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May 142013
 

The Simi Valley Cajun & Blues Music Festival, now in its 23rd year, has continually evolved since its humble beginnings. The Festival started out in 1988 as a New England Clambake fundraiser for the Rotary Club of Simi Sunrise, and within two years the Cajun Creole music theme was adopted. The Cajun theme proved to be very popular as the Festival gained national attention and grew to be one of the largest festivals of its kind west of the Mississippi River. The Festival currently presents live Cajun, Creole, Zydeco and Blues entertainment on multiple stages, offers more than 150 food, beverage, craft and sponsor booths, and attracts approximately 15,000 attendees. One hundred percent of all Festival profits are donated in support of charitable, educational and humanitarian causes. Thanks to the generous and vital support of our corporate partners, profits from The Simi Valley Cajun & Blues Music Festival have resulted in total charitable donations in excess of $ 1,500,000.

Simi Valley Cajun & Blues Music Festival is an annual event hosted by the The Rotary Club of Simi Sunrise to benefit both Cajun heritage and the people of Simi Valley and surrounding areas. All proceeds from the event go to charities.

The Cajun & Blues Kids Area has exploded over the last few years! In addition to the many bouncers, rock climbing walls, slides and gyroscopes, there is a Kids’ Craft Area where kids can make their own crafts.

This family friendly event has a giant kids area featuring bouncers, rock walls, specialty acts, crafts and talent shows.

So much food to choose from, even the pickiest eater will love the food! Enjoy authentic Cajun-Creole food such as jambalaya and crawfish — BBQ sandwiches and hot dogs are also popular! Funnel cake, fruit smoothies, and kettle corn will satisfy that sweet tooth! Check out all the food booths and enjoy fantastic food while listening to the music!

Stroll through rows of craft vendors and be surprised by the treasures you will find! From clothes, purses, crafts and pottery, to jewelry, toys, posters and hats. Homemade salsas, salt water taffy, and unique crafts. There is something for everyone!

May25 & 26. Click here for more details.

 Posted by at 12:12 pm
Aug 222012
 

Ok, Ok, it’s been a really hot summer but there are hours of the day that feel right for tennis! If you’ve never been to the Pacific Tennis Club you should go and check it out. Friendly helpful staff in a beautiful area.

Pacific Tennis Club

4700 Lakeview Canyon Road

Westlake Village, CA 91361

Speaking of tennis did you know…

Most historians believe that tennis originated in France in the 12th century, but the ball was then struck with the palm of the hand. It was not until the 16th century that rackets came into use, and the game began to be called “tennis.” It was popular in England and France, although the game was only played indoors where the ball could be hit off the wall. This later created much controversy between many people who thought that it was unfair for the opposing team. They claimed that the other team was able to hit the ball in a certain way for it to hit the wall and come back to them. Henry VIII of England was a big fan of this game, which historians now refer to as real tennis.

Harry Gem and his friend Augurio Perera developed a game that combined elements of rackets and the Basque ball game pelota, which they played on Perera’s croquet lawn in Birmingham, United Kingdom. In 1872, along with two local doctors, they founded the world’s first tennis club in Leamington Spa.

In December 1873, Major Walter Clopton Wingfield designed and patented a similar game—which he called sphairistike (Greek:σφάίρίστική, from ancient Greek meaning “skill at playing at ball”), and was soon known simply as “sticky”—for the amusement of his guests at a garden party on his estate of Nantclwyd, in Llanelidan, Wales. He likely based his game on the evolving sport of outdoor tennis including real tennis. Much of modern tennis terminology also derives from this period, as Wingfield borrowed both the name and much of the French vocabulary of real tennis and applied them to his new game.

The first championships at Wimbledon in London were played in 1877. The first Championships culminated a significant debate on how to standardize the rules.

In America in 1874 Mary Ewing Outerbridge, a young socialite, returned from Bermuda where she met Major Wingfield. She laid out a tennis court at the Staten Island Cricket Club in New Brighton Staten Island, New York.

The exact location of the club was under what is now the Staten Island Ferry terminal. The first American National tournament in 1880 was played there. An Englishman named O.E Woodhouse won the singles match. There was also a doubles match which was won by a local pair. There were different rules at each club. The ball in Boston was larger than the one normally used in NY. On May 21, 1881, the United States National Lawn Tennis Association (now the United States Tennis Association) was formed to standardize the rules and organize competitions. The U.S. National Men’s Singles Championship, now the US Open, was first held in 1881 at Newport, Rhode Island. The U.S. National Women’s Singles Championships were first held in 1887.Tennis was also popular in France, where the French Open dates to 1891. Thus, Wimbledon, the US Open, the French Open, and the Australian Open (dating to 1905) became and have remained the most prestigious events in tennis. Together these four events are called the Majors or Slams (a term borrowed from bridge rather than baseball).

