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  • Cathi & Ben Walter
  • Sales & Marketing Specialist, Realtor
  • 44530 San Pablo, Suite 101
  • Palm Desert, CA 92260
  • P: (760) 218 – 5752
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  • E: Cathi@DesertAreaHomeFinder.com
  • DRE# 01346930
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A Message From Cathi & Ben...

We hear similar stories repeated in different ways from our clients; At first, they look forward to stolen weekend's to golf & relax in the desert - they gradually discover they're crafting ways to spend more time here until it becomes clear, life just doesn't get any better than this."

Once that realization hit's, the process of change begins... We know what an extraordinary commodity your home is - buying or selling a home can be one of the most important decisions you will make and having the right team on your side will make the difference.

We specialize in homes throughout the Palm Springs Valley including Palm Desert Real Estate & Homes, Indian Wells Real Estate & Homes, La Quinta Real Estate & Homes, Rancho Mirage Real Estate & Homes, Palm Springs Real Estate & Homes& Indio Hills Real Estate & Homes. Whether you want to buy or sell an estate, lock & leave property with income potential, a resort property, land to build your dream home, or a property located in a country club or golf community we know the desert and are here to help. Our motto, If its important to you, it's important to us, guides us as we help our clients buy or sell a home in the desert.

Thank you for visiting DesertAreaHomeFinder.com, we hope you find our site helpful and we look forward to speaking with you it's easy, just click on the picture of a cell phone in the upper right corner of this web site and it will ring our cell phone directly.

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Comic Con Palm Springs 2018

Comic Con

Every year comic fans from all over the world come to Palm Springs for a weekend of fun events, costumes, and comic stars.

Comic Con is an action-packed event filled with exhibits, shows, celebrities, costumes, contests, and more! Attendees can mingle with cosplayers, celebrities, creators and their favorite artists. This year, there’s a zombie walk, supersonic speed dating, a live symphony, and an arcade expo. For Comic geeks, there’s nothing better than visiting the Palm Springs area for Comic Con.

Comic Con

Comic Con Palm Springs has brought together some of the most passionate and talented people from the world of comic books and entertainment to produce an exciting new comic con in one of the most famous and fun cities in the world. We’ve spent years working, observing, and listening to what people want and sought from their comic con experiences. Not only working with talent and exhibitors, but also being passionate fans ourselves, we wanted to apply all the great ideas and suggestions everyone had – yours and ours together. Each year we plan to make Comic Con Palm Springs something special.

Comic Con Palm Springs is a 3 day event being held from 24th August to 26th August 2018 at the Palm Springs Convention Center in Palm Springs, CA. This event showcases products from Consumer & Carnivals, Sporting Goods, Toys & Games industries, products like Anime, pop culture, toys, video games, comic books, photography, cosplay and much more.

 

 

Idyllwild Jazz in the Pines

The Idyllwild Arts Foundation presentation of the Idyllwild Jazz in the Pines, featuring various genres of blues-based jazz and works by more than two dozen bands with art, food and breathtaking majestic pines as a backdrop and lot’s of cool fresh air.

Idyllwild Jazz in the PinesThe Idyllwild Art Campus was temporarily evacuated  due to the Cranston Fire.  Many feared Jazz in the Pines Festival would have to be cancelled.  But thanks to the hard work and invaluable help from over 1,400 fire fighters, the campus was saved.  This year is the Silver Anniversary of the Festival and it will go on as planned.  The difference this year is the Jazz Festival will be much more than just a celebration of music.  It’s a celebration of survival.

President and Head of School Pamela Jordan of the Idyllwild Arts Academy, which produces Jazz in the Pines as a fundraiser, said “This special year now takes on a new level of significance as our community will gather to celebrate our own fortitude, and that of the over 1,400 firefighters who valiantly battled the Cranston Fire to protect us”

Idyllwild Jazz in the PinesThe festival opens at 11:00 a.m. on Saturday, August 11, 2018.

