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Family Fun, Community Events Highlight Cinco de Mayo Weekend in Fresno
STEVEN HEADSHOT 1
By Steven Sanchez
Published 4 weeks ago on
May 2, 2024

Left to right: Grammy winning band Ozomatli, rapper YG, and the Savannah Bananas will entertain the Central Valley this weekend. (GV Wire Composite)

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May is starting with a bang when it comes to events. Rapper YG, the entertaining baseball team Savannah Bananas, Grammy winners Ozomatli, and “Disney’s Aladdin” are in town.

With Saturday being “Star Wars Day,” there are several events with themes saluting the movie franchise. And, Cinco de Mayo is on Sunday, so there are plenty of ways to celebrate this weekend.

Check out our expanded list of events at this link.

Disney’s Aladdin

Prepare to be transported to a dazzling new world filled with shining, shimmering splendor with Disney’s “Aladdin,” the sensational Broadway hit.

The musical is based on the animated classic from 1992. Produced by the mastermind behind “The Lion King,” this timeless tale promises a thrilling new production, brimming with mesmerizing beauty, enchanting magic, uproarious comedy, and breathtaking spectacle.

The story is about Aladdin, a lovable street urchin who uses a magic lamp and its genie to win the love of Princess Jasmine, and to keep it away from Jafar, whose goal is to rule the kingdom.

Audiences and critics alike acclaim Aladdin as a captivating theatrical experience. The New York Times, the Chicago Tribune, and Entertainment Weekly, among others, have given the Arabian Nights adaptation stellar reviews.  NBC-TV says the show is “Exactly what you wish for!”

The show began Wednesday and runs through Sunday at the Saroyan Theatre. If your wish is to see singing, dancing, and Disney magic, you don’t need a genie for that wish to come true.

Get your tickets here.

Club Encore Presents: YG

The newest and most poppin’ nightclub in Fresno, Club Encore, continues to step its game up with high profile acts. This time, they’re bringing Compton rapper, YG.

He’s collaborated with big names in the rap game: Ty Dolla Sign, 2 Chainz, Tyga, Snoop Dogg, Wiz Khalifia, Drake, Kendrick Lamar, Lil Wayne, and Nicki Minaj, to name a few. His single “Big Bank” (featuring 2 Chainz, Big Sean and Nicki Minaj), peaked at No. 16 on the Billboard Hot 100 and is his highest-charting song as a lead artist. He received a Billboard Music Award in 2015 for his collaboration with Jeremih on the track “Don’t Tell ‘Em.”

I saw him perform at the club last year. He was one of the first artists that the club brought to elevate its name. The whole dance floor was crowded with people throwing their hands in the air and singing along to every lyric. He brought the swag and style that night. He returns on Saturday.

Get your tickets here.

Savannah Bananas

The Savannah Bananas baseball team is taking the country by storm. They are baseball’s version of basketball’s Harlem Globetrotters. The team has been featured by ESPN, The Wall Street Journal, CNN 10, and Sports Illustrated because of their on-field hijinks and viral videos.

Their presence on social media is staggering. With over 8 million followers on TikTok and 2.5 million on Instagram, the Bananas’ digital following exceeds that of big-league clubs like the Dodgers (over 1 million followers on TikTok) and the San Francisco Giants (1.5 million followers on Instagram).

The Bananas’ games are filled with non-stop fun and excitement with different themes for each game. Their interactions with fans are very important to their presentation. That engagement with their supporters is unmatched, no matter what level of baseball they are, whether it be pro or for show.

They’re bring their high energy theatrics to Fresno in three sold out games this weekend at Chukchansi Park. If you’re determined to see them, here is the link to the “wait list.”

Free Screening of ‘The Gallows’

For horror fans and local film supporters, there’s going to be a free screening of “The Gallows” at Maya Cinemas Fresno for the Fresno Film Collective. The directors of the film, Tremendum Pictures, will do a Q&A session after the screening.

The film is best known as a nod to its predecessor, “The Blair Witch Project,” fitting into the horror genre of found footage.

