Bear Valley Farm

I grew up in rural Idaho where agriculture was the major staple of our little town. A town where it was normal to see someone riding their horse down the middle of the street, or tie it to the post out front.

I do miss living on a farm. There’s nothing like it. Listening to the sprinklers Bear Valley Farm Petting Zooon the crops, the frogs at night, a million stars and lots of hard work! You can get a glimpse of farm life at Bear Valley Farms.

Bear Valley Farms and Equestrian Center recently opened in Big Bear, so I went to check it out. I mean I had to, these are my kind of people! You can learn how to ride a horse there – I recommend it. Even if you are terrified of the large animals you should at least once in your life, go for a horseback ride. The beauty is they offer classes from beginner to advanced. It’s also important to note that they provide therapeutic classes for a variety of special needs.

Want to come rent a cabin from Big Bear Vacations, but don’t know where to board your horse? Look no further! BVF also offers boarding and you can trail ride from there as well. Let the knowledgeable staff take care of your steed. You can find out more about their affordable rates on their website: www.bigbearequestriancenter.com

There is also a petting zoo. This is where my little kid self kicks in! They have bunnies, tiny goats, regular goats and pigs.  It’s a great place to take your little ones to see different kinds of animals.  And come on – let’s be real – who doesn’t adore baby goats? Anyone? I didn’t think so.

This Saturday, July 12, they will have a bounce house, food and drinks. You can also take a pony and/or hay ride and enter the petting zoo as many times as you would like! $15 for adults and $12 for children under 12 (Tip of the day: If you stay with Big Bear Vacations, you get in for free). Hours of operation are 11 a.m. – 4 p.m.  So pull up your breeches and go check out some good hometown family fun!

Bear Valley Farms is also thinking ahead, they have a pumpkin patch and a corn maze in the making! Once you visit you are going to love it and Fall will be a great time to revisit this awesome place.

Whether you have never been around farm animals, or you are an expert there is something for everyone at Bear Valley Farms. We also have Big Bear Cabins close to Bear Valley Farms so call a Vacation Planner today and let’s get this party started!

Fourth of July

As an American I always feel just a little bit more patriotic than usual during this time of year. I mean, it’s our Independence Day! I am grateful to be free and I appreciate the freedoms that I have. Last year was my first Fourth of July in Big Bear Lake and it was awesome!

4th of July on the Lake

I had only lived here about four weeks last year when the fourth of July rolled around – some of my newfound friends invited me to go out on their boat to watch the fireworks. I was skeptical; small town, small fireworks. Boy was I wrong. The firework display is one of the best I’ve ever seen – and I’ve seen quite a few.

The music was great, the company was fantastic and fireworks were incredible!

There are all kinds of activities in Big Bear Lake to celebrate 4th of July.

Whether you are coming up to BBQ with your family, spend the day on the lake, or watch the fireworks, there is something for everyone! If you haven’t booked your cabin yet, give the Vacation Planners at Big Bear Vacations a call or search for your big bear cabin here.

Snow Summit always has something going on. But this year’s event is called, “Above the Boom.” Catchy right?! They will have dinner, drinks, live music, kids activities, etc. I mean, you can ride the lift up to the top of the mountain and watch the fireworks at 8200 feet elevation!!! Great view of the fireworks from up there. For more information go to: www.bigbearmountainresorts.com

If Snow Summit isn’t your thing that’s okay! We’ve got more!

The Rotary and Marina Resort will host a BBQ on the lake. This is a great spot to view the fireworks and there will be a DJ to keep it rockin’. Price: $20 – $100, call: 800-424- 4232.

Miss Liberty Paddleboat Fourth of July Cruise. You can board the boat and watch the fireworks explode above the lake. Hors d’oeurves, drink tickets and best view of the star-spangled skies. $100 per person.

Captain John’s Independence Day Extravaganza! DJ Reggae music, bring your own picnic, BBQ’s and coolers. Huge beach – bring your chair and blankets and all party needs!