Some of this years performers will be

Ruby and the Red HotsSaturday, August 11
11:00 – 12:15 Idyllwild Jazz in the Pines – French Quarter
Ruby and the Red Hots
Ruby and the Red Hots is a San Diego-based rockin’ blues, R&B, funk, and jazz band. For over 25 years their earth-shaking music has made audiences all over the U.S. and abroad simmer as they’ve performed arrangements of classics as well as original compositions. Ruby (Etoile Ruby Presnell), with her unique and powerful voice, beauty, and sensual stage presence, is known as the “first-class sultry lady of blues.”

 

 

Chase Jackson Sextet12:45 – 2:00 Idyllwild Jazz in the Pines – Main Stage
The Chase Jackson Sextet
This year, one of the new groups at the festival will be the Chase Jackson Sextet. While he will be new to this stage, Jackson is already a popular jazz musician. He has several awards from the Berklee Jazz Workshop, a popular venue for Idyllwild Arts jazz students.

 

 

Evan Christopher Clarinet Road2:30 – 3:45 Idyllwild Jazz in the Pines – Main Stage
Evan Christopher Clarinet Road
Christopher is recognized for his embrace of the early jazz legacies of New Orleans clarinetists Lorenzo Tio Jr., Sidney Bechet, Barney Bigard, and Johnny Dodds. Christopher is an Idyllwild Arts Academy elder statesman as one of the school’s first jazz graduates and student of jazz faculty elder statesman Marshall Hawkins. He toured with singer-songwriter A.J. Croce in the early 1990s and eventually joined the Jim Cullum Jazz Band in San Antonio, where he appeared nightly as their featured clarinetist. Christopher is permanently based in New Orleans, but is a charter member of the Seahawk Modern Jazz Orchestra based in Southern California.  Evan will be joined be fellow at Idyllwild Arts Academy graduate and Grammy-winning trombonist Jason Jackson.

 

Euphoria Brass Band2:00 – 3:30 Idyllwild Jazz in the Pines – French Quarter
Euphoria Brass Band
Euphoria Brass Band is a San Diego-based musical collective that serves up a contemporary mix of old school New Orleans traditional brass band jazz, funky street beats, and new school edginess with a West Coast feeling. They recall the early days of New Orleans street bands. Euphoria Brass Band was created in 2011 by New Orleans transplants Ron Bocian and David Bandrowski and local jazz radio DJ Drew Miller. They quickly assembled a top-notch, hard-hitting horn section: Steve Ebner (trumpet), April West (trombone), David Jackson (tenor sax), J.P. Balmat (baritone and alto sax, clarinet), and Wayne Rice (sousaphone). Euphoria Brass Band was nominated five years in a row for various San Diego Music Awards. Embracing the exciting spirit of improvisation with a hard funk edge, Euphoria Brass Band has become known for their incendiary high-energy shows, guaranteed to get a crowd smiling, dancing, and having a good time.

 

Graham Dechter4:15 – 5:30 Idyllwild Jazz in the Pines – Main Stage
Graham Dechter – A Quartet feat featuring John Clayton, Jeff Hamilton and Tamir Hendelman
Graham Dechter plays with the kind of swinging authority and seasoned maturity that belies his youth. The Los Angeles native shows a deep reverence for the jazz guitar tradition in his warm-toned renditions of ballads, bossas, bebop, and blues. A formidable soloist and consummate accompanist, he imbues standards with rare enthusiasm and an inherent bluesiness while carving his own path with affecting original compositions.

 

Chuck AlvarezSunday, August 12
1030 – 11:45 Idyllwild Jazz in the Pines – French Quarter
Chuck Alvarez
Chuck Alvarez is a Los Angeles-based guitarist/singer/songwriter with roots in blues-rock, who has also earned a reputation for R&B, light jazz, and Americana. Alvarez has composed for nine musicals for national and international audiences. 

