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OUTDOOR ATTRACTIONS ABOUND.

The Antelope Valley's attractions range from the mountains to the desert to outer space. The valley has two municipal theaters, a professional baseball team, a state museum specializing in desert Indian culture and two auto race complexes, plus Edwards Air Force Base.

Outdoor attractions include California's best wild poppy area, a ski resort, desert state parks, and two sanctuaries for exotic wild animals.

--Lancaster Performing Arts Center and Palmdale Playhouse: Antelope Valley has two first-rate municipal theaters, the Lancaster Performing Arts Center, opened in 1991 at a cost of $10 million, and the Palmdale Playhouse, opened in 1994 for $2.8 million. Both host community theater and music groups, plus touring entertainers, often top names. The 750-seat Lancaster theater opened with Harry Mancini and this year hosted Pat Benatar and Kenny G. The 350-seat Palmdale Playhouse has hosted Sergio Mendez and the comedy groups Capitol Steps and Houseful of Honkeys. Lancaster Performing Arts Center, 750 W. Lancaster Blvd., Lancaster, (661) 723-5950. Palmdale Playhouse, 38334 10th St. E., Palmdale (661) 267-5685.

--Antelope Valley Fair: A tradition for 60 years and still a late-summer focal point, the Antelope Valley Fair offers farm animals, carnival rides, craft competitions and top-name entertainment; Bob Dylan and Destiny's Child were headliners last year. The fair runs for 11 days every August, concluding on Labor Day. This year's entertainment lineup is expected to be announced in the spring. This is also expected to be the last year for the old fairgrounds. The city of Lancaster is building a new, larger fairgrounds on Avenue H west of the Antelope Valley Freeway. During the rest of the year, the fairgrounds host other events, including teen dances; bridal, computer and gun shows; and dog and cat shows. The fairground also contains a state off-track horse racing betting center. Located at 155 E. Ave. I, Lancaster. Call (661) 948-6060.

--Lancaster Municipal Stadium: Lancaster Municipal Stadium is also known as The Hangar, home of the minor-league Lancaster JetHawks baseball team. The stadium was built by the city for $14.3 million and opened in 1996. The JetHawks, who play in the Single-A California League, are a farm team for the world champion Arizona Diamondbacks. The stadium is also used for high school graduations, college baseball tournaments, auto shows and even concerts. Lancaster Municipal Stadium, 2400 W. Ave. I, Lancaster. Call (661) 726-5400.

--Antelope Valley California Poppy Reserve: Nestled around Fairmont and Antelope buttes 15 miles west of Lancaster are 1,745 acres judged to be the most dependable area for California's state flower, Eschscholzia californica. The Antelope Valley California Poppy Reserve is a state park, dedicated in 1976 after a statewide search for the best California poppy spot. It also boasts lupines, coreopsis, goldfields and other flowers, varying year by year according to rainfall. Antelope Valley California Poppy Reserve, 15101 Lancaster Road, Lancaster. The visitor center is open during wildflower season, usually about mid-March to early May. Parking fees during wildflower season are $2 per vehicle, $1 for seniors age 62 and older. District state park office: (661) 942-0662. Poppy reserve visitors center: (661) 724-1180.

--Antelope Valley Indian Museum: Giant boulders on rocky Piute Butte form part of the floor and walls of the Antelope Valley Indian Museum's Swiss chalet-style structure, built in 1928 by artist H. Arden Edwards. Inside are exhibits concentrating on native peoples of the western Great Basin east and southeast of the Sierra Nevada range, including the Antelope Valley. State park property since 1979, the museum is open 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays from mid-September through mid-June. Admission is $1 for adults, free for children age 16 and younger. Antelope Valley Indian Museum, 15701 E. Ave. M, (661) 946-3055. District state park office: (661) 942-0662.

--Exotic Feline Breeding Compound: The Exotic Feline Breeding Compound's Feline Conservation Center houses more than 60 wild cats, ranging from the diminutive margay to jaguars, leopards and tigers. The nonprofit center breeds wild cats for propagating rare species. The center is open to the public from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. daily except Wednesdays. It also has periodic special events called Twilight Tours, when visitors can see special breeding areas and see animals unavailable for viewing during public hours. Daily admission is $3.50 for adults, $1.50 for children ages 3 to 18. Twilight Tours are $15 per person, age 18 and older. Another wild animal sanctuary is Acton's Shambala Preserve, operated by actress Tippy Hedren's Roar Foundation. Created in 1972, Shambala has nearly 70 animals, including lions, tigers and elephants. Shambala is open to the public one weekend a month and for special events. Visitors must be at least 18. Minimum donation is $35. Exotic Feline Breeding Compound, off Mojave-Tropico Road north of Rosamond Boulevard, www.cathouse-fcc.org, (661) 256-3332. Shambala Preserve, Acton, www.shambala.org, (661) 268-0380.

--Edwards Air Force Base: Edwards Air Force Base has not yet reopened to the general public as it was before the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks. Before Sept. 11, visitors could take a bus tour along the base flightline as well as see the Air Force Flight Test Center Museum and historic aircraft at the Jimmy Doolittle Airpark. NASA's Dryden Flight Research Center also offered public tours. Aviation enthusiasts can still visit the Flight Test Center Museum's annex, Blackbird Airpark in Palmdale, which has SR-71, A-12 and U-2 spy planes on display. Blackbird Airpark is open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Fridays through Sundays at Avenue P at 25th Street East, Palmdale. Air Force Flight Test Center Museum: www.edwards.af.mil/museum, (661) 277-8050.