The Pine Lakefront Fourth of July Celebration. You can choose from Pines Garden Patio and the Pines Terrace both buffets will be ready. Music by Fantasy and live feed from KBHR radio during the fireworks. $75-95. Call: 909-866- 5400 for reservations.

The Village is always free for firework viewing! You can set up your spot on Pine Knot then wander around until the show begins.

As always, Big Bear Vacations wishes you the happiest of holidays!

Holcomb Fire Update

Holcomb Fire – Big Bear Lake

First and foremost Big Bear Vacations would like to express our sincere gratitude to all of the firefighters that are up here battling the Holcomb Fire.

The fire is northeast of Big Bear Lake, in an area called Holcomb. It has also come close to Baldwin Lake which is part of Big Bear. There were evacuations, which have since been rescinded. We have had several calls inquiring about the safety of visitors coming up the Mountain. I’m here to provide some intel!

Fires can be scary and what you see on the news can make it seem like the entire mountain top is on fire. Well folks, it’s not. I’ll admit that I got a bit nervous yesterday. The smoke was visible, we had rolling power outages, more and more firefighters were showing up from all over the place. But today is a different story. It’s all blue skies in Big Bear today. I did some recon – I wanted to see what was happening. More firefighters means the resources we need are being provided.

Here are some statistics:

1200 acres with 10% containment
1072 firefighters
66 Engines
6 Water Tenders
24 Hand Crews
4 Air Tankers
9 Helicopters

On my jaunt about town I stopped at the lake to watch the helicopters. One after another, after another. They just kept coming. There were three in the lake at one time and it’s impressive. While us locals are protective of  our water – we are gladly giving it up to stop this fire!

The power is up and running today. The air quality is, as it always is up here. There is not a haze of smoke hovering over us making everyone wheeze and cough. It’s a beautiful day and we are not worried about our safety, nor the safety of our guests. Big Bear Vacations strives for excellent customer service and would not put our guests in jeopardy. We want you to have fun here and keep coming back!

The only road closure is Highway 18 from Big Bear to Lucerne. That leaves two ways up and back down the mountain. Totally safe!

So go ahead and keep your reservation. It’ll be bragging rights later: “Remember the fire in 2017 – yeah we were there, it was nothing, but check out this awesome video I got of the helicopters getting water from the lake.”

If you were considering booking a Big Bear Cabin this week/weekend, but had a doubt about whether or not to come – the answer is do it! Come to Big Bear and enjoy the first weekend of summer! Let the vacation planners at Big Bear Vacations help you! 877-417-6504.

If you want to see the information for yourself here are my top website picks:

https://inciweb.nwcg.gov/state/5/

http://kbhr933.com/

http://socalmountains.com/e107_plugins/forum/forum.php

http://www.bigbeargrizzly.net/

Around Town with Ali @ Local

There’s a new shop in town, and it’s called Local. The theme? Taste the Aloha. Pretty awesome right? I mean you can almost taste pineapple, mango and deliciousness just by the slogan!

In my new series, “Around the Town with Ali”, I’m visiting places in Big Bear to give our incoming guests an idea of what’s hot and what’s not! (Disclaimer: this is subjective – totally one girl’s opinion!)

I went a bit outside my comfort zone. I’m almost always a black coffee, no cream, no sugar, kinda lady. I don’t do sweet, or tons of cream or whatever – it’s coffee and I want to taste that flavor! But in the spirit of living on the edge, I went out on a limb with my snobby coffee taste, or lack thereof! So I tried the Cinnamon roll. This coffee did not disappoint. It was yummy! Did I also mention espresso is not my thing? Anyway, this was espresso with the perfect amount of cinnamon, and the ever indulgent whipped cream! It is possible perhaps, that I shouldn’t have had coffee and then espresso on top – I was a bit energetic there for a while! But I stand by my decision – that was an excellent cup of joe!

