Palm Springs weather heats up, Thermal breaks record

Palm Springs

Weather forecast as seen at 10:10 a.m. March 14.

Thermal hit a record high of 97 degrees on Wednesday.

That edged out the previous March 13 record of 96 degrees, which had been set in 1997, according to the National Weather Service.

That compares to the normal of 81 degrees.

Meanwhile, temperature hit 95 degrees at the Palm Springs International Airport, the second weather station in the valley.

That was 17 degrees warmer than normal, but shy of the record of 98 degrees set in 2007.

Temperatures on Thursday could hit near the day’s record of 96 degrees set March 14, 1972.

“It’s going to be pretty darn close to the record,” meteorologist Ken Clark said late Thursday morning. “I could see that being reached or even surpassed.”

While Southern California has been the hottest place in the nation, temperatures will gradually begin dropping to a projected high of 87 degrees by Sunday, Clark said.

Temperatures in the valley could drop back down to normal — and even cooler than normal — within the next 10 days, Clark said.


Palm Springs anniversary: Gifts that show off our desert oasis

Palm Springs will celebrate its 75th anniversary in April — and The Desert Sun wants to help showcase what’s best about our city.

We need your help to rank the Top 10 gifts for the Palm Springs area.

We have so many great artists, chefs and visionaries who set up shop at the Village Fest, the Street Fair at College of the Desert, the Palm Springs Open Air Market, in small businesses or on their own Facebook pages.

What gifts scream “Palm Springs” to you? Do you have any specific souvenirs that you’d recommend a visitor search out?

Snake Jagger's "Some Like It Out" Marilyn Monroe poster

Palm Springs artist Snake Jagger painted this Marilyn Monroe image, called "Some Like It Hot." (Courtesy photo)

We’ll get the ball rolling — but hope you’ll chime in via the comments below:

Now it’s your turn!

Add your gift ideas in the comment section below. In a week, we’ll let you vote to determine the Top 10 gifts for Palm Springs.

We’ll publish the Top 10 list as part of a special package slated to be published in early April.

Palm Springs residents set to debut on Canadian TV

Robert Julian co-stars in "Golden Gays." Submitted photo

What happens in Warm Sands doesn’t always stay in the Palm Springs neighborhood.

Four senior gay men and two lesbians who call the desert hot spot home will provide a peek inside their lives this month when the docu-soap “Golden Gays” begins airing. The first episode of the reality TV show is set to hit Canadian airwaves at 10 p.m. March 22 on the Slice network, according to star Robert Julian.

Two episodes will be broadcast back-to-back each Friday until the season is finished.

The series is produced by Cream Productions of Toronto, Canada. When filming began in Palm Springs last year, producers planned to shop the series to an American distribution company. There’s no word yet whether, or when, the American audience will be able to see the show.

Robert Julian is an author and journalist who lives in Palm Springs and regularly contributes to Desert Outlook magazine.


New Desert Outlook: Sports world stepping up to the plate for LGBT athletes

Scott Norton. Submitted photo

“It’s funny how they worry about getting peeked at in the locker room. I don’t even see it like that. I see it as, basically, family and I don’t have that kind of feeling toward family. Just because we’re gay doesn’t mean every single man that gets naked in front of us produces a reaction. We’re just like you, trying to become our best.”

Openly gay bowling champion Scott Norton discusses misconceptions about LGBT athletes in the March issue of Desert Outlook, on stands March 7.

Pick up your free copy of Desert Outlook at any of the following locations:

