News Release




Date:      March 30, 2005


Contact:  Gayle J. Surabian




Fresno County Fruit Trail Wins Top Honors at Annual CALED Event        


After just its inaugural year in 2004, The Fresno County Fruit Trail took top honors at the California Association for Local Economic Development (CALED) annual meeting in Monterey!  Fresno County and the nine city Fruit Trail partners walked away with the Grand Prize in the Economic Development Promotions category for 2004.


CALED’s Awards for Excellence program offers an opportunity for members to share their economic development success stories with the general membership.  The focus of the Annual Conference is to highlight cutting-edge issues and innovations and provide extensive networking opportunities for their members.


Former Mayor Joseph Rhodes of Reedley, Mayor Leland Bergstrom of Kingsburg and Fresno County Supervisor Judy Case working with Fresno County Tourism Director, GiGi Gibbs, spearheaded the development of this new agritourism trail. The Fresno County Fruit Trail is a unique economic development marketing collaboration directed by the Fresno County Office of Tourism in partnership with the nine cities of Clovis, Fowler, Fresno, Kingsburg, Orange Cove, Parlier, Reedley, Sanger, and Selma, as well as 32 agritoursim businesses and 8 farmers markets.


The Fruit Trail is an extension of the nationally known springtime attraction, the Fresno County Blossom Trail.  The Fruit Trail operates from May through September extending the period which travelers can enjoy the beauty, flavor and culture of Central California agriculture.  In addition to offering travelers the visual splendor of this fertile agricultural region, the Fruit Trail highlights over 40 stops where visitors can taste farm fresh produce, enjoy unique product offerings, and experience the warm hospitality of the trail members and attractions.  This year fourteen new members have joined in the membership including three farms in Kingsburg, Sun Maid Raisins and 10 strawberry stands sponsored by the University of California Small Farm Center.


In addition to enjoying this tour through California’s agricultural heartland, the Fruit Trail Brochure also includes information about twenty four hometown festivals and events, twenty three museums and cultural attractions showcasing the region’s rich diversity and heritage, and eight farmers markets ranging from the metro area to the small communities.


Currently activities are being planned for this year’s upcoming season.  For further information, or to request a copy of the Fresno County Fruit Trail Map & Visitors Guide please call toll free(24 hrs)1-888-549-4900.