The Local itself is tiny. But you still get that groovy ambiance. When I think of Aloha and surfing, I get the image of a totally laid back vibe. That’s what you get here, but the service is great.

The menu looks delish. Unfortunately, I had already eaten my breakfast so I didn’t get one of their rice bowls, but I will certainly go back for one. They also have smoothies and the majority of their menu is organic, if that’s important to you! I also felt the pricing was appropriate. Not crazy expensive, but you are paying a fair price for high quality! For more information about this awesome, all natural drive through, go to: www.thebigbearlocal.com

As a Big Bear Local – Local is where it’s at!

AMGEN Tour of California

Fun fact: Big Bear is the Cycling Capital of Southern California. Being new to the area I had no idea this title had been bestowed upon our city. It’s pretty rad. I mean I knew about the community rides every weekend and I see people riding their mountain bikes up and down Snow Summit, but I was naïve to the enormity of it.

This Friday Big Bear Lake will host the Amgen Tour of California. Stage 6 is a time trial and at almost 7,000 feet elevation, it will be a challenge for the racers. They are however, professionals and I’m certain they are ready!

Big Bear Vacations is having an AMGEN special: Stay 2 nights get the 3rd night free, or a 15% discount on a 2 night stay. So call us – we’ll book you an awesome cabin!

There are all kinds of activities happening in Big Bear during this epic race weekend. Here’s the timeline of events:

Thursday, May 18, 2017:
AMGEN Tour of California Expo opens in the Village
Welcome festivities at The Cave – cycling celebrity guest appearances
Amateur Time Trial Qualifying Event – top men and women advance to race course Friday morning

Friday May 19, 2017:
Redlands Bicycle Classic Domestic Pro and Amateur Time Trial
8:00 – 9:00 a.m. – Time Trial warm up
9:00 – 11:30 a.m. – Redlands Bicycle Classic – Domestic Pro/Amateur Time Trial
12:00 – 4:00 p.m. – AMGEN Tour of California Big Bear Lake Individual Time Trial
4:00 – 5:30 p.m. – Post Time Trial Reception, Legends of AMGEN Tour of California at Marina Resort
Los Lonely Boys at The Cave

Saturday, May 20, 2017:
12:00 – 2:00 p.m. -AMGEN Tour of California Pasadena Finish Viewing Party at Nottingham’s
Miss Liberty Dessert Cruise

There is also a PubFest located in the Village on Saturday the 20th from 2:30 – 6:30 p.m. Cost is $20.00 for singles and $35.00 for couples and can be purchased online at www.bigbear.com. It’s an awesome deal! 5 oz. tasters in souvenir tasting cups with complimentary appetizers!!!! Participating locations are as follows:
Big Bear Lake Brewing Company
The Cave
Chad’s Place
Nottinghams Tavern
Stillwell’s at The Lodge Holiday Inn
Murray’s Saloon
572 Social Kitchen & Lounge

For more information on this awesome event and participating businesses visit: www.bigbear.com or www.amgentourofcalifornia.com.

Mother’s Day

“All that I am or ever hope to be, I owe to my angel mother.” – Abraham Lincoln
May is the month we officially celebrate our mothers. I personally think we should celebrate them daily, but I appreciate that a day is set aside specifically for them. I am fortunate to have a mother that is awesome. She is my biggest cheerleader, she’s smart,
fun, funny and just awesome to be around. I could tell a million stories about why I admire her so much, but that would take years!

If you are looking for a place to take Mom for her day; Big Bear Lake is an excellent choice.

Big Bear Vacations is having a Mother’s Day Special.  Stay two nights – get the third night free!

Treating your mom to a weekend in Big Bear is a great way to show her how much you appreciate her.

There are so many things to see and do in Big Bear and it is beautiful here. The winter has left us with a lot of greenery and the wild flowers are blooming. Go for a hike and see all that beauty for yourself up close and in person!

If you are more into the leisurely pace you can take your mom out for a day on the lake. There are plenty of places in Big Bear that you can rent boats, kayaks or paddleboards.

