A Palm Springs Break

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Only a few hours from our area is the classic town of Palm Springs, Calif. It has been the winter hideout of the movie colony and a festival town for others. There is really a lot to do most of the time and rarely crowded.

There are spas, golf cours- es, famed hotels and resorts, tennis, swimming, sunning, shopping, museums, restau- rants and an extensive list of amenities and attractions.

With more than 130 hotels, you are going to find a location to suit you and your budget. You may even wish to choose a bed and breakfast.

Palm Springs offers culture with art galleries, concerts and theater. And, it isn’t that large of a town — the population is somewhere in the area of 40,000 in the winter. It has been a get- away for many of Los Angeles’ wealthy; and now, with the downturn in the econ- omy, it is a little more affordable for everyone.

When I was young, my father had pur- chased quite a lot of property in and around Palm Springs and we had a sec- ond home there. I attended the first- and second-grades there and on weekends, when my parents would be in Los Angeles, the housekeeper and I would fly to LA on Friday evenings on Western Airlines DC-3s. If you know the area, sometimes it would be quite rough flying through the pass into LA when it was windy. Once in a while I thought the little plane would come apart ... it never did. Through my teen years we usually went to Palm Springs on weekends for the sun

and relaxation. Today, it is for some,

upscale, casual and remains friendly. I have stayed at many of the hotels there. Just recent- ly we spent two nights at an old favorite, Las Brisas. It was once one of the best hotels in the area, and today it is part of the Best Western chain. It has been refurbished and remains a nice property in the heart of downtown.

Palm Springs and its surrounding area is truly an oasis in the desert. The restaurants are many and varied. Usually, one night, I drop into Sherman’s Deli at 401 E. Tahquitz Canyon Way. This is a winner if you like an old-fashioned Jewish deli. They make you feel at home every time. There are more than 100 din- ing spots to enjoy in the town.

Historic Palm Drive is the main street through town and made for walking. There are plenty of locations to park and stroll the avenue. You’ll find a variety of shops to stick your head into. We never intend to purchase anything, but always do.

Every Thursday night Palm Canyon Drive is closed to traffic and is transformed into a vibrant pedestrian street fair — Village-Fest. Visitors and resi- dents alike visit to shop, dine, enjoy the live entertainment, and people watch.

The Palm Springs Walk of Stars is a fabulous tribute to the many Hollywood stars who have lived and played in Palm Springs and includes Ronald Reagan and Gerald Ford.

This is a wonderful place: rare; exot- ic; amazing; home to the Agua Caliente Band of Cahuilla Indians, the living descendants of the ancient people who discovered the area. Now the area is home to architects, Hollywood moguls, and just people like us. They say, this is where adventure begins.

If you have never been, don’t miss the Palm Springs Aerial Tramway. You trav- el from desert floor to the mountaintop with a harvest of beautiful pine trees. In the winter you’ll find snow. Phone (760) 325-1391 for complete information.

There are at least five horseback rid- ing stables for you to rent horses, the most famous of which is Smoke Tree Stables, phone (760) 317-1372.

Golfing is almost on every other cor- ner. Check out some of the greens. Some are very top class.

There is bowling, biking, tennis — you name it, and it’s probably here. You’ll not wonder what to do, believe me.

If you decide to fly to Palm Springs, there is a very fine airport located right on the edge of town and it’s easy for all to find your way from there. I suggest taking a helicopter sightsee-

ing trip over the area. One choice is: Landell’s Aviation Helicopter Tours, phone (760) 329-6468.

The Fabulous Palm Springs Follies entertains audiences with old-time vaudeville dancing, comedy and songs from the ’30s, ’40s and ’50s. Some of the cast is made up of old-timers who lived it. Often there is a real star performing; a name you may remember from the past. The nine performances per week at the Plaza Theatre in the middle of town operate from early October through April. The cast includes per- formers who were once Rockettes at Radio City Music Hall in New York to Broadway dancers and singers from major shows on the Great White Way. If you have the time, don’t miss seeing this special show with lavish costumes, great comedy acts, singers, dancers and won- derful pit orchestra.

The Annenberg Theatre, the Palm Canyon Theatre and the Thorney Theatre provide a variety of stage and musical performances throughout the season.

There is dinner theater also. You’ll find ads in the local paper while you are visiting.

There are a total of six casinos in the greater area for that action.

So, this is just a teaser on what you may find in Palm Springs.

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