--Los Angeles County Raceway and Willow Springs International Motorsports Park: Los Angeles County Raceway in Palmdale and Willow Springs International Motorsports Park near Rosamond offer every kind of motorcycle and auto racing. Los Angeles County Raceway hosts has a NHRA Championship drag strip for vehicles ranging from lawn mower-engine-powered junior dragsters to import sedans to street hot roads to all-out racers. It also has Motocross tracks and drag-racing and stunt-driving schools. Willow Springs has road-race and oval tracks, and hosts classes for motorcycle and auto racing. Los Angeles County Raceway, 6850 E. Ave. T, Palmdale, CA 93550, www.lacr.net, (661) 533-2224. Willow Springs International Raceway, 3500 75th St. W., Rosamond, CA 93560, www.willowspringsraceway.com, (661) 256-2471.

--Mountain High Resort: Mountain High Resort, on Angeles Crest Highway west of Wrightwood in the Angeles National Forest, has 47 trails and 12 chair-lifts spread over 220 acres of skiable terrain. Originally opened in 1937, the resort now has snow-making equipment to provide snow when Mother Nature doesn't. Lifts are open until 10 p.m. nightly on lighted runs. Mountain High Resort, 24510 Highway 2, Wrightwood, www.mthigh.com, (760) 249-5808.

OTHER ANTELOPE VALLEY ATTRACTIONS

GOLF COURSES Camelot Golf Course, 3430 Camelot Blvd., Mojave, (661) 824-4107.

Desert Aire Golf Club, 3620 E. Ave. P, Palmdale, (661) 538-0370.

Horse Thief Country Club, Star Route 1 Box 2931, Tehachapi, (661) 822-6114.

Lake Elizabeth Golf Club, 42505 Ranch Club Road, Lake Hughes, (661) 724-1221.

Rancho Sierra Golf Course, 47205 60th St. E., Lancaster, (661) 946-1080.

Rancho Vista Golf Course, 3905 Club Rancho Drive, Palmdale, (661) 272-9903.

Stallion Springs Resort, Star Route 1, Box 2931, Tehachapi, (661) 822-5581.

Tierra Del Sol Golf Course, 10300 N. Loop Blvd., California City, (760) 373-2384.

MUSEUMS/GALLERIES

Antelope Valley College Art Gallery, 3041 W Ave. K, Lancaster, (661) 722-6300.

Cedar Centre Art Gallery, 44857 Cedar Ave., Lancaster, (661) 726-0655.

Lancaster Museum/Art Gallery , 44801 Sierra Highway, Lancaster, (661) 723-6250.

Western Hotel Museum, 557 W. Lancaster Blvd., Lancaster, (661) 723-6260.

Sage Planetarium, 38060 20th St. E., (661) 273-7646.

Boron Museum, 26962 Twenty Mule Team Road, (760) 762-5810.

U.S. Borax Visitors Center, Borax Road, Boron. (760) 762-7588.

NATURAL AREAS

Devil's Punch Bowl County Park, 28000 Devil's Punch Bowl Road, Pearblossom, (661) 944-2743.

Littlerock Recreation Area, Cheseboro Road, Littlerock.

Lancaster Prime Desert Woodlands, Avenue K-8 and 35th Street West, Lancaster.

Red Rock Canyon State Park, on Highway 14, 25 miles north of Mojave, (661) 942-0662, www.calparksmojave.com/redrocks.

Saddleback Butte State Park, East Avenue J at 170th Street East, (661) 942-0662, www.cal-parks.ca.gov.

ATHLETIC CENTERS

Lancaster National Soccer Center, 43000 30th St. E., Lancaster, (661) 723-6077.

Pelona Vista Soccer Center, 37720 Tierra Subida Road, Palmdale, (661) 267-5611.

THEATER

Antelope Valley College Theater, 3041 W. Ave. K, Lancaster, (661) 722-6385.

CLUBS

El Dorado Restaurant Bar & Dancing, 2072 E. Palmdale Blvd., (661) 947-7611. Dancing, live music, mariachi.

Louisiana Hots, 2728 E. Palmdale Blvd., (661) 274-8000. Live music, dancing and comedy shows.

Savanna, 43951 15th St. W., Lancaster, 726-0886. All-ages club with live bands and dancing. Theme days including jazz, local punk, metal and rock bands.

Schooners, 43807 N. 15th St. W., Lancaster, (661) 940-7028. dancing, concerts, comedy shows.

CAPTION(S):

2 photos, box

Photo:

(1 -- color) Mountain High Resort offers more than 220 acres of skiable terrain.

(2 -- color) The visitor center for the Antelope Valley California Poppy Reserve is open during wildflower season, usually from mid-March to early May.

David R. Crane/Staff Photographer

Box:

OTHER ANTELOPE VALLEY ATTRACTIONS (see text)
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Article Details
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Publication:Daily News (Los Angeles, CA)
Geographic Code:1U9CA
Date:Feb 28, 2002
Words:1511
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