2017 Readers’ Choice Awards

By Central California Parent

Keeping kids outfitted, finding fabulous places for fun and even knowing where to grab a bite to eat are all in a day’s work for us parents. To make it easier we decided a little networking was in order. So once again Central California Parent Magazine polled all you moms and dads out there to tell us what’s worth raving about—and we heard you loud and clear! Thanks to everyone who filled out the Reader’s Choice Award Ballot—we’re sure lots of other families will enjoy checking out your picks.

Most Amusing

Roeding Park’s Storyland (890 W. Belmont Avenue, Fresno. 559-486-2124) where fairy tales come alive as kids walk into the pages of a storybook comes through loud and clear as one of the winners in our Entertainment & Amusement Centers category. Close behind was Blackbeard’s (4055 N. Chestnut Diagonal, Fresno. 559-292-9000) with its arcades, miniature golf, race track and more for family fun.

Best Beasts

The Chaffee Zoo, open every day of the year in Fresno’s Roeding Park (894 W. Belmont Avenue, Fresno. 559-498-5910), continues to be the favorite place to see animals. The zoo is home to more than 730 mammals, birds, reptiles and the Winged Wonders Bird Show. Coming in second place was Project Survival Cat Haven (38257 E. Kings Canyon Road, Dunlap. 559-338-3216) which is home to wild cats like Jaguars, Leopards, and more!

Waterpark Pick

When the mercury soars past 100 degrees families flee to waterparks! The Island Waterpark and Family Fun Village (6099 W. Barstow Avenue, Fresno. 559-277-6800) makes the biggest splash with families, followed by Wild Waters (11413 E. Shaw Avenue, Clovis. 559-299-9453).

Ideal Indoor Sport Center

Aerozone Trampoline Park (4155 E. Ashlan Avenue, Fresno. 559-225-2955) sprang into first place this year. Pump It Up (40405 Brickyard Drive #101, Madera. 431-7867) is second on the list for flying through the air and fun any day!

Must See Museum

The Discovery Center (1914 N. Winery Avenue, Fresno. 559-251-5533) is where science, nature and regional history adventures await for parents and kids alike. Also popular is ImagineU Children’s Museum (210 N. Tipton Street, Visalia. 559-733-5975).

Standing Ovation

Shine! Theatre (684 E. Escalon Avenue, Fresno. 559-549-4741) received a standing ovation from Fresno families. Fresno Music Academy (1296 N. Wishon Avenue, Fresno. 559-222-7464) also received rave reviews.

Party Pleasers

Pump It Up (40405 Brickyard Drive #101, Madera. 559-431-7867) jumps in to take the cake for best party place, followed by John’s Incredible Pizza (7095 N. Cedar Avenue, Fresno. 559-323-1111). Our readers voted Blackbeard’s Family Entertainment Center (4055 N. Chestnut Diagonal, Fresno. 559-292-9000) as number one kids’ party entertainer and Chuck-E-Cheese (Fresno: 559-261-4552 and 559-229-6200. Visalia: 559-733-3373) as number two.

Fantastic Gymnastics 

Families flip for Gymnastic’s Beat (5620 W. Barstow Avenue #103, Fresno. 559-271-9400) with a variety of gym programs for kids. The Little Gym (9525 N. Sommerville Drive, Fresno. 559-433-3434) came tumbling in second with their parent/child classes and more.

Palette Pleaser

Mini Monets voted Children’s Art Studio (Old Fig Garden, Fresno. 559-226-4791 or 559-799-5860) the best art studio where children can experience the intuitive art process. The Artist in Me (1085 E. Herndon Avenue #108, Fresno. 559-367-2084) comes in second.

Finest Footwork

Immaculate Trait (4529 N. Marty Avenue #103, Fresno. 559-347-7248) receives the most accolades for dance classes. Jazzy D’s (2730 W. Shaw Avenue, Fresno. 559-277-1767) waltzes in a close second.

Super Strokes

The water’s great and so is the instruction at America’s Kids in Motion (1205 N. Willow Avenue, Clovis. 559-324-7946) voted best swim school fins down by families. Jan Thomas Swim School (1849 N. Willow Avenue, Clovis. 559-299-2468) came in second by a stroke.

Most Noteworthy

Fresno Music Academy (1296 N. Wishon Avenue, Fresno. 559-222-7464) hits a high note offering a variety of music lessons for kids. Music Together (Fresno & Clovis. 559-458-8811) chimes in at second.