“The Gallows” plays an important role in Fresno’s history with film. Local filmmakers and friends, Chris Lofing and Travis Cluff, made the movie here. Blumhouse Productions, the company behind great horror films like “Paranormal Activity,” “Insidious,” “Get Out,” and the recent “Halloween” sequels, produced the film with New Line Cinema, which is known for the “Nightmare on Elm Street” franchise.

The movie was shot on a shoestring budget of $100,00, and it was released in theaters in 2015 with Warner Brothers distributing it. The Gallows made $43 million at the box office.

Get your tickets here.

Earth Day Fresno Canceled

Due to a rain forecast for Saturday organizers of Earth Day Fresno say the event has been canceled and postponed until next year.

From Earth Day Fresno: “Our #1 priority is public safety followed by hosting a fun and successful event. However, due to the forecasted weather, safety has once again been placed at risk so we made the difficult decision to cancel Earth Day Fresno 2024.

“This annual event is made possible by generous contributions of not only our sponsors, but also our volunteer planning committee that work hard each year to bring the best Earth Day celebration to Fresno. This was not an easy decision and we hope that you will understand and plan to join us at next year’s event.”

Star Wars Pub Crawl

Fresno Zombie Society presents its annual Star Wars Pub Crawl. It takes place Saturday, celebrating “Star Wars Day” as an ode to the famous quote but with it being May the Fourth be with you. Dressing up is encouraged. If you want to go dressed as a jedi knight with your lightsaber, a wookie, a sand person, or specific character, all of it will be accepted. It won’t take place in a galaxy far, far away, you’ll be crawling from bar to bar through Fresno’s Historic Tower District.

You can get into all the participating bars with no cover as well as drink specials. Some exclusive venues will have a VIP entrance line for wristband Star Wars crawlers. It’s an adult event, so please drink responsibly. Don’t be consumed by the dark side.

Some of the bars on the crawl: The Lincoln, Banzai Japanese Bar & Kitchen, Splash, Goldstein’s, The Howlin Wolf, Tower Sports, Strummer’s, Livingstone’s, Vibez, Tipzy’s, Me N Ed’s, India’s Oven, Sequoia Brewery, and Fresbrew.

They do crawls like this quite often with certain themes, particularly zombies. I attended the Star Wars crawl a few years ago, and the costumes and everyone getting into the spirit of the franchise made the experience very fun.

Go and may the force be with you.

Get your tickets here.

Ozomatli 

Ozomatli is an American rock band known for incorporating a wide array of  styles — salsa, jazz, funk, reggae, hip hop, and others. Their collaborative, energetic blend of multi-cultural music and activism has earned them three Grammys, four Hollywood Bowl shows, a TED Talk and much more. Since forming in 1995, the Los Angeles-bred lineup has inspired and energized listeners with their unique sound and messages in their music, both sung in both Spanish and English, that needs no translation. They live and breathe their hometown, and their music embodies the LA spirit.

Their song “Cumbia De Los Muertos” was featured in the Drew Barrymore film “Never Been Kissed.” The group composed music for “Happy Feet 2” and from 2011 to 2014 they were the house band for stand-up comedian Gabriel Iglesias’ television show, “Gabriel Iglesias Presents Stand Up Revolution.”

Amongst their accomplishment, in 2008 the U.S. State Department appointed the band United States Cultural Ambassadors; in 2009 and 2010 they performed for President Barack Obama. Hometown honors arrived in 2013, when April 23 was deemed “Ozomatli Day” in perpetuity, and in 2011, Ozomatli was awarded the NCLR (National Council of La Raza) Capital Award.

They’re bringing their unique blend of music to Tower Theatre on Sunday. I saw them a few years back at the same venue, and they definitely do bring the funkiness and groove. Their rhythms for sure will make you want to dance. They even took their instruments and brought the party out to the lobby of the theatre and continued to play in front the crowd. If you like different music genres and are in the mood to move, this is the band you want to see.

Get your tickets here.

Check it Out:

Cinco de Mayo/Fresno Street Eats, Friday-Saturday

Fresno Street Eats returns to Sunnyside on Friday, 5 p.m. to 9 p.m., at Simonian Farms. There will be food trucks, a beer/wine bar, a live DJ and outdoor patio behind the Big Red Barn.