The comprehensive rules promulgated in 1924 by the International Lawn Tennis Federation, now known as the International Tennis Federation, have remained remarkably stable in the ensuing eighty years, the one major change being the addition of the tie-break system designed by James Van Alen.That same year, tennis withdrew from the Olympics after the 1924 Games but returned 60 years later as a 21-and-under demonstration event in 1984. This reinstatement was credited by the efforts by the then ITF President Philippe Chatrier, ITF General Secretary David Gray and ITF Vice President Pablo Llorens, and support from IOC President Juan Antonio Samaranch. The success of the event was overwhelming and the IOC decided to reintroduce tennis as a full medal sport at Seoul in 1988.

The Davis Cup, an annual competition between men’s national teams, dates to 1900.The analogous competition for women’s national teams, the Fed Cup, was founded as the Federation Cup in 1963 to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the founding of the ITF also known as International Tennis Federation.

In 1926, promoter C.C. Pyle established the first professional tennis tour with a group of American and French tennis players playing exhibition matches to paying audiences.The most notable of these early professionals were the American Vinnie Richards and the Frenchwoman Suzanne Lenglen. Once a player turned pro he or she could not compete in the major (amateur) tournaments.

In 1968, commercial pressures and rumors of some amateurs taking money under the table led to the abandonment of this distinction, inaugurating the open era, in which all players could compete in all tournaments, and top players were able to make their living from tennis. With the beginning of the open era, the establishment of an international professional tennis circuit, and revenues from the sale of television rights, tennis’s popularity has spread worldwide, and the sport has shed its upper/middle-class English-speaking image (although it is acknowledged that this stereotype still exists).

 

 Posted by at 5:12 pm
Aug 152012
 

The XK120 was launched in roadster form at the 1948 London Motor Show as a testbed and show car for the new Jaguar XK engine. It caused a sensation, which persuaded Jaguar founder and design boss William Lyons to put it into production.

The “120″ in its name referred to its 120 mph (193 km/h) top speed (faster with the windscreen removed), which made the XK120 the world’s fastest standard production car at the time of its launch.

It was available in two open versions, first as the roadster (designated OTS, for open two-seater, in America), then also as adrophead coupé (DHC) from 1953; and also as a closed, or “fixed-head” coupé (FHC) from 1951. The DHC was a more deluxe open model, with wind-up windows, and wood-veneer dashboard and interior door caps, as on the FHC.

The roadster was successful in racing.

The first 242 cars, all roadsters hand-built between late 1948 and early 1950, had aluminium bodies on ash frames. To meet demand it was necessary for the mass-production versions, beginning with the 1950 model year, to have pressed-steel bodies. They retained aluminium doors, bonnet, and boot lid.

With alloy cylinder head and twin side-draft SU carburetors, the dual overhead-cam 3.4 L straight-6 XK engine was comparatively advanced for a mass-produced unit of the time. With standard 8:1 compression ratio it developed 160 bhp (119 kW), using 80 octane fuel. Most of the early cars were exported, but for British customers a 7:1 low compression version was provided, providing correspondingly reduced performance because under the post-war austerity regime still in force, UK private buyers were at this time restricted to 70 octane “Pool petrol”. This same basic design of the XK engine, later modified into 3.8L and 4.2L versions, survived into the late 1980s.

All XK120s had independent torsion bar front suspension, semi-elliptic leaf springs at the rear, recirculating ball steering, telescopically adjustable steering column, and all-round 12 inch drum brakes that were prone to fade. Some cars were fitted with Alfin (ALuminium FINned) brake drums to help overcome the fade.

The roadster’s lightweight canvas top and detachable sidescreens stowed out of sight behind the seats, and its barchetta-style doors had no external handles; instead there was an interiorpull-cord which was accessible through a flap in the sidescreens when the weather equipment was in place. The windscreen could be removed for aeroscreens to be fitted.

The drophead coupé (DHC) had a padded, lined canvas top, which folded onto the rear deck behind the seats when retracted, and roll-up windows with opening quarter lights. The flat glass two-piece windscreen was set in a steel frame that was integrated with the body and painted the same colour.

Dashboards and door-caps in both the DHC and the closed coupé (FHC) were wood-veneered, whereas the more spartan roadster’s were leather-trimmed. All models had removable spats(“fender skirts” in America) covering the rear wheel arches, which enhanced the streamlined look. On cars fitted with optional centre-lock wire wheels (available from 1951), the spats were omitted as they gave insufficient clearance for the chromed, two-eared Rudge-Whitworth knockoff hubs.

In addition to wire wheels, upgrades on the Special Equipment, or SE, version (called the M version in the United States) included increased power, stiffer suspension and dual exhaust system.

All XK models are collectible.

 Posted by at 5:07 pm