Maybe do a little fishing.

A great way to wrap up the weekend is by taking your mom out for brunch. There are three different restaurants in Big Bear that will be having Mother’s Day Brunch: Stillwells Restaurant, The Pines Lakefront and Nottinghams Restaurant.

Call us today to book your mother’s day weekend getaway!!!

Spring Break in Big Bear Lake

Spring Fever hits me every February, (yes I realize it’s now mid-March, but my fever hits early). It’s that cusp between full blown winter and hints of warmness. I think longingly of warm sunny days, crisp nights and the knowledge that summer is just around the corner.  I realize this is a bit hasty.  I mean, it’s still technically winter, but I cannot stop the daydreams of tank tops, shorts and longer days.

Spring Break is a really great time to come to Big Bear Lake. We have so many year round activities, but spring is the best.  Trees and flowers are starting to bud making it a fun time of year to go hiking.  Big Bear has more hiking trails than you can count, from beginner to expert.  The Discovery Center on the North Shore is a great place to take your kids and explore the forest. Take a walk up Cougar Crest Trail where it meets the Pacific Crest Trail.  You can be a trail angel and leave goodies for the PCT hikers! For more information on what the Discovery Center has to offer, visit: http://mountainsfoundation.org

We’ve had a wonderful winter in terms of snow. Snow Summit and Bear Mountain should be open until the end of March, and if we get some more storms, maybe even April. Both of our tubing hills will also be open.

Prefer water over snow? Big Bear Lake reopens April 1st. Clearly a sign that summer cannot be far off! Go fishing, take the boat out, dip your toes in the water!!!! Book a spot on the pirate ship and learn about the history of Big Bear Lake.

After a full winter of books, learning and being inside while at school, the kids deserve to have some outdoor time and so do you!  We have a spring promotion going on with incredible discounts that will save the pocket book. Give us a call – our vacation planners would love to assist you with creating the best spring break ever!!

 

St. Patrick’s Day

St. Patrick’s Day, the luck of the Irish, the drinking day, the wear green in all its glory day, is almost upon us! This year, March 17 is the magical day of parties and happy and really, the day I call the precursor to spring. And….wait for it…. IT’S ON A FREAKING FRIDAY!!!!

Here’s what’s up at Big Bear Vacations for that weekend:

POT O GOLD – 10 lucky homes include a pot of gold – yep that’s right, you could walk into your cabin and find you actually do have the luck of the Irish!!! How awesome is that? Here’s the details: Stay two nights March 16 – 19 and your home might include a Pot O Gold! So call us!!! 877-417-6504

There is so much going on in Big Bear you won’t want to miss out. So I’m going to give you a list of the hot spots for your celebration pleasure – but please remember to decide on your designated driver before the festivities, or call a taxi, or grab an Uber. St. Patrick’s Day is awesome, but Big Bear Vacations wants you to be safe.

The Cave is a popular music venue in Big Bear and they are going to have a rockin’ party. Three bands are slated to take the stage; Manifest Illusion, Fused by Defiance and the Shamrockers.  So go get your jam on.

Murray’s Saloon & Eatery. If you have spent much time in Big Bear and haven’t gone to Murray’s then you are missing out. If you have been to Murray’s then you know exactly what I’m talkin’ about! They have an awesome staff, great drinks and you can sing Karaoke to your heart’s content. You can enjoy corned beef and cabbage throughout the day. Part of why I love Murray’s so much is because they don’t buy into the norm – you will not find green beer here. But I bet Irish Car Bombs will be on the menu.

If you are feeling a bit more mellow and perhaps not in the mood for a wild and crazy party night; The Pines Lakefront is a fine dining restaurant in Big Bear. They will open at noon and continue into the evening. Prepare yourself for Irish ballads, an amazing Irish menu to be paired with Irish Beer and Whiskies.  Sounds delightful!

