Local tradition celebrates 27th year of operation
As the countdown to Christmas continues, Clovis and Fresno residents often start to engage in local holiday activities. Driving and walking down the various lanes around town allows visitors to view light displays, spend time with family and friends and engage with the community.
Cindy Lane, originally referred to as Candy Cane Lane, celebrates 27 years of bringing cheer to Clovis. Located on Peach and Alluvial in the Wawona Estates, Cindy Lane sees hundreds of people each night walking or driving through.
Central high school freshman and resident of Cindy Lane for the past 14 years, Ezekiel Belcher shares how living on the lane for a long time affects him.
“I have been living on Cindy Lane since I was born,” Belcher said. “My favorite part is when my Grandpa comes out dressed like the Grinch and everyone likes it. Being related, I feel like it’s my job in the future to carry on the legacy. My least favorite thing about living here right now is all the noise.”
Operating as an attraction since 1993, Cindy Lane features residents like Steve Smith who has lived there since 1994. Smith shares on tough situations that arise from living in a popular visiting spot for the holidays.
“I have been living in the Cindy Lane area since 1994,” Smith said. “Living here all these years the Christmas season can be draining. One Saturday night I wanted to go to dinner with family, unfortunately it was not that easy. We had to walk from our house towards Alluvial to meet our Uber driver because of the congestive traffic. Trash becomes more frequent and I wish people would understand that they are visiting someone else’s home.”
Although Cindy Lane can be a struggle with many cars and people in the area, Smith shares some of the rewarding times from living there.
“Seeing all the children’s smiles and amazement as they look through the car window is gratifying,” Smith said. “It has taught me to appreciate the neighborhood I live in. It started with a few houses decorating on Cromwell with little to no traffic. A neighbor then reached out to The Fresno Bee and sure enough, they printed our neighborhood in a segment they used to do about where to visit this weekend. That is when the community started coming.”
Cindy Lane is fairly new to the Fresno and Clovis area compared to another local spot, Christmas Tree Lane, which is running for the 97th consecutive year. Smith continues about his experience of memorable moments in the neighborhood.
“Living here since the start, I have experienced many moments that stand out,” Smith said. “One unbelievable moment was when a group of Harley Davidson bike riders rode through helping collect toys for kids in need. I enjoy when the carolers come.
“One time, four santas all hopped in an open-top Jeep and rode throughout the neighborhood,” Smith continued. I would have to say my favorite moment is when my son proposed at our Christmas eve party in my front yard. Additionally, I have had another proposal happen in my front yard except there was no relation.”
Driving and walking are both supported at Cindy Lane. Some houses set out hot chocolate, churros, donuts and other snacks available for purchase. The donuts sold outside of pastor Tim Rolen’s house are helping to build a new addition to New Hope Community Church.
In the following interview, Tim Rolen shares about being in the festivities for the past two years. This year will be Rolen’s third year on the lane. He shares on his love for the Christmas season.
Emily Penberthy, ‘22, loves the Christmas time. Penberthy looks forward to visiting Cindy Lane in the upcoming weeks.
“I’ve visited Candy Cane Lane for the past three years,” Penberthy said. “I usually go once with my family and once with my friends. I prefer to drive so I can see all of the houses and drink hot coffee. This tradition makes me look forward to the holidays, it’s one of my favorite times of the year and looking at the lights makes the season more festive.”
Cindy Lane takes around one to two hours depending on the level of traffic, day and time of visit. Aubri Foster, an FCS Bible and leadership teacher lives on Cindy Lane. Foster’s house is decorated with snowflakes synched up to change color.
Cindy Lane attracts many people from all over the Central Valley. Madilyn Foster shares on the joy of getting to now impact others lives.
“This will be my fourth year living in the neighborhood,” Foster said. “The most exciting part of the Christmas season for me is the joy of seeing people having fun and spending time with family. One memorable moment is getting to be apart of it all now. When I lived at Hume Lake, my family and I used to come down and walk it ourselves and now being the ones to contribute to it; it’s incredible. An impact it has on my life is that I get to see families and friends enjoy the season and seeing the joy on kids’ faces as they pass by makes me feel happy.”
Cindy Lane remains open for students to walk or drive through, Dec. 1-25, 6-10 p.m.
For more Christmas-themed articles, read Christmas Tree Lane displays Christmas spirit since 1920 or PROMO: Old Town Clovis prepares for annual Clovis Children’s Electric Lights Parade, Dec. 7
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