City magazines are not new. Almost every major U.S. city has one. In 1983, Bakersfield was not thought of as a major city. However, one couple, Les and Donna Corum, saw something else.
They saw a vibrant, growing community of dynamic people who had refined tastes and a desire to transform their town into a better place. They also saw a business environment that was friendly, expanding, and in need of a new medium to communicate and establish brand recognition.
But, could the city wait for growth to justify a city magazine? The Corums’ answer was simple: Bakersfield couldn’t wait.
This couple would start a city magazine that would show the positive side of Bakersfield and help their city and region to grow. Thus the concept for Bakersfield Magazine was born.
The idea was to build a first-rate, quality publication. Editorial content would be positive, interesting, and well-written. The best local writers were recruited to bring to life the stories that reflect the good, wholesome, active life that those in Bakersfield enjoy. Advertisers who wanted to reach potential customers welcomed the opportunity to be framed in a publication that eschewed gloom and doom news. These goals would be reached in a style that would rival the best “Big City” magazines. Several names were tried, including Le Connoisseur, Panache, and Bakersfield Panache. In 1998, it was given its current moniker: Bakersfield Magazine.
The importance of a locally-published, quality magazine to the economic and social growth of our region has been vital. Businesses and people considering Kern County as their new home want to know as much as possible about the area. They want to know about the people, the business climate, the culture, restaurants, and services that await them. They don’t want to know about crime statistics and local scandal. They want to know about quality of life in this city. Bakersfield Magazine has filled that need. Potential newcomers will see the information they want in a format and style that reflects our region. Local readers have a resource they can point to with pride for it tells their story.
The implementation of the Corums’ dream reflected their understanding of their industry and the growth needs of the region. Expanding the scope and distribution of the magazine with innovative and practical methods kept pace with the needs of the growing community. Placement in thousands of hotel rooms gave travelers a beautiful introduction to our area. Kern County and Bakersfield economic agencies have adopted Bakersfield Magazine as the showpiece in their presentations to prospective new business. The Chamber of Commerce and Board of Trade include Bakersfield Magazine in their promotional packages. The magazine has become the premier publication in the area.
Regular features look at our history, our people, and our institutions and remind us of the wonderful place we call home.
Annual issues highlight important themes such as the Go Red for Women campaign from the American Heart Association, of which the magazine is a sponsor. Every year, in cooperation with the Bakersfield Convention and Visitors Bureau and the Kern Economic Development Corporation, the Corporate Relocation Issue puts our best foot forward to potential new businesses. The Dream Homes issue highlights the important real estate industry. And features continue to grow and change as Bakersfield does. The magazine promotes charitable events, has a little fun with some of the area’s Sizzlin’ Singles, and is a valuable resource for anyone living and working in Kern County.
As Bakersfield Magazine enjoys its 32nd year, we will continue to be a 100% local and 100% positive resource for the wonderful families living in the city we all love to call home.