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Don't dis Fresno. Just don't.
Sure, it's what you want to do. You're creative and in Fresno and you might feel like lashing out. But there are things to be done.
Creative Fresno's Creative Blender would be a good start.
That's 5 to 8 p.m., Friday, at the newly opened Bistro Rustico on Palm and Bullard avenues. The Blenders, which take place the day after ArtHop each month, are Creative Fresno's social mixers — that means a mix of professionals, artists and entrepreneurs getting together for a couple (or more) drinks.
Failing that, here's some more tips on staying creative (and sane) in Fresno.
With help from Creative Fresno's Donavan Byrn.
DIY (that's do-it-yourself, duh)
Some of the coolest stuff in Fresno was started by people who didn't wait for others to do it for them.
For quick reference (alphabetical, but by no means definitive): AMF Productions, ArtHop, Bike Hop, Broadway Studios, Cloud 9 Productions, Creative Fresno, dorktown, Epic Theatre Company, the Evening Ecclectic, Fresno Famous, Fresno Filmworks, Fresno's Leading Young Professionals, Fresno Tattoo Expo, Howie and Son's Pizza, Inner Ear Poetry Jam, Jamaica My Weekend, Jazz Fresno, Meatball Magic, Move on Up, the Pearl Building, Rock of the Tower (RIP), the Rogue Performance Festival, Souls and Sounds, Sound Pollution, Theatre Ventoux, the Undercurrent, Vagabond Lofts, Woodward Park Shakespeare, and Yoshi Now!'s flea markets. That's not to mention of the hundreds of creative business and studio owners and thousands of bands, musicians and DJs playing shows, killing it at open mic night and being busted by police at house parties every weekend.
You're not alone, even though you may feel like it.
So get out and do some like-minded bonding. Creative Fresno, FLYP (Fresno's Leading Young Professionals), FCASH (Fresno Coalition for Art, Science and History), DTA (downtown association) and many other organizations are always looking for people to help out, Byrn says. "One of the cool things about Fresno is that you can make a big impact (and feel that you're making a big impact)."
So, maybe you're asking, "If there's so much to do, why don't I know about it."
The trick is knowing where to look.
Hint: Try the Internet and local independent radio.
"Listen to KVPR and KFSR, join MindHub and read Fresno Famous and the BeeHive," Byrn says. "I have found out about more things to do through these sources than you would believe. Personally, MindHub and FF have been great for helping to break the ice at a Blender or two. You can always talk about a post."
There's nothing better for a quick kick start than moving outside of your comfort level. Byrn suggests getting away from RiverPark. "Explore Tower and downtown. For me, it seems easier to meet people in Tower and I have met the most interesting, creative and sometimes craziest people there." For those living down south, take a trip up north. Do some reverse slumming at Fig Garden Village or Piazza Del Fiorre. Get drinks at Dirty Olive, or sushi and saki at OG Samurai.
In other words, don't be a snob.
And if all else fails ...