On Saturday, there will be a Cinco de Mayo party all along the Clovis Taco and Taps Trail. Fresno Street Eats has partnered with six local breweries and you can ride a bus free as it stops for cold drinks and tacos at Crow & Wolf, Incinerati, 559 Beer, Summer Fox, Burning Sun, and Backyard Social Club. The busses run from noon to 8 p.m.

Also on Saturday: Lucha Xtreme wrestling, Mariachi music, food, beer, and shopping at Riverpark. This starts at 11 a.m. and runs until 8 p.m. It’s free to attend and open to all ages.

Movies at the Historic Crest Theatre, Friday-Saturday

The Historic Crest Theatre in downtown Fresno shows old movies on the big screen on the weekends. Friday, it’s the John Hughes classic “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off,” Saturday they’re screening “Star Wars: The Force Awakens” in honor of “Star Wars Day” and Sunday they’re showing the biopic and Jennifer Lopez’s film debut, “Selena.”

Tickets are $5

For more information click here.

Clovis Trail Fest, Saturday

This free family event is held along the Old Town and Dry Creek Trails from Third Street and Clovis Avenue to Dry Creek Park and Railroad Park. Start or end at any location and walk, bike, run, or scooter along the trail. Activities, demonstrations, live music, and snacks for all ages will be offered at over 30+ locations along the trail and at adjacent parks.

For more information click here.

San Joaquin Valley Bookfest 2024, Saturday

The mission of the San Joaquin Valley Bookfest is to champion Valley authors while providing an inclusive and interactive learning environment. There’s going to be author readings for children and adults in different genres, a pop-up bookstore, and lunch for purchase. It’s open to the public and will be held at the Fig Garden Swim and Racquet Club.

For more information click here.

Old Town Clovis Spring Wine Walk, Saturday

The wineries are located throughout Old Town Clovis inside participating merchant locations. Shop, sip and taste your way through Old Town Clovis and then purchase the wines you love in the Wine Shop, located at the corner of 5th and Pollasky. The wine shop sells bottles and cases of wines from the participating wineries.

Get your tickets here.

A Better Trip with Shane Mauss, Saturday

Comedy + Science + Art + Psychedelics = A Better Trip. Journey into the mind of a psychedelic astronaut with a consciousness-expanding comedy experience. At the intersection of science, humor, and psychedelics comes “A Better Trip,” the latest work from Shane Mauss at Tower Theatre.

For tickets click here.

An Indian Slice of Comedy With Kabir Singh & Friends, Saturday

Danny Minch hosts these comedic events every weekend at DiCicco’s in Old Town Clovis. Kabir “Kabeezy” Singh is fresh off his standing ovations and four “yesses” on NBC’s America’s Got Talent on Season 16 which resulted in a deep run coming in the TOP 15 of AGT. Kabir has been a touring headliner for almost a decade now. Kabir has had specials on Amazon Prime and worked for the hit show “The Family Guy” on Fox. His YouTube Dry Bar Special, “Stay Single,” has been one of the best-reviewed Comedy Specials on the platform with over 3 Million Views.

For tickets click here.

Fresno Toy Anime Comic Con, Sunday

This comic con is going to be selling comic books, action figures, memorabilia, collectibles, and anything related to anime. Definitely for fans of fantasy and science fiction. Kiddos 10 and under are free. There’s going to be a cosplay (costume) contest. There’ll be prizes. Come and dress like your favorite superhero, fantasy character, the choices are endless. It’ll be at the American Legion Post Hall.

For tickets click here.

If there’s an event you want us to consider, contact steven.sanchez@gvwire.com

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Steven Sanchez,
Content Manager/Entertainment Editor
Steven Sanchez, a resident of Clovis, graduated from Buchanan High School in the class of 2007 and obtained his film degree from University of Nevada, Las Vegas. Steven is a multifaceted artist, working as a filmmaker, writer, photographer, videographer, and published author. He has a profound passion for movies, comic books, and rock ‘n’ roll. A dedicated football enthusiast, he cheers for the Las Vegas Raiders. In his leisure time, he indulges in reading and collecting vinyl records. Steven is often found attending rock shows in town, a keen enthusiast of live music. He holds a special fondness for his grandma's homemade meals and spending time with his twin sister.

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