 

 

Jazzgrass10:45 Idyllwild Jazz in the Pines – Stephens Hall
Jazzgrass
Jazzgrass creates an unusual blend of jazz and bluegrass instruments in surprising yet delightful combinations. A cello plays duet with the mandolin, a trumpet and trombone horn section backs up a banjo, a saxophone and a guitar rip out smooth and engaging solos. The tempo ranges from upbeat stomping to mellow swing. The improvisations in these tunes catch the expression of free spirit. In 1999, Idyllwild resident Barnaby Finch put the band together to honor the newer and more progressive side of Bluegrass music. In 2011, he recruited some talented locals to play with him. Don Reed is a virtuoso on mandolin, dobro, and guitar. Sam Zorn, on fiddle, covers everything from jazz to Celtic music. On bass is Bill Saitta, one of the busiest musicians in the Desert, and drummer Jeff Olson also plays with David Benoit. Pianist Barnaby Finch, formerly music director and touring member of Lee Ritenour’s band, has played with Ronnie Laws, Alphonse Mouzon, Boz Scaggs, and Lionel Richie. His piano was featured on the Lionel Richie/Diana Ross hit, “Endless Love. From 1982 to 1989, Barnaby toured with George Benson, for whom he was conductor and musical director from 1987 to 1989.

 

Casey Abrams4:15 – 5:30 Idyllwild Jazz in the Pines – Main Stage
Casey Abrams featuring special guest Haley Reinhart
Casey Abrams’ story is that of a born natural. But it’s also the story of a person who studied diligently and worked hard, striving toward his dream of a life in music. Casey’s childhood resonated with music. Mother Pamela Pierce is a screenwriter and teacher, plays piano and sings. Father Ira Abrams taught at Idyllwild Arts

Academy. At age ten his family moved to Idyllwild and Casey attended the Idyllwild Summer Arts program prior to enrolling in the Academy. He gained proficiency on guitar, upright bass, cello, drums and the sitar. He credits his jazz and upright bass instructor, the

legendary Marshall Hawkins, for helping him develop into the musician he is today. Casey tried out for and won a spot on American Idol, describing the experience as his ticket to getting his foot in the door. Not long after his Idol experience, Casey found himself in London recording his debut album, working with renowned producer Martin Terefe. Even though his prodigious artistic gifts and wide-screen creative vision augur many great things in the future, his ambition at heart remains very simple: to make music that people love. 

Escape Room Palm Springs

Escape Room Palm Springs is great fun for family, friends and team building with co-workers.   Choose from six escape rooms and games.

Merlin’s Magic School is in trouble.  The entire school was accidentally cursed during a talent show, and only you and your team are able to save everyone by finding Merlin’s hidden spell book.  In this game you’ll have to figure out what to do with magical objects, get help from a magical creature, and work your way into Merlin’s secret study.  What’s in there?!

Escape Room Palm Springs

Bank Heist,  you and your crack team  have been assembled to pull of this caper involving sneaking past the banks high tech security, hacking your way into a computer and deciding how you’ll break into the vault.  Your objective?  Get as much loot as you can before the police spoil all the fun.

Escape Room Palm SpringsLocker Room, Trapped in an abandoned locker room, you and your team will battle wits with a sadistic serial killer. Uncover the fate of the prisoners captured before you and if you’re clever enough, maybe you’ll save more than just yourselves. Both mental and physical challenges will test your mind and spirit.

Escape Room Palm Springs Vampire’s Lair, A man and woman in Salem, Massachusetts in the late 1690’s fall in love and are set to marry.  Shortly before the wedding, the man finds a magic spell in his fiancee’s handwriting – the spell was to make him fall in love with her by unnatural means.  He rejects her, call off the wedding and called her an evil witch.  “I’ll show you an evil witch!” she vows, and turns him into a vampire, but that’s not all, he finds his coffin impossible to open!  Now it’s up to you and your team to uncover the secrets of their love affair and help the vampire reclaim his coffin.

Escape Room Palm SpringsJack the Ripper, Transport yourself to the slums of Victorian London where you’ll help Scotland Yard solve the Jack the Ripper murders, hopefully without ending up as a next victim. You and your team will uncover evidence that will help you identify the killer as you work through the game. But if you think identifying the world’s most notorious serial killer will be simple, then you don’t know jack.

