The center of California attracts visitors

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Visitors from all over make their way to our region for places like Yosemite National Park, but there is an attraction in the foothills near North Fork that attracts people for a unique reason. 

“We are at Pine and Palm Brewing,” says Roger Noguera. “We opened in March of 2016.”

One may look at the logo for Pine and Palm Brewing in Fresno and not realize there is a story behind it. 

“We are a small craft brewery here in Fresno,” he says. 

Roger Noguera has been brewing for a years and opened this shop up in the heart of the Central Valley, so he decided to incorporate the Valley into the name. 

“I was working on the logo first I drew the state of California and I had a star to establish we were from Fresno, my mom was like you should replace the pine and the palm on the freeway,” he says. 

Drive north on Highway 99 between Fresno and Madera and you will see the pine and palm that he is talking about. 

“The pine and the palm stand for the center of California where the pine meets the palms.” 

They say this is the exact line where northern California meets southern California, but many say it’s the middle of the state.

What many don’t know is that several miles east of the two trees nestled in the foothills is another not so well known marker.

If you head to North Fork you will see a welcoming sign, go a little further and follow the signs on Road 225 you will come to a marker. 

“We are standing at the exact Center of california,” say Ginny Smith. 

Ginny smith from the North Fork History Group says years ago many areas debated where the center of California was. 

“Professor Jim Crossfield from Fresno State, we contacted him and he and some of his students used all the GPS and satellites and all that and discovered this up here on the knoll is the center of California,” she says. 

This marker was dedicated in 1998.

“This brings tourists out here through town spending in town.”

Ginnie’s husband, Vince, says people take pictures right in the center. 

“We have been told people have been married here,” says Vince Smith. 

Smith says people have come to them saying they thought the trees on the freeway were the center.

“They say well I read that is the center, I say no we have proven that with satellite and instruments,” says Ginny Smith. 

“It is important to North Fork that it be here, and that people can see it,” says Vince Smith. 

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