True Value/Ace Hardware, 1785 E. Palm Canyon Drive
Ace Hotel & Swim Club 701 East Palm Canyon Drive
Albertsons Sunrise & Vista Chino (Gay Section) 1751 N. Sunrise Way
All Worlds Resort 526 Warm Sands
Azul Tapas Lounge 369 N Palm Canyon Dr.
Brien O’Brien Hair Salon, 515 N. Palm Canyon Drive
Camelot Theatres 2300 E Barristo Rd.
Skylark Hotel, 1466 N. Palm Cyn.
Casitas Laquita, 450 East Palm Canyon Drive
Espress Cielo 245 S. Palm Canyon Drive
Desert Aids 1695 N. Sunrise
Desert Hand Car Wash, 645 S. Palm Canyon Drive
Desert Regional Medical Ctr 1150 N. Indian Canyon Drive
Desert Women for Equality 555 S. Sunrise Way, Suite 209
Estate Sales Company 4185 E. Palm Canyon
Gay Mart 305 Arenas
Gideon Fine Art Gallery, 2682 S. Cherokee Way
Golds Gym 4070 Airport Center Drive
Hacienda Resort 586 Warm Sands
Hilton Palm Springs 400 E. Tahquitz Canyon Way
Hotel Zoso 150 S. Indian Canyon Drive
Hunters 302 Arenas
Hyatt on Palm Cyn 285 N. Palm Canyon Drive
Inn Dulge Resort 601 Grenfall Rd.
Inn Exile Resort 545 Warm Sands
Just Fabulous, 515 N. Palm Canyon Drive
Koffi Café 515 N. Palm Cyn.
Koffi Café 1450 E. Palm Canyon
LGBT Community Ctr. Of the Desert 611 S Palm Canyon Dr., Ste. 201
LULUs 200 S. Palm Canyon Drive
Mail Boxes Ect. 611 S. Palm Cyn.
Palm Springs City Hall 3200 E Tahquitz Canyon Way
Palm Springs Coffee 123 N. Palm Canyon
Palm Springs International Airport
Palm Springs Visitor Center 2909 N. Palm Canyon Drive
Palm Springs Public Library 300 S. Sunrise Way
Palm Springs Fitness
Q Trading 606 E. Sunny Dunes
Ralphs 425 Sunrise
Ralphs 1733 E. Palm Canyon
Read Brown Hair Salon
Renaissance Hotel 888 Tahquitz Canyon Way
Revivals 611 S. Palm Cyn.
Riviera Hotel 1600 N. Indian Canyon Drive
Saguaro 1800 E. Palm Canyon Drive
Santiago Resort 650 San Lorenzo
Shermans 401 Tahquitz
Spurline 200 Arenas
Street Bar 224 Arenas
Toucans Lounge 2100 N. Palm Cyn.
Triangle Inn Resort 555 San Lorenzo
UPS Store near Revivals, 611 S. Palm Canyon Drive
Wang’s in the Desert 424 S Indian Canyon Dr.
World Gym 1751 N. Sunrise #F1

College of the Desert 43500 Monterey Avenue
Jensens Palm Desert 73601 Highway 111
McCallum Theatre 73000 Fred Waring Drive
Palm d’or Theater 72-840 Monterey
Plummers, 72-767 Dinah Shore
Sun City Palm Desert 38180 Del Webb Blvd.
Trader Joe’s 44250 Town Center Way
UC Riverside 75080 Frank Sinatra Drive

Rancho Mirage Public Library 71100 Highway 111
Shame on the Moon restaurant in RM 69950 Frank Sinatra Drive
The River @ Starbuck’s Coffee 71-800 Highway 111

Auto Dealerships in CC? (Subaru) Perez Road and Highway 111
Studio 111 67555 E. Palm Canyon Drive
Cathedral City Boys Club 68-369 Sunair
Cathedral City Hall 68-700 Avenida Lalo Guerrero
Cathedral City Public Library 33520 Date Palm Drive
Cello’s Restaurant 35943 Date Palm Drive
DiGS 36-737 Cathedral Canyon
Don & Sweet Sue’s 68955 Ramon Road
Palm Springs Lanes 68-051 Ramon Road
Revivals 68-401 E Highway 111
Sunshine Cafe, 36815 Cathedral Canyon Drive
Trader Joe’s Cathedral City 67720 East Palm Canyon Drive
UPS Store In Target Area

Old Town Coffee Company 78-100 Main Street, Suite 102
Trader Joe’s La Quinta 46400 Washington Street



Chippendales star lands White Party gig

Jaymes Vaughan

What would the White Party be without a diva or two to rock the stage and the sexy glam looks attendees expect? A few of our favorite ladies will perform later this month in Palm Springs: Carmen Electra, Alexis Jordan, Ana Matronic of Scissor Sisters, and Adriana DeMoura of “The Real Housewives of Miami.”