Escape Room Palm Springs opened in the Fall of 2017 and has been a hit with fans near and far.  They’re continually updating / tweaking secret details to keep the games fresh and new so you can go over and over and never get tired of the fun.

Make closer connections with the family, Have a fun afternoon with friends, or even build stronger relationships among your office staff.   You’ll experience an unforgettable bonding experience where no special skills are required.

 

 

How much income you need to buy the average home in each state

Ever wonder how much income you need to buy an average home in other areas of the country?

@HowMuch.net just published a map showing How much income you need to buy the average home in each state in the U.S.

They collected average home prices for every state from Zillow and then plugged that information into a mortgage calculator to figure out monthly payments. The interest rates used varied from 4 to 5% depending on the market, a 10% down payment, and total cost of housing not exceeding more than 30% of gross income. Using this rule as the benchmark, they calculated the minimum salary required to afford the average home in each state.

The Top Three Places Where You Need the Highest Salaries to Afford the Average Home 1. Hawaii: $153,520 for a house worth $610,000 2. Washington, DC: $138,440 for a house worth $549,000 3. California: $120,120 for a house worth $499,900 Here’s a quick snapshot of housing affordability across the United States.

Home much income do you need to buy the average home in each state; Check it out!Home much income do you need to buy the average home in each state

The Shield at 1 Coyote Way

The Shield

The Coachella Sports and Entertainment Stadium Authority plans to build The Shield at 1 Coyote Way, a $300 million, 12,000-seat mixed-use stadium in Thousand Palms.

David Miller, the founder and coach of the SoCal Coyotes developmental football team in the desert, launched the Coachella Sports and Entertainment Stadium Authority (CSESA) with the goal of creating this sprawling facility.

The proposed sports complex would include a hotel, medical facilities, a senior living village and retail and be located on 125 acres of land owned by the H.N. and Frances C. Berger Foundation in the area between The Classic Club golf course and Interstate 10.

It will be called The Shield at 1 Coyote Way, and its primary focus will be to offer a place to allow the desert to be a player in the $15.3 billion youth sports industry, hosting camps, conferences, tournaments and championship games, etc.

The land where The Shield will be built is owned by the Berger Foundation, and they’ve agreed to sell it to Richmond Honan Development and Acquisitions LLC, a firm based out of Alpharetta, Georgia.

The Berger Foundation supports organizations who promote health care, social services and education in an effort to help people help themselves, has been wanting to do something big with this plot of land for years but never found the right project until Miller and his group came around.

According to Doug Vance, vice president of Real Estate at the Berger Foundation, when they purchased the land in 2003 the original idea was to build a university on it, but that did not pan out.

“There has been many other potential investors that have come along over the years and nothing ever seemed to exactly fit,” Vance said. “But when Coach Miller brought The Shield concept to the Berger Foundation with all the charitable things he does for the children here in the Coachella Valley, we were very interested and then when we looked into Richmond Honan as a developer they also had the same goals and interests that we do to help the community.”

Joshua Tree International Improv

Joshua Tree International ImprovJoshua Tree International Improv
July 6 – 8
Indio Performing Arts Center

Come out and watch comedians and improv groups compete for laughs. Enjoy an afternoon of award-winning stand-up comedy with a new comedy act every 15 minutes. You can enjoy them all or just those that suit your fancy with an all day pass so you can come and go as you please.

An opening night gala like no other! Launching at 6:30 with a social hour featuring scrumptious heavy hors d’oeuvres, desserts, and a cash bar followed at 7:30 by special guest entertainment Francesca Amari, performing YOU MAKE ME LAUGH: A Love Song to Gilda Radner. (Some material may be R-rated.)

OPENING NIGHT GALA FRIDAY
  • FRANCESCA AMARI

FRIDAY 7:30pm (6:30pm Bar/Social)   |   Blak Box Theater

YOU MAKE ME LAUGH! A musical portrait to America’s Comedic Sweetheart: Gilda Radner
Starring FRANCESCA AMARI   
Music Director – Wayne Abravanel

A musical biography of Gilda: her life, her loves, her peeves, her rise to stardom, her marriage to Gene Wilder, her battles … all lovingly and laughingly told through song and Gilda’s own words!

