@stocktonca takeover

I had the honor of being the guest instagrammer on the takeover of the popular @stocktonca account this last weekend. It was a fun weekend and very cool to be @stocktonca for a few days and show off what I love about Stockton! Thanks Miguel for the opportunity!

The New Phonebook is Here!

That's right, the new phonebook is here! And I'm on it. I'm not in it, but I'm on it. My photo of downtown Stockton was selected to be the cover shot of Stockton's Valley Yellow Pages.



I realize that most people don't use the phone book anymore, but every now and then I see it at a local business. It's still pretty cool to see my pic on the cover.




If you want to actually use the phonebook online, you can go here.




Color The Skies

This morning, very early for a Sunday morning I might add, we went out to Ripon for Color the Skies, a hot air balloon festival to raise money for the Children’s Hospital Central California. IMG_6175b We got out there a little after 6. Lucky for us, they were behind schedule and were in the midst of having all of the ballooners move from one side of the park to the other. One by one, the colossal balloons inflated to enormous heights. I can’t ever remember seeing giant hot air balloons up close before and was amazed at their size.

Sadly, the festival organizers announced that weather would prevent them from taking flight. Although it would’ve been cool to see them launch, having them on the ground was still cool. Plus, made for some good photo opportunities.

Speaking of photos, I learned a valuable lesson. Or should I say, a lesson I already learned was reinforced. Since the sun was rising right behind us the lighting was tricky. I started shooting in aperture priority mode, with my shutter speed on auto. A lot of my shots were too bright though so I switched to manual mode and increased the shutter speed. My shots in the 1/125 - 1/640 range in AE mode were greatly improved by shooting 1/1250 - 1/3200 in manual.

125v1250 (first: AE, 1/125, f/4.0 ISO 100; second: man, 1/1250, f/4.5, ISO 400)

See the rest of the pictures here.

Stockton Stingrays Golf Tournament

This year, we brought 2 foursomes to the annual Stockton Stingrays golf tournament. With the Lyons closure, this year the tourney was held at Oakmoore Golf Course. The players

The Stingrays don't play golf, but they do drive the carts :-)

We took last and second-to-last place. But, with best-ball, we still did very well!

More pictures.


Beep Baseball

Today, we took the field again to challenge the Stockton Stingrays in a game of beep baseball (also known as blind baseball).

The game is similar to America's favorite pastime. All players,except the pitcher and catcher, wear blindfolds. Also, the pitcher and catcher are offensive, not defensive, players. The pitcher counts down the underhand pitch and tries to time, and place, the pitch based on the batter.

The batter gets 4 strikes and 1 ball (a non swing). If the ball is hit, they must run to toward first or third base, depending on which one starts to buzz. The batter must run and touch the base before a defensive player grabs the ball, maintaining control, and holds it away from their body.

We lost again this year. And we even hit without blindfolds during our last at-bat.

Playing against these blind athletes is amazing. Being sighted, I can't help but overly rely on my vision, so playing with blindfolds is challenging to say the least.

More pictures here.

Next time, Stingrays, next time!

Stockton Thunder!

Picture 2Our new October tradition... Stockton Thunder Hockey!

Early last year, when we heard that Stockton's new arena would be home to a minor league hockey team, we were less than impressed. Hockey was never a sport that we followed in our house and it didn't seem to match very well with our warm weather and culture. We were much more excited to be getting Arena Football and Major League indoor soccer.

As the season started to get closer we decided that we wanted to be part of the hype of the new team and went to the second home game. From the moment we walked in the arena we knew this was going to be cool! When the game started we were on our feet, along with 9,000 other Stockton Thunder fans and we have been hooked ever since.

So, tonight we showed up, decked out in Thunder gear, ready to scream our lungs out for our hometown Thunder!

If you're a sports fan and live within an hour of Stockton, you have to check this out! Trust me when I say that hockey is meant to watched live; so many people have the same comment after watching their first game: "I could never get into hockey on TV... but this is awesome!"

What a game! The Thunder start the season 2-0 and right in the middle of the Pacific Division and end tonight's game being the only undefeated team in the ECHL.

thunderfight1 The first fight of the night. The Arena went crazy when Huxley (Stockton) knocked Neilson right on his bum.

The Long Beach Ice Dogs scored an early first goal but the Thunder tied it up before the end of the first period (click here for the video from the first goal scored at home this season). The same pattern would continue for the second and third period with Long Beach scoring first and then Stockton getting a goal. The final shot in regulation came from Stockton with only 34 seconds left on the clock. The 5 minutes of overtime passed with no scoring so we were treated to a nail-biting shoot out. We tied throughout the first group of attempts so then we went into sudden death shoot out mode!

After 6 failed attempts by each club, Brendon Hodge slaps one in and the Thunder win a close one!

Congrats Thunder... you rock!

game stats click here for pictures