Last on my list is the Convention Center. They are hosting the Luck of the Irish Casino Night.  Proceeds benefit Singing Pines School. Also, they are having a $25 Texas Hold-em Buy-In tournament – how fun! The convention center is always family friendly so if you have the kiddos with you, this is a great option.

As always, our vacation planners are ready to assist you in finding the perfect cabin, and possibly your Pot O Gold, for your getaway! Come join us in Big Bear for an awesome holiday!

Polar Bear Plunge

Big Bear Vacations & the Polar Bear Plunge
There are certain things that tug at your heart strings. Supporting the community and on an even bigger level, supporting all people in need is definitely up there on the “warm fuzzy” list.

 

Date: March 4, 2017
Time: 10 a.m. to 12 p.m.
Location: Big Bear Lake, California

This year marks the 6th Annual Polar Bear Plunge and it’s for a really great cause – the Special Olympics. All funds are donated to Special Olympics of Southern California. What better way to spend your Saturday? Donate $50 for a great cause, jump in some icy water and party with your friends! I mean coming to Big Bear Lake is all about the party right? If you want to get super crazy add a costume to that mix – get down with your crazy polar bear self!

On a serious note, Special Olympics heavily relies on volunteers and donations in order to provide opportunities to their athletes to compete in competitions, continued education and athlete health. By participating in this event you can make a difference.

“Special Olympics Southern California enriches the lives of more than 28,000 athletes with intellectual disabilities and their communities in Southern California through sports, education and athlete help.” – (www.sosc.org)

If you are unable to plunge into Big Bear Lake, you can still help. Visit www.sosc.org for more information.

“Special Olympics Southern California provides year-round sports training and athletic competition in a variety of Olympic-type sports for children and adults with intellectual disabilities, giving them continuing opportunities to develop physical fitness, demonstrate courage, experience joy and participate in a sharing of gifts, skills and friendship with their families, other Special Olympics athletes and the community.” – (www.sosc.org)

Big Bear Vacations staff will be participating in the Plunge – so come join us! We would love to see you there.

LOVE IS IN THE AIR!!!

With Valentine’s Day just around the corner, Big Bear Lake is the perfect romantic getaway. Snow, Mountains, Lake…. You can choose to stay cozy next to a fire, venture out for a day of skiing or snowboarding, or stroll around the Village to do some shopping!

Lil Pine Cabin – This adorable cabin is perfect for two people that are looking for rest, relaxation and privacy. Cozy up next to the wood burning stove and watch a movie. The dining table is absolutely perfect for a candlelit dinner for two. Surprise your loved one with flowers and wine and enjoy each other’s company away from the city. If you are looking to surprise your significant other, or you are planning this trip together, Lil Cabin is an ideal spot for romance.

Peaceful Pines – One of my favorite cabins on our program. It’s just dang cute. The spa located on the back deck overlooks pine trees and is perfect for sipping champagne while star gazing. It’s also perfect on those chilly mornings with a cup of coffee. Watching the sun come up with your significant other is about as romantic as it gets. The leather sectional couch that surrounds the wood burning fireplace is perfect for snuggling up with a blanket to watch a romantic movie. (Please see Hallmark channel for cheesy, happy romance!) Located in the Moonridge area you will be close to the slopes, but far enough away you can have the privacy you seek for your romantic trip to Big Bear Lake!!

Village Hideaway – For the couple that wants to bring their children and/or fur babies, this home is ideal. A fenced backyard allows your puppies and children to run around and work off some excess energy, while you relax and let the mountains soothe away the stress of every day life. The couches and chairs around the wood burning fireplace create a happy, cozy atmosphere where you can hang out while the family barbecuing expert hones his/her skills on the propane BBQ. Roast smores in the wood burning fireplace and bring back your inner child. Hide treasures around the cabin and create a Valentine’s treasure hunt for your kids!

Big Bear Lake has something for everyone! Don’t miss out on a romantic getaway to the mountains!
View all available homes and cabins here.