Francesca Amari has been touring the country the last 3 years with her newest cabaret show, YOU MAKE ME LAUGH: A Love Song to Gilda Radner, premiering it in 2011 at a 10- day festival for Gilda’s Club West MI, and sharing the schedule w/ Betty White, Margaret Cho & more. She has raised more than $1,000 for Gilda’s Clubs and cancer support organizations whenever she performs it. She is one of the creators and performers of a brand new, hit show called “Palm Springs JUMP!” which pays tribute to the old glamour of Palm Springs and the Hollywood stars who have lived and performed there.

Desert Classic Dancesport Championship

Desert Classic Dancesport ChampionshipThe Desert Classic Ballroom Dancing Competition in Indian Wells is going to be Wildly Hot this year!

Part of the World Pro-Am DanceSport Series and Global Series Events where Pro/Am Dancers vie for points and national recognition.

The total purse this year is over $85,000. with awards not only going to best Dancers but also to the best teachers and studios.

Ready to learn? Check out one of the Workshops, where you can learn from the best.  Some of the great competitions include Tango, Flamenco, Professional Cabaret, Latin, Jack and Jill and this years new events; Kid’s Solo and pro / am Gentlemen Closed Championships.

The Event is at The JW Marriott Desert Springs in Indian Wells
July 12 – 15, 2018

TENTATIVE SCHEDULE OF EVENTS

SESSION 1 – THURSDAY (all day): Doors Open 8:00 am

Pro/Am, Student/Student, Mixed Amateur Adult & Youth (16-18) Events

  • Pro/Am American Smooth Closed Single Dance Competitions
  • Pro/Am American Smooth Closed Scholarships
  • Pro/Am American Smooth Open Single Dance Competitions
  • Pro/Am American Smooth Multi-Dance Championships
  • Pro/Am American Smooth Open, World DanceSport Series Qualifying Championships
  • Pro/Am American Smooth Open Scholarships
  • Pro-Am International Latin Closed Single Dance Competitions
  • Pro/Am International Latin Closed Scholarships
  • Pro/Am International Latin Open Single Dance Competitions
  • Pro/Am International Latin Multi-Dance Championships
  • Pro/Am International Latin Open, World Pro/Am DanceSport Series Qualifying Championships
  • Pro/Am International Latin Open Scholarships
  • Pre-Champ Adult Amateur International Latin & American Smooth Championships
  • Pre-Champ Adult Amateur American Rhythm Championship
  • Senior Amateur American Rhythm (over 35) Championship

Amateur and Professional Events

  • Masters Amateur American Rhythm (over 50) Championship
  • Masters Amateur American Smooth (over 50) Championships
  • Professional Rising Star International Ballroom Championship
  • Professional Rising Star American Rhythm Championship
  • Professional Rising Star American Smooth Championship
  • Professional Rising Star International Latin Championship
  • Professional Open Jack and Jill Contest

SESSION 2 – FRIDAY MATINEE: Doors Open 8:00 am

Pro/Am, Student/Student and Mixed Amateur Adult & Youth (16-18) Events

  • Pro/Am International Ballroom Closed Single Dance Competitions
  • Pro/Am International Ballroom Closed Scholarships
  • Pro/Am International Ballroom Open Single Dance Competitions
  • Pro/Am International Ballroom Multi-Dance Championships
  • Pro/Am International Ballroom Open Scholarships
  • Pro/Am International Ballroom Open World Pro/Am DanceSport Series Qualifying Championships
  • Solo Exhibitions (Will be danced throughout the day)

Amateur Events

  • Pre-Novice Adult Amateur International Latin & American Smooth Championship
  • Novice Adult Amateur International Latin & American Smooth Championship
  • Amateur Youth International Latin Championship
  • Amateur Youth American Rhythm Championship
  • Senior Amateur American Smooth (over 35) Championship
  • Masters Amateur International Latin (over 50) Championships

SESSION 3 – FRIDAY EVENING: Doors Open 7:00 pm

  • Formation Team Ballroom Championship
  • Formation Team Latin Championship
  • Amateur Under 21 American Rhythm Championship
  • Amateur Under 21 International Latin Championship
  • Senior Amateur International Ballroom (over 35) championship
  • Adult Amateur Open Ballroom Championship
  • Adult Amateur Open American Rhythm Championship
  • Professional Open American Smooth Championship
  • Professional Open International Latin Championship
  • Professional Theatre Arts/Cabaret Championship
  • Amateur Theatre Arts/Cabaret
  • Open Mixed-Pro, American Style
  • Showtime!