Event promoter Jeffrey Sanker is also mixing things up a bit. In addition to the women and the hottest DJs expected to perform March 29-31, he’s added a new position to the lineup – White Party Ambassador. This year’s circuit party statesman is 30-year-old Jaymes Vaughan, Chippendales performer and former “Amazing Race” contestant.

Vaughan, who’s never visited Palm Springs before, recently spoke with Desert Outlook about how he got the gig, how reality TV changed his life, and his inspirational dad.

How did you get the White Party ambassador title?
Well I bumped into Jeffrey Sanker. He was in Vegas; it was the first time I met him. He said, “Hey, you’re that guy from “Amazing Race.” I said “yeah” and then we started talking. I told him about all the things I’d like to do. Jeffrey said he’d like to give me a platform to do it, and it just went from there.

What are your duties as the White Party ambassador?
I ain’t got a clue. I’ve never been to White Party. I will tell you I will be at all the parties.

What are you looking forward to doing in Palm Springs?
First of all, I’m really excited about getting to go to this big thing that everybody talks about every year. I get to go with Jeffrey, VIP style. That’s kind of cool.

It’s a really cool music weekend. Being a singer and that being my background, music is the thing I’m most excited about. You can’t have a party without music.

What’s the best memory of your “Amazing Race” experience that viewers didn’t get to see?
The thing about “Amazing Race” is everything they show on camera is what really happens. The coolest thing for me is that we got to stay in the whole game. We got to do the entire thing.

One of the things you really didn’t get to see is the experience you get to have in some of these poorer countries. We got to see how these people live with so much less than we have in the United States. To see that and be in a race for $1 million dollars is to realize how trivial what we were doing was. We got to see how happy these people were, though they didn’t have cell phones and TVs. It was really a beautiful thing to see.

How has finishing second with your friend James Davis affected your life?
Finishing second was a little devastating. It wasn’t how we planned to finish. But us not winning was good because we’ve gotten so many opportunities. James (who’s straight) and I have been the grand marshals for numerous Pride events. We get to do a lot of cool stuff from it. … I always joke because I feel like a Kardashian. We didn’t do anything. We went around the world and lost. It’s awesome.

What did you think of the film “Magic Mike” – was it realistic?

It was cool in the way that it brought a lot of interest to our show, back to Chippendales. But it’s not what our show is. That was very much like a strip club. Our show is a multimillion-dollar show. It definitely confused some people who thought they would come to our show and have their dollar bills ready.

What are you working on career-wise?
James (Davis) and I are working on our own television show that’s hopefully going to be on in the fall. It’s a travel show being looked at by networks, but it’s doing it how we do things.

I read that you’ve been active in raising awareness about cancer because of your dad. Any plans to continue that?
Absolutely. You know I think this is what I’m supposed to be doing. You hear about cancer all the time. I just heard it but it didn’t affect me. Now it’s close to home. That’s why we went on the race to win the million dollars. My dad’s medical expenses are insane.

I have the best, best friend in the world. James went with me without hesitation. When we didn’t win it was obviously devastating for us more than anyone else. We weren’t going to win for us.

But these appearances we’re getting booked on are amazing. We’re able to take that money and give it to my dad. And we started this website,, and people from all over the world just started donating money to my dad. It was the most moving, amazing, inspiring thing I’ve ever seen happen in my entire life. We’ve raised $30,000 for my dad now, and we’re not done. We did win two cars on the show and we’re selling those to help as well. It’s given us an opportunity to spread this message.

In the end I want to create something that does help people in this situation – like my dad who is past retirement age and a military veteran. I’m in the process of figuring out how all of that works. I’m meeting with lawyers to learn how to do it right.

How is your dad?
It’s a daily fight. The one thing I got from him is he’s always in a positive spirit and he always looks at the glass half-full. We’re praying for the best.

