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L IVING HERE COMMUNITIES: TULARERon HolmanNate Upshaw competes at the Rotary Skate Park in Tulare. Ivy Rideout, 8, standsstill as abeardeddragonlizard restson her headduring apresentationat the TularePublicLibrary. Teresa DouglassTeresa DouglassTulare Preferred Outlets continues to grow.

0000128163 Mark E. ReaderDO, FAOCOYour Local Ear, Nose & Throat SpecialistThe central & southern valley's only Cochlear & Baha implant centerHearing restoration surgeryAdult & pediatric hearing testingHearing aidsEvaluation and treatment for balance disorders & dizzinessComputerized Image Guidance Sinus SurgeryVisit us at: DrReader. comwwwwwww( 559) 791- 1779390 N. Pearson, Porterville202 W. Willow, Ste. 103, VisaliaLIVING HERE COMMUNITIES: TULAREBy Mike Hazelwoodmhazelwo@ visalia. gannett. comulare keeps making improve- ments to residents'options forculture, recreation and shop- ping. On the cultural front, cityofficials are building a $ 14 million librarythat will feature state- of- the- art technolo- gy and an environmentally friendlydesign. In the recreation realm, the city in 2008opened a $ 1.7 million skate park thatenthusiasts have said is on par with anysuch park in the nation. And a new 15- acre park scheduled to open later thisyear has residents buzzing about itsman- made water features. Shopping enthusiasts from throughoutthe Valley can look forward to anothermajor expansion planned for fall 2009 atPreferred Outlets at Tulare. LIBRARYThe new library is being built at thesouthwest corner of M Street andCross Avenue in Tulare, considered theedge of the downtown area. With a design that emphasizes efficientuse of water and energy, the new librarywill be just as advanced indoors. It willhave digital technology, Internet accessand even new Tulare City Council cham- bers, which has led city officials to pro- claim the site will soon become the heartof the city. Construction started in 2008 and thelibrary is expected to be ready by 2010. SKATE PARKRotary Skate Plaza at Alice TophamPark opened to rave reviews in 2008 atthe corner of I Street and TulareAvenue. The design is the result of input fromlocal residents and offers a variety ofbowls, staircases, rails, ramps and more. It is also lighted and has its own conces- sion stand. DEL LAGO PARKPhase I of Del Lago Park is attachedto Mission Valley School, whichopened in 2007 in northeast Tulare'sDel Lago neighborhood. Phase II ofDel Lago Park is expected to open thisfall at 15.3 acres. The features include awater- play area and a 1.6 acre man- made lake, complete with fishing forchildren. The Del Lago parks are at theintersection of Laspina Street andCorvina Avenue. OUTLETSPreferred Outlets at Tulare has hadseveral expansions since the shoppingcenter was built along Highway 99 inthe mid- 1990s. The 160,000- square- foot expansionplanned for later this year is expected toinclude more dining options. The expan- sion could bring about 30 additional busi- nesses. The center has more than 50 busi- nesses now. With a mix of brand- name apparel andhousehold goods as well as a 10- screenmovie theater, Preferred Outlets at Tulareattracts shoppers from throughout theValley. It also has proven to be a popularstop for those traveling on Highway 99, amajor artery for travel between Southernand Northern California. Culture, recreation, shopping options allprogressing in TulareLIVING HERE May 21, 2009| 45Steve R. FujimotoPhase II of Del Lago Park in northeast Tulare was more than 70 percent finished when thisphotograph was taken in February. The park features a 1.6- acre lake, pictured, which willinclude fishing for youths age 15 and younger. The park is located at the intersection ofLaspina Street and Corvina Avenue in the Del Lago neighborhood. Mission Valley Elementary School studentsJorge Medrano, 5, left, Eddie Medrano, 9, JuanPrado, 10, and Adan Lazcano, 10, right, walkpast the Del Lago Community Park to attendthe groundbreaking ceremony. T