Our View: Saddles, cycles, salsa fill calendar busting at seams

Our View
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Auburn, it’s time to get your rodeo on as a busy season of events kicks off in town. The annual Auburn Wild West Stampede roared in Thursday with barrel racing, followed by today’s team roping events and tonight’s rodeo dance kickoff. The big fun begins this weekend with nonstop activity at the Gold Country Fairgrounds. From crowd-pleasing mutton bustin’ by little ones to the PRCA Pro Rodeo stars on bulls and broncs, there’s really nothing like the smells, sights and sounds of the Wild West Stampede to know that spring has sprung. For a complete schedule, turn to Page 9 in today’s Auburn Journal. But if you prefer concertos over cowboys or sprints over saddles, there’s plenty of other fun stuff coming up. On Sunday the Auburn Symphony rocks the Mondavi — as in the Mondavi Center for the Performing Arts at UC Davis. “Scheherazade & An Amazing Cello” is the title for the 4 p.m. performance, which also is a fund-raiser for the Auburn-based musical organization. Tickets are $30, and if you can even enjoy a bus ride with other music-lovers by calling (530) 823-6683. Since you have your calendar out, you might as well pencil in the rest of May with these noteworthy events: May 1, Coolest 24-Hour Race Against Cancer: The annual fund-raiser brings individual and team mountain bike riders to the 12.6-mile Olmstead Loop in Cool. This year’s race benefits Lance Armstrong’s Livestrong Foundation, and if you can’t put in a full day, you can participate in the eight-hour ride and be home in bed when others turn on their headlamps. May 5, Cinco de Mayo: Old Town Auburn Business Association hosts its 20th annual Mexican fiesta from 5 to 9 p.m. with Folklorico dancers, pony rides, piñatas and famous salsa-making contest, judged by the Dining Divas. Admission is free. May 7, State of the Community Dinner: The who’s who of Auburn turns out to honor top businesses and individuals, including Cheryl Maki, winner of this year’s McCann Award for public service. Tickets are going fast, so if you want to attend, contact the Auburn Chamber of Commerce at (530) 885-5616. May 14, Cruise Night: Downtown Auburn comes alive as dozens of classic cars line Lincoln Way from 5 to 9 p.m. Talk shop with the owners, then kick off your weekend with dinner in one of several restaurants. May 14-16, Auburn Spring Home Show: With the economy bouncing back, there’s no better time to see the latest innovations in home, landscape and interior design. The fairgrounds will be stocked, and the slate will be full of helpful advice and special deals to improve everything from curb to roofline. May 16, Amgen Tour of California: The first leg of America’s answer to the Tour de France starts in Nevada City and rolls a figure-8 through Downtown and Old Town Auburn before finishing in Sacramento. If you ever wanted to get oh-so-close to Lance, Levi and some of the world’s best athletes on two wheels, clear your day from about 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., then celebrate with thousands of your newest, closest friends. May 22, Music on the Green: The Auburn Symphony’s annual outdoor concert at the Auburn Library Concert Theater features a selection of classical and pop hits for the entire family. May 23, Auburn Triathlon: One week after Auburn’s 15 minutes of cycling fame is splashed around the world, hundreds of top triathletes arrive for a grueling race in the foothills. The World’s Toughest Half-Tri shares the bill with a new sprint event and a long course duathlon. Sounds exhausting just reading it, doesn’t it? May 23, Spring Street Fair: Old Town Auburn hosts its 42nd annual fair, moved one week to accommodate the Amgen cycling race. Some 200 vendors, as well as the shops, will offer bargains on antiques and collectibles. May 30, Auburn Criterium: May is bike month in the four-county region, as well as the launch for Year of the Bike in Auburn. What better way to end it than to ride — or watch — as cyclists lean into hairpin turns and sprint in the straightaway on this 1.2-mile course. When it comes to planning your weekends this spring, it really does pay to Think Auburn First.