Free Tours & Free Tastings at Jelly Belly Factory!


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Looking for something to do on a cold day? Visit the Jelly Belly Visitor Center for a free candy sample and tour! Kids welcome! Factory tours available daily, 9:00 am to 4:00 pm at One Jelly Belly Lane, Fairfield. For more information (800) 953-5592 or visit www.JellyBelly.com

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Free Workshop: Citrus Pruning – Feb 25 & 26


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The correct pruning of citrus is important for disease resistance and fruit production. We welcome back Elizabeth Ruiz, aesthetic pruner and garden designer, to show us how.  Elizabeth’s classes are a must for any level of gardener to learn the most effective pruning techniques. Please join us! Register in advance. Free for Rewards Members. $10 for nonmembers (membership is free!)

  • Saturday, February 25:  Pleasant Hill, 10am
  • Saturday, February 25:  Danville Diablo Rd., noon
  • Sunday, February 26: Concord, 10am

For more information on Sloat’s workshop, visit their website.

FREE Tax Assistance Available – Friday & Saturday


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AARP will offering free income tax assistance at the Concord Library for a limited time. AARP volunteers will provide tax assistance to low and middle-income persons. Appointments or drop in appointments available.

Assistance available every Friday and Saturday 10am – 3:30pm.

Please call 925 405-5135 for more information on making an appointment.

National Margarita Day – The Perfect Recipe


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The day has finally arrived and there’s a cause for celebration! Today is National Margarita Day. Enjoy these quick tips followed by the perfect recipe and celebrate one of California’s most beloved cocktails! Enjoy!
Tip #1: Always use fresh lime juice. ALWAYS. If you’re making a party-sized portion, a simple citrus press will save you a lot of time.
Tip #2: Instead of a generic Triple Sec, invest in a quality liqueur (like Cointreau or Combier). Even a smaller bottle will last you a while, since this element is used in small portions.
Tip #3: As for tequila, you don’t need to go fancy, but 100% Agave Blanco Tequila is mandatory. There are a million reasons why this is true, but you have a drink to make, so just trust us on this one.
Tip #4: To salt or not to salt is entirely up to you — “it’s an option, not the rule,” says Altier. Don’t let the salt/no-salt bullies tell you otherwise!
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The Perfect Margarita
2 oz Tequila
1 oz fresh lime
3/4 oz Triple Sec
1 tsp simple syrup (1:1 sugar to water)
If you’re salting the rims, pour lime juice (bottled actually works well here!) onto one small plate, and fill another one with kosher salt. Dip the top of each glass into the juice and then into the salt. (Note: this won’t work with water, you need the stickiness of juice to hold the salt.)
Shake up all ingredients in a shaker with ice, then strain into glasses over fresh ice. Garnish with a lime wedge, and serve.
Cheers!!

Rodie’s Offers FREE Backyard Chickens Seminar


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Thinking about getting chickens? Backyard chickens have exploded in popularity in recent years and now is your chance to learn about them for FREE! It’s chick season at Rodies! They are offering a seminar on raising backyard chickens! Check out their flyer for more details!

Master Gardeners Presents Composting Workshop


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Join the UC Master Gardeners for their monthly presentations!  This month, “Basic Composting for the Home Gardener”. Are you interested in turning your garden waste and kitchen scraps into a rich soil conditioner and fertilizer for your garden? This workshop will teach you how to start a compost pile, add the best ingredients, nurture its decomposition and produce rich humus for your plants. We will cover how composting works, compost containers, what and what not to compost, techniques to encourage decomposition and where and when to use your compost. This presentation is FREE!

The presentation will be held at the Concord Library, Feb 23 at 6:30pm.

For more information on Master Gardeners program, visit their website.

Free Admission Day to National Parks – Feb 20


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The National Park Service just turned 100 years old! Celebrate the start of our second century by visiting a park in 2017. During ten days of the year, all National Park Service sites that charge an entrance fee will offer free admission to everyone.

Mark your calendar for these entrance fee–free dates in 2017:

  • February 20: Presidents’ Day
  • April 15-16 and 22-23: Weekends of National Park Week
  • August 25: National Park Service Birthday
  • September 30: National Public Lands Day
  • November 11-12: Veterans Day Weekend

National parks are America’s Best Idea, and there are more than 400 parks available to everyone, every day. The fee-free days provide a great opportunity to visit a new place or an old favorite, especially one of the 124 national parks that normally charge an entrance fee. The others are free all of the time. Plan your visit and enjoy our country’s history and nature.

The fee waiver includes entrance fees, commercial tour fees, and transportation entrance fees. Other fees such as reservation, camping, tours, concession and fees collected by third parties are not included unless stated otherwise.

Fee-free days make parks accessible to more people. However, national parks are always economical, with entrance fees that range from $3 to $30. In addition, any fourth grade student can get a free annual pass through the Every Kid in a Park program, and active duty military and citizens with a permanent disability can also get free passes. For more information about the variety of discounted passes available, please visit the America the Beautiful National Parks and Federal Recreational Lands Pass page.

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This includes some of the most stunning places on earth including:

  • FREE Admission to Denali National Park in Alaska
  • FREE Admission to Yellowstone National Park
  • FREE Admission to Hawai’i Volcanoes National Park
  • FREE Admission to Grand Canyon National Park in Arizona
  • FREE Admission to Yosemite National Park in California
  • FREE Admission to Olympic National Park in Washington
  • FREE Admission to Grand Teton National Park in Wyoming
  • FREE Admission to Zion National Park in Utah
  • FREE Admission to Acadia National park in Maine
  • FREE Admission to Dinosaur National Monument in Colorado

View list of participating National Parks HERE

*Fee waiver includes: entrance fees, commercial tour fees, and transportation entrance fees. Other fees such as reservation, camping, tours, concession and fees collected by third parties are not included unless stated otherwise.

For more information, visit www.nps.gov/findapark/feefreeparks.htm.