SESSION 4 – SATURDAY MATINEE: Doors Open 8:00am

Pro/Am, Student/Student and Mixed Amateur Adult & Youth (16-18) Events

  • Pro/Am Pre-Teen/Junior Single-Dance & Scholarship Competitions (Nightclub, Country & Rhythm)
  • Pro/Am Nightclub & Country Western Single Dance Competitions
  • Pro/Am American Rhythm Closed Single Dance Competitions
  • Pro/Am American Rhythm Closed Scholarships
  • Pro/Am American Rhythm Open Single Dance Competitions
  • Pro/Am American Rhythm Multi-Dance Championships
  • Pro/Am American Rhythm Open Word DanceSport Series Qualifying Championships
  • Pro/Am American Rhythm Open Scholarships
  • Pre-teen & Junior Solos & Show Dance Numbers

Amateur Events

  • Pre-Novice Adult Amateur International Ballroom & American Rhythm Championships
  • Novice Adult Amateur International Ballroom & American Rhythm Championships
  • Pre-Champ Adult Amateur International Ballroom Championship
  • Amateur Youth American Smooth Championship
  • Amateur Youth International Ballroom Championship
  • Amateur Under 21 American Smooth Championship
  • Amateur Under 21 International Ballroom Championship
  • Amateur Theatre Arts/Cabaret

SESSION 5 – SATURDAY EVENING: Doors Open 7:00 pm

  • Senior Amateur International Latin (over 35) Championships
  • Masters Amateur International Ballroom (over 50) Championship
  • Adult Amateur Open Latin Championship
  • Adult Amateur Open American Smooth Championship
  • Top Teacher, Top Studio & Top Student Awards
  • Professional Open American Rhythm Championship
  • Professional Open International Ballroom Championship
  • Show of Champions
  • Breakfast Under the Stars

SESSION 6 – SUNDAY MATINEE: Doors Open 8:00 am

Pre-Teen & Junior: Pro/Am, Student/Student, Mixed Amateur and Amateur Events

  • Pro/Am Pre-Teen/Junior Single-Dance & Scholarship (Ballroom, Latin & Smooth)
  • Pre-Teen/Junior Amateur Single-Dance Competitions
  • Pre-Teen/Junior Amateur Multi-Dance Championships

Fourth of July Celebrations in the Coachella Valley

Lighting of the Night Sky in the Coachella Valley

The traditional lighting up of the night sky with fireworks in celebration of Independence Day is almost here!  Time to Make Your Plans, Here’s where to watch:

July 3rd in Indio at The Fantasy Springs Eagle Falls Golf Course with music simulcast on The Eagle 106.9 FM radio. The fun starts at 8:45 p.m.

July 4th in Palm Desert at Civic Center Park. The event kicks off with a live concert in the Open Air Amphitheater featuring the Swing Cats Big Band. You can watch the Fireworks from the lawn at the Amphitheater or from the Aquatic Center. Fireworks start at 9:00 p.m.

July 4th in Palm Springs at the Swim Center starting at 2:00 p.m. with a pool party with music, games and inflatable slide.

July 4th Rancho Mirage at the Agua Caliente Casino Resort.  Watch the fireworks display synchronized to music on The Eagle 106.9 FM radio and simulcast on KPSE.

Catch the replay on KMIR TV at 11:00 p.m.