Jaymes Vaughan is featured in the March issue of Desert Outlook magazine, which hits stands across the Coachella Valley on Thursday, March 7. Desert Sun subscribers can also see it at

Palm Springs ranked No. 2 spring break spot for gay college students

Palm Springs spring break

The Spring Break Pool Party at the Wyndham Hotel in Palm Springs is shown in this, April 12, 2009, file photo. (Richard Lui/The Desert Sun)

Palm Springs is the No. 2 most popular destination for gay college students on spring break this year.

So says, a “travel dating site.”

It surveyed about 15,400 users of their site who identified themselves as gay college students.

(Photos: Gays enjoy Spring Break in Palm Springs)

A total 633 of those survey responders said they planned to head to Palm Springs, according to the Huffington Post report of the survey.

The Top 10 spring break destinations for gay college students:

  1. Ft. Lauderdale, Florida
  2. Palm Springs, California
  3. Key West, Florida
  4. Las Vegas, Nevada
  5. South Padre Island, Texas
  6. Cancun, Mexico
  7. San Diego, California
  8. Panama City, Florida
  9. Miami, Florida
  10. Puerto Vallarta, Mexico

Blatino Oasis , Dinah Shore and White Party likely helped Palm Springs rank high — all events that have drawn more and more gay college students to the city, said Reggie Cameron, the entertainment director for Greater Palm Springs Pride.

“The [website] that performed the study that commissioned the report is geared toward attractive young people who are interested in vacationing with generous patrons,” he said.

“I suppose in fabulous locales like Palm Springs there is a long history of that sort of thing from the gay and the heterosexual community. However, I was told that the study itself wasn’t of users of the website, but among the LGBT demographic of college students overall.”

Palm Springs: Why Moby should visit our desert oasis

Moby at Palm Springs Modernism Week

Grammy-nominated musician Moby is seen Feb. 23 at a Palm Springs Modernism Week event. (Marilyn Chung/The Desert Sun)

Dear Moby,

I woke up this morning to an email from my boss about you: “Moby disses Palm Springs. Sort of.”

To refresh your memory, Moby, you wrote in an open letter about the “remarkable mid-century architecture” you saw during Palm Springs Modernism Week in mid-February. Then you added this:

“palm springs fascinates and baffles me. it’s beautiful and it seems like a great place to live, even if it’s a desert furnace that without irrigation is probably incapable of supporting biological life for 2 or 3 months out of the year.”

Moby, no confusion necessary. You’re flat-out wrong on the last part.

Let me take you on a virtual tour of the Palm Springs area to show you why desert living isn’t what you think:

The Living Desert can explain how desert animals have evolved to solve the heat and water problems. Visit ‘em — they’re open all year.

Coachella Valley Preserve

Hikers tour the Coachella Valley Preserve in this August 2011 file photo. (Richard Lui/The Desert Sun)

Or check out one of my favorite hideaways: Coachella Valley Preserve Systema 20,000-acre sanctuary for rare species like the fringe-toed lizard.

We even spent more than $2.2 billion on a 75-year plan — the Multiple Species Habitat Conservation Plan — to protect 27 endangered and protected species that live here.

While you’re at the preserve, don’t miss the amazing palm oases that pop up along the San Andreas Fault Line because of the water that flows underground.

Oasis Date Garden in Thermal

Or check out the Oasis Date Gardens in Thermal, seen in this August 2011 file photo. (Crystal Chatham/The Desert Sun)

Then swing out to Shields Date Garden to learn more about our robust agricultural economy and learn how we became known as the Date Capital of the World. The 123-mile Coachella Canal that brings in water from the Colorado River is far from our only source of water.

Or pick up fresh produce at one of three Certified Farmers’ Market every week. Again, they’re open all year ’round.

Wrap up your trip by soaking in the lush green of 124 golf courses — and, of course, a margarita under the misters in downtown Palm Springs.