Karate Kudos

Bell’s Kenpo Karate (3622 W. Shaw Avenue, Fresno. 559-276-8873) achieves a black belt in this category followed by Pacific Martial Arts (4774 N. Blackstone Avenue, Fresno. 559-436-4641)

Special Delivery

Birthdays are best at Clovis Community Medical Center (2755 Herndon Avenue, Clovis. 559-324-4000). St. Agnes Medical Center (1303 E. Herndon Avenue, Fresno 559-450-3000) is second for greeting the newest member of the family.

Best ABC’s and 1-2-3’s

Voted the Valedictorian of tutoring centers, Kumon (1170 E. Champlain Drive #112, Fresno. 559-433-9344. 1731 W. Bullard Avenue #124, Fresno. 559-825-2028. 6701 N. Milburn Avenue #146, Fresno. 559-374-5939. 729 W. Lacey Boulevard #3, Hanford. 559-583-0477) helps kids make the grade in reading, math, writing, college prep and more! Also scoring high is ABC Private Tutoring (4774 N. Blackstone Avenue #8, Fresno. 559-916-5985)

Premier Private School

Saint Anthony’s Private School (5680 N. Maroa Avenue, Fresno. 559-435-0700) made the grade for premier private school. Also receiving top marks is Fairmont Private School (435 W. Fairmont Avenue, Fresno. 559-226-2347)

Grade A Preschool

Top marks go to The Growing Patch (5560 W. Spruce Avenue, Fresno. 559-435-4934). Also praised by parents was Kids Kare (4697 N. Bendel Avenue, Fresno. 559-275-1169. 3003 N. West Avenue, Fresno. 559-224-7987. 3375 W. Figarden, Fresno. 559-438-1921)

Winning Work Out

GB3 (Clovis: 559-323-4414. Fresno: 559-297-8656, 559- 252-6100, 559-438-3003, 559-448-9300) has the most muscle when it comes to working up a sweat. Crossing the finish line second is Aerozone Trampoline Park (4155 E. Ashlan Avenue, Fresno. 559-225-2955)

Favorite Family Night Out

Families flock to Red Robin (Fresno: 559-436-4200, 559-230-1868. Clovis: 559-299-4500. Visalia: 559-740-4060) for the casual atmosphere, great kid’s menu and reasonable prices. Applebee’s (Fresno: 559-322-7144, 559-261-2331, 559-271-9844. Clovis: 559-322-9890. Hanford: 559-583-8084. Visalia: 559-636-1605, 559-734-2332) comes in as the second course.

Pizza with Pizzaz

No matter how you slice it or top it Me n’ Eds (locations throughout the Valley) is the best place for pizza. John’s Incredible Pizza (7095 N. Cedar Avenue, Fresno. 559-323-1111) with its virtual games, bumper cars, laser tag, glow golf and an infinite variety of video games came in a close second.

Fast Food Find 

When the wheels on the mini-van go ‘round and ‘round all around the town, you’re sure to hear the refrain “I’m hungry!” from the back seat. In-N-Out (locations throughout the Valley) came in as the real crowd pleaser followed by Panda Express (locations throughout the Valley).

Tummy Yummies

Whether you need a spoon or a straw, mouthwatering treats that top the list are found at Menchie’s (3090 W. Shaw Avenue #102, Fresno. 559-274-9002. 6611 N. Riverside Drive #101, Fresno. 559-277-0277. 785 W. Herndon Avenue #400, Clovis. 559-298-2878) and Coldstone (locations throughout the Valley) came in a cool second.

Mall with the Most

Fashion Fair Mall (645 E. Shaw Avenue, Fresno. 559-224-1591) with its variety of retail stores and restaurants is tops with families when it’s time to shop or just hang out. Sierra Vista Mall (1050 Shaw Avenue, Clovis. 559-299-0660) garnered it’s share of votes.

Finest Fashions

Looking for lots of clothes but don’t want to break the bank? Welcome to the world of resale! Parents recommend Good Will (locations throughout the Valley) followed by Plato’s Closet (1053 E. Shaw Avenue, Fresno. 559-222-6700)

Picture Perfect

Children say “cheese” most often for JC Penny Portrait Studio (555 E. Shaw Avenue, Fresno. 559-224-8330. 2115 S. Mooney Boulevard, Visalia. 559-802-4019). Flashing their way into second is Milne (1285 E. Nees Avenue, Fresno. 559-431-0681)

Hairdo’s Done Right

Whether it’s that emotional first hair cut, a trim, or a buzz cut, the shear favorite is Cool Cuts 4 Kids (635 W. Herndon Avenue #200, Clovis. 559-325-7348). Supercuts (locations throughout the Valley) came in second by a hair.


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