PALM SPRINGS INTERNATIONAL SHORTFEST

ShortFest

The 24th Annual Palm Springs International ShortFest boasts up-and-coming filmmakers featuring their finest flicks. Presented by the Palm Springs International Film Society, this event is the largest film festival of its kind in North America. Each year, approximately 325 short films are selected from over 4,200 submissions to be screened at the Camelot Theatre in the Oscar® and BAFTA®-qualifying festival, with over 100 of the past winners advancing to be nominated or even win Academy Awards.

ShortFest

Each screening will feature 4-10 short films, all curated and blocked together to cover a central theme. In addition to the film screenings, the festival features a ShortFest Forum with panel sessions, master classes, and roundtables. Working industry professionals will share their insights into the film industry and tackling the latest trends in the business, as well as provide networking opportunities.

Running June 19-25, the 24th Annual Palm Springs International ShortFest is an excellent appetizer until the Palm Springs International Film Festival returns in January 2019.

For more information, including a list of events, tickets, and more, visit the ShortFest website.

Passes, 6-packs, Opening & Closing Night tickets on sale now

Film & event tickets on sale June 13, 9am | Member ticket sales begin June 11, 9am

Monday, June 11 | Member ticket sales begin 9am

Wednesday, June 13 | General ticket sales begin 9am

Tuesday, June 19 | Opening Night

Wednesday, June 20-Sunday June 24 | Film Screenings

 

Thursday, June 21-Saturday June 23 | Forum

Sunday, June 24 | Closing Night

Monday, June 25 | Best of Fest

Keys Ranch in Joshua Tree National Park

 

Keys Ranch

A preserved Old West ranch portrays a pioneer family’s life, the Keys Ranch and Desert Queen Mine. In the high desert country that was to become Joshua Tree National Park, rugged individuals tried their luck at cattle ranching, mining, and homesteading. The story of William F. Keys and his family is particularly representative of the hard work and ingenuity it took to settle and prosper in the Mojave Desert.

To most people, life in the desert seems harsh and desolate, but to rancher and miner William F. Keys, it was home for nearly 60 years. Bill Keys was hired to run the Desert Queen Mine in the early 1900’s, but when it closed in 1917, he stayed in Joshua Tree  until his death in 1969, homesteading on a patch of land that he called the Desert Queen Ranch.

Keys Ranch

Keys owned at least 30 mining claims, where he dug for gold and gypsum. He also operated a stamp mill and crushed ore for other miners in the area. In this remote and rocky canyon, he and his wife Frances brought up five children and built a ranch house, schoolhouse, workshop, and store. They raised goats, chickens, and cattle and grew a fruit orchard and vegetable garden. They dug deep wells for water, built windmills, and dammed up the rocky canyons surrounding the ranch to create a lake. They were—in a word—pioneers.

Keys Ranch

The ranger-guided tour of the ranch includes the colorful story of the 60 years Bill and Frances spent working together to make a life in this remote location. The ranch house, school house, store, and workshop still stand; the orchard has been replanted; and the grounds are full of the cars, trucks, mining equipment, and spare parts that are a part of the Desert Queen Ranch story.

Tickets are required and must be purchased in person on the day of the tour. Buy tickets at the Oasis Visitor Center in Twenty Nine Palms starting at 8:30 am. Keys Ranch tours cost $10 per person aged 12 and over and $5 for children 6 to 11. Children under six are admitted free. Senior and Access Pass (Golden Age and Golden Access passport) holders pay $5. Please note: We run out of tickets for this tour every day it is offered. Be flexible with your plans and know even if you arrive early the tickets may all be gone. We are working to improve the ticketing system.  (760) 367-5500

To find the ranch, pass the entrance to Hidden Valley Campground, turn left at the Y-intersection, follow the road approximately two miles to the locked gate. Your guide will meet you there. (See map.) Please arrive at the ranch gate 15 minutes prior to your tour.

Keys Ranch

Get In Touch

  • Cathi & Ben Walter
  • REALTOR ®
  • 44530 San Pablo, Suite 101
  • Palm Desert, CA 92260
  • P: (760) 218 – 5752
  • E: Cathi@DesertAreaHomeFinder.com
  • CalBRE# 01346930

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