Submitted by Kim Lawson
OAKHURST – Madera County, also known as California’s Gateway to Yosemite, has a new look at the Capitol. At the heart of Sacramento, the California State Capitol Building, often referred to as the “People’s Building,” is home to both a museum and the state’s working seat of government.
The Capitol serves as a Mecca for school children, travelers and more to explore and enjoy the rich history and culture that is California.
Each year approximately three million visitors tread through the hallways of the Capitol exploring all it has to offer from expansive gardens, historical exhibitions to educational displays. One such exhibit is the California County display area. Here, each county showcases their areas offerings in a beautiful and expansive marble hall. Accessed through the north, south or east entrance, this is where you will find the newly updated Madera County display in all its glory.
Rich with beautiful photographs of Madera County, the display effectively reflects the diverse landscapes and activities offered by the area. Encased behind the glass is a perfect miniature vineyard with barn, steam train, mini sequoia tree complete with real sequoia cones, a carved wooden bear and even a hand carved miniature totem pole created specifically for the display.
You’ll begin to feel as though you’ve stepped over into Madera County itself. This display begs you to take your time and explore the many intricate details in depth.
Julie Fullmer, Director of Sales at the Yosemite Sierra Visitors Bureau, served as the driving force of the project. She enlisted the help of professional production designer, Jim Elliott.
Jim brought to the table 20 years’ experience working, or as Jim would say “playing,” with Disney. In addition to contributing a wealth of knowledge and skill he volunteered all his time and donated much of the material.
Together Julie and Jim thoughtfully created a breathtaking display worthy of the marble halls of the California State Capitol Building. After months of preparation, Julie and Jim with the assistance of Lynn Fullmer completed the installation on January 13th.
Madera County District 5 Supervisor, Tom Wheeler donated two hand crafted Native American baskets from the Mono Indian Tribe to the display. Woven with intricate detail, the baskets give the viewer a small glimpse into the rich native culture that Madera County encompasses.
When asked what he thought of the display, Wheeler responded that he couldn’t be happier with the result, “It’s friendly, warm, and there is something for everyone.”
If you find yourself in Sacramento, be sure to stop in to see the display. Better yet, come to Madera County and see how amazing it is for yourself. Visit us online at YosemiteThisYear.com to learn more about Madera County and plan your trip through California’s Gateway to Yosemite.
Pictures is Lynn Fullmer, Julie Fullmer and Jim Elliott
Kim Lawson is Director of Public Relations & Media at Yosemite Sierra Visitors Bureau