Palmer Course at PGA West

The 18th green is shown here at the Palmer Course at PGA West in this January 2013 file photo. (Jay Calderon/The Desert Sun)

Still not convinced? The Los Angeles Times once explained that Palm Springs, which gets mere inches of rain each year, sits atop “a vast sea of ground water, which has been carefully managed.”

As our then-Mayor Sonny Bono said: “If we hadn’t taken good care of our resources, we wouldn’t be in good shape. But we did.”

Moby, we can’t wait to welcome you back for your DJ sets at Coachella.

When you’re here, will you meet us at the Coachella Valley Preserve to see if you’ve changed your thoughts on the desert?

Sending you warm wishes,


Soldier in finals at Modern Pentathlon World Cup in Palm Springs

Team USA's Dennis Bowsher, who is an Army Spc. and 2012 Olympian, had the lead of his group going into the combined 3km cross-country race and shooting event and finished second for the group during the men's qualifier at the 2013 World Cup of Modern Pentathlon in Palm Springs, Calif. on Wednesday, February 20, 2013. During the qualifier, athletes compete in four events including epee fencing, 200mm freestyle swim, and the combined run and shoot. During the finals, show jumping will be added. Crystal Chatham/The Desert Sun

A Fort Carson, Colorado soldier is in the men’s final of the Modern Pentathlon World Cup today in Palm Springs.

Army Spc. Dennis Bowsher, is the only American to advance to today’s finals. He’ll be competing against 2012 Olympic gold medalist David Svoboda of Czech Republic and and bronze medalist Adam Marosi of Hungary. Also in the field is world #1 ranked Aleksender Lesun of Russia.

Team USA's Dennis Bowsher nears the finish line in the combined 3km cross-country race and shooting event to qualify for the finals at the 2013 World Cup of Modern Pentathlon in Palm Springs, Calif. on Wednesday. Crystal Chatham/The Desert Sun

During Wednesday’s men’s qualifying round, Bowsher started the final event — a combined run and shoot — in the lead for Qualification Group C. He scored a personal best 1032 in fencing, and 1264 in swimming with a time of 2:08.16. He finished the combined event second with a time of 12:12.85 after only Christopher Patte of France who came in at 12:07.17.

Another service member, Air Force Reserve Maj. Eli Bremer, was the top American in Qualification Group A. He finished 14th for the group, but did not make the cut for today’s final.

Bowsher is part of the Army’s World Class Athlete Program (WCAP) which provides soldiers with elite-level athletic qualifications to represent the Army while they train and compete. Though Bowsher travels on the competition circuit, he is a soldier first and had to apply for the WCAP after basic combat training at Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri and advanced individual training (AIT) where he became an 88M Motor Transport Operator.

A 2012 London Olympics veteran, Bowsher told The Desert Sun sports reporter Patti Myers he is focused on Rio de Janiero in 2016. “Rio is gonna’ be our main focus and the main push for everything leading up that point,” he said. “Everything I learn from here it’s gonna be something I put in my bag for Rio.”

He and the rest of the finals field started the morning with fencing. The other four events will follow with swimming at 12:25 p.m., horse jumping at 2:35 p.m., and the combined 3km run with shooting between laps tonight at 5:25 p.m. The event’s presentation is scheduled at 5:55 p.m. All events are within walking distance of each other at Palm Springs Stadium and Sunrise Park in Palm Springs.

Sonny Bono declares candidacy for Palm Springs mayor: Feb. 6, 1987

The Desert Sun front page on April 7, 1987, detailing Sonny Bono's run for mayor

When Sonny Bono declared his bid for Palm Springs mayor on Feb. 6, 1987, it was more than one year before the election.

Bono had lived in the city for two years, though part-time for years before that, and had openly talked about considering a campaign.

When he announced it formally, the businessman and entertainer summed up his love for Palm Springs:

“I like it here. I’m a businessman,” said Bono, who runs a restaurant and tennis complex called Bono’s. ”But there’s an attitude problem. We need to grow,” he said Friday.

“My goal is to make this the desert French Riviera – the playground for Los Angeles and California. This is one of the great glamour capitals in the world.”

