Fullerton’s Fox Theater takes VW fans inside

foxcirclethewagen Finally, Fullerton is getting to use its theater, again. Veggie bikers and VW fans get a chance to go inside the Fox Theater June 5 to view a movie. After years of gutting out and sweeping and sawing and sweeping and Spackling (™) and sweeping and by volunteers and contractors, the citizens of Fullerton are seeing more of the inside of the former Vaudeville Theater.

The Fox Theater was an important stop on the Vaudeville circuit that actors--and talking dogs--followed around the nation prior to 1929.

The Fox Theater was an important stop on the Vaudeville circuit that actors–and talking dogs–followed around the nation prior to 1929.

That’s right, it is not a movie theater. It was built so actors like W.C. Fields, Red Skelton, Jack Benny, George Burns and Gracie Allen  and others could get off the train and entertain folks for a few days, then move on around the country following the Vaudeville circuit. Only when Vaudeville crashed did these stars move to cinema and reappear in Fullerton, without their trunks, on the silver screen.

fox theater ceiling hole

The holes in the Fox’s ceiling have long been fixed and the theater inches closer to its old glory.

This is a chance to see the theater half-completed and dream of what it will be again. Volunteers long ago fixed the roof and dusted the bird droppings off the velvet seats. The lights work. The stage is safe. The theater once again has a tenant, a coffee shop, in the retail area.

Have the family take the bicycles and ride over to see the Volkswagens outside; come inside to see the Vaudeville dream being restored.

However, if one wants to be more than a fan, Pat Shepard, volunteer coordinator for the Fox, needs  volunteers to set up this evening. He posted this message:

Calling all ushers and usherettes!

We’re getting ready for a “Movie IN the Fox” on Thursday, June 5th, and we can use your help.  This will be the first one we’ve done in a while, and it will be inside the Fox!  If you can help at all please let me know.

The movie will be “Circle the Wagen” (2013, 86 min), co-written by and co-starring “local boy” Charlie Pecoraro.  Charlie practically grew up at the Fox and has been a long-time supporter.  This will be the first Fullerton screening of Charlie’s film, and what better place than the Fox?  Also included in the event will be a vintage VW car show in the parking lot.

The event will run from about 5:00 to about 9:30 PM, and there are different activities involved.  Volunteers in each area are asked to be there 30 minutes prior to the times listed below.

The time line and volunteer needs are roughly as follows:
4:00 – set up and preparation inside the theater; about four people are needed here.
5:00 – a reserved area of the parking lot will be opened for arrival of the vintage VWs.  Two to four people will be needed for access control.
7:00 – the theater will open for the public to enter and select their seats.  Eight or more ushers will be needed to stand by and assist.
8:00 – the movie will begin; most volunteers will be free to watch.
9:30 – post-film Q&A
9:45 (or so) – after the movie, cleanup as needed, and secure the theater.  As many people as possible are needed here to make it go faster.

Obviously, this kind of thing can’t be done without volunteers.  Thanks for your help.
Pat Shepard
FHTF Volunteer Coordinator
714-871-1081

Product Review: WeeRide Kangaroo Child’s Seat comes up a wee bit short

Parent and child using Kangaroo Carrier

The beauty of the center-mounted seat is you embrace your child. However, how the many brands of seats mount differs with manufacturer and engineering elegance. The WeeRide Kangaroo is over-engineered, meaning you can haul heavier children. But it requires more tools and time to install.

The WeeRide Kangaroo Center-Mounted Child Carrier comes up a wee bit short of pleasing the Veggie Biker.

That’s not to say is does not work well; it’s to say it takes too many trips to the hardware store to make it work effectively.

The Veggie Biker bought this seat through Craig’s List. Given he paid $30 and the previous  owner, a parent who used it with two children, installed it the first time for the Veggie grandad, the Veggie Biker should be happy and just quit writing, now. But…, that would not be the blogger way.

The short and the long of Veggie Biking’s complaint is the length of the bolts and the thickness of the clamp that connects the cross-bar rail to the seat stay (the pipe the seat slips into) and the head tube (the pipe the handle bars slip into). On the two bikes used, a Giant XL Cypress and a Raleigh C30, the bolts are too short in the rear. We got it to fit the Raleigh by removing extra pieces fromt he clamp. But just had to get longer bolts for the Giant. And on the Raleigh hybrid, there is not enough clearance for the clamps to slip neatly onto the seat stay and the head tube. The tubes extend well above the Giant’s cross bar. But on the Raleigh, the clamps interfere with the seat adjustment lever.

And, of course, for the cool dad who drops the kid at child care, leaving behind the seat for the afternoon pickup, the bike still has that ugly cross bar attachement. iBert avoids this  with a simple handlebar bracket. But, iBert is rated at 38 pounds, while WeeRide carries up to 42 pounds.

The short and the long of Veggie Biking's complaint is the length of the bolts and the thickness of the clamp that connects to the seat stay (the pipe the seat slips into) and the head tube (the pipe the handle bars slip into). On the two bikes used, the bolts are too short in the rear. And on the Raleigh hybrid, there is no clearance for the clamps to slip neatly onto the seat stay and the head tube. For the Giant, shown here, only the bolts were ill-fitting.

The short and the long of Veggie Biking’s complaint is the length of the bolts (note these are not the factory bolts) and the thickness of the clamp that connects to the seat stay (the pipe the seat slips into) and the head tube (the pipe the handle bars slip into). On the two bikes used, the bolts are too short in the rear. And on the Raleigh hybrid, there is no clearance for the clamps to slip neatly onto the seat stay and the head tube. For the Giant, shown here, only the bolts were ill-fitting. But at least the Giant’s tubes extend well above the cross bar for easy clamping.

The test ride with a real child requires many strap adjustments, no matter whose seat you use. And it just adds to the fear the child has for the first time ride. Solve this by having the kid sit in the seat in the house–on the floor–and make it a game.Then, when it is time to ride, just plunk the kid in and click the buckle. Do the same with the helmet.

Fear is the enemy of teaching children to ride.

Knee knocking was the Veggie Biker’s biggest fear. This did not occur even with a 6’2″ father and granddad. However, it would be nice if one could slide the seat back and fourth along the cross bar for a better fit depending upon the brand of bike being used.

The final consumer review was uttered by the passenger as her father pedaled away. “Go, Daddy, go!”

Giant bike with Kangaroo

The Giant XL Cypress hybrid bike seemed better suited for the Kangaroo Child Carrier than the Raleigh. The head tube and the seat stand both were extended well above the cross bar, making attaching the clamps much more effective.