULTON!

  • Skater tricks are fun to watch.
  • Sometimes they fall and it’s funny.
  • I feel young a cool watching skaters do skaters things and imagine what it’s like to be awesome and stuff and think “Yeah, I could totally do that if I wanted and stuff, but I don’t so whatever.”

CONS FOR SKATERS ON FULTON

  • They damage (over time and inadvertently) the new cement with their boards, and could hurt their butts trying to perform a trick. Nobody likes to have a hurt butt.
  • They seem pretty cool and I’m afraid I’ll feel old and lame as I walk by them.

So what to do, what to do… well, the City of Fresno is apparently working on how to deal with the skateboarders:

https://twitter.com/MarkStandriff/status/912380453595660289

This sounds like skaters will be on their way out.

But enforcement would be tough. Fulton Street is not River Park. River Park has security roaming around all the time. Fulton does not. The skaters are free to do whatever. That is until a random Fresno Police Person comes by or a concerned Facebook Group Citizen…person suggests that maybe they could possibly stop.

I say let the skaters stay for now. There was a time when skaters were the only people using the mall after the sun went down. I remember walking down the mall at night, 10 years ago, and recording video of skaters doing tricks on the Fulton Mall because it was literally the only cool thing I had seen on the mall at night.

But if they suck at skating? You know, like, they only perform boring tricks and fall down and break off cement and look totally not cool?… done.

*Pic stolen from a ABC 30 Insider.

When Is The Damn Fulton Street Opening Anyway?


ME: I have grown weary of the continuous string of Fulton Street Mall updates within my social media feed.

VOICE IN MY HEAD: What the hell are you doing posting about Fulton Mall Street then!?

ME: I dunno, bro, I gotta post about something! People expect, you know, something.

VOICE IN HEAD: Jesus, you suck at blogging and this is already boring.

ME: Agreed.

But you see, a big thing happened on Fulton today. To make room for cars they moved the Clock Tower across the “street”. I guess the time had come…

I know this because it was all over local social today.

It was on Facebook:

On Twitter:

On Instagram:


On Google Plus: Just kidding, nobody posts on there anymore.

There is even video:


So now that’s out of the way, the City Of Fresno feels confident enough to announce a Grand Opening date for cruising Fulton Street. That date is October 21st!

You may be like me and have questions about this Fulton Street and its October (yeah, we’ll see) opening. Let’s go through a few:

  • Will there be asphalt? Yes.
  • Will there be room for two cars? Yes.
  • Will there be room for Clovis dually trucks? No.
  • Will the fountains work? Supposedly.
  • Will Parker get in some sort of zany wreck on Fulton Street? One can hope.
  • Will there be parking meters? Yes.
  • Will I have to learn how to parallel park? Yes. It seems that parallel will be the parking style of choice, down Fulton.
  • Will I be able to get drunk on the sidewalk? Hopefully. And if Fieldwork opens up a taproom on Fulton? For sure.
  • Will that old buffass dude with the boombox still be blasting on Fulton? Yes – he will find a way.

So I’ll see ya out there in October, I guess, fighting for a parking spot. Actually, I probably won’t even try and end up parking in front of Tioga like I always do.

*top pic stolen from City of Fresno’s Twitter feed.

I May Have Ruined Fresno’s Chance At A Fieldwork Taproom


I’ve been trolling Fieldwork Brewing’s Twitter account.
Occasionally when they announce a new beer being released at one of their taprooms, I re-tweet and add something like “And soon our Fresno Taproom”.

You see, California allows breweries to open up a certain amount of “remote” or satellite taprooms. Remote being a taproom not on the grounds of the brewery or in their home city. Fieldwork has one in Berkley (main brewery) and four remote taprooms: Napa, San Mateo, Sacramento and soon to be Monterey. State law allows five remote taprooms.

Fieldwork has only one left to give. I want it to be Fresno.

Berkeley’s Fieldwork Brewing is arguably the hottest brewery in the state. They make damn fine beer. It would be a real kickass thing to have them open up their taproom here. We are on the look out for coolass things for Fresno after all.

Hell, maybe a rooftop Fieldwork taproom in Downtown Fresno? Sounds pretty freaking sweet to me and you can add it to the Ale Trail, bro.

But don’t get excited, Fresnan. I may have been trying too hard and messed it all up – the story of my life. 

At first, a recent Twitter troll looked promising.

SUCCESS! They want to take a tour! I’m The Fresnan and on a craft beer podcast, I can show them some cool junk! Let’s do this!

But then they started researching shit.

“Wait until the fall”? That is basically “Don’t call us, we’ll call you.” DAMMIT!

But as long as there is still a chance for the one remaining taproom to come to Fresno, I’ll keep trying. I don’t care how many beers I have to drink while waiting. I will not do it for me, I will do it for Fresno!

*pic stolen from thebrewermagazine.com

 

THE Bands You Will Regret Missing At Grizzly Fest


I won’t be at Grizzly Fest on Saturday. Probably. But YOU should totally go because you are way cooler than me and deserve to treat yourself to the best music festival in Fresno. Well, best since F.U.S.E. Fest went on hiatus.

Yeah, I probably won’t make it because it’s Saturday and that means I’ll be making one worthless trip to the hardware store and a second trip to get the thing forgotten on the first trip.

I’m going to miss a lot of badassness. Fresno’s own Fashawn will be there, along with plenty of other national acts. I kinda don’t give a shit about those. I like the Fresno bands.

Some of the Fresno music will include Slow Season, Amoret, White Glove Service and one of the biggest Fresno bands of all time: 40 Watt Hype. They have a new video out, btw:

There are more Fresno acts but the two I will miss out on the most are Sagey and Wee Beasties:

Make sure you go and report back to me on social media (@thefresnan on Twitter and Instagram. trenchrun22 on Snap) and tell me all the badass sets I missed.  I think I’ll be busy getting drunk while watching house paint dry.

Now please watch the most genius use of Fresno landmarks ever:

Fresno Has The Best Artist Renderings


You know those artist renderings? Like the one above for the Fresno Aquarium – by the way, the aquarium is a thing that will finally happen for Fresno… one day.

Fresno has had some cool renderings over the years. They get you all excited about the potential. My current favorite is this one:

fultonproject

A planned mixed-use project that would be on Fulton, across the street from the Tioga Sequoia Beer Garden – I already need to be hanging out on one of those balconies, drinking a Tioga beer, looking back at Tioga from the balcony, yelling to people in the Tioga Beer Garden “Hey, Tioga! Look at me! On this balcony! With my Tioga! Tioga!”

There is also the remodel of Manchester Center, with some updates on the project. They have been working on getting it started since 2013, as this video demonstrates:

Not all of the renderings come to pass

During Mayor Bubba’s time, I can remember a pretty sweet rendering of the Downtown Lake and Riverwalk proposed. But, alas, I can not find it on the local internets. I think that was the same timeline of Bass Pro sniffing around too.

I also remember a render for Running Horse development and country club. Yeah, that only sorta happened. Some guy named Donald Trump came around trying to get the City of Fresno to give him all the things. They wisely did not. I wonder whatever happened to that Trump guy…

We talked a little bit about Fresno renderings on Flowing With Famous this month. Here is a clip of that:

If you have a historically awesome Fresno rendering your memory deems worth mentioning, leave it in the comments.