In honor of the 26 years since Sonny Bono first launched his political career, we’ve grabbed some of the most popular Desert Sun headlines from his mayoral term:

Feb. 11, 1989, edition of The Desert Sun

Feb. 11, 1988: “Palm Springs mayoral candidates clash in forum” 

Two candidates in the mayor’s race charged Wednesday that the city is being run poorly, but an incumbent and a former councilman defended their actions as city officials. …

Sonny Bono criticized the strict ordinances, budget problems and the lack of communication by officials with the public.

“It’s real simple,” Bono said. “There is a clique that controls this city. If you’re in, you’re in. But if you’re out, you’re way out.”

 Feb. 25, 1988: “Will ‘Hairspray’ set up Sonny Bono for stylish parts” 

Sonny Bono’s role in the film “Hairspray” may be the acting break the Palm Springs restauranteur and mayoral candidate has been looking for.

April 12, 1988:  Sonny Bono elected mayor, beating out six other candidates.

Dec. 30, 1988: “Everybody wants Bono shirts, babe”

A USA Today television show featuring a segment on Mayor Sonny Bono has prompted a local and nationwide run on his T-shirts.

Dec. 1, 1989, edition of The Desert Sun

Dec. 1, 1989: “Recall drive’s charges anger Bono” 

Mayor Sonny Bono said Thursday he is considering legal action against a cluster of critics pressing a recall effort against him.

Hours after leaders of the Save Palm Springs recall group charged that Bono illegally used city employees for political purposes, the mayor lashed back.

Dec. 2, 1989: “Bono won’t be investigated” 

Riverside County District Attorney Grover Trask will not launch a probe of Mayor Sonny Bono’s political conduct, saying the information and allegations submitted by Save Palm Springs leaders is insufficient to warrant an investigation.

Sept. 14, 1990, edition of The Desert Sun

Sept. 14, 1990: “Senator Bono? Mayor admits higher office is calling” 

Sonny Bono’s first term as mayor may be his last. “At this point,” he said Thursday, “I have to question whether for another four years I want to just continue being mayor of Palm Springs.”

Sept. 30, 1990: Sonny Bono declares his Senate campaign.  

We’ve got the Nov. 14, 1990, front page — with a photo of Mayor Bono talking about his Senate race — on our Facebook page.

Palm Springs movie: Sean Patrick Flanery continues filming ‘Hidden Away’

Filming outside Azul in downtown Palm Springs on Tuesday, Feb. 6. (Photo by Kate McGinty, The Desert Sun)

A Hollywood film crew continued its takeover of Palm Springs — and social media — on Wednesday.

The crew planned to shoot at the popular restaurant Azul from 7 a.m. until 5:30 p.m.

The film plan includes transforming the outside patio into a coffee shop, as well as scenes shot inside. It shot at the Palm Springs Art Museum on Monday.

Actor Sean Patrick Flanery tweeted this photo at the Forever Marilyn statue in Palm Springs. (Photo from @seanflanery via

The movie stars Sean Patrick Flanery — a lead actor in the 1999 action flick “The Boondock Saints,” also known for his roles in “The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles,” “Dexter” and “The Young and the Restless” — who tweeted a photo of himself with the “Forever Marilyn” statue.

It also stars Emmanuelle Vaugier, who has had recurring roles on “CSI: NY” and “Two and a Half Men.”

She posted a photo to Facebook of herself Sunday in front of the The Saguaro in Palm Springs.

Actress Emmanuelle Vaugier outside the Saguara in Palm Springs. Photo from @evaugier, via Twitter.

She tweeted a second photo Tuesday at the Saguaro pool, with what looks like a film crew behind her.

The thriller, called “Hidden Away,” follows a woman who escapes an abusive husband and starts a new life in Palm Springs, but is found and terrorized by the husband years later.

Also in the cast:

  • Ivan Sergei: The Mentalist, Army Wives
  • Thomas Calabro: Glee, Melrose Place, Nip Tuck
  • Elisabeth Rohm: Law & Order, Angel, Lifetime’s The Client List